For Those Who Can't Find Love: Letting Go of Shame

For Those Who Can't Find Love: Letting Go of Shame

Life is full of goals: get good grades, get a good job, save money, learn a skill. Perhaps, no other goal is as ubiquitous and powerful as the desire to fall in love. For one thing, it leads to a lot of other goals: get married, start a family, etc. And for another, from the time of our first memories, we are inundated with stories of romance, love and companionship. It is hard to find media that doesn’t include an element of romance in some way. It is as close a thing as you can get to a need, without it actually being a need. We are all taught to expect it, to work hard for it and to believe in it with more heat than the sun.

In the lyrics of singer-songwriter Jack Johnson: “Love is the answer, at least for most of the questions in my heart/Like, ‘why are we here?’ and ‘where do we go’ and ‘how come it’s so hard?’”

Nevertheless, no matter how much we try, some of us will never find love. A very small number of us never really had a chance to start. Since the need to find love is such a consistent social message, people who are unable to do so tend to feel a deep sense of shame, even if it is through no fault of their own. I wanted to write this MyTake for those people. You aren’t alone, you aren’t broken and you aren’t a bad person.

Unfortunately, while I was writing this, I realized I don’t really know many women who are in this situation. I know there are some, but for reasons I’m about to explain, there just aren’t going to be as many at this point in time. This take will mostly be targeted at men, because I don’t know what causes those women to be single. If something in the take helps you too, then I’m very glad, and I’m sorry I couldn’t relate better to you on this. This MyTake will also be wrote with a Western-centric mind-set. Primarily, I’m referring to the dating situation and romantic customs in the United States.

So without further adieu, I wanted to say this isn’t your fault because…

1) There aren’t as many available straight women as there are straight men.

For Those Who Can't Find Love: Letting Go of Shame

It has always been an assumption in our society that for every woman born, there is a man born. This isn’t true. It’s unclear why this is. The widely held assumption is that more male fetuses die during pregnancy. In fact, some studies have suggested that for every five female fetuses conceived, there are six male fetuses conceived; however, male fetuses are much more likely to miscarry. However, other theorists have said the opposite: the conception rate is 50/50 and females are more likely to miscarry. Even so, there are still more male babies born than girls. Somewhere between 51-52% of babies born in the US are male; about 106 males for every 100 females.

Now, back in the old days… the REAL old days, this wasn’t a problem. Males are more likely to succumb to infant diseases like whooping cough, have weaker immune systems, take more life-threatening risks, are subjected to more violence and are just generally more likely to die at every stage of life. By the time, men were ready to have kids, about a third of them were dead, and there were actually slightly MORE females in your average hunter gatherer society. Nowadays, through the wonders of modern medicine, most men survive to adulthood. Still, 106 to 100 isn’t THAT big of a discrepancy, but it gets even more skewed.

About 3-5% of men are openly gay; whereas, about 6-8% of women are. This increases the gap between straight men and straight women. Then add in the fact that there are men who have multiple partners. One man who has three partners (main girl, side-chick and a baby momma for example) is guaranteeing that at least two other men will have none. It’s not incredibly common, albeit, probably more common than you think, especially among my socioeconomic class. Also, many women stop dating men for various reasons: they want to pursue their career, they had a bad experience or they are a single mother who wants to focus on raising their children. There are a lot more women who call it quits on dating altogether, than there are men.

So mathematically, it’s just not POSSIBLE for every man to find someone unfortunately. It doesn’t make you a bad person for not being able to find someone.

2) Nice guys REALLY DO finish last… or not at all.

For Those Who Can't Find Love: Letting Go of Shame

I don’t think there are many people who would argue with me if I were to say that American Culture is individualistic, superficial, selfish, obsessed with instant gratification and somewhat nihilist/amoral/apathetic. So it follows that the average American citizen exhibits more of these qualities than they don’t. Everything here is about the self: “self-care”, “self-love”, “self-praise.” Self-centered. I’m not saying that American Culture is totally devoid of virtue, but selfishness, disguised as pragmatism, seems to be a guiding principle for a lot of people, including many of those in fields like education and mental health.

Now, most people walk around telling themselves that they are good people, without ever really thinking about what that means. In hind-sight, they minimize the bad they do, and maximize the good. However, our society tells them to love themselves unconditionally, so they don’t really have much of a motivation to be good to one another, and extreme individualism or apathy are seen as a show of strength rather than character flaws, as they would be in most societies.

This attitude of extreme cynicism is so pervasive, it even causes us to be derisive or distrustful towards those who exhibit positive qualities. Look around this site and you can find any number of opinions about why kindness is a trait to be distrusted in men. The most common argument is that these men are only being kind to trick women into having sex with them, because why would a sane men EVER be kind otherwise. I don’t deny that there are not A LOT of men who use kindness as a tool of manipulation, they absolutely do. Or some reach a point of frustration and adopt a wicked sense of entitlement. Don’t be one of them. But if someone is being kind for months or years, putting their best self forward, hoping to be noticed, and honestly being a friend who is BETTER than a friend, then I wouldn’t say that is manipulative. Quite on the contrary, these men often end up being manipulated themselves, because they ARE predictable.

