What Dating Is Like When You Have Low Self-Esteem

There’s no algorithm for being a successful dater but there is one thing you have to have before a successful relationship: self-confidence. Dating is all about believing you deserve the best and you won’t get very far without that belief. In fact, having low or no self-esteem can seriously derail your love life in the following ways:

  1. You let guys treat you like crap. You’re going to get taken advantage of because if you don’t know your own worth, no guy will. You know the guy you’re with doesn’t treat you right but you think, hey, it could be worse — and at least you have someone. You’re content that you have a relationship even if it’s not with the right guy. You let him walk all over you because you don’t have the strength to stand up for yourself.
  2. You believe you don’t deserve love. Why would you? You don’t know your own worth so you’re unlikely to convince anyone else of it either, which is a shame. In your head, you’re not the girl who gets the guy — you’re the girl who loses him to someone prettier, smarter, thinner, etc. If you don’t believe that you’re worthy of love, there’s no way you can find it.
  3. You allow your fear of rejection to dictate your love life. You can’t live your life being afraid to take chances. You won’t make the first move, why? Because he might reject you? Honestly, so what? People get rejected every single day, and you know what? Their world doesn’t end because one person’s opinion of you doesn’t matter. The only way it does is if you have that low of an opinion of yourself.
  4. You lack confidence in the bedroom. How could you have confidence in the bedroom if you don’t have self-esteem in any other aspect of your life? You don’t feel confident naked because you don’t feel comfortable in your own skin. Body acceptance starts with you, and the only way to be good in bed is to be confident in bed. Being ashamed of your own body isn’t sexy, it’s sad.
  5. You forget to make yourself a priority. What relationship is more important than the one you have with your partner? The one you have with yourself. Low self-esteem is the most obvious indication that you need to work on the relationship you have with YOU. When you have no confidence, you view yourself as unimportant. You start to prioritize every other person above yourself because you believe they matter and you don’t. Big mistake.
  6. You fall apart if he falls out of love. Getting through a breakup is always hard, but it’s hardest on the women who lack confidence. They don’t know how to pick themselves back up. Having someone who loved you meant everything to you because you didn’t feel like you could offer to that yourself, soSo when that love stopped, your heart feels like it stopped too. You might have loved him, but even more so you loved the fact that he loved you.
  7. You base your self-worth on whether or not a guy likes you. You give your partners all the power. If there isn’t a man to want you then you feel worthless. You let men dictate how you see yourself. You don’t find yourself beautiful or likable but when a man sees that in you, then it might just be true. You need men to tell you how to feel about yourself and without them you feel nothing.
  8. You wonder why any guy would love you. Since you don’t love yourself, you don’t understand why anyone else would love you. Even if a guy says he does, you’ll never be fully confident in that. You’ll always question if his love is real and wonder what day he’ll stop loving you. In the end, he’ll get sick of your doubt and your worry will be the exact thing that drives him away.
  9. You attract negative partners. Positive happy people attract other happy people. Negative people, however, will attract negative mates. You feel like crap about yourself already and you’ll attract men who are only going to make you feel worse. If you want a positive and healthy relationship then it has to start with you. Once you find peace with yourself, only then will you be able to have a successful relationship with the right kind of man.
  10. You’ll never be happy. Happiness doesn’t come from your partner, it comes from you. If you don’t love yourself then you’re obviously not happy with who you are. Before you even think about dating, let alone being in a relationship, take some time to work on self-esteem. You need to find a way to be happy being you. Until you find confidence and true love for yourself, you’re better off being single.
Kelsey Dykstra is a freelance writer based in Huntington Beach, CA. She has a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing from Grand Valley State University and been writing professionally since graduating in 2013. In addition to writing about love and relationships for Bolde and lifestyle topics for Love to Know, she also writes about payment security and small business solutions for PaymentCloud.

Originally from Michigan, this warm weather seeker relocated to the OC just last summer. Kelsey enjoys writing her own fictional pieces, reading a variety of young adult novels, binging on Netflix, and of course soaking up the sun.

You can find more about Kelsey on her LinkedIn profile or on Twitter @dykstrakelsey.