What are something to talk about to strike a conversation with many girls as possible in college for a guy whose never been in a relationship?
October 25, 2012 9:37 PM   Subscribe

What are something to talk about to strike a conversation with many girls as possible in college for a guy whose never been in a relationship?

Im currently an Engineering student at a college and there are not many girls in my program so they are hard to meet and study with them. When it comes to relationship and meeting girls, I never really had a relationship before (Im 22). Im usually shy and quiet person when it comes to meeting people. Even my friends have told me this before, they tell me Im a quiet guy when they first met me. The reason for that is, I have nothing interesting to talk about. For example, I work at a fast food restaurant and meet girls and don't say a word because of nervousness.

Even when my friends introduce me to other girls, I usually kiss their ass and become clingy (text all day, talk about boring stuff) and eventually they loose interest in me once they find out how boring I'm to them.

Another thing is, I'm Indian but I take care of my self (go to gym regularly, proper hygiene, and all). Not sure if the girls I talk to are not into me because my personality (I'm usually a nice guy) or something else. When growing up, my parents have always told me to be nice to girls. But now days, girls, specially Indian girls like guys who are "douchebags" or "assholes" and not the nice guys like us. I have witnessed this a lot in my college.

The reason I'm asking this is because I want to meet many girls as possible(I have no girl friends whom I talk to regularly and ask for advice) and eventually fall into relationship. My thinking is, never ask a girl out until your sure she'll say yes. But I never get to the point where I'm confident that she'll say yes. I usually seek help from my my friends to find out as much as I could about the girls I talk to. For example, I'm currently talking to a girl who my friend introduced me to and he told me more about her so I know what this girl is like. Instead of finding it out my self by asking her, I asked my friend to do this for me because I would not know how to talk to girls in the first place.

I'm really confused at this point on where I'm going wrong or if I'm just taking everything too seriously. Should I be manning up and asking girls out and getting rejected (I feel rejection ruins my image) to learn from mistakes or just continue to be how I am right now.

Im looking to see how other guys talk to girls, flirt with them, read their signs if they like you, keep conversations interesting, what are common things in all the (majority of girls), and any other advice I can possibly get.
posted by Parh6512 to Human Relations (36 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Okay, let's just get this out of the way first: "girls" do not like "douchebags." Yes, some girls may be attracted to arrogant guys who treat them like shit, and some girls are immature enough to confuse "being a real asshole" for "being a strong confident person" (and they usually learn this the hard way if they ever learn it at all). The vast majority of women do not, however, "like douchebags." You're setting yourself up for failure right away if you believe that, so get that idea out of your head right now. Men who wind up actually believing that become the kind of guys who buy pick-up-artist books and follow their advice, which might get them laid every now and then, but won't get them an awesome loving girlfriend.

To meet girls who are interested in you, do whatever you love as hard as you can. Be passionate about your interests. This in and of itself makes you interesting to interesting women, even ones who may not exactly share your passion, and will give you the ability to both begin interesting conversations and keep them going.

Be confident, and more importantly, be interested. Women are people. Women like it when you're interested in learning more about them, and they'll be flattered that you're interested enough to ask.

You know what the most time-worn pick up line in the history of college is? "Hey, so what's your major?" Followed by a sincere line of "Oh wow, that must be really interesting. What's your favorite class? How come you chose that major?" And like magic, you're having a conversation and finding out more about that girl.
posted by erst at 9:45 PM on October 25, 2012 [27 favorites]

Another thing is, I'm Indian but I take care of my self (go to gym regularly, proper hygiene, and all)

This comment kind of bothers me. I'm American but my parents are from India and I don't think there should be any reason to point out your "hygiene" being an Indian person. It sounds like you've internalized a kind of negative impression about how your background is perceived. Let go of that.

what are common things in all the (majority of girls)

Women are not a monolith with a bunch of commonalities. Women are people. I think for an experiment, talk to women as though you were talking to a guy friend, exact same topics, sports, politics, whatever, even if you don't initially think she would be interested.
posted by sweetkid at 9:51 PM on October 25, 2012 [27 favorites]

I'm an Indian girl! And guess what, I LOVE nice Indian guys :)

First things first--build up your confidence by doing things you LOVE everyday. The best thing I realized about not being so hurt when you get rejected is KNOWING you're amazing and awesome--So WHAT if she doesn't see it? You're great and you know it--it's her loss.

