Date Three Men at Once? Only If You Really Want the Ring

Photo by Getty ImagesLadies, feel free to let your copy of "The Rules" remain strategically tucked away behind all those other books you haven't picked up in years. The days of worrying about when to return a call or accept a second date are long gone.
Rori Raye
, dating coach and author of the Have the Relationship You Want series, says there is a sure-fire way to alleviate all of that old-school angst that sabotages any hopes of having a long-term relationship with a man. You must circular date! You don't know what that means? Well, you've come to the right place.

“Circular dating is a therapeutic tool that has nothing to do with ‘the strategy of finding Mr. Right,’” Raye tells Yahoo Shine. “It’s about putting yourself out there in social situations where you can interact and date many men without having an agenda.”

Raye believes that women who want to find true love end up ruining their chances when they constantly worry about the guy or what to do next in order to move the relationship along. Her solution: Date a minimum of three men at the same time. That's right. Not one, not two, but three.

“I like to say, 'Date at least three and treat them all equally,'” says Raye. “And yes, that means go out with the bald guy, the short guy, or the one without a college degree.”

Although, we all know that nice men come in a variety of different packages, there’s also the issue of chemistry. How many times have women gone on dates with men they weren’t attracted to, wishing they had just stayed at home and gone to bed early?

Raye explains that too many women put an emphasis on chemistry, which she believes is something that can only develop over time. “Chemistry means nothing in the beginning,” she insists. “It only tells you if you’re falling for the old patterns that didn’t work for you before. You have to discover the deeper attractiveness in a man and you won’t find that out at first sight.”

The art of circular dating takes practice, Raye explains. She suggests learning how to strike up a conversation with the butcher at Whole Foods or actually smiling at the guy at the gym. “Be open. The moment you turn a date down with a guy because he’s bald or short in order to wait for the one who is tall and handsome to ask you out, you’re going to lose them both. You need to practice with a man who wants you, calls you, and actively pursues you, and that guy may be bald.” And, according to Raye, after a few dates, that bald guy may suddenly turn into the one you’ve been waiting for all this time. But, you still can’t ride off into the sunset with him. At least, not immediately.

Even when a clear winner emerges from a minimum-three-man rotation, Raye believes that a woman should continue to date other men until she gets exactly what she wants, which, for some, may be an engagement ring.

Now, there is that touchy little subject of sex and exclusivity. Raye suggests that women should choose one lover, but continue to date other men. “I have found that most women get into trouble when they start investing in one particular man,” she says. “Unless he’s been dating you regularly, making future plans, doing everything right and what you want is on the table, I say do not invest.” She recommends being open with the guy you’re intimately dating [read: sleeping with], so he understands that he is your only lover and that you enjoy dating him, but since you want happily ever after without pressuring him, you’d like to still go out with other men.

Who knew there was a type of man who would be OK with his girlfriend going out with someone else just as long as she’s not sleeping around?

But actually, you may need to make a choice eventually, Raye says, if the guy you’re intimate with can’t handle the situation you presented him with. Shocker! Although Raye isn’t a fan of girlfriend-boyfriend titles, she does acknowledge that if a guy isn’t backing off and wants a commitment, and the woman is happy with the relationship, then she could “take a risk,” and exclusively date that one man. “If you think he’s worth taking your other options off the table, then take a chance,” she says.

So there you have it, ladies. Be open and honest and focus on yourself instead of the guy, if a long-term relationship with a man is really what you want. Practice makes perfect so start circulating, no pun intended.