Men Are Sharing Difficult Parts Of Modern Dating, And As A Woman, I Never Thought Of Some Of These

Men Are Sharing Difficult Parts Of Modern Dating, And As A Woman, I Never Thought Of Some Of These

Dating is TOUGH, especially in today's day and age. But personally, I can only speak to my experience dating as a woman. So when Reddit user jayrod699 asked, "What’s been the hardest part of dating as a man?" I was super curious to see what it's like from another side. And some of the responses were actually super sad. Here's what the guys had to say.

1."The constant rejection. Get rejected 1000 times and you get more than a little gunshy. The worst is when they assume it must be a joke. Because you have to be joking if you think she might be interested."


"I have seen female friends cry for hours over the fact that one guy said no when they asked him out, and how awful it was and how guys could never understand how they feel. Lady, guys get rejected all the time, we know how it feels."


"I had a couple of first dates last month and all of them gave me their number, some of them said that 'we should meet again'...None have replied when I've asked about going out on a date somewhere or offering a dinner. It's been a month and some of my messages are still marked as unread on Whatsapp."


Two scenes from a film: Top - a woman talking to someone off-camera; Bottom - two men looking up, seemingly at the woman
DreamWorks Pictures/Paramount Pictures

2."For men, it's the absence of opportunity on dating apps — the staggering lack of matches; the occasional match that goes unreplied; the conversation that evaporates after saying hi; the 'maybe-date' that never materializes. It's also the fear of social alienation or punishment in real life as the internet has socialized young men to view approaching women as harmful or annoying (a courting faux-paus). This puts men into a losing position as they don't approach and are left unapproached — essentially a ship sailing alone afraid to hail other ships and ignored by those who sail around them."


"I've been out of the dating pool for a few years now, but I still can't forget the amount of messages my (now ex) had in 2014. She likely had more messages (~250 iirc) in two months than I've received in some four years of combined dating accounts. And she frankly wasn't 10/10 or close to it either.

I was lucky to get five mystery likes a week on Tinder. I could go a month without receiving any new replies, just on there swiping away for four weeks with zero return."


3."After a while, it feels like going hat in hand asking for money trying to get a damn date for Saturday night. I mean, if a female friend approached me and asked me to set her up with a 5’11”, 160-pound, single guy who likes to bike and rollerblade, has a slight British accent, and is studying physics, my reply would be, 'I can do that but can probably only get four guys that match this description exactly and it’s gonna take me about 20 minutes.' Whereas you ask a female friend if she has any single friends that would be interested in a guy like me, I get a quick reply of 'no.'"


A boy in a crowded dining hall holds out his bowl to an adult, appearing to ask for more
Columbia Pictures

4."You have to initiate everything. Unsure if she’s being nice or friendly? That’s on you to figure out. :))))))))))))))"


5."You are supposed to know what woman is interested in you and to approach them while simultaneously being told by women to never approach them in any circumstance. If you do approach them ... and it's unwanted, then you're an entitled creep. The risk isn't worth the reward."


6."The hardest part of dating as a man (who isn't super duper model-tier hot) is keeping the woman on board long enough that she gets to see your charm, humor, and positive points. Personality DOES count, but it's a moot point when most women will ghost or dismiss you LONG before you get a chance to show what a charismatic, fun person you can be."


A woman and man are conversing in a pool; the woman appears contemplative. Text: "They never gave you a real chance."

7."How difficult dating is for an individual man depends on a many factors. When people talk about dating being harder for men than women, they’re mostly referring to men aged 18-29. This demographic of men have trouble finding partners because there are simply fewer available women in the same age range. There is already around a 5% surplus of men in the 18-29 demographic of most western countries, plus a significant number of women in this bracket are either dating men over 30 or have no desire to date. So a big part of it is the numbers game not being in young men’s favor."

"Another big issue is declining social capital — both younger men and women have far smaller social circles than previous generations. This puts them in the position of having to date people outside their circles, which is part of why online dating and bars/restaurants have become the most common ways couples meet now. This is hard for women because they’re forced to date strangers, they’re taking a much bigger risk than men in regards to their safety. However, it’s bad for men because physical appearance is far more important in these methods of dating.

There is a perception that women aren’t visual creatures when it comes to attraction, but this isn’t accurate. The research seems to suggest that for women, physical attractiveness is important, but they need additional context to know if they are truly interested in a guy — i.e. personality, interests etc. The problem is, in online dating you can’t really convey this context through a profile, so women can only filter by looks. Whereas they may have been more inclined to give a less physically attractive guy a shot if they met him through friends/family or in a setting where they get to know him first. I think this is evident by the number of average or even below average guys that had no trouble getting married in previous generations.

There is also a massive gender imbalance in both online dating and social spaces like bars/clubs. This exacerbates the problem, as some women have so many options they end up with choice paralysis. They struggle to commit because they have the perception that there’s always a better/more compatible guy out there.

Ultimately, dating has become worse for both men and women. People are now forced to date total strangers, which is deeply unnatural for humans. Though I think it’s fair to say it’s harder for men on average. You could look at it as an analogy of being in a race — would you rather be in the race but losing, or would you rather not be able to get off the starting line?"


