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    Cripplingly lonely - 23 y/o male w/ no companionship 
    #1
    Hi guys, wanted to get this off my chest because my lack of a dating life has gotten to a point that I'm questioning my desirability as a partner. Truth be told, I haven't even had a girlfriend since I was 13 which I imagine seems really strange for some people. I've slept with a few women but only one of them involved any kind of real chemistry. I tried experimenting with my sexuality and slept with a guy last year which was not a pleasant experience for me; however if I were bisexual I know I'd have many prospects because men tend to be more attracted to me than women for some reason.

    Anyway, it's just sad because I have a desire to share experiences with someone and show that I have the ability to care for them. I consider myself to be a compassionate person and I specifically have a soft spot for artistic girls who I run into at music festivals and similar events. It especially bugs me when I see girls with shitty boyfriends who take them for granted and I always think to myself: "if I were lucky enough to have someone like her I'd make sure I showed my appreciation."

    I didn't date at all throughout high school or my failed attempts at going to college, and am really beginning to wonder when things will shape up for me. I find myself constantly fantasizing about going to a foreign country where girls would be more interested in me. I don't like to make generalized statements but I have found that my luck with younger American women (19-24) seems to come up short because I do not get a warm and welcoming vibe from them. I feel like I have to come up with a way to pry them off their phone screens to talk to me or somehow "prove" that I am interesting enough or worthy of their time. I feel like I have to force conversations and things just seem to sterilize before going anywhere. It's sad because I would be a very compassionate boyfriend but I never feel like I can warm up to people. I also don't want to put myself in a position where I'm used.

    10 + of no dating life can wear on someone after a while, just wanted to share my thoughts.
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    #2
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    You probably heard this a lot...

    But have you tried dating apps like Tinder or Bumble?

    I found my bf on there and know many girls/guys who have found their long term partner on there.
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    #3
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    dating apps work well

    tinder= one of my friends got a lovely super hot girlfriend

    a large part of what attracts people to us is the emotions we feel about ourselves projected through our body language

    people like confident people who like themselves

    fake it till you make it

    or go gym and swimming to improve mood and consequently confidence

    i'm getting this massive chip on shoulder vibe from you - you are young, everyone cant have everything all the time and you should appreciate what you do have (youth/ time/ opportunity) that is good in your life and then improve it based on that rather than look at what is absent in a negative attitude way. everyones life is missing something but if you focus on what is missing you ignore what is good that is there
    Last edited by pofacedhoe; 08-07-2018 at 11:44.
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    #4
    Bluelighter SamanthaB's Avatar
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    Dear Washingtonbound,

    I wholeheartedly agree with the Pretty Diamonds and Pofacedho in every respect. All their suggestions are right on.

    You did not say whether you had guy friends that you could hang with and do things with. If you do, then get out there with them and do lots of things together so that you get yourself into situations where you will meet women. If you do not, then you need to try and find some friends. If you do or you don't have friends, you might want to see if you have "Meet Up" groups in your city. You can "google" and then see if there are any in your area. They are a great way to get yourself out doing things with whatever group you join and meet all kinds of different people with common interests. I think probably the most popular ones are with people in your age group that get together on a regular basis and go out together for movies, eating out, etc. With your inexperience, it will also help you build your confidence in being with women/men whomever you decide you might like to have a relationship with as well as just learning how to become social and be comfortable. You need to get very active at trying to meet people and things will take care of themselves in the partner department. But, no one is going to show up at your door, unfortunately. Good luck and keep us posted.
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    #5
    I see why you would get a chip on the shoulder vibe, I have a pretty traumatic past that I didn’t go into detail with here but a combination of environmental factors has exacerbated mental issues that were already there.
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    #6
    I don’t really have friends except this one junkie who is too strung out to do things most the time; I am trying tinder again even though I’ve had no luck with it in the past. Even when I do get a “match” and a conversation gets going it ends up petering out or I get bored by the caliber of person who uses superficial apps like that.
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    #7
    The few matches I’ve had on tinder have resulted in the conversations going no where fast, and honestly I don’t like the superficiality of those sites.
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    #8
    Do you like any female singers or youtubers ? Im 22 and single when im feeling lonely i find just listening to them or watching them really helps. I mean its no replacement but it deff helps. Idk may im just weird
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    #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by washingtonbound View Post
    I don?t really have friends except this one junkie who is too strung out to do things most the time; I am trying tinder again even though I?ve had no luck with it in the past. Even when I do get a ?match? and a conversation gets going it ends up petering out or I get bored by the caliber of person who uses superficial apps like that.
    yeah the conversations are mostly crap thats why you have to rapidly push for a meet to stop the inevitable fading away vibe you get

