How Do I Make Sense of All The Different Dating Advice Out There?

How Do I Make Sense of All The Different Dating Advice Out There?

Evan, I have been reading a lot of different dating advice websites, especially the ones written for MEN. I have noticed a trend in telling men to get the women to chase THEM. (Ask Men is one example) I see a lot of advice to women about why men disappear, what to do when they disappear, etc., but it seems that men are being COACHED to disappear, as a power play, a way to get the upper hand, and to get the woman to chase THEM. So if women are being coached to play hard to get, and men are playing the same game, what does this mean for male/female relationships?

In this incarnation of my dating life I have decided that I am not going to chase men. (In my younger days I admit that I did, and no good ever came of it.) This time around I absolutely I will not chase men, nor be baited into chasing one. (Yes, men are advised to bait, hook, and then ignore a woman, to get her to do the chasing). BTW, I am not a “rules” girl, I read that book, and feel dumber for having read it. I do want a man to pursue me, but when he does, I will be increasingly receptive to him, and once a relationship has been established, I won’t mind taking the initiative when appropriate. I won’t wait 2 days to return his calls, or only see him 2 times a week, or play all the mysterious stuff that Rules promotes. (They call it mysterious, but I call it secretive & evasive.)

So while I am not a hardcore Rules girl, I am a little old fashioned and want a man to pursue me, not hand me his business card and expect me to call him. Or e-mail me endlessly on Match.com but never ask to meet me face to face. What do you think of the role reversal being promoted by sites such as Ask Men (they call it “The System”) Do you think many men are following that advice ? –S.E.

Hoo boy. I’m not sure where to begin.

I would guess you’d be more interested in how you can understand and land the confident, successful, happily married guy, as opposed to the weak, insecure, jealous, inexperienced guy.

I guess I’ll start with how I give dating advice, and how I think it’s different than many of the other sources out there.

Like many people, my perspective has been shaped by my own experience. However, unlike many people, I had a few unique things going for me.

1) I come from a happy and highly functional nuclear family, so I not only had a model of the kind of marriage I wanted, but I strove to emulate it. Many people who give advice come from broken homes, abusive relationships and unfortunate backgrounds, none of which are a crime. But I think my past is a strength, inasmuch as I have a very healthy outlook on marriage.

2) I am – at the risk of immodesty – very confident and flirtatious. Let’s just say I had considerable practice in online dating, dating and relationships. Many people who give dating advice have been married for 30 years and don’t know anything about dating. Many others (think pick-up artists) came to do so because they are shy, awkward and insecure. But unless you want to attract a guy like that, why would you care what such men think?

3) I am married and in an incredible relationship because I followed my own advice. And I would guess you’d be more interested in how you can understand and land the confident, successful, happily married guy, as opposed to the weak, insecure, jealous, inexperienced guy. Then again, I could be wrong. I’m always willing to risk being wrong by having opinions. What kind of coach would I be if I didn’t have opinions?

4) I’m not afraid to stand on principle. Other coaches are marketers – their only desire is to a) pray that you like them and b) convince you to buy their products. My loyalty is not to my own biases or my own bottom line, but to the truth. I don’t view the world based on how I’d LIKE it to be; I pay attention to how it IS and advise on how you can best react to reality.

And very often, reality isn’t pretty. Would I rather tell you the truth or validate your worldview so that you don’t shoot the messenger?

The answer should be obvious.

Real men don’t play games, use power plays, or try to get the woman to chase them.

People come here because they expect to be told the truth, rather than some rah-rah “all women are goddesses” bullshit that I don’t believe and I don’t expect you to believe.

Unless you believe the equivalent bullshit that “all men are noble studs”.

Which, of course, they’re not.

Now that I’m done tooting my own horn, let’s refocus on the advice you’ve chosen to cite, from AskMen.com

I just went to Alexa to check out the site’s demographics. What did I discover?

The target audience for AskMen is men 18-24, men without children, and men who live at home or are in school. When I clicked to see their income, most of these men didn’t even HAVE income. Compare that to Esquire readers, the majority of whom make six figures. Which kind of man are you looking for, S.E.?

Basically, I’m asking you what difference it makes if a website for boys is giving those boys advice that will work on insecure teenaged girls with low self-esteem?

That’s right. It doesn’t. Real men don’t read AskMen.com.

Guys who play games eliminate themselvesJust as real men don’t play games, use power plays, or try to get the woman to chase them. This is run-of-the-mill pick-up artist advice for awkward teens, not advice that 40-year-old men and women are expected to utilize.

From this paragraph, it sounds to me like you know what you’re doing:

I do want a man to pursue me, but when he does, I will be increasingly receptive to him, and once a relationship has been established, I won’t mind taking the initiative when appropriate. I won’t wait 2 days to return his calls, or only see him 2 times a week, or play all the mysterious stuff that Rules promotes.

