Comment: I met Patrick two weeks ago. We’ve had one date and a handful of home visits since then. We have not had sex yet, but plenty of heavy petting and since reading your article “Either F*ck Them or Don’t” I’ve come to the realization I need to get over myself and f*ck him already. I’m at the point though that if he doesn’t initiate a conversation with me by 5 PM, I start a downward spiral of insecurity. And then when I do hear from him, I try playing it cool by acting like it’s no big deal if he doesn’t want to come over (in the two weeks, this has only happened once.) I don’t want to initiate the conversation and I don’t want him thinking my standoff-ish-ness is a reflection of my feelings. Side note: he starts law school in the Fall at a college 270 miles away. Dating someone with an expiration date also concerns me.
How does a woman act cool, calm, and collected (i.e. treat him as an option) and still let the guy know you’re interested?
State: North Dakota
It’s nearly impossible to act casual once you get in your head. That is a mindset that needs to start from the beginning. There’s no such thing as “acting” casual. The mere fact that you’re acting casual implies that that isn’t your natural state of being. Eventually, after a time of pretending, the real you emerges to the surface.
Going forward if your goal is to not get attached too quickly, which is what your real challenge is, you need to approach every situation with low expectations. In addition to that, you have to work on any other possible issues that cause you to be so anxious and/or compulsive. The need to know where you stand and what they’re thinking is exactly where people take a wrong turn. You have to stay focused solely on how you feel and what you want. That doesn’t mean you get a free pass to be rude, thoughtless or insensitive. It just means that you have to avoid trying to crawl around in their head and stay firmly in your own. The reality is that you will never, ever, ever really know what another person is thinking. You could be with someone for years and still not know. Start there. Begin this transformation by accepting that you will never have 100% disclosure or transparency. Next, acknowledge that we are all options at one time or another and that that is not a bad thing. It’s just truth. We are options until we are not options. Now you just have to continuously remind yourself that no matter how this scenario turns out, you are and will be perfectly fine. That part is crucial. Stop fearing the pain and hurt and not knowing. It has never killed anybody. Every single day that you wake up and go to school or work or on a date, you got yourself there. You’ve got this whole enjoying life thing well covered. The rest is a bonus.
Personally, I am completely unable to get involved with someone who brings with them a known or tangible sense of impermanence. I can’t do it. And that’s okay. You’re not weak for not being able to be totally detached. Know your limitations. That’s another important step. What can you handle without ending up in the fetal position mumbling to yourself.
I think it’s best for you to remove yourself from this situation all together. You are way too in your head to be able to stay detached. Either that or you need to admit how you feel to yourself and to this guy and then let the chips fall where they may.