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Thread: Feeling out of place...

  1. #1
    Senior Member Sally2005's Avatar
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    Feeling out of place...

    So here I am, my usual male self, no hint of anything and I'm at my daughter's school parent's welcome dinner... but I'm feeling a bit out of place. I'm looking around and all the male parents my age mid 40s are grey haired, balding, large frame and generally, well 40ish looking, some are chatting loudly about sports or home renovations and how they knocked this and that down. I know I look young so a lot of times people my own age talk down to me (maybe CDing helps or hurts?) I have some pattern baldness on my temples, but not much and just a few barely noticable grey hairs and not much of a stomach, I'm at the low range on my target weight but within the healthy range. I am fit, but not overly muscular. I've also done a lot more guy projects than most guys and when I get in to a conversation I have to dumb it down so I don't sound like I know too much... I couldn't help but think how different I am and how hard it is to fit the typical male mold. I'm fine being myself, but sometimes I feel out of place...everyone else seems to have a story they love to tell...

    Ever feel like that? ...at the same time I was checking out the mom's looking for clothing ideas, some pretty unusual getups and flattering ones... I could see myself blending in as my female self. Sigh.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sally2005 View Post
    when I get in to a conversation I have to dumb it down so I don't sound like I know too much...
    Why do you do that?

    I've never really felt like I fit in with groups of guys.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Stephanie Miller's Avatar
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    And if that isn't bad enough...
    Just when the GG's start having a good chat about fashion or make-up that you can at least easdropping on... some some Monday night quarterback comes up and starts a conversation about sports or how he belched for 3 minutes solid!

  4. #4
    Austrian Princess harmony's Avatar
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    beeing an individual is hard-its much easier to follow the herd.
    do you have a life or are you lived by your neighbors?
    a lot of the conflicts i read about here stem from this.
    the realization of self is to me the purpose of life -a hard road with tough choices to make especially with a female contingent thrown in.
    but it already said on the sfhinx many many years ago
    MAN-TO THINE OWN SELF BE TRUE!
    where has all the glamour gone?
    marlene dietrich is my idol

  5. #5
    The best of both worlds Kathi Lake's Avatar
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    Oh Sally!

    Am I ever with you, girl!

    Everything you said I mirror completely - except for the hair. I started graying in High School and am now pretty darn silver-haired. Still, I look much younger than my 46 years - and act it as well - even in guy mode. I am, . . . ummmmmm, a bit under my target weight.

    I usually don't hang around the guys. Sure, I could talk about replacing the distributor on a 350 V8, or remodeling a kitchen or bathroom, or even how to get the perfect lawn. But why? I do those things because I have to. What I want to do, most guys wouldn't want to chat about. I usually find myself talking with the girls, the moms, the women.

    Since my wife travels quite a bit, and I have 280 hours of leave to burn off by the end of the year, I am my daughter's "Room Mom." I go on field trips with the other moms. I help the teacher out a few times a week during lunch or in the afternoon. I communicate with other parents. You know. Room mom stuff.

    Am I accepted by the other moms? Yes. Did it take a while to break through the "glass floor" so to speak? Yes. Whenever a new mom arrives, there is a bit of puzzlement until they find me as harmless and, I don't know, "non male-ish." This peer group has never talked down to me, as other male peer groups have. Where a bunch of guys don't ever take me seriously, the women friends I do have do.

    Let's see, did I have a point? Oh yeah! Don't feel out of place, just because you don't feel you fit in with your supposed peer group. Think about it, would you want to be a overweight, balding, boring guy who can belch his ABC's? Why settle for that when you can have all this?



    Kathi

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Sally2005 View Post
    .... I know I look young so a lot of times people my own age talk down to me........ I've also done a lot more guy projects than most guys and when I get in to a conversation I have to dumb it down so I don't sound like I know too much... I couldn't help but think how different I am and how hard it is to fit the typical male mold. I'm fine being myself, but sometimes I feel out of place...everyone else seems to have a story they love to tell....
    Wow, that describes me and my thoughts to a T. I too do the dumb down thing, I think for me it's a self confidence issue. Always feel like they'll call me out then I'll get nervous and stumble all over explaining myself and look like a fool. That or I dumb it down to avoid having to go into an in-depth conversation.

    Not sure what else I can add being in the same boat, I feel for ya'.


  7. #7
    Junior Member jarts55's Avatar
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    Like I always say"There are worse things in the world be than a girl! Like an ugly guy."

  8. #8
    Meberette Hope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sally2005 View Post
    Ever feel like that? ...at the same time I was checking out the mom's looking for clothing ideas, some pretty unusual getups and flattering ones... I could see myself blending in as my female self. Sigh.
    All the time.

