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to think certain of my single friends are single because they are just far too fussy

(136 Posts)
Croccy1979 Wed 02-Jan-13 14:24:28

Got several friends in their 30s who are still single and go on about it the whole time. They are all very attractive, interesting, fun, intelligent, have good jobs etc.

I do sympathise to a point, but AIBU to suggest that perhaps they should be a bit less fussy? OK so not suggesting they should go out with any old Tom, Dick or Harry as you need certain standards, but AIBU to think maybe they should sometimes 'give it a go' with someone who seems to have some potential rather than just rejecting men instantly if they don't tick all their boxes.

I was slightly unsure about DP for our first few dates as he was very shy and I didn't think he was my type, but now I am head over heels in love and would not be without him. So so very glad I gave him a shot grin and didn't write him off.

Also feel like my friends are sometimes not very self-aware - one friend refused to date a guy as he didn't have his own home and car (neither does she) and another rejected a guy because he was slightly overweight (she is hardly Kate Moss herself)........

They also seem to be attracted to good looking / trendy guys who are obviously complete plonkers - fair enough when you are 21 but thought people would have cottoned on and learnt to identify the good guys by the time they hit 30.........

Not meaning to be unsympathetic with this post, just thinking of the best ways to help my friends help themselves so to speak.

MummytoKatie Wed 02-Jan-13 15:04:27

I had a friend like that. She had a list and everything. We always joked that when she met the one then she'd get serious really quick. She did. Moved in together after less than a year, engaged after 18 months, married after 2 years, beautiful baby girl after 3 years.

And the irony is that he only meets about half the list!

closerthanclose Wed 02-Jan-13 15:07:31

I was considered very fussy before I met my DH, I was a single mum for over a decade and friends thought I just needed to settle as it seemed too hard to find a nice, gorgeous, solvent, genuine man who'd want to take me and my dd on! I'm glad I didn't listen though as DH was well worth waiting for (and meets all my criteria!).

I was never desperate for a partner though, though I would occasionally moan about it along with my other single friends. But that was just empathising with them, and it was never much of a problem for me. If anything, I think my mates ought to be more fussy when settling down - some have ended up with pretty awful men when their biological clocks started ticking and just seem to have grabbed the nearest one, despite massive red flags.

I live in London and I have hardly ever dated a man who has his own car. In fact, having a car is a bit of a negative for me as it usually indicates they live in the more suburban bits of town and have a bit more of a provincial mindset.

jessjessjess Wed 02-Jan-13 15:13:16

"Got several friends in their 30s who are still single *and go on about it the whole time*"

I would imagine that's the reason. They should be getting on with their own lives, not obsessing over being single.

I see no issue with being fussy. After a series of unbelievably shite relationships I figured it was better to be single than settle for someone who wasn't right - I was willing to be open-minded, but not to compromise on things that mattered to me.

I made a list. I remember one of my friends laughing at me and saying I would never meet anyone who actually met my criteria.

Well, I did meet him, and I'm now married to him, so man am I glad I didn't listen to the people who told me to just settle!

IwantaPetFox Wed 02-Jan-13 15:16:17

YANBU OP, I know exactly what you mean. I have several single female friends in their 30s like this. The thing is, they ARE happy being single, they have great jobs, lots of friends and loving families, fun lives. There is just such a massive pressure on women to be coupled up that it makes them feel insecure and like they have to be on the hunt for someone, but they have such specific criteria on their 'checklists' that they're never going to meet them!

I met DH when we were 21 so we basically 'grew up' together and it's never felt like we've had to compromise or struggle to fit each other in to our lives. I can see how, when you're in your 30s and your life is pretty sorted and structured, it would be hard to see where a partner fits in. Maybe that's why our single friends have very specific ideas of what they want in a partner.

OTOH, I don't understand why you would put something as shallow as 'footballer looks' or 'nice car' on your list when all you need is someone kind, who you fancy, who you can love and who will love you back.

Chelvis Wed 02-Jan-13 15:17:28

I have, shall we say, a "relative" who is like this. She has very high standards and has recently rejected men, and mocked them to friends and family, for being slightly overweight, not attractive enough, not having good enough jobs, not being academic enough and not having their own home (renting).

The ridiculous thing is, she is quite overweight, IMO very average that's being kind in terms of looks, in a job with average pay, barely scraped through uni and lives with 'mummy and daddy' still. She just has no self awareness that she isn't exactly a great catch either .... I know when I was single. I knew my 'level' so to speak, so I wasn't chasing footballers and millionaire stockbrokers, but did date men who were in similar sorts of jobs to me, average looking, similar life stages. Yes, some of them there was no instant spark with, but so long as they're not odd/offensive, what's the harm in a drink or a lunch to see if you click with them?

