Chemistry Has Several Elements

Dear Toni--

I met this man on the Internet and we hit it off, at least I thought so. We wrote to each other every day and he was always suggesting that we meet in person. Well, we finally met and did a few things together. The next day I wrote him to thank him for the great evening. He never wrote back. My question is WHY? I have no clue why he hasn't written back. --Looking For Love Online

Dear Looking For Love online--

This is such a common situation that many people have written to me about. The answer is one that I suspect you already know on some level, but often needs to be brought to a present awareness.

Attraction and chemistry happen on several levels. There is the friendship part which becomes apparent when we realize that we click on a level of shared interests, sense of humor, lifestyle, intellectual functioning, etc. It appears you two had a good fit there.

Then there's the physical. It is not just about looks in the sense of overall attractiveness. After all, most singles post (and should) a picture with their profile. So, they often know what the other looks like before they meet. There is that in-person attraction. This is where chemistry comes in. You know, that pull towards the other. As you look across the table at each other, you are thinking, "I really like this guy." There are many biological explanations about how and why this occurs, but it remains a kind of mystery that no one can fully predict or explain.

This is why the meeting in person is so important. Everyone should move towards this after a short period of emailing and phone calls. Without doing so, their imaginations and fantasies can be actively working to create the perfect person and love affair without having any real sense of the true presence of the other.

You two met. You had a pleasant time. It felt nice and there were no awful (first date) moments. So, this had to mean it was great for both of you, right? Unfortunately not. It seems that he did not feel what he had hoped/wanted to feel. It's no one's fault and certainly is not because you were not good enough, etc. It just didn't happen.

In a perfect world, this would not occur. Better yet, individuals would speak openly at the end of the date about their intentions to go forward or not. Because this rarely occurs, people like yourself are left to wonder and try to interpret the other person's behavior.

My advice is to get back out there and connect with other singles. You will have your share of disappointments and hurt feelings. However, you will be maximizing your chances of meeting Mr. Right.

(from October 2004)

Want to read other columns on this subject?

"Are Online "Dates" Really Dating?"
List of more
"Online Dating"

"How, When and What Do I Share about My Past?"


Toni Coleman, LCSW
Phone: 703-847-1768


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