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Gloomy Times

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  1. Not really. I thought a date was when you and a girl mutually agreed to meet and hang out. Not just talking to them when you see them at work/on social media. I meet them in the same places everyone else does. At work, on the way to work, through mutual friends, online. I know it's childish, but it has happened. Not in every circumstance, but enough times that it sticks in mind that somebody would be that ****ing bitter, they had to play pranks on me because they couldn't handle me having feelings for them. The most common thing that happens, is they show interest for a while, then when I finally get round to properly 'asking them out', their temper comes out, they show their true colors and make some kind of comment on what they don't like about me. They'll lead me on, but when it comes down to it it's almost always a lie or they realise that being seen with me would be too 'embarrassing', and consider having not thought about that before to be my fault. To be honest man, the bottom line is that I think people are just not that nice when they can't get something they want out of you. There is only one thing and one thing only that make me pursue a girl anymore, and that's her showing interest in me first. What every girl has had in common, is that no matter how nice a person they seemed before, or how nice they appeared to the community, whether they dressed modestly or caked themselves in make-up and showed everything, or how interested they seemed... after having led me on and revealing I felt that way about them, to deal with the frustration/shame of being liked by me they became a completely different person. This is why yeah, I could well be going for the wrong 'type' of person, but I've literally approached girls from such drastically different walks of life, completely different types of personalities, and regardless they all change and let out these poisonous thoughts once relationships come into it. The only pattern I've seen is that I bring out the worst in otherwise good people. It's kind of like how even the sweetest, most eloquent churchgoer in the world, will scream and try to reach for a broomstick when a rat carrying typhoid pops up in their toilet. I'm a disease, man. I don't 'let' them abuse me. As soon as they turn on me, I cut them out of my life and move on. I'm talking in the past tense, it's what they said that sticks, I don't waste my time chasing people who are just evil or have shat on any respect I had for them. I'm pretty much the opposite, I cut myself off from people very quickly once they let me down. I'm talking about how when you have person after person let you down in life, the things they said and did stick with you. It's like how people who've been in war get flashbacks they don't want to have of what they went through. You can cut off the girl, but you can't cut off the fact that 100 people said this same, horrible thing about you that you wish wasn't true. Although if by that, do you mean why do I let them abuse me at all? I can't control if they think I'm ugly or pathetic in some way, and they feel they have to let me know, unfortunately. If I could control what people said before they say it, that would be a great superpower. If they're going to come out with that, it's out of my control. It doesn't mean I put up with it once it's said, I cut them off straight away and give them a taste of their own medicine as well. What does stick with me after I've moved on, though? What they said, and how it has everything in common with what the girl before them said. That's the pattern.
  2. It could be a lie to cover for something else about me, yeah. I'm more convinced that it is what I'm talking about because of reading between the lines, seeing that their behaviour and what they 'admire' in people adds up with what they criticised about me, etc. I've spent a lot of time trying to understand 'why' it works out like this for me, why the rejections are so hostile. **** knows really, I think the bottom line is that people deemed unattractive just get treated like sewer rats to one degree or another. Such is life? I agree, I totally do give people a chance even if there are little, trivial things about them that don't fit my 'ideal'. Hell, sometimes I think it's the little flaws that make somebody more beautiful. Unfortunately, going back and trying to get the women I've been with to think like that, would be like finding hen's teeth in a swamp. I can't change that they aren't forgiving of small flaws, I can only change that in myself and I do strive to in other parts of my life, but that's a separate point. That gets me onto answering that question really. Of course I understand that people have standards, and yes there are some things I would turn down a woman because of. I'm not going to make out that I'm like, the most humanist person when it comes to dating, nor am I suggesting that. But, the reason this particular thing pi**es me off, is because it's not really a 'standard', it's a contradiction. They claimed to be attracted, but not able to tolerate me looking young at the same time. You can't have it both ways. You accept somebody as they are, or you don't. You're attracted to what you see as is, or you aren't. That's the difference between turning down somebody because they're too short, too tall, too fat, too ugly, etc, and this. Those are concrete things. This is something even they admitted doesn't stop me being attractive to them, only to retract that later. It's being petty to the extreme. Now if they handled their confusion in a mature way, like just saying "Sorry, I'm not into you" from day 1, or even "Sorry but you look too young for me" from day 1, that would be a whole different story. But this has happened so many times, the "I like you" followed by "I can't deal with you looking young" two weeks later, and then torrents of abuse or pranks getting played on me (yes, even pranks). It's a game and, to be honest, more of a statement about them not having a backbone, than having a standard. The thing is, I've had this exact excuse more ****ing times than I can count now, and yet it's the most nonsensical rejection I've heard. So I wanted to make some sense of it, the weird logic of "You are attractive to me but you're not attractive to me". But at least I kind of understand now that it's basically them struggling to be honest about this out of some kind of embarrassment about being honest about the stigma of looking young, so there you go. So yeah, I can't put the world to rights and the ethics are beside the point really, but if we're talking about how 'understandable' it is that they've done this, I think there is something 'wrong' enough about it that I'm here trying to understand it and vent about it, rather than taking it and thinking they're being strong-minded in some way. Secondly, it's obviously because of the abuse I've got over it. I had one girl turn around to me, over this, and basically say in so many words that I 'seemed' mature for my age, but I couldn't 'be' mature enough for her because of how I looked. This was after about a