dating question for parents

<p>I'm a graduate student in engineering and have a dating question for which I'm hoping to gain the wisdom of the parents out there. </p>

<p>After my graduation last year, I worked at big engineering firm and now i'm doing my masters under a competitive scholarship. Throughout my time in school, I made the mistake of working too hard and not partying in enough. Although this has led to a couple job offers and scholarships, I've never managed to get a girlfriend. </p>

<p>I've heard many times that girls want a guy who has a stable job so I figured that once I graduated and found a job, I should have no problem. However, this has not been the case for me and I'm wondering if its something to do with age (I'm 23).</p>

<p>I've posted my profile on an internet dating website where I state that I'm an engineer but I don't get many replies. In addition to this, I'm volunteering and playing a couple sports. Sadly, the sports are dominated by males in the mid 50s. </p>

<p>So i'm wondering if there is an age where my market value due to having a stable income will suddenly skyrocket? Or am i just fantasizing?</p>

<p>We're old... dating website, what's that? ;) Go buy a dog. Take your dog to a dog park. You'll find an awesome girlfriend there. I don't want to write long, but seriously, try it.</p>

<p>Have you considered finding some activities where there are a lot of women relative to the number of guys? Volunteering at a place where a lot of women volunteer? </p>

<p>I seriously doubt all hope is lost -- but you may be fishing in a "target-poor" environment at the moment.</p>

<p>And just because it really does matter -- is your grooming good? Hair clean and trimmed regularly - no matter what the length? Have you dropped the college student attire for something that looks a little nicer? Clothes ft well? No unibrow?</p>

<p>
[quote]
i'm wondering if there is an age where my market value due to having a stable income will suddenly skyrocket

[/quote]
</p>

<p>Um, this statement does not give women much credit. </p>

<p>In my opinion, it is a mistake to suggest that having a stable income is all that is necessary to attract a woman. </p>

<p>In nonwork situations, what are your interactions with women like? Have you dated? If yes, what happened on dates? Do you have feedback from any women?</p>

<p>I want to second arabrab's suggestion. Get involved in some activities that attract women--for instance, more women than men typically attend arts events, religious services, cooking classes. As jvtdad has already indicated, dog parks are full of females, many of them young and unattached. If you sign up for a dance class, you will be golden even if you are a klutz. And some sports--e.g. track, tennis, yoga--have more women than others. Obviously you don't want to do something you hate, because you want actually to share a common interest with the people you're meeting, but think about what you might enjoy doing as well as what you already do.</p>

<p>"
Quote:</p>

<p>i'm wondering if there is an age where my market value due to having a stable income will suddenly skyrocket </p>

<p>Um, this statement does not give women much credit.
"</p>

<p>Sorry, i didn't mean to offend anyone. What i'm trying to ask is if women care more about a stable income as they get older. If so, at what approximate age?</p>

<p>Right now, I'm finding that women don't care if I have a job or not which is pretty disheartening as I've worked pretty hard to get to where I am professionally.</p>

<p>I don't want to write long, but seriously, try it.</p>

<p>Good idea.
Also women can support themselves, while a source of income is a plus for a partner, it isn't a deal maker ( or breaker)</p>

<p>There's no equation you can derive to provide the solution you're looking for. The reason is that you'll never be able to figure out the variable of the 'individual' - i.e. what a particular person is looking for in a relationship. Some will look at any of the potential qualities according to what's important to them at the time: looks, stable income, high income, job, no job but with a trust fund, some don't really even care that much about income, recreational and spare time interests (sports, traveling, scuba diving, playing video games, watching TV, working on cars, eating at restaurants, partying, drinking and bar hopping, etc.), extroverted types, introverted types, intelligent, not so intelligent, and any of hundreds of other attributes.</p>

<p>Take a look around and you'll see there are matches all over the place that might not even make logical sense to you on the surface but nevertheless the two consider themselves a match for each other.</p>

<p>
[quote]
...where my market value...

