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“He Told Me He’s Too Busy for Me. Should I MOA?”

I met a great guy a few months ago. He has a lot going for him in all aspects and is genuinely a wonderful man. Unfortunately, since he attends a great university and is a leader in several student organizations, he has limited free time, which he spends going to events with his frat brothers, catching up on sleep and finishing his school work. We don’t talk on a daily basis and we barely text, but when we are together (which is once every 2-3 weeks) we have a fabulous time and we can talk for hours. I have been pushing him to talk to me and see me more often, but he claims he has no time and he will be more free in the future. When I told him he’s probably not ready for a relationship he responded that although he is extremely productive and doesn’t have time for a relationship, he doesn’t want to let a good opportunity (being with me) pass by and have another man “steal” me away from him.

In his past, his ex-girlfriend was with him on a daily basis (even while he was extremely busy) and he felt his personal space was invaded. I don’t want to invade his personal space at this early of a time by forcing him to hang out with me more. But at the same time, we have known each other for three months and are exclusively seeing each other, so is his request for space an indicator I need to move on? By straightforwardly admitting he doesn’t want to miss his chance with me (even though he is extremely busy), is he being selfish? I am lost and confused if I should really wait for this “free time” he will have in the future or if this guy is just wasting my time. — Non Space-Invader


Yes, of course, this guy is being selfish! He wants you to be exclusive to him so he won’t lose you to someone else, yet he’s unwilling to give you any of his limited free time, preferring instead to spend it with his frat bros? If not selfish, what else would you call that kind of behavior? And you’re totally enabling him. Why in the world are you settling for these “crumbs of a relationship”?

I’ve got news for you: this guy isn’t all that special. It sounds like he — and you — thinks he is, but this whole “I’m so busy” bullshit he keeps spewing is just that: bullshit. I mean, sure, maybe he’s busy, but guess what: we all are. Aren’t you busy? I know I am. I won’t even bore you with the details of how time-consuming running this site is — from creating content, reading and replying to the numerous letters I receive each day, managing ads and affiliates, promoting the site, monitoring comments, blah, blah, blah. And that’s just the work side of my life. I also have friendships to juggle, relationships with my family and in-laws to maintain, a home to keep clean, meals to prepare every day, birthdays to remember, gifts to buy, plants to water, travel plans to make, episodes of “Breaking Bad” to catch up on, and, oh yeah, a baby to prepare for. And you know what? I still make plenty of time for my husband. Why? Because I want to. Because people who want to be in relationships make time for them.

Clearly, this guy you’re seeing doesn’t want to be with you. He may recognize that you’re a great catch. He may realize you’re a cool person who, if he were looking for a girlfriend, would make an ideal one. But that’s not what he wants. If he did, he’d make time for you. End of story. You sticking with him — excluding all other options — is just … well, it’s kind of pathetic. I mean, what the hell do you get out of it? Nothing. Just the feeling that you’re of little value. And don’t tell me you don’t feel that way. How could you not when you’re exclusively dating a guy who’d rather sleep than hang out with you? The fact that you actually used the phrase “force him to hang out with me” should be an indicator of the value he places you at. MOA, darlin’, and stick with people who don’t have to be coerced into spending time with you.

*If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com and be sure to follow me on Twitter.

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{ 76 comments… add one }

  • avatar callmehobo June 6, 2011, 12:13 pm

    Amen, Wendy.

    LW, you deserve to feel wanted. “Force him to hang out” with you??? YOU ARE NOT A PUNISHMENT!

    This is almost a maxim on this site, but if a guy wants to be your boyfriend he won’t waste time acting like anything else. Dude is selfish. Go hang out with some people who realize how awesome you are.

  • leilani leilani June 6, 2011, 12:22 pm

    LW, you’re making this way too easy for him. You’re willing to be exclusive to him while he keeps you on the back burner behind all of his other priorities. Why would he want to let that kind of opportunity pass him by?? He gets to have his cake and eat it too, while you remain completely unsatisfied. If you’re willing to settle for that little, that’s what you’re going to get. I think you need to express to him that the way things are going are not cutting it for you, and that you’re ready to move on if he isn’t prepared for a bigger time commitment. If he really doesn’t want to lose the chance to be with you, he’s doing it wrong, because you (hopefully) aren’t going to put up with being treated like this for very long. If all goes the best it can, it will be the kick in the pants he needs to realize that if he wants a relationship with you, he needs to put in the effort that is expected of any guy you’re dating. More realistically, he’ll tell you again that he doesn’t have time to be your boyfriend, and hopefully, you’ll listen.

    • avatar Brooklyn June 6, 2011, 7:15 pm

      Truthfully, I think she should just start dating other people. Usually I’m all for talking things out, but in this case I’m not sure its worth it. Best case scenario: he will decide to date you. But in the end he will probably feel forced into it and then resent you later on.

