Why Are These Guys So Eager To Commit?

Name: Nicoleonline_dating
Question: Hi Moxie,
I’ve been reading some of your old columns dealing with the “insta-relationship” guy and whether it’s a red flag when a man seems over-eager to jump into a commitment. I’d love to get your advice on a situation I’ve run into a couple of times recently – guys who assume that one or two dates means you are an official couple. Is this a warning sign, or just a sign of inexperience?

Last month I went out a few times with a guy who started using the words “girlfriend” and “relationship” after our first date. I ended things with him after 3 dates, though not because of this – we didn’t have a lot in common and the physical attraction wasn’t overwhelming. (He emailed several times wanting to “talk about it” and “save our relationship”.)

Yesterday I had an amazing first date with a different man – we talked for 3 hours over brunch and shared a long good-bye kiss. We planned another date for this week.  He said he was so excited to have found me – and that he was happy to finally be able to delete his OKC profile.

I’m looking for something long-term, and I don’t usually date more than one person at a time. But I don’t feel the need to tell men that on a first date.  And I realize that it takes more than a few hours to decide if you want a relationship with someone. So what’s going on here?

Are these guys just saying what they think I need to hear before I’ll have sex with them? Do they just want to able to say they have a girlfriend? Or are there some men who don’t bother hiding their enthusiasm when they meet a woman they like? These guys are attractive, successful, and seemed confident on our dates. But they are both also busy professionals and divorced with kids, so it’s possible that they don’t date much and a few dates feels like a big deal to them.

I know not to take any of this too seriously.  At this stage, the most a man could possibly commit to is dating me exclusively while we figure out if we’re compatible. I’m just curious as to WHY someone would announce even that level of commitment so quickly. I don’t want to get invested in a guy who’s only looking for sex or an ego boost… But I don’t want to overreact and run from every decent guy who actually wants a relationship!
Age: 34
State: TX

 

You’re right to question the motives of these men. There are a few reasons why these guys might be so forthcoming about their interest level and plans to delete their profile. Most of those reasons aren’t particularly good.

It’s also possible that you’re misinterpreting what some of these admissions mean. The man who said he was excited to finally be able to delete his profile may have just been saying that he was anxious to stop using the site. That comment may not have had anything to do with you or how he felt about you.

The uncomfortable reality is that if you’re looking for a serious relationship, then you probably shouldn’t immediately dismiss guys like this. Yes, they might be over-zealous, but they’re also looking for what you are looking for. Those men hold a much higher return on investment than the guys who don’t share their internal dialogue.

Few people want to hear this, but the people online in our age range (35+) who want relationships will probably possess qualities that turn us off. If they’re bombarded with options then it’s less likely that they’re as anxious to jump into something serious. The people with all the options will either explore all those options and eventually choose (which could take some time) or realize that the odds are in their favor and just hang back and enjoy their plethora of possibilities. As a friend recently said to me, some people just don’t know when to fold a good hand. Others, like the ones you appear to frequently be meeting, are almost chomping at the bit to cash in their chips.The true question is whether they are going all in indiscriminately.

I think you should see some of these dates through in order to determine if these guys are desperate or if they’re just unafraid to make their intentions known.

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22 Responses to “Why Are These Guys So Eager To Commit?”

  1. Craig Says:

    I wasn’t particularly eager to commit to any woman – until I met my now wife. I was seeing two other women when I met her. On our second date I told her I was getting rid of them (I didn’t ask her to stop seeing others though). On our fourth date (within the first week of meeting) she told me she wanted to be exclusive – I of course already had made that decision. That was six years ago, and the rapid pace worked out just fine because we were on the same page. The moral of the story is: if a guy is eager to be exclusive, it’s not always for some nefarious reason. Sometimes, you just know instantly when you’ve met the right person for you. It’s true what they say: When you know, you know.

    I’ve got news for you ladies – a guy over 35 knows what he wants in a woman, and is less likely to waste time with games when he finally finds her. If a guy is attractive, successful, and confident like Nicole’s dates, then they have options and are not desperate. They are just getting after it – because that’s what confident, successful people do by nature. I find it curious that most women claim to be in pursuit of a relationship, noting how hard it is to get a guy to commit. But as soon as they find one willing to do so quickly without any games, they are put-off and suspicious. Because a guy willing to commit so soon must be desperate or up to something no-good right? Men just can’t win with you guys sometimes. SMH

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    • Ben Iyyar Says:

      I wholeheartedly agree with what you wrote and not just because I went through much the same experience with the girl I married. We were both in our thirties, and we both knew what sort of partner we were looking for and why. But unlike you, most of the women I had relationships with were very trusting and seemed to want to settle down with me, with very few questions asked, in fact my wife was quite happy when we were dating that I was serious about marriage and raising a family. I know what you mean about some women being suspicious and looking for nefarious motives, thankfully I just haven’t run into it all that much.

