Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Is this weird, or AIBU?(43 Posts)
I met a guy on an OLD site just after Christmas. We emailed back and forward for a couple of weeks, then arranged to meet. A few days before we were due to meet, he got in touch and said he’d had a second date with someone that weekend and wanted to focus on pursuing things with her (let’s call her A).
I was disappointed, but glad he wasn’t trying to mess either of us around. So I replied and said thanks for being honest and that I hoped it would work out for them. I didn’t expect to hear from him again, but then got an email from him suggesting that we meet for a drink as friends as we seemed to have lots in common. I was a bit dubious, and asked him if that was ok with A. He said yes, he’d discussed it with her, and she was fine with it – so we went for a drink and it was lovely. Lots to talk about, very relaxed. There was no flirting, and we kissed on the cheek at the end of the night. I went home happy to have made a new connection / potential friend who seemed like a decent person.
About two weeks later, we met up for dinner – again, we had a lovely relaxed evening. Towards the end of the night he asked if I’d met up with anyone else from the OLD site. We talked about dating generally, and I asked how it was going with A. He talked about the end of his last relationship (in November) and said that he’d come to realise that he wasn’t ready for a full-on serious monogamous relationship and just wanted to date casually for a while. He’d discussed this with A but it was clear that they wanted different things, so they’d gone their separate ways.
We’ve met up a couple more times, the most recent being last night. In the last month he’s moved out of the flat he shared with his ex (she moved out in November), and he’s changed jobs. He’s said that the break up affected him more than he’d realised at the time, and that he just wanted to stay clear of dating / relationships in any form for a while, until he settles into the new flat and the new job.
From my point of view: he’s very attractive, we get on really well and have a good time together, and normally I’d be interested in him – BUT I understand that he’s clearly not over his ex, and 100% not open to anything long-term with someone new. So I’ve been arranging dates with other people, trying to open up my own social circle a bit more and generally getting on with life. I feel happy that we met and that we’re building a decent friendship, and I like spending time with him. I worked in a male-dominated field until 2011 and always had lots of male friends. I’ve lost touch with most of them and miss having male friends to hang out with. It was nice to do that again with this guy. This is the first time I’ve developed a friendship with someone this way – I’ve stayed friends with exes after a relationship ended, but I’ve never gone from meeting online to becoming friends and skipping the dating / relationship / sex part, if you see what I mean. It’s been a nice surprise to think that this could happen.
Anyway, we met up last night, went to see a film and then had a drink afterwards. In the pub, he mentioned that he’d been on a date the week before (let’s call her B), and ‘she clearly wants something monogamous and long-term, and I’m just not up for that, but I really hope we stay friends.’
On the way home I felt disappointed and a bit upset, and this morning I realised why. It feels rather like he’s ‘shopping around’ for new female friends via dating sites. A, B and I all wanted a monogamous relationship; with me and B he realised that he didn’t want monogamy / a relationship, he met up with us anyway, and now wants to see us as friends.
I thought he was a decent honest bloke, now I'm suspicious that he seems to be building up a list of women who he knows like him, maybe for when he is ready for a relationship. AIBU to think of him like this?
I appreciate that because I’m attracted to him, I’m biased. I hadn’t realised until last night that I wasn’t ok with being just friends, or how I’d feel when he told me he’d been dating other people.
Maybe it doesn’t matter what he’s doing / what his motivation is, and I should just cut contact with someone I’m attracted to who clearly doesn’t feel the same way about me. I’m guess I'm disappointed at the idea of losing what I thought was a new friend.
PS - apologies for length, was trying to give as much info about me as possible / not to drip feed.
PPS - regular poster, have NC for this.
Get some self respect and stop putting yourself through this.
You're doing the 'pick me' dance and you're not even with him!
Agree with pp.
Stop wasting headspace on this man.
You could be missing out on someone great in the meantime!
I think he's being completely honest. We all say we want honesty so how can it be wrong. If you enjoy spending time with him, carry on but be sure to put literally no eggs in that particular basket and pursue other connections as well. Who knows what the future holds.
'You could be missing out on someone great in the meantime' - ha, I doubt it. I've been single for nearly seven years - I very rarely meet anyone I'm interested in!
But thanks for the replies.
I don't think he's doing anything wrong and is being as honest with everyone as possible. You clearly aren't happy with the situation, which is fine, but you should probably break contact and move on now before you get hurt and frustrated. Don't wait around for him to decide he wants a relationship in the hope he picks you because he probably won't.
Thanks Les. I think you're right - I need to take back my eggs!
Does the OLD you use allow you to say what sort of relationship you're looking for? If so, I think this man needs to avoid people who are seeking monogamy. You don't want the same thing, so walk away - there's no point hanging around on his 'reserve' list.