And if you know what you’re doing, it doesn’t impact you one iota if some guy is running a game on you. Guys who play games just eliminate themselves from dating confident, secure women. Right, S.E.?

At the end of the day, whether it’s a man playing games or a woman playing games, one thing is for sure: everybody ends up losing.

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Michael17

    As a guy who is actively looking for a relationship with the right woman (and who is on Match) and who is cute, successful, in shape, socially adept, and a nice guy (not to mention modest), I have a perspective on this that might be helpful to the women out there.
     
    The reason why there is so much advice out there for guys is because, well, women can be hard to date. Or at least it sure seems that way to most of us guys. It doesn’t seem to us that your expectations are at all realistic. And it is NOT in looks or income. Instead, our experience is that you have to be feeling “chemistry” on the first date (which has little to do with looks) or there just won’t be a second date. This despite the fact that YOU are the ones who have your guard up when we meet for the first time. So a lot of the advice that is out there for guys is how to spark that chemistry.
     
    I can’t tell you how many times I (and a couple guys I know) hear things like “you’re a great guy and I had a good time with you but no chemistry” after the first date. So we wonder what the hell that it is that you women are looking for.
     
    Something for some of you women to consider. If you are finding dating to be frustrating, are you really giving the guys you meet a fair shot?
     
     
     
     
     
     

    1. 1.1
      Jenn

      I can answer this confidently, since I went through this situation two months ago. A guy emailed me on Match who was a little outside my target age range. He was 11 years older than me; I really prefer men around my own age. But he wrote a really nice email and I haven’t had any really good date offers in a long time, so I met him. I did not feel instant chemistry, but I’ve made the mistake of writing men off prematurely before. So what did I do? I gave him three (yes, THREE) more dates. He was very nice, but never flirty, at least not from what I could tell. He never touched me on the first three dates at all, except to hug me goodbye and give me a peck on the cheek. He gave me compliments, but never anything flirty, it was always about how much he liked my positive attitude, my love of animals, blah blah, etc. He never made me feel sexy, or like he was really attracted to me. He waited until the third date to kiss me on the lips, after which I felt NOTHING. I went home crying from that date because finally, here was a guy who treated me exactly the way I want to be treated and what happens? I feel no spark at all! Just to be sure, I gave him one more try. We went to a movie, during which he spent the whole time trying to massage my arm through my puffy coat so hard that I actually felt mild pins and needles. It was incredibly awkward.
      I guess it’s true that sometimes attraction does need time to develop, but guys also need to strike while the iron is hot. Had he kissed me on our second date, when I was expecting it (and actually nervous about it!), things might have been different. But then he killed any challenge when he gave me Christmas gifts when it was only our third date and waited until our fourth to start trying to get flirty physically. 

    2. 1.2
      SparklingEmerald

      Michael17@1-“Something for some of you women to consider. If you are finding dating to be frustrating, are you really giving the guys you meet a fair shot?”
       
      But isn’t that leading a man on ?  Or isn’t that just going out with a man “to be nice”.  Guys, do you REALLY want a girl to give you a second or third date if she’s really just not into you ?
       
      And what about guys who don’t ask for a second date for petty reasons ?  Such as “she didn’t order her drink ‘confidently’ ”  or she didn’t let him order her meal for him, or she “peacocked” her accomplishments.  (IOW, he asked her what she did for a living, and she told him)  Or what about guys who go for sex on a first or second date and when they don’t get it, never call again ? 
       
      If guys don’t initially get a boner for a girl, there is no first date.  If they meet her online and her picture looks good, but they don’t get a boner when meeting her in person, there is no second date.  Are they really giving her a “fair shot” ?
       
      I would personally rather a guy “disappear” if he’s just not into me.  Better he just evaporate after date 1 or 2, before I get too attached or invested. 
       
      But for women, it’s damned if you do, damned if you don’t.  If we “give a guy a chance” we’re leading him on.  If we don’t feel that initial spark, and decline a second date, then we “didn’t give him a fair shot”. 
       
      I wonder what we women are supposed to do according to men  ?   I guess the answer is that we are supposed to feel attracted to every guy who is attracted to us.  (weather he’s just attracted to us in a booty call way, or attracted in a wants a relationship way)
       
      Women catch a lot of flack on this blog if they admit that they weren’t attracted to (or felt chemistry) for a guy.   There’s an undercurrent of   “you deserve to die lonely ” if you ever turned a guy down.

      1. 1.2.1
        Evan Marc Katz

        Sparkling Emerald: “There’s an undercurrent of “you deserve to die lonely ” if you ever turned a guy down.” Not from me. Seems like more hyperbole from you.