Second thing is being GENUINE and SMILING. I'm telling you, when you are a guy who smiles often and laughs easily, it comes across as being happy, fun-loving, life-loving and CONFIDENT. So many hot, gorgeous guys at my university stare at me/eye-flirt/try to mind-sex me or something, and they NEVER smile! I melt for a guy who smiles easily and is happy.

Another thing too is realizing that "all girls" are DIFFERENT. No girls like the same thing, just as you and your buddies like different things in women. And you shouldn't try to find a girl just for the sake of it--at least, not in the long-term. Honestly, most girls you WON'T be compatible with or even LIKE. Being friendly, genuine, confident and also HONEST will attract you girls with good values--and no, this does not mean they will be prudes or not want to fuck you. :)
posted by rhythm_queen at 9:57 PM on October 25, 2012 [11 favorites]

I agree with what the previous commentors said.

Adding to that:

I fully understand the desire to get into a relationship as soon as possible - loneliness does suck. But you say you are very shy and have no girl friends. I think perhaps friendship should come first. You say that you have male friends; if you treat girls the same way you treat guys then you'll make friends. And I think that's the heart of it - finding a partner, finding someone you really connect with, it takes knowing how to connect to people in general first, and knowing how to get over that feeling that things are different when it comes to talking to girls vs. guys.

And sometimes those friendships develop into relationships; sometimes they don't. It's best not to specifically expect either - don't think of friendship as means to an end, but also don't think of it as just setting yourself up for an eventual rejection.

In my personal experience, girl engineers are some of the coolest girls around. Why? Because engineers are people who love creating things and improving things and learning about how things work. Is that what you love about engineering? That's what you bring to the table. You don't need to be talkative or loud, you just need to want to listen, to want to get to know the people you meet. That goes a long way.
posted by capricorn at 10:01 PM on October 25, 2012 [4 favorites]

(PS I am a girl and douchebags are pretty much #1 on my "to avoid" list.)
posted by capricorn at 10:02 PM on October 25, 2012

It's not that women like douchebags and assholes, it's that so-called "nice guys" aren't actually nice and women pick up on that. The "nice guy" path leads to stupid shit like PUA, ladder theory and other dumb misogynistic shit.

The only advice I can give you is what worked for me: meet people, treat them with respect, and do not treat meeting women as a process designed to gain you a sex partner. As long as you treat people (men AND women) as people first and foremost, you are gonna be fine and not embarrass yourself.
posted by Sternmeyer at 10:09 PM on October 25, 2012 [11 favorites]

You don't need to be interesting, you need to be interested. Ask girls about themselves:

A few topics:

Their family.
Their home town.
Their studies.
Hopes and dreams.
Movies/music etc.

Listen carefully and actually care about them. That will put you ahead of most guys that hit on them.

As far as being interesting, just be passionate about anything, find a hobby and be good at it. It really doesn't matter if its video games or rock climbing, someone will find it interesting, if you do.

Also, relax. You're in no rush. Make friends with lots of people, girls or guys. Don't try to force every friendship into a relationship. The more people you meet, the more likely you will be to find someone that clicks with you.
posted by empath at 10:10 PM on October 25, 2012 [10 favorites]

Oh, and by the way, "nice guys" who are "nice" to a girl because the "nice guy" want to get in the girl's pants doesn't make that guy a "nice guy." It makes that guy a douchebag. That guy's just a slightly different kind of douchebag than the cocky asshole-to-the-world kind of douchebags.

Be interested in other people for who they are and what they do, whether or not they happen to have boobs and a vagina. I guarantee you it'll pay off.
posted by erst at 10:14 PM on October 25, 2012 [10 favorites]

You have asked essentially the same question a couple of times before, and have gotten the same advice you're going to get now (ask girls out, talk to them like they're people). Did you take any of that prior advice? If not, why not? If you did, what worked and what didn't?

