Even with today’s numerous ways of approaching ladies, some men still remain single. Countless articles write about the dating problems of men in the tech industry, which become more and more serious as the tech industry keeps upswinging. Tech men are by nature quiet, shy and introvert, with their mind focusing on their job 24/7. It seems like, unfortunately, every aspect of their life handicaps their romantic life. A job becomes their dominant culture that overshadows all other cultures that they might already be a part of, such as dating. Practices applied in their professional life are not transferable to fit the standards of modern love.
Finding love has never been an easy task, but nowadays it is
almost a mission impossible, especially in Silicon Valley and Seattle where a tech culture becomes progressively dominant. Tech companies broadly have way more men than women employed, and it creates a high gender imbalance issue in the U.S., where cities are full of single tech men who don’t seem like they’re making any progress on their romantic schedule. It gradually becomes a part of their recognizable “geek” culture, where being single and working 24 hours a day is apparently an absolute must.
To see why techies can’t find their better halves, let’s first take a look at the qualities men need to have in order to be considered a desirable and prosperous. According to an
evolutionary psychologist, Satoshi Kanazawa, high social status, wealth and physical strength, such as tall and muscular build with broad shoulders make an ideal male mate. Women tend to like richer men because they can afford a higher standard of living, which makes them feel safe and protected. However, women also care about men’s physical appearance. They try to find men who can pass their good genes onto a future generation. According to Kanazawa, long-term commitment, and being able and willing to invest resources are some of the qualities that women want to see in the father of their children. High confidence, sense of humor, social skills and emotional support in relationships is what makes an ideal male mate, according to the comedian Aziz Ansari. It looks like, at the end of the day, women want a supporting, compassionate and caring man, who will make them laugh and love them unconditionally. When thinking about techies, at first sight, it is hard to imagine them with a lot of previously stated advantages. However, let’s see what a stereotypical male tech worker is like and whether he can fit in the culture of modern dating.
He earns a lot of money, which gives him higher socio-economic status. Even though Kanazawa points out that women like men that are wealthy and have a high status, many women claim how tech men are extremely boring. The fact that they invest all their time in the work and nothing else besides work is a pretty solid argument for it. Not to even mention
the questionability of their physical strength. They are not in peak physical fitness because their job simply doesn’t require it. They spend their working hours by sitting in front of the computer, which usually turns into a whole day activity. A stereotypical techie is definitely not considered as a beautiful man, but definitely more likely as a nerd who lacks in physical appearance and is socially awkward. He doesn’t have interactions with women if it is not strictly job-related. They show their immaturity by not being able to make eye contact or just rarely interacting with women in general. Geeks and techies are presented as being dismissed from the culture of romance and dating and it looks like they get indoctrinated into their own “geek” culture, which opposes the standards of modern love and dating.
Is that something they choose on purpose or it’s just an occupational hazard? In the
Silicon Valley culture, competitiveness reaches the maximum and the level of stress has no limits. Kim Malone Scott does a good job of describing the situation in Silicon Valley in her novel, “Virtual Love”, where Virginia, her main character does not pee because she suffers from a gallbladder infection. She is a perfect representative of tech workaholics. If they don’t even have time to go to the bathroom, how would they have time to date anyone? They don’t have time for anything besides their job and that kind of a lifestyle closes them up in their own “nerdy” culture – their only comfort zone.
But who belongs to that “geeky” culture? Doesn’t it seem like members are only tech men? What’s up with tech ladies? Well, I already mentioned the high gender imbalance issue in Silicon Valley, where it is currently 144 single men for every 100 single women, which is an exceptionally high ratio of men to women. Being surrounded by other male
workers all the time definitely leaves some impact on male tech workers’ behavior. They’re not used to having women around, or even having simplest interactions with them, which makes their mission of finding a lady even tougher. In the tech industry, ‘fratty’ behavior is very common, so there is no surprise to see popped collars, bad beer, and calling everybody ‘bro.’ Tech companies are not only a place of work but also a place where techies eat and mingle, so literally live. Their work place provides them dry cleaning, fitness on-site, and nap pods, so there is no wonder why some techies lack in life skills. It is simply their lifestyle. They are not familiar with any other culture because they haven’t been in a life situation where they would be forced to experience anything different.
However, this behavior didn’t come out of the blue. It has its roots in history. During the California Gold Rush in 1849, men were the dominant sex. They were coming from all around the world to California with only one reason – to get rich through gold mining. JoAnn Levy illustrates the situation during that once-in-a-lifetime adventure in her book “They saw the elephant.” Men miners were creating camps that looked very similar to the ones techies create today – a population male workers with the same interests. During the Gold Rush, it was a group of unshaved men in dirty clothes, where today it is a group of high societal and socially awkward men. One thing they have in common, though – they have excluded themselves from women because they are too busy with their job, and it looks like throughout the decades it slowly has become recognizable in their culture.
Techies are good at doing their job, and that’s why they are paid so much, but every other aspect of the normal human life is virtually nonexistent. If they are not capable of doing their laundry by themselves, how could they be able to be in a relationship? The fact that they border themselves with guys only doesn’t help them either. It looks like women are
just not welcomed in their “nerdy” culture. But as a solution to this issue comes a new dating site Dating Ring. If you thought it is just another ordinary dating site, you thought wrong. Dating Ring flies single women from New York across the U.S. to meet single men in San Francisco. Doesn’t it sound familiar? Back in 1849, women from all around the country were coming to California in order to find a rich husband because it was an opportunity they couldn’t miss. California was jam-packed with healthy single men who had great chances of becoming rich. Very similarly to that, Dating Ring works today. But unfortunately, even with a perfect set up like this one, socially awkward tech dudes don’t know what to do when meeting a lady. Their jobs don’t let them have many opportunities to socialize with women. Even when an opportunity comes they usually either do nothing or blow things up, since they find themselves out of their comfort zone because it is not a part of the culture they are familiar with.
If they want to finally show their emotional maturity and become ‘taken’, techies need to make some adjustments. To help them raise their romantic lives to another level, many magazines’ journalists and bloggers give away some tips. They encourage them in not being scared of being different. They should be honest, because what is the purpose of pretending to be someone you’re not. They can embrace their geekiness, but more importantly, not let it overwhelm the conversation. They would also need to become more socially aware and have a positive and confident body language. I understand it may be a little challenging and uncomfortable at first, but I believe that somewhere deep inside, techies are hiding their romantic souls.