Are Men Turned Off By Assertive Women?

March 18th, 2018

Feminism, Gender Roles, Moxie 101, NEW!, Re-Post

womandumpingguy

 

Name: Maria

Question: I recently read and article that said if the woman initiates any kind of contact with a guy that woman is chasing him. I have a guy friend, who I’m interested in, but have never opened up to about how I feel. He’ll initiate contact with me once in a while, like texting me to keep in touch or inviting me to lunch. Sometimes, I will initiate contact, too. Don’t you think that if the guy always initiates things, that he’s going to wonder if you’re even interested in him? Does chasing only apply to people dating ? Am I chasing my guy friend if I’m the one always inviting him or texting him? Some men are shy or lack confidence and don’t really go after the woman they’re really interested in, or is that just wishful thinking from me? And lastly, what is so wrong with the woman being a little more aggressive than the man?
Age: 33

To start, I think your guy friend’s intertest is mutual. I don’t know a lot of men that reach out to female friends just to talk. Sometimes the ambiguity of what exactly is going on between you and the other person can prevent one of them from taking things to the next level. I was friends with a man for many, many years and always sensed there was something between us, but didn’t wan t to disrupt the flow of our friendship by bringing it up. Sure enough, I was right. As I’ve mentioned before,. it’s not always black and white. If you think there’s something there – some kind of mutual attraction – there probably is. Where things get tricky is when you can’t tell if the interest is genuine or just something the other person is feigning because they’re bored or need attention. If this guy makes the effort to stay in touch beyond some basic bitch text, he’s probably interested.

Don’t you think that if the guy always initiates things, that he’s going to wonder if you’re even interested in him?

I think most men know that women believe a man should be the one to initiate, so they do it. However, that window of time is not open-ended. Eventually, the man is going to have to see some kind of initiative from the woman – usually in the form of sex – to keep making the effort. To put it plainly, guys will do most of the heavy lifting as long as they’re getting laid. That said, if you have to convince yourself that it’s okay to make the first move, take that as a warning sign. When a person has to rationalize a certain decision, it’s usually because they know in their gut something isn’t right. I’ll say once more that if you truly believe something is there, you’re probably right.

Am I chasing my guy friend if I’m the one always inviting him or texting him?

Yes. Absolutely you are chasing him if you always have to initiate, especially if he’s your friend. Women need to stop with the “But maybe he’s shy” excuse. That’s not a thing. If he’s not making a concerted effort to get your attention or stay in touch with you, he’s not interested.

I am not an advocate of women asking men out. I think women put themselves in very precarious positions by doing so. Why? Because I believe that men are only as interested as their options at the time. I believe most men are less discerning when it comes to dates and sex. Relationships not so much, but certainly when it comes to dates and sex. So what ends up happening is that many women assume that if a guy accepts an invitation that he’s interested and attracted to her. He might be, but I think for most men that attraction is multi-level. There’s the level of attraction required to go on a date; a level to have sex; and a level to commit, with the latter being the highest level. For many (not all!) women, I think, there’s just one level. That’s why many women are always asking men they meet online what they do for a living. They won’t even meet them for a drink without ensuring he’s financially stable. Guys? Guys don’t give a shit until things get to a point where they’re investing more than the woman.

And lastly, what is so wrong with the woman being a little more aggressive than the man?

Stop listening to friends that tell you that men are intimidated by strong/assertive/successful women. Most aren’t. That’s an excuse some women like to make because it sounds better than, “Men think I’m an obnoxious pain in the ass.”

Neither a man nor a woman should be aggressive in a relationship. Aggressive implies someone’s behavior is fueled by anger. However, there’s nothing wrong with a woman being more assertive. Nothing. In fact, I think more and more men are learning to appreciate a woman who knows what she wants and goes after it. If there’s one thing men can’t stand, it’s women that play games. They expect a certain level of hoop-jumping, but even that has its limits. Assertive women don’t have time for games. Either you’re in or you’re out. They let men know where they stand and what their boundaries are and let the guy decide if he wishes to proceed. That said, you should still do everything short of asking a man out. Let him do that for reasons I stated above. Your job is to put clear signals out there and let him take it from there.

