Nobody should have to feel whether it's from their own pressure or another persons that they have to secure further interest and dates with sex. That's frickin outrageous! They're just not that special!

While reading yet more tales of They Bailed / Started Pulling The Slow Fade After I Said I Wanted To Take My Time Before Sleeping With Him/Her, it occurred to me that the type of person who goes from super-interested to crickets / unable to be pinned down to a date and time for the next get-together, is someone who carries on as if getting to know someone is a commitment in itself. What the what now?

It’s the idea that they’re so busy and so not wanting to ‘waste’ any ‘unnecessary’ time that they’d rather just speed up the audition for the non-existent relationship part. And it is non-existent because the type of person who will fade out because you’re not ready to start being sexually intimate isn’t truly looking to get to know you and isn’t looking to have a relationship, after all, if it’s that easy to be written off, they were never in it anyway. They also lack patience.

Sex isn’t an automatic precursor to a relationship although some people will dangle the possibility of it so that they can get what they want in the present – Future Faking.

Some people think that they are getting to know you by having sex with you when actually, they’re just having sex. You could never expect to have a stable and mutual relationship with someone who actually thinks that what they know about your character can be gauged from giving you a good ‘seeing to’. I mean seriously, what does a vagina or penis say about someone? In fact they don’t say anything and they’re not good judges of character. Just asked someone who is ‘hooked’ on the sexual connection with somebody who needs a character transplant!

Now I’m not denying that some people hold out the sex to leverage a relationship, but actually, lots of people don’t. When someone is short-sighted enough to lose their dating mojo because you’re not sleeping with them, they’re assuming that you already want a relationship with them. Now you might do, but actually, you’re probably not in a position (excuse the pun) to decide at that point.

Dating is a discovery phase – you might discover on a few more dates that you don’t want to proceed. And you know what? I’m going to say it: I suspect that in some cases it’s the fact that you might get to know them further and not want to proceed why they try to push the sex issue earlier on.

While thinking about this earlier, I started laughing because I realised that it reminded me of when you put down a deposit in order to secure something, like at DFS, a sofa company in the UK that seem to have a permanent ‘half price sale’ which means that the sofas are not actually the full price, or when you put a deposit down and then spread the payments out over a set period.

A lot of people have sex even if they would rather wait a while because they think that they’re ‘putting a deposit’ down on a relationship and even doing a show of faith, like “OK, you want sex and I want to show you that I like you so that you can relax and get to know me” – er, OK. They think that if they don’t put it down now, that someone else will snag this relationship that’s ‘on offer’. The reality is that it’s more like someone will snag the sex that’s on offer.

If you fall into this trap, you likely end up feeling robbed or at the very least a little compromised because for a lot of people, sex either means something or at the very least leaves you feeling a bit vulnerable afterwards. That, and you may also have fallen into the trap of assuming that you were at least assured of a good shot or even a guarantee of a relationship.

Dating is a discovery phase that requires effort and that in itself can act as a ‘deposit’ if and when you decide to progress it to a relationship in the future.

If you don’t put anything in, you don’t get anything out of it. If you put a little in and then carry on like you’re owed, it sours the interaction. I’m not buying all of this time poor bullshit because it says a lot about where we’re headed with dating that some people are so afraid of effort and being vulnerable that they expect a ‘return on investment’ from just going on a few dates.

It’s just a date. Since when did people become so tight with their time and effort?

It’s like “I’m on the clock here! We’ve had three dates and if I don’t get my ‘medicine’, I’m gonna start to feel like I’m wasting my time here!” And don’t fall for the “We’re both grownups” ploy because if that were the case, they’d be allowing things to proceed organically instead of calling last orders for sex.

We’ve got to lose this idea that a relationship is ‘on offer’ and that we’re competing for a part that if we don’t pony up the sexual goods upfront, they’ll choose someone else that will and give away this relationship that in spite of the fact that we may 1) hardly know them or 2) already have seen signs that they’re not for us, we seem to be hankering for.

Nobody should feel, whether it’s from their own pressure or another persons, that they have to secure further interest and dates with sex. That’s frickin outrageous! They’re just not that special!

Hard as it is to hear, don’t go down the convincing and negotiating route. Don’t justify. They’ve let their position be known as have you (I doubt these ones are in the Karmasutra….) and if you not wanting to sleep with them yet is going to scare them off, then let ’em be scared off. If the subject comes up, keep it light and breezy and move the conversation on. Let the dates be in neutral places and certainly don’t go back to one another’s places on early dates. Be cool, calm and confident and don’t go “Oh OK then” and cough up the sex when you think that they’re fading.

Remember: You’ve done nothing wrong.

*There are people out there who don’t need a sex deposit in order to continue dating you and yes it might take you dating several people before you meet one. Those are the people who at the very least share similar sexual values to you and are a bit more ‘big picture’. Some people will bring up sex but will respect your wishes. It doesn’t mean that you’re going to wind up in a relationship with them but at least on that front they’ve respected your position. For the rest of them, just keep flushing, just keep flushing.

*Note, you will meet more bailers and faders if you’re dating online. Hide of rhino needed and Columbo skills. Basically keep your feelings and imagination in check with someone who you’ve met on a dating site until you’ve had enough ‘real life’ experience of them and steer clear of anything that has a short sign up process / hook-up feel.

Your thoughts?

Updated 29th October: An audio version of this post is now available on Soundcloud.

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175 Responses to When Someone Bails / Pulls The Slow Fade After You Say That You’re Not Ready To Sleep With Them Yet

  1. yoghurt says:

    Ooo – well-timed and brilliant. I’m struggling with this one a bit.

    I don’t know if it’s me or them. I’ve worked out that, being inherently quite shy and awkward, I used to use sex and alcohol as my two ice-breakers (this, by the way, is Not A Good Policy) when it came to men. As I’ve sworn off both these days – or, more accurately, view them both with a good deal of caution – I find that it’s very very difficult to get into the frame of mind where I CAN meet anyone. I don’t particularly open up to men and I can’t flirt in the same way that I didn’t used to be able to do job interviews.

    I’ve had one ‘date’ in the last two years. I was deliberately unflirty and down-to-earth and treated any suspicion of flirtation from him as a bit of a joke. He disappeared – fair play and no loss anyway.

    Honestly, though, I’ve no idea if I’m even able to cultivate the sort of approach that I’ll need if I’m ever to meet a bloke. In fact, I suspect that atm I’m deliberately leaning towards putting myself outside of the ‘eligible’ box (either that or I’m just seriously unattractive, which is a possibility).

    I AM cautious, I’m supremely uncomfortable about even being sexually inviting (for want of a better phrase) with someone that I barely know, and tbh I wouldn’t want to endeavour with someone who I thought didn’t like me, either.

    I should add that, friend-wise, I’m doing a lot better than I was six months ago and I’m perfectly fine relating to women. I miss having male friends, though, and the fact that I don’t, really, anymore makes me wonder if I’m a bit Man Get Thee Back generally. Or if they’re all horrible and only see me as worthwhile if they think they’re going to get something (other than my fine company) out of it.

    • Spinster says:

      yoghurt: We seem to have quite a few similarities in this regard; they don’t all apply to me, but I identify with quite a bit of what you described in your coment. I’m not really sure what to do about it, or if I even need to do anything about it. But for you, I wish you continued clarity & inner peace.

      • yoghurt says:

        Yo, thanks spinster :)

        I did my usual trick of posting in a tizz before bed and then waking up today with the answer.

        It’s just that men make me jumpy. Actually people in general make me jumpy, especially after long periods of seclusion (such as I’ve just had) but men in particular. And always have.

        The thing is, when I was younger and moving in Christian circles (as described below) there were girls who were committed to no sex before marriage and still managed to be attractive to men, have boyfriends and inspire tender, true-love sorts of emotions.

        I wasn’t one of them. I’m still not. I had a really weird relationship with a really closed-off Christian bloke (who still pushed his luck unpleasantly, would you believe? Sod’s law) and then I discovered alcohol.

        So I’ve never learnt the art of being myself and being attractive. It may not exist. But, in the meantime, I should probably get more practice being around people in general. Can’t hurt :)

        • selkie says:

          Oh man, Yoghurt I hear you. I tend to seclude myself in avoidance. I am NOT good at meeting new people and like you don’t feel I express myself very well in a way that makes me very interesting to others or attractive, yet I’ve been around the world and not led a boring life. I agree that practice being around people might help. so, I’m going to a Meet Up Halloween party where I know NO ONE this Saturday. I’m looking forward to it and dreading it at the same time. Is this called social anxiety? I am forcing myself out of my comfort zone, because I just can’t stay here any more. I’m lonely from my life of hiding away from people. I’m wearing a costume which should be fun, and about 50 or so people will be there. Lots of opportunity to mingle and make new friends. Yikes! I’m also signing up for hiking and outdoor activities. Many of these meet ups are family friendly too, so you could bring your son if you find any in your area. I will better my life, I am determined.

  2. JJ2 says:

    Haven’t been here in awhile, came here due to Natalie’s twitter post. Natalie posted: “I suspect that in some cases it’s the fact that you might get to know them further and not want to proceed why they try to push the sex issue earlier on.”

    I think you are spot on with that comment.

    Also, over the years, I have found that if I have sex early in the relationship, I’m not nervous about it, because I’m at the “I don’t care if this works or not” point. However, if I wait to have sex, then I get all nervous and freaked out about “performance” and “expectations” from the guy. I wish it weren’t this way.

    WHEE! Do I get to be the first post?

    • yoghurt says:

      Sorry :/ I pipped you to it!

      I know what you mean about the not-caring, it seems like an awful lot of pressure to hold off until you actually LIKE someone…

  3. MRWriter says:

    Thank you! I finally needed someone (especially a woman) tell me there’s nothing wrong with not leaping head first into the sack. For the last few years, I’ve noticed men seem to have an expectation right out of the gate (2 or 3 dates in or less!) of sex. When I resist, they act like I’m some defective, frigid bitch. What hurts worse is when my own girlfriends sell me down the river after I let another guy “go” and they stare at me in abject horror and mixed curiosity when I tell them I just wasn’t ready to have sex with the guy and he split…they behave like I’m a closet lesbian or as one toxic frenemy put it, “You just don’t want to be happy,” simply because the guy in question was good-looking. I need more than that.

    I don’t withhold sex but I’m not comfortable swapping spit with just anyone. Yet, the older I get, the more pressure I feel to just “give in.”

    This year I did. I did not because I wanted to but because I felt I had to in order to avoid the “what’s wrong with you?” attitude I’ve resisted for so many years. I don’t feel guilty, I’m not feeling bad about it because sex is just sex and a perfectly natural thing. But I do wish dating was less of a “stick-up” (pun intended). I’ve had men bluntly throw down the sex card when we’ve spent a total of two-three hours together tops. It hurts when you feel a connection but watch the light dim after you politely decline or refuse to play ball.

    I think it’s an expectation fueled by women (myself included) who do give in to early that the men can’t adjust when they encounter a woman with a wait and see approach (I’ve been that woman for 5 years with nary a third or fourth date to show for it). It’s easy to say these men that turn into the Road Runner are better off being a cloud dust in our life but after enduring years of this vanishing act and disapproval, it’s also hard not to throw in the towel, give in and hopefully, at least get yours. Too many years of celibacy because a guy won’t wait will have you closing your eyes and jumping off a cliff as if there were a brush fire and that’s your only escape. You hope the water is deep enough and you won’t bounce off the boulders. That pretty much sums up this year for me…do I have anything wonderful to show for it? A relationship? Joy? Happy memories? No, nada, zilch. I got sex. Whoop-dee-doo!

    Since my girlfriends treat me like a spinster, I feel alone, unsupported and confused by the sexual dilemma. Thank you for once again having my back.

    • Alice says:

      I could have written this response. Thanks for doing it so well.

    • SM says:

      MR never, ever, ever saw a better post about this topic. Yep you are right about every single thing you said here, its exactly the way I have felt for the last 7 years. Guys expect you to sleep with them on the 2nd or 3rd date, you will wait a very long time for someone who doesnt. Oh well it is totally worth it. I once stopped seeing a guy after 5 dates because he never tried to kiss me or even hold my hand.

      • tracy says:

        I went out with a nice guy 8 times…same thing. Nothing physical AT ALL. I got one peck on the cheek at the end of the last date, then a message on my phone that he was just too busy to date anymore.
        The first thing I thought was, “We were dating?”

        • SM says:

          Haha tracy that is exactly what I thought. Not one of the 5 dates lasted beyond 90 minutes, with him making no move whatsoever, not even leaning towards me. I texted him after the last and said it seems that there was no chemistry between us. He protested but I knew better. I did not need anymore friends.

    • SM says:

      MR, I have been on this same exact dating trail as you for the last 7 years, I have experienced and agree with everything you wrote. I also firmly believe in what Natalie wrote in her post above. Even though us ladies on BR are behind screen names, we are living, breathing human beings and we will support you if noone else will. Come here and share your struggles with us and we will cheer you on.

      • MRWriter says:

        Thank you SM! This site and Natalie has been a godsend. I’ve been suffering from the “Is it just me?” blues for several years and being the only maverick among your girlfriends eventually lends to self-doubt. You ladies are all the best!

    • yoghurt says:

      MRWriter – your post rang so many bells.

      I learnt my lesson about casual sex the very very hard way, by falling pregnant in a casual relationship (despite precautions! it happens!). So now, having a modicum of sense and the ability to learn from my mistakes, my attitude towards sex is “not with anyone unless I KNOW that they’d be good to have a child with”.

