Where Are All the Cute, Stable, Successful, Funny, Interesting Men?

Where Are All the Cute, Stable, Successful, Funny, Interesting Men?

I hope you don’t find me to sound conceited or picky, but anyway I am hoping you can help me here. I am a 34-year-old single mom with a beautiful one year old daughter from a previous relationship that didn’t work out because my ex BF didn’t want the baby. I have never been married.

I am bothered by the fact that I’ve never been married. I SO desire to get married within the next couple of years or so, but I want it to be with the right person. I wish I was married about 5 years ago or so.  Like virtually all women, I would like to have my “princess day” of getting married before I go completely gray and I look too old. I am also very worried that if I don’t get married soon enough while my baby is young, she will never have a father figure in the picture whom she can comfortably bond with.

I believe I am reasonably attractive and on the “cute” side. I am five feet tall, a little over 100 pounds, and have very long dark hair.  But, to this day I have a hard time finding the right guy. I don’t feel any chemistry when I’m not with a guy I find equally attractive.  Sure, of course personality counts, but I just don’t feel comfortable with kissing a guy whom I don’t find attractive.

To sum things up, over the years I’ve found that the guys who are interested in dating me are either too “geeky” looking and unattractive, too old, or, if they ARE my age and I find them attractive– they don’t seem stable in life and don’t have a good job OR they’re just plain conceited jerks (like my baby’s father). I’m not kidding. I’ve been trying online dating with several different sites, but that hasn’t worked out for me.

Why am I having such a hard time in finding someone who is mutually interested in me whom I find attractive, who holds a steady decent job AND has a decent personality?  I don’t think I’m asking for too much here, or am I? Should I force myself to be in a relationship with someone whom I don’t find terribly attractive and I don’t feel any chemistry with (whom I just don’t want to be “intimate” with?).


Dear Paula,

We covered this recently, but since you speak for a lot of women out there, I wanted to try to tackle your question in a slightly different way.

First of all, I want to validate all of the women who feel just like Paula does. I know it’s not always easy to hear the other side of things – or even consider that there IS another side of things – but we’re here to try to get down to a core truth. This isn’t about right and wrong; this is about effective and ineffective. If your goal is to get married and find a father for your baby, you always have to keep that in mind.

If you want someone stable and kind and attractive and tall and personable and age-appropriate and financially well-off, and you can’t seem to find him? Maybe you need to compromise on SOMETHING.

And I think that’s where the Lori Gottlieb critics went a bit astray. See, if your primary desire is to lead an exciting, passionate life, then, well, you go, girl. But if you want someone stable and kind and attractive and tall and personable and age-appropriate and financially well-off, and you can’t seem to find him? Maybe you need to compromise on SOMETHING. You can transpose the world “settle” for compromise, if you like, but we’re talking about the same thing here: giving up one thing to get something else….

My girlfriend is compromising by dating an opinionated, Jewish atheist who spends way too much time working, talking about ex’s and complaining about all the things wrong in his life. What she gets in return is a guy who is pretty self-aware, always trying to get better, has a good work ethic and excellent family values. She could spend her time lamenting that I’m not athletic enough, cheery enough, or free enough to take vacations at the drop of a hat, but she doesn’t. She has compromised – and, some might say, settled. After all, there are probably some tall, attractive, wealthy, Catholic men looking for a super-cool woman. And yet she chooses me.

I know, Paula, that you feel that you’re talking about something else. You’re talking about men who are old, unattractive, boring, unstable – dealbreakers all. But as I tell my clients, you can be as choosy as you like, as long as you don’t choose yourself out of all your options.

An example from the other side of the aisle:

My rich 56-year-old client wants a hot 35-year-old woman who not only doesn’t want kids, but can pick up and travel on a dime on his private jet. This means she can’t have a serious job, or be too tethered to her friends, and must be willing to move to his area. Oh yeah, and he’s not looking for a trophy – intelligence, class and poise are a must. There’s nothing wrong with what this man wants, but when he factors in:

How few 35 year olds truly want 56 year olds

How few 35 year olds don’t want kids/don’t have kids

How few intelligent women don’t have careers or deep roots in their hometowns

Guess what? There’s virtually NO one left for this guy to choose from. So what do you tell this successful, intelligent, youthful man to do? Say it with me, ladies: COMPROMISE! Go out with an older women. Give a little on the kids thing. Accept the fact that an intelligent woman might have a career and can’t travel spontaneously. This seems REALLY obvious from the outside, but hey, this guy REFUSES to settle. The heart wants what the heart wants. It just seems pretty clear that starting with such a narrow dating pool makes it next to impossible to find someone compatible.

So ask yourself – are you being reasonable with your desires/demands? It’s not my place to say. But play with the percentages and you’ll see. You might think you’re really open, until you realize that 99% of the men in the world DON’T QUALIFY for a first date with you. The charismatic cute guys are emotionally vacant players with money issues, the geeky guys are too bland to be kissable. This is YOUR observation. These are YOUR judgments.

Thus, you have two choices – lower the bar – or steadfastly hold out for that 1% – and hope that coincidentally, that 1% feels that you’re in HIS 1%.

We want everything – and want to give up nothing to get it.

As always, there’s not a right and wrong. But if you really want to be married and find a father figure for your baby, you might have to give up something to get it.

It just seems that no one wants to compromise. We want everything – and want to give up nothing to get it. If you’re a lawyer, refusal to compromise is a terrible negotiating technique. If you’re looking for lasting companionship, it’s probably even worse.

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  1. 121

    I feel the need to defend Paula. Perhaps I am mistaken, but it seems to me that what Paula wants isn’t unreasonable. All Paula said that she wants is a man who is…

    Attractive (she didn’t say a drop dead gorgeous man with six pack abs.) Don’t most of us want a mate we find attractive?

    Employed/successful — (she didn’t say a man with Bill Gates wealth…she didn’t even say six figures. She didn’t even say what type of job. For all we know, she could have meant a successful school teacher, bar tender, whatever. She didn’t say she wanted a rich man. All she said was a decent job.) Again, don’t most of us want a mate who is employed. Being successful and having a steady job does say something positive about a man’s character. It doesn’t just mean a paycheck.

    Fun — she didn’t say that this man has to build his life around making her laugh. I really felt fun meant that she wanted someone whose company she enjoyed. Again, don’t most people here want a mate they enjoy being with? One with whom you can laugh and smile with when you are with them and even when you just think about them? Would people on this blog have felt better if Paula had said she wanted an ugly, unemployed, sourpuss? I think not.

