Why Do Men Who Don’t Want Anything Serious End Up with Girlfriends?

Why Are There No Attractive Men in Your Area
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I’m 31, fit, intelligent, attractive, and I’ve done enough work on myself to know that I’m happy, and that I’m ready for a relationship. Here’s my pattern: I’ll have a great first date with a guy. There’ll be great connection, flirting, maybe a kiss, texts for the next few days, and a second date. But then, he’ll say, ‘I’m not looking for anything serious.’ And I’ve gone both ways — I’ve slept with them (because let’s face it, it’s not just men who love sex!) or I’ve decided to not see them again. If I sleep with them, we’ll maybe have sex a few more times before it fizzles out. If I tell them I’m not looking for just sex, they’ll say they respect my decision, and I never hear from them again.

My real problem is this: three, maybe four times now, I’ve ditched the ‘I’m not looking for anything serious’ guy, only to find out a few weeks later that he’s seeing someone. Even tonight — the man who made me feel like a piece of meat not three weeks ago ‘met someone last weekend’ and has all of a sudden decided he wants a relationship. I feel like Good Luck Chuck!

You say not to sleep with a guy until he’s your boyfriend, but you also say men look for sex and find love. So what’s a girl to do? Is it really just a matter of them not being the right guy for me? I know we repeat patterns until we learn the lesson, but I’m not sure what my lesson is, nor how many more times I can stand to learn it…

Thank you for being you, and I hope you can answer my question.

Ashleigh

Really great question, Ashleigh.

I can understand why it seems complicated but it’s actually pretty simple. Here goes:

People don’t know what they want.

People don’t know what they want.

It’s not just a “man” thing, either.

I met a woman who informed me after a one-night stand she wasn’t looking for anything serious.

Two weeks later, she was my girlfriend.

Was she lying to me the first time around?

Not at all. If anything, she was lying to herself.

Think about it: one usually says “I’m not looking for anything serious” after a bad breakup, a series of dating failures, or some sort of personal loss. It’s a warning shot to the person you’re dating that you’re a good person but you don’t have much to give right now.

And it’s true. I would guess that anyone who declares, upfront, that he/she is in “me first” mode should be taken at his/her word.

But that just goes to show the limitations of one’s word.

If you tell a man “I love you,” that doesn’t mean you vow to love him forever.

If you tell a man “I love you,” that doesn’t mean you vow to love him forever.

It’s merely a statement of how you feel at that moment.

The men who wanted casual sex DID want casual sex, until they met someone who knocked their socks off and made them want to eat their own words.

That doesn’t mean you’ve done anything wrong.

That doesn’t mean they’ve done anything wrong.

That doesn’t contradict my “men look for sex and find love” statement either.

The four guys who slept with you and committed to other women WERE looking for sex…and when they found someone who they really connected with, they opted for love.

Your lesson, Ashleigh, is twofold:

a. Don’t take anything too literally. Everyone’s feelings are subject to change.

b. Don’t take anything too personally. For all you’re focused on a handful of guys who wanted to have sex with you but not commit to you, I’ll bet you can come up with a bigger handful of men who wanted to be your boyfriend, but YOU weren’t interested in them.

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Comments:

  1. 21
    Jeremy

    S, I want to address your comments because doing so is important to any man who may be reading or any woman who cares about men. Men everywhere have asked women for dating advice about what women want, and the advice women give them is usually terrible. Because instead of answering the question, they answer a different question. Not how to make a woman aroused, but how to make a woman happy when she is already aroused by you. Your posts fall into this category IMO, full of contradictions.

     

    You wrote that you are attracted to niceness, yet you then wrote that the overwhelming majority of people you find nice do not interest you. Perhaps because niceness is not the attractant, but rather the enhancer one attraction is already present? If so, is telling men that women are attracted to niceness serving them well?

     

    You wrote that a man treating you well in courtship is an attractant, then admitted that it is the uncertainty that is the attractant. But keeping in mind that the point of men’s courtship is to make you comfortable, not uncertain, should that growing certainty not actually lessen attraction   while it increases comfort? In fact, is this not what men around the world have observed?   If what women are attracted to in courtship is the risks men take for them, how will they respond when there are no more risks? Should they not them expect a lessening of dopaminergic arousal concomitant worth increasing oxytocin comfort?

     

    You might not like my theories on comfort and arousal. You might think they don’t apply to you. But young men would do well to consider them. Because giving women what women say they want doesn’t always work out as well as those women claim.

      1. 21.1.1
        Adrian

        Hi Evan,

        So… That means that you also agree with this:

        Jeremy said, “Courting a woman is the epitome of Beta behavior.   It is giving women the comfort they need and subsuming the man’s internal desires for her benefit.”

         

        1. Evan Marc Katz

          No. But I’m not going to get involved with this mess. Thanks.

        2. Chance

          Hi Adrian,

           

          Courting isn’t inherently “alpha” or “beta” behavior, nor does it inherently inspire comfort or arousal.   It’s the man, and how he carries himself during this process, that inspires comfort or arousal.   Jeremy has made a lot of good points here, but one thing I would disagree with him on is the assertion that courting is inherently “beta” or comfort-inspiring.   The concept of courting is tangential to the concepts of comfort/arousal inspiration, at best.

        3. Adrian

          Hi Chance,

          For what it’s worth… It’s looking like I should have listened to a lot of your advice more

        4. Emily, the original

          Chance,

          Courting isn’t inherently “alpha” or “beta” behavior, nor does it inherently inspire comfort or arousal.   It’s the man, and how he carries himself during this process, that inspires comfort or arousal.    

          yes.

        5. Jeremy

          Adrian, just to clarify my earlier comment, I think that using the words “alpha” and “beta” was not wise on my part.   Those terms have been so muddied by the manosphere that most readers will not perceive what I meant by them.   Instead, just think of what you want to elicit in a woman, arousal or comfort.   There is nothing wrong with eliciting comfort (“beta”), in fact, comfort is necessary.   The question is, when a man courts a woman, what is that courtship eliciting in her.   Answer – both, to some degree, but more comfort than arousal.

