General Question

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

How do I know if this guy's only after physical attraction or if he's after a relationship? (long question)

Asked by nailpolishfanatic (6597 points ) September 10th, 2012

I’ve been talking to this guy who’s 4 years older than I online, last Saturday we decided to meet up and we had a great time. He told me a lot about himself and he was being very honest. Before, when I was still talking to him only through the internet, he told me about his past. We got to talk more about that in person on Saturday when we met for the first time.
He met my mum and dad and they questioned him and later they told me he seemed nice and very honest.

When he was younger he used to drink a lot and parties, which led to him doing bad things he regrets and stuff. Now he’s been sober for almost 3 years and attends AA meetings every Sundays, he even asked me if I wanted to join him this past Sunday to see what they do at their meetings.

Now we later got into more deeper discussions and he told me he has slept with 20 girls (the majority of which he slept with the time he used to drink a lot). To be honest I was very shocked but then I thought of it, I mean at least he told me the truth unlike other guys who would have lied to me.
One thing though, I’m a virgin who’s only been with 1 guy and it didn’t last because all he wanted was sex. The guy I’m talking to now knows that I’ve only been in one of a somewhat serious relationship but he doesn’t know that I’m still a virgin.

Also after he told me that he became very worried and told me hope the number didn’t make me loose interest in him. He asked me on a second date and I said yes. He was very happy to be seeing me for the second time and it always complimenting me.

I’ve told my best friend about him and she says he sounds like a very nice guy and the fact that he’s honest makes him even more likable.

What tips and tricks do you on here have to give… I will be going on a second date with him soon and what should we talk about and do since we got to know so much about one another on the first date.

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53 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

How old are you?

whiteliondreams's avatar

Aside from age differences, don’t disclose your social or financial status to us, but take those into account. What level of education you both have, your financial situations, your personal goals, your beliefs and principles – what are they and are they similar, if not at least tolerable in a very intellectual sense? These are qualities one should take into consideration prior to engaging in any relationship because these are some of the qualities that married couples live by and have traditionally used to lead them to a long and lasting relationship.

As for the sex, you need to wonder, was he protected? Does he have any diseases you should know about such as HPV, which typically for males, is not harmful to them, but as potential carriers, can be fatal for women. What are his ethical principles? Is he for or against choice? Are you for or against choice? What are your religions? Do they coincide, or are they tolerable enough that you think you both can get by? Some things can become imposing when one side of the relationship is or becomes more demanding in certain respects.

Does he have any children? Are his financial obligations in order? Does he have debt and if so, will you inherit some of the responsibilities by choosing to assist him? (Vice versa) If my questions seem to far out, be aware that I know you have a great interest in him, but if you do not at least take these things into consideration, you are setting yourself up for emotional failure. People ask, well why did this happen? Why didn’t it happen this way? “I did so and so, the outcome was not what I expected or anticipated”.

By failing to consider your likes and dislikes to a detailed degree, you fail to analyze and assess your well being and your future as a potential mother or care giver or single entrepreneur. The concepts are limitless, but can be altered dramatically by not assessing. I say this because I fell into it. I have had numerous partners as well, but beware that as a virgin, you may become a nymph or not based on the experience. Again, consider what I typed and be careful. Perception is a bitch. Good luck!

zenvelo's avatar

If he is over 20 or 21, that is not a tremendously high number of partners to have been with. Think of it as being over four years, that’s five per year, and most likely one new partner every couple months.

The most important thing is to make sure he is tested before you have sex with him.

The other things @whiteliondreams is talking about are a bit extreme to think about now, *not to think about before a second date. You’re going on a date, not choosing a fiance.*

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

Sorry forgot to mention that I’m 18 and he’s 22 :)

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@zenvelo I thought so too. 20 isn’t that bad considering his age…

zenvelo's avatar

So you know him a lot better than most people would for a second date. But he is very honest with you and answered your questions. Go on more dates, don’t tell him you are a virgin yet, and don’t bring up sex unless he does first. And then tell him that would be part of an exclusive ongoing relationship.

You can express it as wanting it to be part of mutual exploration of your sexuality.

bkcunningham's avatar

Get to know him before you have sex and before you get too physical. That is the test. When, and if, you decide to become physical with him, you will be friends and you will know him well enough to ask him if he’s been tested for STDs and HIV and you’ll be comfortable telling him to wear a condom. You’ve been out with him once. Take it slowly, safely and have fun.

