How Do I Let Men Know I’m Not Out of Their League?

Hi Evan, I just turned 37. I am very attractive and smart and down-to-earth. I love helping people and have the biggest heart. I am a positive person and smile a lot and I can’t seem to find the right guy AT ALL. I have first dates then second dates, then the guy sees my classic Jaguar and my luxury apartment and he thinks that I am out of his league. I was told that a couple of times.

I met a handsome professor and he was a good person with a great heart but he continued to ask me over and over why I was going out with him when I could have any man that I want. I am not arrogant and sometimes try to play down my looks and the Jag. Men will say “Ooh, nice car” and I’ll say “Oh, it’s old.” Are men thinking that I am too expensive? Do they think I’m out of their league? I don’t have a league – I just want to meet a nice guy! Help… Niki


Let’s flip this over, shall we?

Good looking guy with a big heart and a fat wallet drives a Ferrari. (It’s his second car – the Jag is in the shop).

The only men you can intimidate are the WRONG men.

He goes out on a first date with you. You look at him and swoon, before asking the very serious question: “I don’t get it. Why are you single? You could have anyone.”

He says, earnestly, with a sad smile, “I just haven’t met the right girl.”

You reply, “I get that, but how can I possibly trust you? You’re 37. You’ve probably been with a hundred women. And from everything I’ve experienced, guys like you aren’t solid relationship bets. You’re a lifetime bachelor with looks and money. You’re an alpha male with testosterone and ego. My dating coach told me to run from guys like you and stick with nice guys who want commitment.”

He says, “I am a nice guy – who just happens to be successful. I am very much looking for a wife and family. You can’t judge a book by its cover.”

I don’t know about you, Niki, but I’m sold.

And any guy who chooses to engage you beyond your looks and car will be sold on you as well.

As I’ve said repeatedly, the only men you can intimidate are the WRONG men.

A guy who feels the need to run away because he can’t handle your beauty, success or kindheartedness is nothing but an unfortunate and pathetic little man.

Good riddance to men who are afraid of Ferraris or perfect bodies or PhDs.

They don’t even count in my world.

If you are as great as you say you are, you should have no shortage of quality suitors.

I guess the only question I could ask you is the same question I’d ask of any man who perpetually finds that women are “intimidated” by him: How come you’re letting people get intimidated by you? Why aren’t they seeing your friendly, open, warm, vulnerable side?

If you were a comedian, at a certain point, you can’t keep insisting that you’re funny but “nobody gets the joke”.

As a single person, at a certain point, you can’t keep insisting that “all men” are intimidated by you, no more than a woman who suggests that all men are liars, players, losers or perverts.

It’s easy for you to sit back and say, “I’m great, but no one can handle me.”

It’s harder – and more important – for you to look in the mirror and figure out why.

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  1. 31

    I was also amused by Niki’s statement, “I am not arrogant and sometimes try to play down my looks and the Jag. Men will say “Ooh, nice car” and I’ll say “Oh, it’s old.” Uh, many men understand that a “classic Jag” costs more than a lower-end new one. At the very least, they get that she isn’t driving just any old car, but an upper-class status symbol.

    Despite her proclamations to the contrary, Niki’s conspicuous consumption is a way for her to let others know that she has superior wealth and social standing. Of course, the downside is that many people (men) can feel intimidated, inadequate, and excluded from her lavish lifestyle.

  2. 32

    Gosh, let the poor woman be herself! This is the reason why celebrities usually date other celebrities. I’m afraid alot of men’s attitudes are still stuck in the ‘Leave it to Beaver’ era. As a fellow woman who appreciates & drives a nice car. It’s a new generation. How come a woman cannot appreciate nice classic cars, car appreciation shouldn’t be a ‘man only’ domain. I’m in a similar boat to Niki. Men do ask what could I provide for you? I tell them, emotional connection, loyalty, respect & a true & genuine love of who I am. I am finding the younger Generation Y men who often had mothers with successful careers & their own stuff aren’t put off if a woman materially has more. I do find out there in dating land that the older generation of men (especially the baby boomers) do have major security issues about it. Hey everyone it’s 2012, we have men who are sole parents & women who can support themselves. I would suggest that Nikki gives the younger men a go, they are way less judgemental.