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    • Nicole (the OP) Says:

      I really appreciate getting the guys’ point of view on this.
      I married really young and have been back in the dating scene less than a year. My friends are either married or divorced but not dating much (busy with jobs and kids) – so most of what I know about dating as an adult comes from books and online blogs. And you’re right – a lot of these writers drum into women’s heads that men never want to commit – and the ones who say they do must be losers or up to no good.
      It’s weird … my limited real life experience suggests plenty of men DO want to settle down… My dad remarried at 50 and my ex husband is in a great relationship right now. So why do I pay attention to women online who claim to only meet unavailable men? Definitely something to think about.
      The mix of men and women, in all stages of dating and relationships, is one of the reasons I come HERE for advice!

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      • Eliza Says:

        Nicole–You are right…when a man meets the right woman, he won’t be against taking that leap of faith. However,it IS unlikely that a man will take that leap – after the 1st date from an online dating site. It does take more than one conversation to establish that they are seated in front of their soulmate.

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    • C Says:

      Craig – I love your story!

      As for women most saying they want commitment, but then getting suspiscious when they get it quickly I would say its no different then most men saying they want easy sex with an uninhibited women, but then being put off and suspiscious when a woman shows up on a first date wearing almost nothing, gets drunk and throws herself at them?

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      • mindstar Says:

        C I’ll hazard a guess that women are more likely to meet men who are willing to commit early on than men are likely to meet the woman you describe. At least in my experience.

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      • Nicole (the OP) Says:

        C, so true!
        And over-eagerness to commit makes women suspicious for the same reason a willingness to jump into bed on the first date makes men suspicious – the sense that if someone will so that with you, they’ve probably done it with everyone else. Not necessarily true in either case, but it’s what people assume.

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  2. Chester Says:

    It is ironic that women want men with many options…but a man with many options exercises those options. Let me explain with two different guys below:

    1. A man looking for a relationship who has 5 women to date will very quickly assess these 5 women and he will know who is best for him in a relationship. In his mind, the other 4 are not equal options, so he will see his first choice, more or less as his only option. He has 4 other options, but he will not see them anywhere close to his first choice because he is evaluating them for relationship compatibility.
    2. A man not prioritizing a relationship who has 5 women to date will see these 5 women as equal with regard to romance. Therefore he will appear to have more options than the guy above. He sees them all on a similar level because he is not evaluating them for a relationship compatibility, just romance compatibility, which is less stringent. He is merely enjoying the romance with these women.

    Irony is that women will always be attraced to the second man who does not have relationship intentions. Women will see the first guy as needy or desparate because he is more intent to be in a relationship. Women who recognize this will be ahead of the game.

    Men, on the other hand, cannot just sit there and blame women and hope they will change; Men need to take responsibily for the situation and act more like the second guy in the beginning and enjoy the romance because the second or third choice may still be a good one for him.

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  3. D. Says:

    As I’ve said before, when it comes to things that people say on dates, especially early on, it’s important to remember that sometimes people just say shit. It isn’t a promise, a fact, or anything other than what they’re feeling in the moment, and often

    Some guys are manipulative and will say what they think you want to hear to get in your pants. Some guys are sad sacks who treat even the most mild positive sign as proof that you are the future Mrs. Sad Sack. But some guys just…say shit in the moment that doesn’t really mean much more. They’re excited in the moment, and say stuff that conveys excitement, but sometimes in an awkward, inaccurate, or overly zealous way.

    I tend to think that people — both men and women, for that matter — can spend a whole lot of time analyzing someone else’s behavior while ignoring themselves and what they want. Rather than pore over his words and wonder at his motivations, what about asking yourself how much you actually like him? If you’re only kind of “eh” about the guy anyway, then who cares what he says? If you like him, great, give it a chance and see what happens. Just don’t get too caught up in the early grand declarations.

    If you can keep yourself from putting too much stock in him waxing rhapsodic on date #2, and are still enjoying yourself, then give it a whirl and enjoy the ride. You’ll figure out soon enough whether the guy is into you or just into his search being done, and more importantly whether you’re into him.

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    • Eliza Says:

      Exactly! Go by the person’s ACTIONS, not only the words they sing. The words and actions have to mesh, otherwise, he is putting on some act, or perhaps his intentions are based out of desperation! and nobody finds that enticing! Sad Sack – love it! Thought I was the only one to use that adjective. LOL. There was some comic strip with “Sad Sack” in it…always crouched over and complaining.

