Sunday, April 27, 2014

Does My Online Persona Damage Me?

I don't usually like posting twice in a day, but this is a post that was a long time coming.  So if you're looking for another helping of my thoughts, welcome to the party.

There's a lot of reasons for this blog, and certainly for my persona as "The Inexperienced Guy".  I like The Inexperienced Guy much better than other words I could have used like "Incel Guy" or "Love-Shy Guy" or "Forever Alone Guy", among others, because in my heart of hearts I hope that this problem I have can be solved by having more experience.  As soon as I get that experience I'll likely close this blog and redirect all my readers to another blog that better fits my life.  The other reason I chose this name is that my advice tends to come from that perspective, that of a sexually and romantically inexperienced man.  It's a good thing and a bad thing of course: I don't have any experience to filter my thoughts on these subjects so I have fresh eyes, but on the other hand I'm certain I lack some wisdom that only experience can give you.  I think the good outweighs the bad, and most are certainly able to take the good and leave the bad if they want.

I choose anonymity because I really don't want people I know in real life to know the things about me that I've revealed in these posts.  Most people in real life think I'm some kind of macho man, silent but reserved type with all the self confidence in the world.  Very few, if any, would guess I was the kissless 26 year old virgin.  There are of course some people who know my real identity, and if you're one of those people it's probably because a) I trust you or b) I like you (yes that way, which is the case for one woman, but I'm pretty sure those feelings are not reciprocated and geography tends to be in the way even if they weren't) or c) both and a and b.

So yes, the persona is meant to protect me.  Protect me from judgement or criticism for what I am and what I think.  I don't think anything I've said on here is particularly monstrous or damning, but much of it might make people think I have severe mental issues.

So is this persona damaging?  Am I like Batman and Bruce Wayne, where the anonymous masked personality has overtaken the real person?  If I suddenly by some miracle met a girl and we hit it off and started dating and I got all of that experience I've been lacking would The Inexperienced Guy just go silently into that good night?  Or would he just morph into something else, ready to rear his ugly head at some future inopportune time?  It's hard to say.

So what say you readers?  Does my anonymous persona hurt my own growth and development?  Or is just a healthy expression of my thoughts and fears?

In Which I Talk About Donald Sterling

As many of you know, Donald Sterling, owner of the LA Clippers has been accused of asking telling his girlfriend to stop bringing black people to Clippers games (among other racist sounding requests).  It's all on audio recording, so you listen to it yourself, it's pretty disgusting honestly.

Apparently his now ex-girlfriend is involved in a legal dispute with Mr. Sterling, which may or may not taint the authenticity of the recording, depending on your point of view.  But now apparently this is a national story which requires everyone's personal take on it.  So I'll offer mine.

If the accusations are true, it's pretty clear that Sterling is a racist asshole.  What should the NBA do about it?  I don't know.  This isn't a free speech issue; I don't think anyone is advocating that Donald Sterling be put in jail for what he said.  If and when the NBA takes disciplinary action against him, it won't be in violation of his rights.  He voluntarily gave some of those up when he chose to buy a team that belonged to a sports league.  While he may be "in charge" of the Clippers, there are things he can and can't do as a member of the National Basketball Association.  Owners, coaches, and general managers get fined for all sorts of things that are not illegal (like criticizing a referee, or accusing league officials of conspiracy) and it's ok.

So I guess I'm ok with the NBA fining him.  I'm ok if they want to black list the Clippers from prime time games or other perks while he is owner.  I don't think I support the league forcing him to sell though.  The backlash he's facing so far seems to be a suitable replacement for such a dire action as a forced sale.  Nutcase owners tend to not do so well.  I would know because one of my favorite teams has had one for a while, and the team stunk until fairly recently.  Failure tends to be its own punishment.

And for the record, the NBA is not a typical business.  There seems to be some people concerned that the backlash against Sterling (and the former Mozilla CEO from two weeks ago) might mean that other office environments might crack down on unpopular political views among its employees.  The analogy is nonsense though.  My employer doesn't broadcast my workday live on TV or radio.  My employer doesn't rely on a TV deal or advertisement revenue to make money.  The NBA does.  And if the NBA runs afoul of a great number of its viewers, its business model is threatened.  So anyone criticizing the NBA's response and concern really has no idea about the nature of public relations.

So there you go, Donald Sterling is no hero.  He's not a free speech martyr.  He's just a racist asshole who should probably get what's coming to him.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Do People Have an Obligation to Reveal Sexual History to Their Partners?