8."I can’t speak for the majority. But ever since I stepped foot out of college, dating has become sort of…transactional."

"Through non-work social/networking/private events, they say I look like a 'one-night' kind of guy.

Though work events, I always sense that they just wanna use me for my network.

However, the best dating experiences I’ve had were from girls I met at volunteering, exercise groups, or when I’m abroad. It’s just more wholesome to meet people without introducing yourself as 'XYZ from XYZ industry.' They judge you as who you are without the added spice."


9."To me, the hardest part about dating as a guy is to make others comfortable. There is an inherent display of power at play with men, and showing that you are in fact a gentle giant is hard, especially if the relationship is new."


10."The feelings of inadequacy and hopelessness that come from being ignored by women all your life and or being treated like you're a horrible monster just because you exist. I personally think that both men and women have it hard, but for different reasons and neither side is willing to acknowledge any kind of fault in their own behavior, but would rather put all the blame on the other side."


A man in a Christmas-themed costume talks to another person, indoors, both appear in a festive setting
Apple TV+

11."The hardest part about dating as a man is that you're never good enough."


"It's also often impossible to navigate the frequently contradictory requirements.

You need to be strong and stable, but only when appropriate, and not too much or you're a soulless rock, but you also need to be vulnerable and emotional but similarly only when appropriate and not too much, otherwise you're not worthy of respect. You need to be sensitive, but only when they want you to be and not when it makes them uncomfortable.

You need to be independent and put-together, able to handle all of your own shit without outside help, but also you need to open up and be open to being dependent on them in exactly the idealized way they imagine you should be but not at all beyond that capacity.

You need to be in good shape and fit, but also not in the gym all the time.

You need a decent social life and friends to display you're functional and not a serial killer, but you also need to not spend that much time with them or place so much importance on them that they might ever take precedence over your relationship.

You need to be funny and charming and entertaining and appealing and make every effort to go the extra mile, but you also need to temper how interested you appear to be otherwise you're coming on too strong, but also if you don't appear sufficiently interested, they'll think you don't like them at all, even if you keep making all the effort to interact with them regularly.

You need to make the move, but only when they're comfortable and not a second beforehand because that will make them uncomfortable and they won't tell you when you're on the right side of that line — and if you ask, there's a decent chance that can and will ruin the moment. But also, you need to respect their autonomy and boundaries and not do anything that could be perceived as pushy so you better thread the needle, but also if you don't make a move when you were supposed to then the responsibility is entirely on you, and if things fizzle that's your fault and not theirs, and they will immediately assume you aren't that interested in them if you didn't make a move when you were supposed to so you had better get good at reading minds."


12."You always have to perform. The times when your confidence is low, you won’t be able to date. You can’t doubt yourself openly, or be open about any insecurities or vulnerabilities. Even though a lot of these things are organic human experiences, women don’t want a partner who displays them. Also, if you don’t put in initiative, and 'put yourself out there,' your chances are pretty low unless you’re a hotshot. Lastly, you’re expected to be sure about somebody even in the earliest stages (or at least act that way), when a girl can be 'unsure about you' and act that way."


13."It's the amount of competition. Back in college before all the online dating apps, you were just essentially competing with other dudes in that general area at that time. Now, you're competing with every male within your specific age range within a 50 mile radius or more. Also, your profile needs to be exciting and interesting enough. When I first started online dating before I was married, you just needed a couple photos. Now 10 years later and divorced, I need a picture of me on a mountain top. A picture of me, but not too close, but not too far away. I need a picture of me with friends, but not too many friends. And I need a candid photo of doing something outside. I luckily met my current GF after using Hinge for a couple weeks, but I absolutely hated the experience."


Aladdin and Genie from "Aladdin" in costume, showing a surprised Aladdin looking at Genie speaking

14."The hardest part as a young man was that following the advice and literal statements from women on what they want in a dating partner turns you into a 'Nice Guy.'"

"You have to just know that there is a mile long list of other requirements unstated by her that she may not even be consciously aware of, like you need to seriously hit the gym for those impressive gains, and always be hustling for more green."


15."All the marriage risks are on men. If there is a divorce, the man almost always has to pay the woman alimony and continue working to pay for her existence. Courts almost always take the kids from the men and give them to the women and make him pay her. 50/50 joint custody is not the norm. Most states are 'no fault' meaning she can cheat, or she can just get bored one day, and then take half his stuff, take the kids, and get alimony."


"This right here makes me legitimately question if I want to get remarried. For now, I restrict my dating to women in my tax bracket, even though I'd really prefer not to. It would just be extraordinary imprudent to take on that kind of risk with someone that's coming into the relationship from a very different economic perspective — 'never enter into a contract with someone that benefits from breaking it.'"


16."I've always found it annoying that essentially ZERO women ask guys out. That ish is a lot more common in tv and entertainment but I personally have only heard of it twice in my life. They don't have to put forth any effort."


