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Thread: Putting in Effort on a Date

  1. #1
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    Putting in Effort on a Date

    I have been casually dating this guy for a month, and he's a nice guy, we have great conversations and mesh well, have great chemistry, but he doesn't put in a lot of effort, meaning he hasn't took me out on too many dates. The first 3 dates were at his house because he had gotten into a car accident right before and didn't have a car, so I came to his house and we took walks, talked, etc. Meaning I came to him.

    Our next two "dates", we went out to bars/restaurants that I picked in our neighborhood. The first time going out, he had been out with his friend drinking beforehand. I didn't know this until a couple days later when he casually mentioned that he had gone out with his friend beforehand and had a few drinks/shots. I suspected something because he was a bit louder and talkative on the date, but I didn't know for sure because I had never seen him drunk. I was insulted because it meant a lot to me that we were going out for the first time, and I didn't like that he couldn't be sober taking me out for the first time. I don't think this is too much to ask.

    Last week he moved to the town next to me, he moved there to be closer to his kids. Last Sunday we chatted on the phone and he told me I needed to come see his new place, he mentioned this twice that if I was in his town (which is the next town from me), that I should come visit. I said I'd let him know when I was in his town. (It's very easy to get to his town by the way, it's literally 5 minutes from me.) He never asked me out on the phone, he only asked me to his house. I wouldn't mind coming to his house, but I really want to go out as well. Two days later, I texted him a cute text asking when he was going to take me out again. He said Sunday. (Yesterday). I asked him to plan something because I felt like I was doing all the planning (and I didn't want to tell him that he was being lazy). He had his kids for the weekend, so I figured we'd be going out Sunday late afternoon after dropping the kids at his exes house, but the time wasn't arranged yet.

    I get a text from him Sunday afternoon saying his ex asked him to keep the kids until today, Monday, the holiday. He didn't realize it was a holiday and his ex mentioned it to him last minute on Sunday that he would need to keep them the extra day because she was working Monday and he wasn't working. That's fine, I get it, I am a single mother who has my daughter 90% of the time, I completely understand about last minute changes with kids.

    So we were texting last night and decided to flirt with him since we couldn't go out, and I said that I bought a new dress for the affair and he was going to miss my new dress. He said oh wow, (I guess he didn't expect me to buy a new dress?), and "yes I'm sad I'll miss the new dress." I said well maybe you'll see it sometime if you're lucky. Then he said I hope so, and I didn't reply back because I didn't think it was necessary. He never rescheduled after cancelling. I know he was busy with his kids last night, and I COMPLETELY understand. I guess I'm just sad. I don't want to reach out because I want him to put in more effort. I want him to romance me, chase me, and I feel like he's just being lazy. I don't know what to do from here. I feel like we are at the end of the rope because he doesn't care to put in the effort. I'm sad because we get along great, the kissing has been great, but I don't think it's too much to ask to be romanced, is it? I don't need him to buy me dinner, or spend money on me, etc. I can buy my own dinner. I just want someone to put in a little effort. And I was a little disheartened that he didn't reschedule. Does that mean he's not interested or was he just busy? Or lazy? Or clueless?

  2. #2
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Bummer.

    How I'd look at this, since it's only been a month, is that he's just being who he is—and, it seems, who that person is is not quite who you want to be investing in. Sure, I can agree that he sounds "lazy," but where does that get anyone? The early days are all about observation, primarily observing if you're having a blast with a person vs whether you're wishing the person would be a little more x, or a little less y.

    If it's the former, be that lounging on the couch or hang-gliding into 5-star restaurants—great. If it's the latter—well, not so great. People are who they are, and you've got to give people credit: they show us fast. It's on us to see what they show us, and know who we are.

    I'm very active, for instance. I like the beach, the mountains, live where I do because both are here, and like to try new restaurants. I'm also someone who likes to talk and talk (and listen and listen) about wild life stuff: books, ideas, blah blah. That's not who I am "in romance," but who I am. Well, I dated someone briefly who, after a month, said that she just wanted to hang and watch "Friends"—like that was her "thing," who she "really" was—because the dinners and hikes and talks were "a lot." Fair enough. I could call her lazy, but she was cool. Just not cool for me, or me her. That was the clearest verdict after 30 days.