    Plus, for those who said the thought too highly of herself, this woman did not say she was God’s gift to the world. She said she was reasonably attractive on the cute side. I remember a few months ago, I wrote a letter and described myself as average and many people said my problem was that I didn’t have enough self confidence. So, a woman can’t win on this site. If you say you are attractive, you have delusions of grandeur. If you say you are average, you have low self-esteem.

    She also didn’t say she was flat broke and looking for a sugar daddy. For all we know, maybe she wants a man with a job because she supported her boyfriend and wants a man who is willing to pull his weight….not carry her our support her, but be her partner. I don’t know, but I certainly am not assuming that she is a gold digger because nothing in her letter lead me to believe that she is.

    She also said she wanted to have a father figure for her daughter. Is that so horrible? As a woman who grew up without one, I can understand why she would want to have a positive male role model in her daughter’s life. Also, she said her boyfriend didn’t want the baby, and for all we know, as soon as he told her that she split and decided to raise the baby on her own. Why some people have decided to portray this woman as such a selfish, greedy, immature woman with nothing to offer the world, is beyond me. How do we know she has nothing to offer a man? Maybe she is a great cook. Maybe she could make him laugh and feel happy when he’s had a rough day. Maybe she’s the kind of woman who would believe in man going for his dreams and would support him when no one else would. Maybe she’s the kind of woman who would offer to take care of his parents if they were sick and in need. Maybe she is great in bed too. Maybe she’s all of those things or maybe she’s none of them. But I for one feel a lot happier when I think good things about people rather than bad things — but that’s just me.

    I really wish people on this site– and I include myself — could be a little more empathetic and kind to both men and woman who are just trying to find love in a world where it harder and harder to find that connection.

    1. 121.1

      Men want to be fathers,  not father figures.


      It’s another man’s kid.

  2. 122

    to Dittohd,

    You wrote, “After all what percentage of women in this country still expect a man to pay for her on dates?”……..I have news for you, according to surveys done at Harvard University, 2/3 of all women are looking for financial stability. The book, “EVolution of Desire” by David Buss, describes it more in detail. And if you still don’t believe that, fly in to L.A., and look up a 70-year old sexologist/therapist/Harvard Grad, and tell her you disagree with her 30 years of research and studies on relationships…..hhmmmmhh..LOL!

  3. 123

    Please educate us some more, dittohd, by citing the exact congressional law you refer to, that makes it harder to contact foreign women. It sounds too bizarre to be true. “Three years ago, Congress passed a law that makes it more cumbersome, more time-consuming, more expensive, and even more dangerous for men to even try to start a conversation with a foreign woman over the internet. Ha! ha!”

    What prompted this law? A vast government conspiracy to prevent men from importing disease and/or unfettered Frenchness into our fair country? Wacky.

    Btw, congrats on 30 years of marriage. Hope your next foreign wife doesn’t want an older man like you just for your money.

    I was actually quite surprised to hear you refer to Asian women in Taiwan, Thailand, Japan, and the Philippines as stronger, independent, rational. Not that I think you’re wrong, but I always have seen those women depicted as shy, demure and obedient.

    Finally I am curious: what college did you go to?

  4. 124

    dittohd –

    another man above your post similarly referred to women as gold-diggers. what made you think my comments were in reference to you?

  5. 125

    Red-staters like dittohd need lovin’ too.

  6. 126

    I am a European woman and have seen American males attempting to woo me and the women of my country. It is quite pathetic.

    Here’s a blanket statement for you (a.k.a. “my truth”): the American men who seek foreign women for companionship are spineless weaklings looking for women they can feel dominant over. Ditto’s appreciation of foreign women as “stronger and more independent” is completely disingenuous. Men like him are not looking for women who aren’t golddiggers. These men are looking for women from poorer situations in life, so whatever little amount the man has will look impressive.

    They’re picking up golddiggers on the cheap, but make no mistake about it – the majority of foreign women willing to marry American men are golddiggers.

    It’s so easy to look like a millionaire to a woman who lives on five dollars a week.

    Too bad your dollar is not so strong anymore. If you think we Euro women can be so easily bought, you are mistaken.

  7. 127

    Hi Hunter,

    >You wrote, After all what percentage of women in this country still expect a man to pay for her on dates? ..I have news for you, according to surveys done at Harvard University, 2/3 of all women are looking for financial stability.

    Good point, although I certainly wouldn’t consider the above to be news. Based on my perceptions, you are no doubt correct that most women are still looking for financial stability. In fact, if I were to estimate the percentage, I would guesstimate it to probably be quite a bit higher. And overseas it’s even higher, I’m sure, than it is here in this country.

    The reason I expect the women of this country to shoulder equal responsibility in dating and not expect us men to routinely pay their way is because the women of this country are no longer expected to stay home and rely on men to support them as things used to be quite a few years ago. This change came about at women’s urging. They now attend and graduate college in much higher numbers than us men. They often make more money than men in the same job coming out of college. They run many of our biggest and smallest companies. They can get almost any job a man can get. They are constantly whining that they want relationships to be 50/50. Is it possible that our divorce statistics are so high, at least in part, because of all the double standards between our men and women these days? Is it possible that every time our women are given another right at our expense as men, it breeds lowered levels of respect of us by our women rather than increased respect, not to mention resentment and discord between us? Ask any woman of this country whether they believe in equal rights for women and I think somewhere near 100% of them would without hesitation say yes. Then ask if they believe in equal rights for men and I bet a large percentage would hesitate. So my next question would have to be, then who should women’s rights be equal to?

    What about foreign women? Yes, I have a double standard here but it’s based on the differing expectations of both sets of women. Foreign women are generally more conservative and most often wholeheartedly embrace their primary responsibilities as a wife and mother. I know. I know. Dirty words in this country. They generally respect their men and their role as a “provider”. They don’t constantly whine for rights and treatment that always ends up taking away from their men in order for they as women to get theirs.

    Because the women of this country insist on the equality that they do, many men now expect them to shoulder equal responsibility right along with those “equal” rights (which in most cases would be found to be superior rights if we evaluated them honestly). Anything less breeds resentment and discord between the sexes. Hence the 50% divorce rate for first marriages and the 2/3’s failure rate for second marriages.

