Where did all this awkwardness towards women come from?

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#51 Posted by GazaAli (25216 posts) -

@gamerguru100 said:

@GazaAli said:

I think that this insecurity and awkwardness towards the opposite sex in general are unfortunate and unfavorable byproducts of modern civilization.

I think you're on to something. Any way you could elaborate on how that came to be?

I will try my best.

The way I see it is that society has unequivocally changed. Modern society is indisputably sophisticated and the technological advancements, the revolutionization of the means of production and the scientific leaps humanity made in the last ~300 years had a profound influence on the formation and workings of societies and civilizations. For the first time in history almost every individual on this planet has access to the entire intellectual and scientific legacy of mankind and can be exposed to any thought or norm that is in existence. What I'm trying to demonstrate here is that society is now so sophisticated and with sophistication comes inevitable complexity and convolution. For the vast majority of human civilization, the relationship between man and woman was so simplistic and straightforward; it was mostly an extension of physiology, survivalist incentives and clear social and economic advantages. Then came the last 200 years broadly speaking and the last 40-50 years more specifically and turned everything upside down, sometimes for the better but more often for the worse. The unprecedented abundance in affluence and material means and the sophistication and accessibility of luxuries and pleasures made people indolent and intemperate. The unprecedented liberties and the proliferation of ideologies made people lose their way. What was once solid melted into thin air and people are left without a clue on how to live an examined, spiritually satisfying and personal life. Why settle for one partner when you can have as many as you want? Why be faithful to someone with all these temptations within your reach? Why practice temperance when you can afford to eat as much as you want? If everything is tolerated and if you can go away with most moral depravities, why abstain from anything at all? As a result, virtue has been lost and what was once a simple truth became subject to all manners of twisting and turnarounds. We are riddled with insecurities and distrust of one another, we no longer stand on solid ground.

If you think about it, we're confused about and bewildered by pretty much everything relating to our personal lives and to being an individual among fellow humans.

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#53 Posted by PS4hasNOgames (2620 posts) -

its a generation of men being raised by women. men get their confidence from their dad, so if you grow up being raised by a single mother you don't become fully developed.

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#54 Edited by gamerguru100 (12687 posts) -

@GazaAli said:

@gamerguru100 said:

@GazaAli said:

I think that this insecurity and awkwardness towards the opposite sex in general are unfortunate and unfavorable byproducts of modern civilization.

I think you're on to something. Any way you could elaborate on how that came to be?

I will try my best.

The way I see it is that society has unequivocally changed. Modern society is indisputably sophisticated and the technological advancements, the revolutionization of the means of production and the scientific leaps humanity made in the last ~300 years had a profound influence on the formation and workings of societies and civilizations. For the first time in history almost every individual on this planet has access to the entire intellectual and scientific legacy of mankind and can be exposed to any thought or norm that is in existence. What I'm trying to demonstrate here is that society is now so sophisticated and with sophistication comes inevitable complexity and convolution. For the vast majority of human civilization, the relationship between man and woman was so simplistic and straightforward; it was mostly an extension of physiology, survivalist incentives and clear social and economic advantages. Then came the last 200 years broadly speaking and the last 40-50 years more specifically and turned everything upside down, sometimes for the better but more often for the worse. The unprecedented abundance in affluence and material means and the sophistication and accessibility of luxuries and pleasures made people indolent and intemperate. The unprecedented liberties and the proliferation of ideologies made people lose their way. What was once solid melted into thin air and people are left without a clue on how to live an examined, spiritually satisfying and personal life. Why settle for one partner when you can have as many as you want? Why be faithful to someone with all these temptations within your reach? Why practice temperance when you can afford to eat as much as you want? If everything is tolerated and if you can go away with most moral depravities, why abstain from anything at all? As a result, virtue has been lost and what was once a simple truth became subject to all manners of twisting and turnarounds. We are riddled with insecurities and distrust of one another, we no longer stand on solid ground.

If you think about it, we're confused about and bewildered by pretty much everything relating to our personal lives and to being an individual among fellow humans.

Thank you for taking the time to answer. I find this very interesting. :)

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#55 Posted by drekula2 (3349 posts) -

On any given gaming forum, white-knights and internet-dude-bros are a sun and moon duality.

A lot of the awkwardness comes from a combination of gender standards and the fact that we don't teach children social skills anymore.

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#56 Posted by gamerguru100 (12687 posts) -

@ps4hasnogames said:

its a generation of men being raised by women. men get their confidence from their dad, so if you grow up being raised by a single mother you don't become fully developed.

You may have a point. I have little to no confidence in approaching girls to ask them out. I've spent most of my life being raised by my mom, as well as an only child, a rare combination if you ask me. My biological father was definitely not dad material. My mom divorced him when I was just two years old, I believe. My mom came home one night and I was crying in my crib while he and his friends were drinking and blasting music. She had enough and moved in with a friend for a while. At the moment, I've heard he's having a fifth or sixth kid soon, and he's not had kids with just a few women, but several, so this means I probably have at least four or five half-siblings now.

My mom later married another man who was a much better father figure, but soon things didn't work out and they got divorced. However, I did get to visit him post-divorce sometimes. My mom has been divorced for the last sixteen years, if I remember correctly, and I haven't seen my stepfather in probably ten years now. School was also a bitch for my whole life too, so that didn't help. I honestly think I'm fucked for getting any kind of companionship with the opposite sex right now.

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#57 Edited by always_explicit (3379 posts) -

Its interesting certainly. But its an argument hinged on the basis that gluttony, debauchery, and hedonistic behavior is a product of modern society, which simply isnt true. Those traits have existed since at very least the Egyptians and I imagine predate them also.

"If you think about it, we're confused about and bewildered by pretty much everything relating to our personal lives and to being an individual among fellow humans". Disagree...

Its never been easier to assert yourself as an individual in society. Hell you can become a Youtube celebrity over night by doing nothing more than turning on your computer and talking. Access to music and film has never been easier, and the freedom to information has never been easier. Everything necessary to become a well rounded cultured individual exists in abundance in the majority of cultures.

The increase in liberty should be something beneficial to those who struggle to socialize but you talk about it like it is a hindrance. The last 200 hundred years you talk about gave women the vote, saw gay marriage become a possibility, gave a global super power its first black president . Yet you want to blame such a progressive and free global society because you cant talk to people. Come on man. Not a single one of those things you mentioned in your post lead offer insight to why people become awkward and unable to talk to women.

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#58 Edited by Gaming-Planet (18753 posts) -

I blame slice of life anime.

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#59 Posted by MrGeezer (59150 posts) -

@MirkoS77 said:

There comes a point where I'd agree with the OP in the past. But I'm chronically ill. Severely so. I go through chemo weekly that makes me miserable Mon-THurs. I've been doing this since the age of 20. I'm now 36. I've never had a relationship. Never a career. Minor college with no degree. My parents take care of me. I live on $1000 disability a month, half of which goes to them, the rest to piano lessons and to what gives me an element of pleasure in life: games. Basically all of my adult years have been spent in constant medical treatment and will continue to be.

Thing is, I don't understand what it is to be an "adult". I don't know what "mature" is. Nor of what it's like to bear the traditional responsibilities that a man does as he ages. My growth as a person has been very stunted. I'm literally a 20 year old in a 36 year old's body when it comes to terms of what society expects in many areas. I can't even relate to people who were my good friends when I was 20 because they're now buying houses and having families. We could be from separate planets as far as I'm concerned.

Women my age expect things at this point, the fun days of exploration and discovery are passing and they're quickly looking to find a Rooster and lay some eggs (if they are still single, that is), and there are far greener pastures elsewhere. What they don't want is someone who's 36 to have such stunted understandings of the mere basics of living life and things such as social interactions. Of living with the parents. Of having no income or career, only the offering and burden of supporting someone with a very physically and emotionally draining illness that gives little payout in return.