month of spending time with her. For starters, that makes no sense, just like this problem. Secondly, as you pointed out, that could have been nothing but an excuse for something else that was the 'real' problem. Is it really worth making up a fictional thing that's wrong with my personality, that she doesn't even think is actually there, as a way of getting out of the mess she made, making me then feel insecure about myself? My point being, yeah people can have 'standards', but standards should never be an excuse to treat people like ****. I wouldn't be writing this thread if I'd been turned down so many times in a polite way. Then again, that goes without saying. I'm not going to moan about the politics of how everybody should be like that, because that's just life and that already makes sense. Maybe this will be a lesson to somebody out there though, that the next time you think you're doing somebody a favour making some cheap excuse about their personality to cover up for something else you don't like, it's no better. Why do I care about women I haven't gone on a date with? Maybe I'm not making making this clear enough. Dates aren't just something that come a dime a dozen for me. It's not a choice that I have, I'm not given the choice of "Do you want to get to know this girl through a date, or through everyday life?" Right now, everyday life is all I've had for a good few years and all I get. Maybe there's a difference in where we come from, but here the way it tends to go here is that you ask for the girl's number, or you get to know them through wherever you meet them, and then ask for the date when it's working out between you, something like that. If they say yes to that, it's a luxury, not a guarantee. The point being that obviously, I as the guy who meets somebody in everyday life and thinks "I like that person", have got to use my initiative to make something out of it. Obviously I'm not going to know that girl inside out from day 1, but there is going to be some 'attachment' you get if you keep talking to her, have got to know her over a few weeks or months, and find out you definitely do want to be with her. If I didn't act on that, I wouldn't get dates at all. But in acting on it, there is always the risk of rejection or criticism. So how is it confusing that when that's the furthest I get, completely out of my control, it's going to matter on some level when I get rejected even for a date? It has the exact same effect as if I were rejected after 50 actual dates. Just because I don't reach the dating stage, doesn't mean the essence of the criticism or how well I know that person is any different. If anything it's worse, because they've dismissed you earlier on. As I've been trying to say, the thing is that if this is all you ever get, girls who are that repelled that they think they can treat you however they like, play games with you, tell lies about you, be horrible to you and give criticism when you try to do anything even remotely close to starting a relationship, it's not exactly trivial. Imagine that just before all that, they seemed like nice people, your hopes build up thinking "Oh my God, they're really not like all the other ones", you start to trust them... and then they pull some prank on you. It's not something I can just brush off or not think about, because it's constant and I can do next to nothing about it. Basically, imagine if every day when you went to the mall, there was a man following you down the street with a megaphone right up close to your ear, shouting at you "You're a piece of !" over and over. Imagine that went on for a year, 24 hours a day. Would you be able to drown out something that constant, that's also saying something so negative and hateful about you? If I'm going down the road of the dating game, it's constant criticism. Every risk I've taken, has led to abuse. Even when I go out every day, I at least get one person smirk about how I look or how pathetic I am. When that's all there is in the world around you, people saying "You're not good enough", you do start to think thought has gone into it, because everyone else is saying the same thing. As I said to LaurynJCat, when I have tried to do something about it, it just turns to mockery about 'compensating'. I've not had a break from the abuse, that's why I'm here right now. You're right, I can only try to dress up, grow facial hair, etc. All I can say is those things haven't made it better for me. I still carry on anyway, because I'd rather show I put effort in, at least to look in the mirror and feel good about myself if for nobody else. Doesn't block out all the comments and all the people who got inside my head though. I've tried and tried to go back into the dating game, blanking out the past and thinking it'll be different next time. What can I say? Unfortunately it never is anymore. It goes without saying that time after time of being turned down over something like this, when you were given false hope, grinds you down. The criticism making out you're an inadequate person, grinds you down. I care because that's all it's been dude, there haven't been dates and there haven't been girls who aren't in some way dishonest or bitter towards me, for trying with them, in my personal experience.
  3. The celibate comment was a joke. My point was an ironic joke that you 'could' say me and my lovelife are 'ok', if by 'lovelife', somebody meant never having anything to do with women again. You're assuming I even get as far as dating there. This is literally women I meet, who give signals, and then I get to know over time before approaching. Getting to the date is what I get rejected from 95% of the time, for the reasons I've been talking about here. The reactions I've been describing, are reactions to asking said girl on a date (recently). Getting to a date is a commodity. What I've been trying to say is, I can't help but overthink it because this completely uncontrollable thing, ****s up everything to do with it. I appreciate your honest and straight up answer. But you know what? Nobody up until now has straight up said that a woman dating a younger man is seen as 'not being a socially acceptable thing'. Everyone I've spoken to shook their heads and shrugged like being rejected over age is something they'd never heard of and bizarre. So thanks for solidifying that. I think maybe, this is an issue people haven't completely come to accept actually is an issue yet. Somebody will tell you in two seconds that weight or facial deformity are problems, but age? If anything people seem to think you're joking or deny it if you state it as a reason. As for what you suggested, all I can say is I've tried the majority of what you listed there, seriously. This thread was, if you like, a last resort after finding that nothing compensates for this issue. Not growing facial hair, not just carrying on being myself and appearing to have self belief. Absolutely nothing. What I've learnt is that there's no such thing as 'compensating' for something you lack, you have to have it all or people give you the "How dare you think you even deserved humane treatment, you're clearly trying to compensate for your (insert what you don't have)" attitude.