      Stands to reason, right? Could anything be more logical? But it’s starting to feel as though this is some sort of peculiar minority view held only dysfunctional freaks.

      Admittedly, that’s probably partially subjective and to do with the dissonance that comes with a big change of opinion. But then, I remember deciding to sleep with men because it seemed at the time as though that was the ONLY way to stand a chance of having a relationship. I was reading a lot of silly magazines at the time and paying attention to too many silly opinions, but still.

      The other thing that irritates me about this is the assumption that someone who doesn’t have sex immediately is either hormonally challenged, a tease or doesn’t have sufficient feelings for the other party (also common – I’m inclined to think that men are just as conditioned as we are to believe that True Love implies being ‘unable to resist’ after a very short time). I’m certainly not – I have as strong a sex drive as the next woman and, frankly, I miss it!

      • yoghurt says:

        *irritates me about this state of affairs* – not your post (just in case it wasn’t clear!)

        • yoghurt says:

          should also add:

          I know that I’m not a dysfunctional freak for wanting to wait and it’s a great comfort to know that there are lots of sensible, intelligent people out there who have come to the same conclusion! Muchos gratitude, Natalie!

          • natashya says:

            does it really matter that much, though? with one guy i waited for a long time. he turned out to be an assclown, with another i slept on the first date. he turned out to be an assclown. with yet another one, there was lots of conversation and no pressure at all. i slept with him after about 4 weeks (i had to make the moves) and guess what… he turned out to be an assclown soon after we had sex.

            the problem for me is not waiting (or not) for sex. the problem is that my AC radar is broken.

            • SM says:

              LOL, that cracks me up Natashya. I’ve done all of the above, I know what the problem is though. I’ll just take the last 3 guys I dated: 1. he was fun, nice but I knew before it even started that we wouldnt work and that he was a functioning alcoholic(I guessed this before even seeing it), 2. on the 4th date shoulda flushed, he was very late and my gut nagged me for 3 days to dont go there and he was the best to me about not having sex with him and the biggest ac I ever dated 3. Made out like crazy with this dude for 3 months, he enjoyed the fact that I held off, but I knew he was never going to be serious with me and truth be known lots of red flags right from the beginning. So my AC radar isnt broken, I’m just ignoring it.

            • AYR says:

              That’s exactly it–your radar’s broken. There is no magic number for length of time you should make a person wait, because an AC will just get sex somewhere else while he’s waiting for you to loosen the lock on your knees. You’re not making him wait for anything, except the chance to add your particular notch to his bedpost. But how to develop a better AC radar, that’s the real question. I think it’s a matter of being honest with yourself when they present you with red and yellow flags, and they always, always do. When you go back after your heart’s been broken, it’s only then that you allow yourself to really see the warning signs that were there all along.

            • yoghurt says:


              I’m currently working on the principle that my AC detector gets disabled by large doses of oxytocin. It may be that it’s broken in numerous other ways as well, but I may as well deal with the thing that I’m sure of.

              • Victorious says:

                yes my counsellor even told me my attachment to the ex eum was largely oxytocin related and would subside. As I chose to meet up with him I have caused myself another few weeks of misery. I could shoot myself.

  4. mykaygal says:

    If you work for a company you need to work there for 3 months to get the health benefits, the same concept should be applied to dating, 90 day rule before benefits kick in!

    • dove says:

      Ninety days…doesn’t sound like a lot when you step back and look at the big picture, if you want to be serious about this person, it could be the rest of your life.
      This past summer I hung out with a guy for a little over 90 days; he was great company, we talked about everything, got along like best buds…but when it came to sex, it never happened even though it was discussed. So after we went to a friends wedding I told him that there’s a lot I like but I wanted more than a friendship and I didn’t see it happening between us. I haven’t heard from him since then. I guess that means I didn’t pass the 90 day test?

    • runnergirl says:

      mykalgal, your comment made me spit. Perfect analogy. I’d never justify my sexual boundaries to someone who is pressuring but if I’m ever in that circumstance, may I use your line? Still laughing. The 90 day rule before benefits kick in…love it!

  5. Natasha says:

    Nat, this had me alternately snorting laughing and thinking, “Sing it girl!” I always say be especially careful in these situations because there are also men out there that will pressure a woman for sex and then say, “Oh, well you gave it up too soon! I can’t have a relationship with someone that gives it up that soon!” Sit. The. F*ck. Down. I believe we can all agree that there was never going to be a relationship on offer with these guys either.

    I really love the message that no one is “auditioning” for a relationship – you’re getting to know one another. Personally, I’ve auditioned many a time! Ironically, I couldn’t tell you the first frickin’ thing about the dudes I went out with during that time, not just because it was some time ago, but because I was so focused on hitting all my bullet points of what I thought men had to see in me to think I was “worthy” of a relationship. I mean, PowerPoint presentations aren’t sexy, people. For real. Nor is having sex because you feel that you have to or it’s going to get you what you may THINK you want.

  6. Heather says:

    Nat, it is good to hear this. I had a ton of dates never call me again after declining sex on the first-second date. I was getting angry, like, who do you think YOU are, Mr. Horse’s Butt?? It’s led me to think that a guy who can wait, is rare indeed.

  7. Kelli says:


    great article! I wish more blogs would post about this issue.

    Just a few things to comment on…

    I have had two long term relationships, both with psychopaths. It wasn’t even a QUESTION for me, both times, as to whether or not to have sex. It was an unstated EXPECTATION and because I didn’t feel good about ME, I engaged in it. I found out through my own healing work and other survivor stories, that men who are PREDATORY want sex as soon as possible, hence, gifts, constant email, wine, dine, overwhelming flattery and attention at record speed. It is DIFFICULT for women NOT to fall for this. Then once the predator has “made the deal” with sex, he EXPLOITS it. Most of these men are said to be “The best sex ever!” and with a man who has had LOTS of practice (and continues too because they are rarely faithful and committed, even if they MARRY YOU), he WOULD be, but he is invested in what a GREAT lover he is and he banks on this for her to stay and put up with the HORRENDOUS abuse out of bed. He is all about HIMSELF, not about HER. Women fall for this and hang onto the relationships because of the “great sex”. Women BOND in this way and with all the oxytocin flowing, she can’t see the forest for the trees. BEWARE of the date who wants to bed you before he gets to really KNOW you. The idea that he doesn’t WANT you to get to “know” him, and instead be hooked on the sex so you will OVERLOOK his lack of character.

    Sex is just sex. And without respect and/or without love, in my opinion, it is abusive and exploitative. Sex lasts five minutes to five hours. What is going on when you are NOT in bed? THAT’S what is worth paying attention too.

    But more so, it comes down to how much we respect ourselves. How tight our boundaries are. The value we place on ourselves. Sex did NOTHING to make a sick, pathological relationship better, no matter how “great” it was. He didn’t have a magical penis, I did not have a magical vagina and the relationship was not a FAIRY TALE. Sex is often mistaken as a reflection, show of love.

    A person who is interested in you, will show PATIENCE. Will show you are VALUABLE and WORTH waiting for. Sex cannot replace this value,in fact, it often destroys it.

    Sex is an act. Anyone can do it. It gets lots of people in trouble in their lives as they wind up on the speedway of pathology because they didn’t wait to find out what the predatory individual was really all about. Some pathologicals will WAIT for you, if you’re a good source of supply (Money, adoration, trophy girlfriend/wife) while doing all the sex on the side with others. I see this a lot too…”but he was so patient!” Only to find out he was patient because he was getting it ON THE SIDE.

    Give it time and PATIENCE to find out the character of the person. Now, for me, it’s so easy to do this. I’m actually considered prudish for waiting. I don’t CARE. It’s about my own value, my own worth. If a man can’t wait a LOOOONG time, then, as Natalie says, FLUSH!!! BUH BYE! I know myself well enough that I BOND during sex. I’ll wait for the RIGHT man. Sex is great, but it isn’t THAT great, certainly not enough to compromise myself and end up in another hellacious and painful relationship.

    One more important thing to remember: The man that wants to rush you to bed and into a relationship, love bombing you is NOT positive. This is NEGATIVE. His ability to attach easily is equally his ability to DETACH just as easily.

    Aren’t we worth more than that?

    • Maz says:

      Kelli “His ability to attach easily is equally his ability to DETACH just as easily” couldnt have said it better, after experiencing this myself.
      Like so many who have sought out this site, damaged, bruised and beaten from what we thought was a sunny stroll in a lovely park, only to find out it was a mirage and the stroll was a hike.

      We are worth much more than that, unfortunately for many, including myself, it’s getting much more difficult in distinguishing the flowers from the weeds.

    • selkie says:

      Kelli, so well said. We ARE worth more than that. Unfortunately, so many women don’t think they are, so the predator/player/abuser/user has options, or new prey to pick from when we grow some courage, have self esteem and become ‘difficult’ or require effort and integrity from them. It’s sad how prevalent it is.

      A man who bails because he has to wait until a woman is comfortable having sex, is so not worth it anyway on so many levels and isn’t relationship material no matter how you behave, sleep with him or not. Pressuring someone for sex, using the threat of leaving, having sex with others, disappearing, etc. as leverage is coercion, emotional blackmail, and even bait and switch. All characteristics of a con man. We are BETTER that they disappear. We should consider it a near miss, rather than a rejection. For those who are up for casual sex, then so be it, but be careful.
      This is an example where it pays to be honest and honor our own integrity. Saying I want to wait longer before having sex will weed out men who are playing around or who have no respect for me. A man who comes at you for sex, has nothing else on his agenda but sex. Example of this is a guy who throws out a bunch of sexual innuendos when he barely knows you, and especially after you tell him sex isn’t on the dessert menu. It’s tacky and reason in itself not to believe what he’s saying to you….just like a used car salesman. A man like this has less respect for you than a hooker. I was browsing free on line dating profiles for fun ( and practice finding red flags, but I haven’t made the leap to date or even communicate with any of them) and so many of them who were ‘looking for a relationship’ had sexual innuendos in their freakin profiles. It actually made me laugh!

    • EllieMae says:

      Kelli – I have also had two of these relationshits, both with men I had worked with in the past. I thought I knew them and trusted them way too much and did have sex too early.

      Before I did though I had made it clear that I was looking for a relationship not a FWB but they ignored that and told me everything I wanted to hear. I fell for it and both times when their true character came out I wished I could douche with bleach…I will never forget that feeling or let that happen to me again. I’m not that desperate and they’re definately not that special!

      I walk away from any guy who tries to hit the fast-forward button with me. If I couldn’t trust two guys I knew, how can I possibly trust someone I’ve only known for a hot minute? Dude, it’s not my first rodeo. Trot on….

      Thanks for the accurate description of what so many of us (especially the older crowd I think) have experienced. I will never again “be hooked on the sex so you will OVERLOOK his lack of character” as you described.

      “It’s about my own value, my own worth. If a man can’t wait a LOOOONG time, then, as Natalie says, FLUSH!!! BUH BYE!” Amen!!

      • araja says:

        I could have written this word for word. Amen sister Amen. I slept with the douche bag way way too soon and got seriously burnt because I thought I knew him. (we worked togeher) Never ever ever again.

        • EllieMae says:

          Araja, I’m sorry this happened to you too. I think it hurts so much more to be deceived/played/whatever you call it by someone who you thought was a friend for many years.

          I really believed both of them had more respect for me than what they apparently did based on how they behaved. I hadn’t pushed them or pursued them in any way for a relationship, They did all the right things to make me believe they wanted one and I fell for it even though some red flags were flying. I was way too trusting since I knew them.

          Lesson learned, but still trying to get past it…..

        • Learner says:

          I feel you. Knew the ex for a year through work and then “got down” the first time we were alone together. never again!

    • Kitty66 says:

      Oh my. I could have written this post. Well maybe not have expressed it so well but it applies to me in a way that is down right eerie.

    • Little Star says:

      Kelli, you are spot on, thank you! I did not really knew my ACs that well, I was more flattered with attention they gave me (blowing hot!) and thought they were into me. WRONG! I was thinking if I am not going to “give them”, so someone else will! Have to work on my self-esteem and make them wait till marriage:))

  8. Brad K. says:

    It seems rather obvious. When the prospective partner is looking for a sex partner, a good time, or a “winning” encounter with yet another willing person, then delays or “maybe not” situations signal the time to disconnect and look for some more . . willing. (In the short term).

    When two folk are looking for someone to build a life together, then the when and what of the sex part is of less import. Confirming that values, cultural adaptations, interests, and (almost least of all) compatibility with each other takes time, is susceptible to missteps and misunderstandings — and the joy of coming closer to someone that *might* be there for the rest of your life.

    In an enduring matchup, most sex issues can be worked out in an atmosphere of trust and respect, and endearment. Without any of them, not so much.

    Of course, if what you want is a hook-up booty call, then please do start with the STD checkup (don’t rely on papers older than their last date). Don’t bother to keep their number, and keep looking around, after another STD checkup, in the case you might want a “keeper”. You don’t usually find keepers where you find “hot one nite stand” perpetual daters.

    • Learner says:

      Brad K,
      The exMM confused me with these issues. We did get physical right out of the gate (after knowing him for a year through work), but then I withdrew the physical part, and he had to wait for 6 months before regular physical contact with me resumed. And all this time, he was supposedly “trying to get up the courage” to leave his ice-queen wife. He provided the clean STD lab report from his family doctor. He told me he had visions of a life with me – said he wanted to live at least another 25 years so we had a decent amount of time together( he is 50ish). We discussed values, confirmed our mutual interests, planned retirement together – and then, and then – I discovered he had another woman who had been waiting for him to choose HER over his wife for over ten years! How is a woman to know which end is up? OK, OK, I know – my first mistake – a MM. But he was so *convincing*!