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  4. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    I think the fallacy here stems from the belief that a “long term relationship” is something that is obtained rather than built or “earned”. If you believe, as I do, that a relationship is only as strong as it’s foundation, then you must also accept that a real foundation cannot be built in the span of a few dates. Add to that, there are a lot of people running around with impulse control issues – a trait that anecdotally seems more prevalent in men. And one that appears to be attractive to women. Testimonials from these people add the the fairy tale. I assure you that there are also plenty of successful confident men that are just as deliberative and calculating as others are hopeless romantics. Personally, I cannot take seriously anyone who shows interest disproportionate to the circumstances. Some of us err too far in the other direction, of course.

    I think on balance, it’s better to be skeptical of someone who expresses intense interest without a firm basis for doing so. Sober advice.

    PS. The “folding hands” metaphor is one I’ve used but not the way it’s used here by Modie. Folding a good hand means you sometimes end something even though it has “promise” because it doesn’t have “enough” promise to justify further investment.

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  5. C Says:

    I agree with the others, some men are overly eager and sometimes guys just know they have found something good and want to hang onto it.

    The guy who wanted to “save the relationship” after 3 days doesnt sound like he is trying to play you. He sounds a little nuts or very inexperienced or both. The second guy, hard to say. He could just be sharing an enthusiasm he deems as mutual or it could be something else.

    As you mentioned in another post, the differences in dating cultures could be regional as well as you might just be attracting guys who are relationship minded.

    A family friend from years ago was in his early 30s and felt like it was time for him to settle down. He was a very nice and friendly guy, with a good sense of humor, nice looks and a good job. He had seemingly everything going for him but he couldnt seem to get past the first couple of dates with any woman. My dad trying to be helpful asked him about what he does on dates. Turned out, as soon as he knew he liked a girl, he would propose marriage even if its on the first date. Lolol. My step dad told him to stop doing that and in no time at all he hit it off with his now wife. Really, he was a totally nice and normal guy except for the instant marriage proposal quirk.

    Each person and each relationship has its own timing. I would think that the guy who is sure about you right away is a better deal then the guy who isnt sure about you for 3-6 months. Some people are more cautious or take longer to develop feelings while others prefer to jump into a relationship with both feet and just let it play out. I’m with Moxie on this one. Give them a chance unless they start giving off the crazy vibe like the first guy you mentioned.

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    • noquay Says:

      I agree, give guy 2 a chance; guy one is immature. I had something similar happen a coupla years ago; a guy from the other end of the country wanted to fly out and meet me after a short correspondence on line. We met, nice guy but I wasn’t feeling it. He, however, wanted to marry me, have me pull up stakes and move after total of maybe 8 hours in one another’s company. His last relationship had ended recently, it didn’t end well, I think he simply didn’t want to do the necessary alone time between relationships. Guy 2 may be into you, he may have some other issues; it takes time to find out.

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  6. Howard Says:

    There is an old question: What do women really want? The better question is: What do people really want? When I read letters like this, it shows how much we expect the struggle and like the struggle.

    There is a word called prizeability. That is the reigning issue here. We all seem to want the person, that we choose, to be a grand prize that is hard to attain. If someone commits too early, we discount the value of him or her. We immediately assume that it shouldn’t be this easy, and if the person commits that early, then something has to be flawed with him or her.

    I will readily admit that some guys use, willingness to commit, as part of their game, knowing fully well that women desperately seek commitment. You do have to watch out for that, but be careful, that you don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.

    By now, most women should know the following, and if they don’t, they really should:

    When a man decides he wants to be in a committed relationship, he will go out there and grab the first quality woman he meets, and he will do it rather quickly. When a man is sowing his wild oats, it doesn’t matter how quality a woman is, she is still not going to get commitment from him.

    At 34, you are probably going on dates with guys in their late thirties or older. These are men who have had their run, and now want something better. At 34 you are perfect in their eyes, mature enough to have supposedly left the girlish things behind, but most importantly, young enough to still bear offspring. In her early thirties, a woman probably looks her best. She has learned how to present herself, and age has not affected her. Early thirties is truly prime-time for women and men. We really do look our best and perform at our best, if we have not done damage though poor lifestyle choices.

    I can assure you that “men in a hurry to commit” will not last. Enjoy it while you have it, and make your best choice now, not later.

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  7. Yvonne Says:

    Of course it’s always better to date the man who is excited about you. OTOH, it’s not uncommon for some men to get very excited about a woman early on, only to bail a few weeks or months later. The OP says that writers drum into women’s heads that men don’t want to commit, but the problem is that many of these men who want to commit after just one or two dates, can change their minds more often then not later on. So I think she is right to be cautious. Keep seeing a man who is eager if she likes him, but take all the relationship talk with a grain of salt in the beginning. Only time will tell.

