I recently posted an ad on Craigslist looking for a cuddle buddy. I got a couple of responses I liked, so I wrote them back in the same style as my post on the site. However, I didn't hear from either of them (and I only sent a photo to the first one, so that can at best explan that one; I'm average-looking). I showed a faux-autist friend (he pretends to be aspie because it's fashionable, hipster style) my email exchanges with the responders, and he said his diagnosis was autism, but didn't elaborate further. I care about the details, however, as I'm hoping to be able to at least partially compensate by conscious effort in similar future situations. So I'm looking for analysis of where I went wrong.
First, here's the actual post, to which I did get replies I liked (pic related -- it's what I had in the post):
> Newly single, looking for good cuddler--rated G--compensation possible - m4w
> body : fit height : 6'1" (185cm)
> status : single
> age: 35
> By "good cuddler" I'm not referring to your experience or spooning technique, but just to a willingness to cuddle like you mean it. I simply miss this type of affection, and I'm not looking for anything else.
> If you feel that cuddling you back doesn't fulfill the golden rule of reciprocity, I can also offer other compensation: drinks, dinner, or--you let me know (strictly platonic, of course).
> I'm tall, clean, European-born (slight accent), friendly, and I'm well-traveled and well-read, which makes me a decent interlocutor; I promise I don't smell bad and I'm not a weirdo and not ugly, and I look younger than my age. I have a nice place downtown, with a view (of other towers, that is).
> You're friendly, empathetic, clean, and are taking care of yourself physically and psychologically. If you're thoughtful, that's a bonus.
> Pic for pic, or, if you're shy, a description will suffice. Please write your favourite cuddle position in the subject so I can filter through the spam.
Here's one of the replies I got:
> Admittedly I think I'm quite odd being sleepless and choosing to browse Craigslist instead of counting sheep ... Platonic cuddling is such a good idea I couldn't help but reply. But anyway here goes!
> I think I'm in a similar boat as you, not quite ready for a new relationship but missing the intimacy (not sexual) - like reading together (or as introverts like me could say, being alone together), or even being read to while cuddled under a warm throw :-)
> Hmmm what else... Oh the describe yourself part - 25, Asian, petite (not thin though, average), employed full time, try to be a good conversationalist but I'm quite the shy/quiet type. I do warm up eventually though :-)
> So there's that! I'm not sure how this'll go or if you'll even reply with all the possible spam (or real replies, I'm quite certain I can't be the only who finds this an interesting proposition!)... I do hope you find what you're looking for, and if that might be me, send me a message.
inb4 she's gaysian
I'm in Hongcouver so that's gonna be half of the people here right off the bat.
Anyhow, this is what I sent back, along with my pic (as stated, I'm average, so at best 7/10):
> It's refreshing to get a response that doesn't have the atrocious Craigslist grammar we've all come to know and love. I also like that you're a reader. No worries about being shy -- I used to be shy as well, so I can relate -- and I wasn't looking for a party buddy anyhow. :)
> How about meeting for a coffee or tea first, which gives you the opportunity to ascertain I'm not a deranged axe murderer or shape-shifting lizard from outer space?
No reply. Assuming it wasn't the pic that turned her off, where did I sperg specifically?
And here's another email I got:
> Does this mean I'm an amateur cuddler?
> I was hoping we could discuss your ad a little further. First off, congrats on being more unique than any other cuddle ad I've read. But I hope you can understand when I say a normal, friendly, empathetic, clean and healthy woman such as myself still views your ad with some skepticism. So my question for you is, won't you still need to find someone somewhat attractive before you snuggle up to them? I'm just of the thinking that cuddling still leads to other things. Especially if alcohol is involved.
> My proposal to you is this. If you decide to choose me as your potential cuddle buddy, no drugs or alcohol will be involved. Food and other beverages always welcome:)
> I am genetically female, in your age range but look younger, of eastern chinese descent but born here, very thoughtful of others and have half a brain so I can usually hold a conversation. Though based on your short blurb I can tell your vocabulary is definitely larger than mine. English is my 2nd language so yes, that is my excuse:)
> Happy Monday!