  4. I don't think it's either hate or indifference. It's somewhere in the middle. I'm like the human equivalent of when a person sees a ladder leaning across a sidewalk, and walks all the way around it to avoid bad luck. I'm the ladder. When I get involved with a girl, they see me like a curse or cancer diagnosis they automatically know they need to run a thousand miles from. They change and project all their resentment and hate onto me because they wanted somebody who didn't kick down their own self-esteem, by not fitting the physical criteria they wanted. So yeah, if I went through life from this day forward never taking a gamble with women again, never approaching a woman and deciding to go celibate, I'd 'be ok'. Here's the thing though. I have to put criticism at stake in the context of finding a relationship. If somebody turns round and says "Actually, I don't like that you look like a 16 year old", that literally breaks down the entire thing. There's no way of ignoring that, because that's them saying no over something that can hardly even be fixed, and mixed in with complete lies about what sort of a person I am to add insult to injury ("You're immature on the basis of looking young, but tough I don't want to be proven wrong, go away"). When that builds up to endless rejections, all of which ended with a very similar reason that is simply a mixture of laziness and an insulting lie, it has to be put at stake because that's ****ing everything. It defines who and what you are seen as. Now, do I carry on in the hope that I'll meet a girl who doesn't act and think like this? Of course I do. I would honestly love to sit here and tell you that I've genuinely been involved with a girl who was even close to letting this age thing slide lately. But I haven't. As for what people I go for and I'm hanging out with, well, to answer that gets dangerously close to stereotyping and categorizing. I'll say this much. I've tried with girls at very different ends of the spectrums of personality, which I guess is what you were trying to gauge. Extroverts and introverts, different ends of the social class scale with opposing values, younger and older, some who live pretty 'clean' lifestyles (strongly dislike alcohol and drugs, bad language, etc.) and some who are very open about those things. In different ways, what they desire never really changes, and let's just say, it's definitely a myth that people who live more 'sensible' lives are less elitist. I think it comes down to how somewhere along the line, what defines maturity has been Barstewardized. Ever since some person said "Always go for older men/women, they're wiser and more trustworthy," it's been blown out of proportion to embody purely superficial qualities, whilst most will treat somebody younger with skepticism as if they're a leper. My question is why, when this can be so quickly disproved as being irrelevant if you get a person who is mentally and emotionally mature and good looking, in spite of not looking a specific way (in this case, younger). I know for a fact that people can still be 'good looking' without having to look 35 in how their body has aged, not to mention mature. And apparently, since those are the 2 things which 'matter' so much, does it matter that they don't come in a specific form? Isn't it like refusing to eat a carrot because it's yellow instead of orange when you 'ideally' wanted it to be orange? If that can't be handled, well fair enough, but why waste my time leading me on, only to then get 'insulted'?
  5. You're right, I can't stand women like this... hence why I'm here writing this thread. I totally agree on the inequality debate as well, but that's a whole other discussion I guess, lol. Why I'm caring about this though? Firstly because it's happened so many times. I'm past the point of being able to have healthy relationships because I trust absolutely noone. I keep hearing about these dream relationships that work out, couples who really love each other. I've never had that in my ******* life, not even close. Just memory after memory of being treated like something kept in a freak show, literally. If it isn't with a girl I got involved with, I get reminded daily by tactless comments about my age, maturity, self-awareness, and so on. I keep trying to understand what it is, that makes me bring out the monster in people who just seem normal to start off with. I don't know what it is but it's like I have a knack for doing that, making normal girls release all these horrible thoughts they have stored inside. They become involved with me, and they go from normal girl to telling me all these horrible things like I haven't heard them a thousand times before. I give anyone like that a piece of my mind now, don't get me wrong, but it has happened that many times I literally don't know anything else. Now if I do meet a girl who seems genuine I feel sick to my stomach, because they'll find out all the history of just being treated like dirt, or the more obvious thing. They'll turn out to be yet another one playing a trick on me to give somebody some easy abuse. The amount of times after taking a long break from it all, somebody's said "Just try with her, what's the worst that could happen?" I did and got the most horrible things said to me. I can't put it into words, but it's like when you've spent most of your life dealing with negative relationships, people who DON'T love you and wanted to torture you, it makes you feel sickly when you're actually treated right. It's like a tumour I want to rip out, and the only way I know how to do that is to try and understand the thought process that's going into these clever 'tricks' to try and push me away. I can't achieve piece in my own mind because before I can feel comfortable in ANY relationship, I want to be able to look at the way I get treated now and say "That's history. That never gets said to me anymore." I can't live in a world where the abuse and the care co-exist. The thing I don't understand is that obviously, I see couples out every day, and they come in all different shapes and sizes. I would literally ****, probably even sell my soul, to understand what it is that makes me so disconnected and hated from everyone in this world.
  6. Not trying to argue, but I only just made a few posts on here recently after not being around for months. You're not wrong about those things. I don't really want to go into details of my life here, but there is truth in it and I that did get me thinking about it. I can't say that I'm imagining this, though, even though I have been paranoid about other things to be honest. My age definitely gets rubbed in a lot, in an insulting way, it's something I get from people almost every day. I understand how it came across like that, and I am sorry if it did, but I'll make this clear now. I'm not trying to blame women and wasn't intending to, I'd probably guess in a slightly different way, they face some similar things. I'm blaming individuals who couldn't think for themselves, but also feel they have to make their spiteful thoughts my business. First is the societal construct that women tend to instinctively choose men that they see as good protectors/providers. The older the man, the more money he makes. Usually. We can dicker about this, but the reality is that a woman will openly boast about marrying a doctor or lawyer. I'm not being critical of this though, it's just a fact of life. (And the way things are going, 2/3rds of new doctors are women now.) This is the deeper issue I was getting at here, and I probably made it convoluted so it's my fault. I was saying that what I've experienced, and makes no sense, is that you can be older and you can be deemed more mature, but those two things are cancelled out by not looking your age. My point was that, let's say you are a successful 29 year old doctor, but you have the physical build of a 16 year old. At the same time, the girl in question has said that they find you attractive, the way you are. They then turn around and cite 'a lack of maturity' as being the problem, but the thing that caused them to say this is only your appearance not being aged enough. This is in spite of how they previously said your appearance was ok, as well. In other words, they have actually stated that they personally think you are both attractive and possess maturity, but lacking a specific mature appearance rules out both of those things. Bear in mind, the request for somebody who's 'mature', is like you said, down to them being a good provider. This is something that is gained through the mature individual's knowledge, not their appearance. There is absolutely nothing but superficiality which an appearance of looking older can 'give' a partner in a relationship, since the idea is that this 'maturity' 'gives' their life something it lacks. Therefore, the argument that I was suddenly incapable of 'giving' them this maturity they 'needed' due to not looking a certain way, is a flat-out lie and dishonest to what they stated they wanted, because a certain appearance doesn't give them anything but an ego boost, surely? This makes absolutely no sense, because they claimed that they wanted 2 basic things - maturity and attraction. They have both, apparently, and therefore you would've thought they could flaunt them. It's only after that they admit that those two things not coming in a specific form, changes everything. I'm saying, I can't understand why this matters so much, or how it even became an accepted attitude when it's blatantly flawed and doesn't even give the girl in question what they were wanting... aside from one thing. The only logical answer. That they secretly wanted something superficial all along and it actually bears no relation to 'gaining' maturity or a mature role model whatsoever. Or additionally, there is an element of lying to themselves, and they actually don't mind the 'younger' look, but know it wouldn't be socially accepted. I'm by no means saying that I consider myself to be those things either, but countless times, I've been approached by women who claimed I was, and then dropped this bombshell about how looking younger 'cancelled out' the other things. This is literally a non-stop spanner in the works and I can't come to 'understand' this way of thinking so I can try and change it. The more I try and brush it off, the more it's like the girl in question plays up to 'proving me wrong' and making out the the younger appearance defines my brain, to spite me. I'm also just plain curious of whether somebody else has seen or witnessed this specific problem, male or female, and can give an opinion on it from either perspective, because it almost seems to be like a new, recent trend for this type of body to 'matter' more for the purpose of supposedly 'embodying' maturity and I want to understand exactly why it is considered to be 'better' at providing that maturity than the mind (this is a trick question by the way, because I know it can't be). Sorry if I'm not managing to explain this clearly. As for me, this is why I prefer to get to know a person 'online' (or on the phone) before meeting, since I want to know the PERSON. Yes. I totally agree on this.