        1. SparklingEmerald

          EMK @1.2.1
              No not from you EMK, from your male bloggers.  I was accused of “boasting” with “bravado” when I joined a blog discussion about not feeling chemistry, then he turned around and said we girls were probably making up stories because we were REALLY the ones getting rejected.  (whatever)    Male bloggers routinely make snotty remarks if a female poster shares that she wasn’t attracted to a good guy.  And oh boy, don’t DARE mention on this blog that you prefer men who are taller than you.  That brought on an onslaught of acrimony from your male posters.
           
          I get rejected about as often as I do the rejecting (and about as often as there is mutual disinterest)  According to some of your male bloggers, I’m getting rejected because I am defective, and when I reject a guy I’m being picky.  (I’ve even been falsely accused of holding out for a tall, rich, handsome man, and I never said anything remotely like that.)
           
          I think I’ll just stick with only going out with/going out with guys who I at least feel a level 7 or 8 attraction for.  Anything higher, my judgement is too clouded, anything lower and I’m just trying to talk myself into something I’m not really into.  And if the nice guy that I just don’t feel chemistry for thinks I’m “not giving him a chance” that just too bad.  If he’s my age, I’m sure he’s handed out a rejection slip or two in his lifetime.

        2. SparklingEmerald

          @1.2.1 – Not you, but your male posters.  They get very hostile at the idea of a woman rejecting a man due to “lack of chemistry”.

    3. 1.3
      Danaris

      Haven’t you felt the same way about women?  You’ve gone on a date and had a good time, but there was no chemistry?  I think it works both ways.  Sometimes, there is something specific that men do, but the woman doesn’t want to tell them what it was so they will just say no chemistry.  
      I’ve declined second dates and said no chemistry when in fact the reasons were:
      1. Creepy/Desperate behavior — insisting  that we go back to his place for drinks.  I don’t mean asking once and letting it go, I mean insisting.   Or when a guy told me he hadn’t had sex in 10 years and he’d eat his right arm to get me into bed.   
      2.  Negative Disposition — this is probably the biggest reason, I don’t go on second dates.  I generally have a very positive  and upbeat outlook.   I’ve gone on dates with lots of guys who are so negative about life, relationships and women.  Sometimes I wonder if they ever like women as they talk about other women with such disdain.  I am often stunned when these guys want to go out again, but I say no way.  Being with a person who is so negative brings me down.  In fact, one of my requirements for a man is that he be happy with himself and his life.  I don’t care what he does (as long as it’s legal of course!), he just needs to feel good about himself and his contributions and he needs to feel good about relationships.  The thing is, really negative people often don’t know how negative they come across to others, but it is  real turn off.
      Men Who Don’t Really See You – this one is hard to explain but I think men feel it too. But sometimes you can tell, that the man is relating to you as you but as what his ideal woman is.  You notice he’s not really listening to your responses.   You get the feeling that you can’t really be yourself with this person because it’s not you he wants to get to know.
      Too Much Chemistry– Yes, I have actually declined a second date with a guy that I had too much chemistry with because I knew it would be a disaster for me.  I had only felt that way about one other guy and I was a wreck.  I never wanted to feel that way again.  So, I was honest and told the guy that I didn’t want to go out with him a second time because I felt too much chemistry and believe it or not, he was so gracious and said that he understood and he thought it was smart that I was taking care of myself.
       
       

  2. 2
    Julia

    Great answer Evan!!!!! Every time someone brings up what PUAs or manosphere bloggers have to say I simply say “Irrelevant. You don’t want to date those guys anyways, let them screen themselves out.”

  3. 3
    Frimmel

    Evan is once again hard to disagree with. If you’re going to read dating advice for the opposite gender read the advice aimed at the ones you want to date. How do you think I ended up here?
     
    I also agree with Michael in #1.
     
    I would add that younger men are much more at the mercy of their urges and have neither the experience or means for the type of pursuit the romantic comedies push. They are much more prone to ‘puppy dog’ type behaviors that just don’t work on any women. At the risk of reducto ad absurdem the advice to get her to pursue you is essentially “be in control and don’t be needy.”
     
     

  4. 4
    Angie

    I LOVE Doc Love on AskMen. (He’s the only dating columnist I read regularly, besides Evan’s blog).  The above synopsis of his dating advice is completely off. He doesn’t tell men to disappear.  In fact, his advice is geared towards “nice guys” (and YES, young nice guys!) on how to be more successful with women.  It’s not The Game and it’s not meant to be a power play.
     
    He advises men to wait 10 days between getting a woman’s phone number/first meeting to ask her out, only because he believes most women will say yes and he often states that “Gold-diggers” (self-explanatory) and “Serial Daters” will have lost interest by this time, but a woman with actual interest will still be interested 10 days later.  He also takes about cues women make if they are interested, and that the ideal woman is a “Flexible Giver” (a woman who “gives” as much as she expects to receive), which I think Evan, you’d agree with.  He doesn’t advise men in relationships to disappear.  He advises men who have just met a desirable woman to not call the very next day and to play it cool at first, to save themselves both money and time on girls who aren’t interested.  (He has yelled at guys who said they waited 3 or 4 weeks b/c he said that by this point, those guys are being jerks who don’t seem interested.)  
     
