I think I know how guys feel when a woman wants to pin them down.

Fox and I had our nice overnight sporting event date. That morning we slept in, fooled around, I made us lattes and we drank them in bed. Then he had to leave since Liam was being dropped off by my Mom fairly early.

A few hours after he left, we had the following text exchange:

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I didn’t say anything else on the topic, and didn’t think much else of it. He knew I was with Liam for the rest of the day, and I went to my friend Katharine’s for an early dinner and hang out with our kids.

But then a few hours later I see the following text message:

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What the hell?

One of the benefit of hanging out with your close girlfriends is they can help you figure out what to say. I was peeved but Katharine reminded me he’s probably insecure and needs to know how I feel. Our other friend was more aligned to me and found the text to be rather petulant.

So I said:

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2015-07-27 19.22.36 I decided, with some coaching, to leave it at that and to not respond right away to his response. After I got home and got Liam to bed, I said:

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The next morning I hadn’t heard back, but it’s not unusual that he goes to sleep early. I decided to just send a text that didn’t refer to the prior conversation and move on. Things were fine throughout the day but I did wonder what I would say on our date. I don’t feel like I’m in a position to be spontaneously volunteering information.

I realized this must be what guys feel like when a woman suddenly (in his eyes) wants to talk about “the future” or his feelings or otherwise get things pinned down. I have no fucking clue! I’m just starting to get to know him, there are things I like and things I don’t, yet here I am being backed into a corner where I have few options.

I don’t want to promise exclusivity quite yet. If I told him he’s the only one for me, then I’d a) be lying and b) setting myself up to be unfaithful.

Nor do I want to tell him I don’t want it. It’s not that I don’t like him; it’s just not the right time yet. I hid my profiles because I want to have the time to see where things go. I didn’t need to fill my pipeline, and yes I did call off a few other hangers on, but I wanted to leave some room for other sexual flexibility.

Yes, it did make me think about how early I had the exclusivity conversation with Tony, and what may have also been going through his mind at the time.

I have a new found appreciation for trying to stay chill for a while until you really get a sense for where someone is at and the kind of person they are. It’s absolutely 100% not what I used to do. I know I’ve written about this before but I have no idea which post it was. Basic premise was I used to need to have everything sorted and categorized, even when I wasn’t so sure how I felt about the other person.

So no, it’s not just because I haven’t instantly fallen in love with Fox that I’m able to have this perspective. In the past, I would become all consumed about whether he liked me and as a result, stop focussing on my actual feelings. Here I am, really taking some time to see what things are like with him and decide whether there is real potential, before I make a major move about being exclusive or any such thing.

I just hope I can articulate it well on our date, ensuring he knows I do enjoy being with him and see some potential, without making promises I don’t intend to keep.

Wish me luck!

31 thoughts on “I think I know how guys feel when a woman wants to pin them down.

  1. I don’t like to gender-categorize, but he does seem to be playing the girl role more here with this particular issue! Not that there’s anything wrong with men being more like that, it’s just interesting and seems unusual!

    • It’s unusual for me to have the guy be the one who wants more clarity and to talk about feelings and ask for my feedback and all that. On one level, it’s really great – he obviously cares about me and wants things to be good. He’s open to feedback and discussion which is amazing.

      I find I’m SO not used to it that I have to retrain myself on how to react to it – here’s a guy who wants to have the discussion and when faced with it, I go “whoa”… which of course is a gut response and not the right one.

  2. Sounds like he is way more into U then you are to him. If you don’t want to be pinned down, just tell him you want to take things slow, it’s very early in your relationship. Maybe the sex is confusing for him. Maybe he sees it as more than you do.

    • I do think he’s more into me than I am into him…but with each interaction it’s getting better. Not because I’m convincing myself of anything but simply because I’m giving it time.

      I’m okay with someone adoring me and me liking them. It’s kind of nice, actually.

      We had a conversation about and I’m writing that post next!

