Why Didn’t I Hear from Him Again?

even the furniture looks depressed

We turn, once again, to one of my favorite books: Nina Farewell’s The Unfair Sex. This book is packed full of advice about both the good and bad of men and relationships. After reading so many disgustingly positive accounts of dating, isn’t it refreshing to see some reality?

1953: Why Didn’t I Hear from Him Again?

This plaintive cry has echoed in the heart of every woman at some time or other in her life. Even the most glamorous, the most sought after, are faced with the enigma of the man who seems captivated, and yet never calls again.

There are two important types from whom one does not hear again. Type I takes you and then drops you. Type II takes your phone number and never uses it.

Why? Why do such awful things happen? And what can be done to prevent them? Let us first examine the causes, which are the same in either case.

Ask yourself if you committed any of the following errors:

Did you talk too much?
Did you talk about marriage?
Did you make him spend too much?
Did you make him feel inferior?
Did you boast?
Did you laugh too loud or chew too hard?
Did you accept him too eagerly?
Did you refuse him too definitely?

On the other hand, your failure may have nothing to do with you at all ~ not with your appearance, your personality, your behavior, nor with the fact that you did or did not give yourself.

Often you have done nothing wrong, but are merely the victim of circumstances beyond your control. . . .

In Defence Against Type One

Type One is the man who seduces you, then drops you. You get that dreadful left-over feeling the minute he says good-bye. You search about for some sign of hope, but even the furniture looks depressed. The telephone has a strangely dead look, as if it will never ring again ~ and there you stand, with the vague and sheepish feeling that you have been had. And indeed you have.

There is one infallible way to avoid this bleakest of tragedies ~ Never Give Yourself.

If for any reason you are unable to follow this rule, there is another, but less dependable one ~ Never Give Yourself in Haste. Allow a reasonable amount of time to elapse between the moment of meeting and the moment of surrender. Impose on yourself an Enforced Waiting Period, and no matter how much you feel tempted, do not let yourself give in before the time is up.* This will do you good in more ways than one. A man who is sincere about wanting you is usually willing to put a little time and energy into the pursuit. The others, the undesirables, you can shake off easily, like shaking rotton apples off a bough.

For, generally speaking, the man whose intentions are of the worst has little patience. The philanderer who has a sweetheart ~ the important man looking for recreation ~ the traveller in town for a limited stay ~ the Fly-by-Nighter ~ each one seeks a momentary diversion and is unwilling to expend much effort. Dilly-dallying on your part will result in his dropping you before instead of immediately after he has had you. Which is like taking a small bitter pill to ward off a dread affliction. . . .

If, during the Enforced Waiting Period, you find yourself slipping, strength can be found in repeated recitation of the sixteen Joys of Man, and in serious meditation on the Joys and Rewards of Refusing. Having successfully weathered this difficult period, you may proceed with the feeling that you have taken all reasonable precautions. But men being such unpredictable creatures, the outcome of course is in the lap of the gods.

* I trust that you will remember the lessons on how to resist a man, and that your refusals will always hold the sweet hint of a future acceptance.

In Defence Against Type Two

While harmless compared to Type One, Type Two is every bit as exasperating, and much more difficult to recognize.

Whatever the circumstances of your meeting may be, this man singles you out for attention. He flatters you, confides in you, indicates in every way that he is smitten. If possible, he escorts you home. He seems reluctant to leave and pretends he is eager to see you again. But ~ he does not make a date. He does not say, “Are you free tomorrow night? ~ or the night after? ~ or any night?” Instead, he takes out a little crumbled scrap of paper and says, “What’s your phone number? I’ll give you a ring.” And you never hear from him again.

Frankly, there is little you can do to protect yourself against this type of disappointment. However, there is one device which I have employed with a fair degree of success: When he askes for your phone number, do not give it to him.

Instead, quickly say: “Let me have your phone number, and I’ll call you are soon as I’m free.” Or, “I never get my messages. Better let me phone you.”

This unexpected turning of the tables will certainly surprise him, and may even confuse him, which is always desirable.

Source: Farewell, Nina. The Unfair Sex : An Expose of the Human Male for Young Women of Most Ages. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1953.
~ pp. 145-46, 150-52 ~