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Thread: Young men afraid of committment?

  1. #1
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
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    Young men afraid of committment?

    I realize this is a complicated issue.

    DD is in her mid 20's. She's a very social, bright, talented, interesting young lady. But she's having reoccurring problems with the guys she dates. Everything goes really well with them, as friends. Then they decide to get closer, and bam.........the guys freak out and run away. I feel really sorry for her. This has happened to her about 4 times in the past couple of years.
    Have any of you noticed that the young men these days have a fear of committment?
    I'm wondering if it has something to do with the internet. Seems like in these days of electronic communicating, its too easy to make a relationship into something its not. Then, when reality approaches (like visiting someone who lives farther away, after most of the interaction has been through the internet/skype/phone etc.) its too much for the guys.
    I don't know. DD has considered that maybe its something she does wrong, but honestly can't figure it out.
    I just wonder if alot of today's young adults have an inability to get close? Then again, I've seen other young kids stay in relationships for a long time.
    DD is just really hurting, and I want to help her to not continue to maybe pick the wrong guys, or fall into some sort of scenario that leads her down the same path all the time.
    She's very busy with 2 jobs, and is finishing up her second degree. I don't think she's overly dependent on anyone. She's a very interesting person and is very accepting of people. Can't figure this out, other than there's alot of mixed up young men out there!
    Any insights?

  2. #2
    Senior Member bekkilyn's Avatar
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    Not to be too cynical, but her problem is likely that she *is* very social, bright, talented, interesting, not overly dependent, and accepting of people. Mix it up with a whole heck of a lot of insecure young guys and there are sure to be problems. Rather than dumbing herself down and acting all girly girl for these guys though, she might consider herself lucky to avoid getting committed to a wussy guy just looking for a trophy or a mother, and is scared to death of a woman with a brain and a degree of self-sufficiency. Most of these type of guys are fine as friends and buddies, but are truly horrible relationship material.

  3. #3
    Low Tech grunt iris lily's Avatar
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    If your daughter is having long distance relationships, well, those are seldom "real." She needs to cut that out immediately and find some on-site men.

    edited to add:

    Here's why I say this:

    with on-site men they have to actually commit a couple of hours, minimum, to a date

    they have to plan ahead, at least a little, to meet with your daughter

    they usually have to commit some money to a date--maybe only enough for coffee and gas, but it's something

    I'm not saying that on-site men will commit, but she will have better ways to assess their true interest in her--if they get together with her multiple time using up resources listed above, they are interested. Doesn't mean they are ready to "commit" though. Mid-20's men in general may not be as mature as your daughter, it's true.
    I have to say that a college campus is both a wonderful and an awful place to meet men. There are lots of them, but many (being students) are in a sort of suspended juvenile state, not-quite-adult but not-quite-dependant.
    Last edited by iris lily; 11-15-11 at 10:21am.

  4. #4
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    I think some young men are afraid of commitment and some aren't. When I was in my late teens and early 20s I dated a guy who wasn't really interested in committing. I wish I had admitted that to myself earlier, although everything worked out eventually. It takes a while, but your DD will start to see the signs of it earlier and avoid it.

    Mid-twenties isn't really that old. IME in your mid-twenties there is a kind of separation that happens among friend groups. One group decides they aren't especially interested in growing up, whether it be in relationships, jobs or any other area of life, and one group decides it's time to make the shift. How exactly that pans out is different for each person, so it can be kind of a subtle shift, but it's real. I used to joke that my mid twenties was about the time the novelty of being able to drink and stay up late wore off. Not that I don't occassionally still do both but reality set in at a new level. That may be some of what's going on with your DD.

    DH is 29 and we have been married 8 1/2 years. He loves being married and is passionate about his family. Most of my friends from high school (I'm 33) are married and about 60-70% of of DH's friends from high school are married, so those guys are out there.
    My blog: www.sunnysideuplife.blogspot.com

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  5. #5
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
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    I use the term "committment" sort of lightly. She's not looking for a husband. She just likes being with guys who she likes. One guy she was almost best friends with her for 2 years and they were with each other alot of the time. As soon as they both decided to turn the relationship into an SO relationship, it wasn't a month before he wanted out. Then there was another guy who would like her like crazy from a distance, but when they would spend much time together, he would start backing off. I'm open to it being a problem with her behaivor, but I'm not sure it is. She's a very "authentic" person, and I think her behavior is always consistent and direct. then again........I'm just her mother. Who knows what goes on, really.