Do you know what it's like trying to get to know people with such a history? Much less females? It's impossible. Ok, not impossible, but exceptionally hard. I'm completely and totally fucked when it comes to any relationship, woman OR man. There's nothing on offer here aside from pain and misery and people don't want to be around either. I don't blame them, but if anyone has some miracle cure for me that can automatically shove me back into the show "how life works, how to play it and be included" I'd love to hear about it.

What the **** is the point really. TC, I understand your post was targeted at early 20s and all, but that's me. I am in my early 20s...... I just don't know how to explain that fact to those I meet. Funny thing is, when I was diagnosed I was a hugely popular lifeguard at the Y with all the swimmers and was with chicks constantly. Perhaps this is my punishment for such great times.

But really, it's not that simple.

No doubt that things are stacked against you, but it ultimately comes to...how content are you now vs how content you'd be if you acted differently?

It's like...your history and situation might leave you fucked, but you're certainly fucked if you give up and don't even TRY. Not that I'm saying that you should try; being that below the curve opens you up to a lot of pain and rejection. And it might be easier to just avoid that entirely.

But those are sort of your options. try or don't. Shit or get off the pot. I'm not saying which one you should do, that's not my place. Just make a decision, do what you think is gonna have the best chance of maximizing your happiness, then learn to accept it. Things are gonna suck whatever you do, just don't stew in your misery or be bitter. Once you've decided on the best course of action, then take comfort in the fact that you're doing the best you can in your current situation. Because to be blunt...certain problems can be a turnoff, but an even bigger turnoff is when people constantly whine about their problems. I know it's possibly insulting to say "look on the bright side", but what else can you do? You're entitled to whatever happiness you can get. If you can do something that'll make you more happy, then do it. If you can't, then just try think positively because that's probably not making you any happier.

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#60 Edited by MirkoS77 (12676 posts) -

@MrGeezer said:

@MirkoS77 said:

There comes a point where I'd agree with the OP in the past. But I'm chronically ill. Severely so. I go through chemo weekly that makes me miserable Mon-THurs. I've been doing this since the age of 20. I'm now 36. I've never had a relationship. Never a career. Minor college with no degree. My parents take care of me. I live on $1000 disability a month, half of which goes to them, the rest to piano lessons and to what gives me an element of pleasure in life: games. Basically all of my adult years have been spent in constant medical treatment and will continue to be.

Thing is, I don't understand what it is to be an "adult". I don't know what "mature" is. Nor of what it's like to bear the traditional responsibilities that a man does as he ages. My growth as a person has been very stunted. I'm literally a 20 year old in a 36 year old's body when it comes to terms of what society expects in many areas. I can't even relate to people who were my good friends when I was 20 because they're now buying houses and having families. We could be from separate planets as far as I'm concerned.

Women my age expect things at this point, the fun days of exploration and discovery are passing and they're quickly looking to find a Rooster and lay some eggs (if they are still single, that is), and there are far greener pastures elsewhere. What they don't want is someone who's 36 to have such stunted understandings of the mere basics of living life and things such as social interactions. Of living with the parents. Of having no income or career, only the offering and burden of supporting someone with a very physically and emotionally draining illness that gives little payout in return.

Do you know what it's like trying to get to know people with such a history? Much less females? It's impossible. Ok, not impossible, but exceptionally hard. I'm completely and totally fucked when it comes to any relationship, woman OR man. There's nothing on offer here aside from pain and misery and people don't want to be around either. I don't blame them, but if anyone has some miracle cure for me that can automatically shove me back into the show "how life works, how to play it and be included" I'd love to hear about it.

What the **** is the point really. TC, I understand your post was targeted at early 20s and all, but that's me. I am in my early 20s...... I just don't know how to explain that fact to those I meet. Funny thing is, when I was diagnosed I was a hugely popular lifeguard at the Y with all the swimmers and was with chicks constantly. Perhaps this is my punishment for such great times.

But really, it's not that simple.

No doubt that things are stacked against you, but it ultimately comes to...how content are you now vs how content you'd be if you acted differently?

It's like...your history and situation might leave you fucked, but you're certainly fucked if you give up and don't even TRY. Not that I'm saying that you should try; being that below the curve opens you up to a lot of pain and rejection. And it might be easier to just avoid that entirely.

But those are sort of your options. try or don't. Shit or get off the pot. I'm not saying which one you should do, that's not my place. Just make a decision, do what you think is gonna have the best chance of maximizing your happiness, then learn to accept it. Things are gonna suck whatever you do, just don't stew in your misery or be bitter. Once you've decided on the best course of action, then take comfort in the fact that you're doing the best you can in your current situation. Because to be blunt...certain problems can be a turnoff, but an even bigger turnoff is when people constantly whine about their problems. I know it's possibly insulting to say "look on the bright side", but what else can you do? You're entitled to whatever happiness you can get. If you can do something that'll make you more happy, then do it. If you can't, then just try think positively because that's probably not making you any happier.

Though I may give this impression with my posts I realize, I don't whine about my problems. In fact, the only time I do so is on the net on occasion when I'm having a bad day, and also to my parents when I have really hard periods (though it's not whining, but confiding), but largely all of my mourning, anger, fear, and all the self-pity parties are done 99% in private. You'd probably be surprised to meet me in RL. I have an amazingly positive attitude given my situation and I give thanks for a hell of a lot every day. You would not think I'm sick by looking at me nor by the way I act.

I don't mention my situation to people I meet, at least not initially, because I realize it's a large turnoff. And when I do if asked, it's in a matter of fact manner and not a "woe to me" tone. But I really have nothing else to discuss. This illness IS the majority of my life, this sickness is all consuming and I don't know how to live with it while at the same time having a compatible front many are comfortable discussing. "What do you do?" are four words I loathe more than any other and it's at that point in the conversation that I know it's more than likely a short-lived one.

Shit or get off the pot? I can't get angry at that because, no offense, it's advice borne out of ignorance but that I also know is spoken out of good intentions. I've largely accepted my situation but that doesn't mean I don't feel angry and bitter about it, and I have every right to. But that's besides the point. This topic and my reply to it are not about my lot in life so much as it is how to be able best to enact and build relationships given what I have to work with. That's what I'm looking for advice on. I have no commonality with nearly anyone I meet. People my age talk about their jobs, kids, mortgages, relationships. I'm 100% clueless on all of those. The things I know about are medical and fighting serious chronic illness. And the truth is, people are not comfortable talking about these things, most want to avoid them at all costs. I try my best, but I can only evade, redirect and tell half-truths for so long.

Whether or not I've accepted it is not the problem. It's how can I make others accept it?

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#61 Edited by MrGeezer (59150 posts) -

@MirkoS77: You don't make others accept it. You present things as things are, and then take note of who does accept it. That's not to say that you need to spout off your problems to everyone, but don't get evasive. That's just prolonging the inevitable, and making you waste your time. If you want a relationship, then he/she'll find out eventually and he/she'll have to accept your situation if it's gonna work. Deliberately evading the issue is just a waste of your time. Be straight with her, and if that's a dealbreaker for her, then good. The sooner you know, the sooner you can start focusing your attention on someone else.

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#62 Posted by -Blasphemy- (3353 posts) -

@GazaAli said:

@KHAndAnime said:

@thehig1 said:

I'm I'm a little awkward with everyone, so just people in general.

I think this is the case for many on OT.

I won't lie, I'm not great with people. I function perfectly fine one on one or one on two max. Functioning properly in a group however is a completely different story. Put it this way: if I can't give someone my undivided attention for any number of reason, including but not limited to, being in a group, not knowing that person all that well and/or the existence of a source of tension between that someone then my social skills cease to be. I don't know why I feel this way.

im the same way. i usually can talk and laugh with some people when its just the two of us but anytime anyone else enters the conversation i completely shut down. i dont like talking over other people and im slow with comebacks. my brain doesnt process info as fast as some other peoples. alot of people i just dont feel comfortable around.

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#63 Edited by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@one_plum said:

I want an introvert but you don't find them everywhere.