 

 

 

Thoughts?

GOT A DATING QUESTION? NEED TO VENT?

Live in NYC or Boston? Check out our sister site BuffsandBrainiacs.com for social events and speeddating.

Get a One on One Dating Profile Review

We’ll review your profile/bio together via teleconference line and I’ll identify any red flags or tweaks that need to be fixed. Then we’ll go over the basics: photo selection; which search filters work best; message writing; setting up the first date. I’ll also teach you how to analyze potential date’s profiles and messaging habits so you can spot the time-wasters. Book a Session

 

 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Share
, ,

23 Responses to “Are Men Turned Off By Assertive Women?”

  1. Robyn Says:

    “you should still do everything short of asking a man out. Let him do that ….. Your job is to put clear signals out there and let him take it from there.”

    YES! YES! YES!

    A woman needs to leave something for the man to do in the whole process.
    If you drop all the hints and also do the asking, then he ends up doing nothing – and now you’ve set a nasty precedent for you as the woman doing the majority of the “work” / taking the risks in the relationship going forward.

    I learnt this lesson the hard way myself.

    Reply

  2. Parenting Says:

    This is so true. A lot of men will not ask you out if they think they are likely to be rejected and/or feel embarrassed. Your best bet is to make it abundantly clear that you are interested and receptive to his advances (lots of guys aren’t the best at picking up on clues so best to be pretty direct). From there, let him do the walking.

    I agree that he sounds interested in the OP. Maybe try doing some heavy flirting and see how he responds.

    Reply

  3. EANx Says:

    Many men, especially in the 30-40 range for the OP appreciate a woman who makes clear she’s interested. My GF is in that range and she sent the first email on Match. Four years later, we’re still together. That’s not to say she chased me down and did all the work but there’s a difference between being passive and having some input into the direction of your life.

    Reply

  4. Hailey Says:

    I don’t agree with he notion that a woman shouldn’t ask men out. Really? I’ve asked out almost every guy I’ve ever dated. You need to get rid of the idea that men always have lots of options. That just isn’t true. Ask any man on the street how many options he currently has and he probably won’t have any. Finding someone to date/have sex with/whatever just isn’t that easy to ground. Frankly, if I’m interested in someone I’m going to ask them. I don’t feel like having to waste time batting my eyelashes to see if he’ll pick up on it. I want to move it along to see if there’s a connection. And if he says no, who cares? At least I know and I can move on. If I feel like I’m making all of the effort to contact him the message is already clear he’s not interested. That’s just common sense. Men know that it is expected of them to do the asking but a lot of them just don’t know how to do it, along with a number of men who don’t really know how to carry on a conversation with a woman. They’re just not good at it. Look at examples 1 & 2:

    1. Sometimes the ambiguity of what exactly is going on between you and the other person can prevent one of them from taking things to the next level.

    2. I was friends with a man for many, many years and always sensed there was something between us, but didn’t wan t to disrupt the flow of our friendship by bringing it up. Sure enough, I was right.

    Now, just imagine, if you had just asked them out. You could possibly be dating someone and your dating life just got a whole lot easier.
    OP, just ask him out. “Hey ________, I just discovered this cool new restaurant near my house that I want to check out. How about instead of lunch this time we do dinner?” It’s as simple as that.

    Reply

    • fuzzilla Says:

      Generally I agree, and it sounds like you have the right attitude.

