Why Can’t She Get Laid?


Alias (DO NOT USE A REAL NAME!!): Playful Kitten
Comment: I’m in my mid thirties and have been single now for a year. I’ve had a couple of hook ups and one proper date (which I instigated).

My problem is I never seem to get hit on when I go out. The last time it was a married guy and I quickly got out of that situation. I don’t do married.

I’m trying everything to look approachable, smiling and  making eye contact with guys I think are cute but nothing ever happens. It seems as though I am surrounded by men already in relationships. Even just getting a hook up is hard. I get matches but they never bother to start a conversation or reply.

The only guys I seem to end up with are only after one hour stands (seriously never been longer than that ;) )

One guy said that men are probably scared to approach me so what should I do other than always have to make the first move (which doesn’t always pan out).

Age: 36
City: Camden
State: London


Even just getting a hook up is hard.

The only guys I seem to end up with are only after one hour stands (seriously never been longer than that ;) )

Okay, folks. Buckle up. This is going to be one of those posts.

The simple and most likely answer to this is that you’re putting yourself in situations where you are either a) flirting with guys who are out of your league or b) surrounding yourself with women these men find more attractive.

The issue isn’t that you’re intimidating or that men are somehow apprehensive about approaching you. Know how I know that? Because you can’t even get laid without making a concerted effort. People say things like, “Oh, guys are just intimidated by you” because that’s easier than saying, “You’re not attractive enough to pull the guys you want.” That doesn’t mean you’re not attractive. It means, and pay close attention to the verbage here, you’re not attractive enough to pull the guys that you want.

If you’re putting yourself in a setting where you’re surrounded by other women, you’re immediately setting yourself at a disadvantage. I’m talking strictly from a numbers perspective. If you’re 36 years old and hanging at bars or pubs or going to events that mostly attract a twenty-something crowd, that’s part of the problem. You need to put yourself in situations where you stand out. That means going to events that attract a thirty and forty something crowd.

Let’s be honest, single women. We often opt for the bright and shiny than the tried and true. We find the younger men more attractive, too. If we didn’t, I wouldn’t have a column. I can’t tell you how many profile review sessions I have where women in their forties insist upon focusing on the men in their mid to late thirties guys rather than pursue men their age or older.

“But..but…I get a ton of emails from guys in their twenties and thirties!” they say. Super. We all do. It means nothing.

“Well, have any of those guys turned out to be men you’ve dated long term?” I ask.

The line goes quiet. “Well…I still see some of them.”

So that’s a no?

If I hear one more man or woman express disdain for dating someone their own age or older because, like, ewww,  I’m going to lose it. So what that they’re not as active as you’d like them to be? You’ve been doing all those activities on your own for this long, why can’t you continue to do so? Why do they have to share your love of zip lining or yoga or whatever else you do? Who cares? Okay, fine, you don’t want someone who stays inside wearing stretchy pants all day watching TV. I get that. But stop acting like there are the active people and the couch potatoes. There’s an in between there. You’re using the activity issue as an excuse to justify you’re own ageism and discomfort with getting older.

Stop posting photos that are 3-5 years old, people. (This goes for men and women equally.) Stop presenting yourself as though you’re not the age that you are. Cease and desist with all the mentions in your profiles about how you’re young at heart or don’t feel your age or how people always mistake you for younger. And set reasonable preferred age ranges. Holy bejeebus. If you’re a person in their late thirties or older – man or woman –  and the lower end of your age range spans 10 years but the higher end spans, like, 3 years, you look delusional and rigid and ageist. It’s not cute. It’s sad. Don’t get me wrong. You can actually prefer and pursue that age range. Just don’t make that public on your profile. Fake it. Pretend.

And for those few who are going to whine about how I don’t root for my readers or some other such nonsense because I dare to suggest that someone might cast their net a tad too far, understand this. I’m not going to apologize for the fact that I see things for how they are rather than how you wish they would be. As for the other sub-section of perpetual complainers, no, I’m not saying take what you can get. I’m saying focus your efforts on people who want you, as I will almost guarantee that once they’ve gotten it out of their head that they’re probably never going to get that bright and shiny puppy, they’ll see that there are a plethora of other options that they find equally attractive.

End rant. Back to the OP.

Regardless of the type of men you choose to pursue, the trick is to get them away from all the other options surrounding them.

If you meet a guy online that you like, you need to get that first date set up pronto. Don’t allow the conversation to lag because the longer you go chatting without meeting, he’s on that site messaging other women. Screw the rules and gender roles and the oh I like a man to be a man bullshit. You have to ask him out. You have to be assertive.

