We sat on my sofa eating penne al tonno seasoned with lots of chili powder, chatting about what each has been up to lately.
The food was tomatoey and oozed sunny summer days. But the conversation was dark and sombre like this cold, Corona winter.
“I met this Indian guy recently, who got just one match after a year on Tinder,” Pascal began telling me. “A guy named Yogesh Patel (name changed for privacy)…”
“He’s super fit, the guy wakes up at 6am to work out, and has a good job.”
WOW, I thought, already impressed.
“This guy Yogesh, he’s been in France for a year,” continued Pascal, “and last year he joined Tinder. But after one year, he only got ONE match.”
The story already sounds achingly familiar, but doesn’t end there…
“Do you have a photo of him?” I asked.
“Oh yeah, absolutely!” Pascal whipped out his smartphone and pulled up Yogesh’s LinkedIn profile.
Just as Pascal mentioned, Yogesh has broad shoulders, defined pectoral muscles, and is contracted to a top notch French multinational. He could be considered a catch, except his expression is stern and unfriendly, and he has a haircut that does not help.
Women want to see a man who’s smiling, with relaxed facial muscles and bright skin. They want to see potential in your photo and feel comfortable with you when they meet you in person.
Though Yogesh is a highly-qualified professional, the image he’s sending to the world (and to women who might want to date him) says: I’m rude! I’m harsh! I’m difficult!
It’s a situation I see repeated time and time again as I interact with the many lovely, intelligent, well-educated members of the Indian community in Europe.
Like many of these folks, Yogesh is a bright guy with a solid fitness routine, a good job, and multiple hobbies, the way he currently presents himself is a huge turnoff to women who would want to date an ambitious Indian engineer who loves to travel and has a good career going in France.
“What the hell is he doing here in France,” Pascal pondered, almost rhetorically. “One year and ONE match.”
He mentioned another guy we know (let’s call him Raja), a brilliant Indian scientist who’s been in Paris for 5 years. I like Raja a lot, and we’ve had many interesting conversations.
“He has a good job and a PhD,” I began saying. “He’s smart, he’s nice, he’s in decent shape, he’s tall, he’s decent looking.”
“Oui, il est pas mal,” nodded Pascal, which means he’s definitely date-able.
And yet. The last time he had a real girlfriend was when he lived in India.
“When did he last live in India?” I said to Pascal, not expecting an answer.
“Ages ago,” Pascal noted, looking down at his now-empty plate. “Just imagine, five years with girlfriend, no sex, nothing. What the hell is wrong with him? What is he waiting for?”
Yogesh’s situation – and Raja’s – are typical. They are lovely guys with so much to offer, but because they lack an understanding of how to approach women and how to put their best foot forward, they remain single, and, worse, ignored.
Obviously, the cultural differences are confusing.
“When you talk about India, it feels like a completely different world,” Pascal told me, after he’d finished all the pasta on his plate. “Completely different.”
It can feel like people here are not too open to foreigners, or those from Asia. If they hear you’re from so-and-so country, they already have preconceived notions. Then they unmatch you. You might have faced this situation many times.
Then there’s the fact of dating itself. Most of the guys who reach out to me have never dated before. The whole experience is brand new, and talking to random girls feels frightening. Just like Yogesh, you might have limited or no matches. In Raja’s case, his lack of matches is combined with an intense work ethic that limits how much time he can or will dedicate to finding a new relationship.
Plus, you have mom and dad back home who are constantly asking if they should start looking for someone for you.
You tell them you need more time. They agree, but deep down, you know they’re getting anxious. Yet it’s hard to imagine someone from your old life fitting in to this strange, new world you’re still discovering. She will have to start from scratch. She won’t be able to do anything here.
The most difficult part is: you might not be that extroverted, or talk a lot. That might be a bottleneck. If you want to get to know someone, you have to be in that rhythm of being talkative. And though you’re not anti-social, personally, you might be an introvert. Some who’s a very good observer, and only speaks if it’s necessary. It can feel like a negative point, especially if your goal is to meet more people.
It can feel very lonely (and intimidating) to try to manage this situation on your own; dating is still a taboo topic for many families in India, and if you ask you friends for advice, they just say, “Bro, it’s okay, your profile is fine!” But that’s not helpful.
If this situation (and Yogesh’s story) resemble your own, I invite you to book a free Introductory Matchmaking Call with me.
These are private, one-on-one conversations held on Zoom to analyse your specific situation and understand how you can start matching with the right women.
There is a fee of 1 euro to book, to create accountability between us, and are 30-60 minutes long. There is no selling, no pitching, and no persuasion; just a simple, straightforward analysis of what’s not working and how to change that starting today.
I’ve opened up my calendar over the next few weeks, but slots are limited.
Book your complimentary Introductory Matchmaking Call HERE.
Top image by Jasmine Ng, shared with kind permission.