      I think if a woman is gonna approach first, she needs to be very, very careful about gauging the other person’s response and proceed accordingly. That probably sounds obvious, but too many women see what they wanna see and run with it, they make a million excuses for ambivalent men and then wonder why they’re not happy in their relationship, or why the guy they’re seeing refuses to “define the relationship with labels”… I think this is partly because women are a lot more apt than men are to fixate on one specific person they reallyreally like rather than think, “So, I’d like to try dating. Let’s get out there and see what happens…” They make the guy they’re crazy about the center of their story rather than themselves.

      The cheat sheet version of the above is to just do what Moxie says and not approach first but make your interest clear.

      Reply

    • Parenting Says:

      I dont see the difference between doing lunch and doing dinner in clarifying the fact that she wants to take things out of the platonic zone. Theres nothing inherently romantic or sexual about dinner.

      I can definitely appreciate that some women dont like assuming the passive role and that being the one to initiate has worked out well for you. I do agree with Moxie and Fuzilla that it tends to be problematic.

      The way someone once described it to me is “Women like having a lot of friends and men like having a lot of sexual partners.” Meaning that men often make the mistake in assuming that just because a woman wants to spend time with them that she wants to sleep with them which is not the case and conversely women make the mistake of assuming just because a man is willing to date them and sleep with them that he must want a relationship with them which is also not the case.

      If a guy knows you are interested in him but is still unwilling to take the initiative to ask you out, the fact that he agrees to a date that you instigate is unlikely to end in a relationship.

      Reply

      • fuzzilla Says:

        Yeah, I’m not saying don’t do it, and I also bristle at taking a passive role.

        Just, if you do it (ask a man out), be realistic and emotionally grounded about it. If someone’s not interested, take it in stride and wish them well and move on. As opposed to being crushed or continuing to pine for the guy and thinking, “He only likes her for sex but he confides in me emotionally, and that HAS to mean something, doesn’t it??” You shouldn’t need a crystal ball. Use your words and believe them when other people use theirs. Now, I know feelings aren’t something you have 100% control over. Getting hurt and knocked around a bit is just part of life. You can control what you actively channel your energy into, though.

        Reply

        • Parenting Says:

          I was think of something more along the lines of a woman thinking things are going somewhere because the guy keeps accepting dates with her. If it was as simple as you ask and he shoots you down, sure why not do the asking?! Its just far more crushing to think you may have finally met someone with future potential only to realize 6 months later that he is still not willing to initiate anything and that he is dating other women who he is somehow not “too shy” to ask out. It just turns into one of those weird nevulous situation like the LW from a few weeks back who’s “boyfriend” refused to say ILY after like 7 or 8 months of dating.

          Reply

          • fuzzilla Says:

            Yeah, that’s mostly what I meant. Generally a “no” is a clear answer, although sometimes people still pine if it’s someone who is a regular part of their life either way. If it’s just some rando on OKCupid, it should be fairly easy to forget they ever existed.

            It’s more problematic when a guy says yes but is only lukewarm. Gods, I was *totally* thinking of that same letter.

            Reply

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      Ask any man on the street how many options he currently has and he probably won’t have any.

      Wait, what? Really? So, if I walked around and asked a reasonably attractive man if he had any options, he wouldn’t have any? To quote Miranda Hobbs, “Where’d you read that? Convenient Theories For You Monthly?”

      Finding someone to date/have sex with/whatever just isn’t that easy to ground.

      It’s not the finding that is difficult. Anyone can “find” someone to sleep with or date. It’s the finding someone you consider attractive part that is difficult. That’s where the difference comes in. Physical attraction isn’t always at the top of the list when men just want to get laid. Men, when they don’t have any options, are less discerning.

      And if he says no, who cares?

      This is one of things people toss off but don’t actually mean. So, you’d totally ask out a co-worker and wouldn’t care at all if he rejected you and you had to see him every day? Come on.

      Men know that it is expected of them to do the asking but a lot of them just don’t know how to do it, along with a number of men who don’t really know how to carry on a conversation with a woman.

