[Video] Why Do Ambitious Women Only Want Ambitious Men?


Here’s the latest video from the series I created with Three Day Rule. It’s called “Why Do Ambitious Women Only Want Ambitious Men?”

In it, Kate and I discuss how having extremely high standards can also hinder your ability to find a suitable match. While neither of us recommends “lowering your standards,” we both emphasize that complementary personality types often make the best partners.

Please watch and share the video, then share your thoughts below.

Join our conversation (57 Comments).
Click Here To Leave Your Comment Below.


  1. 1

    Good video. As woman start to take on more of a household primary role, they will also have to realize that they will want a man who is comfortable and supportive of that. They will have to be more vocal about how attractive stay at home dads are to them and men who can have dinner ready for them when they get home, and do household chores when their wives are at work. Women have the power to change the games just by communicating their preferences. But first, women are going to have to get real about their preferences.

    1. 1.1

      There are 2 things going on, first, some men may not want to date a busy, working woman that makes more than him; or the men who want to date rich women are gold-digging men who will just use her for her money and then cheat/leave her, so there’s that.   Second, some alpha feminist women are ambitious and want more success and more money, and that flows to their personal lives.   Sure, it can be seen as gold-digging, but everyone cares about money, and while poor women are called gold-diggers if they want to get rich by marrying a rich guy, an alpha feminist marries a rich guy in part for status and comfort.   In some ways, while men constantly want hotter and younger women; for women, they are attracted to wealth and success (instead of looks or personality).   Perhaps Alpha men and Alpha women focus too much on superficial things (looks and youth) or (wealth and status) when they should focus on personality and loyalty.   Feminist women may be independent and wealthy, but they don’t want to be a poor guy’s sugar mommy.

      1. 1.1.1

        As an egalitarian, I am waiting for the day when the phrase, “all those gold digging men” goes mainstream. When that happens, it will finally be a sign of equality when it comes to pay for genders.


        I personally love being married to a woman who makes double what I do (and I do ok myself). My life has gotten much easier. My stress level much lower. And my risk in future family court? (Hopefully it never comes to this but..) Mimimal.

        It’s the model for men to look to. Date/marry up and up only, men. Never ever Ever date any woman who makes less than you. Ever.

        Good Luck!

  2. 2

    I see the point. I think however the real issue is that a lot of women would rather be at home making dinner themselves than working 60 or 70 hours a week and that is the real source of the problem. A lot of these women aren’t feminists themselves but have grown up in a post feminist era where they have to fend for themselves rather than especially want to. For me there really is no point in going for a man like this as it would keep me trapped in a male role in a relationship that I don’t actually want.

    1. 2.1

      Interesting perspective but prioritizing earning capacity sounds like gold digging to me. Maybe I’m a little sensitive to it since this was an issue in my last relationship.

      1. 2.1.1

        Does that mean a man doing the reverse is a gold digger then? I wouldn’t have thought so. It’s just saying I’d rather have a more traditional female role in a relationship than a male one as I am more comfortable with that.

      2. 2.1.2

        I agree with you, @stillsingleat40

        Scott, “prioritizing earning capacity” equals finding a man who will take on the provider role. I am nurturing, caring, feminine in all respects…I can’t be with a man who wants me to be the man, i.e. needy, unreliable, needs constant reassurance, etc…the challenge really is finding a man who 1. will commit long-term and 2. who will be comfortable in the provider/protector role. Simply put, a man who can afford to support a wife and a baby for a few years at least.

        The reality (and I speak for myself here) is that when I meet a man I think “is family part of the picture?”. If a man is too concerned that this is seen as “gold-digging” then he isn’t all that masculine in my opinion. “gold-digging” to me means an expensive lifestyle and expensive clothes and restaurants, something along the lines of high maintenance, which I associate with a single lifestyle, not a family.

      3. 2.1.3

        Gold digging = prioritizing financial resources when you have nothing to offer.   It is akin to an unattractive, broke man that only wants to date supermodels.

        As a highly educated woman who earns a high paycheck is reasonable to want a partner who offers those same things.   It is a matter of shared values.

        1. Russell

          What you say seems logical, and for women, this is somewhat true.   But for men, this is rarely true.


          Many women like you say, “I want a man who brings the same things to the table that I do.”   But men say something different.   Men say, “I want somebody who brings to the table what I don’t.”


          This is the root cause of the consternation women like you feel when you have worked so hard to become accomplished, only to see men who are your peers reject you for less accomplished women.   In short, he was not looking for his identical image, he was looking for his mirror image…there is a difference.


