A Jewish matchmaker gets real about excusing bad dating behavior…
This month’s post is written with my female audience in mind. I’m hearing from a lot of women who seem to be stuck in this middle space where they are hanging on to small bits of attention from a man thinking that eventually he will realize what a ‘catch’ he’s got and step up to the plate. I’m here to say, ‘uh-uh”. If you want a partner who is 100% invested and able to ‘man-up’ to the very real demands of a mutually rewarding relationship, stop wasting time on men who are distant, unresponsive, indecisive, and insincere; simply put, real men get ‘real’ from the start.
Most women I know are carers, nurturers, give the benefit of the doubt, hope for the best, and tend to allow for the possibility of a ‘diamond in the rough’. We make all sorts of excuses for the poor behavior of men we date. We do all sorts of mental gymnastics in an effort to reconcile our ideal of a man, with the truth of what is in front of us. He doesn’t make time to meet up or is lazy at responding to our messages? “He’s really busy with ……..(fill in the blank) ”. He maintains his online dating profiles and communicates with other women? “It’s too early to be exclusive or He’s afraid of getting hurt again.” Or maybe he is love-bombing you with extraordinary amounts of attention and words of affection very early in the relationship. Instead of seeing this as a red-flag we say, “He’s lonely” or “He’s loving and caring’, or “He’s a giver.”
We’re not short on catchy phrases that we throw around to justify the lazy behavior of others: “He had a bad childhood”, “He needs his space”, “He’s not good at communicating”, “He’s afraid of commitment”, “He needs more time”, “He doesn’t know what a good relationship looks like”, “He’s too nice”. Whatever the excuse, it always revolves around trying to understand his needs and cutting him slack because “It’s not his fault”. But what about your needs? Can you be emotionally and intellectually satisfied by a man who has to be handled with kid gloves? Do you expect to have an emotionally stable and long-lasting partnership with a man who can’t find the time to pick up the phone and tell you he’s thinking of you? At what point in this scenario do you expect the man to suddenly morph into a guy who is pro-active, committed, determined, and 100% vested in a relationship with you?
If what you seek is a strong, confident man who can stand beside you and build a relationship with a firm foundation, who can weather the storms of conflict and challenge, who can commit to one person and one relationship and stick with you through all the stresses and curve-balls of life, you MUST seek and expect more than the passive, lackluster, unresponsive, and noncommittal behavior of those men to whom you are giving the benefit of the doubt. If a guy is not that ‘into’ you from the beginning, don’t expect he ever will be. Most of us shine at the beginning of a relationship, we are on our best behavior. If you’re not getting his best early on, don’t expect it to come later. Cut the excuses and continue forward. There are sincere, emotionally healthy, loving, caring ‘real’ men out there – and they don’t play games or need a woman to cut them any slack. And when you find one, you’ll see it from the start, via a balanced display of attentiveness, interest, affection, and sincere desire to connect.