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Possible Commitment Phobe: Make-out with him then dump him?


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So I was wondering if you guys can help me out and perhaps set me straight if I'm going down a path of (minor) destruction.


Here's my deal. A recent but close friend of the family (his family married into my family) and I got to know each other over the past six months via long distance chatting and webcamming. At first we were really close and talked constantly and despite the distance there was a lot of passive emotional involvement; it really felt like we were in a relationship without really saying it.


That's when the problem started. I felt like I was being strung along and that I was more emotionally involved than he was so I started to pull back. I wasn't as available (one of his favorite things about me) and I didn't give him as much of my attention (he openly craves attention at times when he is feeling lonely.) After a few weeks while he was getting drunk with is friend he messaged me that me missed me (the second time but always in his constant joking manner, such a jokester) and that in the beginning it felt like we were in a non-committed relationship (so its not all in my head) and now it felt like we were two ships drifting apart.


Since he was joking I laughed it off and agreed, also hinted that I wondered why that it is. I dropped it after that since he didn't pursue questioning me (figured he wasn't ready to talk about it). The reason for me however is obvious. I don't want to be in a non-committed relationship with a man who is so closely tied to my family.


Problem? Well he is coming to my country in two weeks for a conference, but wants to visit and stay over at my place for a day (this will be the first time for us /AND/ the first time we'd be alone together.) We plan on cracking open a bottle of wine (we're both wine lovers) and commented about how nice it would be to rent a boat there too. Looking back at it now it sounds rather...romantic doesn't it? Gah.


Here's the thing, I have a feeling I won't know for sure how he feels until he puts the moves on me in two weeks. Its been so long since I've had a proper make out session however that a part of me wants to let him for a while before I put the brakes and insist that its either commitment or nothing, and since I firmly believe he is a commitment phobe this means we stop.


...Is it bad for me to wait until after the make out session? I mean, I will be sorta using him while knowing that it won't last and that I'd put an end to it on the last day...There is no guarantee just how far I'd go either (but definitely no intercourse). I just want to know how good of a kisser he is and how compatible we might be. I know mentally and emotionally we'd need a lot of work to get along relationship-wise anyways (not because we argue a lot but because communication is sometimes stunted rather than open) so...I'm not sure what else I'm getting out of it except for relieving some of my general frustrations.


I mean since I believe he is a commitment phobe its not like I am using him any more than he intends to use me, right?

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Do you think it's fair to label him a commitment-phobe? Long distance relationships(or pseudo ones) aren't for everyone. While it works for some, they're certainly hard to maintain, and well, you didn't really HAVE one(officially, that is).


Onto the making out - If you fully intend to drop him like a hot potato after you check out his kissing skills, then you are being deceptive. Maybe he IS down for some fun, too - But GIVE the man a chance to know what he's getting into(or not). The whole "since I think he's a phobe, it's just mutual using, right?" line is just a way to justify it to yourself.


Don't do that. Just be upfront. Nothing wrong with your physical needs, but he's got to be on the same page. Assumptions will get you nowhere.

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If he lives far away and there's no big chance you will move to his area or him to yours, then why fool around with this (other than as friends)? Look for a local guy who's available all the time rather than getting attached to someone you basically can't see but very rarely. And since he's 'family' in a way, better not to lead him on or he'll be really angry and tell everyone about it too.

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You were already getting emotionally involved by the contact with him...I suspect making out with him will get you even more emotionally involved. Rather than making out with him why not have a frank discussion with him about dating and a relationship. If he says no then you don't have to waste your time checking out his make out skills because it won't go anywhere anyway.

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Now you need to ask yourself, what do you want from him? I think you want to see if what's missing is a physical connection. You think if he only sees what I look like in person, how great a person I am, how sexy I can be, how much fun he can have with me, he'll change his mind and want to have an emotional connection. You want a relationship with this person--even when you know you two have different ideas and values about relationships and attraction, you're not really compatible and he is not careful with your feelings.


Of course you're assuming that he's a man of his word, and will keep that play date that you're planning. Don't get your hopes up, have a Plan B to go out with folks that you like. Do that to preserve your own feelings. Playing with fire? Only if you don't care about getting burned. My theory is if I'm going to spend time with a man, alone, up close and personal, I am open to everything he has to offer, including sex. Otherwise, go out to a coffee shop, a wine bar, or some place public where you'll get another chance to evaluate whether you want to spend intimate time with him. Take it slow and you'll know which way to go....

