How Do You Deal With a Guy Who Is Too Needy?

Name: Devenannoying-e1356637300485
Comment: Guy Who’s Too Needy!!!

Hi there,

So I have gone on five dates with an attorney who I met through work. He made a good impression initially but after the first date he started calling every day, then complaining that I didn’t talk to him long enough; e.g., more than fifteen minutes. Then he wanted to see me three days later; I agreed because the first date had been positive and suggested that we go to a local eatery…but he showed up with a bottle of wine. I told him I wanted to take things slow but he proceeded to question me about how long I thought it appropriate before being exclusive. He then began to email me, call me, and text me in addition to calling me everyday. I again told him to slow down.
I’ve also noted some odd behaviors which makes me think he may have Asperger’s Disorder. He seems emotionally immature for a 44 year old attorney, will stroke my hand for fifteen minutes while avoiding eye contact, and likes to stick his tongue in my ear (which I don’t mind, except that he missed my ear completely and left one side of my head wet). Those are just a few examples. He seems to be pushing for intimacy after only five dates, and he’s already making plans for us to do things together two months in advance…I can’t seem to get him to slow down.
Does this sound normal to people? Should I run for the hills?
Age: 43
City: NYC
State: New York

 

 

I’m taking a short hiatus from writing responses to these letters. I have other things I need to focus on and have some personal matters I need to tend to for now. If I can fit in a response or post here and there, I will. Enjoy.

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30 Responses to “How Do You Deal With a Guy Who Is Too Needy?”

  1. D. Says:

    It sounds like this guy is seriously interested in being in a relationship. Oh, and he may like you, too, on top of that.

    More to the point, it sounds like you aren’t actually that interested in him, which begs the question why you’re continuing to accept dates with him if you don’t actually dig him that much. You’ve had five dates with this guy, yet your letter makes it sound like dating him is a chore. Now, if you’re following the “beggars can’t be chosers after 40″ logic that pops up regularly here, I can understand why you’d give him, say, three dates, but past that? Fuck it. Move on. You know you want to anyway, so just pull the trigger already.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 68 Thumb down 8

    • VOR Says:

      ” it sounds like you aren’t actually that interested in him, which begs the question why you’re continuing to accept dates with him”

      The answer is in her post:

      ” a 44 year old attorney”

      No intimacy after five dates? I bet she would have slept with him on date 2 if she was interested in him rather than his career.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 40 Thumb down 18

  2. HammersAndNails Says:

    Most of his behavior I would classify as less than ideal, but also less than alarming, with the exception of the fact that he ignores your direct requests to slow down. A man of average emotional/interpersonal intelligence will take that request quite seriously. The fact that he ignores your clearly stated needs right up front should tell you how the relationship will go.

    You don’t sound all that interested anyway. It doesn’t sound like a good fit.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 33 Thumb down 3

    • krismae Says:

      I agree. The only red flag is his insistence after you asked him to slow down, but the other things you list aren’t. If you were attracted to him, you’d be eating up the attention.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 4

  3. Johnny_B Says:

    I don’t see a person who wants to be in love and is interested in you as emotionally immature. Being affectionate and enthusiastic is not necessarily needy. A lot of women would like to have that kind of attention paid to them.

    I think that he is interested and you are less-than-interested.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 6

  4. The D-man Says:

    Is he coming off a long-term relationship or marriage? I found that I had these clingy tendencies right after my divorce. I felt like a loser for letting my marriage fall apart and would cling to any port in a storm. (Not to say OP is just any port, but for me receiving female attention was like a ray of sunshine that paradoxically clouded my judgement.)

    Whatever you do, please give him feedback that he’s coming off across as clingy and needy. Oftentimes people don’t realize they’re doing this.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 0

  5. mindstar Says:

    In my opinion there is nothing unusual about “…pushing for intimacy after only five dates” and the rest of his behavior (apart from that tongue in ear business) may simply stem from his being an attorney. It’s a profession that tends to attract Type A personalities. From the OP’s letter it’s clear she’s uncomfortable with this so there is no point in her stringing the guy along for more dates. She should call it off

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 1

  6. cb Says:

    Nothing sends me running faster than a man who is lightening speed toward a relationship when we are still in the early dating stages. i’m not gonna say what you should do but I would have been outta there when he complained I didn’t talk to him enough. I’ve run into guys that make me feel crowded and pressured when I’m trying to decide if they are even a good fit and it is a dealbreaker. Are you even attracted to this guy? The hand stroking but no eye contact sounds more odd than the high speed exclusive approach he is taking.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  7. loveliee Says:

    If you were interested in him, you would love the fact that he wants to call you so much and plan things two months in advance. You clearly aren’t, so I would move on.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 1

  8. PhillyGal Says:

    I think that some of this depends on context, but you sound genuinely disinterested. That is enough reason to move on.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  9. LostSailor Says:

    A 44-year-old attorney who calls, emails, and texts every day and who strokes your hand for fifteen minute without looking at you and sticks his tongue in your ear and misses after 5 dates?