  7. Partly related to another thread I made recently. Time and time again, I've been rejected by women on the basis of a particular thing. I know it's about this, because they make it very clear (such as in the choice of man they do eventually make) or even outright say it. It has been a recurring thing well over 30-40 times. Not saying that this is something 'every' woman does, but it seems to be pretty conformist in society at this moment in time, so maybe some people will be able to step in with their experience on the matter. Looking young for my age. I'm in my mid 20s, but due to my build, look younger. Every time I've tried to understand why looking younger than I am is something that apparently matters so much, the response I get is a variation on "Women like a man who's mature." Because maturity is a sign of security, leading the way in life, etc. Now of course, if we're talking about mental maturity, the mind of the individual, true and I'm not even questioning that. Of course a mature mind is likeable. However, when it comes down to qualities that are purely superficial, such as that he happens to 'look' 30 when he is in fact 21, or just so happens to be 35 but acts as if he's 10, that whole excuse becomes redundant. I'm not exactly going to brag and say I'm mature for my age or something, because I actually think it's pretty arrogant for anybody to describe themselves in such a way (the ones so desperate to find a 'mature person on their level' included) and that 'maturity' in itself is a pretty superficial thing. But, I have been told that one of the things that drew them in was maturity or intelligence, and I'll take their word for that... only for them to then say, "But you're not mature enough because you look too young". It goes without saying, this has annoyed me and done no favours to already feeling pretty crap. So this is where contradiction number 1 lies. What they're essentially saying, is that they need a man who can 'provide' maturity into their life, believing it brings some kind of stability. Their criticism directed at me, is literally, "Oh, I think you're mentally mature, but you don't look mature. Therefore, you can't provide what I want." ...Well, surely a man who simply looks mature can't, because he doesn't 'possess' maturity in the sense she claimed she wanted it, i.e. power in the form of knowledge? The substitute then ends up being a man who simply looks older, and in a number of instances has been on about the same level as me maturity-wise, or sometimes childish as hell. I remember one girl (not that I was involved with, just one of many who has made obnoxious comments about this) who continued to snub me with these age-related comments talked smugly about the 24 year old man she was seeing... only to tell me he was a football player who had gone sleeping around and cheated on her. Yet, the reason she had so much faith in him, was simply because he was 24 and looked it. So from that, you'd think this is basically all a shallow cover for saying "I want a guy I'm attracted to, and I find the older looking guy thing attractive," right? Well, that gets me onto the second bizarre way I've found people don't seem to address this. Again, by several of the girls who eventually rejected me over this, they told me they found me good looking. In numerous cases, they pursued me first and showed that it was because they were attracted, very clearly. When it came to actually dating, they suddenly turned around and began awkwardly admitting that this 'how old I look' thing mattered to them and would prevent them from having this magical, mystical supply of 'maturity' they craved. Now this makes no sense whatsoever. It's a complete contradiction to find somebody 'good looking', even own up to it, and then say 'You don't look a certain way and I don't like that'. Not only does that make me think "Why waste my time?" but it also makes absolutely no sense. Because say this is all a superficial thing, and then that same girl who admitted to being attracted also said they found me mature or intelligent to talk to, does it matter if I don't look a specific way? In a backhanded way, they've just admitted that they found both to be in a way that satisfies them personally. If they're attracted to what they see, even if it isn't the 'exact' thing, they shouldn't be worried about lack of attraction. If they respect me for being 'mature', and they craved knowledge and maturity in their partner as some form of protection, well there it is surely? All that leaves is "I wanted a specific thing due to peer pressure." Which would then get me onto asking why this ever even deserved to be a thing that's valued so much? Isn't superficiality already superficial enough, without the added dimension of people now suppressing what they personally like the look of? You could say, I smell a rat, or somebody who hasn't thought this out and copied a strange trend in society without ever stopping to think about what they're doing. There's this ambiguous 'lust for maturity', which eventually whittles down purely to mature looks. Now why am I sick to death of this by now? Because as far as I'm concerned, it's pretty rude to storm around, saying casually to people you've only just got to know, "I think you lack life experience and are kind of pathetic." Simply because I look a certain way. Or, to put it more bluntly, it's pretty rude to storm up to people who are basically strangers and make any kind of commentary on their looks reflecting what kind of a person they are or aren't. It's like how you wouldn't walk over to somebody in a restaurant you didn't know at all, and say "Excuse me, but you look like the sort of person who would set a house on fire." Yet, I thought these were basic manners we were taught from a young age! I also thought "How somebody looks on the outside, doesn't reflect who they are on the inside" was something even fairytales taught us, and yet I'm currently dealing with morons as old as 30 who literally are blind as a post to this concept. This allegation aspect of it is more offensive than criticism of the looks, because I'd at least appreciate a ******* attempt to get to know me first! So, if anybody else has been following this phenomenon, could you 'explain' it to me? What exactly is it about a man simply looking older, that guarantees some kind of better deal if the expectations are that a man is desired who provides maturity in a way that will supposedly fuel the relationship? How is it that somebody can apparently be 'good looking', and yet 'not good enough because they're handsome but look young'? Why has maturity become such a thing people fawn over now, that the most superficial aspects of it, the ones that actually have the least to do with maturity like the person's age or physical appearance, are the ones they see as fulfilling their need for maturity in the first place when it doesn't give them any? Why does any of this even matter at all, if there's not even logic behind it? I thought the whole point of a relationship was either that you found people who brought you happiness, or just looked suitably good looking enough that you were content with it? I can understand being incredibly shallow about nice figures and faces, more than this, and that's saying something. This seems like convoluted rubbish and self-denial to me.
