…And then disappear?
I’m a great woman. I can cook, keep my house organized, I work long hours so that I never have to ask for anything. I don’t do the mani-pedi thing, or have my hair done at the shop too much because frankly, I was never a real girly-girl to begin with.
I find myself dating less and less these days because I am always being cheated on or dumped and I don’t understand it. Things will be going along very well for about six to eight months and then “wham!”, they start changing their behavior. Then all the red flags (no calls, less frequent visits, holidays alone) start showing up. Will, I’m tired of this happening to me. I’m not changing, but maybe I should? Why do I keep getting treated this way?
Down in the Dumps
You’ve read me before, so you know I’m kind of no-nonsense, right? Well, once again, it’s band-aid ripping time. The good news is, I’m pretty sure I know what the problem is. The bad news is the problem is you. I mean, it’s not completely your fault, just 99%. But, before you start sticking pins in your Good Enough Guy voodoo doll, let me explain.
THE USUAL SUSPECTS: This is a mistake a lot of my single friends (female and male) make. Albert Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. The same thing goes for dating the same guy over and over. Sure, they may be a little taller, a little shorter, a little older, or a little younger, but if they all have a similar mind set, a similar attitude, and a similar set of values (or lack thereof), then they’re still pretty much the same guy. And if you keep picking the same kind of guy, and they keep doing the same bad things to you, then the problem isn’t the guys, is it? And the bad part is that the very thing that attracts you to them may be the thing that makes them a bad match for you. So many women think they want the bad boy (or a thug, depending on which radio station you listen to) but then can’t figure out why, six months later, they’re finding strange phone numbers in his pocket and even stranger panties under his back seat.
SIMPLE FIX: Get out of your comfort zone. Date a guy you normally wouldn’t, just for comparison’s sake. He may not be Mr. Right, but he may open your eyes enough to help you avoid the next Mr. Wrong.
STUCK IN HIGH SCHOOL: Another possible culprit is the repeated cycle and again, both my female and my male friends do this. We all remember dating in high school, right? You met, you fell in love, things were hot and heavy, then problems started and soon it was over. All in the same day and sometimes before lunch! As we got older, our values changed and we realized that we have to have more than just a physical attraction and raging hormones to have a real relationship; well some of us did. Those unfortunate others got stuck in the 80’ and still think that love is a battle field. They believe that, if they aren’t either tearing off each others’ clothes or trying to scratch each others’ eyes out, the relationship must be in trouble, so they jump from person to person and live the same Junior year love affair over and over, promising their undying love at homecoming, but breaking up before prom.
SIMPLE FIX: Grow the hell up! Realize that love is not some hole you fall into and out of; real love is a verb. And it’s not for the lazy. Love is something you have to actually do, all day, every day. You find it. You keep it. You work at it. You fix it. You make it. You build it. Or… you lose it.
BLAH: Okay, you don’t do manicures, you don’t do pedicures, you don’t get your hair done, you don’t ask for anything so what exactly is that you do like to do? Clean the house? Work long hours? When you say things are going along “very well” for six months, do you mean that you’re coming home from work, cooking dinner, and watching TV until you fall asleep and he goes home? If it sounds like I’m calling you boring, then you’re catching on. Think about it; if you wouldn’t date someone like you, can you really expect anyone else to want to?
SIMPLE FIX: Change your game. Go get your nails, toes and hair done, even if it’s just once in a while, then put on something sexy and WOW him. And make it a point, at least once a month, to do something you’ve both never done. Try a date at a rock climbing wall. Go to a horse race together. Take a sexy massage class. This is how you make stories that will keep you talking waaaay past the eight month mark.
SABOTAGE! Something else I noticed in your letter is that you say this happens every “six or eight months” which is pretty specific time frame for a generalization. That makes me wonder if maybe it isn’t the guys who are changing at that mile marker, maybe it’s you. I may be reaching but, you cook for yourself, clean for yourself, keep your house organized the way you want it, work long hours so that you can provide for yourself, and never have to ask for anything. So what do you need a man for? Which is fine, except…MAN RULE= Men need to feel needed! A woman who has her own is wonderful, but we still need to kill the spiders, unclog the sink, and open the pickle jar. Six months is just long enough for a man to catch the vibe that you’re just as comfortable without him or that you can take him or leave him. And by eight months, he may have already found another stuck pickle jar to open.
SIMPLE FIX: If you’re sure that you want a long term man, make some room for him; in your schedule, in your life, and in your heart. Needing someone is okay; make sure he knows it.
Well, I’ve given you plenty to work with. Try these things, and if they don’t work, they’ll at least help you zero in on the real problem. Then write me again, and we’ll start all over! Good luck to you!
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William Jones is originally from the tiny town of Alton, Illinois, and now lives in the tinier town of Reisterstown, Maryland. He is a happy husband and a proud father of three, and writes as a hobby, in those few moments he finds between husband-ing and daddy-ing. Follow him on Twitter @goodenoughguy1