  3. 33

    It’s interesting because i was only thinking about something like this recently when i thought of Athina Onassis. i thought … now if i was as rich as athina onassis, and street wise, then how would i go about approaching finding a guy who was genuine about their intentions with me. and i also thought about women like jennifer aniston who seem to constantly fall for players. there are many women who are much less attractive or rich than these two women who manage to get sincere, loyal, stable guys.
    i don’t see what i’m about to suggest as totally deceitful – it’s just being cautious given the circumstances. if i was athina or jennifer, i’d definitely avoid revealing my wealth/fame and try to find a normal, sincere, genuine guy who is into me for me, and who doesn’t have any significant wealth, fame, talent (i know that would be a bit hard if i were jennifer aniston but then i would pick countries to hang out where i’m not famous). like with niki, if she’s got so much money, why doesn’t she buy an extra average car and have another average apartment on the side (as well as her bling apartment) to use with potential suitors until she finds a guy who’s into her for her personality. she can drive the toyota camery and stay at her “normal” apartment when she’s got a suitor in tow. then when she catches her man, she can reveal how much money she’s got – after the guy is hooked. then she can sell the toyota and rent out the average apartment 🙂 evan discusses something in his book … he said that he didn’t find out about his wife’s large credit card bill until he was hooked on her, and by that time, he was “all in”.

  4. 34

    I don’t know why, but I get the sense that Niki might be happier with a wealthier man, who was similarly high-flying. I don’t think she should have to hide her light under a bushel and downplay the fact that she is beautiful and has luxurious things. This is going to come out sooner or later.

    I think some people are put a little off balance by these things and that is their right. I think it has to do with comfort level. And I think Niki might be more comfortable with someone who was comfortable in her lifestyle, so that she wouldn’t have to watch what she says for fear of how it comes across.

    That said, it is rarely just “you earn too much, you’re too beautiful, you’re out of my league”. Sometimes people with privilege project an arrogance which is off-putting, and which they may not even be aware of. Even so, I think finding someone who *is* comfortable around you is easier than trying to change who you are.

  5. 35

    Regarding the car, I don’t think it’s necessarily the fact that she has a classic car–it’s the fact that she has a classic luxury car.

    A guy (at least this guy) wouldn’t be intimidated by a woman who had a classic muscle car, like a 1967 Mustang fastback. That is, if she let him take it for a spin every now and then. 😀

    Value of classic cars, no matter whether muscle, or luxury, is extremely variable, dependent on condition. It’s conceivable that a particular classic Mustang could be much worth more than a particular classic Jag.

    It’s the “luxury” part of the car that adds to the “she’s out of my league” factor, for many guys.

  6. 36

    That said, I think some of posters on here have gone a little too far. I mean, why should anyone apologize for liking, being able to afford, and having the finer things in life? Good for Niki for having a luxury apartment and such a nice car!

    Truth be told, many guys ARE insecure and you really don’t want to be dating them. Why should anyone feel the need to apologize for having a high-paying job or lots of money and what that can afford. If a guy makes you feel bad for having all that, then lose him. I mean, people feeling bad for success…that’s messed up.

    Liz and Helen made a good point. Your partner needs to feel “needed” though, and it’s going to be somewhat harder for a woman to do if she has a lot of money–after she’s weeded out the insecure guys that is, which many are. In the end, no one wants to feel like “the heavy” in a relationship. We need to know that you like us and we need to have an idea why. We have to like what we bring to the table in the relationship.

    How would you feel about dating a guy who was amazingly good-looking? As in, every time you went out and people were glancing over at the two of you, they were glancing at HIM. I mean, on the one hand, why should anyone have to apologize about being so good-looking. But on the other hand, how would that make you feel.

