Today, the guys of Dear Wendy answer an age-old mystery:
“Why do guys say they’re going to call when they know they’re not??”
See their revealing answers after the jump.
JAREK: The same reason you told your college friends you would stay in touch. As self-involved Americans, it is part of our culture to make courteous exchanges we never intend to make good on. How many times have you told someone “we should do lunch”? S/he likely agreed, and the two of you went another ten years before seeing each other again. We make these exchanges because it allows us to give the perception that we care. The reality is, we don’t. Unless a specific date, time, and location is set, lunch will not be happening. So when a guy says “I’ll call you,” I wouldn’t really hold your breath. If he absolutely wanted to see or hear from you again, he’d either make plans right then and there or elaborate on when he’ll actually call you. Otherwise, it’s his way of saying you two should do lunch sometime. It’s easier than saying he’s not interested in you, because there could be a chance you’ll cry. And we really do not know how to handle that situation.
MARK: Same reason women sometimes give out fake phone numbers. No guy ever wants to look like a prick — just as no girl hopes to come off as a stuck up snob. And so — in both instances — they LIE. What both fail to realize, however, is that they only come off as even bigger jerks. For now the intensity of rejection has been magnified by the power of anticipation. Sure, the poor guy feels like a sap when he tries to call in a day or two, but it’s even worse for the would-be Juliet now waiting for her phone to ring… Heck, she has probably been left hanging for a week, maybe more, all the while thinking up various excuses as to why Romeo hasn’t called just yet. I mean, of course he IS going to call. He said so, right? It sucks, big time. But it’s all a part of dating… You can’t take it personally, although often it’s impossible not to, I know.
ERIK: What you really mean to ask is “Why do guys say they’re going to call and then not call?” You can’t assume they know they’re not. Guys don’t call for the same reason women don’t often respond on online dating sites: they were into it when they signed up, but the next day they aren’t feeling as flirty and decided maybe you’re really not their type after all. If you go out to a party and meet someone nice who seems really into you and the flirting commences, it puts you in a certain kind of mood, and you ask for her number. The problem is, when you wake up the next morning you aren’t thinking in that flirtatious frame of mind anymore. Your differences start to stick out, and you don’t have a level of arousal to help ignore them. Basically, when he says he’s going to call, even he doesn’t know that he’s not.
ALEX: A guy that says he will call when he knows he won’t is either letting you down like a coward or leading you on to feed his ego. When a guy says he will call, it is best to consider it a nice idea and then go about your life. If he doesn’t call, you aren’t disappointed. If he does, you’ve had a great, unexpected conversation with a man of his word