You are going to keep getting the same answers; asking the question again isn't going to make the world different. So what's different for YOU?
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:15 PM on October 25, 2012 [29 favorites]

What are something to talk about to strike a conversation with many girls as possible in college for a guy whose never been in a relationship?

Why can't you just wait until you meet a girl you get to know, respect, and admire? Why is talking to lots of girls important? Why wouldn't you wait to be genuinely interested in someone rather than just talk to "girls "?

And why is having relationship experience do important? You're a young guy in a hard major. Guys who just date girls to build a dating history are probably going to have a hard time finding a satisfying relationship.
posted by discopolo at 10:24 PM on October 25, 2012

You don't need to be interesting, you need to be interested.

I think given your stated propensity to cling, this is not great advice. Being interesting is sexy. And by interesting, I mean passionate about some stuff. Sure, also learn who you're talking to, but if you're not bringing anything to the table that won't last long. And the clinging needs to stop, that is a giant turn-off for most people.

What do you geek out about? Cars, cats, food, trains, fashion, exercise, religion, sports, current events? Go do more of that with likeminded people. Make female friends who can help you stop viewing women as "other" and who can perhaps guide you more personally.

Finally, I also think the I'm Indian but is weird. Be proud to be you and you'll have more success attracting other people to you.
posted by vegartanipla at 10:28 PM on October 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Please see the responses provided to the gentleman in this AskMe which is very similar to yours. You will find input on...

1. Why believing that there are steps to get with a "majority of girls" is sexist, stupid, and wrong.
2. Why you thinking that you're a "nice guy" is setting you back (you probably aren't what you think you are).
3. The real definition of a "nice guy".
4. How to relax and develop a personality worth engaging with.
5. Many other related topics you may not have considered yet.

Also, these comments of yours...

(I'm usually a nice guy)
(I feel rejection ruins my image)

If this is genuinely how you feel, your first and only step right now is to get over yourself in every possible way, because you're setting yourself up for failure toute suite by affirming these things over and over. The usually a nice guy bit makes you sound super creepy, like there's an implied "unless" somewhere in there and I don't really think a lot of people will find whatever that "unless" is very attractive, you know?

Anyway, good luck. It's good to be asking these questions and working on improving yourself in these ways.
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 10:46 PM on October 25, 2012 [4 favorites]

I usually seek help from my my friends to find out as much as I could about the girls I talk to. For example, I'm currently talking to a girl who my friend introduced me to and he told me more about her so I know what this girl is like. Instead of finding it out my self by asking her, I asked my friend to do this for me because I would not know how to talk to girls in the first place.


A prospective girl will want to talk to you in order to find out about you. And when you talk to her, asking her about her interests, family, etc., that reciprocity helps her feel that you care about her feelings. It also helps her Unconscious check that you're not a narcissist, psychopath, etc.

The goal is small talk. "Oh, you're a single child too? How interesting. I've always thought that single children have it different from kids from big families."

Interrogating your friend about girl X may help you prepare an engineering report on girl X, but it will do nothing to further an emotional relationship between you and girl X.

*You should learn to cook. Chicks dig men that like to cook. And preparing nutritious and delicious meals for yourself is a useful lifeskill for engineers as well as normal humans. Including financially.

*Consider taking a lifedrawing class. This will help you learn a skill outside your major. (And learn to talk to women outside your major/job) And drawing (well) is is hard. You'll be pleasantly surprised to learn this. And preparing little explanatory sketches is a useful lifeskill for engineers as well as normal humans. (Don't hit on the models. They can pick up on that stuff really well.)

(If you don't have a hobby right now and aren't well rounded, what conversational subject would a prospective mate have to talk with you about besides fast food service and your engineering studies?)

Finally, learn to chat with people to just to meet them, not because you're trying to find the one in the herd that's a prospective mate.