You'd be surprised. I know a lot of women who try to act pretty outgoing, but most of the time it's a show. It's probably the same with plenty of men, seeing as how our society puts a premium on extroversion, it just seems like there are more male extroverts who aren't ashamed of it or feel like they need to compensate (anecdotal, but still). I think in most studies they do on the topic there are usually slightly more introverts as a proportion of the population, or at least it's close to a 50/50 split, so if most of the people you meet are extroverted there's a good chance that a lot of them are introverts posing as extroverts.

Anyway, on topic, I don't believe all women are attracted to the same things they were when we were living in caves. There are probably some residual instincts, but human relationships are more complex than that. That being said, I think most women go for the more extroverted, outwardly confident man most of the time for a variety of reasons, and I think there is a significant chunk of the female population that is miserable because of it. Some women are just attracted to that type, some aren't and feel like they should be anyway and they end up being miserable.

Regardless of all that, relationships nowadays just seem like a minefield if you're a male. You're expected to make the first move and if you're not making very obvious advances very soon after meeting a woman it seems like they're just going to interpret that as rejection. If you make an advance and it's unwanted, however, now all of the sudden things get awkward. You were just friends, she valued your friendship and you were just concerned with sex, why the hell would you go and ruin a perfectly good friendship? If people could just speak frankly and honestly about their feelings I don't think there would be a problem, but that's not acceptable. Instead you have to read social situations correctly all of the time and make the right move all of the time, and if you don't you're either the jerk who rejected her (even though you never really rejected her) or the jerk who cared more about sex than friendship (even if you didn't say a single thing about sex).

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#64 Edited by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@korvus said:

Yep, I agree. I've always been more comfortable around women than men. Growing up, I would never have anything to say to a group of "manly guys". It was just so frustrating having to deal with endless pissing contests and bragging tirades...on the other hand, I'd be perfectly comfortable in any group of women, who (maybe sub-consciously) would always make me the center of attention since I was the only guy there, but I have yet to just "parachute drop" into a group of women and having them receiving me with anything less than complete acceptance. And I find them so easy to talk to; most can make a pleasant conversation out of just about any topic, and they actually listen when you talk to them instead of thinking "yeah, yeah...you're having problems; shut up so I can tell you about this hot chick I banged yesterday".

Even when I would just walk up to a girl (alone or with her friends), introduce myself and 5 minutes later ask her(them) to go out for a coffee I was never rejected (no, they wouldn't automatically jump in bed with me, this is not a porn website). Even now, being married, 99% of my friends are women...

That being said, I think this shift in awkwardness is due, in big part (but not solely, obviously) to the shift in parenting. A few generations back if you were a man you'd get a pat on the back and told you had it made for the simple fact that you were born with a penis....get a job and all the girls would flock to you looking for security and stability like the mindless animals they were. The girls, on the other hand, like proper inferior beings, would be trained to be useful and skilled and maybe a guy would pick them up, despite all her flaws, and rescue her.

Thankfully things improved for women but not so much for relationships. Now the roles are a bit inverted. A lot of girls are raised to the "pussy worship" mentality; they have one, guys want one, that's all they need. Guys, on the other hand, like the mindless sex crazed inferior animals that they are, are trained to think women are this alien species who is akin to the Holy Grail and that a man's sole purpose in life is to be worthy of one, therefore everything he does should be to court a female from a distance, and under peril of death, approach the deadly predator. If she doesn't eat his head, he might actually get to take her out for coffee.

A few years back, I used to have lunch at a sandwich place and since it was close to a school there were always some kids having lunch with their parents. There were these 2 kids in particular, a boy with his father and a girl with his mother. They were probably around 8/9yo and the boy was completely in love with the girl (who never even noticed him). I'd see him stealing glances at her every time they met there. One day (after months) apparently his father encouraged him to go talk to her. He (the father) had a bouquet of flowers with him and took one out, gave it to the kid and told him to go give it to the girl. So the boy stands up, all shaky and sweaty, shyly walks over to the girl, introduces himself very formally and offers her the rose. It was really sweet and half the place was in a sort of mute "awww". The girl grabs the rose, looks at him like he had just lifted her skirt, throws the rose to the floor and says really loudly (obviously for spectacle sake) "Why would I want anything from YOU? Just because I'm a girl, it doesn't mean I have to deal with this shit!". Me, the boy's father, pretty much all the guys and some of the women were like "Holy shit...did that just happen?" while the girl's mother and the rest of the women were cheering for the girl...some even clapped! How is that sort of reaction even remotely acceptable? The little boy was so ashamed they never ate at that place again.

Nothing will improve with role reversal; we need role equality. I don't think any parent should foster the superior/inferior view upon others, regardless of gender. There is no reason to raise your kid not to be kind, accepting, generous, polite and with a sense of self-improvement. If parents decide how to raise their children based on what's between their kids' legs, no wonder kids become obsessed with it. And then we end up with OT threads about how to talk to girls like you need to learn a second language in order to approach one...

See, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Asking a girl out can turn into such a big deal so quickly. If you misread the situation and she's not into you then it can just turn into this s***storm that makes you want move to a different country and buy a new identity on the black market. And frankly, why are we only asking this question of men? I think next time one of my female friends starts pining over a guy I'll tell her to grow some balls, stop being such a bitch, just do it, etc., etc., see how well that goes over.

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#65 Posted by TacticalDesire (10713 posts) -

I generally agree with what you're saying, but I disagree with the idea that women are attracted to the same qualities from when we ran around with sticks and in caves :P.

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#66 Edited by korvus (10713 posts) -

@theone86 said:

See, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Asking a girl out can turn into such a big deal so quickly. If you misread the situation and she's not into you then it can just turn into this s***storm that makes you want move to a different country and buy a new identity on the black market. And frankly, why are we only asking this question of men? I think next time one of my female friends starts pining over a guy I'll tell her to grow some balls, stop being such a bitch, just do it, etc., etc., see how well that goes over.

I think that's the problem right there. A lot of girls were taught by their mothers how men are just huge disrespecting pieces of shit; how they mistreat women and see them as inferior so girls grow up wanting to "put men in their place" so the problem is reversed. If now guys start treating girls like shit again we're back where we started. To be honest I never really had to deal with a "bitch" but if I did, then her actions are her own, and I maintain my dignity being the person I want to be and not the person a few women out there are trying to force men to become (again).

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#67 Posted by BeardMaster (1686 posts) -

on the sticks and caves theme, why are sociopaths now executives and captains of industry, when previously they were outcasts? Back in the day when a nurturing and loving father figure was part of surviving, it was important. Nowadays when you can hire people to do all the crap you dont want to do. Women are no longer looking for the nurturing father, they want the rich sociopath.

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#68 Posted by always_explicit (3379 posts) -

@BeardMaster said:

on the sticks and caves theme, why are sociopaths now executives and captains of industry, when previously they were outcasts? Back in the day when a nurturing and loving father figure was part of surviving, it was important. Nowadays when you can hire people to do all the crap you dont want to do. Women are no longer looking for the nurturing father, they want the rich sociopath.

I think perhaps because those individuals do display those primal alpha male instincts. They do offer the confidence and security i mentioned in my OP in abundance. They may lack nurturing behaviors but find me a woman who doesnt enjoy trying to make a flawed man perfect!!!

Woman are clearly attracted to confidence above all else. Its human nature as far as I can see. Why would a female actively seek out a introverted unsociable physically weak mate when the polar opposite is in existence? In the same way that I am more likely to seek out the variety of fairly standard characteristics that make certain women more appealing than others. Of course there are exceptions to the rule but by and large the same pattern is visible across the board.

The difference is in modern society having the biggest muscles doesnt necessarily make you top dog, sometime it can be cash and other variables as you mention in your post. I still think its largely confidence and that unknowable sexual chemistry that passes between human beings.

