How Does He Tell Her He Doesn’t Want To Be Serious?

Name: Christopher
Comment: I’ve been seeing this girl for about six months. We have not had “the talk” about being exclusive, but we have been seeing each other a few times a week recently. I really enjoy the time that I spend with her, and we get along great. However, I just don’t think I am ready to be exclusive yet. While I have not cheated on her, I have been approached by other women about going out, and I am interest In doing so. She will text or email me every day. It does not feel nagging or needy when she does so, but it is clear that she is into me.

However, I don’t want her feelings to get hurt. Part of me knows that it is her responsibility for how she feels, but I am aware that the actions I take have repercussions. I am 41, and she is in her early 30s. I am divorced, and do not want kids. We have not talked about anything serious like that, but she knows that I went through a painful divorce several years ago, have repeatedly gotten “too serious, too quickly” in the past, and I don’t want to make that mistake again.

I started to bring up the conversation the other night, but her job was just cut, and she just gotten the news, so I did not want to pile on to the emotional drama that she was experiencing. Part of me says that that was just a copout for not telling her, but the other part says I was being sensitive to her needs.

I know what to do, I just don’t know how to do it. I want to keep seeing her, but I just want to back off a little bit until I am ready to get more serious, whenever that may be.
Age: 41
City: Boston
State: MA

 

Well, if you’re not exclusive, then you’re not doing anything wrong by dating other women. So my advice to you is to go out with these women that intrigue you and see what else is out there. You might realize that the woman you’ve been seeing for the past 6 months is the one to whom you’d like to commit. If she is assuming that you two are exclusive, that’s on her. I’m sure some people will say that you need to be upfront and honest from the start with the women you date. In an ideal world, that would be nice. However, that’s not really in your best interest. It should be understood by now that someone who does not express a desire to commit doesn’t want to be committed at that point or at all. The onus is on the person for whom commitment or exclusivity is a priority to bring it up.

I know some of the female readership will take issue with this, but I would just pull back a bit and wait for this woman to speak up and ask what’s going on. Let her bring it up. When she does, you don’t have to tell her you’re dating other people. In fact, don’t tell her that. That’s unnecessary. Use this inquiry to gently remind her that you and she are not exclusive. If she says that she would like to be monogamous then you need to be clear about where you stand. Until then, there’s no need to go looking for problems where there are none. Scale things back so that you and she aren’t seeing each other – and therefore growing dependent upon each other – so frequently.

She’s not bringing anything up because she probably doesn’t want to rock the boat. It’s even possible that she likes things exactly as they are. I have said this before: women her age aren’t anxious to settle down with men your age. If she knows you don’t want children, and she does, then she’s either hoping you’ll change your mind or has no intentions of having children with you.  If you clarify anything with her it should be the subject of having children. That’s only fair.

If you want to back off then back off. There’s nothing preventing you from doing that. Now let’s address something else that you said.

but she knows that I went through a painful divorce several years ago, have repeatedly gotten “too serious, too quickly” in the past, and I don’t want to make that mistake again.

It takes two to tango, Christopher. Whether you’re expressing a willingness to commit verbally or through actions, you’re still communicating an interest level that may or may not be genuine.  If you’re not looking for commitment, then don’t see a woman three times a week. It’s not that you don’t want a relationship. You clearly do. What you don’t appear to want is to be exclusive to just one woman.

Going forward, should you find yourself back out there again, be mindful of your tendency to allow things to spiral out of control and take on the form of a committed/serious relationship. Make sure your actions align with your intentions.

 

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92 Responses to “How Does He Tell Her He Doesn’t Want To Be Serious?”

  1. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    Great advice from Moxie, I think. The only place where I differ is that I do think the woman wants an exclusive relationship with the OP – most likely, she either assumes she is in one or she doesn’t want to rock the boat. I’m okay with the OP being willfully ignorant of this – after all, everyone is a grown up. But, I don’t think it’s correct for him to delude himself that she’s fine with him dating other women. I doubt that.

    I would also like to add that this question really illustrates what we were discussing a few days ago: What people say compared to what is actually motivating them. This guy is divorced, and is completely in touch with his feelings. He is not confused about himself, and what he wants. He want to date this woman but also to date other women. As far as I can tell, the only thing he’s concerned about is how to do it without hurting her feelings. If he dumps her some day, she might conclude that “he liked me but he didn’t know what he wanted, he was just out of a marriage and was confused.” Maybe he’ll even TELL her that. But, again, his goal is to spare her feelings while he goes after precisely what he wants – dating other women. This is how people behave in real life – they are self-aware.

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  2. Valley Forge Lady Says:

    This is a classic lopsided relationship where one party is clearly more invested than the other. But the person who is least invested likes the comfort of the regular sex with compliant partner.

    I stay out of these arrangements. I am currently in a realtionship where the guy is in 100%. Do I know where this is going….no. But neither one of us is lacking in integrity either.

    The woman in this arrangement needs to put on her big girl pants and dump Mr.Option Player. Guys like this can play this game forever. For too many people…the one they have is never enough.

    Mr. Option Player likes the ego trip of the eager younger woman but can’t commit. I can’t help but wonder if this was a part of the failure of his marriage.

    I am not male bashing! I have played the Option Game when I was getting hot sex from Mr. Dead End. It is best to get off the hampster wheel and find the real deal. Drop the bad card!

    If this guy is merely confused…..he should offer to put her in the friend zone while he “finding himself”. Men can’t do this!

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    • GI_JANE Says:

      I agree with this comment, and not Moxie.

      You owe a person that you have been seeing 3 times a week for 6 months the truth.

      Only reason you haven’t told her is your afraid the consistent sex with a woman 10 years your junior will leave you.

      Grow some balls, tell her.

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      • Valley Forge Lady Says:

        The guy is too self centered to be concerned about hurting the girl….he just likes the consistent access to regular sex. Also does not want the ego hit to being dumped. I am certain that he has implied commitment with his attention. There is a reason this guy is single.

        When a person you are dating keeps being ambiguous,,,,you need to have the courgage to say NEXT…..and hit the gym to maintain a fitness level to attract the next one! It works for me! No regrets.

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        • Katie Says:

          Totally agree with you ladies! Whether or not having speaking the truth/integrity is “in his best interest” the guy should always be straightforward with his intentions, in actions and in words (both parties should be!). When we look at the issues men and women have in relationships, oftentimes the person who wants to have a conversation about an issue just clams up… Why?! Simple communication folks… talking, solves a lot of problems…. Hopefully the lady he’s dating gets a clue and moves on. If it were me, I wouldn’t have waited that long for him in the first place… NEXT.

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      • LaMotta Says:

        Or maybe she should grow some balls and lay the gauntlet down.

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        • Valley Forge Lady Says:

          Women have to be courageous…..No man is last man on earth! If you see yourself as worthwhile you do not tolerate ambiguity. AND YOU DO NOT GET STUCK WITH LOSERS OR ABUSERS!!!!

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      • Kurt Says:

        I agree. The woman probably thinks that he must be really into her if he has been willing to see her three times a week for six months.

        However, the woman is very naive for dating a divorced man and not explicitly asking for exclusivity. She is not going to be happy when this ends.

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      • Curious Guy Says:

        If you are going to tell her the truth do you wait for her to ask or do you just bring up the topic out of the blue?

