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Is this worth pursuing?

(223 Posts)
maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 00:18:20

I'm sorry - this is long. I'll try to be succinct. I just need some perspective.

A few months ago I started seeing someone having just ended a long term relationship. We both agreed it was casual at the beginning, meeting just for sex. I would go to his place (I was staying on a friends sofa bed at the time) and go home that night. He didn't want a relationship and neither did I. That was fine, for a while. I started to have some feelings but I kept them in check as I didn't want to get too close.

Things started to change a little, in that I started staying overnight at his invitation and we would spend time talking about our lives rather than just having sex.

Around the time I moved into my own place I decided to take a risk and ask him on a real date. He said he was comfortable with that but jokingly said he might freak out if I asked him to move in or something. I said he didn't need to worry about that at this point (for goodness sake!). We were both nervous on the date but it was lovely.

A few dates and weeks later he turned up at my place late one night telling me how much he liked being with me and how he hadn't slept with anyone else since we met. I didn't really respond much because he was a bit drunk at the time and I was a bit caught off guard and didn't know how to take it. However we kept seeing each other, having a really good time and started alternating staying at his place and mine, going on proper dates and not always having sex, just being quietly comfortable in each others company. We didn't talk about that night again.

I've met his brother who he lives with, and he's met my best friends who I live with. We have socialised with both. We haven't met any other of our groups of friends. He has told his work mates about me and I have told mine about him (our companies are linked). He's agreed to come to a work function with me, no hesitation.

We now spend practically every weekend together, it's grown to three nights a week if we are both in town. He takes me to nice places and seems proud to be seen with me. I feel the same way.

I started to feel I needed to know if we were heading somewhere. Unfortunately I decided to raise this at 4am when we had both been out drinking. I thought I asked him if he saw me as a potential girlfriend when or if that time came, he thought I was asking if he saw me as his girlfriend right now. He said no. He said he is enjoying what we have and how we are getting to know each other now and he wants to see where things go. He got quite upset, talking about how when he moves in with someone it'll be the person he wants to marry. I asked who had even mentioned moving in? He really jumped the gun but as I say, we had been drinking. Next morning we talked a little more. I cleared up the misunderstanding about my question the night before but made it clear I don't want to get hurt again, waiting around for something that might never happen (as in my last relationship). He said he understood but he wants to take things slow, by which I took to mean he felt I was rushing him. He had to leave for work then, he was concerned I was still a bit upset, gave me a hug, kissed me several times and left.

We are affectionate in public and he holds my hand and is a gentleman in general. He has passed the waitress test with flying colours and is generous and kind to all. He has a great relationship with his family. However, he has told me how he has ended relationships in the past because he realised when they started talking about moving in together that he didn't want to marry them, so he called them off. He did live with one partner and from what I gather it ended badly, which may be where his fear of commitment stems from, I don't know.

So my question is, dear mumsnetters, am I wasting my time or should I give him some time to see if it goes anywhere? I don't want to be a mug but I don't want to let something potentially good slip through my fingers.

Apologies for the epic length of this post!


Val007 Mon 29-Jul-13 14:27:47

OP, I have absolutely no intetion to hurt you. I am only saying this because I have been there, done that and learnt my lesson. Honestly, this is how a lot of men think and until we women realise this, feminism or not, we shall always ask ourselves 'why', why was he with me for 10 years and then he married the girl he only met 3 months ago?

scrazy Mon 29-Jul-13 14:28:27

I kind of agree with Val, men who have choices, and I'm assuming this one does, tend to put women in two categories, one who are worth going the extra mile for and ones who aren't.

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:30:16

And he just hasn't met one of the ones worth going the extra mile for in his 38 years do you think?

BitOutOfPractice Mon 29-Jul-13 14:30:39

Hmmmmm...I'm not sure what to think.

