DEAR DR. NERDLOVE:
I have been seeing this guy online for a good 8 months or so. He’s very supportive, kind, silly, sexy, and he doesn’t judge me for having not the best past. We’ve been there for each other, and we’ve helped each other grow a bit. The problem is, we are currently just online FWB.
I’m not so sure I want to be FWB anymore. He knows I care very deeply for him, but hasn’t really given me a response to his feelings for me. He’s been giving me huge mixed signals. One night he told me he prefers to be friends, the next day he tells me he was thinking of me a lot in the hospital, and how he wants to hold my hand and other sweet things like that. I don’t know what to do. I don’t want to be the girl in “Paradise by the Dashboard Light” and give him a pressuring ultimatum, but I really love him and can’t stand the thought of being an ego boost.
Do I confront him? How?
Reading Foggy Tea Leaves
DEAR READING FOGGY TEA LEAVES: Dump his ass.
Sorry. I realize that’s harsh, but he’s straight up jerking you around.
He may be a sweet, supportive guy, but he’s treating you like shit. You and he want entirely different things. You want an actual relationship with everything that means. He wants continuing access to your vagina without actually committing. This is why he’s giving you mixed signals and blows hot and cold; he wants to be friends but he also knows that if he doesn’t keep dangling the relationship carrot in front of you, he’s going to be left alone with his stick. As soon as he said “let’s just be friends” he realized that it was a toe over the line and tried to pull you back in by being all lovey-dovey. He’s taking advantage of the fact that you care for him more than he cares for you and unless you take a stand, that’s all that’s going to happen.
You deserve better than this.
You can give him a heads-up: either you get an answer or you bail… but I’m guessing we both already know what that answer’s going to be.
Drop him like fifth period Calculus and find a dude who is actually in tune with what you want and isn’t going to play games with your emotions.
DEAR DR. NERDLOVE: I recently decided to start looking for a long term relationship, but not for reasons most do: not for the need of love or even a connection to others or a fear of ending up alone. I’m perfectly content with being by myself — I often prefer it. Instead, I’m looking for financial reasons: as in two people paying bills, rent, etc. is cheaper than one.
Now a little bit about myself: I’m a 29 year old guy, I’ve been in a few long term relationships, but I knew it wasn’t really my thing. I stayed in my longest relationship because my life at home was falling apart, and leaning on others was easier than dealing with my situation. After a few relationships, I made the choice of not seeking that in life, but more of short term engagements when I was feeling the need to be with someone. I don’t really need sex or emotional connections; I do enjoy it from time to time but I can long stretches without it. The problem I find is that as enjoyable as meeting new people is, learning interesting things about them is for lack of a better term… boring. I get bored of people, and when that happens I tend to just end things and move forward with my life until I meet someone who interests me again.
Now I recently went through life changing events. My father passed away over a year ago, and as most do when something that big happens, I took some time to self reflect and see if changes needed to be made.
These days, I’m in a good place emotionally, which leads me to my wanting to find a long term partner. I have discussed it with some close friends and a few coworkers whose opinions I find often have value and for the most part I keep being told it’s wrong. I’m willing to be all the things that make a good partner for whoever, I just don’t need most of them myself and I’m fine with that. However, I still get told that what I’m doing is bad. I feel everyone enters into a relationship for their own reasons; this just happens to be the reason I’m looking for one.
Was just looking for the thoughts from someone whose column I enjoy reading
Got To Be In It To Win It
DEAR GOT TO BE IN IT TO WIN IT: Your friends are right, GTBITWI: that’s a shitty reason to be in a relationship with someone.
Your issue here isn’t your motivation, it’s what you’re looking for. If all you’re looking for is someone to split the bills, then you aren’t looking for a romantic relationship, you’re looking for a roommate.
This is all about expectations and connection. People who are looking for relationships are looking for someone to share their lives with, someone that they have a connection to and to be intimate with — emotionally as well as physically. It doesn’t matter that you’re willing to play the role of “boyfriend” in order to find someone to help you live more frugally; people don’t want someone who’s acting like a caring and attentive partner, they want the real thing. What you’re doing is, at best, offering a sort of long-term “boyfriend experience” in exchange for someone splitting half the rent and utilities. Frankly, unless that’s how you’re actually presenting yourself to people — which sounds more like some form of being a sugar baby, rather than a partner — then all you’re doing is setting them up for disappointment and, likely, heartbreak when you inevitably get bored again.
Do yourself a favor: get off the dating apps and get on Craigslist instead. Find a roommate to split an apartment with and let the folks who are sincerely looking for relationships alone.
Please send your questions to Dr. NerdLove at his website (www.doctornerdlove.com/contact); or to his email, email@example.com