Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“He Dumped Me Before Our First Date”

couple pizza date
I went to my aunt’s funeral last week and ran into a guy I hadn’t seen since high school, 26 years ago. We talked for a minute, and he asked me to lunch so we could catch up on everything. When I passed my phone number over to him through my mom, he immediately gave me his number as well. After the funeral that day he began texting me. Long story short, he sent me a pic of me out of his yearbook where he had written: “We had crushes on each other.” I couldn’t believe it, but I also wondered if he had just written it that day to impress me? He said I was the sexiest women he has ever met or known and that I am his fantasy girl. He began making a list of all the things he wanted to do with me like go to NYC at Christmas time, ride 4-wheelers, eat pizza, go to the beach, etc.

We decided to meet for lunch, but, before we even did that, we had a long talk on the phone about his having an 12-year-old daughter who is very jealous of other women. I was concerned about this, especially when he said he has to reassure her that he loves her more than any woman and always will. The next day I got a very long text from him saying he thought about us all night and morning. He said he had an ex-girlfriend who called over the weekend, trying to make-up with him, and she wanted to talk and come get the rest of her things. He also said he thought we should wait on us until his daughter is 16 because he realizes now that I deserve and need attention from a man and that he can not give me his full attention right now with his daughter being with him 50% of the time. He said this was very hard for him to do, but he thought it was in my best interest.

I was upset and very confused as to why he quickly came to this decision without even having our first lunch date. I told him I have a career and am very busy too and that I don’t need a man’s attention 24/7. I said I thought our days apart would make us stronger and make us miss each other more. He was very happy to hear that and asked me if I would just give him more time to get himself together and wrap his head around everything. He said he wouldn’t make me wait long and we would talk soon. What do you think? — Wait for Lunch Date? 

I think this guy sounds like a hot mess and you’d be wise to consider your blown-off lunch date a bullet dodged. To make you feel better about where things stand with him, let’s go through the list of his questionable behavior, shall we?

1. He picked you up at a funeral.
I mean, sure, funerals can be a good place to re-connect with people, but there should be some sort of rule that you don’t hit on anyone directly related to the deceased — including asking for a date or a phone number — at the actual funeral. That’s what Facebook (or email if you know their address) is for. You wait 24 hours and then send a message saying you’re sorry again for their loss, and despite the sad circumstances it was great seeing them and would they like to get lunch some time?

2. He used his high school yearbook to woo you.
Even if he’d really written in his yearbook 26 years ago that you two had crushes on each other, save that shit for, like, your third date when you’re starting to realize the first sparks of something and the idea that that something was actually planted 2 1/2 decades ago is sorta sweet and not just… desperate.

3. He called you his “fantasy girl,” and said you were the sexiest woman he’s ever met, before you even went on your first date.
Come on, that’s just weird. That’s what dudes at the bar say after they’ve had too much to drink and are saying anything they think might get them laid that night, or at least score them a tiny bit of action so they don’t have to go home to their dark, messy apartments alone where there’s nothing in the fridge but a nearly-empty bottle of mustard and a single Budweiser and their beds haven’t been made in a month. Save the “sexiest woman ever” for when you know her middle name at least.

4. On his list of things to do with you, he listed “pizza.”
Not that there’s anything wrong with pizza! I love pizza. Pizza’s great. I want to eat pizza with everyone I care about, too, but on a short list of things to do with a potential new love interest, there are more imaginative things to say. If, in his biggest fantasies, he’s dreaming about eating pizza with you, it doesn’t bode well for the reality of life with him.

5. He threw is 12-year-old daughter under the bus.
All the other stuff could be overlooked if it weren’t for this transgression. Having a “long talk” with you on the phone — before you’ve actually gone out! — about his daughter’s jealousy of “other women,” is just… God, it’s so weird and inappropriate and just… ugh, no. Even IF his daughter were a real reason he felt like he wasn’t ready/ couldn’t date someone, he could just say, “You know, I was probably premature in asking you out and I’m really sorry about that. I was so excited to see you again after all these years, but the truth is I’m in a place right now where parenthood precludes me from making my love life a priority and I think it would be better if we hold off on that lunch date for now.” Don’t talk about how your daughter is jealous of “other women” and you have to reassure her that you will always love her best. No one needs to hear that shit — especially a woman you haven’t even taken out on a date yet. And frankly, a 12-year-old doesn’t need to hear from her dad that he’ll always love her “best,” as if there’s a competition between her and everyone else. He should be telling her that women he might date could never compete with her because the love a father has for his daughter is special and much different than the love he might feel for a romantic partner (or anyone else, for that matter), and no one could ever, ever change or affect that.

