There are quite a few misconceptions out there about men and dating. Perhaps one of the chief among them is that most men are just interested in sex and that the rest of the stuff that comes with a relationship is merely a matter of obligation to them.
Not true, men desire love and affection, we are humans, we thrive on it. Whether or not we value it as much as women is probably up for debate, but to suggest that it doesn’t give us the same sense of comfort and belonging is extremely misguided.
The reason why there is a consensus that men are only looking for one thing is because that’s kind of bred into our minds. Men are raised to believe that they shouldn’t show emotion, and that they should be able to maintain themselves on inner-strength alone.
Society’s “real man” is one who doesn’t need to be loved and cared for in their relationship. And he’s also one who’s primal instincts overshadow any desire that can be sourced from a place of emotion or vulnerability.
And because of this, sex has become a game for men. That’s what they’re taught from a young age, that they should suppress as much of their will to give and receive affection as they can in favour of getting laid.
Even the pleasure and the joy that sexual satisfaction brings ends up being less important than the mere fact that you’re getting some. Is any man in this position truly happy? Probably, I mean it is still fun, but humans aren’t entirely like that.
We mate for life, we have done for thousands of years and to get scientific for a moment, that makes sense from an evolutionary perspective. So as men get older, like past college age, they tend to start realizing that they want something more stable but are unsure how to get it.
Their association with women up to that point has been defined by suppression of their feelings and an insistence that their desires are entirely physical. And if that’s all you know, how can you find something more.
How do you prove to a woman that you don’t just want to get into her pants? You need to tap into your soft side. And the question is how. Let’s think about that:
Communication is key to any strong relationship. This is a thing that seems to come alongside the inclination to not show any vulnerability. If you’re listening to her then you’re not being passive, and men aren’t passive.
But that’s a two way street right? Think about how you would feel if you were having a conversation with a girl and you were trying to make a point or bring up something of interest and you were constantly getting interrupted.
Or even if they did listen to you, you could see on their face that they didn’t care about what you had to say and were just waiting until their next opportunity to speak. It wouldn’t be a nice feeling, would it?
You wouldn’t be inclined to spend time with this girl or make any further effort to get to know her. You’d feel unimportant in her life and like your thoughts and your opinions were irrelevant. And that’s exactly how she feels if you do the same to her. We all want to be heard.
It’s not like women exist purely as empty vessels for men to just unload all of their thoughts into. Their minds are just as active and they want to be heard just as much. So if you want to build a meaningful connection, then let her speak and actually take in what she’s saying.
She’ll appreciate it, she’ll feel like her personality matters to you just as much as her body and she’ll want to spend more time with you. What’s more you’ll enjoy being around her too. A good conversation is a joy, and a lot of men don’t seem to realize they can have those with women.
In a similar vein:
2. Take Interest in Her Passions
Much like the odd and intensely problematic idea that women don’t have thoughts and opinions of their own, there appears to be an equally prevalent thought that women don’t get passionate about anything outside of motherhood. And cleaning.
And of course, it’s fine to be passionate about both of those things, but to suggest that any insight a woman tries to offer that doesn’t fit into the traditional ‘girly’ categories is invalid is ridiculous.
And if it’s an opinion you hold, then you will alienate the women you talk to. Women’s opinions on things like politics, sports, social issues and art are constantly being dismissed, as if they don’t have the capacity for intense interest in those topics.
Think about the creative industries for a minute. They’re all dominated by men, despite women displaying no lack of ability and no lack of interest in creativity, we still have a different outlook on the female side of it and it’s often a dismissive one.
The girl that you are trying to form a relationship with? She’s passionate about something, I can guarantee it and she might very well be afraid to talk to you about it because other men haven’t taken an interest when she’s tried to bring it up before.
So again, I’ll ask you to take the empathetic approach. What are you passionate about? Sports? Films? History? Don’t you just love talking about it? Of course you do, you have so much to say about your passion and she is the same.
So ask her about it, and again, listen to what she says. Take a vested interest in what she’s passionate about so you can have conversations. Not only will this make her enjoy your company more, but it will add so much to the relationship for you too.
3. Don’t Hide From Emotion
We’re getting into the deep stuff here with this one. I think this practice is important for many more reasons than just winning a girl’s heart. Did you know that global suicide rates are twice as high for men as they are for women?
It might seem like a surprise because we assume that men are emotionally stronger than women, but you can only be so strong when you’re taught from such a young age that you can’t show any emotion.
This doesn’t mean that men don’t have emotions, it means that they just bottle them up so that they can rot them away from the inside. And in turn, this will make you emotionally unavailable, which is a turn off.
An aspect of a strong relationship is that you can come to each other with your problems and rely on each other from support. Many men will run from emotional situations though because they don’t know how to deal with them.
They’ve been hiding that side of them for so long that it’s not there when it’s needed, and they’re unwilling to find it. Your partner needs to know that you can be relied on for emotional support and this applies to women too, but emotional unavailability is just far more common in men.
And it’s extremely obvious too. So open up, even if it feels uncomfortable at first, allow yourself to feel your emotions and engage with her emotions. It won’t just make her more comfortable around you, it will be a weight off your shoulders too.
4. Allow For Affection
This kind of ties into the last point but emotion and affection are two different things. What I mean by this is that you shouldn’t be afraid to show affection when you feel it. To let her know how you feel about her and that you’re capable of love.
This doesn’t just mean that you should compliment her because women get complimented all the time, to the point where it probably doesn’t mean as much to them anymore, and it probably doesn’t feel very sincere.
Men have said things which they haven’t followed through with in their actions. Don’t say things you don’t mean, but also if it’s something that you do mean and you feel like it’s an unmasculine thing to say, say it anyway.
Like here’s an example. Humans love dogs and that’s not a gender exclusive thing. But it’s more socially acceptable for women to display how much they love their pets because if a man does it he’s showing emotion and being unmasculine.
If you’ve got a dog, show them off, and more importantly, show off how important they are to you. This might sound like a little bit of an underhanded tactic, but take a selfie with your dog and send it to the girl you’re interested in.
She’ll see this and it will plant the knowledge in her head that you are a guy who’s willing to show affection, without you having to overdo it and potentially convince her that you’re not being sincere.
Of course, this will only work if she actually likes dogs and if you actually like dogs for that matter, but the principle is more important. Don’t shy away from the fact that you have love and affection to give.
5. Don’t Force Your Feelings
I’ve touched on this a couple of times already, but it’s important that you don’t force your feelings. What you’re trying to do here is not to convince someone to be your girlfriend, it’s to actually find a stable and fulfilling relationship.
You want to win the heart of a woman that you actually want to be with. All of this stuff that I’ve talked about, it shouldn’t feel like an obligation, it should feel real. The trouble is that men find it difficult to show their soft side even when they really like someone.
So don’t be fake. Stop viewing women as a part of a game, as a score that you’re keeping for yourself. Don’t just transfer the competitive nature of your approach from being sexual to being relationship driven.
That won’t make you happy and it won’t make her happy. Find a woman that you actually want to make an effort with, and all of this will be a joy rather than a chore.