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November 23, 2012
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Looking to do a digital art university course at age 25...

:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm 24 now - I'll be 25 at the start of the next university year - and I never properly went to university. I *sort of* did, to do a Games Development course, but I lived at home at the time because it was a five minute walk away, and I was suffering from anxiety problems so I rarely attended lectures or anything. I also started mid-way through the year... and didn't make a single friend or anything. Then I *moved country* with my family, dropping out after less than a year.

Since then, I've been trying to make games independently from my bedroom, essentially wasting away the years, and I've not made a single friend since I moved.

I've been focusing more on art, realising that this is more my forte than programming stuff ever was. I'm not technically-minded at all, and while my art skills have suffered from years of neglect, I'm trying hard to catch up now, and I would like to do a course to further improve my digital concept art sort of stuff, so then I could make better art for my games.

The main reason I'm thinking of going though is for the social benefits; the chance to meet like-minded friends. This is what I want to ask about, though!

Would people care that I'd be 25? I feel scared and old, and I worry that while people might politely talk to me in class, I'd have little hope of finding genuine, deeper connections with anyone. Or are people in my age range not all that uncommon? Would I not stand out?!

Another big thing is, uh... my life has been one long sausage fest. All the friends I ever had at school were nerdy guys, and I have a community website of my own, where I spend much of my time, and that too is essentially all males. It's suffocating, because I'm all sensitive and feely and not at all masculine, so I tend to feel misunderstood and frustrated when surrounded by guys (I say from *excessive* experience).
I crave to make female friends for the first time in my life, but I'm worried that digital art courses might be mostly male.

There are 'game art' courses that most likely would be, so even if they're the most relevant to my line of work, I will avoid them for that reason. But then there are other basic 'art' courses which seem more like fine art, which isn't what I'm interested in, or they're 'design' stuff which is more for company logos and that sort of stuff, which I'm not interested in either.

I'm the sort who draws dragons and wolves and stuff like that, 'Fantasy Art', and I'm curious about what kind of courses the people into THAT kind of art end up doing.

Another concern is that I don't guzzle the ol' grog, and have no desire to; I'm also very introverted and not *interested* in parties and things like that. Is it possible to meet other people who'd rather draw and play video games with me rather than going out getting drunk and being stupid? Or would I just end up a lonely alien for refusing to get into that world?

So if you have experience with university art courses, I'd love to hear about what the social dynamics are like, what the gender balance is like, which particular course you did, and whether I'd stand out too much for being OLD AND GRIZZLED!

Sorry about the length; I want to cover any assumptions before they're made!
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:iconlica-june20:
lica-june20 Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student General Artist
I don't think there's any problem with going back to school at 25. I've had friends in my university who were even older i had a classmate who i would call auntie because she was older than my mom and i was about the same age as her kid. there's nothing wrong with learning more and striving for your goal. As for the gender thing you can never really predict who you will be working with so please keep an open mind.

The male to female ratio also depends on the university and course. there will be a myriad of characters you will encounter in your time at a university and i believe if you be yourself and treat other people how you want to be treated then maybe you'll find one or two of those elusive good friends that you're seeking (regardless of their gender).

also i don't think partying is needed for university i've never attended one since i have never felt the need to. there's nothing wrong about not giving in to peer pressure. i think you are quite aware of your issues and that's good but just remember to keep an open mind about other people and im sure that will be reciprocated.

P.S.
I know how it feels to be a loner i was one before (a group of girls bullied me as a kid therefore making me avoid everyone more) but despite my mistrust i eventually found people with common interests (but very different personalities) who i could be myself around without any pressure. Maybe you just haven't found those people yet? i do wish you the best of luck and if anything i hope you continue your quest for knowledge.
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:iconcreatorsoul:
Creatorsoul Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Don't worry about your age. It may be a little strange for the people fresh out of highschool, but there are people who are 80 years old going back to school in university/college. 25 years is nothing in comparison...XD

Um...Just from a female-gendered perspective, I have to raise a point of concern after reading some of the posts. Most girls I know would not take your approach of meeting others for the sake of getting a partner kindly. People generally don't like ulterior motives when it comes to forming relationships, and for girls, that is even more so with regards to someone who wants to form a romantic relationship with them. Not that trying to find a girlfriend isn't a good goal to have, but you are going about it in a way that I think will be socially and emotionally detrimental for both you and the people you try and approach. As an advice, I think you should form relationships with others (regardless of gender) to see where they go, instead of how you want them to go, since a relationships is maintained by two people, and you can only control one.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think this is due to miscommunication more than anything, and I wish I'd worded things better... D:

I would not enter into friendships with girls *intending* to make them my girlfriend, like some creep. Never!
Instead, I'd befriend people *as friends*, and only over the course of many months would I want a relationship to develop, IF we were compatible and there were mutual feelings and chemistry and stuff.
I've always hated it when people look for *strangers* to 'go out with', because it seems nonsensical to me; I'd only ever want an evolving, developing thing that started with being acquaintances, then friends, then close friends, best friends, and ONLY THEN, after months of knowing eachother well, would I want it to evolve into 'more than best friends'.