Three-panel image from a movie with characters on a boat at night and a man in a cap expressing dismay
New Line Cinema

17."[The hardest part is] walking on eggshells for miles to reach a person who nine times out of 10 isn’t 'good' themselves."


"Being gay and using the apps, there were also a lot of men who were depressed, lazy, didn't keep very good hygiene, and they had no real sense of accountability or responsibility.

They were in a rude and condescending mood all the time, but they wanted the kind of guy they were jealous of: The tall, athletic guy who makes really good money and can travel. If they didn't envy you, they didn't have time for you. Some of them would tell me that I wasn't 'conventionally attractive,' and that they 'already had friends' and didn't even feel like getting to know me...or even answering my text messages. This was a direct and outright admission from some of them, lol.

I got tired of 'working on myself' for people who couldn't even show me a basic amount of respect and put in any effort themselves."


18."I make over over 500k as a physician. Before I met my wife, I dated countless women who thought my income was THE standard. These are women who worked at Walgreens, waitresses, school teachers, and other below average income jobs. Like shit, 500k a year is 0.1% income. Barely 10% of men even make 100k a year."


19."[The hardest part is wondering,] 'Can I read her signals accurately?'"


"There's a girl at work who, when she started, was married. After a while I noticed she was staring me down constantly, suggested we get together a couple times, and I overheard her talking about lawyers being expensive, then I heard from a friend at work that she got divorced. In our random conversations, she never once mentioned that she's not married anymore or anything even hinting at that, so she basically expected me to figure that out or risk hitting on a married woman because her signs are 'so obvious.'"


20."I can sum it up in a conversation I read in a forum outside of Reddit. Someone asks, 'Should a guy bring flowers on a first date?' Most responses were ambivalent, just stating a preference but a fair few read like this: One: '"Ugh, flowers, tells me the guy is a total cheeseball and now I've got to carry flowers around all evening.' Two: 'If a guy doesn't bring flowers on a first date, it tells me he's trash and has no class.' In both examples, the guy is getting cussed as if he's a problem. Caught between being cheesy or rubbish."


Two characters from a TV show engaged in a conversation, close-up shots of their emotional expressions

21."It's hard to find a gal at all...good or bad, lol. I feel romantically/sexually invisible to women. I get way more attention from gay/bi men and that's saying a lot considering how much smaller potion of the population they make up. Not that I'm looking right now, but it's not like I'm turning anyone down either. I haven't had a woman besides my SO obviously interested in me in 14 years."


22."Not all women are impressed by the knowledge that I know and have the same interests. ... Most good guys have certain hobbies that they deep dove into. And a good bit of women will want him to get rid of the majority of it or put it in the shed or storage. It can be hard to talk about our hobbies because a lot of women would consider it childish if we are nerds. I have told women my interests just to try to make friends and they ghost me. And trying to convince a woman you are not her ex half the time can be exhausting. But not all women are like that."


23."After agreeing to a date, it's up to the man to do 100% of the planning. Even after multiple dates with the same woman, the man is generally expected to be the social planner. It's exhausting and expensive since most women still don't think they should pay for anything."


Two characters from a film are in a police station office, with one facing the camera
Sony Pictures Releasing

24."Where can you meet [single women] without being shamed and lambasted? Yet you're a loser if you can't meet them. If women are interested, they'll 'drop hints' like blinking and breathing. If you approach and she doesn't like you, then you're 'creepy and weird.' If she likes you and you don't approach, then you're 'not a real man; and it's your loss.You're expected to initiate everything from the first conversation to physical intimacy but you're 'creepy and weird' if you find women sexually and romantically attractive. And if a woman does want to have sex with you, you better have ... a black belt in kama sutra or else you're a loser."


25."Today’s dating — swipe left or right — has been tweaked to ... a gambling-like formula. You will be judged immediately by a few pictures and two sentences as the combined value of your worth, and worst of all, you're competing with every other single (or not) man in the city. Now them is some tough odds."


26."You always have to pay. It doesn't sound that bad on the surface. But it adds up and sometimes starts to feel as though we are being taken for granted. It feels like we are escorting this beautiful princess around, who everyone loves and adores. Everyone is fawning over her, but if you make one mistake she's gone and onto the next one. You're just some chump who happens to have the credit card tonight which is paying for everything."


"Not sure if it's the 'hardest part' necessarily but the expectation to pay for everything (at least early on) can really be a barrier to dating. When you don't have a well-paying job and you live in an expensive city, dating becomes a significant investment."


Person in a dressing room with white robe, looking in mirror, another person in the foreground
MGM/UA Distribution Co.

27."Being denied any support or compassion whatsoever and somehow being expected to be confident. THEN I might get the support and compassion I don’t need as much anymore."


28."Some women ... like bread-crumbing and only provide one line dead end responses to thoughtful conversation starters. There's an entitlement that comes with the 'entertain and impress me,' mentality that some women have, all while contributing little to nothing to the interaction."


29.And finally..."The most apt analogy I've heard is that if quality partners are like fresh drinking water, men live in a desert and women live in a swamp. It's a struggle for both, but it's not the same struggle."