      Date others and still date him if you want. When you aren’t so available to him and he asks why, tell him the truth. The truth that you knew he didn’t have time to be your boyfriend and others asked you out so you decided to since you were interested in them too and they were willing to make time. Maybe he will get his act together, maybe he won’t, but either way you won’t be waiting around for some dude that doesn’t deserve you.

  • avatar The_Yellow_Dart June 6, 2011, 12:23 pm

    I definitely agree with Wendy. Even though this guy might have an enviable education, leadership roles in several organizations, and a swoon-worthy presence when you are together, can you really call a guy who unabashedly neglects you a “great guy”? I think not. MOA and spend some time determining what your “great guy” really needs to have – from your letter, it seems like “respect” and “willingness to spend time together” should be near the top of the list.

  • avatar Bethany June 6, 2011, 12:26 pm

    I didn’t actually read the letter yet, but if that’s really what he said, I don’t need to. Clearly the answer is YES-MOA!!!

  • avatar Spark June 6, 2011, 12:27 pm

    No matter how busy we are, it is ALWAYS possible to make time for the things we truly care about. If he wanted to make time for you, he could. It almost sounds like he doesn’t want to hurt your feelings, so he is leading you on by saying how great you are and how he doesn’t want to lose you. I know it hurts to hear, but I don’t think his heart is in this one. :-(

  • avatar melikeycheesecake June 6, 2011, 12:30 pm

    This is becoming a common question on this site.

    If he won’t.. not can’t… because everyone CAN make time for the people they care for.. anyways.. if he won’t make time for you then MOA… I promise you there are men out there that will give you the time and attention you deserve.

  • avatar Jshizzle June 6, 2011, 12:31 pm

    Next time he wants to hang out tell him that you feel your personal space is being invaded, that you wish to cut back to once every couple of months, and that you will be seeing other people, but you don’t wish to lose him to someone else.

  • avatar Seattle _lili June 6, 2011, 12:34 pm

    WOW. This letter could be written by my ex’s new gal-minus the school stuff. I agree with Wendy’s response, any man that isn’t making time for you doesn’t value being with you enough. I must admit that I like the ex-gf in the letter probably did ‘invade his space’ a bit, but its a deceptive web these men weave with their so-called importance. I say for the sake of YOUR self esteem, MOA. It really starts to wear on you being given these crumbs as Wendy mentions and then you start to think of him as being ‘better than you’ because so many people want a piece of him anything he gives you is oh so special. Its crap. This is just a guy who can’t say no and IF he values you enough, he SHOULD WANT TO hang out more often. Schedules for men like him never really ‘free up’ it HAS to be something he arranges, and neglecting you this early on is NOT a good sign.

  • avatar PFG-SCR June 6, 2011, 12:35 pm

    “…he responded that although he is extremely productive and doesn’t have time for a relationship, he doesn’t want to let a good opportunity (being with me) pass by and have another man “steal” me away from him.”

    Just because he says a semi-sweet comment doesn’t make that overall statement endearing in any way – he is being selfish. He’s trying to call “dibs” on you without even making any effort whatsoever, and by doing that, it keeps you waiting for him, only to get his attention and time when he is interested. To be quite blunt – if he liked you enough, he’d make time. Trust me, he would. But, he doesn’t, and you’re getting nothing from this relationship that you want. So, stop wasting your time and stop allowing him to disrespect you in this way. And, stop letting him think that he can calls “dibs” on girls because he’s so “amazingly awesome” that they’ll just accept what little he gives them.

  • avatar Emma Woodhouse June 6, 2011, 12:37 pm

    Yep, I’d definitely say MOA! Let him miss you. He’s not ready for a girlfriend right now and you’re obviously not in the same place in your lives. If and when the timing is right, it will happen, and he WILL make time for you because he’ll have grown up and will understand how vital that is. If not, you’ll find someone who is ready to treat you the way you deserve to be treated and you’ll be so much better off for it.

  • avatar phoenix287 June 6, 2011, 12:43 pm

    Amen Wendy!!!
    “Because people who want to be in relationships make time for them.”

    I wish there was a way to burn this line into everyone’s mind so that no one would ever settle for the crumbs of a relationship.

  • avatar ReginaRey June 6, 2011, 12:43 pm

    It’s such a simple rule, but so many of us women just CAN’T see or understand it.

    Right now he is making time for everything he WANTS to make time for – classes, school work, extracurricular activities. Don’t be fooled into thinking everything he does is an obligation that he’d really rather NOT do. If that were the case, he’d be even more eager to spend time with you – something that is NOT an obligation, and something that is purely enjoyable and fulfilling. He’s telling you he doesn’t have time because he doesn’t WANT to make the time for you. If he was head-over-heels, dying to be with you, he would be sacrificing sleep, some time with those frat buddies, and a few other things in order to make it happen. Guys are pretty hard to stop when they want to be with someone.