    text tells you nothing, real life smells and talks and walks and makes eye contact

    the key is ask for phone number early, switch to whatsapp and then meet them


    so you have no friends to do things with (big cause of loneliness) and dating apps arent filling thats gap (they never will)

    get new hobby

    walking groups? not bad way to make friends cos you have to talk to the people in it

    living in a shared house with lots of other people your own age- great way to make friends and extend social circles

    Quote Originally Posted by d1nach View Post
    Do you like any female singers or youtubers ? Im 22 and single when im feeling lonely i find just listening to them or watching them really helps. I mean its no replacement but it deff helps. Idk may im just weird
    yeah watching youtube/tv is a bad cure for loneliness

    Quote Originally Posted by washingtonbound View Post
    I have a pretty traumatic past that I didn?t go into detail with here but a combination of environmental factors has exacerbated mental issues that were already there.
    you need to deal with your past because its having a bigger negative effect on you than you realise in terms of putting you off everyone

    couselling might help- when you come on here explain your problem but dont inform us of the formative experiences that have shapped your behaviour patterns its harder for us to find a solution that might work for you because past trauma will definitely affect all your interactions and expectations. you seem to have a lot of negative expectations of others
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    #10
    Thanks, I appreciate the advice from you and everyone else on here on how to deal with my situation. I guess I just wanted to vent a little because every once in a while I get ruminating on these things and it just helps to type it out.

    I think the incident that catalyzed my increased isolation/depression was getting sent to a wilderness program/boarding school when I was sixteen. I never really seemed to be the same after that. Then a year and a half later after my first year of college I had an acid flashback of some sort that left me in the hospital, and over the past four years I’ve dealt with more hospitalizations along with losing my house and parents getting divorced. I don’t like to feel sorry for myself as that’s counterproductive but the problem is I have failed to make any good friends that could help me through these things. My mom lives in a small town in Florida and it’s hard to just go out and meet people very easily. I’m working on getting to a better place but sometimes my mental baggage prohibits me from doing so.
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    #11
    Bluelighter atara's Avatar
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    http://www.cracked.com/blog/6-harsh-...better-person/

    I don?t really have friends except this one junkie who is too strung out to do things most the time;
    Dammit man you can't, you just can't, you can't have no friends. It's just not healthy. Having no friends is worse than not having a girlfriend. I know, I know, it doesn't sound like it. But it is.

    Listen: Pretend you have a broken leg. Are you going to go to a [social venue] and start trying to meet women while you can't walk? Probably not, right? You're going to wait until you can walk. That's really the fundamental issue with your dating life. Right now you can't walk. You're hobbling around hoping for sympathy points but nobody has any sympathy points left because they spent all of their sympathy on the homeless guy with the skin infection sitting on the sidewalk outside the club.
    You don't want to be that guy. You really don't.
    Your sex life isn't even bad: you've gotten laid before. That puts you ahead of... oh, I don't know, about 10% of guys your age. The problem isn't not trying hard enough to get sex, it's not trying hard enough to get anything except sex. Some women are obviously willing to sleep with you, they just don't want to live with you. Dating on a different website is not going to fix that.

    Go find something to do that forces you to meet people and either compete or collaborate with them to accomplish or win something. If you take nothing else away from this post, keep that sentence. That's how you meet friends. Well, not always. But usually. Whatever you find to do might sound lame at first but I guarantee it's a lot less lame than sitting at home refreshing social media feeds until you get sleepy.