          You can easily understand this when the “gold digger” is young and extremely beautiful, even if you don’t like it, but what really makes women like you scratch their head is when the women is average, or only moderately pretty.   What attracted him to her is not as easy to suss out.   But Evan already gave the answer.   It’s all about how a man feels when he is around you.   How he feels about himself, how he feels about his life, his career, his worth as a man, and also, just in general, how he feels about life.   In short, does he make him feel happy?   If yes, then he wants her, but if no, then he moves on, and keeps looking.


          What is hard to accept is that what makes you successful is what also repels men.   But don’t feel attacked, or that this is unfair.   Men have faced that advice also.   For instance, if a man is a drill instructor in the military, he has to learn to have a dual personality because what works for him at work will land him in the doghouse at home.   But the same goes for any man who was successful, a boss, supervisor, etc…   We read article after article telling us to learn to curb those qualities that made us successful at work, and be a kinder, softer, gentler version of ourselves when we got home.   For the most part, men accepted that advice.   However, women see doing this as being disingenuous…dishonest…fake.   They also then throw it back on men claiming that he just can’t handle a strong woman.   Know, we can, we just choose not to because it is not sexy to us, it is not a turn on, it is tedious to deal with a woman like that, etc…   And…she doesn’t make us feel good.

        2. L

          It’s all stereotyping.   Just because I was good at school and academically oriented when I was younger and I’m successful now doesn’t mean that I am a bitch or have personality traits that are undesirable.   Success in a woman should not be a turn off, any more than nurturing qualities in a man.

          I also can’t help but find it ironic that many of the same men complaining about women being goldiggers (not you Russell from what I’ve seen) are the same men that prefer subservient and/or less successful women.    Men seem to want the most beautiful women regardless of what they have to offer, yet a smart, attractive and successful woman is counseled to sell herself short because her best qualities are “unattractive.”

        3. T-Cat

          I have to agree with you on this. It’s because you want someone with similar values in life. My father is an alpha/business man & he raised me with these values – one of them being that the man I end up with needs to share similar values.


          Honestly, if a man wants to provide for me, knowing that I can provide for myself, then he can if that makes him feel like more of a man. Money to me is not a competition, in fact, I want for a man to earn more than I do & to accomplish all of his goals. I think working women’s real struggle is, they don’t know HOW & WHEN to tap into their feminine energy, thus they struggle to maintain relationships with Alpha’s.


          I think a woman can be independent, yet feminine at the same time & if that is what she truly desires. It depends on whether she wants an alpha or a beta man.

        4. sharpin la

          Who raises the children in a two high income household?

    2. 2.2

      Right on, Still!

    3. 2.3

      It seems that one’s reaction to the gold digging comment is a function of many things and as I said, this was an issue in a previous relationship so I’m sensitive to it.   I’m in the middle of the 100-150k range.   She made double or more and took 4 months of my time and emotions to decide that she needed someone who could ensure her high maintenance lifestyle should her income become jeopardized.   If she wants alpha guy, good luck to her.   I hope she can say all the great things about him that she said about me.   Ok, so I’m bitter and maybe looking for validation.   But when I was back on Match and saw women who wanted a guy making $150k+, I just passed right on by for a couple reasons-   1) Our lifestyles aren’t compatible because I don’t live like that;   2)   that much money isn’t needed for a happy relationship;   3) it comes across as very demanding and princess-ish.   Maybe if I was a high earner, it wouldn’t be so distasteful to me, who knows….   Should the guy be gainfully employed?   Absolutely.   But where is the line?   Only you can decide.

      I know of a couple where she’s a very high earner and he graduated from prison.   They’re very happy together and he’s a completely different guy and she’s happy.   I’m sure they’re the exception.    It all depends on your perspective and what you want.

      My ex told me many times how fun, funny, sweet, and smart I was and how much she cared about me  and then she dumped me so she can find a rich guy.   I hope she can say all those things about him.

      Ok, yes, I’m dumping here.  It’s somewhat cathartic.   Thanks for providing a place to share.   It’s a jungle out there.

      1. 2.3.1


        I feel for you. If she would’ve said she didn’t think y’all were compatible or something like that it still would’ve hurt. Possibly more so. But if she actually said she wanted another guy because he made more money than you… Please count your lucky stars things didn’t progress further with her before finding out her character. SHE is the one with issues. You dodged a bullet, IMO. Take some time to heal and get back out there when you’re ready.