      Okay, but why would you want to date someone who didn’t know how to talk to women? Why would you want to date a grown man who doesn’t know how to ask a woman out? I mean, sure, if that’s your type, then go for it. Ask them out, but you’ll probably be the one leading the way throughout the relationship. But don’t you think an adult male with a reasonable level of self-confidence would ask you out if he were interested, as long as there weren’t extenuating circumstances? (i.e. a co-worker.)

      I was friends with a man for many, many years and always sensed there was something between us, but didn’t wan t to disrupt the flow of our friendship by bringing it up. Sure enough, I was right.

      Conversely, he obviously didn’t like you enough to take the risk. The “I don’t want to ruin the friendship” excuse is usually something people say when they want to be polite. I could be wrong, of course.

      “Hey ________, I just discovered this cool new restaurant near my house that I want to check out. How about instead of lunch this time we do dinner?”

      “this time” implies there’s already a pre-existing relationship. That’s not the same as asking someone you don’t know very well out on a date. Not that your example sounds like a date, because it doesn’t. It sounds like you’re asking a friend to join you for dinner. Cool, then you’ll find yourself out with someone and wondering if it’s a daTte. Again, who wants to do that?

      Do what you want, I guess. I justy don’t think your argument holds up.

      Reply

      • joeb Says:

        “Ask them out, but you’ll probably be the one leading the way throughout the relationship. ”

        This leap in logic seems to be the heart of the don’t ask men out argument and I just don’t buy it. An assertive man will be assertive whether or not you ask him out and a passive man will be passive in the relationship regardless. Your asking a man out is not going to irrevocably suck all the initiative out of him. Personally, if a woman asks me out, I’m likely to be far more assertive now that’s she given me permission.

        “But don’t you think an adult male with a reasonable level of self-confidence would ask you out if he were interested, as long as there weren’t extenuating circumstances?”

        My answer would be no (though perhaps the difference is in what we consider extenuating). His interest isn’t nearly enough. At least in my social group (and I think this is becoming more universal) you don’t ask unless you are pretty certain they want you to. If there is any doubt at all you back off. This leads to a lot of indeterminate testing the waters interactions with lots of ambiguity. Which sucks in some ways and leads to lots of frustration but that’s just the way we now proceed.

        Reply

      • Hailey Says:

        “Wait, what? Really? So, if I walked around and asked a reasonably attractive man if he had any options, he wouldn’t have any?”

        Yes, you would. You said so in this sentence: Men, when they don’t have any options, are less discerning.

        “This is one of things people toss off but don’t actually mean. So, you’d totally ask out a co-worker and wouldn’t care at all if he rejected you and you had to see him every day? Come on.”

        Been there, done that. Dated a couple of co-workers in the past. Still were friends after it was over. And seriously, being told “no” isn’t going to make me feel “oh so embarrassed” that I couldn’t walk by them everyday. At least I can say I tried. I’m also an adult. I can accept rejection. It’s always a 50% possibility when asking someone out.

        “Okay, but why would you want to date someone who didn’t know how to talk to women? Why would you want to date a grown man who doesn’t know how to ask a woman out?”

        This is coming from the same person who has had a year long crush on a guy at the gym and has admitted to not knowing how to start a conversation with him. Tell me why he would want to date YOU?

        “But don’t you think an adult male with a reasonable level of self-confidence would ask you out if he were interested, as long as there weren’t extenuating circumstances? (i.e. a co-worker.)”

        Nope. I’ve had a few men in the past tell me they had a crush on me a long time before. When I asked them why they didn’t ask me out, because I would have said yes, they all said the same thing. They thought I would have said no. That’s when I stopped waiting around and started asking men out instead.

        “I was friends with a man for many, many years and always sensed there was something between us, but didn’t wan t to disrupt the flow of our friendship by bringing it up. Sure enough, I was right.

        Conversely, he obviously didn’t like you enough to take the risk. The “I don’t want to ruin the friendship” excuse is usually something people say when they want to be polite. I could be wrong, of course.”

