Being single and dating is a common reality for most people. Some people are certainly more successful at it than others, as we all know. But why is that? Well some singles, of course, stay single by choice. However, most people really do want to find love but can’t.
A very interesting academic study was recently published looking at all the reasons men cited that they were single. The researchers from the University of Nicosia in Cyprus asked almost 7000 male Reddit users from all over the world why they were single to determine if there were consistent reasons men chose (or didn’t choose) to be single. They found that there were 43 various reasons men gave for staying single. What were they? Read on to find out!
Why Men Stay Single
The reasons men stay single are quite varied but here are some of the top responses given (you can read all of them here):
- Undesirable physical appearance led the pack. Whether they were overweight, unattractive, short, bald, perceived themselves as ugly, penis size, health/disability challenges, etc, they felt that it was holding them back from attracting love.
- Low confidence or self-esteem was a close second. These men felt they were socially inept or not worthy of love. They don’t have the charisma or social skills necessary to secure a mate.
- Next on the list was a lack of effort. They really didn’t bother trying. They prefer a passive approach to dating and finding love. Essentially, they feel it will come on its own when it’s the right time.
- Also, some people were not interested in having a relationship or they enjoy being single. They didn’t really want to be with anyone.
- Poor flirting skills or shyness was next in line. Not being able to flirt or talk to the person they like in a desirable way holds them back.
- Being introverted was also a popular response. They really don’t get out there to meet people. These men stick to their work-home routine and don’t step out of their comfort zone.
- Another reason was that they recently broke up with someone and just not ready to jump in to the dating pool yet.
- Some men also had bad experiences from a previous relationship. Those experiences have held them back from wanting to try again.
- Other men said that there are no available women in their communities or areas of work or who meet their standards. They can’t find what they want where they are.
- They have a fear of commitment or making the wrong choice in partner. They don’t want to be tied down, they have a fear of missing out or they see the grass is greener on the other side.
Because of all these reasons, many single men just gave up trying to find love. Many would rather allocate their time, energy and resources on other things. While it furthers the argument that well-rounded charismatic men who have good social skills are most successful with women, that’s not always the case in practice.
I would argue that most of these “undesirable” attributes are within the respondents’ control. It’s easy to say “nobody wants me because I’m short, obese and bald”. It’s easy to say that there are “no available women”. What’s NOT easy is to get out of your comfort zone and do something about it.
Even though the study focused on Reddit users, from speaking to and working with many many single men over the years I know that the reasons noted are pretty much uniform for most men who are having a difficult and challenging time finding love. Women also, in my experience, cite pretty much the same reasons for being single, so men aren’t alone. It’s almost like singles feel that you have to be a 10/10 in every way in order to find love. While that may be true for some people, it’s not true for most.
Just look around you. Short obese bald men, for example, are living their happily ever after. So then, what makes these men different? Perspective. They are realistic. They know how to market their best attributes and how to make dating choices that are better for them. Their success is a direct result of their actions and attitude. As Dita Von Teese said, “you can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.” So if you meet someone who isn’t a fan of peaches, accept it, don’t let it get you down, and find the one who loves peaches. Plain. Simple.
What To Do
What men (or women) who are single need to do is simple, they need to take a hard look at themselves, their values, their judgments and then re-assess who they perceive themselves to be, what they are really looking for in a partner and how they are going about finding them. Additionally, in my experience, most singles also underestimate the importance of personal marketing when dating. They don’t know how to demonstrate their value (usually because they don’t know or see what it is themselves).
Singles also want quick solutions and big fireworks but it takes a lot of dates to find the right one and the best relationships take time to develop. Knowing that will put you one step ahead. Online dating, contrary to what you might think, has also made finding love somewhat harder and not easier. There are many more time wasters than ever online. Most people used to find love in their social circles and communities in person with success, and they are now looking online with countless meaningless options, frustrating the hell out of everyone. Some people do find success online, but many don’t.
I always challenge all my clients to get offline and meet people the old fashioned way. Scary for most, I know, but practice makes perfect so the more you do it the easier it will be. I’ve witnessed even the shyest most socially awkward people meet others with success after getting out of their comfort zones. I’m not saying it’s easy but it is possible.
So what do I think about this study? Well, I think that it brings to light what singles are actually thinking and feeling. More than ever singles need to try harder and push harder to find love. They have to get out of their comfort zones and give love a chance. They need to go on dates with people they normally wouldn’t go out with. They need to stop serial dating. They need to re-assess what it means to be a good partner.
Finding love isn’t what it used to be, so singles need to ask themselves what lessons have they have learned and what could they be doing differently and do it. No one said it would be easy, but it will be worth it.