So I'd not lecherously talk to girls thinking "here's my next prey! Mwahahah!"; instead, I'd talk to them as people and befriend them for the sake of making friends.
It's just that with guys, there'll always be a 'dead end' to how far things can go, but with girls, there's a *possibility* that things *may* go further than friendship in the distant future. It wouldn't be my *goal* or anything, but at least the possibility is there.

Hopefully this clears up what I was trying to say before; it's embarrassing and awful thinking that I worded things so badly as to give entirely the wrong impression... D:
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:iconcreatorsoul:
Creatorsoul Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012
Yes, thank you for clearing things up. I was getting a little scared with some of the postings...D8
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:iconravynnenevyrmore:
RavynneNevyrmore Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Digital Artist
I'll be 28 in 2 weeks and I'm a junior in college. I look very young so most of my younger classmates don't even realize I'm so much older than them. Plus kids who went directly from high school to college never broke away from the linear structure and are conditioned to believe that anyone their grade level is also the same age as them. Meaning that they will assume you are their age unless it is made obvious to them that you are not. Young until proven older.

I have several friends who are also 25+, as well as a few who are in the early 20s but so mature that I forget there's an age difference. But honestly I have the maturity of a 24 year old myself so the gap isn't that big to me. The bigger problem is with younger guys who think it's weird that I'm a few years older than them, and they don't get that I'm obviously not in the same place in life as a typical 28 year old. If they got to know me and opened their eyes they would see that, but they hear a number and replace the reality of me with their stereotype of who a 28 year old is.

Art colleges usually have a higher female to male ratio. My school is about 60:40 female:male and that's pretty balanced as far as art schools go. If you take a course called "game art" or a major called "video game art design" or something then yes there's a likelihood that there will be more guys than girls. (I'm taking a course called Video Game Culture as my art history requirement this semester and I believe we have 4 girls to about 20 guys.) But if it's something more general like "digital art" or "computer art" or something to that effect than it should be pretty balanced. I think I know just as many girls as guys in our computer art major, though it's probably one of the more male-heavy majors at my school. And of course any art school major will require you to take foundation and/or humanities courses that will probably consist of students from different majors.


Another big thing is, uh... my life has been one long sausage fest. All the friends I ever had at school were nerdy guys, and I have a community website of my own, where I spend much of my time, and that too is essentially all males. It's suffocating, because I'm all sensitive and feely and not at all masculine, so I tend to feel misunderstood and frustrated when surrounded by guys (I say from *excessive* experience).
I crave to make female friends for the first time in my life...


Please don't be one of those creepy guys who is all like "OMG GIRL" when they're talking to you, giving you excessive attention because they think girls are these strange and interesting creatures and omg maybe one will have sex with them! It's super awkward and we want to spend as little time with those guys as possible. Girls are people. They're not marvels of nature.


Another concern is that I don't guzzle the ol' grog, and have no desire to; I'm also very introverted and not *interested* in parties and things like that. Is it possible to meet other people who'd rather draw and play video games with me rather than going out getting drunk and being stupid?

Why do you have no desire to drink?
Why do you equate going out and drinking with being stupid?
Honestly, you sound like a judgmental asshole who thinks you're better than people who like to socialize and drink a little alcohol. Maybe you don't even deserve friends if you're going to be like that. But yeah, I'm sure you can find like-minded judgmental assholes who just want to stay in and play video games and judge all those "stupid" people for doing "stupid" things like going out and drinking. Because it's not like adults should be allowed to responsibly enjoy alcoholic beverages without being branded a lowlife idiot or anything.
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:iconwhiskyomega:
WhiskyOmega Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Professional General Artist
Don't worry about it.

When I went to collage and then university there were plenty of 'older people' also in my classes, so it's not like it's uncommon.

