I have a low tolerance for BS. The moment I see a fatal flaw in a date, I dump her. I’m not new to dating; I know what I like and what I don’t. I have high standards and I’ve been burned enough to know when it’s time to nip a relationship in the bud. Or so I thought. I recently dumped a woman because I thought she was playing games with me. Now I think I might have jumped the gun and dumped her prematurely. I’ve never been one to have regrets until now. What’s the best approach to “un-dump” a woman?
Dear Trigger Happy,
Many people carry baggage from past relationships into the present because they don’t want to risk another heartbreak. So you broke up with a woman and now you regret it. You may still be able to repair the damage if you’re willing to apologize to her and explain your behavior. At this point, you have nothing to lose, so you might as well be bold and call her. If you don’t know how you feel about this woman, take some time to figure it out before you call. Say something like, “I felt a strong connection with you and I’m sorry for my behavior. You made a big impact on me and I’m thinking of you. I’d like to see you again and make it up to you, if you feel the same.” Put it in your own words, but say it sincerely, not casually. I don’t know how you dumped her or how much time has passed since then, but if you act too casual on the phone, like, “Hey what’s up, Babe, long time no talk,” she’ll probably think you’re insensitive and never want to speak to you again.
Dating experience is supposed to make us wiser, not jaded. It’s human nature to make mistakes, but it will be divine if she can forgive you. If you don’t try, you’ll never know. Since you care about this woman, it’s worth taking the risk of rejection to call her. You don’t want to have regrets and wonder, “What if?” for the rest of your life. Hopefully, she’s more tolerant than you and doesn’t consider your hasty departure a fatal flaw. At this point, you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain.
I’m developing a complex because my boyfriend of five months never tells me he loves me. I’m very affectionate and I tell him I love him all the time. How bad is it that my boyfriend never says it back?
Lack of Love
Dear Lack of Love,
Why isn’t your boyfriend saying, “I love you?” There could be many reasons. Does he want a monogamous relationship with you? That’s the first question I’d ask him if I were you. If he doesn’t want to be exclusive, he may not be saying he loves you because he doesn’t want to lead you on. Perhaps he doesn’t want you to think that the relationship is more serious than it is.
If he does want to be exclusive with you, it’s time to address the next issue. Is he an expressive person? Some men are not emotionally expressive or affectionate. If these qualities are not part of his personality, you may have a long road ahead of you. Some people are not the touchy-feely type. If it turns out that he wants a monogamous relationship with you but he’s not an emotionally expressive guy, it’s up to you to decide if you can accept this. Love does not necessarily conquer all. With some coaxing, he may learn to warm up a little, but don’t expect him to change drastically. For some people, just knowing that their partner loves them is enough to sustain a relationship. For others, verbal confirmation of their partner’s love is essential.
I’m dating two men at once and I like them both. I’ve never been a multi-dater and I’m starting to feel guilty. Neither man has mentioned dating exclusively yet, so I’m still a free agent, right? So why do I feel so bad and how much time do I have before I have to make a choice?
According to conventional dating protocol, you’re allowed to date more than one person at a time if you haven’t had the exclusivity talk. However, dating is about individuals, and the individual men you’re dating may see things differently. One or both of your dates may already assume that they’re dating you exclusively, whether you’ve had “the talk” with them or not. Does that mean you’re in the wrong? No, but if you plan on dating one of these men exclusively in the future, you may want to choose one of them quickly before you blow your chances with both of them. A relationship-oriented man could be hurt/turned off if he found out about the other man in your life. Before you decide, find out if both guys are looking for a monogamous relationship. If they’re not, your decision may have already been made for you.
Since you don’t usually multi-date, you may feel uncomfortable trying out this new behavior. Multi-dating can be a wise strategy as long as you don’t drag it out for too long. Talk to your dates to find out where they’re coming from, and then make your choice. A quality man won’t want to share you with another guy for long.
Rachel Iverson is a freelance writer, dating coach and author, who lives with her husband in Venice Beach. Her book, “Don’t Help A Man Be A Man: How To Avoid 12 Dating Time Bombs,” has been endorsed by Dr. John Gray, author of “Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus.” For more information on Rachel or her book, visit: http://www.rebelgirlpublishing.com. For dating advice, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.