Wrestling with Dating Standards

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    Feb 22, 2015 3:52 AM GMT
    After a date that has me questioning how and why I am attracting the guys I'm attracting and going on expensive dinner dates with I'm asking myself why am I not attracting the kind of guys I'm into. Typically guy next door or preppy types.

    I feel a bit guilty for even having a "type" since those kind of guys comprise of a fairly small percentage of the gay community and since it's a bit superficial. But then I see couples and more often than not they're pretty similar to each other, like usually attracts like.

    Though, I wonder if I'm even able to attract my "type"? It's good to look in the mirror and be honest with yourself before expecting standards and qualities of others you may not even meet or have yourself. After all right not I'm trying to get my life in order and am playing catchup compared to my peers. Even if I was able to attract my ideal guy right now, he may not want to get into a relationship with me because I don't have the lifestyle (or money to live it) yet. Just the fact that I'm renting a room from a cat lady in a far flung neighborhood is off putting enough IMO. icon_redface.gif Though, why would I want to stay with someone who judges you for your life circumstances? Or worse dumps you because you don't have a high income or whatever?

    Standards of other guys and their standards of me is something I've been going back and forth with for months. How do you guys deal with this? Do you worry your standards are too high sometimes for others or even for yourself?
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    Feb 22, 2015 4:07 AM GMT
    Erobert said
    After a date that has me questioning how and why I am attracting the guys I'm attracting...

    And what kind are those? You go on to describe the kind of guys you'd LIKE to attract (next-door, preppy), but what are you actually attracting? Can you describe them? That may help to better define your problem.
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    Feb 22, 2015 9:49 AM GMT
    Erobert said... then I see couples and more often than not they're pretty similar to each other, like usually attracts like...

    looking for someone like your self is a good start. even better is consider what you bring to the table. What would that someone else bring? would this complete some sort of a house hold?

    life; even over the short term, is a winding road. sickness or health, rich or poor are true real. just stick to the basics communications, respect, trust.

    good luck
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    Feb 22, 2015 10:49 AM GMT
    It's okay to have dating standards. However, don't make it like a page long ass list. Lol, just be flexible and realize that no guy is perfect. I feel that for the income part, money comes and goes, people lose their jobs, money and or just in and situation. I don't judge people who are struggling to make it. Having said that, I do crave stability in a man. But yeah, thinking about my own standards, I do loosen it up a lot from everything, weight, height, hair, ...etc. icon_smile.gif Maybe I'm taking my own advice of trying someone new and different than my previous men I go for, I can be genuinely surprised.
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    Feb 22, 2015 3:57 PM GMT
    OP, you have to understand, not just intellectually but emotionally, that you are not a sought-after type and that this kind of difficulty is to be expected and likely to follow you for a long time, if not forever.

    You chose your standards as much as you chose your parents. You chose your standards as much as the pretty ones chose their pretty faces, their height, their favorable socio-economic status. The roll of the dice is the main factor of success in the ball of seduction, so don't feel guilty for having the standards you have because most of the factors that sabotage your success are beyond your control.
  • mwolverine

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    Feb 22, 2015 7:26 PM GMT
    While it's true that "like attracts", it's probably just as true (or untrue) that "opposites attract". So you never don't know. Just be you, do what you do, put yourself out there, keep your eyes open and give it time.
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    Feb 22, 2015 8:14 PM GMT
    Art_Deco, not a specific type of person but the date I went last night was with a guy who was a bit... skeevy. I've been on dates last year with guys who were social awkward or just people you'd rather not go on a second date with.

    Part of the problem could be I've mostly been looking on OKCupid which seems to be declining in quality over the years.icon_confused.gif

    bachian saidOP, you have to understand, not just intellectually but emotionally, that you are not a sought-after type and that this kind of difficulty is to be expected and likely to follow you for a long time, if not forever.