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#69 Posted by GazaAli (25216 posts) -

@-Blasphemy- said:

@GazaAli said:

I won't lie, I'm not great with people. I function perfectly fine one on one or one on two max. Functioning properly in a group however is a completely different story. Put it this way: if I can't give someone my undivided attention for any number of reason, including but not limited to, being in a group, not knowing that person all that well and/or the existence of a source of tension between that someone then my social skills cease to be. I don't know why I feel this way.

but anytime anyone else enters the conversation i completely shut down.

This right there. Its not that I become inept or socially awkward, but I simply lose interest and can no longer find the desire to participate and partake in whatever the subject matter of the conversation might be. Unless its a debate of some sort then the complete opposite holds: the more people participate, the more involved I get just to show them how inferior they are :3

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#70 Posted by BeardMaster (1686 posts) -

@always_explicit said:

@BeardMaster said:

on the sticks and caves theme, why are sociopaths now executives and captains of industry, when previously they were outcasts? Back in the day when a nurturing and loving father figure was part of surviving, it was important. Nowadays when you can hire people to do all the crap you dont want to do. Women are no longer looking for the nurturing father, they want the rich sociopath.

I think perhaps because those individuals do display those primal alpha male instincts. They do offer the confidence and security i mentioned in my OP in abundance. They may lack nurturing behaviors but find me a woman who doesnt enjoy trying to make a flawed man perfect!!!

Woman are clearly attracted to confidence above all else. Its human nature as far as I can see. Why would a female actively seek out a introverted unsociable physically weak mate when the polar opposite is in existence? In the same way that I am more likely to seek out the variety of fairly standard characteristics that make certain women more appealing than others. Of course there are exceptions to the rule but by and large the same pattern is visible across the board.

The difference is in modern society having the biggest muscles doesnt necessarily make you top dog, sometime it can be cash and other variables as you mention in your post. I still think its largely confidence and that unknowable sexual chemistry that passes between human beings.

traditionally males are one and done, implant the baby and ditch. Its hypothesized the reason male pattern baldness exists is because it showed to women they were more dependable mates.

So for the same reason maybe women would seek social introverts and whatever crap you say

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#71 Posted by thehig1 (6212 posts) -

@theone86 said:

@korvus said:

Yep, I agree. I've always been more comfortable around women than men. Growing up, I would never have anything to say to a group of "manly guys". It was just so frustrating having to deal with endless pissing contests and bragging tirades...on the other hand, I'd be perfectly comfortable in any group of women, who (maybe sub-consciously) would always make me the center of attention since I was the only guy there, but I have yet to just "parachute drop" into a group of women and having them receiving me with anything less than complete acceptance. And I find them so easy to talk to; most can make a pleasant conversation out of just about any topic, and they actually listen when you talk to them instead of thinking "yeah, yeah...you're having problems; shut up so I can tell you about this hot chick I banged yesterday".

Even when I would just walk up to a girl (alone or with her friends), introduce myself and 5 minutes later ask her(them) to go out for a coffee I was never rejected (no, they wouldn't automatically jump in bed with me, this is not a porn website). Even now, being married, 99% of my friends are women...

That being said, I think this shift in awkwardness is due, in big part (but not solely, obviously) to the shift in parenting. A few generations back if you were a man you'd get a pat on the back and told you had it made for the simple fact that you were born with a penis....get a job and all the girls would flock to you looking for security and stability like the mindless animals they were. The girls, on the other hand, like proper inferior beings, would be trained to be useful and skilled and maybe a guy would pick them up, despite all her flaws, and rescue her.

Thankfully things improved for women but not so much for relationships. Now the roles are a bit inverted. A lot of girls are raised to the "pussy worship" mentality; they have one, guys want one, that's all they need. Guys, on the other hand, like the mindless sex crazed inferior animals that they are, are trained to think women are this alien species who is akin to the Holy Grail and that a man's sole purpose in life is to be worthy of one, therefore everything he does should be to court a female from a distance, and under peril of death, approach the deadly predator. If she doesn't eat his head, he might actually get to take her out for coffee.

A few years back, I used to have lunch at a sandwich place and since it was close to a school there were always some kids having lunch with their parents. There were these 2 kids in particular, a boy with his father and a girl with his mother. They were probably around 8/9yo and the boy was completely in love with the girl (who never even noticed him). I'd see him stealing glances at her every time they met there. One day (after months) apparently his father encouraged him to go talk to her. He (the father) had a bouquet of flowers with him and took one out, gave it to the kid and told him to go give it to the girl. So the boy stands up, all shaky and sweaty, shyly walks over to the girl, introduces himself very formally and offers her the rose. It was really sweet and half the place was in a sort of mute "awww". The girl grabs the rose, looks at him like he had just lifted her skirt, throws the rose to the floor and says really loudly (obviously for spectacle sake) "Why would I want anything from YOU? Just because I'm a girl, it doesn't mean I have to deal with this shit!". Me, the boy's father, pretty much all the guys and some of the women were like "Holy shit...did that just happen?" while the girl's mother and the rest of the women were cheering for the girl...some even clapped! How is that sort of reaction even remotely acceptable? The little boy was so ashamed they never ate at that place again.

Nothing will improve with role reversal; we need role equality. I don't think any parent should foster the superior/inferior view upon others, regardless of gender. There is no reason to raise your kid not to be kind, accepting, generous, polite and with a sense of self-improvement. If parents decide how to raise their children based on what's between their kids' legs, no wonder kids become obsessed with it. And then we end up with OT threads about how to talk to girls like you need to learn a second language in order to approach one...

See, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Asking a girl out can turn into such a big deal so quickly. If you misread the situation and she's not into you then it can just turn into this s***storm that makes you want move to a different country and buy a new identity on the black market. And frankly, why are we only asking this question of men? I think next time one of my female friends starts pining over a guy I'll tell her to grow some balls, stop being such a bitch, just do it, etc., etc., see how well that goes over.

Asking a girl out does not have to be so awkward, most girls (unless there a heartless bitch) will either say yes out of pressure and maybe the fact you've asked then the confidence may attract them.

However if you get a no turn the conversation round jokingly and say something like "aaw you just my heart...well offers there if change your mind, ill ask again tomorrow ;)"

I did this with a girl when I was 18 and on my 4th try I got a date, got a few more dates and 12 month relationship before we broke up.

Even though I'm socially awkward asking girls out is not so hard once you do it a few times.

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#72 Edited by one_plum (6503 posts) -

I think a cause of this is how gender roles have changed, but gender expectations have not.

In previous generations, women were confined in the home. So, as long as the man had a job, he probably made more money than the woman. In more recent times, women's income are on par or the same with men. It's much more equal now.

But I believe what women look for in a man hasn't changed that much. The norm for many women is still to find a strong and confident man who makes more money than her. So, because women make more money now than before, I believe women's standards may be higher now than in previous generations.

Alternatively, women nowadays are more confident and independent than ever, and I think that intimidate men who are ingrained with the traditional thinking that they must provide for and protect the woman... the woman may be doing a better job at that than the man can.

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#73 Edited by always_explicit (3379 posts) -

@one_plum said:

I think a cause of this is how gender roles have changed, but gender expectations have not.

In previous generations, women were confined in the home. So, as long as the man had a job, he probably made more money than the woman. In more recent times, women's income are on par or the same with men. It's much more equal now.

But I believe what women look for in a man hasn't changed that much. The norm for many women is still to find a strong and confident man who makes more money than her. So, because women make more money now than before, I believe women's standards may be higher now than in previous generations.

Alternatively, women nowadays are more confident and independent than ever, and I think that intimidate men who are ingrained with the traditional thinking that they must provide for and protect the woman... the woman may be doing a better job at that than the man can.

I can see some sense in this. Technically speaking although our salaries are similar my girlfriend does earn more than me. It could influence gender roles a great deal with couples who have been together for a while or those older couples. I dont know if it explains why guys in their late teens and early twenties find it so hard though. Perhaps its precisely because they dont yet have a gender role or know quite where they "fit" in society?