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    • Eliza Says:

      You really hit the nail on the head. I fully concur. Classic case of wanting one’s cake and eating it too.
      The OP is 41, not 21…and should think before acting, and allowing misconceptions like these develop. date other women. I’m sure this lady has options, and it’s only fair not to waste her time and energy. 6 months is long enough to more or less know whether you see yourself with someone long-term or not. And I agree with Katie. Sometimes, it’s not what a man says, but rather what he refuses to say or discuss. Know what you want, and be able to decipher if the other person is avoiding a discussion…inactions say it all. Next. Time is too valuable to waste.

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    • LostSailor Says:

      Such venom, ladies! Methink protestations of “no regrets” may not quite be true!

      I am not male bashing!

      Of course you are. You’re just not honest about it.

      Men can’t do this!

      Sure we can. And apparently some have to you and GI_Jane. It’s all part of dating as an adult.

      The guy is too self centered to be concerned about hurting the girl

      Vitriolic projection much? You have no idea whether this man is honestly concerned for her feelings or is self-centered. I’d say not piling on by having “that” conversation on the day she was fired is evidence of some respect there.

      And, to GI_Jane:

      You owe a person that you have been seeing 3 times a week for 6 months the truth. Only reason you haven’t told her is your afraid the consistent sex with a woman 10 years your junior will leave you.

      “Owe”? It may be conventionally courteous, but there is no obligation here. If they had agreed to be exclusive or had a close, longer-term relationship, I might agree, but casual dating over a period of months imposes no such obligation, no matter how much you might like to dictate other’s behavior. He also indicated that while they’ve been dating 6 months, they’ve been spending 3 days a week together only “recently,” and I’m guessing the increase in frequency of dates is telling him that things are starting to get “serious” and he’s not ready. There’s also no where in the OPs letter that says they’be been having sex, though the asumption is understandable. However, you’re last sentence makes no sense. He’s already indicated that he’s got options, so he’s not concerned about losing “consistent sex” and he’s the one with one foot out the door, so she’s not doing any leaving.

      It’s a shame when bitterness overcomes reading comprehension…

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      • Yvonne Says:

        Come on. You don’t seriously think they are not having sex, do you?

        “He’s already indicated that he’s got options, so he’s not concerned about losing “consistent sex” and he’s the one with one foot out the door, so she’s not doing any leaving.”

        I beg to differ. He’s got “options”, but that doesn’t mean that those “options” are going to pan out. He wants to keep the current girl around just in case they don’t. Not that he doesn’t like her, but not enough to commit. Or he’s just not ready to commit to anybody.

        Nobody’s forcing the guy to see her 3 times a week, and again, if it was completely clear that they were dating casually and non-exclusively, then why is he worried about “cheating” on her? Why does he say, “I don’t want her feelings to get hurt”? Why, if they are not exclusive, isn’t he already DOING what Moxie advises him to do?

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        • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

          if it was completely clear that they were dating casually and non-exclusively,

          Well, let’s see. He hasn’t expressed any desire to be exclusive and told her that in the past he has rushed to commit and doesn’t want to do that again. How much more clear does he need to be? He set down the terms and she agreed by continuing to see him as often as she did without requiring any further clarification. Nobody is forcing her to see him three times a week without any kind of expressed direction for the relationship.

          It’s as if most of the women in this thread can’t wrap their brain around the idea that a woman might not need to lock things down in order to be happy. You do. We get it. We heard you. You can’t comprehend how a woman could go so long without demanding an explanation. Maybe that’s more about your limited understanding of how other people view relationships and commitment. Maybe he does just want to keep her around for the sex. Or maybe he actually likes her but just doesn’t want to commit before he’s ready because it hasn’t worked in the past. If she’s not complaining, then why do you care so much?

          Not every woman is some fragile little flower being duped by the big bad wolf. She has a voice. She could use it if she likes. She’s CHOOSING not to. That’s her choice.

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          • Yvonne Says:

            I don’t know what the woman (I’m not sure if we can call her his “girlfriend” or not) is thinking. But if there’s no problem, then why is he writing for advice?

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            • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

              Why does it matter why he wrote in? He’s conflicted. He wants attention. Who knows? Who cares? It’s amazing how you’re willing to take some things at face value as long as they align with your opinion while over-analyzing and questioning the things that don’t.

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          • Marie Says:

            I find it interesting that you’ve assumed this woman hasn’t brought up where they stand. I got the vibe that she did. He mentions that they haven’t spoken about kids, but he says nothing about if they’ve spoken about where he or she sees things going. That they’ve spoken about how he’s jumped in too quickly before implies they’ve had conversations about where this is going. Why else would he bring that topic up? Taking things slowly does not necessarily imply seeing other people. Furthermore, he mentions that he hasn’t cheated on her yet. That’s pretty telling. If even he would consider it cheating to start seeing other women, then it says something about the relationship and how HE views it.

            Another thing that seems pretty obvious to me is that he does, at some point, see himself dating this woman – or at least isn’t ready to give up that possibility. His last line: “I want to keep seeing her, but I just want to back off a little bit until I am ready to get more serious, whenever that may be.” He uses the words ‘until’ and ‘whenever’. He never says ‘if’. If he starts seeing other women behind her back without telling her how he feels, he runs the risk of losing that possibility. If she does consider this to be potentially serious, she very well might feel betrayed. It can be rationalized down to ‘well, there was no talk of exclusivity, so it’s not wrong’, but all of that rationalization will have no impact on how she feels about it later.

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            • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

              It can be rationalized down to ‘well, there was no talk of exclusivity, so it’s not wrong’,

              That’s not a rationalization. No expressed exclusivity means they can date other people. Period. That’s it.

              If he starts seeing other women behind her back without telling her how he feels, he runs the risk of losing that possibility.

              And he runs an even greater risk of losing her if he does speak up. If he has other women expressing interest, then he knows he has options. So it’s not about his desire to maintain consistent sex. He likes her. He just isn’t ready to make any serious sacrifices.Call it what you ever you like. A technicality. But that technicality is the difference been cheating and not cheating.

              The guy from last week who committed to the woman who wouldn’t have the three way got the same amount of shit. That guy committed before he was ready and people gave him hell for it. Now a guy is being cautious and not making a promise he can’t keep and he’s still getting shit for it.

              If the woman had expressed a desire to be more exclusive, don’t you think he would have brought that part up? Isn’t it possible that she brought that up and that’s when he told her he wasn’t ready for something serious?

              Stop advocating that women take this passive role in their relationships. If you want something, ask for it. If you stay quiet, you’re equally responsible for “having your time wasted.” Maybe – just maybe – she’s perfectly okay with him taking his time. Isn’t that a possibility? Or is it assumed, because she’s a woman, that she’s suffering in silence somehow wanting to know where things are headed?

              It’s astounding to me how so many women LOVE to take this self-victimizing stance when it comes to men and relationships.

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              • Marie Says:

                Yes, you are right. She very well might be okay with it. But if that is the case, then him bringing it up to her should have a positive impact on their relationship, not negative, because then they will both be on the same page.

                What I find amazing is that the biggest point that a few of us have tried to make – one that you refuse to even acknowledge – is that he would consider it cheating on her if he started to see other women. You’re right, technically, without the talk it isn’t cheating. Yet, he considers it to be. That doesn’t tell you anything? Really?