           

          Sure, initiating confidently is arousing.   Sure, taking a woman to a new environment ups her dopamine and creates a sexual context, both of which can trigger arousal.   But the main purpose of courting is for the man to show the woman in no uncertain terms that he likes her and is invested in her (and only her), which lets her know to start thinking about long-term plans.   This is comfort.

           

          I am not suggesting that men should not court, or that men who court are somehow weak or less-than (“beta”).   I believe the courtship is good and appropriate when a man has long-term intentions/aspirations with a given woman, and inappropriate when he doesn’t.   Because when a man has long-term interests in a woman, she will need some degree of comfort from him in addition to the arousal she feels for him.   Hope that clarifies it a bit.

  2. 22
    S.

    Wow. It’s so interesting how my comments are read.

    You wrote that you are attracted to niceness, yet you then wrote that the overwhelming majority of people you find nice do not interest you.

    I never said the overwhelming majority of people I find nice do not interest me.   I’m combing through my three comments and I can not see how what I wrote could translate into that.

    What I said and I’ll quote since quotes are exactly what I actually said was:

    Whereas a man who I never noticed ever, had no arousal for, who shows me kindness consistently I may start to have that spark for him.  

    This means that I had no arousal for him.   None, nada, zilch. Never noticed him, before he was kind to me.   I don’t know how to be more clear that than that.   Does this happen 100% of the time? No. But it happens.

    Perhaps because niceness is not the attractant, but rather the enhancer one attraction is already present? If so, is telling men that women are attracted to niceness serving them well?

    It’s the niceness.   This is how I’m wired.   Some of these men aren’t even cute to me at first and are way off my radar.   But it is the niceness.

    But keeping in mind that the point of men’s courtship is to make you comfortable, not uncertain, should that growing certainty not actually lessen attraction   while it increases comfort?

    I don’t know if I agree the point of courtship is to make one comfortable.   I think that courtship does lead to LTRs.   There is some comfort there.   But as I said, that’s different than early stage courtship.   Actually, marriage (or a LTR if you don’t roll with marriage) is the end of courtship.   I can’t speak much on marriage since I’ve never been married.   But I will venture to say that there should always be some courtship within a marriage.   But there may be more comfort at that point.   In a long-term relationship you are trading uncertainty for certainty and some lessening arousal for comfort.   But that’s what people who want to be married want. It shouldn’t mean the entire cessation of courtship and uncertainty.     There’s a balance. Maybe a married person could weigh in more than that?

    I don’t know if you’ll hear what I’m about to say, but there is something to be said here about balance and nuance.   How does a man keep the balance between comfort and arousal during courtship? How does the couple keep that balance during marriage? There should always be elements of both throughout.   A couple has to work on that.   There are always risks.   People may want to divorce, people get sick, lots of risks in life.   So yes, a big question, is how you keep attraction and arousal going during these very real challenges?   It’s not that a woman gives up on a man because he’s not a risktaker. That’s such a binary view of it.   The entire relationship takes a beating when someone is sick or out of work or whatever challenges occur.   Both partners have to work together to reconnect and re-establish that bond.

    Should they not them expect a lessening of dopaminergic arousal concomitant worth increasing oxytocin comfort?

    Yes, they should. I think that’s the deal of having a long-term relationship.   But it doesn’t mean no dopaminergic arousal at all.

    You might not like my theories on comfort and arousal. You might think they don’t apply to you. But young men would do well to consider them. Because giving women what women say they want doesn’t always work out as well as those women claim.

    What I don’t like is when words are attributed to me that I never said.   I try my best to be clear.   I don’t really have an issue with your theories.   You’re entitled to your opinion.   You do seem to think they are the majority opinion and there is no proof that they are.   Your theories are just as valid as my experiences.   Neither one may be the majority.   And that’s okay. People take what they will from our comments. And what is useful to them.

    1. 22.1
      Jeremy

      S, you wrote, “there is something to be said here about balance and nuance.   How does a man keep the balance between comfort and arousal during courtship? How does the couple keep that balance during marriage? There should always be elements of both throughout.”

       

      I agree with that.   And both should understand which behaviors factor into which category in the relationship in which they find themselves.

       

      Regarding my theories you wrote, “You do seem to think they are the majority opinion and there is no proof that they are.”   No.   I do not think they are a majority opinion.   If most people understood these things, I wouldn’t need to write them.   I write them because most people don’t understand them.

       

      ”  People take what they will from our comments. And what is useful to them.”   Agreed.

      1. 22.1.1
        S.

        And both should understand which behaviors factor into which category in the relationship in which they find themselves.

        We agree on more than we disagree with.   As I was saying in another thread, I assume people reading this blog are more self-aware than most.   i shouldn’t but I do. I am aware of these factors in myself.

        No.   I do not think they are a majority opinion.

        Then we both agree. 🙂   I don’t think I’m typical of most women. I’m not.   But just because our opinions aren’t the majority doesn’t mean they aren’t valid.

        I understand your points even though you use terms like dopaminergic that I don’t use every day.   🙂 But I get what you’re saying.   Even Evan says, “Men don’t go both ways. ” I believe that, but it’s difficult if you really do want someone in the middle.

        Self-awareness is the first step.   These comments actually remind me that I still get crushes on very sweet men who bald, overweight, not very masculine, and just not noticed by me at all until they do something really nice for me.     It’s a very innocent feeling I have difficulty attaching the word ‘arousal’ too.   It’s not even sexual at that beginning stage.   I’m glad I’m still capable of interest in a man on that very simple level.

