Fuck this guy
Question: Ok, Moxie – this one has me really stumped, and I don’t know who else can give me some no-BS advice on this except for you and your savvy readers.
I go through phases where I use Tinder fairly actively, and then I get burned out and take breaks and start over. About a month ago (April 2), I finally met someone I really liked and the feeling seemed to be reciprocal. We both live in DC -within 2 miles of each other, actually. However, I have a fairly typical government job where I rarely travel and I go into the same office every day $0 hrs/week – M-F). He is in sales for a consumer products company and usually travels during the work week, either Monday – Thurs or Tues-Friday. He’s 37, claims to have never been married or engaged, FWIW….
At the end of our first date, which was 7 hours long and super fun, he said he wanted to see me before he left for Las Vegas. So we had our second date 4 days after the first. It was amazing. At the end of that date, he said he wanted to see me the night he got back from that trip – which fell on a Wednesday. He texted me every day he was in Vegas.
Here’s where things go wonky….
During all of this texting while he was in Vegas, there was no mention of the date the night he got back from Vegas. I didn’t bring it up – I just made other plans. On Wednesday, he asked if we could get together on Friday instead. No probs. Friday comes along, and at 11 am he texts me to say we should pick a place with an outside patio since it’s so nice out. Perfect. By 3 pm, I get a text that he’s all of a sudden not feeling so well and he’s going to take a nap. I don’t respond (I’m cynical) and I wait it out. An hour later, he says he’ll rally and we’ll meet at 7. At 6:30, he calls to cancel. All weekend long, I get a string of texts about how sick he is with the flu, including pics of digital thermometer readings of his temperature (overkill). At a certain point, you run out of ways to say “that sucks – feel better” to someone you don’t know that well.
The nonstop texting continues and by Monday, he lets me know that he’s feeling better but he’s off to Charlotte for work. There’s no mention of rescheduling our date. Here’s the thing, Moxie: I get that people get sick, but if I’d gotten sick and had to cancel a date 30 minutes before a date, I’d be making every effort to reschedule – at least if it was someone I liked. The texting with no talk of plans went on for a few more days before I texted this:
“Hey, I had an amazing time the 2 times we went out and would have loved it if a 3rd time had worked out. If you ever decide you would like to go out again, I would love to hear from you…but I’m not sure it makes a lot of sense to text just for the sake of texting.”
I didn’t hear back for nearly a day, but when he did finally write back, he agreed and that he appreciated the straightforwardness…that he enjoyed being around me as well and genuinely wanted to know how I was doing and wasn’t texting for the sake of texting. He said he wanted to get together that next weekend if I was up for it. He said he would call me (as in, on the phone – not texting) which he did – and we made plans, and we went out a third time. Another fun time.
And now…. we’re in the same damn place!! At the end of the evening, he said he was going to Pittsburgh the upcoming week but he wanted to see me the same day he got back – one week from then (a Saturday). Texts me all week long, no mention of Saturday. Friday morning comes, he says he can’t do Saturday because he has “to take a client to the game on Saturday” but that maybe Sunday would work and am I available. At this point, I call him on the phone and I say basically the same thing I’ve already said in my previous text (ie., if you’re not interested, cool – but stop with the texting). He assures me he’s just busy. Says he will call me on Saturday to make plans for Sunday. I get a text at 5 pm (PM!) on Saturday saying he has dropped his phone in the sink and that he’s just gotten his old one up and running, which is why he hasn’t been in touch sooner. Oh, and now Sunday won’t work either because he has to fly to Chicago to be with his Dad at a medical consultation at
Northwestern. (I did know the dad’s medical issues were legit and he sent photos of his boarding pass AND a picture of the dad in a wheelchair in a respiratory mask. Again, seems like overkill, but whatevs).
This guy has texted me every day since I’ve met him a month ago and we have been out 3 times, I date enough to know what being blown off feels like and this isn’t it, but it’s also not unabated interest. I’ve already communicated once very clearly that I don’t want him texting me if he’s not interested, and he claims to have gotten that memo. I’ve given him a million opportunities to bow out gracefully or ghost me, and he won’t. If i tell him to stop texting me unless it’s to make a date, I just sound pushy. I don’t want to have to twist someone’s arm to go out with me. At the same time, I don’t believe in texting someone every day until that person is legit your boyfriend. He’s now got a 50-50 (at best) rate for keeping plans and the constant texting creates a false sense of intimacy and only makes it hurts worse when he breaks plans. My thinking is that I have to stop responding to the texts, but that will suck because it will convey disinterest and I am interested. But I’m
feeling jerked around and that’s worse. If this were an episode of Catfish – the sick father, the flu, the phone in the sink – I’d be like “you lonely idiot! This is a scam!” the only difference is that I have gone out with him 3 times in person in a month.
I feel like maybe he likes me but he’s not really available – i.e., has another GF on the side.
So Moxie, WTF? Are his reasons for cancelling legit or is this guy another shady guy from Tinder? And what do I do? I feel like not responding now is my only option… at least until he makes plans he’ll keep.
Give it to me straight, Moxie!
-Quasi-Dating a Phantom via Text
I think his reasons for cancelling are legit, believe it or not. But I also think his schedule is not conducive to conducting a relationship. He apparently hasn’t accepted that reality and is blindly continuing to date as though he’s actually available.
Yes, you need to stop responding to his texts. Every time you respond, your original no nonsense stance erodes a little bit further and he continues to disregard your boundary.
People get busy. Their jobs take them all over the place, they have deadlines, etc. But they should know what they can offer and what they can’t and act accordingly. This guy is dating as though he has a relatively flexible schedule. He doesn’t. Instead of just slightly detaching from the situation, he’s turning up his efforts. That’s a sign that he’s only thinking about himself.
The guy can’t offer you more than the occasional night out for drinks. So either take it at face value and lower your expectations or get rid of him. Personally, I see red when people cancel and reschedule plans. My initial reaction to this saga was to say, “Fuck this guy.” Because, really. Fuck. This. Guy and his crazeee schedule and constant texts. Who has the bandwidth or tolerance for this nonsense? And the excuses? The dropped phone, the sudden illness, the sickly Dad. Like, get your life together, dude. Stop inflicting your bullshit on other people. And really…stop with the texts. How lame. How very Tom Hardy’s brother, Try.
You feel jerked around because you are being jerked around. Between the super busy schedule and what appears to me to be the fact that he’s juggling multiple women (just a guess) I think this guy is totally taking advantage of your interest. Bag him and tag him. He’s constantly screwing up the momentum that you two build with his scattered behavior.
Finally, let’s be honest: you’re tolerating this bullshit because he’s in that upper echelon of Tinder guys: good looking, good job, etc. That’s the other reason you’re experiencing this. As I just said: if you choose to date those guys, then plan on constantly being back – burnered and rescheduled.