The sex shark

Right or wrong, a popular belief about sharks is that they are always hungry; always on the hunt.

I’ve come across men who seem to have a similar unquenchable appetite — for sex.

They are always on the hunt for new sexual prey, but not to the point of being sexual predators. They seek consenting partners, not those taken by force.

How do they hunt? Often times online. They pose as nice guys, sometimes borrowing pictures from others, or posting their own decades-old ones. They sweet talk each unsuspecting woman to persuade her that he’s a great guy. He romances her quickly, saying all the things she’s yearned to hear. And he beds her.

Then he’s gone. He’s on the hunt for his next conquest.

These men could be married, living with someone, or have a girlfriend, who, of course, is unsuspecting. She believes he is working late or out with the guys. Little does she know he’s prowling online sites or bars for his next target.

I dated a man for five months who I later learned fell into the sex shark category. When I told him after the third date that I wasn’t ready to get intimate yet, he said he had other ways to get his needs met — I only later figured out he meant other women.

One time he was away for weeks for a family emergency, and when he returned he said he needed to clear his head by taking a solitary motorcycle trip — without seeing me before he left. Later I learned a former lover had been sending him naked pictures of herself while he was with his family, and she’d enticed him to visit her.

Another potential suitor shared that he could have sex with a different woman each night of the week, and he was enjoying it! He had no interest in being monogamous and enjoyed the hunt and conquest.

Other men actively pursued me who I later learned were married. When the cat was out of the bag, I asked why they were looking to cheat on their wives. “Sex” was the common response.

How do you know if you’re with a sex shark? I think it’s how you’d look for signs of any cheating. The challenge is if he’s slick, it may take you months or years to find out. Which is why you want to take it slow if sexual exclusivity is important to you.

Have you been with someone you learned was a sex shark? If so, what happened?

Dating over 40Want to know other ways to determine if a guy is a keeper? Get your copy of Real Deal or Faux Beau: Should You Keep Seeing Him?



5 responses to “The sex shark”

  1. Lisa Avatar

    I was married to one. I never figured out how long it had gone on but it continued on the sly even while we were trying work things out in counseling! They’re slick, smooth talkers, and compulsive liars because they are sexual addicts. Beware and stay away.

  2. Lynn Avatar

    If he’s already telling you he ‘has other ways to get his needs met’ on the 3rd date, that’s a big red flag. A good guy will respect your choice, and be very willing to move the relationship along at *your* pace. Why did you date him for 5 months? Was the 3rd date at the 5 month mark? You don’t mean you continued seeing him after the 3rd date? Ugh. Be pickier!!

    I found a book at the library that listed all the red flags to be aware of, called The Little Book of Big Red Flags. It’s written to a younger audience, but the red flags are basically the same ones at any age. More good books along the same theme: “Whom Not To Marry;” “SMART Man Hunting;” and “Deal Breakers” by Bethany Marshall.

    I think “Deal Breakers” gave a list of things to look for in a healthy good man. There were 12 items to look for to make sure you’re with one of the good guys. I wrote them all down, but I didn’t write down the title of the book too, but I’m pretty sure it was the last chapter in “Deal Breakers”:

    1. When you meet, he’s attracted, and he follows up by making plans to see you.
    2. Soon after meeting him, you discover he has achieved in at least 1 area of his life.
    3. He says what he means & means what he says. He only makes plans he intends to back up.
    4. The relationship feels reciprocal and mutual.
    5. You like his friends and who he is with when he’s with them (he doesn’t change into some other person you don’t like when he’s with his friends).
    6. He likes you for who you are, and it doesn’t change. You can change your hair, your style, your career, etc. He still likes you no matter what. You don’t have to be afraid to change, grow and reveal yourself.
    7. He never views you as unconditionally bad or good.
    8. He can tolerate the unexpected because he trusts you.
    9. He has a learning curve, and is willing to learn from his mistakes.
    10. He will seek his own solutions and make the changes he needs to make. He has no petty pride.
    11. He will not try to have power over you. He won’t leave you wondering where he is or what he’s doing.
    12. He’s grateful for what you offer, and says “thank you” and acknowledges when you do something nice for him.

    According to “Select Men Wisely” by David Shade, men with high self-esteem don’t cheat. Men with low self-esteem often cheat. Very promiscuous men usually have VERY low self-esteem. They may have had a caustic mother who berated them throughout their childhood. They probably have a difficult relationship with one or both parents. Possibly their fathers also cheated on their mothers. Of course, in our 40s we are Generation X, and many single men our age came from divorced households. But at least half did NOT. So, look for guys that came from the happily-married households growing up. They are a better bet. On the first date, ask questions about the guy’s family, his childhood, his relationship with his parents and his parents’ relationship with each other. It should tell you all you need to know, to avoid the “sharks.”

  3. Amber Dawes Avatar
    Amber Dawes

    Dating is tough since you’re only 50% of the equation. Healthy, whole men are hard to find.

  4. Anon Avatar

    I would caution that the opposite is equally damaging to guys. I never really knew how to date since I was a shy geek and now haven’t had a girlfriend in 5 years, and typically only some intimacy once a year or two, briefly. By some shallow girl who doesn’t care much about me, but what can I do, I’m just a guy so I have to say yes. I can say for sure this doesn’t make me happy and I’d love to have a good girlfriend.

    So I can say while women don’t like dishonest guys, it is often better as a guy to be too forward and keep trying, to learn how to date successfully (due to many failures by being rejected by women for all sorts of reasons, e.g. not enough emotional connection, not enough flirting, etc that you learn about and figure how to improve on). Women have the burden of rejecting guys and they ought to be selective and weed out all the bad ones. But men have the burden of needing to take risks and pursue women.

    Many of the successful men I know who are geeky and PhD MIT etc make a lot of money, are not successful with women at all, because they don’t realize something that is intuitive to the “shark” that to learn you have to get out there and risk your ego and get shot down a ton.

    Women I suppose can always help out by asking out a shy guy. But I still think the burden is on the guys to improve. In my experience successful and healthy guys are quite common yet women seem to also complain a lot since a very skewed distribution of guys (the sharks) are the ones that are hitting on them.

  5. WC Avatar

    Where would that leave JFK?