    I’ll tell you a story from my own life. I briefly dated a woman who is a seriously proficient martial artist. She was also extremely intelligent. I actually thought that was awesome. What did us in was that she thought my chivalrous gestures were “silly”. I liked her and wanted it to work, but well, what did she need me for? We fizzled out.

  7. 37
    David T

    No one needs to apologize for anything. It is different definitions of success. For me being successful is touching as many lives and helping as many people as possible whether that is through the kind of work I do, or taking home $1M a year and donating ~$800k of it to charities and individuals.

    To someone else it might be earning $1M a year and donating $950k and to another it might be donating $10k or even zero. These are different world outlooks and different value systems. It seems several posters are misinterpreting my perspective because they equate personal wealth with a kind of success. That is a perfectly legitimate worldview, and so is mine.

    Back to the discussion at hand, do you see how two people who are too far apart regarding what success means might have a hard time getting along if they co-mingle their lifestyles?

  8. 38

    David T @ 38
    You asked, “Back to the discussion at hand, do you see how two people who are too far apart regarding what success means might have a hard time getting along if they co-mingle their lifestyles?”

    I can see various scenarios; some would work out rather well while others would be a match made in hell. For example, if my idea of success is to be a wealthy surgeon, own a McMansion, drive a Porsche, and have a stay at home wife then a woman who views success as being a stay at home mom, able to volunteer 20 hours a week to the homeless kitchen, etc. would be a good partner.
    A match between a man who wants to donate 90% of his income and live simply would not work so well with a woman who views success as being a pampered princess who must have the largest house, the latest “must have” car, etc.

    I guess it all comes down to whether it is a symbiotic relationship or one full of friction caused by competing values.

  9. 39

    Some people will stereotype you / have a preconceived idea about you because you are rich, poor, mediocre, successful and so forth. Changing their minds is time consuming and is not worth the effort.

    A man who truly values you will not care if you are rich or poor. He will care for who you are and what you bring into the relationship.

    Michael 17, nice last post.

  10. 40

    I understand Niki’s issue. My sister went through a similar issue in that becuae of her looks the only men that ever hit on her or asked her out were ‘players’. It took her years of bad dates and relationships to find a down to earth guy to fall in love with marry and have children with.

    In line with this thinking, although well educated and successful, most guys like myself (over 40, balding, average build, etc…) would find it very hard to believe that a woman of Nikki’s beauty would have anything to do with them and would normally not even try. The money and professional success have nothing to do with it by the way.

  11. 41

    Scott @41
    Some men might not try to approach a beautiful woman because of a fear of rejection.
    I do not hesitate to approach a beautiful woman if she appears low maintenance and down to earth. Unfortunately, many of them appear to be high maintenance so I don’t bother to waste my time.
    Am I guilty of stereotyping based on looks and a very quick initial impression, whether online or in person? Yes. I also avoid women who have not worked outside the home for 20 years and have lived a pampered lifestyle. Might I be missing the woman of my dreams? Perhaps but we all make our initial assessments off of very limited data. Life is sometimes too short and time is too valuable to see if someone really doesn’t fit our stereotype.

  12. 42
    David T

    @Still 39

    Your mention of having a partner who takes the lead in raising good children into awesome adults and also volunteers got me thinking. If I am in a less than “making a difference” job than I would rather be in but am contributing money to a household and partner that makes a difference in the world, I helping make work that happen and I am contributing. Their work as a nurturing parent and volunteer is still *their* life and *their* career/volunteerism, but it contributes to my satisfaction with how my life is aligning with my values.

    Taking a look at what the *combined* partnership will look like and how well the partnership supports my values is what matters (along with being satisfied when it is in the right direction but not perfect, or when the unexpected pulls us from our ideal plan.) This is important to remember.