    She is slowly realizing that there's no need to pine over these guys, after they "break up" with her, since its just alot of unnecessary pain.
    Stella.....you're right about the 20's. Seems like kids start calming down and being more realistic and mature as they get to their late 20's.

    I keep telling her that its good she's seeing this in them early in the relationships and wouldn't want a long term relationship with that kind of
    insecurity. These guys have some qualities that she absolutely loves and misses.........but I keep reminding her that how they treat her and the relationship is just as much them, as the good qualities. Its a package deal!
    What really concerns me too, is that the guys can never say "I just don't think we are a good fit and I'm not comfortable in this relationship anymore.", etc. Instead, they make up excuses to not be together.......they're too busy, etc., instead of having the **lls to tell it like it is, instead of leading her on. Maybe that's common with alot of folks. Even jerks might not want to hurt anyone. But in the long run, it hurts people more to be honest with them as soon as possible.
    Anyhow........when she hurts, I hurt too.

  6. #6
    Senior Member jennipurrr's Avatar
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    I agree with Iris Lilly...the long distance thing gives much more time to be wishy washy and drag on a sort of semi relationship. If its real life dating then she'll know pretty soon whether the relationship is heading where she wants it to.

    I wonder if she's just had a string of bad luck, or if there is something else drawing her to these types of men? Something to think about anyway.

    My husband is a bit older than I am (seven years) and if I had met him when he was 21 rather than when I was 21 (in an imaginary world where we were the same age), I would have never given him a second thought as far as a relationship...he did a lot of growing up in that time frame. At that time in his life he was not in any way ready for a committed relationship. I wouldn't say looking for older guys is an answer, but I just from observation something appears to happen to people when they start nearing 30...most of the people I graduated from high school with are getting married now and we're all turning 30.
    Last edited by jennipurrr; 11-15-11 at 11:26am.

  7. #7
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    A mid-20's, busy woman like your daughter who even had time for 4 relationships in the past couple of years sounds like she's doing OK. It can take a while to find a man that fits. What you have described doesn't sound any different to me than what it was like when I was in my 20's and that was 30 years ago.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Kestra's Avatar
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    Part of it is age I think. DH and I met when we were both 30 and got married less than 2 years after that. If we had met sooner I don't know if we'd still be together. I changed A LOT from 20 to 30. I'm sure he did, too.

    Another thing I'd recommend, though some would disagree, is to not try to turn friends into a relationship. Of course you want to be friends with your boyfriend or husband, but if you spend months to years just being friends, before it turns into a relationship, then there's a reason it didn't become a relationship sooner. I think both people should want a relationship pretty quickly if it's going to work out. After 3 dates with DH where there was no physical stuff as we were outdoors in -40C or at a restaurant all 3 times, I invited myself to his place and very clearly indicated that I didn't just want to just be friends and didn't just want sex - wanted the whole package. I had known him for a few months prior to that through an activity so I wasn't going in completely blind.

    Also avoid the internet stuff as much as possible. Fine for keeping in touch but not for dating. Need to have person to person time as much as possible to get a sense if there is real relationship potential.

    Something else I learned in my 20s is to switch my mind set from: Does he want to be with me? to: Do I want to be with him? She doesn't need to worry about what he wants or does. She has every right to be the one doing the breaking-up. She should be asking herself whether that guy is what she wants, and is good enough for her (trying to avoid superficial things of course). Took me a long time to clue into that one.

  9. #9
    Senior Member daisy's Avatar
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    Perhaps some of the problem is being friends first. If she's meeting guys that just want to hang out and keep things casual (especially for 2 years), then maybe that is all that guy has to offer. My DH is my best friend now, but his interest in me initially was definitely not to be "friends". DH is quiet and shy and went way outside his comfort zone to let me know that he wanted to date me. My last serious relationship pre-DH could have been ripped from the pages of the book, "He's Just Not That Into You," (even though it lasted almost 5 years). DH, on the other hand, was the epitome of "He's Into You."

  10. #10
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
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    DD is really perceptive. Sounds like several times, she was totally blindsighted by the guy wanting out. I think that's because maybe its awfully hard to hurt someone who is being really decent to you, even if you don't want a serious relationship with them.
    DD is a really intense person, so maybe that scares the guys. I think she's slowly learning though, and hopefully learns to quickly "weed out" the ones who have certain red flags. Then again, maybe she won't!
    Only a couple of the guys were people she met at her school, and then they graduated and moved. She was willing to have the long distance relationship, but the guys weren't as much. She doesn't understand this. But maybe the guys in this case were being much more realistic.

    Hopefully she'll learn a few things and not spend so much time feeling bad. I guess its all part of growing up, unfortunately!

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