Question: Hi Moxie,
I’ve written to you once or twice before, but today I’m coming to you with a pretty new problem. For context, I’m a single woman in a major city.
Within the past six months to a year, I’ve take on a pretty relaxed but no-nonsense approach to dating. I have no issue making the first move but I don’t waste any time on guys who don’t demonstrate a clear interest in me relatively soon and most guys I’ve dated recently reached out to me first. It’s a pretty liberating not to waste time worrying about whether or not some dude likes me.
So, the problem that I’ve been having might read as humble-braggy but I swear it’s not. The last couple of guys I’ve dated came on way too strong, way too quickly, and it seems to be happening again now. Examples include:
-Using the word “we” on a first date
-Constant compliments, especially about my appearance
-Making plans for a second date only a few minutes into the first
-Wanting to go away with me on trips after only a date or two
-Using terms of endearment like “babe”
-Getting pushy about wanting to make plans with me, ASAP
-An unusual eagerness to go out of their way to see me
On one occasion, the guy was so insistent I found it unnerving and canceled the second date- and he had the gall to ask me if I would “reconsider”!
I currently have a date scheduled with a guy who I do like, but he’s also being effusively complimentary before we’ve even met.
Typically, I tend to think people who behave this way have ulterior motives or don’t have many options and are trying to lock something down using flattery and ass-kissing. I don’t know why that would be the case here, though. If they just want sex, there’s lots of girls on dating apps and sites also looking for casual hookups…why go to all this effort?
Secondly, I would think the guys in question have plenty of options. They’re all early 30s, nice looking, professionally successful, tall (height’s not a dealbreaker for me, but for some people it is), in-shape men. I don’t know why they’d be bending over backwards so quickly when one would think they have plenty of options.
What’s your take on this? Am I just a cynic who doesn’t understand true love? Am I looking a gift horse in the mouth? Is there any way to avoid a guy like this, or perhaps something I’m doing that’s attracting their attention? Your take on this would be much appreciated. Thanks!
For those playing at home, here are the OP’s previous two letters:
This letter reminds me of an article I read last week.
Now, I can not be the only person who read this and – through out the piece – wondered what the fuck the point of this story was. Was she complaining about all her bad dates? Was is a statement about the role fate and timing play in dating? Or was it this:
Feb. 14, 2014
To: Christine Grimaldi
From: [name redacted]
Subject: Date Lab!
You may recall that a long, long time ago you filled out our Date Lab application. Well, we think we’ve found you a great match! So if you’re still up for it, we’d love to send you two to dinner—on us, of course.
To: [name redacted]
From: Christine Grimaldi
Subject: Date Lab!
It is so crazy that you emailed, because it’s just the latest message in an on-and-off exchange that dates back to 2009. I’ve been with someone wonderful for more than a year now, so I’ll have to decline the match.
Update: Two years later, I’m marrying that wonderful someone. I never had to pitch him to love me. My emails with Date Lab may be frank, and frankly, embarrassing, but they remind me of the progression from who I was then to who I am now — always, worthy of love.
So basically this essay was an engagement announcement, yes? Am I just missing the true take-away of this story? Where’s the introspection? What did the author learn about herself and this process besides the “love yourself” cliche? She couldn’t figure that out when she was single? She could only realize this after she met a guy? Reductive, party of one.
Like the essay, this letter feels like a humblebrag wrapped in a blanket of over-analysis and faux introspection. If you read this blog the way you say you do, then you know what I’m going to say: these guys are either total losers or disingenuous. I have no idea what you’re doing that could be attracting them.
My take on this is that you’re thrilled at this groundswell of attention and want to believe that they guys are sincere. Maybe they are, maybe they’re not. I haven’t a clue. Based on the behavior you say they are exhibiting, they either sound like controlling douchebags or cloying weirdos. Are you a cynic? No, you’re the opposite of a cynic because you want to believe these guys are for real. Spoiler alert: you’re not confused about any of this. You like these guys. You like the attention. You want to go out with them. You’re making a problem out of nothing for no other reason than you like to spin your wheels.