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JawnMuir

How do I break this cycle?

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JawnMuir

So I think I'm probably demisexual.  I don't seem to experience primary physical attraction; literally every guy I've had feelings for I knew for some time as friends, or it was an intense situation like traveling together where you are around them 24-7 in a different environment and that speeds things up.  I always realize I'm suddenly talking/thinking about the person all the time and then realize I'm emotionally, next physically attracted.

 

I would say even though in generally I am not touchy-feely, when I am attracted to someone it's not an issue, at all.  I definitely want sex with a person I'm attracted to and feel like they are really attracted to me (ie not just because I have correct plumbing down there).  And it's very hard for me to restrain my romantic streak.  However, I have never found a person I like who likes me back.  All of the men I've fancied see me as just friends.  I tend to like someone every 2-3 years historically, and crush hard.  Then tell them or make a move, and get rejected.  It's been very, very hard for me being nearly 37, never having had a romantic relationship nor a sexual one.  Want to be able to share and explore that side of myself.

 

I've tried online dating and it's different this go around (I'd last tried about 8 years ago).  I get tons of messages, most of which are like "heyyyyyyy", but there are also ones that seem genuine.  However, I just have no attraction to any of these people.  Partly I feel like some of this is due to my historically needing to know someone for a while before feeling anything, but the other part is just that I find a lot of these dudes boring and very little in common.  I have always liked men who are musicians in some way (even if not professionally) and I still am unsure if it's something about the lifestyle/personality, or if it's because I'm a musician myself and I'm around them more than any other profession, or familiar with the lifestyle.  Also men seem to bring up very quickly (first date) about past relationships etc and then I have to be vague and even then the men get super weird, and some have been quite mean to me about it, saying I have so many "red flags", something "wrong" with me since no experience, etc.  Obviously not right dudes but this still sucks.

 

I think I've been dressing better or better body language than when I last lived in this city; I have in the last 2-3 months finally guys coming up to me and trying to flirt a couple times.  However, in all of these cases, they were also very very drunk.  Um.  Better than before or nothing?/pretty much not what I want at all tho.  I had a guy I like ask me out (or so I thought) a few months back and we went on a few dates but he also told me after the first one he wasn't ready for a relationship, I think just was lonely, and eventually ghosted me and all our mutual friends.  Sigh.  There was another one I might have been interested in, I didn't know him at all and wasn't attracted yet, but open to getting to know him, but he also ghosted after texting for a few days.  

 

I just feel like I'm in this cycle of I can't be attracted to anyone right away, so since if a guy is, then I ruin it by acting platonic, but I don't even know since I don't usually pick up on these things.  Also that somehow I must behave in a way that doesn't get men attracted to me, since there has been literally nothing until few months ago, and then just few and not positive experiences.  It's weird and frustrating because most people assume I'm in a relationship, and then are shocked that I'm not, can't understand why.

 

Any suggestions?

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Grimalkin

This will be harder because you are 37. Not impossible, but a lot of people that age are already paired off or have been through some messy heartbreak. Many will have children from past relationships. This is why a lot of the guys you've seen seem less than ideal. It's still doable, but your ideal type may be very hard to find.

 

I'm not suggesting you "settle", far from it. But you could start by making a list of things you need in a relationship, versus the things you want. For instance, it may be that you don't need your partner to be a musician, but you do need them to be outgoing or bold. Also make a list of dealbreakers so you can steer clear of those from the get-go.

 

It's rough needing to know someone for a while in order to be attracted to them. I think there's two ways you could approach this.

 

The first is to look for meetup groups or other opportunities in your area that bring together people of your age to do fun things. Meetup.com is wonderful for this, and if you live in a city it will be easy to find groups like "30+ hikers", etc. This will allow you to meet a lot of people, probably single people (since they have time to do these things), who share common interests. You will make friends, both platonic and potentially romantic.

 

The second is to really throw yourself into the dating world. Join all the dating sites. Join all the singles groups. Go on loads of dates even if you're not sure it'll work. It will stretch your dating wings and allow you to get some practice explaining what you're looking for. Tell them you want to go slow; no, really, actually slow. Explain to them what demisexuality is. Tell them what your limits and boundaries are. If they're not comfortable with it or don't want to take things slow, bounce. If they seem open to the idea, go on some more casual dates with them, with minimal to no romantic content, just walking and chatting and doing fun things. Treat it like an advanced friendship, and don't let them pressure you to go faster. See if it develops into something more.

