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Is it a date or a mate?

manwoman

Posted by John Aiken, RSVP dating and relationship expert on

Have you ever been out with someone who had a number of great upsides - sense of humour, healthy, good group of friends, ambitious, solid career - but something was missing? On paper they should be a keeper, but instead you feel only friendship for them. In short, they're a mate not a date, and in the long run you're looking for the "X" factor not the friend factor.

It can happen to all of us at some stage of our dating lives. We finally meet someone who we think could be ideal for us but unfortunately every time you're with them, there's just no spark. They make you feel relaxed and happy when you're around them, but you don't want to take it the next level.
For some this can be a very confusing time, and you end up being unable to make a decision on this.

To help you out, here's some telltale signs that the person you're dating is just a mate:

* You don't want to have sex with them

* You flirt with other singles in their company

* You don't have any plans to commit to them

* You're not in love or have intense feelings for them

* You're too busy for them

* You often change your plans with them and let them down

* You shy away from being affectionate with them - particularly in public

* You don't rush to return their calls/ texts/ emails

* You feel uncomfortable when people ask if you're a couple

* You usually try to only go out with them in groups

* You call them friendly names like "buddy", "matey"

* You tend to take advantage of their kindness, time and efforts

Now if you're confronted with this, it's important not to try and fight through it or downplay the signs. Instead, you need to see it for what it is. This person you're dating is lovely - but you're simply not into them in that way.

Your friends might want you together, your family might think they're perfect for you, and on paper they may outshine a number of other potential love interests. It doesn't matter. If your feelings are not there then you need to move on.

Be honest about this with them and never ever lead them on. You can certainly still hang out with them, but both of you must be clear that it's not going anywhere romantic.

John Aiken, RSVP dating and relationship expert, and seen weekly on Ch 7's the Morning Show (www.johnaiken.com.au)
85 comments

Comments


LadyLikesToDance
LadyLikesToDance
PeacefulOne

Those experiences and life lessons have been folded neatly, packed and stacked into vast cerebrum vaults.

Yet emotions, powerful all encompassing emotions,
They gingerly linger.
They haunt and taunt reminding me of what is possible.
But, most importantly, they alluring tempt.

So what's a gal to do?

Put on best frock, heels, brightest lippy and go dancing, like no one's watching.
Peacefulsixty
Peacefulsixty
Hi, LLTD.
Why seek a lobotomy? Why not experience the emotions and learn from them. With all the effort that a male rifle bird puts into his courtship dance (Have you seen it? It's magnificent.), do you see him skulking off into the forest in despair if he is rejected? NOPE! He immediately begins trying to attract another female and perhaps also tries to brush up on his dancing skills.

What might the equivalent approach be for a human female? Get a new hairdo, buy a new dress and get back out there to give it another shot????????

A curious mind wants to know.

Just my 0.02.

You have a wonderful day.
Best wishes.
Peacefulsixty.
LadyLikesToDance
LadyLikesToDance
Only perception you say, PeacefulOne?
Possibly, except I would need a lobotomy to expunge the emotions!

The learning has evolved as these experiences do change and shape us.

Climbing out of a pit of despair even after gut-wrenching betrayals, is an opportunity to mature and grow.
With the benefit of time, support and hindsight, tis best not to linger too long on analysis paralysis, but remember the good and move on.

That's what truly living is all about, isn't it?

Taking risks :)
Peacefulsixty
Peacefulsixty
HI, LLTD.
Further to my earlier post below, would you understand if I said that there is no such thing as a negative experience, only negative perceptions of experiences that have at least as much potential for positivity as they do for negativity?

Just my 0.02.

You have a wonderful day.
Best wishes.
Peacefulsixty.
Peacefulsixty
Peacefulsixty
Hi, LLTD.
"Forgive those who have wronged us?"

No matter what may transpire in our lives or 'befall' us, if we are being TRULY responsible for our own thoughts, words and deeds, we need to take at least the part of the responsibility relating to us choosing to be where it happened when it happened. To put it in simple terms, the perpetrator cannot perpetrate the deed unless the recipient of the deed is somewhere where the deed can be perpetrated. Who made the choice to be there?

Now I suspect that this comment may raise the odd howl of disapproval from one or two readers of this blog and this post but that does not and will not lessen the truth of the statement.

Most people do, say or think the things that they do, say or think because they believe it is in their best interestes to do, say or think those things. What gives anybody else the right to judge whether any of it is either 'right' or 'wrong' for the person who chose to act that way?