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Oh he is a man of his word. I know he is coming for sure (this plan was set a long time ago and he is the one who tends to bring it up. He has to come over for a conference and meeting me coincided wonderfully.) If he doesn't I would be disappointed (cause hey, friends coming over is always a plus) but I don't think I would be crushed - I think since I am no longer in the 'infatuation' stage I feel like I can pull back a lot easier now. I always felt I was more rational than he was (while he is the type who flings himself wherever his emotions take him) so I feel a lot more 'in control' than before, especially now that I have focused my main attentions and fantasies onto another man.


We have met physically before but we never hung out alone (I was only home for Christmas vacation, which means family time and limited friends time.)


My reasons for believing him to be a relationship-phobe?

-He told me about girls he was interested in and asked for my advice - when it didn't work out and I nudged him to meet other girls he was staunch about not wanting to be in a relationship.

-I made a comment after that incident that he's still young and wants to play around, he perked right up and agreed heartily.

-He kept joking that it'd be bad luck if we got together (two sisters marrying two brothers thing).

-He commented that our friendship was like a relationship with no commitment (and he mourned that.)

-He told me once when he was drunk and we're discussing possible futures that after 20 years of marriage he is either going to leave his wife or leave his job (he planned out his midlife crises already apparently...)

-He has had one long term relationship (for a year, and in the beginning he compared me to her a lot) but been in flings since then.

-He is younger than me and still in what I believe is the 'sowing his wild oats' stage.


I am going to end up in the same country as his by the end of the year and...I guess it does seem like I am angling for something and it is kinda shady reading back.


I just have a feeling that he doesn't want a commitment but wants a back-up girl. I don't like being a back-up girl. Basically I think I want to see if there is a physical spark between us (since so much of our relationship developed long distance) and if its there that's when I put my foot down - either commit or we stop this intense friendship where I feel like he is distracting me from future possibilities.


I'm just willing to bet money that he'd high-tail it out of there. Maybe I don't give him enough credit, maybe /I'm/ the one so scared of how it might impact the family that I'm projecting my own phobia onto him-...whoa...I think I may need to consider this part a bit more.

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>>I don't like being a back-up girl.


Just tell them that... you don't want to be a back-up or part-time GF, so either he agrees to have a real relationship or you ramp back to just being friends.


But if you think there is only a really small chance of it turning into a real relationship i would pass on it since it could be awkward since he is a relation to the family.

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I don't think he has a phobia of commitment -that's fairly unusual. From his comments, assuming he is being honest with you, it simply sounds like he doesn't desire to be in a committed relationship -nothing to do with fear. Maybe this is not a "sowing wild oats stage" -maybe it's just the way he is and having a committed romantic relationship is not important to him, or not important enough to give up what is important to him. My guess is if he meets someone who knocks his socks off, his priorities will shift but since he's not in the mindset of seeking an LTR it will take that level of intensity to change his mindset. I would interpret his comments to mean that he's already decided that you're not the one who's going to knock his socks off but he would enjoy making out with you and hanging out with you. Don't take that personally but also resist the urge to throw around "phobia" terms because you need to accept when someone prefers to be unattached even to someone obviously special like you, without labeling it as an anomaly.

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My apologies, I didn't mean to make it sound like an anomaly. I meant more exactly what you wrote Batya33, that he isn't ready and I am not the one who would change his mind any time soon. I realized this the day he told me liked another girl I think, which was why I pulled away (although the situation that surrounds the girl is rather odd.)


I just wonder why he would pursue if he knows that I am by definition a 'good girl' (I don't sleep with someone unless I am engaged, etc.) Nor does he know how far I intend to go or have gone (just that I had boyfriends before but he knows I am a virgin). Is the idea of one /possible/ make-out session in six months enough to have him calling me or asking for webcam conversations 3-4 times a week? And remains on for hours on end at times, especially when with his friends or travelling alone? He keeps making jokes about how everyone expects us to be together (his friend dedicated a love song to us one day while they were drunk) and then jokes that my sister would kill him if he tried anything.


