Highway to the Desperate Zone.
Single men and women alike are constantly being bombarded with ways on how to lure the opposite sex (or same sex, however their boat floats) – How to dress, how to act, what to say, etc.
As a mid-twenties single girl, myself and I’ve had a decent amount of time both dating and in relationships. Not to toot my own horn, but I’m also intelligent and observant of my surroundings and others behavior. This may or may not be why I’ve constantly always tried to imitate the way people act, their mannerisms, voices, etc. – mostly for the mere means of making someone else laugh.
What I’m trying to say is that I *think* it’s because of these things that make people come to me often for advice on how to date, and how to get through problems in both relationships and friendship. I’m not claiming to be an expert, nor am I claiming to know everything (though I’m sure some of my friends would argue otherwise), but I do like to help and offer a second opinion for them to ponder thoughtfully. All of these things matched with a recent need from a few people to be given advice – I thought it would be fun to write a few posts on dating in the twenty-something stages.
Today I want to focus on men.
According to my mother, I’ve been fixated on men since I was born. Men were always my favorite people when I was an infant/toddler, my imaginary friend when I was 3-4 was Tony Danza (because I thought he was cute), my first crush (or couple) was when I was five, and my first “boyfriend” was when I was 12. I was somewhat of a flirt through my school years and still have the tendency to be one. Needless to say, I’ve been focused on boys/guys/men/people with penises for many years so there’s a few things I’ve picked up along the way. Now that I’ve spent a few years in my twenties, I’ve mostly been checking off what men shouldn’t do.
Now this isn’t something that is character changing because I think no one, men or women alike, should change who they are as a person in order to find a mate. There is always someone out there who will click with you, accept you, and love you for who you are. There are however, a few things you can avoid that aren’t necessarily character-changing. My first words of advice for today?
1. Stay out of the Desperate Zone
I don’t care if it’s been weeks, months, years or never since you’ve last gotten laid. You need, I repeat, you need to stay out of the desperate zone. If you have a lower self-esteem, it’s harder to stay out of this zone because usually a good confidence overrides desperation but for the love of God, try. Desperation can be smelled by women for miles – i mean miles – away. You’re frustrated, you haven’t been able to get a date or a piece of action, all you can think about is getting into her pants and no matter how hard you try to not focus on it, we can just tell. We sense it, smell it, run from it. And not even Kenny Loggins can get us to run toward your desperate zone with a slight change of his lyrics.
I once went on a date with a guy named Paul (name changed) who gave me the creep vibe the entire time though there was nothing about his outwardly appearance that was creepy. I realized half-way through the date that it was desperation. I didn’t go on another date with him, but I did become a friend to him. (from afar, I could only handle the creep vibe for so much longer) I actually helped him with a few dates he had after that. He one day called to ask how I felt when I went on a date with him and why he can’t seem to get past a first date.
That’s when I decided to try an experiment. Around that time I had been on dates or in contact with a notable amount of desperate seeming guys, so I was curious to see if his problem would help solve it.
I was honest with how I felt while we were on the date, and I asked him how frequently he was thinking about sex when he was out with girls. He responded with “A lot. Constantly”. Now, I know they have studies about you men and sex popping up in your brain every x amount of seconds and I know you’re hard wired for it – but there’s a difference between thinking about it every whatever-amount-of-seconds and letting it override every single thought you have that isn’t sexual. I advised him to make a conscious effort to not think about it and focus on getting to know her. Think about it as much as you want before (a la Something about Mary!) and after, but not during. Do not let it consume your brain, and you might not reek of the desperate zone stench.
Most non-desperate men will be able to successfully avoid exuding their sexual thoughts but if you feel like you’re in the Desperate Zone, try to avoid it all costs. In the case of Paul, it worked – he was finally able to make a second date (and third, and fourth…).
But don’t take my word for it, he could have just met someone who accepted his creeper vibe. In which case, more power to him.
Later I want to talk about the Not-So-“Nice-Guy” and how he goes hand in hand with the desperation zone, but that’s all I have for you fine gentleman out there today.