JLeslie's avatar

Well, the difference between an 18 year old and 22 year old can be vast. I’m not saying it could never work, I am only saying he has a lot more life experience when it comes to sexual relationships, and certainly would know how to manipulate a young woman if that was his intention. But, his intentions might be all good. I say go out on more dates, you will get a read for if he is pushing you or not for sex before you are ready. Men at his age generally would expect sex within a couple months I would think (generalization) and women in that age group generally would be giving it up within a couple months, but it isn’t like that is a hard and fast rule. I think it’s tricky with young men. Even when they really like a girl, they still most of the time are out for sex also. So, it is hard to gauge sometimes what is really going on.

I will also go ahead and add if you were my daughter I would not be thrilled with you dating a 22 year old ex addict. At least on paper I would be wary. But, he was rather young, and people overcome mistakes in youth all the time.

Is he working? In college? Are you in school?

Do you like drinking? I would say if he is a recovering addict you don’t get to drink while with him, and if it ever turned into something long term, you should give up drinking when around him period. I personally would be very reluctant to date a former addict, but I would not regard it as never willing to consider it. I don’t drink myself, but not because I was an addict, I just don’t bother. I feel you will have an obligation to not make his recovery tougher, even 10 years from now. I know you are nowhere near the SO or marrying stage with this guy, but be honest with yourself about what you enjoy and what you are willing to do. Dating someone who would never fit your idea of how you want your adult life to be is a nonstarter.

@whiteliondreams Men really have no way of knowing if they have HPV, unless they have a visible wart, which is unlikely. They can only suspect they have contracted the virus if a former partner had it. At age 22 there is little chance it would have already been discovered by a partner. It is fairly likely he has been exposed. Prior to the vaccine the exposure rate for men and women was very very high. I think for women it was something like 80%, I don’t know the male stat, but it most be nearly the same. With the new vaccine maybe the numbers have some down some. Doctors don’t test men for HPV, so even if they both had typical STD workups, HPV would not be tested for in the man.

DrBill's avatar

first, I am proud of you for retaining your virginity. The best way to insure he wants you, and not just a 21st notch, is tell him right up front you will not have sex till your wedding day. If he runs, you were notch 21, if he stays, he is staying because of you.

LuckyGuy's avatar

You are 18. Why on earth would you even consider a relationship with an alcoholic 4 years your senior that you met online? My alarm bells are screaming!

He said he was with “only” 20 girls/women. That’s how many he remembers. How many was it really? And even it it was “only 20”, looking at it another way, that’s 5 failed relationships per year. A new girl every 10 weeks. (Unless he had overlaps) Why would you want to risk being #21?
What other things did he do while drunk? (underage drunk, by the way) . Has he been tested for Hep? Did you look at his arms for tracks? Is his attendance at AA meetings court ordered?

I’d say go with @DrBill ‘s advice and say right up front that you will not have sex until you are married. Period. Don’t lead him on. Say it loud and clear.

There are so many nice guys out there who are looking for someone nice – just like you. They work hard in school, they don’t get in trouble; they don’t drink to excess; they don’t have criminal records. They will most likely have good jobs and will make better husbands and happier home lives and they will love and appreciate you.
Sure there are exceptions to every rule – but the smart money doesn’t bet on exceptions.

Why would you even consider this as reasonable? Look in the mirror and ask yourself. “Really? Is this what I want? Is this what I deserve?”

I give your parents a lot of credit for not saying anything pro or con.. It’s your life and they are leaving the decision up to you. They are wise. Now it’s your turn to be.

JLeslie's avatar

@DrBill She never said she was planning to be a virgin until her wedding day.

@LuckyGuy I’m glad someone else said some alarm bells are going off. I stated it a little less forcefully.

@nailpolishfanatic Part of the reason he might be attracted to an 18 year old is your expectations are much lower than a girl his age. That is why I ask if he is in school or working.

bluiii's avatar

Luckyguy hit the nail on the head! My God, you are only 18! I am the mother of a 20 year old so I know you are going to do what you want to do—you are an adult. But as an adult, it is your responsibility to make good decisions. And sleeping with an “addict” right now is not a good idea—not to mention your will be giving away something very precious (your virginity). Like luckyguy said, there are soooo many great guys out there! You need to get out there, live your life, travel, get a great job, decorate your apartment, go out with your girlfriends, date good guys, date bad guys—but the good news is that when you are ready to make a committed relationship, you will have many life experiences behind you and you will be confident in your decision.