  13. 43

    But again, if you’re looking for marriage, it’s about shared VALUES. And attitudes about money, while not a bit deal in a mere relationship, are very important in a marriage. So maybe a guy who is only earning $100,000 – which is a lot, but isn’t much in a big east coast city – and marrying you – let’s say you’re making at least five times that – just wouldn’t be comfortable blowing money on vacation homes, nannies, housekeepers, etc., even if on your combined incomes you could afford it. Maybe, with the economy being as bad as it is, he has the good sense to recognize that you don’t just blow your money because times are good – you could lose your job or clients at any time.

    If you were wealthy but spent your money wisely (I mean, saved and invested) and weren’t throwing it around – of course you’re entitled to do so if you think it’s best – most guys would be cool with it. But you’re materialistic, so expect a materialistic guy. But, oh wait, why would a materialistic wealty man want a 37 year old woman who probably told kind, commitment oriented men for years, “I don’t want a relationship right now” as she clawed her way up the career ladder when he could have a younger, hotter woman (no offense, but few 37 year olds are that beautiful compared to the kind of women their 37 year old male counterparts could get) who isn’t as threatening? I know this seems harsh, but I’d say something similar to a man – it’s like when men are materialistic and wealthy, and are shocked when shallow women flock to them with their hands out.

    Obviously you can find love no matter what – all sorts of people do – but just trying to point out the limitations of your situation. Perhaps, like a lot of us, you should be more honest with yourself about who you are and what you really want.

  14. 44

    Michael hit it the basic point. “HOW DOES SHE MAKE HIM FEEL?”.

    I doubt its the material possessions that is the issue. The issue is something within herself. Most women who have all of that, (I used to be one) have LARGE EGOS, and constantly in masculine mode.

    A man wants to be a man. A man wants to be respected. She needs a man at the same level or she needs to make the man feel good. I can almost bet that she is “chasing” the man too. Or maybe “controlling”. Or even “insecure”. ALOT of insecure people NEED labels to FEEL superior or SECURE.

    I always skip the women’s comments on here because I need a mans advice. I want a man, not a woman.

    Ladies, if your on here, you probably do too. Listen, pay attention.


    And the women that are saying ” Let her be herself. let her do this and that.” Welp! Thats exactly why she is still single with HER LABELS and expensive car.

    Ladies, we have to change OURSELVES. Be quiet sometimes and LISTEN. You might get your man if you do. 🙂

    No disrespect intended.

  15. 45

    Have you ever been to a bar, club or party and watched two different women?

    1. The one with the expensive clothes , shoes etc, usually standing or sitting down with her drink NOT smiling, snarling her nose up at every body and being anti-social. Probably whispering talking about or down on another girl? You know, the “mean girl”.


    2. The “fun” girl who may have on a simple outfit still sexy not showing too much, but you can still see curves. She may even have on flats that night, who knows. she is dancing, SMILING, laughing talking to everyone. Even strangers. Just living having a good time.

    Who do you think is the man magnet? #2 is.

    I have been both.

    #1 comes home miserable.
    #2 comes home not remembering the name of all the men she gave her number to.
    #2 is a MAN MAGNET. Because she EXUDES confides , her energy is FREE and she is having fun.

    Be yourself. We ALL LOVE NICE THINGS, -Its your attitude that makes you beautiful.

  16. 46

    I have encountered insecure men who worry that if you drive a nicer car than theirs, or earn more money, they have nothing to offer. Really it is a reflection of their low self esteem. I would have to say I don’t drive a Jag (SUBARU-LIberty instead) and only earn $80K, yet still guys can get stressed!

    I really think whatever you do, you cannot win. I wear some nice designer clothes but I buy them on sale, drastically reduced and I do not have very many. It is investment dressing as they are classics and I expect to wear them for a few years.

    I can’t say I spend money on manicures ( it is not my thing, but one blogger here was saying women who had manicures were high maintenance!!). Women are just trying to do what they can to attract a guy. We know it, at first, is all about how we look, so we are trying to look good.

