What do you do when a guy’s actions don’t match his words? My ex-boyfriend seemed like a great guy at first, until this happened…
“I’m a good guy!” That’s what my boyfriend Bob would say (with his sexy southern accent) whenever he did something that wasn’t so ‘good’. He forgot my birthday? “I’m so sorry. I’m really a good guy. Let me take you out for dinner tonight to celebrate.” Have you ever met a good guy – someone who claimed to be ‘good’ – but they weren’t? That’s what today’s video is about…
When His Actions Don’t Match His Words
I used to be a sucker for those charming ‘good guys’…until I met Bob. Let me take you back to how it all began. We met on a dating site, and we immediately hit it off. We had so much in common. We were in similar professions, we both played guitar and sang. We even had many of the same friends, which made me feel safer with him than I felt with most of the potential axe murderers I was meeting online. After our first 1 hour phone call, in which he was planning our possible grandchildren together, I was buzzing with excitement. I immediately called one of our mutual friends to find out what she thought about us dating. “Bob?” She said. “He’s a GREAT guy (not just good). I can’t believe I never thought about fixing you up. Go out with him. You’re going to have a blast!’
The first date
Three days later, Bob and I met for our first date. And what a date it was! He was tall and handsome, a silver fox with snowy white hair. He drove a fancy red BMW convertible. He took me out for sushi and then we went go-karting, which I had never done before. As we waited to get into our go karts, he locked eyes with me, and bent down to kiss me for the first time. I was smitten.
Could he be the one? What about the fact that he was an hour late to our first date? I mean he had a good excuse…he said he got stuck in traffic. It could happen during rush hour on the new jersey turnpike. So, while I was a little upset about the long wait, I forgave him.
And so began my relationship with Bob
We went on amazing dates; live music concerts in small venues in New York City, fancy ice cream parlors and high end restaurants in New Jersey, talking on the phone until late at night, we seemed to never run out of things to say…it was like a dream come true.
Well… There was this one little problem: Bob told me he was recently separated from his wife, and even though he really really liked me, he was so new to dating, he wasn’t looking for a relationship. He wanted to date several women at the same time. You know, sow his wild oats so to speak.
Setting my standards
I thought about it. Would this work for me? I mean, it was against my policy to date separated men, and I was looking for a long term relationship, but he was so handsome, and fun, and he took me on such great dates. I decided I would still date him—with a few conditions: 1. he wouldn’t get ALL of me (wink wink), and 2. I would stay with him as long as it was still fun for me. That felt like it could work. In fact, when I shared those conditions with Bob, he told me it made him like me even more.
Life got complicated…
About a month later, things in my life got complicated. My oldest daughter ended up having emergency surgery. It was scary, and I was with her at the hospital through it all. And then I brought her and her husband back to my house for the weekend so I could take care of her while she healed. I called Bob and told him what was going on. “I really need some support right now,” I said. “Sure”, he promised, “I’m a good guy! I’ll give you a call over the weekend to check up on you”.
That weekend was stressful. I ended up having to take my daughter to the ER Friday night because of complications. I didn’t hear from Mr. Good Guy all weekend.
Monday night, he finally called. “Hey, how’s it going?” he asked. “Not so good”, I said. I told him how hard the weekend had been, and how upset I was that he hadn’t been there for me. His answer? You guessed it… “Oh, honey, I’m really a good guy. I’m so sorry, but my phone was stolen and I couldn’t call until I got my new phone. Please trust that I’m a good guy. Meet me in the city for dinner tomorrow. I’ll take you to the best steakhouse in town!”
I did meet him for dinner, and as I sat down, I said, “Bob, my life is not all unicorns and roses. I need someone who’s there for me in good times and bad. If that’s not you, that’s okay, but I don’t want to date you anymore.” Can you guess what he said? ”I’m a good guy. I may seem like a jerk at times, but I’m a good guy. I’ll do better next time.”
When actions don’t match words…
There was no next time. I was done being a good guy doormat. This relationship was no longer fun for me, so I said goodbye. He pleaded with me, “Hey, can’t we just be friends?”, and I said, “Bob, you’re not my friend. Friends show up and support each other. I wish you all the best, but this is goodbye. Have a ‘good’ life!”
When someone’s charming and fun, smart, sexy, it’s easy to lose sight of what really matters – integrity. You want to believe people mean what they say, but without action and consistency, words are empty.
I needed a Bob to remind me that I have standards, and I want to surround myself with people who show up for me in good times and bad.
Do you have a charming Bob (or Barbara) in your life?
It could be a romantic partner, a friend, or even someone at work. Don’t believe their empty promises. Words are cheap. Make sure their actions match their words. Because someone who’s really good doesn’t have to work so hard to convince you.
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