I really find myself conflicted on this one.  On the one hand, your sexual history is really your own.  Share it or don't share it.  It doesn't matter if your partner asks or doesn't ask, if you don't feel comfortable you're under no obligation to tell them.  Just like you're under no obligation to tell anyone your health history.  If you had a yeast infection when you were 15, or jock itch when you were 19, no one needs to know unless you want them to know.  It probably helps you to let your doctor know these things so they can figure out how best to treat you, but it's still really up to you.  

A possible exception seems to be virgins.  There's a lot of debate over whether it is acceptable to be dishonest about a lack of sexual history.  Anything short of revealing that you are in fact a virgin prior to having sex is akin to having sex under false pretenses and possibly sexual assault.  

I think we need to step back for a moment and think about this.  For one, I think the only people who would be upset about having slept with a virgin are people who are looking for casual flings or hook ups rather than meaningful long term relationships.  I have no experience with having sex with strangers, but I'd imagine people at bars or clubs are not exactly completely honest about themselves prior to having sex.  You might wear makeup or high heels to make yourself look better or maybe you're taking law school classes at night and you fib and say you're a lawyer.  Stuff like that.  I don't think you talk about your hangnail or how you found a bunch of hair on your pillow this morning and you think you're going bald.  I could be wrong though.

Now some of you might say "well, lying about your receding hairline, or occupation, or sprucing yourself up isn't the same as lying about having had sex before".  And you're right, it isn't the same.  But how's the person lying supposed to know what kind of thing you might find to be a turnoff?  Moreover, is there really a responsibility to protect you from being turned off?  

Disclosure rules are really designed to protect you from any negative externality that might harm you in some way.  Your stock broker discloses to you how he's investing your money because his decisions will effect your net worth for example.  If we're talking about sex, disclosing to you that I have an STD is important because you could catch it from me.  You can't catch virginity nor can you catch bad sex.  So I can't say that I entirely agree that it's incumbent on the inexperienced sexual partner to be upfront about his or her inexperience.  If you don't like the sex they have with you you are free to never see them again and there will be no further impact on your life.  

A big point often brought up is that sometimes virgins become obsessive about the first person they have sex with.  And I agree that it's possible, perhaps even likely to happen.  But I'm going to let you in on a little secret about some of us inexperienced people: we get a little obsessive whether you sleep with us or not.  I have never stalked anyone and don't plan on starting, but I will admit that I do google people I went on dates with or had a crush on years ago.  If you shared a drink with a guy and he tells you he's a virgin so you decide not to sleep with him, it's not like he's not going to get obsessive.  You might not see him ever again but he's probably googled you, or looked you up on facebook.  You're not really saving yourself anything except a terrible roll in the sack.

In an ideal world everyone would be honest and virgins would accept rejection and go find people willing to date or sleep with virgins.  The problem is virgins tend to be virgins because they have a hard time finding someone they like who also likes them.  I think about my own situation; my last date was at the beginning of last May.  Here we are on April 20, almost a year later.  If you want to know why people are willing to hide their faults in order to find a romantic or sexual partner, that's why.  

None of this (by the way) obligates you -experienced person- to have sex with a virgin.  Nor does it obligate you to have sex with someone who doesn't wish to disclose their sexual history.  My advice to you is that if it is that important to you, you have every right to ask and you have every right to walk away if the person isn't open to disclosing anything with you or if you suspect them of being dishonest.  But you don't have a right to demand that they disclose their sexual history to you.  That's theirs to decide what they want to do with it.  

I'd love to live in a world in which we can all be more honest about sex.  A lot of people want to blame society, sexism and sex-negativity for why we can't.  I think it's more likely our own fears and insecurities that causes the problem.  Let's hope it changes.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Going Nowhere in Life: Revisited

My Going Nowhere in Life post from yesterday caused a bit of a reaction in people who read it (yes multiple people read, oddly enough).  So I want to clarify a few things people seemed to take issue with.

Note: if you don't want to read the main section, skip to the bottom to what's written in bold.

1. Marriage:

I only mentioned getting married in passing, as an example of an adult type of thing that is fairly normal for people my age to have done.  When I was younger (say 14-15) I did think that I'd be married by now, and when I was older (say around 20) I would have thought that I'd be in a relationship that was moving in that direction by the age of 26.  I'm not particularly broken up about not being married.  I'm frustrated at the fact that at an age when some people are married I haven't even managed to date consistently or even kiss a girl.
2. The purpose of this blog:

This blog exists for a few reasons.  The most obvious being that I am romantically (and to a lesser degree of importance, sexually) inexperienced.  It doesn't exist because I'm single; lots of people are single.  It doesn't exist because I didn't have a date last night; lots of people didn't have a date last night.  What makes me unique is that I'm an older inexperienced man.  So I write about what my life is like given that reality and I write on other topics from that perspective.