        This year I have been trying to date more masculine, confident men and well, it’s interesting and not at all comfortable.     The attraction is there, but there isn’t a sense of complete safety I’m used to which is a huge part of what allows me to let go sexually.     (I don’t mean physical safety, I mean emotional safety.)   I just don’t have the control (you would say ‘comfort’ but I’m calling it as I see it) that I like to have and I’m just seeing how that feels.   I’m completely aware of the differences and am simply observing them.

        I may end up going back to my baseline of the less masculine, less confident man.   We shall see. 🙂

        1. Adrian

          Hi S,

          This is just my opinion but I think the reason so many of the male commenters are pushing back on your comments (on this as well on the other post) is because your whole approach to dating goes against everything we have been taught and believe at our core…

          That what a man has on the inside matters more than what he has/looks like on the outside. Most women believe that “ONLY” they have the pressure of having their whole future of dating, love, and marriage dependent upon their looks… Well me men believe/know this too! We are just not recognized and supported for those unfair standards like women are.

          So when you come along saying that you can think a guy is hot but still want to go slow or that you can become sexually attracted to a good hearted but average looking man… I think the men who have experienced differently are pushing back on this because it means that they should have keep going out and meeting new women until they found one who was excited about his looks instead of quitting and   condemning all women as shallow and vain

          Anyway just my thoughts… I could be wrong.

          …     …     …

          You said, “This year I have been trying to date more masculine, confident men and well, it’s interesting and not at all comfortable.     The attraction is there, but there isn’t a sense of complete safety I’m used to which is a huge part of what allows me to let go sexually.     (I don’t mean physical safety, I mean emotional safety.)   I just don’t have the control

          Do you mind explaining this more?

          Why don’t you feel emotionally safe with these confident men?

          What do you mean ‘you don’t have the control’; control of what?

           

        2. S.

          I will try.   I don’t see male commenters responding to my comments.   Just Jeremy and I were having a discussion. And now you. 🙂

          That what a man has on the inside matters more than what he has/looks like on the outside.

          Did I say otherwise? I thought I had said, “I still get crushes on very sweet men who bald, overweight, not very masculine, and just not noticed by me at all until they do something really nice for me.” I don’t think I said that   what matters on outside matters more. Quite the contrary. But if I did or if something I wrote seems like that, please point that out to me.

          I have to reread my comments. I must be missing something. I never said anything about going slow or about looks in this thread.   I don’t think that was me.

          I can answer your questions about me choosing more masculine men this year, though. 🙂

          When a man is less confident, has less experience with women, it’s all kind of new to him.   And he treats me so well and well, he’s agreeable to a lot of things I want to do.   And yes, we do have stuff in common, but I can kind of take the lead.   We do a lot of stuff I like to do.   I’m a planner. 🙂 It’s stuff he likes too, but he isn’t used to planning stuff with a woman. Also, I feel more control of the ability to make him happy.   It’s nice to feel sure you’re making your man happy.

          With a more confident, more assertive man, he takes the lead. Most women like that.   I . . . it’s different. I find that in that case we do a lot of stuff he wants to do.   I let him because I’m trying to be less masculine in my relationships.   But unlike the other guy who is so safe, this guy I never know what he’s going to do.   Where we’re going to go, when he’s going to call.   It’s unpredictable.   Before I used to call so there wasn’t that uncertainty and I liked that.   Confident Guy is probably not going to do anything bad or wrong, but I never know.   It’s a little exciting, but it’s not as comforting as Jeremy would say.   I like a little bit of this, but I’ve dated men on the very low end of the masculine scale most of my life so this is different to me.

          Why isn’t it emotionally safe? The more confident guy (doesn’t have to do with looks) he knows his worth.   That’s attractive but you have to be on your game more with him.   Not that he’ll go somewhere else, but it’s just like dating someone very smart. You have to keep up. Sometimes it’s exhausting. Sometimes it feels like more work to make him happy.

          When I get home, sometimes I just want a safe place to land.   I don’t know what men think of this but I just want someone to hold me on the couch until I get turned on by that and climb on top of him.   That’s what gets me going.   😉

          Until this blog and a few years went by, this was what I did.   I still don’t know if how I get turned on is typical or atypical because the people posting on this blog may not be the majority. I may never know.   I do know I tend to be a bit more on the masculine side of dating and I’ve changed that because I don’t want to do all the work in dating which was happening.

          I was hoping for someone in the middle but Tron likens that to looking for a unicorn.   Good thing I still believe unicorns exist. 🙂

          Hope that explains.

        3. Emily, the original

          S and Adrian,
          S pretty well summed it up:
          When a man is less confident … I feel more control of  
          With a more confident, more assertive man,  he  takes the lead. … But unlike the other guy who is so safe, this guy I  never  know what he’s going to do.   Where we’re going to go, when he’s going to call.   It’s unpredictable.   Before  I  used to call so there wasn’t that uncertainty and I liked that.   Confident Guy is probably not going to do anything bad or wrong, but I never know.   It’s a little exciting, but it’s not as comforting as Jeremy would say.   I like a little bit of this, but I’ve dated men on the very low end of the masculine scale most of my life so this is different to me.
          A less masculine guy is safer. You can feel his energy and as a woman you take more of the lead and so you feel more comfort. With a more masculine man, he takes more of the lead and you have less control. As YAG writes, it’s scarier when you feel less control but, on some level, attraction is about feeling off balance.

        4. S.

          As YAG writes, it’s scarier when you feel less control but, on some level, attraction is about feeling off balance.

          Exactly, Emily, the original.   I just happen to be a woman that if that masculinity is too much, I feel more fear and discomfort than attraction.   I still need him to have a leetle bit of edge, of masculinity.   But probably less than other women.

          Interesting thing is the female friends I make are usually similar.   We self-select. 🙂 So in my POV, this is normal and within the spectrum of male/female relationships. Writing this I realize, none of my friends’ husbands are ultra-masculine.   Nope. But of course, we don’t see this as bad and they love their husbands and have great relationships.

