17 Struggles You Go Through When You Are Extremely Guarded Yet Hopelessly Romantic

This Is Honestly Why You’re Not Girlfriend Material

Some of my articles are sweet and nice, others cut straight to the point and bring you truths you may not want to hear but could really benefit from. This article is the latter.

Look, I’ve been there, For a large chunk of time I was not girlfriend material. I was hookup material, I was great time material, but I was like Teflon when it came to guys, nothing stuck. I was capable of filling them with an intense desire for me, but it always fizzled out quick and I was left baffled time and time again. What’s wrong with me? Why can I catch them but never keep them? Why am I not good enough?

The fact is, there was a lot wrong with me! My perception of myself and my ways of going about getting what I wanted was totally skewed. I, like many, thought having a guy would give me this sudden sense of worth. I, also like many, failed to realize that I first needed to create that sense of worth within myself and until then I would be a tub without a drain, you can pour in as much water as you’d like but it will remain empty.

Based on the questions I receive, this is something a lot of women struggle with. And I get it. It’s harder than ever these days to be confident and totally happy with yourself — how can we when we’re all addicted to our phones and being flooded with perfectly curated images of other women living these seemingly perfect lives. And then there are the dating apps making it easier and harder than ever to settle down.

It’s tough out there but it doesn’t have to be. Be real with yourself and try to identify the reason why you can’t attract the kind of relationship you want.

These are the 5 most likely reasons you aren’t “girlfriend material.”

1. You lead with sex

This was always my biggest issue. I would lure them in with my sexuality, and a man being a man would happily latch onto it, but then there wasn’t much else to work with.

I got high off of being wanted so that was the goal … not so much being seen and building a connection. And a lot of women do this. It feels good to be desired. It’s a drug. So we lead with our sexuality. We dress a certain way, act a certain way, all with the intention of getting his juices flowing and capturing his attention, but then what?

OK, so he’s intrigued and he finds you attractive, but that really doesn’t mean anything. You may think it does, but he doesn’t see it that way. For guys sex is sex and a relationship is a relationship. Sex isn’t a means to get a relationship and oftentimes it’s not a measure of how he feels.

Women who lead with sex often don’t feel like they have much else to offer deep down. It’s an underlying lack of worth that causes you to rely on something foolproof, your sexuality, to get his attention but like I said, this doesn’t usually make for a long-lasting romance.

2. You can’t connect with him

People who are insecure or have an agenda when entering into a relationship usually fail to get the relationship to go anywhere because they can’t truly connect. The reason is they are so stuck in their own heads, consumed by their worried thoughts, that they can’t possibly form a genuine connection with someone else.

You constantly worry about how he feels. You measure the number of texts and time how long it takes for him to text you back. When you don’t hear from him for a while, you feel a knot in your stomach and crumble into a pit of despair. You kind of always suspect he’ll leave you because that’s what always happens to you, so you are always on the lookout for something that looks like a bad sign.

You pay more attention to how he feels about you than to how you feel about him. Is this really the right guy for you? Does he have the qualities you’re looking for? You don’t really care, or at least, you don’t think about it. Instead, all you think about is how he feels about you. Is he serious about you? Is he going to commit to you? Does he like you or is he just using you?

You play what I call emotional detective, constantly gathering and analyzing clues to see how he feels. You think you’re protecting yourself, you think that this is helpful, but really you’re just pushing him further away.

You can’t connect with someone who isn’t there. If you are only engaging with your own worried thoughts, you can’t possibly connect with him on a real level so it’s no surprise that things will quickly fizzle out.

3. You choose the wrong guys

If you always end up with guys who won’t call you their girlfriend, it’s very possible you’re going after the kinds of guys who don’t want anyone to be their girlfriend. I call them damage cases. They are emotionally damaged guys with major commitment issues. And unfortunately, they are usually pretty hard to resist.

A damage case will never see you as girlfriend material because he finds something wrong with everyone. At the same time, women who go after damage cases usually have a fair degree of damage of their own.

If you believe deep down that you are unworthy of love, you will be most drawn to guys who treat you like you aren’t worthy of them, hence proving your subconscious right. (It’s pretty twisted, but our subconscious is always looking for validation, even if it’s something painful that we don’t want to be the truth.)

Don’t be that girl who thinks all she has to do is love him hard enough and then he’ll come around. You want a partner, not a project. You want someone who can handle his life, not someone you need to fix. Seeing a guy as a fixer-upper is how codependent and toxic relationships begin.

If you can’t ever seem to get the relationship you want, it’s time to look at the kinds of guys you’re going after. And don’t give me, “I can’t help it, these are the kinds of guys I’m attracted to!” Just think about how sad that is. The only guys you want are the ones who don’t want you? If that’s the case, you need to really get to the root of what’s driving your behavior.

4. You’re a drama queen

Men hate drama. Here is a very simple and basic truth about men. If you can understand this, you’ll basically understand everything you need to know about why men act the way they do. Men move towards what feels good.

If it feels good to be around you, he’ll want to be around you. If it feels bad to be around you, he won’t want to be around you.

Starting drama is usually a plea for attention which comes from—you guessed it— deep insecurity. Maybe you flip out at him over something minor, maybe you trash talk his friends or yours, maybe you just always have an issue or a complaint. You need his attention, whether it’s positive or negative.

Constantly starting drama with him is also a means to gain reassurance from him about how he feels. He doesn’t text you one night, you assume it means he’s cheating or he’s losing interest, and you make a huge stink about it, really hoping he’ll shower you with reassurance of how much he cares.

The fact is, if you don’t feel deserving of his love, then nothing he does will convince you otherwise. Which brings me to my next point …

5. You don’t really love yourself

I’ll keep saying it until I’m blue in the face. You can never let love in from the outside if you don’t already feel it on the inside.

It just doesn’t make sense. How can you possibly believe someone could love you if you don’t love yourself? And forget love, a lot of people don’t even like themselves.

Self-love does not come through being in a relationship. Neither does happiness. Neither does healing from all your emotional wounds. If you have internal emotional issues, they are yours to deal with and until you do, romantic relationships will never come easy.

Now I’m not saying they’ll never come. There are plenty of people who hate themselves who are in relationships. But I guarantee you those are not happy relationships.

The most important factor when it comes to having a love that lasts is being in a good place internally. Once you’re there, then some of it comes down to timing and luck. But you can’t always control these things. The only thing you can control is yourself. Make sure you are at your best, that you’ve worked through your issues, that you feel good about who you are and are confident you will find a man who really sees and appreciates you. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Sabrina Bendory is a writer and entrepreneur. She is the author of You’re Overthinking It, a definitive book on dating and self-love.

Keep up with Sabrina on Instagram, Twitter, Amazon, TikTok and linktr.ee