  8. Since the early years of being an adult now, I've faced some infuriating and shocking discrimination on the basis of something I don't see acknowledged nearly as much as it should be - age discrimination. I look young for my age. I'm also not that tall, and pretty slim. Yes, fair enough, I look younger than I am, I'm not challenging that. What I do challenge, is people who seem to think it's acceptable, even seemingly 'beneficial' to me in some way, to treat me like less of a person because of it. I'm not entirely sure why it's this way, but there seems to be a real underlying, bitter hatred in society for men who look young for their age (I'm not denying that it happens to women as well, because it most likely does, however I haven't experienced that so I can't comment on it). I noticed this start around university, especially. This is actually a key point of this that I'll come back to later. Too many times to count, in instances where I approached and tried to get to know girls on my course, or girls had approached me first, they would somehow bring up how old I looked in a spiteful way. Comments I got included "Are you 17?", saying I "looked 12", something condescending about the clothes I was wearing implying that they reflected the choices of a child, and it goes on. Eventually, I noticed that this had a long-term affect on people in my classes. They would continue to patronize me, they'd find ways of twisting things I said so that they were childish, or put the spotlight on me in a way which made it seem like trivial mistakes I made were done out of childlike ignorance. Sometimes, just in the middle of nowhere, I would get asked how old I was after saying something that they deemed 'mature', in a deliberate attempt to snub it and say something along the lines of "You know a lot for your age," condescendingly. Other times, they would go into this little lecture about how much they'd 'been through' in life, or how they wanted somebody with 'big goals/ambitions in life like themselves', in a 'hint hint' sort of a way as if to suggest I didn't live up to this. This hurt so much because years of my life have been traumatic, and they didn't have a clue how much I've fought through to not go and just shoot myself in the head. Other girls, the ones who did approach me, would then find a way to bail out at the last minute, every ******* time. The reason was always, always, always, to do with how old I looked, they would imply it in their language ('I didn't realise you were so short. How tall actually are you?'). Want more evidence? One look at the men they chose over me. They always physically looked older, but many a time it was almost laughably blatant that mentally, they weren't mature or did not particularly have less flaws in the category of maturity than I did. This hurt because, if you like, they dragged me into this twisted game over and over, where I was simply led along to be reminded of why I 'wasn't good enough', only for that reason to be something they chose to make a problem. They claimed to think I was good looking, and yet didn't think I was attractive because I didn't have a specific type of look? You can't be physically 'attracted' to somebody, and at the same time find something about how they look a problem. That is an oxymoron. They were evidently going for men who it was 'socially acceptable to be seen with', and making this 'problem' then become my problem. It was like they wanted me to know how much of a burden I was to them, and make this rambling statement about how I couldn't 'provide' this 'ambitious' life they wanted. If it wasn't any of that, it was simply laughing in my face. Now, here's the biggest double standard that pi**es me off about all this. University puts huge emphasis on 'maturity'. It puts a huge emphasis on equal rights for people. The strange thing was, I noticed that in a lot of ways, the same people who treated me like this did acknowledge this and tried to uphold this attitude in other aspects of life. Politics, animal rights, human rights, and so on. It's almost the university etiquette, to accept people from all different walks of life, and to not accept things that are 'trashy', or 'discriminatory'. Sometimes, I noticed this was applied to things that didn't quite even deserve it, such as more, if you like, 'working class art' (hip hop music, certain horror movies). However, when it came to this particular issue, at my university I almost noticed the complete opposite. It was practically advocated that people who were deemed 'younger', were allowed to be treated like dirt, and the university encouraged elitism towards people who fell under the category of 'immature' even if it was in a superficial sense of the word. I noticed this happen to other people to an extent who fell into very particular categories - They were the youngest age a student could be (18 or 19), they were mentally immature, or like me they looked younger. I noticed the macabre way this manifested itself. There seemed to be this falsehood, that a man who looked more mature, was to be trusted mentally. But then of course, it got me thinking, why does there have to be hatred and spitefulness towards those men who don't? Why are the things that come out of their mouths, even if they're no less philosophical, discarded and ridiculed? It seemed to me over time, that it was something engrained into middle class culture. University is and was practically built on the middle class culture of 'political correctness'. I began to realise that people from rougher, or more poor backgrounds, would at least listen to what I had to say. They tried to value me as a person, and give me the time of day (and for that, by the way, I value them more and to this day have a prejudice of my own towards snobs). They didn't assume that I had a smaller brain, because I looked smaller. And yet in contrast, THESE people, supposedly the most 'intelligent', the most 'educated' in society, the ones trying to work towards creating an 'equal' society, carried on living in this dream world, where the simple appearance and shape of a man reflected this Disney-like fantasy that they would be promised security in the form of knowledge. What insulted me the most was that my knowledge, and my abilities, were being questioned on the basis of how I looked, by people who were supposedly the most 'educated'. In short, it was as if at some point, in the handy rule book of etiquette and neatness, to be a manifestation of immaturity in any shape or form, was deemed 'politically incorrect'. It's like something stuck from back in the 1800s, when we were feral, that's never