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15 Real Men Reveal Their #1 Struggle When It Comes To Relationships

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Men struggle, too.

What's the best dating advice? That men and women both find dating hard. However, we don't necessarily find the same things about dating challenging.

For women, the challenges of dating can be stuff like worrying what men think about seeming too enthusiastic, or dealing with the seemingly never-ending swath of dudes who reach out on dating apps. For men, dating challenges exist, but not in a way that many woman could immediately name. After all, we aren't dudes. It makes sense that we would understand what they go through when it comes to the wacky world of dating. 


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While it might not have ever occurred to you, while men and women have different challenges when it comes to dating, understanding the challenges that the opposite sex faces can actually make it easier for us to do battle with our own dating struggles.

Some men might not exactly feel comfortable opening up honestly about their challenges when it comes to dating, but the men of the AskMen subforum on Reddit were happy to share their biggest struggles when it comes to dating. Recently, one redditor asked, "What's your biggest struggle when dating?"

What did they have to say? Read on to find out, and maybe men will stop seeming like such strange creatures and more like other humans just trying to make a connection, just like you! 

1. I can't always figure out what the other person is thinking. 

"Knowing whether or not someone is interested in me."

2. I lack the energy for dating again after a breakup.

"I thought I'd met the love of my life. We broke up a couple of months ago. I now find myself at 35 and having to start all over again with meeting someone. It's going to suck. So I'd say my biggest dating struggle is finding the energy to get out there again."

3. Dealing with optimists is the worst. 

"Common misconception is that everyone will eventually find the right person for them. It's much more likely to find someone who’s compatible on the surface but with major underlying incompatibilities, or to just never meet anyone at all. I don’t pretend that it's impossible to find a great match, but when people speak in absolution that 'you’ll find someone,' I feel patronized by their blind optimism."

4. It starts to feel repetitive.

"As a fellow serial dater, do you ever feel like it becomes scripted? Like the first few dates are what it takes to be interesting and converse. It is just so easy, I go on auto pilot. I really like doing fun and unique things for dates, but definitely not worth it until you find someone you like."

5. All that effort gives me so little in return.

"When I was actively trying to date, I would get a date once every 3 to 6 months. That's to get one date. So you're putting in a large effort for the searching part, only to hope to get something in a span of 1/4 to 1/2 a year. I have female friends and colleagues that get a date without doing anything within 1 month of breaking up with a guy. Many, if they're actively searching, can get a date a week."

6. I have yet to meet nice people.

"Yeah, it's like a side job that you pay for instead of being paid. And the 'customers' treat you like garbage!"

7. It's hard to open up all over again.

"Putting my guard down. It’s not so much getting hurt by someone, it’s more so hurting myself. I am the King of self-sabotage and if I don’t open up or get attached I can’t mess it up, which in hindsight I guess I’m still messing myself up. I try to make a conscious effort to put my guard down, but it’s difficult."

8. Meeting people seems impossible.

"Getting out of the house. I don't know what to do to meet people."


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9. I find it difficult to take the lead.

"Just kind of tired of leading. At least in the initial stages I feel like I lead all the conversations, the dates themselves, the pay, everything. I'm tired of it feeling like a prolonged interview. One time I got drunk and had a gay Italian guy literally wine and dine me. I feel horrible for leading him on (I found out that night that I'm as straight as they come), but I found it so refreshing that for once I was the one being wooed and seduced. I just wish that more of my dates and relationships with women were closer to that. I want someone else to lead for a change."

10. I fear being ghosted. 

"Ghosting. That always sucks because you're left wondering 'why?' But I've come to realize that I wouldn't want to be with someone who doesn't prioritize me enough to respond."

11. I struggle to be emotionally vulnerable.

"Opening myself up emotionally to them. Like most guys, I grew up not really opening up to anybody. Then you find that first person that you love, the person who you think is the one. You open yourself up to them. About things you've never told anybody. You trust them to hold your heart and not crush it. For most people, they inevitably do."

12. It's just hard to find the time.

"Time to meet someone new. My life is busy and if I had a partner I'd prioritize time for them, but it's hard to make the time to meet new people, especially when it ends up disappointing."

13. I can't always figure out if it's love or friendship.

"My biggest issue is finding the line between when my date is interested in me as a friend, or as a romance. I am the worst at interpreting signals and usually I don't try to make a move since I don't wish to be intrusive if the feeling isn't reciprocal. Most of my dates don't lead to anything more than the occasional meet-up, since I seldom can tell if my date is being friendly or actually interested in me romantically."

14. I'm too short.

"I’m 5’3”, so pretty much invisible. I talk to girls online and then they find out how short I am and stop talking to me."

15. I haven't met the right one.

"I wouldn't say my issue it getting dates; apps like Tinder make that pretty easy. My issue is that I rarely find one I like. I can't tell you how many times I've gone out with a 26-year-old cashier who lives with their parents and has no ambition to change a thing. Usually, when I find one I can actually get excited about, she either isn't interested or ends up being mentally unwell, and the whole thing falls apart."


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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cat, Batman. She hosts the love and dating advice show, Becca After Dark, on YourTango's Facebook Page every Tuesday and Thursday at 10:15 pm Eastern. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr.

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