You put your profile online. You weed out the creepy guys and the poor spellers, the stalkers and the old men. The guys who winked and the guys who give their phone number in the first email. And you’re left with a small core of decent men.
You write back. You flirt. You exchange private emails. You talk on the phone. You meet for coffee. Everything’s going swimmingly. You actually like one of the guys!
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What you may have forgotten is that he’s doing this with five other women.
Listen, it’s easy to blame guys for being non-committal shoppers who are always looking for the next-best thing; it’s a lot harder to come to terms with the fact that, as a woman (especially if you’re under the age of 35), you’ve likely done the same thing. In fact, most women under the age of 35 don’t quite appreciate how good they have it. Their inboxes get filled with scores of emails – mostly from undesirable men, with a few golden nuggets thrown in. On the other hand, the average man has to write ten emails to get two replies – and rarely, if ever, receives an unsolicited contact.
And as I’ve written before, if you are a 27-year-old woman, you’re at the top of the dating totem pole. Same for a 37-year-old man. If you’re on a website and legitimately have the option of being able to land the cutest, smartest, most successful person out there, it’s hard to blame you for it, isn’t it?
This is what both genders fail to appreciate about each other. Men think women are rude for not writing back. They never consider that those women have dozens of other men courting them. Women think men are players for not committing. They never consider that those men might be marriage-minded and struggling to find the right fit.
Online dating is truly a leveling of the playing field – not a tilting in the man’s favor. And the more desirable the person – whether it’s because of looks or money or education – the more likely that you’ll have a hard time getting that person to settle down on you. The “best” candidates know they have great power and are intent on exploring it.
So what is the right way to combat this if you’re a woman? Mostly by not sweating it. You can’t control what a man does, you can only control your actions and reactions to him. Better yet, I’d approach each new guy with the blind confidence that he’s going to love you. Men love confidence. On the other hand, the more you worry about how often he’s logging on, and who else he’s dating, and why he hasn’t taken his profile down, the more likely you are to come across as needy.
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Frankly, I think this is way too much analysis for a pretty simple situation. When a guy is crazy about a woman, he does whatever is in his power to make her his girlfriend within the first 6 weeks or so. If he fails to do that, she’s just ignoring the writing on the wall.
I’m no psychologist, but people’s behavior generally speaks for itself, don’t you think?