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Move forward or move on

Posted Mar 18 2010 7:57am

Today, a question from a reader:

“I’ve been seeing a guy for 6 months and we still can’t get farther than a quick peck on the lips or a quick impersonal hug. I’ve told him I want more intimacy but still nothing. What should I do?”

Many men say it’s up to the woman to set the pace of physical involvement and they don’t want to overstep their bounds. They have learned to be respectful of a woman’s boundaries and don’t want to press those without explicit permission.

He might have been chastised in the past from a woman who took offense at his moving things forward more quickly than she liked. Or even though you stated you were ready, he may not be.

After dating exclusively for three months and physically progressing up to a point, I once asked a beau, “What do you need to feel comfortable having sex together?” He said he needed to feel in love with me. We then discussed that while we were both very fond of each other, neither of us was in love. A few weeks later we discussed how we’d given it 3.5 months and wasn’t happening for either of us, so we decided to shift to being friends. Now he’s a treasured pal.

So you could ask, “What do you need to feel comfortable moving our relationship forward?” Or you could just pull him back to you the next time he pecks you and go in for a more involved kiss — and see what he does!

The point being something has to shift. You want to either progress or move the relationship to friendship.

Readers, what advice do you have for her?

For more on how to talk about difficult issues, get your copy of Ironing Out Dating Wrinkles: Work Through Challenges Without Getting Steamed .

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