    Also, there is an issue with how you interpret the actions of people around you:
    I consider myself to be a compassionate person [...] It especially bugs me when I see girls with shitty boyfriends who take them for granted
    Question: How do you know they're shitty?
    Is that something a compassionate person would assume?

    Do you see a guy arguing with his girlfriend and think "wow, what an asshole, I would treat her so much better"? Because you don't know anything else about their life that led them to that moment. There are a million possible explanations for two people arguing and it's not particularly modest to choose the version of reality that lets you feel superior. You can see why that's a problem when I spell it out, right?

    How about calling your only friend (according to you) "this one junkie"?

    Let me tell you something about the word "nice": people get called nice because there isn't much else good to say about them. Nearly everybody is nice. All humans are capable of compassion and empathy except for a few mental disabilities, and even then they usually have some compassion. "You're such a nice guy" either means "thank you" or "etiquette requires me to give you a compliment, but I can't think of one". I'm sorry, but you can't wander around at 23 thinking that "compassion" is your primary positive trait. It's the social equivalent of saying "I can walk". You have to be something more than that.

    Nobody expects you to be the most compassionate person ever, and you probably can't be, psychologically, anyway. People who are really abnormally compassionate usually follow their hearts right into a lifetime of lots of work for very little reward, because that's what compassion is. They also, usually, don't have much trouble making friends, although they do get taken advantage of more often than other people. Sound like you? Didn't think so.
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    #12
    Atara - more insight in your reply than I’ve had from any therapist. You make good points about some contradictions in my post, but I think what I was trying to say by compassionate is that I am not deliberately mean spirited towards people. My problem is that I’ve ended up having breaks from depression and stress in college which leaves me more and more isolated each time. My expression is just uninviting and no one has interest based on appearances. I have tried the meet up thing and the closest city to me with a substantial young persons population is Tampa which is an hour and a half away. I need to find some kind of volunteer activities to engage in that don’t involve churches, which is kind of difficult.

    And to clarify, I have certainly seen really nice girls in relationships with guys who don't appreciate them which is the point I was trying to make. And I literally had no friends, living out here in Boca Grande, FL where the median age is 67 until I ran into an oxy dealer who I've gotten high with a couple times. Not productive experiences which led me to feel worse afterwards.
    Last edited by washingtonbound; 12-07-2018 at 17:03.
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    #13
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    get a job and move to tampa

    seriously america has some places where you are very isolated
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    #14
    I live in Boca Grande, FL for reference
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    #15
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    get a job and save up and move somewhere new that is better, wasting your twenties in some place that wont meet your needs is pointless

    also how often are you being hospitalised with mental health issues? because if thats happening every year then its gonna really impact on your independence and you will need people to help you that are close by
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    #16
    Bluelighter Vastness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by washingtonbound
    Even when I do get a “match” and a conversation gets going it ends up petering out or I get bored by the caliber of person who uses superficial apps like that.
    LOL, sorry, but this attitude right there is part of your problem, and I hope for your sake that you see the irony in it.

    I really have no patience for people who still have a judgemental attitude towards dating apps in this day and age, while whining about their lack of success in dating.
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    #17
    I’ve had 10 hospitalizations over the course of four years; I recently spoke with a new counselor who said I exhibit some DID symptoms, which I somewhat agree with. Now I am working on maintaining sobriety so repeat occurrences don’t come up.
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    #18
    I probably didn’t phrase that right; I just tend to get really bored with those things and I think it’s impossible to get a good picture of someone based on a stupid app. People will project what they want others to see in them and will be hypercritical of what they see at first sight, so it’s not useful for finding meaningful relationships IMO. But that’s just my opinion, I realize others have had different experiences.
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    #19
    Bluelighter Vastness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by washingtonbound
    People will project what they want others to see in them and will be hypercritical of what they see at first sight
    Remember, this is what happens in real life anyway. People naturally try to present their best side, and hide their flaws, when speaking to someone new. With apps, of course, it's easier to hide certain things but it's also harder to show certain things about yourself - there's only so much unique and interesting charm that you can cram into a text message.

