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Hating still being single and unpopular at 22

Community Member

In financial and professional terms, I am doing well and succeeding. I am currently working a part-time job and own a Freelance Massage/Beauty business. I have recently been accepted to study Massage Therapy at a high-level institution. Despite struggles, I have worked hard and persevered to achieve these successes. Yet my social life is lacking. Already being unpopular since school, I have struggled to make friends, and been rejected by many guys I liked. Many of my ex and current classmates are already dating, married, having kids, getting to travel to countries, succeeding at careers/businesses and it looks like life is just perfect for them and many people like them. Looking at social media makes me jealous and depressed, like why is this happening to me? Why am I still a virgin? Why haven't I been in proper relationships/dates at 22? Why am I so incompetent with 'connecting' with people and feel drained/alienated instead? At this stage, I've barely been seeing anyone outside my family/work, due to feeling disconnected. On top of that I've had to deal with disgruntled clients, work conflicts, and negative reviews about my work performance/customer service. As if I already need to keep being reminded how shitty I am as a person.

Currently, I have a crush on a guy who I know at my current workplace. We get along well together and he is typically nice. As a result, I started having feelings obviously. I started inviting him out for dinners post-work, which he kept refusing. Eventually, he told me that he was dating someone else and that I was being too forceful and forward. It really broke me. I've tried reading 'dating advice' and it seems that I fit most of the things that would repel people away, not attract them. Now things are awkward between us and he's tried to avoid talking with me aside from work orders.

It sounds so vain I know, but right now I feel so lonely and insecure. I know there's many things I should be grateful for and I am. Yet with peers my age, I lack social competency. Having grown up being bullied and outcasted in school, it just doesn't feel right that I'm still struggling with this at 22. That I still feel conflicted and unhappy that I'm like this. That I can't seem to interest or attract anyone, that whatever successes I have is barely celebrated or comparable to others successes. I don't really know what I can offer. Would appreciate opinions, support, advice no matter how honest it is.

5 Replies 5

Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Asianaussie~

Welcome back, I've read yur posts in

Forums / Depression / Sensitive and Unmotivated and
Forums / Welcome and orientation / Post-Work Sadness

Now you say as far as relationships go "I don't really know what I can offer."

Um, well I disagree. You have battled bullying, finances, a TAFE course, a succession of jobs with dubious establishments, worked and got on with others in your first job, and also seen the practicality of your parent's advice, even if is is contrary to your desires.

Sensible, able to get on with reasonable people, steadfast in your studies, and now doing well and succeeding.

I'd add sensitivity.

In a good long term relationship (and I've had 2 spanning 50 years), the important thngs are enjoyment with the other, care for them beyond oneself, reliability, trust, and the ability to gain support (as well as give it) when needed.

You can offer all those.

Maybe you were clumsy with that guy at work, but then again maybe not, he had to have some comment to make himself feel better. If he had empathy he might have said something different. Frankly I have always been very blunt, saying thngs like 'I'd like to go out with you and get to know you better".

This acts as a sort of filter, and helps you find the one you need, frightening off those who just want a good time.

22 is not old -it's that simple. and you only have to find one -or -they only have to find you.

Please don;'t worry about 'social competency' No such thing, be yourself.

You are welcome to talk here as much as you would like


Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi asianaussie,

You have been working so hard. Life can be really unfair.

Social media is not a real reflection of people's lives. Most people tend to present the great aspects of their lives via social media but we don't always know what's behind that. A friend once told me of their experience visiting the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy. They said not one person was there just sitting back enjoying the scenery. There were masses of people and every single one was curating "the perfect photo" of themselves with the tower. Imagine that? Going across the world to see a landmark only to take a photo for bragging rights.

I know this is easier said than done but I think the love you need to be chasing is that of your own love for yourself. Even if you find a perfect match in a partner they cannot take away your insecurities. Then you have a partner to think of on top of all your problems. Our society likes to present this idea that success is defined by being in a relationship, getting married, having children. There are tonnes of people who have this and still aren't happy. No one else can "save" us from ourselves, that's our job. There's a YouTuber I watch: Shallon Lester, she's very opinionated so I take everything she says with a grain of salt, but if you are up for some tough love relationship advice you might find her thoughts helpful.

What are your interests outside of work? Are you doing activities for yourself that might in turn help you meet new friends?

Hi Croix,

Thanks for your message. I appreciate the honesty and advice you're provided in your response.

At this stage I've been feeling overwhelmed because it seems that I can't really relate to my current peers at the moment. It's been rare that I've really made friends who I can really connect to, and the few who do I only see them occasionally. This though, I think this does shed a light on my insecurities and sensitivity. I also have High-Functioning Autism, so I've had struggled socially throughout my life. It's often frustrating for me to be ignored, misunderstood and judged, but it's something I'm still going to have to be resilient to. I'm not using Autism as an excuse, but I thought that explaining this would be more clearer.

With my past workmates, I haven't really been seeing them much since our shops closed down. I've had been in contact with some of them, and they're either in new jobs or still looking. Most of them though, are struggling in similar ways, and it's not all glitz and glamour even if seems so. Hopefully, we will meet up for a reunion sometime soon.

At this point I can't really see it clearly, but I'm hopeful that I'll eventually get to the stage where I do accept and love myself. It takes time and effort, and lots of reminding. I'm thankful that I've had the opportunity to hear constructive advice from you and others, and that's already a start.

All the best to you.


Hi MissBenthos,

Thank you for your honest and supportive response. I appreciate this greatly.

At this stage I've been feeling really overwhelmed and it's hard at this stage to see the successes and achievements I had this year. I've struggled to connect with many others, and it can be frustrating to be consistently left out and ignored, and it's not easy to be able to stand confidently without feeling the need for approval.

Although life is still tough right now, I've been focusing more time doing the things I enjoy. Every day I like to go exercise and meditate, and every week at least, I play piano and/or guitar. I also enjoy writing and drawing comics which has always been a pastime of mine. It's just that I don't attend any clubs or groups at the moment, due to the fact they're on weekends which is when I have to work. But having just finished TAFE, I'm going to consider joining one at least.

All the best to you.


Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Asianaussie~

I wonder what you think of as peers. From the little you have said you have a very artistic way of thinking, and abilities I would love to have. I can write, but comics? Piano and guitar? They are all communication, and if many do not appreciate that then it is their limitations, not yours.

Maybe joining a group would be good, however I have found that it has to be one where here is an overriding purpose and enthusiasm, not just a social gathering. That way each is concentrating on the purpose, and friendships develop at a natural pace.

I do not know your style of music, anything from modern to chamber, perhaps there is something there. Comics can get messages across to a wide audience, is there a group you wish to support in that way?

Friendship is rare, I've not had many in a long life, they, like a partner, will come. You are articulate in your writing, talented and persevere, you will get there