11/22/2006 07:35 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Ill-Equipped (Who Isn't?)

Jennifer Lehr answers your questions about sex, love, and relationships every week on Fearless Voices. To send her a question, click here.bouquetofroses.jpg

Dear Jennifer,

I'm 38. I've been told I'm good looking. I work out. I make a decent
living. I love to travel. I have fun. I'm writing a novel. I have great
friends. My life is really good. My problem? You guessed it. Women. I
actually date fairly often. But rarely ever do I get past a first date.
I'm either bored or, more often than not, I find that there's just no
chemistry. I mean you can't have sex with good conversation and stuff
in common. I don't want to be single forever. But I don't want to
settle. I want someone to really blow me away. Is that too much to ask

Not getting any younger.



My advice to you is FORCE YOURSELF TO GO ON A SECOND DATE! Plain and
simple. Actually I recommend that the next time you have a date with
someone where the conversation is lively and you find the person
interesting--even though no fireworks are flying overhead--that you force
yourself to go out with her four times. Yes, four whole times. That is,
if she'll have you.

It seems to me David that you are a serial first-dater because your
expectations are warped. And it's not your fault. Chemistry is hard to
argue with. It's instant. It's exciting. It feels like life is
happening, and this could be it! You know what? The last five guys that
lit up my insides turned out to either have a girlfriend or someone he
was still in love with. It took me a painfully long time to learn that
I should actually use that chemical excitement not as a sign of someone
I should pursue, but as a sign of someone I needed avoid. For me, while
chemistry could definitely lead to a hot night of sex, it was followed
by way too much heartache.

Once I finally realized this, I forced myself to go on a second date
with an unattractive, long-haired, super funny, fun, smart guy who I
had no interest in ever kissing. Six years of marriage later, I think
he's the cutest thing in the world.

You should also consider that that chemical feeling fades over time. So
you need other qualities to help the relationship endure. When you say
that you are looking to be "blown away," what specifically to do you
mean? Do you know yourself? Don't underestimate "good conversation"
and "stuff in common." They warrant further investigation. I'm not
saying kiss someone you're not attracted to. I'm saying give yourself a
chance to get to know someone. Give her a chance to get to know you.

I think you'll be surprised how differently you'll feel about her on
your fourth date than you did on your first. Even though you're whole
being might be screaming "No, I can't do it!" pick up that phone and
ask her out again. Nike is right. Just do it.