    S.E. – Did you read through AskMen or did you just read a couple articles?
     
    And, yes, I think The System works if the man is the more interested party.  I think “be cool” is good advice if you are the MORE interested person, because Doc Love is telling guys: “If she isn’t interested, move on” and that the only way you can tell that is by being cool and seeing if she comes to meet you halfway and not overwhelming her in the process.
     
    Doc Love: Wait 10 days and ask her out.  If she says yes, take her on a nice date and be a gentleman.  Flirt.  If she’s into you, she will give you cues.  If she gives you the cues, walk her to the door.  Lean in to give her a good night kiss if you are feeling it.  If she likes you, she’ll give you her lips and kiss you back. If she doesn’t, she’ll give you the cheek.  If she kissed you, you’re in.  Call her for a second date.  No games there.  I think it’s relatively fair advice to young men who want to find a great girlfriend, the same way Evan’s advice is fair to women who want to find a great boyfriend.

    1. 4.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      Angie, sounds like Doc Love is right about many things – except for a few important ones:

      “Doc Love: Wait 10 days and ask her out”. Bullshit.

      Let’s play a game for a second, Angie. You had a great time talking to some guy for an hour at a party. He gets your number and calls you the next day to make plans. Do you suddenly like him less? Think he’s needy? No, you’re THRILLED that this guy for whom you felt great chemistry is a man of his word and is making the effort you hoped he would. His call to you doesn’t change your mind about him in the least.

      And that’s the thing about the 3 day rule or 10 day rule or any such arbitrary things – they are GAMES and they are INEFFECTIVE.

      If a woman likes you, you can call her the next day and it will be the best thing you ever did. If she DOESN’T like you, your next day call will make you look like a needy stalker. But then again, if she doesn’t like you, the call in 10 days won’t be very effective either.

  5. 5
    Chivon

    I agree with Evan @ 5
    If a guy takes 10 days to ask me out, I’d already have assumed that he isn’t interested, or that maybe I’m his backup girl – maybe his other dates from Days 1 to 9 didn’t work out and I’m next up on the roster. Also, the longer the wait, the more interest and attraction fades…
    “If a woman likes you, you can call her the next day and it will be the best thing you ever did. If she DOESN’T like you, your next day call will make you look like a needy stalker. But then again, if she doesn’t like you, the call in 10 days won’t be very effective either.”
    Exactly!

  6. 6
    michelle

    “If a woman likes you, you can call her the next day and it will be the best thing you ever did. If she DOESN’T like you, your next day call will make you look like a needy stalker”
     
    Hence the problem, most men cannot discern whether a woman is romantically interested or just being nice. 

    Most young men and women (and lots of olders ones too!) haven’t strengthened their boundaries and therefore maturity levels.  If ‘rules’ help guide them to do that, what’s the harm?  10 days seems awfully long though, and not sure, but I think a lot of women know about the 3 day rule, so buck the system and call in 2 or 4 days, haha…

    Frankly, all the ‘advice’ is the same in the big picture, it’s just packaged in different ways with different emphasis on different aspects and different styles.  I think it’s a matter of who resonates most with each individual person’s preferences. 

    1. 6.1
      SparklingEmerald

      Michelle@6
      http://www.yourtango.com/experts/julie-ferman/give-shot-guys-who-think-youre-hot
      It’s true that men have the dilemma of not knowing if a girl is into them or just “being nice”.  To add to the confusion, women are encouraged to go out with a man even if they don’t feel instant chemistry.  This isn’t to “be nice” but there is a school of thought that a woman can develop attraction for a man over time (as long as she isn’t utterly repulsed by him to begin with) whereas a man can not.
      The above article asked men and women this question about attraction growing over time, and according to the answers given 85% of the  women asked, were able to develop attraction over time vs just 5% of the men.  I must say, I doubt that this “survey” was conducted with any sort of scientific vigor, so I will have to take the results with a grain of salt.  I have met women who claimed to not be initially attracted to their husbands/significant other, but I have never heard a man say that.  I have heard many men claim that when they met the woman who is now their wife, that they knew immediately that they wanted to marry her.  (My female friends who claimed to “learn to love” a man really seemed to be settling to me)
      I don’t doubt that only 5% of men had attraction grow over time.  (the only doubt that I would have is that even 5% of men really felt that way, my guess would have been zero)  I struggle with the 85% of women and that is based solely on my limited experience, mine, and what has been reported to me by GF’s. 
      I decided to give a guy 3 dates to become attracted to him.  He treated me like a princess.  Eventually he asked me to be exclusive, and my attraction did grow a bit, but it was a pretty fragile attraction.  One that could fade quite easily at the slightest annoyance.  I felt bad about the whole thing.  We broke up, he contacted me months later and and asked to try again.  We went out, and we were back to ground zero as far as attraction was concerned.  He wanted me to decide then and there that we were a couple again, and at first I wanted to say, let’s start over, and go out for awhile before we decide, but I just didn’t want to be that girl.  The girl who strings a “nice guy” along, and ends up feeling no chemistry.  Or the girl who agrees to be his girlfriend, but because it is such a fragile attraction becomes a bitchy, critical girlfriend.  So it was a no go.  I know I made him feel bad AGAIN.  And that in turn made me feel bad.
      I also started feeling a surge of attraction for someone on date 3.  (I decided to let it grow)  He pulled back. He started being the guy who texts me occasionally, and asks me out once in a blue moon.  Attraction faded again, because he pulled back. 
      I am really beginning to think that there needs to be fairly strong mutual initial attraction –not neccesarily a Tsunami wave, but I should at least be excited to see him again, and not thinking “maybe I should give him a chance”.
       