I'm going to be 30 in two years and I'm thinking about going back to collage for a few more courses and it doesn't bother me; actually I've noticed many younger people approach the older folks as peers and looking for guidance in life they havn't experienced yet.
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:iconthisismyboat:
thisismyboat Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
To answer your other questions:
No, you will not be the oldest person there. I see people well into their sixties taking first year classes. Most people will be between 18-21, but no one really cares about age once you're in university because there's such a huge mix. Sometimes fourth year students will be taking first year classes for fun or to get that last credit they need, sometimes people come back to do another degree, etc.

Most of my arts courses are dominated by females (my studio class has only three men). Of course it depends on your school, as my school has a 6:4 female to male ratio anyways.

I don't drink and I'm very introverted. I need a certain amount of hours alone per day or else I get irritable. I don't really start conversations with strangers, yet I still managed to make three or four good friends within the first few weeks of classes. The key is being open to stuff. If someone adds you on Facebook, add them back and comment on their stuff. Compliment people you think are dressed cool. When someone talks to you, don't just give a one word answer and go back to doing whatever you were doing. Go out to events you like. You might get lucky and see someone from your class there, which means you now have someone to talk to with common interests (happened to me!). There's also going to be tons of clubs on campus for you. I joined a video game and a tabletop rpg club within the first few weeks, and though I didn't really stick them out (mostly because I always forgot to go) it was still good to see that there were options out there for people like me.
If you don't like drinking, don't force yourself to go to parties because you're just going to be miserable anyways. Some of my friends do drugs, but they know I don't, so they don't invite me to those sort of parties because they know I'd be uncomfortable. That doesn't mean we can't be friends. We still have a lot of fun hanging out in art classes or around town, but we do different things on Friday nights and that's okay. Your friends don't have to agree 100% or do everything with you.
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:iconmeggierenee:
meggierenee Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Professional General Artist
I say go for it! I'm 30 and I'm currently studying commercial art. There are people of all ages in my classes. I've had a hard time with school...I have schizoaffective disorder and had to go on medical leave a couple times. I thought I'd be the weird one, but there are so many different people with different situations at my school. I really think you will be fine if this is truly something you want to do. :)
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:iconakcordova:
akcordova Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
i think you should take the class! im just nearing the end of the first semester at the university i transferred to and i was worried. i didnt know what to expect about going to a bigger campus with people who had already been there for 1-4 years. surprisingly, i have made a few good friends and most people in my art classes are friendly. i am a few years older than some of the students, (21), but i dont see a problem with age. there are a few older people in some of my classes and no one judges them and theyre not 25, but probably in their late 30s and ive even some elders (60s).

RESEARCH the campus you want to take classes at. My university is not a party school, well at least im not invited to any haha,
and it is smaller in size than most but still big enough to be a little overwhelming at times.

As someone with few close friends and am mostly quiet, I'm telling you you should go back to school and keep an open mind. try not to feel the nerves too much. relax, be yourself, smile and be open to meeting people. i know that its hard, esp. if youre introverted BUT you dont have to be the loudest person in the room to make friends. :)

hope this helps!
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:icondorkface4:
dorkface4 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
There are plenty of people who go back to university and are older than the majority of students. There's a lady in my graphic design course who is 40+. There was also a lady in my psychology course who had grandchildren. Obviously, they're not exactly going to hang out with everyone else since the age difference is so large, however, the age gap between you and the other students isn't as big so you shouldn't have any problems. Hell, if you look young the people in your course will just assume you're their age if you don't tell them (the people in my course assume I'm there age when I'm at least 3-4 years older).

Also there are plenty of non-masculine, sensitive guys out there. So even if the majority of your classes are male there will have to be atleast ONE guy who you feels the same way you do. Your ideal situation where you have a girlfriend and no other friends is unrealistic. You need a life OUTSIDE of your relationship, you need your own friends, your own hobbies/activities and time away from your significant other. Relying entirely on one person puts a lot of pressure on them and is unfair to them.

The idea that you only want female friends because it *could* lead to something further can be conceived as something creepy and it seems like you only want friends so that you can get a girlfriend. How about making friends with ALL kinds of people simply for having friends, building your social skills and your support network.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
...I just wrote a huge post in response to this explaining my reasons for wanting nothing other than a girlfriend, but I deleted it because I've found that I'm not really interested in essentially arguing about that in detail with a stranger right now, since someone always comes up to tell me it's 'unrealistic' or 'unfair' or 'creepy' or other such things every time I dare mention it. I've heard it all before, and I wish I didn't have to keep explaining myself...

Yes, I'm aware it's those things from the perspective of a, uh, 'regular' person, but not everyone has to want the same things, the same life experience, and not everyone has the same *needs*... I neither want nor need many friends, and would see them as a burden rather than anything positive. However, I am deeply interested in one close confidant.
I've talked to other people before who feel the same way, who only have one friend at any time and want nothing more than that. Ideally it'd be someone like that who I'd want to end up developing a friendship with.

