I have used your techniques, and they have worked. Right now I am dating someone.
However, I have a friend who is the same age (well she is a few months older) as me, but she has never been out on a date. Never!
She has always given excuses as "I am not ready to date." "My parents fought all the time, and I am afraid the same will happen to me." "I know what men want." "I will be raped on my first date." "I am good girl, and men do not want good girls in this day and age."
One time my friend and I went out to a restaurant and bar near where we live. On Friday night this restaurant and bar had quite a few single middle-aged men. Several men spoke to me, bought me Margaritas, and I had a great time. They also tried to have conversation with my friend. She quickly and rudely told them, "I do not drink!" "I am not interested in talking to you." "I am not easy, if you are thinking that way."
I am embarrassed by the whole situation. Not only was she rude, she dressed sloppy and out-of-date. Her excuse: "I dress this way to let men know I am not a loose woman, I am a good girl, and probably the only virgin in the southern half of the state."
I do not know what to do with her. I no longer invite her anywhere. She has not even met the man I am dating. I am afraid she will let him know she is perfect.
No matter what I say, she will stick to her beliefs. I have tried telling her she is wrong, and denying herself a wonderful part of her life.
What can I do to help her get over herself, and her perception of men? She is in her early 50s.
Her fear of meeting men is greatly out of hand. She even turned down attending her company Christmans party for fear one of the single men would ask her to dance, or join her at her dinner table.
Your response is greatly appreciated.
-She's Outta Hand
Dear She's Outta-
What we focus on in life is what we tend to get. So, if your friend believes all men are goons, she'll prove herself right every time. This, despite the fact that for every goon out there, there's also a decent man who just wants to find the right woman to love.
So, if your friend keeps believing what she believes, she'll die happy in the knowledge that her instincts about men were excellent. That's the thing about us humans: We do like to be right.
It's kind of you to want to help this woman, but she can only help herself. I'm no psychologist, but the comments she made about her parents fighting and how she's a good girl (not to mention her pride in remaining a virgin after the age of 50) lead me to think she endured some pretty wild programming in her childhood.
Programming can be overcome with the help of a good therapist, but the question remains: Is your friend willing?
Until she is, continue living your life to the fullest. If she calls and asks why you don't invite her out anymore, it wouldn't be unkind to point out that she embarrassed you and may have hurt the feelings of the men who tried to talk to her that night over margaritas.
If you feel like seeing her again, you may be better off doing it privately, but take care that her bizarre ideas don't color your own relationships with men.