      Sigh, too much attraction and I let the guy treat me like crap.  Too little initial attraction, it grows just enough so I get into a relationship, then I become the crappy girlfriend. 
      I feel like Goldilocks, except that I never get that “just right” initial feeling.  It’s either too hot, or too cold.

  7. 7
    michelle

    I would also add KUDO’S to anyone that is curious enough to seek out information to learn and/or do better. 

  8. 8
    Jackie H.

    It is hard to wade through all of the advice, but my rule of thumb is actually having an “AHA” moment when I read advice…like it’s the answer to some questions that I have been asking if that makes sense….

  9. 9
    John

    I do want a man to pursue me, but when he does, I will be increasingly receptive to him, and once a relationship has been established, I won’t mind taking the initiative when appropriate.
     
    On the surface this sounds like a good theory. But reality speaks differently. The competition amongst women for men is another woman who doesn’t need to be in a relationship in order take the initiative. There are other women who will pursue the guy from the start. There are women who will do the things the OP mentions right from the get go and not 4 weeks in when they are in a relationship. Merely being receptive to a guys advances is just not enough. You need to bring more to the table immediately because there are other women who surely do.
    As a guy, who the heck do you think I will be more likely to commit to- the OP or another woman who shows some fortitude and goes for it? The degree of difficulty and return on investment are alive and well in the dating world. If a woman thinks she can wait until she is in a relationship in order to do these things, she will lose out to the woman who does this upfront.
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    1. 9.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      @John - You go out on a great first date. It lasts for four hours. You kiss at the end of the night.

      I’m guessing you call her the next day to say, “I had a great time. Let’s do that again.” She says yes.

      You have a great second date. It lasts four hours. You mess around back at your place for an hour.

      I’m guessing you call her the next day to say, “I had a great time. Let’s do that again.” She says yes.

      You have a great third date. It lasts four hours. You spend the night at her place, but don’t have sex.

      I’m guessing you call her the next day to say, “I had a great time. Let’s do that again.” She says yes.

      You have a great fourth date. It lasts four hours. You want to have sex. She says that she only sleeps with men who are her boyfriends. You realize that you like her more than any woman you’ve met in the past two years and agree to become exclusive with her. You have sex, spend the night, have breakfast the next day, and call her as soon as you leave her to say how happy you are.

      Where’s the part where she has to call you?

      That’s right. She doesn’t. If you like her, you’ll follow up with her – as long as she’s warm, flirty, receptive, and fun.

  10. 10
    Michael17

    Keep in mind that a lot of the PUA advice out there is “newbie” advice. Guys who are making horrible mistakes with women (being too giving or complimentary towards women before it is warranted and hoping that it leads to a relationship with them) are being told to do the opposite. The hope is that the advice will stop this guy from making the mistakes he has been making, and that the guy will eventually reach a balance.
     
    In reality S.E., most of the men you want to date want a girl who makes it clear that she likes him. If he takes you out on a date, express your enthusiasm. Return his calls and texts promptly. And every guy wants to date women who treat him with respect. If a guy goes through the trouble of taking you out and you’re not interested after, don’t just ignore him. Kindly get back to him instead. That type of decency from women unfortunately seems to be less common than not. We men are taught to shrug being ignored off, take the high road, and move on, but that type of behavior does get old.
     
    Meanwhile though, I do hope (for selfish reasons too) that women will consider their own dating strategies. One reason why EMK does so well (besides that he gives good advice), is that many women do have these huge blind spots, such as not really giving guys a chance (i.e., putting too much emphasis on first-date chemistry) and expecting the relationship they end up in to be like it is in the rom-coms.
    PS: I have a rule, and it is called The 24-Hour Rule. If you get a girl’s number you need to call within 24 hours. I am thinking of revising that rule though, to the 12-Hour Rule. Haha.
     