The fact that I feel this way means that there'd be others out there who feel the same.
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:icondorkface4:
dorkface4 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Just curious though, not wanting to argue or anything, why do you feel having friends is a burden? You don't need to answer if you don't feel comfortable with answering, I've just never come across someone who has that point of view.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I had a few (all male) friends in the past when I was at school, and they used to contact me on weekends and stuff and I hated it; I always wished they wouldn't and felt sort of... 'on guard' the whole time, waiting for the phone to ring. When it *didn't* ring all weekend, I felt wonderful!!
And of course I never contacted *them* unless they contacted me first.

I'm very introverted, and would rather have spent my time working on my solitary hobbies; I used to teach myself things like art skills, how to program games, etc, and I greatly enjoyed it, being all alone and crafting my own fantasy worlds that really meant something to me and only me.

Maybe it's just because they weren't particularly good friends, though. Essentially all the (always male) friends I've ever had have been, uh... self-absorbed, or something like that? I used to be the person they talked to about their problems, their interests, etc, while I politely listened and offered empathy and understanding, or asked polite questions to show that I was absorbing what they said because I really did listen and 'care', but if I tried to talk about my own concerns, either they weren't particularly interested (some even *hummed* over the top of me or simply interrupted me to talk about themselves), or they criticised me to feel better about themselves or just because it was their natural response to, well, everything.
They were all 'gamer nerd' types, technically-minded and cynical, while I was arty and emotionally sensitive, and an idealist, so I wonder how differently I'd have felt if I'd had friends who shared my artistic interest and who were on the same emotional level as me... I'd probably not be saying what I do now about friends seeming like a burden.

It's not like they were bullies or anything, by the way; we just had very different personalities. They were 'nice' to me in their own ways; it's just that those ways were not satisfying to me on an emotional level.

I really crave a deep, personal emotional relationship with a single person, though. Someone I could share everything with and who'd really see eye-to-eye with me; the more we had in common, in terms of personality traits, values, etc, the better, so as to minimise conflict and maximise the wonderful feeling of deep *understanding* and the activities we could share. Being able to hug and cuddle with that person, and having the intense emotional bonding evolve into love, would be ideal, and that couldn't ever happen with a guy.
I've had this kind of connection before, and it was wonderful! It ended a few months ago, though, due to it being a long-distance thing...

There's waaay more to my aversion for friends than this, and I could probably spend all day writing about the many, many, many reasons why I'd want one girlfriend but no friends, but I'm aware that long, long posts are frowned upon so, uh, I don't want to bore you with too much detail.
Essentially though it's due to bad experiences, emotional pickiness and 'idealism', and a lack of desire to go out and 'do stuff' with people. Also a fear of expectations and things like that.

Usually people try and convince me that with good friends, I wouldn't worry about them contacting me because I'd genuinely enjoy their company and things like that, but, uh... well, it's frustrating how it's so hard to put my strong *feelings* about it into words!

BUT maybe I'd end up meeting these mythical 'good friends' at university. Still, I'd rather at least some were female, just because a lifetime of bad all-male friends has really, really got me down and conditioned me to want to avoid my own sex as a whole... It's not fair or right, but how many clowns do you need to need to be beaten up by before you start avoiding clowns?!?!/1
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:icondorkface4:
dorkface4 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Ah, I can see your side now. I am an introvert as well, I have quite a few friends but I only see most of them once or twice a year. There's a select few that I see more often, usually every few months. You can still maintain friendships without seeing the person often/or talking to them often, I can understand not wanting to go out every weekend though.
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:icondorkface4:
dorkface4 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Well good luck finding someone then.
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:iconfelix2648:
felix2648 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Being a first year in university, I can tell you that I've seen students in some of my classes that are in his 60s, and most of the students I hang out with are in their mid 20s, so you have no need to worry abot age.

There are plenty of different ways people hang out with other than parties, I for one pretty much high tailed out of any parties I happen to get dragged into. I'm sure you can find groups who focuses on drawing and such.

Also, I wish you would not focus so much on the gender thing.
Not all males are focused on masculinity, and I'm not sure about art courses but I think most people that do art is most likely more emotional and focus on feelings instead of the other type of males.
For females, there are many females who are really controlling and insensative, so do be careful if you're only focusing on that gender.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
The reason I care about gender so much is because I'm not particularly interested in friends, but I would like a partner; one really close confidant who I could do everything with. I think that a meaningful relationship can only come from an evolving friendship, though, so I'd like to make friends with people who *could*, over time, become closer to me. My ideal situation would be to have a girlfriend, but no other friends to have to worry about.