    Right now, for instance, one of my best friends just started seeing a very busy grad student. He has a job, a huge grant proposal due this week, and he has STILL asked my friend multiple times when she’s available to hang out.

    And you know what? Keeping in touch with someone you want to keep in touch with isn’t that hard! Texting isn’t that damn hard! If he wanted to, he could! It’s easy and quick and you can do it while you work/study/hang out with friends. Guarantee you he’s texting his friends to set up times to hang out with THEM. Girl, MOA. Stop settling for the few hours this guy is deigning to give you.

    • katie Katie June 6, 2011, 10:22 pm

      “Guys are pretty hard to stop when they want to be with someone.”

      I think that is especially true! I knew guys in high school who would completely cut off all other things (friends, sports, whatever) to be with a girl. a friend of mine in college would save up all the money he could (ie. not hanging out with us if we were spending any money whatsoever) so he could drive to see his girlfriend a couple times a month. now granted, girls do this to, but i feel like there is definitely a little bit of a different way that guys do it.

  • avatar Maracuya June 6, 2011, 1:01 pm

    This is kind of an open and shut case, isn’t it? I’m sure he dumped his ex-girlfriend because his version of ‘invading his personal space’ equates with anyone else’s ‘wants to be acknowledged.’ Hanging out with you doesn’t preclude him from hanging out with his bros.

    At best, you see each other bimonthly. At worst, once a month. You guys go to the same school. You are literally a walk away and he can’t be bothered to say, “Hey, let’s grab a quick dinner or lunch together at the [cafeteria, dining hall, student union.]“

  • avatar lexie.b June 6, 2011, 1:12 pm

    If he wants to be with you, he will find a way to be with you. I’m sure there have been times in your life when you were dating someone and had a million things on your plate already, but still managed to make time for the guy you were seeing. Isn’t it only fair that we should expect the same?

    I know I was in a similar situation and I let it go on way to long. By the time I ended the relationship I felt so worthless and unwanted because he never did come around to giving me the attention I was hoping for. You’re better on MOA because these types of situations are a high risk to damaging your self esteem, and ultimately it’s just not worth it!

  • avatar cdobbs June 6, 2011, 1:12 pm

    Classic example of a guy who “wants his cake and eat it too!”. LW, MOA and find a guy who isn’t a selfish jerk!

  • avatar lk June 6, 2011, 1:30 pm

    My highschool sweetheart became exactly like this once he joined a fraternity. By the end of sophomore year, I had to instigate a new date-night policy where – in addition to emails/lunch/study breaks – we had to have one committed night together. He blew it off one week, I told him I needed 2 weeks no contact to give us both time to think about what we needed during that transitional time. He blew it off again, and that was the end of our 3-year relationship. It was hard because I loved him and I could tell he really was trying to do the right thing by being “productive” and make the most out of his college experience.

    LW, this guy is not a bad guy but his priority right now is not you (you don’t even make the top 10!) and that won’t work.

    • avatar SpaceySteph June 6, 2011, 1:49 pm

      “this guy is not a bad guy but his priority right now is not you (you don’t even make the top 10!) and that won’t work”

      Maybe agree with this (the “not a bad guy” part). It is possible that he really just lacks the self-awareness to see that what he’s asking of you is unfair. In college you think your life is so jam packed* only to find after college that you had tons of free time that you mostly spent sleeping or goofing off. If you tell this guy that you are not going to wait around for him to decide to have time for you, he may wake up and realize that he CAN make time for you. Or he may, a few months down the road actually find time for you. If this is the case, he might deserve a chance. But I would tread carefully, because this “I’m too busy” has all the makings of a line used to get what he wants without any sacrifices and that is not something anyone wants in a partner.

      *This doesn’t go for everyone– the people who are working full time or have kids and are taking a heavy courseload or have other special circumstances have my utmost respect; frat bros who string girls along do not.

      • avatar lk June 6, 2011, 2:21 pm

        ^^ Agree.

        Whether he’s using her for…um…”a fabulous time” or if he really does enjoy that they can “talk for hours” (pillow talk??)…either way, MOA.

    • avatar missarissa June 10, 2011, 2:59 pm

      The “date night” thing really important with super busy people. And you can actually be too busy to spend a “reasonable” amount of time with someone, but you BOTH have to figure out the solution to that problem.

      My BF just started a two year grad school program that takes up every other weekend, in addition to his 50+ hour work week. I’m no better, as I work on average 60+ hours a week, including most weekends. We’ve talked to people who have gone through his program before, and others like it, and they all stress the importance of “date night” where you focus on your partner and don’t let anything get in the way. (The unfortunate thing is that I am the one who can’t commit to never cancelling date night (the all-powerful blackberry reigns supreme above all else)). He just started and we have only had one date night so far, but it seems like its going to be key. (And he understands that date night can only be cancelled for work-reasons, not school reasons, as the goal is to make sure our relationship doesn’t get lost, not to wreck our careers).

      Wish me luck?

