I am a 29-year-old, beautiful, adventurous, ballroom dancing woman in business school. I have dated and loved several men that were my definition of the whole package–intelligent, adventurous, ambitious, sweet, and attractive. Yet my relationships tend to follow a pattern. While I am getting to know the man and deciding on whether or not I’m really interested in a serious relationship, our relationship is roses and the wonderful things he does are bonus points! But a short time after I decide to open up my heart, something goes wrong.
At this point, my expectations rise with my commitment and openness (ie. vulnerability), and then I find myself hurt and perplexed by why he’s backing off. Talking about it doesn’t seem to solve it (ie. he doesn’t get the hint when i tell him it hurt me that you didn’t call me for several days when we used to talk every day). After we drift apart, I end up breaking up with him, upset about how yet another relationship that had so much potential fell short. I don’t know if I just haven’t found the right one for me, if I need to adjust my expectations, or if something else is going on.
I don’t believe my expectations are unreasonable. To sum them up, I would like to know I’m a part of his thoughts every day (a phone call to engage with me and tell me he misses me would do most days of the week), I would like to be courted at least every couple of weekends (taken out on planned, lovely dates), and I expect that we would weekly spontaneously relax and unwind together.
Not that my track record is much different for long-distance relationships, but when I’m in them (which probably makes up half of my relationships), his reaching out to me every day to engage with me and say something sincere becomes my primary expectation, but I also expect him to bring up the subject of when we can see each other again and eventually help make the trip happen.
Janis, I would like to know from you, first, specifically what expectations about the expression of love through time and words do you believe to be reasonable? Second, what’s your advice for me personally?
Well for starters my dear….YOU pick the WRONG men…reason being NOTHING you are requesting is out of the ordinary. That is exactly what they should be doing.You are NOT that young so that’s not the excuse..how old are the dudes you date? I will reiterate YOUR EXPECTATIONS are NOT unrealistic at all. My advice to you is shift what you are looking for, maybe the boys are NOT old enough? Is that a possibility? not mature enough–not looking for a “real” relationship? hymn sounds to me like that might be the deal breaker. Tell me more about the kind of boy you meet/attract and of course where/how do you meet them? Major question when do you have sex with them? Hope NOT right away??? The good news is you are young enough that we can correct this type of guy you go for (::::
You make meeting guys seem easy, but I’ve had no luck over the past decade. Everywhere I go I meet every demographic except my target: the single 30-something male. Everyone tells me to attend or do “X” because its a stereotypical male interest or hobby, but I end up only meeting married men and other man-hunting women. I could try the bar-and-club thing, but that’s not me. Facebook and other online social networks are better for maintaining friendships than meeting new prospects. I don’t know what to do. Please help. Thanks.
Sign me… “Wanting to Stay Home”
I wanted to ask you about “balance” in a relationship. When you’re first getting know know someone and when you’re exclusively dating them.– What is an appropriate balance of a woman being giving to a guy and being considerate without doing too much and damaging the balance in a relationship? I ask, because you mentioned some of the men you know have made comments that the women have never once treated them to anything, “pay for the popcorn, cook them dinner at home, pay for a dinner or drinks when out…” or anything of the sort.
I’ve actually done those things, but it’s always nipped me in the bum! For one ex – we were in a long distance relationship, and he got sick once about a month after we met and, I sent a “get well package” to him in London. When ever he’d come to NY to see me, the day before he arrived at his hotel, I would always stop by and drop off a small “welcome” gift bag for him at front desk for him to receive when he checked in. In the past I’ve also sent funny greeting cards in the mail as a way to show I was thinking of the guy (even if he was local and I knew I’d see him in a few days…but something he wasn’t expecting), paid for drinks or dinner on occasion…The last guy I was seeing – two months into dating (and he’d done some sweet things and showed himself well), so it was his birthday and I told him I was taking him out for the night. I showed up with a small birthday cake in hand, balloons and a nice Papyrus gift wrapped die cast model of a car he saw on the street previously he liked – then took him out to dinner and a fun show. He could not stop raving to his family and friends about how much he appreciated that I made him feel special on his birthday (he even admitted he’d never had cake or balloons on his birthday as his family wasn’t big on these things growing up). The following weekend we went out, he was happy to introduce me as his girlfriend, then the next week he didn’t make an effort to make plans in advance like had for the past two months (and there was a long holiday weekend ahead), didn’t call when he said he would, and a couple other things…and got really really lax, and started wanting things on his time and terms! I’ve had guys not even say, “thank you.” I’ve run into this more times than I care to admit…get to know a guy, things are going well… do something nice, even a small gesture, and it falls apart!?… And even more importantly than this, a couple guys I’ve dated hit some life bumps, and I stood by them and that even down like a plane in flames.