    That's just my personal attitude, and how I'd approach this in your shoes—unless you want to give it a bit more time in the observation stage. I've never liked the idea that someone is supposed to be one way in "romancing," before settling into another way. Like, would you be stoked if he was doing everything you'd like right now, but in another month or two, is back to "come on over!"? My gut says no. Gut says that you want a more engaging man rather than a man you have to handle like a stove with an iffy pilot light. Yawn. Hard to bring the water to a boil on that kind of stove.

    He could be sorta interested or super interested. He could be lazy or a man of simple routine. He could be clueless or unapologetically clued in to his personal comforts. He could also just be who he is: a guy you wish had a little more juju in his repertoire than he does.

  3. #3
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    I mean, he was married for 10 years, and got married when he was 22 and had a kid when he was 24 (military guy), and I asked him once, does he know how to date as an adult, because he hasn't dated for a long time the the last time he dated, he was in his early 20s, and dating in your early 20s is much different than dating in your mid 30s. He said he doesn't think he does. I'm not asking for hang-gliding into 5 start restaurants, I just want a little bit of effort and don't feel like I'm getting enough. But I want to give him the benefit of the doubt, because when we do talk, we have really long, good conversations and we get along so well...

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    What if your "dates" continue to be "why don't you come over"? Will you still want to keep seeing him?

    If someone has to change to be right for us, they're wrong for us.

    BTW, of course he knows dating is going out and doing things. You gave him an "out" when you asked him if he knew how and he took it.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    To be honest, I would call it a day.

    The beginning of the relationship is when it's supposed to be exciting and everyone on their best behavior. Dates should be where you are picked up for the date, taken out to a nice restaurant, given flowers....all the good stuff.

    He SHOULD be making far more efforts. It wouldn't even take much to send you sweet texts and romantic messages.

    It sounds very lame and if this is as good as it gets, I can't even imagine how much lazier he could possibly get.
    Wait...yes I could.
    I can see him laying back on the couch on Saturday nights with a shirt on that has food down the front of it, drinking a beer, belching loudly and thinking that pinching your butt as you walk by counts as giving you attention.

    Ugh.
    If he can't even be bothered...why should you be?

  7. #6
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    I hear you.

    So then it kind of becomes another question: How into you coaxing someone into their "adult dating" self are you? There could be something special to that, though there could also be something exhausting, with perhaps a higher chance of the latter.

    For instance: A friend of mine—was with her last night—is engaged to a good guy. He is socially awkward, a loud-talker, a clumsy interrupter. It's endearing—to a point. I think early on she said something to him—respectfully—and he responded with something like: Yeah, I know, it's a thing I work on. Anyhow, she's kind of softened him a bit, worked with him—and that's part of their thing. He also brings a ton of awesome to the table, so it's not as if their dynamic is all about her teaching him manners. But it's there, and will probably always be there, as there was some of that last night, they've been together 2 years, and so on. She is engaged to the man she went on the third date with, in short, not the man he became through dating her.

    Another anecdote: My best friend. Great guy. Ask him what "girlfriend" looks like and he will conjure up an imagine of him cooking pasta (he is a master!) and then watching a movie. He's smart and eccentric—a surfer tech philosopher, not a couch potato—and yet: that is what he wants, and that is where he starts nudging things with women pretty quickly. I can imagine that some women have found him "lazy," and perhaps some of them have chalked that up to his limited experience, as he spent his 20s with one woman and at 36 still has a kind of fish-out-water vibe. But I think he'll have that vibe at 65, and will find someone who just digs it.

    Oh, and why not: I'm with someone who married young, had a kid young. Very different life history than my own. I've never questioned if she "knows how" to date at 35 because it was just fun to date her, as it's fun now to be committed to her. Maybe to some other guy she wasn't so fun? Too busy with her kid, too this or too that, while I was being maybe-conditioned into a "Friends" fanatic?

    I guess I'm just trying to give some context to this word "effort." It implies that you know something about someone that they don't—that they have more to give, but are withholding it. I think that's risky. You can just make the part about you not feeling like you're "getting enough" the truth, rather than something someone else needs to solve. That's for year three, when your awesome dude gets lazy for a few months, not the foundation of things, you know?

  8. #7
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    I've been in a similar situation as you in the past. I can relate to the hopeful feelings, that if you just show a supposedly clueless guy what you want and communicate your wishes about dating, that's he'll wake up and care enough to please you so he can continue to be around wonderful you.

