Psychotherapy
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest NewsQuestions and Answers
Found Out my Therapist Had a Disciplinary Action in the PastStay in Therapy Because I Like it?Is Any of This Real?Bipolar Medications That do not Cause Sexual Dysfunction Very Harmful TransferenceToo Much SorrowOCDTransference IIAm I A Sadomasochist?Ending TherapyIs Erotic Transference Permanent?Erotic Transference and Borderline Personality DisorderIm Scared I'm MadHow Much Should a Therapist Care or Reach Out?Middle-Aged Female Never In LoveI Feel Like a Question MarkAnxietyTherapist Was FiredWhen to Leave Therapy?Guys Think I Am Too Much for Them to HandleNew Diagnosis...My Doc Says I Am Not Bipolar. Should I Go Back to My Medication?PTSD Am I Wallowing in Depression?What Should I do? NoahWhat more can I do?How Can I Trust Again??What Is Wrong with Me?TransferenceShould I Switch Therapists? Sara, Nov. 4, 2008A young adult needs to find help, but cant find it.Terminating Therapy after 17 yearsIs there help for a person who has always been a 'little depressed'Lovely, however... - Julie C. - Jul 14th 2008Can I survive without all these horrible meds?Where can I get the energyWas my therapist wrong or am I just freaking out?Does a therapist have to report me as suicidal if I tell her I self injure? AM I BEING ABUSED BY MY THERAPIST?My Son's ProblemCan a psychologist tell his patient that he is attracted to her?Tolerating emotionFurious that my therapist didn't warn me about erotic transferenceI don't know who my true self is!Is it OK to give my therapist a gift?What is the true meaning of being defensive?What to do when your therapist quits?Wanting a better lifeHighly Intelligent but Socially Handicapped: The Psychology of the Nerd20 Year Old Female: no friends, depressed, what should I do?Worried about thoughtsCounter-Transference Issues?What is wrong with me?Advice about past therapyDepression Treatmenthow do i deal with the fact that my therapist is dying?OCD TreatmentWhat treatments are available after you've tried the medicines of last resort?I\'m in love with my therapistDo I have a mental health problem?Adopted and dealing with Mother issuestherapist isn\'t listening to med concerns...Afraid to touch peoplefear of expirationWeird Feelings Towards TherapistSPECIFIC PHOBIAGETTING FAMILY TO UNDERSTANDhow can i get my former eating habit backWill this ever endIs This An Eating DisorderIs there any help?Can you help?Dark FantasiesSocial Phobiashould a depressed person marry?Am I just a bad personAnxietyStuck in a mental rut...Loss of PatienceQuitting Therapyabout my childhood and why I am like this, but what can I do to changeDepression/dysautonomia?Worried about my therapistAm I Depressed or What?13 Yearl OldDepressed?What is your theoretical perspective?Graduating TherapyWant To Make Love With My TherapistShy Rural StudentPoetry TherapyStruggling With Feelings And ThoughtsAnxietyPanicSeriously JealousNon-medication Help For DepressionBulimicMastery Of Anxiety And PanicBad Health And A Bum HusbandSick Of Feeling This WayVery Determined Panicker In The SouthAlternatives For Anxiety TreatmentElectroconvulsive TherapyNine Gallons In Two WeeksDesperateUnable To Keep Eye ContactAttachment And TrustWild Mood Swings18, Sad and HopelessPTSD Getting WorseShould I Continue With Therapy?In Love With My TherapistDo I Still Need Therapy If I'm Medicated?My Mother Is Ruining My LifeA Cure For Claustrophobia?How To Treat Avoidant PersonalityI'm Attracted To My TherapistI Love My TherapistMPD and HypnosisTreatment of TrichotillomaniaMeds Don't Seem To Work So Now What?Panic AttacksPTSD and Night TerrorsFeeling Depressed and InsecureMy Therapist Doesn't Like MeOCD And Behaviour Problems Psychotherapy Doesn't WorkMedicine Doesn't Work AnymoreThe Goal of TherapyI'm Going CrazyAbsent TherapistCan't Afford TherapyTwo CliniciansFinding a TherapistProtectionist TherapistHow Do I Find Help?No One Believes Me...
LinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Psychological Testing
Mental Disorders
Mental Health Professions
Treatments & Interventions

Ask Dr. SchwartzAsk Dr. Schwartz:
Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions

Middle-Aged Female Never In Love

Thu, Jul 29th 2010

I am a 53 year old woman and, I guess, somewhat attractive (so some say). I still have a slim figure but am starting to look my age in my face. The problem is I've never, ever had a healthy love relationship with a man. I had some bad relationships in my teen years, no real boyfriend, though. I had a few brief sexual encounters in my very early twenties with two different men but they were never boyfriends or steady friends. They never took me out anywhere (in public) so I never could really call them "dates."

