This article might seem shocking and archaic, but it’s all true. The other night I had dinner with my husband and two of his single male friends (Ben and Jack) who launched into a tirade about dating today. These good-looking, 40 something, self-employed bachelors are frustrated with trying to find a decent woman. I couldn’t believe it.
Ben and Jack think women today act desperate. Of course I asked for specifics – what does desperate look like? Turns out it boils down to two very basic and rather traditional concepts:
1) Men don’t want women to chase them
2) Men don’t like when “the chase” is too easy
Dating is an Ancient Mating Ritual
What? How can this be in an age of equality between the sexes? It’s really very simple – dating harkens back to ancient mating rituals that have not gone away, nor been modified as much as women would hope.
Dating Guidelines from the “Fellas”
According to Ben, Jack and others, here are some guidelines that women might try following if they want to be perceived as “quality prospects” during your initial encounters with men:
1) With online dating, don’t initiate a flood of emails. Some women email multiple times a day which makes them appear demanding, needy, or high maintenance. Frequent contact can cause him to feel crowded. Initially, let men set the pace.
2) Don’t Call to Say Hi, Check in, or Discover Why He hasn’t Called. This is seen as pushy and desperate. If you don’t like the slow pace, perhaps the guy isn’t the right one for you. If you feel compelled to call when you haven’t heard from him, don’t make more than one light-hearted and friendly call. That’s it. Either he’ll pick up the ball or not, but leave that ball in his court.
3) As horrible as this old saying is, “There’s no reason to buy the cow if the milk is free.” The double-standard is still alive! While all men don’t feel this way, it’s pretty hard to know who does and who doesn’t before it’s too late. The best course of action is to hold off on intimacy to insure you’ll get the respect you want and deserve.
The Chase Remains Important and Desirable
Most men still prefer to pursue women during the initial phase of dating. They want to chase and win you over, rather than feel like you’re a push over. It’s not about playing really hard to get. It is about not being too available or overly enthusiastic. Simple human nature creates the desire to want what isn’t readily available and without this tension, there’s nothing to “conquer.”
If you think about it, women feel the same way. My female clients complain all the time about men who are “too nice,” clingy, or come on too strong. Or think about all the women who love “bad boys;” men who are unavailable or unattainable. This is the flip side of the very same coin, so to speak.
My conclusion about Ben and Jack’s perspective on dating is this: For better or worse, the Dating Game is still in play. You can deny it or fight against it if you want. But that won’t change the cold, hard facts from most men’s perspective.
You’re Best Bet is to Play the Game
Instead of chasing someone and risking the appearance of desperation, use your feminine charm to draw a man in. Let him know and see why you’re a great catch.
Demonstrate your delightful character by being fun to be with and looking your best. Flirt with him, flatter and praise him (but keep it genuine please), and show appreciation by thanking him. And, let him lead the way for at least the first 4-8 dates. It may be “old school” but there’s no arguing with what has worked well for eons and still works today. Try following this plan and discover how well it can work for you too. Chances are, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.