TBH I can see his POV. Surely a relationship is already there and will develop natuarally as time progresses without being analysed and defined

Equally I can see your POV too. You want to know where you stand. I think a lot of women feel like this

Earlier this year I was on a dating site and it used to drive me mad that lots of men wanted a "relationship" after 2 dates! I wanted to go out, have fun, see how it went, get to know each other... Eventually I met a man who was confident enough to see that's how I felt and feel the same as well. Lo and behold, 3 months later, we've just "found ourselves"in a relationship. It just happened, evolved.

I think that's what's happening with you two, just that you're earlier to put that label on it.

I wish you lots of luck. You sound lovely. So does he. I hope you can find the right path for both of you

BitOutOfPractice Mon 29-Jul-13 14:32:33

Sorry Val but I think that's a load of crap. Not everyone is so hung up on sex as to judge a persons worth on it. This isn't the 50s

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:33:38

By the way, he doesn't have that many choices, he ain't no God (and I ain't no Goddess either!) and I believe him when he said he hadn't and didn't want to sleep with anyone but me. Maybe I'm confusing that with feelings.

scrazy Mon 29-Jul-13 14:34:00

Yes, he did, the one who he lived with or had a ltr that ended badly. He will be waiting to meet someone like her again, but having his fun in the meantime, without committing.

The one I'm stuck in this situation with is much older than 38. I'm not meaning to sound cruel as I've explained, I feel your pain.

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:35:41

Thank you BitOut. You sould lovely too and I'm grateful for everyone's advice.

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:37:05

Scrazy its fine, I did ask for advice smile

Val007 Mon 29-Jul-13 14:37:41

Some men are, many more than are admitting to us women anyway. And OP has found one of them. Then there is the other part of the puzzle - men marry when they are ready. I guess it is a combination of those two in OP's situation. Better look for a man who is ready and pining for a seriuos relationship now, not some time in the future, and approach him in a respectable manner by letting him court her as a gentleman should a lady. Not saying it should take ages, but going through the motions sets the tone for the relationship from then on.

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:39:52

So should I cut my losses now Val? You see no hope at all in this?

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:40:53

He has been bloody courting me, thats the most annoying thing! I finally felt just a little bit special.

BitOutOfPractice Mon 29-Jul-13 14:42:31

Crikey Val you'll be telling us to read The Rules next!!

Look, you're either on the same page or you're not. Nothing to do with ladies and gentlemen fgs.

OP It sounds to me like you are on the same page, just that he's taking a little longer to read to the bottomof it than you!

maryclarey Mon 29-Jul-13 14:44:03

I hope you are right BitOut smile

BitOutOfPractice Mon 29-Jul-13 14:45:45

I'm always right crap wink

I could write a bloody book about the adventures I've had this year with men - not all sexual Val before you decide I'm not a "lady"!

Val007 Mon 29-Jul-13 14:49:42

OP, I really feel for you, as I have been through similar. All I know now is that if a man is serious about it, he will not waste a second in showing you this, telling you this, cementing your relationship. He will try to make sure you feel and know you are unavailable to any other man in this world, because you are his. From what you have described... he hasn't even put a label on you (girlfriend), he hasn't marked his territory. Not typical for a man, who is serious about your future together....

Honestly, if you want to know if you stand a chance, stop contact and put a price on yourself - the more expensive, the better. Tell him you want a serious relationship and you need to clear the spot for a serious guy, not a timewaster like him. See how he reacts. If he pays your price - good! If not... then you know. (I believe a poster before me suggested the same). There will be no other way if knowing for sure, especially as he tells you in your face the opposite of what you want to hear. It doesn't make sense, does it?

cahemo Mon 29-Jul-13 14:50:32

Hi, well as someone who is going through hell in a marriage at the moment, feel free to take my words with a pinch of salt, but let me say them anyway.

You're having a good time together, he is kind to you and you back to him, you enjoy seeing each other, are not embroiled in any financial/emotional messes.

Why not just enjoy that? As long as you're being honest and treating each other with respect and nobody's being abused, I don't see the harm.