      2. 2.3.2

        That really sucks, Scott. If a man makes six figures, that is enough of a contribution. My concern is the artist types I date who make less than $20,000 a year and don’t have the ambition to do more. If I found a good, caring man who made $100,000 a year, I’d be perfectly happy with that. Would I love a lavish lifestyle? Who wouldn’t? But as long as you have enough to be comfortable and save for a comfortable retirement, that’s what matters to me, when it comes to finances.

        The problem with men who earn very little, for me, isn’t even so much the money they don’t bring to the table… it’s their unreliability. It’s the “I’ll try” attitude when I need something, rather than the get it done because it needs to be done attitude from a man who makes me feel safe. I don’t want a man who is overly ambitious, because I want one of his ambitions to be a really strong marriage. But he has to have enough drive, motivation and self-discipline to be able to produce results in the world and not expect his mommy of a partner to drag him along for the ride.

        Good luck to you, Scott. Have you considered getting some counseling to get over these feelings you’re dealing with? It sounds like you have a ton to offer and I’d hate for you to miss out on a good woman because you’re worried she’s too concerned with money, when most women would be happy to meet a great guy who makes a decent living.

      3. 2.3.3

        Scott, I do feel for you but consider yourself lucky that she only took four months of your time and not four years!   She sounds just like my boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend, who also wanted a man who could subsidize her “high end” lifestyle of designer duds, etc (despite being highly educated and making good money herself).

        I realize how self-serving this will sound, but my boyfriend has said himself that he is much better off with me–someone who is more in line with his lifestyle.   We both make good money and not to say that we’re “cheap”–but unlike her, we don’t demand or expect luxury either.   We’re really and truly very happy together.   In the meantime, his ex is still looking for her rich guy.   I don’t have a crystal ball but I’m sure that like him, you’ll find someone else before she does, since you seem to have more reasonable expectations that are easier to fulfill.   She really will need all the luck in the world to land her “alpha”.   Believe me that those men are often extraordinarily picky in who they select!

      4. 2.3.4

        With some women it’s about the money, but in my experience, it’s more about the passion and drive that often results in a man acquiring money and power as a byproduct; in other words,   a lot of women see those byproducts as tangible evidence of how “alpha” a man is.

        I really don’t care how much money a woman does or doesn’t make; let’s just say I’ve done well enough that no matter what she makes, it’s not likely to intimidate me. That said, I avoid “alpha females” like the plague. Why? Because I don’t want a relationship that’s a constant power struggle with a woman who’s as testosterone-driven as I am ( that’s REALLY saying something, but in recent years, I’ve known a few).That would be like being married to a guy with female , ah, “plumbing”. Thanks, but no thanks! There’s just NOTHING about a masculinized woman that appeals to me at all.

        1. GoWithTheFlow

          Buck, I totally get that men want women who exude feminine energy, because I want a man with a strong masculine presence.   I just love it when a strong, masculine man holds me and I feel like I can just melt into him.

          The thing that bothers me is that some men (and women) hear a woman is an attorney, business executive, physician, etc. and the automatic assumption is ball-buster!   I am a physician and I can tell you that for me and most of my female colleagues, our jobs are another outlet for our caring, compassionate, and nurturing selves.   On the other hand, the hardest, coldest woman I ever met in my life was my son’s second grade teacher.   That lady did some serious damage!

          I often hear men say that they don’t want to compete with, or be in a power struggle with their girlfriend or wife.   Can you or some of the other guys on this forum share some examples?

        2. Buck25


          Well, you know what they say about “assumptions”….I’ve known plenty of women who were highly successful as physicians, attorneys, academics, or in business, who emphatically did not have that alpha female, “Boys, I’m taking charge here!”, masculinized personality. I’ve seen others in female-dominated occupations who did; I can remember one middle school teacher who was so hard, cold and man-like that her students nicknamed her “Brutus”. Her personality would have done credit to the meanest and toughest male drill sergeant.

          The problem in a relationship comes when you pair a competitive, dominant “alpha woman”, with a dominant, competitive “alpha man” or at least a man with those tendencies. Think of it like a couple dancing a waltz, only both are trying to lead; usually doesn’t work out well. That doesn’t keep a woman who projects a lot of masculine energy from wanting a dominant masculine partner; it’s just that if she actually gets one, the power struggle over who’s going to lead in the relationship (not so much in the sense of control, as in the sense of who’s going to play what’s usually the “masculine ” role) can get pretty unpleasant, and turn a relationship into a competition. She’s used to leading, he’s used to leading…but now, someone has to give up some of that, at least within the relationship.

