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Ask the Advice Goddess 

Chased Makes Waste

I'm 33, and perpetually single. When I date a man, I like to wine him, dine him, and give him gifts, but my efforts are never appreciated or returned in kind. In fact, I'm usually stood up, and left feeling heartbroken and used. What am I doing wrong? --Nice Girl Finishing Last

You have to decide whether you want to be Santa or somebody's girlfriend. If you'd like to go for girlfriend-hood, your objective, when you're on a date, should be exchanging witty banter, period. The point is seeing whether you have a connection with someone, not bribing them into coming back for more: "Date your way to a new car!" (Why not just scrawl "Desperate!" in red lipstick on your forehead?) Finally, keep in mind that a guy might want to have a role in the date, too. Your current dating style is a bit like throwing a ball to your dog and making him stay while you run and fetch it. While it's nice to avoid treating men like walking wallets, all your wining, dining, and gifting doesn't leave much for your date to do -- well, beyond rolling over and playing dead while you hold up both ends of the conversation.

Copyright 2003, Amy Alkon, all rights reserved. Got a problem? Write Amy Alkon, 171 Pier Ave, #280, Santa Monica, CA 90405, or e-mail AdviceAmy@aol.com (www.advice goddess.com)

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