See someone at a party or gathering that you like? Approach him. Get really comfortable with the possibility of being rejected and just walk right up to him and introduce yourself. That’s one way to separate yourself from the crowd.

If you’re never getting approached, there’s a reason for that. It’s not just random bad luck. If you struggle to get a guy to have sex with you, that’s a huge red flag that something is off, something that you’re not mentioning here. Is it a third eye? Do you have a hump on your back? I don’t know. It could be as simple as you’re as picky when choosing casual sex partners as you are when trying to find a relationship. There’s nothing wrong with that. I’m the same way. But if you’re not converting any of these initiatives into a sale, so to speak, and the few you are closing don’t stick around for more than an hour then Houston, there’s a problem. If these guys don’t stick around longer than an hour, then I really hate to say this, but that sounds like they were having sex with you just to get off and probably weren’t attracted to you. If these men aren’t coming back for seconds or hanging out or anything, then something is very, very wonky.

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7 Responses to “Why Can’t She Get Laid?”

  1. EANx Says:

    There are times when I disagree with you, this post is spot on. The single most common reason why people have problems with dating is shooting out of their league.

  2. Nia Says:

    This is a hard one.
    I will be honest: when I passed 35 I found it increasingly difficult to have casual sex *with men I felt really, strongly attracted to*. Sure, there were downtrodden 59 year olds writing me stuff like “hey u” all over the place, but I had zero interest.
    The cute 29 year old barrista? The adorable 34 year old guitar player? The 41 year old recently divorced dad? Gone like a blown out dandelion in the first fall wind.
    I consider myself on the cute side of average, and for a certain type of guy, catnip (I’m tall and curvy). But the days of going to a bar with a couple girlfriends or my sister and picking up a dude were O.V.E.R.
    I invested in online dating, and eventually I met someone at work. That didn’t work out, so I went back to online dating. But both my now-BF and the serious BF before that: met at work. The casual guys I met, I met from networking events for upscale professionals or online dating.
    I think maybe you might be focusing on the wrong thing?
    Getting “laid” is not the first step in unlocking the BF badge. It’s a detour, IMHO.
    What I think you should do is:
    Get therapy for whatever lingering issues you might be unconsciously revealing on first dates or in social situations
    Get hobbies and interests that you’re passionate about—passion is hot and attracts other passionate, well-rounded people
    Start hanging out in places that aren’t about sex: (no more bars and clubs) the local dog park or park where the cool professional crowd goes to unwind. The art scene. Your church or place of worship. Seminars and classes. Book clubs, or other intellectual pursuits. Board game or Cards against Humanity night. Join Meetup. Go to Meetups.
    Make it about *friends*. Some of these friends, after spending time with you and gaining your trust and respect, could be FWB or part time dudes, or even a BF!
    Your *goal* past age 35 is not to “get laid”. That can be an outcome of a fun, sexy night with a cool guy, sure! But I believe *raising* your emotional standards will help here.

    • KK Says:

      Her goal past 35 is not to get laid? Who are you to tell her what her goals are?And where on EARTH did she say or even insinuate that she WANTED a boyfriend?

      I will grant you that if she wants a bf, she might not be going about it in the best way, but it’s also not clear that she is looking for a serious relationship at the moment. And regardless of what she IS looking for, telling someone what her goals are seems…presumptuous beyond belief.

      • Yvonne Says:

        Who has “one hour stands” though? That is rather strange. Is she doing these guys in the bar restroom?

      • Nia Says:

        Well, okay, fair. But complaining that she ‘can’t *even* get past a one hour stand’ made me read a bit into it that not only would she like a FWB, but perhaps even more, and she’s saying she can’t “even” get “just laid”. There’s totally nothing wrong with casual sex!! not saying that! But I think she is just going about it backwards.

  3. HerGuyFriday Says:

    If you like a guy then other women like him, too. What are you doing to stand out?

  4. AnnieNonymous Says:

    Is it really true that you can’t get laid? Or is it more like the offers are too crass and don’t come with a move or drink date attached?

    I’m not really interested in figuring out whether there’s something fundamentally wrong with this woman’s overall approach to dating and approaching men. Lots of annoying and terrible people end up in relationships and I doubt OP is more annoying and terrible than those people. I think it’s possible that OP is drawn something in men who maybe just don’t want to date. At 36, that’s going to be a big one. Any seemingly eligible bachelor who’s still single at that age probably just doesn’t want a relationship.

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