been let go of and come up to speed with a modern, more accepting society. These people were brought up to be told to treat those who looked young like lepers, because they 'deserved' it for being a form of 'lowlife'. So here I was, told that just for looking a certain way, I wasn't able to handle the responsibilities life threw at me? I wasn't able to possess an intelligent mind? I wasn't able to be trusted with upholding a career? This was in spite of how the girls I had something going with did spend time around me, they were aware of the sort of person I was. But it was like when they realised the looks didn't reflect the personality, something in their brains wouldn't compute and it annoyed them to accept it. For that, I deserved to be treated like a piece of ######. What the ****? What hurt the most was that anything I did to disprove this, got thrown back in my face, time and time again. I eventually isolated myself from just about everyone, because of this. Now I see certain people I went to university with, with their future husbands, sometimes future fathers. Not all of them are the right people for the job, some of those men have been abusive. What they did have in common, though, was this particular type of 'older' appearance. They all looked like they'd aged. It was almost as if finding a man to them, was like finding a fitting piece of furniture that would make or break their house, and the lifestyle they led they reflected outwards to other people, if they chose anybody who didn't have this conformist look. They have an annoying habit of emphasizing how this person has been the sole benefactor in pushing them to 'where they want to be in life', thanks to his maturity. They try and rub in this perfect, Disney happy ending they're having when I can see through the cracks, from knowing them and what they were like with me, that it isn't like that, it's only superficially like that. And you know what? It's at this point that I might even be tempted to ask... is maturity as ******* important as society makes it out to be? Or is it just a social construct entirely built on snobbery? Don't get me wrong, I don't like people who act like 10 year olds literally going round calling people names any more than the next person and by all means, somebody should give them a piece of their mind. But when it's in a more trivial sense? It seems to me that sometimes people forget the ******* passion in relationships. How it's supposed to be about two people who bring happiness into each others' lives. On the other side of the spectrum, it goes without saying that there are certain stereotypes that come with being a man. Strength, not showing emotion as much, the works. Somewhere along the line, I feel like something changed, because there used to be a point when appearing 'masculine' was simply down to the confidence and attitude you put across in life. Again, what I've experienced is that it all ends up being superficial. I've been called out and excluded in social groups, had it rubbed in that I'm 'weak' in some way, simply on the basis of my appearance. I get ******* sick of these people who think they can just casually call somebody 'weak', especially after going on about how they themselves have fought all their lives to not be 'weak'. I even get ******* sick of this big bulls*** fight over who's most 'mature', when these people are roughly the same ******* age as myself. It's a joke. I could easily mock and torment these people myself if I was really that low, but I'm not. However, I am losing a lot of my sanity and could well snap one of these days. When did people stop seeing that it's what's inside that makes a person strong or weak? For me personally, this whole debate of 'weakness' or 'strength' is very personal to me. I spent years overcoming being bullied, I've lived in pretty rough cities. I'm not some stranger to the hardships of life, or how it feels when they're on top of you. But one look at me and these people decide I am. Or hell, they string me along claiming I'm fine looking, only to drop the bombshell later. I'm experiencing this same ###### now, every day. SOMEBODY drags up the elephant in the room, my age. There's a certain tone when a girl asks how old I actually am, and I can sense it from a mile off. As soon as the question is asked I think "This ###### again", and know that isn't going further any time soon. Same goes for if I add them on social media, and soon find a profile picture of an ex partner, and see the man has 'that look'. And Jesus, if I could name the sheer amount of times those have happened, and be given a dollar for each, I'd be a wealthy man. If it isn't that, it's some 'macho' **** trying to start a fight. Over time, people around me see this pattern of how condescending people are, and even though they see me defend myself against it, even though they hear words come out of my mouth that are evidence to the contrary, it just doesn't wash with them and they actually side with the one who started the trouble, as if I can only be pitied if I weren't the one to start the predatory behaviour. Sometimes, they subtly show respect for the predator, even. It follows me through every ******* workplace I go to. My whole life is being told, "You're not mature enough", "You're not good enough to make me happy", "I don't even believe that you're capable of building a future for yourself, letalone me." It was bullies first, in a different sense of the word, now it's just this harsh truth that if you're a young looking male, you're as good as a sack of donkey ###### to anybody. When was the last time I was accepted the way I was? Given a chance beyond about my first 5 introductory words to show what sort of a 'person' I am? How about never. Hell, sometimes I feel like all I'm doing by carrying on this fight is giving something to scum who don't deserve it. So there you go. I'm sick to death of why people think it's ok to be so open about this subject. But moreover, when people say it with a tone of demanding that I change. HOW? HOW am I supposed to make myself look and grow older? These supposedly 'wise' and 'mature' people don't really think this ###### out. And to anybody who's going through a similar thing, male or female, I feel for you, I really do. **** the lot of em.
  9. A classic one. One time, I told an at-the-time friend that the doctors hadn't allowed me to have antidepressants because I was under 18. The response was, "Ha! (Guy she knew) has been given them since he was 15!" She proceeded to use this as a basis for saying his depression was 'worse' than mine, and that there was something fake about mine.