BTW, I suggest reading about the 60s womens movement and women's lib. Most modern western women prefer mates that understand this stuff.
posted by sebastienbailard at 10:46 PM on October 25, 2012 [3 favorites]

I really want to help you out here so I'm going to try to do my best to explain some stuff to you. Because I was you. There's just so much to explain. Hang in there.

You've been in a rough spot for the past few years, judging by your questions, as you struggle with your decisions and those of your parents and their ramifications as to your living conditions and current level of happiness.

As a 22 year old you lack a lot of life experience. All this is normal. Furthermore as an ABCD there is also an understandable, but minor, cultural gap between you and the fine people of Buffalo, NY.

So here's the deal. You didn't wake up one day and do multivariable calculus. You worked your way up to it over a period of years by mastering each of the prerequisite mathematical disciplines. If you try to do calculus without hitting all the basics you're going to hit a brick wall of failure. But you wouldn't get upset and quit, would you? You would realize you don't know anything about trig identities and you go back to remaster that area before attempting again.

Similarly, human relationships are complicated and require all kinds of esoteric and non-obvious prerequisites. That's why so many fail. You didn't even know you were incompatible. But now you know what you need to work on. It's a painful process.

So you need to embrace the random nature of human interaction. You're going to fuck it up. Your first girlfriend, your first five girlfriends, might dump you. When you finally get over it, that's when you learn and do better the next time.

A year from now you're going to ask a girl that you can't imagine a life without, you're going to ask if she wants to hang out and she's going to say no. You're going to text somebody you want to spend the rest of your life with and absolutely nothing will echo back from the ether. You will not know why, and will probably never find out. That's life. The pain helps you later on.

At any rate, ten years later you won't even be able to remember their names.

In economics terms, right now you are an unknown quantity. It sounds like you're looking for love and commitment. Well, unfortunately you have to go out there and make something of yourself first. That's just the reality of human evolutionary biology. Deep down you already knew that, which is why you began asking questions about bodybuilding and finding work over a year ago.

Right now you want a girlfriend. Stop and consider for a second, why would someone date me? Am I patient? Rich? Kind? Emotionally unavailable? Considerate? Mother issues? Thoughtful? Do I have 3% body fat? Everybody has a niche, and it's not always a good one. Some girls like abusive girls, that doesn't mean you need to smack your date around.

Maybe you make the best mango burfi in the world. Perhaps you have beautiful eyes. Work with what you have, and find stuff to add to your toolbox.

Turn your perceived weaknesses into strengths. You have innate access to an entire world of completely different culture, music, language, food, cinema. Put that out there, put it to good use. Look for desi cultural events in your town, and go to them even if it sucks. At least you'll have something to talk about. Make obscure, scurrilous references to the corrupt internal politics of Pakistan in your political science class.

Talk to people that you have no intention of ever seeing again. They might surprise you. Go out of your way to help random people ... for no other reason than you know what it's like to have needed help and not get it.

Try to find some cultural programs at your school, desi groups of whatever flavor, religious, etc. You don't have to believe in it, they are there for people like you. You need to find situations where people are not busy doing something else.

These days, people in college are unfortunately fairly shallow and going nowhere fast. 18-24 year old kids make a lot of very poor life decisions and you shouldn't ever take that personally. College is the new high school, and a lot of people are just there because they think they have to be. On that note, like the above poster said, take a random class and see if you can broaden your horizons and make idle chat about the professor, the homework assignment you forgot about, and how bad your essay is.

It's a big world out there. I know you're wrapped up in college and your job and all that, but young people are usually just as confused as you are. Try talking to considerably older people who look like they're not too busy. Around a college campus secretaries, vendors and librarians are pretty good bets. If you get tired of talking about the weather, find one nice thing to say about someone. Ask them where they got those marvelous socks.

Change jobs, just for the hell of it. Nobody's going to care, there's no damage to your resume at this point. Find something you wouldn't normally consider.

A lot of my friends from high school were essentially dateless from 18 to 24. Decent, hard working dudes who were not about to win any Mr. Congeniality awards and may or may not have belonged to multiple chess/computer clubs. Those of us who recognized the problem and worked on it made slow, painful progress.

