Dating isn’t easy, and can sometimes feel like a rollercoaster ride with all the ups and downs of the experiences with the people we meet. In this week’s Love Essentially column, I offer dating advice about what it was like to date a guy who was hot and cold, and the lessons I learned from it.
Dating Someone Who Is Hot And Cold Leads To Freezer Burn! by Jackie Pilossoph for Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press
I can still remember how I felt several years ago when I was dating a guy who was hot and cold. On our first date, he took me to a really nice restaurant where the ambience was romantic, the wine was expensive and the sparks were flying between us. He acted attentive and kind and affectionate, and he made me feel like I was the only woman who mattered. At the end of the night, we kissed goodnight in my kitchen, and I felt like I was floating on a cloud. I went to bed that night feeling hopeful and happy.
The next day, I was hoping for a text saying something like, “Thanks for a nice night.” Nothing. The day after that: still nothing. A week went by. No call. No text. Nothing. It is these kinds of experiences that make women really hate dating. The promise of Prince Charming takes us as high as the moon, only to have it plunge us deep into disappointment.
I managed to move on, but I always thought about him. Then, out of nowhere, two months later, a text from him: “Been thinking about when we can get together again.” Oooh, I burned with anger. How dare him! Yet at the same time, my heart pounded with excitement. I instantly began rationalizing. Maybe he wasn’t over his last girlfriend. Maybe it was bad timing. Maybe it took being away from me to make him realize how much he liked me.
We went out again. The experience was just as great as the first date, even better. We laughed and talked and kissed and even held hands. But, the roller coaster ride continued, as after the second night he retreated back into his coldness. I got no call or text from him. A few days later, I called and confronted him.
“I’d really like to know what’s going on. You’re hot and cold with me and I’m not sure why,” I said.
“Look, I really, really like you,” he responded. “Trust me, I do. But I was badly burned in my last relationship and I’m really scared to get serious with someone.”
Foolishly, I bought it. In my mind, I was going to save this poor, sweet guy who had been hurt by some mean girl.
So, we went out a third time. This time, we went to a party. He was acting very platonic, distant and cool, like we were just friends. I pulled him aside after a little while and asked, “What are we? Are we friends? Are we more? Can you tell me?”
“I need another drink for that conversation,” he replied jokingly.
I went to bed that night really sad. I lied there thinking, “What can I do to make this man love me? To act like he did on those first couple dates?” The thing is, I realize now that I was addicted to the hot in his hot-and-cold treatment of me. It was like I needed a hit of his drug – the one that made me feel like the only woman on earth. It was killing me that I couldn’t have more. It was a horrible, horrible feeling of lack of control.
Things went on like this with us for a few more months, a pattern of hot and cold, which resulted in super-high highs mingled with constant disappointment and resentment. Then, one day, I said to myself, “Screw this. I deserve better.” I realized I deserved my man to be hot and hot versus hot and cold. And that was the end of the hot and cold guy.
Dating someone who is hot and cold just makes you feel bad about yourself. That is all it does. When the person is hot, you are on top of the world, only to be pulled down (with hurricane-force winds) when he or she decides to be cold again.
So, why do people choose to be hot and cold in certain relationships? What you have to realize if you are dating someone like this is that it has absolutely nothing to do with you! The person could be unhappy in their own life, perhaps is in a bad place and maybe has self-esteem issues.
It’s hard to see it at the time, and any man or woman who has dated in their life will tell you that we have all tried to be the fixer at one time or another in a relationship. Guess what? You can’t fix the hot and cold person. You just can’t. Accept it and get out of the relationship.
A deep, meaningful relationship is one that is hot and hot. It consists of feeling warmth and of feeling loved and cherished all the time – not just sometimes. It is the best feeling in the world.
Looking back at the hot and cold guy, I don’t feel animosity toward him because I think I was an enabler for awhile, letting him treat me hot and cold. That’s on me. I also feel sorry for him because I don’t think he is capable of the kind of emotional intimacy I want in a romantic relationship. And lastly, I feel lucky…(click here to read the rest of the article, published in the Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press.)
Like this article? Check out my blog, “Dating Advice for ‘I want a Real Relationship.'”