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Woman, 36 with only niche appeal is there any hope?

(29 Posts)
magicprague Fri 05-Dec-14 00:22:44

I am 36 and single, I haven't dated in a while as I was busy with my masters degree for a few years and now I am working as an artist. I live quite rurally and I don't meet many new people. I am quite shy and totally not a party girl, nor even that social. I do like people but I prefer a one on one or small groups. I find that single people my age all still tend to be into going to clubs and partying and I'm not really into it, I don't even drink. I have always been a bit square, aside from my art I like yoga, reading, gardening, astronomy, jigsaw puzzles, board games, cooking, music (playing and going to concerts) so sort of in between a little old lady and a 10 year old girl.

Also and this is the big one, I can't have children or at least not without masses of intervention and even then nothing is guaranteed. I found this out in my teens and was devestated but when I really thought about it I realised that I actually didn't want a child enough to put myself though all that, so I made the choice not to. My first serious boyfriend from 17 to 33 was for the longest time happy with not having children but that all changed when his brother and friends started marrying and having children suddenly he started to talk about us having children, I did give it some serious consideration but I just couldn't and he was not happy to adopt so we split up, so he could find a mother for his children, which left me heartbroken. He is still single at present.

I would like to meet someone, around my own age but I think my appeal is rather niche. I am not glamorous, sophisitcated or beautiful but I am healthy and am often taken for much younger (my boring lifestyle has some benefits). Dating sites look too brutal and I just can't imagine anyone would want me being both barren and not cool or hot enough. My feeling is that most men my own age want either a short term partner in crime or a woman to have children with, even if they aren't sure themselves yet they still want the option of being a father in the future.

Is there any hope for me?

Malabrigo Fri 05-Dec-14 00:29:23

Hi OP. I'm in much the same position. I have no words of wisdom (except that I look at threads on the relationships board and give thanks I'm free). I offer you solidarity though.
Better to be single and independent than to be bogged down in a manipulative or abusive relationship I think.

SoMuchForSubtlety Fri 05-Dec-14 00:30:49

You sound like someone I'd like to be friends with. Not what you're after perhaps.

But I think a relationship that lasts is mostly about friendship, and what you describe about yourself is not that niche I think, maybe just a group that doesn't really mingle so a bit harder to find.

magicprague Fri 05-Dec-14 00:38:38

Thanks, yes I do suspect that their are others out there like me and maybe some might like a partner but it is difficult to meet them. I guess I would like a husband but perhaps men who marry generally do so with children in mind.

A friend did point out recently that in a couple of years I will have my pick of divorced men are 1st marriages start to break down. Nice!

MargotThreadbetter Fri 05-Dec-14 00:43:34

Of course there's hope for you!
I think you're lucky to have so many interests and time to pursue them. You also sound pretty cool to me!
I'm single at 46 with a 2 year old so I've not exactly got a load of eligible blokes beating a path to my door, but I've kind of made peace with that for now.
Would it be worth trying a yoga break or astronomy forums (if such things exist?!) to meet/chat to new people? If you're feeling brave maybe give internet dating a whirl...
I wouldn't worry too much about the child issue - there are plenty of men who aren't bothered about having kids. A friend of mine didn't want children and made it very clear when she met her boyfriend. He said he wanted her more than kids and they've now been married 10 years!
Whether you meet someone or not though, you sound pretty together with a full life anyway. Good luck

WhatsGoingOnEh Fri 05-Dec-14 00:48:33

Did you really date one man from 17 to 33? Or did you mean 23?

sillymillyb Fri 05-Dec-14 00:49:02

I don't know if this is a help or not, but I've just ventured into online dating and there's lots of men in that age bracket that don't want kids, and seem to have settled down from the pubs / clubs thing.

You sound like a lovely person, I hope you meet someone soon thanks

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 05-Dec-14 00:52:53

My biggest concern at present would be that you live somewhere rural where you don't meet many new people, and at the same time are reticent about online dating.

Wrapdress Fri 05-Dec-14 00:53:46

I agree with the above poster about men online not wanting kids especially starting in late 30s. LOTS of men have no interest in kids.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 05-Dec-14 00:57:05

Don't confine yourself to a restricted age range, go for five-ten years either side of your age.

MeMyselfAnd1 Fri 05-Dec-14 00:58:49

I'm just like you, no problems with internet dating. Believe it or not, there are plenty of men that are not interested in party animals. Most people are just looking for a down to Earth person to settle with.

I think also that you are being extremely harsh on yourself, Not being able to have children without intervention doesn't make you any less than any other woman. You are who you are and no accident of nature will make you less valuable than what you allow your mind to make you.

I would also say that there are more men out there who ended relationships because they didn't want to have chidren than those who did because they wanted to have them. So statistically speaking, you stand a better chance of finding someone who will welcome your desire not to put yourself through a pregnancy, than if you were desperate to have children.

DixieTreats Fri 05-Dec-14 01:32:34

My goodness me. You sound so very attractive OP. Because you sound genuine. Don't even bother thinking about what you haven't got, you have got what others would kill for. You have honesty and openness - and that's what men like. X

LittleRedRidingHoodie Fri 05-Dec-14 07:14:22

If you ventured into the world of online dating you could put that you don't want children on your profile and then you're only going to be contacted by men who want this too. (Are you hoping for a man who does want children but is prepared to go through treatment and possible failure or do you actually not want them) I have several single male friends who don't want children but do want a partner and they are finding life in the dating world really tough as the women they meet do want children.

As for all the other stuff - you sound interesting and quirky. I'd join volunteer conservation groups, there's a whole heap of fabulous quirky men out there who'd love a girl not into all the crap that many girls are into. Go out there and have fun!

fluffapuss Fri 05-Dec-14 08:15:17


Of course there is hope !

