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Why Guys Never Dump Their Lame Girlfriends

6 Mar

I have a theory I am working on — guys don’t dump their girlfriends, no matter how lame these girlfriends are. I realize this is a bold statement, and I haven’t done a formal study, but I can’t think of the last time a guy I knew broke up with his girlfriend. Now this is not because all of the guys I know are in healthy, happy relationships. Hardly. In fact, over the years, I have seen most (if not all) of the guys I know in relationships that were downright awful. But even though they were/are so obviously unhappy, I’ve never seen one of them dump their girlfriends.

Instead, these guys usually try and blame their unhappiness on something else: work stress, financial stress, roommate drama, whatever, as long as they don’t have to consider the fact that maybe the thing that is making them unhappy is the she-devil they are dating. And since these lame girlfriends tend to have no problem ignoring their boyfriends’ unhappiness, these guys usually start acting up. I’ve seen this play out in a number of different ways; everything from picking fights about stupid crap to cheating. But no matter what avenue the guy takes, it all shows the same thing — they want out of the relationship and they don’t know how to ask for it.

In truth, I think girls are only marginally better dumpers. So many of us will just put on blinders about problems and ignore red flags because we don’t want to be alone. However, when push comes to shove, it seems like we always have to be the one to pull the trigger.

So why is this? Why are guys so hesitant to drop the dead weight in their lives and go after something better? Here’s what I think the top three reasons are:

• Guys hate being the “bad guy”. When you dump us, we cry and guys hate that. It is much easier to act like an asshole, because then then we’ll get all mad (instead of sad), and do the dumping for them. And frankly, although it isn’t a perfect plan, it usually works.

• Guys don’t like admitting they were wrong. When I broke up with Mr. Not Quite Right the first thing he said was that he thought we would work because he had never been wrong about a relationship before. I think that is an asinine comment, but it did give me some insight into why he’s still with this 21 year old who, by all accounts, is a crazy bitch. Personally, I don’t think dumping someone is admitting you were wrong but I can see how it could feel that way.

• Guys don’t like being alone. This is especially true for guys who have been in a string of relationships. Modern culture would have us believe that every man has the desire to be George Clooney — perpetually single, dating, promiscuous. But this just isn’t true for the vast majority of guys I know. Everyone likes someone to cuddle with and dumping a girlfriend means sleeping alone.

So the question is, how do we help these dump-phobic guys? In the past my plan was always to keep mum. I’ve usually tried to play nice with the bitchy-ass girlfriend and keep my mouth shut when the guy talks about her. But I am starting to re-think this theory. Maybe all these guys need is a little tough love. Maybe it is time to say, “Hey dude, your girlfriend sucks. We all hate her. You are clearly unhappy. You should get out.” Possibly a little outside perspective is what these guys need to avoid taking drastic measures (eg. cheating) and finally dump their lame girlfriends.

What do you think? What would help a guy end a relationship that sucks? Is an intervention the way to go, or do we just have to sit by and hope that these guys figure it out?

37 Responses to “Why Guys Never Dump Their Lame Girlfriends”

  1. Garrett March 6, 2011 at 9:35 pm #

    As a male, it is hard to admit that you are wrong. More often than not, we chased after this female and took extraordinary measures to get her. So, breaking up is an admission of being wrong. Also, it sucks to go from sleeping next to someone to sleeping alone. The loss of companionship is tough.

    • Cali Bradshaw March 6, 2011 at 9:41 pm #

      Thanks for the male perspective, Garrett! Nice to hear that my theory as to why isn’t totally off. In the end, I don’t really blame the guys. Breaking up is hard! It just makes me sad for everyone involved.

    • fedeline June 12, 2011 at 4:12 pm #

      I’m a female, but I can definitely understand the concept of complacency. We all have a tendency to cling to what is familiar. But what happens when the relationship we’re in becomes toxic? Toxic meaning unhealthy psychologically and emotionally? We all deserve to be with someone who’s compatible and can reciprocate unconditional love. In the end, it’s time wasted. Cheating, lying, vile arguments, and emotional distance are the result of a dying relationship.