    I have NEVER fit in among "the guys." And it's not from a lack of guy type activities - I'm a pilot, I rebuilt a VW in college, I camp et.al.. I just can't stand the sports / beer / hunting / belching / farting / competitive dirtbaggery. It doesn't help that I have a masters degree and live among farmers. If there is 1 group with simultaneously a giant inferiority complex, and an even bigger chip on their collective shoulders it is definitely farmers in the fly-over states. So I find myself constantly having to not let on that I know things around the guys here, or I am treated like some sort of know-it-all jerk.

    At the same time... I have always fit in with the girls / women I have been around. It usually takes a while to be accepted, and not looked at as some sort of wolf in sheep's clothing... but usually acceptance happens. And even when the conversation turns to something I have 0 interest in, it is at least civil and non-combative. And there IS conversation.
    "I don't mind living in a man's world, as long as I can be a woman in it." — Marilyn Monroe

  9. #9
    Fab Karen Fab Karen's Avatar
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    What is a "guy project"? Now what is a "girl project"? Who says?

    If any guy in his 40's is bragging about belching, his age matches his IQ.
    [SIZE="3"]Gender is a state of mind[/SIZE]
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  10. #10
    Silver Member Rogina B's Avatar
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    Smile I don't go to hunting camp.either....

    I feel the exact same way and tend to avoid guy conversations if possible.I have a lifetime of worldwide adventures and misadventures,am a commercial mariner,so I work with tools to help make a living.I don't want to go to hunting camp and I don't even want to sleep in anything less than a bed anymore!I am just tired of too many years of guy things to want to talk about them to fit in. And,I am in shape as well and when I see one of these other parents that look years over their age,it confirms that the norm is not for me...I would much rather have a makeup brush in my hand than a paintbrush! Can't say that on this beautiful little island that has great weather AND a church on every other streetcorner.I am different and fortunately,so is my family.

  11. #11
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    Why not have the best of both worlods

    When in guy mode I can belch the ABC's with the best of them. I used to have a job that required an IQ greater than average ( by a long shot ). I'm one of the best in the U.S. in a dangerous "guy" sport. I'm not greying (much) and no belly. In guy mode I can pass for a guy MUCH younger than I am. And when a kid pulls my finger.... never mind.

    More than 20 years ago, I would visit my counterparts at corporate headquarters, a group made up mostly of women.
    I fit in great. They accepted my as "one of the girls" even though I was in guy mode exclusively ( as far as they knew ). Out to lunch, they always had me tag along, and I fit in fine.

    But I also love to CD.
    When watching TV with a DVR I don't skip the commercials that are relevent to dressing. "Checking out chicks" is truely bi-level. I may not get out and about as much as some, but I do what I can, a little.

    So feeling "out of place", NEVER

    Who said that you can't have it both ways......

  12. #12
    Loving Life Dressing Jill's Avatar
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    Hi Sally

    Yep. I don't do well with men for very long. It seems like it is always a struggle to dominance. I want to talk with some color and my hands moving but in men groups hands in the pockets and short sentences more like cave man conversations short and to the point.

    I belong to 2 groups of men. 1 a billiards league which is mostly men and there is not much talking at all mostly good shot, nice game etc.... another is a fly fishing group mostly men again. It is the same nice fly did you catch that wow good fish etc.......

    I don't expect that the male persona will change anytime in my lifetime.

    I do much better with women. I can get some kind of conversation from them. But most are hesitant to start a conversation because of there husbands or surprise that a man can talk. LOL....

    Maybe it is just me not fitting in. Or maybe they don't fit in.LOL.....

    Who knows I still keep on trying.
    .
    I am Nobody-- Nobody is perfect so therefore I am perfect


    There is always room for more friends in my heart

    Jill

  13. #13
    Super Moderator DAVIDA's Avatar
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    Well, I have met AND exceeded MY target weight!
    I am also fat and balding(should read"already" bald)!
    I get senior citizen discounts even though I am years away from being one.
    I can't belch the ABCs, although, with training, I could do it!


    What?......Isn't that what ..............it isn't?



    Never mind!

  14. #14
    Gold Member Miranda09's Avatar
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    Hey Sally, just be yourself and don't ever worry about fitting in somewhere. I can relate to what you're saying as I don't really relate to most guys my age...don't really want to for that matter! Most topics guyd tend to talk about I zone out on, but stay in the conversation just to be polite. If I have something to contribute, I chime in...but I never dumb it down. Show them what you know. Who cares what they might think.

  15. #15
    Adventuress Kate Simmons's Avatar
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    I'll bet the Moms were checking you out as well Hon and I don't mean checking your clothing style.

  16. #16
    Member Ashley_in_Texas's Avatar
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    [SIZE="3"]When I am around a bunch of guys, (my close freinds not included) I feel like Luke Wilson, as "Not Sure" in the movie Idiocracy. If you don't know what I am talking about, you HAVE to see this movie. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE="3"]It seems that the[/SIZE] [SIZE="4"]more[/SIZE] [SIZE="3"]I get to know myself, the[/SIZE] [SIZE="1"]less[/SIZE] [SIZE="3"]I have in common with the average guy.[/SIZE]

  17. #17
    Style Icon Sara Jessica's Avatar
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    I can't believe the similarities we have Sally based on what you described.

