How to Identify and Avoid The Serial Dater

February 7, 2010 by athena goodlight  
Published in Dating

He is the modern day Don Juan or Casanova, known today as the “confirmed bachelor."

Photo by CarbonNYC

They can be fun, charming, witty, and exciting.  These men are often the ones who have interesting careers and dynamic social lives.  Thousands of them can be found in the major cities all over the world.  They are on the lookout for beautiful or even smart, and fascinating women.  They are well versed about food, wine, travel, politics, and the arts—but marriage material? Doubt it.  Even though these men are fun to go out with, marriage or even a long-standing commitment is not in their schedule, despite their protestations otherwise. 

Janis Spindel, a famous New York matchmaker says, “I know several serial daters (and I do not fix them up with women), and they often say that they haven’t met the right woman yet, one who ‘shares their values.’ Hello!? If you can’t find a partner who shares your values in a great city that is filled to the brim with extraordinary women, excuse me, but there’s a problem.” 

Having been accustomed to their life alone, they are comfortable with their lifestyle and have set their ways enjoying the excitement of dating and sleeping with a lot of women.  If you just want to hone your dating skills, you may go out with one of these men, but never ever fall for one.  If you do, you are setting yourself up for a lot or heartaches. 

Signs of a Serial Dater

Janis Spindel recommends the following checklist.  If two or more of the following are true of your date, you may have a chronic problem on your hands.

1.         You met him on an internet dating site (these men think of the Internet as the depot of dating)

2.         He’s a professional, over forty, and has never been married.

3.         He claims that he plans to settle down and get married but the truths is he has not been in a committed relationship in over two years.

4.         The first few dates may be fantastic, but soon he simply stops calling without even a break-up notice.

5.         He’s charming but can never achieve psychological intimacy (although he has no problem getting you into bed with him).

6.         He loves to talk about his work above all other topics.  The reason behind this is that they are married to their jobs, which is why they aren’t married to a person).

7.         He knows the latest buzz on trendy bars and restaurants– often even before they are open (the serial dater is always more excited to be seen at hot spots than spending time with someone he could potentially share his life with).

8.         He prefers to spend his weekends alone or with male buddies and has no interest in seeing you.

Dating should not be, as much as possible, a hit-or-miss thing.  You have to act on it, be proactive and not just wait and be reactive.  If you seriously consider dating, check out Perfectmatch and see what they have to offer.

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21 Responses to “How to Identify and Avoid The Serial Dater”
  1. bailieman Says:

    All good pointers for those not wishing to avoid being disappointed.

  2. metro7 Says:

    lol i guess u have made your point but nowadays same goes for either of the gender ladies r not far behind maybe less in numbers.thxs for the share

  3. Guy Hogan Says:

    For a while there I thought I was a serial dater but I guess I really can’t qualify because I’m poor.

  4. yes me Says:

    I here were ya coming from but like for like as a happy grandfather
    I think some women are top of the league as serial daters.
    great share….


    yeah guys blame it on the ladies..many women want the traditional stuff like marriage and kids. the only reason why women will be serial daters is because they keep having sucessio of one night stands with emotionally unavialable men. here in my country(jamaica) serial daters are all over the internet and guess what they have o intention of marrying and settling down…

  6. LoveDoctor Says:

    Excellent article. You have described several guys that I have known. I was in love with one myself and the relationship didn’t work out because like you said these types of men are addicted to their work. While many of them are over 40, you find a lot of them in their 30’s like this. They seem to be looking for perfection, but my question to them is are they perfect? They are probably full of flaws themselves and most of the time you see them with a woman half their age just to satisfy their ego. They claim that they haven’t found the right woman, but yep like you said if they are living in a big city surrounded by women and still haven’t found her it sounds like they are the ones with the commitment issues.

  7. Frances Lawrence Says:

    Very good article, this type of person is best avoided.

  8. qasimdharamsy Says:

    Great Article…well done…

  9. Authoress Terry E. Lyle Says:

    Well done on a great article.

  10. patofgold23 Says:

    well thought of! =)…i love the term
    serial dater…lolz

  11. Isabel Says:

    EXCELLENT article. Dated a guy who had his profile on just about every darn online dating site. I knew it, shouldve know, mega serial dater. He\’s 46 never been married, just got a convertible, never wants to date on the weekend cause hes with his other single buddies.

    Very emotionally unavailable but very charming and good in bed. He stated \”I dont know what I want\” when asked about our status. We dated for 3 months. Loser.

    Great article.

  12. Cassandra Says:

    good article! i just escalate breaking off wih a serial dater, whos a doctor in his 60\’s. initially it started oit great, and it grew more intimate, to great sex despite him confessing to not being able to get it up, to actually doing it without the viaga/cialis drug.
    From then, the relationship grew to him calling every night and talking for over an hour and. Wanting to know where you are and somewhat possessive (red flag?), to wanting to see you, doing things he likes not what you like so much (red flag), making you feel as if it could work out after the 33 women he had dated, and neither one proceeded beyond the second date (red flag!), and how different you are, blah, blah, blah, the usual crapola lines.
    then suddenly he becomes less available, supposed helping an ex -girlfriend who’s going far away and he wanted to be at her beck and call, as he would never see his friend again (red flag), leaving you feeling as if you have to wait for him. To fulfill his obligation. Then he suddenly say some things which made you think whats going on. Eg.I made a promise to her I would do this for her, I. Despised one on my best male friend who slept with her and in love with her but she doesn’t love him and I. Love her for sure except care for as a friend, she asked whose boobs are better felt, he is torn about his ideal women and you (question is is he an ideal man himself, red flags all over) and just wait until she leaves as it is a difficult transition. Then it became something I said that was a turnoff but will not elaborate, until I finally sat him down and talk face to face. There were some inconsistencies mentioned, and the final. Push came when I asked very pointed questions, to realizing he will always be dating preferably with your permission, he would like to remain friends preferably with benefits the better, things that he earlier referred to but kept sly enough, all the while claiming that he’s been honest throughout the relationship (I learned that one can be honest while still omittinh certain matters, unless specifically asked). Some things he had said made me wonder why he’s still looking for that ideal mate when hes going out with me – I questioned muself, what I am to him…..and realized I am a filler til someone else come along!! When I left after our last indefinite conversation, it make so much more clarity to. What he’s really is. The relationship had smoke and mirror, thrown in with some honesty and nice Guy he is, etc…..all to charm, control, confuse,have fun, when the fun diminished on his mind, the relationship is over…..unless you want to be friends with benefits! So much for the serial dated, whose only goal is to hat the excitement from everything he can, sort of like an andrenoline junkie seeking the thrill of the ‘ new and different adventure’

