About the Manual

The Nerd Manual is meant to be both a useful resource for nerds and a guide for the people involved with nerds. If you're a nerd you can find information here that will help you improve your life and perhaps better understand yourself. If you're close friends with, dating, or married to a nerd, I want to give you insight into things nerds do that a lot of people have difficulty understanding.

I hope to avoid offending anyone--either nerd or non-nerd--but please understand that the manual will get into some sensitive topics, stray into contentious territories, and even use stereotypes to illustrate points. It's OK to disagree with something, but keep your comments civil.


Nerd Q&A: Will I Ever Have a Relationship?

mliu92 - Not in Oz
I hear this question so often that I think we all need a bracelet saying, "It's OK to be alone right now."
(Unless you're locked in a basement. In which case you need to call the police.)

"Should nerds worry about never having a relationship?"

The only reason you should worry about never having a relationship is if you're doing something to make relationships impossible...and if that causes problems for you.

For most people, it's not normal to have zero relationships--connections with other people where you have a reliance upon each other for something--but there are people who prefer isolation and manage to function just fine that way.

If you're concerned that you'll never have a romantic relationship, the same answer applies. A romantic relationship can be very rewarding, but it will also be very taxing, so lots of people do fine without them. It's easy to fall into the trap of believing that just because everyone else has a boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse, you should have one also. This leads to a lot of unhealthy relationships in the world, so make certain you really want a romantic relationship before you worry about not having one.

That said, humans are biologically driven to have partners, which makes us distinctly aware of when we don't have one. And, it stinks to be lonely.

Should a nerd worry about this? No.

No matter how socially inept, skinny, fat, short, tall, boring or weird a person is, there are a multitude of people out there who will find you beautiful, entertaining, and fascinating. I'm not saying you should sit around and wait for those people to fall into your lap, but you shouldn't despair. Just based on statistics, if you believe that your perfect partner is one in a million, that means there are around 7,000 perfect partners on the planet right now.

If you're a true nerd, you can think of hundreds of ingenious ways to find those 7,000 people...or just one of them, since you don't really need all 7,000.

 It will take some effort and a little patience on your part. Think of it like a novel, or a movie, or a good video game. You don't get to the climax right away, you have to work your way up to it. Don't give up. Always remember that there will be subplots and side quests along the way. Enjoy them because they will be important later.

In the meantime, do the things that make you happy. Find ways to do those things with other people and pay attention to them, because one of them might be one of your 7,000.

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