Monday, April 16, 2012

Is He Ready for a Relationship?

One of the things about dating that we have very little control over is timing. When you meet someone who seems like the perfect romantic partner for you, are you at a point in your life when you ready for him? When he meets you, is he ready to begin a new relationship?

Determining whether you are both ready to begin a relationship is one of the most important things to discover during the first few dates.

When Ralph met Candace, he was quite sure that HE was ready. He had been divorced for three years, and he had done quite a bit of dating. He had sowed a few wild oats, and he was ready to settle down.

Ralph was instantly attracted to Candace and she seemed to share his feelings. He saw in Candace everything he wanted in a mate—kindness, a successful career, physical beauty and common interests. But she spent most of their first date telling him the details of her divorce.

Candace and her ex-husband had been devastated by the death of their only child, and their marriage was on the rocks. At her suggestion, they started going to meetings at a local spiritual center. As it turned out, she didn’t care for it, but he embraced it. He started attending the meetings regularly, and then he started meditating. He stopped drinking. “We were getting along better than we had in years,” she said.

Then he took her completely by surprise when he announced that he wanted a divorce. “I laughed out loud because I thought he was kidding,” she said. But he was serious.

Before the end of their first date together, Ralph had the “aha” moment: Candace wasn’t ready for a relationship with him. She wasn’t ready for a relationship with ANYONE. She was still heartbroken, and she needed more time to heal.

Chances are that you’ve also had an “aha” moment during a date when you knew that the person on the other side of the table wasn’t going to be the one you’ve been looking for. The sooner you can find that out, the better. Ralph counts himself lucky for finding it out on date one with Candace.

When a man isn’t ready to commit to a relationship, he will be hard to pin down. When you ask him direct questions about things like his schedule or his goals for the future, he will respond with vague answers or deftly change the subject.

One of the big mistakes that women make is trying to coax men into discussions about relationships and commitment. These are important topics, and women want to talk about them. Men, however, would rather volunteer for a root canal.

Here’s the key, ladies: Men only commit when they think it’s THEIR IDEA. Yes, you can express how important a committed relationship is to you, and how you like to shower your man with love and adoration when you feel the safety and security that a long-term relationship offers. But if you push too hard and too soon for a commitment, he will run away like a man fleeing from a burning dynamite factory.

So maybe the question isn’t, “Is he ready for a relationship?” Maybe the real question is, “Can you wait until he is ready for a relationship?” If you can’t, then you might be happier if you moved on.

If you're ready to read something about the lighter side of dating, have a look at my new book, Confessions of a Middle-Aged Babe Magnet by Chad Stone. It's available from

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