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American

He finds many of his female members are determined to meet only men who are tall, attractive, wealthy and well educated. They want the alpha males. ”Most of the professional women rarely give out ‘yes’ votes to men who aren’t similarly successful,” reports Parfitt, who struggles to attract enough of these successful men to his speed-dating events. Sixty per cent of his members are female. Most are over 30.

During their 20s, women compete for the most highly desirable men, the Mr Bigs. Many will readily share a bed with the sporty, attractive, confident men, while ordinary men miss out. As Whiskey puts it at whiskeysplace.wordpress.com: ”Joe Average Beta Male is about as desirable to women as a cold bowl of oatmeal.”

Data from American colleges show 20 per cent of males – the most attractive ones – get 80 per cent of the sex, according to an analysis by Susan Walsh, a former management consultant who wrote about the issue on her dating website, hookingupsmart.com.

That leaves a lot of beta men spending their 20s out in the cold. Greg, a 38-year-old writer from Melbourne, started adult life shy and lonely. ”In my 20s, the women had the total upper hand. They could make or break you with one look in a club or bar. They had the choice of men, sex was on tap and guys like me went home alone, red-faced, defeated and embarrassed. The girls only wanted to go for the cool guys, good looks, outgoing personalities, money, sporty types, the kind of guys who owned the room, while us quiet ones got ignored.”