From the Guys, Guest Post: Is Saying “I’m Busy” the Easiest Way to Weasel Out of A Commitment?
Note: This is the third in a series of guest posts, “From The Guys,” written by two of my friends who blog at Simon and Cole. Over the course of the next few months they will be discussing common misconceptions women have about men and telling stories about relationships and dating from the honest and upfront, dude’s perspective. This third one is from Simon.
For nearly two years now, I’ve been a single guy. I find myself devoting all my time and energy to Simon and Simon’s needs only. It’s great to be selfish at a young age when the only things I want to do when I get home from work are personal, meaning they don’t pertain to other people. You can let your mind run wild with the possibilities, although they’re mostly G-rated and include both active and inactive solutions to the monotony of a 40-hour workweek. You might even say I’m a pretty “busy” guy.
I typically strain myself to keep my best friends close, which keeps me remarkably organized but also unbearably busy. Very few of those friends are females. The few that I do have are girls that I’ve never been interested in and vice versa. I think we’d all agree on the fact that friendships work a lot better when there is no chance of sex occurring. These are all girls that I don’t feel an obligation to. For example, I’d rush to end a phone conversation with them in a second if one of the self-advocacy things I mentioned above were to come up. (In other words, I treat them like my other guy friends).
With a girlfriend or someone whom I am interested in, I wouldn’t do that. I’d go through the drudgery if I got to hear her voice just for a few minutes. Anyone who has fallen for someone knows that it’s worth it. The downside is that when it’s not worth all that time and energy there’s always that moment where you have to break apart and go your own way.
How do these short-lived pursuits play themselves out? Guys like to say “I’m busy” or “I just don’t have time for a girlfriend right now and I’d rather focus on school or my career.” For some, it’s simply a coping mechanism that masks an inability to stay focused on one girl. It’s not that they are actually busy; they just aren’t interested. The fact is, if guys like the girl they go through the everyday mundane commitments in order to pursue a happy relationship.
This isn’t exactly demonic behavior, though. In most cases when guys tell girls that they are busy, they are not being mean (necessarily). They have simply made the mistake of acting upon what would be most pleasurable for that moment and rushed into things with no agenda. This, in fact, may be as simple as a fundamental difference between the way men and women approach dating: men think physical pleasure and don’t prepare for the future, whereas women tend to think rationally and predict what might happen down the road (I can’t tell you how much I envy women for this quality).
Recently, when I was faced with the difficult task of treading lightly with a girl that I hardly knew and had kissed (and only kissed) the night before, I panicked. I knew that the easy way out would be to tell her that I’m busy and that I truly didn’t want a girlfriend. This isn’t the whole picture, however. The fact is, I simply don’t like this girl. She is vibrant, interesting, (and hell, even beautiful!) but she’s just not for me. Without using terse language, I find this phenomenon to be extremely unsettling. Luckily, I get the feeling she feels the same way. There are one or two things about me that don’t settle right in her stomach, and that’s fine. What’s not really okay is lying in order to avoid saying “I don’t like you.”
In the end, we both extricated ourselves from the situation and didn’t tell each other the truth. The lesson here, as always, is to be forthright.
Have you pulled the “I’m busy,” card with someone you really didn’t want to see? How do you approach dating when the chance of meeting someone you don’t like is highly likely? How much honesty do you exercise?