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Women can make first move

After several months of just smiling and saying hello to a guy in his workplace where I am a client, I decided the next time I was in there that I would introduce myself. The other day, I did just that.

We chatted, and it was nice to meet him. At the end of the conversation he offered me his business card, and I didn't even think to reciprocate. I am old-school in thinking men should pursue, but I also don't stick around for nonsense.

Does offering a card, as opposed to asking for my number, mean he's not interested? Or was it because he was at work and wanted to seem professional?

-- L.L., Kenmore

Because you approached him in a friendly manner, as opposed to blatantly flirting with him, he was probably a bit unsure whether your introduction was simply polite or motivated by something deeper.

The fact that he handed you his business card implies that he would like for you to contact him, and it's much more professional than asking you for your number, considering he was in his place of work. It's perfectly acceptable today for a woman to ask a man out, or make the first contact. In fact, there are many men who have respect for women who take the initiative.

The great thing about business cards is that there are often e-mail addresses printed on them. If you want to contact him casually, send him an e-mail saying it was nice to finally meet, that you'd been wanting to introduce yourself for a while, and wish him a good week. Then the ball is in his court, and he will either respond asking for your number, or he will end the conversation.

If nothing comes of it, at least you will have tried and you won't be wondering "what if" in the future. You really have nothing to lose!

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Looks like a cheater

I have been seeing a man for more than a year, and I'm worried he may be seeing other people. I have not confronted him about it, but I've never met his family or friends; he seldom calls but e-mails or texts me whenever he wants me to come over to his house; Saturday nights are mostly off-limits; I've found traces of some female guests, such as wine glasses with lipstick smear, partially lit candles around the house and face wipes with traces of makeup. Is he cheating on me?

-- R.W., Williamsville

Based on the information you've given, it sounds like your instincts are correct. This kind of behavior is not common for a faithful man in a committed, loving relationship.

Someone who refuses to introduce you to his family and friends is usually hiding something. This can be anything from a pre-existing partner to lies about his personal life. Another hint is that he won't see you on the weekends. Saturday, specifically, is considered a date night, and he may be leaving it open for others. This is not a sure sign that he's cheating, but it is definitely odd.

The biggest concern is the lipstick smear and makeup. He is obviously hiding something from you and you need to have a talk with him right away. You've been letting him get away with his behavior for over a year, and that shows him that what he's doing is acceptable. If he doesn't have a legitimate excuse, or is not willing to discuss these things with you, it's time to cut your losses and move on.

This can be easier said than done, but you have to love and respect yourself in order to be loved and respected by anyone else.

Remember the saying: If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it's probably a duck.

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Patti Novak owns Buffalo Niagara Introductions (www.buffaloniagaraintro.com). E-mail questions to queencitymatchmaker@gmail.com and include your initials and hometown.

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