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    • D. Says:

      Yeah, but that’s always the risk, for both men and women: you make yourself emotionally available and let yourself get into someone, and the risk always exists that you’ll get hurt as a result of them losing interest, changing their mind, you growing apart, or someone being hit by a bus or whatever. You can’t eliminate risk. All you can do is recognize it and decide how to proceed accordingly.

      If the reward is worth the risk, then you accept that you could get hurt…but you do it anyway. If it isn’t, then you move on and fold a “good” hand as some have described here. But as with poker, it’s a gamble each time.

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  8. LostSailor Says:

    There are a lot of possibilities here. I agree with Craig, that as a man I can say that when you know, you know. That was my experience with my ex when we first met. We had one date and were living together within the year and married within two. I was also tired of serial short-term relationships or one-night-stands and was ready to settle down in my early 30s. The marriage lasted nearly 20 years and was generally pretty happy up until the end.

    So the myth that men won’t commit is just that, with a caveat: men are quite willing to commit to the right woman at the right time.

    I also mostly agree with Moxie that Nicole might want to give these guys a chance. They may be genuine; guys have a biological clock of sorts, too, if they want to have a family.

    But I’d also be a bit wary. Maybe Texas is different, but if Nicole is running into multiple men who profess an eagerness to commit after only a few dates, it could be a red flag. Nicole will have to judge that for herself. Which brings me to the poker metaphor. I don’t play much anymore, but I’ve had several friends who played in high-stakes games regularly, including casino tournaments and the World Series of Poker in Vegas. What they taught me is to recognize a “good” hand from a winning hand (that, and how to read other players). The secret to winning is to know when to fold even a “good” hand; the people who win often fold more than they play. It’s really all about reading the other players.

    So, while I agree that Nicole might want to give these early-commitment guys a chance, she should also learn how to read their actions, their “tells” in poker parlance. It’s one thing to commit to dating exclusively, it’s quite another to commit more emotionally and deeply.

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  9. Nicole (the OP) Says:

    Thanks everybody for the insights!
    Had a second date with guy 2 this afternoon and talked some more on the phone this evening after he got home from seeing his kids. Definitely going to see where things go with him.
    He mentioned that he is really looking for someone who will make him and the relationship a priority – which is how I feel, too, I’m just usually too chicken to say it out loud. I get the feeling that (like me) he’s tired of wasting a few weeks or months dating someone, only to realize they’re not serious about a relationship. Maybe he’s just decided to cut to the chase and screen for that early.
    Or maybe I’m over analyzing again ;)
    I’m going to go write D’s advice on a piece of paper and tape it to my bathroom mirror.
    Sometimes People Just Say Shit.
    (At least the sign will make for interesting conversation if a guy ever sleeps over, lol.)

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  10. Brenda Says:

    I met my husband 3 1/2 years ago and within 3-4 dates, he made it clear he wanted to be exclusive with me and what he hoped for in his future – remarriage etc. He is an extremely outgoing confident man who could win anyone over in a nanosecond. I was initially a little put off by this- but that was because I had dated men who held their feelings close to the vest. As Moxie pointed out, it’s so refreshing it to date a man who knows what he wants and knows how to express it! (and go after it!)

    My husband pursued me in a very engaging and intentional way; he continues to be just as wonderful in our marriage as he was when courting me. Very expressive, opinionated, loving and caring. I am blessed! Take a chance and go for a man who knows what he wants!

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  11. eric Says:

    i find that now, when im finally mature enough to know the value of a good relationship, that the women i meet, (30’s age range) have by this time in their lives ,been thru so many screwed up relationships filled with games and betrayals… that when someone comes at them honestly, it seems to confuse the heck out of them.

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  12. Howard Says:

    It’s like asking, how do I never die? Men will want sex. That’s how men are. You can’t change that, just like you can’t stop death. I think the real question you are asking is.

    “How do I stop guys from fading on me after three of four dates, when it sinks in, that sex with me is really far off?”

    The answer is that you really can’t easily do this. A good place to start is with guys in religious circles where celibacy is practiced. If you date regular guys, you have to expect them do what they consider normal, want sex. Nicole may consider herself a special snowflake, but no one is that special to easily change something as fundamental as how someone else thinks. You may pull off changing someone’s actions, but changing the way he thinks is asking far too much.

    What is normal, is always a loaded question. I suppose it ends up being what most people want and/or do. In some cases that norm may not be moral, nor ethical, nor make the best sense, nor fit what you hold dear to your heart. We however have to make the adjustment if we plan on functioning in society.

    The adjustment, that you have to make, is to find people who see the world your way, and accept those who don’t, without getting too worked up over it. Clearly understand that you are in the minority on this issue, so you have to expect an uphill battle with the majority of men.

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