I want to discuss a trend that I have noticed recently. I'll start with an actual example. First off (for background), I am 31 year old single male (never married, no kids) and live in Boston. I work as a software engineer and am in a Masters program part time. I'd say that I am at least average on the looks scale (nothing glaringly wrong in that department). So all in all, I'd say that I'm a catch (I don't mean this in an arrogant way, just that I don't think there is anything major preventing me from finding a relationship). I was seeing a woman for a few months (she is 31 also). I met her online. I'd say we enjoyed our time together. We had some differences (for example, she is a bit more introverted than I am), but I saw real potential in her. I wasn't sure if it would work out, but I did like her.
Last night she suggested that we just continue as friends. In her words, "I like spending time with you, I feel like you get me, you're a really great guy, but the romantic chemistry is just not there". I asked for more feedback just to make sure there was nothing I was missing. She reiterated that I didn't do anything wrong and it just wasn't there. A friend of mine wondered if there may have been another guy, and I really don't think there was. So here's the thing. I'm not upset, and she's entitled to feel that way, but I am starting to see this as a pattern in (at least my) dating life. I just don't understand how anyone can say "I like spending time with you, you get me, but it's just not there". What else can one expect after two months of dating? I want to preempt any of the comments that people usually give to men. I did make physical overtures, but didn't push too hard. I was confident and showed myself. We took it slow physically primarily because it was discussed right up front. In general, I can't think of a single thing I regret in my actions/behavior. I really believe her when she says that it's simply a lack of a romantic connection.
But my question/concern/vent is more along the lines of, "are my expectations different than women's?" And if so, who's expectations are more reasonable? I mean this open and honestly: sometimes I think that people are holding out for a gush of chemistry and sparks, and frankly I'm not sure that that a reasonable expectation. In my view, romantic feelings come with time and shared experiences. If I like spending time with the person, I am attracted physically attracted to them, and there are no major deal breakers, that's good enough for me to continue seeing her.
What is your opinion on this?
Allow me to make this about me for a moment. As I mentioned last week, I had a date a few nights ago. It was my first date in some time, so naturally i was a bit nervous. The man arrives and we proceed to have a pleasant conversation. There was nothing ostensibly wrong with him; he was attractive and easy to talk to. However, I didn't feel any spark. I'm not talking butterflies or even chemistry. By "spark" I mean just that: a tiny glimmer of possibility. He sent a text the next day expressing interest in another date. I gave it the afternoon to consider before I replied and thanked him for the invitation, but I didn't feel we were a match.
I debated all day about whether or not I wanted to seem him again. Was I letting my fear of his availability cloud my judgment? No. It was important that I be honest with myself about that. Simply put, I just didn't feel a spark. I could have given it more time, but I know myself well enough that it wouldn't be fair to him to accept a second date.
I think what this woman is trying to say to you is that she doesn't feel any attraction towards you. That doesn't mean you're not attractive, just that - for her - the attraction isn't there. I think the more dating experience a person gets, the quicker they determine if something is the right fit for them. You weren't a right fit for her.
In my modest opinion, two months is more than enough time to decide if there's enough chemistry present to take things to the next level. Sure, figuring out long-term compatibility might take some time, but chemistry? Nope. When you know, you know. That goes both ways. You know when it's there and you know when it's not.
The pattern here might not be with these women but with you. Maybe your interest in having a relationship is pushing you to pursue people solely because they're available and not because you feel any real attraction or connection.
I would suggest you take a step back and try to look at each experience objectively. Was there ever any chemistry? Even you said that you had slight reservations about your differing personalities. It's admirable that you wanted to see things through because you saw potential, but make sure you're not trying to make any potential connection into a relationship just to have one.