Over on Huffington Post, dating and relationship coach Jag Carrao has written a very interesting dating-related article called “5 Lies Women Tell Themselves.” Carrao says the the dating myths women tell themselves “may feel comfy, but [are] insulating us from sometimes unpleasant realities, they undermine our ability to make rational decisions based on complete information, thus sabotaging our long-term romantic goals.” So, are you sabotaging your dating experiences? Might these “lies” actually be true? After the jump, let’s take a look at the five myths Carrao says women tell themselves and see.1. He’s intimidated by you.
Carrao says that successful women “will tell themselves that the reason the object of their affection isn’t responding to their flirtation is because he’s just overawed by their credentials, looks, or financial standing.” She says this simply isn’t true and that even the “mousiest” men will “discover his inner manly man when he sees a woman he wants to be with.” I’m not so sure about this one. While I do think most men will pursue women they find physically attractive — something our culture has encouraged for ages — when it comes to professional and financial success, two areas where men have traditionally outshone women, there still exists sexism and certainly some level of intimidation on the parts of many men. How often do we see a beautiful woman with a man who isn’t as physically attractive? It happens all the time. Not as common is the couple where the woman is much more successful than her mate. Sure, women aren’t without blame in this discrepancy (just read yesterday’s “Dear Wendy” column for an example), but I’ll say it takes a progressive, confident man to date a very successful woman. Of course they exist, but I definitely wouldn’t say it’s a “lie” when women tell themselves a man may be intimidated by their success. I’ll have to respectfully disagree with Carrao on this one to an extent — there’s some truth in this “lie.”
2. Women love men who treat them like crap.
“That may be true for a minority,” Carrao writes, “but women with high self-esteem find adoring, persistent and respectful attention an incredible turn-on.” I agree with this for the most part, though I question whether women with high self-esteem really need adoring, persistent attention. That seems kinda needy to me. But still, if you love and respect yourself, you want in a mate someone who will love and respect you just as well.
3. It’s what’s on the inside that counts.
“Before you have a heart attack, let me emphasize that it IS what’s on the inside — your essence, your spirit, your intellect — that a man falls in love with, and that is all important when it comes to building a relationship and sustaining it over the long run, especially during hard times. But unfortunately, this “truth” can become a myth, when we use it to dismiss the importance of looking our best when it comes to attracting men. In addition to diet and exercise, this includes making an extra effort to look pulled together, feminine and sexy. If you have a favorite feature, show it off! Your long legs, dazzling décolletage, or silky tousled hair may be the lure that leads him to contemplate and fall in love with your amazing personality.”
I imagine this is the most controversial of the “lies” Carrao outlines, but you know what? She’s right. Physical appearance plays a huge part in attracting a mate, not only because people are attracted to what looks appealing to them, but taking care of yourself, showing off your best features, and putting effort into your appearance shows you take pride in yourself and exude confidence, two traits that are a big turn-on. If it’s been ages since you exercised and you dress like you work on a farm, you better believe that plays a part in the quantity and quality of men you attract.
4. He’s teasing you because he likes you.
“While it may have been true for young boys, still developing emotionally and sexually, a grown man who tries to put you off balance with verbal sparring on the first few dates doesn’t really care that much about you — or is playing games, which, in my book, amount to the same thing,” Carrao says. It seems like a pretty big leap to compare “teasing” with “verbal sparring.” In my mind, a little teasing is like flirting, and people flirt because they’re interested. There’s a difference between friendly teasing and nasty belittling, and I would hope grown women know the difference.
5. It doesn’t matter what night he wants to see you — Thursday, Friday, Monday, Wednesday, Saturday, whatever — only THAT he wants to see you.
“If he’s not seeing you on Saturday, he’s seeing someone else — or looking for someone he WOULD want to see on Saturdays, and every other day, in perpetuity.” I pretty much agree with this, though if a man works on Saturday night, he sort of has an excuse. But yeah, if a guy only wants to see you for booty calls late at night, he’s not really interested in you as a girlfriend, and it’s time to move on, sister, if what you want is a boyfriend.
Next week, Carrao promises to share five more dating-related rules women tell themselves. Any guesses what they might be?