Since You Asked…

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Dear Caroline,

I’m a divorced man, 33 years old. I’ve been dating a woman for the last four months, and now she’s pressuring me for exclusivity. The last time she brought this up, she got angry. I don’t think that was fair. I like her, but I told her up front that I wasn’t looking for a one-on-one relationship.

I don’t want to lose her, and at the moment, I’m not seeing anyone else, but I think things are fine the way they are without any labels or strings attached.

What should I do?


Dear A.V.

You might think things are “just fine the way they are,” but if she’s getting angry, it seems things are quite to the contrary.

At this point, what you told her up front doesn’t matter because she has clearly developed feelings for you. Meanwhile, it sounds like you want to enjoy “the girlfriend experience” while still having the right to play the field.

Once someone is ready for a committed relationship, this sort of ambiguity keeps them on the hook and prevents them from finding the right person. It’s selfish and unfair.

If you have no emotional attachment to her, you should have no problem breaking off this “situationship.” If the thought of losing her upsets you, it’s time to pull up your socks, claim her as your girlfriend and commit to seeing each other exclusively.

There’s an old saying, “If you don’t want a haircut, don’t hang around a barbershop.” Likewise, if you don’t want a relationship, don’t start seeing a woman and doing romantic things with her.

Wishing you both the best.


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