    As for the guy thing, I often find myself thinking the "what if", as in what if I were out to these people, or would they accept me in the unlikely event I were to transition? More often than not, I come to the conclusion that it's probably best they don't know.

    So when the women are conversing, I sometimes get into the periphery of the conversation, just enough to be "in touch" but staying away from too much danger (as in temptation to dive head-first into their world).

    I often sigh myself. No one said balancing between two worlds is easy.
    Like a corpse deep in the earth I'm so alone, restless thoughts torment my soul, as fears they lay confirmed, but my life has always been this way - Virginia Astley, "Some Small Hope" (1986)
    Sunlight falls, my wings open wide. There's a beauty here I cannot deny - David Sylvian, "Orpheus" (1987)

  18. #18
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    For certain most of us have suffered through and survived your situation. Remember - you are unique, a one of a kind, mentally, physically, emotionally, as we all are - that's why we are called INDIVIDUALS! Enjoy every moment in life - as that time will never be again.

  19. #19
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    Sally,

    Like so many others I could have written the same post. One thing you didn't mention but which affects me when I get into situations like you have described is --that I get severely depressed and incredibly anxious. I just don't feel comfortable in my own skin. But I have learned that I needed help and I worked at getting it.

  20. #20
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    In general I like women much more than men.

    I find many men to be annoying and crude.

    I enjoy how easy it is to talk to women. Especially mature ladies with a sunny disposition.

    Very young women can be annoying because if you are in guy mode they're in their whole "is he trying to get with me" phase.

    Other than politics and history I've never been into most "guy" stuff. I do love football. I'm not into stats but I love watching the game.

    I love mature (40 and up) women the most. They seem like the happiest people to me. I think its because they've been around long enough to be confident and secure with who they are.

  21. #21
    Platinum Member Karren Hutton's Avatar
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    Actually I feel like "they" are the ones that are out of place and I'm the one that looks pretty damn good for my age (wish I was in my 40's again!!). And works on my weight and is active and plays ice hockey every week.. Is well groomed.. Has long nails... And I never dumb things down.. If they can't understand engineer speak then they should get a couple Dilbert books and bone up!! Hahaha

    So I situations like that I'm feeling pretty damn proud of myself and pretty sorry that "they" have let themselves go to hell.. But that's just me..
    I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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  22. #22
    Senior Member Stephanie Miller's Avatar
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    Your post Rogina got me thinking..... (ouch)....
    Looks like there are a bunch of us on the site here that must be primadonas (self included).
    No talk of sports... no belching...no construction talk etc.. Because we're "girls".
    Think about it... I have a wife and two daughters and a granddaughter that LOVE to camp fish and hunt. Any one of them could take the 100% girly girl award. Think of Danica Patrick. Here is a chick that can turn a dirty wrench and turn around and look fab in a swimsuit. Nanci Donnellan, best known by her title of "The Fabulous Sports Babe," is an American sports radio broadcaster.
    Why not intermix?

  23. #23
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    Just be yourself and...

    I agree with Miranda... Just be yourself.

    And, I'll add, "Let the chips fall where they may."

    The older I get, the less in common I have with anyone on a one-on-one basis. When we were all in elementary school, we were like eggs in a carton. By High School, we were starting to hatch out and go our separate ways. Then, some of us went to college, some didn't. Then some got married, some didn't. And, so forth... As time passes, we find ourselves having traveled different paths with different people, jobs, kids, houses, duties, luck, health issues, etc.

    I don't expect to have a lot in common with anyone. If I do, great. If I don't, it's no big surprise one way or another.

    You only need a few good friends in life. Everyone else is just, "OK."

    Don't worry about it. It's just life for everybody.

    Good for you, by the way, you're paying attention!

  24. #24
    just Khelli mykhelee's Avatar
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    I can dig it!

    I took my eldest grand to the Daddy-Daughter dance. All of these proper business hair cut, suits and ties etc. I come rolling in with my hair down to the middle of my back, Spanish cowboy boots, full crease jeans, and rodeo shirt. Took quite a while before any of them would speak to me, guess I did not fit their comfort level. Guess they would have really freaked at the underdressing that was going on.
    Only worry that you are happy with how you look, to hell with the tskers.
    Peace

  25. #25
    Silver Member Tomara's Avatar
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    Hi Sally
    I also feel more comfortable when I am having conversations or interactions with women , I am not into sports of any kind and think that most of the things that guys do and think it is funny or cool is just showing how immature they really are.
    When I met my GF she told me that she liked that I was sensitive and caring and if I was a weekend couchaholic she would not have been interested in me at all.
    So I guess I would say be yourself and don't dumb it down to try to fit in , maybe they could learn something from you.
    Tomara

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