          So it’s more about the individual personality, than it is about a woman being highly intelligent, educated, successful, and accomplished in her chosen field. I had a beautiful relationship with a woman who has a PhD, is at the pinnacle of her profession, quite assertive, and pretty fearless to boot…but she’s also exquisitely feminine, compassionate and nurturing, and brings that kind of feminine energy to a relationship. Distance and some other extraneous factors eventually ended that, unfortunately, but while it lasted, I was getting the softness and nurturing to smooth the hard edges of my life, and she was getting the strong, masculine presence that made her feel safe and desired. As a result we were able to enjoy and celebrate each other’s successes, rather than feel threatened, or trying to one-up each other.

          I think a lot of the “pigeon-holing”   you speak of, where successful women are automatically seen as “ball-breakers”, is a product of a natural human tendency to categorize everyone we encounter in life. Sometimes that works for us, but not when we get lazy with it, and start drawing inferences about individual personalities based on loose correlations (our own, or someone else’s). Women (and men) are more individual and complex than that.

    4. 2.4

      Thank you for clarifying this!   As a hard-working woman who never felt entitled to someone taking care of me, I’ve always worked and paid my own way.   And end up with men who keep letting me pay my own way and theirs too!   I’m tired of it.   It’s not that I’m a raging feminist.   It’s not that I want a sugar daddy.   I just don’t want to be sugar momma any more.   I want an equal.   I would have been OK being housewife with kids as I was raised to believe.   But it didn’t happen that way.

  3. 3

    I absolutely support the ideas presented in the video, having previously only dated alpha make-more-money-then-me men. However, what happens when you think you found that complementary partner (both in our 40s) but he still struggles on some level accepting that I make more money? I think men in younger generations (20-30 year olds) may better accept women being the bread winners but many men 40+ may still have that old-school mentality of being the “man” that supports the family. I’m going through this now and so are my parents where due to the recession and bad work luck, traditional gender roles have switched which is causing lots of grief in the house. I’d like to know if others have the same thoughts of this generational difference that I perceive.

    1. 3.1


      The key is to not let money be an issue. Since the rolls are reversed, you have to make him feel like he has access to your finances. You have to be willing to spend money on him liberally. Support some of the activities that he enjoys, even if it does not involve you. Gift cards to his favorite hobby store or tickets for him and buddy to some event. The more expensive, the better. We can be just as materialistic, but our items are generally in the form of gadgets, which in our minds provide utility and usefulness.

      You have to suggest activities that are within his budget in order to ease him into the new normal. When it comes to trips and events, have the tickets or airfare already purchased. He can’t feel like you are the final arbiter when it comes to decision-making because you make more money. “Because I feel like it” responses won’t work. You have to logically articulate why going left, is better than going right.

  4. 4

    I am fine with a man not being ambitious and career oriented. I am ok with him being supportive and nurturing, but I don’t want to be put in the role of being the one in charge. Just off the top of my head I can think of two men I know — big, burly, very masculine guys — who totally acquiesce to their wives’ wishes.   I work with one of them and he can’t go home unless he calls her to get his daily chore list, like she’s his life’s cruise director. If you are a take charge, type-A woman and go for a man with complimentary qualities, you may end up with someone who needs to be dictated to.

    1. 4.1

      In many, many cultures worldwide women are in charge at home and of directing domestic stuff. I don’t see that it makes a man less masculine to pick up groceries.   In face, given that they’re usually stronger it makes sense!

      1. 4.1.1

        It’s not about a man picking up groceries because he is physically stronger. It’s about the man needing a woman to control and direct his life. That’s not a man who has his sh** together. He has no sense of self. He’s too needy.

        1. marymary

          Would you rather he did nothing for the home, or somehow intuit what’s required, or has to work a job AND figure out all the domestics, or that he tell his wife what to do?

      2. 4.1.2

        I don’t want children, so the domestic stuff doesn’t interest me. If had can figure out what to do in the bedroom, we are 80 percent of the way there.

    2. 4.2

      Emily, have you read any Alison Armstong stuff? I don’t know about being bossy, but men LIKE to feel needed, helpful and useful. So his willingness to do things for her might be quite typical of most men. I really don’t know exactly how she directs him, so it’s hard to say. But if she asks for help with things, rather than demanding it, most men would be happy to provide their help. Men have a need to be needed. That’s not being a wimp, that’s part of being a good, strong man whom a woman can lean on.

      1. 4.2.1

        He literally doesn’t know what to do with himself unless she tells him what to do. He wouldn’t know how to fill his time up. He has no hobbies and no outside interests. That’s what I meant about being needy. Everyone should have some kind of life outside their relationship. This man I referred to works 3rd shift. I work first. He is leaving as I am coming in to work. He hasn’t even punched out yet, and he is already on the phone with her, getting his directions for the day. Personally, I think she calls him right before his shift is over so he doesn’t stay and talk to his co-workers.

