Dear Wayne and Wanda,
I need advice. For a few months now, I’ve been hanging out with “Mike.” Mike is pretty well known in town for being a musician. He’s in a couple really popular bands. In fact I met him because I was kind of a regular at his shows. I love his music and one night I got up the nerve to talk to him. We started texting and I invited him over and he stayed the night.
That was three months ago. Since then, Mike and I on average spend two or or three nights a week together. We text a lot. We’ve gone out to breakfast a few times and a couple times we met for drinks. But I felt like the places we met were places where no one we knew would see us, and like he planned it that way on purpose. I asked him if that was the case and he said I was "being crazy." But the fact is, we are a few months in and it feels as casual as day one. He’s never made any reference to us dating or being together. And when I’m at his shows he doesn’t even talk to me except for quick nods and winks. He says this "keeps it fun."
I really like Mike and I’d like us to be more than friends with benefits. How can I get him to see me as a girlfriend?
Hmm, so keeping your sexual relationship a secret “keeps it fun,” huh? Fun for Mike maybe — because he can maintain his single-guy image, keep his options open, and have you whenever he wants you. But are you having fun? Doesn’t seem like it. Actually you sound slightly miserable.
Casual sex is all kinds of fun until it isn’t. Having “just sex” with someone is great until you want something more. And it’s extremely confusing to reconcile how a person can so physically desire you, yet has no interest in pursuing that passion in a more expansive way.
Look, it could be that Mike's more of a slow-burn guy and needs time to get used to being a boyfriend, not a bachelor. It could be he’s really into you and is scared of messing things up. But the more likely reality here is that Mike is a youthful musician with plenty of options in the casual companionship department. If you want more than that, it might be time to cut Mike loose.
Actually, Wanda, Mike isn’t a slow-burn guy; he’s a musician. Musicians don’t have their own set of romance rules because most don’t play by any rules at all. Normally, I’d preface such strong statements by saying, “Hey, no offense to my many musician friends out there,” but my musician friends will take no offense. This is how they roll, fully realizing the power of the musical magic they weave.
And Ms. Letter Writer, this musician is playing you — and probably a few other fans — like an acoustic guitar. Or GarageBand. Or whatever kind of instrument or software he uses to make his music.
All of that said, I can’t and won’t put this all on the music-and-love-makin’ man. Are most of his songs about women and love and longing and sex and broken hearts? Have you ever watched any music videos, movies or documentaries? Have you even seen him interact with other fans before, during and after gigs? You’ve spent months feeling alone in the crowd and kept far, far away from his friends and other fans — you can no longer play the naïve fangirl. This is exactly what you think it is. Accept it or exit stage right.