I want you to imagine the perfect man.

He’s your age.

He’s fit.

He’s passionate about his work and makes a good living.

He texts you every day and calls you almost every night.

He refers to you as his girlfriend.

He tells you he loves you after only 3 months together.

He’s already talking about vacation plans for next year.

Sounds nice, huh?

I’ll bet that if you think about having a man like this in your life, it would bring a great big smile to your face.

Then again, if you had such a man in your life, you probably wouldn’t be reading this; you’d be off drinking pina coladas in Cabo. 🙂

So believe me when I tell you that men like this really do exist.

Career men aren’t home for 5pm dinner, especially if they’re not living with you.

One of the women in my Inner Circle is currently dating one.

And, believe it or not, she is doing everything in her power to break up with him.

That’s right.

Debbie, from my Inner Circle, is quite a catch and I’m thrilled to work with her.

And although I only hinted at one side of the story to make a point, there IS another side. I’ll let Debbie explain herself:

At three months of dating, my boyfriend Sam is completely fine with seeing each other once during the week and every other weekend when I don’t have my son.

Right now, that might be acceptable but I know that at six months or a year I would want more time together. I know he dated someone with a kid for about a year, moving in at six months and it got to be too much for him, he moved out, moved back in, then eventually broke up with her. This makes me think that although he says he wants to be in a relationship and does want someone to go on trips with, etc, he may in fact value his freedom more.

Honestly I don’t see the point in continuing to date this guy for six months or a year knowing that eventually we will not be on the same page with respect to spending time together.

Do you agree I should cut my losses now instead of doing it at six months or a year, or are my expectations too high and I would run into this with anyone I dated?

Thanks!

Debbie

Debbie’s questions about their long-term compatibility are real.

Her fear, however, isn’t serving her well. In fact, it’s more likely to drive Sam away.

Allow me to explain.

First of all, Debbie has already acknowledged that everything this guy does is virtually perfect. He treats her like gold, he follows up consistently, and she always knows where she stands emotionally with him.

As a woman, you know how very rare and important that is.

Her complaints are a) she doesn’t see him enough b) he seems content with that.

Yet part of the reason she doesn’t see him enough is because both he and she are hard-working, 6-figure earners with jobs that take close to 50 hours a week.

Debbie loves his mind, she loves his passion, she appreciates that he has money – she just wishes he could spend more time with her. Sorry, doesn’t work that way.

Career men aren’t home for 5pm dinner, especially if they’re not living with you.

Not to mention the other main reason they don’t see each other more is because Debbie has a son and Sam doesn’t. And after three months, it doesn’t make any sense that Sam would be fully integrated into her life with her son.

My question to Debbie was this: what exactly COULD Sam do differently given his work hours and her custody situation?

She wasn’t quite sure. All she knows is that she’s looking for signs.

When Sam goes out with a guy friend to listen to music, it’s a sign.

When Sam texts her and says he loves her but he’s tired and has nothing to say, it’s a sign.

When Sam tells her about how he had fun doing something without her, it’s a sign.

Do you ever look for signs like this?

Do you ever try to find fault with the man in your life, despite the fact that you know he’s good to the core and doing the best he can?

Do you think that you should be the center of his universe even though he’s only known you for a few weeks or months – because it makes YOU feel better?

If so, you’re in for a rude awakening.

The man you want to be with DOESN’T make you the center of the universe.

You know who does?

The creepy stalker guy makes you the center of his universe.

The lonely divorced or widowed guy makes you the center of his universe.

The socially awkward guy who has no friends makes you the center of his universe.

You’ve dated these men before and how did you like it?

It’s like he didn’t exist before you came into the picture.

You never meet his friends. You never meet his family.

He’s obsessed with you, calls you ten times a day, and declares his love after a week.

Not to mention that he’s insanely jealous.

Whether you’re hanging out with your girlfriends, hanging out with your ex-boyfriend or away on business and have no time to talk, he freaks out if he’s not involved.

How does it feel to be involved with that guy?

Instead of trying to read the future – and spending all of your time discussing “us” and “where we’re going” – the best way to get a man to want to be with you is to play it cool.

Once the rush of flattery is gone, how long before his attention becomes oppressive and weird? How long before you break up with him to find a guy who has a life, who has self-esteem, who treats you well, but doesn’t obsess over you?

Because if you’d be inclined to break up with that man, I can assure you that Sam will be inclined to break up with Debbie if she keeps up her desire to be the center of the universe.

You WANT a man who has a life.

You WANT a man who enjoys the company of men.

You WANT a man who treats you well every second he can.

And since you CAN’T know the future – whether or not you get married is a story that will take another year or two to write – ALL you can do is continue to enjoy the here and now.

This is one of the most important lessons from Why He Disappeared: The Smart, Strong, Successful Woman’s Guide to Understanding Men and Keeping the Right One Hooked Forever.

Instead of trying to read the future – and spending all of your time discussing “us” and “where we’re going” – the best way to get a man to want to be with you is to play it cool. To lean back and let him win you over with his efforts. To be fun and easygoing and nurturing and appreciative.

The more you dissect his every move as a “sign” that you should “cut your losses” the more likely you are to drive him batty and force him to choose someone who accepts his daily calls, texts, and declarations of love for what they are – signs that he’s not going anywhere.

If you’ve identified with any of Debbie’s normal insecurities, I understand. Enough disappearing men will make you wary of any new relationship.

But the answer isn’t to force him to cut off his guy friends, quit his job, and promise to marry you after a few months.

The answer is to be sure that he’s treating you the way you deserve to be treated.

If he is, trust that he’s doing the best that he can, and that the longer he stays with you, the deeper in love he’s going to fall.