Should She Date Him Even Though There’s No Chemistry?



Name: Whey
Question: Hello!

So this is a relatively unique situation.
I’m was not actively seeking for a relationship or anything physical but I ended up getting Tinder a while ago. My friend nagged me so I agreed to get it but on the condition that I would only be there to goof around and potentially make friends. (Just because it’s a very questionable way to meet your significant other in my culture) However! This worked out miraculously as I got over 200 matches with just one profile picture that was of me with a silly filter over my face.

Fast forward a couple of weeks and now I happen to be seeing a few guys from Tinder while one is standing out a bit more than the rest.

The only reason I met up with him was because we seemed to connect. (through text) We have similar backgrounds culturally and it feels like we are on the same page in the realm of jokes and most other things in general. I have also not had someone pursue me so eagerly before and quite honestly I enjoy it a lot. I think one of the most important parts of dating is to have fun but while I’m enjoying the chase, I’m afraid this is highly likely just a desperate guy trying to to get into my pants and once I find out it would be too late because I’d already be emotionally invested and ultimately get myself into undesireable situations that wouldn’t be worth my time.

Before we met up, I clarified that I only wanted to be friends and that if he wasn’t happy with that then there wouldn’t be much point to keep talking. I also asked him what he was expecting/want ( To which he replied that he didn’t really mind and that it would depend on me too ) I see this as him not having any other options and that I might be the most flexible or easiest  to get along with hence it might be easier to get with me in other ways.

We’ve met a few times but I didn’t and still don’t really feel a “connection”. We only have a few things in common and he is usually quite jittery with his words and it takes him a while to explain things. I took it as he was probably nervous during the first and second date or that he is just naturally timid and reserved or is a bit insecure with his speech.

The reason why I’m still talking to him is because he’s been pretty open about his family situations, seems to be a straightforward and relatively honest guy. This might have just been sweet talk but he’s mentioned that I was different to the other girls he’s talked to on Tinder and that he doesn’t use it anymore which I think is true since he’s been talking to me everyday for over a month with relatively timely replies. Although I could be wrong since I have little trouble keeping in contact with at least 2 other guys. He’s happy to teach me things and is understanding of how slow I am with meeting up and physical contact etc due to my commitments. I can be myself and feel comfortable with him since I have the upper hand in terms of leading the conversation etc. I am relatively attracted to him physically, the way he seemingly treats his family and how he’s got talent in a few departments (singing and cooking etc).
It also feels as if it is hard to come by a guy that is so dedicated to you and gives you the feeling that he is extremely glad to have met someone like you. I can’t help but feel as if he’ll be this way for a while and stay committed if we end up getting past the dating stage and having a relationship.

I also don’t mind the idea of finally getting into a proper relationship. I really like the idea of being in one, or in other words, having a best friend which you can do other ” additional stuff ” with.

It’s my first time trying a dating app so I don’t really know how it works and what the red flags are. Also at this point I do just want to try the things I haven’t done yet in regards to dating and relationships so I confuse myself as to what I want with these guys.. Initially I just wanted to meet up and potentially make a few more friends with the guys that I have decent conversations with.

Here are some of my doubts and problems with the guy:

1) I don’t have chemistry with him ( I don’t know how long to give until I need to give up on the fact that he might just need to loosen up a bit more) – He was more easy going after a few drinks.

2) I have a tenancy (as copious amounts of girls do) to get emotionally attached and I’m afraid he might not be worth the time.

3) My best friend thinks I deserve better and that I should just stop talking to him before it gets harder to break him off.

4) I have not even kissed anyone let alone had any sort of physical contact with guys and I know it’s not reasonable for me to feel this way but at times I feel like could easily be taken advantage of if he knew.

5) He is starting to make more sexual jokes/puns with what I say and is hinting at progressing a bit more, i.e. kisses and hand holding etc. ( Although I don’t blame him since we have only met around 4 times within the span of a month and a few weeks with minimal physical contact) – I don’t know how slow or fast it usually is with dating, but I think everyone should go at their own pace. (Do let me know where you draw the line during the first few dates!)