          So interesting.   They found their unicorns.   It’s not perfect, but works for them.

        5. S.

          I think the men who have experienced differently are pushing back on this because it means that they should have keep going out and meeting new women until they found one who was excited about his looks instead of quitting and   condemning all women as shallow and vain

          Adrian, I think I know what you mean now. I had to really read your comment several, several times.   I missed that you are referring to things I’ve written in multiple posts on the site.   That’s fine but just quote it for me next time because these posts get so long and unwieldy.   🙂

          Reading your comment makes me want to tell the men I have crushes on that I do think of them romantically!   There aren’t many and some I’ve moved on from.   When I have told (or shown) men this in the past, they were completely clueless.

          they should have keep going out and meeting new women until they found one who was excited about his looks instead of quitting and   condemning all women as shallow and vain

          The bald guy I like at my yoga class, well, he has no clue.   It’s a spiritual place, not a gym, so it’s not really where many think of romance. And I don’t want a spiritual place to become a place where I avoid anyone if it doesn’t work out.   But what I’m hearing from you is that in his experience he has no idea that I’m attracted to his personality and which turned into me liking his looks. (I now think he’s adorable, not what most men want to hear maybe, but if he showed just a little interest in me, that would turn to arousal in short order. ) This probably goes against everything he’s experienced as you say.

          Hmm. And it’s difficult. I’d love to clue him in, but it would take him being hit with ton of bricks (figuratively) because this isn’t his usual experience.   And   . . . I’m trying to be less masculine, lol.

          It takes two.   Men have to keep looking for that woman who will find their looks attractive.   She’s his unicorn and he’s hers.   She’s out there.   He has to believe that.   And women like me, probably have to be more proactive. Hey, maybe I’m a unicorn! LOL.   Evan has said that his advice differs for men who aren’t the most confident or knowledgeable about women.   Or for men who are extremely shy.

          Thanks, Adrian.   I think I understand your comment now. (If I misunderstood, let me know.) It’s hard out here to figure this stuff out, for men and women!

        6. Emily, the original

          S.,

            Writing this I realize, none of my friends’ husbands are ultra-masculine.   Nope. But of course, we don’t see this as bad and they love their husbands and have great relationships. So interesting.   They found their unicorns.   It’s not perfect, but works for them.
          I agree. It’s all on a spectrum. I have a friend whose husband is very masculine but she runs the show. She jokes that she’s the man. I guess he needs that and it works for them … but blech … that would turn me off.

        7. Emily, the original

          Hi S.,

          Hmm. And it’s difficult. I’d love to clue him in, but it would take him being hit with ton of bricks (figuratively) because this isn’t his usual experience.   And   . . . I’m trying to be less masculine, lol.

          But isn’t it so much easier to just forgot the whole thing because this guy is so clueless and it would take SO MUCH WORK? Isn’t it so much easier to interact with a man who has some degree of experience (I don’t mean a player) just because you won’t feel like you are directing the whole production? I have a guy friend who went to a party and a woman he’d never met sat in his lap! And he told me he assumed there weren’t enough chairs   and she needed somewhere to sit! I mean OMG. Could she have been any more obvious?

        8. Yet Another Guy

          @Emily, the original

          A less masculine guy is safer. You can feel his energy and as a woman you take more of the lead and so you feel more comfort. With a more masculine man, he takes more of the lead and you have less control. As YAG writes, it’s scarier when you feel less control but, on some level, attraction is about feeling off balance.

          I believe that the same thing holds true for feminine women.   The following quote from one of my earlier posts highlights how much I love ultra-feminine women:

          She projects a lot of feminine energy, is impeccably groomed (hair styled for her face as well as being waxed with a nice manicure and pedicure), applies just enough makeup to accent her features, and wears clothes that flatter her figure (whatever shape it may be).   Women who possess these attributes are irresistible to me, and they are usually not the most physically beautiful women in the room; however, they are often the most feminine women in the room.

          The problem with ultra-feminine women is they are like Kryptonite to me.   I am a guy who usually projects a lot of masculine energy, but oh my lord, I completely lose control when I encounter an extremely feminine woman who rings my bell.   I find the I have to keep a safe emotional distance from this type of woman; otherwise, I feel like I am going to spiral out of control and crash to the ground.

          On a different note, I was out on a date with a woman seven years my junior last night. She is less feminine than I usually date; however, she is a fellow musician and music geek, so the date was a lot of fun. We talked about our musical influences and music geek stuff like how some bands change time signatures and insert syncopation into their music. I can tell you without reservation that her primary love language is physical touch because she broke the touch barrier very quickly. She was touching me the entire evening. She also had that starry-eyed look that a woman has when she is with a man who rings her bell loudly (i.e., the kind of situation where, in Emily, the original terms, a woman can get “dickmatized”).   It was clear to me that she has not been out with a guy who is buff in a long time because she kept mentioning how she could not believe how muscular I was at my age.   We chatted until they kicked us out at 1AM.   I walked her to car, and she offered to drive me to my car.   We wound making out like teenagers in her car until 3am.   I have not been kissed like that in long time.   She kissed me like I was the last man on Earth.   There was this raw primal desire in her kiss.   As a man, I can honestly say that it is a wonderful feeling to be with a woman you dig who desires you that badly.   Part of me wants to see her again.   Part of me knows that I desire what I desire, that it will not work in the long term, so I believe that is better to leave it as a wonderful memory.

        9. Emily, the original

          YAG,

          I completely lose control when I encounter an extremely feminine woman who rings my bell.   I find the I have to keep a safe emotional distance from this type of woman; otherwise, I feel like I am going to spiral out of control and crash to the ground.

          I understand that feeling well, but if you never let your guard down, you will continue to have the kind of empty interactions you described with your short-term sex partner. I’m not good at it myself. I can be very warm and supportive to friends, both men and women, but when I get around someone I’m attracted to, the shields go up and my entire personality freezes. It’s that wonderful song by Bruce Springsteen called “Brilliant Disguise”     “I want to know if it’s you I don’t trust. Cause I damn sure don’t trust myself.”