Just have a good time; if it's meant to be forever it will be: don't push it. Maybe he's been hurt and doesn't want to rush into things. Give the gay a break (meant in a nice way).

Missbopeep Mon 29-Jul-13 14:53:46

How old are you both? Do you have time to spare re, kids etc if you want any?

That makes a difference imo.

Talking from personal experience- my DH had 3 long term relationships before he met me- partly lived with one woman while at uni. He ended all those relationships because he wasn't ready to settle down- though now he says it was partly ( with hindsight) that they weren't 'the one'.

We dated for 3 years before he asked me to marry him. I was fully aware of his past relationships and all around us, other couples who were our mutual friends were pairing off and committing.

It was a LDR so there was no simple solution to move in together as one or other of us would have had to give up our job and friends etc on a rather paper-thin sense of commitment.

So what did I do? I told him I was sick of waiting for him to make up whether we were going forward, and started dating other men and not seeing him so much.

Within 3 months he was on the proverbial bended knee. That's now almost 30 years ago.

Maybe you can take something from this and apply it to yourself?

BitOutOfPractice Mon 29-Jul-13 14:54:06

Val. Seriously. This isn't a game to ensnare a husband.

He isn't a dog, marking his territory.

Not all men are the same (just like all women are)

And, IME, ultimatums never end well - for either side

Val007 Mon 29-Jul-13 14:54:37


I am just sharing what I have concluded from my personal experience (with the help of a few books, of course). But hey, they were absolutely right for me. I appreciate there may be other scenarios, but... if OP stood a chance, she would not be here asking. He would not be there avoiding. They simply started off on the wrong foot. And sometimes, lots of times, it is irreversible. The man himself talks openly about women, marriage and so on. Not to OP, though. She deserves a man who will grab her and not let her go or have doubts. He will show her that he will give her anything she wants. Because he is her man.

cahemo Mon 29-Jul-13 14:57:25

See I don't get this 'mark his territory stuff'-if a guy does that too quickly, then there's a chance he may be abusive.

He doesn't seem to see you as a possession to be controlled.

And so what if it doesn't lead anywhere long-term? Not every relationship is meant to go the distance- doesn't make them any less enjoyable or fulfilling.

BitOutOfPractice Mon 29-Jul-13 14:57:46

My eyes just nearly rolledout of my head then Val grin

Val007 Mon 29-Jul-13 15:00:50

Women take feminsm and freedom to extremes and men definitely profit from that! Free sex and no responsibility, wow! She needs this ultimatum for herself, because she wants a family and children in the near future, not some wanker who is showing her a good time, but will tell her adios when he is ready to settle with a 'virgin' and it may be too late for OP to have kids by then. We are women, we should respect ourselves, otherwise men will not. Simple as that and even if we lived in 3013, it will be still the same - men think 'the mother of my children and my wife should be a dignified woman', they think 'I don't want to share my wife'. Anyway, my words may sound extreme, but I urge you to consider the essence of them. Do not take them so literally.

Walkacrossthesand Mon 29-Jul-13 15:01:04

I've been in a similar situation, I adopted the cahemo approach of enjoying it for what it was, but withdrew after 3 years (non cohabiting) when I felt I was investing in a future which wasn't on offer. I find it bizarre, these men who can talk in the abstract of a future with commitment and children, while in a relationship that they won't commit to. How does he see your involvement ending, I wonder, and what will the 'marriage' relationship look like for him? IME, men who want a woman but are afraid of commitment, will step up to the plate when faced with losing the woman - but you have to be prepared to let him go if he doesn't.

cahemo Mon 29-Jul-13 15:03:28

And how exactly is he not respecting her? He is honest, kind and they enjoy each other's company.

Is he abusing her? No. Is he sleeping with other women? Apparently not.

Honest to goodness, if a man came on here saying that his girlfriend wouldn't commit this instant we'd be accusing him of being a control freak.

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