[/quote]
That's a problem right there. Don't think of yourself as marketing a commodity according to a formula or business plan.</p>

<p>You'd probably do better to just lighten up a bit, don't over-analyze it, place yourself in situations with potential, i.e. a fair number of women in your age group and ideally who are interested in similar activities as you, and make sure you're open enough to actually talk to the people (i.e. don't be like some stereotypical engineering guys whose eyes don't raise higher than their own shoes when in the presence of a pretty girl), and see how it goes.</p>

<p>Thermo1, it is not JUST about the money. Certainly that may help! Because you are right, many girls don't want a guy who doesn't at least pull his own weight financially. But that is definitely not all they are looking for, or even the first thing they are looking for. And do you really want a women who only likes you for your income? I hope not...</p>

<p>I agree with other posters:</p>

<ul>
<li><p>Put yourself in situations where you will meet more women. Good suggestions above (suggest not just a dog, but a cute puppy that will be an attractive breed when bigger). Women (heck, most people) love puppies, and they really like to see a guy nuturing something. You probalby aren't going to meet tons through work/classes, since you are an engineer. You say you are a grad student, are there any groups on campus you could join?</p></li>
<li><p>"Partying" is not necessarily the best way to meet women. You mentioned before that maybe you didn't party enough. A lot of bar/party initiated relationships are superficial. If you want a more complete, genuine relationship, look at the other suggestions above. Believe me, lack of alcohol is probably not why you are where you are today.</p></li>
<li><p>Not sure what your personality is like, but be sure when you talk to women you ask them questions and listen to their answers. Also... that grooming business is pretty key (in addition to what is mentioned before, showering & good dental hygiene are essential).</p></li>
<li><p>Do you have any female friends? You might ask them for advice. They might just suggest that you get out more... or they might have some concrete suggestions on personality, clothing, communication skills, grooming, etc. that could help. You should follow their advice (at a minimum, if you do they might mention you favorably to some of their friends).</p></li>
</ul>

<p>I'm (roughly) your age but I'm wondering what your specific issue is. Are you having trouble meeting girls period? Are you meeting girls but having trouble being in situations where you can get to know them better? Are you doing both of those things but having trouble being more than a friend? It's a bit too general to just say your problem is you haven't had a girlfriend.</p>

<p>Don't get a dog unless you actually want a dog and you have the facilities for a dog and the time to take care of it. A dog is an investment of over a decade into providing for the well-being of a living creature. </p>

<p>I second the suggestions to find activities/places where there are likely to be girls...but not just girls but new people. Instead of setting a concrete goal to find a woman in X place, just work on generally being more social and meeting new people including male friends. You'll be happier and more confident which will help you as well.</p>

<p>^ How about walking a dog for someone else? One stone, two birds: getting paid and meeting people!</p>

<p>Absolutely second getting a cute dog (of course, only if you love dogs and are willing to take care of a dog). This is a superb chick magnet:</p>

<p>[Papillon</a> (dog](<a href="http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papillon_(dog%5DPapillon"&gt;http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papillon_(dog))&lt;/p>

<p>I'm not kidding. A cat could work, too, but not too many cats like to be displayed in public. Pay attention to your looks and grooming. Try ballroom dancing, especially salsa lessons. Join a Y and work out regularly. 23 is too young to give up on dating!</p>

<p>Lots of great suggestions here, although I would echo Dwight that a dog is a huge commitment and you shouldn't get one unless you want one apart from what it might do for you. If you have a good friend your age, preferably female, it might be helpful to ask that person to tell you what you need to do differently and what you may not be doing right. If you have a friend who has good social skills, especially with the opposite sex, they may have a pretty good idea of what you could change, but not want to tell you without your permission.</p>

<p>Great posting, that I am sharing with my sons and their friends. I see a pattern, since many of them are in the same boat. They've worked hard through school, and now some of them (the engineering and accounting guys especially) are sitting in cubes wondering what's next as they see some of their friends start to get engaged. The pool of guys who are available to get together for a drink after work is starting to get smaller as they peel off with significant girlfriends. Some of these guys were never big drinkers anyway, and video gaming is losing its attraction LOL.</p>

<p>I see that the guys with female friends seem to do a little better. The girls are always suggesting that they meet other single friends, or helping the guys to break the ice.</p>

<p>The fact that an election year is coming up should be helpful. Pick a party, and start to volunteer. Lots of singles do that. Use your access to grad school to tap back into school activities, lectures, etc. to meet possible eligible girls. If you weren't already in a Master's program, I'd suggest taking a graduate level class. Find out if there's a professional engineering association near you, which may have a "Young Engineers" section. Pick a charity - lots of girls do charity walks, runs, auctions, etc. Let people know that you're eligible. You'll be surprised at how many people have daughters or know young women who are also looking. Be open to friendship, not necessarily girlfriends. Friendships can lead to romance.</p>