      I do NOT want a booty call, I do NOT want it to be all about the sex. The lies are just so, ummm, deceptive! OK, never, never again will I resume being a lying cheat by getting involved with a self-absorbed, disrespectful, manipulative (of many women) married man! Thank you for your male perspective Brad.

  9. truth=freedom says:

    Excellent post Natalie, and so spot on. A work colleague of mine who has begun dating again is in shock and I must introduce her to your website. She began conversations on a dating website with a guy who she thought ticked all the boxes. They met for coffee date which lasted approx one and a half hours which proceeded to organising a dinner date. The dinner date was going so well and then he put out the question of having sex and going back to his place at the end of the night. She proceeded to tell him that she really wanted to take things slower and get to know each other more and she was really enjoying his company and she thought he understood. (!?!?)He disappeared to the toilet and came back and asked that if she was uncomfortable with going to his place they could GET A MOTEl! WTF! He had already popped one of his little magic blue pills and it was a shame to waste it!!! He was obviously missing two vital ingredients….a BRAIN and EARS! FLUSHED!

    • JJ2 says:

      “He had already popped one of his little magic blue pills and it was a shame to waste it!!!”

      If a guy has to pop a pill for sex, FLUSH! Not dealing with this!

      • Learner says:

        Ha! The exMM was so cheap, he would take a quarter of a “little magic blue pill”. Or, as he put it “Just took a nibble”. It tasted so bitter on his tongue when we kissed. Soooo glad he has been flushed into oblivion!

  10. SM says:

    Natalie I am so glad you made that last disclaimer about internet dating. It is a bunch of muck to wade through.

  11. Gina says:

    I guess I’ve been fortunate in this regard because I have not had any of the AC/FF/EUMs pressure me into having sex prematurely. I waited a bit, then proceeded to jump their bones. LOL! I will shut a guy down in a hot flash if he tried that crap with me. I am the one who decides when and ‘if’ we will have sex, not them. And if I find out that they have been two timing me, I will shut them down in a hot flash also because I do not want an STD–especially one that is incurable

  12. tracya says:

    Wow! How timely…this happened to me a couple of months ago. Went out with a guy a few times, he asked what I was ‘looking for’ (a relationship), and didn’t seem scared off, told me he was looking to get remarried some day. He called me every night for several weeks and we talked for about an hour each time. For the third date he wanted me to come to his house. I suggested a restaurant close to his house and he agreed. After dinner (for which he had me pay half…)we were making out a bit, he said he wanted to see me two nights later and then asked if I wanted to go home with him. I declined. Almost immediately he became ‘really tired’ and needed to go home. It was only 10:15! So I went home, went to a party the next night, tried calling him on my way home…no answer. No response to a text. The next morning, the day he said he wanted to see me again, I sent a text asking what time he wanted to meet. His response, by text (I guess all of a sudden he forgot how to use his phone) was that he was soooo busy getting ready for a business trip (that wasn’t until three days later), and he had just finished a three HOUR bike ride, and just…couldn’t…
    I got a quick call a day later, with him declaring he would DEFINITELY call me from his trip…
    Silence…end scene.
    I mean, this guy is over 50. I don’t think I would ever have slept with him, as after he disappeared I really thought about what kind of person behaves like this and did a little review of potential red flags, and realized I didn’t think much of him anyway.
    Courtesy of BR, I was able to look at this scenario and realize that HE is the complete jerk, it had nothing to do with ME. Hell, I don’t even think this guy knew my last name. So when he went *poof*, I knew that no man of quality would behave this way because I didn’t put out, so FLUSH.

    • Learner says:

      yes, he does sound like a complete (middle aged) jerk. So glad you flushed him. Good call!

  13. Willyb0ne says:

    I think men worry that they are loosing momentum. Being told time and again to sweep women off their feet and not to hesitate and that women will test to see how confident you are and that they want you to take the lead etc… means most men who have not slept with a woman after three dates think they have failed to make her sexually attracted to him so they move on. Many women will offer some form of resistance even after they have just given you oral sex (“maybe we shouldn’t be doing this”. The problem many men have with women is often the fine line is so ridiculously subtle its unrecognizable. Women can be remarkably flakey and unpredictable so many men just keep their options open and move on at early signs of ‘momentum loss’. How many times have men on here waited around so as not to put undue pressure on a woman only to see her flake out and jump straight into bed with another man? That sh1t hurts man. We can’t tell when there ‘going slow’ or just not interested but don’t have the courage/decency to just say it rather than ignore your phone calls and then avoid the subject when they see you. men are really quite pure in their intentions initially but realise that game playing gets women hooked on you so eventually cave in to it.

    • SM says:

      Willybone you need Baggagereclaim as much as us women do.

    • vhs says:

      I see two things here: a woman being responsible for the man’s insecurities, and a perfectly healthy woman being responsible for other EUW’s behaviour.
      A woman has a choice so does a man.
      It shouldn’t be influenced by either the man’s insecurities and false impressions nor the behaviour of another group of women.
      That said, what about sexual pressure when you’re already in the relationship?
      And another: what about a man who’s willing to wait, only because he loves the chase. Even if it takes 3 months, he’ll be even more fuelled up and thèn leaves.
      I guess it’s a matter of respect (and manners) and you can feel it right away if they behave respectfully or not . Are they waiting for your mutual approval (because a woman can also feel like having sex early, nothing wrong with it) or are they pushing you (even slightly) to have sex, or start to moan or to distance themselves. Those are the red flags, out or in a relationship. Mutual agreement of having sex early on is just that. Mutual agreement.

      • Lilia says:

        Willybone, if a woman tells you she really likes you but she wants to get to know you a little bit more before having sex (aka take it slow), why would that be ambiguous?
        And if she doesn´t spell it out, why don´t you just ask where she thinks things are going?
        I would love a guy to ask me that, most times it seems like they just don´t care and I´m one in a long series of steaks in a catalogue.

      • dancingqueen says:

        “And another: what about a man who’s willing to wait, only because he loves the chase. Even if it takes 3 months, he’ll be even more fuelled up and thèn leaves.”
        The AC who brought me to this site waited for me and then did an abrupt turnaround just when I was starting to trust him. He LOVED the fact that he had to wait for sex; it stroked his ego that I would sleep with him after being so choosey. Then he proceeded to wine me and dine me for several months only to abruptly freak out and be cruel to me in public the vacation on which I met his kids and parents.
        People show you their true colors with time; now the difference is that my period from being crushed and disillusioned to disgusted, strong and respectful of myself has gone from months to days. Progress I would say:) I love me now, way more than I will ever love a dysfunctional man ( but not more than I love my cats he he)

  14. Kazinsky says:

    Great article and so true. I had someone give me the line of “Oh, well you gave it up too soon! I can’t have a relationship with someone that gives it up that soon!”, someone I know for a fact is more s*x driven than relationship driven anyway. Basically, he was saying “I can’t have a relationship with anyone”! I have another funny story, relating to my brief online dating experience. I was chatting with a guy who admittedly was throwing up red flags by making s*xy references on email. But I thought I’d go and meet up for coffee, nothing major. We both liked the beach, it was nice beach weather, beach companion for a day? Anyway, we’re making plans to meet up and he asks where I’d like to go. I suggested somewhere in his area rather than mine. He said he’d prefer to go out my way so we could go back to mine if things went well. Say what? I said that we hadn’t even met yet and even if things did go well I didn’t roll that way. And you know what? He didn’t even want to meet me, he called the date off. So we didn’t even get to the “first date”, because there was no guarantee of s*x afterwards!

    • Jule says:

      Wow. WTH is wrong with people? I hate to think it but things seem so efffen broken in the dating world

      • Lilia says:

        Kazinsky, I had a similar experience a while ago, had forgotten all about it!

        I exchanged some messages with a guy from a dating site, he asked me a bit about my life and suggested meeting in person, which seemed okay. Then, on a Friday he wrote asking if I´d come over to his flat that night. This was someone I had never even talked to on the phone!
        I mean, am I on a hooker´s site? I didn´t even respond – flush flush.

    • Learner says:

      What is with guys who pressure for sex, so you feel like you have to go along – then they tell you that *you* gave it up too easily? I mean really – if they were that virtuous, would they not just wait till sex unfolded naturally, without the push, push, push? The first time with the exMM, we got into heavy kissing/groping. When I slowed down and said we needed to talk, he said “it’s too late”, and I went along! Talk about mixed messages from these guys (along with us allowing boundary-busting. Sad!)

  15. valleyforgelady says:

    So many of the men I have met from on line dat ing think I am an extension of their secret on line porn experience. I am really good at keeping these guys away because they are so shallow in their emails and phone conversations are just dumb! I have a profile with photos that gets a lot of attention…but I will bet that 95% of the men do not read the profile….where I mention my faith and deep interest in highly cultural activites. Most of the blokes who wink or send me inane emails are just hoping to get laid….and fast. The sad part of all this is that most of the guys are jerking off to porn so much that a woman’s vagina can’t keep them erect. Sorry to be so negative…but I am glad not be obsessing over some guy who is not really relationship material. Playing for time and not getting an STD is a powerful card to play

    • Learner says:

      “The sad part of all this is that most of the guys are jerking off to porn so much that a woman’s vagina can’t keep them erect”
      Ohh, can I relate to this one! The exMM confessed, slowly, over the years, to “reading about erotic literature (literotica dot com)” to admitting to “watching a bit of online porn”, to “OK, so yeah, I watch pretty much daily before my morning shower – and when I’m in the shower, I don’t last too long…”. No wonder he needed the magic blue pill to get it on with a real-life woman! I don’t care if he can never get it up again. Wanker!

  16. runnergirl says:

    Well how can I resist commenting since I just went through the slow fade/bail out from almost fourth date guy after a very brief no sex convo after the third date. We are also talking about this in Natalie’s Dating Clinic available through the self-esteem e-course as well. Natalie, your insights on this phenomenon are priceless. It was like getting to know each other before sex was a “commitment”. WTF? Obviously, his definition of getting to know me wasn’t the same as mine. That is a substantial difference in sexual values. I think you are right in the observation regarding pushing for sex early on in the event that you decide not to proceed after getting to know them. Love the concept of a “sex deposit” but with sex it can curry different results. At least if you put a deposit down on a sofa, you get a sofa, not a wooden picnic table. If I put a sex deposit down, it doesn’t mean I get a relationship, there may be another date or a hoodini. So I’m totally on board with hitting the flush handle until I meet somebody who doesn’t need a sex deposit. I also love the term because it is so impersonal. It’s just sex with a stranger, not to imply that’s bad. It is what it is. Since I’m doing online dating, I’m developing the hide of a rhino which is great because I can see their issues have nothing to do with me as we are strangers. And I have to keep my feelings in check, obviously, I don’t know them. I steer way, way clear of any suggestion of your house or mine. Flushed one very early on who suggested a second date at his house.
    Let them be scared off…!

  17. miskwa says:

    I agree 100%, if someone is pressuring you for sex right away, it often is because they know that they do not have what it takes to be in a relationship and that you will shortly be on to them. That or they are just looking for someone willing to play slut. I too have been hit with the sex on date 2 thing and it was from someone not being honest about his health and what he wanted (hint: someone actually healthy and wanting a committed relationship with someone in town doesn’t have their house up for sale and talk about leaving the state to be closer to medical care). He knew damn well my hand was clutching the flush handle. My “good” relationships did not include sex until 1-3 months after beginning dating. Taking the time to get to know you first is a sign of respect. Anything else is not.

  18. Tyla says:

    Sadly, most.. if not all… of my single girlfriends do this – sleep with guys way too soon! it’s frustrating to hear bc I don’t do this and find most men expect this, bc women give it up SO easily and way too quickly so it becomes the “norm” and the expectation right off the bat when you meet people bc unfortunately women out there have and are making it a normal expectation. It’s like no one has limits or boundaries anymore. What happened to values and getting to know people?! Does anyone do this anymore? It’s become all about instant gratification and validation. For someone like me who actually does have some values that I try to live by, I’m finding it’s become impossible to come across guys who don’t expect something right out of the gate! It’s horrible and discouraging as all hell.

    • Spinster says:

      Sadly, I agree with Tyla.

    • Revolution says:

      I agree, Tyla.

      Umm….I don’t know where I fit into this post. I am a spiritually-minded person and follow Bible values in that I don’t have sex before marriage. And I have kept those values. I hope that this comment doesn’t sound too mealy-mouthed or preachy to anyone, and that’s why I hesitated to say it. But yeah, there it is.

      And yeah, I know that I have a big mouth and have been cussing up a storm in these comments, despite my spirituality. It’s not an excuse, but these last six months has put me through the ringer and I haven’t been myself. Still, I stand by my values not to have sex without marriage, and I don’t and won’t cave. However, I’m not judging anyone here who decides to do otherwise.

    • Jule says:

      I was thinking this too…I think a lot of what women have been doing is setting the expectation. We can blame our own gender for causing a lot of this. :(

      • Lilia says:

        I agree… now that I´m developing more awareness thanks to BR and all of you lovely ladies, I see how desperate women come across nowadays.

        Just yesterday the mother of one of my daughter´s classmates told me she was dating a guy who is 25 years older than she is. He is a diplomat and has her convinced that she has to walk beside or behind him – never in front of him – when they go out. I mean, what the hell is that all about? I´ve never heard that is part of the protocol.

        Also, he has kids in different countries, which seems like a red flag to me. It actually made me sad to talk to her, she was so happy, and it left me wondering if some silly old man is the only thing I can aspire to.