I got married at 33. I kissed alot of frogs until I met my husband—some good, some bad. But thank God I waited and was more than ready to get married. We’ve been married for 25 years.

Good luck, honey!

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@LuckyGuy But he’s been sober for almost 3 years. He’s in school and works part time. Just like I am as well.

And @DrBill Sorry to disappoint but I’m not really saving myself till marriage. Just waiting for the right guy, I have no idea when that guy will come around but I would rather wait till I feel emotionally ready and I really like the person I’m with.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@bluiii Thank you for the advice, will keep that in mind and wow, kudos to your husband and yourself for being married for that long. I wish to archive such an accomplishment in the future.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic It does not matter if he has been sober for 3 years. An addict is an addict. It is for life. Ask any graduate from AA.
Second, @DrBill ‘s advice and mine is a way for you help figure out if the guy is “only after physical attraction” (your words). That is just a test. It is better to figure it out earlier rather than later.
if you can reconcile his 10 week girl turnaround time and want to be apart of it, fell free. But remember what doors you are closing behind you. At your age, and with your potential you can do so much better.
I have no skin in this game. It does not matter to me which way you go. It only matters to you.
I wish you well.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@LuckyGuy Oh Okay, guess I’ll have to try that out. Thank you.

deni's avatar

My honest opinion is that I’m surprised and impressed that he decided to tell you outright (and early!) about his past, given that none of it makes him look very good. I think that’s a good sign. If it was 3 years ago he had a drinking problem, that’s a long time, especially at that age. You change a lot. It’s easy to be a dumb 17 or 18 year old and make poor choices that snowball into big issues. But, he told you. And I think that’s a really good thing. But I’m an optimist too so…just feel it out, but make sure you’re honest with him in return like he was to you.

JLeslie's avatar

It’s not only his addiction. He is much older in dating years. I ask again, are you both in school?

marinelife's avatar

The Second Date
Have an experience together. Go white water rafting or ziplining or take a hike. People’s characters really come out when the going gets tough.

Don’t Be in a Hurry.
It is only the second date. It is too soon to know whether he is only after sex. If you plan to stay a virgin until mariage you can tell him that the next time you are talking heavily.

Look Beyond His Past
Find out about his future plans. What does he do for a living? What are his career plans? Does he plan to get married and have a family someday?

Look to Meet His Friends and Family
Since you met him online, you can have no idea if he is telling the truth. You need to see him in his native habitat. Meet his friends and family. See what kind of support system he has.

Take It Slow
Just enjoy his company for now. Don’t be falling for him too quickly. If he is worth it, if the relationship is worth it, that will be revealed in time.

Have Fun But Be Smart and Safe.

gailcalled's avatar

“The fact that he’s being honest”...

How do you know that what he had been telling you is the truth? The best con artists, hustlers, scammers and Bernie Madoffs are convincing liars.

wundayatta's avatar

I would say you are focusing on something that is irrelevant. I think that what you want to know is whether he is actually interested in you, as a person. He can be interested in you as a person, and if he is, and he is a whole person (which could be problematic), then he will want you—all of you—body and soul.

The best way to see what a guy wants is to get to know them slowly. You don’t have to say anything about sex other than you are not ready yet because you don’t feel like you know him well enough yet.

When you feel safe with him, then you might be able to say you know him well enough.

But I feel pretty sure already that he is interested in you, not just some fleeting romance. He asks you questions. He tells you his secrets. People don’t do that unless that have a feeling about someone or if they don’t have boundaries. But there’s a big difference between people who divulge because they have no boundaries and people who divulge because they want you to know.

People without boundaries have a bit of desperation about them. Often then require substances in order to talk. They have a kind of edginess. They get too personal, too fast, usually by divulging things you wouldn’t divulge until you knew someone much better.

When he was a drunk, he might have been like that, but now he should seem more even-keeled and normal. From the way you tell the story, he sounds even keeled to me. But you’re the only one who can know for sure.

Sex is really no big deal. Sure, stay safe. But it is fun, and you can engage in it for fun or for serious, too. It’s not just a male thing. And you can make mistakes, and that is ok. I mean mistakes about people—I’m not talking about getting pregnant. Like I say, if you have sex, you need to protect against pregnancy and diseases, but that’s normal.