            Part of me wants to see her again.   Part of me knows that I desire what I desire, that it will not work in the long term, so I believe that is better to leave it as a wonderful memory.

          Why don’t you just go with it and see what happens? You are projecting an outcome before it even occurs. I went to a networking event the other day and the speaker said you have to align you life with your values. That includes your life financially, career wise, etc. I think deep down you would like a connection with a woman.

          On a different note, I was out on a date with a woman seven years my junior last night.

          How is it possible that they are all exactly seven years your junior? Is that a requirement you put in your dating profile?   🙂

        10. GoWithTheFlow

          YAG,

          “As a man, I can honestly say that it is a wonderful feeling to be with a woman you dig who desires you that badly.   Part of me wants to see her again.   Part of me knows that I desire what I desire, that it will not work in the long term, so I believe that is better to leave it as a wonderful memory.”

          Palm Hitting Forehead Now!

          Good grief man, I don’t think it’s possible for you to overthink and sabotage yourself  any more than this.

          How about not making assumptions about what the future will bring?   How about take it one day and one date at a time?   Were you attracted to her?   Did you enjoy yourself?   It sure does sound like it!   Concentrate on having fun and getting to know her.

          Now one thing I think you may be doing is confusing external feminine dress with feminine characteristics.   Look at what you wrote:   “She projects a lot of feminine energy, is impeccably groomed (hair styled for her face as well as being waxed with a nice manicure and pedicure), applies just enough makeup to accent her features, and wears clothes that flatter her figure (whatever shape it may be). . .”

          You mention feminine energy then give a long list of how a woman grooms and dresses herself.   What you did not mention were actual feminine characteristics;   empathetic, nurturing, kind, agreeable, intuitive, sensual, etc.   Because I know of a lot of women who are gorgeous, can apply makeup like an artist, wear dresses and heels every day, have long hair and get mani-pedis on a regular schedule but they are driven, assertive, competitive, and self-contained.

          OTOH I know two women very well who don’t wear makeup, are usually dressed in jeans or casual pants and wear athletic shoes.   But they just radiate warmth and friendliness. Both are intelligent women with advanced educations, serious jobs, and are married with kids.   Their husbands adore them and people gravitate towards them.

          Now you say the woman you went out with isn’t as feminine as you would like.   Why do you you say this?   Is it because her hair is short or because she doesn’t wear stilettos or paint her nails?   One thing you do say she did was to touch you often and you had a hot makeout session.   That may or may not mean her love language is physical touch (have you read Chapman’s book?).   What it sounds like is that she may be a sensual creature–an actual feminine characteristic.

           

        11. Emily, the original

          GoWiththeFlow and YAG,
          You mention feminine energy then give a long list of how a woman grooms and dresses herself.   What you did not mention were actual feminine characteristics;   empathetic, nurturing, kind, agreeable, intuitive, sensual, etc.   Because I know of a lot of women who are gorgeous …  OTOH I know two women very well who don’t wear makeup, are usually dressed in jeans or casual pants and wear athletic shoes.   But they just radiate warmth and friendliness.
          A lot of good points here.
            What it sounds like is that she may be a sensual creature—an actual feminine characteristic.
          And YAG, she meets your other requirement: wants to do you!     HA!     I see this as a win-win all around.     🙂

        12. S.

          Emily

          And he told me he assumed there weren’t enough chairs   and she needed somewhere to sit! I mean OMG

          I do yoga, so I’d sit crosslegged on the floor.   But hey, if only laps were available, it’s telling she chose his lap.   LOL.

          Evan wrote the article, ‘Men Don’t Go Both Ways’.   I read it many times and puzzled over it.   But I reluctantly concluded he may be right except for the few unicorns out there.     It’s work on either end.   I could choose a really sweet, inexperienced guy and I’m driving the pace of that relationship forever.   And he’ll adore me, but he’s not gonna change just cause I love him.

          Or I could choose a confident guy who also loves me that’s completely unpredictable forever.   He used to doing what he wants and he has to do that.   I know how it feels because I feel the same way. That’s what makes him a man and that’s what makes me, S.   He’s not going to change, either.   It’s work because I can’t always get my own way and I have to learn a whole new pattern and after all that it may not work out anyway. And it seems like more work because the more masculine he is, more of a man, the less turned on I am because of the way I’m wired.     Attraction is important in the beginning because it helps you overlook the things that will annoy you later.   With a masculine man, I’m less attracted so I see those things outright.

          Sigh. So it’s not easy.   But I keep looking hoping I’ll trip over a unicorn when I’m not paying attention.   🙂 And I make my life exciting enough on its own so that I meet really great men no matter where they are on the masculinity scale. I do love myself some men. 🙂 With the right one and when things are going well, it doesn’t feel like work.

        13. Yet Another Guy

          @Emily, the original

          And YAG, she meets your other requirement: wants to do you!     HA!     I see this as a win-win all around.     

          Touché!   That desire is a certainty with her.

        14. Emily, the original

          S.,
            It’s work on either end.   I could choose a really sweet, inexperienced guy and I’m driving the pace of that relationship forever.    
          I meant a guy who’s had some experience in picking up the signals and knowing how to get things off the ground. It took the friend I mentioned almost 4 weeks of dating to kiss his girlfriend. I meant with a guy like that the woman was to do the work because he is so tentative. Shy doesn’t bother me but painfully awkward/not a modicum of game turns me off.

        15. Nissa

          S, I’ve decided what I really need is a T-shirt that says “Unicorn” . Maybe that will do the trick, lol.