    Ouch! Could be misinterpreting this part of what you wrote but that was a bit harsh.... Sure, I don't have a body of an Adonis or make six figures but I have my good qualities to. I managed to get my former BF who fit my "type" pretty well after all.
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    Feb 22, 2015 8:17 PM GMT
    "Type" isn't all about physicality. I remember when I went on the first few dates with my current bf, I felt like he was physically so different than the previous guys I dated. I wasn't sure if it was going anywhere.

    But then I got to know him, and found out how funny and ambitious and cerebral he was. And I'm really glad we have this really cool emotional connection. And a deeper, stronger physical attraction followed - it's all connected.
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    Feb 22, 2015 8:48 PM GMT
    "Standards" keep more guys single than anything else. That isn't to say that standards are wrong, in fact, they are often protective. Let's not be mistaken, though... standards are walls you put up to keep people out. And they also keep you locked in behind walls, oftentimes away from people and experiences that might make you much, much better and happier.

    I've experienced this several times with friends and coworkers. People I thought were "weird," "unpredictable" and "too quirky" turned out to be reliably solid friends who exposed me to new things and made me a better person. So while a desire to find people who affirm your values is an important motivation for our standards, fear and a desire to stay firmly within our comfort zones are also often the drivers behind our standards.
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    Feb 22, 2015 10:19 PM GMT
    It sounds like you're ambivalent about getting close to people and that your focus on standards serves this purpose.
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    Feb 23, 2015 6:39 PM GMT
    woodfordr said"Standards" keep more guys single than anything else. That isn't to say that standards are wrong, in fact, they are often protective. Let's not be mistaken, though... standards are walls you put up to keep people out. And they also keep you locked in behind walls, oftentimes away from people and experiences that might make you much, much better and happier.

    I've experienced this several times with friends and coworkers. People I thought were "weird," "unpredictable" and "too quirky" turned out to be reliably solid friends who exposed me to new things and made me a better person. So while a desire to find people who affirm your values is an important motivation for our standards, fear and a desire to stay firmly within our comfort zones are also often the drivers behind our standards.


    THIS. I mean - we have our physical predilections - but things beyond general stability and cleanliness can (and should) be taken with a grain of salt. Dating an A-Lister sounds utterly AWFUL to me. I'd never attempt to keep up or compete. No time for that nonsense when LIFE is about experiences, heart, and insights - not what tie one has on or car one drives. All nice things, but mean nothing in the end. icon_wink.gif
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    Feb 24, 2015 2:22 AM GMT
    Erobert saidOuch! Could be misinterpreting this part of what you wrote but that was a bit harsh.... Sure, I don't have a body of an Adonis or make six figures but I have my good qualities to. I managed to get my former BF who fit my "type" pretty well after all.


    It wouldn't be harsh if you already knew that. The fact that you don't know that is rather alarming.

    Bach was a great musician but he is not popular like Beethoven or Mozart and is not a best seller like these two. The relative unpopularity of Bach says nothing about his value a musician.

    I'm simply telling you that you are NOT one of the best-sellers and that this has nothing to do with your self-worth as a person. You are not a sought-after type and it's likely you'll never be. Accept this fact. Learn to live with this and you will have a better understanding of what is going on in your life instead of being forever mystified for not wanting to look reality in the face.
  • mwolverine

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    Feb 24, 2015 6:44 AM GMT
    manboynyc saidDating an A-Lister sounds utterly AWFUL to me.

    Yeah, but not dating an A-lister is also a standard. icon_smile.gif

    The only thing worse than having too many standards is not having enough.

    Ultimately it depends on what you're looking for. If you're just looking for a roll in the hay then standards are superfluous and will just get in the way. But the thread mentions "dating" (and is in the "Dating & Relationships" forum), and I think another word for this is "compatibility".
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    Feb 24, 2015 1:06 PM GMT
    bachian said
    Erobert saidOuch! Could be misinterpreting this part of what you wrote but that was a bit harsh.... Sure, I don't have a body of an Adonis or make six figures but I have my good qualities to. I managed to get my former BF who fit my "type" pretty well after all.