    Equal should mean equal, in my humble opinion. Does anyone really believe that when women are given “equal” rights and then are allowed to pick and choose those equalities as though they’re at a rights and responsibilities buffet, it helps bring the sexes together? Does anyone here think that when women are treated as inferior beings every time a new law is instituted while at the same time the women of this country are shouting that they can do anything a man can do, only better, this helps bring harmony between the two sexes? Is it really necessary to repeatedly reduce the rights of men in order to truly treat the women of this country equally? Not in my opinion.

    I have no trouble paying for every date with foreign women because of their actions, attitudes in life, and the way they treat me in our daily dealings. I wouldn’t for women in this country. I would envision the woman of this country thinking to herself as I pulled out my wallet to pay each bill, Sucker!. And I’d believe her to be right. I believe we should treat women and men based on the way they act. If the women of this country truly want equality, I say give it to them!

    By the way, walk down the street and when you catch a woman’s eye who is walking toward you, smile and say Hi! to her. How many just walk on by in silence because they don’t know you and they’re deathly afraid you might grab them, drag them into the nearest bushes and rape them right then and there? Overseas, at least where I’ve been, a large percentage of the women will actually smile and say Hi! back. What a difference! It almost makes life worth living!

    Does anybody here truly believe that the men of this country are worse and on the whole, more dangerous than the men of all the other countries of the world? Ask any foreign woman what she thinks of us as a group and how she’s heard the men of this country compare with the men of their country as marriage material. I bet you’d be pleasantly surprised.

    Too long? Sorry.

  8. 128

    Eda @ 121: I really like your reasoned and empathic gloss on Paula’s tale. Yes, there really is NO evidence in her story – which is, of course, necessarily brief – to support all the opprobrium that it has elicited. It may be true; it may not: there is NO PROOF, either way. Give the poor lady, as Eda so generously recommends (and as Evan is clearly prepared to do), the benefit of the doubt.

    Amanda: yes, a lot of Britmales do this too. It’s risible – and, as you so rightly put it, “pathetic”. I agree wholeheartedly with your analysis.

    As for me, I am not looking for a husband or ‘provider’. I cannot always pay my way (annual income is now less than $16,000 and no home), but I am prepared to do so where possible. No, I should like a GOOD FRIEND who is capable of becoming a lover and – even, possibly – a companion for the rest of our lives.

    Too much to ask, evidently. Having seen all the comments about women on this – and many other -sites, I have finally realised how much women are hated by so many men. I cannot understand it – in spite of some terrible experinces, I do not tarr all men with the same brush – but the fact that it is the case horrifies me and fills me with dread.

    I give up.

  9. 129
    Evan Marc Katz

    This blog is supposed to be the FUN one with the NICE people, remember?

    Therefore, I hereby call an end to this post. No further comments will be accepted. And no, I’m not kidding.

    Enjoy your weekends. Detox from the negativity. I look forward to answering a new reader question on Monday.


  10. 130
    Evan Marc Katz

    I wasn’t kidding when I said this post is over. I’ve had a handful of people try to prolong this interminable argument, and they’ve all been deleted. So please, save your breath. There are 200 other blog posts on here that deserve your equal attention.


  11. 131

    Wow Vino and TMan!  Sounds a little on the arrogant side to me…..how’s your love life?
    We are all human beings and at times, do not make the right choices in life.  Or think we are at the time and later down the road it sours.  Such as life.  Live and learn.
    Last time I checked it takes two to make a baby AND it’s not always the woman’s responsibility to take care of birth control.  
    I guess you could even say, if a man was “responsible” and didn’t want to MAKE a baby, of course he would have to actually use his head to think, he could take the initiative, ya think?  OR not go down that road to begin with.  
    Funny how’s there’s two sides to life 🙂  

  12. 132

    she sounds like every single jewish women i know in my city…

  13. 133

    Well, if she hasn’t found her mate by 35, then I guess she might have a problem. At East I don’t think her last bf was that guilty as she puts it. 
     She says she’s in the gorgeous side, but I don’t really find an only “five feet ” women very attractive or any attractive.
    So, she wants a man with extra full package while she doesn’t have even the half package on her side. 
    I say, go be with those you have already been during these 35 years, nobody’s gonna be that fool to take care of your mess, baby doll. 

  14. 134
    james rogers

    I will explain what is going on here to the ladies.  You are damaged goods.  You are past your prime years and you have a kid from a man that you described as a jerk.  You essentially had sex with a bad boy trying to trap him and it backfired.  You like most women are hypergamous and ignored 80% of men while you chased the 20% of men known as bad boys and alphas.  The bottom 80% as you call them did not just sit on there hands.  They watched women like you.  They worked hard and have good jobs now.  They saw that you want a thug to excite you and that you do not value good men and nice guys.  Now women like you and other older single moms and obese women think a good man will just be there waiting.  The good men either became bad boys and thugs because they saw that is the man that got laid, or they are looking to marry a women 18-25 without kids. This is what the feminists will never tell you, I however will speak the truth.  The patriarchy was not to oppress you, it was designed to protect you from yourself.  This is why feminists are always complaining about male nature.  If men don’t go along against their nature and marry single moms, and older women…..then a majority of the female population will not be able to have it all.  A majority of women wont have a provider or a father for their child.  Feminists made promises to women and simply didn’t factor in the needs and wants of men.  I do feel sorry for your child as this fatherless life was forced on him.  You the mother chose that man who didn’t commit and was a jerk.   There were countless good men and nice guys that no doubt wanted to date you.  You ignored them because they were boring to you.  It is simply unfair for a woman to expect a man to raise a lesser mans child. A man that you spent the past 10-15 years talking down to and treating like dirt.  Notice how there are countless articles espousing the lack of good men wanting to marry, yet not one article from a mans point of view speaking about the lack of single, thin, childless women under 30 who haven’t slept with 50 plus men all of whom are the 20% of bad boy thug men.

      1. 134.1.1

        Angry? I don’t think so.

        1. starthrower68

          You might agree with him, but all that you get from coming on a dating blog geared toward helping women understand men is some sort of fleeting, perverse sense of satisfaction.  It’s just like the women who claim all men are bad.  People will read your post, think you have issues, and still do what they’re going to do.  It’s like you MRA trolls are drininking poison and expecting the other readers to die.