    And you’re asking if this is normal behavior for a 44-year-old attorney? Really? It may be normal behavior for an inexperienced 15-year-old. Or maybe a puppy. It doesn’t sound to me–or deep down to you, either–like the behavior of a mature man who has his shit together.

    What also doesn’t sound normal is that you question his “pushing for intimacy” after only 5 dates (which is actually pretty normal for a man) yet don’t mind him sticking his tongue in your ear. But, hey, whatever floats your boat.

    Normally I would say definitely run, far and fast. But you seem to not overly mind his desperation, you just wish he were desperate at a slower pace, so maybe not.

    Nah. Just run.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 4

    • Joey Giraud Says:

      The ear is most definitely not a delicious orifice, no matter how well maintained.

      Strange guy.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  10. monica Says:

    There obviously isn’t any “chemistry” on your part. Cut your losses now before he turns into a stalker. Unfortunately, some people have a skewed view of reality. They believe that if you spend some time with them, you must really, really like them. If you spend more time with them, you must be “falling in love” with them. Again, if this is not the case, politely release him and move on.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  11. Mandy Says:

    “Slow down” could be interpreted as wanting to get to know him better before you sleep with him and/or become exclusive. This could easily be interpreted as MORE contact, not less. Unless you’ve been clear that you meant less contact, I don’t think that’s his fault.

    The only “red flag” I see is him wanting exclusivity before he actually got to know you.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

    • M Says:

      Well, let’s be fair. He could very well be offering off exclusivity thinking that she is holding out on sex until they are committed. If he thinks that, it isn’t too surprising that he’s ready to commit (even if only for a short time).

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

      • D. Says:

        Right, but it’s still not really about her as much as getting something he wants. I can understand the trepidation about the guy coming on SO strong right out of the gate. Even if he’s really wowed by her, it calls into question how genuine he is in his affections.

        But all that aside, she just doesn’t sound that into him. If she was, she’d probably not really be bothered by this.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  12. c. bauman Says:

    the only question ought to be if you are enjoying his company or not. and yeah, wanting to have sex after five dates is not particularly weird, so if you find that off-putting, maybe you are just really not attracted to him.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  13. Kurt Says:

    He likes the OP and probably doesn’t date very often. As others pointed out, the OP does not seem to like the guy that much and may only be dating him because she likes his job. Why is she even dating this man if he is that much of a hassle for her?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

    • Kurt Says:

      The fact that he is 44 and is dating a woman who is only one year younger tells me that he probably isn’t the most attractive man. If he were, he could get a younger woman or the OP would be really into him.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 30

  14. D. Says:

    I’ve got a question here. Why is it that Deven is actually staying with this guy at all? I mean, if he’s as overbearing as he sounds and she’s as disinterested as she sounds…why stick around? Why even ask the question of whether he’s normal or not?

    It’s behavior like this that leads me to believe that most people simply lack insight into themselves and/or have a real knack for bullshitting themselves. I see this kind of thing not infrequently. The way the letter is written, I don’t get a sense that Deven is consciously saying “Eh, I might as well stick this out. I like the attention/free meals/tongue-in-my-ear.” It’s not anything deliberate. But if it’s not deliberate, then she’s either so out of touch with her own feelings that she can’t determine when she’s lost interest in someone, or she’s bullshitting herself that she’s “giving him a chance” when it’s pretty clear that she’s not interested.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  15. VJ Says:

    Again, some useful responses. Let’s count the possibilities.

    1.) So perhaps he’s got aspy tendencies but is also clearly an accomplished dude who may be somewhat inexperienced for his age. Ergo: SHOOT HIM NOW! Deny that anyone such ‘afflicted’ is due any sort of humanity or courtesy or much of a 2nd look. If he’s not for you? Move on and get some cats. They’re easier than the guys, mostly. If you’re good at it, they’ll also outlast that 1st marriage too.

    2.) If he was a woman? Most of this would go the way of being judged as ‘slightly clingy’, and not uncommon. Especially after 5 dates! People would be asking about her other qualities & some have.

    3.) Only after 5 dates does this 44 year old sort of move in for more physical affection, and naturally he’s condemned for it for the Way he goes about it. His style is a bit ‘detached’ & ‘weird’. And of course there’s objections to much of everything going on. Step back a bit. Sounds almost sweet huh? No one’s being coerced, no one getting hurt, no threats seen or heard? Just an over actively wordy attorney? Yeah, dump him. You’re too good for him obviously.