      (we also live together, so at least we can curl up to the other person

  • avatar SpaceySteph June 6, 2011, 1:38 pm

    I would like to point to that beacon of American cinematic brilliance, John Tucker Must Die: In this movie, the titular character tells girls he’s too busy with school and basketball to have a relationship, so he doesn’t want to publicize their relationship or call her his girlfriend. Because he just gave that line to two other girls who also fell for it.

    This guy is not your boyfriend. Nor does he want to be. At best he’s just kinda oblivious to how ridiculous he is, at worst he’s using you and possibly several other girls. MOA!

    • avatar Seattle _lili June 6, 2011, 1:46 pm

      Oh ya…since we had an ‘amicable’ breakup, my ex wanted to remain friends and still meet up occasionally. He met up with me for drinks almost weekly during the same time he first started going out with his new girl. I told him we had to stop meeting once I found out about her, because if he really is as pressed for time as he says, why is he spending any of his free time with me, the ex? Shouldn’t he save all of that precious free time for her. I think he was keeping me around for booty calls now that I look back and am disgusted at his arrogance in juggling us both but it goes to show how much my self esteem suffered while i was with this ‘important and busy’ man…

    • avatar Krissy June 6, 2011, 1:51 pm

      Yep! I’ve heard this line before also. He was just SO busy with all the important work he had to do… Turns out he had a girlfriend…

  • avatar spaceboy761 June 6, 2011, 1:47 pm

    He’s using you for sex and doesn’t care about you at all.

    • avatar PFG-SCR June 6, 2011, 1:57 pm

      And, that’s obviously not even that often since they only see each other every 2-3 weeks!

      • avatar lk June 6, 2011, 2:25 pm

        Totally only worth it if you’re getting used for sex >1x/week

        • avatar PFG-SCR June 6, 2011, 2:44 pm

          Once a week? No way I’d be used for sex unless it was at least once a day. Sheesh, a girl has needs.

    • avatar SGMcG June 6, 2011, 11:29 pm

      So what species jerk is he?

  • avatar redessa June 6, 2011, 1:48 pm

    I think this is the very definition of stringing someone along.

    He’s got other priorities in his life right now besides dating and that’s fine. That doesn’t make him a bad guy. What *does* make him kinda douchy is this idea that he wants you to put your life on hold until he is ready for a relationship. There’s nothing about this that that should be okay with you. If you really think he’s the kind of person your could eventually build something with, then tell him to call you when he’s ready to be a real partner to someone. If you happen to be single, maybe you’ll consider going out with him again. But for heaven’s sake, don’t sit around waiting for that day to come.

  • avatar katiebird June 6, 2011, 1:56 pm

    LW, my boyfriend sounds just like yours, fraternity, involved in a bunch of campus organizations, busy academic schedule, except for one thing; he makes time for me because our relationship is important to him. It *is* possible to balance all those things your listed and a relationship, so don’t listen to him when he says it isn’t. No matter how busy your guy may say he is, if he wanted to make time for you, he would and could do it. MOA, you deserve a lot better.

  • avatar silver_dragon_girl June 6, 2011, 2:38 pm

    Good grief. He’s treating you like any other resume-building activity in college. He’s in a fraternity, is a “leader” in student organizations, attends a “great school” and spends his free time “catching up on sleep and doing his schoolwork.”

    He’s playing you. You know what college guys do in their spare time? They text and hang out with girls. They go to parties and try to meet girls. They think about girls. Not saying homework and sleep aren’t tucked in there somewhere, but come on. He sees you as wife material and he’s so focused on “living the dream” that he’s trying to hang onto you. If you stay with him, I predict your life will go something like this:

    His graduation: proposal.
    His MBA graduation: wedding immediately after.
    His first promotion at “the firm”: announce baby #1 on the way.
    2 years later announce baby #2 on the way.
    He makes partner! Misses both kids’ birthday parties but buys expensive gifts.
    15 year anniversary: buys you diamonds.
    6 months later: you discover the affair(s). More diamonds. Promises.
    2 years later: he announces he wants a divorce. Has met a 23-year-old intern at his office and wants to marry her.
    Live off alimony.

    …Ok, that was pretty ridiculous. But think about it.

    • avatar SpaceySteph June 6, 2011, 2:54 pm

      While it may be a bit of a tall tale, I do see one theme here that I am pretty sure is gonna come true. All of these milestones are about him. He does this, he gets that, he wants a divorce. Nothing about what you do, what you get, what you want. He has already set that precedent early… He’s too busy, he doesn’t want to let some other guy get you, he wants to keep you around. What about what you want? You want a boyfriend who will actually WANT you, care about you, spend time with you. (And, if thats not what you want… it should be.)