  10. I've not been on here for a while, thankyou both for the responses. FeelinBlue, I'm especially sorry to hear that a therapist laughed at your problems. It goes without saying, but anything along those lines disgusts me. I'm not very good at being concise, and I feel like in the middle of all that text, I didn't really describe what gets to me about this very well. What I was trying to say, is that when I look back at my history at this moment in time, all I see is joke after joke. Somehow, everything horrible and humiliating that happened to me in my life, the really traumatic experiences, became a sick joke with a sick punchline for the entertainment of somebody else. I can trace back every instance to somebody who tried to make my problem their business, and were laughing at it internally or making a show out of it externally. I can rarely remember a moment where somebody really, genuinely cared, was disgusted, or even wanted to help empower me when they heard about what had happened. I just remember it being funny or "pathetic" to people. That's all my life has been, the entirety of my memories is these sorts of things. There were almost 2 years of my life in particular where I think it was at the worst it's ever been, and after being stabbed in the back by certain people I've never felt the same way about the things I regret again. I don't know if before that, I'd say I felt like I "owned" my mistakes, but it almost felt like that. I at least felt like for every vile person, the whole world wasn't laughing along with them. That's what changed. The number of people who backstabbed me made me feel like from an objective, almost factual, point of view, it was impossible to not see what had happened to me as a series of unforgivable comedy sketches. Like I said before, almost every haunting memory I have is of something where, when I finally confided in somebody about it, their response was to mock it or say I was being pathetic. Now I can't feel "comfortable" with my past, and therefore I can't confront my past. It was already bad enough when the memories themselves hurt, but people not being able to understand how tormenting and haunting it was, added another dimension to it and I feel lost as **** some days. I've never had somebody in my life who I would say both cared, and understood. Now I've spent so long suppressing the memories that when people say "Give an example", I know exactly how I'm feeling but I literally struggle to recall details, so they think I'm being dishonest or exaggerating, but that's another debate. I've broken potential relationships pushing partners away, and sometimes I've even pushed friends away, because the more they get to know me, the more those things that define who I am become relevant. And that is overall point. These memories are all the history I have, they completely define and make up my life so far, the person they want to know about. I wish they didn't have to, but I look at myself and see that same person. I look back at every moment up until now, and I'm embarrassed. More to the point, I'm doubly embarrassed because like I said, it's not just the memories that cripple me, but the reactions to those memories and events. I hate how that's all there is for them to know about me, the stuff I want to hide and they won't be able to understand without having some kind of critical or demeaning reaction to it. The fact is, I do feel like there's a ******* person behind the things I've been through, but these events are a barrier in the way of that. The "real me" can't be seen, because the nature of what's happened to me cancels out that person who has anything admirable or deserving of respect about them. I'd like to think that isn't the truth, but the majority proved me wrong, and what they put me through went on for so long that I can't stop feeling ******* furious with myself for not stopping it earlier. A lot of days, I feel like it's continuing in subtle ways. I never feel like my life has got to a point where even in a very subtle or underhanded way, I'm seen as this pathetic clown. But it often presents itself in different ways, things like people assuming I'm weaker than them when they don't know ###### about me or what I've been through, people judging the life I'm living now for various reasons, impinging on bits of information about me and using them to come to conclusions linked to cowardice. I don't feel like I can just connect on a simple level with anyone. They always find something about me or my life that's "a joke" or "inferior" and run with it. They then just make what was my past, the present.
  11. In the last year or so, if not even a bit longer, I've come to terms with how I had the complete wrong set of people in my life at one point. To describe what they did, however, isn't simple. As the first bit of background, my life at school was marked by a lot of bullying, and a minority of people who were friends that stuck by me. At the hands of the bullies, I felt like peoples' disposable clown. If I could go back and do things differently, I would, but rather than getting annoyed over that aspect of it, I'm trying not to dwell on it and accept that I unfortunately did become victim to those people. This more complex problem, however, all started in a much later year of school, when I started meeting new people who'd moved from other schools to mine. Gossip and bullying still spread about me, I wanted to branch out and start to make new friends. So, I got to know a number of people, and as they got to know me, they also learnt about how the bullying made me depressed, and that I had depression. However, these people were very subtle and devious. To try and describe the game they played, they continued to 'pose' as being my friends, but in a subtle way, they sided with the bullies more than they sided with me. But, I don't mean that in the conventional sense. I don't mean that they literally went and talked to the bullies and teamed up with them, they did something more sly than that. Instead, they began revealing between the lines that they deemed my problems to be 'inferior' to their own. They would rub in that the things which were getting me down, like mood swings, problems with my family at home, and people spreading rumours about me, didn't matter in comparison to their own problems. Some of them opened up about having very similar issues, but they would say between the lines that they deemed their problems to be on a more 'mature' level than mine, whereas they deemed mine as petty. This was because, through various rumours and misunderstandings, they felt that I was more 'immature' than they were, and therefore did not deserve the same value, and could not have problems with the same level of worth. So between each other, subtly, they sort of stereotyped me in the group as the one who was comic relief. But when I say 'comic relief', I don't mean because I was the one cracking jokes. I mean, my life was the comic relief to them. This is what I mean when I say that they sort of 'sided' with the bullies in a way they wouldn't even admit to themselves - they secretly actually found what the bullies did funny, but specifically because I was the one that those bullies upset. They, at some point, stereotyped me as this clown who didn't have deep feelings, and therefore, by proxy, anything bad that happened to me and I was visibly upset about, was funny because it happened to somebody who they deemed to be 'pathetic'. In other words, it got to a point where they almost were worse than the bullies and my abusive family in an underhanded way. They didn't give me space or support to grieve when I was going through Hell. I'd turn to them, and they'd subtly say or do something which made me feel more ashamed of myself than I already was. But why, exactly? I see now that it's because they actually took it to a deeper, worse level than the bullies. The bullies, at least, didn't really care for me as a person. All they wanted was an easy target to pull a joke on, spread a rumour about, or whatever, and have their entertainment there and then. But that didn't strictly mean that if, say, I became severely depressed over what they did and tried to **** myself the next day, they would find that funny as well. But this is sort of what these people were like. They extended