The dating market sucks if you have AU. I am a 22 male and have only had 1 girlfriend back when I was 17, I met her online.

I've seen women interested in me sometimes, but it doesn't occur much. In the past five years, I can remember two cases (of which one was extremely drunk). Haven't even had as much as a makeout in the past 5 years, let alone getting laid. Started working out and gained 8 kilograms of muscle, kind of plateaued now. It helps generate interest, as long as my head is covered with a hat or something.

Is this what it comes down to? Conforming as much as possible to society's beauty standards by dressing well and being muscular. Even then, I'll probably be at the same level as a regular dude on the streets who does not spend much time on his appearance.

Lately, I haven't even bothered to look at women anymore, or flirt with them. I also quit viewing pornography. Because of this, it has really sunk in at how much of a disadvantage I am. Writing this makes me feel sad, pain in my chest. Perhaps it has always been there, and I had never dealt with it.. only to have it resurface now.

I'm kind of at a loss. I will keep hitting the gym, for shallow yet realistic reasons (that doesn't bother me so much).

How do I increase my chances of finding a partner? I want someone to share my life with, especially now that I'm on the right track. Active and a straight A student in IT field. 

I could write a lot more, but this pretty much sums it up.

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Maurice, 

Hair loss is already difficult without the added stress of dating. I'm sorry you've had such a hard time with both. I, too, have AU and I won't lie to you- some potential partners will find you less attractive due to AU. However, there are many people who will not mind! Alopecia, especially in men, seems to become less of a big deal as your peers start to lose their hair, too. This doesn't mean you're doomed until you're middle-aged but you will likely find dating easier post-grad. The number of bald/balding men in the workforce versus on campus is a game changer. 

As for increasing your chances of finding a partner, I never found a magic method. I just asked men out on dates when the opportunity would arise or gave my number when asked. When I behaved normally, instead of being apologetic or ashamed of my condition, people were more likely to treat me like anyone else. This isn't to say I never got rejected but being confident and at ease convinced people I wasn't sick. The cancer association is a frankly a boner killer! :) 

Obviously, no one needs to change to find a partner. I met my current boyfriend while wearing a wig but I told him right away. I even went on our second date bald and it wasn't an issue. People like that are out there we just can't lose hope in the meantime. Would you date someone who seemed ashamed or depressed? You seem like you have a lot going for you and I'm sure someone will recognize that soon!

I wish you all the luck in the world! 

I know this is so obvious as to not be any sort of advice, but you are still so young. While it may be harder to make superficial appearance based connections, that isn't what many (most, I hope) people eventually look for. Different women will find different things appealing, but when I was 22, if a guy had a great smile, a quick wit, was open and kind and up for doing fun activities, he would catch my eye. I was wary of anyone who seemed too obsessed with his appearance. I truly believe there are great women out there who won't care about whether you have hair or not, especially if you aren't hung up on it yourself.

I have felt the same way.Im 27 and had recently aquired alopecia totalis a year ago. Its been along road of hiding and being embarrassed. I honestly started loving myself and the guys came. Women like confidence and honestly they shouldnt judge you based on uncontrollable factora. They dont deserve you and are not meant for you if so. Be patient the right one will come along and dont give up.I havent given up dating and there is plenty of time. I would just be up front and honest and if they dont like it then they can kick rocks. Lol Flaunt your flaws and never forget how special being diffrent is.
Hey Maurice, I can understand how you are feeling, I have AU. It just happened in January of this year, I am 45, married, w/ twins. I know its hard, it was hard for me when I was 22 and I still had hair! I have found that giving my all with what I have helps me feel some sort of control over my situation. I work out and have good diet. If Im gonna be AU, Im gonna be fit. Working on my spirit is vital. Do things you like to do that make you feel good.. hobbies, carpentry, artwork, paint ..whatever it is for you... the glow needs to come from within, that is what people are attracted to.. find what makes your light brighter ...sorry if this sounds cliche'. I do know the despair side as well and I get nowhere with that. Hang in there

We share the same view on spirit and vitality. Sports and diet are the foundation of my life, and probably yours as well!

Despair is easy to succumb to, but it brings us nowhere. I'll keep fighting.

