Recently, a friend set me up with someone.
The guy called that night.
He asked me odd questions like, how often do I play tennis, whether I read in bed before falling asleep, etc.
Finally, he said he’d meet me at a restaurant the next night.
When I arrived, he’d already ordered for both of us.
I noticed a travel-size toothbrush tucked in his shirt pocket. When I commented, he said he wanted to be prepared for a sleepover.
I said that nothing had indicated that possibility. He said, “You knew I tested whether we’d be compatible, and you gave the right answers, so why waste time?”
I was so upset that I walked out.
I called my friend for an explanation, and was told, “he’s a bit quirky but very bright.”
I felt I should’ve been given a lot more information about this man beforehand.
Quirky? Maybe he’s just arrogant or, maybe he has a personality disorder accompanied by limited social skills.
Your friend should’ve explained in what way this guy was “unusual” so you could decide if you were still interested in meeting him, or at least been more understanding of the date.
Next time, communicate with a set-up, or online date longer till you want to meet. Or not.
I’m 20. When I was 16, I was into partying but met someone who was 17 who fell in love with me.
He moved in with me but I kicked him out for a year, during which I got pregnant. I ran into him at seven months pregnant, and he still loved me.
I was vulnerable, responsible for taking care of my child. He said he’d take care of us.
He became verbally and physically abusive but always begged me not to leave him.
My son was born when we were 18 and 19. When my baby cried, he’d yell at him, spanking him harder than he should.
After abuse, disrespect, and cheating, I left him and moved away.
Then I missed him and finally unblocked his contact last November. He still loves me.
I met a new guy here who says I’m the one for him. His past 11-year relationship just didn’t work.
I work in oil fields so I get hit on regularly but this one’s special, sweet, mature, and respectful, has one kid, and a great job.
My “boyfriend” is looking to do jail time or probation; he’s very smart and sweet but has anger problems. He has nobody but me.
Am I stuck with him or do I need to give someone else a first chance?
Stuck in Between
Neither man is right for you, because they need you more than you need them.
Though you got pregnant very young, without any support, you accepted the responsibility. You’re now a working mother who had to learn when to save yourself and your child from damaging abuse.
You’d be dangerously irresponsible to your son and yourself to risk it again, since your boyfriend’s all talk but no substance.
His “love” is neediness, and he’ll likely turn on you again since he knows he fails you both.
The “new” guy is also looking for a place to land after his breakup. He doesn’t know you well, hasn’t earned your trust.
Maybe in time he’ll prove a decent guy but you can’t afford another mistake.
Your son and you need your strength, not reliance on others who take more than they give. Build confidence to manage on your own, until and if you meet a true partner.
FEEDBACK Regarding the boyfriend who’s totally "spontaneous" and cancels dates, weekend plans, and vacations with her (December 31):
Reader – “It's possible that sometimes his family commitments get in the way.
“BUT it’s more likely he’s ATTACHED to someone else who’s jerking his chain.
“I’ve dated a couple of guys who constantly made plans, then cancelled, always using some questionable excuse.
“In each case, the man turned out to be MARRIED (or living with another woman) and had lied to me about being single.
“Once I figured this out, I dumped these guys. This woman should dig deeper to find out if her boyfriend is actually married.”
Ellie – Given your own experiences, it’s understandable that you suspect this writer’s boyfriend of being attached.
You raise the point that anyone dating someone new should be alert to unusual behaviour patterns such as repeated cancellations. And should ask probing questions about his/her “single” status.
Tip of the day:
A set-up goes better with some communication ahead, so surprises aren’t overwhelming.