    Years ago, I didn’t worry about jewellery, clothes, much makeup , I thought guys would like me for me, as I was. it doesn’t work that way, you have to spend time and money on marketing yourself and then some perceive you as ” high maintenance!!). Women you cannot win

  17. 47

    Catherine 47: I’m pretty sure most men can’t tell whether you’re wearing designer clothes. I think men care more that the clothes are figure-flattering than how expensive they are.

    But your point about men assuming women are “high maintenance” is right on. Depending on how that assumption was made, it may not be fair at all.

    How do men assume a woman is high-maintenance without knowing her well? Is it clothes? Makeup? A Jag like our OP has? And why is high maintenance something to avoid in the first place? It doesn’t have to involve the man.

  18. 48

    Here’s a thought Nikki, think about exactly the kind of man you want to attract – the details like how he might dress, carry himself, do in his spare time, behave, react, etc and, be like that yourself ! No kidding. People are always attracted to like (and while opposites can attract, they usually do so for pathological reasons) which is why body language experts always ask you to “copy” or “mirror” people whom you want to influence and win over, like clients or customers. While you have no trouble attracting men for first or second dates, the “clash” in your styles inevitably signal the end of anything long term. Some men may admit to being intimidated. Others won’t understand why they just didn’t “jell” with you – they can’t explain why to you or to themselves, except that it just didn’t “work”. Sure you see rich men going out with poor women all the time, but these aren’t relationships – they are business transactions – and for those men who want their relationships to be like business transactions, they are going to be the ones who get to call the shots.

  19. 49

    There’s been a lot of good points made in this thread especially by Michael17 and Maria. I can only speak for myself as a normal 75kish a year guy with a couple of Chevy’s…lol

    The most important thing for me(and many men) is being comfortable with whoever we’re dating. I can honestly say in all my years of dating (and I would venture to say many of my peers as well) these aren’t the types of women we’d ever run across in our real everyday lives for the most part so it would be a non-issue. When I’m perusing profiles online I look for a woman who I THINK by her profile that I would be comfortable with in my everyday life not just attracted to. So I don’t email the few women that play up their looks with 21 model type photo’s from luxurious vacations, their 3 degrees, what they have, where around the world they’ve been(are going), and the 3 businesses they own that make them “very busy” etc…. they have no value to me because “I” wouldn’t be comfortable with them. Evan is right I’m not the guy for them and neither is 99.99% of all the single men. That doesn’t mean the right guy for Niki isn’t out there he’s just a lot harder to find.

  20. 50

    I have to side with Catherine on this one, it’s damned if you do and damned if you don’t. I have a few designer dresses too, although they’re often at a steep discount. I also get my hair and makeup done at the salon for dates–again, often at discounts (I’ve gotten friendly with the stylists there and they’re often willing to do it for me at lower rates since I come in frequently). As I get older into my 30s, it will just take me more effort and “maintenance” to try to look attractive. Yes, some men have taken one look at my salon styles and assumed I’m “high maintenance”. Yet if I just let myself go to be “low maintenance”, those same men wouldn’t find me attractive enough to get to know. Men want women to be beautiful, but how do they expect us to be that without the effort it takes to actually get there? I know very few women who can just roll out of bed looking terrific without some “maintenance” work (look at even those celebrities without makeup–even they aren’t naturally like that). There’s just no way to be all things to all people.

  21. 51

    Thanks Christine 51. I’ve been very low maintenance and that sure hasn’t worked me either. No manicures, no pedicures, minimal makeup,  average cars until relatively recently.

    really as I look back at my life I would say to women:


    Just find out what he wants and deliver it:

    and find out what the average guy wants so you appeal to as many as possible.

    My hair was always fairly short for years as I rode horses  and I hated helmut hair (BIG MISTAKE)

    My nose is on the big side (RHINOPLASTY  WAS AN OPTION
    I dont have cheekbones ( SHOULD HAVE HAD CHEEK IMPLANTS)
    I am a tomboy and wore trendy man style clothes, collared  shirts, vests and jeans (SHOULD HAVE WORN frills, pink, tight,   figure hugging clothes)


    For women seeking men AT FIRST, too hook the guy,  its all about how you look   , Spend every last cent you have on clothes, makeup and plastic surgery to look like a Barbie Doll. You can’t afford a Jag or a property when there’s so much cosmetci surgery to be done.