So Ive had AU since age 8. Deep inside even before I fully understood why I was extremely distraught by what I thought would be a life of loneliness. The basis of this feeling/perception was very real. That perception became my reality until my late 20s. Funny thing is when I gave up worrying about it and focused on my future along came a girl who wanted the same life I did. We've been married now for 23 years with 3 beautiful healthy kids ages 17, 15, and 12. I'm a professional engineer with an MBA working for the 2nd largest automotive company in the world. I completed 10 years in the USMC with decorations received in combat. Ive run many marathons, travel internationally, performed in local theater, and enjoy every minute of every day. Almost all completed after I let go of my self pity.

Dont let this condition rob you of any more time! Life is too short and you don't get a do over :-).

Thanks for sharing Dave! I'm working on myself harder than ever before and life is going great. It's a harsh condition, but I can't let it chain me down anymore. Just messaged a girl I am interested in getting to know actually. 

Man, some people are very toxic here! A lot of self-pity, and negative attitudes. Your positive attitude gives me strength. Appreciate it buddy!!

Hey Maurice,

Great to hear. Hang in there and focus on being the best you. Life is good! Smile every day at everyone no matter what their disposition is. It's good medicine for the soul.

Dave
How many women have you been with? Do you have a girlfriend? Don't want to rain in your parade but it sound like you might just be on antidepressants and getting lots of therapy. Don't want to be that guy but did your life really get better or is it just a facade created by drugs and a good therapist?

Sorry, Maurice, but your comment about a "lot of self-pity" sounds really snarky to me.  Of course, I have a negative attitude about my AU.  It's a negative situation, so what am I suppose to feel--happy for myself??  I also have a positive attitude in that I am positive that I have a lot more to gain in being honest about my feelings than in playing a Pollyanna game.  People come here for support, not to have their feelings dismissed as a self-image problem.  If someone with alopecia has a self-image problem, it is most likely the result of the problem--not the cause of the problem.

Unfortunately yes this is how the society is. I will be very honest with you unlike the lady who said that alopecia for male isnt a big deal because of all the male pattern balding. Lol. Seriously? Thats not the same and you know it. Good thing you have been working out but even if muscular having AU will make dating VERY difficult. Almost impossible... you will have a few opportunities but the journey will be painful. If i dont speak the truth, how come if u go on a dating site u wont get any matches? Money will make it a little bit easier of course. I have AU and yes i am muscular. but aesthetics is not my strengh. Thats harsh, sad , painful but it is the truth. And women are shallow. I know a few girls with alopecia, they wear a wig and can have a few white knights around them. Now show me 1 male with AU that has success dating. Success does not mean being married to a women btw. OP is 23 years old, it would be NORMAL like any other guy to date a few girls, gain experience, flirt with random chicks etc...
Instead Try to focus on your status, career, build confidence and hopefully good things will come. And even with all this, yes you will face some days when your morale will be rock bottom... its normal, AU people tend to disappear from the society because we dont accept ourselves.
Stay strong because our life is gonna be Tough.

I can certainly sympathize: I had AU in high school, and have had it since.  I'm 46 now.  I more or less gave up even trying to date for a while, I had no confidence in myself.  I didn't start dating until I was 27, and really only because a 35 year old really pursued me.  Then another one did, and then I hit the online sites a little (they were just coming into being at that point).  I got married when I was 31 to a slightly younger woman.

But I had so little self-confidence in myself that I look back and remember opportunities that I didn't pursue because I just felt hopeless.  When I was in MBA school, I was the valedictorian.  There was a dinner about 20 miles away in the city for the valedictorians of all the various programs at the various local universities.  I was speaking to this girl from Poland who was valedictorian of her department at my university.  She asked for a ride back to her dorm, as I had a car, and she had gotten a ride from a professor who was then going home and not back to campus.  I drove her home, we chatted, but at no point did I ask for her number.  It didn't even occur to me to ask.  I can come up with probably five other times I could have at least asked a girl for her number, but I didn't even ask.  

Now, I'm not going to say that it doesn't suck, but still, take the opportunities that present themselves.  I didn't do that, and if it were not for the first two women I dated really pursuing me, I'm not sure I ever would have dated.  I remember when I was dating my first girlfriend, and feeling ecstatic, but at the same time thinking the woman must be crazy because she likes me.  After we broke up (and it might have been because of my AU to be honest), I sort of went back to just thinking she was a fluke.  Then there was some charity event a friend was running, and I was telling people they should go, and I told one woman about it, and her reply was, "I won't go alone, but I'd go as your date."  So there are women out there who will be interested.  Not as many as if you didn't have the AU/AA but it still happens.  You just have to have some confidence...

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