                My point here is that he really does seem to like this woman. At 6 months, you should be starting to build trust with someone you’re seeing. IF (and that’s only an if) she considers this serious, it might not even be crossing her mind that he wants to see other people. Even if it’s technically not cheating, if she feels like it is, then the technicality won’t matter. She’ll still be upset and trust will be broken. If she’s okay with him taking his time, then him having a conversation with her shouldn’t ruin anything, but strengthen it.

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              • Yvonne Says:

                We can only analyze the info that we have. He’s the one dating her. We assume she’s not okay with it because HE is concerned about HURTING her, and HE is the one who mentions cheating. She may be okay with him dating others, but given the way he has framed their relationship, I doubt it. If she wrote in asking if she should initiate the talk, I’d advise her to do that. But she isn’t writing in, and he is. If she IS okay with him dating others, he has lost nothing. Going out with other women behind her back without knowing how she feels isn’t honest.

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              • sj Says:

                Spot on Moxie. The guy gets shit no matter how he behaves from some in the crowd. At least THIS guy appears to have some concern for how his actions would impact the woman, and not just his “access to sex”.

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  3. Yvonne Says:

    Christopher says he has not “cheated” on his girlfriend…yet, he wants to date others, and is wondering what he should do. I think he knows that his girl wouldn’t like it, and he’s hiding behind the act that they haven’t had an exclusivity talk yet. If they are not dating exclusively, then he really wouldn’t be cheating, right? However, I think he knows that she’s into him, that she’s calling or texting daily, and that she likely assumes that he’s just as into her. I believe that the only reason she hasn’t brought up “the talk” yet is because she knows that he ” went through a painful divorce several years ago, (has) repeatedly gotten “too serious, too quickly” in the past, and (doesn’t) want to make that mistake again.” Plus, a lot of dating advice out there tells women not to initiate “the talk”, and that the guy should be the one to lead.

    He also writes, “Part of me says that that was just a copout for not telling her, but the other part says I was being sensitive to her needs.” I’m sorry, but “being sensitive to her needs” IS a cop out for not being honest with her because she’s already going through a tough time.

    “I know what to do, I just don’t know how to do it. I want to keep seeing her, but I just want to back off a little bit until I am ready to get more serious, whenever that may be.” He knows what he wants to do, which is to have his cake and eat it too, and I’m thinking he knows the lady won’t be receptive. Six months is enough time to decide if you want to date someone exclusively.

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  4. Yvonne Says:

    I’m also confused by the comment, “If you’re not looking for commitment, then don’t see a woman three times a week. It’s not that you don’t want a relationship. You clearly do. What you don’t appear to want is to be exclusive to just one woman.

    Going forward, should you find yourself back out there again, be mindful of your tendency to allow things to spiral out of control and take on the form of a relationship.”

    Don’t most relationships imply exclusivity? Most people I know aren’t looking for open relationships. Why advise the OP not to let things get “out of control and take on the form of a relationship”, if it’s so “clear” that is what he wants? Sounds more like he just wants casual dating, and not a relationship.

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    • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

      It should have read, “take on the form of a serious/committed relationship.” I fixed it.

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  5. Matt Says:

    Well, it appears that the OP might have already been very clear about his intentions already and she hasn’t picked up on it. “We have not talked about anything serious like that, but she knows that I went through a painful divorce several years ago, have repeatedly gotten ‘too serious, too quickly’ in the past, and I don’t want to make that mistake again.”

    The thing is, I know from experience that in these cases, you have to be as direct as a brick to the face. Even if you think you’re being clear from the get-go with the other person, if the other person really really likes you, they’ll rationalize what you say into what they want to hear.

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    • Yvonne Says:

      The woman could be reading his comment about his divorce as implying that he just wants to take things slowly, which may be why she hasn’t broached “the talk” yet. IMO, that’s a convenient “out” for him. It also implies some openness to getting serious again at some point, which doesn’t appear to be the case.

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      • Matt Says:

        He might absolutely want to get serious again with someone at some point, it just appears that he doesn’t want to get serious with HER, which is the issue.

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  6. Me Says:

    Uhmm you’ve been dating this person non-seriously for 6 months? So tell me, what do you think dating is for? Don’t you wish that people could try each other out without getting emotionally involved? Test driving a person who actually be an option!

    I think that wise and ancient thing to do, is to marry her. No man spends 6 months with someone without the intention of marrying, but if he isn’t he definitely owes her. Wasting a woman’s time is extremely base.

    I’m a little stricter though, my concept would go a bit further than the above: I think that finding a mate should be like job hunting. You either accept the offer made to you upfront, or else you keep looking. You can’t do both at the same time, because obviously it puts you into the pickle you are in right now, and then you need to start asking for advice.

    People aren’t like cars, you can’t take them for a long drive until you run them out, and after all that, finally make your decision what you want. You either go with it now, and buy it and take it home now, or you get off the lot and go look somewhere else.

    -Deborah

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    • Me Says:

      btw what would you be dating other women for? What are you looking for? to marry several woman, like a harem?

      Women are not in the market to goof around all day. If your intent isn’t to get married, then I suggest you quit dating. Because dating is courtship to marriage, flat out.

      If you disagree, fine, then be confused. I don’t care!

      I am just saying, if you are going to leave this person, accept that fact that you are a base human being like the rest of the guys out there, and take your medicine. You really deserve a huge slap across the face, and then some! What do you think she is? That she should just stand around and wait for you to dilly dally, while her time clock is ticking? You are a piece of garbage.

      Now, do the right thing. marry her. if you don’t PLEASE get out of the dating market, we don’t need losers like you.

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      • Valley Forge Lady Says:

        Marriage to this guy would be a huge mistake! Learn to say NEXT to self absorbed people. THEY NEVER CHANGE

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      • LostSailor Says:

        If your intent isn’t to get married, then I suggest you quit dating. Because dating is courtship to marriage, flat out.

        Flat out wrong. So divorced men and/or men who are not actively seeking marriage should just quit dating to make your life more convenient? Not going to happen. There are too many women who will gladly date these men without a though of marriage.

        That she should just stand around and wait for you to dilly dally, while her time clock is ticking? You are a piece of garbage.

        You don’t even know if this woman wants to get married. Men are not garbage because they don’t want to marry you. Perhaps if you had started your marriage search earlier, you wouldn’t be in this position; but acknowledging that would mean you’d have to accept responsibility for your own behavior, rather than blaming men.

        From your comments below:

        Everyone got married up too soon, leaving me ALONE still looking…and now they are all divorced and want ME, and I have to say no.

        Yes, it’s all someone else’s fault that they married someone other than you.

        If they had done things right and made wiser choices…then they would have MADE a wiser decision.

        Such as waiting around to marry you when you were ready? Actually it sounds like all those men made exactly the right choice in not marrying you. The only mistake they’re making is “wanting you” now that they are divorced. They should have better sense. Rather than blaming men, a more productive course would be to state emphatically to all prospective dates that you are interested in only marriage to men who have never been married and as soon as possible. That ought to screen out those men who are unwilling to date on your terms, which actually should be all of them.

        And by the way, the only way divorce is acceptable is if someone’s life is in danger.

        That’s not correct. The only acceptable reason for divorce is sexual infidelity (adultery) on the part of a spouse. Period. At least according to the Bible…

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        • tracy Says:

          I agree non-marriage minded men should not be dating because dating should be for marriage. if there are women agreeing to date for fun, they either have serious emotional problems, been married, or they are lying. Men do not be fooled 90% of women who date want to marry. Its the nature of women, women do not date for fun period.