    You hope because the chemistry and so many other things are there. You make excuses for him because you want so much for him to care as much as you do about quality time together, since everything else seems to be going so well. Unfortunately, the bad outweighs the good in this case. I gave the guy I was dating 6 to 8 weeks (can't remember exactly, but it was no more than 8 weeks). And then I just told him I wasn't happy with how things were going.

    The beginning is supposed to be when things are at their height in excitement and enthusiasm for meeting up. If this mediocrity is all he can muster now, it'll get even worse, not better, as time goes by.

    There are other guys you can have good conversations with, guys you share chemistry with, AND who shows how much he's into you by planning get togethers.

    I'm glad I made myself single so I could eventually meet my future husband who definitely put in great efforts to see me 2 or 3 times a week, and that never waned. It only progressed. I bet the same will happen to you if you keep cutting the losers loose in order hook a keeper.

    Maya Angelou was such an intelligent lady. Here's her gem: "When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time."

    Take care.

  9. #8
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    You're like fast food being delivered to his door.

    Don't you want to be the fancy steak, not the sad looking McDonald's burger?

    Raise your standards.

  10. #9
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    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    I hear you.

    So then it kind of becomes another question: How into you coaxing someone into their "adult dating" self are you? There could be something special to that, though there could also be something exhausting, with perhaps a higher chance of the latter.

    For instance: A friend of mine—was with her last night—is engaged to a good guy. He is socially awkward, a loud-talker, a clumsy interrupter. It's endearing—to a point. I think early on she said something to him—respectfully—and he responded with something like: Yeah, I know, it's a thing I work on. Anyhow, she's kind of softened him a bit, worked with him—and that's part of their thing. He also brings a ton of awesome to the table, so it's not as if their dynamic is all about her teaching him manners. But it's there, and will probably always be there, as there was some of that last night, they've been together 2 years, and so on. She is engaged to the man she went on the third date with, in short, not the man he became through dating her.

    Another anecdote: My best friend. Great guy. Ask him what "girlfriend" looks like and he will conjure up an imagine of him cooking pasta (he is a master!) and then watching a movie. He's smart and eccentric—a surfer tech philosopher, not a couch potato—and yet: that is what he wants, and that is where he starts nudging things with women pretty quickly. I can imagine that some women have found him "lazy," and perhaps some of them have chalked that up to his limited experience, as he spent his 20s with one woman and at 36 still has a kind of fish-out-water vibe. But I think he'll have that vibe at 65, and will find someone who just digs it.

    Oh, and why not: I'm with someone who married young, had a kid young. Very different life history than my own. I've never questioned if she "knows how" to date at 35 because it was just fun to date her, as it's fun now to be committed to her. Maybe to some other guy she wasn't so fun? Too busy with her kid, too this or too that, while I was being maybe-conditioned into a "Friends" fanatic?

    I guess I'm just trying to give some context to this word "effort." It implies that you know something about someone that they don't—that they have more to give, but are withholding it. I think that's risky. You can just make the part about you not feeling like you're "getting enough" the truth, rather than something someone else needs to solve. That's for year three, when your awesome dude gets lazy for a few months, not the foundation of things, you know?
    I thought of that, how long would I have to “work on” stuff with him which doesn’t sound like the ideal life lol and sounds exhausting lol. I would like to think he’s working on things. Examples: after going over his house for the 3rd time, I told him to get his car and insurance situation situated and then we’ll go on a proper date. A few days later, he finally got a rental car and we went out (not my ideal date as I said but still, he was trying I suppose.) I asked him a couple weeks or so ago if he cooked because he didn’t have a lot of food in his fridge and always was getting take out. He said no because it was just him, but then all of a sudden when he moved into his new place, he told me how he went shopping and bought all this food to cook. And he was excited about his new place because it was just his (he had a roommate for a few months that he didn’t like.) So I thought if I asked him to take me out and make plans he would step up to the plate because he did so with the other things.

    But you’re right— it implies I know something about someone... I do act as if he has all this potential— which I would like to think he does - - but perhaps he doesn’t?

  11. #10
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    Originally Posted by Honeycomb8
    You're like fast food being delivered to his door.

    Don't you want to be the fancy steak, not the sad looking McDonald's burger?

    Raise your standards.
    That’s exactly my point honey comb. I do have standards, and don’t want to stand for this, and that’s why am writing this post to begin with.

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