    • avatar ReginaRey June 6, 2011, 2:56 pm

      I don’t think it’s that ridiculous. I think there’s something to be seriously considered about that timeline. Sure, some guys might eventually get to where they envision themselves, then start prioritizing a relationship. But if someone values all of those extracurriculars right now, they aren’t going to vanish when he graduates… just be replaced with other things. He’s always going to be on to the next big thing, and you’ll always be left saying, “Well maybe after his MBA, or after he passes the bar, or after he makes partner, or after he gets underway with his business…” You’re constantly left clinging to the hope that he’ll FINALLY be satisfied one day, and he never will. I don’t think that really changes in a person over time. If someone is busy and clearly enjoys being busy, no amount of effort on your part will ever change it.

      • avatar SpaceySteph June 6, 2011, 3:03 pm

        Who’s the advice columnist who says ‘you teach people how to treat you?’ (Its not Wendy, is it? I’ll feel way dumb if it is)
        But anyways, if you stick around then you are teaching him its ok to treat you this way. To put his needs miles in front of yours, to ignore your needs completely even. He goes from being busy big man on campus to being busy husband who never comes home for dinner then busy father who never sees his children and you are left taking care of everything else (house, kids, bills, holidays, HIS parents’ birthday presents, etc.) all by yourself because he learned and over time convinced you that your needs don’t matter.

        • avatar silver_dragon_girl June 6, 2011, 3:08 pm

          Exactly (to you both). I am really curious about this LW…she says nothing about what her life is like without this guy. Is she in school too? Working? What’s her social life like?

          I’m kind of worried that this is a case of, “OMG he’s so amazing and he’s going to be so successful, I can’t believe he wants ME!” I mean, I’m the first to admit I’ve been guilty of that. If you’re not living the most successful of lives at the moment, it can be VERY easy to start thinking about hitching your wagon to someone else.

          • avatar GertietheDino June 6, 2011, 6:28 pm

            I was that girl too. Until I realized what a vain, selfish, manipulative ass he was and it made me so depressed that I wasn’t his priority, just a convenience. Status and success mean nothing if you don’t like who you when you are with someone.

        • avatar redessa June 6, 2011, 6:22 pm

          It’s Dr Phil. He says that all the time.

      • avatar Brooklyn June 6, 2011, 7:29 pm

        Wow. That was the stuff epiphanies are made of.

  • avatar Painted_lady June 6, 2011, 2:54 pm

    Also, can I just point out the LW knows that her bf and his last girlfriend broke up because she was too invasive of his personal space? LW, I don’t know the context of this knowledge, but it sounds like one of those tricks of the professionally manipulative: he’s essentially saying, hey, another girl tried to voice her needs, and look where she is.

    Anyone – male or female – who makes that kind of implicit threat is not playing fair. What that does is stop you from being honest for fear of being dumped, and then he gets to be free as a bird without your ever asking for anything.

    • avatar ReginaRey June 6, 2011, 2:58 pm

      Couldn’t have said it better. He set her up PERFECTLY with that…he tells her that and boom, she’s acting exactly like he wants her to.

      • avatar Painted_lady June 6, 2011, 5:21 pm

        Exactly! It kind of reminds me of a Friends episode – Phoebe’s dating a new guy who won’t sleep with her, and when she asks why, he says it’s because he’s worried that she’s one of those women to whom sex is a big emotional commitment. She assures him that she’s not going to expect anything from him, they have sex, and she goes home and tells Joey. Joey freaks out and says that the guy is his hero because he can get a woman to sleep with him and promise she won’t expect anything after. It’s sort of a brilliant commentary on how some women are so terrified of being seen as some sort of stereotypical harpy that all a man has to do is insinuate that x, y or z is indicative of that kind of behavior to ensure that he can do whatever he wants and never have to be held accountable.

  • avatar mcminnem June 6, 2011, 2:58 pm

    It is so unbelievably true that a guy who wants to be your boyfriend won’t waste any time acting like anything but your boyfriend. (Also applicable to girl/girlfriend.) I’ve seen both:

    When I was in high school and met my first boyfriend, *I* was the guilty one – I liked him, and I liked having a boyfriend, but making time to hang out outside of school (more than, say, once every couple weeks) seemed like too much work. Not much of a relationship. I ended up resenting him for wanting so much of my time, and I finally realized that if you dread having to fit someone into your schedule, you do NOT care for that person enough to be in a relationship. We only dated for about six months before our couplehood imploded.

    When I met my current boyfriend, he was working full time and I was in my third year at university. He had work and business travel to deal with and I had a full course load and was going home every weekend to work. We still texted or IMed every day, and saw each other a least twice a week. The first couple weeks, he was coming out to meet me at 5:00 (a time I suggested because I figured that’s when he’d get off work and his office was close by.) I later found out that he was technically supposed to work until 6:00 – he had been going in to work early so he could leave at 5:00 and take me out. He never mentioned it; just “sure, that’s fine, can’t wait to see you”.

    If this guy really liked you, and wanted to make time for you, he’d already be doing it.

    • katie Katie June 6, 2011, 10:30 pm

      thats a really sweet thing for your boyfriend to do!

