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Recently turned twenty one. Tired of messing around, want something serious?


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Old 7th March 2018, 4:35 PM   #1
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Recently turned twenty one. Tired of messing around, want something serious?

Over the past few years, I've had a few flings with college guys. I have sort of fallen for them and enjoyed myself, but the outcomes haven't been good and the guys haven't been mature or really looking for a real relationship. After I finish college I'll be finishing up preparations for PhD applications to clinical psychology programs. If I'm admitted, these programs will take five years to complete. I really need a strong, stable partner to support me (not necessarily financially) during this time. I wouldn't even mind getting married and starting a family during the PhD, given that I'll be in school during my prime child-bearing years.

What is your advice for me? I feel like all 20-22 year old guys are very immature and just looking for fun. Should I stick with guys 25 and older? Not really sure.
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Old 7th March 2018, 5:53 PM   #2
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Though someone serious about a relationship in the manner you speak of can come from all ages, what you probably want to look for is someone who has settled into his own life and/or career a bit. Someone who already has a stable life is more likely to provide a stable relationship, you may find that guys a little older than yourself fit this description more often than younger/college guys.
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Old 7th March 2018, 6:01 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Didyouknow96 View Post
I wouldn't even mind getting married and starting a family during the PhD, given that I'll be in school during my prime child-bearing years.

What is your advice for me?
This is smart. There are marriage- and family-minded men out there. You'll know them because they're very serious and want to talk about these future plans right away. Any of the player types in the YOLO "fun" mindset are a waste of your time for anything of depth.
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Old 7th March 2018, 6:41 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Didyouknow96 View Post
Over the past few years, I've had a few flings with college guys. I have sort of fallen for them and enjoyed myself, but the outcomes haven't been good and the guys haven't been mature or really looking for a real relationship. After I finish college I'll be finishing up preparations for PhD applications to clinical psychology programs. If I'm admitted, these programs will take five years to complete. I really need a strong, stable partner to support me (not necessarily financially) during this time. I wouldn't even mind getting married and starting a family during the PhD, given that I'll be in school during my prime child-bearing years.

What is your advice for me? I feel like all 20-22 year old guys are very immature and just looking for fun. Should I stick with guys 25 and older? Not really sure.
It would be advisable to probably put your focus in guys who are in the same place in their lives as your own, or perhaps with guys who have already gotten out of college, grad school or otherwise, if you're seeking maturity. Young guys, who aren't thinking about settling down aren't a good fit...so don't focus too much on those 20-22 year olds.

When I was in grad school, I was still in that college mode of dating around and having fun. Dating around was even better in grad school than undergrad, as I had learned a lot by then. After grad school, that continued just as effectively into my early thirties, when I finally met my current girlfriend.

The point is, even focusing on 25 +, you're going to find guys who aren't going to be what you want.

Look at the individual. Learn to pick up red flags early on. Act on those red flags. That's the best advice when it comes to dating.
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Old 7th March 2018, 9:12 PM   #5
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Hon, I'm 43. I remember thinking the way you are thinking. I've yet to be married. And if you think that guys are going to be mature at any age about such things, you are in for some pretty big disappointments. I am happy to say that I have had 4 LTRs in my lifetime (after my college years the first time around). What happened with them and everything in between? They all would not commit to me for some reason or another, then they rebounded to some trashy ho barely a year later, then got taken to the cleaners in divorce court a few years later. But I digress ...

The only thing I can tell you at this point in your life is to keep yourself as open as possible to meeting new people (because it's going to be HARD IN ALL CAPS when high school / college is over), try to interact with people as much as possible outside of OLD, and just keep hope that someday, somehow it too can happen to you.
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Old 7th March 2018, 9:27 PM   #6
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I think they are out there. I am older than you (graduated college in 2002) but I would hope things haven't changed too dramatically.

I met my now husband when I was 23, and he was 21. He has just started his career, I was finishing my last year off school and moved in with him as soon as I graduated.

I have a number of friends who also meet their husbands during this time.

Small difference would be most waited around 5 years to get married, and had kids in their mid 30's rather than mid 20's.