    It wouldn't be harsh if you already knew that. The fact that you don't know that is rather alarming.

    Bach was a great musician but he is not popular like Beethoven or Mozart and is not a best seller like these two. The relative unpopularity of Bach says nothing about his value a musician.
    You are not a sought-after type and it's likely you'll never be.

    Not a sought-after type? Tastes differ!
    The Bach analogy is apt. Bach, Mozart and Beethoven have different strengths and appeal to listeners in different ways. Some listeners prefer cerebral music, some prefer sensual, some prefer dramatic.
    Just so with sexual attraction.
  • Destinharbor

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    Feb 24, 2015 2:11 PM GMT
    A-listers won't date you. You're not on the list. Especially in NY. Try focusing on education and manners.
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    Feb 24, 2015 4:20 PM GMT
    bachian said...that is rather alarming...


    Oh absolutely. It's a vanity emergency. Someone dial 911 and while you're at it tell them to bring the fashion police for nonconformance with bad TV A-listers.

    I can't date you. Your shoes don't match your shirt. And just because I had sex with you last night doesn't mean I'll have sex with you again tomorrow: I have my standards ya know.
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    Feb 24, 2015 11:52 PM GMT
    TexDef07 saidNot a sought-after type? Tastes differ!
    The Bach analogy is apt. Bach, Mozart and Beethoven have different strengths and appeal to listeners in different ways. Some listeners prefer cerebral music, some prefer sensual, some prefer dramatic.
    Just so with sexual attraction.


    This is not about whether Bach is better than Mozart, but the fact that Mozart sells more records than Bach. Bach sells less records, but by no means that implies he's a worse musician. He just appeals to less people. Just like OP. OP is not a popular type.
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    Feb 25, 2015 12:42 AM GMT
    [quote][cite]bachian said[/cibte]
    TexDef07 saidNot a sought-after type? Tastes differ!
    The Bach analogy is apt. Bach, Mozart and Beethoven have different strengths and appeal to listeners in different ways. Some listeners prefer cerebral music, some prefer sensual, some prefer dramatic.
    Just so with sexual attraction.

    This is not about whether Bach is better than Mozart, but the fact that Mozart sells more records than Bach. Bach sells less records, but by no means that implies he's a worse musician. He just appeals to less people. Just like OP. OP is not a popular type. [/quote]
    I'm amazed at how a number of you go on about how OP is "not a popular type,", and thus should expect to have a hard time finding dates. He does not have a jock look, and neither do half the gay men in the country. He's not looking for a jock - but a "boy-next-door or preppie looking guy.


    OP is not bad -looking. One could even say he looks cute. Judging only on looks, I would have dated him when I was his age. Single guys in NYC are no doubt rather jaded on average. I think in many parts of the country he would have as good a chance as anyone else in finding dates.

    @OP I think mwolverine gives the best advice on dating.
  • Svnw688

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    Feb 25, 2015 5:43 AM GMT
    You're over-thinking and rationalizing love.

    Just let it happen. I can't describe the difference between good sex and bad sex, or good ballet dancing and bad ballet dancing. It just is.

    Sure there are groundrules, such as a partner who can get erect, or a ballerina who can reliably hit 4 turns. But trying to intellectualize some things is futile: sometimes he kisses me softly, and other times I kiss him aggressively. But then sometimes we both kiss each other. And occasionally we don't kiss at all.

    What the hell?

    But if you've ever had great sex, all of those instructions make sense in their time and place during the session. The same with dating. Sure there should be some ground rules: "no druggies, employed or seeking employment, good oral hygiene." Nobody would fault you for those standards. But much more and you're kidding yourself.