  13. Guest Says:

    Boy that sounds like someone I dated briefly- exact wording and everything- from rudi. I wonder if his last name starts with an S and ends with a K. He’s got a famous brand of razors named after him. Drives a porsche, races cars, and has a green VW beetle. Lives in Oak Park. Every women should be aware of him.

    signed Guest

  14. Suzie Says:

    Boy that sounds like someone I dated briefly- exact wording and everything- from rudi. I wonder if his last name starts with an S and ends with a K. He\’s got a famous brand of razors named after him. Drives a porsche, races cars, and has a green VW beetle. Lives in Oak Park. Every women should be aware of him.

    signed Guest

  15. guy Says:

    I have dated 3 gurls from online dating sities..all of them were serial daters. 1st one had 6 bfs. 2nd one was very attractive and was addicted to serial dating. I met her, for 2 months we used to just hangout and go restaurants and shopping malls, used to refuse to go to bars and clubs, which was fine with me. She would never let me touch of any kinda contact.
    Later on i became gud friends with her friends and then i realized she is a serial dater. All see does is go on date to restaurants and shopping malls, so she gets all gud stuff free. When i talked on relationship she said, she i never in love really and had usually had short relationships.
    So i guess stereotyping is wrong, it doesnt matter, guy or gurl, who cheats the most, every person is unique and different. So make sure u meeting the right person before u waste your time, money and life.

  16. matt Says:

    this article is gender biased, i know a lot of women who are serial daters…..

  17. Serial Dater Says:

    I don’t think this article is right; that’s just how people are generally in large cities. Having lived in LA for several years, you can see that most women there are just social butterflies and enjoy the attention of men. Most of them are, by your definition, serial daters. With so much “choice” and “options”, men and women alike just do not want to commit.

    I met someone who grew up in a much smaller city. Her vision of a relationship is completely different.

  18. lees Says:

    This is really crazy. this is EXACTLY how my ex was/is. I am depressed n really just a huge mess bigtime over a recent break up. I really ignored all the signs she gave me. She wud say things like the thought of bein alone is terrifying, that she always dates 2 or 3 ppl at the sametime, one person she’s sleeping with the other dating n the other just talking to. Her friends said she’s a serial dater. At the time I didn’t know what that was. Thought it was just a joke it sayin. Googled it and WOW! She said she wasn’t doin what she usually does since she got with me (serial dating habits) n that she wanted to b with me for a long time, wouldn’t hurt me or cheat, blah blah. Got to the point she said I love u. She went on a trip, cheated came back, broke up with me, n since I’ve been tryna work it out, n she’s made no effort, she said she never loved me she lied. Moved on to like someone else n talk to other ppl n maybe less than 3 wks of our breakup. Said she lied she never loved me. She kept switching the reasons for the breakup n the beginning. Then came around to sayin she just wasn’t feeling me anymore, doesn’t think I’m right for her. Didn’t feel we connected. She gets bored easily, n wants something new something diff. She doesnt wanna b with me, she’s looking for something diff. She just hasn’t found what she’s looking for in a relationship. She said she wants a relationship, but her actions do say otherwise, becuz that’s what I was giving her a serious relationship, like a normal real relationship, where ppl work thongs out when they breakup, but after she broke up with me, she made no attempt to work things out, like u wud in a relationship or if u really cared, I was trying ALONE. N all she did was ignore or push me away. But idk to me it doesn’t seem like she’s sure what she really wants. I wish I paid the right attention to the signs. She was also very self centered n the relationship, self indulged, looking for perfection n me, n pointing out every little flaw. Like eventho I really tried to work it out n b with her n I am a good person, do serial daters ever take those things into account that they had a gud person n come back, or do they just keep moving? When or will they ever change n truly settle down?

  19. Jilliebeans Says:

    Women can also be serial daters. I, for one, am. I’m a woman and I’ve been serial dating. Although I’m open to commitments, I find myself going from one relationship to another in a short span of time. I guess I just get bored easily. Or maybe I don’t try hard enough to make a relationship work. IDK, but I know something’s seriously wrong with me.

  20. JOHN Says:

    I live in NYC and this happens all the time! Men and women if you wanna marry and settle down don\’t move to NYC or just leave and go to a smaller town !!

  21. Sick of Dick Says:

    Or the man who married in mid forties because a woman FORCED him to though he willingly gave her a ring and procreated with her….and claiming he didn’t love her… and had problems bonding with his child after divorce.. because the child needed his attention. Admittedly counting the minutes until he could return the child to his ex wife after his scheduled parenting time. The focus was not on him. One who claims to be a caring “doctor” does this? Yes. And he is not an MD. A want to be.

    And 50. not 49 as he deliberately set his dating profile to in an attempt to appeal to younger women.

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