    1. 134.2

      I don’t think anyone will internalize this and feel shame or guilt.  And as an unworthy woman, please, yes pass me by. Why would any woman, acceptable and unacceptable want someone with such a low opinion of women?

      1. 134.2.1

        People can think what they want. Mock if you will, but the fact remains that there are any number of women who have low expectations of, and even lower tolerance for men. Yet, it is obviously politically incorrect for men to defend themselves. OK, I get it now.

        1. starthrower68

          I have no more patience with the extreme femists than I do with the extreme MRA’s; I have even LESS patience for political correctness.  However, ad hominem shots at one group does not cast the one taking the shots in a postive light.  It doesn’t motivate women to understand men anymore than the hardcore feminists motivate men to understand women.  The aforementioned comments are not really a defense of men.  If you want to defend men, you do better to be positive to make your case than to defend men by telling women how bad we are. 

        2. Julia

          Starthrower I agree with you that this guy is an angry, jerk who just spouting out hate but I want to know what you mean by hardcore feminists trying to get men to understand women. Who are these hardcore feminists, how are they trying to get men to understand women?

        3. Evan Marc Katz

          Julia, find any woman who thinks I’m a misogynist and “mansplainer” for telling women how to understand men and make effective relationship choices, and you have your culprit. See Jezebel, Feministing, etc. Not every writer on there is as strident and misandrist, but when someone who spends his whole life working with women is told that he hates women, there’s a serious disconnect.

          IMHO, MRAs and extreme Feminists are the same – blaming the opposite sex and failing to see the validity of their perspectives.

        4. Julia

          MRAs are hate groups according to Souther Poverty Law Center, Evan. A couple of authors on Jezebel and Feministing are not. MRAs call for the extreme violence against women, including rape, assault and death. A couple writers who disagreed with you have not. Its really not a legitimate comparison. Feminists do not hate men and do not want to tear down men, they seek equality. MRAs hate women and want to dominate and control them.

          If you want to call me an an extreme feminist for disagreeing, go ahead. 

        5. Evan Marc Katz

          You’re maximizing what’s wrong with MRAs and generalizing all MRAs as the worst. You’re also minimizing the worst traits of extreme feminists, as if they are few and far between.

          To me, it’s like the Maher/Harris/Affleck/Islam thing. Muslims can act like there isn’t an extremist problem that tarnishes the whole religion, but it does. Doesn’t matter if there’s lots of peaceful Muslims, which, of course, there are. The number of Muslims who believe in Sharia law, blasphemy, and are anti women’s rights are still appalling.

          So, yes, the worst MRAs give them a bad name. The most extreme feminists give feminism a bad name. The only difference is that you’re a feminist who is focused on the evils of the other side without conceding the worst of your side. I’m completely in the middle. Extreme feminists hate me (mansplainer!). MRAs hate me (mangina!) and I can sit back and laugh, because I have objectivity on my side, not an agenda. The second MRAs and feminists listen to each other and concede the validity of the other side, there will be progress. But, of course, that will never happen. Very much like liberals/conservatives, for what it’s worth.

        6. starthrower68

          Julia, this is a bit off topic, but there has been more than one post on here saying how even consensual sex is rape.  Just because we don’t know any personally doesn’t mean they aren’t out there.  You personally may not have a radical viewpoint; but we can probably agree that there is probably an extreme element to any group you want to point at, be it a small or large subset.  Of course we have different definitions of extreme based on our world view.  I am sure that I am considered by most readers here to be extreme because I have purposed not to have sex again unless I am married.  That is not an extreme view to me, but because such a lalargbut because such a large nnumber of the population engages in sex outside of marriage, I am something of an anomaly.  But I digress, and this is not the point of this particular thread.  

    2. 134.3
      Karmic Equation

      I always find it interesting when men go on rants to bash “bad boys”, “alphas”, and “boy toys” (I’ll just call them “BABs” for short 😉 ) and the women who “run off” and carouse with them.

      Who are BABs attracted to? The top 20% of the attractive women out there.

      So basically, these complaining men IGNORE the women that BABs ignore, 80% of women.

      If the 80% BAB-shaming men DEIGNED to date the 80% IGNORED WOMEN, there wouldn’t be a need to BAB-bash and there would be a lot more men and women in relationships.

      Fix your own house, Dudes, before you go BAB- or babe-bashing. You can all be happy too if you all learned to date within your own league.

      1. 134.3.1

        Normally I’m all for gender-flipping arguments, Karmic, but I think I disagree with you here.
        The difference between the “top-shelf” men and women is that the women only go for the top 20% of men for dating, whereas the top men go for a much larger swath of the female population for sex and dating….just not for committed relationships.  Hence the concept of the “alpha widow” – the woman who dated/had sex with very high-caliber men, and then “settled” to marry a somewhat lower-caliber man because the others wouldn’t commit to her.  Rare is the man who dated/had sex with a supermodel and then “settled” to marry a woman he considered lower-caliber.
        I have no qualms with bad-boys, alphas, and boy toys.  My concern is for women who perceive themselves as having settled.  They haven’t settled…they found their equals in the sexual/marriage marketplace.  But they over-estimated their original value based on the men they THOUGHT they could get, and this over-estimation may result in a permanent state of dis-satisfaction with what could otherwise be a wonderful relationship.