    Either the fire lights or it doesn't. Stop thinking, and start feeling. Life would be easy if we could choose who we loved. You'd think LGBTs, amongst anyone, would realize that. You have to follow where your heart leads. Yes, let your mind trump (i.e., enforce your absolute deal breakers), but don't let your mind commandeer that which is essentially a matter of the heart.

    Go fall in love and to hell with what anyone, or even your inner self, says.
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    Feb 25, 2015 12:52 PM GMT
    Svnw688 saidYou're over-thinking and rationalizing love.
    ..... You have to follow where your heart leads. Yes, let your mind trump (i.e., enforce your absolute deal breakers), but don't let your mind commandeer that which is essentially a matter of the heart.

    Go fall in love and to hell with what anyone, or even your inner self, says.


    This is excellent advice.
    But it doesn't really address the OP's problem. He isn't complaining about being attracted to guys who don't meet his arbitrary standards. His problem is that he just isn't attracted to the guys he finds on the dating sites he uses.

    The solution is to look IRL. Easier said than done, of course.
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    Feb 25, 2015 5:40 PM GMT
    Erobert said
    Art_Deco, not a specific type of person but the date I went last night was with a guy who was a bit... skeevy. I've been on dates last year with guys who were social awkward or just people you'd rather not go on a second date with.

    Part of the problem could be I've mostly been looking on OKCupid which seems to be declining in quality over the years.icon_confused.gif

    A problem with dating sites is that you get a lot of guys who NEED social dating sites. The really desirable guys can usually manage quite well without them. The ones you encounter on dating sites are often a bit more "desperate" if I can use that term.

    Not to write those sites off completely, they're especially helpful out in the hinterlands where there's like 1 gay per square mile and no gay gathering places where you can socialize. And believe me, I lived in such a place for years, as well as your New York City. But just realize the quality is problematic, as you note. In NYC I would think you could do without them.





  • SilverRRCloud

    Posts: 875

    Feb 26, 2015 7:10 AM GMT
    It is perfectly OK to have your "type" of guy. The freedom of association is one of the most basic human freedoms. You are NOT discriminating against anyone. Being your BF is neither a public function nor a housing or a job-related issue. It is all about whom you wish to associate on a very private and intimate level.

    Dating has a lot to do with matching different people. You do not have to have the attributes that you are seeking in others as long as you agree that they do not have to have the attributes that you have.

    Say, you want to date a preppy looking successful dude who kinda lives well. You do not see yourself as being particularly successful at this time. So, maybe you want to cut this other dude some slack, and look into the guys who are a bit older than yourself but have achieved the lifestyle that you want to enjoy.

    The opposite is true, too. Say, you want to date this hott college dude, who looks very good but does not have the lifestyle that you would want to enjoy. Gotta cut him some slack somewhere.

    I very much like your way of thinking, when you basically say, 'what am I putting on the table?'

    SC

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    Feb 26, 2015 7:50 AM GMT
    On the specific topic of dating standards, I've never had a real list. I either like a guy right off, or I don't. Afterwards I might discover some serious flaws that are relationship enders, but actually not too often. My dating instincts were always as reliable as my gaydar - in other words, rather good.

    What most worked for me was a guy who has similar interests to mine, but different talents. Which means we could watch the same movies together, TV shows, listen to the same music, enjoy the same foods, like the same art and architecture, share a common space.

    But it also meant we reinforced each other in practical matters. It usually meant he could cook, while I could work on the car or fix things around the house. For example, the thing you NEVER want is 2 chefs in the kitchen. I just stay out of there, that's his exclusive domaine. While he wouldn't question me about auto mechanics.

    And the long list of what each of us could individually do goes on, pretty much each different from the other. The strength of that is that we could cover all the bases of practical modern living between us, from one end of the spectrum to the other, as a team. And yet still enjoy the same TV show together in bed at night.

    Similar tastes, different talents - that to me has been the key to a successful relationship. And that's what my husband & I have today. icon_biggrin.gif