When the timeless cliche comes true you will be in the enviable position of knowing who you are and what you want. If you are working on improving yourself without giving up on trying to find good people to be around, and date.

This is a hard topic and I don't feel like I've done a very good job. But the most important life advice I can give you is when you are given a questionable choice, and this will occur often, reflect in your heart and always do what you know is the correct and just thing.


Never give up. This, too, shall one day pass. Life is not easy, but it's frequently worth it.

In closing please remember that people will come and go but when you lose your integrity you have lost your soul. Best of luck.
posted by hobo gitano de queretaro at 11:25 PM on October 25, 2012 [16 favorites]

Don't be too generic. Think about what the most interesting thing that happened to you this week is, or the most interesting story you heard was, then practice telling it in an interesting way.

See if you can link it in with questions. Eg if you ask what the last band she saw was, after listening attentively and asking followup questions, you might slip in an anecdote about a band you saw.

There are whole books of dating advice (Dating For Dummies isn't bad). It's worth reading one and just going on as many dates as you can: confidence comes from experience and you'll get there in the end.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 12:53 AM on October 26, 2012

Most girls don't have a problem with nice, but they do have a problem with wimps with ulterior motives. As has come up in response to your previous questions in this area, you need to get over yourself and start taking steps that risk rejection. What image are you concerned with protecting? The one of a guy who's never had a girlfriend?

Talk to girls like they're people. If you want to date them, ask them out. What you're doing isn't working for you, so why not start taking the advice of the lovely people of metafilter?
posted by J. Wilson at 5:07 AM on October 26, 2012 [5 favorites]

Women are people. Make friends with some women. Real, honest friendships where you aren't trying to get in their pants as a long-term goal. And guess what? They'll have a whole lot of single women friends they can introduce you to, and will probably be able to give you advice about it. Side benefit.
posted by baby beluga at 5:17 AM on October 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

I would agree with the other posters - learn to view people you're interested in as people and not "girls," don't essentialize women (or any other group), don't fall into the bs trap of telling yourself that you're single because women like "douchebags" and just don't appreciate "nice guys" like you. To this I would add:

There was a person in my undergrad program who was very obvious in his goal of "striking a conversation with as many girls as possible," and it was off-putting, to put it nicely. Nobody - woman or man - wants to feel like they're talking to someone who only wants to tick off another box in their mental tally of potential dating partners. Being that guy, way more than rejection, probably has the potential to "hurt your image" - again, I would point you to all the comments here urging you to view women as people.

I understand where you're coming from, and if you're that nervous around women it probably would be good for you to practice - but maybe the numbers game would be best played on something like OK Cupid where the other people are also explicitly there to meet people?
posted by DingoMutt at 5:36 AM on October 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

Women don't like douchebags and assholes. Women like confident guys. Unfortuneatly, douchebags and assholes are confident. So work on that.

You want to find someone who has similar interests as you. While bars are nice places to hang out with friends, unless it's a really specific kind of bar (Sabers Sports Bar) there may be little commonality there.

For sure, talk to people at parties and at bars. Ask questions about them to find out what their interests are. I recommend this book to women and I'll recommend it to you, How to Marry the Man of your Choice. (Please don't be put off by the title, it's really good.)

The first edition of this book is older than you are, but it really explains attraction, understanding your potential partner and how to assess people for long term relationships. It opened my eyes, that's for sure.

Instead of bars and parties, join some clubs. The Film Club, Habitat for Humanity, Dr. Who Meetup, whatever it is. You have more interests than just your major, explore those. When you meet people at a club, you already have at least one thing in common, and you can build on that.

I met Husbunny in a Daria Chatroom. Weird, but true.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 5:57 AM on October 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

Also: Even when my friends introduce me to other girls, I usually kiss their ass and become clingy (text all day, talk about boring stuff) and eventually they loose interest in me once they find out how boring I'm to them.

THIS is what you need to work on most immediately. Not the "boring" part - the clingy, text all day stuff. Clinginess is not really what most people think of when they think "nice person," and I'm guessing this is putting those women off of you far more than anything "boring" you might be saying. You could be a shark-wrestling astronaut who rides to class every day on his pet chupacabra, and for most people that clingy thing would still squelch any potential interest they may have had.