And below is how I responded to that one; again, that was the end of the conversation, so I'd like to know how it is that I killed it. As far as I can tell, it's consistent with my original post, so what is it that they didn't like that wouldn't have prevented them from emailing me in response to the CL ad in the first place?
My friend says I'm being too casual, but about the wrong things, and "let coffee be when you start showing off your red flags, not in the email". I don't know how to interpret these comments, and he's not responding now to clarify... Anyways, I'm hoping that some normie or near-normie can elaborate on whatever the various social faux-pas I'm making are.
> I should hope you're an amateur, as I shudder at the thought of professional cuddlers.
> Your question is difficult to answer because I've never done this before. My estimate is that the threshold in terms of perceived attractiveness is extant but a lot lower. Moreover, if the person I'm cuddling is too attractive, that might be a detriment -- after all, I don't want to end up needing to mentally command my body "down boy!" :) So, along these lines, the best fit would be a woman from average to cute or pretty rather than hot or sexy (and the the difference there is partly one of attitude).
> Since neither one of us is looking for anything aside from cuddling, I don't see a risk of it leading to anything else without an explicit conscious decision by both parties. I only drink for taste and only on occasion (usually cognacs at least XO level), but if you don't trust yourself around any alcohol, then I'm fine with omitting it completely.
> English is also my second language (ergo the accent I mentioned). I think that's actually helped me with grammar, as learning it was a more conscious process. My vocabulary, on the other hand, I owe primarily to Henry James and Joseph Conrad.
My thought would be the "shudder at professional cuddlers" part. What she wrote made it sound likes she's read MANY cuddle ads before, which means it' likely that she's responded to them before.
Also, what makes you shudder about pro cuddlers?
There are a lot of jobs that make you intimate with a client. Massage therapists, normal therapists and counselors, some doctors, some teachers. Intimacy is something that almost everyone needs, and if you're good at providing it and get genuine joy from it, why not get compensated? If you make it your career, you need to get paid in order to live.
You offered compensation, dude. You know that this is a transaction of intimacy, whether or not this is something they do regularly.
>You offered compensation
Bait in the worst case. I never even implied it would be financial. Food, drinks, etc. -- nothing a gold digging gf wouldn't expect. Anyway, this is a tangent, as it doesn't help me with the conundrum I posted about.
Second the axe murder thing. You're clearly somewhat uncomfortable with the whole craigslist ad thing, and you're overcompensating.
These people are perusing these ads, they know there's a risk. Drawing that much attention to it makes it uncomfortable
Want to send us that pic? We've got no way of knowing if that actually was the issue.
Fair enough point on the axe murderer comment. But I only sent the pic to the first one.
And even so, though it's a shitty pic, it's my main profile pic on Tinder and I've got decent matches there (even if only a few percent of them actually reply) — so it can't be that horrible
I said it was compensation, a transaction. Doesn't mean I was saying you're giving her a cashier's check or some rolls of quarters. And also you added a bit that left compensation as more open-ended.
You being against "pro cuddlers" is what I'm saying could have been your issue with that particular one. At least that's what stood out to me as a jarring and abandon-ship moment.
Oh and also that awkward bit where you said "I don't see a risk of it leading to anything else without an explicit conscious decision by both parties" and the "down boy!". That makes it seem that there's a remote chance that a sexual encounter could take place (I mean it's not outside the complete realm of possibilities). But for a female stranger to trust you with this kind of thing, there needs to be ZERO insinuation.
I can see that being against pros could have turned her off, as in, she took it as an implication I would not compensate her sufficiently generously.
I don't get your second point, though. There's no insinuation; it was a factual statement — no sex unless both parties decide otherwise. That means that there can't possibly be sex unless she explicitly wants it. How's that insinuating anything?
It's just bringing it up. It brings attention to it, even in passing. And that makes her think that there's a part of you (however small or distant) that wants sex from this, or wants there to be some other aspect to this cuddling- maybe a relationship, some sort of longer-term agreement, who knows.
adding to this, after reading the whole thread you look strikingly similar to Elliot Rodger and speak (or at least type) like him too so work on toning down your supreme gentleman talk.
all the "big" words and "fancy" talk. I could go through your post and highlight every word that I've never heard a person say irl but it's late and I'm on my phone. just simplify your speech, people are simple, be simple and concise.