        Pardon me Moxie, you just put yourself down because that was YOUR story. You referenced that when you talked about ambiguity between two people. I was pointing out that if you had said something instead of “not wanting to disrupt the flow of your friendship” you could have asked. Instead, you did nothing and It turned out he did like you. Oh look, you could have dated someone if you took a chance.

        ““this time” implies there’s already a pre-existing relationship. That’s not the same as asking someone you don’t know very well out on a date. Not that your example sounds like a date, because it doesn’t. It sounds like you’re asking a friend to join you for dinner. Cool, then you’ll find yourself out with someone and wondering if it’s a daTte. Again, who wants to do that?”

        Pardon me while a re-phrase the question: “Hey _______, I discovered this cool Mexican restaurant in my area and I remember how much you like tacos. How about I take you to dinner there some time?”

        “Do what you want, I guess. I justy don’t think your argument holds up.”

        Really? I’ve had lots of dates and some long term relationships where I asked them out. So, tell me how that doesn’t hold up?

        Reply

  5. joeb Says:

    I’ve never understood the “don’t ask a guy out” advice. If you’re interested and want to explore the potential – ask him out. Otherwise resign yourself to regretting lost possibilities. There seems to be this weird notion that somehow that one interaction defines the relationship or leads to not knowing if he really wants to be there or something. The start of a relationship, even a casual one, is made up of hundreds if not thousands of interactions indicating interest or the lack thereof. Asking him out gets the ball rolling but even then, that one act is followed by a whole series of indications – how enthusiastically does he respond, how involved does he get in making it happen, does he suggest venues or times or activities, how much follow up does he do. And that doesn’t even get into the second and third date. If you are always having to initiate all contact and all dates and all interaction beyond that initial asking out, then, yes, he’s not interested. But your asking him out isn’t going to cause that situation.

    If the problem is “you can’t tell if the interest is genuine or just something the other person is feigning because they’re bored or need attention”, that’s a problem with your ability to read people and is not in any way solved by having a don’t ask him out rule. He may be asking you out because he’s bored or needs attention just as likely as he accepts your invitation because he’s bored and needs attention.

    Making it obvious but not asking him out is a really poor strategy. There are so very very many reasons why your “obvious” isn’t really as obvious as you think. Maybe it’s too subtle, maybe he thinks you’re just enjoying a flirtation, maybe he thinks you are bored and amusing yourself, maybe he’s not terribly confident in his ability to read signals, maybe he’s heard from somewhere that you don’t really like him. Who knows? Just asking works way better.

    Reply

    • Hailey Says:

      Exactly what I’m saying! Thank you Joeb. The entire notion that “men should do this” and “women should do that” is old school nonsense. Feeding the women the idea that if they do the asking it’s not going to end well creates this idea that all men untrustable jerks, which isn’t healthy. It also makes women think they have to let a man have power over them in order to date someone. No thanks. I’ll have control over whom I date. If he wants to ask me out, great. If I see someone I’m interested in, I’m going to ask him out. An whomever does the asking doesn’t decide the outcome. Plenty of men ask women out, turn on the boyfriend experience, hoping to get laid, or attention, or whatever. Use your common sense. If he’s out with you but not giving you what you need then don’t date him.
      In the meantime, take the chance and ask him out. You’re dating life with be much richer.

      Reply

    • fuzzilla Says:

      Hmm. Maybe people should be more specific about what “obvious signs of interest” look and feel like, then. Smiling, laughing, calling/texting, “I really like XYZ in a man/relationship,” “hey, I always wanted to check out XYZ place, it sounds really fun” while stopping short of actually asking?

