It’s Not You, It’s Him

Name: cdales |  Location: New York , NY |Question: Hi Moxie

I’m sure you’ll hear this and go same story different situation but I’ve been reading you’re advice and find your angle/take on the situation refreshingly simple and honest.  I’ve had this one situation in my dating career pester me and would love to get your insight on what actually happened…Here is goes…

Met and started dating the brother of my close friends boyfriend.  Things were going great – the first week was the “I’m so into you/I really like you” (BTW read your response regarding the saying nice things in the beginning as a way of knowing if you’re into him, totally interesting perspective).  After our first date he asked me out for the next day (I declined but rain checked) he started emailing me everyday…multiple times….followed by texts after the work day ended.  Frankly, I freaked out the first week because it was a little intense for me, but I still tried to keep my cool.   I kind of liked the emailing aspect, it was an interesting way to get to know someone.  The one weird point was after 2 weeks in he stopped trying to see me or it felt like it.  Same emailing everyday, same “what are you doing tonight?”, but he seemed to shy out of trying to hang.  I started to call him my penpal basically.  Granted I do understand that his job is 7:30 – 4:30 and then a lot of time out with clients/co-workers “schmoozing” if you will.  Mine is the same, and yes I know letting work get in the way is, well a cover for me.  So after once suggesting we hang out and didn’t I never tried that again.  I actually never really initiated conversation, let him sort of control as I was feeling it out.

Our last date/interaction was a mess…namely he was.  He was out with my friend/his brother and I came and met up with them later on (had plans that day).  He was a mess from the night before, was embarrassed about it and pointed out that we had to hang under better circumstances.  I spent the night (we were not even close to sleeping together at this point in our dating scheme).  Next morning was fine, he texted me after work, I replied, then he replied.  Then….nothing.  Normally I go with actions speak louder than words and he’s not into me.  A week later his brother was under the influence and gave me an earful about the guy I was dating/his brother.  Massive diatribe all unprovoked (I made it a point to NEVER speak about his brother with him) He had apologized because he told his brother to stop emailing as much bc it was too much (or something along those lines), he just didn’t realize that I didn’t mind getting in touch everyday.  His main points were that he’s loves his brother but 1) he’s an emotional child 2) all the girls he ever dated prior were idiots and I was the first ‘smart girl’ he had dated, which was ‘good’ because I was there to ‘push back’ and that’s why he knew his brother liked me 3) he has to ‘control’ situations 4) he is paralyzed by insecurity and the fear of being rejected.  I know we all are, but I can relate to the deep fear, all consuming all controlling feeling.  It happens to me a lot.

I did break and text him once a month later after all this.  Something along the lines of an inside joke, and ended with hope you’re well.  No questions necessary. He responded with a series of questions and I sorta played it cool.  Short response, no questions.  My guess was if he was into me then he’d continue. 

Any insight on what went down?  I’ve never had the juxtaposing behavior of I like you let’s talk everyday to … nothing.  Always on the fence of what went down and well, if he’s worth trying to get in touch with again.  I still think about him alot, which is weirder, dated plenty since then. 

If you have the chance I’d love to hear your feedback.

Thanks for your time,
C |Age: 26

This can be summed up quite easily.

He’s a mess.

The brother told you that he was, at times, paralyzed by insecurity and the fear of being rejected. Boom. Done. That’s all you need to know. It’s one thing to fear rejection. We all do. But to be “paralyzed” by it is not the same as having the occasional bout of insecurity.  This guy doesn’t even make his own decisions. His brother told him to stop emailing you. And he did it. Case closed. This guy is an emotional wreck. You don’t want him when he’s in this shape. 

What went down is that he isn’t any good with relationships. He probably usually dates girls who do all the heavy lifting and work. Not because he’s lazy but because he hasn’t a clue what to do. Do you want to be someone’s partner and equal or do you want to be someone’s nursemaid and caretaker?

You’re trying to rationalize irrational behavior. That’s what has you stuck. That’s where so many of us get stuck. Someone acts really in to us, shows signs of interests then puts the walls up  without warning. That’s not rational. I’m not saying the guy is crazy…just in need of some serious fixin’. But that is not your job. Don’t fall in to that pattern of taking in all the stray dogs and wounded birds. It’s great to be compassionate and kind. But there are some people that can’t be saved by love. That’s a Lifetime movie.

You don’t have to help him. Just don’t hurt him.

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2 Responses to “It’s Not You, It’s Him”

  1. Dimplz Says:

    I know you’re both in your twenties so you’re still figuring out who you are post-college, but I think you have done the smart thing by keeping your distance. Just because a guy says he likes you, doesn’t mean he’s ready for a relationship. It’s best to take everything at face value. Yes, he likes you. Now what? He barely took action afterwards. This is how you know it’s time to fold. Move on to someone who doesn’t even have to say they like you because they are showing you. You won’t have to guard yourself so much and you can be yourself with another guy who isn’t so cagey.

    Also, this is an aside and I’m sure many will disagree with me, but if you’re not sleeping with the guy, don’t stay at his house. Best not to make things messy by encroaching on someone’s living space when you’re not even in a relationship. I’ve been totally wasted and still gone to my own house or to a gf’s. There’s no reason you can’t do the same. I feel this is clingy behavior and sends out the wrong message. I mean, if you’re staying over and you’re not even in a relationship yet, what will you do when you are actually in a relationship? Move in? You have your own bed. Make sure you go to it at the end of the night. Just my 2 cents.

  2. Capt. Jack Sparrow Says:

    If you’re desirable, you have a lot of options in NYC. For men and women. There’s just a lot of singles in their 20s, 30s, 40s. It doesn’t always make dating easier, and it probably makes it that much harder. Moreover, those same desirable people are busy pursuing careers, dating, and relationships. I do think the odds are against you (for this guy) if it’s so difficult at this stage. I tend to think that if a guy has his stuff together, and likes a girl and is open to a relationship, he will tend to pursue her … at least for a few dates to figure out the chemistry. Especially if he’s a type-A guy in NYC. It sounds to me like he has too much on his plate to pursue you: wrong time, wrong guy. I agree with what Dimplz said. Staying over at a guys house if you’re not planning to sleep with him is probably sending the wrong message. He’s likely to think you’re a tease or you don’t like him (and feel rejected).

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