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Regret of not dating someone and then see her date around casually

Tagged as: Dating<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (14 April 2012) 5 Answers - (Newest, 15 April 2012)
A male United States age 26-29, *id11 writes:

Sorry for posting on this forum again, but I have been struggling badly with this issue for 5 months now.

I broke up with my first and only girlfriend in Jan 2011. The reason was that I am Indian (living in US) and she is american, and my parents took too long to approve it and she said that she turned bitter about this (though recently I found out that she found another guy when she was on internship while we were in a relationship). After this, one of my friends introduced me to a Filipino girl for dating. I made it clear to her that we should not meet because of my restrictions. But she somehow got attached and tried to convince me to date for over a month. But I always felt that it is unfair to date a girl if I know that it will be hard to marry. So, ultimately, she gave up. I had seen my friends dating around just for fun, which would mostly leave the girl heartbroken, and this is what influenced my decision not to date casually. Also, I was in touch with my ex-gf, and she was giving me crap about playing with another girl's life when the decision of marriage is not completely in my hands.

After this, the filipino girl came back to my life as a friend. We used to hang out so often that it was almost like dating, except for any physical contact. I cared for her, so I used to pay for her dinner, movies and introduced her to some Filipino friends who I thought could be a good long term match for her, even though I myself loved her a lot. I was happy to sacrifice my feelings to make her and my parents happy. However, around September/October, she started telling me about her plans to have casual sex/dates with other guys just for fun, and it started bothering me. I asked her if she is still ready for a serious relationship, but she declined saying that the way I initially rejected her was very hurtful to her.

Now, when I look around, it seems like most girls casually date around for fun, just like guys. And I had these stupid morals based on wrong assumptions (because I come from a conservative country and also because I was feeling guilty after my ex-gf broke up saying that she was hurt), where I was trying to save all the girls from guys, who I thought were using them just for sex. So now I regret letting go of my chance to spend some good time with this girl and then had to see her date around casually. When I imagine her engaging in casual sex with other guys, it makes me physically sick. It is so hurtful to know that I suppressed my feelings so that she doesn't get hurt, thinking that it will be wrong if I date her but couldn't marry her, but casual dating is a part of life here. This feeling of regret is killing me everyday. It is even hard to watch TV/movies because any mention of casual sex/ hook-ups/cheating hurts me immensely. How can I get over this regret of making this stupid decision of not dating this girl? It haunts me every moment.

Thanks

View related questions: broke up, heartbroken, my ex

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (15 April 2012):

CindyCares agony aunt Don't be so sure. Just a week of reading Dear Cupid's posts would disabuse you of this notion that " American girls don't feel used if they are dumped after few weeks ". Many of them clearly DO. Of course , it depends , if a relationship is short lived because incompatibilities show up very soon, hey that's life . But if they get wind that they have been conned into thinking a guy wants more than just a ciuple of sexual encounters, and then they see that instead they have been used , they are hurt, whether they are American, Chinese or Ukrainian.

I think you are still missing my point though, which his what YOU feel about casual sex. It CAN be seen as using people as a mean to your selfish ends, I don't say that you have to see it this way, but if you do , it does not matter what the other person says. If you feel it's wrong, it will still be wrong even if the other party is consenting !

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A male reader, sid11 United States +, writes (14 April 2012):

sid11 is verified as being by the original poster of the question

It is not about being a wimp ..... its about caring for other people's emotions and making sure they don't get hurt. But I have realized that girls here don't get attached so easily and they don't feel like somebody used them if someone dates them for a few weeks and leaves them. On the contrary, most of the girls here do the same and enjoy it. Its kind of a culture shock and the way I have experienced it is very hurtful. And the feeling of hurt and regret just doesn't go away.

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (14 April 2012):

CindyCares agony aunt US culture and sexual habits in US are much more varied and multifaceted than you believe, and what is acceptable or not, common or uncommon varies a lot according to the individuals, their personalities ,ideas and upbringing.

SOME girls will have sex just for fun, and some never would . SOME girls end up unwillingly used for sex by unscrupolous guys due to their naivety and insecurity, some others voluntarily seek and enjoy a variety of casual ,no strings sexual partners without guilt or regrets. It's not a one-size-fits-all. In any case, I think you should develop your OWN values and moral compass, rather than borrowing other people's, if you think that having sex outside of a committed relationship is wrong or it means exploiting people for selfish ends, then you 'll be right in not doing it, regardless of what your friends say. If you think that it's no big deal and there's nothing wrong in casual fun, then do what YOU want ( as long as the girl is consenting and aware that there's nothing serious between you ) .

I think it has ALL to do with what you believe, instead. You can't live your life just to fit in, or to get the advantages of a culture and lifestyle that you do not approve. I may be wrong, but it sounds like you do think that casual sex is wrong, or inappropriate , or not such a great idea anyway,.... and you just regret having been too much of a wimp to seize the chance to misbehave and " get some " without having to be officially critiqued.

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A male reader, sid11 United States +, writes (14 April 2012):

sid11 is verified as being by the original poster of the question

The problem here is not about what I believe. I wanted to do what is moral by US culture, so I asked for advice from my friends and ex-gf. My ex-gf gave me a biased advice and I ended up taking her advice over my friends' because of her aggressiveness. But now I know that she was wrong and that casually dating around and having sex is not a big deal for girls here. So it is the combination of not enjoying a relationship with this girl and seeing her casually having fun with other guys, which is making my life miserable.

So it is not about whether I believe in Indian or US values (I don't have a problem with either), it is more about my ignorance of the dating culture in US. And I regret making a wrong decision based on a biased opinion. It really hurts to see this girl dating around just for 'fun'. I could have experienced the same fun with her, but decided not to, as I thought it will be wrong by US culture as well.

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (14 April 2012):

CindyCares agony aunt Op, this is not about the first girl, or the second girl , this is about you. You have to make up your mind , and decide what you want and WHO you are.

Do you identify with your conservative culture and traditions ? Is it important to you that you live as an Indian and embrace Indian values - like family cohesion and having the wholehearted approval of your parents for your love life ?.. Nothing wrong with that, it's a choice,- but if you choose that, then DO it. Stop sniffing around girls that you know you can't have and can't marry, don't even approach them because you know it will only lead to confusion and resentments. Date only Indian girls from your religion and caste- if you are even allowed to "date " ,which it's a pretty un-Indian concept. Do the right thing, and do it proudly.

Is it not the right thing for you ? Do you feel more inclined to follow and use the social habits of your host country ? Do you BELIEVE that your personal and romantic life should be free from interferences from families and community ?

Then , you sit your parents down and you tell them more or less : " I love you, I respect you and I am grateful to you for bringing me up. BUT we are living in the States now, I can't and don't want to pretend that we are still in India. What's good for India is not good for here, and I am living here. Reason for which, I will always love you and respect you, but from now on I'll chose whom I want to go out with, I won't ever accept an arranged marriage, and I 'll decide who is right woman for me based on her personal qualities and not on her country, race or religion ".

Make up your mind. There's no right choice or wrong one, it's only up to you and what you value MORE. Unluckily, evidently you can't keep your cake and eat it too, as you have tried so far. You have seen it does not work, it only generates bitterness.

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