        1. Karmic Equation


          We both know that men will have sex with a larger swath of women and that they’ll “offer” relationships to a smaller subset. The men complaining are usually complaining about that smaller subset with whom they would like a shot at sex, but to whom in reality, they would have to offer a relationship in order to get that sex. But they don’t even get a shot. So that’s why they bash. These men forget they’re overlooking a lot of women for relationships because they’re all hankering for that hot babe who had the hots for a BAB instead of him. See where I”m going with this?
          Personally, I don’t care about the “alpha-widow” (good term, btw). She’s her own worst enemy and conceptually, she’s my competition, right? So I don’t care if an alpha-widow is unhappy if she thinks she’s settled when in reality she ended up where she should have been all along.
          My point wasn’t about the alpha-widows. My point was that the complaining men are, in essence, being hypocrites. They’re trying to date out of their league and bash BABs for their own lack of sex appeal, when they themselves overlook tons of women who also have that same lack of sex appeal.
          If men are the gatekeepers to relationships, and they’re not getting the relationships they want, then they’re targeting the wrong women.
          BAB bashing isn’t going to get these men onto babes’ radars.
          These “high quality men” (which I read to mean average looking, low sex-appeal, but good providers with good characters) — need to understand that “hot women” gravitate towards hot men the same way ALL men gravitate towards hot women. In this one segment of the female population (hot babes, e.g., women in 8-10 range), a man’s good looks/sex appeal is a MUCH higher attraction factor than in the non-babe population. (Exceptions: if the man is rich, famous, or powerful, these guys get babes even if he is ugly).
          So if these “high quality men” (but NOT rich, famous, or powerful) really want to have a “quality relationship”, they should target the non-babe population within their own league. But these men don’t. They think that good qualities SHOULD BE enough for that top shelf female. Unfortunately, that is not the case.
          Both men AND women need to understand their own leagues. Men need to date women within their own league instead of in the leagues FAR above them). If he has money/status, he can stretch and reach above. Women need to know what league they’re truly in, by not basing it on the men who’ll bang them, but on the men who have offered her relationships…and accept that she’s not “settling” but water finding it’s own level if he’s not as cute as others she has “known” before. Most women’s egos can’t accept this. Hence their unhappiness.
          If these men stay in relationships where their partners make them feel she has settled, then it’s a problem he can easily solve: Just like women should dump men if he’s just looking for sex, men need to dump women if she’s “just” looking for a relationship and any guy will do. 
          But here’s the rub, MOST women, particularly the overlooked 80% only look for relationships with men they find attractive. They’ll only date men they find attractive. Because women are picky. That’s been established other posts in this blog.
          So if men target those 80% instead of the top 20% of women for dating, he’s going to find himself in a good relationship.
          Men win the relationship game easily if they date in their own league. But they won’t. Why not?
          For women, there is no sure-fire win in the relationship game. And most women won’t play the sex-game where she CAN win easily, as long as she’s not looking for a committed relationship (e.g., NSA sex).
          Ironic, no?


        2. jeremy

          Karmic, I have no qualms with most of your post.  I agree with you on dating within our leagues, and knowing which league we are in.
          Where I disagree is your statement that men easily win in the relationship game if they date within their own league.  This is where the concept of the alpha widow comes into play.  Such a woman IS in the man’s league, and she is willing to date/marry him after coming to terms with the fact that she has to “lower her standards”, and after years of unwillingness to date men like him.  And, in the long run, she sees herself as having settled. Tell me – in that situation, did the man “win”? 
          I’ve come across quite a few comments on Evan’s blog of women who described their current or past relationships as having “settled.”  Why do we never hear of men settling?  Is it because only women do?  Or is it because only women PERCEIVE themselves as having done so, when in fact they haven’t?
          My theory on the subject is this – women see themselves as having settled when they perceive themselves as better looking than the man they marry, or when they perceive themselves as more powerful than him.  Men, on the other hand, do not date women they don’t find at least somewhat attractive, and don’t perceive power dynamics the same way women do.  Instead, most men “settle” to marry women who do not provide them with the emotional validation they need, but are unwilling to perceive themselves as having settled, since they would be shamed for needing validation (“fragile male egos”, and all that).
          Sorry, I went off on a tangent there.  So I agree with you that we should date within our leagues, but disagree with you that men who do so are automatic winners.

        3. Karmic Equation

          ” Tell me – in that situation, did the man ‘win'”
          Nope. He did not. But he also did not have to stay in that relationship. If a woman MAKES IT KNOWN that she feels she has settled and the guy REMAINS in that relationship, he’s in the bed he made himself. In other words, he lost because he CHOSE to lose. Don’t blame the woman for that.
          A man staying with a woman whom he KNOWS feels she has settled is just as stupid as the woman who stays with a man who won’t commit after she has made it clear she wants commitment.
          They both have the same power to walk away. If they choose not to, they only have themselves to blame for being in an unfulfilling relationship.
          “Why do we never hear of men settling?”
          This is the reality with marriages. For the “average man” (e.g., men 6’s and below, not famous, rich, or powerful, but good provider and of good character), he can USUALLY marry a league up in looks without any power disparity in the relationship — and since men primarily rate “leagues” in terms of looks, he HAS NOT settled. So therefore, you don’t hear of men complaining they settled. 
          HOWEVER, *BECAUSE* men rate looks so much more highly than character, if they happen to be lucky enough to snag a their-league+2-woman, he may end up in a situation where she does feel she has settled in looks, particularly when he starts taking her for granted. There was a great facebook meme that went something like this: “Treat her like you’re still trying to win her, and you won’t ever lose her.” This is how men behave at the beginning of a relationship. But 6 months in not so much. Doesn’t matter if she’s a supermodel or not, men end up taking their women for granted more often than not. No more effort to make her feel desired and special.
          I know you’re saying that the problem is when a 6-man commits to a 6-woman and the 6-woman feels she has settled. Well, there’s a simple solution. He should dump this settling 6 for a quality 6 who appreciates him. 
          A man owes it to himself to find a partner who does validate him emotionally. But unfortunately, most of men (particularly the complaining ones) are looking for physical hotties (who often have issues of their own, e.g., entitlement, insecurities, controlling) and giving up on the quality averagers (for lack of better term) who are of sound mind and spirit, but whose faces and bods are not as hot. 
          Men are the gatekeepers of relationships. If they target the right women, he wins.
          I have no sympathy for men who target the wrong women. They have the power to choose better. 
          Men need to PRIORITIZE their criteria better before offering relationships (less on looks, more on character). Women need to CHOOSE better men to offer love to (less on chemistry; more on character).
          What’s the common theme? Character.
          Problem is that both men and women DO NOT ACCEPT the league they’re in and refuse to date within them, causing power disparities exacerbated by character flaws because both genders are prioritizing the wrong qualities.


        4. jeremy

          “I know you’re saying that the problem is when a 6-man commits to a 6-woman and the 6-woman feels she has settled. Well, there’s a simple solution. He should dump this settling 6 for a quality 6 who appreciates him.”
          Problem is, Karmic, that he often won’t know until too late that she thinks she settled.  Most women, when looking for commitment, are on their best behavior.  The whole “settling” meme usually comes years later.
          Also, unfortunately most people are blissfully unaware of their rating in the eyes of the opposite sex.  Look at the example in this post – a young woman who describes herself as attractive, with the minor detail of being a single mom who had her child out of wedlock with an un-involved dad.  I have no interest in judging her or shaming her.  But I am expressing reality when I say that this fact decreases her marriage market value immensely in the eyes of most men.  The problem in her post is that she does not realize (or won’t acknowledge) that at this point in her life, her looks are not the only determinant of her “rating on the scale”, and that she can not reasonably expect the same caliber of men to be interested in her as once might have been the case.
          She says it herself when she writes that the only men who have expressed interest in her are “geeky” or older, or unstable, and she doesn’t want to SETTLE.  I wish this lady all the best.  But I wonder, if she follows Evan’s advice and compromises, and finds a man who loves her and will become a father for her child, will she come to see herself as having settled, or will she realize how fortunate she is?

