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Dr. Norman Brown
Dr. Norman Brown, Marriage Therapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 931
Experience:  Family Therapist & teacher 35+ yrs; PhD research in couples
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Hello thought i would follow up. I gave him my number via FB

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Hello thought i would follow up. I gave him my number via FB message he said he appreciated it gave me a wink and made an inside joke. We chatted on FB last night I said "I think it would be reall y great if we went fishing sometime. I want to hear your giggle again it's cute." He said "Thank u! I like fishing!!" So today I asked him to go with me on a specific day and place. He seen the message but has not answered yet. Confused??
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dr. Norman Brown replied 1 year ago.

Dr. Norman Brown :

So far you've only met him on FB? If so, he might be somewhat shy, so making a date to actually meet in person might be a big deal. I suggest you give him around 2 days to respond before getting too worried yourself.

Dr. Norman Brown :

If he hasn't responded by then, he could still be too busy with other things to get back to you, or he might be uptight because YOU are setting up the first face-to-face meeting, and he's not feeling in charge of what's developing with you.

Dr. Norman Brown :

After 2 days, I suggest you could use a fishing metaphor and write "Hey, I'm a wiggly worm squirming on your hook. If you don't want to go fishing on the day I'm suggesting, give me a different day and place that works for you."

Dr. Norman Brown :

One other thing: Many guys tell each other to NOT respond right away when a girl shows that she wants to meet you. They say "make her wait a couple of days. Cuz then she'll be all worried you don't want to go out with her, so when you finally do respond, she'll do whatever you want, because she's already spent all that time of uncertainty worrying that she's done something wrong and you've decided you don't want to meet her after all. So he could be just pretending to be not very eager to see you, so you'll try really hard to be and to do everything he wants. You'll worry that HE thinks you aren't good enough for him, and you'll worry that you're really not up to his standards of attractiveness, so he's trying to let you down slow and easy. Some guys tell each other to get girls they should use these delays to KEEP the girl missing them, and she'll usually like them more when they finally DO call.

Dr. Norman Brown :

So the chances are good that he's either too shy, too busy or too crafty. Don't worry which it is, and don't write anything. But see if he apologizes or writes about what made him late getting back to you. Write back again here when he responds, if you want me to interpret what he says about his delay.

Customer:

Well I got my answer. he said he would really like to go but has a new girlfriend who is monopolizing all his time on the weekends. I'd love to know when this happened and why would he lead me on? So I replied "Oh okay. I had no idea, sorry." I will just leave it at that and continue to live my life as I have WITHOUT any complications from men who play with my emotions for NO reason. Sorry but I am quite upset. I mean what was the point???

Customer:

One other thing we had met in a group setting several times which HE asked me to. Since getting laid off FB is the way we have communicated. We do not see each other everyday like we did a weeek ago. He has always been the one to approach me and make conversation. I only approached him twice. Once about 3 weeks after turning down an invite to meet for breakfast and second this time when I asked him to go fishing. Between those times it was he who wanted me to meet his roomates and join his friends for dinner.

Expert:  Dr. Norman Brown replied 1 year ago.

Dear XXXXX,

 

I'm sorry but I had to switch off chat, because the computer system wouldn't let me in after I waited 5 min. I also was not informed you were asking for me until I brought up the question. You were right and I was wrong from the gitgo about him. He's apparently unconsciously self-centered, since he's casting his fishingnet out wherever he can to make sure he gets a girlfriend as soon as possible. So he may well have been deeply hurt by his wife's rejection of him 10 or more years ago--and anybody who does not go into therapy to explore their past relationships is likely to do this stuff over and over again. He's like a "child of divorce" in that he doesn't want to feel abandoned ever again, so he keeps pursuing women (also rhymes with hunting quail) everywhere he goes and any port will do in a storm. So he grabs onto anybody who will have him, and then discovers shortly (1 to 6months) afterwards that she's NOT what he wants in a permanent partner ("who" is not the operative pronoun, because he's not picking her for Who she is but What she is) and dumps her, or she gets disgusted with him and flees first.

 

I'm sorry I campaigned for giving him the benefit of the doubt. But there are LOTS of men like him never work on increasing their self-awareness of their strengths & weaknesses & emotions involved in human relations, so they either just cut a swath through women whose personalities they don't know how to respect. Or they marry somebody and then treat her like she's the answer to their needs--but discover sometimes that she too has been abused & bruised by loving, so their 2nd (or later) marriage is a protracted wrestling match as each tries to get the other to change enough to make them both happy--and that is possible.