Male people can't develop into girlfriends, so I don't have any desire to get to know them. I'd still *talk* to people who are male about things, like in a class setting or through website comments, but I wouldn't want to *befriend* them and talk to them one-on-one and stuff.

I wouldn't talk to girls purely to make them into my girlfriend or anything, and wouldn't start friendships expecting that... but friendships with males would always lead to a 'dead end' that I don't have any interest in, while friendships with females wouldn't have that limit.

Since personality is of utmost importance *too*, that's why I'd hate to be in a class with few or no girls to 'choose from' as friends.
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:iconravynnenevyrmore:
RavynneNevyrmore Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Digital Artist
I'm not particularly interested in friends, but I would like a partner; one really close confidant who I could do everything with. I think that a meaningful relationship can only come from an evolving friendship, though, so I'd like to make friends with people who *could*, over time, become closer to me. My ideal situation would be to have a girlfriend, but no other friends to have to worry about.

Wow, I can't think of too many less desirable traits in a guy. That's what every girl wants in a man is a loser with no friends who wants to cling to her as his sole social support.

Grow the fuck up and learn to be a whole individual before you can ever be half of a couple.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thankfully, not every girl in the world is exactly like you.
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:iconthisismyboat:
thisismyboat Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
You do know that 99% of girls will become friends with you and that will be the end of it, right? I've become friends with men and instantly knew that it would never proceed. Just because I'm a girl and they're a guy doesn't mean there's an unlimited ceiling for our relationship. That being said, I've had platonic guy and girl friends that I've been extremely close to.

I'd really start being conscious about your attitude towards your gender. I've had horrible bullying by girls towards me, but that doesn't mean I rule out the possibility of any girl being my friend. You're generalizing 50% of the human race based on a few bad experiences you've had. Girls don't have different personalities than boys. Your classroom isn't going to be less diverse in personality because you only have a handful of girls in it.

I think you should think about why you value a girlfriend so much over normal close friends. Your statements are basically saying "I'm not going to be friends with you because I want you to be my girlfriend, but if I decide that I do want you to be my girlfriend, that possibility better be open to me". You're disregarding a girl's choice. Even how you describe how you want your relationship to be seems a bit needy and controlling. What if your girlfriend doesn't want to do everything with you? What if she doesn't want to be the only person you spend time with? I have some really, really great friends but I'd go absolutely insane if I had to do everything they liked (or everything I like) with them every day. People need breathing space.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I wish I'd never mentioned this! D:
Because I have a whole complex idea in my head about it, which is so, so hard to explain briefly to strangers with entirely different outlooks on life, different preferences, different experiences, etc... It's natural - though frustrating - that people would question and criticise what I want because it's different to what they want, and I wish I could really fully *explain* it... D:
That's not even what I wanted to start this thread about, though...

I wouldn't expect any girl I took an interest in to DEFINITELY become my girlfriend if I wanted it; I'm aware that things don't work that way. I would never be *seeking* becoming a girlfriend with any girl I ever talked to; I'd only ever want that to happen really, really gradually over the course of months as we got closer and *mutual* feelings developed, and I'm aware that this wouldn't happen at all in most cases.
It's just that there's some chance that it might happen with girls, but *zero* chance with guys.

Males *do* have different personalities to females... or rather, certain, uh, personality types (the ones I find frustrating) are statistically more common amongst males than females. It depends what you notice and look for in personality though; I'm aware that I personally am really... picky, about the sorts of people that I can derive genuine *emotional satisfaction* from being around, because my preferences are unusual. The normal response that more well-adjusted people give to me saying this is something along the lines of 'grow up' or 'get over it' or 'broaden your horizons' or other such things, but I just don't work that way, and it results in frustration on both ends when someone with a different personality essentially criticises me for not being like them...

Anyway, there's a very real chance that I might meet guys who are more sensitive and emotional, like me (though my own personality type thing has about a 0.5% prevalence amongst males; it's more common for females though), and I'd befriend them... But I'd still hate to be in a class that was *nothing but men* because I'm so sick of my life being all males, and it was that that I wanted to ask about in this thread; whether or not digital art courses would have a balanced gender ratio or not.

