too slow
Photo Taken In Cape Town, South Africa

The Lower Brain: Taking It Too Slow?

(Photo by Carina Knig / EyeEm /Getty)

So I go on a first date to this upscale charity dinner for a great cause. It goes great. She asks to keep hanging out, so later that night we go to a bar and then sit in her backyard for hours just talking.

The next day she says she wants to take it slow. I say I understand. She has a young child and recently got out of a serious long-term thing, so I completely get it. I even specifically ask if she wants to just stop talking, no questions asked — we had a fun date and if that’s all it is, that’s okay. She says no, she really likes me and wants to see me again. But she’s been really slow to answer my texts, rarely initiates conversation and wants to wait yet another week to set a second date.

Am I being played? Does she not like me? Is this what taking it slow means?


I Don’t Get It

too slow
Photo: grmarc (Getty)

Dear IDGI:

Are you being “played?” Uhhh, for what? Did she take tons of your money? Is she using you for career advancement? Did she use your beach house and never clean up or pay a dime, all because you’re waiting to see if this will induce her to become your girlfriend? Nah. She just sounds like a woman who is being honest about where she’s at. It isn’t all about you. In fact, very little of this is about you.

Allow me to elaborate.

There’s a country song that says that a first date with a single mom is like a job interview. This is incorrect, obviously. I know plenty of single moms who just want to have fun, or cherish the concept of taking it slow — as this gal clearly does. Many women aren’t interested in bringing a new partner into the child-rearing situation. It is important to remember that a single mother is busier than many folks (myself included) can truly imagine. Adults raised by single parents have greater insight into this, but until you’ve done the job yourself, I’d say it’s still only a partial view of a complex reality.

Related: An Average Saturday Morning: With Kids VS. Without Kids

Think of single parenting as a full-time job where she’s on call 24-7-365 in addition to whatever she may do outside the home. On our busiest day, you and I are at most 25 percent as busy as she is. And that’s okay — we’ve all made different choices in our lives and had different things visited upon us. It doesn’t deny or denigrate your own hard work and full life to acknowledge that she’s probably got more on her plate.

Considering the fact that she just got out of a long-term relationship, it is fantastic that she wants to take it slow. You probably wouldn’t want to throw yourself right into something new — if you did, that something new probably wouldn’t last, because you hadn’t done the work of fully dealing with the last thing.

I enjoy a healthy rebound as much as the next person, but I’ve also had unhealthy rebounds where I tried to instantly co-manufacture some brand new relationship. Respect this woman’s intelligent choice to move forward carefully.

Nothing wrong with taking it slow: You’re A 30-Year-Old Virgin And That’s OK

I understand why you’re worried. You may be used to women responding quickly to texts and calls. In the end, you’ve got to take your hands off the wheel. The worst thing you can do is try to crawl up her ass and live there. Obsessing over this is not healthy for you and certainly won’t make you attractive to her. Healthy people are attracted to people who have full lives. If she wants to hang out again, she’ll let you know.

Live your own life. Look after yourself. Go on other dates if you wish — not to make her jealous, but to explore the vast world of human good times. Maybe she’s busy as f–k. It’s possible she changed her mind about a second date. If it ends up being one lovely evening, and that’s all, then let it be what it was. That in and of itself is a gift.


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