      Reply

      • joeb Says:

        There really isn’t anything that is reliably obvious short of being explicit with words. And even that is subject to misinterpretation (I’ve been on dates where I wasn’t actually sure if we both agreed it was a date or not). For me, of that list of 5 behaviors: smiling, laughing – absolutely not reliable indicators of interest; calling/texting – possible but still pretty iffy; “I really like XYZ in a man” – nope, not an indication at all; “hey, I always wanted to…” – close and possibly actionable but still may just be a statement of general interest in something rather than an invitation.

        Where’s the harm in just adding to the last one – “, would you like to check that out with me?”. Resolve a lot of the ambiguity and ask for what you want.

        Reply

        • Parenting Says:

          Been there done that. Asked a guy to go camping just the two of us. Because we’d gone camping before as a group and it was platonic then, he assumed it was still platonic and nothing happened. We started dating 2 years later.

          Reply

        • fuzzilla Says:

          I guess hinting that you’re interested is kinda like watching someone eat some delicious cake and you’re like, “Wow, that looks so delicious, they used imported chocolate and the finest baker made it, and all those flowers on top were hand made and soaked in rum and that baker made the cake for Obama’s inauguration…” Hint after hint after hint about how fabulous the cake is. I can imagine the other person being like, “OMFG, just ask for a damn piece if you want some…”

          Like I said, I do get being cautious about approaching men for dates because men are lazy and will often say yes just because they’re down for sex. You don’t wanna end up with dead weight. But I also get just wanting to be direct and get a yes or a no and get on with your damn life already.

          Reply

  6. Mark Says:

    Instead of thinking of it as chasing, you might want to think about sending signals that you are interested. Not too subtle, not over the top obvious. But enough to let him conclude (if he has half a brain) that you would be receptive to his advances.

    If he is interested, he will do the asking.

    It just seems that by and large, that’s the way our society has conditioned us.

    Best of luck.

    Reply

  7. Yvonne Says:

    Could this be a bit of a generational thing? I’m in my fifties, and when I’ve tried asking men out in my past, it didn’t work. They really weren’t interested. I think men my age are are really used to having that ball in their court. Most of the men I date have had plenty of relationship experience, most have been married, they’re not clueless about the “signals”, and they know how to ask for a date. Are younger men more comfortable having women ask them out?

    Reply

    • Parenting Says:

      Not to beat the point to a bloody pulp but i can relate to what Moxie described from my experience job hunting. I saw a billion job posting and most of them i glance at and think, “Nah, not interesting enough to pursue and go through the headache of tailoring my resume, writing a cover letter, researching the company in preparation for the interview, etc…” However, if a recruiter pings me and gushes about what a great fit I am and is willing to do all the leg work and all I have to do is show up for the interview, then what the heck?! Let me see what they offer.

      Theres always the possibility that I may fall in love with the company in the process but they are starting out on lukewarm footing.

      There are no bad guys or good guys in the process. Its really just a matter of perception and interest.

      Reply

  8. Ss16 Says:

    I think it really depends on how you do the asking. I totally agree with the sending obvious signal part of the advice. If he didn’t pick up on any of them, and you still want to take a last shot, ask him to join you for an activity – anything ranging from drinks, coffee, seeing a show/movie//exhibition. If there’s really something going on between you two, it will show there. There’s no need to be like “hey I’ve been interested in you for a long time. Do you want to go on a date with me?” – which I think no one would ask like that. I don’t think there’s any harm in asking that way. It’s not even about being assertive or not – it’s about being strategic in asking. And most guys will ask in the same way.

    From experience, I’ve always dropped plenty of hints and on several occasions, I’ve asked the guy to “catch up over drinks”. That’s the “giving him permission” part. And sure enough, he picked on up the hint. If I hadn’t done that, it would’ve taken him much longer or worse, not at all. Just know that men and women are equally careful when pondering the possibility of getting rejected. We can still be assertive without taking initiatives in everything and leave the guy nothing to do. I hope it works out!

    Reply

Leave a Reply to Parenting

© 2013-2018 And That's Why You're Single All Rights Reserved