You know that stereotype of the guy who fears commitment and his girlfriend is longing for him to propose? In the movies, she confides in her friends that she doesn’t understand and is hurt by his reluctance to commit to her. Most likely she is dropping not so subtle hints but is still impatiently waiting. You know the type, right?
Well I am not that type but every girl I meet seems to fit that typically male stereotype. I constantly find myself having turbulence in relationships because I don’t move slow enough. I am willing and able to commit yet instead of that being an appreciated attribute it seems to lose me dates and opportunities.
And I am not talking about meeting a girl and proposing a week later. I am talking a girl up and abandoning any potential relationship the day before the first “official” date after a month of talking (that more than friends but less than full blown lovers type talking). Or being happy to discuss marriage and even encourage a proposal only to freak out and break off the entire relationship less than a week after getting a ring.
Scaring away potential mates is nothing new for me. Being a conservative Christian who likes the idea of homeschooling his future kids tends to be scary for some reason. And yes, I do like to move a little fast (although still reasonable). I find it hard to understand how a man who actively wants to commit to a woman is such an issue.
Part of the reason I hate dating is I fall hard and fast. In the first month of a relationship (or the “talking” stage of one) I am already asking deep questions: how many kids do you want to have? Do you like the idea of homeschooling? What do you believe about… etc. I ask early because if there is something we differ on that is a deal-breaker I want to know before I am too invested. Before she can hurt me too much.
Maybe that is part of my problem with dating. I fear heartbreak. I’ve had my heart broken a couple of times. It is the worst feeling ever. I can remember wondering how I could ever feel normal and happy again after my fiancé left me. Heck, a year later I still feel the pain from that betrayal from time to time. Heartbreak sucks. So, I avoid it. Yet, I also long for companionship and love so I know I have to take the risk.
The need for a partner outweighs the fear of heartbreak but it still has an influence. I may put myself out there but I spend the first short period of getting to know a girl trying to find a reason not to fall for her. Much easier to find that reason early on before I’m emotionally invested than after. The flipside of that is that if a girl passes through and I allow her to have my heart I go all out. I completely invest and offer her my emotions.
The fact that there are so few good girls available in the world coupled with the fact that so many are prone to run from commitment makes it that much harder. Like a starving man given a feast, when I meet a good girl that seems all too perfect my excitement takes over and I fall into the same trap of coming on too hard to fast. Basically I become a big scary commitment.
I would like to say that I can take this knowledge and do something about it but… well, if I could change my personality I would. To not long for companionship and love would be awesome. I would love to be like the other guys I know who are casual towards relationships and are pretty good at dating… but I’m not. The dream career and life full of exotic traveling and stuff like that was never a big deal for me. I never had any “wild oats” to sow either. For me, it was about finding my best friend to settle down with and start a family with. I wanted a companion to adventure with. So, I always took relationships seriously, not casually.
I’m not sure why that is such a bad thing. I guess I will just keep hoping and praying for a girl who wants the same thing and isn’t scared of commitment. I have a lot of years of built up appreciation for her when/if she does show up…