  • avatar ele4phant June 6, 2011, 4:11 pm

    Am I the only one who thought this was a bit harsh on the guy? They’ve only been dating a few months (can you even really call somebody your boyfriend after 2 to 3 months – what happened to getting to know someone and becoming serious over time?), and while I still think she should move on, its not because he’s selfish, its because their conceptions of what a relationship should be are different.

    She wants to be with someone frequently. He wants to date more casually and not make his relationship one of his main focuses. Its clear its not personal, because he wanted this with his ex too. This isn’t bad or selfish, they just don’t want the same kind of relationship. They should break-up because they are not right for one another. She should find someone who wants the same level of involvement she does, and let him find some super independent chick.

    If they had been dating several years, then yes, he would clearly been in the wrong. But they are still in the early months. Its time to recognize that they aren’t a match and move on.

    • avatar fearfulsymmetry June 6, 2011, 5:42 pm

      I COMPLETELY agree with you. I think Wendy and most of the comments I’m reading are way too harsh. I just think that the LW writer and her boyfriend are simply not compatible. She should move on and find someone that can give her what she needs and her boyfriend can do the same. I also find it ridiculous that you got anu thumbs down because I think your comment was the most rational on here! Everyone else is being too harsh and brutal, I wonder if they have a stick up their ass or something.

    • katie Katie June 6, 2011, 10:36 pm

      I disagree- but only because the guy told her that “although he is extremely productive and doesn’t have time for a relationship, he doesn’t want to let a good opportunity (being with me) pass by and have another man “steal” me away from him.”

      that to me means that he wants an exclusive relationship, not a casual one. an exclusive relationship takes time and energy, and much more face time then once or twice a freaking month. i think that he is one of those all the benefits with none of the work types, which is not fair to her.

      i do agree with your thoughts though.

      • avatar ele4phant June 6, 2011, 11:42 pm

        Okay, I suppose I mis-spoke when I used the word “casual”. This guy could very well be a d-bag stringing her alone (I can’t say just from this letter), but I think that its completely legimate for someone, in the beginning, to put in less time than they will further along in the relationship because they want to maintain other aspects of their life. I’ve had lots of friends (heck myself included) who at certain points in their life held this mindset – particularly during the college years when you are figuring out who you are and what in life is important to you.

        Its also completely legitimate for someone in a new relationship to want a lot of together time. Neither of these attitudes are wrong, they are just incompatiable.

        In any event, the LW has made it clear what she wants, and he has also made it clear that he can’t provide her with that, for whatever reason. She should MOA, I am not disputing that. But I thought that people were a bit rash to immediately assume he is a player, when perhaps he just views what a relationship should be like differently than she does.

        • katie Katie June 7, 2011, 9:25 pm

          i definitely agree with that. i think that is the simple answer to this letter- he has told you what he is able to give, and you want different. MOA.

          this could have been done in shortcuts! ha.

          i will confess, i totally think that this guy is a douche just because he is in a frat. a total sterotype, yes, but it still is there… lol.

  • avatar LTC039 June 6, 2011, 4:20 pm

    I’m pretty sure his “busy schedule” involves other girls. The “I’m ‘too busy’ to spend time with you” excuse usually means **he’s just not that into you**. Sorry, but if you live in the same city & you only see each other every 2-3 weeks, well, those 2-3 weeks are when he sees his other girls & probably tells them the same thing he tells you.
    PLEASE stop feeding this guy’s ego & dump his ass faster than he can probably spell “frat.”

  • avatar dobby June 6, 2011, 4:22 pm

    MOA. Please, MOA.

    I found myself in this exact same situation with a guy. I got out in under two months, thankfully. It can take a toll on you if you let it – why doesn’t he want to make time for me? What’s wrong with hanging out with me? Why are other “things” more important then me? You get the drift…

    • avatar Christy June 7, 2011, 2:47 pm

      Unfortunately, I was in two separate relationships where the guy didn’t care enough to spend time with me. With both guys, I had a great time whenever we hung out, but it was nearly impossible to get a hold of them. One hardly ever returned my calls, and I didn’t know if I would get to see him until he showed up, even though he insisted he enjoyed spending time with me. The other guy claimed he wanted a serious relationship, but we went weeks without seeing each other. When I started seeing someone else, he had the nerve to call and ask to be exclusive! Both went on way too long (one for about a year) because I questioned myself and kept telling myself I wanted too much.

      Long story short, what Wendy says is so true–if he wants to be with you, he will make time for you! My current boyfriend works early mornings (4am-noon) and he will skip sleep to spend time with me. It doesn’t matter how early it is in the relationship, if you want more time and he doesn’t want to give it, move on!

  • Budj Budjer June 6, 2011, 4:32 pm

    Open and shut case for sure. Sounds like everyone is in agreement. Anyone can make time for things they care about.

