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The missing piece of the happiness puzzle


2shy2try

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I just turned 24 this past Friday, and I have spent a good deal of this weekend thinking about where I am in my life right now.

 

I'm one of those never-been-kissed, never-dated, virgin guys who usually makes awkward conversation with girls until somebody more confident steps in and I slunk away. To say I'm shy is a gross understatement, and I've spent the better part of my life watching my peers thrive in conditions I was too afraid to even seek.

 

Don't get me wrong, I know I have a lot going for me. I'm a college graduate with a full-time job that I enjoy, making good money and with no debt. I have multiple groups of friends, mostly male, and many hobbies I truly enjoy. I live in a great area with plenty to do. Yet despite all that I spend way too many lonely nights in my apartment wanting more than I have.

 

My lack of experience with woman is the one thing preventing me from being truly happy with my life. I worry sometimes that that makes me ungrateful for what I have, but I feel like I'd trade almost anything for the confidence and relationship experience I envy in so many of my friends.

 

I guess I'm posting these thoughts because I don't know what to do with them, and for too long I've just let them fester internally. I'm also curious to hear from others who can relate to the way I feel, which is the main reason I joined this forum.

 

Thanks for listening.

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Welcome! It's a pretty common story here. Well the "never never" group is pretty small, but you learn who's in it pretty quickly (yes, I'm part of that too).

 

For sure I can relate and I'm sure most of the other guys in the group can too. I do class myself as shy, definitely very shy in the past (when it mattered in school/Uni environments where you could naturally meet girls easier) although these days I can't so just from seeing how a lot of people around me are. Don't confuse that with outgoing though.

 

But that's all a moot point. I'm mid 20's (unfortunately late 20's eventually obviously) and have very similar thoughts too. I've got that whole "good things going for me" too but not having ANY sort of romance experience at all or progress to, is just demoralising and for me depressing now. It was very tolerable in the past but time has chipped away. I may as well just copy and paste you here too. My lack of experience with woman is the one thing preventing me from being truly happy with my life. I worry sometimes that that makes me ungrateful for what I have, but I feel like I'd trade almost anything for the confidence and relationship experience I envy in so many of my friends. And it's not like my friends have a bad life either.

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I'm 24 too, a virgin, and only been in one relationship, a few months ago, and it lasted a couple of months at most lol. I am an attractive and intelligent guy. If I was more outgoing and confident around girls I know I could pull easily. But I'm not interested in that. It's not who I am. And I've learned to become comfortable with this fact. Don't try to be someone you're not.

 

Of course I like girls and occasionally have a crush on one. But I'm not, like so many guys, trying to have sex with every ok-looking girl I meet.

 

What you guys need to know also is that being with girls, having sex and being in relationships also involves a lot of pain. Probably more pain than pleasure. With my girlfriend I was happy for maybe 1 or 2 months, it was great, felt like I was on top of the world. But I've been feeling lonely and crap for longer than that after she broke up with me for no reason.

 

So in a way I think you guys are protecting yourselves from all that pain by not getting involved and being shy. That's what I think I was doing before I met this girl. I didn't even try with her. In fact I'm almost 100% sure that if she became attracted to me is because I didn't show her I liked her, and I was really comfortable and confident around her. We met totally randomly. She literally fell out of the sky, into my lap. Yes, it CAN happen.

 

So don't despair, and honestly if I were you I wouldn't be so eager to be in a relationship, because it will take you on an emotional rollercoaster, where you will inevitably get hurt. Not saying that you shouldn't, but just warning you that you go out with girls at your peril. People will tell you that it's worth the pain in the end. The only reason I can think why this is true is because by feeling that pain you will grow as a person and be more prepared for your next relationship/date.

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I'd agree with everyone who's replied so far. As you can see, there are plenty of us who have similar stories to you, and not all male either. It certainly doesn't mean you're inherently unattractive or have no hope. If you want to blame someone, I'd blame the education system for not teaching relationships properly, so that many otherwise intelligent people really don't have a clue how to give or receive an approach.

 

But that doesn't help so much. A piece of advice I was given by a very clever and romantically successful female friend was that the more you strategise and consciously try to impress someone, the less likely you are to get anything. When things happen, they just happen unexpectedly. There is definitely some truth in this - as soon as you have expectations for someone, that creates pressure and makes you act shy. But opportunities have to come from somewhere. Is there a way you could broaden out your interests and contacts to make them slightly less male-dominated. Talking to girls in the context of a shared interest may not solve everything instantly, but it's a definite start.