what the bullies had started, so now it wasn't just the in-the-moment things the bullies did that were the 'joke', it was extended into the idea that the thought of me being depressed, suicidal, or deserving some humanity was a 'joke'. They embodied my depression and character as a whole into a warped 'joke', combined with some admitting that they themselves had various depression, family and bully-related issues, almost in a deliberate bid to make a point that there was absolutely no way that if those same things happened to me, they could be taken seriously, because I was the group's comic relief. They were acting as if it was Daffy Duck who was telling them that his abusive family and bullies were driving him over the edge, not a human being. The way they did this, however, was never direct. It was always in subtle body language, and things they said between themselves when my back was turned. It was years on that I saw them for the scum that they really were, at the time I unfortunately fell for the crap they said, things like "Get over yourself", or "You're being selfish". At the same time, I also had someone else I knew that would continue to tell me my depression wasn't real, or brag about how a guy she fancied at the time "had worse depression than me" because "he was given medication before I was", insinuating that there was some degree of strength required to truly have depression, and being a weak person I was faking it. I don't exactly want to hear people say to me "Why did you let these people con you with all this?" If I had to answer that, I was a teenager, everything was being thrown at me at once (remember, the actual problems coincided with being told all this, and they took up most of my time), and the severe bullying made me believe that I was a joke already. As I said, what they were doing was effectively an extension of the bullying. They twisted something in a clever way that verified what I believed about myself already, that made it easier to be fooled. So, that gets me to where I am now. The campaign those people reigned over me, has left me in a position now where a part of me still feels like I'm not taken seriously as a human being. I feel like when my depression hits me at its worst, it's ******* hillarious to people. The memories of stuff that happened to me, would be considered childish and pathetic to people, because that's what they told me they were. Being cheated on was childish and pathetic to be upset about. Having psychologically abusive parents was. Bullies who embarrassed me in front of the class was. The only thing that's given me faith, is that the times I've opened up about those things with the odd person I've met later in life, they were humane, they said those things were horrible. But to this day, I still feel a lot of people treat me like I'm just 'comic relief' because of how I look, and that's all fun and games, until by extension somebody makes my soul, and my feelings, part of that 'comic relief' too. I want to be taken seriously, but this was unfortunately the earliest 'support' for my depression I got. My first memories of opening up about it are scarred by people who basically said, "Comic relief like you can't have real feelings", and acted with this smug sense of pseudo-maturity, enhancing my reputation as immature whenever something else they found 'petty' had happened to me. I also feel a sense of regret, though. That's my 'history'. Being the 'comic relief who wasn't allowed to have feelings' was the badge I got stabbed into me. People found the likes of someone cheating on me comedy and 'petty'. I don't trust getting close to women anymore, expecting that when I recount that story, they'll laugh. When you had a long-term history as a joke with no soul, it's difficult to go back in reverse and think you mean something. This is even though I cut all those people out some years ago now, and the people left have been genuine and good to me. I still can't get my head round being treated seriously or with humanity. It angers me because it isn't normal. I feel angry, infuriated even, that they drummed that into me. I've actually seen some of them share things about mental illness on the likes of Facebook since, and wonder who the **** they think they are? It makes me lose my faith in humanity, all those times I thought people were 'gaining awareness' of mental health, it is in fact scumbags like them who are just sheep, following the herd and sharing a Facebook post to look good. I guess this is all I can really say on this. Thanks to anybody who reads.
  12. What I wonder is, how do you change somebody's perception of you being 'vulnerable' after a bully approaches you and attempts to pick on you, if the fact that they picked you out in itself makes them officially label you pathetic without a chance for redemption?
  13. This is a question I've come back to several times in my life, just recently being one. I remember reading a comment on a forum, article or something a few months back, where somebody said that bullying was subjective. Their example was, that if somebody had fought a lot of the bullies who confronted them and won, "They would look back on those times as fights, not being bullied." That sort of gets me onto this debate. I've seen the argument that it is not being chosen in the first place that makes somebody a true 'victim' of bullying, but rather how they respond to being chosen to be bullied. The reason being, if they respond well, that bully's perception of them will change. I don't agree that this is always the case. Numerous times in the past, when people tried to bully me, I didn't give them the response they wanted. Regardless, the people surrounding us, bystanders, understood exactly what that bully was trying to do, and they rooted for them purely on the basis of them being the one who started it and had the 'power' to start it in the first place, or because something else about the social status of that bully made the majority find them more 'desirable' to be on the side of. No matter how clever or relaxed my responses to those bullies were, both the bullies themselves and the people around them would twist and manipulate the circumstances so that they rooted for the bully anyway. I have also seen this same scenario happen to others who did well at appearing to not care and give them the reaction they were after. I've heard people say things along the lines of "Everyone gets bullied, but they learn how to handle those people so that it stops early on." I am not convinced. Not everybody can simply stop a bully on the basis of the reaction the bully gets from them. If the bully has enough of a following, people will find excuses to side with them no matter what the response from their target. The bystanders will continue to label the person being bullied as a 'victim' in their minds, simply because of social status, not how they approach the bully. So what, truly, makes a person a 'victim' of bullying, in the sense that they're vulnerable? Is somebody truly vulnerable if they present an indifferent or unsatisfactory answer towards the bully, and yet the bully persists at trying to annoy them anyway with giggling sidekicks beside them? Or is somebody truly vulnerable when they don't know how to handle it?
  14. Thankyou for the response. It has only got worse. The boss thinks I'm terrible at the job, others laugh at me like the circus has come to town. It's being made out to be a clown and ***** all over again. In this context, I definitely don't have the abilities suited to this job, I have to keep going until the end of the contract but will almost definitely have lost all dignity by that point the way people are treating me. I've realised I spent a lot of time running away from myself. I avoided these circumstances, and once I'm back I'm seen as the awkward gimp all over again, just like I would have been half a year ago, or five years ago. I'm inherently disliked and ridiculed.
  15. I have had the misfortune of dealing with a family full of narcissists, as well as encountering, and maybe attracting, a few others over the years. I know the way they think very, very well, and still live with some of the consequences of their behaviour. If you want to talk about it, I'll offer advice.
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