Thursday, August 21, 2014

Biggest Mistakes Women Make When Dating

Women often blame themselves when things don't work out in the dating world--often to a fault. In such cases, I tell them to stop beating themselves up and sometimes even refer them to therapy for self-esteem building. On the other hand, sometimes it's true that women could have been smarter about dating. 

Steve Harvey, comedian, author, TV personality, and one of my favorite male writers on the topic of relationships (because he presents the man's perspective in a clear, easy-to-understand, lighthearted way), gets it right in my opinion on the biggest mistakes women make when dating:
1) They don't ask the right questions early on to find out if their date is compatible with them. Harvey says, that by date #3, a woman should have learned these 5 things about the man she's seeing:
- his short-term goals
- his long-term goals
- his views on relationships
- what he thinks about her
- what he feels about her 
2) They don't have clear standards and requirements in terms of what they want and need from men. Harvey says it's critical that a man know what it'll take to win a particular woman over, and she needs to tell him this directly. If she doesn't, she may allow herself to be disrespected, and no man is interested in a long-term partnership with a woman who doesn't respect herself.
3) Staying more than 6 months with a man who doesn't yet refer to her as his "girlfriend". According to Harvey, it takes far less time than that for a man to know if he sees himself with you long term. If, after 6 months, he's still introducing you to others as his "friend," he doesn't envision a future with you.
4) Getting intimate with a man before you know if he's right for you. As Harvey explains, if you sleep with a man too early, he won't respect you from then on because he believes you don't respect yourself and will let him get away with anything he wants. In other words, you have no dignity or confidence.
5) Letting him set the pace of the relationship instead of you. Harvey says a man who really likes you wants to please you and doesn't want you to do anything that makes you uncomfortable. So it's important that you say no to anything he suggests that doesn't feel right for you. 
6) Not allowing him to provide for you and protect you. Letting him pay for the date, open doors, pull out chairs, and help you in whatever way he can are things men want to do for women...and that make them feel more like men. Today's independent woman needs to let a man be a man.
7) Ignoring warning signs that show he's not really into you. Harvey advises a woman to move onto someone else if the man she's dating:
- doesn't pay attention to her feelings
- lies to her repeatedly
- cheats on her or has cheated on others in the past
- doesn't show an interest in listening closely to what she's saying
8) Expecting her love to be returned in exactly the same way she gives it out. Harvey says that men show their love in different ways than women, mostly through actions rather than words.

As a 60-year-old woman who's twice divorced (as is Harvey), I find it helpful to hear dating tips from a guy who's learned from his mistakes and sincerely wants to spare women the pain of making similar ones themselves. And I have to admit I've made most of these mistakes in more than a few relationships. 

How about you? Do these 8 suggestions resonate with you? I'd love to hear your views!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Your Efforts to Understand the Opposite Sex Will Pay Off!

I just finished reading an excellent book called Why Men Don't Listen and Women Can't Read Maps: How we're different and what to do about it by Allan and Barbara Pease (published in 2000). What an eye opener!

The book describes the biological and evolutionary reasons for the differences between men and women in an entertaining, never clinical and boring, way. It goes far beyond the "cavemen were hunters; cavewomen were gatherers" thing we always hear. It calls men "lunch-chasers" and women "nest-defenders" and clearly explains that, because our modern brains are still wired that way, we differ in many essential ways we will never be able to change. 

Here are just a few of the hundreds of basic differences between men and women outlined in the book:

1) Men are stimulated through their eyes; women are stimulated through their ears.

2) Men want power, achievement, and sex; women want relationships, stability, and love.

3) A man's biological job is to find as many healthy females as possible and help them conceive to preserve the species; a woman's biological role is to bear children and find a partner who will stick around long enough to raise them. 

4) Men's sexual turn-ons are pornography, female nudity, sexual variety, lingerie, and the woman's availability; women's sexual turn-ons are romance, commitment, communication, intimacy, and nonsexual touching.

5) Men's private sexual fantasy is sex with a stranger; women's private sexual fantasy is sex in a public place.

6) Men solve their problems/handle their stress using internal talk and need peace and quiet to do that; women solve their problems/handle their stress using external talk and want others to talk with them. Unfortunately, both genders think the other is like them when, in truth, they are opposites.

Just by understanding these 6 biological facts and putting this knowledge into practice in their male-female relationships, I bet most of today's couples would find it a lot easier accept each other...and, as a result, would be a lot happier. What do you think?

P.S. I highly recommend picking up this book. You'll find it a fun & fascinating read that, I'm sure, will improve your relationships.