I would not worry about finding out if he just wants sex. I would worry about finding out if he is interested in you and in knowing your for a while. There are no guarantees about the future in the long term. But your focus should be on seeing how serious he is, and that means getting to know him, slowly. You never owe him sex. Not for nothing. You owe him your own honesty, though, once you feel like you can trust him. And that takes time. As many dates as it takes. A day, a week, a month, half a year… whatever it takes for you to feel comfortable.

Pazza's avatar

Your only 18, why get into a serious relationship with a 22 year old self confessed alcoholic?
Fine he’s honest, fine you get on, and great that you can look past his past.

But your 18???????
Why not just enjoy each others company?
Go out, stay in, get physical, don’t get physical?

Being a virgin at 18 is no problem, when your ready your ready, just don’t turn it into some biblical right of passage where all manor of rituals and words must be uttered before you loose it, if you tell him it will probably be more of a ‘turn on’, than a ‘turn off’, but know this, he’s 22 and has had lots of sex in the past, and even though he might be ok with waiting for a while until your comfortable, he will be expecting it at some point! There’s only so much self pleasure you can administer before you need the embrace of the opposite sex.

It sounds to me like your looking for the perfect relationship and in my experience your very unlikely to find it at 18, firstly its hard enough to find a good compatible partner in you mid 20’s with a few relationships under your belt, never mind when your just starting out, and secondly I really can’t understand anybody wanting to jump into a long term relationship at 18. You should enjoy being single, single life should be a party, just don’t over indulge, a few teenage years of debauchery could see you a 22 year old recovering alcoholic.

Kardamom's avatar

He’s only 22 and he’s been with 20 girls??? That seems like a lot of women to me, even over a lifetime.

He’s only 22 and he’s a recovering alcoholic? That means that his formative years were spent as a drunk. And because he’s only 22, he is in the age class where most males and females like to go out drinking and go to parties where there is drinking. So most of his friends will be drinkers, unless he dropped all of his former friends when he started to get sober.

He’s not yet been sober for three years? Addictions to drugs and alcohol are hard to beat. I’d say give him 10 years of sobriety before even considering that he’s clean. That may sound harsh, but that’s the reality of addiction (of course there’s always the anecdotes about someone who gave up drinking and was fine ever after, that’s not ususually the case).

That’s nice that he was “honest” with you. Maybe he was and maybe he wasn’t. But I suspect that AA tells people that they need to ‘fess up to other people, that’s part of their treatment, but what was revealed isn’t something I’d want a daughter of mine to get involved with. If he was drunk from say age 15 to 20, he wasn’t learning to be an adult, so technically, his development has been stunted.

Sometimes “honesty” can be very intoxicating and charming to a young woman. You might be thinking that because he’s being honest with me (whether he is or not) must mean that he cares for me. Maybe he does, but you really don’t know him and he doesn’t know you. Talking online is one dimensional (even here on Fluther). So even though you feel like you know him already, you really don’t.

Like @JLeslie said, most fellows, if they’re interested in you for just sex or for a real relationship are going to want to get sexual with you within a month or so. Most fellows can’t/won’t hold out for 6 month or a year while they get to know you for real, which is most unfortunate.

I don’t know if you need to “test” him with telling him that you’re withholding sex until you get married, but you might want to tell him that you don’t plan on having sex with him for six months to a year while you guys really get to know each other. And that would mean him spending time with you and your folks, and with you and your friends and you meet his family and friends, and do lots of things together that don’t include sex. I’m guessing that even if you tried this arrangement, you and he would not be able to stop yourselves from having sex, and that too is unfortunate.

I’m not a prude, I think that in most “normal” circumstances that it’s OK to get together sexually after a few months, and after getting tested for STD’s and after deciding to be monogamous (something that you can never really know for sure is happening) but in this case, because there are so many red flags, I think waiting 6 months to a year while you really get to know him is not a bad idea. If he balks at the idea, you will have your answer immediately. But know that even if you like this idea, it is very likely that he will try to pressure you into having sex before the 6 months to a year is up. And once again, I think you will have your answer at that point.

