Dating is too much work

I find it a chore to take time out of my schedule to meet some dude in hopes that we’re compatible. Deciding which one of us has to drive–if it’s me, it’s a massive inconvenience because I have no sense of direction; if it’s the other guy, then I’m at his “mercy” and I don’t know if I can handle the lack of control.

I still have trouble figuring out what I’m doing wrong in social circumstances so I know how to present myself in the right way. (For years, for example, I was convinced that everybody thought like me and confused a number of my casual friends when I’d continue trains of thought that the rest of the group had long ago forgotten. Nobody taught me the fine art of conversation via free association, so while the group had moved on to topic, say G, I was still pondering the sub-sub-sub-branches of topic A.)

I’m also working on not every conversation into something about me because I can be a very self-absorbed twit. When I’m not a shrinking wallflower, I’m an insufferable show off. And I seem to bounce between “complete doormat who doesn’t know how to say no” and “insufferable bitch with a tiny comfort zone who loves to boss people around”.

Every time I’m around a guy, I get irrationally paranoid because there had been some jerks in my life who thought it was funny to get uncomfortably close and freak me the bleep out. Sure, in my head I know that just because some guy thinks I’m cute and wants to get to know me better doesn’t mean he’s a date rape waiting to happen, but it doesn’t stop me from feeling uncomfortable even when someone gives me an honest compliment.

I’m offended when a guy puts me on a pedestal, and even more offended when a guy decides I’d be perfect if only I would open up a little more and let go of my insecurities. The guy who worships the ground I walk on I suspect of loving a phantom, an image of a girl in his head; the guy who treats me as a fixer-upper I see as a threat to my current existence.

I don’t want to be wined and dined, I hate shopping, I find most movies a waste of my time and money, and I find noisy, crowded areas (like clubs) to be suffocating. I’d prefer to spend my evenings curled up on the couch watching football or playing video games.

I find my cats easier to relate to than most people and even they (the cats, that is) find me off-putting sometimes.

I’m not entirely fine with the way I am now, but most days it’s less effort to maintain ontological inertia than figure out whether or not there are parts of me that could use a little improvement. I’m worried that trying to date now would end in disaster for either party, so I’m neither putting myself in the market nor am I looking. Sure, I might regret not taking chances later, but given how my last attempt at dating fell apart, I’m not exactly eager to try again until I can figure out how to minimize making the same mistakes.

Here’s an alternate method:

Each party submits a list of questions to the other. They then grade the responses. If you each score higher than 80%, then you roll a 100 sided dice. If the value of the dice roll is lower than the lowest of either of your test result, then you get married.

Don’t you get a saving throw?

Yes, I agree, dating * is* too much work. Sometimes I think of just putting an ad out there somewhere (Craigslist?) stating that I just want to get married. If I just randomly marry someone, it has about as much chance of working out as I have of finding someone then getting married. But then, see, that would sound crazy, which would attract the crazy, which I’m not into. The older I get, the more comfortable my living room gets, and the less appealing the idea of being uncomfortable on a bad date gets.

One alternative might be to focus on meeting guys as friends without ruling out the chance of more later on down the road. My current (and best) boyfriend started out as a platonic pal. I think that having that foundation of friendship helped enormously.

At the risk of being called a smartass, I’d think if those statements are true, you’re better off not actively dating. Just forget it. If Mr. Right shows up in your life, he shows up. If not, you’ve got football and your cats, and that policy keeps some guy from wasting a perfectly good Saturday night by taking a girl (you) out to dinner and dancing when you don’t really want to go.

For me, once a man is in the friendship zone, that’s it- I can usually never feel “that way” about them after that. It’s like they’re my brother or something, so ew.

I have had friends like you. Many of them are now married because they found guys who liked to watch football and play video games in the evenings and gradually realized that everything else kinda just fit, too.

The biggest problem with this is that it tends to attract guys who do not know when or how to classily suggest that you move from friendship to maybe a date (to a football game, even, or just sitting closer to each other on the couch that night).

Have you many male friends?

Alternate response:

Video games, football, and cats, eh? How YOU doin’? winks I didn’t even vote for you in T2 Mafia!

I’m curious as to whether you’re interested enough in the concept of dating to work around that, per se…that is, is there a point where an acquaintance is not in the friend zone yet but looks to be headed that way, where you could ask them out on a date to see if it might work?

I’ve never understood the American obsession with dating.

I’m 38 and rather experienced in the ways of the world (including marriage). Yet I’ve never been on any sort of formalised “date”. I’ve been in situations where I’ve ended up going out with people, and stuff has happened (or not), but to go and sit at a restaurant table with somebody, with both sizing each other up with “is this stranger somebody I want to grow old with?” seems really weird to me. It reduces it to the level of shopping - with more than a touch of teenage desperation thrown in for good measure.

We’re adults. Just go about your life, and let somebody come along when you least expect it. I’m too old for sitting there nervously playing with my cutlery, and saying, “So, uh… you like stuff?”

So it DOES exist! cackles maniacally

There’s nothing wrong with being single for a while and working on improving yourself. What exactly do you think you need work on? Also, what was so bad about your last dating attempt?

Which, in this case, means Yakko or Wakko. I don’t know if that makes it better, or worse, but I’m sure Dr. Scratchansniff would have an opinion

I read the OP with the Tress MacNeille voice in my head. It was interesting.

Not wishing I had a secret service detail every time a guy so much as takes marginal interest in me, for one. Figuring out how to make small talk with someone without constantly trying to redirect the conversation into something I’m interested in, for another. Deciding how much physical intimacy is appropriate for various levels of dating–on top of my hangups, I am genuinely old fashioned about things like kissing or making out, and I’d rather not have to be up in arms about whether or not somebody is going to make a move on me the first some number of undecided dates in.

I was very upfront about my hangups, but the guy seemed to think that if he exposed me to the healing light of his…something, I’d get over it. Dealing with him was draining because I felt like I was being emotionally blackmailed. “Aren’t you my girlfriend? Why won’t you spend more time with me?”

Now, I obviously don’t have an objective view of the relationship, and I probably could have handled things better, but two things that stuck out in my mind were:

  1. The first time I thought it was okay to spend some time in his apartment, he decides to unzip his pants and show me how turned on he was by me.
  2. A couple months after I broke up with him (and had been kind of avoiding him), I thought it would be fine to give him a neutral, polite “hello”. He calls me up that evening to discuss what went wrong in the relationship, hoping that we could hook up again. I made the mistake of humoring him and we spent the evening talking across each other. I basically had to outright ignore him. (Which was a little awkward, considering we went to the same school and that was how we had met.)

Most of the few friends I do have are male, but I’m “one of the guys” to them.

I was friends with a neighbor of mine for years and years, and he ends up dating my cousin 'cause she was a much more forward, and while I was going over to his house to play video games and/or watch him play video games with the other guys, she was over there to become his girlfriend.

Cue moment of awkwardness when my Mom thought it was inappropriate for me to hang out with said buddy when my cousin figured out long before anybody else did that there wasn’t anything romantic going on between me and him and was totally fine with all of us hanging out together. (I have to tell you, though, finding out he was dating my cousin was kind of heartbreaking for a tiny moment, but I think it was more of an ego thing than anything else. I can’t believe she got to him first! :P)