Not everyone wants children ! - make this a positive point, not a negative !

People should be defined as an individual person, not by their children

Some men have children from previous relationships, so dont want more children or dont want children. We live in an age where it is possible to choose

My belief is that there is someone out there for everyone !

Get out there to meet people, join paid online dating & be clear from the start about who you are & what you want

New year soon, so new start !

Good luck

LordEmsworth Fri 05-Dec-14 08:19:08

I just can't imagine anyone would want me being both barren and not cool or hot enough

"Barren"??!! You can stop using that word for a start. You are not a field.

I sound very similar to you, only I don't want children and don't consider that a major flaw - definitely I don't think it's the reason I'm single. And I see lots of women much less hot and indeed cool than I am, who aren't single. So I refuse to believe it's that.

The thing with internet dating is, I am afraid, quantity. At our age, it's unlikely we're going to meet many new men in our everyday lives; technically we only need to meet the right one, but generally meeting the right one seems much more likely if you're meeting lots of men and "screening" them.

Stop focussing on what's "wrong" with you (in your head) and think about why you are a great, unique, interesting and appealing person. It sounds like self confidence is your biggest barrier, rather than any of the things you've said...

KnitFastDieWarm Fri 05-Dec-14 09:20:21

OP you sound lovely smile I don't suppose you're in southwest england and in the market for a sweet 30 year old accountant friend of mine? grin He's quite shy, gentle, kind, keen on films and nice quiet trips to the pub, and like you he's absolutely lovely but he's not 'in your face' so he can be overlooked in traditional dating settings.

I do think the way the 'dating market' is set up favours extroverts, which is a shame.

oh and none of that nonsense about being 'barren' - what is this, 1850? There are many men who don't feel children are a necessity to them and many more who would be happy to consider adoption, etc. You sound like a lovely person and I know it's a cliche but I'm sure there's plenty of men out there who would love to go out with someone like you - you just haven't met them yet! It might be worth trying internet dating because at least you can filter out people who look too loud for your tastes? I've got several friends who are no happily coupled up with partners they met online, and none of them are the kind of people who'd go out to meet someone in a bar or club smile

rb32 Fri 05-Dec-14 09:31:51

'niche' hehe. OP, if I was single you'd sound ideal to me (though perhaps because I already have kids?). I'm 30, not massivly social (definatly not a clubbing type!) and would love to live in a little village somewhere out of the way. All your hobbies sound quite interesting too.

Unfortunatly you will need to 'get out there' to meet new men.....but don't do anything you don't enjoy. Just try and do the things you like doing but with more people around. Atleast you'll know you have a common interest with the people you meet!

I can understand why you're worried about the child issue but, and trust me on this, not all men want kids!

jasper Fri 05-Dec-14 09:33:06

OP you sound fab!

having no children and not ever going to be having any is a huge plus point for many men .

I think you sound like a total catch, I really do

Palmyra Fri 05-Dec-14 09:47:54

magicprague - "Woman, 36 with only niche appeal is there any hope?", this sounds like an advert for an old ford Capri!!!!
You even list your interests in a negative way (yoga, reading, gardening, astronomy, jigsaw puzzles, board games, cooking, music (playing and going to concerts).

You sound like a fantastically interesting, warm person. I guarantee you have far too many interesting positives for you to list. There are literally thousands of people that would find you "appealing" (sorry its your word), the trick is, you just need to be in the environment to meet them. They will not come knocking at your door. So you will need to take positive action to meet people.
"Dum spiro spero"

Tryharder Fri 05-Dec-14 09:58:25

OP, have you considered Spice which is a sort of singles club where they go walking and do various activities. I know one or two people who have met wonderful partners through this organisation and none of them have been outgoing, clubbing, drinking social types either.

AnathemaIsANiceNameForAGirl Fri 05-Dec-14 10:01:38

OP you sound really, really lovely. If I were a man I'd want to date you!

Cabrinha Fri 05-Dec-14 10:03:03

Everybody is a niche market! That's why we don't all marry the first man we meet!

Niche is normal, niche is great, niche is unique.

I'm fabulous, I have lots of male friends - they all like me, but none of them fancy me, because we're all niche and that's how it works!

Not everyone wants kids.

DollyRocker1 Fri 05-Dec-14 13:53:51

I've enjoyed reading this thread. Eharmony might be worth a try. It's a more gentle approach to OLD where you communicate through guided communication (basically through questions you chose) before being able to send emails. The guys I have spoken to have been friendly. It's also good in that if you don't want children it'll only match you will those who says no or maybe. So if you state no there'll be no awkward questions as the guys will know where you stand from the start.

MLP Fri 05-Dec-14 15:13:08

You sound great - don't give up hope. Internet dating is definitely a route - maybe better using one of the paid sites as you might get more people on there who are quite serious about finding someone?
And don't give up on it. I have a friend similar to you (niche!) and she has met some nice guys online eventually, although she has had to ignore all the random weird ones. (Eg from a teenager looking for a mature lady)

glassofwinetime Fri 05-Dec-14 15:55:48

Agree that many men in their 30s/40s won't be interested in having children. I already had a DC when I met my DH (in our 30s), but I don't want any more and DH is fine with that, I am on a waiting list for sterilisation. And marriage certainly isn't just about having children (we are old romantics, the main thing for us was avoiding inheritance tax!). I definitely think it's something you'd want to discuss very early in a relationship though, to avoid the situation you had with your ex.

If a man is divorced and already has dc then it might be that he's less likely to want more of his own, but that could bring up all sorts of other issues in itself (take a look at the step parenting board on here). For me and DH, there were fewer issues because my ex isn't involved at all but it's worth finding out some of the potential problems.

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