    • dancingqueen says:

      I agree and what is worse is that I can barely kiss a man after 2-3 dates unless I have a little wine…so you can imagine that I am not really on the popular list right now…;)

  19. selkie says:

    Natalie, I’ve said it before. You are brilliant. This post is such a boost to my morale about ‘being myself’ in the dating arena. My body is not on offer for leverage, rent or sale. Neither is my mind or heart for that matter. Thinking about this in the context of a physical boundary made me understand how my emotional and verbal boundaries can be just as simple. I’ve really been thinking too hard and putting too much pressure on myself to transform into the don’t mess with me dating ms. self esteem wonderwoman. It became daunting. It can be as simple as just being myself and listening to my inner voice, who if I hadn’t ignored her, always had my back. I know I have a lot to learn still, but relaxing about it because there is no fire, sounds so much more peaceful and kind.

    • Learner says:

      I want to get to this point where you are: “My body is not on offer for leverage, rent or sale. Neither is my mind or heart for that matter.”
      Wonderful. Thank you.

  20. GettingBetterAtIT says:

    Amen Sister! Frickin’ Amen!

  21. Jule says:

    Great article. Shared it some friends. I only wish I had read this before I met the assclown. He pressured me and I became deeply vulnerable and entrenched. My boundaries were busted but didn’t know at the time how much I could exercise them. Now I do. It’s never too late to learn.

  22. Christina says:

    As they say, “It’s a feature, not a bug.” If someone moves on because they’ve been unable to pressure you into sex, good riddance!

  23. Tinkerbell says:

    Truth=Freedom. Are you serious about the little blue pill? I thought this was a funny story and why not a little levity whether it’s on topic or not. True story as told to me: An older guy asked a woman out on a date. They had a great time. At the end of the evening he assumed he deserved payment, for treating her so well. When she declined his offer, his statement was, “Well dag! If I had known things were going to take turn like this, I wouldn’t have taken my Viagra. Pathetic, but funny as hell. It was even funnier when I investigated that Viagra sells at $15.00/pill. LOL!

    • truth=freedom says:

      Dear Tinkerbell
      Yes am totally serious about it. It was truly awful for this woman as they had exchanged many emails before this and she was tentatively taking baby steps back into the dating arena as she was widowed three years ago after a long and happy marriage and he knew full well of her situation. She drove an hour to meet this douche man!!!! The only person taking care of his magic pill effect was him and his right hand!!!!

  24. Kveteran says:

    Great, great article…I feel you’re 110% right with this one. I tell myself all the time if don’t wanna wait..then it’s on to the next one! Huge red flag for me if they even talk about sex during the beginning phases.

  25. Raven says:

    Holding off having sex was the greatest action I took when I changed my dating habits. It meant I could date lots of men and just relax and tell who was interested in the same kind of relationship as me. I had to ignore my vagina though and that was quite hard at first as it was telling me to overlook flaws and inconsistencies! But i persisted and began to hear my reason and then my heart. Now I have a lovely relationship mostly thanks to Natalie.

    One of the guys I dated was an extremely intelligent and cultured man and I was very excited by the potential. I was well into my no relationship no sex phase and so found it easy to leave before bedtime on our 4 dates. He then went quiet for month so I reluctantly flushed. He then reappeared and told me he didn’t want a relationship as he thought he would hurt me. Well I already knew that but it interested me that he had clearly seen I deserved better. It also made me realise that he would also spot/tell a woman who didn’t have good esteem and boundaries and be quite happy to fake a relationship for sex and not be so concerned about hurting her. That would have been me in the past! This week he has had to resign from his job because of a sex scandal with an employee. Her career pretty much destroyed. Lucky escape for me! Thank goodness I woke up in time!!!

    So I would say keep your legs shut and focus on finding the relationship you want rather than focusing on the right man!

  26. grace says:

    I’m an extreme case as the bf and I won’t have sex until we are married, so I may not have sex with him ever, hmm let me just sit with that thought for a while ….
    Okay, my point is that you can absolutely get to know someone, love them, fall in love, spend time alone together without having sex, it’s not obligatory.
    As for sex on date three, I strongly suspect they are just trying it on.
    Trust me, he’s not going to explode, forgive the pun, if you ask him to wait. And it’s not even about you asking him. maybe, shock. HE will want to wait until HE is sure.
    I don’t think it’s necessarily true that men just want sex sex sex and it.s our job to stop them. It can be more mutual than that, even if you’re not bible bashers.

    • EllieMae says:

      Grace – “And it’s not even about you asking him. maybe, shock. HE will want to wait until HE is sure.”

      THAT’s the guy I am looking for! One who has enough self esteem to see if we even like eachother and want to have a relationship (and that’s the point for me where sex is part of the arrangement).

      But while waiting for that guy to show up, I’m perfecting the FLUSH :-)

    • Revolution says:


      I’m in the same boat you are (reference my comment above). Aside from the spiritual, I find that it just makes things easier without having sex cloud our (or their) judgment. Also, if things go south (even if they haven’t GONE south, heh) then it’s still painful, but much less so.

  27. We always have a choice. Just make sure that what you picked is what you deserve!

  28. Teddie says:

    Just now came across this article/study in Scientific American:

    “Men and Women Can’t Be “Just Friends”,

    Hmm, ties in with our topic, interesting comments as well.

    • Spinster says:


      I hate articles like that because in my experience, that’s bullshit. As a matter-of-fact, I think that Natalie has an article about this very topic; I can’t look through every single post since I’m working, but I’ll try looking for it during the weekend.

      • Teddie says:

        I agree, you’d expect higher quality of research from the Scientific American! One thing is true though: it is very difficult to conduct such studies with a representative poll, they all sample college students. By the way, this is where this casual attitude towards sex starts already: from what I read about college students’ conduct, recreational hook-ups are the prevailent relationship style.

    • Mymble says:

      Unfortunately I think there is a lot of truth in this survey. Most men are really not willing to invest energy and time in a friendship with a woman unless there is some attraction there and some sexual agenda however under the radar it may be. Ask any seventy year old woman who her lifelong close friends have been and they will not include any males. I’ve seen long term male friends vanish like snow off a dyke when they married.
      Like any rule, there may be honourable exceptions, but they are rare.
      Gay men are different of course. No agenda there.

  29. Spinster says:

    “And you know what? I’m going to say it: I suspect that in some cases it’s the fact that you might get to know them further and not want to proceed why they try to push the sex issue earlier on.”

    Thanks for the light bulb moment. Never considered that before, but it makes perfect sense. If one knows that one is an ass-wipe and/or insecure and/or (insert negative characteristic[s] here), then one will move as quickly as possible to cover up all red flags. Seems manipulative & underhanded to me; very typical of future fakers and those who want an apology accepted as if nothing ever happened (the “let’s move on” type). And thanks for reminding me to look at DFS, as I’m in need of a new couch. 😐

    Off to read the comments…

    • pinkpanther says:

      This is exactly what happens to me. If I don’t “get on it” right away, I often find that I have lost my interest due to the finding out who they REALLY are (usually just plain old blandness).

      This is what’s happened in my life now for quite some time. And I’m not saying that I’m so great either. This could be working both ways! Maybe they are initially attracted to me too, then later, not so much!

      Reality is not so glamourous as fantasy

  30. kat says:

    This blog is so on point it’s ridiculus…too bad she wasn’t my best friend as I went through my 30’s.
    better late than never.

  31. kat says:

    Official promoter…turning all of my friends on to this blog and asking them to pass it on. cringe when I hear my friends going through the exact situations I read about on the blog. surrounded by women who try to “make loaves out of crumbs”. I retired from that crew. deleting all “assclowns” from cell. Preach Natalie!

  32. Gregarious Wolf says:


    Turn this problem on its head. How long is too long to make a guy wait?

    One month?
    Three months?
    Six months?

    For the sake of argument, do not assume the worst of me and take me for my word that I am not out looking for a notch in my belt or a one night stand. Also assume I’m footing the bill for dates. I’m taking you out. I’m picking up dinner and drinks. I’m buying you gifts.

    Assume the girl makes all the right indications. She makes sweet talk and sends pictures. Not nudes, but some are sexy and others are personal like she’s involving you in her life. She says she has feelings. She says she is attracted.

    What does a guy do if she never makes herself available for any kind of physical intimacy. Never comes over, doesn’t invite me to her place. Always has good excuses. Work. School. Family.

    My gut tells me that normal people want to have sex if they are attracted to each other. I have no problem with a girl wanting to get the know the guy better first.

    My question is when does the girl go too far in withholding intimacy? When does a guy know he is being led on?

    I’ve been reading a lot of blog posts, and I honestly believe that much of what Natalie writes applies to women as well as it does to men. It looks like women can also be emotionally unavailable, and men need to learn how to set boundaries, too.

    • Revolution says:

      “I’ve been reading a lot of blog posts, and I honestly believe that much of what Natalie writes applies to women as well as it does to men. It looks like women can also be emotionally unavailable, and men need to learn how to set boundaries, too.”

      For SURE it applies to chicks too, GW. I was an EUW in my late teens/early twenties and I cringe when I read some of the stuff I read on here.

      I’ll let the other ladies answer the rest of your (great) question.

    • Grizelda says:

      I think your answer Wolf lies in the areas somewhere between the dessert course and the goodbye. How does she behave then? Do you touch, caress, hold her hand or kiss? Do you look into each other’s eyes? Do you make out furiously? Or is she the ice maiden, glaring at you if your fingers graze hers when you’re both reaching for the olive dish?

      Sex is not binary for women. The moments we spend with a man are not cleanly divided between “having penetration right now/not having penetration right now”. If no physical contact of any sort is allowed for seven dates running, yes it might be that you’re wasting your time. But if she walks arm in arm with you, or you’ve been kissing, or she likes that little protective gesture that men make — the brief hand-on-the-lower back, then do you not recognise these are positive signals? These slow little physical expressions get her used to you. That is intimacy. She’s reading her own reactions to them, the same way that dipping a toe in the water gives us a good indication of what swimming would be like. She’s also reading your reactions to them — if you’re getting impatient, grabby, overfamiliar, or if you’re not really interested and seem to avoid touching her in these ‘getting to know you’ times.

      There’s a whole landscape of meaning in what she wants to do and doesn’t want to do with you during those dates in public. If the signals there are good, then yes she might want to be alone with you sometime soon. But get impatient and shove her into the nearest broom closet for some alone time and quality time between your hand and her arse, and you’ll never see her again.

    • grace says:

      Although we won’t have premarital sex, the boyfriend and I do hug and kiss. We hold hands. He has been round to mine and I do cook for him.
      We’ve been in a relationship for about three months. If we did not have our religious beliefs I think we would both be comfortable with sex around now.
      If the woman in question has you pay for everything, doesn’t reciprocate financially at all, make time for you, doesn’t cuddle or kiss, you may possibly not be on the same page.
      These things are best discussed, if it can’t be discussed because one or both of you is embarrassed, evasive, or afraid it doesn’t bode well. It can’t all be laughs and hanging out and texting pics. We all need to have those somewhat awkward adult conversations. How do we feel about each other? What are our goals? What are our timescales?
      We don’t have these talks all the time, but if you never have them and instead rely on games, rules, what society thinks and conjecture you’re on the fast track to nowhere.
      Take it from someone who would rather have stuck pins in her eyes than do relationship talk, sometimes you just have to suck it up and do it. And it’s not so bad to have clarity. Either you move on or the two of you take a big step forward together. Or a little one. Forward is key though.
      I’m not suggesting you flat out ask her if she will ever have sex with you but find a way to address your concerns. Without knowing the both of you I can’t suggest the exact words but I would hope that, after however many weeks, you know each other well enough to be able to speak wisely.

    • runnergirl says:

      GW, everything Natalie writes about applies to both males and females in same sex or opposite sex relationships. Please see my post to you below. Sending hugs.

  33. nerolijasmine says:

    How come guys now view a date as guaranteed sex?
    Just because they pay for dinner or drinks. What happened to geting to know someone, taking it slow?. For the guys sake too, they could be jumping into bed with a psycho.
    If they are in a hurry to get you into bed, how many other girls are they doing the same with. With the added pressure if they don’t get it from you, they will disappear. They can disappear if you do!
    Some guys on dating sites don’t actually want relationships, just easy sex.
    Dating game has become a complete minefield of assclowns.

    • amanda says:

      I think, unfortunately, that there are many, many, many men (and women) out there who dont want to have serious, committed relationships. Ever. Period. They really see sex as the end of the line. They want to upgrade their sexual partners as often as they upgrade their iPhones. They don’t want to get bored or feel hemmed-in or tied-down, and are willing to trade intimacy and love for that “freedom”. They have no problem with this attitude. Sex is easy and cheap to come by; one no longer has the binary choice of making the long-term investment in a real relationship or buying a prostitute. You can get cheap, free sex with a “nice girl” (ie, not a hooker) because that is how the dating landscape now works. It’s an uphill battle, I’m afraid, but I believe that we are dealing with an epidemic; a critical mass of people out there just aren’t interested in having a relationship, ever.

