July 25, 2010
Issue: 11.06
Meant to Be

An entire industry has been built on women’s belief that, if they behave a certain way, they will be able to attract and keep a man. The most recent product of this industry is dating coach and matchmaker Rachel Greenwald’s new book, “Why He Didn’t Call You Back: 1,000 Guys Reveal What They REALLY Thought About You After Your Date.” As if the title weren’t sufficiently enticing (or nauseating), the description of the book includes such statements as: “Ever wonder why he flirted with you at a party (or online) but never asked you out? The top ten date-breakers that men confessed here offer candid, counter-intuitive insights to help empower women to always get that call-back.”

Let me ask you something. Do you really want to be with a man who gets so easily turned off by something that you do that is not “by the book” or that does not “follow the rules”? Or with a man whom you have to manipulate, through “acting like a lady but thinking like a man,” into a relationship? Did it ever occur to you that these authors, who prey on women’s hopes and fears, are purposely omitting the notion that, just perhaps, men who flirt with you and then never call you have emotional issues? Hello!

Well, let me offer my counter-intuitive insights based on my own dating experiences. Not to dash anyone’s hopes, but “following the program” or “playing by the rules” is no substitute for the unconscious programming that dictates who we are attracted to and who is attracted to us. And try as we might to meet someone, by putting ourselves on the various dating sites or by paying a matchmaker a king’s ransom, it is up to G-d to bring us together. Short of totally screwing up (and, really, how many of us have ever screwed up that badly?), if he’s that into you, he’s that into you. In other words, if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be.

I’ve been seeing Benjamin for two months, during which I have probably broken most of the key rules in these guides to attracting and keeping a man. For our first date, rather than meet for coffee, we arranged to spend an entire day together, with his coming to my house to pick me up. Why? Because, prior to this date, we spent a total of a few hours IMing, e-mailing, and talking on the phone. And, by the way, I didn’t set up a timer by the phone to ensure that I maintained the illusion of being busy and to leave him “wanting more.” We both knew that the other was busy; we simply enjoyed talking to each other. By the time we had arranged to meet, I knew that he was a mensch and I felt as if I already knew him. Having him come to my house and spending an entire day together seemed natural.

On the Friday before the following weekend, I was scheduled to have surgery. Out of embarrassment of how I would look immediately after surgery, I didn’t want to tell Benjamin about it, but he invited me to attend an event with him that was being held the day after my surgery. I would be in no position to go with him, and I didn’t want to lie about why. He volunteered to take care of me, which involved, among other things, his helping change my bandages as well as his seeing me at less (much less) than my best. Much to my surprise (or perhaps not), I felt no embarrassment.

Somewhere along the way, I realized that I wasn’t giving any thought to how I should or should not be behaving. I was just being myself and enjoying being with someone with whom I felt happy simply doing the most ordinary things. I’m a little embarrassed to say how many times we’ve been to Fresh & Easy and Costco together, but, hey, there’s food that needs to be bought and tires that need to be replaced, and it’s a lot more fun to do it together, especially when you’re with someone with whom it’s simply meant to be.

Go back to:
The Gantseh Megillah
< Click icon to print page
Designed by Howard - http://www.pass.to

subscribe (free) to the Gantseh Megillah. http://www.pass.to/tgmegillah/hub.asp
A  print companion to our online magazine