DEAR DR. NERDLOVE: So, I have a situation, and I’m not sure I’m making the right moves navigating it, and I’d like the opinion of an expert.
I’m a 32 years old straight man who never had a relationship before. In 2012, while trying to find someone on dating sites, I met a woman my age, we’ll call her R. R is a literal beauty queen (in that she has won beauty pageants) and a very interesting person. Our first date went well, until the very end when a homeless man came to us asking for money and I gave him some. She…did not appreciate this. She got heated and started complaining that she lived in the area and that he would recognize her now and harass her for money. Being quite new to dating at the time, I assumed I had made a mistake and blew it in the home stretch.
To my surprise, she actually reached back and asked for a second date, then a third. Shortly after, I introduced her to my best friend and it did not go well. My best friend is polyamorous, and she did not approve and wasn’t shy about saying so. Still, being elated that a girl was digging me, I continued seeing her. However, when I made a move to kiss her, she stopped me and said she just wanted to be friends. So we met as friends a few times.
In 2014, I met her one last time before leaving for a different city for my doctoral studies. She admitted to me then that she was interested in me, but that she wanted children, and that since I have a severe heart defect, I had “bad genes” and she thus couldn’t have kids with me. Her words. This stung. She kept trying to reach me after that, calling me often. I answered at first, but I ended up cutting contact quickly afterward. I was too chicken to actually tell her that I didn’t want to talk to her anymore, so I just ghosted her.
Flash forwards to two months ago. My doctorate now completed, I ended up moving to the city where she lived. So in November, she reaches to me on Facebook, saying she really liked hanging out with me and wanted to talk. I figured that since it had been six years, she might be different and this might be more fun. Turns out, she is the exact same. Including calling me whenever she wants and disapproving of my best friend (which she herself brought up as a topic). But she’s still seems super into me. She even said she considered a relationship despite my health problems. After a single chat, she already wanted to meet up ASAP and do things together. I almost gave in, but seeing how anxious she made me, I decided to tell her point-blank that I wasn’t comfortable with her, never had been, and while I didn’t mind her texting me every few days, I couldn’t give her more than that for now.
That was right before Christmas. I didn’t hear from her for two weeks after that. Then she texted me again saying that, and I quote, she couldn’t live with the restrictions I put on her, that she needed more freedom, and that she couldn’t handle having me as a friend but not being able to contact me. I told her again that she was welcome to text me. She said that she didn’t want to only text me, because of her dyslexia, and that I live less than ten minutes away from her anyway.
(I should clarify that I had no idea where she lived when I moved in this city. I didn’t even know if she still lived here.)
I haven’t responded yet, because I don’t know what to respond. On the one hand, I’m just not feeling it. On the other, I’m no Chris Evans. Women don’t throw themselves at my feet for a chance at spending a night with me, much less a long-term relationship. And here is a gorgeous woman being clearly into me, and I’m thinking of saying no? What’s wrong with me? If she is still that interested after six years, then surely it means something, right? My friends are divided on the issue. Some think I should get over myself and take her up on her offer, while other think I should just break up the friendship. Personally, I’m afraid that if I pass on this opportunity, I’ll have missed my only chance of not dying alone.
What should I do? Which group of friends should I listen too? I’d like to hear from someone with more credentials.
I’m Just Not That Into Her
DEAR I’M JUST NOT THAT INTO HER: First, IJNTIH, a general rule: it’s far better to be alone because you’re alone than it is to be alone because you’re with the wrong person.
Because HOLY HOPPING SHEEP S--T, DUDE, R is the wrong goddamn person. And I don’t mean for you, I mean for just about anybody.
I mean, f--king hell super-chief, let me count the ways that you’ve said she’s awful. Getting snippy with you for helping someone who’s homeless would be a first strike for me. And while I’ll be the first to tell people that hey, polyamory ain’t for everyone, the fact that she apparently couldn’t not avoid insulting your friend is another strike. I mean, it costs nothing to just shut up and let other people do their thing, especially when it has precisely zero effect on her. Aaaaand then there’s the “well, you’ve got s--tty genes, that’s a no from me, sorry, LOL” bit which to me would be a “f--k you very much, there is the door, and don’t think it hasn’t been a little slice of heaven… ‘cuz it hasn’t.”
So in and of itself, those are all very good reasons to lose her number and otherwise forget that she exists. But then she came back into your life years down the line and… manages to be just as s--tty, occasionally in new and impressive ways. I mean, bringing up how much she disapproves of your best friend’s love life unprompted is a sign. “I considered having a relationship with you despite your heart condition” is some condescending bulls--t.
But here’s the big, flashing neon sign that says “DO NOT ENTER”, IJNTIH: it’s the part where she says that she “can’t live” with the “restrictions” you put on her and that she “needs her freedom” because she needs to be able to contact you at will after you stated that you weren’t comfortable with her and the way she behaves. What she is doing right there is telling you, point blank, that she does not give a single, solitary, malnourished f--k about your boundaries. You have stated clearly that you are willing to have a relationship on these terms and these terms only and her response was “LOL no”. That, king, is what we in the relationship-advice-giving business call “a huge f--king red flag”. That is more red flags than the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona. She has shown you exactly who she is and what she cares about, and what she cares about is not you. She cares about her and only her.
And look, I get why you’d think about it. She’s hotter than a four alarm fire and probably has a body that’s wolf whistle jaw drop lip bite. The idea of her naked probably makes your junk stand at attention and sing “Rosanna” in three part harmony. And trust me: it ain’t worth it. I have yet to meet a woman who was so hot — and I have met a metric f--kton of insanely hot women — or so good in bed that it would be worth putting up with bulls--t like this. She has insulted you, insulted and mocked your friends, shown herself to be a selfish little s--t and has no compunctions of telling you that she doesn’t want to respect your no.
Trust me: that is not somebody who’s going to be worth banging, even for the stories. These are the hallmarks of someone who is selfish in bed (at best) and who will treat you like dogs--t if you let her into your life.
What’s wrong with you? Absolutely nothing, chief. The fact that your instinct is to tell her “no” is a sign that you are thinking very clearly and correctly. The fact that she’s still interested after six years may be flattering, but it doesn’t invalidate the “oh, right, still an awful human being” part. This isn’t a “get over yourself” situation, this is a “you have too much respect for yourself to consider it”.
Personally, I’m siding with your friends who’re telling you to end the friendship. Although, if I’m perfectly frank, I wouldn’t consider this a friendship. You may be her friend… kinda. But she’s definitely not yours.
Oh, and one more thing. Passing on this opportunity doesn’t mean you’re missing your only chance, nor does it mean that you’re crazy to pass it up. The takeaway here is that you can do so much better than her. You’ve got a literal beauty queen bootie calling you because she’s been after you for six years. Take that aspect and realize that there are other, equally hot — if not hotter — women out there who will also think that you’re a tall glass of “f--k my brains out” who aren’t s--tty people. Who will actually be sweet and funny and generous and treat you with respect and, y’know, not insult you or your friends.
Block her number and go find them instead.
Please send your questions to Dr. NerdLove at his website (www.doctornerdlove.com/contact); or to his email, firstname.lastname@example.org