An unfortunate and lonely author writes at XOJane.com:
We were over each other before it amicably ended and very much ready to date other people. And I have. There have been flings and first dates and flirtatious, undefined, long-distance friendships. But no boyfriends.
The poor girl launches into a monologue of her perceived faults; some of them more pressing than others:
Over our first drinks, I’ll draw attention to my weird, clubbed thumbs. When we order the second round, I’ll make a flirtatious quip about how, after 10 years and as many antidepressants, I switched to Cymbalta and have been on it ever since. By the third, I’ll have found a humorous way to tell you I was raped in college.
I checked, and Cymbalta isn’t horny goat weed. It’s hard to perceive how prescription drugs are flirtatious. If I told a second date that I was on Viagra with a wink and a nod, that still wouldn’t work. Unless she was a real down and dirty bitch. And yeah, rape’s a bit of a turnoff too–we’ll leave it at that.
I don’t mean I’m tired of anything in particular — I’m just tired. When I say I’m on the couch with my dogs, it’s because I don’t have the energy to do much else when I get home from work or at the end of the week.
Behold, the fruits of feminism.
And of course there’s the atomic bomb:
I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been.
Tsk tsk. We know better. Frankly, if this girl were slim and trim she’d probably find someone willing to put up with all the rest of the shit. She has attractive features, and would be quite a catch if she were ten years younger and in much better shape. (As she probably was when she got married the first time.) But she’s let her body go to waste, and the result is an unwanted ride on the cock carousel. A guy with her faults would merely endure the grinding agony of celibacy and shame; she has the pretense of sex but cannot score the committment she desires.
I spent half an hour crafting a response. She seemed like a nice girl, genuinely troubled by her plight. Below:
In all seriousness, you’ve answered your own question. And I don’t mean to be harsh; it seems like you’re coming from a place of real honesty, after all. But, you’ve laid down the following points:
1) You talk about your uncomfortable history and major flaws on first dates. That’s a major warning signal to potential boyfriends that you have a strong possibility of being unstable. Your thumbs aren’t really a big deal – he’ll notice those eventually anyway, and men can get over small quirks like that. However, being on antidepressants and saying that you were raped are some real out there things to be telling a guy who hasn’t had a good opportunity to develop a legitimate opinion about your actual level of stability. If you’re a genuinely normal and well-balanced person, let him see that first, and then later on you can slowly intimate all of your problems. If you’ve been on your best behavior around him, he’ll have a frame of reference to say, ‘yeah, this girl is keeping it together even though she had some hard times’, as opposed to ‘this girl is going to saw off my thumbs with a hacksaw if I fall asleep next to her’. Stability in a woman is MUCH more attractive to a man than her intelligence.
2) Guys want sex. That’s true, but the problem is that men are often happy to collect on sex without a requisite offer of committment. A man’s willingness to commit is the square of his desperation for companionship and his attraction to you; a man who is willing to commit to you despite not being very attracted to you is thus very lonely and in need. And after all, YOU probably don’t want those needy kinds of guys around. (However, a man who has high attraction to a woman may commit even without an urgent and pressing need to be shackled down; note that even famous leading men of Hollywood often tie the knot to young, attractive stunners.) Therefore, while you may have gotten a fair amount of sex, none of these men were enamored enough of you to sign a letter of hire; you were good enough for temp work, but not qualified for a full time position. It’s great that you like sex, but the lack of committment post-sex is concerning.
3) You probably could use to clean your apartment. It’s not a dealbreaker, but it’s indicative of other factors wrong in your life. I’ve considered a messy apartment a minor warning sign in women, given how much more likely women are to be surrounded by a clean and comfortable environment. But, it’s not THAT big of a deal. (Tidy up a bit before he comes over tho.)
4) You’re tired. You need to take better care of yourself, as evidenced by point #6. As to your lack of spontaneity, I realize that it has a legitimate cause, but turndowns of quickie dates are often interpreted as signs of disinterest; many lonely women who are genuinely interested in a man will make at least some effort to accommodate an immediate opening in his schedule. At the very least, you should probably make a quick counteroffer of another date if you are interested in preserving the relationship; a refusal due to circumstances, followed by a counteroffer will preserve his sense that you are potentially interested in him.
5) You’re unable to tell how old guys are. Not really too much of a problem, but you should be angling toward single men who are significantly older than you at this point. Learn to look for cues in dress and mannerisms that hint at a man in his forties. You will need to, at this point, begin to sacrifice some level of physical attraction toward a man, since you’ve let this problem fester for some time. And let’s be honest…
6) You’re fatter than you’ve ever been. Let’s not mince words — to use the word ‘heavier’ is useless fluff. I know plenty of girls at 5’4″ and 140 pounds who have a fine, dense, athletic body with very low body fat. ‘Fatter’ is appropriate. And I don’t mean to beat the word into you like I’m swinging a club, but that’s what it boils down to. You have let your body slip past an attractive bodyfat ratio. Physical attraction is so utterly critical to sparking interest in men that your number ONE priority ought to be to get into reasonable shape. (Women have their own ‘shallow’ triggers, most notably fame, status and wealth. Neither gender is to blame for it, it’s just how we’re respectively wired.) Looking at your picture, you’re not. And it’s a tragedy – you have very pretty features and could knock a man senseless if you were in shape.
Men with any reasonable amount of choice in the dating market will choose a slimmer woman – weight immaterial -almost every single time. Men without choice in the dating market will settle for the leftovers. You’ve mentioned not being attracted to men who have shown interest in you — the shoe is now on the other foot, so to speak. Certainly you have displayed interest, from time to time, in decent men of reasonable quality; and they have replied that it is better to just be friends. (As have I, in women that I genuinely liked otherwise but were simply too overweight for me to be sexually attracted to them.) These men can select healthier, sexier women, and the men who have no option are willing to settle for someone less than ideal. Unfortunately, those men are also less than ideal in your judgment. And unable to settle for less than what you believe worthwhile, the men in your life are therefore the kind who lick their own balls and like to play fetch. Not that that’s a bad thing, but clearly there’s a need that ought to be fulfilled.
You’ve laid out the roadmap for your own change right here in this post.
- Don’t reveal your dark, ugly secrets before your date can understand that they are behind you (if indeed they are; if they are not, then you will have to find someone willing to tolerate them, but you must show first that you are past them enough to not throw undue weight upon the relationship. After all, if he can make a decision to be with any number of women, why would he choose to be with someone obviously broken?)
- You aren’t screening for committment before putting out, and consquently are receiving confusing messages about your role in the dating marketplace. At some level, your subconscious believes that sex will naturally lead to committment and companionship, but you’ve inadvertently written yourself out of that. – Clean your apartment; and from a greater viewpoint, you must attack this problem with more energy and focus. True self-change is rigorous, difficult, painful and merciless. Writing a long post is only the start. The rest comes over LOTS of time and hard work. – Go after obviously older men, or inquire their age early on; younger men are almost never going to commit to you, so screen them out early on. You can ask a man his age – it’s not rude to ask men. (However, you should be prepared to concede your own age as well, since you opened that floodgate. Honestly, you have little wherewithal to complain about it by now.) – Lose weight. YOU MUST DO THIS. You are shooting yourself in the foot by not being in as good of shape as you can possibly. It’s WAY more important to us that you look sexually attractive than it is for us to look sexually attractive to you. (Conversely, you may be intrigued by an older man’s career and achievements, while we generally couldn’t possibly care less whether you were a barista or a physicist.)
Want a boyfriend? You wrote the recipe yourself. The hard part is sticking to it.
Who the hell knows if it got approved or swallowed up in the comments chain, but it’s worth a shot to save a soul.