<p>Be open to meeting lots of friends....don't foreclose being friends with someone who is physically not what you're looking for. She may turn out to surprise you, or may have a friend who is perfect. Get in touch with college friends and find out what they're doing.</p>

<p>The most important suggestion is not to sit home on the computer, playing games etc. Force yourself to engage in the world outside of the computer. This may not be an issue for you, but I've seen some of my kids' friends living more on their computer than they do in the real world.</p>

<p>This sounds like something my son could have written. He just graduated with his masters in Engineering and Materials Science. All the years of undergrad and up until last year, he did not have a girlfriend. He was busy with school, job-study and finishing his degree. He met a very nice girl last year in a sports bar near campus. She approached him first.
Now she is working in another state and he is working on his PhD. So far so good. She is very independent and it works for them. They take turns visiting each other on weekends..</p>

<p>The advise about getting a dog is silly.</p>

<p>The answer is simple -- go where the girls are. </p>

<p>Where are the girls? My unscientific survey shows that the ratio of girls to guys interested in riding horses is 5 million to one. The ratio of girls to guys interested in dancing is about 3 million to one. The ratio of girls to guys interested in fashion is 6.5 million to one. </p>

<p>The best approach is to make a list of those activities where there are a lot of girls and develop an interest in those activities. </p>

<p>Based on my research, you could try to go to a dancing horse fashion show, but I digress....</p>

<p>Since you are working, can you afford to join a gym? Most gyms will give you a trial day for free. Go before work, look around, and if there aren't enough women your age, leave! Try another gym until you find one with more women your age. Work out, and if someone interests you, ask her if she wants to have coffee or breakfast with you after the workout. If the answer is no, try again the next time with someone else. Then, sign up for a volunteer activity. Perhaps your city has a [City's Name] Cares organization. Sign up for some events, and talk to people. If there are not enough people your age, do not go to that again; pick another activity. Sometimes these events are volunteering for a couple of hours and then having a social gathering. Go to a place of worship for your religion if you have one. If there are not enough women your age, pick another place of worship until you find one with women your age. If you are not religious, choose another activity for regular attendance. Join a group having to do with interests, hobbies, your ethnic group, or whatever. Maybe there is an outdoor club or a ski club if you like those kinds of activities. Also, tell everyone you know that you are looking to meet someone; do they know anyone for you? People, especially women, love to set people up. The people you ask to set you up do not have to be your age; they can be older because they have daughters or friends' daughters or relatives your age. The main thing is to get over any fear of rejection. Just go for it, and if you get rejected, so be it. It actually takes a lot of effort but if you really are serious about wanting this, work at it a bit and you will be rewarded. Good luck!</p>

<p>ask the 50 year olds in the sport you play if they have daughters or know anyone that is looking to date seriously. if youve built up a respectable report with them, then i cant see them not helping you out. they want their daughters/nieces married too.</p>

<p>My # 2 son is your age - same problems . Most dating websites would tell you to take a class , especially one that attracts alot of women AND you are interested in . For example a young woman I knew signed up for an auto mechanics class -she was the only woman there ! Maybe Sierra Club ,or a bike group . You get the idea . How about a dance class ? Good luck !</p>

<p>
[quote]
This is a superb chick magnet: Papillon

[/quote]
Seriously? A guy walking a little foo-foo dog? </p>

<p>Regardless, don't get a dog for the purpose of meeting females. A dog or any animal is a serious commitment and one not always well-suited to a young single working person. If anything it'd probably tie you down more than you'd like and diminish your ability to meet women. And ballroom dancing? For people under 60 other than the pros? Are there really very many early 20s people doing ballroom dancing? (but I admit I don't know much about it other than having to tolerate it when my W watches it on TV)</p>

<p>The first step is to be where the women are which usually isn't too difficult since they're pretty much everywhere including the workplace, school, workout places, bars (but not the best place to meet people usually), church, sports, out and about almost anywhere.</p>

<p>But that does little good without the second step - you have to be assertive enough to actually meet them, talk to them, carry a conversation with them, flirt with them, etc. and be able to pick up on cues to see that they have some level of interest in you and act on it.</p>

<p>Maybe the dating websites work but I never saw much of an issue with finding people before the internet existed. Maybe it works somewhat for people who won't get their nose out of the PC long enough to actually meet people.</p>