What do men wish women knew regarding those first few dates? What small changes can women make that will pleasantly surprise their dates? Social conventions and stereotypes have engrained notions not entirely accurate in the minds of the dating public. Women often believe they should aspire to an ideal which, in reality, is not the ideal at all.
First of all, and not surprisingly, many men have voiced a desire for the woman’s gesture to pay for the date. Whether ladies offer to split the bill or pick up the tab entirely, this gesture goes a long way. It is important to remember, that in this day and age, when dates (due to online sources) are relatively easy to come by, it can become a major burden for guys. Not offering to pay implies an entitled attitude. An assumption that a perfect stranger wishes to treat another perfect stranger for dinner simply because she happens to be a she is misguided and unfair. Secondly, reaching for one’s wallet demonstrates a mutual investment in the outing. It is not the man’s sole responsibility, but rather, a shared investment that falls equally on two people. Lastly, it is interesting to note that some guys prefer the girl to pay so that they then feel like they “owe her one.” This in turn will then serve as their incentive to take her out on another date.
In a similar vein, many men have also mentioned that it would be wonderful if the ladies would choose the location or activities for the date. Let’s face it – women eat out just as much as men do (scientific fact). Throw a bone; pick a spot. Most men will find this small demonstration of assertiveness attractive. Moreover, most men are happy when they feel that their dates are happy – knowing that the lady is enjoying herself (she did choose the locale, after all) will serve as a huge relief. Lastly, men don’t only like happy women, but they also like to feel taken care of, and this is an easy way to do it.
Thirdly, it is not only women who want to feel desired and attractive in the eyes of their date. Men put a similar amount of effort into the way they look and present themselves. Ladies enjoy a compliment from their dates regarding their appearances (so long as the compliments are in good taste, of course), and guys are no different. Letting them know that they are seen and appreciated gives them the confidence and desire to keep trying. Few things feel better than being noticed and seen by the right person.
Dainty sometimes comes off as wish-washy. Women who try to be “more feminine” usually come off as unimpressive, indecisive, and less attractive. While it may not be suggested to belch in a date’s face, it is better to order the ribs over the cucumber salad. Order the big greasy plate if this is the usual go to; being oneself is infinitely more attractive than trying to be someone else.
No games. There is a difference between not coming on too strong and playing games. What playing hard to get is supposed to do is force a guy into chasing a girl – and because of men’s competitive nature, this can make a girl more desirable. That is why people who are overly available and come on too strong right from the get go do not challenge their partner and therefore, do not ignite or spark attraction, interest, or curiosity. That said, “playing hard to get” has lost its nuance. Men need to feel respected and that their time matters. If a lady makes a man jump through hoops and then flakes at the last minute, she is not playing hard to get. She is being disrespectful and rude, and their is no greater turnoff. Avoid word vomit. Leave some stories untold and some traits undiscovered. Leave him wanting, but only wanting to know you more. This can be achieved while still answering the phone (even the day after the date), or shooting a text to thank him for a good time.
To sum up, it is important to remember, that dating is not the time to begin succumbing to empty social stereotypes. No part of this list should come as a big shock to those who have experienced the dating scene. Women and men are looking for similar traits in their partners: engaging, interesting, and invested. Striving for those, as opposed to “being the perfect lady” can go a long way.