  22. 52
    Karl R

    There seem to be several recurring sentiments which can cause men to avoid women like Niki (and would cause many others to be cautious).

    “Needed” vs. “wanted”
    Neither my fiancée nor I earn anywhere what Niki does. However, neither one of us needs the other. Collectively, we’ve spent over 40 years being single. We can happily live without the other one.

    We want to be together, and that gives us confidence in our relationship. We don’t need to be “needed” in order to feel secure in what we have. (People who “need” me creep me out.) That’s a crucial difference between men who will be intimidated by women who earn more, and men who won’t.

    A woman that I can’t afford
    I’ve met women (including homemakers) who had expensive tastes that I couldn’t afford to pay for. If they could afford to pay for their own luxuries, that was fine. If they expected me to provide those luxuries for them, it wasn’t going to happen. In one case the woman didn’t expect the man to pay for her own fashion, but she wasn’t interested in men who didn’t dress themselves in expensive clothes/accessories. Again, that’s a relationship I can’t afford.

    Men see high-maintenance as a concern if we have to do a share of the maintaining. Among the men I interact with, “high-maintenance” only refers to the maintaining we have to do. The amount of maintaining that falls on you is a non-issue.

    My fiancée and I worked out our finances (going forward) this past weekend. The system we agreed upon would work for me regardless of whether I’m the primary breadwinner or my partner is.

    Money and shared values
    If you’re someone who gives a lot of money to charity, it’s easy to look at someone’s expensive car/home/jewelry and think that the money could be better spent helping others.

    That’s a very limiting attitude. If you give that heavily, it will be rare to find someone who is similarly generous (regardless of whether they outearn you). You need to find someone who accepts that you regularly give that much away. Just like you need to accept that they don’t necessarily do the same.

    In my opinion, if you want to be happy about your giving, you can’t allow yourself to feel guilty about treating yourself well with the portion you keep. I heard of a man who gives 90% of his net income to charity. He lives in a nice house, drives nice cars, goes on nice vacations … all with the remaining 10%.

    I have several friends who talked about dating women whom they thought were out of their league. I’ve been in that position myself. Each one of us decided to date her anyway and enjoy the relationship.

    If a woman clearly is interested in us, “Why” becomes a lot less important.

    Adding it up
    There are men who would comfortably date someone like Niki (and have done so). It’s possible that she hasn’t met those men yet. It’s also possible that men are bailing for another unknown reason (and she’s incorrectly identifying the issue).

  23. 53

    Catherine, your post cracked me up. I am tall, thin, have long straight hair, don’t have a big nose, and wear feminine clothes, yet I can’t get a guy to have more than a superficial interest in me. And I know dumpy girls with masculine clothes and big noses who find love just fine. I’m doing something wrong , and you’re doing something wrong – in terms of being strategic about how we find men who would care about us – but looks are not it, I suspect.

  24. 54

    Karl stated, “Men see high-maintenance as a concern if we have to do a share of the maintaining. Among the men I interact with, “high-maintenance”only refers to the maintaining we have to do. The amount of maintaining that falls on you is a non-issue.”

    I couldn’t agree more.  If I date a physician who has a maid, eats out 7 nights a week, has a “spa day” every Saturday morning, and drives a $100k car I don’t view her as high maintenance b/c she is maintaining her lifestyle herself.  

    On the other hand, I met a woman who was separated, had a child in high school, and worked 2 days a week – she had a maid b/c she didn’t like to clean, she never cooked but either went out for dinner or ordered meals to-go from gourmet restaurants 7 nights a week, and filled her days with shopping and lessons at the club.  Her husband had been paying the bills for her demands and desires for years.  It didn’t take long for me to realize she wasn’t about to give up the lifestyle she had grown accustomed to and was searching for a man to maintain her lifestyle.  Needless to say, I disappeared rather quickly!