    4.) At 43, you’ve obviously got little understanding of your ‘league’ or the real SMP in NYC. This guy’s been a gent, and yet strangely enough is being condemned for it and being a bit ‘weird’. You don’t get to be single @ 44/43 & not trailing some kids w/o being a bit ‘weird’ or having some significant ‘psychological tics. Anywhere too.

    5.) Again, if you don’t like him, simply move on. There’s weirder folks out there for you to play with. Perhaps some more to your liking. I’m betting that if he wanted to, this dude might be married in under a year if he was working at that. Nothing he’s doing seems out of the ordinary for many of the married couples I know. But that never occurs to anyone, right? ‘VJ’

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 6

    • Matt Says:

      Yeah, this guy sounds like a monster. Affectionate AND an attorney? Get thee away from me, Satan! I’m sure there’s some rude jerk of your dreams willing to treat you like garbage if he deigns to even pay attention to you.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 6

    • LostSailor Says:

      clearly an accomplished dude

      Well, all we know is that he’s an attorney. That doesn’t mean he’s “accomplished.” There are plenty of attorneys who aren’t.

      If he was a woman? Most of this would go the way of being judged as ‘slightly clingy’

      Uh, no. A 44-year-old woman who calls/emails/texts every day and wants daily long phone calls, and licks your ear in 5 dates? That’s not slightly clingy, that’s at best borderline behavior. Borderline obsessed.

      Step back a bit. Sounds almost sweet huh?

      Not really. I suppose from one perspective it could possibly considered sweet. But “sweet” is a death of attraction; “sweet” works sometimes in already committed relationships. After 5 dates, “sweet” might be sending flowers, not trying to insert tongue in ear and missing.

      I’m betting that if he wanted to, this dude might be married in under a year if he was working at that.

      Doubt it. I’m sticking with a bit clueless and a bit desperate.

      Nothing he’s doing seems out of the ordinary for many of the married couples I know. But that never occurs to anyone, right?

      Key point: married couples. Not early-dating couples.

      Clueless in dating isn’t mendacious, but there are limits…

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 10

  16. AnnieNonymous Says:

    New/young lawyers so rarely have enough time to nurture relationships. Maybe this guy finally got to a point in his career where his schedule is a little more open and he’s eager to find someone to date. I’ve never known a lawyer in real life who wasn’t a bit odd. Law school is brutal, and they usually end up working long hours that effectively pull them out of their social lives for the entirety of their 20s and 30s. This guy seems to like you enough for you to have a serious conversation about these things without risking him running away. Tell him you’d like to take things more slowly but that you’re not shutting him down.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 12 Thumb down 6

  17. ISOf16 Says:

    He is 44 yo…or is that 14 yo…… You shouild have run away from him after the 2nd or 3rd date. And you are really screwed… if you work in the same office. And he wants to get intimate – Oh Boy!… With the tongue thing… do you want to trust that he will put his wee wee in the right place. Run Devon Run :-)

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 14

  18. Curious Guy Says:

    I know this needy behavior is a turnoff to women but I bet many needy guys would make excellent husbands.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2

    • Joey Giraud Says:

      If by husband you mean “man servant.”

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 7

  19. M Says:

    Ok. Any guy you come across who is over the age of 20 will push for intimacy after 5 dates. Actually, if they’ve waited that long, it’s impressive. Doesn’t mean you should feel guilty if you don’t want to sleep with them yet, but by your 40s, you’re crazy if you think any man isn’t going to at least try. That really shouldn’t be a strike.

    It doesn’t really sound like anything he’s doing is out of the ordinary (except maybe aiming for your ear and hitting your face – I’ll give you that). When people like each other, they want to talk to each other and they want to see each other. Most guys, believe it or not, will text you and call you daily if they’re invested.

    If you want a relationship and like this guy, you shouldn’t run for the hills – because it seems to be heading toward serious. If you don’t want a relationship or you aren’t interested in the guy (which is what it seems like) – then you should be fair and let him go so he can meet someone who actually enjoys his company.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 0

  20. Matt Says:

    So, this guy is “needy”. Guess what? People have needs. If someone’s hungry, no one would begrudge them for saying, “Hey, I’d like something to eat.” Why are emotional needs any different?

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 2

  21. Dd Says:

    OP isn’t wrong for needing more time to get to know someone before getting physical, I don’t blame her. But it really sounds like she’s not attracted to this guy. That’s reason enough to end it and move on.

    The guy does sound needy if he’s doing all this despite being told how slow you want to take things. Just do both yourself and him a favor and end things.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

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