Ask Dr Gilda-How can I win him over?

A rejected woman wants another shot at love with her guy. Our expert questions her motives…

By Dr. Gilda Carle, Ph.D.

ear Dr. Gilda,
I’m 41 years old and divorced. I met a wonderful man a little over three months ago and fell in love with him. Now we’ve broken up and I’m devastated. I knew from the beginning he was emotionally unavailable and had serious woman/love/relationship issues. His
I knew from the beginning he was emotionally unavailable…
dad was very emotionally abusive to him, his sister and his mom. He is 51 years old and has never fallen in love.

Despite this, we shared so many beautiful moments together, had amazing sex, and were always together. I was the first girl he brought to his home and to meet his pals.

When we broke up, he told me he is incapable of falling in love and isn’t able to give me what I deserve. (I want a family and he does not want kids.) I don’t believe that he is incapable of love. He was very loving towards me, affectionate, and I could see it in the way he looked at me. But he insists he’s destined to be alone.

Should I try pursuing a man who is unavailable? I know he really cared for me. He would always tell me how what a wonderful, amazing, and perfect woman I am. So can’t he find himself with my help?
– Broken to Pieces

Dear Broken to Pieces,
Hey, girl, do you want a lover or a patient? You say, “I knew from the beginning he was emotionally unavailable and had serious woman/love/relationship issues.” Someone emotionally balanced would have noted this as a red flag and exited at that very moment. But you persisted in remaining in this affair. Why? Either you are not emotionally balanced right now (and are attracted to people like yourself), your desire to save a man supersedes your drive to take care of yourself, or you simply don’t believe you deserve anything more than an emotionally absent partner.

What worries me most is that you hung in with this dude, knowing he was not present, yet persisting to believe he was giving you love. You also said, “I want a family
Let this experience be a wake-up call for you.
and he does not want kids.” That in itself is a deal-breaker. If this relationship had continued, did you intend to trick this man into fatherhood?

Honey, take the blinders off your eyes! To your question, “Can’t he find himself with my help?,” the answer is “No!” You’re not his counselor, his nurse, his mother, or his savior. Besides, it sounds like he’s content living his cloistered life.

You further question whether you should try pursuing a man who is unavailable. I question why you would want to. Is it because he told you “what an amazing, perfect woman” you are? Does your ego need so much stroking that you would discount reality for sweet talk?

Let this experience be a wake-up call for you. This is what you must do now:
  1. End this torture at once! Accept that this romance is over, and be grateful for it. This man is not in your house. In fact, he’s not even in your neighborhood. You can’t love a ghost.
  2. Seek therapy immediately. Discover why you are willing to settle for so little.
  3. Recognize that romance entails buy-in from two people. List the elements that did not match. You will need this honest information for yourself and for your therapy sessions.
As my Gilda-Gram says, “Before you find a mate, find yourself.” After you have developed a strong self-image, you’ll attract someone capable of two-way love. Anything short of that is settling.

Relationship expert Dr. Gilda Carle, Ph.D., gives Instant Advice throughout the world via Skype, email and phone. She is the 30-Second Therapist for Her best-selling books include Don’t Bet on the Prince!, 99 Prescriptions for Fidelity and How to Win When Your Mate Cheats. Please visit her website at (
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