      • Cali Bradshaw June 13, 2011 at 12:18 am #

        You are quite correct, girls too can become complacent and yes, change is hard for all. I completely agree that we all deserve to be with someone compatible and that time wasted is just silly. Thanks for you comment and for reading.
        -Cali

  2. Single Steve March 6, 2011 at 11:56 pm #

    Maybe I’m the anomaly…and maybe it’s the reason why I’m chronically single….but I dump girls like it’s my job. In a nice way? The moment I know she’s not “the one”, I break up with her. Why would I continue to be in a relationship with someone when I know I’m not going to marry them. I know that its harsh, and I end perfectly “good” relationships,but I’d rather end it, even though we could probably continue the relationship and it would be fine, but then a year later, it’s a year later and I’m not any closer to finding my wife. But I’m probably not the one to be giving advice seeing how I’m Single Steve. Maybe If I was Relationship Steve…

    • Cali Bradshaw March 7, 2011 at 12:41 am #

      Steve, I am exactly the same way. I don’t see any point of being in a relationship if I know it has no long term potential. That being said, I do think you are an anomaly. Not in a bad way, just in a you know what you want and in the long run you’ll benefit from it, way.

  3. @IggyCurtis March 7, 2011 at 12:15 am #

    Nice piece, though in talking with women, it seems like an awful lot of them have been dumped. But in those cases, it seems the men have met someone else first. You may be right in the cases where there is no one else on the horizon and the man is just inexplicably staying with a woman who is not right for him.

    That being said, I think you are on to something when you suggest the women friends in a man’s life should not keep quiet about the bitch from hell. If we don’t get your honest feedback, we assume that you as a woman think whatever is going on is within normal limits (or as you point out, blame other factors). I wish someone had spoken up regarding the woman I married before I got married. It was frustrating to find friends telling me after things went south that they had never thought she was right for me. So yes, ladies, your guy friends need and deserve your candid opinions.

    • Cali Bradshaw March 7, 2011 at 12:48 am #

      Thanks for the comment, Lloyd! I think you are correct in noting that a lot of time women who get dumped, get dumped for another woman. I haven’t heard of too many cases where guys are just dumping girls to be single (altho there are of course exceptions to every rule!) And thanks for sharing your opinion on whether girls should be honest with their guy friends. I shall definitely keep that in mind!

    • TashaL. January 13, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

      I think even if you have a female friend telling you your relationship sucks or the girl your dating isn’t right, that makes the guy try harder to prove to you that he was right and not wrong and stay in the relationship. I had a very great guy friend (my best friend) who decided to date one of my other friends. They never knew each other before I intorduced them, so he wasn’t aware that she was a slutty and manipulative girl. I never thought they’d get together, because really she’s honestly not pretty. But lo and behold, they got into a relationship three weeks after getting to know each other (texting, no phone talking or hanging out) and I warned him. I said I know you “like”( he only agreed, because he was lonely and never had a girlfriend before….she asked him out through Facebook) her but be smart about this she isn’t going to be the best of girlfriends. And he took this as me being a joykill and wanting to see him unhappy, so he began distancing himself from me, which of course I was like really now? The majority of their relationship is sexual activites and talk through text or on the phone now. And when I point out that his relationship is mostly based on sex initiated by her, because when they talk they only say I love you, no I love you more, and that I know he thinks thats a relationship, but it really isn’t, he gets upset with me, and says I’m not being supportive. And his girlfriend agrees, and uses any chance that I’m not in line to blow my actions out of proportion and say “your friend hates me, she called me this, she called me that” and instead of believing the friend whos been there for you for years, he believes the girlfreind of one month because he’s geting sex and she can do no wrong apparently becuse any girl he dates must be the “one” or wouldn’t screw him over. So really, it’s awlays best to tell someone the flaws in their relationship after they’ve broken up or divorced, because then the person can actually see it too and isn’t blinded by their love for the person. He stopped talking me, and his girlfriend makes it a point to mention his name any time she’s around me. I stopped caring, because I know all it takes is a hot guy to come along for her to cheat or dump him.

  4. The Blind Blonde March 7, 2011 at 3:46 pm #

    I have a friend who sincerely hates every relationship he is ever in. He complains, he’s unhappy, there is drama. But he refuses to dump them. And so when they finally get around to dumping him, he plays the role of the sad-dumpee. It’s very confusing to me.

    But I think your reasoning really makes sense.

    xoxo The Blonde.