This is also a place where I can dump a lot of negative thoughts and feelings without fear of judgement from people who know me in real life (though some of you do know my real identity).  Most of the stuff about how I feel are things I'd never in a million years tell my friends or family.  Partially out of fear of judgement, but also because I doubt they'd understand where I'm coming from.  If you've been going on dates for most of your adult life, you can't really understand the point of view of someone who's late to the party.

If you don't want the negativity, you can skip those posts.  You can also send me an email, or get at me on twitter or write a comment on here and you can add me (the real me) on facebook and follow some of the cooler stuff I do in my life.  I have a pretty healthy variety of interests and things I like to do and learn about.  So I'm not entirely irredeemable.

3. Depression/Suicidal thoughts:

I said this in the original post, but I'll say it again here: I am not suicidal.  For many reasons.  I do understand the value of life and how many people have to deal with obstacles in life far more trying than being perpetually single.  Some of you have lost loved ones to car accidents, cancer or violent crime.  Some of you are dealing with loved ones who have substance abuse problems.  I get it.  My lament is that despite having this thing of value called life I have seemingly managed to waste it.  I can't seem to figure out how to use the talent I'm alleged to have, nor how to use the resources I have at my disposal being a middle class person in a pretty decent place to live with a family that generally supports me.  I'm always told how smart I am why am I having this much trouble?  If I'm such a nice guy who could get a girlfriend, why have I not?  This is what gnaws at me.  Knowing I need to fix something, but not knowing exactly what.

4. Women/Dating/Relationships:

This sort of goes back to point 2, but it's a little different so it gets its own section here.  I clearly have a lack of confidence in this area of life.  It isn't something that I made up in my head, it's the product of my own personal experience in this arena.  Every time I'm interested in a girl, as soon as she figures it out, or as soon as I tell her/ask her out/etc., she begins to avoid me like the plague.  I've had women do this to me in high school, I had women do this to me in college, I've had women do this to me after college, on dating sites, etc. It's like my interest is this creepy thing that nobody wants to have happen to them.

And it's not even isolated to romantic interactions either.  I've tried to cultivate female friendships with absolutely no ulterior motives whatsoever.  And I always, always, always get rebuffed.  I honestly don't understand what I'm doing that could be interpreted as threatening to people.  Males never have any problems with me like that.  I don't send women penis pics, I don't talk about sex, I don't do anything awkward or off the wall.  When I do manage to get a date I get unceremoniously dropped before anything can develop (we're only talking about two women here so don't get ahead of yourselves).  What gives?

So if you wonder why I've come to expect failure from my interactions with women, that's why.  Because I've never had a situation where a woman has reacted to my interest with anything other than what I'd consider to be the nuclear option: excommunication.

I understand that having a girlfriend is not the end all be all of life.  But it's weird when something considered so commonplace and "normal" is so hard for me to figure out.  You start to wonder what's wrong with you.  I don't think I look like Quasimodo.  I brush my teeth, I wear clean clothes, I shower daily (sometimes twice daily), I exercise, I have hobbies and interests.  Yet the simple process of successful dating eludes me.  As much as it shouldn't, it depresses me.  For once in my life I'd like to have someone I like say "hey I like you too".

5. Career, Etc.

This is a complicated one.

I have a BA degree in a social science/humanities type of field from a fairly good state school.  When I was actually in college I had a plan that I thought was a pretty decent one.  Looking back on it, from a purely logistical standpoint, it was.  The problem is that I developed a moral opposition to it, and I could never go into that field without thinking I was a monster for doing so.

I've long been told I'm a smart guy, and I have "so much talent".  The problem is I have a terrible time finding any openings that I'm even remotely qualified for.  On the odd occasion that I do find something I could do, I apply only to never hear back.

I have a job now.  I make a little bit more than minimum wage (though not much more) and I work fairly decent hours, and I know the job and the company like the back of my hand.  It's not a terrible job like cleaning toilets and sweeping floors, but I often find myself bored and daydreaming.  The process of going back there day after day just leaves me on the verge of having a mental breakdown.  I don't want to advance any further with this company, so promotions and further advancement are off the table.  I'm mostly doing this because it's easy and I need money.