Anyone who has ever tried to attract women or influence any human being knows how ridiculous this is. There is no more sure-fire way to lose a woman’s interest than to be honest about your feelings. Generally, the best way to influence other people is to subjugate them, just definitionally. People respect power, and if subtly you act like you’re too good for them, they’ll think you’re better than them and try to seek your approval. Any number of studies can show that traits like impulsiveness and narcissism in men correlate with high romantic success. This seems like a contradiction, but people wouldn’t do the wrong thing if it wasn’t the easy thing too.

Selflessness is seen as suspicious, whereas selfishness is just being practical. Self-discipline is rigid and boring, whereas “self-care” is a requirement. Self-awareness is nothing but a hinderance, but self-love should be unconditional. Caring is a weakness and apathy is strength.

So in summation, being nice won’t get you a romance, but you should keep being nice anyways. Be proud of your kindness, even if you have to do it alone. You are making the world a better place. People wouldn’t do the evil thing if it wasn’t easy, but they should do the right thing just because it’s the right thing to do. This whole section is true for women too, to a lesser extent. Women who are kind will often end up in relationships, but they are manipulated themselves, which really REALLY sucks. I would think that would be worse than being alone. Be strong girls, don't settle for treatment you know is beneath you.

Great advice!
Great advice!

3) People are shallow.

For Those Who Can't Find Love: Letting Go of Shame

Everyone knows men are shallow. It’s practically a joke. I feel really bad for women who aren’t attractive, because there just isn’t much they can do to change their situation. Fortunately, the VAST majority of women are attractive enough.

However, women are just as shallow as men, and that isn’t something we as a society are very comfortable admitting. And to make matters worse for unattractive men, women stick to their standards. Men are much more likely to get desperate and “settle”, but women don’t ever need to. Very few women have trouble getting their standards met. Just because women’s standards are generally higher does NOT mean they are unrealistic. They are just looking for different things: height, size, muscles, a low voice, etc.

Sure having a nice job, being well-dressed, having hobbies and a winning personality can’t hurt. But one has to get one's foot in the door first, which requires that another have an initial attraction. Unfortunately, some people just lost out on the genetic lottery. That doesn’t make them a bad person, and they don’t need to be ashamed of that.

4) The world will tell you you aren’t good enough.

The same way women are shamed for being sexually successful and called “sluts”, along with a slue of other derogatory terms, men are shamed for not having enough romantic success. If you don’t believe me, then search “virgin guy” on Google Images; the pictures that come up will be overwhelmingly negative. Even the phrase “virgin guy” conjures an image of someone who has poor hygiene, dresses poorly, doesn’t exercise and has strange hobbies. The only media that portray male virgins in a positive light are teen coming-of-age comedies, like Superbad. But even in movies like this, usually the virginal teenagers (i.e. children) eventually overcome their sorry state and are able to get a girlfriend or get laid in the end, thus becoming “full men”.

Result for "virgin guy" on Google Images

People will tell you that you just need confidence, a hobby and a new suit, and if you can’t find romantic success, then blame rests squarely on your shoulders. You’re a social reject. You’re a loser. You’re broken and wrong. None of this is true. It’s not as if you could have gone to the girlfriend store and picked one out off the shelf. As stated above, there aren’t even enough women for every man to be able to find someone, and most sex is concentrated amongst a relatively small group of men. Don’t let the world shame you.

If someone is told they are a monster enough, they begin to become a monster. It’s human nature. For some men this will cause them to become bitter, cynical, isolated and withdrawn. These are the old men at the grocery store who only speak to correct people and are constantly muttering under their breath. They weren’t born bad, but a lifetime of loneliness, shame and ridicule has stripped them of their softness. For other men, they will become something much, much worse: an entitled incel, a rapist or a sociopathic Elliot Rodgers-type. Not everyone has the capacity to commit such horrors, but everyone has the capacity for evil of some sort. Don’t let the world form you into who it thinks you should be.

If you can conquer life alone, then you’re one of the best of us. Keep on trucking! Be positive and enjoy life, there is more to life than romance. Don’t ruminate on it and if someone tries to make you feel ashamed for your singleness, kindly tell them to shove it up their ass. This part is also probably true for virgin women, but once again to a lesser extent.

In conclusion, not everyone will find someone, and that’s okay. Don’t let it make you feel shame or rob you of your pride or softness. Emotions might not be attractive, but they are healthy. Be a good person, live a fulfilling life and focus on making the world a better place for everyone. We’re never truly alone, even without finding romance. Good luck! Life ain't so bad! Thanks for reading!