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#74 Posted by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@korvus said:

@theone86 said:

See, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Asking a girl out can turn into such a big deal so quickly. If you misread the situation and she's not into you then it can just turn into this s***storm that makes you want move to a different country and buy a new identity on the black market. And frankly, why are we only asking this question of men? I think next time one of my female friends starts pining over a guy I'll tell her to grow some balls, stop being such a bitch, just do it, etc., etc., see how well that goes over.

I think that's the problem right there. A lot of girls were taught by their mothers how men are just huge disrespecting pieces of shit; how they mistreat women and see them as inferior so girls grow up wanting to "put men in their place" so the problem is reversed. If now guys start treating girls like shit again we're back where we started. To be honest I never really had to deal with a "bitch" but if I did, then her actions are her own, and I maintain my dignity being the person I want to be and not the person a few women out there are trying to force men to become (again).

I was using "bitch" more in the sense that you would use it when talking to a male (as in indicative of cowardice), funny how that changes just based on whom you're addressing.

Anyway, I don't think it's necessarily that most women are manhaters (though that's certainly true in some instances). I think, rather, that they simply don't know how to deal with being the one making the first moves. Now they're dealing with all the nervousness associated with it and they have a hard time coping with it, only they can fall back on the traditional role and just wait until some guy makes advances towards them if it gets too frustrating for them. As for why they lash out at men, a lot of it can be explained by this, they're venting their own frustrations in a poor manner. Part of it too, though, is that there are all these tacit expectations and rules that men simply aren't privy to. There's no rulebook for when a friend is just a friend and can only ever be a friend (and will probably freak out at you if you ever suggest anything more), and when it's okay to make an advance on a friend. If women want to maintain these rules that's fine, if they want to maintain the secrecy surrounding them that's fine too, but if men are constantly at risk of committing a faux pas without knowing it then one thing that would help clear things up would be if women were the initiators more often.

@always_explicit: And how does one observe confidence from the outside? I'm a confident person, but I'm not outgoing and I certainly am not overly social. That seems to be the definition of confidence you're using, someone who is outwardly very expressive and sociable, in which case I have a problem with your argument on two levels. One, you're saying that people who aren't that way are simply destined to be lonely for life, that we as a society should just accept that these people are somehow inferior and should be ignored romantically, which is frankly just cruel. Some people just don't operate that way. The main biological factor in introversion/extroversion is the amygdala, which handles information processing. Basically extroverts can handle a lot of sensory information all at once which makes them great in social situations such as mingling at parties. Introverts can't handle such sensory information, in fact being in such situations can often cause physical discomfort for them. I don't think it's fair to say that those people have some flaw simply because they process information differently.

Secondly, you're simply wrong when you say that women are only attracted to extroverted males. I know plenty of women who constantly describe introverts when describing their ideal male, the problem is that they don't know how to talk to them. They constantly go for the extroverted male (probably because it's easier and they don't feel as insecure when it's the man who's making advances and not the other way around), and they're constantly complaining about their relationships. There's a difference between having a base attraction and really being attracted to a certain type. I'll grant that most women probably have some base attraction to extroverted, alpha personality males (like you said, due to our species' history), but a lot of them aren't really attracted to this type. They may swoon for them at the bar, but when they actually start dating them they don't feel fulfilled.

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#75 Edited by ChristianGmr14 (157 posts) -

Attracting women is easy, just be confident and be yourself and talk to them. You also have to love yourself first before anyone can love you back. Trust me, a relationship will NOT always make you happy, sometimes it's better to be single than to be in a relationship with a bad person. If you find it hard to be confident then just start faking it until it becomes true, tell yourself "I'm great", women like men who make them feel comfortable, sometimes they are nervous too they just express it differently.

So here's what you do, get some confidence, feel good about yourself, go out, talk to women. It doesn't have to be anything serious, just be casual, some will like you, some won't, some will want to take you home, some will want to be in a relationship with you (these are the one's you want). You can also do networking, every girl has a single friend who is also a girl, become friends with them and have them introduce you.

Bottom Line-You are your own worst enemy in this. And it's okay to feel a little nervous, but don't let it stop you from being a great person and meeting people.

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#76 Edited by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@thehig1:

I think if I asked out most women I know four times in a row I'd be labelled a stalker, maybe even turned over to campus police. It's not a matter of getting a feel for it (at least not for me). I've been there and done that, it just seems like there's so much more stigma involved nowadays. When I was younger I'd ask girls out, they'd say no, and that would be the end of it, we could just go on like we did before. Now when I ask them out and they say no it's such a big deal. I get accused of not valuing friendship, of only caring about sex, of having sex entitlement, of ruining friendships, etc., etc. I can deal with being rejected, I'm not going to deal with that sort of BS.

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#77 Posted by korvus (10713 posts) -

@theone86 said:

Part of it too, though, is that there are all these tacit expectations and rules that men simply aren't privy to. There's no rulebook for when a friend is just a friend and can only ever be a friend (and will probably freak out at you if you ever suggest anything more), and when it's okay to make an advance on a friend. If women want to maintain these rules that's fine, if they want to maintain the secrecy surrounding them that's fine too, but if men are constantly at risk of committing a faux pas without knowing it then one thing that would help clear things up would be if women were the initiators more often.

Guess we have very different experiences. I don't think I have ever seen/heard of anyone being in trouble because they made a move on a girl who only saw the guy as a friend. I hadn't even heard of the "friendzone" and other ridiculous things until I started frequenting US based forums. To me, the only rule that ever existed when trying to be more than a friend to a girl was "Do it with respect and don't put her against the wall" (as in asking her in public in the middle of all her friends and putting her in an uncomfortable situation)

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#78 Posted by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@korvus: Yeah, I've never asked anyone out in front of other people. Like I said to the other guy, I never remember it being this way when I was younger, it's only ever happened to me as a college student who's slightly older than most other students.

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#79 Posted by speedfreak48t5p (12684 posts) -

Just started online dating and am actually talking to someone for the first time. See where it goes. :)

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#80 Edited by comp_atkins (34387 posts) -

@Storm_Marine said:

You can't always just rationalize your way out of social anxiety and low self esteem.

sure you can. the answer is simple: don't have social anxiety and low self esteem!

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#81 Edited by tocool340 (21135 posts) -

My experience with women is what cause my problems with them. I was quite the ladies man in middle school, I had so many girlfriends. Then in came my high school years that sported a different breed of girls which changed everything. I had 3 "serious" relationship in High School, 2 with childish ghetto "turn a ant of an issue into a whale of a problem" bitchy type girls and one who was semi ghetto but far less bitchy. First two ended with me getting jumped by their family/friends on some he say, she say "I'll trust whatever they say over whatever you say" mickey mouse bullshit and the last one ended with us going our separate ways after high school (I really wish I didn't let her get away). Nothing improved after High School though as most of the women I tried socializing with (I'd usually start conversations like "Hey! How are you doing?", followed by complimenting their appearance) take things way too seriously and once again turn small issue into a major problem (example, I told one girl that I liked how the color of her makeup coordinates with the color of her clothes and that she looked nice. For whatever reason, she thought I was being sarcastic and attempted to embarrass me in front of a bunch of people). After a while of trying, I just threw my hands up and said **** it. I decided to raise my standards up really high and minimize my interaction with them as much as possible. I'll still talk with one if they strike up a conversation, but I definitely don't drag it out. And since its been 5 years since I really attempted to have a long meaningful conversation with a girl, I now have a problem of really sustaining a conversation women, or hell, people in general. I've been trying to improve, but it ain't really happening. My inability to care or see a reason to REALLY put effort into socializing is preventing me from getting any progress....

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#82 Posted by Master_Live (18817 posts) -

Shut up. I'm writing my manifesto.

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#83 Posted by always_explicit (3379 posts) -

@theone86 said:

@korvus said:

@theone86 said:

See, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Asking a girl out can turn into such a big deal so quickly. If you misread the situation and she's not into you then it can just turn into this s***storm that makes you want move to a different country and buy a new identity on the black market. And frankly, why are we only asking this question of men? I think next time one of my female friends starts pining over a guy I'll tell her to grow some balls, stop being such a bitch, just do it, etc., etc., see how well that goes over.

