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I keep chasing unavailable women

A man writes to ask why he keeps ending up with distant partners. Our experts say he might be the unavailable one


Tracy Clark-Flory
December 9, 2011 6:15AM (UTC)

It's been five years since my first real romantic relationship. It was in college, lasted three years, and she was my first sexual partner. She was a very "marriable" type for me, but during our relationship she broke up with me three times. The fourth time, I felt like I had had enough and we parted ways. She had some insecurities and trust issues, probably due to her father's alcoholism, and the terrible divorce that occurred when she was 12. She still despises her father in a lot of ways.

Ever since then, I feel like I've been chasing after alcoholics/codependents or broken women who fall apart at the first sign of something real, or they play games with me and perhaps several other men. Most of these women I probably wouldn't end up with for the long term, and I know that. I almost never have any sexual contact with them, but we tend to get close, intimate, almost like we're in a relationship, just without the physical aspect. These women then tend to sleep with losers, old men and assholes while they reserve their tender feelings for me.

When a woman who is together, secure and on track with her life approaches me, I get bored pretty much right away, and blow her off. I want to change this pattern, but part of me wonders if this is due to a resistance that I have to growing up, as is the case with other aspects of my life, or if the problem stems from something else that needs to be addressed before I can have a real r...

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Tracy Clark-Flory

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