Saying that, those sort of people do seem to end up single forever or settling for someone terrible later in life, so I suppose they end up with their own punishment for fussiness!

LilyVonSchtupp Wed 02-Jan-13 15:24:26

So women who would like a relationship should not have any standards and go out with any old bloke who will have them. Tick tock and all that hmm

Maybe those women who are successful, great fun, lots of friends etc feel pressurised by society to show an interest in 'settling down' and pay it lip service but in fact would rather put their own eyes out than share their lives with a tedious bore. Some women like footballer looks and cars - wth is wrong with that?

lubeybooby Wed 02-Jan-13 15:24:42

I am very fussy, however mainly over personality traits rather than looks.

I want someone between the ages of 30 and 45 who is kind, honest, into a little romance, who can cook, is educated/intelligent, has no sexual dysfunction and who has a good sense of humour, who isn't already married and isn't vastly shorter than me. Who doesn't have a personality and life riddled with red flags and all that.

Not only do they have to be all that but of course they have to like me too. It's just impossible!

It's a very good job that 1) I'm not bothered about having a serious relationship at the moment and 2) am very happy with my own company.

LuluMai Wed 02-Jan-13 15:25:55

I just think dating gets so much harder as you get older. People have so much baggage, children, exes, financial issues etc. People get used to living alone, get set in their ways, find it hard to compromise etc. They have often built their lives exactly as they want them instead of growing up together as couples do. People have trust issues, are scared of getting hurt, commitment issues, still hankering after an ex etc! It's a minefield! Dating in my early 20s was so easy, no one had any baggage, everyone had youthful confidence and optimisim, we were fluid and not set in our ways. I often envy my friends who met their partner when young, life was so much simpler then. I'm a perpetual singleton and unless you've had to play the dating game in your mid 30s and beyond you have no idea. It's so very easy to be smug when you're in a relationship, ie where term smug marrieds came from!

Lavenderhoney Wed 02-Jan-13 15:28:43

Is the "spark" shorthand for want to jump into bed with?smile
I was considered too fussy as well, but I saw no reason for wasting my and some blokes evening as it was never going to go anywhere.
If I thought there was a spark and he coud hold a conversation that was interesting I would have a short date, but I have lost count of the amount of men parked next to me at dinners with the urge not to be so fussy.

Floatyjosmum- As for your mate, sounds like she thinks she wishes she was with your dh not you! Does she tell him that?

IwantaPetFox Wed 02-Jan-13 15:30:40

There's nothing wrong with liking footballer looks and cars Lily, but if you're actually looking for a partner they aren't essential are they? The relationship isn't going to work/fail based on them, is it?

Crinkle77 Wed 02-Jan-13 15:31:23

EldritchCleavage I agree with you entirely. I think maybe people need to be a little less picky with the guys they date but I would not compromise on my criteria for a relationship. I have had friends who have 'settled' simply because they do not want to be on their own. I could never settle for second best and believe the 'spark' has to be there in the first place. Ok a guy might be nice, kind, thoughtful etc... but if the spark is not there then there will always be that little something missing from the relationship. Ultimately I think you have to fancy your partner and I couldn't sleep with someone I did not fancy for the rest of my life

LilyVonSchtupp Wed 02-Jan-13 15:36:51

Some footballers look like Paul Scholes. I guess they're not thinking of him eh?

lagoonhaze Wed 02-Jan-13 15:41:28

I have friends like this. In my opinion if they spent more time just looking to widen their social circles by becoming friends with others then romances would follow.

DesperatelySeekingSedatives Wed 02-Jan-13 15:42:22

I have friends like this. They will be single forever at this rate. I honestly dont think perfect exists, which is a shame as that's what these people are waiting for. Having said that, my gran has a saying which goes "better to be single than put up with a nasty gobshite". Or something. I've maybe got the wording wrong but that's the jist of it.

On a different note, a relative of mine married a man who, on paper is as perfect as you could possibly get. Except he's not. He's a knob. But he would tick an awful lot of my picky friends' boxes (handsome, solvent, good job, educated kind in theory etc etc). Go figure.