  11. 11
    michelle

    When doing it on your own, it can be like drinking out of fire hydrant.  A lot goes over your head until you run into the situation, different things resonate at different times of our life.
     
    That’s probably the advantage of a coach, they can give you the advice you need at the time you need it without being overwhelmed by other stuff that doesn’t really apply at that time. 

  12. 12
    Fusee

    Spot on, as usual!
     
    Years ago I also came across all this “advice”, as I was confused about dating in the US, and painfully trying to understand what was going on here. What all the advice showed me is that molding a behavior based on “rules” or cultural expectations was not going to work for me. I am not a sheep, I have my own values and principles, and I was looking for someone likely-minded.
     
    I decided to behave in dating as I was planning on behaving in marriage. And conversely I decided to only accept dating behaviors that I was going to be willing to accept in marriage. So I ditched the guy who did not return calls or emails. I ditched the guy who could not wait a few weeks for sex (well, he kindly selcted himself out : ). I ditched the desperate clingy one who said “I love you” after two weeks. And I ditched the controling one as well.
     
    After all, if I wanted a husband who will be communicative, patient, interdependent, and fair, why would I date the opposite? Yes, I do not care for men who follow “rules” about making you wait for a call, then rush you for sex. As a commenter on another thread last year had nicely put it: if you have a 3-date rule, I have a no-second-date rule : )
     
    I found a man who never read that BS, and who treated me the way he wanted to be treated from the very first meeting: with respect and trust. At the end of our first date, he told me he would call the next day, and guess what? He called the next day. Now that we’re planning our wedding, guess what? He continues to do what he says he will do. This is how mature men behave.

  13. 13
    Nicole

    @ John 10
    as a guy, who the heck do you think I will be more likely to commit to- the OP or another woman who shows some fortitude and goes for it? The degree of difficulty and return on investment are alive and well in the dating world. If a woman thinks she can wait until she is in a relationship in order to do these things, she will lose out to the woman who does this upfront”
    my comment:
    it’s not a matter of chosing the woman who is in for everything first (before other women)
    it all depends on the way a woman presents herself. If she shows her feminine side, her self-Worth and interest in the guy, I think that – if the guy is looking for a serious relationship – he may want to pursue her at least at the beginning.
    I know many women – who in desperate search for a boyfriend – do “everything” upfront just in a very insecure way to “secure” the guy. But it will just work for a short time if the guy is merely looking for  a fling.
     

  14. 14
    Nicole

    @ Michael17 11
    I agree with the fact that women shall be less superficial when they chose to dismiss a guy after one date because of lack of chemistry.
    But in any case, if a girl acts like this, in the end, you would not like to date a woman acting so shallow , right?!
    so, if we are all adults who wish to date people mature enough to understand that chemistry on the first date is not a predictor of a healthy relationship or of real compatibility, then, we shall take into account that those (women or men) who act superficially are not the kind of people we wish to have a relationship with.
     
     
     

  15. 15
    Ruby

    Michael17 #11
    ” One reason why EMK does so well (besides that he gives good advice), is that many women do have these huge blind spots, such as not really giving guys a chance (i.e., putting too much emphasis on first-date chemistry) and expecting the relationship they end up in to be like it is in the rom-coms.”
     
    Men, of course, do this too, although they are not expecting the “rom-com” as much as they are the sexual fireworks.
     
    Dating advice is helpful, but the best advice always comes from one’s own gut, kind of like Jackie H said about the “AHA moment.” I do think that good dating advice helps you to find that.
     
     

  16. 16
    Karmic Equation

    @John 10
     
    I usually see the man’s POV, but on this I will have to disagree with you. This guy explains my reasoning better than I can, on why a girl shouldn’t initiate or pursue: http://www.thefrisky.com/2012-09-05/guy-talk-the-real-reason-women-shouldnt-make-the-first-move/
     
    I’m already going to spoil the guy with my uncanny understanding and tolerance of their guy-ness. The least my guy is going to do is going to pursue to keep me happy ;) I don’t think that is too much to ask. In the long run, we both have more fun that way, in the beginning. And as the OP writes, once the relationship is agreed to, I don’t have any problems initiating.
     
    @Tim
     
    I’m one of those women for whom online dating would not work as you indicate, because while I’m attractive IRL, I’m very unphotogenic. All the stats that I have to put on the site would filter me out of most men’s filters. I look younger than my age and I weigh more than I look, so much so I was hit on a mid-20’s guy last weekend while shooting pool. That would NEVER happen to me online, sad to say.
     
    I would say if online dating doesn’t work for you, you might want to try dating IRL. Be authentic and vulnerable (read this article: http://postmasculine.com/power-in-vulnerability). Easier said than done. But the take away is that a guy who is unafraid to show his vulnerability is a confident man. That’s a turn on to most women.