It's ok for you to meet men as friends but not him? Seems a bit one-sided. He appears to have been very honest with everyone, including you, its you that has been less than honest if anything.
Looks like you thought you wanted to be friends, but actually you'd rather have a relationship with him. He's not looking for that. Neither of you is wrong here, but why are you now making it his problem, that he must be up to something nefarious when it is you that has changed your mind?
I don't think you're being very fair,
doubt it. I've been single for nearly seven years - I very rarely meet anyone I'm interested in
I understand - it's tough to find someone you're remotely interested in. There are so many tossers out there. But don't let that make you settle for less than you deserve. It's hard to stay strong.
OLD is a minefield. Not saying you shouldn't do it, but couldn't you also supplement that with more socialising, taking on a hobby (especially if it's a hobby you like that is also popular with men), holidays to places where there are more singles - that kind of thing?
Shake up your world
Oh and if you want to continue OLD - try a paid site. That can help to sift out the dross and time-wasters.
Asmoto - not on the site we met on. He's not on there anymore - I don't know where he met B.
Casey - I hadn't thought of it that way. Thanks for the wake-up call. Genuinely - it's helpful.
'Not saying you shouldn't do it, but couldn't you also supplement that with more socialising, taking on a hobby (especially if it's a hobby you like that is also popular with men), holidays to places where there are more singles - that kind of thing?' Oh believe me, I've tried! I've tried hobbies, classes, meetup, singles holidays... I thought that being single and making friends would be enough. Clearly I was wrong.
Flora - I've tried match.com and GS. Not one single interesting message.
Much more success on the free sites (OKC and POF), bizarrely.
I think he is being honest. I met my DP on a dating site, he messaged me to say that he didn't want to date anyone with children but he thought we had lots in common and would it be ok to meet as friends. We were good friends for 3 years before it naturally evolved into something else.
To be honest, I was no where near ready to date in that time as I was still mending a broken heart and I stayed single but he met someone and had a relationship. The time we spent as friends made what we have together now a very good strong relationship. We've been together less than a year but we know each other so well.
Sorry I did put a paragraph in there and it shifted!
He is shopping but he's being honest; but basically in a nutshell:
YOU WILL DO JUST NOW UNTIL HE MEETS A WOMAN HE ACTUALLY LIKES ENOUGH TO DATE PROPERLY
Personally I'd not settle for that and I'd tell him to do one.
Thanks Orlando. I'm glad things worked out for you x
I'd imagine he's hoping you'll offer FWB or just no-strings sex
It sounds to me like he likes you as a friend. You can't tell if there is any spark or sexual attraction for him or not. But he likes your company. Perhaps something will develop and perhaps not. But he's not ready so you can make a choice to wait and see or stop seeing him. However, if you do continue your friendship, be aware that he may only ever see you as a friend and eventually find a partner. Right now he sounds very confused and a bit lost. You could also deduce that as he's still looking he's not interested in you that way. Or maybe that he likes you too much to have a one night stand with you if that's what he's after.
This is all pure conjecture
and I'm starting to sound like a teen agony aunt
Well he sounds a bit of a drama lama imo - is there any need for all his deep musings over what he is and isn't 'ready' for? What's wrong with going out for a drink and just seeing how it goes.
He sounds a bit self obsessed - and I also suspect there's some BS going on. He clearly is wanting to date or he wouldn't be on a dating site? . So maybe until he finds someone who ticks all his boxes, he's trying to collect a few admirers to stroke his ego a bit?
I would drop him and concentrate on somebody who is looking for the same thing that you are.
Hmmm... I think it is a little off to shop for friends on a dating site (even though he has been honest and maybe thought he was ready for dating at first). I think he just isn't quite thinking about the other people in all this - the "friends" who originally hoped for a longterm relationship and now need to accept cultivating a friendship with someone they are attracted to and is potentially available. It just doesn't seem a stable basis for a friendship. If he did meet someone else, would she be expected to deal with a load of "friends"
When I was doing OLD, I could have accepted friendship from men (who I didn't see relationship potential with) and got a little boost from cosy dinners etc, knowing they were attracted to me. But I wouldn't have done that as it wouldn't be fair on them (and the guilt I'd feel and worry about the eventual fall out would outweigh any benefits!).
My boss ended up friends with some women he dated but I think it happened naturally rather than him saying he'd like to be friends from the start. He has kept all those friends despite now being in a relationship although they have shifted slightly and he has been careful to introduce his GF to them. I am friends with one guy who I dated for 6 weeks but again, it happened naturally.
And I also found the free sites far far better than paid ones for some unknown reason! After a couple of years of dating, I eventually met my BF (who is awesome) on tinder of all places!
Join the discussion
Already registered? Log in with:
Please login first.