Really great relationships are chosen on multiple levels: emotionally, physically, spiritually, and intellectually. By far the weakest of the four choice-makers is the intellectual. The science of the brain tells us that when we make important decisions that impact our lives, we first make them emotionally, and then we explain them logically. In dating relationships, putting off touch and sex empowers the intellectual choice-maker to do its work first, rather than the other way around.
So if you want a great marriage down the road, stop touching – for a while. One researcher at the University of Ottowa, Dr. Martin Rovers, advises putting off touch for three months. I advise putting off sex for three to six months. How do you accomplish that? When he asks you out and offers to pick you up at your home, counter offer to meet him at a public venue. When he invites you over for a home-cooked meal at his place, counter offer a picnic date to which you both contribute food. Meet him at that venue. Minimize alcohol. Keep up that pattern for as long as you have intellectually decided you will avoid sex. Use the time to interview him, asking questions about his past relationships.
And here’s a novel idea: communicate. Tell him that your first priority is getting to know each other really well, minus sex. Tell him that your goal is a committed relationship leading to marriage with the right guy; don’t know if that is you at this point, but that’s why we’re dating. The players will scram and the serious, good guys will view you with increased respect and desire. Try it out for a few months and see what happens.
About the author: Nina Atwood, M.Ed., LPC, is a nationally known psychotherapist, author of five self-help books, and frequent expert media guest. Read the transformational book that will change your life and your relationships with men: Temptations of the Single Girl: The Ten Dating Traps You Must Avoid. To successfully date online, get Nina's $0.99 eBook Internet Dating for the Savvy Single. Learn how to communicate effectively with your mate with Soul Talk: Powerful, Positive Communication for a Loving Partnership. Get loads of free advice and Love Strategies at www.singlescoach.com.