    • Cali Bradshaw March 7, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

      Ha! That is hilarious but I swear it is typical! I have so many guy friends like that. And it’s even funnier that although they refuse to break up with their girlfriends they are ALWAYS telling me to break up with the guys I date. I haven’t dated a single guy yet that they have been like oh you should try and make this work. So interesting@

      Thanks for reading and for your comment Ms. Blonde :)
      -Cali

    • Neptune February 6, 2014 at 12:52 pm #

      Ugh – THAT guy.

      He can’t help it. It’s a learned behavior, aching for attention yet lacking self esteem to genuinely earn it, so he exploits the emotional leeway of a relationship to recreate what was learned earlier (yes, likely the bossy mom syndrome, maybe with a little bit of dad’s angry bottle?) OK, maybe that’s an unfair assumption, but many of us know ‘that guy.’ Would he even acknowledge the tough-love honesty? Unlikely. As friends, we have to tolerate or drift away, no?

  5. D is single March 7, 2011 at 7:07 pm #

    I bet most guys like that had bossy moms.

  6. NikkiB March 9, 2011 at 2:45 pm #

    Number one! Number one!

    In my experience, guys hate it when they make us cry/piss us off. Tears and/or yelling are not things they enjoy. This isn’t just getting out of a bad relationship, but even in the early dating stage of things. Instead of the easy-as-pie “hey let’s just be friends” text (still kind of a pansy way out but still), they try to back out but… end up sending the “hey! So sorry I’ve been MIA” random text for no reason. They want to soften the blow, but end up just being confusing!

    • Cali Bradshaw March 9, 2011 at 7:26 pm #

      So true! I have often been in that place where I am like ummm are you blowing me off? Because if so, could you please be more direct about it? Great, thanks!

      Thanks for reading and for the comment, Nikki.
      -Cali

  7. Doug1 March 9, 2011 at 10:00 pm #

    Nope. I think your reasons are off and your premise is off for part of the guy 20 something demographic.

    Beta guys don’t like dumping girlfriends that are still giving them sex, or even if they aren’t for awhile but delude themselves into thinking they will again soon, when things get better again. Since 85% of American middle class white guys in their 20s are betas in part because they were brought up in a feminist society in such emasculated, play nice not rough, feminized ways, yeah most of the time guys don’t leave their lame girlfriends. Even greater betas who are successful in things, but not great at picking up hot girls, don’t.

    It’s scarcity mentality. They know or fear they’ll go through a long sexual dry spell. This is first and foremost what guys mean when they say they don’t like being alone. For betas being in a LTR is generally the only way they can get sex from better than a mud turtle. Even mud turtles aren’t so easy for all but greater betas.

    Cute not to mention hot girls, HB6 and up, know they can get sex (albeit without commitment) from guys hotter than the bf they’re dumping anytime they want to be a little (or a lot) slutty. There’s also a lot of anti slut shaming ideology courtesy of feminism to help her not feels so bad about it. (That doesn’t really work come husband hunting time, but then former sluts pretend they never were one, and try to get away with that. There are tells though.) Meanwhile she’s next boyfriend hunting, while allowing herself to get fully sexual by the third date with guys she feels the gina tingle for, and perhaps also feels he seems like bf material – or perhaps she throws that last one away. So yeah, while it might not be all that much easier for her to get real commitment in a LTR from a guy who’s a step up from the bf she’s dumping than it is for him, she knows she need not be in a sexual desert while she’s looking.

    Alpha guys do dump girlfriends. They know like hot girls they’re not gonna be in a sexual desert for any extended period at all. Well more often they start cheating on them, and let them stomp off when they find out if they can’t handle it, which could go either way actually. Then he might turn her into a friend with benefits on the side, while encouraging to go serious husband hunting. Unless they’re crazy in a not sexy or worth it way, in which case it’s pure dump by Mr. alpha. So often alpha guys have a trial replacement or two lined up in the kitty.

    Myself, it’s not exactly cheating since I’ll likely have never promised her complete sexual fidelity in the first place, and would have said so if she’d asked the right questions. Emotional fidelity though, yes, I’d have given my LTR that while she was working out.

    • Cali Bradshaw March 10, 2011 at 2:24 am #

      Hey Doug – Thanks for the comment. I see your point and agree with it. You are exactly correct that break ups mean no sex for most guys and as much sex as they want for most girls. I also agree that Alpha guys are more prone to break up, but I think your point about cheating is true for both Alpha and Beta males and that was exactly the point I was making. Many guys need to have a girl on the back burner to feel secure dumping their GFs.