        16. S.

          @Nissa

          #UNICORN.   LOL.   Thanks for that. 😀

          And I thank Tron for being real about what unicorn-seekers are doing. It’s not easy and may not even be possible.   I myself may not be successful, but gosh, I’m going to try to have as much fun as I can seeking!

          🙂

    2. 22.2
      Nissa

      S, I’m in the middle on that. I’ve only ever once been attracted to a man that I didn’t initially like, and that was because I saw him exhibit qualities that I admired – openness, honesty, was good to his children, etc. But in spite of growing more attracted to him mentally, I was never that physically aroused by him. But I think I would have if he had been open to a relationship (he wasn’t, at least not with me).

      So I think you are right that women are more attracted to men via character, and Jeremy is right in that physical attraction tends to be a baseline, to which character attraction might be added.  However, I don’t think that takes into account qualities like confidence, which is arousing, yet not a physical aspect.

      1. 22.2.1
        Jeremy

        Hi Nissa, I didn’t mean to say that only physical qualities are arousing.   Rather, I meant to say that there is a difference between arousal qualities and comfort qualities, and that different women will need a different balance of comfort/arousal, and that different women will consider different qualities arousing/comforting.   Many women do report that they find confidence arousing – hence being aroused when a man pursues them confidently.

        1. Nissa

          Hi Jeremy, you are right, you didn’t say that. I am just sitting here racking my brain to think of non physical ways of arousal, because for me they are almost all physical. Yeah, I think I’m shallow like that :-). For example, I love Anderson Cooper, but the arousal is for his perfect hair, his luminous skin and crisp white shirt. My attraction to him is for his mind, his commitments to journalist integrity (I don’t know him personally, so there’s a little projection here). I’m also attracted to young John McCain, but the attraction is not that high due to opposite politics. But he was do-able, for sure, in spite of the lack of comfort I find in not getting to make choices for my own body.

          I guess I would say that if a man met my minimum attractiveness standard (what you said) and acted masculine, my arousal would go up. So I’d agree that my arousal would not go up if he didn’t at least meet the minimum physical standard.

  3. 23
    Adrian

    HEY Tom10!!!

    Jeremy said what makes women aroused??? (^-^)

    So far he seems to be saying looks and selfishness…

    The looks part I understand but I don’t see how being selfish works on a woman whom you just started taking to in the checkout line at starbucks?

    If what the women are saying on here is wrong (as far as what triggers their arousal NOT comfort) then how do you trigger sexual desire from a woman you just met in line or at a party?

    Besides just being good looking I can’t think of anything… but from my experience looks only work on women with lower sexual market value (SMV) ratings. A woman of equal or higher SMV will not lust after me just because I am hot… because she is also hot!

     

    1. 23.1
      Emily, the original

      Adrian,
      If what the women are saying on here is wrong (as far as what triggers their arousal NOT comfort) then how do you trigger sexual desire from a woman you just met in line or at a party?
      Attraction is a physiological, hormonal response, but if you trigger that (no one can control that) and say something witty or funny … with a little gleam in your eye, a little flirtation.

    2. 23.2
      Nissa

      Selfishness can seem like the opposite of neediness. So I think women are turned off by insecurity/neediness, and think that selfish = confident. This may or may not be true, but I think that’s how women are interpreting it.

      For myself, there is a lot of pleasure in someone who has allowed themselves to be pleasured. That’s why we look into our lover’s face while having sex – the act of giving pleasure is pleasing. It’s appealing to know someone else enjoys us that much. Someone who is utterly selfless denies us that pleasure. So for some women, that can be a permission slip for them to be selfish too, when they otherwise would not allow themselves to be ‘selfish’.

    3. 23.3
      Tom10

      Hey Adrian!!!
        
      Apologies for my tardy response; I didn’t know what to write so I let your questions digest for a few days.
        
      “Jeremy said what makes women aroused??? (^-^)
      So far he seems to be saying looks and selfishness…”
        
      I think he’s correct; women indeed seem to be turned on by looks and selfishness. Although I would add status as being almost equal in importance to looks.
        
      They’re also turned on by a million other qualities as well though; namely intelligence, wit, suaveness, talent, education etc. but none of these matter much without the looks and status.
        
      “The looks part I understand”
        
      The looks part is fairly simple; they’re a direct proxy for genetic quality and physical health. Obviously women will prefer someone healthy with high-quality genes.
        
      “but I don’t see how being selfish works on a woman whom you just started taking to in the checkout line at starbucks?”
        
      Lol. I’m picturing you in the checkout line behind a pretty lady:
        
      Cashier: “hello ma’am that’ll be another two dollars please”
        
      Pretty lady: “oh shoot, I’ve no more cash with me” *as she furtively glances in your direction to help her out*
        
      You (trying to impress her): “no-way lady; that’s your problem, sucker” *as you hide your wallet behind your back*
        
      Pretty lady: “oh you’re so sweet; wanna meet for a drink later?”
        
      I’m not sure it works like that!
        
      But selfishness is a funny one as men find it very unattractive in women; my best guess is that it’s something to do with the accumulation, husbandry and judicious expenditure of resources. Selfish men will have more time and money for their own children than generous men will maybe?
        
      Also, as Nissa pointed out:
        
      “Selfishness can seem like the opposite of neediness. So I think women are turned off by insecurity/neediness, and think that selfish = confident.”
        
      I.e. men will tend only to be selfish toward women for whom they don’t really about in the first place (he wouldn’t risk the possibility of her leaving by being selfish if he really cared about her); some women will perceive this as higher-value mate behavior and thus be turned on.
        
      Why do you think women are attracted to selfishness Adrian?
        
      “If what the women are saying on here is wrong (as far as what triggers their arousal NOT comfort) then how do you trigger sexual desire from a woman you just met in line or at a party?”
        
      You know when you watch a music/talent competition on TV Adrian and some acts are immediately captivating and have “it,” whereas other acts are instantly forgettable? What do you think that “it” is?
        
      My opinion is that “it” is one’s perception of high-quality material.
        