        1. GoWithTheFlow

          I hear stuff like that, or my friends say something along the lines of   my husband is like my third child, and it doesn’t make marriage sound  very attractive to me.

  5. 5

    I’m a woman with a great career and nearly 40, but I wouldn’t say at this point I am “ambitious.”   In short, I have a pretty solid job in government administration making a good salary, which allows me a fairly predictable schedule and a moderate amount of stress.   I could care less if a man is ambitious, but it is essential that he be happy in his chosen career.   There’s a level of braininess and wit, and conversational ability, that I require as well.   I responded to a teacher on Match just yesterday.

    I’m really looking for a partnership. I used to be more concerned about a guy’s income input, but honestly I am starting to feel quite ambivalent about children and that gives me more flexibility than a few years ago when I was still hoping for that.   Unfortunately, many of the available men in my category either aren’t interested due to my age, or are otherwise incompatible (religion, lifestyle).   I’m becoming pretty resigned to being single.

  6. 6

    Anything can happen, redundancy, sickness, traditional male jobs disappearing, retirement.   It’s more important to face these things together rather than trying to divide it up along what men and women should be doing.    That’s something we retreat to I think rather than taking a good look at what works for a particular couple.   My father nursed my mother for twenty years.   That’s not unusual among the people I know.   Is that a feminine thing to do? Hardly.

  7. 7

    She is listed as a matchmaker and Evan is listed as a dating coach, what is the main difference?

    Is the difference, Evan only does online?

    Or is the difference, Evan lets you do all the actually approaching and talking, but he sticks with his clients for a few weeks during the dating process. While a typical match maker actually introduces you, and sets you up on dates, but after that, you are on your own… like Patti stanger.

    1. 7.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      Matchmakers introduce you to people for a premium price. They may or may not offer dating coaching and it may or may not be good. They get paid well to introduce you to people who are, in theory, “better” than the ones you’d meet online.

      I don’t make introductions. I just give advice.

  8. 8

    I view ambition as the desire to get ahead.   This is fine as long as the person is making the right decisions.   I know quite a few people(mostly men) who are ambitious but drop the ball.   They job hop, they drive flashy cars, they get into debt, they chase bad investments.    I think its best for women to search for a man with a good work ethic who knows how to build wealth regardless of salary.


    1. 8.1

      There’s a big difference between “ambitious” and “successful/stable” as you point out.   I think women confuse the 2 when assessing a man’s value. I’ve had the same job (which I love btw)  over 25 yrs. I didn’t have the ambition to   want to move up to a managerial  position because I never wanted the stress and aggravation of those above me. I still consider myself successful and very stable whether a woman considers me so by my job “title” or not.

  9. 9

    I suppose that most casual observers would call me an “ambitious/alpha woman.”   I make around $300k/year, sometimes more with bonuses.   But I live on maybe $75k/year.   As a result, I have a 7-figure net worth in my mid-30s.   Am I a gold-digger for wanting to date a guy who has his financial affairs in order?   Last year I had to dump a guy upon finding out that he still borrowed money from his parents to pay his rent – despite being gainfully employed in a well-paying job.

    Also:   I’ve dated the less ambitious men and you know what?   They contributed nothing.   Even with me working long weeks, they expected me to do their laundry, handle all the cooking, pay for all dates out, etc.   They didn’t even go to the gym to stay in shape, as I do.   They created more work for me, were incredibly needy emotionally, and were just a drag to be around.

    Lack of professional ambition often translates to lack of personal ambition.

    1. 9.1

      That’s exactly what I felt. I was coming home to a mess, never a dinner or even take out and my ex-boyfriend was working 20 hours a week. He was extremely jealous if I had to go to any work related events and made me feel bad about spa treatments or massages that I paid with my money. Oh, and his mom would give him few hundred bucks every time we came for dinner and he would hide it from me, so he doesn’t have to pay next time we go out.

    2. 9.2


      “Lack of professional ambition often translates to lack of personal ambition.”

      Yes, it often does; quite a few people don’t (or don’t want to) understand the difference   between “laid back” and just plain lazy.

      You’ve achieved a remarkable level of success for someone your age; I say that from the perspective of someone who’s been around almost twice as long. That achievement’s not a bad thing, but it’s not of supreme importance, either.   Material success, as you’ve already found, is not the root of all evil, but it is a double-edged sword,   for men and women alike. It can buy you some wonderful times, and some nice toys. It can also attract people into your life who are not the ones you need there, and it sounds like you’ve experienced a bit of that.

