"Ask Dr. Tracy"

5/12/96 Advice Column

Time Waster,
Too Many Friends?,
The Big Rush

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I went out with this guy for a year and after that we decided to see other people. Well that was three years ago, and he doesn't want to consider us going out but he gets really jealous when I talk to anybody else. I love him and he says he loves me. When I try to explain to him that were not seeing each other he gives me a guilt trip about how he thought that I loved him. Well now it is really difficult I don't know what to do because I am getting to where I would like a permanent relationship. I don't think it is fair for me to wait around for him to decide to be with me. I don't see being with anybody else because I love him. Now it is really hard because he went away to school in Florida and I am in Missouri. Do you think I am wasting my time? Do you feel it is a dead relationship?

Dear Time Waster,

Anytime you allow a man to manipulate you this way, you're wasting more than your time; you're wasting your self-esteem and possibly your future. Why would you let this guy keep you on a string? For three years? He doesn't want you but he doesn't want anyone else to have you. He's taking advantage of you.

Tell him once and for all that you're going to date other guys. Then do it and no matter what he says, don't feel guilty. Feeling guilty allows him to control you with his jealousy and will undermine your resolve. I'm sure you can find someone who you can actually date and see. Being in love with someone who doesn't even consider you "going out" is a big waste of your life.

When you really start going out with other guys, your jealous ex will probably want you back. By then of course, you may have found someone better. If not, don't take him back on the old terms. Let him know he has to make a permanent commitment or he can't come back. Right now you have put yourself in a powerless position in this relationship. You can only turn it around by standing up for yourself.

In the long run, a man loses respect for a woman who can be so easily controlled. I suggest you work on why you let this happen to yourself. Pick up one of Nathaniel Brandon's books on self-esteem right away, and read "Why People Love" in my Library to understand how counter-productive it is to let someone manipulate you, even if you think you love him.

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I have a problem that is actually a nice problem to have -- it seems that every woman I meet, be it online, through friends or on my own -- ends up being my friend.

Now, I love friends. But I am also interested in something more. I'm a 29-year-old guy, decent-looking, smart, funny, caring. But it seems that these qualities don't generate many sparks (or maybe even suppress them). Just because I'm a nice, thoughtful man doesn't mean I don't want passion and sex and all that great stuff.

My biggest fear is that this will be my lot in life -- many friends who are girls, no girlfriends. And yet, I hear often that women are looking for a man who has the same kind of qualities I do. Question is, are they looking for love, or just companionship?

Dear Too Many Friends,

They're looking for both. You must have friendship, companionship and love to have a good relationship.

If you find it easy to make friends with women, you're better off than most guys, who really need the advice in "How to Attract A Woman".

In your case, it's not as big a step as you think for one of your women friends to become a lover. I suggest you use one of the techniques I teach in my book, Manpower. It utilizes everyone's natural tendency to "project." You can get a woman to transfer and project her loving feelings for another man by letting her tell you about her lovers.

Ask her, "What made you fall in love with him? When did you first feel love? What made it happen? Was it something he did? A way he looked? Something he said?" If you and the woman are good friends, she'll tell you, and while she's telling you, she'll be remembering the loving feelings she felt and some of them will be transferred to you since you're there.

You'll also get a lot of insight into what pushes her hot buttons. You'll find out right away if you're her type and if you are willing to do what makes her feel loved.

Don't let being a good friend keep you from thinking romance. It's not an "either/or" proposition.

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I met a man and we seemed to hit it off. So we went out on a date. It was the best first date I ever had! That night, he invited me to church and breakfast with his parents the next morning. Everything went great. In fact, I got along with his parents really well. For the next several weeks we saw each other on the weekends (he lived an hour away from me, but his parents live in the same town as I) and everything was going great. He invited me to a birthday party for his cousin and uncle where I met all his relatives and he introduced me as his girlfriend. We had never discussed dating exclusively or anything, but I was thrilled none the less because I really liked him.

Well, within a week he changed completely. Several times he said he would call and didn't. He started lying to me (little lies, but lies). At about the same time he got a job offer in a city about 5 hours away. I had been nothing but supportive in this opportunity because I knew how much he wanted this job. Well, when he got the offer he never even told me. I found out from a distant friend that doesn't even know him that well. Next I had to go out of town and he offered to pick me up at the airport when I returned. He did and everything was back the way it use to be. He invited me to his parents on his last night before the move and said he'd call. Well, you guessed it, he never even called to say goodbye that night. I ran into his mother in town and she asked if I had heard from him; he had told her he needed to call. Well, I never heard from him. I have even heard from a mutual friend that he has been in town the past two weekends. Obviously, he doesn't want to continue the relationship and I am okay with that. Afterall, what is the point of wanting to be with someone who doesn't want to be with you? I know I deserve better. What I wonder is why did he change so much in the way he acted towards me in just a week?

Dear Rushed,

Through years of hard experience dating, I learned one important lesson: ALWAYS BE SUSPICIOUS OF MEN WHO GIVE YOU THE BIG RUSH. In "Men to Avoid, Part 2", I describe "The Fairy Godfather" who loves you, loves you, loves you, and it's all too good to be real. This guy sounds like "The Fairy Godfather" on speed.

Nobody falls in love that fast, and if a guy says he loves you right away, wants to spend his life with you, introduces you as "his woman," look out. He's either trying his best seduction act to get you in bed, or he's in love with love. Either way, he's not in love with you, even though he goes through the motions.

Many of these guys have a very low self-esteem which requires constant reinforcing. The way they do that is to constantly see if a woman will fall in love with them. Once they accomplish the "getting her to love me" part, they're not interested anymore. The game is over. They've won, and they have to move on and play the game with a new target.

These relationships usually last no longer than 6 weeks. That's how long it takes for reality to set in.

He's probably got a new woman in his new town who he's also giving the rush to, complete with visits to his parents. His kind of superficial being in love doesn't hold up to any inconvenience, like being in another town. Also, little lies lead to bigger ones.

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(Featured art from cover of Letting Go, by Zev Wanderer and Tracy Cabot, published by "Bitan" Publishers, Tel-Aviv, Israel)
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