        5. Karmic Equation

          “Problem is, Karmic, that he often won’t know until too late that she thinks she settled.  Most women, when looking for commitment, are on their best behavior.  The whole “settling” meme usually comes years later.”
          That may be the case, Jeremy. But it’s no more of a risk than a woman who has sex with a man who has no intention of ever committing to her. Both genders are at risk for not getting what they want. However, if you think about it. In both scenarios, men ARE getting what they want most: sex. Whereas when a woman has sex with a man who hides his commitment-aversity until after she’s emotionally invested in him, the man gave up nothing for that sex. — Man 1 Woman 0.
          In terms of marriage, the guy gets sex all along the way to marriage. So the woman is “downpaying” for marriage with sex all during this time and should they break the engagement, the man got the sex (a downpayment for marriage that a woman nevers get back) and the woman had nothing to show for it but lost time (no relationship, not marriage), which we agree can be a MUCH more dire consequence to women because of our limited fertile years as compared to that of a man. So man wins again (if engagement is broken) – Man 2 Woman 0.
          So now the woman got her marriage. She decides to curtail the sex for whatever her reason (lack of desire, thinking that she “settled”, he no longer makes the effort to win her, etc). 
          Man is still ahead because he got that downpayment, right? Man 2 Woman 1
          Ok. They divorce. Woman gets 1/2 his assets and primary custody of their children. Man 2 Woman 2. 
          Divorced Man vs Divorced Woman:
          Man can easily find another woman to have a relationship with. Woman not so much, because as you’ve just written, her marriage market value has dropped because she’s now a single mother who’s had children by some other man. Man 3 Woman 2.
          Man wins the RELATIONSHIP game. EVERY TIME. He doesn’t even lose the SEX game. He got the pre-marriage downpayment. Yes, men can lose money in a divorce. But money can be re-earned. A woman can’t get back those fertile years she’s lost. She’s older now and as women age her SMV drops. Dating is more difficult because she has primary custody. Whoopity do, but she has a lot of your money. Right, women win. NOT!
          To get back to your point, Jeremy. Just as MOST men are NOT players, MOST women do NOT consider themselves settling for a man when they enter a relationship. That sense of settling ONLY comes into play if something changes within the relationship for the worse. Most often a woman starts thinking that she settled when the guy starts taking her for granted.
          That problem is easily solved: “Treat her like you’re still trying to win her, and you won’t ever lose her.”
          I love FB memes <3


        6. jeremy

          We may end up agreeing to disagree here, Karmic, because I don’t agree with your point system or your argument about women only perceiving themselves as settling if something heads south.

          First, regarding the point system – I really don’t think that a man whose wife summarily refuses sex, divorces him, takes custody of his children and gets entitled to a permanent alimony cheque ends up with “equal points” because he got some premarital sex.  But then, this may just be a matter of perspective.
          But regarding your argument about women not perceiving themselves as having settled unless the man begins to neglect her….no.  I can say that I have objective evidence that this is not true.  The sheer number of articles written on the subject of women settling – written before the relationships even happen!  – proves this point.  Again, take this particular posting, the woman who believes that she is better than all the men who pursue her, and feels that she would be settling by accepting one.
          Look at so many of the letters that Evan gets on the subject.  Look at the number of commenters who discuss how they have settled or that they fear settling.  The perception of settling happens on a conscious level when a woman decides to marry a type of guy who is different from the guys she has been attracted to in the past.  The perception of settling happens when a woman decides that a man is a stable provider, though not the best looking or the best sex she has had, but would be a good dad.
          How many times have we heard women ask Evan why they are not attracted to their “generous, devoted” boyfriends or husbands, and how often have we heard Evan say that when men pedestalize women, women can only look down on them?  Perceptions of settling are not confined to relationships where men mis-treat women, but rather are more common when men pedestalize them.
          I believe we would be intellectually dishonest to ignore the fact that this perception is so ubiquitous in the female population (and yes, we men have our problems too, but this isn’t one of them).  
          And, to end my post on a positive note, I believe the solution to this problem is the concept of gratitude.  If we are thankful for the good in our lives, if we appreciate the things our partners do for us and choose not to focus on negatives, if we stop comparing the people we are with to others (or worse yet, to our idealized memories of others), we would stop seeing ourselves as having settled and perhaps be able to find happiness.

        7. Karmic Equation

          “And, to end my post on a positive note, I believe the solution to this problem is the concept of gratitude.  If we are thankful for the good in our lives, if we appreciate the things our partners do for us and choose not to focus on negatives, if we stop comparing the people we are with to others (or worse yet, to our idealized memories of others), we would stop seeing ourselves as having settled and perhaps be able to find happiness.” 
          I agree with this sentiment 100%. The nitpick I would have is that I would change the word “gratitude” to “appreciation”. The reason is because gratitude can be perceived as a “settling” sentiment, i.e., “If I didn’t have this, then I would have nothing. Therefore, I must be grateful.” Whereas “appreciation” is LIKING what you have. Easiest example: my exbf who was a player. I appreciated his player-ness, which was the culmination of his confidence, cockiness, smoothness, smarts, and, yes, even his ability to “manipulate” women, even me 🙂 All these qualities that made him a “major player” (as a woman warned me of) was what made him him. And I liked him. Therefore I appreciated those qualities that made him him. I wasn’t at all “grateful” that he was a player. lol. But I certainly appreciated that he was 🙂 OTOH, I was quite aware that he was not LTR material from all the qualities I did NOT appreciate in him (bad with money, drank too much, questionable friends, etc).
          Women who appreciate men for their masculine qualities, which can often be a trial to women, are the happiest women and are the kinds of women who easily create that emotionally safe haven that most men yearn for: He can be himself around her without being judged, or mocked, or denigrated. With her, he doesn’t have to bite his tongue or filter his thoughts. He is appreciated for who he is, not who he can become. If compared to a previous ex, he nets out ahead.
          Unless you’re married to a settling woman or have friends who are in relationships with settling women, they are no concern of ours. Any more than people out there committing crimes or having affairs. Women who believe they’ve settled kill their own happiness. We should pity them instead of worrying about them.
          Your wife is a lucky woman, Jeremy. I hope she appreciates you 🙂


        8. jeremy

          What a lovely post, thank you 🙂
          I am, thankfully, blessed to have a wife who appreciates me and whom I appreciate.  She wonders why I come to this website, and I reply that inter-gender dynamics fascinate me, and perspective on it can only help improve our relationship.
          I think I agree with your last post 100%.  Pleasure debating with you 🙂

      2. 134.3.2


        The problem here is that most of the 80% that you are referring to won’t give most guys the time of day, either.  

