Ask Drew: Should We Follow the 3 Date Rule?
I was getting drinks with a friend of mine last weekend when we ran into a girl I'd went on a couple dates with a few months ago, but never called again. Actually, the truth is that I hit on her at the bar before I got a good look at her, causing her to look me up and down and ask, "Really, Drew?" Because I'm a bad person, I said I knew it was her and jokingly accused her of ignoring my texts knowing full well I was the one at fault.
Once we parted ways, my buddy floated the idea that I call her up again, especially since I'd already been on three dates with her. I explained that it wasn't worth it because she had a minimum three date rule. From there we began debating whether or not the previous dates would count toward my total, or if the date count would reset and I'd have to start from scratch. It's no wonder I'm single.
Still, regardless of how childish I am, putting a timetable on sex is truly one of the dumbest rules women have implemented in dating/relationships. And guess what: men are to blame. Didn't see that one coming, did you?
I know why you do it. I've heard it said countless times from countless women, sometimes while they're hurling my clothes at me: "When I finally sleep with a guy, I never hear from him again!" You're right. If we're not really interested in pursuing anything long-term, then sex is the defining moment in our short-lived "relationship."
That being said, this is your solution? To make up a rulebook you can consult whenever you feel like being emotionally honest with yourself about the guy you're with? Look, I actually agree that you have to regulate sex. But the way you're going about it is completely flawed. When you put a number of dates on it, you're basically assigning that as your value. Now, if the guy is legitimately interested in you, then this really won't matter and it will just be the first of many stupid hoops he has to jump through in your relationship.
But if the guy isn't interested and you make it clear you're withholding sex until the fifth/eighth/tenth date, that might very well keep him around just long enough until he gets the most bang for his buck. Pardon the pun, but I'm serious: if you look at it as an investment (like some men do) it really doesn't make sense to walk after four dates and $200 spent. He's already thrown his credit card down at BOA and suffered through whatever Ryan Gosling DVD you popped in. One more dinner date is completely worth it if it means a night of keeping your neighbors awake. I know, that sounds cynical and disgusting, but more often than not it's the truth. In the words of my friend about the girl last weekend: "At the very most you're only two dates away now, one if you're lucky."
Most importantly though is that it sets a precedent. Even if I really do like a girl, it's an immediate turn off. The fact that I'm gonna have to wind the night down with my naked lady machine (computer) is bad enough, but knowing that the girl has these unnecessary, arbitrary rules is indicative of a rigid relationship down the line.
So how do you ensure that he won't abandon ship after he gets his dinky stinky? You can't, to be honest. Trust me, and I mean this in all sincerity: if I like the girl, it doesn't matter if she sleeps with me after the first date or the tenth. If her reason for waiting isn't because of a rule her catty friend told her was the industry standard, but that she wants to be comfortable, a good guy will respect that. If he likes you, waiting around won't be an issue. Sure, he might get a sore elbow in the mean time, but that won't matter because his end game won't solely be sex.
"But if I give it up too early, he'll think I'm a slut." Nein, Fraulein. He'll think you're a slut if you don't demand respect the other 95% of the time you're with him. Believe me, never once have I heard a guy slander a nice, respectable girl to his buddies the next day because she gave it up after a date or two. Instead, because we're stupid and need our egos rewarded, we brag about how awesome we are that we got a good girl to sleep with us so quickly in the relationship.
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Drew is a single guy living in Los Angeles. When he's not bar-hopping with a friend's golden retriever to convince women he has a soft side, he's taking them on short-lived dates. His fickle dating habits and "perspective" almost guarantee he'll die alone. All opinions are his own. Got a question for Drew? Ask away... firstname.lastname@example.org