  17. 17
    Rose

    I agree with Evans posts 5 and 12.
    Re instant  chemistry. Well how has that worked for you so far?

  18. 18
    Karmic Equation

    Oops. Tim response should have gone to the other post on Online Dating. My allergies are messing with my mind! Sorry!

  19. 19
    TheProdigy

    I just took a glance at AskMen, and that site is filled with a bunch of garbage. It just turns awkward and shy men into sulry and rude people most women really don’t want to deal with.
    @Michael: It’s just you. Online dating was easy, if not addicting. If women have their guard up, it’s you.  I had a lot of success and enjoyed the experience up until I met the woman who was right for me and I married.
    I think most dating advice sites are BS. You’re not going to learn how to be anyone other than yourself by reading a few words on a screen or out of a book. Whatever charade you concoct will be short lived as the real you comes out over time.
    The reason why I enjoyed reading EMK blog (and still do) is because it doesn’t tell you how to “double your dating” or “be irrestible to the other sex”. It usually just gives you different perspectives, shines the light down all the available paths, and tells you to go down the one that’s best for you. 
    Makes for quality reading.

  20. 20
    Rose

    John, you may well go for and like it when the other women shows fortitude  That will only ever get you  FWB or she will end up being the leader and social director of the realtionship. If what you want is FWB or to be led around by a woman and that works for you then keep doing what your doing as that is obviously working for you. Only you know what you want and what is or has worked for you.
     

  21. 21
    Sally

    @Michael 17
    You have it completely right about women, present company excluded.
    Too bad I suspect you are much younger than me! :-) 

  22. 22
    JB

    Doc Love is a cluless idiot who’s about 65-70 yrs old and hasn’t dated since he grew his mustache in 1972. (Google him, take a look. Would any man take dating advice from that?) When I first read his stuff I laughed and said “how can anyone PAY for this garbage?” Pure comedy! He used to say “get a womans HOME phone # or you have nothing”…LOL He’s no more a doctor of love than Gene Simmons is. Sure wait 10 days to 2 weeks after you get a woman’s # online see how that works for you. Grown men don’t follow Doc Love but I’m sure there’s enough goofballs on the internet that will pay for his system that’s for sure.

  23. 23
    John

    Evan @12
    After date #1 in your scenario I also go out on a first date with another woman. It isn’t unheard of to date more than 1 person at a time. SO I go on date #1 with woman #2.  I call her and say I had a great time and say lets do that again. She agrees. We go out on date #2. She calls me after date#2 and says she had a great time. She invites me to dinner at her place for date #3. We don’t have sex but we fool around. I thank her the next day for a great meal. She then proceeds to text me the next few days on her own without prompting from me.
     
    Now if all this is going on with woman #2 as well as with woman #1 in your scenario then I have a decision to make because I am not good at juggling for more than a few weeks. Who do I choose? Woman #2 because she took way more initiative and showed an investment in me.
     
    When you meet multiple people you eventually have to decide which one to choose. In your scenario, that’s fine and dandy if there wasn’t any other woman in the picture. I am sure in your dating days you dated more than 1 girl at a time on occasion and you eventually had to choose. Same thing here. All things being equal, the girl who shows initiative and investment in me, will be the one I most likely choose to pursue something with.

    1. 23.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      @John – A woman calling me never convinced me to be more into her. In fact, studies (see: “Have Him at Hello” by Rachel Greenwald) indicate that men DEVALUE women who call or initiate texts early on.

      I can verify that, in general, men choose women based on attraction and feeling – how did I feel when I was around her? Which is to say that a woman doesn’t NEED to call a guy if the guy likes her. It may turn YOU on, but you also may be the exception to the rule. Most men like to DO the courting, not be courted.

  24. 24
    Tom10

    Michael17 #1
    “our experience is that you [women] have to be feeling “chemistry” on the first date (which has little to do with looks) or there just won’t be a second date.”
     
    I actually agree with Ruby with this one. Guys notice chemistry too but it’s to do with sex, not a first date. Basically – and I hate to be crude – our penis works really well, or doesn’t work so well according to how much chemistry there is. It’s like a barometer. If there’s a lot of chemistry we can go again, and again, and again despite being hung-over / tired etc. If there’s no chemistry it’ll be a lot of work to go just once. I agree that it’s not necessarily linked to looks – it’s just one of those things at an animal level that’s either there or not. Like every other person out there I’ve chased this white-hot chemistry, and found it twice. The first girl dumped me, and I didn’t like the other enough generally to commit. One of the biggest things I’ve learned from this blog is not to become a slave to chasing this chemistry. Some is required obviously but it shouldn’t be the be all and end all.
     
