Hello. I recently had 2 dates with a guy who initiated contact on a dating app, he seemed really nice, interesting, and very interested in me. After the first date, he was flirtacious and couldn't wait to set up another date, which we did. On the second date, a long, sort of intense talking date ( which i tried to keep fun too) the vibe was at first a little calmer. Then at the end he wanted to get slightly physical, but after I agreed, he left the date without interest in a next date, and ghosted. Honestly, I've never had a guy so interested initially then just change so soon.
Should I assume he just found someone he liked better and couldn't say something polite? Why do people get really jazzed so quickly only to pull a 180?
Should I just write it off as one confused messed up strange guy and hope he's the exception ?
Whether he's strange and messed up or not, you should definitely write him off. A lot of people - especially people on dating apps - can be flaky and ambivalent. What would send up a red flag for me is that he seemed to come on strong right away. That feels like someone who's trying to create a false sense of comfort and intimacy. In cases like that, your critical thinking skills must be utilized.
Why is he so eager?
Why is he being so attentive so quickly?
Why is he so intense?
Asking yourself these questions does not mean you have low self-esteem. Any time something strays from your personal baseline, you should take a step back and perform some objective assessment of the situation. Most people play their cards close to their chest, at least in the beginning of the relationship. That he was so excited, so soon is atypical.
I don't think this had anything to do with him finding someone "better." My guess is, he's not looking for "better." He's looking for someone he can bamboozle into falling for him, either because he's a creep who just wants sex or because he doesn't have an adequate amount of dating experience and doesn't know how relationships organically unfold.
Unfortunately, I don't think he's an exception. I think there are a lot of men and women out there like him who simply do not know how to engage or connect in a healthy way. So, I would suggest to you that, the next time someone shows an inordinate amount of attention - especially before meeting - keep your guard up.
As for future matches you make, to prevent further confusion like this, manage your investment level by:
Keeping communications to a minimum before you meet. Ongoing conversations contribute to the false sense of intimacy I mentioned above.
Keeping conversations light and not getting too personal. We bond through sharing. Opening up to a stranger on the internet is something we all do, but in cases where your feelings are at risk, it's best to maintain a level of detached distance. Don't be evasive, but don't be too forthcoming, either. Keep sensitive details of your life to yourself until the other person has earned your trust.
Remaining objective. This one's tough because our emotions get involved even in the earliest stages of getting to know someone. Make it a point to remind yourself that this person is still a stranger and that everyone is on their best behavior in the beginning. It takes time to see people as they really are.