No Heat

Dear Jewish Fairy Godmother:

Is there any nice way to say “Thanks but I’m not interested in you in
that way?” I started dating someone very nice whom I met on a dating
site. In theory we have a lot in common that should make us want to
hook up: similar age, both Jewish, intelligent, funny, similar life
history. I like her and it is clear she is interested in me. She’s gotten
into a habit of almost daily texting or emailing, and has given me
many invitations to do things in the future. I think she’s a very nice
person whom I might want as a friend, if I was looking for more
friends. But when I think of a life in which she never again appeared, I
don’t feel any sense of sadness and when I am with her, I don’t feel
any desire to kiss her. It’s been almost two months and it feels like we
should clarify where we are. Should I initiate a “Yes, but”
conversation, or just let things gradually drift away?

No Heat

Dear No Heat:

There’s no substitute for “chemistry” and virtually no way of predicting
what will trigger it. Some people think they have a “type” but they
don’t go trailing after every woman with red hair and/or great legs.
Chemistry is an elusive but powerful factor in any incipient
relationship. You can’t substitute for it with an intellectual delineation
of reasons why. Sad but true. Also note that if the chemistry is too
strong it can lead your “picker” astray in lots of bad ways, and you
might fall for exactly a wrong person. Most of us have learned that
lesson the hard way. But there’s very little antidote for the absence of
heat and mystery.

All of that said, don’t give up without at least a kiss or two. Compatible
partners are hard to find, and while heat’s great as a springboard,
successful partnerships work best and longest with a solid basis of
communality. By starting a conversation with, We seem to have a lot
in common. Have you thought about taking the next step? You are
almost dooming the response. The key word is “thought.” Instead, a
kiss, after some preliminary handholding, would obviate the question.
How about a scary or sentimental movie that might lead to some
hand- holding, an arm around the shoulder, and a goodnight kiss.
Then see if you want to talk or touch.