      It’s in no way wrong or unreasonable for you to expect that a man in   your life has his financial house in order. He doesn’t have to make as much as you; but it’s reasonable to expect that a man in your age group be self-supporting, responsible in living within his means, and capable of at least some modest financial contribution to a relationship, once in one. Assuming he does that, he’ll also have to be quite confident and secure in himself, to accept that you may have far greater material success than he has achieved. That’s not always easy; guys have been pretty much conditioned to define themselves in terms of their career/job title. If he feels like your inferior, he’ll soon act the part; human nature, I’m afraid. That’s the bad news. The good news is, that there are a number of men who take pride in a career that’s less lucrative, financially; but still rewarding, fulfilling, and worth pouring their best effort into. Einstein spoke of being a man of value, rather than a man of success. Success (materially speaking), is what we get to take from the world for our efforts; value, is what we give to the world by our efforts. In that vein, I would suggest to you that rather than look for a man who’s your financial equal,   (you won’t find many of those), look for the man who’s your equal or better, in   the value he contributes; it’s a bigger pool, and might be deeper, as well.

      In short, find a man who cares enough to give his best, and be his best, and strive for excellence in whatever he does, whether he’s making a fortune, or just a decent living. You just might find something in such a man that’s worth not just your acceptance, but your admiration as well. If you do, let him know it; I can tell you, as a man, that nothing feels better to a man who loves a woman, than knowing she sees something in him she looks up to. That holds true, no matter his wealth, or station in life.

      1. 9.2.1

        Thanks for your thoughtful reply Buck.   I’m all too aware that material success isn’t worth much.   I’d love to have a reason (a man) to quit my job and find some easy 9-5 making a third of my current salary but leaving lots of time to focus on family.

        I’m dating a man now whom I admire more than anybody I’ve met in my life.   I do all I can to build him up, appreciate him, spoiling him with lavish home-cooked dinners, long massages, learning about his hobbies, etc.   I’ve neglected work a bit to do this.   Yet I feel him slipping away.   Just like the others.   He pursued me hard and was a perfect gentleman for the first 3 months.   Just like the others.

        I think I might chuck it all and go live on an island if I’m still single at 36.


        1. Buck25


          Well, first of all, 36 is a bit young to think about chucking it all and living as a hermit, don’t you think?   Why, you’ve still got the better part of a lifetime ahead of you, and you’ve already acquired the wisdom to understand the importance of balancing the priorities in your life; not such a bad place to be, really. Of course, the prospect of more/continued loneliness, or lack of the relationship we’d like to have don’t make any of us feel very good at any age. So the question is, how do you change that?

          It sounds like you’ve found something in this man, something of real substance, perhaps, that you can honestly admire. Even if he’s not THE ONE, apparently at least that part isn’t “just like all the others”, so you’re at least partially on the right track now with how you choose a man. That part’s a positive.

          Now, I have to tell you something about most of us men. When we think we really want a woman, we’ll put a lot of effort into our original pursuit of her; but as we begin to get comfortable in what appears to be a relationship…well, it gets harder to sustain that same level of effort. If we’re really into our own career and our own lives (often the kind of enthusiasm that attracted you in the first place, BTW), now we have to balance that with that space in our life we carved out for you. That makes it hard to sustain that initial burst of effort we put into our pursuit; it’s like a very fast sprint that eventually has to turn into more of an endurance race. Obviously that feels different, for us, and for you; and to be honest, we can start to feel a little too complacent, as well; combine the two, and you’ve got a pretty common experience.   I’ve seen a lot of women talk about it here, and, truth be told, I recognize it   in what I’ve done in my own relationships.

          So, you probably want to know, what happens next?   It depends on the relationship. In my own experience, somewhere between the 3 and 6 month marks,   the “new” starts to wear off, and whether the relationship fails at that point, or continues and grows, depends on how much there is underneath that worn-off shine to hold it together.   That sounds like what you’re describing in your relationship now. About all I can tell you is that if it’s truly the right fit for you both, it’ll survive; if it’s another “almost, but not quite” (happens a lot) , well, you’ll know that soon enough.

