Friday, June 3, 2011

A Man's View on Dating and LTR

So far, I’ve mainly covered dating from a woman’s point of view. Today, I’ve had a courageous and frank male volunteer I’ll call Malcom who is going to give his take on dating. Let me preface this by observing that Malcom is an attractive professional man in his mid-forties.

Malcom’s Take…
Even though women may not believe it there are plenty of men looking for a lifetime companion. I know I am not the only one. The trouble is meeting professional, mentally stable women with grown or almost grown children in roughly my age bracket. Random chance where I bumped into my future mate in line at the post office hasn’t happened yet. To facilitate my search for a lifetime companion I went online. In fact, I visited multiple dating sites which cost me plenty.

The very fact I would be judged on a photo and a profile was intimidating. Women would decide on a few words and a somewhat unflattering photo if they wanted to meet me. It would probably take the average woman five seconds to decide if I was possible dating material. It would take a woman longer to decide between a pair of shoes. I swallowed my pride and asked a long time female co-worker for her advice in helping to draft my initial profile. My friend’s rendition of my profile sounded like it was written by a female. I trimmed the verbose profile until it sounded like a man taking out words like wonderful and beautiful.

As a result of being on multiple sites I usually received two matches a day. Often the sites sent me women that were too far away or simply out of my age bracket. The sites often ignored age and distance parameters just to match me. This resulted in one possible match per week that I would consider pursuing. Even though I sent out possible inquiries, I usually heard from only one woman a month. Because I didn’t hear from the women I often felt rejected. Even a note from a possible prospect saying, “thanks, but no thanks,” would have been better than silence. The best I ever did was to get one woman per month respond to my initial dating questions.

Once I started a conversation with a woman, she often dropped all communication within a week without explanation. This up and down ride of hopefulness and rejection caused me to disable my profile several times. Since random chance wasn’t working I went back and re-established my profile in another flurry of hope of meeting “the one.” In my next attempt, I managed to keep a prolonged email relationship with a woman. I usually gave the woman my number with an invitation to call by the third email. If I made it to the phone call then I could usually make it to the first date.

To prepare for my first date, I read Internet advice which suggested a coffee date to avoid wasting money. This didn’t appeal to my romantic nature and seemed a bit cold, so I opted for a regular sit-down type dinner. I worked very hard to prepare myself for the date including studying my date’s profile and thinking of conversational topics. Most of my dates were interesting, a few bizarre, and I enjoyed them for the most part. Unfortunately, there was no chemistry on the majority of my dates. A few let me know on the first date that there was no chemistry. While another few let me know they wanted to continue to see me, but I didn’t feel the same way about them. Then there were the others who made it to the second date by mutual agreement.

The second date involved more profile research and more conversation. This was the time I try to find out more about family and personal likes and dislikes. By this time, I had been conversing back and forth by email, text and phone. Sometimes the weirdness shows itself by this time. Good example of this was one woman stated she had one high school age child on her profile and on the first date. By the second date she confessed to having four children that she failed to put on her profile. Her lack of honesty made me question everything else she had told me.

If I successfully made it past the second date, I had to think very hard how I wanted to proceed since the third date from a man’s point of view means he’s interested in pursuing a relationship. Sometimes I didn’t make it to the third date because it didn’t feel right. I followed it up with polite letter explaining that I had a good time, but didn’t feel like we would be a good match. The usual response was a hate filled email rant. This hurt because I worked hard to be a good date and a gentleman. Two dates does not a relationship make.

The main reason a guy doesn’t show extreme interest on the first or second date because it makes him appear needy and desperate. This type of behavior normally turns off the type of confident woman I was hoping to attract. By the third date, the guy realizes he can be considered possible boyfriend material if his date is interested in dating exclusively. Most of the advice I’d read advised dating for three months before dating exclusively, but then again what do I know.

While I did start several relationships, they fell apart for various reasons, someone in the past, some addictions and some very lame excuses such as going to find herself. (Are you kidding me, you’re in your late forties, where have you been?) I would have respected them more if they told me the truth.

Women often think men have it easy when it comes to dating. Most men have good intentions and do want to find that special someone and make her happy. Men have the same fears as women including their appearance, being rejected, and being alone. Men do want a happily ever after ending.

I have to admit, however, that my system did finally work. Though I had many disappointments along the way, I finally found a woman on-line who does measure up to my high standards. A woman who I treasure and can’t wait to be with at the end of the day. We had some bumps at the beginning I will admit but what good relationship doesn’t start out rocky and unsure? I’m glad I hung in there or I would have missed out on the most wonderful connection a man could ever have with a woman.

It makes getting up in the morning a little easier to handle when you have a future to look forward to with a special someone. Is there still work to do? Of course! Any good relationship involves constant care and maintenance. And yes, in case you were wondering, my significant Sweetie is the author of this blog you’ve been perusing.

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