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How to spot the emotionally unavailable ones

I’ve been called shameless, emotionless, or my personal favorite: a heartless machine. Cynicism has been a part of every single one of my relationships since high school. One of the many downsides to being labeled as a living heart donor is that we tend to cling to what we are familiar with. We end up dating emotionally unavailable people, because that’s what we are. Trouble is, what about when we’re ready to finally see the good in people and settle down?

Recently I found myself clinging to yet another ambiguous batch of dudes, or duds as I’m choosing to call them lately. As someone who used to pride herself on keeping a safe emotional distance from all wrecks, I can tell you that non-committal people are emotionally reserved for one reason only: fear. Fear of being hurt tops the list of evasive under cover lovers. These are the men, and women, who cannot commit outside of physical intimacy. Physically, they’re all there; But, emotionally there is little to nothing available to others.

My insensitivity towards the opposite sex has landed me a spot in line at Friday night movies alone more than I’d like to admit. I’ve become painfully aware that it’s time for me to turn from bitter to better. And, I’m hoping that someone can learn from my experiences and mistakes. Because trust me, if you’re looking to find your soul a mate, then you’re going to want to avoid the emotionally unavailable ones…

Rule #1: Don’t be naïve. If you aren’t going anywhere besides his bedroom, neither is the relationship.

Rule #2: Men (think they) are hunters. Ladies, this means that we have to know when a guy sees us only as a piece of meat. If he’s more into the spandex V-neck sweater you’re wearing than what you’re saying, chances are he’s not into fashion (or you)…just your rack.

Rule #3: Most guys (also known as every single guy I’ve had the pleasure of dating) will never “man up” until they absolutely have to. This includes occasionally breaking away from his mother, his friends, and his Xbox. So, steer clear of the boys and keep your eyes peeled for the men. In my research I’ve found them at charity events, bars that don’t allow tennis shoes, and museums.

Rule #4: Be weary of Chasers. These are the men (or women) who swoop in after, or right before, a potent break-up. I’m talking about the kind of break-up that leaves a bad taste in your mouth and makes your esophagus burn. The Chaser will calm the dizziness and seem like a lifesaver. But, really he/she is an opportunist who loves a chase.

Rule #5: You can’t let fear of being hurt or alone control your decision making. The reality is we’ll all get hurt and we’ll all hurt someone else. It’s the way the dating pool swirls. So, jump in the hot tub, have some fun, and skim out the losers while you still can.

Rule #6: Avoid dating by way of intoxication. It’s no secret we make less than intelligent decisions when there’s excessive drinking involved. If you’re like me and feel awkward in a bar without a drink in your hand, just get a club soda with lime. It’s amazing how easy it is to spot losers when you’re sober.

The beauty of being able to spot the emotionally unavailable ones is that you have the advantage. Now, you get the chance to cut your losses before it’s been six months of chasing someone that, let’s face it, you’ll never have. It’s not because you’re undesirable, but because of issues they have. As a recovering living heart donor I have realized I do have a heart and I am ready to give it to someone. Now, I just have to avoid those emotionally unavailable ones…



  • Shamontiel (Chicago News & Events Examiner) 5 years ago

    I enjoyed this read. I have been on both ends, the one who was emotionally available but only seemed to be attracted to emotionally unattached people and the one who was emotionally unattached as a security measure against those who may be like people in the past. I can't say I'm a fan of either. The heartbreak involved in being emotionally attached is frustrating when you really like someone who isn't as interested in you. But being blahzay about a great person can end up making you ask the "What if...?" question. (Guilty!) But two unemotionally attached people will never bend, so sooner or later both have to. I guess the end situation is to finally give it another go. Anyway, good read. It got me thinking.

  • UhNoThanks 3 years ago

    You need to be intoxicated to force oneself to tolerate the loser Chicago men; they all suck.

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