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5 Reasons Why You KEEP Attracting Commitment-Phobes

Dating

OK. Raise your hand if you know that you've dated—or worse, completely fallen in love with—a commitment-phobe. You know the type—uber-charming, great on dates, sometimes even better in bed. Fine. Funny. Ambitious. On so many levels, he seems like the perfect catch.

That's until you're a few months in and you discover that he doesn't like to plan more than a week in advance, he can't remember the last time he was in a serious relationship, he hates using titles, he doesn't have many close connections (to family, friends, or anyone else) and, anything that sounds even close to the "L" word is like a cuss word to him.

No matter how hot 'n heavy things were in the beginning, give it half a year (if he sticks around even that long) and if he doesn't get ghost on you, you'll find yourself getting tired of having the same "So, what are we doing? Where is this going?" conversation/argument with him.

As a result, things end. Problem is, not too much time goes by before you find yourself in this same kind of situationship with another guy who also displays the signs of being a commitment-phobe.

What's the problem? I'm not talking about with him. I'm talking about with you.

Why do you find yourself constantly attracting commitment-phobes into your head and heart space? From personal experience, I've got a few reasons that you should think long and hard about.

You’ve Got Daddy (or Mama) Issues

One of my favorite quotes is "Adulthood is about surviving childhood." While I wish that wasn't the case, the reality is a lot of us didn't see healthy relationships as children.

If your parents were never together or they divorced when you were young (and if that is the case, check out "Effects of Divorce on Children's Future Relationships"), sometimes it can either make you attract a situation that is similar to the one your parents had or cause you to work overtime to try and convince someone to commit to you because you may not know what reciprocity in a relationship looks like.

Not to say that this reason applies to everyone, but if you're constantly in "relationships" with guys who won't commit to you, looking back at what your parents modeled to you certainly can't hurt.

Relationships Are More Like Projects for You

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Listen, whomever came up with the whole "I can change him" motive for being with a man who already shows serious red flags, they should be committed; not to a man but to an institution. Not only is it unhealthy—and semi-manipulative—to try and make someone be what you want rather than accepting them for who they are or moving on to someone else, but it also turns them into a project.

A person shouldn't be a project.

If you can't recall the last time you dated someone and the goal wasn't to try and turn them something else, no wonder you keep attracting commitment-phobes. You're not dating guys who are ready for the kind of relationship you desire. You're choosing guys who you think show the potential of wanting a relationship. Maybe. Someday. To a commitment-phobe, "someday" can be an eternity.

You Don’t Treat the First Three Dates Like (Semi) Interviews

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I don't care what anyone says, the first few dates are interviews in a comfortable setting. You're both trying to figure out if you're mutually-attracted, if you have similar values, and if you want the same things when it comes to a relationship.

If you're giving me "push back" on this point because you're thinking I don't want to put too much pressure on him so early on, guess what? You're signing up for him being on one page, you being on another, and possibly discovering two years from now that you totally wasted your time.

One of the best ways to not get involved with a commitment-phobe is to 1) ask a guy what his last serious relationship was like and 2) ask him if he's looking for one—and yes, to do this during the first three dates with him.

If when it comes to the first question, he has no idea and with the second one, he says he wants something casual…take him at what he said. FACE VALUE. Otherwise, you're headed towards kickin' it with at least a pseudo commitment-phobe. I'm 98 percent sure of it.

You Never REQUIRE Reciprocity

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Reciprocity is a mutual exchange. You plan a date; then he plans one. You call to say, "Good morning"; he texts to say, "Good night." He knows your love language is "Words of Affirmation", so he sends you cards. You know his is "Quality Time" so you go to a few games with him. Relationships that have reciprocity in them don't need to go "tit-for-tat" to keep up with who's doing what. Things are so balanced, it's hard to keep up anyway.

But when you're the one doing most of the work, not only does this show that you are more committed than he is; it also reveals that he has no intentions of doing more than what he already is. And you know what? Chances are, if you pulled all the way back, you'd see he's not doing much. (He probably never was.)

A commitment-phobe will stick around for a woman who will give her all without REQUIRING he do the same.

A man who wants a commitment will be bothered if he's not consistently doing his part. Then he will rise to the occasion so that mutuality is evident—to you both.

You’re Afraid of Commitment (and Don’t Even Know It)

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A lot of women who attract commitment-phobes don't realize that it's because they aren't as ready for a commitment as they might think.

Case in point—if a woman who really wanted to be married went on a first date with a guy who said that the thought of being a husband makes him break out into hives, her response would be along the lines of "Thanks for dinner. Take care." It's nothing personal. He simply doesn't want what she does. Why waste time?

If you are in the hamster wheel of dating commitment-phobes, ask yourself if you want to be in something serious as much as you think. Maybe you keep picking men who are wishy-washy about relationships because it's easier to blame them if things don't work out than to look within to ask, "If I want something long-term, why am I constantly settling for the opposite?"

I can personally vouch for the fact that the moment you're like, "I want what I want and I can wait until I get it", the commitment-phobes will start to evaporate. You may not get as many texts or go on as many dates but hey—you're after quality not quantity, right?

Someone who is committed to more than a date this weekend. Someone who wants just what you want—a healthy and happy long-term relationship.

No hesitation. No excuses. No phobia.

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
Sign up

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