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Am I too picky?

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  June 2, 2011 08:21 AM

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Q: Dear Meredith,

I recently started dating someone, Lisa, who I met online. She has a lot of great qualities and I have enjoyed our time together so far. There are things about her that I find attractive and things about her that give me some reservations, which I feel is normal in the start of any relationship. I'm willing to give it some time to see how things progress.

About three months ago, I dated someone, Jen, briefly (very briefly) who I thought I could really be interested in. It seemed she felt the same, but it turned out that she had just come out of a relationship and wasn't ready to start dating again. We left it that maybe we would touch base with each other in the future. For all I know, she was telling the truth about the timing not being right. Or, she just wasn't interested.

Here's the thing. I can't stop wondering about her, especially now that I am dating someone else.

In the meantime, Lisa seems to be getting serious about us very quickly. I'm guessing that she thinks we are already exclusive.

Does the fact that I'm thinking about someone else so much mean anything about how I feel about Lisa? Should I email Jen or forget about it and try to focus on Lisa? And, even more than that, should my feelings for Lisa be getting progressively stronger or is it normal to go back and forth about someone new?

I'm a fairly independent woman who would rather be single than in a mediocre relationship. My friends like to tell me I over think things and am too picky. I like to think that I am just waiting for the right fit. Probably, the truth is somewhere in the middle.

– Too Picky For Her Own Good, Boston


A: "Does the fact that I'm thinking about someone else so much mean anything about how I feel about Lisa?" Maybe.

"Should I email Jen or forget about it and try to focus on Lisa?" Sure. Email her. My guess is that another rejection from Jen will help you reset your priorities.

"And, even more than that, should my feelings for Lisa be getting progressively stronger or is it normal to go back and forth about someone new?" Probably. If you don't feel any closer to Lisa after a few months -- if she's not growing on you -- it's time to move on. You're supposed like her more as you get to know her better. And you're supposed to feel at least a little bit giddy about her. Besides the Jen thing, are you thinking about Lisa when she's not around?

As for the "too picky" argument, I'm on your side. People often accuse selective daters of being too picky, but if you're not feeling it, you're not feeling it. You're attracted to people based on your wants, needs, and experiences. You can't force it. All you can do is stay true to yourself and treat people with respect as you make decisions about them.

I believe that staying picky keeps you honest. It basically means that you're listening to your gut.

Readers? Do you agree? Should she call Jen? Should she keep dating Lisa? Is she being too picky? Discuss.

– Meredith


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ABOUT LOVE LETTERS: Welcome to Love Letters, the place for love advice (giving and getting). Globe relationship columnist Meredith Goldstein and Boston.com readers are ready to take your letters and tell you what's what. Have a question? Click here to submit or email us at loveletters@boston.com.
Blogger Meredith Goldstein

Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.

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