Reveal Insight into Dating, Marriage, and Women
A female sent
me the following dilemma and question:
We met online and seemed to hit it off right from the start.
After he answered my ad, we went on our first date, and it was
fabulous. I believe we both felt a strong chemistry and learned
a lot about each other. At the end of the evening we agreed to
get together again. He called me the next day and we talked for
three hours. On our second date, we spent the whole day together.
After three dates (and many emails, phone calls) - we were talking
on a Thursday night. We had previously discussed plans for Saturday.
However, he did not mention it before we hung up. I wasn't sure
of how to handle the situation, so I waited until a day later
and left a voice message for him, saying hi. After four days
with no word, I left him an invitation to dinner at my place.
I never heard back. What happened? What am I supposed to think?
Many single women write to me expressing confusion, uncertainty
and frustration regarding the whole dating scene. Their stories
are often (like the one above), filled with tales of broken dates,
unanswered emails and/or phone calls and guys just disappearing
for no apparent reason. They are looking for answers about what
qualities men look for in choosing women to date and want to
know what single guys really want from their relationships. Most
of all, they want to know how to find and build mutually satisfying
and lasting relationships.
After receiving the above email, I decided to query several
single guys and ask for their thoughts, reactions and suggestions
to this and other questions that women want answers to. The men
I spoke to are all; never married, twenties to thirties, professional,
attractive and financially successful. All have very full social
lives and have been actively meeting and dating women for years.
Only one guy (David, a small town mayor and a professional lobbyist
for a trade association) is in a relationship. However, he travels
quite a bit and spends a lot of time out socially with mixed
groups of singles.
for the writer of the above question contained somewhat differing
views, but had a consistent thread running
through it. The bottom line - he liked her and had an interest,
but something changed and he decided he didn't want to continue.
The men offered such comments as "he decided he's just not that
interested in her" and " I wonder if they had sex, because some
guys are into the chase and loose interest after that". One guy
was surprised that this had occurred after they had spent a lot
of time together and there had been a real interest in getting
to know each other.
All of the
guys felt that he should have handled the situation differently.
David felt the writer should
have brought up the issue of getting together right away- during
the phone call. He believes "this would have cleared up the ambiguity
and let her know upfront where she stood." He also commented
that a woman needs to "focus on what is happening in a relationship
right now". He cautioned, "don't rely on past dates, go with
what is happening now." Their comments gave birth to more discussion
and many related questions that came up for me as they shared
about their dating experiences and their beliefs. The end result?
A brief snapshot of the qualities men look for in women and their
thoughts on dating, timing, commitment and marriage.
What are turn-ons for you?
is very important. Look for easy-going, easy to be with, low
» "Confident, fun,
strong - yet kind- women"
» "Takes care of
herself- mentally and physically"
» "Makes decisions
based on what is good for her, not to please me or someone
» "Is positive
and can be part of a healthy give-and-take relationship"
» "Attractive and
has style and class"
» " Is a good friend,
easy-going. easy to be with"
» "Is upfront and
communicates feelings/wants/needs clearly and directly"
» "Comfortable with
herself/her body/her decisions"
What are turn-offs for you?
» "Doesn't take care
of herself- sloppy, disorganized, etc."
» "Negativity is
a big turn-off- behavior, relationships, conversation"
nothing is ever enough"
express needs and feelings directly"
» "Expects too much
in general and doesn't give back equally"
» "Is always the
victim- everyone unfair and unkind to them"
» "needy, insecure,
» "selfish- stingy
with money, time, friends"
are the qualities that make a woman a "keeper"?
» "very into me"
» "appreciates what
I contribute and is respectful of my feelings"
» "career or no career
ok as long as she contributes to the family (great mom)"
would you define "date"?
» "Make plans in
» "There is something
there besides sex"
» "This is something
you want to pursue- have an interest in the person"
» "Friends with benefits
can lead to dating or be considered a date"
» "Hooking-up is not
How does a woman know if a guy is really interested?
» "He will pursue her"
» "No matter what, he will keep in
» "He communicates
regularly and pursues a dating relationship"
How does a guy let a woman know he is not/no longer interested?
» "He will vanish"
» "Email or call
but not bring up getting together"
» "Say I had a great
time, etc.- but then not call"
» "Won't return calls
or call when he said he would"
» "Talk with her about
how he is feeling/not feeling, but this is hard for many men
» "Has to do with
his age and level of maturity- these will determine which way
he will handle it"
Why/when do guys marry?
» "It's about maturity
» "Age and what friends
are doing plays a large role"
» "Has to do with
readiness for making a commitment and having kids, etc."
» "Heeds to feel
financially, emotionally ready"
» "Needs to really
click with a woman- on all levels"
» "timing is a lot
The content of the feedback from these guys was very consistent.
The overall consensus? High-maintenance, negative women are the
biggest turn-offs. Confident, together women, who take care of
themselves, can communicate honestly and directly and are easy
to be with- got the highest marks. Timing in relationships plays
a huge role. Mostly, the men emphasized that when a guy is truly
interested in a woman, he will pursue her and let her know. If
he offers excuses and doesn't follow through, he's just not interested-
either in her or in a relationship at this time.
My advice to the women
out there. "Listen" closely to what he
communicates non-verbally. If he says one thing, but does another,
he is not telling you the whole truth. If you have just begun
dating someone or have seen him for a while and his behavior
towards you changes suddenly- address this with him immediately.
Most of all, if something just doesn't feel right, it probably
isn't. Trust your instincts and let them be your guide.
Toni Coleman, MSW is a licensed psychotherapist and relationship coach with
over 20 years of experience. As a recognized expert, Toni has been quoted
in many local and national publications including: The Chicago Tribune
and The Orlando Sentinel newspapers and Family Circle, Woman's Day, and
Star magazines. She has been featured on ABC News; Discovery Health Channel
and AOL Online. As a weekly contributing commentator on the KTRS Radio
Morning Show, (St. Louis, MO), Toni offers dating tips and relationship
advice in response to listener feedback. Toni founded Consum-mate.com in 2002 to offer singles the knowledge and tools they need to find and
sustain healthy, lasting love relationships. She is a member of The International
Coach Federation, and The International Association Of Coaches.