My entire family thinks I'm worthless now

We had a family reunion today. My grandmother asked me if I had a girlfriend. I scoffed and said no. She asked why I put it like that, and I replied “because the notion of any girl wanting anything to do with me is laughable.” She asked if I ever had one, I said no. She couldn’t believe a 22 year old would go through life without a girlfriend and wound up telling the whole party. My uncles started making fun of my dad for it, and he tried to damage control.

“Well you’ve had a few flings, right Phil?”
“…uh, no.”
“C’mon, what about that girl from school?”
“Dad, you and I both know there is no girl from school or anywhere else. No female wants anything to do with me.”

Then he got mad and we left, and he’s still mad. I took away his ability to brag about me.

…just when I was beginning to think I was worth a fuck after all, too.

Well, duh. No one wants to hang around whiny emo kids. Lemme tell you a little secret, because you apparently don’t know it. Lean in close. You ready? Here it is.

You’re awesome. No, really. You are awesome. There is no one in the world like you and there never will be. What we think determines what we say and do and what we say and do determines who we attract. If you think happy and positive you will be happy and positive. Happy and positive people like other happy and positive people. And that, my friend is the secret.

Don’t use other people as your metric. Use yourself. Are you happy with you? What will make you happy with you and what can you do to get there? This is your only shot at life so you might as well make the best of it. The ancient greeks knew it, shakespeare knew it and you know it now as well: Be yourself. There’s no one better qualified.

I’d say that any uncles who make fun of someone’s parent for the lack of romance present in their offspring’s life are a pretty pathetic bunch. And Grandma sounds charming. (not)
And then what Inner Stickler said. I get that you’re feeling frustrated and embarrassed and angry etc, but seriously, take a good long look at yourself and find your attractiveness. Then follow your interests and get out there and do it. There’s someone for everyone but they tend not to just come knocking. Good luck. And avoid these uncles and grandmas for awhile.

You wasted a perfect opportunity to come out to your family. Oh, well, at least they all think so now anyway.

Perhaps it wasn’t the fact you didn’t have a girlfriend that bemused her. Perhaps it was the fact that you didn’t keep your private business private?

I think we as a society air far too much personal information in pubic. I can’t believe what I overhear when people talk on cell phones.

While I certainly don’t care what a person on the bus or subway think of me, on the other hand, I’m not about to reveal personal details about my life so the entire bus can be entertained.

As for the OP, you’re a 22 year old kid, I know young people don’t want to hear this and I don’t mean to sound condecending but you’re TWENTY TWO… Who CARES!!!

It’s hard at holiday times when everyone has someone, or at least it seems that way, but many people have no one, not even family. When you’re telling yourself how many things you don’t have, remember the things you do have.

There is a major recession on, people are losing their cars, their homes, going bankrupt, these are real problems. Now this isn’t to say that your pain doesn’t count, or that it doesn’t hurt, but you need to put it in perspective.

Fifty or sixty years from now you’ll be dead and no one is gonna remember you were ever alive. Or if they do, it’ll be for five minutes a year. Then life goes on

The point is you get ONE chance, not TWO but one.

If you learn one thing from me, learn this:

Do not let anyone dictate your happiness

You’re letting a grandma, an uncle and a girl you have even met or may never meet ruin your holiday.

And lastly you’re 22, you’ve got a long time yet to experience life, enjoy it while you cause the time goes a lot quicker than you think.


The OP started a thread just like this a few weeks back, and despite dozens of well meaning Dopers trying to tell him the same thing you are trying to tell him now (one very generous Doper even offered to buy mookieblaylock a self help book that they had found useful) mookieblaylock repeatedly insisted on his utter worthlessness and at the same time would not take ANY responsibility for his situation.

Eventually everyone saw thru his “poor little old me” routine and refused to feed his self pity party.


You ARE worth a fuck. Or to put it better you got better things to do with with your life than the obsessive compulsion some OTHERS have to find someone to fuck right fucking now.

Getting an education. Getting ahead in your job/career. Gettting financially stable. Growing emotionally/intellectually as a person.

Hear and see a few horror stories about younger guys like yourself that were proudly “getting some” and ended up with kids before their time and/or crazy assed bitches that make suicide/murder look like a good option and you’d quickly change your mind.

Do your thing and fuck (or not) everyone else.

Maybe I’m a little too eager to give this advice around here, but I really think you should look into seeing a therapist. You have stuff on your mind that is bothering and is getting in the way of enjoying daily life. And you’ve shown that you want to talk about it. You can say whatever you want to a therapist, they’re obligated to listen to you without being dismissive or stomping out of the room.

Self flagellating people who continually play the “poor me, I’m no good, who would want me/ like me / want to be with me” etc… game are quite frankly pretty irritating to be around and tend to repel normal people. It’s like a sucking emotional vortex of negativity. I have an adult child who occasionally does this, but is, thankfully, slowly growing out of it.

It’s not a newsflash for you that your doing this shit drives people out of their minds, and I’m pretty sure you’ve been told repeatedly to stop this self deprecating behavior. Get some therapy or change your outlook. Representing yourself as a useless loser is choice, and if you want continue to make that choice it will be a self fulfilling prophecy.

Now Marxxx, what he feels isn’t on the same level as being downsized or foreclosed on but to a 22 year old, it feels pretty damn bad.

Mookie, this will pass. But you will find someone. You may find a lot of somethings. My advice is stop trying. Don’t try to impose what you think your life plan is on the world. Let it bring things to you. You’re at a time in your life where you can have freedom. Try something new. Join a choir or a rock climbing group. Run marathons. Do something that gets you out and about with people. Find stuff to keep your mind occupied because a busy brain is a happy brain. And when you’re in the middle of doing something fun, she’ll walk into your life and you’ll have a blast. And then maybe it won’t last or maybe it will. But that’s all part of the excitement! And you get back up on those roller blades and you skate.