  25. 55
    David T

    @Karl 53
    Thank you for the insight.  It isn’t about a percentage btw;  I always believe in taking care of myself and my family (son) and helping friends.  So if I was taking home $40k/year, you can bet I am not donating 80%! On the other hand, if I was taking home $2M, I could live as plush a lifestyle as I would want and take care of my son for $200k spendable, about twice what I have now. Your bottom line however is correct. We all have traits we would like a partner to have.  It is impossible to find someone with all of them, and it is likely impossible to accept someone who has none of them. It is more about acceptance of someone for who they are. which segues well into:
    @Catherine 52 

    DO NOT BE YOURSELF. BE WHATEVER THE GUY WANTS YOU TO BE. Just find out what he wants and deliver it
    Wow. What a recipe for long term disaster.  You won’t be happy being something other and you can’t sustain that in the long term. When you transform into your true self, if you still know what that is after months or years of being a chameleon, even someone who still accepts you for who you are is finding themselves with a stranger suddenly and is going to wonder about your honesty. Given Mia 54s observations, perhaps something else is at play. . .

  26. 56

    I like successful women, you can drive me around in your Jag and take me out to expensive dinners to wine and dine me!  I prefer a successful woman they are less needy, well balanced and seem to know how to enjoy themselves a lot more – plus I dont have to do all the work because they are usually secure enough to take initiative themselves when they want something!

  27. 57

    Karl53, thanks for that input.  It’s given me some food for thought.  Now I’m wondering if some men somehow just assume (without actually asking) that I expect them to do any of the maintenance? I can honestly say I don’t expect that.  I don’t expect any man to pay for my Lexus, designer clothes and/or salon trips. I work to earn the money for that myself. I don’t know why men should mind what I do with my own money when I’m not taking away any of theirs. I also don’t expect men to dress fancy or spend a ton on themselves either.  If a man happens to like doing that sort of thing that’s fine, but I don’t necessarily impose such requirements on them either.  I’ve only dated two “high maintenance” men. The rest of the men I’ve dated were “regular” guys and most of them actually made less money than me. 

    I have these things to try to make the most out of certain aspects of my life.  I chose my Lexus because it had the best GPS system I could find–and I have a terrible sense of direction and REALLY need the help.  Not to mention, I have a substantial commute to and from work.  I wanted a nice, smooth car to make that commute bearable, as I spend a lot of time in my car.  I do my own “maintenance” now and then to try to improve my chances with men.  The sad fact is, as much as character should be the most important thing, women are judged by their appearance first.  No, it might not be enough to actually keep a woman in a relationship, but without it, she often won’t even get in through the door to begin with (it’s like trying to get a job by leading off with a poor resume).  I’m just trying to improve my chances, after years of being “low maintenance” (no-makeup look and casual clothing) led nowhere.  Don’t hate the players, hate the game!  🙂 I would love to be “low maintenance”, because these fancy designer duds and salon styles can get expensive (and in the salon trips, time-consuming).  In fact, one of the nicest memories I have is of the one guy who told me I didn’t need make-up because I’m beautiful just as I am.  However, those men have been too few and far in between for me to bank on that.  To improve my odds and appeal to a wider variety of men, I think I need my make-up and fancy salon styles.  Yes, I realize that comes with the risk of the “high maintenance” label, but the “low maintenance” alternative was no better for me (and, in many ways, worse). 

