Can your Fall Back Guy become your Front Runner?
By Jess McCann
You are out with your friends enjoying a few drinks on a beautiful night. Your phone vibrates. You have one new text message. You pick it up and see that it’s Sam, a guy you met three weeks ago and hooked up with because you were really wasted. He’s a nice guy, but ever since that night, he’s been pseudo-stalking you. You’ve been cordial, answering some of his texts and calls, mostly because you like the attention, but he’s just not the one for you. You tell your friends at the table, “It’s Sam again. He is out in DC and wants to know where I am.” There’s a round of snickers and laughs. Someone tells you to be nice to the poor guy and tell him where you are. You never know, he might have cute friends, she says. You take a sip of your margarita and say, “Let’s see how the night goes. If we don’t find any cute guys here, I will tell him to come by. He’ll be my fall back.”
Two hours and two rounds later, no one at the table has seen anyone cute. You are almost forced by one of your oversexed friends to call Sam and bring his entourage over. By now you have a good buzz going and figure, why not. He’ll buy you your next round and tell you how hot you are. So you text Sam and tell him where you are in Arlington. You laugh to yourself because you don’t even have to extend an invitation. You know very well that he’s going to say by some strange coincidence that he’s at the bar next door and will just swing by. Fifteen minutes later, Sam, his best friend, and his roommate stroll into bar. People are introduced, shots are ordered, and the night officially begins. Sam is all over you and the more you drink, the more you like it. By the end of the night, you and Sam are stumbling back to your place. You guys make out all over your apartment and for some reason it’s really great. Maybe it’s because you’ve been going through a dry spell, but whatever the reason, you are into it. You continue to make out with Sam and the more you kiss him, the more you like him. How could you have disregarded him before? Maybe he’s not as bad as you initially thought.
And then you wake up the next day completely sober and realize you had on major margarita glasses. This fall back guy will never be a front runner. Sam is lying in your bed, snoring like a Sabertooth tiger, drooling on your favorite pillow. You are annoyed like crazy. How long is going to be here, you wonder? He finally wakes up, smiling like a Cheshire cat, and pats the space next to him, indicating he wants you to lie back down. You’d rather shoot yourself than cuddle with Sam so you make up an excuse about having to run into work that morning. Disappointed, Sam reluctantly and slowly, gets out of your bed. You throw his pants at him and watch him stumble to get dressed, knocking over your alarm clock and family photo in the process. He apologizes and then asks if you have time to grab some breakfast. Ah, sorry no. You really don’t. Some other time maybe. Sam picks up on your unintentional invitation to do this again, and says, “Ok, when? Do you want to meet up later tonight?” At this point you just want him out of your apartment so you tell him to call you later and you will see about getting together. He finally leaves after you pretend to walk to your car. You get back to your apartment and collapse on the couch. You eventually drift off to sleep but not before labeling Sam’s number DO NOT ANSWER into your cell phone.
I know you can all related to this story. We have all had guys we just aren’t into, chase after us relentlessly. We’ve all caved and been nice to them, even hooked up with them once or twice. We’ve kept them on the back burner in cases of emergency and extreme boredom. But guess what? This story is not what you think. You’ve just entered the Twilight Zone. You were not out with your girlfriends having margaritas last night. You were in DC, hanging out with your best friend and her roommate, hoping to hear from the guy you met three weeks ago and had a hot hook up with. A hook up you have not been able to stop thinking about. That’s right, in this scenario, YOU are Sam. You were the one who texted him to find out where he was. You were elated when he told you he was at the Eventide rooftop in Arlington. You rushed over and played it off as if you at the bar next door. You met up with him and his friends, had some drinks and ended up back at his place, where at some point in the night you fell completely in love. You woke up in his bed filled with excitement. You are certain he likes you now. He wanted to go to breakfast, but a work emergency took priority. Totally understandable. You like him even more because he’s ambitious. He told you to call him later and you guys would meet up again that night.
Maybe you saw this switch-a-roo coming from a mile away. Maybe my Twilight Zone blog was totally predictable. I really don’t know. What I do know is this. There are lots of girls out there that string along men they aren’t interested in. They hook up with them when it’s convenient, call when they are lonely, and use them when they want to. But those same women become completely enraged when a guy does the same thing to them. Girls, just as frequently, chase after guys that aren’t interested. And, yes, we too can just as easily become a fall back girl.
As sure as you are that your fall back guy could never pull into first place, guys feel the same way. If you have fallen victim to the fall back scenario, the best thing to do is leave and don’t say goodbye. If a guy really likes you, he will make you a priority from the beginning. Don’t make excuses for his sporadic behavior. If he doesn’t call for a week, but then suddenly texts on a Friday night, don’t convince yourself he’s come around. Read the writing on the wall. Don’t be Sam. Sometimes we want something to be true so badly, that we will lie to ourselves and only see the good when the bad is so obvious. Don’t waste your time on men that are not interested in you and only call you as their fall back. Hanging on and hoping he will grow to like you is a lost cause. Don’t text him when you haven’t heard from them in five days. Don’t rush to see him out with his friends. He knows he’s got you and if he wanted you, he’d have you by now. I know it’s more tough love from Jess, but sometimes we need all need a little wake up call. These situations have a way of wearing on you. They chip away at your ego and by the time you find a guy that really likes you, you don’t know how to act. If you avoid scenarios like this, you will keep your self-esteem in tact. Read the signs. If he doesn’t seem crazy about you, do yourself a BIG favor and just move on to someone who is. He’s out there. Trust me.
Jess McCann is an author, speaker, and dating coach who knows what it’s like to be on the other side of the fence. Before finding love and writing, You Lost Him at Hello: a saleswoman’s secrets to closing the deal, she was confused, self-conscious and alone. Since then, she has coached women all over the globe on how to kick their love life into high gear and get the relationship they have always wanted. She’s appeared on national television shows, such as Good Morning America, The Fox Morning show with Mike & Juliet and speaks frequently at women’s rallies, college campuses and lifestyle events.