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I know a lot of people including myself who have ended up broken hearted. Often this is just how love plays out or dies out, but other times it's clear right from the beginning. And not just through the interpretation of vague psychology or body language, but because the person we are hooking up with tells us to our face in plain English. Here are a couple of phrases that generally spell doom.
"I left my last girlfriend because things got too heavy."
"She wanted to settle down too quick."
"I'm not cut out for a relationship."
"I just want to have some fun."
"I'm not looking for anything serious."
This is the guy being completely honest. They don't want a committed relationship, and they are telling it straight. They do want the sex and the comfortable companionship, but they also want to spend the long weekends fishing with their mates rather than accompanying you to a friend's interstate wedding. Its unlikely they'll change their mind. If Liz Hurley, Jennifer Anniston and Kylie Minogue can't get their guys to commit, you need to assume it's a tougher proposition than you think. "But," you say "We had such a fabulous night under the stars, on a wine cruise, and/or camping in the forrest." Well he probably has a lot of fabulous nights with a lot of fabulous people. "But we have such a connection." Ditto.
The first couple of months of any relationship are always heady, exciting and romantic. If he's telling you during the honeymoon period that he would like to rent and not buy, then your position will not be strengthened six months down the track when all those little quirks about each other you found cute become annoying.
Can it happen? Can someone start with cold feet and then fall madly in love? It's possible, but I have never seen it happen. The closest I have seen was a couple who split when the man wasn't ready to commit, but then came together a couple of years later when he was. Otherwise, what I have seen is a relationship that fails to launch and drags on for years with one partner wanting an engagement ring, and another partner wanting more space.
If you are looking for a long term committed relationship, then find someone who wants one too. If a guy says he's not ready for something serious, then believe him and move on. If you want to a pursue a relationship with a man who spends as much time putting out the flames of romance as you spend fanning them, go in with a level head. Give yourself a time frame - maybe six months. After that time, if you still can't get him to go with you to your nephew's 1st birthday, then throw in the towel.