READERS: Do you agree with the findings? Share your thoughts & perspective in the comments below!
Your Sister in Dating Bliss,
Single Dating Diva
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I totally agree that most of these issues are within the daters control. For most people, losing weight is within their control if they put in the effort. Many want a magic wand waved and them and they’ve magically lost two stone. It does not work like that.
Empty or poorly constructed profiles will get you nowhere. Terrible photos or no photos at all are not helpful. I don’t believe being short is a hindrence if you have a personality. Likewise with being bald. I see tons of unattractive (to me) people walking around in couples. There is someone for everyone if you want it.
Again, distance. I have a 250 mile limit set on mine – that’s about a 4 hr drive. The right person is worth the journey so all those Londoners who won’t date outside their zone are missing most of the population. It just smacks of laziness and I think that is why a lot of people who don’t want to be single, are. If you can’t be bothered to make an effort for someone else, what do you expect?
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Thanks for your comment! I agree that in the current dating scene you definitely have to make an effort not only to stand out from the crowd but also to find the right partner. Many, sadly, aren’t willing to do that.
Hi Suzie, I’m a 39 year old guy who had never been on a date (literally not even one) in my life. After 20 plus years of rejection every time I asked a woman out, I’ve basically given up on trying any more. So many people seem to forget that men are human – I’m tired of being told that as a guy I should just “sick it up” every time. Do you honestly believe there’s someone for everyone, or should i just accept my situation as fate and avoid thinking about the possibility that any woman could ever be attracted to me altogether?
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Thanks for your question Allen. Sorry you’ve had such a challenging time getting a date. I think that love is possible for everyone but it takes work. I would need more information about you and your experiences/situation to be able to give you specific advice. It might just be something you can adjust to change your fate and change your success rate. You are welcome to email me more information.
I’m attracted to a man who is short and a bit chubby but he has low self esteem. He needs to work on himself before he’s a good choice. I think what many men do wrong is date out of their league instead of being realistic. For example, I used to have this friend who was smelly, unemployed, obese, over 40 and lived with his mom. He would only want women under 25, preferably blonde, in shape, buxom, good job, etc. I told him first off, certain things he needed to change before he was desirable to any woman (better hygiene and a job were what I mentioned), and he needed to be realistic. He wasn’t going to attract the woman he wanted because most men wanted that and he was going to fail. There was a woman he knew who was open to dating him but she was chubby and his age. He rejected her because he thought he could do better. Long story short, he died a few years ago around 50 and was still single. I often wonder if he had been a lot less picky maybe instead of being dead (I believe he committed suicide but not sure), he’d be alive and happy.
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You are completely correct Dawn. Many many people have unrealistic goals and expectations when it comes to dating. They seem to forget you have to also attract the person you want, be attractive to them. That means being similar to them in look, values, as well as other factors.
Suzie. 62 year young male single never married. I ask ladies out and sometimes get yes. We set up a date and then they make a fool of me by backing out. Why hurt someone’s feelings? Are they phony and not able to say no? What about a too busy excuse? I’m running out of time and patience here. Then I lose the friendship too! How do I take charge and handle this hurtful stuff? Please help.
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Randy, are you asking out women around your age or much younger? The age is a pet peeve of mine because as a 47 year old woman I get a lot of men in their 60’s and 70’s. I’m in shape, no baggage (financially secure, no kids or exes) yet can’t seem to attract men like me around my age since they are seeking the 20 somethings.
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Dawn. Thanks for replying.
Age has been already pointed out before, but is only a number. How compatible the couple is much more important. As Suzie said choosing better quality dates is the key to success. Randy.
Agree compatibility is important but very rarely are large age gaps successful. This is why many men fail, and so do older women because we are overlooked. It’s no fun being rejected by a guy my age but some 70 year old man thinks we are compatible. What then happens is both people are still single because the man is unrealistic.
Thanks for your question Randy. Sorry you’re having such a difficult time with dating. While yes it’s pretty rotten of them to say yes and then backing out, from what you told me it sounds like you’re making a lot of bad choices. If it happened occasionally I would say it’s normal (we all go through it), but since it happens every time it tells me that you aren’t focusing your attention on the best matches for you. Try focusing on people who are looking for someone like you, who share the same values and make sure to personally market yourself in the best way.
Suzie. Thanks for a fine reply. Quality compatible matches are key to dating success. Age is only a number but is considered also. Randy.
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It’s also a good idea Randy to not waste too much time chatting online with these women. You should ask them out within a week or two of connecting. This will alleviate getting attached to someone and will get rid of time wasters. If they don’t accept or make excuses then cut the connection and move on. Best of luck!
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