As for the 'being her only friend' thing, I am an example of someone who wants nothing more than one close bond with a partner, so there must be others like me out there. I have talked to people like this before! People who prefer one close bond and nothing more. I'm aware that this is an *uncommon* preference, but I'd hope to meet someone like this; I'd not want to lure in some girl who *didn't* want something like this.

Chances are that my views will change a lot once I actually go to university, though. I only feel this way due to bad experiences and being sheltered. I really wish I'd never mentioned it... ugh. Every time I try to post in this forum, I have terrible experiences... D:
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:iconthisismyboat:
thisismyboat Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
I get the sense that you have a really idealized view of how relationships work. The kind of relationship you're describing happens far more often in movies and books than in real life. Does it happen? Yeah, but not when someone's planning it out like you are. You can't really force that sort of thing to happen. I said it before and I'll say it again, just because a girl is friends with a guy doesn't mean there's an unlimited ceiling on the relationship. I've been really close friends with (straight) guys for YEARS and there's no potential for it ever to become a romantic relationship, which is exactly how we want it.

For now, assume that there's a zero chance for your relationship fantasy to happen with girls. This is what I meant about choice. It's sort of like if you went to a restaurant and they gave you grilled salmon and you went "I didn't order this!" and they said "Well you didn't SAY you didn't want grilled salmon!". They're giving you the choice in a very weirdly specific way that pretty much constitutes no choice at all. Right now you're sort of assuming the potential for a relationship is there because they're a girl, and completely forgetting that many girls are not interested in relationships at all. The ones who are might have boyfriends or might not be interested in you. Just because you're good friends doesn't mean you can become lovers.

I hope I'm explaining this in a way that makes any sort of sense.

And males really don't have different personalities than girls. I think you're applying generalizations based on poor past experiences. You probably have an aversion to loud, "jock" sort of personalities right? Those exist by the thousands in girls too. Believe me, I live around them. They're all great people though, just not the kind I'd be close friends with. Even emotionally sensitive people generally don't show it until they're close friends with someone (think about it, do you show that side of yourself to strangers?), so maybe stop focusing so much on personality types and just find people with common interests that you can do things with.

Honestly, the kind of person who doesn't want to interact with anyone but their partner is the kind of person you don't want to be in a relationship with. I know it sounds ideal because it's what you want, but even if it works for the first few months or years eventually you're going to develop as a person and want some freedom to do what you want by yourself. Think about how different of a person you were a year or two ago. If that person doesn't grow with you (which odds are they won't because everyone's very different), you're going to have someone clinging on to you and demanding you as their sole entertainment in life. That's going to get extremely aggravating. It goes the opposite way too (if their personality changes and yours doesn't). Besides, what are you even going to have to talk about when your interactions are only with each other?

We're not trying to attack you or anything so stop victimizing yourself. You keep calling yourself sheltered, so we're giving you social information that maybe you don't already know.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I already had what in many ways was an ideal relationship - emotionally at least - for the last 5 or so years; essentially what I'm looking for is 'something else like that'. I say 'emotionally at least' because it was very long-distance (we were only able to meet a few times), which is the reason that it ended; the distance was just too much.

So this 'relationship fantasy' is something based on actual experience.

If I befriended girls, I would not go in *expecting* them to ever become my girlfriend; it's just that there's the *potential* for that to maybe, possibly happen *if* we became good friends, had chemistry, and had mutual interest in eachother. That *potential* would never exist with male friends though.

Certain personality types are more common amongst males than females; there are statistics like this, for example: [link]

While I am bothered by extroverted 'jock' types, that's not the thing that I'm worried about. I've thankfully encountered very few of those in my life.
I wouldn't want to get involved with extroverts, but they're easy enough to avoid and I know they are equally common for both genders.

What bothers me most though is, uh... the 'Thinking/Feeling' difference, as Myers-Briggs defines it.
It's something that's bothered me all my life, but it's only recently that I discovered the Myers-Briggs thing and finally had a *name* for it, which made sense of so much (and led to me falling in love with the system (after incredulously scoffing at it for months) *because* it explained so much that I'd always wondered and felt frustrated about).
T types are statistically more common for males, and F types are more common for females. I'm INFJ, meaning that I'm idealistic and very emotionally sensitive (and yes, I DO show this very openly indeed to any stranger that I come across! I've written loads of journals about it on my profile here and stuff), and apparently INFJ has like a 0.5% prevalence amongst males... though of course it depends where you look. The arts are more likely to attract them than, say, law school or something.

This T/F thing is sort of subtle, so I could very easily befriend someone who's, say, INTJ, but then when things that really mattered to me came up - like emotional concerns - they'd try their best to be good friends, probably, but the way in which they try to help me causes me harm. It leads to frustration for both of us, because they never meant any harm, and I don't feel better due to their good intentions alone.