The other red flag that pops up in my mind about this situation is that because he’s being “honest” with you about his addiction, that puts you in the sweet spot of being his helper or his savior. I know a lot of young, middle aged, and older women who relish the idea of being in that position. Please don’t be one of them.

wundayatta's avatar

If a woman told me she didn’t want to have sex for six months to a year, I’d assume she was playing with me. It would mean that her emotions were held at a distance and that she wasn’t really interested in getting to know me.

I believe that to truly get to know someone, you must be lovers. I have found that the only relationships that ever last in my life are those where we have become lovers. Even lover relationships that don’t last can turn into friendships, but relationships where we were never lovers die and disappear very quickly.

People who make conditions about relationships aren’t terribly serious about the relationship in front of them, I don’t think. They are more focused on some ideal relationship in their head. This may explain why some women I have met like this never get a good relationship. They just never seem to get it that we’re talking about a person, not a formula.

I prefer women with feelings. I prefer it when their feelings guide them, not some calculation. If I find a woman is making decisions based on some calculation or model or formula, it’s a big turnoff. But I’m sure there are plenty of men out there who might like such a woman. I just have a hard time imagining who.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@wundayatta Sure, that would hold if all parties were adults with similar life experiences and circumstances.
The problem is that she is only 18 and is meeting an admitted alcoholic 4 years her senior with a significant past. Erring on the side of caution is warranted.

chyna's avatar

@JLeslie She told you 5 answers above yours that they are both in school.

wundayatta's avatar

@LuckyGuy If that much caution is warranted, then wouldn’t it be best to have nothing to do with the alcoholic at all? If she can’t trust herself to evaluate him in six months, alcoholic or no, then it seems to me she has no business spending any time with him at all.

Of course, he’s not an ogre and a child molester just because he has a brain chemistry issue that he needs to learn to deal with. But I get the feeling that’s how people think of him.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@wundayatta We don’t know if he is definitely an ogre or child molester We do know he’s not a brain surgeon.
We know he’s run through (in?) women on average one every 10 weeks over the past few years. We don’t know if that number is underestimated.
We know he has had a “colorful” past and in now in AA. We don’t know if his attendance is court ordered or if he has a criminal record.
We don’t know if, at age 22, he has totally seen the light and will be loyal, trustworthy, loving partner for the next year. We do know which way the smart money would bet.

The OP is 18, in school, limited experience. Her question was how can she tell if he only wants her for sex. (my words not hers). The best way to tell is to make it clear sex will not be available and see if he moves on.
My thinking is there are so many other people out there with more potential and less baggage, why risk it?

JLeslie's avatar

@chyna Thanks. I missed it. I am going to assume that means they are both in college, and she is not still in high school.

wundayatta's avatar

@LuckyGuy It seems to me you are all but telling her to move on. Why not just tell her to move on?

Kardamom's avatar

@wundayatta He’s not telling her to move on. He’s telling her to give it time to find out what kind of guy he is. And if he runs away at the mention of not having sex until marrige, or for six months, then she’ll know that he is not a good candidate for her. If he sits down with her and discusses things, she might be able to start dating him under limited circumstances to find out how he really is. She doesn’t know that right now.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@wundayatta If I told her to move on – she wouldn’t.

Was my earlier comment: “You are 18. Why on earth would you even consider a relationship with an alcoholic 4 years your senior that you met online? My alarm bells are screaming!”, too subtle?

wundayatta's avatar

@LuckyGuy Was it too subtle? Yes. At least for me. And as you can see, it was too subtle for at least one other person besides me, since @Kardamom didn’t get the message either.

I’m left wondering why you are all but telling her to move on without telling her to move on? Why leave the door open? I see in your mind you are telling her to move on, now.

I mean, fluther is not a place where people are known for holding back. Perhaps yours was a tactic to get her to think she should move on. I can see that.

gailcalled's avatar

^^^ Guys. Take your quarrel elsewhere. PM’s at twenty paces?

wundayatta's avatar

@gailcalled I don’t think this is a quarrel. It is a clarification, and now we have greater understanding.

gailcalled's avatar

I find it a distraction…too long-winded.

wundayatta's avatar

Duly noted. Now if you like, I could argue with you about whether it is an important point or a distraction. That would be an argument, not a clarification. My point is this. If you don’t see this as an important point in this discussion, then I think you have misunderstood the OPs question.

gailcalled's avatar

@LuckyGuy; As @Lucky guy also did?