    Women seem to be able to identify if it’s there or not from the outset – I don’t think guys can do that, maybe it’s because we are attracted to far more women, than women are men. I really don’t know how a guy can overcome it if women keep saying it’s an issue – Karmic maybe? Would working-out / addressing sartorial style etc. improve a guy’s chemistry quotient? When women say there’s no chemistry is it simply just a nice way of saying “I’m not attracted to you,” or is it a deeper feeling?
     
    Evan
    “How do I make sense of all the different dating advice out there?”
     
    Well I suppose it’s like anything in life, one has to do some research and then make a sensible decision based on the information obtained. If you are looking for a cosmetic operation you will examine the previous work of the surgeon. If you are looking for an architect you will examine his previous projects to see the quality of his work. We should be listening to people who have a proven track record of success in their chosen field – like you do.

  25. 25
    John

    Evan @27
    I guess I wasn’t included in that study. I would never devalue a woman if she called me or invited me out on a date in the early stages. If I am the exception rather than the rule in that regard, then so be it.  I think its a huge turn on if a woman courts me as much as I court her. I love it when we both kind of make plans, both take turns initiating calling and texting. I am surprised to hear that would make me the exception. Now I see why some women cant figure men out. If that study you mention is true, I cant figure men out either.

  26. 26
    Brenda

    Evan@12 (and 27): that’s exactly how my now husband pursued me when we were dating. We joke that he kept calling and asking me out and I just kept saying yes except for the sex part. And since we enjoyed each other’s company so much (and obviously still do), he decided that he wanted to be exclusive, and then engaged and we married at 1 1/2 years. By the way, we are in our 50s, and have both been around the block a bit.

  27. 27
    Michael17

    EMK #27 and Tom10 #26: I can only speak for myself here and yes, I do choose women based on attraction and feeling. But I also think men are lot more “linear” thinkers than most women are.
     
    We can make a list of things we want in a woman (cute, smart, *nurturing*, high-character, good dresser, good hygiene) and if a woman meets those requirements then by golly we will be interested. Right from the very beginning. In fact, every time I have *not* felt chemistry with a woman I was able to pinpoint why.
     
    My experience is that women don’t work that way when it comes to attraction. You can put a “great guy” in front of a woman (good-looking, smart, successful, interested, kind) and she still very well might not be feeling it after Date 1 and if she isn’t feeling it there is no Date 2. It’s not so much that the woman’s “standards” are too high–you could put someone who is “not such a great guy” in front of the woman (not so smart, not so good-looking, not so kind) but it is quite possible that there will be chemistry, and she WILL want to see him again.
    My point Tom10 is that how women feel chemistry is a lot harder to explain than how we men feel chemistry.
     
    EMK, I am going to guess that a big part of what you do with clients is convince them to give the “great guys” a chance even if the woman isn’t feeling that much chemistry after an early date. Am I correct?
     
    *********EMK #27: If I am into a woman, I WILL call, text, and set up the date. HOWEVER, I do need her to let me know she is into me. This can  be a “I had a really good time tonight!” text if she didn’t make it so clear during the date, and it also has to be prompt and enthusiastic follow-up to my communication–even if she doesn’t initiate. I HAVE decided not to call a woman again because I suspected she just wasn’t into me.

  28. 28
    Julia

    @EMK #12 And this is exactly what happened when I met my boyfriend. It was like, between all this calling and asking me out it clicked “this is what Evan is telling me.” When a guy is into you you literally have to do nothing. I just said yes, always thanked him, appreciated him, kissed him (many many times) and acted feminine.

  29. 29
    Selena

    @Tom10
    Women seem to be able to identify if it’s there or not from the outset – I don’t think guys can do that, maybe it’s because we are attracted to far more women, than women are men. And, When women say there’s no chemistry is it simply just a nice way of saying “I’m not attracted to you,”
     
    I think this is true of many, if not most women. Not everyone is holding out for white hot instant sexual attraction, but they do want enough attraction to be able to kiss the guy. And who wants to hurt another person’s feelings by bluntly stating you don’t find them attractive enough to you?
     
    Some women find that a man they thought was just *okay* looking at first, actually becomes more attractive in her eyes as she gets to know him better and likes him. I don’t know if that’s so comnon with men. I don’t think I’ve ever heard or read a man say, “I wasn’t all that attracted to her at first, but the more time I spent with her, the better looking she became to me.”

  30. 30
    JustMe

    I don’t know if I would define it as “chemistry” but I have to feel a connection.   Conversation is easy, we can laugh and joke, those kind of things.

    1. 30.1
      SparklingEmerald

      Just me @ 30  – YES !  That’s it !  I don’t care how great looking a guy is, if the conversation doesn’t flow back and forth fairly easily, I just don’t feel it for a guy.  Of course I’d have to be physically attracted to a guy to consider to continue dating him, but if we can’t talk and laugh easily together, what’s the point ?  Once in a relationship, what do you think a couple is going to do more of ?     Talk or sex ?   

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