I think that's the problem right there. A lot of girls were taught by their mothers how men are just huge disrespecting pieces of shit; how they mistreat women and see them as inferior so girls grow up wanting to "put men in their place" so the problem is reversed. If now guys start treating girls like shit again we're back where we started. To be honest I never really had to deal with a "bitch" but if I did, then her actions are her own, and I maintain my dignity being the person I want to be and not the person a few women out there are trying to force men to become (again).

I was using "bitch" more in the sense that you would use it when talking to a male (as in indicative of cowardice), funny how that changes just based on whom you're addressing.

Anyway, I don't think it's necessarily that most women are manhaters (though that's certainly true in some instances). I think, rather, that they simply don't know how to deal with being the one making the first moves. Now they're dealing with all the nervousness associated with it and they have a hard time coping with it, only they can fall back on the traditional role and just wait until some guy makes advances towards them if it gets too frustrating for them. As for why they lash out at men, a lot of it can be explained by this, they're venting their own frustrations in a poor manner. Part of it too, though, is that there are all these tacit expectations and rules that men simply aren't privy to. There's no rulebook for when a friend is just a friend and can only ever be a friend (and will probably freak out at you if you ever suggest anything more), and when it's okay to make an advance on a friend. If women want to maintain these rules that's fine, if they want to maintain the secrecy surrounding them that's fine too, but if men are constantly at risk of committing a faux pas without knowing it then one thing that would help clear things up would be if women were the initiators more often.

@always_explicit: And how does one observe confidence from the outside? I'm a confident person, but I'm not outgoing and I certainly am not overly social. That seems to be the definition of confidence you're using, someone who is outwardly very expressive and sociable, in which case I have a problem with your argument on two levels. One, you're saying that people who aren't that way are simply destined to be lonely for life, that we as a society should just accept that these people are somehow inferior and should be ignored romantically, which is frankly just cruel. Some people just don't operate that way. The main biological factor in introversion/extroversion is the amygdala, which handles information processing. Basically extroverts can handle a lot of sensory information all at once which makes them great in social situations such as mingling at parties. Introverts can't handle such sensory information, in fact being in such situations can often cause physical discomfort for them. I don't think it's fair to say that those people have some flaw simply because they process information differently.

Secondly, you're simply wrong when you say that women are only attracted to extroverted males. I know plenty of women who constantly describe introverts when describing their ideal male, the problem is that they don't know how to talk to them. They constantly go for the extroverted male (probably because it's easier and they don't feel as insecure when it's the man who's making advances and not the other way around), and they're constantly complaining about their relationships. There's a difference between having a base attraction and really being attracted to a certain type. I'll grant that most women probably have some base attraction to extroverted, alpha personality males (like you said, due to our species' history), but a lot of them aren't really attracted to this type. They may swoon for them at the bar, but when they actually start dating them they don't feel fulfilled.

I never said introverted people deserve to be alone, I also never said confidence was displayed exclusively through being sociable, although granted my examples probably point to this. I dont take issue with those who lack confidence or those who are introverted, each to their own, but my topic was really about those people who create threads, youtube videos etc. drawing attention to their lonliness and lack of ability to gain positive female attention. My argument is simply that the confidence to talk to actually talk to women and the irradication of this self pity that comes with it is only going to lead to positive results regardless of your personality type. I also never said women are ONLY attracted to extroverted males I am aware that thats simply not possible because its perfectly possible to find security and confidence in an introverted male. Howeve women are more likely to find about about these qualities in an extroverted male because they have the ability to socialise and be forthcoming, whereas introverts are more self reflective.

I dont take to issue with guys having different personalities, but people do go around totally shy, insecure and filled with self pity due to their poor success with women, despite having never made any affort whatsoever to talk to them. Girls dont just drop from the sky ready to worship us....we actually need to talk tot hem and not be afraid of our own shadows in the process. Not that much has changed. The laws of attraction are much the same as ever. That was my point.

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#84 Posted by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@always_explicit: Thanks for clearing some of that up. I still have a few issues.

One is that, when we're talking about men making these videos and such, it's reflective of a larger issue for men in this society, which is that men really don't have much of an emotional support system to vent their issues. If a woman gets dumped or rejected most of the time she'll go to her friends and they'll say how much of a jerk the guy is, how she's awesome, how she doesn't need him, etc. Right or wrong, this gives her support and helps her to cope. If a man gets dumped or rejected then one of two things happens (or both), him and his friends go out for a drink and avoid talking about it or he's told to grow a set of balls. When men make these sorts of videos I think that they're, at least in part, trying to find the sort of emotional support that is commonplace for a lot of women. The end result of that would also probably be increased confidence, exactly what your end goal is, but giving supportive advice would probably be more effective. You don't think these guys have heard what you've had to say before? Do you think that after hearing the same thing for the hundredth or thousandth time something will suddenly change with them? The problem is that a lot of these males simply don't respond well to your sort of advice. Maybe confidence is the problem, but continually admonishing them to be more confident when they don't know how in the first place isn't going to do a whole lot of good.

It's not that introverts don't have the ability to socialize or that they're necessarily more reflective. Extroverts thrive on extreme stimulation whereas introverts process sensory information more slowly and receive less biochemical stimulation. This pre-disposes them to reflection, but doesn't necessarily cause them to be reflective. Also, because they receive less stimulation doesn't mean they don't receive any stimulation. I think one of the most harmful misconceptions about introverts is that they don't need any social stimulation. Every human needs social interaction, we're social animals, and it's not even that introverts necessarily need less. It's that introverts can't handle the sensory overload of highly charged social situations, such as a crowded party. They simply aren't wired to go around a crowded room and make conversation, they're more comfortable in a less crowded room making conversation within small groups or even just one-to-one. They may even have more of a necessity for socialization in a relationship than extroverts. Whereas extroverts thrive on socializing within large groups, introverts thrive on the more intimate socialization that's typical of interactions between partners.

Some people are just better at striking up conversations, that doesn't make people who aren't shy or self-conscious. It has nothing to do with women dropping out of the sky or worshiping males, it has to do with stopping this ridiculous BS that males are supposed to go out and get women, women are supposed to fall for the first alpha male that takes an interest in them, and these rules are simply carved into stone. If a woman is attracted to a man then why shouldn't she make the first move? I'm not saying it has to be like that every time, but this idea that it always has to be the man is simply outdated.

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#85 Edited by bforrester420 (3480 posts) -

This is the internet, in general, and a gaming website in particular, so it's bound to be populated by a number of socially awkward, teenage boys that haven't seen a vagina in 3 dimensions.

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#86 Posted by always_explicit (3379 posts) -

@theone86 said:

@always_explicit: Thanks for clearing some of that up. I still have a few issues.

One is that, when we're talking about men making these videos and such, it's reflective of a larger issue for men in this society, which is that men really don't have much of an emotional support system to vent their issues. If a woman gets dumped or rejected most of the time she'll go to her friends and they'll say how much of a jerk the guy is, how she's awesome, how she doesn't need him, etc. Right or wrong, this gives her support and helps her to cope. If a man gets dumped or rejected then one of two things happens (or both), him and his friends go out for a drink and avoid talking about it or he's told to grow a set of balls. When men make these sorts of videos I think that they're, at least in part, trying to find the sort of emotional support that is commonplace for a lot of women. The end result of that would also probably be increased confidence, exactly what your end goal is, but giving supportive advice would probably be more effective. You don't think these guys have heard what you've had to say before? Do you think that after hearing the same thing for the hundredth or thousandth time something will suddenly change with them? The problem is that a lot of these males simply don't respond well to your sort of advice. Maybe confidence is the problem, but continually admonishing them to be more confident when they don't know how in the first place isn't going to do a whole lot of good.

