“You are just too much work”

Sometimes a guy says something that stings but it shifts your perspective so it ends up for the better.

We’d been seeing each other a few weeks. I enjoyed his company. Smart, funny and affectionate, he made me laugh like no one else. I thought it was going well. Then, over cocktails, he told me he didn’t see us together long term. When I asked why, he uttered “You are just too much work.” Shocked and hurt, I didn’t really understand what he meant.

You see, I consider myself a medium-maintenance woman. I’m not demanding about much. I’m not so low maintenance that a guy can just pop into my life when he wants and expect to pick up where we left off. But I also don’t demand extravagant gifts, dinners, and 100% attention.

So when he said I was a lot of work, I asked what he meant. He said “When I come home, I’m beat. I want a beer, a good meal, then watch the tube. You require conversation. And not just ‘How was your day?’ or ‘Can you pick up the dry cleaning?’ But real conversation that makes me think. I’m too tired at the end of the day to think like that. I just want to zone out.”

While it stung that he thought I was a lot of work, he was right in that I do require a thinking man — someone who wants to participate in meaningful dialog. I wouldn’t be happy with a “zoner” — someone who doesn’t care about engaging in anything beyond trite conversation. Nor would I be happy with someone who couch potatoes every night in front of the TV, even if he’s watching PBS or the Discovery Channel.

What about you? Are you “a lot of work?” Are you low-, medium- or high-maintenance? And what, exactly, do each of those mean to you?

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6 responses to ““You are just too much work””

  1. Bruce Daley Avatar

    Am I a lot of work? Well frankly yes. My energy level is high, my intellectual curiosity is broad, and my personality expansive. If I stop to watch TV I usually fall asleep. That is why my Yahoo profile is Trophy_Husband_Someday. Like radiation, I am therapeutic in small doses, fatal in large ones.

  2. Dating Goddess Avatar

    So you’re now using my blog to advertise your online profile? You are shameless, Bruce!

    That said, ladies check out his profile. If we could just get him to take off that hat, his primary photo is kinda cute. But know his profile name isn’t Trophy_Husband_Someday, it’s really Trophy_Husband_Later. (Note to Bruce: Check out my posting “Is that you? Photos are rough facsimiles of the real thing.”)

  3. Steve Mertz Avatar

    Goddess-who besides you mom said you were “medium” maintenance? Just having fun with you.

    I think anyone who comes home after work and just wants to veg-needs a new career, new people in their life etc…Life should not be that big of a drain, I hope!

  4. Bruce Daley Avatar

    Thanks for the kind words Goddess! My Yahoo profile is actually “House Trained Now – Trophy Husband Later”.

  5. uewoso Avatar

    Yo! Goddess! There are two kinds of maintenance and women usually only think of the first one:
    A. Financial. you want gifts, tickets, restaurants and always, always “fine” wine.
    B. Psychological. you are a drama queen, needing constant reassurance, compliments and quality time.

    The key is to find a balanced mate willing to give you what you want.
    And you give him what he wants, which may be peace and silence, at least sometimes.
    See Rob Becker’s play, “Defending the Caveman.”

    And BTW, I don’t think you answered my question as to what you bring to the table by way of reciprocity for your list of characteristics you want in a man…

  6. Dating Goddess Avatar

    Hi Joel:
    Thanks for the clarity about maintenance levels.
    Actually, I did answer your question. Go to http://datinggoddess.wordpress.com/2006/09/22/why-men-go-poof/ to read my response.