Since then, I had only been asked out twice but I wasn't interested in dating either man. At the age of 37 I was quite lonely and a man was attracted and attractive to me. It turned into a crummy short-term (two week) sexual affair because I was weak. Then I learned he was married and it made matters worse.

Another time, at age 41, I went out with a man who I wasn't really attracted to and went to a cafe and to a movie. I thought I'd give it a chance, thinking that I might find something about him to like. However, he was just like all the rest in assuming that I would just go with him to his place for "a night-cap",...yeah, right. I never even flirted with him or gave him any indication of wanting anything from him. I just wasn't into him at all, so I asked that he take me home.

After that I have never been asked out by ANY man. I've had some real bad actors flirt with me or try to come on to me, but was not impressed, so avoided them. I was very attracted to three men in my adult years and none of them were ever attracted to me at all... so I seem to want what I can't have. For some reason, I sometimes attract guys who are mentally challenged or have serious mental disorders of some sort, are married or are much older men, and they don't seem to have a problem approaching me.

I don't dress provocatively. I dress appropriately, with taste, and don't wear much makeup. So, I don't know why I attract bad apples in the first place.

Now I have been more open to the idea of dating but I'm not getting any younger. I realize that if hardly anyone found me attractive during my prime years,  it is unlikely that they will now. It seems nearly impossible to find a decent, available man now.

I live in a city with over 3 million people and while I have been very social the last 2 or 3 years, no single men that I am attracted to have asked me out. One seems to like me, yet even he's backed off. The men here just do not ask.

Being rather old-fashioned myself, I will not ask a man out or make the first move. I also have been celibate for many years except for that 2 week affair. I do not want to go into any sexual relationship without genuine love and affection. I have never had those from a man whom I truely crave.

Seriously, I have not been kissed or held, even if it was only physical, in over 16 years. That said, I realize that I may be socially phobic in that I often clam up around men I find I am attracted to and feel like a teenager in that I get shy, anxious or nervous. But, I really think that it's because I just don't have any substantial experience in dating any man of good quality. I am currently going to activities in singles groups, so it's not as if I'm hybernating.

What can I do to become more sure of myself and more attractive to the right kind of man? Is it something in my past that prevents me from a good relationship? Would it have anything to do with losing my father who I never really knew at that age of 7? He did not live with me and my mother and he was not married to her. My mother also had a few failed relationships after my father died. She later married and he adopted me and my sister but I was not close to him at all. He later cheated on my mother and they eventually divorced.

In what way would these circumstances affect me at this late date? I know there are some good men out there but they always seem to belong to someone else or they are not interested in me.

THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION WILL NOT BE DISPLAYED UNTIL YOU HAVE INDICATED YOUR AGREEMENT WITH THE DISCLAIMER PRINTED JUST BELOW. CLICK THE 'I AGREE' BUTTON TO AGREE TO THESE TERMS AND SEE THE RESPONSE.

Disclaimer

  • Dr. Schwartz responds to questions about psychotherapy and mental health problems, from the perspective of his training in clinical psychology.
  • Dr. Schwartz intends his responses to provide general educational information to the readership of this website; answers should not be understood to be specific advice intended for any particular individual(s).
  • Questions submitted to this column are not guaranteed to receive responses.
  • No correspondence takes place.
  • No ongoing relationship of any sort (including but not limited to any form of professional relationship) is implied or offered by Dr. Schwartz to people submitting questions.
  • Dr. Schwartz, Mental Help Net and CenterSite, LLC make no warranties, express or implied, about the information presented in this column. Dr. Schwartz and Mental Help Net disclaim any and all merchantability or warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or liability in connection with the use or misuse of this service.
  • Always consult with your psychotherapist, physician, or psychiatrist first before changing any aspect of your treatment regimen. Do not stop your medication or change the dose of your medication without first consulting with your physician.