If we adopt the approach of not judging but rather of learning from the experience, whether we like it or not, and moving on, taking with us the accumulated wisdom, then anything that we may have previously considered a 'wrong' or a' mistake' on our part then becomes a lesson that needed to be learned and thus an experience to be treasured.

This may not be easy in many cases but it IS a positive approach - - and a healing one..

Just my 0.02.

You have a wonderful day.
Best wishes.
Peacefulsixty.
Todayisthefirst
Todayisthefirst
Hi CroquetTragic,

It's the easiest thing in the world to follow a guy's lead in dancing - if he IS leading confidently there's very little else we women can do.
You guys are the ones moving forward in the majority of the steps, as well as your (usually) taller height giving you a better view of which direction to take to avoid collisions. In my experience, it's very awkward and frustrating for a woman to dance with someone who doesn't know either the dance or can't follow the rhythm ...but if you DO, you'll be in GREAT demand with the ladies.
With respect, if any guy asked me who was going to lead, I wouldn't even be interested in trying.

Soooo, you could - if you wished - invest in some dancing lessons to get you leading more confidently ..... and never again have any woman attempt to lead you. Believe me, I don't know of any who enjoy that .... on a dance floor.

OMG, just realized I sound like I'm agreeing with TG and QMW.
LadyLikesToDance
LadyLikesToDance
"Love your enemies", like love thy neighbour are powerful universal codes of honour to live by, regardless of religion.

Tis only truly beautiful souls who have the capacity to open their hearts to accept, understand and forgive those who have wronged us.

But how much more rewarding is it, mon ami, to reach out, help and heal others?
*smiling at the PeacefulOne*

"Hunger for love, is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread"
- Mother Teresa.
CroquetTragic
CroquetTragic
Thanks for the invitation LadyLikesToDance. No promises but may come to one, though as you have guessed with an answer like that, not quite so likely. I am fairly shy, especially in large groups, I like small groups or one on one if I get on with the other one. I swing from social to shy especially when it comes to dancing. I have not danced for over 20 years except for recently with my ex partner about 4 years ago. We did a lot of tripping and stopping. I can waltz, jive and not bad with the dancing with someone else who does not know I am dancing with them type. Anything can happen and a lot depends on how confident I am feeling. Why I do not know but I often find partners who want to lead. Sometimes I remember in Aus it is common, but when I forget often have to stop and ask who is going to lead.
Peacefulsixty
Peacefulsixty
Hi, Arcadia1.
Welkum too ther blogggs.

I too have studied Touch For Health-Kinesiology and Spiritual Healing, the FREE version of reiki without the price tag and the ritual and I learned a LOT of things about thoughts, 'feelings', 'emotions' and disease during these studies. F'rinstance, almost all, if not ALL, physical health issues have an emotional cause. I also learned that if people can't love themselves, there is precious little chance that they are going to be able to love anybody else in any meaningful way.

I would qualify your friend's comment/query by suggesting that if a member of the opposite sex is going to be a long-term lover in an on-going relationship that 'ackshully' means something to both parties, then they would also need to be a friend, hopefully, the BEST friend.

Then again, there is the old saying, "Love your enemies. It drives 'em nuts."

Just my 0.02.

You have a wonderful day.
Best wishes.
Peacefulsixty.
arcadia1
arcadia1
I had a friend once who studied kineisology and reiki and she had the opinion about the opposite sex that they should demonstrate the ability to Be a friend, as she said " Why would she sleep with anyone who was not a Friend" scary I guess one has the ability to get to know a friend more than someone who is coming from romantic feelings which can be quite irrational and blindside one.
LadyLikesToDance
LadyLikesToDance
CroquetTragic, we have a large group of sassy Sydney singles who meet socially for that exact reason.

Perhaps at the next RSVP Greenwood or CityTatts function, we could all catch up :)
CroquetTragic
CroquetTragic
Realistically I think the odds of meeting members of the opposite sex as friends has to be higher than meeting them a potential mates. Why not enjoy those as friends that become friends and let the lovers emerge. I am fortunate that I have a lot of friends of both sexes and find I can flirt with some who could be potential but turn out to be friends. Enjoy what we have is what I say.
MumofWCC
MumofWCC
Yes you can have a great friendship out of non-physical attraction - I have!!! He is my best friend and I would give my life for him in a blink even though the bonkability isn't there for me. These blogs are interesting however some of you do appear to be rather too serious about others' comments which, I feel, is dangerous as you aren't able to pick up on the subtleties of nuance which is lost in the written word...
Peacefulsixty
Peacefulsixty
Hi, Tinkerbelle57.
On the principal that where there is smoke, there is at least enough of some form of heat or chemical reaction to create it, I long ago began living my life with the approach that any uncertainty probably had some basis in fact, regardless of how obscure that fact might be. If smoke is observed, reach for the fire extinguisher.