Nancy66 Wed 02-Jan-13 15:42:24

maybe. But they are definitely outweighed by the women who aren't fussy enough and will shack up with any old loser just to have a man

AngryFeet Wed 02-Jan-13 15:44:09

I don't think you can really know what you want until you have been in a good relationship to be honest. I think lots of people have a good idea of their ideal man but then they meet someone who they like and the list means nothing. The problem is more likely to be that your friends didn't meet anyone in their 20's that they liked enough and when people are in their 30's lots are getting married/having kids and there isn't so much choice so it is harder to meet someone. I don't think the 'too fussy' thing is correct really. I used to think I would be with someone very handsome and sociable. My DH is good looking to me but certainly not male model material and he is not social at all. But he makes me laugh and I can be myself with him and we are a great team.

paulapantsdown Wed 02-Jan-13 15:50:55

I have a friend who is desperate to fall in love. She also point blank refuses to have anything to do with any man who does not have a full head of hair. This is a little bit harder to find when the age group is 40+ so she is not having any luck!

Alisvolatpropiis Wed 02-Jan-13 16:35:23


One of my friends is single because she keeps sleeping with blokes already in relationships. Not being fussy at all obviously.

porridgewithalmondmilk Wed 02-Jan-13 16:46:28

Do they get offers, though? I am nearly 33 and I have tried internet dating, "getting out there" ... nothing!

These days I find that when I do meet a nice man, someone else has had the same idea first and he's married/in a relationship. I think I just left it too late, to be honest.

Croccy1979 Wed 02-Jan-13 16:49:29

Yes, they get offers. One of them is particularly lovely and stunning looking and has men falling in love with her left, right and centre.

Spuddybean Wed 02-Jan-13 17:03:42

I used to work with loads of women like this. Interesting careers in the arts but low paid. Wanted the perfect man, banker type, gorgeous, well paid, fit, tall etc. Trouble was they were in their 30's, okay looking, maybe a few extra pounds - nice enough (like me) but not 'gorgeous' model types, low paid etc. I tried to explain one night, over a bottle of wine, when they were moaning for the umpteenth time as to why they couldn't find mr perfect and 'why should they settle' that they may in fact be considered settling to these guys and what if they had the same criteria? They wouldn't get a look in! (one said that even if she met a bloke in a bar, with everything she wanted, and he asked her out, she'd say no, because she'd never go out with someone she met in a bar confused )

They weren't impressed and started ranting 'just cos we don't go out with any old loser, like you etc' I just smiled and said but 'i'm happy and you are not, fine be single if you want, but recognise it is your choice and you may not be the catches you think you are'

Jojobells1986 Wed 02-Jan-13 17:18:29

I can sympathise, OP. My foster sister is now in her 40s & only seems interested in model-level attractive men who are either drug dealers or steroid abusers. She regularly complains about how depressing it is to be single, in between insisting she's never going to be interested in another man ever again, & tells me how 'lucky' I am to have found a good man. Luck genuinely has nothing to do with it. She's had more nice men be interested in her than I have but she won't give them the time of day because they're not good-looking enough! I found the first sensible, stable man who showed an interest in me & married him, partly because I was terrified that I'd end up rejecting every nice man I met like she does! Am v pleased I did now! DH isn't a looker but he's my rock! smile

Amothersruin Wed 02-Jan-13 17:27:34

My best friend is like this! She has completely unrealistic expectations of how she thinks a man should be. For example I know she wouldnt date anyone who came from a "bad" area no matter how successful they are/level of education etc. She also wont date men older than herself-38-but doesnt realise that many men her age want to date younger women! Also is fussy with regards to looks-wouldnt date any one bald.overweight etc.

My grandmother said to me from the very first day she met her-"that girl is going to end up an old spinster" and sadly it looks like she may be right.

Sarraburd Wed 02-Jan-13 17:27:46

Yes there were loads of reasons on paper why I shouldn't have dated DH - or perhaps, him me. Definitely would never be together if we'd been Internet dating.

He's vegetarian (my parents are beef farmers).

He was my boss.

He didn't go to uni and I'm from a family of academic snobs.

I love dancing; he gave up dancing aged 4.

He's very good looking (thought he was one of those good looking tossers when I first met him)(and it's not just me thinking he's gorgeous, really!) and me, not so much - short, a bit dumpy, rubbish legs, rubbish hair. Assumed he was way 'out of my league'.

He's very anti-social, I'm the reverse.

He's an ardent cyclist, and I didn't (then) cycle.

But, actually, on closer aquaintance we found have just as many things in common as not, and ten years later still very much love and fancy him and three DC.

So while not advocating 'setlling' as such - I'd rather be single - I do think it's worth giving it a go even if they don't tick the boxes.

LynetteScavo Wed 02-Jan-13 17:30:09

But on the other hand I see so many women fall out of one relationship and immediately fall into another. I can only assume it's because they aren't being fussy enough.

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