Too Busy for Love?



Dear Dharma,

I’ve been seeing this guy for about a month now and mostly things are good. We have quite a bit in common (but enough differences to keep things interesting), and we have good chemistry. He’s smart, funny, interesting, laid back and treats me well.

The problem is actually finding time to spend together.

Since we’ve both been single for a while, we’ve gotten involved with outside activities, which I think is great. But he has activities almost every night of the week, and when he doesn’t, I have my own stuff. This leaves us with mostly weekends to spend time together.

That would be all fine, except his Fridays and Saturdays seem to be reserved for hanging out with his friends. Usually, he tries to plan dates with me for Sunday before or after one of his other activities.

I have tried to subtly suggest we hang out on a Friday or Saturday, but he always has plans or is vague about his schedule.  He then goes ahead and makes plans with his friends for those days/nights.

Don’t get me wrong

I’m all for having friends.  However, I’m starting to feel like he’s squeezing me into his busy schedule when it’s convenient for him.  I’m low on his list of priorities, to say the least.

Needless to say, this doesn’t make me feel great.  I really like him, but want to date someone who at least puts me at the same level as his friends. Maybe he doesn’t realize he’s doing this, and is just unconsciously keeping the same pattern he’s kept as a single guy.

I haven’t said anything because I don’t want to come off as clingy or seem as if I’m asking him to stop seeing his friends.  I’m really not – I’d even be cool with being invited to hang out WITH his friends now and again.

It’s really bugging me and I think we need to talk if we’re going to keep seeing each other. Any advice on how to broach the subject without seeming too clingy or demanding?

Holding out for Sunday

Dear Sunday,

The reason you feel like this guy is squeezing you into his schedule when it’s convenient for him is because he’s squeezing you into his schedule when it’s convenient for him.

And if you would like to date someone who at least puts you at the same level of importance as his friends, Dharma wholeheartedly recommends you do that!

It just might not be with this guy.

Look, either he wants to be in a relationship with you or he doesn’t.

I don’t know the nature which you started into this.  Maybe he’s just looking for someone to hang out with a few hours a week, and not a full time relationship?  But either way, having to convince someone to spend more time with you…  That’s not a great platform to build from, right?

Your expectations are neither clingy nor demanding, and you seem to have a super great outlook on developing interests outside a relationship.  You’re not asking him to devote every spare minute to you, but it would be nice if you factored in higher than a squash game or beer night with the boys.  Every single Friday.

I’m sorry to say that it seems to me that he might not be that into you.

Of course, if you are thinking you’d still like to give him a chance, a conversation that’s matter of fact and down to earth is what you want.  “So, Palbert, the thing is, I really do enjoy your company, but I’m not sure if we’re on the same page.  I appreciate that we both have full schedules, but I’m wondering if dating is a priority for you right now   What are your thoughts on that?”

If that’s enough to be considered clingy and demanding, so be it.  If a guy can’t take you levelling with him in a mild, yet direct manner, then it’s okay if he walks.

Right now your investment is low.  You can’t have spent more than a few Sunday afternoons with him thus far, and I honestly think you can find someone who is smart, funny, interesting, laid back, treats you well and is looking for something more than filler.



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  • JK says:

    Heard that! So true. …In my case, the guy was keen and available, and we did lots of fun things together at first. Then after he told me he wanted us to be exclusive after a couple months, all of that changed. He wanted me to be available when he wanted, but he was not available for me in the same way. Same situation as yours, Sunday: it was Fridays 5-7 if he wasn’t having dinner with his buddies and Sundays after 3, or some variation of that regimen.

    Was I his girlfriend or his client? He words and actions were not lining up. …I had the conversation, too, and he insisted the relationship was important to him, but he also seemed unable to recognize the problem, and he continued to sideline me. He even avoided introducing me to his friends who were at an event that he had invited me to.

    This was all pretty confusing, but eventually I realized that it was pretty simple. I was not getting what I wanted or needed there, and that staying was causing me to feel insecure about who I was. I realized that I needed to prioritize myself, and in this case, that meant leaving and opening up space in my life for people more willing to invest in a relationship equally.

    It’s true that if it looks like he’s not that into you, he’s probably not that into you…no matter what he says. Actions speak louder than words.

    • Dharma says:

      Amen, JK. Dharma is a FIRM believer that actions speak louder than words, although I used to forget to apply that motto to my relationships on a regular basis. So I had it tattooed to my leg. Literally. So when I say FIRM believer, I mean it. 🙂

      Glad you found your way out of that situation and fingers crossed that the LW will do the same. Wasting time in places you shouldn’t be is just no good.

      Thanks for sharing, JK!

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