          If it doesn’t work out, it’s not a failure, and it’s not hopeless; just means this wasn’t the right time, and the right man, for you. That’s hard to accept, but hang in there; it sounds like you’re doing a lot more right than wrong. You’re otherwise in a pretty good place in life,   you have a healthy idea of what you want, and you know you can attract a quality man. That’s a lot of positives you have going for you; don’t be so quick to give up and start looking for that island just yet. I have a feeling you’re not going to need it. 🙂

  10. 10

    @ Evan
    “Why do ambitious women only want ambitions men?”
    My opinion: well, um, it’s because that’s what turns them on. Sexually. No matter how ambitious or driven a women is, she will only turned on by guys who are equally — or preferably, more so — ambitious.
    I’ve grown up with, went to college with, competed against, and read comments here from, enough “Type A” women to know what makes them tick: they want to take on the world. And they want a partner in crime to do it with.
    And if they need to take time out at any point (for, I dunno, illness or babies) then they need to know that they have someone worthy enough to have their back.
    Nothing wrong with that 🙂
    The problem, however, is two-fold: 1) there aren’t enough Type A men to go around for all the Type A women, and  2) Type A men don’t necessarily have the same objectives as Type A women. Indeed, many of these guys have high levels of testosterone so, instead of looking for their partner in crime they are often primarily driven to shag lots of women or date models.
    So where does that leave the Type A women who can’t find their Type A match? Well I guess that’s where Evan steps in 😉

  11. 11

    This is the other Marie. I’m puzzled by the underlying assumptions in the comments that somehow being a smart, strong, successful woman with some ambition who has her act together is somehow a liability in dating. If I didn’t have these qualities I wouldn’t have been able to meet the men I did, afford Evan as a dating coach, the means to look nice, and the financial freedom to stand on my own two feet and make whatever choice in men I want.   It gave me many more choices in men then I would have had.   Before meeting my husband I was able to date many different types of men – I dated the wealthy successful ones without any discomfort or insecurity, I dated the ambitious but poor without concern that we would be too poor. No one ever thought my qualities were repelling but rather intriguing.   As my husband says, he doesn’t need someone to cook clean and do chores.   You can hire someone for that. He needed someone who is his partner and his equal. Yes, in the process of becoming smart strong and successful some woman have developed qualities that need to be managed better but overall it’s a positive package. Finally why do people automatically assume that a professionally successful woman is somehow cold and otherwise not nurturing or gentle?   There are many ways to be successful. Women have a different approach at work than men and they can still get ahead.

    1. 11.1

      Marie, can you please refer to the specific comments that contain the underlying assumption that smart, strong, and successful women are a liability in dating?

      1. 11.1.1

        “There are 2 things going on, first, some men may not want to date a busy, working woman that makes more than him”

        “This is the root cause of the consternation women like you feel when you have worked so hard to become accomplished, only to see men who are your peers reject you for less accomplished women”

        “What is hard to accept is that what makes you successful is what also repels men.”

        There are entire blog posts that Evan has written on this. Scroll down to the comments. Many of them are yours.

        1. Chance

          Wow.   First, I have never, ever, ever.. ever…. ever….. ever indicated that being a smart, strong, successful women was a liability in dating.   Never.   In fact, it is more likely that an asteroid will come through your window in the next five minutes than it is that you will find a comment where I’ve said this.


          Now that we have that out of the way.   The first example you gave is hardly an endorsement for the idea that successful women are a liability.   He was throwing out number of observations, and one was that some men may not prefer a busy woman who makes more.


          The next two examples are from the same comment, and he was stating how successful women often possess qualities that make them unattractive.   He isn’t saying these women are unattractive because they are successful.

  12. 12
    Karmic Equation

    I think the title of this blog should have been “Why don’t ambitious women want deadbeat boyfriends?”

    That is really what we’re arguing, isn’t it?

    Many guys would be ok with deadbeat girlfriends making minimum wage if she were hot.

    Women might have an ONS with a hot guy with no job, but very few would sign on to be his girlfriend or wife.

    Personally, I wouldn’t date a man without a job when we met. However, once in a relationship and I wouldn’t dump him if he lost his job (happened 3x, btw).

    When women become the “sugar mama” it feels a lot like she’s paying for sex or paying the guy to have a relationship with her. That just does not sit well with the ego. We want to get off that train really fast, if the relationship is just bf/gf. When it happened with my husband, it just felt like bad luck. But with one of the bfs, I felt he was getting way too good a deal and when I started feeling that way, that was the beginning of the end for us. With one bf, he spiraled into alcoholism and I broke it off with him because of that rather than his joblessness. I didn’t want to be his caretaker.

    As I was discussing with a male friend, he posited that, men, otoh, have been “paying” for sex one way or another since the beginning of time, so “sugar daddy” relationships don’t bother men as much as it does women, who inadvertently end up in “sugar mama” relationships.

    1. 12.1

      I agree that men have been paying for sex one wary or another since the beginning of time.   But now that we women have just as many opportunities to become rich, we ought to get used to paying for sex, too.   It’s only fair, after all.

