Let’s say (and this is an example), a girl meets a guy and they get along well. And they go out a few times for coffee or a movie or whatever.
And the guy acts like a gentleman. And the woman enjoys his company. However, the girl suspects he wants to become girlfriend/boyfriend by the little hints he drops.
But the girl does not think they would be a match because they both want a different lifestyle eg he wants to live in the country, she wants to live in the city. She likes to travel, he would prefer to buy a cottage. And there are a lot of other differences such as that.
At first the girl does not write him off because she wants to give the guy a chance in getting to know him.
So my question is: At what point does it change from getting to know him to leading him on. Is the first time the woman thinks secretly ‘I could never marry him’ time to call it quits?
Well, I’ll say upfront that I don’t think there is a universal standard answer for this question. I think the young lady needs to pray about it and take care that she is not leading the man on, but what is considered “leading on” can vary greatly.
If the first time a lady secretly thought “I could never marry him”, she completely severed ties with the man, I know that my wife would have never married me. But then, depending upon the particular man and woman, calling it quits at that point might be the best course of action (so as not to waste each other’s time nor increase the amount of hurt feelings)
It’s really tough to give a general answer to this question. I would just say that the general principle to not lead someone on (thereby toying with their emotions and not respecting them) is a good principle to strive to honor. However, the point at which “leading on” occurs can be different for different people and different relationships. As in all things, dicscernment is the key.
If the girl only suspects he wants to be in a relationship, I don’t think there is anything wrong with getting to know him further. She should be sure not to flirt or do anything that would otherwise indicate she is more interested in him than she actually is, however.
In my opinion, if a guy simply drops “hints” without coming out and saying he is interested, he should not be assuming that she is interested anyway. I don’t think just getting to know someone is ever leading someone on, actually.
Do you think there’s a future for a platonic relationship between two people of the opposite gender who get along well and find each other attractive, but one of the two is not interested in it being more than a frienship because of opposing long term projects? The girl needs to state what her intentions are, and perhaps the gentleman is actively looking for a long-term romantic relationship and won’t be interested in just being friends. Or the girl might enjoy being with that man and might find “the little hints he drops” flattering and charming, and so she might not be eager to dispell the ambiguity that might be there.
I would caution the woman not to use extremely trivial criteria as a reason to cut off contact with the man before she even gets to know him. She likes to travel. How does she know that he doesn’t? Why would owning a cottage prevent traveling? It sounds like she might be fishing for any reason she can find to prevent this potential relationship from going too far, because she is afraid of close relationships. Perhaps she is from a broken family and has always struggled with that. There are plenty of people in situations like that, and they first need to understand their own thought patterns and come to terms with the inner demonds that are preventing them from persuing friendships and romantic relationships with others. A person cannot be in a strong, healthy relationship with another person if they are still struggling with mental barriers that prevent them from being close to others.
As a devout practitioner of cabin life, I think it would be a deal breaker if a woman could not accept that lifestyle.
The development of a serious relationship requires a foundation of shared values and beliefs. If both people cannot agree how to structure a shared life, then, unfortunately, they are not a good match.
It’s hard to say generally when a woman begins “leading him on.” It’s completely possible to have platonic friendships with someone of the opposite gender. Hints that a man is dropping can be tricky. If he’s being very forward about it, then she should just say that she does not see him as more than a friend. If they are hints that she might be putting too much thought into, she doesn’t necessarily have to say that. But she should be careful not to do things like be flirtatious. If she’s treating him like any other friend, she’s probably not leading him on. If she’s spending a lot of extra time with him (more than she does with other friends, for example) or she’s acting more interested in him than she does in her other friends, it could be seen as leading him on.
These situations will be different for different people. There’s not a specific thing that crosses from “just friends” to “leading him on” in every situation.
I agree one needs to get to know someone before cutting them off. And perhaps the cottage/travel example may not be the best. But let’s take it to another level. Like one pster said, they love the cottage so they would need a partner that would like the cottage as well
Let’s say, this couple were not all that well off financially. The man is willing to do without a lot of things to be able to buy a cottage because it means that much too him. Whereas the woman sees all the money being pumped into a cottage she has no use for and there is no money going for her trips.
Or perhaps the man has a Monday to Friday job and has the weekends to go to the cottage. But the woman has to work Saturdays and doesn’t want to rush after a long days work to the cottage.
So the question still remains ‘Is it leading a man on when the woman knows she could not be supportive of his lifestyle choices’?
I was dating a girl for 3 years before I met my wife on a business trip in South Africa. She lived in a palace, I lived in an appartment, she was non-Catholic, I was a Catholic, she lived in a beautiful place called Cape Town, I lived in England, she did not travel, I traveled all the time, she worked in a bank, I worked in computers, I was a hard-partying 24 year old, she was 19 and very devout.
So you get the picture. The result was we started dating after 1 week, broke up with our GF/BF immediately. She traveled to England to visit. We were engaged after seeing each other (face to face) for 21 days, and married 3 months later. That was 31 happy years ago.
So looking for excuses and differences really doesn’t matter if you fall in love with someone. Now I realize my situation doesn’t happen to everyone, and love creeps up on you sometimes, but the bottom line you will recognize it when it does. We were both dating and could have married the ones were were dating but it would have been a mistake and a compromise.
God will hit us over a head with a 2 by 4 sometimes, and when that happens don’t turn away. Little things like cottages, lifestyle, money will NOT matter in making that decision as the yellow brick road of life is laid out in front of you. In fact the more you focus on unimportant issues like those, the less chance you have of success.
Looking for love in the all the wrong places (didn’t someone write a song about that :rolleyes:) is the surface tension of a relationship, instead focus on morals, values, virtues and if you feel that “tingling” in the others presence. Get to know them. You will be amazed how much someone can change (i.e. me) under the influence of the right partner.
We have 4 beautiful kids, one grandchild, two Catholic marriages in our kids and wonderful son and daughter in laws. My wife became a Catholic 15 years ago, and things could not be more beautiful.
Actually, the question does not remain, unless you want it too. If you have coffee on Monday, go to a movie on Wednesday, and go to a restaurant on Saturday (don’t get bogged down in my examples, they’re for discussion’s sake) with the same man but yet don’t even consider being romantically involved because of what you perceive as being major impediments to a long-term commitment, then you’re leading him on. If he were just another friend, you wouldn’t see him one-on-one 3 times/week and would probably include others in your activities. Not setting the record straight in a gentle yet unequivocal way about your intentions as he “drops little hints” is leading him on. Rather, the question is: are you willing to pay the price that your being honest with this gentleman might cost? Three times/week was just an example, if it’s once/2 weeks, then you’re probably not sending him mixed signals, and I was using the “you” in a universal sense.