Understanding Men: We Text and Talk, But Don’t Go on Dates

When it comes to understanding men, why you text and talk, but don’t go on dates,create a “no Excuses” policy. I explain everything in this post.

understanding men“Dear Dating Coach Ronnie,

I have been talking to a guy I met online for three months now. We Just met a week ago in person. He does call and text me all the time but we have never been out on a date. He hasn’t called me for 2 days now and has sent no text.Please tell me what to do. He made a statement to me on our last phone call saying, “You are very naive sometimes.” What is he telling me? Please help me with understanding men. I really like this man.

Frustrated in Florida”


Dear Frustrated,

I know you are confused because you are emotionally invested in this man. You have spent three months talking on the phone and texting with him, so you feel you have developed a deep connection. And from that place you have assumed that he must want what you want – a close, loving relationship.

The trouble is, YOU’RE NOT in a REAL RELATIONSHIP. You cannot be in a relationship with a man if you don’t go on dates. I know this is hard to hear or even think about, but IT’S THE SIMPLE TRUTH.

Perils of the Virtual Relationship

Instead, you have gotten pulled into in a virtual relationship with a man who took three months to finally meet you. (Why don’t you consider that a date?) My blog is filled with questions from hundreds of women with this same problem about understanding men. They have fallen for a man who won’t make time to see them.

3 Reasons Why You Don’t Go On Dates

1.He could be married or already in a relationship. He has time to talk to you and text, but he can’t SEE you on dates. That’s too risky for his current relationship. Probably after you asked him for weeks (or longer), he squeezed in a meeting with you. That doesn’t mean he wants a real relationship or that he loves you.

2. Maybe he wants everything on his terms. To talk and text when he feels like it. He doesn’t want to invest his time in getting together or creating a situation where you have bigger expectations. He doesn’t have time or money to spend going out to dinner or taking weekend trips. Or he’s not interested in physical contact.

3. Some men are emotionally manipulative and controlling. Occasionally a man gets pleasure from being adored and wanted by you, while he dangles love over your head. He enjoys watching a woman suffer as she falls in love, but can’t have him. This mean-spirited scenario is rare but does happen.

Texting and Talking Aren’t Signs of Love

It’s so easy to feel confused when you accept texting and talking on the phone as signs of his genuine interest and feelings for you. But this is not enough to indicate love. When it comes to understanding men in relationships, recognize that he may need your emotional support or want to boost his ego.

But texting and talking are a small part of a loving relationship. Spending time together is a bigger component which is missing from your scenario.

The Plain and Simple Truth about Understanding Men

If he wanted to date you and
build a genuine relationship,
he would find the time.
That’s what quality men do

No matter how busy or shy or whatever other excuse he may have, any man who wants love will do what it takes. This is fundamental to understanding men.

Sadly, you have opened your heart to a man who doesn’t want what you hope for – his love and commitment. So naturally you are confused. You wonder why he calls and texts if he doesn’t like you and want more? He likes you enough to do those things – but that is not enough for you.

I realize it’s hard to not know, but you may never know the reason. The fact is, it doesn’t even matter.

What DOES MATTER is that he is not willing to go on weekly dates and build a relationship face-to-face. This automatically disqualifies him as being the right man for you.

While you like parts of his personality that he shares via text and phone, HE DOESN’T WANT TO GO ON DATES and that is a huge part of who he is. Can you see that?

For this particular guy or any man, you can’t do anything to make him date you or want a relationship. Anyone who tells you differently is not being honest or realistic.

How to Qualify the Men You Date

What you can do is GET BETTER AT QUALIFYING THE MEN YOU DATE so you don’t get into this kind of virtual relationship again. This is for women who to date men with the goal of finding a lasting, committed relationship.

It takes a bit of self discipline, but if a man cannot meet you on a real date within 7 days, MOVE ON. I don’t care what his reasons are. He’s busy with work, he’s traveling for business or vacation, his kids are sick, his ex wife is taking him to court, he has to paint his house, etc.