It's not that introverts don't have the ability to socialize or that they're necessarily more reflective. Extroverts thrive on extreme stimulation whereas introverts process sensory information more slowly and receive less biochemical stimulation. This pre-disposes them to reflection, but doesn't necessarily cause them to be reflective. Also, because they receive less stimulation doesn't mean they don't receive any stimulation. I think one of the most harmful misconceptions about introverts is that they don't need any social stimulation. Every human needs social interaction, we're social animals, and it's not even that introverts necessarily need less. It's that introverts can't handle the sensory overload of highly charged social situations, such as a crowded party. They simply aren't wired to go around a crowded room and make conversation, they're more comfortable in a less crowded room making conversation within small groups or even just one-to-one. They may even have more of a necessity for socialization in a relationship than extroverts. Whereas extroverts thrive on socializing within large groups, introverts thrive on the more intimate socialization that's typical of interactions between partners.

Some people are just better at striking up conversations, that doesn't make people who aren't shy or self-conscious. It has nothing to do with women dropping out of the sky or worshiping males, it has to do with stopping this ridiculous BS that males are supposed to go out and get women, women are supposed to fall for the first alpha male that takes an interest in them, and these rules are simply carved into stone. If a woman is attracted to a man then why shouldn't she make the first move? I'm not saying it has to be like that every time, but this idea that it always has to be the man is simply outdated.

I really enjoyed reading that post. I just struggle...not with the issue you raised, those make perfect sense and were really well put across. However....whats the solution? if these threads and forum posts are individuals seeking a support network then how best do you support them?

I am very much in the "kick up the ass should do it" camp, and im aware its not always the best tact. I can offer advice and tips until I am blue in the face but until these people actually act there is very little foward momentum.

I read Eliot Rodgers Manifesto....and you can see the hatred of sex and sexuality rising increasingly as the years pass...he speaks frequently of a number of instances whereby women have no approached him and have ignored him. Yet I also noticed after reading it,,,,not once in the 20 something years he was alive did he even try to approach a women. The expectation was entirely unrealistic as its perfectly possible to be ignored by women and men alike if people are not willing to "put themselves out there". Its an extreme case, and such extreme cases are usually bad examples when trying to make any sort of point, but it would be great to find some sort of solution.

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#87 Posted by xdude85 (6330 posts) -

Girls have cooties, that's why I stay away from them.

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#88 Posted by korvus (10713 posts) -
@theone86 said:

Some people are just better at striking up conversations, that doesn't make people who aren't shy or self-conscious. It has nothing to do with women dropping out of the sky or worshiping males, it has to do with stopping this ridiculous BS that males are supposed to go out and get women, women are supposed to fall for the first alpha male that takes an interest in them, and these rules are simply carved into stone. If a woman is attracted to a man then why shouldn't she make the first move? I'm not saying it has to be like that every time, but this idea that it always has to be the man is simply outdated.

I don't think anybody said that, but you have to admit that no matter how weak and uninteresting the "alpha male" might be, he still has a better chance with the girl than the guy skulking in the shadows stealing glances at the girl that may or may not know the guy exists, and that has never approached her.

"If a woman is attracted to a man then why shouldn't she make the first move?" Totally agree, and they do...but not many girls think "Hey, there's that guy that keeps staring at me but looks away when I get close. Let me go and ask him out". If the guy is so afraid to even have a conversation with a girl, how is she supposed to feel attracted to him?

Do keep in mind that I'm talking about extreme situations; you don't have to jump in the middle of a group and start asking every girl's phone number in order to be noticed, but there is a necessary degree of normal socialization in order for you not to be "the weird guy in the corner".

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#89 Edited by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@korvus: We're talking about different degrees and perceptions. I can only speak from my experience, which has generally been pretty negative in this regard. I've been told on a couple of occasions that I "don't talk," and by the way don't ever say that to anyone even if it's true, it's not fun to hear. What really bothered me, however, was that it wasn't true. On one occasion the person telling me this was a close friend that I spoke with on a pretty regular basis. I think the reason she said it was because there are certain days and times when I'm not very talkative. Another time it was someone in the group I ate with in the dining halls who tends to dominate the conversations, which bothered me because I actually do talk with people who are able to converse. Anyway, the point is that I don't think these perceptions about the guy in the corner who never talks to anybody are always valid. It's been my experience that a lot of people are unfairly pegged as anti-social just because they're no the most outgoing.

As to women approaching men, I'm not even necessarily talking about anything with romantic intentions. If a guy seems interesting then go talk to him, maybe she'll end up having zero interest in him whatsoever. I've been in plenty of situations where there was some interest on one side, but as soon as that person got to know the other person they realized they had nothing in common. Why does everyone act as if striking up a conversation is basically an invitation to sex? And if it were just a matter of outgoing men being more attractive I would agree with you, but in my experience it's not. To me it's more like a woman in a skimpy outfit. Sure, most men are going to have some sort of immediate attraction to her, but that doesn't mean that once they start talking to her they're actually going to like her. I hear women complain all the time that they can't find a man who listens to them, I hear them describing their ideal male as basically your classic introvert, I've even seen them admit to liking an introvert, yet go to the bars on weekends and flirt with the most extroverted guys even though they were carrying a torch for this other guy. I just don't think this should solely fall on men, if women have an interest in someone then they should have just as much reason to take initiative as men. That's not the message that comes across in our society, though. The message that comes across is that if you're a man you make the first move because she's not going to do it, and if you're a woman you don't make the first move even if you're attracted to someone because some guy is going to make a move on you at some point anyway.

Sort of a postscript, one of the hardest parts about being an introvert, and in my case one who tends towards the less socially inclined end of the spectrum, is when people take silence to indicate disinterest in socialization. There are just some days and times when I would prefer to be left alone completely, but that tends to get interpreted as hostility. When I do socialize I like very small groups and calm settings, that tends to get interpreted as me avoiding the specific people in a certain social setting like a crowded bar rather than the bar itself. I understand that these things are interpreted in certain ways, but that doesn't mean that they should be. Just because I don't strike up a conversation at a bar with a woman in a large group doesn't mean I'm not interested or I'm afraid of her. Being someone who acted like an extrovert for a very long time, I understand the thought process. On more than one occasion I've taken a quieter disposition to indicate disinterest and I've also lost interest in someone because they seemed overly shy. Looking back on it, though, I realize both how unfair it was to them and how much of a missed opportunity it was for me. I don't think it had much of anything to do with attraction, it was just a personal hangup that I should have been able to get over but didn't. I'm not saying that it's the same for everybody, but I wonder how many women might be surprised if they just tried to look past perceived shyness.

@always_explicit: Well, I think one way is to not make these individuals feel ashamed to both ask for support and to offer it. Part of the problem is that men who need reinforcement don't know how to find it, but another part is that men who could potentially offer support risk being ostracized or feel like that's just not what men do. Men like you may simply not be able to help a specific individual directly because of the difference in experiences (or maybe you can, who knows). The big problem, as I see, it, is the male ideal and how it's continually reinforced. There's nothing wrong with being who you are, but it isn't right to act as if that's the only way to "be a man." Being told that you're not really a man simply for acting in a way that's comfortable to you can be pretty discouraging. Just recognize that people act differently and try to treat those people with friendliness and respect.

Kick in the ass works for you, it doesn't work for everyone. It's hard because maybe there are some people who would respond well to that, but you wouldn't know it by looking. Then at the same time if you just take that approach with everyone it may put some people off. My best advice with friends would be to think about your group composition. If there's one introvert in a group of extroverts then trying to give him a kick in the ass is probably going to make him feel very isolated. If there's someone else he feels comfortable talking to then it may not be such a big deal. With people on the internet, more often than not they're going to be in the former camp. If they had someone to talk to they probably wouldn't be posting online. If you feel compelled to say anything to them I'd say to recommend counseling, since you really have no idea of what's going on in their lives.