I’m going to try a different approach. Stop telling people that girls don’t like you. It doesn’t matter that you think it’s true. Merely saying it makes it more likely to be true. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Just tell everyone that you aren’t interested in girls right now. If you think that’s a lie, try “I don’t think I’m ready for girlfriend right now. I’m going through some emotional problems.”

You honestly seem to evaluate your worth based on whether you have a girlfriend. This is pointless. Lots of good people are single. Even in my hometown, where people tend to get married at 18, at least half the people I know are single. Do you think I care?

Oh, and remember that “your entire family” does not think you are worthless. Your dad obviously doesn’t, and your grandmother was probably telling people because she thought it was unusual that someone as attractive as you didn’t have a girlfriend. If you were honestly as bad as you think, it would be obvious and nobody would bother talking about it.

Um, you know what makes people make fun of you and ridicule you? It’s not that you don’t have a girlfriend. It’s that you say stupid stuff like this:

You turned an honest question into a conflict about how pathetic you think you are. You’re the one who’s the jerk here, for intentionally creating a hostile environment that feeds the self-loathing you seem to get off on.

Talk is cheap. Who knows his motivation for posting but as long as I think he’s posting in good faith I’ll respond. And you never know who might be lurking and reading and enjoy a few words of encouragement. (You’re doing great, buddy!)

He is seeing a therapist, IIRC. However, I would advise that if this therapist isn’t working out, to find another one.

mookie, right now, I would say a relationship is probably the LAST thing you need. You seem to be pinning all of your worth on someone else, expecting them to make you happy. And that’s not going to happen – YOU need to be confident in yourself first. You need to get well, to concentrate on trying to get rid of your depression and anxiety before you worry about relationships. A girlfriend won’t be a magic cure-all, and you’ll only end up getting hurt in the long run.

Note – I’m NOT saying you’re worthless, or that no girl will like you. Rather, I mean, your main priority should be taking care of your illness – because that’s what depression is. An illness. It’s NOT something to be ashamed of – it happens to a lot of people. You’re NOT worthless – hell, before anyone here points it out, I’m 30 and I’m still a virgin. (Mostly a lot of bad luck in the dating pool). But I’ll be damned if I’ll let anyone call me a “loser.”

What does your therapist have to say about this?

I was certainly not trying to tell you what to do, just providing a bit of context on the OP’s M.O.

Kindness and understanding are admirable things indeed, though of course some people seem to enjoy wallowing in self pity, or at least pretending to, as a poster upthread obviously (and probably rightly so) thinks.

ETA-- I realise that by posting in this tread I am validating the OP’s behavior, so I am done here.

What’s up mookie! You must be my long lost twin. Most of my family dinners are just like yours, sans the open mocking. It sucks that your relatives are so insecure with themselves that they would do that to you.

At my dinners, all the grandmothers would inquire about my relationship status, and when I disappoint them, they would talk to their kids about it. My family is big on family values, so they want to make sure I have one of my own. I wouldn’t get mocked, but I can feel the disappointment at every get together. If we were still in Russia, then they would find dates for me. They all mean well.

If I ever started whining about my life, however, my parents would disown me. My grandparents would laugh their heads off first, then before my parents would die of embarrassment, they would disown me.

Whining emo bullshit is just unheard of for my family. My Grandfather on my dad’s side fought with the Belarusian partisansduring WWII. My Great Grandmother ran away from her home village with her two daughters while Nazi airplanes bombed the place. And that’s just scratching the surface. I just don’t feel like revealing more. So imagine a crowd of people who survived war, poverty, religious persecution, and an oppressive communist government, listening to a middle class 24-year-old law school student bitch about his life.

Here is my advice. You are being irrational. There, I just saved you years of therapy. Ok, so you won’t believe me. All I can say is that you should talk to somebody about your issues. There is no reason for you to think you are worthless.

Sorry to hear of the exchange. Everybody there probably regrets saying stuff. You’re dad is not mad at you in the way you think. He’s disappointed that you were self-depreciating. The people who harangued you were the ones whose value was reduced by the exchange.

Dating is not a measure of human worth. It is the physical consecration of a close relationship. The measure of a person is what they’ve done and the friends they keep. Mother Theresa was a person of great worth. Anyone lucky enough to call her friend was rewarded for the privilege. Compare her to the underwear challenged group of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton who measure their self worth in units of penis. That pretty much makes them a bunch of dicks and anyone calling them friend is lucky to know a doctor who treats STD’s.

One thing to consider, people react better to someone with a positive attitude. If you walk around with a large L on your forehead you will be treated as such. Friends respect and love you for who you are and not what you’re not.

And you are not obligated to feed your grandmother’s expectations. Hold your head high and learn the gentle art of telling people to mind their own business. “no Grandma, I’m working on it…. THANKS FOR ASKING”. Smile and look her square in the eyes.

Ugh. It’s not that I give a damn what my family thinks. My grandmother’s a batshit crazy bitch (I know that sounds insensitive, but this is a woman who will call my dad at work and curse him out for all his co-workers to hear. When my dad’s father committed suicide, she made him and his brothers all look at the body with the bullet wound still fresh in his skull. She’s nuts) and my uncles are all fat old worthless drunks. I just don’t like to disappoint my dad, and when he acts that way over something like a lack of romance it makes me feel pretty shitty.

Well as Eonwe already pointed out, you’re the one who made it into a big deal. You could have just said, “No, I don’t have a girlfriend, I haven’t found anyone I like enough yet” or something equally neutral of that sort. There’s no need to engage with nosy or otherwise unpleasant relatives.