But they met while in their early 20's. And the poster below is correct. It is so much harder to meet people once you are out of school. Never again will you be around so many who are in the same stage of life and demographics.
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Old 8th March 2018, 4:05 AM   #7
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There are guys of all ages who are looking for relationships. I know because when I was your age, I was!

Unfortunately the likelihood is that if you can't find guys your own age who want something more than a fling, you'll struggle to find guys 25+ who do either. With the added pitfall that an older guy is much more experienced in dating and will be much more able to manipulate/deceive you, should he so choose.

It's really about the individuals you're dating.
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Old 8th March 2018, 9:08 AM   #8
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What is your advice for me? I feel like all 20-22 year old guys are very immature and just looking for fun. Should I stick with guys 25 and older? Not really sure.
From a guy's perspective I would also advise to keep your options open. I'm not sure what PhD program you have in mind, but they may require a serious effort with relatively little pay. Having a child at the same time is possible, but will most likely not be easy. Or in other words, you will have to look hard to find a guy who is willing to take that supporting role in addition to being relationship-minded. I'm not sure if I would have agreed to that when I was that age. (Maybe, I was more naive back then. )
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Old 8th March 2018, 9:20 AM   #9
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First keep your eye on the real prize: the PhD. Do what you have to do to achieve that goal.

Meanwhile on campus interact with fellow students to see if you can find one who shares your priorities & values.

Do be open to dating various people but if you have to, use your studies as an easy way to weed out the incompatible ones . . . "Gee, I don't think we're going to work out because I really need to focus on my PhD right now."
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Old 8th March 2018, 9:54 AM   #10
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Keep in mind that there will be lots of available guys in your PhD program or around your campus in general. If someone is going for a PhD they will likely be more mature and could be more relationship minded no matter their age. They will also understand when you are very busy and have studies/internships/practicums bc they will be doing the same. I went through all of that and it is a very stressful time. It may benefit if someone knows exactly what you are going through. As a poster above said, the money factor will also be an issue bc usually the pay is very little as you are working your way up. That may be a disadvantage dating someone working towards their PhD during the time that you are (bc you might both be poor lol) but it will only be short term.

Good Luck with everything!!
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Old 8th March 2018, 9:58 AM   #11
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Definitley look for men age 25 and up. No guarantees, but the older they are the more likely that they are also looking for something more serious. Guys your own age are interested in hooking up, having fun and trying to figure out their career path, not good for something serious—though there always exceptions.
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Old 8th March 2018, 5:53 PM   #12
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In terms of PhD plus kids, it's doable. When I was studying for my PhD, I'd started with a 3 year-old, a part-time job, a
fellowship, a super long commute and a crazy exH. By the time I completed it, I'd fallen pregnant (not planned, obviously), a now double-dose jealous crazy exH (of the new baby and of the PhD), moved 3 times, had a traumatic divorce, went into meltdown, had financial stress, and finished as near full-time working single mother of 2.

If you're serious about the PhD + marriage + kids thing, you will need to find a man who not only is relationship-minded, but who will also support you with childcare while seeing very little of you, never mind the financial aspect of it. Keeping your focus on your PhD when you have higher priorities (ie kids) means some intense juggling and a programme of studies that will take you longer than expected.

I did it on my own and seriously, my advice would be to make sure you are well supported (by your grad school, your family and most importantly by your partner) every step of the way. The age of the guy doesn't matter, fwiw.

Last edited by littleblackheart; 8th March 2018 at 6:04 PM..
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Old 8th March 2018, 11:41 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Didyouknow96 View Post

What is your advice for me? I feel like all 20-22 year old guys are very immature and just looking for fun. Should I stick with guys 25 and older? Not really sure.

Maybe that's your issue, you're making assumptions that all young guys want to simply hookup and not get into an actual relationship when that is further from the truth. Otherwise no college boys would be getting into relationships if that were the case.


There's definitely lots of guys who want a relationship, hell I want a relationship. Iv'e wanted one so bad for so long.
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Old 8th March 2018, 11:59 PM   #14
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depends on the person but yeah when i was around that age i didn't want any relationship now im 25 and over the whole casual thing and wanting to actually develop something serious
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