 

You can do both of these things at the same time, in fact. It's just a numbers game, and at your age when there's statistically not as many people looking for relationships, numbers are what you need. And of course, you will be rejected, and you will need to reject people. It hurts, but the second you know your feelings you need to let them be known. If you feel like you're starting to develop feelings for a friend, let them know and if they don't feel the same way back down quick so the feelings don't escalate.

 

The thing is, allosexual men will be concerned/won't think it's worth it when they wait and wait and nothing happens. So communication between you and them will have to be constantly, constantly open. Will some men be put off by this? Sure. But the one for you won't be.

 

Don't wear yourself out. Keep on with your life as normal. But if a relationship is ultimately something that you want, then you'll need to work just as hard as you want it, even when it's frustrating. Good luck.

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E

I have an elaboration that might help a little bit.

 

Attraction is composed of two component parts. Physical(which mainly ties into sexual) And mental(which ties into personality).

 

Most people you're ever going to meet are going to get into a relationship because the starting lure was physical attraction. And it's only later that they find out if they're compatible personality wise. Probably not by coincidence, this is why so many relationships sink under the waves.

 

But this doesn't rule out that for a small portion of people, it's the mental attraction that needs to happen first rather than the physical. Which makes everything a supreme pain in the ass. But now you know. When I have more time to write something substantial I will later on tonight.

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JawnMuir

Yeah I've tried meetups for years off and on...mostly the hiking ones.  It's been hard as I tend to have opposite schedule of most people (I usually work nights/weekends, which is when they are) and can't get to them often.  Also didn't have a car, but I did recently get a car tho which makes things a little more possible.  I haven't found much luck with the meetups, currently the singles ones are all with people way younger than me (I'm probably looking for a guy in mid 30s to any of 40s, the people at those are in late 20s mostly even if group says 30s-40s, or 20s 30s).   Also mostly women, very few men, and I'd say half of those that show up have a girl with them.  IDK.  I feel like not many people use meetup any more, I had taken a break for a couple years when I was out of the country, and in the last almost year I've been back, it really seems like few groups in my city.

 

I do meet a lot of people as a musician (gig in public couple times a week, these involve dancing and drinking 95% of the time) and in medical field (tho...patients?), but I guess not enough?  It's very confusing as I see women approaching the single men in our music group all the time, but almost no-one (and actually no one until recently) comes to talk to me or whatever.  The people who do are usually women who are like, it's so rad you're a girl in a band ¯\_(ツ)_/¯  I mean, that's cool and all, I don't play in a band for attention, I play because I HAVE to, that creative fulfillment  If others are inspired, awesome!  Or the recent couple-a drunk dudes.  I don't even think I noticed this years ago but now since working on it it's something I've observed.  The group is mostly men, often I'm only woman on gig, the only single one of the others who sub, supposedly men make move first more often than vice versa, I don't even know.  But it is something why I've been trying to pay more attention to appearance, not that I ever looked bad I think, but if most dudes go by physical attraction first, ok, dress cool (prolly was more tee + jeans in 20s).  I actually am enjoying thinking about fashion a little and it's not crazy expensive since I shop only at thrift.  The people in the band have been complimenting me so I guess that's something?

 

My dealbreakers are not too many: in reasonable health, working on self-improvement in some way and/or have some sort of passion (work, hobby, whatever), they read, sense of humor, not religious, some shared interest(s) (doesn't have to be everything but at least something), taller than me (I'm 5'8", anything above 5'9" is fine.  I guess I have an inferiority complex since rest of my siblings and much of family are very very short, I always towered over them) Apparently even these needs/wants eliminate a lot :( 

And of course to desire me (like, I definitely don't need to hear from you all the time, but make a little effort that you want to see me, I honestly feel I'm WAY less high maintenance than most), and be able to communicate.

 

I really don't feel like I am able to be with someone who has kids, it's just way too much for me at this point, and since I don't want to have kids, that's also a problem apparently.  I actually have very few people in my friends group who have/want kids, but for some reason people I meet, particularly through online, all seem to want to have kids even if they don't have already and that rules me out before I could even rule them out.  I'll go on dates, I mark on my profile about this on the kids section, then they bring it up and argue with me how I can't know that I don't want to have kids.  Um, what?  Just confused, why would you even want to meet then?

 

So I guess problem is really that there aren't many people who fit the criteria?  Maybe I just really need to come to terms with that.  It's been an interesting year being "back in civilization" which I hadn't really been in a while, observing where I'm at, and what other people in my age group are up to.  I'm really pretty stoked with my life apart from the romantic tip, I guess can't have it all.  Good thoughts E, putting it quite clearly.  I'll keep that in mind.

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