6. He said his ex-girlfriend is trying to make up with him and that she’s coming over to “get the rest of her things.”
Why is he telling you that? Why on earth do you, someone he’s just re-connected with after 26 years, need to know that? You don’t. And the fact that he told you is just code for: “I’m lazy and it’s probably easier to let my ex fight for me than to try to make things work with you.”

7. He said he needs time to “get himself together and wrap his head around everything.”
Wrap his head around what? What is he even talking about? At best, this guy is a big ol’ drama queen, and, at worst, he’s a creep. Either way, bullet dodged, girl, because, when someone tells you he needs to “get himself together” before he’s ready to date you, believe him and say thank you. It was probably the most honest thing he’s said in ages.


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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com.

29 comments… add one
  • Kate B. July 22, 2014, 10:22 am

    I recently heard a quote by Maya Angelou. (I am convinced that woman knew everything about everything. R.I.P.) It made me think of a lot of the letters we read here. She said, “When a person shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”

    Whatever what this guy’s motivations were (and I can think of a few), they don’t matter. Get on with your life and never look back.

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  • Kate July 22, 2014, 10:28 am

    Wendy basically covered this, but I’m pretty sure this guy is not actually available. He’s in a relationship but got all excited about you when he saw you at the funeral. Then he realized it was going to be a logistical nightmare to try to sneak around and see you, so he made up this daughter and ex situation to backpedal his way out. I’m not saying he made up his daughter OR the other woman, but he’s lying about both of them. Bottom line, he’s not single or able to date, so move on and chalk it up to him being an idiot.

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  • artsygirl July 22, 2014, 10:28 am

    Holy crap – they went all the steps of a high school style relationship before the first date.

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  • Laura Hope July 22, 2014, 10:39 am

    This reminds me of the psychopath test. Who wants to take it? Okay, a woman meets a man at her mother’s funeral and instantly falls head over heels in love. But he leaves before she has the chance to find out who he is. 2 months later she kills her sister. Why?

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    • Kate July 22, 2014, 10:42 am

      So there can be another funeral, of course!!!

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  • bittergaymark July 22, 2014, 10:47 am

    Wait, wait, wait. Hold up. Now are you sure high school was 26 years ago? Could it instead have been 26 days ago?

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  • Scooze July 22, 2014, 10:53 am

    Can you even say you were “dumped” before a first date? Don’t you have to actually have had some dates and even the start of a relationship to say that?

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  • Laura Hope July 22, 2014, 10:54 am

    Kate, you got it right. I’m not saying anything but no one I know could get it. It’s obvious but unthinkable.

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    • Kate July 22, 2014, 11:00 am

      I either heard it before or I’m a psychopath. This one client today had better hope it’s not the latter, because I’m thisclose to losing it.

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  • Portia July 22, 2014, 10:56 am

    What even is this? Wendy hit the nail on the head, this guy is all drama and you really dodged a bullet.

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  • Raccoon eyes July 22, 2014, 11:00 am

    This much discussion, “future talk,” and this many excuses BEFORE you even have lunch??? Run away and dont look back!

    I also agree that he might not be single right now.

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  • Lyra July 22, 2014, 11:08 am

    I’m craving pizza now.

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    • Addie Pray July 22, 2014, 11:50 am

      Best Lyra comment ever! Me too, and don’t take this the wrong way but I’d share a pizza with you! 😉

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      • Lyra July 22, 2014, 12:27 pm

        Me too AP, me too. 🙂 Next time you’re in Minneapolis let’s make that happen.

  • Stonegypsy July 22, 2014, 11:08 am

    You can’t be dumped before you’ve even gone out on a date with someone. Someone started wooing you (way too enthusiastically, way too quickly), then started backpedaling, then changed his mind and cancelled the date. That’s all that happened. There was no relationship there to end.
    And honestly, this guy seems super weird. I know it can be really hard to pick up on those ‘creepy’ signals when you are already into someone and they seem excited about you, but it’s true. And seriously, if there’s this much drama before even the first date, can you even imagine how much worse it would have gotten when there *was* a relationship?