  3. The mantra of modern dating and relationships these days is, “the person who cares less wins”. In this case Fox is more invested in this relationship at this point than you are, and therefore it’s manifesting as insecurity. It’s nobody’s fault, it just sounds like a combination of your respective life/relationship mindsets and where you’re both at. Fortunately, communicating openly and honestly with each other should help resolve things one way or the other.

    • I don’t disagree but I wish it wasn’t that way. I’m not trying to be cool to him because I feel it gives me the upper hand. Part of this for me is getting used to someone who is open and interested and who wants to have great conversations. I’m not used to that.

      I also am not interested in being totally tied down to one person, but it’s also not as simple as that. Knowing Fox and I were going to have the conversation, I’ve done lots of thinking about this to figure out what I’m going to say to him.

  4. I feel if it’s right then it will work out and committing to each other early doesn’t guarantee anything except that you’ll probably get hurt. Don’t rush into things if he’s serious he’ll stick around. It takes time to get to really know someone and I think that has to happen before you make a real forever and ever promise.

    • Couldn’t agree more. Part of my big “ah-ha” moment was my reaction and as I said, I think I have more insight into what might have happened when I pushed someone in the past who wasn’t ready.

      It’s not that I don’t like him; I shut down my profiles for a reason but didn’t want to tell him – so I’ve been thinking a lot about what that means and how to articulate it.

  5. Wasn’t he mainly asking for feedback regarding sex? I think it’s great that he wants to make sure it’s good for you and that he’s open to suggestions. Clearly he’s aware that there’s room for improvement. From what you wrote it seems like you brought up the issue of dating profiles, so maybe he isn’t looking to discuss that or exclusivity.

    I think it’s healthy that you aren’t in a rush to make big decisions about him and that you seem less stressed about figuring things out quickly. If he remains more into you then you are into him, it’ll become clear over time when you’re ready to move on.

    • Holly – yes, in hindsight I think you are right. It started off as a sex conversation and then when he sent that follow up note I assumed it was about a whole lot more. He’s right that I haven’t been volunteering a lot about how I feel – usually because I’m not sure what to say.

      I am not stressed and find it amazing that I’m able to kind of step back and just see where things go.

  6. It sounds as though Mr. Fox has been hurt before and is trying to protect himself. Either than or he is one of those people who are incapable of simply enjoying a drive through scenic landscapes. Instead of focusing on the surroundings, they watch the clock and constantly check the map while hoping to make it to their destination in good time.

    This isn’t necessarily a bad situation but it can be if he is truly insecure and is constantly checking on his standing with you.

    • he *did* used to be an auditor…

      But yes, I think he is looking for honest dialogue and I haven’t exactly been effusive with my feelings.

      I don’t think he’s deeply insecure…but I do think he was trying to check in – a temperature check, as it were.

  7. I agree with the other comments too. It does sound like he’s trying to pin you down, or asking for full disclosure – and I find it interesting how the tables are turned and you’re feeling the pressure. It offers you an interesting perspective into being the “one up” instead of the “one down” in this relationship. How does that feel to you? I personally have been on both sides – and being the one up is great, but often made me want to run, and being the one down was an emotional rollercoaster I seemed to be way more attracted to. Nevertheless, stick to your guns, Ann.

    • It was definitely interesting to realize that my feelings were not dissimilar to what some men must feel (maybe even Tony) when they get asked.

      Wanting to run is an interesting thing – if I think someone is too needy or not strong or not my equal, I definitely want to run. I don’t feel that with Fox. He communicative, which I’m obviously not used to!

  8. I’m with Holly on this…wasn’t he just wanting feedback on the sex? I didn’t get the sense he wanted to pin you down whatsoever but perhaps there were more conversations not included in this post that led you to feel this way?

    • I confess I may have overreacted in the moment. There was certainly an element to pinning me down but not as extreme as I thought. I haven’t been that effusive with my feedback so in hindsight I can see how he would be wanting some sense from me on where my head was at.