      Anywho, good point about the sex desert and the different options for males/females. Thanks!
      -Cali

  8. yohami March 9, 2011 at 10:04 pm #

    reason no. 1: men are problem solvers. when the relationship is sinking, men try harder, while women whine harder. men have a wiring that makes us push when things go bad, the so called hero path, etc.

    a lot of men get trapped with crazy whiny bitches because they keep on trying to fix the mess, never realizing theres nothing to fix

    so, I realized that a while ago. I have been ending relationships for a while

    • Cali Bradshaw March 10, 2011 at 2:48 am #

      I like this theory, and I think it is valid for some men, but not all. I definitely no guys who are in relationships and doing NOTHING to make them work but whining every second they get. That being said, I think there definitely are guys like you described. Glad to hear you are one of the guys who ends relationships. No sense in wasting time!

      Thanks for the comment.
      -Cali

  9. NewlySingle April 5, 2011 at 6:09 am #

    My ex flat-out told me he thought it would ultimately get to a point where it was so bad that I would break up with him. Clearly him taking some relationship initiative wasn’t in the picture… nor career initiative…

    • Cali Bradshaw April 5, 2011 at 4:28 pm #

      Oh that makes me so sad but it is so typical! I can’t believe he actually admitted that he was going to be that lame. Shame on him! Yea, it is no surprise that someone who can’t take initiative in one arena fails in others as well. Definitely sounds like you are better off! <3

    • Neptune February 6, 2014 at 1:03 pm #

      I want to be ill, and yet I know he just doesn’t get it. The same could be said for many of the points made by this great article and the multitude of readers’ comments. It amazes me how bravery and success in the work/play world can simply NOT translate into relationships.

  10. fgdfgfdg February 5, 2012 at 5:01 pm #

    I was in such relationship and couldn’t break up as You said but my last one made me crazy. everything looked ok for me and her but she just wanted to go check a new guy as she always did with all of her previous boyfriends. So if You know she cheated on someone else why would You be an exception ? But it’s another story.

  11. Nick March 12, 2012 at 10:40 pm #

    This is such bs I litterally shot the milk i was drinking out my nose after the first two sentances. Of coarse men dump women! Ill believe not as often as women dump men, but the idea we are a bunch of pathetic lonely beings who simply can’t be happy single is completely false. The fact is most men tolerate too much female bs to begin with. Ask the MARRIED men out there what the number one issue is that they have with their spouse, I guarantee it will be GRIPING. Most men don’t have the nuts to tell a women who they think is the trophy they just have to hang on to no matter what the cost that they are tired of being made to feel inferior and stuck with dealing with their partners bad attitude. Women wouldn’t like being treated in the same way. But a girl who has the looks (supposidly) to give her a sense of power over men, and thinks she can move on in a heartbeat to something better should her man displease her too often gets away with it. But there are men out there who realize too that there are plenty of fish in the sea and can be perfectly happy on their own.

    Seriously ladies, get over yourselves. If my girl acted like a b**** to me it’d be over VERY quickly. Amazing how women just love to complain about being played when they can be just as guilty of the same thing!

  12. Jane December 21, 2012 at 6:30 am #

    Men are cowards. End of story.

    • Neptune February 6, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

      Generalize much?

  13. Tom December 31, 2012 at 6:38 am #

    I didn’t want to break up with my girlfriend pretty much because of sex. I liked having someone in my bed every night, she was beautiful and sexy and thought I could just deal with being unhappy. Also, I didn’t want to see her with another guy. I literally told myself 50 times I would break it off but never did. Eventually she dumped me, lol. Yea, this may seem somewhat pathetic and selfish, but I’m just being honest.

  14. Danielle March 1, 2013 at 4:34 pm #

    Hello from Boston! A friend just sent me your blog. I love it. It’s so true that guys do not want to WORK for sex if they don’t have to..and they think that’s acceptable. Maybe someday we will all meet a man who actually cares about Quality of life via personality over consistent pipe laying. Not to say we don’t want that, too, but at least we have some standards.

  15. Eric M May 2, 2013 at 12:42 am #

    Nice theory, really, and true for 90% of guys out there. I don’t buy into the whole “alpha and beta” bull some people push like a religion, but I do think it takes a real man to admit he was wrong and move on. Happiness is out there for everyone; it’s only when two people refuse to admit things aren’t working out that things really turn sour. I recently ended a serious relationship, and while it hurt her, and me, I knew it would just hurt more if it got dragged out. Point is, try and try and try, and if you know things aren’t going to get better, there’s no reason to fight and fight and fight.