When you meet someone you like, don't impose yourself on them all day long. Maybe make yourself a one-text-per-day limit at first (or two, or three - I don't know what precise number would be best, but set yourself a limit, and make it a very low limit). Assuming you've been rapid-firing texts without getting much response, this could also help you with your perceived "boring" problem: give the person a chance to respond to you, take your time and focus more on hearing and responding to her rather than just barraging her with whatever comes to mind.

Work on this neediness issue first, or else learning how to do the initial talk-and-meet thing probably won't do you much good. People are usually willing to give "boring" a little initial benefit of the doubt, but clingy just screams red flag.
posted by DingoMutt at 5:59 AM on October 26, 2012 [9 favorites]

Does your college offer feminism courses? Take them. And don't be the jerk who takes them to start arguments--actually listen. You may start to better understand what it has been like to be female in our culture the past 100 years. This in turn might provide you with the empathy to stop thinking of women as a monolithic group. And this might just make you into a more attractive prospect for women to date. I know if I dated dudes, I'd want to date dudes who read Adrienne Rich.
posted by Lieber Frau at 6:09 AM on October 26, 2012 [4 favorites]

Woman here... I was a girl once. HATE DOUCHEBAGS AND ASSHOLES. The problem is that sometimes the DBs and AHs act like nice guys and in fact they are not. Then you are suddenly in a relationship. It's hard sometimes to distinguish a real nice guy and a fake nice guy. Now that you know that from me and others, we can address the shyness.

You are plenty interesting. Indian culture, food, customs, fashion, etc. is so awesome. Engineering student? You know how things work and if you don't, you can figure it out. Talk about anything, who cares about what a girl finds interesting, talk about stuff you like until you find a girl that likes what YOU like. Why work so hard to be interested in something someone else is interested in?

Sure, clingy is not fun, but if you want to make contact, why not translate a kid joke from your language to English as a daily text? If she is interested, she will contact, if not, you can move on. Don't feel like you're being cut down, she just didn't find anything attractive about you. You will find girls unattractive too. Or maybe you two just aren't meant to be. There is such a thing.

Talk about the weather, talk about the gross oil at the fast food place you work in. Tell the girl how she doesn't want to eat the lettuce because you guys don't actually wash it before serving it. Everything is interesting. I reiterate...talk about what is interesting to you, because when you are interested in what you are talking about, you look and sound interesting.

You don't have to ask a girl on a date, you can just buy her a coffee or smoothie. Quick ten to twenty minute dates are better than dinner or lunch. It's less stressful and cheaper and you can get out quicker if you don't like the girl. Now go out there and buy some coffees and such!
posted by Yellow at 6:11 AM on October 26, 2012 [3 favorites]

If you want to talk to everyone, talk about the weather.
posted by oceanjesse at 6:17 AM on October 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

Get involved in clubs. If your city has a hacker space or a maker movement of some kind, get involved with that. Volunteer at a local science museum. Sign up for classes outside of your major (cooking!) or in the community. Importantly, when you hit on an activity, talk to people outside your comfort zone. Just make small talk and ask them what they like. Practice talking to women in a low-stakes way, so it doesn't seem like such a big deal when you're talking to someone. That way, you won't have to get all clingy over every girl, because she won't be The Only Girl you'll talk to in the next six months.
posted by stoneweaver at 7:04 AM on October 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

If it's really stressful for you to get comfortable talking to girls, one way to deal with that might be to take some of the pressure off yourself. Tell yourself that for a short time, say one month, you're going to practice talking to girls without trying to get a girlfriend. Girls your friends introduce you to, girls at social events, girls at societies and meetup groups. You're not asking them out on a date, you're not asking for their number - you're just talking to them, casually, the same way you'd talk to your male acquaintances. You don't need to worry about rejection there, because you're not asking them to be your girlfriend - you're just practising talking to them like people.

