Enlightening Answers: Falling for Someone Else and Sweet Words


I met someone online. We talked on the phone and via email for five months. He planned to come and meet me. Two weeks before he was to fly here, he called and said he’d met someone else and that he didn’t mean to, but he’d fallen for her. Hence, he said it wouldn’t be fair to visit. I was devastated and heartbroken. We’ve had intimate conversations and even phone sex. I felt there was a definite connection. I feel lost without him. He doesn’t respond to my emails or phone calls…

Virtual Mater

Dear Virtual,

What crappy timing! Sorry to hear it… but what you’ve gone through is extremely common.

Here’s the deal with online dating – you need to meet people fairly QUICKLY. Once you do your “dating due diligence” via email, you need to speak on the phone a few times to see if you like their voice, their sense of humor, their ability to articulate thoughts, etc. Then you have to MEET! The problem with long-distance cyber love, is that it’s just so darn easy for both parties to fall for the fantasy of who they THINK the other person is. I’ve known women in your shoes who’ve thought they were completely over the moon for someone for months (they loved the man’s writing and his voice and the oh-so-exciting anticipation of it all), only to meet and find out within FIVE NONOSECONDS that he made their skin crawl…

I don’t doubt your feelings were real, I just think they were for who you THINK he was vs. who he truly is. So, you’re not “lost without him” – you simply need to grieve the ghost you’ve been imagining, and STOP CALLING OR EMAILING HIM IMMEDIATELY. Then, let your fingers do the walking across your keyboard again – only this time find someone more geographically desirable (i.e. in your neighborhood) who can do everything Mr. Fantasy did and more – in the flesh!

Get going!

I’ve been with someone for 28 months. I’m not sure if this is going anywhere. He’s not very good at complimenting, praising, or using terms of endearment and I need this. I’ve never heard, “I love you” either. Am I overreacting?

Needing the Words

Dear Needing,

Your fella may have great love for you, he just may not be a wordsmith – he may not express love verbally. But you need to be loved in a way that feels like love TO YOU – and only you can know what that requires.

I’ve had women say to me, “My husband is a good man – he’s just not affectionate,” and they are happy with him anyway! No one can tell you that you should get over needing to hear “sweet nothings” if they’re not NOTHING to you… The flip side, of course, is that plenty of men will say the words you want, but won’t follow them up with loving actions. You’re not overreacting if your guy also doesn’t treat you well or behave as though he loves you.

Here’s what to do:

My advice to anyone who wants more of ANYTHING in love is to BRING IT. So, you want more nice words? Give him some FIRST. You want compliments? Compliment him FIRST. You want him to say, “I love you” – then say it FIRST. Lead the way and see if he follows your lead. If he doesn’t, then let him know (without complaining or letting him think he’s failing you – two things sure to kill any lover’s motivation) how much it would mean to you if he told you how he feels.

I’m guessing he’s just not the communicative type, so I’d encourage you to look for the other ways he may be telling you what you want to hear – through tenderness, attention, affection, spending time with you, laughing at your jokes, making an effort to please you, etc. If he’s not doing enough of those things AND you’re getting the romantic silent treatment, then he doesn’t sound like the guy for you – but only you can know the difference.

Good luck,



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