Dear Cheryl: I'm 37, and I have two kids. I've been dating this guy for two months. I really like him, and I think he likes me. When we're together, everything is great. We're so in sync it's scary. We have the same opinions on food, music, movies, TV and sports teams. We laugh a lot together and have a fabulous sex life. He tells me I'm beautiful, and he loves to be with me. He says I'm a great lover and he loves how easygoing I am.
The problem is I'm not as easygoing as he thinks I am! In fact, I hate the casual way he treats our relationship. Sometimes he'll call me several days in a row, and then a week will go by and I don't hear from him. We'll go out three Saturday nights in a row, and then he'll skip a week or two.
I don't want to nag him, or make him think I'm chasing him or looking for a commitment. On the other hand, since we're sleeping together, I feel like I'm entitled to some sort of security. I want more, but I don't want to scare him off. Help! — Catch 37
Dear Catch 37: You're right; the relationship is too casual. Once you're sleeping with someone, everything changes. There are too many STDs out there. You need to protect yourself.
It's not nagging to ask if he's sleeping with anyone else when he's not with you. If the answer is yes, or if he's evasive, or if he basically says it's none of your business, then you need to rethink the relationship.
If he says he's not and you're the only one he's intimate with, then tell him you need a little more "structure." You're a single woman with two kids. You can't just come and go at a moment's notice. You need to make arrangements for your kids, hire a babysitter, etc.
If he's not OK with making some minor adjustments in his M.O. to be with you, then he's not the right man for you.
Dear Cheryl: I'm a reasonably good-looking, successful, honest man, but I find it impossible to meet women. I won't date women I work with because it's unprofessional. I've tried online dating, but it's been a disaster. The club scene is not for me. I'm not a player. And I'm not the kind of a guy who can approach a woman at the supermarket and say, "Hi, wanna have coffee?" I keep reading about all the millions of single women, but I can't find them. — Tired of Looking
Dear Tired of Looking: You've had some bad luck. I get it. But that's no reason to stop looking if you really want to find someone.
You're right; there are millions of single women, and they're everywhere. They belong to church, civic and professional groups, and co-ed sports teams. They do volunteer work and canvass for their political candidates. They take classes at the gym and the Y and community centers. And they want to meet you.
Give yourself a goal of starting one new activity a month every month this year. And then force yourself to approach women you find appealing. Invite them out for coffee, lunch, dinner or a drink. Get to know them. If it doesn't work out with them, they'll have friends. Good luck, and let me know how you're doing.
Got a problem? Send it, along with your questions and rants to [email protected] And check out my e-books, "Dear Cheryl: Advice from Tales from the Front" and "I'll Call You. Not."