      Now, as “high-quality” is a relative term, to trigger sexual desire from a woman (anywhere) you have to somehow demonstrate that you’re equal or, preferably, higher in quality than men she’s dated in her past.
        
      The details of the dating “strategies”, chat-up lines, clothes etc. aren’t actually really that important per se; it’s the overall package that you present that matters.
        
      So, be the best man you can be Adrian and then let the chips fall where they may.
        
      That and a few one-liner jokes always go down well; I always have a few at the tip of my tongue to cover most topics. Cue: “If Bing Crosby was great, imagine how good Google Crosby would have been”. Haha. 🙂
        
      What do you think triggers desire in women Adrian?
        
      PS. An important point to note is that one’s inherent “quality” can improve in time with focus and dedication; equally it can deteriorate if not properly maintained.

      1. 23.3.1
        Adrian

        Hi Emily, Nissa and Tom10,

        Emily said, “A  beautiful woman who thinks everyone should be dying of love for her because of her appearance.

        So… This is probably going to be the meanest and most braggartly thing I have most likely said in the comments

        but…

        I think most of the male commenters are coming from a perspective of men who are at best average looking or slightly below average looking and their views and advice reflect it. Guys who always want beautiful women but can’t get them.

        They are ALWAYS going on and on about looks, beauty, SMV ratings, the sexy guy she had sex with on the first date; and how if a guy is hot enough a woman will let him do or get away with anything, etc etc etc…

        But as a very handsome looking guy who got an 8.3 score on hot or not and who is approached by women who would classify as 7’s and below ALL the time (wow, just typing this I feel like an arrogant A-hole) I can tell you looks only matter to the degree that most of these men think it does only when you are dating women BELOW your attraction level.

        A woman who is a 8-10 in looks won’t care how hot I am, she can get other 8-10 guys all she wants; so she goes okay you are attractive check! What else is there about you? What else can you bring to the table in a relationship with me? I have accomplished this what have you accomplished?

        But conversely women who are 7’s and below always overlook many of what I consider my flaws and the lower she is on the SMV scale compared to me (sorry if that sound arrogant) the more of my flaws I have seen these women brush off and say they would accept.

        Another thing I think I will interject her is how some guys say that “all men” will sleep with a women regardless of how she looks-Not true! Besides the fact that I don’t like misleading women, stringing them along, or breaking their hearts, there is also the fact that having sex with a woman I don’t find attractive is nothing to me-As Jeremy would say I get no validation from it so it would be empty.

        The only guys that I have honestly ever seen do this are the weak and desperate ones…

        Back on the topic of attraction this is why my questions always focus on other things besides looks but somehow the guys always go back to the looks standard. It also makes me think that they have never or have rarely dating really attractive women because despite the stereotype of hot women being “B’s” (something I think men made up to make themselves feel better for not approaching her or getting rejected by her and something women made up to distract them from the fact that they are not as attractive as they think or at least not as attractive as that woman) I have found most really attractive women to be well… human.

        You know like a human, some are good girlfriends, some are bad girlfriends; her looks have nothing to do with her character NOR her confidence. Sorry guys on here shocking I know but you can be a very attractive man or woman and still not be confident in dating because you are dating someone just as or more attractive than yourself…. Which means that you had better have other qualities that shine besides your looks or your sculpted body.

        Like Emily said the beautiful woman who had lower SMV guys allow her to be a bad girlfriend gets a shock when a guy who is just as attractive dumps her because she is a bad girlfriend.

        …     …     …

        Tom10 I have decided that my new year’s resolution is to leave this blog and stop following others ideas and figure out what does and doesn’t work for myself.

        I will miss your wisdom and you humor.

        …     …     …

        Nissa I think it is about balance. Certain things a man should be selfish about to show his woman that he is confident in his role and that he is worth her allowing him to take the lead, but that his overall character should be that of a kind, supportive, patient,   giving, and non-judgmental boyfriend.

        Like I told Tom10 I can only learn these things by not reading about them and just getting out and doing. I will never succeed if I keep being afraid of failure.

        …     …     …

        Emily I agree with you. A woman will either think you are hot or not from the beginning; her arousal will be natural. After that all you can do is increase or decrease her comfort by showing her your true self.

        On another topic: What is your opinion of women (30+) who say that they DON’T have any friends or who say that they only have male friends because all women are <insert something negative>.

        I am noticing this more and more from the women in my new city and it surprised me.

        Should I count this as a red flag?

        An adult who can not keep at least one real friend?

        And as you said most women know that if a man is saying he wants to be only friends he is lying. From our conversations I get the impression that every women I have talked to who says they only have male friends know deep down that these guys want more; yet they say they CAN’T be friends with other women… This seems strange to me.

        If you agree that it is a red flag why?

        If you disagree why?

        Is not having any friends the same as not have any female friends or are they two different red flag types?

        1. Evan Marc Katz

          “I have decided that my new year’s resolution is to leave this blog and stop following others ideas and figure out what does and doesn’t work for myself.”

          Respectfully, there are better New Year’s resolutions. Usually, they’re to cut off vices or improve oneself. I’m not positive how disengaging from reading others’ points of view on dating and relationships will improve your life, but I wish you all the best nonetheless.

        2. Emily, the original

          Hi Adrian,
          Like Emily said the beautiful woman who had lower SMV guys allow her to be a bad girlfriend gets a shock when a guy who is just as attractive dumps her because she is a bad girlfriend.
          That’s not what I wrote. I wrote a beautiful woman may get a shock when she see less attractive women doing better with men if those women are more approachable. The beautiful women in that scenario mistakenly believe all they need is to look good.