I run my own community website thing, which has had several thousand members over the years, and it's been going since 2004, and I've been very active in the community there. However, almost all the members are male (89% by statistics, though the percentage of actual posting members seems higher), and I've been enduring this massive 'sausage fest' for years, talking in the forum and chatroom to many, *many* people who are male and into the stuff I'm into (they mainly get there because they like the games I've made).
I write blog posts there sometimes about my ~feelings~ (because as I said, I am very open about my emotional sensitivity), and the 'helpful' responses I get from this group of guys are just downright frustrating because most of them operate on a 'T' level and give me advice when I want *empathy*. They try to 'solve my problem' rather than *understanding how I feel*. (Myers-Briggs types are shown on profiles there, by the way, so I can notice the link between the way people talk and their personality type...)
They aren't trying to be mean, and they're trying to support me; it's just that, well, it's like giving meat to a horse or something.

There are *some* guys I've met on that site whose personalities are more in line with my own, but they're really, really uncommon. So when I say I'm frustrated by guys, I am speaking from a lot of experience.
(There are also T-oriented girls who rub me the wrong way, too... so I know that 'being female' isn't enough to mean they'd be a potential friend.)

Anyway, I find personality types so extremely valuable and useful because they show that we aren't all operating from the same base; that's their main point of importance to me... Showing that we're different, and providing explanations for these differences and predictions for how to treat others who aren't like you.
An "ESTP 8w7" person is going to have *wildly* different desires, values, and attitudes to, say, an "INFJ 4w5", even before you factor in all the massively important life experience stuff, because their minds are simply wired differently.
It's something that I wish people would understand more, so then they'd understand that what works for one person doesn't work for everyone.
Something that causes me a lot of frustration is when one person essentially tells me to be less like me and more like them (not explicitly, but they advise me along the path they themselves prefer), and then accuse me of 'not trying' or tell me to 'grow up' or whatever if I don't like their path as much as they do.

Even if personality types aren't an exact science or anything, they do make the point that we are *different*, and operate on different levels.

Anyway, essentially, I'm looking for someone with a similar personality type as myself. They exist, but they're not common; they're less rare amongst girls.
It's interesting also that stuff I've read - like marriage statistics between different types - shows that this is a common preference for people of 'my type'; while other people are more willing to befriend or go out with many people of a wide variety of types, my own type tends to prefer to pair up with someone the same as them. (A fact that amused me when I saw it, because my own desire to meet people like me predated my discovery of personality types by many years.)

Once I actually get to university, a lot of my thoughts about this will no doubt change... But as it is, the all-male community on my site has been gradually frustrating me more and more and more over the last several years to the point now where the very idea of talking to other guys makes me feel physically sick.

(It's also made me really easily frustrated, unfortunately... Defensive and bitter due to being bombarded by this *unwanted advice* every time I ever tried to bring anything up there... I was fine until about a year ago, but I hate what I've become because of it. So I'm really sorry about being less than receptive to what people are saying here...)
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:iconmonkeydoodles:
monkeydoodles Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
That's an incredible amount of pressure to be putting on your future girlfriend, to be basically your only friend.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It'd be a huge amount of pressure if she were the sort who *wanted* other friends, yes, but I'm hoping to find someone like me, who doesn't. They are out there, since I'm an example of one of them.
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:iconmonkeydoodles:
monkeydoodles Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012
That's a huge amount of pressure to be putting on each other. I'm the introvertiest of introverts, and I can tell you that it's a really bad idea. You're not going to listen though, so whatever :shrug:
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Do you ever change your preferences about really, really important things to you because strangers on the internet - who don't know the nuances of your mind or situation - tell you that you should...? (I'm actually genuinely curious about that; does anyone *ever* change their closest-held values or beliefs from the words of strangers online?)

It's not that I don't understand what you and others are saying... It's just that I can't make myself *want* to have multiple friends. Even if I could see it as something I 'should' do, that's not the same thing as actually *wanting* it...
There's just no way that I can think of in which multiple friends are desirable to me, so even if I did get some, I'd probably just be forcing myself into it, and I'd probably dread having to contact them and I'd spend all my time with them wishing I was with my girlfriend instead.