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      • Kurt Says:

        I have to tell you that the woman in the letter is pretty stupid for not making things clear. It is obvious that the OP wants to play the field, and his woman probably suspects this, which is all the more reason for her to clarify things. Women who choose to date players really shouldn’t be surprised when they discover that the players they are dating don’t want to settle. Dating a divorced man so much older should have been her first red flag.

        The woman here definitely deserves much of the blame if this blows up. If she is even remotely attractive, then I am certain she turned down far more suitable and stable men to be with this player.

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        • tracy Says:

          Since he is divorced and older the younger woman i sprobably thinking that he wants to settle down and that since he is older , he may be more mature than regular men her age. oy is she in for a surprise. Poor thing. Younger women do not realize sometimes that older single men over 40 have the player game on lockdown.

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  7. Me Says:

    And by the way, the only way divorce is acceptable is if someone’s life is in danger. To get divorced for “any reason” is garbage. People are flexible, and relationships go through phases. People are so flexible that they can chose ANY mate out there and probably make it work!

    Well I shouldn’t say you should be dating anyone. Divorce doesn’t exist in the eyes of God, and marriage was designed and invented by God. In reality ( reality is spiritually) you are still married no matter what legal pieces of paper people give you. because legalism isn’t real, it’s merely systems made up by man. Right now you are committing adultery. Absolutely.

    So really you are not allowed to be dating this woman in the first place. shame on you.

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    • Pedro Says:

      “you are still married no matter what legal pieces of paper people give you”…sigh, organized religion.

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    • Kurt Says:

      If you really believe what you wrote, then you should cast at least as much blame on the woman for dating the OP, knowing full well that he is divorced.

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  8. Me Says:

    People like you have made it atrocious for people who are faithful. do you know that I don’t trust men who want to date me if they are in their 40’s, or sometimes 30’s? I can’t date someone who’s been married!! No Christian can, actually.

    This means I’ve had to go out of my way to date 20 year olds because at least I know I’m safe from divorced people! but it’s gawd aweful. Everyone got married up too soon, leaving me ALONE still looking…and now they are all divorced and want ME, and I have to say no.

    If they had done things right and made wiser choices, even if they had to wait several years to mature (develop their frontal cortex, which is usually by around age 29) then they would have MADE a wiser decision.

    Instead they all went by their hormones!

    and so now I’m stuck with all these guys that I know would be good for me, except I can’t date them because I’d be sinning against God./

    People are such losers these days. If they would have listened to God in the first place, and done things right, everyone would be happy and benefiting, but instead people are just doing stupidity and being fools, instead of taking God’s caring advice, and now the world is a piece of garbage.

    Well, thanks a lot.

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  9. Me Says:

    And then the people who DO try to take God’s advice never do it right. False Christians, setting a bad example for people, because their heart isn’t into their own walk! ridiculous. and so people use that as an excuse as if Christianity doesn’t work. oh yes everyone looks for an excuse. I’ve seen communities of Christians work absolutely beautifully! When everyone is into it in the right way…it’s the most beautiful and well oiled machine you’ve ever seen, people work together sooooo well! I’m just sad that people don’t see that very often, because they don’t want to look. Anyway, all the values people have these days are compromised and don’t work. as a result you have millions of people making money on self help books. pfft!

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    • Valley Forge Lady Says:

      In talking about Christian culture,or other faith based philosophies you are dealing with the core values of love. In too many of the other me first groups…..the center is self. This is a major culture clash.

      When Self is the core value…..relationships fail in the long term…always!

      Love is not selfish.

      GET REAL!!!!

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  10. coffeestop Says:

    If the LW cared about the woman’s feelings he actually would have explicitly told her he did not desire exclusivity. What he cares about is keeping his regular sex and companionship gig while seeking absolution for looking to hook up with other women who have “approached” him. I am not suggesting everybody owes society the debt of being in an exclusive relationship but after six months of getting together regularly if he actually cared about her feelings he would just end the relationship. He cares about his own feelings, he wants to spare himself anything that make shim feel bad about himself.

    She is probably being a bit cowardly chances are she secretly wishes for exclusivity and much more and keeps thinking that if she “proves” herself he will change his ideas about the future and his potential future with her. She is “into him” and thinks that entitles her to some consideration for exclusivity. Wrong. Women fool themselves about this all the time and the return rate is pretty low.

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  11. Missy Says:

    If a guy I had been seeing for 6 months- several times a week -began to pull back; I wouldn’t “speak up”.
    I’d get the message- loud and clear…he’s just not that into me.
    OK, fine- suit yourself!
    I wouldn’t have been texting daily tho, either.
    For men it seems to be all about the chase.

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    • Eliza Says:

      Missy–not for ALL men. For boys–it’s just about the chase. however, once a man does enjoy a woman’s company, and not just looking for regular casual sex – “while” they pursue other options (“greener grass syndrome”) – they actually will stick around. But women have to realize that not all men care or think about the other person’s feelings. They have their own agenda and ulterior motives. If a man is seeing a woman 3x a week regularly – and they are intimate…yet he wants to dates around, clearly – he is looking to benefit himself. This is why if you are looking for an exclusive arrangement from the start, you need to speak up, about your expectations and wants. Personally, rather than text him daily–she needs to back off, and date other men. That’s what she needs to do. Have options. The right guy will come along, and if 2 people are truly aligned and right for each other, exclusivity has a way of naturally evolving. Not like some awkward 6-month dance like this. Where a woman has to tippy toe around such discussions. Be upfront. If you are not getting what you know you want at this time frame…move on. Some people will never know what they want…because they are too busy wondering “what’s behind door number 2?” Perhaps a bigger and better prize. Those people end up alone and grey in nursing homes! Lol. You know what I mean.

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  12. Linda Says:

    Why dont you just date
    other divorcee, who already have kids?
    Why do you need to deceive others who are hopeful
    for marriage & kids and ruin it for them? Is it because
    you are already runined? This advice is dishonest and immature.

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  13. Linda Says:

    No. Dont answer. I think I know. Because someone
    who is hopeful for marriage and commitment will
    be more giving then a divorcee who already has kids.
    You will find another divorcee like you who wont
    give a crap about your needs and invest as liitle
    as possible into the relationship. What you want is maximum
    benefit with little effort.

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  14. krismae Says:

    If you aren’t interested in something serious after six months, you should say so. If it were just a couple months, it’d be a different story, but usually after six months people are thinking about whether they see long-term potential in someone. It’s reasonable at this point to tell her that you aren’t interested in a serious relationship with her, but it’s not fair to her to lead her on to think that you are interested in a serious, monogamous relationship past the six months’ mark. It’s more considerate to do it now than to wait, regardless of what her professional situation is right now.

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  15. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    It’s really interesting how all of the women are putting the onus on the man to clarify the status of the relationship even though he has already stated to the woman that he’s not looking to get serious. Apparently the woman gets a pass because she’s the woman.

    Yes, it’s been six months and she has never brought it up. She’s obviously happy living in blissful ignorance or she’s okay with how things are.

    She’s an adult woman. If it’s important to know where she stands, she should speak up. Not wait for the man to enlighten her.

