You feel like you’re doing everything right: you put yourself out there, you show interest, and you’re a total catch. And yet here you are, painfully single. It’s so hard to find a good man these days, and there are lots of reasons why. Here are some of them, as well as some tips for beating the odds.
- Hookup culture has taken over. Although I would never knock hooking up, it has replaced dating and even relationships. Men don’t want to be with only one woman when they have an entire buffet at their disposal. If you’re not interested in letting him sleep with you and then never getting in touch again, there are other women who are.
- People have too many options. While it’s good to have options, it can be bad when there are too many of them. At any given moment, a guy can open up a dating app and immediately have endless amounts of women from which to choose. Because of that, it’s hard for them to give one woman a shot for more than a hot minute. Sure, the same could be said for women, but given that so many guys are on these apps for something short and sweet, we end up getting screwed over more often than not.
- Lots of guys are holding out for something “better.” It’s a sad thought, but in a world with so many options, people can become immersed in the idea that something better might be just around the corner. Because that’s the case, it’s hard to find a man who wants to commit when they’re thinking that the next woman they meet could be perfect (despite the fact that we all know “perfect” doesn’t exist).
- Marriage is becoming obsolete. Once upon a time, people couldn’t wait to get married. Although it was likely due to the fact that they would finally be able to have sex, the reality is that these days people are in no rush to get married, so they’re in no hurry into a relationship or settle down either. Plus, if a guy’s friends aren’t married, he sure as hell won’t be the first one to do it.
- Some men are intimidated by power. In comparison to the past few decades, women are more independent than ever. This success and power, for some reason, can be intimidating for some men who probably that they’ll never be the “man” his female partner is.
- Technology has created distance. How can anyone possibly find a good man or anyone at all when we live in a world where technology rules and our most intimate relationships are with our iPhones? We can’t. How many “relationships” have you had that took place pretty much entirely via text or WhatsApp? Probably too many to count, and it’s really depressing.
- The “man-child” is a legitimate problem. A man-child is a just modern-day term for a man who suffers from Peter Pan Syndrome: He does not want to grow up. If he grows up, he’d have to become responsible, get his act together, and even maybe find a girl and fall in love. Too many men just don’t want to do that. You’re not a babysitter and you certainly don’t want to mother a grown man, so that really cuts down on your options.
- Everyone has their baggage. No one is immune to having a rocky past, and sometimes that past can interfere with how that person moves forward ― if they move forward at all. Messy baggage can keep even the great guys in hiding for a long time.
- Being a commitment-phobe is accepted. We live in a world where being scared of commitment has simply become the norm. If a man doesn’t want to commit, people are rarely surprised. Since that’s the case, they’ll just keep on skipping out on commitment and sticking to hookup culture, because it’s so accepted.
- A lot of them are already taken. This is the most classic adage women repeat to ourselves and each other when lamenting that a good man is hard to find. “All the good ones are taken – or gay!” we say, laughing so that we don’t cry. While it’s true that a guy with a lot to offer is likely to be snatched up quickly, there are good guys out there.. right?
- We’re not looking in the right places. Maybe one of the reasons we struggle to find a good man is that we’re looking in all the wrong places. If you’re thinking you’re going to find Mr. Right on Tinder or while you’re drunk at the club on Saturday night, you should probably face the fact that it’s unlikely to happen. We could all do with widening our scope and looking elsewhere. Maybe we meet a guy at book club, at church, or even in the produce section of the grocery store. That’s not to say that you can’t meet great guys in less-than-ideal ways, but that if you’re striking out with your usual methods, there’s probably a reason.
- The vibe is all wrong. Have you ever considered that maybe the problem isn’t always with the other person and that it could very well be with you? Yes, you’re a badass boss, but would you actually make a good partner? Do you have a positive attitude or are you negative, braggy, and generally unpleasant to be around? You can’t expect to come across the man of your dreams if you’re putting out the wrong vibes. Work on yourself first before you start looking for a guy who meets your standards.
How to increase your likelihood of finding a good man
At the end of the day, love doesn’t come with any guarantees and there’s no one magic formula that will bring “The One” right to your door. However, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of coming across a decent dude, according to the experts.
- Keep an open mind. You might have a really strong idea about the kind of partner you want, down to his hair color and his job. However, as relationship coach Lucy Keaveny says, this could be holding you back. “Rather than have a rigid dating checklist, split this into deal-breakers and ‘nice to have,'” she advises. “Key things to consider are age and life stage, the kind of relationship you’re looking for (casual or committed), and whether your fundamental values align (so differing politics may not be a deal-breaker, but being honest, open, and thoughtful are). With everything else, see them as a nice optional extra, to make it easier to welcome someone new into your life.”
- Try to meet in real life. If you usually meet the guys you date on dating apps, consider taking your search into the real world. Relationship expert and matchmaker Destin Plaff says these real-life meet-cutes could be the key to changing your dating luck. “As much as I embrace technology, there’s nothing better than meeting someone in real life. Chemistry can tell chapters beyond a dating profile,” he says.
- Don’t rely on your girls too much. It’s great that you have supportive friends who are willing to be your wing women, but staying with the pack could make you intimidating to guys. As psychotherapist and author Kelly Kitley explains: “In therapy, we work on building confidence and self-esteem to have the courage to go out by yourself or with one friend. People are more approachable when they are at a social event without a group of people.” In other words, there’s never been a better time to take yourself on a date.
- Strike up a conversation with strangers. These days, we’re all so… inward. It’s rare that we engage with the world around us, particularly people we don’t know. That’s a mistake, relationship expert and therapist Dr. Juliana Morris points out. “It passes the time and you never know if it could be a match or if they could know someone,” she says. Strike up a conversation with a guy who seems interesting and see where it goes. Even if it’s nothing, “you never know if it could be a match or if they could know someone” who might be a better fit for you.
- Update your online dating profile. If you are using apps, it’s important to keep your profile up to date and relevant so that you’re showing off the best you have to offer. “You change your résumé for every job—so you should be changing your online profile picture to show you on a recent ski trip, or talk about the newest movie you’ve seen. You need to be putting things out there that people will respond to, not just ‘Looking for someone with great eyes,'” says author and Match.com’s relationship expert, Whitney Casey. And if you’ve always sworn off online dating and refused to do it, it may be time to change your approach.