So I’m wondering if maybe the men I’m meeting say/think they’re ready for a serious relationship – but aren’t, therefore not able to appreciate a relationship minded woman, or maybe guys are looking to be shown appreciation and reciprocation in a way that I’m not aren’t aware of or don’t know about?…
*So for future reference, what is the “right balance” in showing a guy who truly is ready for and wanting a serious relationship, that you care and are considerate of him as well, without being left as though you’re the one being taken for granted? I will caveat that I’m definitely no doormat and don’t give repeatedly to a guy who isn’t appreciative – but I’m finding that men have a difficult time accepting kindness from a woman.
I look forward to hearing you speak this week at the lecture uptown at the Y! And yes – I’m registered for the bootcamp next month too!!
STAY TUNED FOR A REPLY FROM JANIS
I’m a 24 year old professional. I fell in love with my best friend. This was during the time he was trying to avoid a girl who was seriously pursuing him with all her might. We had gotten very close within a few days of knowing each other. We have a very special bond. We can fight for weeks and it all becomes normal if any of us says a stupid word or initiates a hug. We used to chat the whole day. It was all going very well and I had this gut feeling that he was going to propose. But one day out of the blue he told me about his girlfriend of 6 years. And suddenly I was catapulted to the status of a relationship counselor for him and his beloved. I tried to suppress my feelings and act normal. Things started getting normal again. But now, I am an emotional wreck. My life kind of revolves around him. I see him in every minor thing that’s remotely connected to the words ‘couple’ ‘love’ ‘family’ etc. I’ve cried and fainted and been near suicidal. My heart cringes every time I hear any word related to his love or any reference of her from his mouth. I met his girlfriend and found her to be a nice girl overall. I could never imagine harm for any of them but she’s super-practical and always keeps reminding him how she’s better than him and he’s getting the best in this relationship. See, this is how privy he made me to their relationship problems! And one fine day he called to announce they had gotten engaged a few days prior! They’re getting married in a few months. And I am ready to have a heart failure any day. Now I seriously don’t know how to handle this. If I listen to my heart and try to protect my sanity, I lose a very good friend who tolerates even my worst moods with a smile. If I stay in his life as a friend, every day I would hear updates of his wedded life. Seriously, what should I do? Please help! Thanks!
Reply from Janis Spindel
OMG breathe! Seriously I do feel for you that you got yourself into such a horrific situation like that. The GREAT news is that you are young, vibrant and have your entire life ahead of you. When you meet the next boy that you fall in love with all of this will pass. PROMISE been there and done that! You will have to have some time to “heal” and maybe you will not be able to be BFF with him for awhile. I do suggest that you do be honest with him and express all of your feelings and see how he responds. Did he know that you were in love with him? Was he in love back? Did either of you use the “L” word? It is exceptionally difficult to be friends with someone you were once lovers with and men for the most part do NOT understand that. Women are emotional…Men are analytical . Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus was written because the 2 do come from different planets. PLEASE promise me you will not do anything silly, I am telling you , your feelings and emotions will pass and you will heal. Realize that it is normal for your life to still revolve around him, but its now time you make some changes so you will not have to go thru that anymore. I wish you the best of luck and I know you can do this. You might want to really dive into your work environment for awhile to distract you. Start a new hobby even if its just running , yoga or pilates , do something to make your self feel better.
All my best,
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I have a challenging situation. I am an African-American woman, well-educated, highly intelligent (140 IQ), very intuitive, “incredibly beautiful, gorgeous, stunning” (so they tell me–smile) and as a minister I practice a religion.
I never tell a man I am a minister until I feel comfortable, so it’s not as though he is aware of what I do until sometime. People have prejudices against ministers.
When an online service sends me matches, they are much older, fat, vulgar, and not very cultured. They immediately want to paw me and they act surprised that I don’t want to roll around the restaurant floor with them.