    Additionally, given that you haven't (I'm assuming from what you've said so far - correct me if I'm wrong) actually met anyone from a dating app in real life, how do you know that they're painting a false picture of themselves? If you had met a bunch of people in real life and been basically catfished every time, well then fair enough, but from the sounds of it you are just writing off people that you've never met based purely on the fact that they're using the same app that you are! Well, sorry to say but if you can write people off so quickly, then you're the one that's superficial.

    Far more likely than your assumptions here being an accurate reflection of reality are that your preconceived notions are just a self-defeating belief that you use to protect yourself from failure. If everyone using dating apps is superficial, and not worth bothering with, then it's not worth trying - and you're protected from the pain of rejection. Of course you're not the first one to think like this, and overcoming these psychological blockades that we unconsciously put in the way of our own happiness is far from easy - but the first step is recognising them for what they are.
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    #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vastness View Post
    Remember, this is what happens in real life anyway. People naturally try to present their best side, and hide their flaws, when speaking to someone new. With apps, of course, it's easier to hide certain things but it's also harder to show certain things about yourself - there's only so much unique and interesting charm that you can cram into a text message.

    Additionally, given that you haven't (I'm assuming from what you've said so far - correct me if I'm wrong) actually met anyone from a dating app in real life, how do you know that they're painting a false picture of themselves? If you had met a bunch of people in real life and been basically catfished every time, well then fair enough, but from the sounds of it you are just writing off people that you've never met based purely on the fact that they're using the same app that you are! Well, sorry to say but if you can write people off so quickly, then you're the one that's superficial.

    Far more likely than your assumptions here being an accurate reflection of reality are that your preconceived notions are just a self-defeating belief that you use to protect yourself from failure. If everyone using dating apps is superficial, and not worth bothering with, then it's not worth trying - and you're protected from the pain of rejection. Of course you're not the first one to think like this, and overcoming these psychological blockades that we unconsciously put in the way of our own happiness is far from easy - but the first step is recognising them for what they are.
    this
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    #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Vastness View Post
    Remember, this is what happens in real life anyway. People naturally try to present their best side, and hide their flaws, when speaking to someone new. With apps, of course, it's easier to hide certain things but it's also harder to show certain things about yourself - there's only so much unique and interesting charm that you can cram into a text message.

    Additionally, given that you haven't (I'm assuming from what you've said so far - correct me if I'm wrong) actually met anyone from a dating app in real life, how do you know that they're painting a false picture of themselves? If you had met a bunch of people in real life and been basically catfished every time, well then fair enough, but from the sounds of it you are just writing off people that you've never met based purely on the fact that they're using the same app that you are! Well, sorry to say but if you can write people off so quickly, then you're the one that's superficial.

    Far more likely than your assumptions here being an accurate reflection of reality are that your preconceived notions are just a self-defeating belief that you use to protect yourself from failure. If everyone using dating apps is superficial, and not worth bothering with, then it's not worth trying - and you're protected from the pain of rejection. Of course you're not the first one to think like this, and overcoming these psychological blockades that we unconsciously put in the way of our own happiness is far from easy - but the first step is recognising them for what they are.
    Yea I would just say my viewpoint on dating apps is based off negative experiences. And all you?re really doing on there is judging people off a picture; there are people who are say 6-7 on the looks scale but have personalities that make them really desirable. People have told me I?m decent looking but I?ve had very limited success with women through dating apps in the past; the few that match with me will be nearly impossible to talk to, on the other hand if I set it on both genders I get loads of interested males that pursue avidly. But I?m not really able to change my sexuality just because hypothetically I could have more partners if I pursued both genders. And I think the problem is probably more me being too aware of my flaws than having a judgement attitude towards others. (Women) are able to smell a lack of confidence a mile away I?ve come to realize, and do not desire being around men who have some degree of discomfort with themselves (my experience).
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