      • Kit-Kat says:

        Amanda… Yes, the AC took an upgrade. Looking back at our time together I cringe thinking I may have just been used for so very long as a safe, endless supply of sex partner. At times he just seemed obsessed about it. Addicted to it. Wanting to know how he was compared to others. GAG.. I found porn on his computer. I talked about it with a friend and she said all men look at porn. Hmm really they do. I bought it hook,line & sinker. I would say to him when he said he would be over then end up showing up at bedtime (of course sex) that I felt like I was being used. He said I had a wild imagination. Hmm really. He is in his 50’s and I thought by that age all the head games would be over. I learned the hard way that they will continue to do what they do because of women like me who let them get away with it. Now that he has upgraded to a doctor she can supply him all the viagra he will ever need..ha,ha.. She can have him & all the head games, future faking, cheating ,lying that goes along with him in a neat little package deal… Thank god for BR that I have kept my sanity. I know now what I didnt know then.. Knowledge is power :)

        • amanda says:

          I’m sorry about this Kit-Kat! Don’t beat yourself up too much about it. You seem sobered enough by this to know to keep your eyes open the next time. Yes – most men probably do look at porn, just like most men drink. Some men can drink responsibly, some men can’t. Same with porn consumption. If someone has to watch it every night, that’s a problem. I took great comfort watching a recent TEDx talk on on-line porn addiction: look up Gary Wilson at TEDxGlasgow on YouTube. Fascinating! You’re not the first woman to have to deal with porn in a man’s life; back when I was in the thick of it with the EUM/MM, we might be on-line chatting one night, and it would often get racy. Invariably, he would start sending me links to porn, and I, being the “good sport” wouldn’t say anything. it was clear that he needed to multi-task to get his rocks off… watch porn AND chat with a real woman whom he had sex with. Watching the TEDx talk helps me understand what was going on (not that I want to waste any more time trying to figure him out.) Good luck!

          • Kit-Kat says:

            Amanda. Thanks for your kind words. I dont beat myself as much as I use too about it :) Like I said I didnt know what I didnt know. I will look up your suggestion. Thanks

    • amanda says:

      The upshot is that those of us who want a relationship have to look longer and harder for the real thing, amongst the growing tide of people who are content with floating from one sexual connection to the next. The first thing that many of us here on this blog (myself being the most needing of this advice) need to do is to stop being a beacon for the EUM/Ws out there. We need to address our own self-esteem issues and watch carefully for the EUM’s red flags. Its been inspiring reading the commentary on this post; many readers here seem to be putting these good skills in practice.

    • amanda says:

      One last comment. Over the last year, as I try hard to mend my fallback-girl ways, it has been really interesting taking a closer look at dating profiles. I used to get really mad when a fellow talked about how he was looking for a “real” relationship, only to reveal himself as looking for quick and easy sex in a messaging session soon after. I’ve come to conclude that these guys, unfortunately, think that this is what a “relationship” is! Making a short-term connection with someone, mostly for sex, then moving once the sex gets stale. Frustrating, but that’s why they are sending out the mixed messages. One site I have tried lets users answer multiple-choice questions about themselves, which I find really useful. I’ve learned that if a member answers tons of sex questions, even if the answers aren’t all that dodgy, then its pretty clear what is on his or her mind. They can say whatever they want about wanting a relationship in their summary, but if they are jumping on the sex questions, then their agenda is clear… and then, I steer clear. I haven’t had a new romantic/sexual encounter since before the New Year, and I am proud of my ability to read through the lines in these profiles.

      • amanda says:

        AND, by corrollary, I have learned that if you answer sex questions on your profile, other members will see you as easy. It doesn’t matter how maturely you answer these questions, they will see you as easy. I resisted this conventional wisdom for a while, thinking, “I am an enlightened woman who feels empowered in and liberated by her sexuality. I shouldn’t feel shamed into not answering these questions.” I had a guy-friend look at my profile when it was in this state, and he said, “I’m sorry, but I would totally take you for someone who would do a one-night stand.” I realized that there is a time and place to share your sexuality in an empowered way with someone: after you go through the discovery phase in dating! I also make it clear in my profile, without going negative, that I am not available for casual connections and one-night stands. Do I get much lower traffic? Yes. Do I get less dodgy messages. Yes!

        • Learner says:

          kit-kat and amanda,
          Your experience with men and porn/sex matches my experience with the exMM. Thanks for sharing – I am off to watch the TEDx talks with Gary Wilson now!

  34. lo j says:

    I’ve dated several men who wanted to wait to have sex. I pushed them both for it. One gave in. We got engaged, I moved in, then stayed out all night one night playing kissy face with another man (while my fiance babysat my 2year old). We broke up. The other man did not give in because he was not sure he wanted to be exclusive and I freaked out, manipulated, went into desperation mode, and needless to say, we did not date anymore. And in both cases, I felt I was the “victim”. Good grief. If they can’t wait, they’re not mature enough to be in a relationship. I was FAR from it.

  35. NoMo Drama says:

    Refusing to be pressured has been my hard line for many years; it’s a relief to see that I am not alone.

    Even so I’ve wasted a lot of time negotiating with people who keep trying to find loopholes in “NO.” It’s even worse if you feel you might be interested later, so in the interests of not rejecting the guy completely, you say something like “not so fast.” They still end up flushing themselves with their disregard for your needs.
    Such a huge turnoff.

    It’s really easy to feel alone in this stance, especially when so many influences in Western culture in particular — movies, magazines, books, even songs — have done so much to normalize and even glorify the casual, instant-sex thing in the last couple of decades. You’re struggling against a LOT of conditioning that “most” people seem to accept as “normal,” or just what all the “cool,” “hip” people seem to be doing.

    You don’t get a lot of support from much of anywhere — as some people said earlier, even their friends criticize them for being “uptight.”

    You are the only one who has to live with yourself. Forget the crowd; sometimes they see your refusal to participate as a judgment on their behavior, and that’s their problem.

    • Dawn says:

      Amen NoMo Drama! A few months ago I dated a guy who, although he had a lot of interest in sex, had very little interest in getting to know me as a person. At the end, after I told him I wasn’t ready, he became very’busy’. Then he went on a 3 week business trip. Not knowing when I’d see him in person again, I sent him an email ending it. In the email I said, among other things, “I just don’t sense that getting to know me and spending time with me are on your priority list”. He didn’t even bother to respond. That was 3 months ago.

      As you mention about support – I have a very good female friend who knows us both, and she basically thought that I was total prude to just not have gone ahead and have sex with him.She didn’t understand where I was coming from. So I definitely felt totally unsupported.

      Now, though, several months later, I’m feeling a lot better from the insight I gained from NML and her wise commenters! I won’t be pressured into sex in any future relationships.

  36. Gina says:

    @Mykaygal: some guys will see the 90 day rule as a challenge and still dump the woman after they sleep with her. I had a guy tell me that he pursued a woman for six months. Shortly after he slept with her, he met his wife (at the time he told me this they had been married for almost 20 years) and ended up dumping the woman. He realized that he had broken that woman’s heart, but she wasn’t the one. Personally, I feel that it’s better to wait, but if and when a woman decides to have sex with a man, she should do so because she wants to snd on HER terms–NOT to please him. I actually have more respect for a guy who is straight up from the start and tells you that he’s only looking for a roll in the hay versus one who will pretend as though he’s interested in you as a person only to get you in the sack. I enjoy sex, but I can also take care of myself physically. Therefore, I am able to slow my roll in order to take the time to see where the guy is coming from. If I need to be hugged/held by a man, I have platonic male friends who will be happy to do oblige. So there is no incentive for me to use sex in order to receive affection, which some women feel the need to do only to end up feeling used and hurt afterwards.

  37. SleepingBeauty says:

    Chivalry is dead….And WOMEN killed it. The reason why men have an expectation of sex immediately is because women that do have sex immediately have become the RULE not the exception.

    I will admit, I have questioned whether some relationships would have gone further had I slept with the man instead of waiting, but then I realized that it’s likely not. I would have just ended up feeling not only hurt, but used. I’m sure I would have gotten some version of “I really DID want a relationship with you, which is why I thought we should sleep together, but then I realized…..(fill in the blank) and I just couldn’t move forward.”

    I do have one girlfriend who, for all intents and purposes, dates like an EUM/AC. She has sex with EVERYONE she dates betwen the 1st – 3rd date. Why? She says she likes to get it out of the way because she doesn’t like sleeping with them, she doesn’t want to move forward with a relationshp. To her credit, at least she’s honest.

    • FX says:

      SleepingBeauty, I was definitely on the same page as your friend but have been out of the mix so long you had to refresh my memory. LOL I haven’t been with anyone other than the ex AC for so long that I forgot not all sex is amazing. I have known great guys – 2 in particular come readily to mind – that I could not proceed with because I knew we weren’t a good “intimate relations” fit in spite of all the other good things on offer. I would have just ended up being unhappy and resenting them. I’m not sure whether I’ll feel the same now that I’m older and wiser but I suspect I haven’t changed so much that I could make peace with it. Sigh. I think there’s a fine line between giving it time to develop and wasting both your and their time if it’s a bad match in the bedroom.

      I’m sure this is an unpopular sentiment but maybe some people fade away after having sex not because they have a need to conquer but because whatever they are seeking in that aspect of the relationship is different than the reality they discovered.

      • FX says:

        I just want to clarify I didn’t mean having sex with everyone between the 1st and 3rd date! I meant gathering this important information within a reasonable time frame for the evolution of the relationship

        • Linden says:

          I also think this is really important, FX. Because of decent contraception, women today have more freedom to select a partner based on what they want sexually than they’ve probably ever had in history. Literally for millennia women were supposed to either not have desires, or subordinate their desires to what men wanted.

          This is why right-wingers want women to not be able to get contraception. The balance has shifted to an even footing, and they liked it better when it favored men only. I think this is also why so many men today use porn and/or pressure women quickly for sex. They are now subject to women’s judgment, when they used to be the only ones doing the judging. Instead of learning how to relate as equals and how to take charge of their own feelings and needs, they dump all over women with their passive-aggressive stunts. My nine-year-old son is more well-adjusted than most of the grown-ass men I’ve met lately. My son’s presence in my life reminds me that men all start off having feelings as children — it’s what happens later that screws that up.

          Really, if it wasn’t for my kids, after my divorce I would have had a hard time remembering how to love other people at all. Too bad so many men I have communicated with online lost interest the moment they knew I had children. I still see them out there looking, years later, for their dream playmate who has nothing else going on in her life but to have sex with them.

  38. Gregarious Wolf says:


    “…when a woman decides to have sex with a man, she should do so because she wants to snd on HER terms–NOT to please him.”

    If you don’t want to please him, why are you even with him in the first place?

    • selkie says:

      Wolf. Sex isn’t the only way to make him feel good or please him. Unwanted pregnancy doesn’t feel good, and neither does a man who isn’t ready for a child bailing when it happens. Women carry the pregnancy so it is a big decision that involves more than you are talking about here. Sex isn’t just a decision about whether you want to please your man when you think of factors like HIV, herpes, chlamydia, gonnorhea, and unwanted pregnancy and abortion. A man who honors a woman for respecting her own body in a responsible way is a grown up. If feeling good is the base of your argument, go to a hooker.

      • selkie says:

        Sorry, my last line sounds rude, but it isn’t intended to be. Intimacy can be a back rub, or a sensual massage, it can be kissing and cuddling. It can be baking your favorite cookies or just stroking your hair. Sex is nice, great in fact, but if it isn’t the be all end all in a relationship. Besides, I think sex is better once you really know some one. It means something more than just pleasing each other. If you feel like you’ve waited too long, can you talk about it and find out where both of you are? Women are given mixed messages too about the timing of sex in a relationship.

  39. Gregarious Wolf says:


    I don’t think attraction is binary for either gender. It’s not as simple as smouldering eyes versus ice queen. If my hypothesis is true, that much of what Natalie writes apples equally well to women, then men ought to be on their guard for emotionally unavailable women and (lol) ass clowns.

    Now that I’m dating again I’m starting to think that behind the traditional pursuer/pursued is that guys need to be on their guard as well. Probably another reason for not jumping in the sack right away. I like Natalie’s point about dating being a discovery phase and agree that sexual values is a part of this. Both sexes can use sex to get what they want. In this sens, a casual sexual encounter is fundamentally honest so long as it is presented as such. While dating or in a relationship I think both gender a can use sex as a manipulation tool.

    • Grizelda says:

      Ok so hang on Wolf, you say you like Natalie’s point about dating being a discovery phase. And yet your original post was all about discerning at what point during this discovery phase you’ve either discovered the green light to screw her or discovered the red light to bail out without ‘wasting’ any more of your money on wine and fajitas. Your motives are clear cut: at what point does my time and money investment turn into rumpy pumpy?

      Whilst I totally agree with you that guys need to be equally cautious about defending themselves from EU/assclown females, it’s a fact that men have potentially nothing invested in a shag whilst females could potentially have their entire future lives invested in the selfsame act. Guys are perfectly happy with hooking up with notoriously hideous assclown women… so long as they’re good for 10 minutes blowjobbing. Women aren’t like that. No man’s oral skills are that good. No, not even yours. I’m kidding! but you know what I’m getting at here!

      I absolutely agree that women can be EU just as men can be, and men definitely need to guard themselves against myriad types of women who will shipwreck them. But nevertheless we’re talking about the real world here, where men’s primary concerns are about sexual acts and women’s primary concerns are about the relationships in which sexual acts take place. Which one of those is going to be more affected by assclownery?

  40. GGo says:

    Thank you. I so needed to hear this right now. I haven’t been dating in ages and am a bit unsure about what to expect. I feel more prepared having read this. I might adopt the attitude of a virgin when dating. When I was a virgin, I was really horny and romantic but I felt like there was a line there. A line of steel. I went out with guys for 6months without sleeping with them. I guess I didn’t think grown men would be prepared to wait, whereas teens expect to have to wait with no guarantees of anything. I think it’s time to value myself enough to make them wait or chuck them (I see it as me chucking them if they leave because I don’t want sex in the beginning because they are carrying out my wishes not to be tried out sexually before they know that they like me and want to be with me.)