  • avatar Lindsay June 6, 2011, 4:47 pm

    What I learned and will never for get is that if a guy wants to spend time with you, he will make time for it. Period. Being in college and in extracurriculars is not an excuse. Even the president of the United States is married and spends time with his wife. And he’s MUCH busier than a student leader.

    • avatar dude23 June 6, 2011, 6:09 pm

      That was a pretty good analogy about POTUS.

    • avatar spaceboy June 6, 2011, 6:48 pm

      Good analogy about POTUS making time for his family

  • bittergaymark bittergaymark June 6, 2011, 5:50 pm

    Eh, to me it almost sounds like he is taking the coward’s way out of trying to let you down easy… “Oh, you’re just so great. Oh, I so hate to lose you, but…” I mean seriously, would ANY woman stand to be treated this way and then stick around? Okay, scratch that, as recently seen on this very website, some probably would. That said, let’s hope those women and few and far between… Yeah, I think he is being diplomatic here, or at least trying to. Yeah, he’s failing miserably… I mean — come on! — I don’t think he is being sincere enough to be selfish. Face it, he is just not into you. Move on. Just do it.

    • avatar ele4phant June 6, 2011, 6:23 pm

      Hmm, I guess my arguement would be if he doesn’t want to make it work, he should have the balls to come right out and say it. Why are women considered the pathetic ones in these cases? If you don’t want to be in a relationship with someone, don’t be pathetic and try to take the easy way out.

      I still stand by the theory that he does like her, they just aren’t comaptiable. Either way, they should break up.

      • bittergaymark bittergaymark June 6, 2011, 6:33 pm

        Oh, I would argue that they are BOTH pathetic in my scenario. He is pathetic for not having any balls. She is pathetic for not seeing that he would pretty much rather spend time with literally ANYBODY else in his life but her…

        • avatar ele4phant June 6, 2011, 6:39 pm

          All right, I’ll agree to that. Both pathetic.

  • avatar ReginaRey June 6, 2011, 7:09 pm

    ……So you must have got burned pretty damn badly. Bitter, much?

    As a young woman who is in fact not stupid and full of shit, I take extreme issue with this comment. She expects a guy she’s interested in to spend time with her, and have mutual interest, and she has ATTACHMENT ISSUES?! She might be insecure, as many humans are, but she’s right in expecting what every self-respecting person SHOULD expect out of another person.

    This douche she’s dating is the one who doesn’t want the relationship to succeed…otherwise, he’d be putting in the time and effort. I get that MAYBE you were trying to get her to realize that no guy will ever treat her with respect if she can’t see worth in herself and have enough self-respect to demand to be treated properly, or else move on…but damn, your approach missed by a LONG shot.

    • bittergaymark bittergaymark June 6, 2011, 7:17 pm

      Actually, there IS a grain of truth in Dude23′s post. I’ve seen women do it over men. I’ve seen men do it over women. I’ve seen men do it over men. It’s funny, how some people REALLY do get all caught up in the whole popularity game. People want all the perks of dating the popular, but not the downside, such as, say, limited time for one another… It’s like all those doctor’s wives who go out of their way to marry a doctor and then flip out that the guy has to work insanely long hours…

      • avatar ReginaRey June 6, 2011, 7:21 pm

        Oh I agree that there’s certainly some truth in what he said. But a blanket statement that “young women are stupid, and full of shit” doesn’t sit well. Even if he were just saying that SHE was stupid and full of shit, it wouldn’t sit well. Just because someone is perhaps too insecure to accept his “being too busy” for what it is, and even if she IS going after him for his popularity, out of diminished self-worth, I don’t think that makes her stupid and full of shit. I think it makes her naive and insecure.

        • Dear Wendy Wendy June 6, 2011, 7:22 pm

          I deleted the original comment, FYI. Explicitly calling women (or men, for that matter) stupid is not OK on this site.

          • Firegirl32 Firegirl32 June 7, 2011, 10:35 am

            Whew – I thought I was going crazy….trying to figure out what people were talking about! Thank you for making me not crazy…

    • avatar dude23 June 6, 2011, 8:40 pm

      Well good luck to you, in life.
      Everybody “deserves” to be happy, but that’s not the case, is it ?

      The main source of unhappiness in any of life’s endeavors, are unfulfilled expectations.

      This chick wants to date Mr.has everything going for him, president (like that means anything) of multiple student clubs, popular frat boy. How would he maintain his social status, if he spends lots of time with her ? And if he did that, he would no longer be as attractive.

      It is paradoxical.

      In spite of being treated like stale bread, the chick praises him highly in her letter. It seems this behavior is quite common if Dear Wendy letters and commentor’s are representative of western women.

      Every week, its the same theme. “My boyfriend does not look at me enough”. At least one per week, for as long as Dear Wendy has been dishing out advice. And in all those letters the women praise their boyfriends, and place them on a pedestal.

      And of course commentor’s like yourself chime in with their personal stories, that follow the same theme… therefore I am basing my blanket statement on these observations.

