I find myself internally yelling “How is it that no one could ever meet me halfway? How could it be that all these years no one I ever approached could even give me a chance? Why can’t I get just one mutual attraction, ever?”
I’ve seen women around me choose dangerous, evil, addicted, brutish, boring, piggy, assholes over and over but I’m somehow not worth a second look. I’ve gotten the polite, condescending brushoff or the embarrassed, self-conscious pitying brushoff from people who settled for mates that make me look like Cary fucking Grant. And the maybe two, three times maximum in 25 years that any woman has asked me out or told me she was attracted to me, it was each time a motherly collector of wounded animals who wanted to feed off my depression and control me in some sick love/hate relationship.
Now I’m too old and I’m painted with the loser brush. I get it; I’m not supposed to succeed with anyone I’d actually want now. But even when I was the skinny kid with the cool taste in music and the quick wit, I got the same response. No I don’t think we should go to dinner. It’s not you it’s me. I’m not really dating right now. You’re so great, you’d be a totally perfect date for someone else, not sure exactly who at the moment.
My sane and reasonable self knows that I have to work on my own brain and deal with my own issues. And that the problem must somehow be me, because otherwise the universe is a really much more peculiar and unpleasant place than I thought.
My day-to-day brain, the one that I live in, tells me that something I couldn’t see or feel or change made me totally unacceptable as a potential mate before I’d even had the chance to try. And that I’ve been unfairly written off my whole adult life and no one even finds me worth the trouble to tell me honestly why, because that would be troubling to them and I’m not important enough for the effort. Somehow no one, ever, either wanted me, found me worth trying, or thought I deserved the truth.
And that now a couple decades of this has made me what you all treated me like then: radioactive, untouchable, pathetic. At this point I can’t blame anyone for keeping me at arm’s length.
But I didn’t think I ever was that bad. I’m certainly not as bad as some of your other choices. And if not, I’m at least worth the truth. Why have none of you ever bothered? What the hell did I do to deserve total rejection and failure? Why won’t anyone honestly tell me?
I honestly don’t feel like the loser I’ve been treated as. I think I have a lot to give, and that I’m more than the sum of my problems. But you proved yourselves right in the end, I guess. After endless put-downs, let-downs, and hypocritically complimentary pity I’m now That Guy, without a chance or a bye or an honest critique from anyone.
That’s not what I started out as, not what I set out to be, not what I reached for. And it’s not all my fault, either. Sometimes I’m just mad as hell about it.