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I Don't Want To Lose Him, But He Says He Needs Space

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Toto asks: "I have been dating this guy for 5 weeks now. The first two weeks were great but by the 3rd week I began to notice that there was a distance building between us. He was calling less often and we were spending less time together. Last week I asked him if there was a problem and he said that he felt that the dating was moving quickly towards a relationship/commitment when he was not really ready for one. He said that he was experiencing financial difficulty at the moment and he didn't want to get into anything serious unless he was sure his career was headed in the right direction. I really want this to work because I feel a connection with him and I think that this can be really special. But he is making it more and more difficult for me to get through to him, and I don't want to lose him. What should I do?"

Miss Toto, you are coming on too strong for this guy that you've barely started to date. You're asking for way too much, way too early, and your gent has been kind enough to say so. Him telling you what he needs is a great thing - now all you have to do is hear him, instead of continuing to try and "get through to him". He's made up his mind, and no amount of cajoling on your part will change that. If anything, it'll make him run for the hills.

Let's break down what he's told you so far:

  • He's under a lot of stress with his job and can't commit to anything while he's working things out;
  • He feels things between you are moving too fast;
  • He's not ready for a commitment or a relationship right now; and
  • He's not able or willing to spend as much time with you as he did in the first two weeks of your relationship.

To me, your answer here is clear. Continue to push for a relationship and you'll be left in the cold. Now, you may not have said outright that a relationship is what you're after (to him or to me), but that message is still coming across loud and clear. And if that's the impression I'm getting, then what do you think the man you're dating is hearing?

Take a step back and do as your gent has requested. Stop putting so much pressure on the relationship to 'be something' right from the start, and just enjoy dating again. Plan some fun dates together, and give him the space and time he needs. I'd even suggest you start dating other people if the two of you aren't exclusive, following a plan like The Four Man Plan (a bit racy but fun) or Love in 90 Days (tamer and very thorough). You might be surprised at how he reacts to you taking a step back as he's requested, and either way it will give you a better idea as to whether or not the man truly can be special to you, or not.

Related: Does My Boyfriend Want Space?

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