Its this back and forth situation - so much of it is influenced by outside forces that it makes me doubt myself /so much/ and it makes me doubt my readings of him too. He joked to my sister once about getting with me and she basically gave him the 'don't you dare' deal. He likes to bring this up randomly, even when there is no prior conversation going on. It doesn't help that he back pedals, shifts from one view to another, mumbles something concerning us being together then refuses to divulge further, and so on and so forth. And it doesn't help that /I/ have been going back and forth either, have laughed or taken offense during awkward moments where he professed something sincere, and so on and so forth.


I think a part of me is hoping that when he arrives it might clear things up. If he makes a move I know he is interested. I then stop it and lay down the ultimatum, by his reaction I will know if he is being sincere or just playing around. I won't initiate, even though he has told me twice before that he never initiates it with a woman that is the one barrier I won't break unless I know for certain the outcome.

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If he's talking about liking another girl, then most likely he is just flirting around... maybe he's a big flirt who flirts with everyone and doesn't take anyone seriously at this point. Many players and flirts will say all kinds of things they don't mean, and you have to call their bluffs on it.

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You mentioned his family is somehow joined to yours. Is a sibling of his married into your family? What? either way, if something goes south, or even if something even happened, would it be the talk of the family or have repurcussions in any way? Or even not with them, could you not really get away from him really (you would always be connected). Your sister has implied that it would be a problem. Anyways, I would not invite him over for the night. I would meet him in a public place and take him to see the sites of your town. Act like its a first meeting of a business contact. If things go from there, they go from there, but if he likes another girl, is in another country, and is practically family, I would use extreme caution here. ALso, if he switches his views with a snap of a finger, he is not someone I would want to date. Seriously, don't look at this as a tryst. Treat him like a family member or an aquaintance and protect your heart.

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abitbroken, yea, my sibling is married to his and we're both very close to our respective siblings. Also one of his closest friends is marrying my cousin and another brother of his is best friends with my brother.


I think its the 'if something goes south' that's bothering everyone: my sister, him and myself. This would have been a lot simpler and more obvious if our families weren't so intimately involved (aside from marriage, his siblings are incredibly close to mine /and/ my extended family.) So we have friends, family members and anyone who knows our story basically either pushing us to be together (dedicating love songs to us, bringing up how awesome it would be if it happens, etc etc) or they keep insisting that its bad and we shouldn't (bad luck for siblings to marry another pair of siblings, family interference if things go south, etc etc.)


It also doesn't help that /he/ jokes about us getting married too and NOT just to me! Although for a while he shifted his jokes to say that we shouldn't get married due to our circumstances (but this one only to me.) He acts like he is interested whenever I mention something I like (for my birthday or valentine or whatever) looking as if he is jokingly taking mental notes. Admittedly if he isn't serious then this part of his behavior is what bothers me the most since it can and may scare away future prospects (why hit on her when he acts so obviously interested?)


This is what I mean by changing his views - he flirts heavily (especially when drunk but sometimes sober too) and sometimes reciprocates when I do too or sometimes snaps away from it/takes it back. Admittedly however I have done the same, especially when I feel like I'm not sure if he is pulling my leg or not.


Is he a big flirt? I haven't seen him much with other girls but I know one of his brothers is (and he points it out when his brother is trying to make his girlfriend jealous) I also suspect he is a fan of 'games', especially when it comes to manipulating the direction of the conversation - I catch him when he does it though since I am a bit more observant than the girls he is used to. He does flirt (not sure how big as he doesn't tell me much about other girls except for very specific instances) but he is a horrible cheesy flirt who does it in an almost mockingly poetic fashion and in such a way that no girl can really take it seriously. I told him its one of the reasons he lucks out.


His off-the-cuff mumblings are sometimes fascinating but I am never sure if I heard him correctly so I end up dismissing most of them. Finally one time he did it while drunk while his friend was over, so when he refused to repeat what he just said his friend grabbed the phone and told me. Basically he was asking if he could introduce me as his girlfriend to one of his friends that I wanted to meet...y'know, to make it easier to explain who I am. They were drunk so I didn't he was serious but...how am I supposed to take that? Especially when he told me that he believes that drunk ramblings are exaggerated truths.

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