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Ask E. Jean for DearSugar: Did I Lose Him?

Dear E. Jean,

Did I just totally mess up?
Last night after a really great dinner and a movie with a guy (our second date), I invited him up for coffee to my apartment. He’s smart, a witty conversationalist, volunteers on a political campaign, and is attractive and slightly reserved. We’re both lawyers. As we arrived at my door, I was going through my bag searching for my keys, and, not thinking, I said nonchalantly to him: “I wonder where this is going?”
He froze.
It was the weirdest thing I ever saw. So I laughed and said:
“Don’t be nervous!”
Of course that was the WORST thing I could say, and of course I kept laughing like an idiot. I finally found my keys, and after turning the lock, I opened the door and, trying to lighten the mood, I said (I know, I know — stupid!) “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.”
Needless to say, he stayed just long enough to take two sips of coffee and practically ran out the door. Was my momentary lapse that bad? I apologized twice — once last night, and once today in an e-mail. I received a polite but cold response. Did I lose him? Please tell me I didn’t. — Should Have Kept My Mouth Shut

To see E. Jean's answer

Miss Mouth,

Alas, my darling. He’s gone. The “Where is this going?” question is one of the best ways to lose a guy, along with the “Where do we stand?” . . . and the real scrotum-tightner: “So where do we stand as a couple?
Chalk it up to experience. As to the other top ways to lose a guy, read on:

  1. Wrap your whole life around him.
  2. When driving home from a party refer to every single woman he spoke to as, “a famous slut.”
  3. Make him take the quizzes in Ladies’ Mags.
  4. If you went to a better college than he did, never let him forget it.
  5. Reassure him that all men, uh, have, uh, difficulties in the sack, but not to worry — you’ve discussed his problem with his friends, and THEY all think it’s hilarious.
  6. After your third date instruct your children to call him Daddy, even if they are all over 25.
  7. Every time he makes a joke, roll your eyes and say, “Very funny. Ha ha.”
  8. Fixate on the future. Focus, for example, on his taking you to Cabo San Lucas for Easter.
  9. If he does not take you to Cabo San Lucas for Easter, act real light and breezy and then suddenly collapse in a heap, burst into tears, and inform him he has “intimacy issues.”
  10. Speaking of which, always cry after sex.
  11. Better yet, cry during sex.

NOTE: One of these weeks we’ll list the best 12 ways a man can lose your interest.

To see more advice from E. Jean visit Elle magazine and

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