State: New York
Comment: I am an AA woman in my late 20s who has always had difficulty finding a mate. It seems like there is something I am missing in attracting someone of the opposite sex. I am cute, not drop dead gorgeous, but definitely cute. I am a bit shy when first meeting others and I tend to feed off the energy they give back to me. If they are excited about meeting, then I am excited about meeting them. If someone is lackluster toward me, then I try to be nice and end up feeling awkward. I have a hard time meeting men. I work in a mostly female industry and my social life is mostly connected to my career. When I do meet men at parties, and chat them up, I feel like I am always out competed by some girl with better tricks or conversation. I am a genuinely nice girl who prefers to read, cook and have quiet dinners with friends. My interests are mostly related to my career or are domestic. Parties are the worst place for me because I feel like I fade into a wall. I have tried online dating for years and feel like I keep getting men that are not even remotely in my league. They only want sex or they wear gold chains and baggy clothes. I am the kind of black woman that likes going to hipster venues and gallery openings. This has shut me out to most black men but I have been openly dating other races. Yet those guys were not looking for a relationship (at least with me). The problem is getting the right attention. How does one do that in real life?
NOTE: Since I don’t have much first hand experience with dating black men or women, I’m going to leave that topic to the readers who do. Please feel free to share your thoughts and experiences.
These are all great things that many men value and find attractive. But they also want a woman who brings more to the table than just “nice.” Really think about that word for a second. Think about when and how you use it in this context.
“Oh, I met him. He seemed nice.”
Nice is the word we use when we really didn’t get any read or beat on someone because they displayed no dicernable personality.
Nice, to be blunt, is boring. Nobody wants to date boring. Especially the boring people. We all want someone who keeps us on our toes in some way. We want someone engaging. Not to be confused with “charisma.” Charisma is charm on speed. It’s fake and exaggerated and in no way genuine. When women say that they want a guy who has “charisma” what they’re telling you is that they are drawn to phony assholes who know exactly what to say and do to keep a woman’s attention. They want a guy with charisma because those men are usually in high demand. They think that getting a guy with charisma means that man finds her charismatic, too. Except they don’t. They actually find her really insecure and therefore easy to manipulate. That’s the attraction for men like that.
I am a genuinely nice girl who prefers to read, cook and have quiet dinners with friends
Men like nice. But men also like and want a woman that is naughty. They like women with a bit of an edge. As long as the woman displays a sense of vulnerability about her, she can pretty much get away with anything. So often you hear women wonder out loud, “What does he see in her?” What he sees is a healthy mix of femininity, vulnerability and sexiness. That can come in all kinds of packages. But the crucial component in that mix is vulnerability. Does she make me feel safe? Will I be able to be who I really am and show my fears and frustrations without her judging me or making it about her? If a man can glean that from a conversation with a woman and there’s a physical attraction, then he’s going to want to get to know that woman better. We talked before about men being intimidated by certain kinds of women. As long as the woman demonstrates her own ability to be vulnerable, she can be as assertive and bawdy and outspoken as she likes. The lack of vulnerability is what turns men off. So if you want to know what men want..that’s it.
Utterly, the tone of this message lacks vulnerability. You sound stiff and a little entitled. I’m sure you are a bit of a wall flower, but the underlying rigidness is you’re bigger problem. Most men can and will overlook a woman’s shy nature. They even find that attractive to some degree. But if they pick up on the entitled tone or demeanor, they’re out.
I have tried online dating for years and feel like I keep getting men that are not even remotely in my league
We all feel that way. That’s because most of us way over-estimate what our league actually is. I can assure you that if you can’t keep a man engaged at a party or are always being shoved aside for other women, then you are not the catch you think you are. Leagues just aren’t about looks or status. Personality and charm play just a big of a role when determining your league. In fact, I’d say that personality is the one determining factor that can bump someone moderately attractive/marginally employed up to a higher league.
You need to work on your personality. You also need to take yourself down a notch or two. Anybody that says outwardly admits that someone “isn’t in their league” is merely trying to hide a bruised ego. You’re offended by the majority of replies you get online. Which I get and understand, as I’ve been in places like that. It is frustrating to get message after message from socially awkward men or guys who fall far outside your search criteria. It makes you wonder (as it should) if this is the best you can do.
The answer, Utterly, is…sorta. You need to take a look at the replies that you get online and get a general idea about what all these men have in common. That, in a nutshell, is your league. It might not look pretty or feel good, but it’s a pretty accurate barometer. You’re next step is to look at what you bring to the table and how you present yourself and figure out what you can tweak in order to change the quality of your responses, online and off. Maybe you need to rewrite your profile or post new photos. Maybe you need to work on your social skills. Maybe you could make some significant changes to your presentation. You’re not going to change the men and what they want. But you can, if you choose or feel you should, make changes about yourself.
The starting point for you is find out what men really think when they meet you and what sort of impression you make.