Warm guy, cold feet?

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    Aug 14, 2007 6:37 PM GMT
    I’m quickly discovering that this site is handy for bouncing ideas around and getting feedback and opinions. Y’all are the smartest gay guys ever!  Anyway, I do best with multiple perspectives on things. So here goes…has anyone else ever experienced this phenomenon?:

    Someone contacts you via one of these gay networking sites (not a hookup site). A mutual, genuine interest evolves over multiple email exchanges. It spills over into a couple of phone calls, and there’s some definite “hitting it off”, to include lots of deep info about himself and his life. You hear from him a lot of “I like you” and “you really impress me”. He hints at getting physical. But every time you make the suggestion to meet in person (no sex), the guy backs off, remains vague, and basically refuses to agree to do so. Yet the emails and calls continue.

    I’ve never really hung out with anyone that I’ve met on the internet, and rarely meet anyone on the internet to begin with (I hesitate to even call it “meet” until it’s in person). I just don’t put much stock in anyone until I can actually reach out and shake their hand. Call me old-fashioned, but I’m more comfy face to face. So with these internet connections I’m very much in some new territory here. Admittedly, the phone calls add a wrinkle.

    What am I to think?:

    - he has a lazy eye and he’s ashamed
    - he’s socially inept
    - he wanted just sex after all
    - he likes to mess with people
    - he thinks he’s looking but he’s not really ready
    - he’s one of those guys who always looks for something better
    - he’s sketch
    - i’m just being too pushy

    Of course any of these is possible (ok the first one was a joke). For all I know maybe I’m the weird one. I just think that human interaction should replace electronic interaction once the electronic interaction has served its purpose (basically, a cursory “pre-qualifying”).

    Naturally, there’s still genuine interest in him, or I would have let it go by now. And I know there’s more to it than can be summarized in a post. So I’m not so much fishing for answers here as I am wondering about the experience of others. Lemme know.

    Cheers guys. Y’all got the hotness in more ways than one. Glad I found this site! (Thanks once again, Outsports.com)
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    Aug 14, 2007 6:57 PM GMT
    (before anyone gets offended by the lazy eye comment...i've met people who think this is sexy and, also, i've been with one girl and later one guy who had this)
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    Aug 14, 2007 7:40 PM GMT
    It could be any one of those. Or he could just be using these sites for his entertainment. You'll only know if you ask, I spose.
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    Aug 14, 2007 7:43 PM GMT
    I was definitely thinking the site-as-entertainment theory except for the phone conversations.

    Wondering if there are similar experiences out there.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:14 PM GMT
    I think the site-as-entertainment is most probable. The internet is the new TV.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:16 PM GMT
    Try not to take it personally, it happens to us all and I'm sure we've all been guilty of writing cheques we've no intention of cashing. I know I have.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:27 PM GMT
    Hey ATX... another option you may want to consider (although unfortunate) is that he's lying to you or misrepresenting himself in some regard.

    Shrouding yourself in a veil of secrecy is incredibly simple online, and fairly easy over the phone. Perhaps he's reluctant to meet you because you'll see that he's been dishonest.

    That's only a possibility, as everything else you've listed is just as probable, but is one you should consider.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:32 PM GMT
    Thanks enigmatic. I admit to having a bit too much faith in the genuineness of others. Funny how I am only naive when I'm single. ;-)
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:33 PM GMT
    Dontcha hate it when emoticons wrap?
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:35 PM GMT
    My theory. He seems as if he is sincere in his interest in you, and that is great! Who doesn't appreciate a sincere interest - right? Now for his holding back perhaps it's because of an insecurity he fears you will find a deal breaker. Maybe he is overweight, or something else, and can't bring himself to meet in person.

    Perhaps you should move on, but if you do, give him the benefit of the doubt that he isn't trying to play you.

    Or mention to him that you're getting mixed signals and for the sake of relationship or friendship want to clarify things. Couldn't hurt, right?

    NICK
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:39 PM GMT
    I'm putting my money on one of the following:

    1) he's a fake - doesn't look like his pics, or at least hasn't in 10 years.

    2) he's got a lover/partner/wife.

    Let us know if he ever shows up for anything.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:43 PM GMT
    Thanks NRG579. The interest felt very genuine, even if expressed through limited means. I'm a very open-minded guy, and a deal breaker would have to be something big. That being said, I am not a project manager and have no interest in changing someone.

    Moving on is always an option, and perhaps the best one here. We'll see.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:44 PM GMT
    PSBigJoey: I hadn't considered the old pics possibility. Hrm.

