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General Dating Questions/Getting back in the dating pool

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I’m starting to feel completely lost when it comes to dating/relationships and I could really use some advice – and you’re the expert!

I am in my late 20’s and have experienced crushes, dates, short term relationships and a long term relationship. All of them resulted in me being dumped and left feeling hurt and lacking in confidence. I am such a great girlfriend and while all my exes said that too, they also used the “I’m your typical bad boy and you deserve to be treated much better” excuse to leave me.

I’ve been single for 8 months now after a 3 year relationship and I thought I would dip my toe back in to the dating pool by going to a bar with one of my friends. While I did get approached by a lot of guys... I didn’t find one of them even remotely attractive, in personality and appearance.

I then set up an online dating profile and the same thing happened. My counter reached 400 requests of guys wanting to meet me which seemed flattering. But yet again, I didn’t find many of them appealing. The ones that I was physically attracted to had clashing personalities, and the ones that had the personality didn’t physically appeal to me.

There was one guy that seemed to have both the looks and personality and I would have loved to try dating him. His profile really stood out but I noticed that he hadn’t been online for 2 weeks, until I emailed him and within 5 minutes he had replied to me. And – he had updated his photos and entire profile will we were chatting. He was stunning in his new photos and we seemed to be chatting really well for the whole weekend about our common interests. But he never replied to my last message a week ago. Nothing… except he has been online everyday since so I can only assume he’s just no longer interested.

So I am back to scratching my head and wondering if I’ll ever get to experience a ‘good’ relationship. I would love to get married and start my own family one day. I have to hold back tears when I play with my friends kids because I have reached the point where I am so desperately wanting a family of my own.

What does one do in this situation? Do you keep trying, only to fail? Or do you give up completely and just accept that for some people true love never happens? Do you keep persevering even when you’re not really interested in the guy and hope that you might become interested later? And do I bother contacting that one that seemed to be the only right guy, even though he stopped responding?

My head hurts Dennis and I wish I knew what to do!

Answer
Hello Cherie!

No, you don't keep trying only to fail, you stop failing and start succeeding instead.

You have a number of problems here that you have to address (either now or in the future - your choice!)

Like so many women you're making the same mistake of "seeing what's out there". You're trying to find an opportunity to have guys "wash all over you" instead of using a clear, specific direction. In fact, you really don't know what or who the guy is that you want to find! You're hoping for "chemistry" from the very outset and you start off offering nothing of value outwardly.

You don't give great guys any chance because they don't fit some nebulous model you have in your head based on looks or initial personality (no doubt based on your ex(s)!) You aren't with those guys anymore, why are you still looking for them? Further, remember that these are the guys who dumped you! Are you really looking for ANOTHER guy to dump you?

Cherie, the problem here is that your plan and follow-through are all wrong. That's why you're having the troubles you're having. Stop this scatter-gun approach and start thinking strategically.

To begin, sit down for 30-60 minutes where you'll have no interruptions and figure out who the guy you're looking for really is. Don't expect him to just show up. He won't, but even if he did, you'd never recognize him since you don't know what you're looking for. Get this really clear in your mind and commit it to paper.

However, the rule is NO MORE THAN 5 "MUST HAVES". That's right - not 10 or 20 or (gasp!) 100 or more like I've seen some women look for. Only 5 most important, deal-breaking, must-have's. I have mine and they have served me very well.

Next, figure out what YOU bring to the table. This is another exercise you absolutely must do and very, very few people ever accomplish. Cherie, one of the things I teach my students to do is to not only figure this out (and believe me, it's not easy to do) but also to ASK it of someone they start dating. No, I'm not kidding.

What makes you a good girlfriend? Why should this perfect guy get into a relationship with you? What skills do you bring? What makes you unique? How does the GUY benefit by being with you? If you can't answer those questions, how in the hell should he?

Finally, stop looking for the wrong things. You've met a TON of guys so far and out of your own combination of arrogance and ignorance, threw them all away. Really? Out of all those guys there wasn't one who was a great match for you? Come on here. The fact is; you didn't give them any chance! They made one or two mistakes and instantly, you crossed them off your list (which, remember isn't even written yet!)

Once you get your lists done, start looking again. This time however, if a guy fits your 5 must-have's, you absolutely WILL go out with him on AT LEAST two dates. Cherie this is where I see women making their biggest mistakes. They hold guys to absolutely unreasonable standards (and give themselves none to live up to) hoping for a spark or chemistry. Here's the reality: chemistry can be built - it doesn't always happen for the right couple from the very start.

Best regards...

Dr. Dennis W. Neder
CEO/Executive Producer
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BAM! Productions
Remington Publications
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Producers: "BAM! TV" and “Love and Sex”
Publishers: "Being a Man in a Woman's World I, II & III”

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Dr. Dennis W. Neder

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I'm able to answer any sort of question related to the approach, meeting people, dating, sex, relationships, break-ups, non-legal marriage and divorce questions, and anything in between. I've helped over 30,000 people with their individual issues. IMPORTANT: Please, PLEASE don't ask me, "what was he thinking..." or "why did he say..." types of questions! I DO NOT READ MINDS! There are 1,001 reasons why someone does what they do, says what they say or thinks what they think. If you *REALLY* want to know what they were thinking, saying or why they were acting that way - go ask them! Be sure to check out my FAQ's on my website at: http://beingaman.com. You can email me directly at: dwneder@beingaman.com.

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I am the author of the books "Being a Man in a Woman`s World I & II" and "1001 Places and Techniques to Meet Great Women" and 11 others. I`ve spent the last 20 years studying the art and science of every aspect of relationships, and have answered over 30,000 letters from readers all over the world. My main focus is men`s relationships with women, but I also have many female readers and answer questions for them regularly as well.

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Doctor of Philosophy

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