‘I find it very difficult to be physically attracted to him’

Dear Meredith,

I moved to a new city and decided to give online dating a try. In my fourth month, I met a 34-year-old man (I'm a 28-year-old woman). Now, I am normally attracted to guys of a certain aesthetic – guys who work out, are outdoorsy, rock-climb, etc., because I enjoy doing those things myself. From his photos, this man didn't particularly fit that aesthetic but seemed like a nice and fun person so I decided to give a go because … who knows?

We went on our first date, which went very well, and have been seeing each other since then. It has been about three months since our first date. He is an awesome guy in every way – he loves his friends, genuinely listens, and cares about what I have to say. He wants to know more about my culture (he is white and I am black). However, I find it very difficult to be physically attracted to him. I have seen old photos of him where he looked like he was in shape. He takes walks and sometimes works out. I know looks aren't everything and feel terrible that I am thinking of breaking things off for this reason. However, I have also noticed that he snacks a lot, especially late at night, which concerns me even more.

I have tried to bring up questions like “What are your goals regarding fitness?” … but his answers are always vague. I don't know if I should be thinking of moving on or bring this up more directly. I don't think I should fault someone for their weight, but it concerns me that if I am not OK with it now, what if he gains more weight in the future? I do not want to come off as being so critical. I also blame myself for swiping right in the first place.

- Confused


"I also blame myself for swiping right in the first place."

Well, that means you want out. He's really nice, but you're not attracted to him. It's better to leave him than to shame him into changing into someone he doesn't want to be.

Sometimes attraction starts off slow. You might feel "just OK" about a person, but then, as you get to know them, all of the physical things you never noticed (or didn't like) become adorable, unique, even hot. This man is not growing on you like that.

The last time I swiped on a dating app, I complained that everyone's photos showed them running or rock climbing. There is no shortage of men hanging off mountains, which is a great thing for you. It's time to go find them, and to explain to this man that while you are enjoying the relationship, it's not becoming more serious, and you can't force chemistry.

Also, please know that old photos mean nothing. I have a photo of myself at the top of Mount Monadnock. I look like I'm at ease, a comfortable young climber. What the picture doesn't tell you is that just after it was taken, I yelled to my friends, "I resent that we did this, and I am never doing it again!"

I know it’s frustrating because you want to be into him, and because there's so much of him that's right, but you both deserve to have someone who wants you as you are.

– Meredith

Readers? Time to end it?