Help! AII my friends have started dating but it feels like no one wants to go out with me 

Dear Friend

All of my friends are dating, but it seems like nobody is interested in me, and it takes a toll on my self-esteem. I take good care of myself, but it looks like nobody is attracted to me, and I wish I could get dates like my friends. What should I do? 

Best, No Love 


Dear No Love

It is normal for teens to go through a stage of life in which many of their friends suddenly become interested in dating and relationships. It may prompt you to think that since everyone else is dating, you should too, otherwise it means something is wrong with you. 

But this is not the case. Your self­esteem shouldn't be built on whether people are attracted to you, romantically or otherwise. You should see yourself for who you are and recognise what you are good at. Try to identify your achievements and abilities, develop them further, and allow yourself to feel a sense of fulfilment and satisfaction in yourself. 

I am pleased to hear that you are taking good care of yourself. Good hygiene, dressing nicey, eating well, and exercising can improve your self­confidence and make you happy. Self­love and self-esteem are essential for building healthy relationships with other people. Before you rush into making any decisions on whether you should date, ask yourself if you are ready to date someone, or if you are just going along with the crowd. 

When you are ready, you will meet someone special. It is better to wait and meet the right person to whom you are mutually attracted rather than rush into anything just for the sake of dating. There are various factors to consider, such as timing, circumstance, and the behaviour of the person you're interested in dating. 

While it is true that healthy romantic relationships can be good for a person's mental health and make them happier, unhealthy or unfulfilling ones can undermine someone's sense of self-worth and hinder personal growth. 

If you do feel like you're ready for a relationship, here are a few helpful pieces of advice to keep in mind. 

Look for similarities 

It's important to have things in common with the person you're interested in. It's definitely easier to form a connection  with someone if you have similar hobbies, values, personalities, and ways of thinking. 

Having things in common plays a significant role in attachment and companionship, as people are more likely to establish and maintain successful relationships with those who are similar to themselves. You could start by looking for friends who have similar interests and views as you, and then deepen your relationships with them. 

Build personal charm 

Sure, at first glance, people usually notice the person they want to date based on their physical attractiveness. They may be attracted to their energy, the way they dress, or how they carry themselves, and this makes them want to get to know someone better. 

But remember that personality and social traits are important too. Being optimistic, genuine, positive, respectful, thoughtful, kind and warm are also attractive traits. Of course, you do not have to change your personality, but consider what qualities you possess that can help you interact better with other people. 

When you do meet someone, good interpersonal and communication skills wilI help the relationship grow. Smiling, showing interest in others and making eye contact during conversation can also build feelings. Relationships characterised by good communication and positive feelings are always happier. It also helps you gain support, trust and closeness in a relationship, and these elements are crucial for intimacy and love. 
Hope it helps, Friend of a Friend

This was answered by clinical psychologists from the Department of Health under Shall We Talk, a mental health initiative launched with the Advisory Committee on Mental Health.
Source: Young Post