Eliot Rodgers shouldn't be seen as representative of introverts. He clearly had mental issues beyond his problems with women. I wouldn't completely dismiss them as a contributing factor, it clearly affected his actions, but there's a difference between an introverted or shy person being rejected and complaining about it and a mentally unstable person being rejected and killing people instead of seeking out help. I'll just say this at the outset, I hate the phrase "sex entitlement." Rodgers is an extreme example, and even in his case I think the phrase misses the mark. Here's what I'll say about the social side of his situation. American colleges can be extremely alienating places for introverts. You'd think it would be an ideal place for them (remember, though, they're not necessarily reflective and not every reflective individual is introverted), but so much of the social atmosphere revolves around "busting out of your shell," which, to introverts, a lot of times sounds like being someone you're not. It can mean being in situations where you're not comfortable (like parties) and putting forward a persona that doesn't really fit you in order to fit in. I imagine Rodgers considering some of these situations and being uncomfortable to the point of experiencing physical discomfort. I know the last time I was at a crowded bar I actually started to feel claustrophobic. This is part of why I dislike hearing about sex entitlement, because I don't think it's completely, and in a lot of cases primarily about sex. Some people at college can't function in these highly social environments, but if that's where everyone goes on the weekends then that's the primary place to meet people. If you avoid those places you reduce your chance of meeting new people and, by extension, your chance of having sex. Also, if you're more of a wallflower, you may actually go to those places and spend the whole night sitting in a corner without anyone attempting to talk to you, which also doesn't feel too good. Add to that the fact that foreigners generally feel a bit more out of place at American colleges. Most European societies, actually, hold to the extrovert ideal, though it's more pronounced in the U.S. Asian societies tend to hold to the introvert ideal, which makes Asian students more likely to feel out of place. All this is to say that, while it probably wasn't as markedly different from the environment he was used to in England as it was from a country such as Japan, the social isolation was probably a bit more pronounced.

Now, like I said, most introverts are not going to spend a night sitting at the end of a bar and then go out on a killing spree because no one approached them. I don't think Rodgers' social issues caused him to go out and kill, what, twenty people, and I don't think anyone can say that had his social situation been ideal he wouldn't have still snapped (the NIU shooter, if I recall correctly, seemed to be in a pretty good social situation). Isolation, however, is probably only going to exacerbate whatever problems a given individual has. At the very least, if someone has close friends then they're more likely to see warning signs and try to do something.

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#90 Edited by korvus (10713 posts) -

@theone86: I agree with everything you said; women should take initiative if they want to and of course not all social interactions need to be driven by a sexual motive, but I was aiming my post at your average "I want a girlfriend but they never come talk to me..." guy. If you want something, then you should be the one working to achieve it,. not waiting for it to come to you. If a guy is fine with the amount of friends they have and is not actively wanting a companion then by all means, feel free to not pursue other relationships, but I really hate hearing them complaining that women don't choose them and act like it's an inevitability in life. It's like not wanting to work and complaining that people who work make all the money...yeah, you might find a prized lottery ticket on the floor and become rich, but is that really what you want to spend your life aiming for?

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#91 Posted by deactivated-58061ea11c905 (999 posts) -

The problem is that women never want to talk to a guy if you are ugly or just an unattractive guy.

And so far all my crushes rejected me just because I'm ugly. I know I'm ugly because if I wasn't ugly then I'm quite certain that beautiful women would have come talk to me.

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#92 Posted by jasean79 (2593 posts) -

@pariah3 said:

The problem is that women never want to talk to a guy if you are ugly or just an unattractive guy.

And so far all my crushes rejected me just because I'm ugly. I know I'm ugly because if I wasn't ugly then I'm quite certain that beautiful women would have come talk to me.

It has nothing to do with your looks....it has everything to do with your lack of self-confidence. You're a "pariah" by choice, my man.

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#93 Posted by HoolaHoopMan (9403 posts) -

@pariah3 said:

The problem is that women never want to talk to a guy if you are ugly or just an unattractive guy.

And so far all my crushes rejected me just because I'm ugly. I know I'm ugly because if I wasn't ugly then I'm quite certain that beautiful women would have come talk to me.

Go for an ugly chick then.

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#94 Posted by deactivated-58061ea11c905 (999 posts) -

@HoolaHoopMan

Go for an ugly chick then.

But your missing my point. I don't want to go for an ugly chick because I'm just not attracted to ugly chicks.

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#95 Posted by The_Last_Ride (76371 posts) -

I think it's because women don't go for introverts, at least from what i've met. I have absolutely no problem talking to women, but it seems at my age at least that they are going after what you might call bad boys

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#96 Posted by HoolaHoopMan (9403 posts) -

@pariah3 said:

@HoolaHoopMan

Go for an ugly chick then.

But your missing my point. I don't want to go for an ugly chick because I'm just not attracted to ugly chicks.

Then why should women have to settle for ugly men like yourself if you don't have to settle for ugly women?

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#97 Edited by deactivated-58061ea11c905 (999 posts) -

@HoolaHoopMan said:

Then why should women have to settle for ugly men like yourself if you don't have to settle for ugly women?

If beautiful people really settled for ugly people then the world would have been a better place. But the fact is that it isn't happening in the real world.

And because of that ugly people always have to settle for each other because beautiful people don't want to.

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#98 Posted by Master_Live (18817 posts) -

@pariah3 said:

@HoolaHoopMan said:

Then why should women have to settle for ugly men like yourself if you don't have to settle for ugly women?

If beautiful people really settled for ugly people then the world would have been a better place.

wut

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#99 Posted by HoolaHoopMan (9403 posts) -

@pariah3 said:

@HoolaHoopMan said:

Then why should women have to settle for ugly men like yourself if you don't have to settle for ugly women?

If beautiful people really settled for ugly people then the world would have been a better place. But the fact is that it isn't happening in the real world.

And because of that ugly people always have to settle for each other because beautiful people don't want to.

So you don't want to date ugly women and yet despise women who don't want to date ugly men (you being one of them). This is even ignoring the fact that odd couples can and do exist all over the place. Its the essence of hypocrisy.

So your options seem to be:

1) Date someone in your league

2) Gets lots of money to date of of your league.

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#100 Posted by theone86 (20808 posts) -

@korvus said:

@theone86: I agree with everything you said; women should take initiative if they want to and of course not all social interactions need to be driven by a sexual motive, but I was aiming my post at your average "I want a girlfriend but they never come talk to me..." guy. If you want something, then you should be the one working to achieve it,. not waiting for it to come to you. If a guy is fine with the amount of friends they have and is not actively wanting a companion then by all means, feel free to not pursue other relationships, but I really hate hearing them complaining that women don't choose them and act like it's an inevitability in life. It's like not wanting to work and complaining that people who work make all the money...yeah, you might find a prized lottery ticket on the floor and become rich, but is that really what you want to spend your life aiming for?

But I mean, there's part of the problem, is in our society we spend so much time encouraging men to take initiative, yet with women it's sort of like eh, if it strikes your fancy try it out (and frankly, in my experience, a lot of women still see it as taboo, as if it's somehow a measure of desperation for them). I'm not saying men should just wait around for a woman to fall into their lap, but that's exactly what we expect from women. I'm really not fond of this double standard, and I think a lot of the rhetoric of just taking initiative supports it.

As for working, I don't think that's a good comparison. I mean, if women want to keep up this dynamic where they're an object to be obtained and men have to put on false pretenses to obtain them then fine, but I don't think that works out well for either side. Besides, working is usually something that you gain some satisfaction from or are at least comfortable doing. For an introvert, going to a crowded bar, approaching a lot of new people, and being gregarious simply isn't comfortable. I'm not saying women at a bar like that have to jump into bed with the guy in the corner, but if everybody is going to treat that guy like the plague then you're basically forcing him to make a choice between acting extremely out of character or just spending his time alone. I think that's even worse because there are probably a lot of women in those scenarios who would probably rather have an intimate conversation in the corner of a bar than be a part of a large group, but because there's a stigma against it won't approach him. I think what I'm really taking issue with is this idea that people who are more quiet and subdued should just be left alone, not just by women but by everybody, until they learn to be outgoing and gregarious, or in other words until they learn to not act like themselves.