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    • coffeestop Says:

      Nope. More than one of us suggested she needed to recognize how things were and leave. I said she was being cowardly and indulging in some fantasy thought. Here is part of the problem, when women do speak up in relationships they are often assumed to be pushy, being too agressive, or forcing the agenda. So when women do speak up they are demanding bitches and when they don’t they are passive cowards. Either way when we make our wants and needs known it is often the case that somebody somewhere does not like it and is quick to explain to them why they are so wrong. I do not think the LW has some moral deficit because he wants to have his regular during the week sex and his weekend other chick sex, I am annoyed that he is wrapping it all up in protecting her delicate feelings. He has ego game going on because there is a power imbalance in the relationship. He likes it. No problem because he is at the edge of an age where he can bang any women unless he is a trillionare. It happens to women sooner than men but it happens to everybody.

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      • Brad Says:

        “it is often the case that somebody somewhere does not like it and is quick to explain to them why they are so wrong.”

        Welcome to the world of being an adult!

        Now that we have discovered that no one (man or woman) can please everyone all the time, the next question in sequence is ‘who should I please and when’?

        The answer: make yourself happy, and make those who you love/love you happy.

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        • coffeestop Says:

          Seems reasonable. If we all acted on your answer then there would be no need for this dating column. In actuality people subvert themselves all the time in dating partially because they have not completely examined what makes them happy or what it takes to make others happy. Both sexes do it. I think in general women want to be told that somehow against all evidence their hopes and wishes for any particular relationship are valid even when they are quite clearly not and men want even when they are morons or blatantly disreputable to be told they are not in fact either.

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        • AnnieNonymous Says:

          The problem with

          “The answer: make yourself happy, and make those who you love/love you happy.”

          is that if the guy wants to make himself happy, he’d go and see other women. If he wants to make his girlfriend happy, he wouldn’t. Advice like yours depends on the false idea that everyone always wants the same things and that people never have contradictory goals.

          That said, if he wants to make himself and his girlfriend happy, he’d tell her that he wants to see other women (so she can make a decision that would make her happy – either by staying with him or seeking out an exclusive relationship with someone else) and then get on with his goal. So….in this case, the easiest way to make both of them happy would be to tell her.

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    • Linda Says:

      I think you are advocating dishonesty. I think
      you should think twice about giving out this type of
      advice. If we were to all take your advice then this world would
      have a lot of serious problems. Partnerships are built
      on trust. He specifically said he did not have the talk
      and is using some stupid excuse of a hurtful divorce.
      The divorce must have occured cause he is selfish
      and deceitful.

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      • Mj Says:

        The problem with her advice in general is that she tends to lay blame on the other party who hasn’t had a chance to tell their side and takes everything the people coming to her for advice as gospel. People need a reality check and a dose of tough love i agree, but you really shouldnt be blaming her for staying when you have no clue if she really never brought up exclusivity. Your advice should be for him and what he’s done, not blindly assuming she’s sitting by meekly waiting for him. Either way the op needs to man up and tell her the truth. Your advice shouldn’t skew so harshly against a person who has no voice In this. This is the pattern I keep seeing repeating on this site. There is way too much speculating instead of actual advice giving.

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    • Mj Says:

      I think in this case they are both wrong. Also we are assuming she’s pining after this guy to settle down? Maybe she is also seeing other people since she too never brought up exclusivity? Also I think people are blaming him more because he has told her that he wants to take things slow cause of his divorce (that conversation had to come from somewhere. Maybe she did ask about exclusivity and this is the answer she received? I find it suspect that that would come up casually) so she’s scared of scaring him away and letting him lead because he’s the one who brought up moving slow. Personally, unless I want that kind of open relationship as well, I’d never let anything get this far without being open about what I want. We are not so sure that is the situation here as we are only hearing his side. He should do the right thing and just end things or tell her point blank he wants to date other people. Honesty and communication are what seems to be lacking in this relationship possibly on both ends.

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    • Marie Says:

      I actually really think it’s in his best interest to tell her the truth. Maybe she would be open to a non-exclusive relationship, you never know. Even if she isn’t up for it and he hides that he’s dating other people, it stands to reason she’ll be very upset when she finds out. It’s a guaranteed way to lose the girl in the end. Moral issues aside, if he’s honest, maybe he’ll actually get to have his cake and eat it too.

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    • Valley Forge Lady Says:

      The woman in this relationship is in a dream world. She needs some girl friends to help her check the reality of this situation. BUT THIS DOES NOT GIVE THE GUY A FREE PASS FOR A DEAD END RELATIONSHIP!!!! My comments are not about blame….it is about fairness. This guy is not being fair AND HE KNOWS IT!

      He is probably not plugged in emotionally and Moxie is supporting his position.

      Some people have the capacity to seek sex and fun and no ability for have a full range of emotions. They don’t evolve or change. The best you can do is let them alone to find their own kind!

      I have wasted a lot of time with emotional cripples. I am no longer doing rehab for these guys. I have found a wonderful man who is totally emotionally engaged with me and I have never been happier.

      Don’t give up! Just stay away from toxic, sick, self centered people. I think this is a genetic issue that you cannot change.

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    • Yvonne Says:

      I’m not seeing where the OP told his girl point-black, “I don’t want to get serious”. If he had, he wouldn’t be here asking for advice. What he said was that she knew he’d gone through a painful divorce, had “…repeatedly gotten too serious, too quickly” in the past, and I don’t want to make that mistake again.” My guess is that she read that as wanting to take it slow, and hopes that he’ll come around in time. If he’s seeing her so often and ACTING like a boyfriend, she may be under the mistaken impression that a more serious relationship is building.

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    • AnnieNonymous Says:

      I don’t think it would be effective in this instance to suddenly pull away and hope that the woman gets the message. So far, the only message the guy is sending with his actions is that he wants to be exclusive with this woman. I might agree with your advice if the OP’s email didn’t paint a picture of a guy who’s essentially in a monogamous relationship but is trying to find a loophole so he doesn’t feel bad about cheating.

      The six month timeline complicates things. I’m willing to bet that the guy is lying in his email about having never said anything about being exclusive to this woman. Seriously, three dates a week for six months, and yet he’s claiming that she’s not his girlfriend, and implying that he thinks she has no reason to believe that she’s his girlfriend. Sounds like he left a lot of pertinent information out of his email so you’d give him the answer he wants to hear. If I was dating a guy intensely for six months and he later revealed to me that he had been having this whole thought process about wanting to pull back and see other women, I would not only see that as a shift in the relationship that I deserved to be told about, but I would also think he was a bit delusional. You can’t do something sketchy and then act like you didn’t know it was shady when it all hits the fan. This guy knows he SHOULD tell her, but he’s asking if he’s allowed to not tell her. I think he should.

      At the very least, people deserve to know if their sexual relationships are monogamous. After six months, if the woman is on the pill and they’re no longer using condoms, he has to tell her if he wants to see and sleep with other women.

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      • AnnieNonymous Says:

        And actually, if they ever talked about not using condoms anymore, that counts as a conversation about being exclusive.

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        • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

          No, it doesn’t. That is a conversation that establishes that – at that moment – they are not sleeping with anyone else and that they trust each other to be disease free.

          The only conversation that establishes exclusivity is the one where both people say that they agree to not date or sleep with anyone else.

          A lot of women hear what they want to hear when they have these kinds of conversations with men. Unless a man or woman states explicitly that they don’t plan on seeing or sleeping with anyone else, that person is not exclusive.

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          • AnnieNonymous Says:

            But if he wants to have sex with other women, they need to start using condoms again.