These are all EXCUSES and a man’s way of letting you know that he’s not into you enough to make time to meet you. Or he’s not ready and available to date.

Establish a “No Excuses” Policy for Yourself

Don’t share this policy with men. Just stop texting and communicating with any man who can’t meet you within 7-10 days at the most. Don’t except a man’s excuses thinking you are being flexible. When it comes to decoding men and understanding how men think, it’s best to focus on what works for you instead. Excuses don’t work. Move on to men who are ready to meet you.

The next qualifying hurdle is that you want to date men who will go on dates at least once a week. Yes, there are occasions when someone has go out of town, but if a man is always out of town, that alone makes him unavailable due to his lifestyle.

The Bottom Line about Your Man

My best dating advice for understanding men is to realize this man is NOT into you. He’s told you he thinks you are naive because he knows the game he’s playing. The good news is NOW YOU DO TOO.

Don’t continue to play hoping things will change. HE WON’T CHANGE. Move on to find a better man who wants the loving relationship you want and demonstrates that by making time to see you.

Wishing you love,

understanding men


Single for too long, Ronnie wanted to find love. She put her skills from personal development and her spiritual path to work, dating 30 men in 15 months to meet her adorable husband Paul. Discovering the keys to manifesting and midlife dating, she founded It’s Never Too Late to help smart, successful women find love or live an empowered and magical life. Ronnie Ann Ryan, MBA, CCC, is a Certified Coach who has helped 1,000s of midlife women with her Love & Magical Life Coach services. She’s the host of the Breathe Love & Magic podcast and has been featured on NBC, ABC, & Fox News, NPR, BBC, eHarmony, MSN.com, and Connecticut Magazine among others. Also, Ronnie is the author of 6 books which are available on Amazon.

9 thoughts on “Understanding Men: We Text and Talk, But Don’t Go on Dates”

  1. I can’t believe I’m asking this or even this naive. I’m 33 and met a guy years ago. He texted and called me and a couple times, asked me out for ice cream. Years later we reconnect and begin going to the gym together. We were intimate…but only talk on the phone in the morning while he’s working. Never evenings or weekends. And it’s been two months and he hasn’t asked me in a date. I asked him about it – he said he has his son full time. He doesn’t want me to date people because I am dating him. I don’t get it.. he doesn’t want me to go on dates but don’t take me on them. I set up dates myself and he cancels. If I’m pissed he makes it seem like I’m blaming him. How do I break it off without burning bridges with him? Or coming off as crazy? With my attachment style it’s hard for me to cut people off especially after intimacy … or should we be friends with benefits until I meet the right person?

    • Hi Neelia, This is classic GASLIGHTING! He’s a narcissist, thinking only of his own needs and probably has a woman in his life which is why he can’t go on dates or see you on the weekend. Gaslighting means someone claims their bad behavior is your fault! STOP TALKING TO HIM NOW! You can’t be friends with this man ever – he doesn’t know how to be a friend – he only takes!

      Don’t worry about what he thinks about you – worry about what you think about yourself! You know in your gut this isn’t good for you because you called yourself naive. Honor yourself and find REAL love. If you have to tell him something say you want a real relationship with a man who will spend time with you in person. Don’t believe him when he says he’s working on it – where’s the evidence of that? He’ll never change.

      Forget your attachment style – that’s an excuse. What’s your style for taking care for yourself? Block him on your, join a new gym and MOVE ON PLEASE.