 

I said before that when you're as brand new to dating as you are, it would be a miracle if you didn't have to get hurt. [I once conducted an 8 hour workshop on comparing relationship histories among grad students of average age 50, and every one of them (incl myself) had established their 1st marriage or permanent partnership by finding somebody who was SAFE, as a refuge from the many prior loves they'd had in which they got hurt, usually more for women, because they got pursued much more than they needed to pursue and assert toward who THEY wanted.

 

Interesting that he passed the initial interview about being a good potential husband. But he ruins his chances by using deceit to keep plenty of replacement partners in his waiting room. I hope you let him know that you aren't going to be available to him anymore, no matter when he decides to try you out.

 

Of course a woman used to the bar scene might be used to the competition for "good men" who are vigorously playing the field. You never actually got the "first date" which is when I used to tell every woman I dated after age 30 that I would ONLY date exclusively, until one or both of us decided that long-term=marriage was not what we wanted with each other.

 

I suppose in hindsight, you could have let him know when he was flirting with a waitress that you're a "one-man woman" so any evidence that a man who's interested in you is playing the field is a complete turn-off--and then see if he was willing to shut himself down in your presence (@ least). He probably would not have done that, but then you'd have been rid of him much sooner. My demand for exclusivity saved me from several heartbreaks during my 30s, but didn't work to prevent others, because the women were not honest with me.

 

Come to think about it, the few that weren't honest were working on a rule that someone on this site called "Don't ask; don't tell" for "dating other people" at the same time. A man was writing about it because he didn't like it at all, but he really liked the woman. I would say to that that when a love partner keeps sneaking away and then coming back all full of love, the rollercoaster emotional effect can make such a relationship unusually INTENSE and ADDICTIVE, and that's VERY BAD for the person experiencing it, because it sets up an emotional pattern that fosters the somewhat delusional thinking that the relationship is bound to get bad and very hurtful many times, AND it's also bound to get very good some time after it gets bad. Once you get emotionally hooked on that pattern, you might as well be partnering up with an alcoholic or drug addict, or a serial cheater, and you could get drawn to future partnerships that generate the same emotional rollercoaster.

 

So perhaps you could add another question to your prescreening interview: "What do you think about the 'don't ask; don't tell' rule for dating relationships?" If the guy endorses or defends it, then ask him When Exclusive Dating Does Include New Ground-rules (just wordsmithing: acronym Wedding)--actually when he himself would want a commitment to exclusive dating. You'd get rid of the self-important players like your Desperate4Love Hunter through that little sub-section interview.

 

I think the majority of women in your age bracket (and mine in my 30s & early 40s) don't want just dating until somebody more exciting comes along, though many of the highly successful women with big bankrolls may like individual success better than marriage. They want a lifelong marriage, even if they have to raise high nuptial hopes and get very hurt when their chosen bridegroom turns out incompatible, or worse yet, turns out to have different romantic goals and methods.

 

I'm glad you wanted to let me know what happened. I guess another diagnostic question for the "screening interview" would be to ask about how the guy's divorce went--and be looking for more amicable and/or more complete separations

Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Thanks for all your advice and help. I can only take comfort in the fact that he WAS attracted to me (no matter what way) and it did boost my confidence and ego. I will not respond to him if he decides to contact me in the future. Although I would like to show him I am a great woman. I guess I just get tired of always being the friend and not the girlfriend. Thanks again

Expert:  Dr. Norman Brown replied 1 year ago.

Your husband gave you the great friend love-pattern, so it IS important that this sleazy hunter WAS attracted to you. I know the feeling of "showing him I am a great woman." When my 2nd great love finally managed to stop coming back to me every time she got away--but only by luring a German guy to leave his wife and fly to USA to be her new BF--she had admitted that she preferred a "buff guy" to an ectomorph like me. So I started working out at a gym (to "show her I was a buff guy"), and I haven't stopped in the 35 years since then.

 

Whatever you do to be a great woman will have the desired effect on the next guy who's ready for you--and maybe your lonely hunter will still be flying from one nest to the next when you've got the good-friend & passionate partner you're seeking. That's a competition(or revenge) feeling you get when the one you wanted seems to think somebody else is more worthwhile than you are. I got to "win" in that virtual contest, and I wish you success there too--but of course the best revenge is your own happiness.

 

Goodnight Kelly, sleep tight.

Dr. Norman Brown, Marriage Therapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 931
Experience: Family Therapist & teacher 35+ yrs; PhD research in couples
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Dr. Norman Brown
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Family Therapist & teacher 35+ yrs; PhD research in couples