            You’re right in that a conversation about ceasing condom use means that neither one of them is having sex with anyone else at that time. I would argue that “at that time” also includes “for the foreseeable future.” That one talk about condoms doesn’t carry through if there’s a shift in the default exclusivity of the relationship, especially if the woman is kept in the dark about that change. They both would have committed to being sexually monogamous, even if they were still dating around. Which means that they need to have a conversation when things change and one of them starts having sex with other people. This woman has the right to make educated decisions about her sex life. It’s debatable whether she’s ignorant of the realities of her relationship or if the OP is deliberately deceiving her, but if the guy starts sleeping with other women while phasing his girlfriend out (but still having condom-free sex with her), he needs to come clean with her instead of waiting for her to figure it out (especially if, again, he continues to sleep with her).

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          • HammersAndNails Says:

            I’m really with you on this one in principal, I really am. I’m a guy who usually dates a few women at once and these sort of ambiguous situations arise pretty frequently for me.

            If ever I agreed to go bareback with a woman and assured her she was the only one, I would certainly think that was 100% the same thing as agreeing to enter a monogamous relationship that would require a discussion to change the arrangement.

            (there is no indication that this guy did agree to something like this. Just speaking hypothetically.)

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            • AnnieNonymous Says:

              Yeah, I realized that this probably seemed like a tangent when I brought it up, but it occurred to me that if the woman thinks she’s in an exclusive relationship, it’s not unlikely that they’ve given up on using condoms after six months. If that’s the case, he has an inarguable ethical obligation to let her know if he plans on sleeping with other women.

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              • DrivingMeNutes Says:

                It’s a good thing your ethical opinion has been adjudicated “inarguable” because otherwise someone like me might come along and, you know, argue with you.

                No red herring in the history of red herrings has ever been redder or fishier than the “condoms issue” on this post.

                Christopher, you learned your lesson. Never speak of these things out loud again. Just say “I’m still confused from my divorce and I’m not really sure what I want.”. Chicks LOVE that. Plus, you can use it forever since, no matter what happens, you will always be “divorced.” Personally, I always say “I’m too busy at work to be exclusive.” We all must play the hands we are dealt.

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              • HammersAndNails Says:

                It’s INCREDIBLY unlikely. Women are much smarter than you give them credit for. Very, very, very few women that I have not verbally expressed exclusivity with have suggested we skip condoms. Women know the game they are playing when they avoid the DTR conversation. (define the relationship. Girls say it, because they know….)

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                • AnnieNonymous Says:

                  As I’ve already said, I suspect that the OP has had a heavier hand in letting his girlfriend believe they’re exclusive than he’s admitting here. I mean, surely he’s answering her daily calls and texts. I wasn’t even saying that going condom-free was an utter norm. I was just putting it out there as something to consider while deciding whether or not to tell her what he wants to do. You’re right, women aren’t stupid, but we don’t always know when we’re being deceived.

                  We’re all getting away from ourselves with these speculations because the original question was so utterly stupid and basic and we’re trying to imagine why a grown adult can’t handle something this elementary. “My girlfriend thinks we’re exclusive and I don’t want to be. But I also don’t want to tell her that. How do I let her know that we’re not on the same page without actually saying anything? Is it okay to see other girls behind her back and hope that she gets the message?” Why is telling her the truth not considered the best and simplest answer? Because he would lose her? If he likes her that much he should either stay with her or tell her the truth. He says he cares about her, and he’s being told to lie to her. I mean, the bottom line is that he would have already committed to someone he really liked. When you feel the urge to sleep with other women, it’s time to end your relationship, end of story.

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    • yb Says:

      I think the women, myself included, are placing the onus on the man because he wrote the letter. He needs to take the ethical route.

      If she had written the letter then the onus would be on her to speak up.

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      • AnnieNonymous Says:

        I agree. This isn’t a male/female thing. The person who wants to make a change has to be the one to say something.

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  16. AnnieNonymous Says:

    I disagree with Moxie on this one. If you’ve been seeing a woman three times a week for six months and you’ve been exclusive (albeit by default) the entire time, it’s on the guy to initiate a conversation if he wants to scale things back. Doing the third-date fade out doesn’t work after six months of exclusive dating.

    It’s perfectly okay to break up with a woman at any point, especially if the option is staying with her and cheating. I think the underlying question here is whether it would be a “real” break-up or if this relationship doesn’t count because they’ve never changed their relationship statuses on facebook. After six months, it’s a real break-up. You can’t start seeing other women at that point and claim to be justified in not thinking you were cheating. If you keep something from your girlfriend, no matter what it is, because you know she would get mad, it’s in the realm of cheating.

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  17. LostSailor Says:

    I generally agree with Moxie’s advice. If there was no agreement to be exclusive, then it’s not an exclusive relationship. One key is whether she is still dating other people.

    That said, I’m guessing this woman is considering this a relationship, based on the length of it, the increasing frequency of dates recently, and the daily texting/email. Yes, Christopher, she’s into you. And while it’s clear that you like her, you don’t match her level of interest. Three months or so seems to be the limit for just “casual dating” relationships; the longer you go, the more “real” the relationship is as an STR. Six months is not an uncommon expiration date for STRs.

    So, like Moxie has said, pulling back on the frequency of dates will likely prompt this woman to “ask the question” about where he sees the two of them going. If she insists on exclusivity, which he doesn’t seem capable of providing at this point, he should end it. Even if she seems comfortable with the current arrangement going forward, if she’s asked about exclusivity, that’s what she really wants and may be hoping that by hanging on, he’ll come around. A lot of guys would be fine with that arrangement, but if Christopher does actually care about her feelings, a clean break in that instance would be the best course.

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    • AnnieNonymous Says:

      I think a lot of the women here are reacting against Moxie’s advice for the OP to act in a typical male fashion. So this guy wants to make a change. That’s okay. They’re not married, and even a guy in an exclusive relationship has the right to end things if his needs aren’t being satisfied. But he’s being told that there’s nothing wrong with, instead of proactively making the changes he wants to make, acting like a bad boyfriend so his girlfriend will do the breaking up for him. It’s such a spineless move. Where’s the integrity in injecting even more ambiguity into the relationship instead of making his needs known?

      There’s nothing technically wrong with pulling a fade-out when long-running relationship isn’t official. But it’s also not admirable, and it casts a major pall on this guy’s character. Based on the fact that the guy wrote in at all, it seems like he knows that it’s not the right thing to do.

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      • LostSailor Says:

        I think a lot of women here are reacting against Moxie’s advice because they want to avoid assigning woman much responsibility in relationships and dislike men acting on their options. But to get there, there’s a lot of mis-reading of the OPs letter.

        For example, many of the women here are insisting that “dating 3 times a week for 6 months is and exclusive relationship whether they had the ‘talk’ or not!!” But, of course, the OP never said anything about 3 dates a week for 6 months. What he wrote was I’ve been seeing this girl for about six months. We have not had “the talk” about being exclusive, but we have been seeing each other a few times a week recently. For the reading-comprehension impaired, that means the increase in the frequency of date has recently increased to perhaps twice a week, maybe even three. This isn’t a “long-running relationship. At best it’s casual dating. But, that doesn’t fit the man-bashing narrative.

        My read on the situation is that he likes this woman, and enjoys her company, which may or may not include sex. But she’s showing signs of wanting to be more serious or at least more invested in him and since he’s been burned before, he’s not ready to go there, nor is he sure if “she’s the one.” But the ladies here can’t take at face value his statement: I want to keep seeing her, but I just want to back off a little bit until I am ready to get more serious.