6) This is very pathetic but I told my parents that he is just someone I’m considering and that we met through friends and that he has graduated and is working at the moment ( which he hadn’t and is working at a relatively low pay job) I said this because he drove me home really late one time and my parents needed an explanation. My parents are also pretty hard to please so I ended up blurting that out..

7) The idea of my first proper relationship being with a Tinder date. (Should this even be a problem?)

Maybe I worry too much about things that haven’t even or will not even happen. I know that I’m very afraid to be vulnerable but I don’t know how to get my walls down and learn to take risks in this area. Or that I’m way too egotistic and that I look too highly upon myself. I have noticed that I try to seek approval or validation through other people, and that I try to please people most of the time. I need to be more assertive and let out my personality more but those things are always holding me back. Or perhaps I’m too insecure about myself and the fact that I haven’t had a proper boyfriend before. Which leads me to where I am now; constantly skeptical and doubtful of people’s actions.

What are your expectations in a guy and what do you base the quality of your dates on?

Please be brutally honest and don’t hold back on your opinions about me and my perspective on all of this, thanks.
Age: 25

I did a search of your IP so I could get an idea of your background. You are from New Zealand.  I also gather from your letter that you live with your parents. These are important things for me and for readers to consider when offering feedback.

The first thing I’ll say to you is that dating site and apps are for people to meet potential dates. If you;’re not sure why you’re using these platforms or don’t know what you want, you really shouldn’t be using them. It’s not fair to the people you meet.

I would never want to be with someone who is crossing their fingers in hope that – some day! – they’ll be attracted to me. It’s admirable that you’re giving this guy a chance, but it feels more like you’re going through the motions to keep everybody else – him, your friend, your parents – happy.  Meanwhile, he’s clearly hoping things escalate. If he’s making sexual jokes, he’s trying to gauge your attraction and interest, which he’s allowed to do as long as he doesn’t cross a line or say anything disrespectful.

You have to understand something: broad declarations like, “I just want to be friends” and “no hook-ups!” are about as effective and burning sage in a haunted house. (Speaking of which, everybody go to Twitter right now and read #DearDavid. You’re welcome.) It gives the person laying down those boundaries a sense of power and control that doesn’t exist. People are going to ignore those words because they know how arbitrarily they are enforced. When I see “friends first” or anything similar on a profile, I skip right past it. I’m not there to be your friend. I’m not going to invest extra time to get to know you, sweetie.  Either you’re in or your out. The only red flag I see is that this guy agreed to meet you after you put up that “I just want to be friends” wall.  Most people would have bailed. So either this guy really likes you or he doesn’t have many options. Most likely it’s both. And here’s the thing: I think I’m pretty awesome, but I don’t have a lot of options. That’s not a statement of my character just like it’s not a statement of his.

If you met this guy organically, say at a party, how would you feel about him? Is it the fact you met him on a dating app the root of your wishy-washy attitude towards him? That’s something to consider.  Using technology to get dates is the norm now. Most everybody does it.  There’s nothing to be embarrassed about.

Now let’s talk about your friend. Unless she has taken the time to get to know this guy, she has no business saying things like, “You can do better.” It sounds like she’s basing that obnoxious opinion on shallow criteria, like how much money he makes or how he looks. So, ignore her. I say this all the time: ninety percent of what our friends tell us about dating and the opposite sex should be ignored, as their feedback is always colored by their (usually negative) experiences.

The one thing I can say definitely about this situation is that you should only date this guy if you really believe there’s a connection. Don’t escalate things just because you feel pressured to have a boyfriend. Shut out the white noise from your parents and friends and really ask yourself what and who you want. It’s tempting to be with someone who you know will treat you with love and respect even if you’re lukewarm about them physically. Don’t do that. You’ll end up damaging both you and this guy. Never let your fear of not being like everyone else be what motivates you to get into a relationship. That never ends well.