  41. Gregarious Wolf says:

    Thank you all for your answers, by the way.


    “I’m not suggesting you flat out ask her if she will ever have sex with you but find a way to address your concerns.”

    If you’ve been with someone for six or eight months, is it wrong to raise the issue plainly? Not saying to be tactless, but I’m think six months is a good checkpoint to evaluate a relationship. Is it what you want? Is it going the way you think it should go?

    I’m bringing this up because I think I am in a relationship with an emotionally unavailable girl. I’ve noticed in her some of the red flags Natalie talks about. What I am dealing with is why I keep pursuing her. What does it say about my self esteem and ability to set and enforce boundaries?

    I’m not here to stir up war between the sexes, I am being sincere. I’ve decided for my own well being that I should break off the relationship, even though I am attracted to her. To anticipate criticism, I do not believe I am dumping merely because she won’t put out. What bothers me is her words and actions don’t agree. She promises affection and intimacy but the relationship never seems to progress. To use some buzzwords from this blog, there has been some future faking and evasiveness when trying to define the relationship.

    So, it isn’t easy for me to decide to let go. I like her a lot and I’m attracted to her. But there really isn’t any intimacy. I’m not speaking of the physical act only, but of emotional closeness and a desire in include someone in your life. It’s hard to let go. Guy get stuck too.

    • selkie says:

      Wolf, I was a little defensive in a post to you above when you replied to Gina about why bothering to be with someone if you don’t want to please him. But after reading your post here, I see you are being sincere and I apologize for being quick in my answer. Women can be EU as well. Most of us here have recognized it in ourselves when we have examined our relationship history with self honesty. I do agree that relationships without intimacy (not always sexual) and progression are frustrating. I experienced that in my last relationship, and it was futile and confusing. If you really like her, talk to her her honestly about it.

    • SM says:

      Ok GW the experience you are talking about with your gf is the same experience we all are talking about on here when it comes to dating eu’s. You are correct, it has nothing to do with gender and all to do with us dating people who dont want the same things as us or they just arent interested and are stringing us along. There are always signs way before the 6/8 month mark you are talking about we just dont always heed them. Believe it or not, there are a lot of men who will date a woman for a long time and never intend to sleep with her and it frustrates the heck out of us.

      • Lilia says:

        GW, I´ve been through the same thing you describe with an EUM so I know how frustrating it can be. I spent months and months in a similar situation with a guy who was seemingly very into me but would not have much physical intmacy with me – it was mostly a lot of blahblah.

        It is very difficult to let go of these “relationships” because the real thing seems to be just around the corner. So, you end up behaving like someone in a casino -just one more try, because perhaps next time he/she will open up to intimacy. Only, in the meantime you´ve lost all your money and self-esteem and become a nervous wreck trying to figure out what it is they really want. You become addicted.

        What I learned from this experience, that hasn´t been easy at all, is to shift the focus on MY feelings. So, in one of his fits of evasiveness I just told him Listen, I have real feelings for you so that is why I have to get away from this situation because it´s harming me.

        This completely surprised him and freaked him out. At first, he said goodbye. After some weeks, I received some lame attempts to continue the non-relationship on his EU terms. By then, I had finally understood (thanks to Nat) that he was just not capable of giving me what I needed. So it was clear that I could not accept what he was offering.

        Now, some months later, I am finally over him. Ambiguity is terrible, I don´t ever want to go through all of that again.

        • Gregarious Wolf says:


          “Ambiguity is terrible, I don´t ever want to go through all of that again.”

          You hit the nail squarely on the head there.

          I hated the ambiguity.

          Me: How do you feel about being boyfriend/girlfriend?

          Her: I’m not seeing anyone else, am I?

          Me: No, I mean would you like to be in an exclusive relationship with me?

          Her: I’m not seeing anyone else, am I?

          The above is an example of one exchange we had.

          I finally just told her I wanted to be her boyfriend and lover, and that if she didn’t have those feelings for me, it was OK.

          Nothing. She’s never commit to an answer.

          • Linden says:

            I’m sorry, but you have your answer. A non-answer is an answer. Time to flush. I think in the long run you’ll feel better for it — your time will open up to find someone else who is on the same page.

            Personally, when I’ve gotten the “I’m not seeing anyone else, am I?” answer from men in the past, I’ve treated it as a automatic dumpable offense. No further discussion needed.

    • runnergirl says:

      I’m sorry. Based on what you’ve written: you’ve notice some red flags, her words and actions don’t agree (flashing red flag), the relationship never seems to progress, including future faking and evasiveness. Yeah there is probably a problem that goes beyond the the actual scope of this post. However, if you keep reading Natalie’s stuff which is most definitely applicable to either sex, you’ll find the answers as to why you keep pursuing her, why she may be using you as an option, why you allow yourself to be an option, what it says about your self-esteem, and your ability to enforce boundaries. It isn’t easy to decide to let go whether you are male or female and in a same sex or opposite sex situation. Guys do get stuck too. This made me cry: “I’m not speaking of the physical act only, but of emotional closeness and a desire in include someone in your life”. It’s hard to let go. However, you can let go, heal, and find that emotional closeness and someone who wants you in their life.
      Despite the fact you evoked tears of sadness, you evoked tears of joy. You give me hope, there are guys who want what we want!
      Okay, where the frig are you all hiding!

  42. Gregarious Wolf says:


    “How many times have men on here waited around so as not to put undue pressure on a woman only to see her flake out and jump straight into bed with another man? That sh1t hurts man.”

    Been there, bro.

    • Revolution says:


      “…only to see her flake out and jump straight into bed with another man? That sh1t hurts man.”

      Eesh, brutal. FLUSH these chicks. Trust me, there’s better out there.

  43. Stephanie says:

    The last experience I had with an AC I had sex on the 2nd date (way too soon) I thought because he was successful and so handsome I was the luckiest woman in the world (ugh) this guy future faked to the hilt from day one, after our 5th date which I had to initiate because by now he was fading me out, he stood me up by using an unforgivable excuse then disappeared. Now firstly I should have known better (but I didn’t I mis-judged him). Looking back now the signs were clearly there and he told me in a very cryptic way that this was what he does. I was faded out right after the sex he didn’t disappear because I wouldn’t give it to him! It took my quite a bit of time to get over this because I had never experienced it before and it was all a bit of a shock. It all went from extremely hot to below zero freezing in a short space of time. I went on a seeking validation search for many months until I decided to take a self esteem course (not Natalie’s one – it was fully booked) because I just couldn’t move on. Now I have moved on and learnt a valuable lesson, I feel comfortable laying down my boundaries without fear of losing someone who I consider or who themselves consider to be a good catch. Oh and by the way I met him online! 😉

  44. Little Star says:

    Ha, Natalie, I am confused…My two ex ACs and my ex husband (except my current AC) were waiting from 2-4 months for sex. IT did not work out anyway:(

    • brown_eyes says:

      Four months is not that much, in my opinion… I am waiting until marriage.

      • Little Star says:

        Good for you:) Brown Eyes! I think it is nothing wrong to have sex after 4 months, it did not work out because of sex, but because we had different values/inspirations. My sister was a virgin (21 y.old) when she got married, it was her only man for 14 years, they divorced now..SO there are not guarantee that relationship will flourish:(

  45. RAVE says:

    I think as women, the most empowering thing is to be able to separate sex from love.

    I’m a rare bird, as I handle one night stands very well. It hasn’t changed anything about my love life. I’ve had times when I was celibate for very long, holding up for Mr Right, and times I would sleep around because I wanted physical pleasure. Most men I picked up were lovely, kind, tender. In fact, my best sex has been with strangers, not boyfriends.
    In relationships, I’m monogamous.

    One thing I can tell is when men have asked to wait ( I tend to want sex early to see if we are sexually compatible – if we are not it’s a deal breaker for me) it was because they were sexually inadequate. To me, that’s a red flag when a guy says upfront he needs to wait longer than I do.

    Porn is killing eroticism. When men wait they use porn as a release, which means they see sex as a release. If people were more sexually literate, if they cultivated a unique sexuality, we wouldn’t have to think in terms of bartering or being a slut for giving it up. We are not giving up anything if we are taking pleasure.

    I think our sex obsessed society is in need of proper sexual education.

    A man that must wait for sex in order to be tamed into a relationship or to respect the girl is not sexually free.

    When we’ll think about sex in terms of pleasure, not barter, when we’ll bring equality to the bedroom, these assclowns will fall through the cracks.

    As a full blow woman, I think I deserve pleasure, so I don’t mind taking it on my own terms. If sex is involved, I make sure it’s how I want it, when I want it, but also, I stop whenever I feel I am dealing with the sort of guy who sees sex as a release and doesn’t look at the woman as equal partner.

    I think men who are not threatened or shocked by a woman in charge of her sexuality are sexually mature. The rest of them with their childish strategies to get a woman in bed…arrghhhh FLUSH.

  46. grace says:

    Little star
    It’s not just about putting off sex, it’s about building trust, closeness and intimacy before you have sex. The boyfriend and I do a lot more than just avoid sex. It’s not just hanging out and having fun either, although we do that.
    Don’t get carried away by thinking if I wait x months it will automatically be better. It’s more proactive and richer than that.
    Can you get shafted by someone you’re not shagging? Abso frickin lutely. Having an AC wait for months of years is not going to turn him into a better relationship prospect.

    • Little Star says:

      Yes Grace, agree, it is not about “shagging” as you said, it is about building relationship. I met plenty of guys in my past, I never even kissed them, as I did not “sexual desire” for them, they were decent, kind, faithful but boring and predictable. BIG MISTAKE! BUT yet again, I cant date a guy if I am NOT PHYSICALLY attracted to!!! Sorry:(

    • Spinster says:

      Don’t get carried away by thinking if I wait x months it will automatically be better. It’s more proactive and richer than that. Can you get shafted by someone you’re not shagging? Abso frickin lutely. Having an AC wait for months of years is not going to turn him into a better relationship prospect.

      I agree with grace – I waited a long time to have sex, a major late bloomer (when I was practicing religion, I was waiting until marriage), and that did not keep any ass-wipes in my past from having unacceptable behavior(s) & attitudes. 😐 Quality over quantity (in this case, waiting X days or weeks or months or years).

  47. Gina says:

    @GW: when I said that a woman should not have sex to please a man, I was referring to allowing herself to be pressured into doing something that she may not be ready for yet. If two people are both mutually ready, then I would think that they would want to please each other sexually.

    On a slightly different note…I do not think that it’s fair for a man to always have to pay when dating. If a guy picks up the dinner tab, I’ll pay for the movie. Whoever does the inviting should be willing to pick up the tab (unless both parties decide otherwise). Keeping things in balance in this area alleviates the possibility of the guy thinking that I am using him, or expecting that I should “put out” because he’s always paying.

  48. Yani says:

    Well, I had the same reaction from a guy that I was intimate with afterfive weeks of dating him. We were intimate twice and he even sent an email the day after to see how I was doing. Then after I received a terse text from him the next day after I asked if he had received my edits on his paper, he never reached out to me again. That was three weeks ago. After receiving that curt text, I stopped myself from reaching out to him to figure what was going on. I figured he was insulted by my comments on his paper, he should tell me instead of cutting me off so suddenly. We literally went from talking a couple of times a day to nothing. For the most part, he always initiated contact. The hard part is we go to the same school so I see him occasionally, which is really difficult for me to deal with. I already have some major insecurity issues, but more importantly, I feel so stupid for thinking he was actually a nice guy (a religious one he claimed). To be honest, I never thought we would be long term, but the last thing I expected him to do was be so dismissive so suddenly. This came out of nowhere. I am taking this really hard and am afraid I’ll never get over the feeling of being dismissed, especially he will be there to remind me whenever our paths will cross at school. Argh. I wish I could just believe and really feel that this isn’t about me.

  49. Jule says:

    Now AC is being nice again and trying to get on my good side again by making polite texting conversation. Ugh. This is hard. I hate it when he does this. It’s easier to dislike him when he shows his real assclown self.

    • Allison says:


      You know who he is. Why are you wasting your precious energy on someone who will let you down once again?

      Show yourself some kindness!

    • Kit-Kat says:

      Jule. That is why the NO CONTACT rule works so well… Go NC and flush :) Block ,delete, whatever you have to do to move forward…

  50. pinkpanther says:

    I have done an experiment with this. Slept with them (women) within 3 dates, and waited as long as a few months. I have concluded in my case it makes little if any difference in the longevity of the relationship.

    These days I’ve been waiting longer since I don’t want to make all kinds of AC mistakes! My last few were doozies!

  51. runnergirl says:

    This has been such an incredible thread. I’m NOT making him wait for 30-60-90 days or even a year. It’s not about making him wait. (For some reason, this conjures up visions of a salivating dog.) “It” is about establishing a relationship based on respect, trust, and honesty. If a guy simply wants to hop into the sack before we know one another’s last name, how can that progress into a healthy relationship? Not saying it can’t, just sayin it hasn’t happened for me.
    I’m thinking we all, males and females, gotta get over this third date thingy. Assuming we are perfect strangers or even work colleagues, after three dates, assuming each date lasts three hours, we are in a total of nine hours. That’s nine hours. How on god’s green earth are we supposed to ‘know’ one another after nine hours? After all, many of us work at least nine hours a day. The math doesn’t add up. It just can’t be about having sex after meeting up for nine hours. So yeah, some perfect stranger I’ve met online and had three dates with just isn’t going to get me to drop my knickers because my long term goal is a committed, healthy relationship based on respect, love and care. I’m not clairvoyant enough to determine that after nine hours. Thus, I’m not making him “wait” for sex for some predetermined time. Nor am I withholding the goods. That is a game. Sex irrelevant. Sex is not monetary. Sexual intimacy is not a game. Topline: For me, It’s about a relationship, not sex. Sex comes after the relationship.

