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Men never seem to notice me

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Question - (8 September 2018) 2 Answers - (Newest, 8 September 2018)
A female United States age 22-25, anonymous writes:

I am 23 and never had a boyfriend or dated anyone before. Men never seem to notice me. They never approach me or hit on me. Whenever I try to hit on a guy, they just don't seem interested in me back. I have been to bars and men just ignore me or see me only as a friend. I don't understand why I am having such a hard time when it comes to love and dating. My weight, I know, is not the problem because I am 115 lbs and 5'3. My skin isn't bad but it isn't really good either (I have acne prone skin). I went to the doctor and they gave me tretinoin, so I am hoping my skin will look perfect soon. Usually I don't wear makeup (except for eye shadow and eye liner) but I am just know buying foundation and planning on wearing it almost everyday just to look my best.

I get so sad hearing from other women the male attention they receive, how they are dating a guy, how they went on dates , or how guys ask for their number or leave their number somewhere but that hasn't ever happened to me where a guy wants to exchange contact information. Instead, I am still dateless and no boyfriend. I have done volunteering work and other activities and tried to talk to guys but they just never reciprocated interest. I don't know what to do or what I am doing wrong?

View related questions: acne, never had a boyfriend, notice me

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A male reader, WiseOwlE United States + , writes (8 September 2018):

You really touched my heart. Time to time some very sweet and sincere people come to DC; and they're words just seem to hit me in all my soft spots.

I don't think it's so much about looks as it could be about your confidence. I also think you're not exactly sure what you mean when you say guys never notice you. Are you sure guys don't notice you, or the guys you want to notice you don't seem to? There is a difference. You may totally ignore those who don't fit a certain "type!" You want the obvious hotties to flirt and make passes? Guys can't be that blunt or forward with women anymore. They're not sure what kind of reaction they might get. Especially those who are too serious, or reserved.

When you mentioned your acne, I have to wonder if for most of your teens you shied away from attention? Kept a very low-profile; and went about your business usually as a loner. I did, because I was shy and I am gay. I saw how mean guys were to the "effeminate-boys." I'm not effeminate, but I was scared they could tell I'm gay. Some kind of straight-guy gaydar! I was a kid. I don't know! I eventually dated girls, and lost my virginity. It didn't take!

I was also nerdy, into my studies, and I was always avoiding eye-contact. The weird thing is how girls really liked me. They told me I was cute; but I didn't really like the attention. I didn't know how to act, or know what to do or say when I got their attention. It freaked me out!

One of my teachers pulled me aside; because she saw me walking down the hallways, always with my head down avoiding eye-contact. I'm a loner by nature. As an adult, much more outgoing and social now. She asked me to look ahead with my head-up. She made me write a paper, and read it before my class. It didn't cure me, it just made me decide I wanted to stop being shy. It took work. I did it. It took a few years; but I was determined. Would you believe I even modeled some years ago? That took guts. I'm biracial; and someone walked up to me while I was shopping one day; and gave me a business card. I think my unusual features intrigued the lady. It's hard to tell my race. Asian, Arab, Latino? I'm none of those. That was interesting, but scary.

I quit, and joined the Air Force; I didn't like posing, and being stared at. It didn't change me. I didn't like the models. I was sick of explaining what race I am. The stupid guessing! I was accepted at a military college and released early from the service. I think that's when my life changed for the better. I became comfortable with myself.

If you have been hiding all this time. You've become so proficient as being less visible; that you don't realize when you're shying away from people. You may even show panic or fear in your face without realizing it; because you're afraid people will notice the flaws in your complexion. I used to get palpitations when girls flirted with me! I froze!

I noticed you said when your skin is "perfect." Your love for yourself as you are reflects from your spirit. People pickup on your personality more when you're comfortable in your own skin; and don't shy away when approached. Don't apologize for your flaws, or explain them. It's exhausting.

Stop assuming people are staring or concentrating on your pimples. It's too common. It doesn't stop guys from liking you.

I liked aunt honesty's suggestions about experimenting with your hair; but go easy with makeup when you have acne-prone skin. Wear clothes that flatter you. Be colorful.

Practice being at-ease with your skin just as it is. Keep-up the activities and volunteer work, that's good for the soul. It gives you visibility and keeps you exposed to the public. That builds confidence. Sometimes it takes awhile to be noticed. I never liked being noticed. My job demands it, and I want to be loved too. So I worked on myself. So keep it up!

Makeovers help to some degree; but you have to realize the world is competitive. If you live in a small town; pickings are slim. It just takes time before you make romantic-connections. If you live in a big city, you just get lost in the crowd. It's not always your looks, but a lot depends on building the confidence to like yourself as you are. Developing a personality that is warm, friendly, and at-ease.

Continue experimenting and doing the self-improvements that reinforce your self-esteem.

Then you have to be patient. Don't let desperation make you try too hard, or get weird. Don't compare yourself to others; it will make you self-conscious and stiff. You may not be doing anything wrong; you just live in a town of unfriendly detached people. Some girls just have a knack for getting attention; but sometimes they dress too provocatively, or behave in a way guys think they might be easy. So they get more attention, but the wrong kind! From the wrong types. You're also ducking bullets!

You try talking to guys you say? How? Idle small-talk, rambling-on, senseless chit-chat like you're begging for attention? Or do you just say hi, when a guy smiles at you? Turn on a little charm and natural femininity. If you have no natural-charm and you're bland; people lose interest. I think you're trying; but the vibe you project shows sadness, maybe even depression. You're so unhappy with your skin.

I've never met a cheerful person who didn't draw people. If you've been a shut-in, loner, or like me, shy; just relax around people. Smile naturally, and let your natural-charm work for itself.

Don't force-it or be mechanical; because it comes across as weird. My guess is you're trying so hard you seem desperate. People just don't know how to read you.

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A female reader, aunt honesty Ireland +, writes (8 September 2018):

aunt honesty agony auntWhen you say you hit on guys, how do you approach them? Could you be more specific on what you do and how you know they are not interested? As for meeting men in bars, it is never a good idea! I always think it is the worst place to look for a partner, as drink is involved, sometimes people only want quick hook ups ect. Have you tried other avenues? Maybe joining a club or a hobby where you meet other people your own age with the same interests? Are there single nights or speed dating you can try in your area? Or maybe try online dating to see how you get on with that!

I am struggling to see why you would mention your weight, you do realize people off all shapes and sizes find love yeah? I mean you say your weight is not a problem but maybe the guys you are flirting with prefer curvier girls ect. It's not good to base things on weight. Okay so you have acne prone skin, but hey so does a lot of people. Hopefully for you the medication will work and it might give you a confidence boost. What is your personality like? Are you outgoing and bubbly? Or are you shy and quiet? As for the make up, well that is a personal choice, so do it for yourself nobody else. I barely ever wear make up but when I do I feel good about myself so maybe it will make you feel the same way. It is good to feel our best so maybe one day a week you can pamper yourself, maybe put on some tan, do your hair, create new make up looks (Check you-tube for tutorials and tips if you are unsure) and have confidence in yourself. When we feel we look our best it usually gives us a boost of confidence.

I feel for you getting sad. I really do. I cannot tell why you are struggling because I don't know you personally to give you any advice on how you come across. Honey maybe your not doing anything wrong, it might be a case that you are chatting to guys who are not compatible. All I can say is I hope it works out for you in the end and don't give up because you are still young. If it makes you feel any better, my husband was older than you when he met me and I was the first girl he was ever with. There is nothing wrong with him, he is a confident great guy, he just was never lucky in finding someone when he was younger and sometimes that is the case with some people.

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