I would suggest you date other people, get your feet wet and gain some experience before you settle into a serious relationship. Meet more guys on Tinder and get a feel for their personality and actions. It’s that experience that will alleviate all the analysis paralysis you suffer from.


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6 Responses to “Should She Date Him Even Though There’s No Chemistry?”

  1. Whey Says:

    Hi, thank you for the speedy reply!

    You are pretty much bang on with everything and I agree; especially with how I feel more secure with a sense of control that doesn’t really exist.

    It’s definitely not fair on the people that are using the app too, but I made it clear near the beginning of our conversations/banter that I have little to no intention of hooking up or getting into a relationship. I still keep in contact with the people that are “okay” with that.

    Yes, the fact that I know him from the app is one of the reasons why I’m not solid about him. Its because something about doing a lot of my “firsts” with him that feels and sounds distasteful. Maybe I’m overanalysing and caring much more than I should.
    If I met this guy at a party, theres no doubt I would feel different about him. If we met at a party, I would be assured that we have mutual friends and it would be a lot easier to be seeing him.

    For my friend, I am aware that she’s basing her opinions on more shallow things and associating her own ideals on him. A bit of a side note : She’s caucasian and we’re asian. She has her own tastes and I try to filter out those and take in whats relevant.

    I don’t feel pressured at all to accept the escalation of things since I do like the idea of dating and a relationship. I personally would like to enjoy the “perks” that come with those ( finally try ) and explore new and cheeky horizons. I’m just stuck on whether or not I should do them with him or not and I’m getting tired of contemplating whether or not I’m making too much of a deal about this. Mainly because I don’t feel that “connection” with him. The tricky part is, I’m not even sure what I’m looking for within that connection.
    How much time do you think I should invest in him to test out whether we have a connection or not?
    I’m very wishy washy toward him because I really don’t know what a real connection is with a romantic interest. I know we should definitely be able to have conversations without too much difficulty and be able to be honest and open to certain degrees but what would that connection consist of?

    I do enjoy dating around but it tires me out so much. It’s difficult keeping in touch with three guys at once and its mentally exhausting. I am keeping my options open since being vulnerable scares me and I worry way too much of being used or getting heartbroken.

  2. Annabelle Says:

    Hmmm. I’m much older and live in the U.S. where things move much faster than in this person’s culture. However, given her ambivalence toward this man and her uncertainty about whether they share any chemistry worth pursuing, I can only suggest one thing: kiss him and find out. Truly, it is that simple.

  3. Parenting Says:

    Yes, please do not join a dating site to “make friends”. It would be like me joining a social club then informing all the nice people who want me as a friend that I have no interest in spending time with them, Im just here to find a plumber. If you want social male friends then please join a meetup.

    It sounds like you feel you need to make excuses for why you joined a dating site. Your friend didnt nag you into it. If you really didnt want to join you wouldnt have. You want to date. Lets start there.

    As for this man you are dating, IDK. You seem to have so so many reservations about him. When its right, its easy. When I have had lots of questions and reservations about a man it was due to my own ambivalence and limitted attraction than anything about him. Honestly, he sounds sincere and very interested from what you describe. You on the other hand dont sound very intereted. If thats the case, I would cut him lose. No reason to drag this out and have him get hurt.

  4. Ames Says:

    While she is living in New Zealand it’s quite possible she’s first generation or an immigrant. There are many Malaysian and Asian people living in NZ and Australia which might explain why her culture gives online dating the side eye.

  5. HerGuyFriday Says:

    I love it when people use online dating and assume everyone except them is some loser.

  6. CSI Says:

    Good on her for putting herself out there. But I think online dating, particularly Tinder, might be the wrong method for her. She needs to expand her social circle and meet men organically in real life. She needs a man who will be willing to take it a little slow but who she feels some chemistry. Its ironic though that she asked for a man willing to be just friends, and this is apparently what she got.

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