    • Revolution says:

      Couldn’t have said it better myself, Runnergirl.

      • runnergirl says:

        Hey Revolution,

        I’m glad you didn’t pull the slow fade or bail…he…he…he!

        • Learner says:

          Aww, are you SURE you are hetero? lol. I was thinking of going for you, too – but Revs beat me to it. Fearless pulled a *fast* fade on me – well, she didn’t even respond. I’m crushed!

          • runnergirl says:

            Where is Fearless these days. I miss her too. Maybe she is so “busy” with a new beau she’s bailed on us! Gregarious Wolf’s post really got to me for some reason. His comment: “I’m not speaking of the physical act only, but of emotional closeness and a desire in include someone in your life” made me realize we are all on the same team. That’s what I want. His comment and Pink Panther’s comment about her encounters with same sexed partners, makes it even more clear, we are all on the same team whether it is same sex, opposite sex or something else.
            Trust me Learner and Revs, you aren’t the first to pose that question. You sure are amazing, and totally awesome ladies. I’m batting for our team. (BTW, I suck at the plate, only way I get on first is to beat the throw to first. But I play a mean second, that is, if the guy doesn’t take me out.)
            Let’s all play on the same team. Love you Learner and Revs. Where is our Fearless? Some day we have to meet! What a weekend that would be…

            • runnergirl says:

              We’d rock the house for sure!

              • learner says:

                aww Runner, love you too! You have such a wonderful way of making people feel included, listened to, and validated. I am so reassured to hear that even YOU had exMM stories that later had you shaking your head at your own behaviour. And yes, a BR in-person meeting would be awesome – rocking the house for sure! xo

        • Revolution says:

          Hahaha!!! No way, Runnergirl. And hey, I’d even wave my “sex by the 3rd date” rule for you….


    • Learner says:

      runnergirl – love your no-game-playing, relationship-first viewpoint!

    • sushi says:

      you are a confident reasonable emotionally available woman with values. Brilliant ! :)

  52. sushi says:

    GW, “emotional closeness and a desire to include someone in your life”
    Thats the bottom line of what a relationship should be based on.
    Sometimes they just won`t do it, sometimes they will give you some of it, on their terms only (crumbs), and sometimes they really want to but are unable to deliver the goods because they have issues that they are not aware of /willing to work on – that`s when it`s most confusing because there are so many mixed messages. None of the above is good enough. I never had a full monty, what a sad realisation, and I thought the reason was that I was not good enough. Get Natalies book, I think you`ll find your answers.

  53. Maria H says:

    I started dating a friend of the family in October last year. He’s divorced; lives with his mum and has his teenage son at the weekends & school holidays. Four/five weeks in, I had sex with him & things got sporadic after I had sex with him. Although he initiated the contact, he hardly ever organised any more dates & whenever I tried to suggest a date, he always said that he was skint. He’s a mature student at College & on benefits. He always went on about how much he thought about me in our online chat sesions. That was his favourite form of communication, but we only saw each other 3 times throughout the winter. Then when we met up again at the beginning of March, I had a chat with him & asked him what was happening with us cos all I was getting from him was mixed signals & that this was not going anywhere. He said that he was not misleading me, he was not cheating on me, it was just that he had a lot of work to do from the College & had his head buried in his books & was skint. He stepped up & our dates became more frequent again & at the beginning of April he said that we had cemented our relationship & I believed it. Soon after that we booked to go away a couple of nights on the Mayday bank holiday weekend. We had sex on the first night & then on the second night he was not up for it. He said he was not feeling well. I started to sense that the mood was changing, he was becoming distant. I felt that I have been used & that him not feeling well was just an excuse not to have sex with me. That was the last time I saw him. He maintained contact for 4 weeks after we came back, but that was just him fading away on me cos he organised dates that he then cancelled. When I tried to organise dates to finish with him face to face, he made some excuse or other that he couldn’t make it. He eventually disappeared & went dark on me on the Saturday of the Jubilee bank holiday weekend. I tried to phone him to see if the date was still on as he reneged on the previous 2 dates, but would not pick up the phone to me. That’s when I realised he disappeared on me. I then tried to phone a couple of weeks later to try to get some answers & closure, still no answer. So I eventually sent him a facebook message telling him how disrespectful it was of him to disappear on me. He responded a few days later that he was depressed & needed to be alone. I then started NC. 3 days after his reply, he blocked me on FB. I was strung along & misled into thinking our relationship was cemented. I realised he only said that to get sex from me on our 2nd night of the weekend away. Something else I’ve learnt from this is it’s not always better the devil you know. I have now been doing NC for 3 & a half months.

    • Allison says:


      He was a real jerk for not being honest with you, but if you read through your post, you will see that his action/inaction screamed his lack of interest. I have been in the same boat, and choose to listen lies, when the truth was in his actions all along.

  54. phoenix says:

    Many times when I’ve told a guy that I didn’t want to rush into sex until we got to know each other, they’ve come back with having sex is PART of getting to know each other. Not only have I heard this argument from different guys trying to get in my pants, but also from female friends. Ironically, “knowing” someone in the biblical sense refers to sex. Does this argument have any merit, or is this another Jedi mind trick guys use to get us to feel better about sleeping with them sooner than rather than later? Thoughts????

    • runnergirl says:

      It may be that getting to know somebody includes sex for some people, male and female. However, you get to decide what works for you because they are your boundaries. I think that has been one of my many take-aways from reading Nat’s books and BR, I get to decide what works for ME. Based on my past relationship history, I’ve always dropped my knickers straight away (then usually married them), then discovered there were major problems. Sex early on doesn’t work for me. PERIOD. I’m like a dog with a bone (pardon the pun) once sex enters the pic and I won’t give up no matter how awful the bone is (double pardon the pun). BTW, it may work for your female friends (I’m betting it doesn’t) and it may work for the guys (who knows) but you get to figure out what works for YOU! What are YOUR boundaries? What are YOUR sexual values? You get to decide!

      • selkie says:

        Runnergirl, you hit the nail square on the head. It is about how we decide to handle our own bodies. and self respect. End of. Not about making him wait to earn his respect. We need to show up with it.

        • runnergirl says:

          You nailed it better Selkie. It boils down to self-respect and showing up every where, including dates, with my self-respect/self-esteem in tow.
          Back to Phoenix, why are you arguing with girl friends or guys? Self-respect, self-esteem, your boundaries, and your values aren’t negotiable.

    • FX says:

      I do think it’s part of getting to know someone but my opinion should be irrelevant to you. What do you need to do to feel good about the progression of a relationship and respect your own boundaries?

      This post made me think about how I want to progress with someone beyond the important issues now. Because I’m older, I’ve decided to consider whether I really want to have sex with some a bit more than the last time I was dating. I will definitely continue to kiss early on, though, because compatibility in that area is of critical, non-negotiable importance to me. I’ve been around the block enough to know that you can’t really teach someone something as instinctual as kissing. I know that “bad” (not to my preference) kissing makes me want to gag and is a major turn-off so it is an early barometer for progression – for me.

      Physical desire and compatibility isn’t some dirty afterthought or bargaining chip. It is a requirement in a healthy romantic relationship for many people – both men and women.

      I have never been particularly appearance oriented so I don’t put much stock in that as long as there’s attraction. I’m not just looking for a platonic best friend, though!

      • grace says:

        The boyfriend and I kiss better than we used to. I hadn’t kissed in five years. He hadn’t in two. Sometimes it can be learned. Or re learned.
        Don’t force it but it would be a shame to pass up on a possible good thing because of something that could be improved. It was never bad though, so i hear you.
        Same with sex. I understand that a person might be wary of waiting “too long”. What if I wait, fall in love and sex turns out to be gross? But I think if two people love each other, are flexible and adaptable, willing to learn and listen even mediocre sex can be improved.
        When I think back to what I thought was great sex with the playa I realise now it was not as great as I thought it was. I was mainly caught up in the high of winning him over than in how much pleasure I was getting. And after not very long, it was all about him anyway.
        But, yeah, i do know the man is potent, you can find that out by just kissing!

    • Brenda says:

      All excuses, If sex made things work and made people know eachother then why are so many of us that had sex end up alone again anyhow?.. I can be 100% comiitted with NO sex whatsoever if I like someone enough for who they are.. So there you go.

      You can have the best sex with the most messup up and confussed person.

      Also had it thrown in my face – like during pregnancy, that sex was not love and I was stupid for going along with it.

      No, getting to know eachother takes a lot of honesty and communication, from both.. and it’s the “BOTH” part that is just so hard to come by.

      Sex should be a nice bonus, I understand having needs but if I can ignore my own for many many years at a time to avoid more BS in my life, Then they can wait to show me they have more than BS to offer.. Again maybe hard or maybe even impossible to come by for me, But after this long it would be like taking a diamond and tossing it in the garbage anymore, and you know what? I worked hard to make this a diamond and had to do it all by myself, sex did not make it, nobody’s scraps made it either… I made it, so it’s my job to protect it now.

  55. Tinkerbell says:


    I absolutely agree with your opinion about sharing expensive of a date, when the woman invites the man and the activity or place she has chosen is upscale. It can get quite expensive. Plus, as you said it does alleviate his feeling that he is putting out all this expensive and should get a return on his investment. I’m independent and cannot deal with even a hint of possible obligation. When I go on a date, which is very rare,I want to do it in style, so it most likely won’t be cheap. I’m not a picnic, movies, bowling type of person. I don’t mind chipping in a little when it’s my choice what we decide to do. Otherwise, if it’s his choice, I would expect it would be within his means and the expense is on him.

  56. Tinkerbell says:

    I hope for your sake you’ve learned the lesson not to be so persistent when a guy is acting flaky. One questionable excuse may be legitimate but when it’s consecutively, LET IT GO. No need to try to confront him on his behavior. He’s not that special and all you’re doing is demeaning yourself by trying desperately to hang on.

  57. courtney says:

    I just want to share this because I’ve shared other parts of my journey on here before.

    Recently, I experienced two extremes of online dating – one very positive and one very negative. It’s somewhat related to this post.

    I had recently created an online dating profile on a site I had used in the past. It was a brand new profile, rid of all the old messages, the old exs, the old dates produced from that site. I felt more confident and aware of my boundaries and several times opted out of potential dates with people because there were clear red flags.

    I recently exchanged messages with someone who seemed to be kind, open, honest, and decent. Also, I am attracted to him which is always a big nice bonus. Of course, still waiting for the behavior and meeting with him to support/slowly learn more about him – yes, slowly, slowly, slowly – I am approaching this way better than I ever approached it before, because I am not going to go out on a limb again and invest/engage in intimacy/fast-forward without some hard evidence/proof/behavior. So I am finally coming to terms with NOT engaging/believing in the future faking or skipping 10 essential steps in the process. I really want to get to know him slowly and surely and take my time in the discovery phase. I will keep you guys updated on how that goes. Thank you, Natalie!

    But, I do have to mention the negative aspect of online dating. It may be relatively anonymous but the past can still follow you – I also recently received a message from an ex on the site who’s still on there (horrible, abusive person who was overweight himself and constantly criticized my weight—which was average by the way, and constantly abused me verbally) telling me that he’s “glad to see you finally got laid.” I believe this was a way of trying to put me down and make me think I was less desirable than I actually am – thankfully, I know I am a helluva lot more desirable than he is, and way more attractive/appealing. Secondly, I believe this was a strike against me not sleeping with him (hard to do when there’s little physical chemistry and so much abuse).

    I responded, “Yes, I am glad to see you obviously haven’t. Lame ?” and promptly blocked him. Again, I can’t stress enough how much garbage there is out in the world. But it really opened my eyes to see that when I had low self-esteem, I was constantly trying to embrace, love, and gain validation from garbage (EUM’s, abusers, narcissistic harem owners, prime ACs) instead of kicking it aside and throwing it away where it belonged. I take full responsibility for chasing garbage and it feels so great to have that confirmation that my initial gut instincts were right and that this past relationship was over!! P.S. this is not the ex that I have been talking about in my comments, this is a more toxic and gross ex—I am thankful that my last ex did not treat me as badly and would never say something immature like that.

    Scary part is, this guy is a licensed social worker and is going to be almost 30 in a few years, and he has the nerve to act like that and be extremely childish. Just in time for Halloween, it’s a frightening prospect to recognize how many terrible people are operating in this world under the guise of helpers/healers, when they really are just the worst of charlatans.

    In retrospect, I realize how much garbage I put up with in the past and how many negative people I attracted because of my low self-esteem, and consequently low self-respect. Seriously, I keep thinking back to this person and realizing – WHAT ON EARTH WAS I THINKING? I wasn’t. I was simply acting on my desperation. Not only was I not physically attracted to this guy, I allowed him to take a toll on my self-esteem and belittle me because of his own insecurities. Even when I finally broke up with him, I felt the need to second-guess myself. I didn’t realize how worthy and beautiful I was inside and out. But now I am making progress in recognizing both. So thanks BR, BR readers and of course Natalie for giving me that essential toolkit and helping me use it!!