  2. Hi, my situation a bit different but same result. We’ve actually met @ at friends party in May of this year and had plans to go on date to a concert but concert got cancelled. Since then, we’ve only been talking via text and really long phone conversations (not everyday). There’s a lot more but to keep this short, I have fallen into a deep like for this man and would like to see him and go on an actual date but he’s says he’s got financial issues right now, but we are talking about going on a getaway trip for week of New Years Eve holiday. He’s also hot and cold with communication. I know I should just walk away and have tried a few times unsuccessfully. We have a LOT in common, but of course he doesn’t want to be just in the friend zone. Should I just stop communicating with him the next time he texts or calls and ignore him? He has ignored my texts and calls before. Caught in a trap and want to get out… gracefully without burning the bridge down. Please advise. Appreciate it. Cheers. PS.. there is quite an age difference but if you saw us together you’d never know it

    • Hi Jo, I know you aren’t going to want to hear this but he’s not serious about you at all. I doubt you’ll see him for New Year’s but if you did, you likely wouldn’t see him after. Why are you allowing him to treat you this way? He’s taking up valuable real estate in your head and heart but won’t even go on a single date! You may have strong feelings, yet this has some degree of fantasy, since he doesn’t reciprocate and sometimes ignores you! He’s using you for attention, companionship, or as an ego boost – he enjoys being adored. My hope for you is that you find a way to love yourself enough to let him go and move on. May you never let yourself get taken in by a texting/phone buddy again. Give a man 7 days to meet. If it doesn’t happen, close that chapter, block him, and move on to find a man who wants a relationship and doesn’t just talk about it.

  3. Hi Ronnie, what if it’s been 5days but you’ve sent a TON of emails? There are a few guys I’m in that situation with and they haven’t even asked for my number!

    • Tracy,
      When a man doesn’t ask for your number, he is clearly not interested. I recommend NOT sending you a ton of emails online (if that is what you are referring to). Instead, thoughtfully select 3-5 good options at a time. Wait to see who responds in a day or two. Then do another batch. When you slow the process down a bit, you’ll be less anxious. Plus, and this is very important, you won’t be sending out any signals to the Universe that you are desperate for any answer from any man.

      If the men who respond don’t ask you out after 7 days, then ask if they want to meet. This is the only time it’s Ok to initiate and the first meeting is not really a date – its called “Date Zero” and it nothing more than a chemistry check. So ask if he wants to meet for coffee. Anyone who doesn’t say yes, stop communicating. This will simplify your process and help you weed out time-wasting men.

      Last but not least – your shot gun approach isn’t really working as you can see. So slow down, take your time and don’t spend more than 30 minutes a day online. That will help you relax about the process.

  4. HI Ronnie – and thank you for your reply. I think I have known for some time I am just being ‘played’ but being something of a queen of denial, I tried to not look at it! I am going to let him go and play his games with someone else, and rather wait for someone I can actually meet and spend time getting to know, as you say, that is the best way to find the true chemistry. Happy holidays and thank you again!!

  5. Dear Ronnie – this is something I understand all too well – met a guy online in September and we have been chatting ever since, getting on well and he seemed to really like me. We do live quite a distance apart – about seven hours travel by car – and I have told him I would like us to meet soon, since I don’t consider texting a solid basis for a relationship. All he does is avoid the issue, and tell me how busy he is with his business in the run up to the holidays! (Sorry, but I am not prepared to be the one to go visit him – I did that once before with previous online date, and it was a total disaster, the guy turned out to be a horror!) So – do I push the issue or simply walk away – I do get the sense I am simply one option for him, since I see he is still active on the dating site where we first met. And yes – I am old enough to know better (53) – while he is 57 – guess nonsense carries on no matter what our ages! Thanks for your advice and your blog, which I read a lot!! Gail B

    • Hi Gail,
      I’m going to be very direct with you but know that I do have compassion for you. I tell my clients not to text or email longer than 7 days (10 at the most) if they don’t meet. You are now into this for months! If he was genuinely interested, the distance wouldn’t matter. But many people use the web for these virtual relationships with NO intention of ever meeting. That’s what is going on here. You cannot expect a commitment when you are not really dating or in a relationship. You can push the issue if you want, but my bet is you won’t get any where with this guy. I hope you stop letting this man waste your time and look for local men to date. Its the best chance to find love.

Leave a Comment