    I don’t think being “high maintenance” necessarily reflects on character either.  No, I’m not Mother Theresa and yes, I do like treating myself to some of the finer things in life.  However, I can honestly say I’ve also given substantial amounts of time and money to various charities too (for breast cancer research, Make a Wish, etc.).  I don’t think being “high maintenance” and a decent person are mutually exclusive. 
    Catherine 52, it doesn’t hurt to look your best with things like clothes and make-up.  I’m not sure if I’d go so far as surgery though–what if something goes wrong and you’re stuck looking awful? At least you can take off clothes and wipe off make-up that don’t work.  Surgery isn’t so easily reversible.  It can also be dangerous, since all surgeries have a risk of infection.  I’m a curvy “pear shape” myself, but I don’t think that’s hindered me, to the point of needing lipo (I think what held me back before was more my lack of style).  I’m pretty small on top but have wide hips.  However, I actually get more attention now as a pear-shaped size 4 than I did back in my waifish days as a size 0.  It’s true that men like meat on the bones.

  28. 58

    Offtopic, I’d probably be terrified out of my mind if my partner insisted on giving 80% of our income to charity, spending 20%, and saving 0%.
    @ David T #56, I think Catherine #52 is pulling our leg. No way can that post be serious. In the unlikely case that it is, I agree that this is a recipe for disaster. Being with a man who wants you to apologize for what you are and pretend to be something you’re not, is way too much work. Not worth it. Not healthy for the woman, either! I’ve dated guys like that, and I’m glad things didn’t work out with any of them. Life is too short to spend it beating yourself up because you’re not meeting some random man’s requirements.

  29. 59
    Karl R

    Christine said: (#58)
    “The sad fact is, as much as character should be the most important thing, women are judged by their appearance first.”

    People are judged by their appearance first. It takes you seconds to see what I look like. It takes you days or weeks to accurately guage my character.

    Mannerisms are even more important than physical appearance for first impressions. Making eye contact and smiling makes you seem friendly and approachable, for example.

    Eventually your character will show through. If someone is in a social circle with you, the inaccurate first impression will eventually be replaced.

    Christine asked: (#58)
    “Now I’m wondering if some men somehow just assume (without actually asking) that I expect them to do any of the maintenance?”

    Of course. What questions would we ask a woman we’ve barely met in order to find this out?

    Or to turn it around, what questions would you ask a man to find out to find out whether a man is dependable in a crisis, or whether he’s going to stress out and vanish? There aren’t any (non-offensive) questions that you can ask. Even if you do ask, people won’t necessarily give you an accurate answer.

    People look at small details, then try to extrapolate to see the bigger picture.

    Christine said: (#58)
    “I don’t think being ‘high maintenance’ necessarily reflects on character either.”

    I have a couple friends who I consider to be high-maintenance women. They’re nice people and I enjoy their company. I just wouldn’t want to be their boyfriend.

    Catherine said: (#52)
    “Spend every last cent you have on clothes, makeup and plastic surgery to look like a Barbie Doll.”


    I’d rather date a woman (and I have dated women) who is pear-shaped, small breasted, short haired, with a largish nose and no makeup. (“No cheekbones” is anatomically impossible unless you’re physically deformed.) You don’t have to wear frilly pink clothes, but I strongly recommend clothes which fit correctly. If your men’s clothes make you look like a man, you’re going to be about as sexually appealing as a man.

    I don’t know if you get Marie Claire (my fiancée does). This month there’s an article by a woman who lost 40 pounds … and discovered that she was now a smaller woman with all the same problems and insecurities that she had before losing the weight.

  30. 60
    Karl R

    The Misconception About “High-Maintenance”

    Almost everyone here is discussing this in terms of money. That’s not the only type of maintenance.

    Children are high-maintenance. They require money, time, attention and energy. If someone requires a lot of any of these (relative to other men/women), he or she is high maintenance.

    A girlfriend and I were walking out of the bedroom one morning. As she left the room (a few steps ahead of me) she turned off the light. She then stopped and apologized for turning off the light on me. I couldn’t understand why she would apologize for that. (I was leaving the room too, and it wasn’t that dark.) But her previous boyfriend (who was somewhat neurotic) had gotten upset over things like that. He considered it rude.

    If someone has to learn and follow a set of rules to avoid upsetting you on a regular basis, that’s high-maintenance, even though money isn’t involved.

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