Whirlwind Romances: When You’re Fast Forwarded
I have heard many stories from readers and clients of guys (and gals), who have moved the initial dating period along at high speed. There has been everything from declarations of falling in love and ‘I love you’ when they’d barely known them a New York minute, to conversations about babies, marriage, moving in, meeting parents and being whirled around like a show pony amongst friends, to high intensity liaisons with persistence, great sex, average sex, multiple phone calls, texts, emails AND letters in a bottle. All of these people have been whizzed at high speed through the early crucial stage of dating.
What is wrong with a bit of romance? Absolutely nothing when it is genuine. When it isn’t, it is called Fast-Forwarding. It is a technique where someone sweeps you up in a tide of intensity when they’re pursuing you and you’re dating them that you end up missing crucial red flags. They go on to either disappear when they start to feel panicky about the fact that you will want, need and expect in line with the great show they have been putting on. Or…they just revert to the ‘real them’, ripping the rug from under your feet and replacing hot with cold and someone who you barely recognise.
– Push for emotional commitment and often sexual intimacy very quickly
– Make you feel like the centre of their universe
– Distract you from looking too closely at them
– Can be emotionally demanding
– Refer to the types of plans that people who have been in relationships far longer i.e. marriage, babies, etc
– Some will introduce you to friends, family (including their children) very quickly
– Say things like ‘It feels like we have known each other for X months’ when you object to something and mention how you hardly know each other
– Can be petulant and sulky when they don’t get their own way so you quickly learn to minimise conflict
– Even though they appear to respect an asserted boundary, they may often quickly try to recross it
– Are very persistent when you’re not interested in them
– Will privately and sometimes openly think you’re The One pretty much immediately
– Will be eager to ‘title the relationship’ and demand commitment even when you hardly know each other
– Often have strings of high intensity short dalliances that fizzle out quickly
– Overestimate their level of interest
– Often veer between deflecting questions about themselves and over-sharing or telling lies and using selective omissions. People who engage in Fast-Forwarding are Future Faking, whether they directly do it by talking up a storm about plans or do it indirectly by behaving so intensely and putting so many demands on you (emotional, sexual, wanting to be with you all the time), that they let you believe that the level of intensity you are experiencing is what is on offer. You will use a number of the things that they fast-forward you with as basis to trust them with – Trust Points.
It’s crucial to remember that dating is a discovery period. You should date with a reasonable level of trust as a basis and your interactions serve as a series of checks and balances. Positive things increase your trust. Dodgy stuff should have you rolling back and assessing the risk.
Dating is a fact finding period where you should be discovering ‘facts’ that let you work out whether you can proceed, or whether you should be cautious, and/or abort the mission. If you love and trust blindly and get sucked into being moved along at high speed, you will be blind in the relationship, when you actually have a responsibility to yourself to have your eyes open.
Fast-Forwarding creates a pseudo connection. Slowing down and actually getting to know each other at a healthier pace creates a real connection. Whilst there are anomalies where people have had a whirlwind romance that progressed, in the overwhelming majority of cases, when someone wants to be intense immediately or very quickly and fast-forwards you through the relationship, it is a red flag.
Life is not a fairy tale. This isn’t Pretty Woman or a rom-com where you move at high speed to a happy ending. Doesn’t it remove the mystery and stuff to look forward to when you try to do it all very quickly? Nuff said. Being confident in yourself is also about believing that there isn’t a fire. You can take enough time to get to know each other without rushing to get your pants down and make big declarations.
Be careful. People who tend to fast-forward can go through their cycle in a few hours, a day, a night, a few dates, weeks, months, and in some cases, some can play the long game and draw it out for a year. The end result is the same – the hot tap switches over to cold or lukewarm, if you are ‘lucky’.
When you get swept up in someone Fast-Forwarding you, you will basque in the adoration. When they disappear or they replace ‘the model’ you got with a pared down version, you will wonder what was wrong with you to cause the loss of adoration. While it is very flattering when someone says they love you immediately or makes you the centre of their universe immediately, the fact of the matter is that they don’t know you enough to be sincere about it. Harsh but true.
Why do we allow ourselves to be fast-forwarded? Well, we may not like to appear to be spoilsport, many of us are not aware of the perils of red flags, and we may second guess ourselves. In a startling number of stories, most of these people had some, if not a lot of reservations about the very person that was fast-forwarding them. It is flattering when someone seems to fancy the pants off us so much that they can’t seem to want to stop ripping off our clothes or saying we’re the best thing since sliced bread. If these people are still around in a year or two and your high intensity dalliance yields into something more steady, then all to the good.
However, the problem with people who fast-forward is that they can’t cope with steadiness. They also make the mistake of being so over the top that they create expectations that they cannot deliver on. These people overestimate their level of interest because often the uncertainty of not knowing how you feel and needing to ‘win you over’ and ‘suck you in’, is what triggers their desire for you. When the relationship stops being new, they’re panicking about what you may be expecting, they’re sure of your interest and the desire loses its ‘erection’. If they’re still around and things are going from bad to worse, you’ll be getting the hot and cold treatment while thinking ‘It was so great in the beginning! What happened to that guy?’ and then sinking all your efforts into trying to retrieve the beginning of the relationship.
It’s nice to feel adored and if you’re a passion seeker that tends to talk about ‘type’ ‘passion’ ‘connection’ etc, you’ll be ripe for someone to fast-forward the hell out of you and then feel desolate and inclined to go on the validation seeking trail when things start to go wrong.
Why do you need to demand so much of the person and the relationship so early on? How much validation does the ego need? You shouldn’t have to emotionally or literally commit to someone you hardly know. There is a reason why you were not interested and whilst sometimes we get things wrong, it’s important to assess why you weren’t interested rather than just letting yourself be swept along.
If in doubt about someone’s actions and motives, the best thing you can do is put your foot down and press ‘Play’ and see how the relationship copes at a steady pace. If it’s already over, ‘Rewind’ the relationship tape and mentally play it back and you will spot the red flags.