        No, he’s a man, so there has to be a self-serving, sleazy, ulterior motive. Because the narrative is that men are self-serving, sleazy, manipulators looking for exploitative sex with women who bear no responsibility for their dating behavior.

        Why shouldn’t a man act in male fashion in a casual dating situation? Apparently because men should always act in ways dictated by women for their sole benefit.

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        • Marie Says:

          Well, I can’t speak for everybody, but I personally disagree with her advice because he would consider it cheating to see other women. Given this, it isn’t a stretch to infer that she would consider that cheating as well.

          The other reason I don’t agree is because I actually do believe that he is genuine in wanting to continue seeing her, but wants to take a step back. I just dont’ think this will turn out well for him in the end if he starts seeing other people and not telling her. Is it possible that down the road when she finds out she reflects and says ‘hmm, well it sucks that I had no idea what was going on, but technically he didn’t promise exclusivity, so I guess I can’t be upset”? Sure. But emotions aren’t usually that rational. More than likely, from how he framed this, she will be hurt. She’s 11 years younger than him. He has options, but she likely does too. I don’t see her letting it go, I see her walking away. If he isn’t worried about losing her then, yes, he should do what he wants. If he does care if she walks away, he should be honest.

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        • coffeestop Says:

          I don’t think anybody has a problem with the idea that he does not want and exclusive or serious relationship. Clearly there is not some automatic button we all jam on in panic when a certain time has been reached. However, he has also made it clear that he has been approached by other women about dating and he is interested in doing so. In addition, he is very confident that she is very much “into him”. None of that is evidence of moral depravity or ethical compromise. The problem is his reluctance to admit to her he does not want to be exclusive. She texts or emails him every day, the underlying assumption is that she might be a bit more into him than he is to her. Why is it unreasonable that he tells her he wants to date other women? Why does he not just “back off” who needs advice or permission to do that? He is trying to strategize because he wants to keep the current women and option out more dating prospects which would be fine if he told her he was doing so. If a woman wanted to date multiple men including one particular one who she had been seeing for six months who might be a bit more into her than she was to him, would you assume it was fine for her not to inform him of her choice? Or would you consider her to be manipulative and merely seeking out a multitude of free dinner opportunities?

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        • AnnieNonymous Says:

          I agree with Marie…you can argue the logic of it not being cheating, but if so many women here would feel like they were being cheated on, the OP needs to approach this as if he’d be betraying his girlfriend if he were to follow through on his desires. I see both sides of this debate…it’s logic vs. emotion. And as I’ve said before, if you know that she’ll probably feel betrayed, you can’t approach the situation as if she won’t be. It doesn’t give the guy tools he needs to deal with his situation. He needs to make his decision knowing that her feelings will be hurt, since he’s justifying his omissions by claiming to be protecting her feelings. If he wants to keep considering her feelings, he needs to accept that she’ll be hurt. Right or wrong, that’s just the truth, and arguing whether or not she has the right to be hurt is derailing from the conversation of whether or not he should be honest with her

          I think he should tell her for another reason, and it doesn’t have anything to do with gender politics. This woman has a misconception about her relationship, and the guy knows it, but he’s never corrected her (which is on him…if the woman you’re seeing is getting clingy and you’re not telling her to lay off, you have a hand in creating that situation). She thinks they’re exclusive when he believes they’re not. Why does he expect her to draw correct conclusions if he pulls away?. This is a couple that has never read each other’s signals properly. This whole mess started because his girlfriend assumed they were exclusive and he never corrected her. It’s 50/50 here. There’s no way she’ll get the hint, so he needs to tell her. Does he want her to call him while he’s out with other women? Does he want her writing romantic things on his Facebook wall while he’s picking up other women? Those things would happen if he keeps seeing her but starts dating other women. This is a woman who calls and texts him every day. She’ll amp it up if he doesn’t answer and never explains why. Not only will he lose her in the long run, but she’ll fuck up his efforts to date other women.

          I’d say the same thing if the genders are reversed. If your partner is bad at reading other people and you claim to care about his or her feelings, you need to say whatever you’re thinking. I really don’t think any of this is man-bashing. It’s the very simplistic notion that lying, even by omission, isn’t a sign of great character. He has allowed his girlfriend to assume that they’re in an exclusive relationship. He has already fucked up. He can’t slide out of this without feeling some consequences. She should have spoken up about wanting exclusivity, and now he needs to speak up about wanting to open things up. Just because she didn’t do her part doesn’t absolve him from not doing his. He knows she thinks it’s exclusive.

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        • LostSailor Says:

          There still seems to be a lot of assumptions without foundation and reading into a situation without much information.

          Is it significant that he used the word “cheated” in his letter? I don’t know. Perhaps, but perhaps not. There’s simply not enough information to go on. I agree that from the letter, given the information provided, that the OP thinks that she is more involved in the budding relationship than he is. Whether it’s gotten to the point where she “thinks” they’re exclusive is unknown and Marie, coffestop, and AnnieNonymous all think they can read her thoughts and emotional state, and while I understand your own experiences are substituting for lacking information, filling in the gaps, it’s not necessarily true and a bit unconvincing.

          If he wants to back off and take things slower and date other women, it’s possible she’ll be hurt, but it’s possible she won’t be. We don’t know. Either way it plays out, he’s going to have to resolve his ambiguity, take whatever action he settles on, and own it. I see this letter as part of the process of figuring out what he really wants, not necessarily a real cry for advice.

          But I’m glad, at least, that the toxic narrative in many comments here has been derailed.

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  18. meh Says:

    the woman needs to speak about about what she wants but christopher has made it clear that it is an exclusive relationship when he says “While I have not cheated on her…”

    you are in a relationship that’s been de facto exclusive for 6 months. you want to sleep with other women? fine, break up with her. but don’t cheat on her. you known full well that it would be cheating if you didn’t. even though she hasn’t talked about it.

    it’s also your responsibility to talk about what you want & how you feel. stop deceiving this woman by seeing her exclusively if that is not what you want.

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    • AnnieNonymous Says:

      Exactly. It’s an exclusive relationship that he’s denying based on semantics. The guy sounds like a jerk so the woman won’t be losing much by dumping him.

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      • meh Says:

        he is a jerk & i know, because i was that jerk. “hey, we never said we were exclusive” i said to some girl years ago when she finally brought it up. & i wasn’t even seeing her as much as this guy does (6 months, a few times a week!)

        yes, ladies need to have that talk even if it means the relationship ends. but it will end because the guy is just not that into you. so don’t waste time. if you like him & want more, then bring it up, even if it ends. better to know now than waste time.

        this guy wouldn’t need to say anything at all if he weren’t seeing her so much exclusively.

        he is being selfish & he knows it or he wouldn’t be conflicted. he doesn’t care about her that much or he wouldn’t be considering other women. he should dump her, but he’s afraid he won’t find another young girl to sleep with. she’s going through a rough patch in life but he is wasting the few years she has left to have a kid. better to dump her now than to drag it out until she gets back on her feet & then dump her.

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  19. Valley Forge Lady Says:

    I read through all the semantics of this blog……Hell…I added to it. Big Question….is this guy in love with the woman he has been having sex with for 6 months? I doubt it! What happened to falling in love? What happened to strong emotional ties?