  9. My first impulse when I read this was ewwww! But I’m married and say all sorts of weird shit to my husband (and he back to me) that would probably send me running screaming from the room if we were dating.

    Your communication styles are very different, and he is apparently has some insecurity and probably past dating hurts. Feedback is obvioiusly important, because he’s soliciting it rather than waiting for you to volunteer. Whatever his motivation, kudos to Fox for having the courage to broach the subject with you, even if the timing and communication media were not ideal.

    What seems more important to me, though, is the way you interact (and this is not a comparison to Tony). In prior posts about Fox you have mentioned that he does not volunteer or expand upon conversation topics, that you have to ask a direct question to elicit a response, and that he seems to have no opinions of his own and everything is “whatever you want” or “whatever you think.” I know this is/was on the agenda for discussion in the future, and it seems your next date will bring that out into the open. This is not you making promises; this is part of you and Fox getting to know each other better. Maybe for him it’s 5 dates and mind is made up, but for you, more time and experience with him is required. You know yourself best and need not apologize or feel painted into a corner to insist upon the opportunity to let the relationship evolve as it will.

    I do not think you need luck, Ann. You’re doing swell on your own with this one.

    • Thank you Janelle!! Yes, he’s slow to open up but each time, the conversations get better.

      I’ve been pretty good at just relaxing into things and recognizing that not everything starts off with fireworks and that’s okay. I’m not getting ahead of myself, nor do I want to promise him anything… but we’ll just see where it goes.

      And thank you… I do feel pretty good about where I’m at right now.

  10. It doesn’t feel good, does it? It puts you in the position of having to make snap decisions when you don’t even have enough information to know where your own thoughts are on things.

  11. I woke up thinking about this, so while these are pre-coffee thoughts, they are also ‘wait, what, why has this been in my brain all night?!’ thoughts.

    Communication is so funny. And by ‘funny’ I mean ‘mostly terrible’. I suspect that a 5 minute chat with him would clarify all of this, but wow I read it SO differently from your interpretation (of course you have 100% context, I have only this).

    Here’s how I read it:

    Him: Hey, I want to be better at teh sexing for you, can we talk about it? [this must have been really hard for him: kudos]
    You: Eeehhh… I’m really not comfortable with that [even though you DO have specific feedback you could give him]
    Him: Well, communication is important, we need to be able to talk about this kind of stuff [why is she reluctant to talk about this?]
    You: I don’t mind sharing things, I’m big on it, but you know, I’m not gonna tell you stuff that’s relevant to us or our relationship unless you specifically ask the right questions, like this time, where I deliberately avoided sharing in a perfectly normal conversation because, well, you never ACTUALLY asked [i.e. I lied by omission, deliberately]
    Him: WTF?! That’s not okay [So you’re saying lies by omission are A-OK with you?]
    You: ARRRRGGGH! EXCLUSIVITY!!! [In my (possibly incorrect) interpretation of the conversation, this leap seems completely bizarre]

    I hope the chat really does clear things up: text is a fucking horrible medium for anything other than ‘I’ll be there in 15’ level of communication.


    • I *totally* hear you (and thanks for the pre-coffee comment). Once again you have used humor quite well to prove your point.

      I’m not sure why I made that leap. In hindsight and based on a lot of comments here, probably not fair. I think I knew that his comment about hiding his profiles, and my not volunteering the same information, was starting to weigh heavy.

      I do give him a ton of credit for how communicative he’s been.

      (and we did have an excellent conversation about all this which I will write about and post shortly!)

        • It’s funny…sometimes I’m not sure what to do with a mature, communicative, open, non game-playing guy. My reactions are preconditioned for men of a different sort… so it can take a little bit to adjust.

          (he did tell me once that what he’d really like is for me to “tie him up and have [my] way with him”). I might need some pointers from you πŸ™‚

What do you think?