Most women - and a few men - have at least some level of intuition working for them. Trouble is - - - way too often, they try to second-guess it and only add to the confusion. Personally, I think there is some good value in the old Chinese proverb, "Truth is the thought you have BEFORE you start to think."

Put the questions in the appropriate places. If you don't get beleivable AND convincing answers, take self-preservatory action. And always remember that there are lies where a deliberate untruth is told and there are also lies where the truth is deliberately NOT told. Each is as potentially hurtful as the other

Just my 0.02.

You have a wonderful day.
Best wishes.
Peacefulsixty..
amberlirose
amberlirose
Hi Peaceful,
Good luck - I hope it all turns out well for you.

I identify with where you are coming from Tinkerbelle.
While I also 'get it' that there are some who prefer not to know the truth - I am not one of those people and I get angry when people think they have the right to decide if I can handle it or not.

I think a child's natural instinct is to be truthful - but we are often taught to lie.
My own mother was a good case in point - she would tell you not to lie but when you told her the truth she would always react badly.
And you usually got a belting.
As a child I learnt to lie to survive - as a teenager and an adult - I decided that what I wanted was for others to tell me what they really thought.
But people need to feel 'safe' to be able to do so.
So although it might hurt me at times- the truth allows me to make informed choices - so I always try to remember to thank them for their honesty.

To receive honesty, like you I agree you have to give it. Up front and kindly as you can.
Even if others do react badly :)
LadyLikesToDance
LadyLikesToDance
Justa, having been accused of being "mentally switched off", I am now more aware of how I communicate.

Old habits die hard, but with conscious effort and persistence, new ones can be developed.
Tinkerbelle57
Tinkerbelle57
Yes Peaceful, the hurt factor can be huge and I am all for minimizing it for both myself and others. Having said that, I prefer the truth, no matter how much I may not like it or how hurt I may be by it. I have lived the "alternative" and that did hurt and I didn't like it.

I find that not knowing the truth, (mine or others) leaves me in a place of uncertainty and confusion. I find I am missing the clarity and the information I need to make informed decisions/choices about my life and my future. I am responsible for me, what I want and what I don't want. Should I choose not to share this, then I feel it limits my chances of receiving what I want and what I need. I know a lot of people wont put themselves "on the line" in this way and that is ok, that is their choice and I get that. I just remain hopeful that others will, and from this place of mutual trust and respect we can create something that is beautiful and meaningful to both of us.
Peacefulsixty
Peacefulsixty
Hi, Amberlirose.
Yes, I have been a bit quiet here but there has beena fair bit of cyber-traffic between here and South Africa lately - - - which has resulted in me booking air fares to Jo-burg and return over Christmas and New Year to hold some discussions about forming a forward planning committee for a possible joint venture.

On the subject of dedicated 'truth massagers', one of my favourite pastimes is coming across a real narcissist, listening to some of their lies for a couple of rounds and then tripping them up.This ALWAYS results in a RAPID right-angled turn in the conversation 'cos they can't handle being caught out. (I don't have much time for most narcissists 'cos most of them get their jollies by emotionally hurting other people.)

Hi, Tinkerbelle.
Being totally honest with yourself is quite often the hardest form of honesty. Often, we would like things to 'be' one way and they ain't but we don't want to admit they ain't. Who gets hurt? Usually the self-deceiver but not uncommonly others do too.

Hi, Libbyau101.
Good profile and nice 'bait'. How-wevver, some people can be a bit sensitive to sarcasm - - - been there, done that.

Also, your habit of coming right out and saying 'it' may scare some people off but it may also be a good 'filter' by getting rid of the ones who are perhaps not as up-front.

Just my 0.02.

You all have a wonderful day.
Best wishes.
Peacefulsixty.
oooUNIQUEooo
oooUNIQUEooo
Whats wrong with being mates and dating?

Or dating a mate?

If you're attracted to them...
Justa50sguy
Justa50sguy
Hey Libby,

Maybe you are mentally "switching off", and some of the guys that you are meeting that might interest you are picking up on that...you've let the bad ones create a negative impact in your mind?

The problem with forming friendships is just that for some of us....if you get to the stage of interest, then it an feel really weird to look for something more from that person (not to mention the fear of losing someone special to you?

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