For Those Who Can't Find Love: Letting Go of Shame


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What Guys Said 8

  • #3 nails it!!! If you're a guy not in that top 10%, you'll never be able to get that foot in the door so they can see all of the personality traits they claim to want.

    • Personality can only hurt you when it comes to dating. And the traits that hurt you are considered positive in most other contexts. Although, I would say that the figure is higher than 10%.

  • When I go out it seems I almost never see (potentially) single women. There always seems to be more guys, and most of the females are children, mothers with children, or elderly retirees.

    • Yeah, there just aren't as many single women. Women will complain about the same thing (i. e. there are no single men), but really they're discounting most of the male population off-hand.

    • That's partially because girls are not encouraged to find a partner, because there is no social pressure. If a single guy passes on a party where there is a chance of getting laid, he's called an idiot, a borefest, and he slowly gets abandoned. If a girl does that, she has a thousand excuses ("I feel like I'm om the meat market", "I'm introvert", "I don't feel like it", "I am looking for the One", "there are only trash men in parties, they'd just cheat on me"), and so they stay at home instead, and maybe call over a girlfriend. They don't need an occasion to meet a guybit, registering to Tinder is enough.

  • The world male heavy human gender ratio is so often overlooked , I see so many people say there are more female... wrong , over 600 million more human males than females worldwide , this has been magnified by the disgusting practice from the Middle East , to China , of female infanticide. Also , the feedback from my female friends , is that single women are mostly singe by choice. I am currently a single dad , with no intention of dating , even when my 2 are grown up , I will be single by choice , not being hormonally charged anymore does help greatly

    • Yes, if a woman wants to be in a relationship, puts herself out there and puts forward even a minimal effort, it won't take her very long to find one.

    • Although I will also say, that since you're a father, obviously you were able to be in a relationship AT SOME POINT.

  • This is why I advice most "nice guys" to remove their heads shoved up their moralistic asses and try the same things differently... like most other guys who get tons of chicks

    • This is why I advise most people that we as a society are fucked. Morals and good sense usually take a back-seat to "getting laid". If they don't, then the moral thinker won't get laid, and the type of children produced from the amoral dip-shits who do, don't leave a lot of hope for future generations. But you are right, being amoral works for a lot of men. You wouldn't do it the evil way if it wasn't the easy way too.

    • Show All
    • "Why not just rape people?"
      I want the easiest legal method
      Also, prostitution is illegal so... yeah there's no "other" way

      "I mean getting laid is fine, but if that's "all you want", you're boring as hell."

      And did you know that most men would rather choose to remain single or be with their friends assuming their sex drives are satisfied regularly as they don't want to deal with a woman's emotional BS and her tests?

    • "Also, maybe you should find some other things to want"
      Yes I do, which is why I want the fastest & easiest method to drain my balls legally... instead of pandering to a woman's every desire and then expecting her to throw a bone at me

  • Good take but a bit defeatist - Other guys don't get the girls sometimes and some of the type of guys described above get girls - I don't believe there is some great algorythm of love - Its just some people are lucky and others aren't - I would describe myself as a very nice guy and I found a girl daft enough to fall in love with me so why not anyone else.

    • Just being realistic. We all know there are men who die without ever finding anyone. The world doesn't care about them.
      Also, you may be right, but generally saying, "I'm a very nice guy," is like saying, "I'm very smart." It's a claim that almost always contradicts itself.

    • No offense, but as the son of a 50 year old man - dating isn't the same. The old man didn't believe his ears when I told him some of the things I encounter on the dating market.

  • Really great take, I feel like a lot of people nowadays need to see this. 👍

  • So no sources? Why would we believe what you wrote here?
    Anyway, if i remember correctly it's close to 1:1 ratio, but there are imbalances depending on country and age.
    I can say stuff off the top of my head too tho, like i think there are more bi girls, than guys. Not everyone wants a partner + what you wrote, gay/lesbian, divorces etc.., so you really can't tell, if there is "enough" men or women out there for everyone.
    So it's useless to think about if there is enough women out there for men.

    • Nope, no sources. I wasn't writing an argumentative piece or an essay, so I don't really feel the need to cite sources. I can find some of my sources (they're not scholarly) if you'd like, but others I found so long ago, it might be difficult for me to locate all of them. What in particular would you like sourced? I also don't understand anything you wrote between "country and age" and "so you really can't tell..." so I can't respond to that, but I will say, it's not useless to think of those things. It's just mathematically impossible that every man will find a partner.

    • There's always that one guy who reads with a closed mind.

  • Probably because women are the only gender that are entitled to it

    • Women aren't entitled to it either. There are women by the thousands who can't find anyone as well. It's much much much easier for 98% of women, but for the other 2% it's almost impossible.

    • As for around 2% of men, who are extremely unlucky.

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