I'd probably talk to people on the internet though, so it's not like I'd be completely shut off from everything and everyone.
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:iconeverfae:
everfae Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Just do it, go. If you want to do it and are passionate enough then don't waste time worrying about things like age. There'll be people there who will like you, won't care about your age, and would love to work with you especially since if you're around people who are younger than you they're not as likely to be a skilled or experienced as you are, they'll probably look up to you for help or something, so that's one way to make friends. If you're worried about 'wasting your life' away then i just say grab the opportunity when it comes. :) You'll feel better, your worries will melt away once you get used to it, I suppose :)
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
My anxiety stuff makes things like this more difficult than for most people, perhaps... which is why I like to know as much as I can before I really decide on anything.

I did a nearby college course recently, as I might have said to you before, which I mentally prepared for for ages, hoping it'd be a great opportunity to meet people and stuff... but I dropped out after like one day because the people in the class weren't the sorts I could make friends with (they were all middle-aged women). Things like that make me wary about making the same mistake again, especially if, unlike that course, I had to PAY for a university thing and had to move away from home and stuff.

I was hoping though that I might be more skilled or knowledgeable to some younger people and could make friends like that, though! I know I got attention from the middle-aged women because I had more artistic skill than them... o_O

Anyway, I probably will do this... but it's still nice to hear from people with direct experience that I wouldn't stand out for being 25 so then I can stop worrying about it.
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:iconeverfae:
everfae Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012
As you know, I'm doing Illustration at Uni next year, and if a 25 year old man were to be on my course too as a first year, I would be really curious to see how skilled he was, ask him why he's doing a BA course at 25 and all that (unless that makes him feel uncomfortable). I'm not saying this to make you feel better, but I wouldn't treat him any different to the other then-18 year olds that would be on the course because we're all there as aspiring illustrators with diverse styles I'd HAVE to take an interest in everyone's work. So I'm guessing that all the other people would probably talk to you regardless just out of curiosity :)
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:iconkrissiistsocool:
KrissiIstSoCool Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Filmographer
I started my first year at my games university 3 month ago :D aaaaaaaand the most people here are about 25 years old :D im the youngest of all people at my university xD ...but some people are about 40 years old... thats weird xD
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:iconresident-bishounen:
Resident-Bishounen Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I went to university fresh out of school. There were lots of older students in my classes when I was in university, and the age difference was never really an issue. There are lots of reasons why someone would go back to school: career change, needing extra credentials, taking a few years off to work.

I majored in Computer Science, so I understand your concern about being surrounded by men, and I can assure you even there I wasn't the only woman in the class.

There are plenty of students that aren't interested in the partying-and-drinking thing - joining a few student groups or clubs will help you find them.
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:iconpseudolonewolf:
Pseudolonewolf Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
When I did a Games Development university course briefly, it was entirely men; all the practical classes had only males, and even when there were lectures with like 300 people, I didn't see a single girl anywhere... A girl I know online recently went to do a game art course thing, and she's one of only two girls doing it. So it's things like this that make me worry about the gender ratio!

How do people find out about and join these student groups and clubs anyway, and what might they be about in order to appeal to people who don't drink? Do people only ever meet friends through those rather than in class? I have basically no idea at all how university works, since when I did briefly go, I didn't involve myself in any of the social stuff at all. I don't remember hearing about any group things...
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:iconresident-bishounen:
Resident-Bishounen Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I went to a formal university as a full-time student and lived in residence on campus. At my school, there was one week in September where each club would set up a booth in one particular area where people could come to check them all out at once. Each one is centered around a particular interest, and there was a wide variety of interests covered: Sports, Politics, fields of study (Archaeology club, Chem club, Comp. Sci club etc), entertainment, community service, different cultures, different religions. Club activities would center around that particular interest. In my experience, the students that were more interested in going to the campus pub every night it was open weren't as interested in getting involved. If you do a campus visit when you're trying to decide on schools, you can see if they have a student association. If they do, go to their office and ask about it.

We also had an "e-commerce" major, where your courses are half computer-science and half business, which attracted more women than pure computer science, but we had enough classes in common that it helped balance the gender ratios a bit. I won't lie, it still was mainly men, and I was the only woman in my field that graduated in my year. But I still wasn't the only woman in my classes. And as I said earlier, this wasn't a private college so that probably helped as well. Gender ratios are something you can ask the instructors in each department about if you do a campus visit when you're trying to decide what schools to apply to.
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:iconnarkya:
Narkya Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
So, pretty much, you're afraid you're too old. I can tell you:

You will stand out, but only because most of those others will come strait from school. There are always older people in university as well. You won't be the only one.

And: if you let your age, of all things, stop you, you're stupid. Don't be stupid.

Partying isn't a requirement for university. You'll find that especially in the first semesters, lots of people do it. But not everybody. You'll just have to find out.
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