Do that for a few weeks or whatever, and then when you're a bit more comfortable talking to girls and they don't seem like this weird other species to you, then start asking girls you're interested in if they'd like to go out on a date with you. Yes, some of them will say no, but that's okay! You see all those confident guys around, the ones who never seem to have any trouble finding a girlfriend? That confidence doesn't come from never ever getting rejected; that confidence comes from not being afraid to face rejection.

Not sure if the girls I talk to are not into me because my personality (I'm usually a nice guy) or something else. When growing up, my parents have always told me to be nice to girls. But now days, girls, specially Indian girls like guys who are "douchebags" or "assholes" and not the nice guys like us.

How do these girls know you're a nice guy, if you're too nervous to even speak to them? They don't, right? They don't know anything about you, except that you aren't speaking to them. For all you know, some great girl who thought you were gorgeous met you the other day, and just assumed you weren't going to be interested in her because you didn't try to start up a conversation. Girls get insecure and nervous too; girls get scared of rejection too.

Also, saying this as a woman who was once a 22-year-old girl - the attitude of "women only like assholes and douchebags and they're not interested in guys like me" is a) not true and b) toxic to your future relationship success. The reason you're single is not because you're nice; the reason you're single is because you're scared to talk to girls and don't dare ask them out. If you start being bitter at women, girls will pick up on that and be less interested in you as a result. You don't want to go there.

You'll only get a girlfriend by being prepared to put yourself out there and get rejected. I know it's scary - it's scary for everyone at first - but it'll become less scary when women don't seem so alien and terrifying to you.
posted by Catseye at 7:10 AM on October 26, 2012 [7 favorites]

I had a huge crush on and still think about on occasion an Indian boy. It couldn't work out for several reasons, mostly on my part. So, some girls do like Indian boys. Just to let you know, I didn't think I would like him, it just happened. He now has a girlfriend who he has been seeing for at least 6 months.

He seems pretty similar to you. He is getting his Phd in Physics and can be nerdy, but works tit to his advantage. He's funny and laughs a lot, does a lot of outdoor activities and travels, and uses his current friends to introduce him to new people -both men and women. So, basically what I would say is go out with your male friends, go to parties with them and keep building your social network. Each person you meet can help you meet more people and eventually someone will know someone who you might get along with and might be able to introduce you. But don't go meeting people as if they are only a means to an end of getting a girlfriend. People will be able to pick up on that and resent you for that and not lead to the results you want.

A lot of the above advice is good, too.

How to Meet and Influence People by Dale Carnegie is a good book with lots of good advice.
posted by eq21 at 7:12 AM on October 26, 2012

Oh, and I assume you can cook Indian food? Use that to you advantage :)
posted by eq21 at 7:18 AM on October 26, 2012

OP dude:

Good advice but be careful about the suggestions to read "women's lib" books.
That implies 2 things: you are clueless and, you are looking to attract only certain kinds of women.

There are many women in the U. S. that don't identify with the women's lib of the 60s, and many who are happy being independently "traditional."

Base your decisions on what you truly seek.
posted by Kruger5 at 7:19 AM on October 26, 2012 [2 favorites]

Work on your self esteem. What you think of as "boring" might not be boring to someone else. I'm not an engineer, but I love to hear about all the fascinating breakthroughs and learn about science in general.
posted by parakeetdog at 7:58 AM on October 26, 2012

Kruger5, I don't think it would be wrong to say that women in engineering programs probably didn't get there by believing in traditional gender roles.

I also take issue with your implying that "only certain kids of women" would enjoy being treated like actual human beings, instead of mysterious sex vending machines requiring specific coded inputs or kindness coins. I think people in general would be well served if everyone dropped the "men are like this, and women are like that" discourse and just treated everyone with an equal amount of respect for their personal agency.
posted by keep it under cover at 9:10 AM on October 26, 2012 [6 favorites]

My thinking is, never ask a girl out until your sure she'll say yes.

I understand this impulse, but it's completely misguided. Hearing "no" is just the price of admission for dating. Rejection isn't fun, but you will survive it, and surviving it will make you fear it less. This is essential if you're going to have a functioning dating life. There are a lot of mistaken assumptions in your post, but this is, to my mind, the wort one. So, just to be really blunt about it: women will say no when you ask them out, and this is fine, normal, and not a big deal.