    • runnergirl says:

      Hi Courtney,

      I agree with you 100% and congratulations. A little bit of self-esteem/self-respect goes a long way. I have to work in the same building with one of my gross, abusive, overweight, and aging badly ex’s and every time I see him, I cringe and think the same thing WHAT WAS I THINKING? BTW, with regards to the subject matter of this post, I did rush into sex with him and then discovered he was an abusive AC. By that point, my brain too muddled to see the forest through the trees. It is like Nat says, he rushed into sex so when I found it I didn’t want to proceed, it felt like it was too late.
      Good luck with the online date. Remember, it’s just a date. I’ve been interested (can’t really say attracted) in online guys on the phone but the guy that showed up was different.
      And good for you for blocking the exAC. I wouldn’t have responded. His comment was awful.
      Natalie’s toolkit is the best and all the tools actually do work.
      My best to you.

  58. Learner says:

    “It’s the idea that they’re so busy and so not wanting to ‘waste’ any ‘unnecessary’ time that they’d rather just speed up the audition for the non-existent relationship part.”
    Sheesh, in the early days with the exMM, when I had stopped being physical with him while he “decided” about his marriage, he agreed to go shopping with me as “friends”. We also went for a walk in the cold weather, and I mentioned I would like to go somewhere warm. I meant to go get a cup of tea or something, but he responded” Oh, that’s a great idea! if I know you wanted to go get a room, we wouldn’t have wasted time shopping.” Wow. He totally had his own agenda. I didn’t end up “getting a room” with him for several months after that, but staying “with” him after the comment he made was crazy! How could I deny, minimize, rationalize all the many, many red flags he waved in my face? It is slowly sinking in. He wanted me for sex. he wanted me for sex. Well, guess what? I don’t want him for *Anything* *Ever* *Again*!!!

    • runnergirl says:

      Yeah Learner when it starts to sink in, it was frightening how many red flags I rationalized, minimized, and denied. You want a warm cup of tea; he wants to get laid and wouldn’t have wasted time shopping! So sorry but spot on. It’s so amazing how obvious they were in BR retrospect. I have a similar story. The night the exMM asked if I “was in”, we went for drinks, late, after a long meeting. I agreed to being “in”, engaged in a long, wonderful, knee trembling kiss, and said goodbye. After the affair started, he said he couldn’t figure out why I didn’t invite him back to my house that night, which was around the corner. Duh. He was thinking why didn’t he get sex that night. I was thinking what a wonderful “relationship” we were going to have!
      Good for you for not “getting a room”. Did you at least get a warm of tea?

      • runnergirl says:

        Oh and I got another. It was in the early stages of the affair before we had sex. He invited me to attend a work function with him. It was one that I could have skipped but I agreed to go with HIM. It was an all day event with a lunch break. At lunch, I suggested we go to a nice restaurant nearby and we did. After the affair started, he said he wondered why I didn’t invite him to my place for “lunch”. Since my place was a 30 min drive from the meeting place and a 30 min drive back and we only had 60 mins for lunch, it never, ever even crossed my mind. Duh, Runner, it crossed his mind. I wasn’t holding out or with-holding the goods, I was completely oblivious. Finally, he got me to bed when he called, asked me to dinner and, of course, I agreed. I thought this was a relationship. He suggested a restaurant near my place (we lived 30 mins apart) and he’d pick me up. By the end of dinner my pants were charmed off and since he picked me up at my place, well you know the rest! (Now that’s why I don’t do your place or mine.) Our favorite joke was “you are a hard woman to get to bed”. I was. Not because I had boundaries or sexual values, it was because I was 100% oblivious. Plus, it never dawned on me that he was thinking sex. I was too busy in fantasy land to be bothered with reality!

        • learner says:

          Runner – the last word I would use to describe you would be “oblivious!”
          To answer your question – yeah, I got the cup of tea on that particular day. But I am ashamed to tell you that later “dates” DID involve getting a room. The first was one he later confessed he had attended with the OOW. Oh Jeez, the more I see about the exMM in writing, the more sickened I become. Fantasy land sure is the land of oblivion regarding the bloody obvious!

  59. Jule says:

    A word about online dating — I have met both online – men who want a relationship and those who don’t. But be very cautious if you go that route. These guys can say anything — even that they are looking for long term and love but they are lying. I think it’s a breeding ground for the players and cheating husbands. There is a facebook page that I came across where women post messages they get from douche bags from online dating sites. It’s disgusting and disturbing. Unfortunately, I saw a message from a married man I happen to know on there trying to pick up a woman. I know it was him because it was the same picture he has on his band web site. :( I know this happens but it’s still shocking to see someone caught in the act.

    One other thing I want to mention — I have been thinking and it seems to me that a majority of men are just simple creatures who are weak in many ways and are just living out their caveman tendencies. They are MEN. Not only are many not that special, but they are NOT THAT evolved. Maybe we have to just accept this fact. Women are strong, complex, evolved creatures. We have the strength to withstand a lot of hardship, child birth, heart ache, and provide emotional strength and nurturing etc. I for one am not expecting from men what I expect from my women friends.

    • Allison says:


      Don’t forget there are a large number of female ACs. This is not exclusive to males. Also, the men who are unavailable (married and involved in relationships) are engaged with women who are aware – most of the time – of their relationship status. The problem affects both sexes and no one is excluded.

      Please do not demonize all men, or I can guarantee, you will continue to choose jerks.

    • Brenda says:

      No your caving into the idea that thay are like animals.. There are differences naturally, But I think it’s a “selfish” thing not a man /animal thing what many here are dealing with, We could hanlde less words of love if we were getting “Actions” of love.

      Many of us would even preffer that after getting so many that were all “talk” and no “action”.

      This bamboo / monkey we cannot help ourselves act ius even an irritation to men that don’t use that excuse.

      I do not expect a man to crochet, but why so many think I should get into things like race boats or drag racing?
      ” It’s a selfish thing that is why.”

      Again I do not expect them to be like women – But I would deifinantly most definantly expect a freinship, becasue if that is NOT there your not going to have a “Foundation” – looks will fade, sex will dercrease ect ect.. and if I am going to grow old with someone he better be a freind otherwise even with him your going to end up alone.

      I think darn well expect him to pull his weight, and to have a “thinking” brain as well.

      No he may not give birth, may not cry as often as me – But if he aint at all feeling enough to love with actions, he can take his ape / gorilla excuse arese right to the zoo or pound.

  60. Gregarious Wolf says:

    Runner girl,

    Thanks for your replies. I like how you said we’re all on the same team. There may be some differences in how men and women approach attraction and sex, but as far as attachment and intimacy are concerned people want the same things. Healthy people want someone who is available and can form secure attachments.

    I’ve since found out unavailable girl may suffer from trauma as a consequence of sexual abuse. It didn’t stop her from sleeping with her last boyfriend, who I happen to know by complete coincidence. I had all but broken up with her this weekend when she confided in me about abuse during her childhood.

    This is a whole new world for me. I am not sure how to cope. She tells me that she likes to masturbate but feels uncomfortable when being touched. I am thinking now this woman needs some serious counseling and therapy. She said it was a leap of faith for her to even confide in me. That may represent some measure of trust she has for me, but doesn’t help me much otherwise.

    I hate to sound too transactional, but I feel if she can’t reciprocate love what do I get out of this relationship?

  61. Tulipa says:


    I think she is using you as an emotional airbag she is clearly aware of your feelings for her and uses them to her advantage. Now she wants to keep you around by telling you her issues.

    You won’t get much out of the relationship you have feelings towards her and she doesn’t towards you not in the way you want her to anyway so the more you hang in there the more painful it will be.

    Her issues are hers and maybe you can point her towards some help but you cannot fix her.

  62. Feistywoman says:

    Just thought I’d share with you my experiences of men that I’ve met since my marriage broke down.

    Man 1) Within two months of my traumatic marriage breakdown this man who I’d known since childhood came over all heavy with endearments and tried to throw his money around to “rescue me”. I pushed back as my red alert gut instincts kicked in and he then got angry with me and was closed out as a friend. What I saw was someone who was trying to control me in a vulnerable state and my life from half way around the world. 18 months later be popped back up phoneing out of the blue as these Ac do and couldn’t understand why I was in a bad place with my marriage breakdown. Yes really what a fuckwit. So I e-mailed him and was cold and distant then blocked him and he has thankfully gone.

    Man 2) Net him through work. Couldn’t arrange a date left it me. As this was my first “date” I wasn’t sure why it was left to me. Anyway thanks to Natalie’s site the red flags continued and I never let anything progress. Turned out he was getting sex on tap from his ex wife 6 years after their divorce and each of them was manipulative and controlling of the other’s life. he wanted to control and even told me my circumstances were complicated, yes WTF? He didn’t like text but used it as the primary means of communication. Yep he got flushed as he blew hot and cold and once I knew the score with him and his ex I was like yuk.

    Man 3) Met through a social group. We had a lot in common and he asked me out by e-mail which I thought odd but this was only my second date. He then told me it wasn’t a date so we kept friends as we often did the same events in this group. He relied on text and when asked why told me he could have a 3 way conversation, eat and watch TV at the same time. Things he was saying weren’t matched by his actions. Then he went off radar cancelling his membership of this group and letting people down with a social planned out of this group. I flushed after telling him exactly why by text since this was his preferred method of communication.

    Man 4) A married ex-colleague who had pursued me for 20 years with was a EU workaholic. He had been blown out as he was off limits a few times but he kept coming back. Popped back up again in the summer after nearly dying and declared undying love for me. Then……. nothing. He indicated that he would always love me no matter what our age and would make a pass at me. He was told in no uncertain terms that I wasn’t some cheap tart to be picked up in a whim and I am now guessing that the declaration whilst heartfelt was an attempt to manipulate me. With hindsight I can see that his “friendship” centred on pressurising me at vulnerable times in my life to have sex but I held strong.

    I am now left wondering if there are any decent men out there but am happy enough single as I don’t have the bull shit and emotional clap trap to deal with. What I have learned with these men is to trust my instincts and see red flags. I have now decided that before I embark on a relationship I want to be friends with a man first and see if he is consistent over time. I also have a 90 day rule for sex. They take it or leave it as far as I am concerned but no-one busts my boundaries now male or female.

  63. julia says:

    Yep. If I really liked someone, I would wait, wait, wait. But this is key: the waiting should be tough. If it’s not tough to wait, YOU don’t truly like the guy, and are caught up in just trying to get approval, and whether HE likes you. Who cares, if you don’t like him?

    I do disagree with the idea that you can’t learn anything about someone when you sleep with them, though. Last night I slept with a guy I really didn’t like too much that I have been kinda dating for a short time. I knew I didn’t like him, I knew he only *thought* he liked me (because he has made no effort to get to know me, and seems oblivious to the fact that we’re total opposites) … it was terrible, and I don’t mean It. “It” was decent. But god was he a dick afterward. I don’t mean he was horribly unkind, he was just … ugh. Yuck. He doesn’t like me, he knows it, I know it, I know I don’t like him … but be decent. I admit I was a touch on the fence about him, wondering if I was being shallow for the reasons I didn’t like him (no, it was nothing to do with looks), but now I know. Nope. I was spot on. And how.

    I think the key is if you’re going to sleep with someone and are not doing so as part of a true, growing relationship, you’d better be honest that you aren’t downplaying your own hopes/expectations – don’t set yourself up for hurt.

  64. Aboutme says:

    Wow! First, Natalie this was a great post. Secondly, the responses/topics brought up was very insightful. Thirdly, my life has been extremely calm since I start acting on the “tell” signs presented by men/women/family members.

    Let me just add my comments, there are times that I wonder whether I have “tell” signs that make people chance their arm with me. The way that these situtions play out for me is that I let the dispectful behavior continue for a while, these days, the disrespectful time frame is very short. But once I feel that I have had enough, then a complete and total bitch emerges. In my mind, Initially, i really don’t want to go there. Because once I do, then I am very angry say some choice words and then I make the decision to cut them off. With family, I still don’t voice my dissatisfaction, I just distance myself from them. Side point, no matter what anybody says or does to me, my mother will not Agree with me or show any outrage, like how could they say or do that to you. Up until maybe a few months ago, I was still expecting validation/nurturing from my mother. I am just beginning to accept, as painful as it is, that she is/was incapable of providing that to me. Her idea of showing love is very limited. I now see the importance of forgiving my mother do that I can finally move on…..anyway

    also, I find that women in my circle like to give belittling comments under the disguise of “Im just jokin”. I have been told that I am too sensitive. I am not buying that bull! Grown people know exactly what they are doing/saying but they are acting out their own insecurities that I for whatever reason bring out. Unfortunately, I believe a lot of it is jealousy…I certainly don’t mean it in a conceit way, in fact, I have confidence issues. But from the outside I look like I have it going on.

    So, I don’t believe we should give a lot of time trying to figure out whether it is intentional. Next thing you you are rationalizing and excusing bad behavior.

    Right now I have become hyper alert to bad behavior from everybody. There is slight concern because I do not want to become an angry, bitter, quick to anger person. However, having put up with soooo much crap, this is my path for right now. I’m thinking that once my self esteem improves, I will display “fewer tell signs” and I can cut back on the angry woman role. At least I hope so, because I feel that I am becoming a different person.

30-Day Project: Dealing With Tricky Family Members

Tired of dealing with family drama or waiting for them to spontaneously combust in to changed people? Need to find ways to step back and take proactive steps to redefine the relationship from your end? This 30-Day project will help you do just that.

30-Day Project: Dealing With Tricky Family Members

Tired of dealing with family drama or waiting for them to spontaneously combust in to changed people? Need to find ways to step back and take proactive steps to redefine the relationship from your end? This 30-Day project will help you do just that.