This letter was from a woman who had a hard time understanding why a man she met online, who seemed to appreciate who she was would let her go? The question really comes down to exclusivity. She handled this well, but I gave her a tip that can really help in the future.
Dear Ronnie The Dating Coach for Women,
I want to find love but here’s what happened. My heart is broken a tiny bit. Met a guy online and had three amazing dates. But I was paying attention: he talked about how important his work is and how it takes a lot of his time. He also said women did not always understand this about him. And was looking for a partner to fit in when HE had time. He could never commit to plans and has some financial strains because of his business.
On the third date, I told him I would not sleep with anyone if we weren’t exclusive. On our fourth date, he asked to clarify what I meant by being exclusive. I said I only sleep with boyfriends and would date in a non-committed situation for a limited time – about 2-4 months. He said he could not offer exclusivity, but wanted to keep going out.
Then he pulled back, still called, but less touching base. We saw each other two more times and the last time I felt I had to ask for time and attention, more than he was giving in the two-hour slot he had given me.
So I ended it by email by saying I liked him, wanted more than he could give and wasn’t going to pressure him and get hurt and wished him well. He sent me a very sweet email saying how great I am – good date and communicating.
My question is, why would he let me go? Or was he never capable? I feel sad.
Thanks for any insights you can give,
Frustrated in Framingham, MA
I know this is painful and my heart goes out to you regarding the disappointment on your journey to find love. Having gone on about six dates, you would think this was going somewhere. Unfortunately it did not because this man has a different dating agenda than you do. Not sure if he is incapable or simply not interested in a relationship. At least you found out early rather than six months down the road.
The good news
But the good news is that you are a savvy dater! You did catch on – he is not interested in a relationship right now. His business is his priority and he is honest about not wanting to make any promises. She is his first love. You would always be second.
Men (and women too) often use the work excuse as a barrier. “I’m so busy and women don’t understand me.” That works pretty good on most women, but not you!
From my perspective as a dating coach, he let you go because he cannot offer what you want. Sounds like he wants a no-strings, no expectations relationship with a non-demanding woman who is terribly busy herself so she doesn’t care. Or a woman who foolishly thinks he will some how turn around and want more once he falls in love with her – extremely unlikely. He did suggest continuing, but you declined which was very wise.
I also want to mention that your timing expectations seem reasonable – not sure of your age but 2-4 months to achieve exclusivity seems fair to me.
Keep some mystery! Don’t give away your timetable
Something to consider for future situations. You can explain that you don’t sleep with a man who is not exclusive, but you might want to keep your timetable to yourself. Men are funny about fitting into someone else’s timetable. They don’t need to know everything that’s up your sleeve…let them wonder what it will take to win you over – it’s more of a chase.
The reason I say this is I had a client who read in a book to wait 30 hours before intimacy. Phone calls and dates counted. Unfortunately, she told the guy she was dating. Even though it took time to get there, he waited the 30 hours to get her into bed and then disappeared. The game was worth it to him – maybe he liked a challenge.
So, a bit of mystery is not only good for him, it’s good for you too.
There are many more men, good men who want a relationship out there waiting to meet you. Get back out there soon!
Wishing you love,
To learn more about online dating – Read more and Register for my upcoming program How to Sizzle vs. Fizzle Online starting Tuesday, May 14th