    Yes, most of the women who wrote in here are ticked off at a guy who is ambiguous after 6 months. The woman in this relationship needs to value her emotional goals. If she is seeking love and loyalty….This guy needs to go!!!!

    And anyone who disagrees with me is probably one of those emotionally limited creatures that needs to stay single and childless. Playas need to be with Playas! We all need to find people with the same goals.

    I can celebrate that I have found someone who shares my emotional goals and encourage anyone not to settle for anything less. It takes effort but to do otherwise will keep you on these damned dating blogs where everyone seems too cool to talk about LOVE!!!!!

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    • Matt Says:

      Love is an admirable goal. The thing is, sometimes, you have to eat a lot of White Castle hamburgers before you can really appreciate a good steak. The relationship the OP is in right now? White Castle.

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    • DrivingMeNutes Says:

      “And anyone who disagrees with me is probably one of those emotionally limited creatures that needs to stay single and childless.”

      Ha, right. It must be that and not because you are giving shrill, nonsensical advice to an imaginary woman who didn’t ask for it.

      The frustration and rage reflected in the commentary proves one thing: many, many women have been on the receving end of a guy like this. It’s a very common situation. If you genuinely want men to change, you need to show them convincingly why it is in their interest to change. If you can’t do that, you’ll never succeed. All you’re doing is sounding off and hurling insults.

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      • wishing u well Says:

        “The frustration and rage reflected in the commentary proves one thing: many, many women have been on the receving end of a guy like this. It’s a very common situation. If you genuinely want men to change, you need to show them convincingly why it is in their interest to change.”

        How does a woman do that, exactly? I’ve been on the receiving end of a situation like this in the past because I allowed myself to be so I understand the frustration. Disappointment is never fun, especially when you care. However I started to truly own the responsibility for managing my own feelings & expectations and changed. When it becomes clear to me that said guy and I aren’t on the same page after a certain length of time, I end things shortly thereafter, wish them well, and make a clean break (which for some reason seems to startle the guy). Even though clear communication is taking place, how does one show men that it’s in their best interest to change?

        I’m curious.

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        • DrivingMeNutes Says:

          The absence of a convincing argument for “change” is evidence that it is not, in fact, in a man’s interest to change. I don’t mean to suggest for a minute that women should embark on a campaign to get men – let alone a particular man – to stop acting what he perceives to be in his best interest. It’s a fool’s errand, just as its a fools errand to try to convince women not to expect romance, or to be treated well, or paid for on a date.

          I was just pointing out the futility of most of the commentary here. The reason people turn to morality and god, or “karma” in making these arguments is because there’s no other source of authority to turn to. You don’t have to convince a guy not to punch you in the face – because the law creates a consequence for that. He will go to jail. If I sign a contract to pay for my refrigerator, the appliance store can expect the law will hold me to my promise. But, in personal relationships, there semily is no “higher authority.” There is no law, or settled rules. He’s either convinced or he’s not. This seems to be a source of confusion for people who are accustommed to deals being enforceable. That’s why they say all is fair in love and war. The only solution is (a) to understand what motivates people and acknowledge, however painful, their absolute right to make choices they deem to be in their own interest with regard to personal relationships, and (b) accept that nothing you can do to control them.

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          • wishing u well Says:

            “The only solution is (a) to understand what motivates people and acknowledge, however painful, their absolute right to make choices they deem to be in their own interest with regard to personal relationships, and (b) accept that nothing you can do to control them.”

            I agree wholeheartedly. In fact, I think that most instances of “the crazy” that people sometimes display appear when a dating situation ends when a person fails to accept these 2 points and substitute their own “dating justice system.” In fact – the control portion disturbs me as I’ve seen it in action in various forms. When dating, I would think that we all want someone who chooses to be with us of their own free will and someone who is happy and proud of their choice in us, not coerced. A person being controlled / manipulated is a person that cannot be trusted in dating, as by playing puppetmaster, you never get to see what this person really thinks, believes, or will do. Regardless of how fancy a gilded cage is – no bird returns once it has the chance to fly free.

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        • LostSailor Says:

          How does a woman do that, exactly?

          Wishing, you answered your own question: “However I started to truly own the responsibility for managing my own feelings & expectations and changed.”.

          Bingo!

          The women that are commenting on this post with such anger, bitterness, and vitriol are the ones who are still blaming men rather than taking responsibility for their own feelings, expectations, and choices. Unfortunately, the anger and bitterness are usually monumental blocks to actually doing what you suggest. It’s a downward spiral that tends to repeat itself because the angry attitude blinds them (and men who do this as well) to the need to take responsibility and control and make clear-eyed, rational decisions about relationships. As DMN says “its a fools errand to try to convince women not to expect romance.” Indeed. To be effective, people have to do this for themselves.

          Not that it’s wrong to want romance and be open to it, that’s a good thing. But don’t “expect” a man to provide it. Romance is constructed jointly…

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          • wishing u well Says:

            You know, once I accepted this and absorbed this, it really changed my view when it came to men and allowed me to not villianize perfectly good people whose only “crime” was disappointing me or wanting something other than what I wanted. I found that most of these guys were respectfully honest with me once they felt the freedom to be themselves (and sometimes once I brought the topic up).

            I’m not saying that there aren’t liars out there. But once you choose to take ownership of your feelings and decide to limit your involvement / attachment until there’s a reason to get truly vested in the other party, it seems to greatly reduce the amount of drama involved and to open the dating world up for more oppportunities to see the good in others.

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  20. D'Alias Says:

    Six months in a relationship without definition? I think this woman is keeping her options open to. I wouldn’t be surprised at all to hear she’s been dating others the whole time.

    It the OP has to write in to a relationship blog to ask about this at the age of 41, trust me – He’s NOT a player.

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  21. Anna Says:

    I think it’s clear that the guy doesn’t owe her anything. They’re not exclusive and haven’t’ had “the talk”. However, he seems to have written in because he was concerned that she clearly wanted more and wants to be serious or thinks they are already serious. Even though technically he doesn’t owe her anything he is aware on some level that she wants more and may even think they’re already in the more. While on the principle of the matter he doesn’t have to say anything and yes women should put on their big girl panties and ask the hard questions, he has been dating her for 6 months which must mean he has some level of affection and respect for her as a human being. So as one human being to another if you can sense someone is being willfully blind you might as well just let them know in some gentle manner that things arent as she hopes they are. Just tell her because its the nice thing to do.

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    • loveliee Says:

      This is so right. Technically, they aren’t exclusive, and I get it, but if he can clearly sense that she wants more and he’s not willing to give, why is it so hard to just do the right thing? Out of respect for her as a friend/human being, why cant he just say “hey, I want to keep things casual?” Because he wants to have his cake and eat it too, and there’s nothing wrong with that if she’s OK with that too.

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      • Matt Says:

        The thing is, if SHE wants more, it’s because she really likes him, and if he says he doesn’t want anything more than casual, then he’s basically saying, “I don’t like you that much.” That’s a helluva thing to say to somebody. Feelings most likely are going to be at least a little hurt.

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        • LostSailor Says:

          That’s a helluva thing to say to somebody

          Maybe, but it is what it is. At best, once these feelings are out in the open and under discussion, one should be honest. If one’s feelings are hurt, then perhaps one isn’t ready for dating in today’s market. If it isn’t out in the open, then one doesn’t have to act as if it is and defer to the other’s possible feelings. If you’re an adult, date like an adult.

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