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Parallax - Advice

April 29, 2002

He wants space

Dear Conversely,

Ask us a Question!I was dating a guy who was fresh out of a one-year relationship that mutually ended due to differences in future relationship goals (he wanted marriage with kids and she didn't.) Things were pretty serious. I stayed at his house twice a week, and he was talking about our relationship becoming exclusive, once he completely healed over his ex. Then he said he was still in love with his ex and gave me the 'two-week space' crap. He said he'd call me, but I'm lucky if he calls once a week (versus his previous habit of calling every other day.) Was this a weenie way out of this relationship—in order to avoid telling me the truth? Did he get spooked or did he change his mind? I was perfect in every way—bed, career, sensitive to his space, never asking questions, tentative, etc... Help me—I am so confused!Email to a Friend

Her view:

Dear Confused,

Actually, it is he who is confused, and you applying pressure to the situation are simply all wrong. You must follow through on his wishes and grant him that space. Frankly, he needs it. Do you really want to be dating a guy hung up on his ex? That's no fun at all. Let him sort it out, be reborn, blah, blah, blah.

In the meantime, there shall be no waiting around for you. Get on with your life. Space for him means space for you. See other people, go out and have fun, do whatever you wish and try to put him on the back burner. If you are around and interested—if and when he decides to return—then, there is a match. If he loses you, well, it was his choice and you moved on to new and better things.

It's time to start thinking about yourself and what you want. Obviously, he isn't. He is wallowing in a relationship that has no future, and odds are low that he will turn his focus to you.

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His view:

Dear Confused,

The moment you decided you were 'perfect in every way' was the moment you:
     a) read too many self-help books and Cosmo articles that explained what the 'perfect woman' was; or
     b) failed to stop to ask yourself whether being perfect mattered, at all, in this relationship. (A relationship, which—since you appear not to have noticed—has a big green neon 'rebound' sign hanging from it. He gets out of a one-year relationship and immediately starts dating you? Hello?)

Moreover, you banked too much on his offer of exclusivity. Once he completely healed over his ex? Come on, it has so many strings attached to it that I'm surprised you didn't get tangled up in it. Sorry, but he never changed his mind. He never got spooked. He wasn't even there to begin with.

Now, to answer your question. Was the two-week space request his weenie way out of the casual relationship? Yes.

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