JLeslie's avatar

I think @LuckyGuy was pretty clear with his opinion.

gailcalled's avatar

Edit. My response above is directed at @wundayatta; I was too busy being exercised to proof read. Sorry.

Kardamom's avatar

IMO she probably should move on and maybe @LuckyGuy agrees, but we both do not think that every situation is completely black and white. Maybe the guy in question could turn out to be OK and they’ll live happily ever after, but if she just jumps into bed with him right away, there is a far better chance that things will go sour on her. If she takes the time to really get to know this guy, maybe there is a chance for them, even though the chance is smaller than if the guy didn’t have the baggage of being an addict. I think that if @LuckyGuy thought she should head for the hills immediately he would have said so. Since he didn’t, he’s giving the OP some wiggle room for the exceptions of the world. Or maybe I’m 100% wrong.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

So I’ve read every single answer and comment everyone’s said to this question of mine. Of course I won’t jump into bed with the guy in less than a month. I’ve decided to meet him for dinner tonight and see how things will go. He was very nice and not to overly sweet on the first date, so it’ll be great to see if anything about him will be different tonight.

As I saw, some of you agreed and disagreed about me meeting him. Some happened to mention the fact that he isn’t a good role because of his past and such. But you know one of my aunts has been with her boyfriend for such a long time. He was involved in even worse addictions, drugs. Though he finally took a step forward through his life and changed into a new person, he’s been sober for the last 10 years if I recall and all is going well for them.

That’s mostly part of why I’ve decided to give this guy a chance.

I see first how things will go tonight… I mean we can be friends if not more right.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Meanwhile, some nice 19 year old sophomore engineering major is wondering if he’s ever going to meet someone he can love.
I wish you well.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@LuckyGuy But there are so many douchebags out there, I’ve gone out with guys a few times and so and it always ends up lasting only a few weeks, I’m starting to think there is no guy for me out there, not being desperate at all but just mentioning it :P

JLeslie's avatar

I am not very worried about the sex, I am more worried about you getting emotionally entangled with someone who will not be good for you in the end. I am not saying this guy will turn out to be bad news, I am only saying that is my chief concern. I don’t know you obviously, but I know many many many women, especially young women, who fall hard fast, and stay mixed up in a relationship that is bad news. If you see red flags heed them, run. You are 18, you aren’t suppossed to already be in a relationship. Sure some people are by age 18, but certainly there is nothing wring with you if you aren’t. Focus on your studies.

Going slow to me has less to do with having sex with this guy and more to do with getting to know him well enough that you see him handle being sad, angry, and supporting you when you need help, and figuring out if he has integrity and a plan for the future. Young virgin girls focus on whether to give up their virginty (that is not a criticism of you, I was that girl once) but adults generally have sex these days, the bigger question is is the guy right for you. If you were 22 like him, probably you would not even ask a question about having sex or not. You would be concerned about what he was planning to do for a living, is he in debt, is he honest, can you see having children with him, etc. I am not saying you should just go ahead and have sex, I hope that isn’t how this sounded.

Kardamom's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic You’re right, there are a lot of douchey guys out there, but you’re only 18 and hopefully you haven’t dated more than 4 or 5 guys in 2 years (I always put the starting age at 16, because at least in the US, that’s when most girls are allowed to start dating).

Where did you find/meet the other guys (who turned out to be douche bags)? Where you look for guys can make a big difference in the quality of guys you find. For me, I would never consider going to an online dating site to find a guy. It’s one dimensional and not always true, what you are reading or seeing (just like with Fluther or any other online site). I need to meet a guy, in a real setting, preferably in a setting where there is some kind of common interest, whether it be a hobby, or a professional setting. And I need quite a bit of time to get to know people before I would ever consider dating them. Talking online does not constitute getting to know someone. It’s a facade (no offense to our own @Facade) LOL.

And getting back to what you said about your aunt and her recovering alcoholic boyfriend. You mentioned that because of her experience, that is why you are willing to give this guy a chance. You need to know that their experience is an exception and not the rule. Most alcoholics struggle all of their lives to stay clean and sober. Plus the fact that his formative years, he was a drunk, means that he has not matured in the natural way.

Your folks sound very kind and supportive, but if I was your parent, I would be horrified and terrified that you would even consider dating a fellow that has so much baggage. You’re only 18.