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How to get women? - the same way you've got your job...

 

Hard work, a proper education, dressing nicely, having a confident interview. Knowing what your goals and intentions are with that interview and the most important thing of all, SHOWING UP.

 

Get out there and make life happen, it wont wait around for you and if you dont believe me ask yourself how everyone else succeeds and you dont. I bet you cant find anything beyond a rationalization of why you cant succeed, the reality is success with women comes from within yourself, and if your not willing to put yourself out there how can you succeed.

 

Go ahead play the blame game, but honestly has blaming anyone ever gotten anyone anywhere? Absolutely not.

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Thanks for all the responses so far. I can already tell participating in these forums is just what I need.

 

In response to what Dean said, I completely realize that a relationship could potentially make things worse, and that fear certainly contributes to why I haven't made a better attempt to escape my current funk. I just know that those rare moments when I get into a good conversation with an attractive woman that lasts awhile and doesn't feel forced are about the happiest I experience. I feel that having those moments come more frequently and with the same woman would be something worth having, regardless of the risk of rejection down the road. That doesn't stop me from fearing that rejection though.

 

Either way I am certainly not desperate to just have sex and lose my virginity to every attractive girl I meet. If anything I try really hard not to think that way because the last thing I want is to treat losing my virginity as a task that needs to get done as soon as possible, which will likely end badly. Rather I try to look at it as a reward that will come naturally if I can overcome what's holding me back from actively pursuing female companionship, which is ultimately what I believe will make me happy.

 

However I can't deny that the fear of how that first time will play out, especially if it happens with somebody I'm really into, is a contributing factor to my hesitation. The last thing I want is to lose that first real love to a bad performance in bed, or even from admitting that I'm a virgin to her. I know that there are plenty of good women for which this will not be a major issue, but I still worry.

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Hey

To me it looks like you';re longing for these things to happen, yet you self-assuredly sit on the side not taking action. Just take the plunge, women are human too...

You are definitely a smart guy but I feel you are talking yourself out of any attempt of changing things.

 

There are many levels of relating to an opposite sex person, and even if it's not 'pure' love, it can be something that can help both of you know yourselves better, it's experimenting.. You have your morals in check so I wouldnt worry abouyt you harming/deluding someone like some pr_ks outthere who don;t have your ability of soul searching.

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Hard work, a proper education, dressing nicely, having a confident interview. Knowing what your goals and intentions are with that interview and the most important thing of all, SHOWING UP.

Presumably when you say "a proper education" you mean acquiring the skills and abilities necessary to perform the job. When marco76uk says the education system is to blame for not teaching how to start a relationship, this must be what he's referring to. While I don't really think it's an education system's responsibility to teach this, I certainly don't have these skills. I don't see a way to acquire these without direct experience - exprience that I'm unable to get because I have no prior experience or existing skillset. It's a bit of a catch-22.

 

Mind you, I'm not blaming anyone else. I'm blaming myself for apparently not being able to learn by example and I'm blaming myself for not having the same kind of natural abilities in this area as others do.

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It's funny that people know how to achieve certain things they want - because they put all effort in it, but despite having achieved so much with our own willpower we don't realize that we can actually act the same way in other fields...

 

Same here - being a chain-smoker, my will to smoke is so huge that I sometimes (when being out of money or smth else) manage to get a pack of cigarettes in places and in such ways that people often don't believe if I tell them... It's all about our willpower, not the healthiest example, but if I would put that much effort and belief in finding somebody to love as I do for getting something to smoke - huh...

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Go ahead play the blame game, but honestly has blaming anyone ever gotten anyone anywhere? Absolutely not.

 

I agree but stop trying to help them. I don't think anyone posting in this thread wants to hear the truth that there's no magic solution to any problem in life and you have to take chances or be responsible for yourself eventually.

 

Good luck to all of you.

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CrazyKing, I know what you mean about surprising yourself if you really put your mind to something. However, the problem is that relationships are a two-way thing: you can do everything right at your end, but whether you get any response still depends on factors that are beyond your control.

 

GernBlanston, my gripe with education, basically, is that governments are obsessed with quantifiable results. They set targets, get some figures back that show whether the targets have been met or not, then use those figures to allocate money and score political points off their rivals. The result is that the education system is entirely based around measuring results by exams. Being able to do exams is one life skill, yes, but there are many skills that are critical to leading a happy and fulfilled life which are harder to measure and so are hugely undertaught. One of those, as this forum shows, is being able to handle romantic interactions.