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  • Skyblossom July 22, 2014, 11:16 am

    “We had crushes on each other.”

    This is written in the past tense so yes, he went back and wrote it later, probably recently. A teenage boy would jot a note in present tense.

    Why would you think a 26 year old crush that went no where was the foundation for a romance or even romantic?

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    • Stonegypsy July 22, 2014, 11:26 am

      Because some people think romantic comedies are documentaries.

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    • Moneypenny July 22, 2014, 2:19 pm

      Oooh, I didn’t catch that! Geez, that’s so weird.

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  • Addie Pray July 22, 2014, 11:51 am

    I loved Wendy’s response.

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  • Skyblossom July 22, 2014, 11:51 am

    I think a general rule of thumb is that if someone says you’re their fantasy you should run. A fantasy is make believe, their imagination making up a story or romance that is perfect to them. It doesn’t include the real you, maybe what you look like, but not you. It doesn’t include your real life personality or preferences or likes or dislikes. In the fantasy you’ll love everything he does and you’ll love how he does it. You’ll love sex exactly like he does and the food he does and the trips he does and the two of you will never argue, and you’ll want to live in the same town he does in the same house he does, etc. It may sound flattering to be his fantasy and it may sound romantic, but you can’t be a fantasy.

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  • bittergaymark July 22, 2014, 12:58 pm

    In all seriousness? Not dating anybody till his kid is 16? Actually, that’s the most sound “single parent” thing I’ve read on here in ages. So — OF COURSE! — all the single parents THINK it’s idiotic… Sigh…

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    • bittergaymark July 22, 2014, 1:11 pm

      That said, this guy has watched WAYYYYYYY too many bad rom/coms… (Wait, is there any other kind?) His playbook is NOTHING but cheese… The yearbook move could only happen to Kate Dudson in some dreary ick-flick…

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    • lets_be_honest July 22, 2014, 1:16 pm

      I kind of agree with this. I don’t think it should be a ‘100% of the time’ rule to wait to date til your kids are older, but its not a bad thing to do either, especially if you kid has issues with you dating. I actually don’t think there’s anything wrong with what he said about that. I definitely liked Wendy’s phrasing a lot better, but I can’t blame him for not so perfect wording. I just can’t bash the LW over what I wish more parents would be considerate of. Better to care about your kids that your new “girlfriend.”

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  • Wendy (not Wendy) July 22, 2014, 2:09 pm

    LW: you sound intelligent and you’re a good writer and it seems like you’re ready for a relationship. Don’t waste your probably-awesome self on this guy. The only parts of what he said that you should believe are that you’re sexy and deserve better than him. Take that knowledge and go meet some other guys. Good luck!

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  • Moneypenny July 22, 2014, 2:12 pm

    My first thought was, Wait, he didn’t get her number *during* the funeral, did he? (I thought I misread it.)

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    • Essie July 22, 2014, 2:21 pm

      It sounds like that’s what happened. The part about passing the phone number through mom. Is it just me, or does that totally squick anyone else out? Holy cow, have enough respect to wait till after the funeral to set up a date.

      Whatever happened here, whether he’s in a relationship or not, this guy is way too much drama. LW, consider it a bullet dodged.

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      • Moneypenny July 22, 2014, 7:58 pm

        That TOTALLY squicks me out. Not the time nor the place. Just, no. Talk afterwards, if there’s a reception, or in the parking lot, or something, but not at the service.

  • tbrucemom July 22, 2014, 6:37 pm

    Did anyone else pick up on it was her aunt’s funeral and they passed notes through her mother?! I sincerely hope the aunt was at least her father’s sister and not her mother’s because this is all kinds of messed up!
    LW-this guy is seeing where things are going with the “ex” before he starts anything with you, if she really is an ex. Doesn’t matter, don’t go out with him!

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  • Fabelle July 22, 2014, 6:50 pm

    Yeah, Wendy’s response was epic. I was lol-ing by the time I got to, “wrap his head about WHAT, what is he even TALKING about??” Because, seriously.

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