Dateless-Man vs. New Year Doldrums

Just like that, an old year is over and a new year has begun. And just like that, I went a month without a post. I genuinely try not to do that – as ideally I like to get in roughly two posts a month – but sometimes it’s unavoidable. Now that I have gone through my mental vault of previous memories and failures with women, and considering I have waxed on about many related topics more than once – especially my own virginity – there sometimes isn’t much use in typing up a blog entry which is essentially “same ol’, same ol'”. But now that it’s at least February I at least have enough to grouse about for a few thousand words.

As stated some time ago, I consider the period from October to March to be the half of the year where I am usually at my most morose and/or depressed. The change of season from fall to winter can do that to plenty of people for a variety of reasons, such as less sunshine. For me it usually is because from Halloween to Christmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s Day and ultimately my own birthday, I am faced with a multitude of “special days” which only remind me of my own loneliness and the seeming futility of my own state in that regard. I can honestly report that since beginning this blog in summer 2014, in the name of aiding in my own mental health via expression, I’ve felt less of these negative feelings this year than last. I do believe that having vented a lot about my own past and foibles with women, as well as simply knowing I do have a “safe space” to type about my own ¬†frustrations where I won’t have to fear anyone I “know” finding out about it is helpful. This isn’t to suggest that I’ve suddenly become a joyful optimist singin’ in the rain, but that at worst, having this blog (and those who read it and contribute to it) has at worst done no harm and at best given me an extra cushion to my own frustrations or thoughts.

But that’s not the only thing you’re hoping to read, is it? You want some updates into my adventures (or lack thereof)!

There has been a development involving a recent online situation I had with a woman I dubbed “Carrie” in “The More Things Change” back in November. It involved me becoming online friends with an acquaintance who I also realized was a friend’s ex who I naturally developed a crush on (and just as naturally, saw no viable way to reveal this without pooching things). As the months wore on, Carrie would continue to chat with me via Facebook, albeit mostly to vent to someone about her own woes with relationships and dating. I usually did my best to comfort her and offer her advice, which she seemed to appreciate (even if I did note the irony of it coming from me of all people without revealing my own secret). She’s commented how I “make everything seem so reasonable” and “give the best advice” more than once.

As we continued to chat, and I continued to weigh my options, she finally told me of an episode where she was considering revealing her feelings to a longtime friend who she believes likes her, but never made a move until one drunken “sort of” kiss. She stressed how she usually likes to keep “friends” and “lovers” as apart as possible most of the time, which was why this was bugging her out (in addition to her own esteem being shot by a few rejections). As someone who adores her I of course can’t imagine why any man would reject her but naturally I keep this to my vest (while bucking her up with compliments). Once Carrie got into how out of wack it is for her to consider dating a friend, especially one who wasn’t me, I realized that any sort of revelation of my own would likely do little more than complicate matters. It was something I feared back in November but as the new year happened, became more of a sure fact. According to her Facebook updates, Carrie is now dating someone – whether it is that friend or another dude, I have no clue – and appears far more upbeat than she was at the end of the year. I’m genuinely happy for her. While it certainly would have been nice for her to have “chosen” me or been more receptive to that potential, in the end we are going in two different directions. She is over 30 and looking to settle into something more long term, and I am even further over 30 and have barely even begun to have a love life. In all honesty she deserves far better than an inexperienced man-child virgin with a crappier job like I am, and I know it. I am stuck in this void in which I hardly want to settle down, but I’m not entirely eager for one night stands either – as if I could get either. Still, that’s not the direction Carrie is headed. I’m mildly disappointed but overall not surprised. My romantic life has never been that easy or clear cut before, why would it be so now?

Relating to my most previous installment, I am still planning out the best “imperfect strategy”. To this end I have begun reading some advice columns here and there across the internet. Two of them can also serve as the best examples of what is often out there for men in my situation (outside of standard “pick up artist” sleaze). There is Doctor Nerdlove, a former PUA artist who encourages a lot of progressive ideas with both his articles and the community of people he fosters in his forums. Another is “Good Looking Loser“, which essentially tells you that all you need to do is work out and keep plugging at online dating until something gives. The former is a very welcoming place and many of the people there give good ideas and advice, even if it sometimes can be almost too understanding. If you don’t think you have what it takes to slog through it (like me), everyone is cool with just chilling until you’re 100. The latter, of course, will scream at anyone to just hit the gym and hit up enough women, or you’re a weenie. As always I feel caught in a crossroads.

My least worst option is giving OkCupid a genuine try. I decided (or rather, was convinced) not to hand over money to the website to see my “likes” because many of them could be outdated; merely a total since I first joined in 2006. The best idea is to restart from the ground up with a new profile. Research shows that keeping it short is usually for the best – no more than about 97 words a section. Ideally having at least one profile shot which is taken professionally (as in, by a paid and/or trained photographer) is best, with selfies-via-mirrors to be avoided. But most of all, it requires a slog. Ideally, only 1:20 or 1:30 or 1:50 (etc.) will respond, and out of those maybe 1:20 or 1:500 will agree to a date, and out of that maybe 1:20 or so on will want another. Online dating is perhaps the best and easiest way to make one last gasp at making up for lost time, but it can also be just as frustrating and daunting. I didn’t have it in me when I was in college in my 20’s, or even in my late 20’s when I began my latest job. Now that I am facing down another year, getting another year past 30, being another year of old baggage, I genuinely don’t think I have what it takes to go through with it, to grind it out like I have to (especially without messaging people I genuinely have zero interest or compatibility with just to make up numbers). I am sure I can avoid coming off like a creep in those “private messages”, but I doubt I will come off beyond mediocre either. Yet I am not getting any younger, and as hard as it is now, it won’t be any easier when I am over 40, or over 50. This really, really, really, REALLY is it. I either make a shot sometime soon or I may as well never bother, ever, anywhere. And I am not sure what I want, or what I have the fortitude for, and whether I have any attributes which would help me for either.

So, 2016 begins much like 2015 ended. At least so far.

 

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