Now, what to talk about. Get interested in something, and then talk to people about that. It can be anything you want, but yo have to be genuinely interested in it. Esoteric and niche interests will narrow the range of people who will want to talk to you about this thing, but that's fine; there are billions of women in the world, and a narrow slice is still a huge number of people.
posted by Ragged Richard at 9:58 AM on October 26, 2012 [4 favorites]

Now, what to talk about. Get interested in something, and then talk to people about that.

So supporting this. I once went to this traveling museum exhibit on rice of all things, thinking it would be fun for a laugh or two and may even a dorky t-shirt ("Rice is Nice! At XX Museum!"). However, the exhibit itself was surprisingly engrossing, explaining the history of rice cultivation, various myths surrounding it, modern-day technology for growing and processing it, etc. What I left with was this realization that everything is secretly amazing - if rice could be fascinating, then what couldn't be? It just takes someone who is passionate enough about the subject to make the average person see that.

"Boring" be damned - be enthused about whatever it is that excites you! Enthusiasm is attractive.
posted by DingoMutt at 10:24 AM on October 26, 2012 [2 favorites]

[Not the place for a side-argument, mefimail each other if you want to talk about this in detail.]
posted by cortex at 12:28 PM on October 26, 2012

My thinking is, never ask a girl out until your sure she'll say yes. But I never get to the point where I'm confident that she'll say yes.

You never will be confident. If you were confident, and she said no, that's even worse! Look, you can't just do things only if you're sure they'll work out. You'll never ever do anything. The same applies here.

One way to get past this is to assume that girls will say no, but ask them out anyway if you like them and you think there's a possibility there. Rejection is still bad, but not quite as bad. This doesn't mean ask everyone out, it means ask everyone out who you have an inkling about. If it becomes exhausting (and it will) then slow down and stop for a while. You might end up friends with the girls you ask out- also a net positive!

If you find something interesting- anything at all- talk about it. If someone asks a good question in a class, tell them you appreciated it, and wham instant conversation about whatever you were discussing in class.

Find an activity that gets you interacting with lots of people. Debate? Quiz Bowl? Dungeons and Dragons? I took up social dancing. It's full of nerds- nerdy girls, nerdy guys. It's also wonderful practice risking rejection: every time you ask a girl to dance, she could say no. If you don't ask, you don't dance, and dancing is fun, so you ask*! It won't get you laid**, but you'll make friends, especially with the girls you dance with regularly. And if you become "that guy who can dance" then, hey, instant topic to talk about. Being confident about something physical, rather than cerebral, helped me out tons. YMMV. If not that, something else.

* she'll probably say yes, it's low stakes.
** though some insane proportion of my school's ballroom dance team dated itself, so it obviously works for someone. If you take it up, GETTING LAID IS NOT THE GOAL. Meeting cool people and enjoying their company is.
posted by BungaDunga at 3:55 PM on October 26, 2012

Really, I think you just need WAY more practice talking to strangers, no matter what their gender is. This is definitely a skill that you can build up but you have to practice it a LOT even if it is intimidating or awkward at first.

This is my honest best advice for you. Make a bunch of signs with your phone number and the following message: "My name is ___ and I am a 22 year old guy. Call or text me if you need someone to talk to, or if you are just bored. We can talk about anything you want or I can just listen to you." Post the signs all around your city. Talk to whoever calls you no matter who they are. I think by the time the phone calls trickle to an end, you will be way more confident in talking to anyone.
posted by cairdeas at 7:39 PM on October 26, 2012

if you're at a party and you don't know what to say, you can ask about tv/movies/music/books. for example

- i'm thinking about starting to watch a new tv series, do you have any suggestions?
- once the semester is over i can't wait to read a book that's NOT a textbook [she then tells you about a good book she read]

it's just a small idea but it can keep a conversation going long enough for you feel more comfortable.
posted by cupcake1337 at 8:43 PM on October 26, 2012

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