Why not look for someone closer to your own age? At 18, unless you’ve been something of a floozy (which I’m sure you are not) you can’t have experienced too many fellows. And since the ones you have experienced have been duds, that just tells me that you’re probably looking for love in all the wrong places and possibly setting up standards (maybe hot looking guys) that don’t serve you well.

I can see why you are attracted to this older, former alcoholic. He is looking for someone “kind and understanding” (which you are, and he’s told you so) and he’s looking for someone who’s “non-judgemental” (which you have been) so you feel like you are “helping” him. Maybe you are, but I don’t think he’s going to be of any help to you.

Andthink about the word judgemental, people on Fluther are always asking outrageous questions and then asking for us not to judge them. Everyone judges everyone else, just not in the same ways. That is why the terms “good judgement” and “bad judgement” exist. Try to avoid having bad judgement, because it will bite you a*s in the end.

You need to figure out what you really want out of a relationship and then go from there. If you want somebody who shares common interests and values with you, then you need to get off the computer and start living your dream. What are your interests? Whatever they are, join clubs or go to places where males and females are engaged in those interests.

Take your time and really get to know people. While I agree with @wundayatta that intimate physical relationships are part of a healthy relationship, I do not agree that having sex right away helps you to get to know someone. Why do you feel the need to have sex so soon (you said not within a month)? But why not wait for 6 months or a year, until you really know the other person? I think that any guy who thinks you are “playing a game with them” is not someone worth bothering with. If you explain to any guy you are interested in, that you want and need to get to know them fully before becoming physically intimate with them, you can weed out the douche bags pretty easily. Most guys will run away, immediately, and that should tell you something.

Also don’t settle for someone who has a lot of baggage of issues because that stuff will just become baggage and issues for you. Also, never pick a guy who is a project. People are who they are and they don’t need other people trying to change them, or being their nursemaid or their martyr. And you shouldn’t be a woman who has to put up with someone who has serious issues. Like I said before. Give him ten years of sobriety and then talk to him about a potential relationship. By that time, hopefully you will have found a decent guy that doesn’t have a boot-ful of baggage.

I’m sorry this is so long, but I’ve seen too many good friends and even myself get sucked into less ideal situations because we thought we could help these troubled souls. In the end, we sort of became troubled souls ourselves.

JLeslie's avatar

Oh, guys generally get better as they get older. There are plenty of good guys out there the trick is for you to get a good one, and not settle or get attached to a shitty one. That is exactly what I was talking about above. Sometimes it is cultural. If the people you are around, even the grown aduls, people your parents age, have cheating and lying husband, men who sit around waiting for their wives to serve them all day, men who go out every week without their wives, and generally the women are very unhappy in their marriages, get the hell away from that and break the mold. It is very hard to do. Hard psychologically. Most of the people my husband and I are friends with are happily married (most, we do have a couple friends who have divorced) they love being together, do everything together, you see how united the couples are when you are around them. Most of them have been married over 15 years, some much more. The best way to meet a different type of guy, if I have described what is around you, at your age is to go away to college in my opinion.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

Hi, hope some people are actually still following my thread, so I have finally told him that I have never had intercourse before. He took it the way I expected he would, he was very calm and sweet about it (just to mention, I am not/ haven’t fallen for him or such).
When I mentioned to him that I was a virgin he told me not to be embarrassed or ashamed about it. He asked me why I hadn’t slept with the other guys I had been with before. I told him why. He told me he not the one to pressure people into doing something they don’t wish to with him, he told me he would wait. “There’s no rush, I can wait till you feel comfortable and ready” were his words.

We communicate every single day (not just at night but also during the day). Yesterday he came over for dinner then we spent the night together… all I’m saying is that everything seems to be heading a good way.

LuckyGuy's avatar

That is great. But it has only been one week since you asked this question. And 5 days since he said he did not date virgins. Keep in mind the baggage he is carrying and the hypothetical dialog i posted in your virgins question.
Take it at your own pace. One week is not enough time to make a serious determination.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@LuckyGuy I am a little confused at the link you attached, is that meant for me? Because I don’t think it’s meant for me.

Kardamom's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic I think he got it mixed up with another, similar question form PinkLady.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic Karadmom is right. I confused the two. However in my defense there are some strong similarities. :-)

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@LuckyGuy Oh okay, thank you. I’m checking out her question ;)

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