I suppose going back to school is an option, but I want to make sure that if I do it I won't be just racking up student loan debt with no hope of having any kind of decent career on the back side of it.  No one wants to be that guy with a Masters or Ph.D. in History working part time as a sales clerk.  Plus I don't want to be spending another 2-4 years postponing my career start.

6. Inexperience:

I want to be honest: I have a bit of a complex about my inexperience.  I feel like most women would judge me negatively if they ever found out and would immediately write me off as a dating/romantic prospect.  But more importantly I feel out of step with my peers.  We're supposed to be the most open generation when it comes to sex and our romantic lives and here I am late to this party.

So there you are: my clarifications on my last post.

I want to thank each and every one of you who gave me your thoughts.  You don't understand how appreciative I am that you took the time out of your day to read my blog and took your time to think of something to say and then shared those thoughts with me.  All of you are wonderful people.  

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Going Nowhere in Life

If you're looking for a cute or witty post, something with humor or some kind of redeeming educational value, I suggest you not read this one.  Go through the archives and find one that better fits your needs.  This is going to be a rather negative, soul crushing post.  Read at your own peril.

Roughly 3 weeks ago I turned 26.  Birthdays I suppose, are usually a cause for celebration.  I lived to see another year after all.  And I'm healthy enough to appreciate that.

But this year I've turned the corner.  I'm now closer to 30 than I am to 20.  That's scary.  Not only because it means I'm getting older, but because I seem to have stagnated in my progression as an adult.  Just to take stock for those of you late to the party that is this blog: as of today April 16, 2014, I am a 26 year old male who has never held a paying job outside of retail sales (not even management), I've never lived away from my parents' house, I've never been in a romantic relationship, I've never had sex (or even kissed a girl), vacationed on my own, and I've never had a credit card (or any line of credit aside from student loans), among other adult type things I'm sure I've never done.  About the only adult things I have done is pay for my student loans, cell phone bill, gas for my car, and my car insurance.  Oh and I can cook and clean (in a very limited capacity though I might add).

When I started this blog in late 2010 I was a senior in college.  Looking through my posts on here as well as posts of mine from message boards I post on, I am in the same position today as I was roughly three and a half years ago.  In essence, I'm going nowhere in life.

I think about this from time to time and I wonder: what girl in her right mind would want to date someone like me?  I'm clearly bad at being attractive, I have no career, no "thing" that defines who I am, I don't make enough money to be independent, and I must have no ambition or else I wouldn't be where I am.  If there was ever a poster child for "loser" I'm it.

I know some of you will try to put a positive spin on this.  Tell me I'm a good guy or whatever.  But honestly I can't see a single positive point about anything meaningful in my life.  I'm not suicidal, mostly because I'd like to live long enough to see my favorite baseball team win the World Series, and I'd like to see the ending to Game of Thrones (whenever that is), but I don't see the value of my life.  Growing up I thought for sure that by 26 I'd be getting ready to think about marriage, have a career, maybe a house, stuff like that.  I am so far away from those things to make them so completely unlikely.

I don't see anything as an opportunity anymore.  I see them as chances for me to fail.  Women who aren't interested, HR people who will just throw my application in the trash as soon as they see  it, etc.

I have failed the game of life.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ask the Inexperienced Guy

Allison F. [last name redacted] asks: Hi!  I have a question.  When's the last time you felt confident around women?

Honestly?  Maybe first grade.  I don't know why or how this happened, but I've pretty much always felt nervous around women.  Even in elementary school.  Partly because I had acne, bad teeth, bad hair, glasses and I was fat until I was 15.  But none of that really mattered when I was 9 or 10 so why did I not have confidence?  Beats me.

During my senior year of high school I was able to overcome my lack of confidence a little bit.  Danced with a girl at homecoming and asked out another girl (she gave me the run around until I wised up).  But my lack of sustained success made me give up and hope that college would be much better/easier.

My mother would claim that it's because she failed as a parent to instill in me self esteem and adequate confidence.  To be honest though I received the same upbringing most of my Generation Y counterparts did: always told I was smart, good looking, could do anything in life, etc.  So I think that's a bunk theory.

You're free to come up with your own though and let me know.

Joanna writes: I am dating a guy who's also inexperienced.  We're both 19, how should I deal with this?  Should I bring it up and talk about it with him?  I really like him.

Well, you're both 19.  At 19 it's really not a big deal.  I'm sure a lot of his friends have probably done the deed but not enough for him to feel self-conscious about it.  Or at least he really shouldn't feel self conscious about it.