      • avatar Kate June 6, 2011, 10:14 pm

        Well, darn those “western women”!

        • avatar Maracuya June 7, 2011, 4:29 pm

          The phrase “Western women” makes me think of cowgirls throwing a lasso.

  • avatar ReginaRey June 6, 2011, 7:23 pm

    Whoops…guess I was too quick to jump on him! :-)

  • avatar _jsw_ June 6, 2011, 8:15 pm

    There is no way to interpret this except as an MOA situation.

    And this is me, the guy who said the bf found naked in bed with another woman might not have been to blame. Seriously, I try to find alternatives in every situation. I’m not seeing any here. I’m not saying anything is wrong or bad in terms of who he is. Just that you need to MO, LW. The Devil himself couldn’t advocate for you to stay.

  • avatar MissD June 6, 2011, 8:15 pm

    It is inappropriate to call someone stupid, and counterproductive. Many of the letter writers are looking for support to help them do what is best for them in their situation, even though it’s hard. For most of us, the best choice is the obvious one, but it’s easy for us to see that because we’re on the outside looking in. Having an objective understanding of your own romantic entanglements is generally difficult…and is a good reason why so many out there need Wendy in the first place!

    Also, I disagree that the commenters have been harsh about the guy involved. It is true that a man (or woman) who truly wants to be with someone will. If he’s saying he’s too busy, he likely means one of two things: I don’t want a relationship right now; I am juggling you and two other girls who also believe I’m “too busy” to have a normal relationship with them. My husband was suddenly “sooooo busy” with school because he was spending all the time I was at work with his new girlfriend…I tend to think this is the more likely scenario, given that frat boy makes time for his friends. If he were truly insanely busy, he wouldn’t have time to live it up OR see her. So, definitely MOA.

  • avatar RoyalEagle0408 June 6, 2011, 8:56 pm

    I don’t really know that you can use the amount of time you’ve been together as an indicator of anything when you only see each other every 2-3 weeks. Now maybe this guy really is super busy with everything he’s got going on in his life and isn’t with other girls, but regardless, you do need to MOA. From personal experience if a guy says he’s too busy for you (for whatever reason), it’s not going to work out. I think the guy needs to grow up and tell you he’s not in a place to be in a relationship because he clearly is not. Since he doesn’t appear to have time to do that, you need to end things and tell him that the relationship is not what you need right now and that maybe in the future when he has more time, if you’re both single and still interested, you can give things another chance. Then you’ll see how interested he really is.

    • avatar ele4phant June 7, 2011, 12:15 am

      Totally agree with this. Whatever his reasons are, he told you he can’t give you what you want. Who is or is not in the right is beside the point. He will not give you the kind of relationship you want. Either live with what you’re getting, or go find someone who is on the same wave length as you.

  • avatar Irina G June 7, 2011, 7:49 am

    OMG this is HORRIBLE! Get out of this relationship NOW. NOW NOW NOW! Period.

  • avatar Kass June 7, 2011, 4:07 pm

    Thanks for saying: “People who want to be in realtionships make time for them”. Some times we make excuses to ignore that a guy is too busy, when he really means he’s too busy to love you. :( It took me a while to understand that :) Now I am alone and free!!!! Not waiting for the crumbs to fall of the table.

  • avatar Ana June 14, 2012, 1:41 pm

    I’m in a similiar situation myself right now though I’m not in an intimate relationship with him yet. We met 3 months ago and he was and still is in the process of amicably dissolving a 19 year marriage. We went out 3 times though we’ve seen each other several times and talk and text constantly. He told me that right now he’s too busy, working lots of overtime and building a new house himself for his soon to be ex (he wants to keep their present house because it’s been in his family for generations and doesn’t want to sell it to split it). He claims that he hasn’t had a sexual relationship with her or anyone else in over 2 years. I’m climbing the walls with sexual frustration but while he’d like to get intimate with me told me (said I’m driving him crazy) that he doesn’t think it fair that I get involved with him while he is in this situation right now and that I should live my life and date other people. He said he definetely will be contacting me in the future or as he put it visiting me. I don’t know if this was a brush off but when I asked him he said no, just that he is under so much stress right now that he really can’t deal with a relationship and all that entails. Though, in addition to all that he’s going through, he also has time to work out, practice with his band (music is his hobby), take on other work from other people (one of them right now is dissembling and salvaging an old barn, etc.) and a myriad of other things. I took his advice and am not seeing him anymore though he is still contacting me daily as ‘friends’. I would still like to get intimate with him and have to stop myself from calling him up and suggesting just a sexual relationship, which deep down I know wouldn’t remain that way for long with me since I am already emotionally hooked on him. I really need to get over this man because I also know, deep down inside, that all the excuses he gave me are bogus. If a man wants to be with a woman he’ll move heaven and earth to do it. So, though I really hate to do it, I’m moving on.

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