 

Of course a lot you can only learn by experience, but I'm sure you can do better than the sex education I got, which was entirely biological and was taught with the clear message "now you're teenagers, you'll all be getting lots of opportunities to have sex". I saw an interview the other day with the guy who writes those Hollywood teen comedies, saying that while his films are full of sex, the most excitement he actually got at school was sitting next to a girl in class and having their knees touch. That clearly was closer to the reality for a good many of us, and I feel the education I got didn't remotely recognise that and so made me feel like a social failure when I really wasn't...

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Presumably when you say "a proper education" you mean acquiring the skills and abilities necessary to perform the job. When marco76uk says the education system is to blame for not teaching how to start a relationship, this must be what he's referring to. While I don't really think it's an education system's responsibility to teach this, I certainly don't have these skills. I don't see a way to acquire these without direct experience - exprience that I'm unable to get because I have no prior experience or existing skillset. It's a bit of a catch-22.

 

Mind you, I'm not blaming anyone else. I'm blaming myself for apparently not being able to learn by example and I'm blaming myself for not having the same kind of natural abilities in this area as others do.

 

The education system is not to blame, its only if you believe every little thing your told, yes the education system is broken, it may be the rollercoaster ride to our demise, but we paid for the ticket and waited in line to get on, ever so patiently.

 

And your right, your education is experience, all education is experience. How is it a catch 22? You were born bloody naked and screaming, i hope* your a little better off than then.

 

Life has taught me how to think, but thinking has not taught me how to live.

 

Fear of the unknown is your enemy, education is safe, not talking to girls or going out are all safe. The only way to grow as an individual to is to expand the borders within you.

 

I agree but stop trying to help them. I don't think anyone posting in this thread wants to hear the truth that there's no magic solution to any problem in life and you have to take chances or be responsible for yourself eventually.

 

Good luck to all of you.

 

The sooner people stop making excuses and began taking action is the sooner they can take a breathe knowing they are truly alive.

 

Nothing would ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome.

 

Art is long, and time is fleeting. Our hearts though stout and brave, still, like muffled drums, are beating funeral marches to the grave.

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CrazyKing, I know what you mean about surprising yourself if you really put your mind to something. However, the problem is that relationships are a two-way thing: you can do everything right at your end, but whether you get any response still depends on factors that are beyond your control.

 

Sure it may take for some to go through a lot of relationships until they find a suitable partner, and some may get the jackpot at the first try, but it's all about the willpower which helps to find these people to date...

Like I said - if the desire is strong enough, unbelieveable things may happen...

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Being able to see a person is a suitable partner (i.e. a date?) still involves another person accepting.

 

I don't think anyone has done "everything they can" to get success, but I do think a lot of us have done enough that we should be having some success. So no I'm not including the real social phobic people, but us guys who have an education, have a job, go out to eat/social/work/exercise, etc.

 

I'm not keen on keeping the whole education thing going but just from my experience, parents, culture and upbringing are the main ones.

 

And yes it's sad isn't it that when we're all young we basically take for granted we'll have crushes, romances, a girlfriend, sex, all just like that but well, here we are.

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This may sound weird, or maybe it's just because I'm part of the female chapter of that "never never" group you guys were talking about, but to me, the lack of experience is a very attractive quality. Especially when the guy (as you all appear to be) is an intelligent and well-rounded person. To me, you guys are like diamonds in the rough, natural and unspoiled. A very rare find that I can't seem to locate anywhere near me but would love to stumble upon.

 

Just thought I'd post to let you know that not all girls are going to be put off by this. Because I know that's how it feels sometimes on my end too. In fact, there are those of us out there who seek it out...so don't let it hamper your idea of self worth or make you feel as if it'll never happen, because as long as you continue to stay true to yourself and be who you are, some very lucky girl is going to get to discover you and have you all to herself. =)

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Great post Bastion's Girl, thank you! I would much prefer to be discovering relationships with someone on a roughly equal basis, and don't think that's an unreasonable thing to want. So the "diamond in the rough" is much more appealing to me than someone who's already done everything. All that really matters is that you are ready and willing to learn, as opposed to trying to pretend you know it all and falling flat on your face...

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