        1. Julia

          If 95% of American adults will get married, this is an inaccurate observation. Sorry, utterly average people hook up every day.

        2. Karmic Equation

          And so the answer is to ONLY go after the 8-10s?
          No, Mickey. The answer is to keep lowering your league until you find a woman who will date you…and from THAT league, date the most attractive ones you can find. NOT to continue to go after the 8-10s who can date amongst themselves and are unlikely to gives 5-6s the time of day.

  15. 135

    @James134   Surely you realise that most marriages of people under 25 will end in divorce.  So, the men who insist on young brides are the same men, in a decade’s time, who will likely to be whining about getting screwed by the courts, alimony and child support payments.    

  16. 136

    Julia & Starthrower:

    Whether it’s a guy defending himself, or simply disagreeing with a woman, the fact that he said something in opposition automatically makes him wrong and a jerk in the eyes of most women. Again, I get it.  


    1. 136.1

      Mickey, I’m not female, nor am I a “white knight”.  I am a guy who would like the world to be a place where both my son and my daughters have a decent chance to find happiness and fulfillment – and not at each others’ expense.  To build a world like that requires us to understand the prerogatives of both genders – to realize what women (generally) like and want, and to realize what men (generally) like and want.  We do not want the same things – saying that we do will not lead to a happy world.  That is the main qualm I have with feminism’s current incarnation – the supposition of genderless homogeneity inevitably leads women to believe that men’s desires are immature rather than simply different.
      Similarly, I have spent enough time on the manosphere to see that there is a lot of genuine lack of respect for women there (though not from everyone there).  Teaching men that the only way they can succeed with women is to maintain constant “frame” and to consider most of their requests to be shit tests is not a recipe for successful relationships.
      Mickey, I agree that this article represents some of what is wrong with the female side of things.  Women who constantly complain that they have “settled” often lack understanding both of their own value and the value of the men they are with.  My own view of women who are in relationships where they believe they “settled” is that in fact the man has “settled” to be with a woman who does not respect him, and would be better off without her.
      But I would also posit that a man who believes that women owe him something or that he should constantly be in control, or that the world has wronged him somehow….that is a man that women would be wise to avoid.
      You want more female attention?  Learn what women want, and try to be that way (hit the gym, get a job, read a book, etc.).  Similarly, a woman wants a man to commit to her?  Learn what men want from a committed relationship partner, and try to be that way.  Don’t want to be that way?  That’s your prerogative.  But don’t be surprised when women don’t call and men don’t propose.

    2. 136.2

      You’re not getting that from me, as I did not call you any names nor did I make any such charge. You are more than welcome to explain to me how this adversarial mindset works in your favor.  If you want quality women, great, I’m all for you. But how does this mindset help you achieve it?  You don’t even have to put in a romantic context.  I’m betting friends, family, etc. would find such hostility off-putting.

      1. 136.2.1


        I meant my comment as a general charge…nothing directed specifically to you. Sorry for the confusion.  

    3. 136.3

      I apologize for my stupid phone again.  Btw, Mickey, I have two boys that I adore.  It would be ridiculous for me to have an anti-male mindset.  I also have a daughter I adore. What I want my children to learn – and the kind of world I want them to live in – is we all need each other and were created for relationship and fellowship.  

  17. 137

    Well its all about state of mind, im31 with a 5 year old son and broke up last year with my partner after almost 10 years together. I have decided that Im not going to rush into anything new and I am going to enjoy my time as being single, Im tall, slim and pretty and I never have had a problem with attracting men or when men find out I have a child I didnt see any of them run,  then again my ex partner was 10 years older so I tend to go for men 34+ rather than boys . So my advice would be just relax enjoy your single time and don’t be desperate because you sound so desperate with your ‘princess day’ and ‘rolemodel’ for your kid.

  18. 138

    I agree with you that people not just women should throw up their lists!  I have very few “must haves” one of which is I won’t date a smoker.  But attraction is important and I date all types of men,  bald of all races, all hair colors and looks but I am not attracted to short men meaning under 5’9 can’t do it and have tried really hard.  Financially I make a large salary so I’m not looking for money and I could care less what a guy makes but Evan I’m sorry a large cause of divorce is money so of people disagree on money I think they should discuss that and I would not compromise on attraction.  I will give it a few dates but if I’m repulsed I’m not forcing myself because I think it’s all I can get or I think I will end up alone because I know that’s not true and I don’t care if I do.  Maybe that’s where I differ?  So many women settle like you suggest and end up in miserable marriages!

    1. 138.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      Show me where I asked you to settle. Otherwise, you are merely engaging in a straw man argument which conflates compromising for settling.

    2. 138.2

      The problem is that she is far enough down the dating hierchy since you must pay for two that she would have to make such compromises and thus she will be the one who has to go for the ugly and bottom guys ( somebody has to ) and thus she will have to decide to date or not. She will depending on the country be lucky to date men with jobs at all and maybe even the drinkers thats the reality depending on where she is.  I have nothing against her but every man i know is against dating a single-mother. They usually just do flings and focus on the kids.

  19. 139

    After my divorce, I chose to compromise On a  few things I wanted in a man.  I completely went to

    out of the box thinking.   Let me tell you , this divorced father of 3 with a crazy ex wife almost ruined my life and my children.

    He maintained his ex wife was a crazy woman

    that’s why they could not get along and hence, she divorced him.    Well, he was a poser .  She was determined to create havoc.  She turned the children against me.