    Yes I'll follow up with the outcome.
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    Aug 14, 2007 8:49 PM GMT
    Oh, and good luck ;)
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    Aug 14, 2007 9:14 PM GMT
    I agree with NRG579, he does sound genuine and i think he does want to meet but is scared that you wont like him in return.
    Its also not necessary that the picture is old or he is fat, maybe he's just not confident in meeting in person, some people are shy, some people are monogamous, take time to get to know you and dont want then to loose you!
    I think you should be patient and let him say when he wants to meet up i.e. if you like him.

    By the way, i am saying all this not because i am very experienced or wise just that i am shy by nature and find it hard to initiate a meeting.
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    Aug 14, 2007 9:17 PM GMT
    umrao: Thanks. Until today I was operating under this mindset. I'm a firm believer in synchronicity during times like this, but it's a bit elusive.
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    Aug 14, 2007 9:22 PM GMT
    just give it a bit more time, you'll know when it's time to move on.
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    Aug 14, 2007 9:39 PM GMT
    Some people are so into the fantasy that they never want to risk meeting in reality. That could be the issue.

    That said, my second suspicion echoes already posted comments: maybe he ain't actually single. I think that's a common cause of this sort of behavior.
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    Aug 14, 2007 9:50 PM GMT
    My first thought was the same and NRG's and Umrao's -- he is insecure or shy about something.

    It's always better to believe the best about people until you learn otherwise. Maybe I'm naive.

    Gotta agree with you about what a great site this is for advice. Makes me really proud to be gay.
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    Aug 14, 2007 11:19 PM GMT
    antelope, I'm the same way. I believe the best about people, even after I've seen something unsavory. I'm very compassionate and was raised to believe there is no such thing as a bad person. It takes a real sketchasaurus to make it onto my very small sh*tlist.

    That being said, I find my patience with people slightly dissipating as I get older. I don't like it, but I've become much more protective of my time.
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    Aug 14, 2007 11:46 PM GMT
    I always try to limit my interaction online or over the phone with people in my city or area I actually expect to meet.

    I have been on many sites meeting guys for years, and I have found that the more of a connection I make with people over the phone or online, the less it translates into reality. Especially when there is a 'date' potential. I find that the more phone talking I do with someone, the less I want to meet them, and the more I want them to just be my phone friend. I have met many people that get confidence talking to me on the phone, but in person, it's like we just met for the first time. They are shy, and not the person I was talking to, or the person they made themselves out to be. Sometimes meeting them ruins it all.

    A lot of people are liberal in their desciptions and view of themselves, so when you talk through an impersonal medium (internet or phone) people run with it, and they have no accountability for anything they say or infer. In person it is much different, and the mask doesn't cover as much.

    In your specific situation, the problem could be anything. You will never know until you meet him. If he won't meet you, then there will always be a problem, and it isn't really worth dealing with that from what you say.
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    Aug 15, 2007 12:21 AM GMT
    He may not be out.. no matter how tempting meeting you is.

    Nothing about any of this is easy..
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    Aug 15, 2007 12:47 AM GMT
    Isn't it simple enough to reflect to him what you've reflected here?

    "I've noticed that every time I suggest meeting in person, you back off. What dat about?"

    Until you do that, it's all guessing. He may well be a fake or he may be shy. He may have been burned meeting other guys. It takes me weeks, sometimes months, before I'll meet someone, usually, and people have confronted me a good bit.

    You don't say over what period of time this has developed (and I'm only presuming he lives in your own city). Generally, I'm always suspicious when people disclose so much and start telling me how much they like me before much time has passed. In this case, it's before you've even met in real time!

    Usually that means the person is incubating a fantasy -- cyberspace is ideal for doing that -- and it usually can't be sustained in the terrible thing we call reality. Like Sureshot, I've found that the higher the expectation, the more likely a crash is.

    I bet I hear this kind of story once a week from a client.
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    Aug 15, 2007 1:37 AM GMT
    Sureshot/obscenewish: Yeah you touched upon something here. I was a little taken aback by his proclamations of being impressed and liking me without so much as eye contact or a handshake. But different people have different experiences which make them more/less forward, open/closed, eager/shy, whetever. So I gave the benefit of the doubt that he was probably reasonably sane. I think that's part of why I want to meet him person and answer the question to my own satisfaction.
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    Aug 15, 2007 1:40 AM GMT
    kylez4me: I'm pretty sure he's out. You're right though, none if it is easy, and it probably isn't supposed to be. In fact, that might rule out the "convenient" internet altogether for all I know. Just don't tell the folks at Match.com. :-)