The biggest thing is to not call attention to it.  He probably wants a normal relationship that includes sex, not one that requires him to talk about his feelings and lack of experience all the time.  Just make sure he knows you like him and you're not weirded out by him or treating him like a baby because of his inexperience.

I hope that helps.

Ask the Inexperienced Guy appears every so often.  To appear just send your questions to  Please include your name, age, and whether or not you'd like to be anonymous.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

How many people are like me?

Obviously I come at this question from a heterosexual male point of view, so I'm mostly interested in that, but I'm a little curious about the female side of this too I suppose.

A couple of years ago I did some research on it and I came up with results pretty similar to what I found here: about 1.1 million people aged 25-44 are virgins and by age 19, 80% of men and 75% of women have lost their virginity.  Now, I wasn't able to find the total number of adults aged 25-44, but if you use the demographic numbers from the US Census Bureau and play around a bit it's roughly 100 million adults give or take.  So 1.1 million is about 1%.

Sorry about the math there.  I know it's a lot of numbers to read all at once.

My main point is that most people by the time they hit 30 aren't virgins.  And odds are if they aren't virgins they've probably kissed a girl, and had a girlfriend.  So it's a far more useful indicator to use.

Now, people can lie on self-reporting surveys.  People might be ashamed at the amount of sex they've had or not had and will lie or round their numbers to something they think might seem more "normal".  So you have to be a bit suspicious about the numbers.  But in my experience the numbers more or less jive with what I've seen in real life: I only know two people who remained kissless past the age of 21.  And I know shy guys, religious guys, people from other parts of the world, people who smell, people who look weird, etc.  I don't know about the virginity numbers because I don't know everyone's sex life and don't care to.

So given these numbers and given what I know about people in real life, and given that people often lie about these things, how many people do I think are kissless inexperienced guys past the age of 25?  I think the number is somewhere between three and  seven percent.  And that mostly depends on who we're counting in the overall pool, and I'm actually leaning towards the lower end of that number.

Yet on message boards, websites and forums that I read and post on, there seems to be a feeling that the number of "forever alone" type guys has been steadily growing over the past 10-20 years.  Most of the people who subscribe the this theory tend to blame women for being too picky, feminism and single mothers for teaching men to be passive, or society for valuing alpha males over beta and omega males, or some combination of these theories.  I'm willing to believe that the percentage of older inexperienced men has grown over the past say 50 years, but not by any significant margin and not for the reasons given by these internet commentators.

I now bring it to you readers.  How common is it to find a guy (or a gal) who has made it to age 25 or older who has not had his first kiss, has not had sex, and has not been in a relationship?  Is my estimate of 3-7% too high, or too low, or just right?  Am I missing some big increase in inexperienced guys?  I thought this blog was unique?

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Revisiting the Race Issue

I wrote a little bit about race and dating six months ago, dealing with the notion of preferring to date within your own racial background being inherently racist.  The topic is relevant again with this lovely article written by Tiffany Wang over at The Bold Italic.  It's not necessarily about dating per se, but more about the kind of people one finds attractive and the stereotypes of Asian men in particular.

I will start off by saying that I had no idea Asian men were stereotyped or felt stereotyped before I started posting on internet forums around 2010.  Perhaps being white means I don't notice such things, I don't know.  In any case I understand the frustration, a lot of women who say they are not attracted to Asian men may be doing so because of the perception that Asian men are undesirable.  The whole "small penis" stereotype, the femme way Asian men are sometimes presented, and the lack of strong Asian male portrayals in popular culture.

But, on the other hand, is it possible for an individual woman to not be attracted to Asian men in general?

One of the key themes of this blog is my unusual attraction (some may say fetish, but I should hope that's not what it is) to women of South Asian and Middle Eastern backgrounds.  In general I'm not attracted to white women, despite being white myself.  It's much more common for me to find an Asian woman, or Hispanic woman, or a black woman (like Iman, I mean damn) attractive than a white woman.  But almost every woman I've ever been into was South Asian or Middle Eastern.  I don't know why this is, perhaps it's because one of the first Disney movies I watched as a kid was Aladdin.  Maybe it's something else, I don't know.  But I am pretty sure that my lack of attraction to white women has zero to do with popular culture, otherwise I'd be fantasizing about Megan Fox instead of Sherlyn Chopra, et al.  And this doesn't mean that I've never met or seen a white woman that I was attracted to, we're talking about generalities though.

So at the end of all of this, I don't really know what to say.  Perhaps many have been socialized to find Asian men unattractive.  Maybe some women were never going to be attracted to Asian men in the first place.  It's really hard to say.