          Emily I agree with you. A woman will either think you are hot or not from the beginning; her arousal will be natural. After that all you can do is increase or decrease her comfort by showing her your true self.
          I actually wrote that some women can have attraction grow for them if the man courts them. For others, the attraction is there from the beginning or it isn’t. Isn’t that how it is for a man? If a man isn’t attracted to a particular woman, is her trying to win his approval or doing a bunch of things for him going to make a difference? Probably not.
          On another topic: What is your opinion of women (30+) who say that they DON’T have any friends or who say that they only have male friends because all women are
          Some women don’t like other women. They see them as competition. They live by the adage: There is no friendship when it comes to sex and guys. I must admit I talked to only a handful of women at my last job. I spent most of my day talking to men. At the morning break, I was the only woman in this one break room with about 10 guys. They were guy’s guys. That can be fun. But since moving, Mr. Adrian, the courses I’m taking are dominated by women and the few men are … the intellectual types. So in school I talk to mostly women. I think a woman should have at least some female friends.What do you think a date would say if you told her all your friends were women?
          DON’T LEAVE THE BLOG. DON’T LEAVE THE BLOG.

        3. Jeremy

          After reading all the advice here, why would you find anything you just wrote surprising?   Hot women are still women, still need a mix of comfort/arousal, still have sexual meta-goals and relationship goals, still have anxieties – same as a hot guy like you, no?

           

          Adrian, once I determined what I needed in a relationship and what women in general (and my wife in particular) wanted in relationships, I had the raw materials to craft my relationship any way I wanted.   With that in mind, I chose a way that allowed me to live ethically, create mutual benefit, and respect myself.   Gather your materials and decide how you want to be.   Sounds like you are on your way.

        4. Nissa

          Adrian, if you leave you will be missed :-(. I’m an outlier in regard to friends (a big surprise, I know, lol).

          I am friendly with both men and women, but not really friends. The men either want to date me (no, thanks) or are married (do I want to make their wives angry?), or fail to notice I exist (because they aren’t into me, don’t bother to attempt friendship). I end up talking to a lot of older men, who are lonely and therefore happy to just talk. Sometimes they take this the wrong way and I have to pull away, as I don’t want to lead them on. Talking to them makes me miss my Dad, though. They often have a sweetness that is easy to love. If they realize you don’t want them as boyfriends, they are the easiest friends to have. As they get older (and especially the ones that were married and are now divorced/widowed), they miss having someone to listen to them talk about their day. That may be what the ladies are telling you.

          The women are trickier. Most of them don’t have a minute to spare, unless it’s on the sidelines of a child oriented event with the other mommies. Even then it’s “Timmy did this and Annie did that and the school needs this…”. Very little of it is ideas. Women who don’t have kids (as I don’t) can be captivated with their hobbies, from BDSM, polyamory, cats, or God. That’s why I’ve been going to classes for 10 years. I get my idea fix, have people that care about me, and still get to go home without having to buy any girl scout cookies.

          But the real, genuine connection? The closeness? It’s not really there. Just like in dating, the ones that I can accept don’t want me, and the ones that want me, I can’t accept.

        5. Emily, the original

          Nissa,

          I am friendly with both men and women, but not really  friends.

          I just made a real friend, a woman I really like and who values friendship, but this is not a common experience. Most of the “friends” I have are as you described — people to talk to, people to go to the movies with, etc., but I would never call them in a crisis. I don’t invest a lot in those kinds of friendships anymore. However, I have been feeling more positive about friendships and the idea of building a community. Certainly, if there’s one real friend ,there are others out there. Everyone can’t want shallow interactions and only talk about the cookies they baked.

  4. 24
    kenley

    YAG

    Why are you doing this to yourself?   You found someone that you like but you aren’t going to go out with her again because you don’t know how long it’s going to last?   Ugh!   I would kill to find someone I want to touch me let alone makeout with for hours.    Please reconsider your decision.    I am throwing in the towel, but I would love to see other people find love!

  5. 25
    KK

    YAG,

    You said, “Every so often. a woman comes along who I want to see more than one time, so I will add her back into my date queue for further exploration.   The two women who I have been dating for a while fall into this category.     Like I said, they are not lovers, but are also not platonic friends.   I have not had sex with either these women”.

    Dating for “a while”?

    But earlier you stated your “N” is 2. And that any man who doesn’t have an “N” is a fool.

    This appears to be a contradiction, so which is true?

  6. 26
    Lynx

    Here’s a perspective I haven’t seen mentioned in either EMK’s response or the comments: some of us are attracted to people who say they don’t want a relationship, and successfully pursue them. Genuinely attracted, not just attracted to the challenge (although that’s part of it).That’s me. I should probably get therapy to figure out why, but as soon as I learn a guy is either emotionally or physically unavailable, I’m hooked. On the other hand, in the early days, if a guy indicates he’s ready to be a couple, I’m outta there.  The night I met my ex, he said he was moving soon and wasn’t interested in long term. We were married for 23 years. After we split up, the first guy I dated had been divorced for 2 years and said he was only interested in dating lots of women; we were together for 4 years.  I think what happens is, since I am also thinking I’m not interested in a long term relationship, I’m not at all critical of their behavior or trying to sniff out deal-breakers. My last boyfriend was habitually late to dates, had dogs that weren’t house-broken, and spent a lot of time watching screens — all behaviors that would have been on a deal-breaker list if I’d been looking for my ‘soul mate’. And, to be honest, he wasn’t my type, physically.But, over time, I learned he’s scrupulously honest and faithful, the most intelligent man I’ve met, perceptive, witty, introspective, dependable, talented,   and open to continued personal growth. Oh, and he’s great in bed. Turns out those qualities were way more important than whatever list I might have had in my head.  Sometimes, people who think they don’t want to be in a relationship really just don’t want to be criticized. Turns out they’re fine with a relationship when they’re accepted for who they are.  Not saying that’s true of every such person, but that’s been my experience.  

    1. 26.1
      Lynx

      ^ BTW, I added paragraph returns when I sent my comment, not sure why they disappeared. Apologies for such a huge text block!

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