  16. Jeff June 13, 2013 at 4:42 am #

    I never am the dumpor even when I’m unhappy in the relationship and I often wonder why. After reading this I think you may be right. I wonder if a big part of it is not wanting to admit I was wrong. Especially because of all the ‘work’ I put in to it to win her over. I also think I’m just afraid I will regret it…

  17. Anya July 1, 2013 at 3:41 am #

    Bullshit. You can ask every one of the guys who have dumped me over the years. Men DO dump women. I have been dropped by men for all of these reasons: ‘You’re not PERFECT.’ ‘You’re too independent.’ ‘You’re not loud and hyper enough. Also, you don’t have a car.’ ‘I respect you too much intellectually to date you.’ Yeah. I’m still trying to date even though I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong.

    • Neptune February 6, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

      Oh, man, you have had some $hitty draws from the deck! Then again, if you’ve been dumped because you have no car, you were spared SO much suck!

  18. M July 19, 2013 at 3:54 am #

    Hi, Cali. Thanks for the insightful entry. For clarity, I’m in my mid 30s reading this blog. I just broke up with a girl that I love because I had to (in a Scott Pilgrim kinda way) reach out to another girl who I desire deeply and to ask honestly are you thinking of me as much as I’m thinking of you? ‘No’ came the resounding and immediate response. Meanwhile, the other girl cut all ties.

    So here I am, alone, villainous, creepy, emotionally frail, unrequited.

    But despite the empathy for the girl I just broke up with that barely allowed me to get out of bed for a couple days, I feel fine.

  19. chmod07 August 19, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

    Frankly speaking some men are very picky just one look at friends chandler end up married monica because most girl he went out with either the one with Big head, the one with commitment issues and the one who are married Janice Janice hahaha.

    Basically from what I understand there is a percentage of men rather date a Bimbo then independent woman. They keep mentioned smart woman are too scary. It goes with asian and other race of men. When we ask them ” why are you breaking with me ?”

    All I can said is their ego are way too big like Mount Everest.

  20. renee October 2, 2013 at 9:40 pm #

    well, let me tell you that I was at the receiving end of my breakup and it was the worst feeling I have ever felt!! That was 7 months ago and I still struggle to this day wondering how it got so one sided!!

    I say continue to let the men be cowards when it comes to this topic. more power to the women on breaking up. I truly wish I was the one that broke it off with him!!

  21. Neptune February 6, 2014 at 2:04 pm #

    Ahh, hindsight, the ultimate teacher. There certainly aren’t many good teachers heading IN to the jungle of dating and romance.

    I loved your article and many of the comments as well, agreeing or disagreeing. I’ve experienced or at least seen a bunch of these situations, looking back with a bit of cringe in my scalp.

    I am one who wishes to hell my friends had spoken up when I was in absurd relationships. I’m sure many would say the same thing, but how many could actually handle such a straight-forward approach? And even if such a conversation was tolerated, instead of digging a moat, would the advice be heeded?

    In one case, I knew friends were shaking their heads, and part of me knew it was ridiculous. But the sex was constant and simply awesome. Our routine was fairly shallow, but it was cozy, and that can be a difficult comfort zone to abandon. And really, can’t the physical pleasures sometimes outweigh the deeper issues of emotional and cerebral nourishment?

    Marrying the wrong person is a completely different story, and unfortunately, that’s when those friends were most needed. I know one thing, that if I’m ever in a position to have such a talk with a friend, I won’t hesitate.

    I think the biggest disservice by our older generations is not instilling the importance of communication, often likely due to them sucking at is as well. A good sense of right from wrong and the ability, AND THE BALLS, to communicate, will go a long way in this life, though sometimes not comfortably or easily.

    How many times would the difficult truth have spared us prolonged anguish? But it’s not always easy to dish out, from either gender. Relating to this article, some guys truly don’t want to hurt their girl, to break their heart. For other, the comfort zone is hard to leave behind. And then there’s the lack of spine and confidence, some haunting voice that tells them they’ll never find anyone else.

    Sometimes the truth hurts, but it’s always liberating. Having the confidence to say something is screwed up might hurt some feelings, but the listener is only lying to themselves if they refuse to hear it.

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