The black men are similar except they respect my space more. The men on a higher level that are more compatible with me are not interested in anything but looking at my profile.
Countless attractive white men (and other races) who have viewed my page, turn me down when I wink at them or I write and attempt to open up a dialogue. Why aren’t they considering me for a companion, a mate? My ideal mate is accomplished, bright, attractive, and adores me. And he wants me to love him with every ounce of my being.
I want to nurture and love him, and dote on him. I am attractive, very loyal, mature, and quite sexy. I easily create romance, love to travel, and thrive on intimacy (including just plain trust & emotional closeness). I marry people for a living and do other things as well. Weekly and daily I am blessing the love and unions of other people in love; when is my turn? I am well-rounded and engaging.
So what’s the problem?
Lonely & Frustrated
JANIS SPINDEL REPLIES:
Well for starters I just might have the man of your dreams, IMMEDIATELY I would suggest you head right to my homepage, click on the link women apply here and fill out the application. After seeing More about you I will also be able to tell you what the problem is. Are you over the top religious or not at all? Clearly you are meeting the wrong men . There just might be a reason why you found me and his name is George !!
This is a beyond great dating question asked of a man for all women to read and understand.
I find these questions interesting, especially the ones from women who indicate that they and their friends are all beautiful, outgoing women who have so much trouble meeting good men. Yet, my friends and I all have the same troubles meeting women. It’s comical.
Anyway, here’s my question.
I just recently came across an internet dating profile from a woman around 50 y/o. It states: “I want to meet someone that I look forward to seeing…..again and again! I want the spark! you can’t start a fire without a spark. Do you ever put your arms out and just spin and spin and spin? Well, that’s what love is like. Everything inside of you tells you to stop before you fall, but you just keep going.”
I include this because it seems so representative of the expectations that are out there. It is difficult to find people who seem to want to give things a chance if they don’t perceive that this type of thing is achievable before meeting or upon meeting for the first time. I think we all know that this is often not how lasting love begins.
So how do we men meet these kinds of romantic fantasy-like expectations that are out there from the getgo?
Reply from a Woman:
Ugh! I hate reading those kinds of statements from guys too. It’s all about meeting some weird emotional expectation. This woman doesn’t realize that love as an experience differs for people, and even for the same person with different relationships. I’ve never felt like I was spinning, and I hope I never do, since it would make me nauseous!
Janis, I’m a single, talented, pretty, successful, out-going, sporty woman living in Atlanta, GA. I am 45 years of age, divorced of 7 years and am perplexed as to the complexity of meeting a nice guy to share fun, adventure, travel, sports . . . life! I have exhausted so many efforts of being open to men that I normally wouldn’t be interested in, to dating websites (eHarmony, Plenty of Fish and Match) only to remain disappointed in my search. Interestingly, I have a group of girlfriends in a similar spot (beautiful, successful, out-going, energetic, fun-loving, athletic, in shape, etc.) yet no luck in finding the right guy. I/we simply do not understand the difficulties around meeting a man with whom we could enjoy our time. I’m open for your guideance and suggestions for me and my friends. Sincerely, W
Well first of all you and your friends sound really awesome. Do I know you??
Clearly, it’s your body language which makes you unapproachable or you may not be putting yourself in the right places—with educated, well-groomed, commitment-minded men. Do you ever go to upscale steakhouses? Are you really being proactive about your love life; because you can’t just sit around waiting for “him” to knock on your door or prince charming to come riding in on a white horse?
Please give me some examples of how proactive you’re being, how many dates you go on a week, or where you and your friends go to meet men.
I have not been having too much sucess lately with the online dating sites in getting the ones I like to respond back to me.
Besides the usual (“You are attractive and sound interesting. I would like to learn more”), any ideas as to what I could say to spark their interest and excitement?
Matchmaker Janis Responds:
Hello Online Dater,
First thing men do is go to the photo so ….what do your pictures look like??? Do they do you justice???? What about your bio, have you stepped out of the box? or are you doing the common..I love walks on the beach fine dining, travel and going to the movies? (boring!)
Your pictures must be FABULOUS because men are visual, they fall in love through their eyes. Also, spice up your profile to MAKE YOU STAND OUT!!! Add humor to it.