Hey Dr. NerdLove,
I am 26 years old and have been hard on myself for being (mostly) single for the past few years. Many aspects of my life are great. I have a great job in Los Angeles programming video games, above-average physical fitness, a good group of friends, and interesting hobbies. I perform well on online dating websites, and with effort, get about one online date a month.
That said, I feel that my diet restrictions are holding me back from performing better in both online and real life dating pools. I have celiac disease, which requires a strict gluten-free diet, and I also have a number of other mild food allergies. Restaurant outings are stressful, so I have organized my life around mostly avoiding them. I spend my weeknights cooking a particular rotation of food, and then pack the leftovers for day trips throughout the weekend.
This lifestyle is manageable, but it has some hard limitations. I spend 7-10 hours per week cooking, giving me less time for social outings or dates. It also kills my ability to do anything impulsive. If I click with an online dating match on Monday, I can only offer to go out with them on Friday at earliest. My friends tell me that most women lose interest within a couple of days, so I am potentially missing out on an unknown number of dates. I fear that my scheduling restrictions, combined with the limited number of restaurants I am willing to eat at, gets interpreted by women as a lack of enthusiasm for dating them.
In the real world, my lifestyle limits my random social encounters. My friends are great, but they never eat at gluten free restaurants, so they never invite me to grab dinner with them. By far, the worst events are the paid social dinners catered for 20-somethings. I get the double insult of paying for food that I can’t eat, and conspicuously bringing my own food with me. The last thing I want to talk about with people I have just met are my diet restrictions. I skip these entirely.
Most of my social life involves hosting or attending house parties. In my experience, these have been great for strengthening existing friendships, but a slow way to meet new people.
What can I do to take my dating life to the next level?
Diet Destroys Dates