    Moral of the story.  Watch what they do.  Listen intently on what is said. Make sure you’re okay with a guy with 3 young children. Also, there’s a reason the ex dumped him.   He was actually a selfish emotionally unavailable man, posing as a

    nice guy.

  20. 140

    I rhink this writer needs to recognize that because she has a child, specifically a young child that is going to limit her dating pool of men in her age range.  Is she willing to date men with kids? Generally 34 year old men without kids are looking to marry, have a great time for awhile and then have kids.   Particularly in situations with no coparent as it appears here, the woman will have less free time to spend one on one with the man.  Many men in that age range are not looking for an insta family.  I,personally think she needs to date older men or men with kids of their own.

  21. 141

    I found I had some of the same problems finding dateable men. I’m 31, no children, decent job (nurse), have my own place and my own vehicle. You wouldn’t believe how hard it is to find someone just on the same level. I found once I opened up a bit and got to know people before judging it got a lot easier. I ended up meeting someone my age, no kids, has own vehicle and job but was living with his mom. I obviously didn’t love the fact that he was living with his mom but he had so many other things I was looking for. We’ve been together about 8 or 9 months now and things are great. You have to pick what’s more important in that list. I liked that he had no children(not that I don’t like kids but dating with them is hard), he’s genuine, we have fun and he treats me very well. I find him to be attractive. Is he a model? No. But am I? No. This is real life. You can’t have it all. Be a little flexible with your list and I’m sure you could find someone.

  22. 142

    “Paula” sounds a little immature. She’s figuring things out, and she definitely has a few hurdles before her. Vino, her story triggered some strong reactions from you. It was nice to read a few men could compartmentalize their issues with her naïveté and be a little empathetic. Steve, I know a men who have stepped up and remained great fathers to children from a prior marriage, even after that subsequent relationship failed. That’s up to the father to “step up.” I appreciate the new perspective regarding “compromise,” but there really are characteristics that cannot be put on the table to barter. I’m learning that maybe time is what is needed to shake out the compromises, learn perspectives of others, pare down/ adjust the wish list. The only item I can imagine that will come back to haunt a person after that time passes is the “youth” issue. If you’ve got a penchant for a younger prize, male or female/ gay or straight, burn the candle at both ends finding something, but you’re assuming a lot of risk. Other than that, just cool your jets and date casually or enjoy the single life. Enjoy your children, your job, those things that have been deal breakers for others. There may be fewer seeming folks to date down the line, but compromise and peace will be easier to achieve… in fact so easy, it won’t feel like compromise at all.

  23. 143

    If you’re a man foolish enough to consider a relationship with this woman, I suggest you find out who her ex-boyfriend is, track him down and get his side of the story. Women lie. And the more desperate the woman, the bigger the lies. They are also delusional and almost totally incapable of accurately assessing objective reality.

    1. 143.1

      problem is she is now at the bottom of the dating pool since you literally cannot even have a family of your own with her and instead must pay for and take on some other guys kid. This is were women find that they become undatable and the shock of not being able to pick a man but fight for scraps like the short fat unemployed men have to makes many of these women go a sort of reverse mgtow themselves and just decide to stay single rather than date guys without jobs or looks. It is sad on some levels but i am sure this guy was obviously not great to any rational outside observer.

      I personally want a marriage and family and probably such a women would date me but would stay single rather than date a single mother any day of the week ( and twice on Sundays). Paying for another mans child would feel as emasculating as being cheated on, maybe worse.

  24. 144

    Women over 30 are rarely considered by educated men in their early to mid thirties in most cities anyway unless they earn enough or are wealthy enough to not be a divorce risk. The better men are long partnered off at this age.

    She has double outgoings ie a kid so unless she earns a lot she will categorically not be on the radar of any university educated man. As a white woman interracial dating is similar for men and women as rates but the educated white men are the white men leaving the pool for asian women where its the poorer white women leaving the pool for black/arab men. More females also graduate which is a talked about factor but the IR disparity is actually much bigger but less PC to mention. It affects the young working class non-college white men and graduate white women negatively, and gives the reverse groups massive numbers of options ( ie uneducated white women and college grad white men ).

    Whatever her race if the child is not of her race she has nill options within her race . Black women with mixed white kids cannot get the good black guys, and white with mixed black can only get black guys and Asian with mixed x can only get x guys, REALISTICALLY.

    White women have a reputation as being divorce trigger happy and that they have double the ten year divorce rates of white men ( at least ) in EVERY class of IR marriage in the USA the reputation and stereotype is not without merit. WMBF about 15% ten year divorce rate where WWBM 75% which is the biggest disparity and is literally 500% higher. Also white lesbian women have crazy divorce rates verses white gay men. This is Only SEA women are worse bets for a white men and all others are much better. All groups have their stereotypes and WW as being awful partners like black men being involved in crime is one that she must might to prove she can be a good partner and is better than the stereotype in an international graduate marriage market where asians are the biggest group and whites the minority and blacks and arab globally as graduates of top 5k Universities statistically barely a trace number mostly in the USA.

    Probably all those men she rejects wouldn’t take her seriously anyway. She will be able to marry a non college graduate without any money or sizable income to risk who cannot get an unmarried women if upon dating her character and values seem marriage-able. The reality is from the article she is focused on having a wedding  not the married life.

    Distribution of men with kids means fewer single fathers since a few produce many single mothers so there are far fewer single fathers about looking for wives than single mothers.

    1. 144.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      Readers: this is complete and utter nonsense that only sounds authoritative. Feel free to disregard entirely.

      1. 144.1.1

        But it is entertaining in a watching the opera singer forget the verse and accidentally knock over the pillar on the set kind of way.  😉

        1. Emily, the original


          But it is entertaining 

          Yeah. And the post says far more about the writer himself than it does the subject he is writing about.

      2. 144.1.2

        Which part? Actually its completely accurate you are uninformed.

        Here is the data on interracial divorce data http://www.divorcesource.com/blog/interracial-marriage-and-divorce/

        The part of women with interacial kids not being able to date the men of their own race was just an observation but I think its accurate largely from my life experience. You can check that far more women do graduate and that the majority of graduates globally by far are asian.

        Different distributions of numbers of children of men vs women is something that is widely known if you google it.

        1. will

          And WMAF are higher earners is also fact if you check it out

  25. 145

    Long story short she dated a good looking jerk to make her pretty baby and now she wants a provider for her and baby.

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