Fellow dating friends,
My guess is we all agree that we are not interested in cheaters, right?
Let’s talk about one of my more recent dates to see what we can learn together about catching a cheater… As far as I know, this is a first for me. It speaks to the increasing moral breakdown of our society when it comes to dating… and I hope we can learn together from it. That’s my goal.
I met a Christian man online. After writing for a bit and then having a phone call, he asked me to go on a date. I canceled our date when he said he wanted to bring his 9-year old son. That was not the way I wanted to meet him for the first time (or his son)!
The next six months were interesting. He was persistent. He connected now and then, letting me know he was thinking of me and wondering if I’d change my mind.” Sometimes I responded and other times I did not.
Over the next few months he continued to pursue me to let me know he wondered if God had reserved us for one another. He said he was praying a lot about us. Here is what was odd though; he didn’t seem to have time to get together because of his second job and he would get back to me when he was more available. It took him two to three months to actually plan a date. That was a flag to me and I let him know I was no longer interested and moving on.
This is where he got to me. He apologized, said he would make the relationship a priority if we connected well and he asked me to give him one date to see what God was up to. He insisted that God was prompting him and he actually made a date. We got together and enjoyed ourselves and he asked me to go out again. I was not available when he asked so I suggested another day. This also was odd; he said I took him by surprise and he would need to think about it and get back to me. The next day he did get back to me and said he would take off work the next day to have lunch with me. I said that sounded good. I also asked him for his last name but he did not respond on two occasions. This also seemed odd. I let him know I was uncomfortable with not having his last name. He made a joke, said it was a fun adventure and that he would give it to me over lunch. I said to him that I was concerned and not having fun. He sent his last name.
When I looked him up, I found all sorts of picture of him on Facebook with a woman, and I found the same on her Facebook page. I let him know that I saw the pictures and he said they were just friends and he still hung out with her. I said that they looked like more than friends, that I didn’t want to get in the middle of their relationship, and that I was canceling our date. He said he would not contact me again. I confronted him on his bad behavior and let him know I would make this known to his pastor to hold him accountable.
Here is what I learned, see if it helps you:
- A lack of availability is a cause for a pause; someone who is available and interested will want to get together sooner than later
- A push/pull is a cause for a pause; look for consistency, not hot and cold
- A disconnect between someone’s words and actions is a cause for a pause; when the person is expressing interest and that God is in this but not following through with getting together, something is not right
- A withholding of information is a cause for pause; get a last name on the first date or sooner then look do your research. In this online world of dating, this is wise
- Address bad behavior for your own mental and emotional health and potentially for the mental and emotional health of others; don’t be a victim of bad behavior and don’t hide from addressing it. Create a better world by speaking the truth in love and with respect when you experience bad behavior
What have you learned from my story or from your own similar stories? Let’s help each other grow by sharing our learning together in a positive way to move forward
Dr. Jeanine Parolini, PhD, MBA, MA