      There’s a lot of pressure on ambitious women to marry ambitious men.   No one bats an eye that Hillary Clinton remains married to a former President who openly cheats on her. But imagine the scorn and ridicule


      1. 12.1.1

        … were she to be married to a gardener or a kindergarten teacher.   There’s status accorded to men who marry hot wives and to women who marry high-earning husbands.

        1. Buck25

          Well, by all means, if that’s what your heart desires, go for it! It’s a free country, and everything’s for sale by someone at some price, I suppose. Only thing I can see holding you back, is the inordinately high value most of you women seem to place on other women’s opinion of you; highly successful men pride themselves on no longer having to care what anyone thinks. There’s an old saying, “So live, that you can look any man in the eye…and tell him to go to hell!”

          As for Bill and Hill, all I see is a coward and a cad on the one hand, and a ruthless shrew on the other. I am NOT impressed, but I think they’re perfect for each other.:-) Then again, I think character trumps ideology; I’m old-fashioned, that way.

        2. Evan Marc Katz

          Buck, if you thought character trumped ideology, you’d probably leave your own party. So let’s leave politics out of this, shall we?

        3. Henriette

          @Buck, I’m certainly no fan of your country’s future first lady or her husband but since we’re on the blog of a staunch Democrat, let’s try to respect our host by keeping our shared political views to ourselves 🙂

          And, I think there’s pressure on men to conform in their choice of mates, too.   Plenty of guys marry the woman they think is appropriate for a man of their social position, career rank etc. when they’d actually prefer someone quite different.     I’ve seen it happen often.

  13. 13

    Well, I don’t think “less ambitious” has to go to the other extreme of a deadbeat who mooches off of you and contributes nothing.   It could mean someone who might not be a CEO with a lavish lifestyle–but still makes a respectable income that lends itself to a comfortable one.   It isn’t all-or-nothing.   There is an ample middle ground in between the CEO and the deadbeat.

    I’ve also seen the drawbacks to dating and marrying those super-rich “alpha” types.   I know one man (friend of my brother-in-law) who is a lawyer at a huge law firm, and is a very nice guy to boot.   However, with his billable hours requirements, he barely gets to see his wife!   I’ll never forget her disappointment over how many of her birthdays he’s had to miss out on, due to his work schedule (not to mention, the planned vacations together they’ve had to cancel).   Sometimes I think they might as well be single, given how little time they can actually spend together.   I’m sure other “alpha” males, with those super high-paying jobs, also have similar drawbacks of being more married to their jobs than their wives.   I think women are best off with someone between those extremes–someone self-sufficient who can support himself, but isn’t a slave to his job either.   Me and my boyfriend are both like that, and have made a very happy life together as a result.

    1. 13.1
      Karmic Equation

      My current boyfriend and I net out to similar take home pay after taxes. Although I gross higher than he.

      The two bfs before him made significantly less than I (I made 2x – 3x) more than they did.

      So a man making less money than I, I have no issues with. Neither knew how much I made although after we became a couple they knew  I made more than they, but not by how much.

      Both guys lost their jobs during our relationship. One did not handle it well and took to drinking, which killed my attraction for him. I picked up our social tab with the other bf while he was out of work, but when he got another job, he continued to expect me to pay our social tabs. Once I felt he was taking advantage, I started getting resentful and then eventually ended it, probably about 3 months after the resentment set in. Those guys having ambition or not would not have changed whether they were good partners or not.

      If ambition is a proxy for women to ascertain if a guy will try to make as much money as he can, then I think it’s a bad proxy. A guy who wants to make as money as possible or get the most prestigious “title” he can, doesn’t necessarily make him either a good partner or a bad partner.

  14. 14

    If ambitious women only want ambitious men,  “traditional” women also only want successful men, the wage gap is closing, and more women than men are going to college … then something’s gotta change.   And it won’t be the successful men, they don’t have to.

    1. 14.1

      Of course something will have to change; if there’s one universal truth about social revolutions, it’s that they have unintended (and unanticipated). consequences. This one’s no exception. Most of the change will be in the middle of the socioeconomic spectrum, simply because that’s where most people are. You decide to change the way you divide the economic pie, then to give to one group, you have to take from another. It IS a zero sum game, and for everybody that wins, someone else has to lose. It’s not going to be the upper 1%; they’re insulated from most of the effects, like it or not ,(unless you plan to stage a redux of the French Revolution, and I wouldn’t recommend that). The greatest fallacy of modern liberal political thought is the notion that “everybody wins”. Doesn’t happen, never has, never will. All the wishing to the contrary can’t make it so.

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