Not All Women Want Your Money, Not All Men Want Your Body
Generalizations are killing authenticity in dating.
I’m not sure who to feel more sorry for in the dating arena, men or women. Truth be told, most days I feel sorry for just about anyone dating. That includes me.
Maybe it’s that I’ve been single for a couple of years now. Maybe it’s that I’ve become a bit more self-actualized about it. Maybe I’ve learned to be really good at spotting other people’s issues. But, I have become wildly aware of how some people absolutely ruin dating for themselves.
I was having a very in depth conversation with a potential suitor who is the kind of person that is so freakishly honest about what how he feels and what he thinks that you don’t quite know what to do with it.
He said that a lot of men feel that the most important thing they can bring to the dating table is the superficial things: money, status, a high paying job, a nice house.
He thought that a man with this going for him has the greatest advantage in dating and will most likely win out.
The statement didn’t surprise me. It’s widely understood that men feel most self conscious about how well they can fill the role of the provider. But, the contrarian in me disagrees wholeheartedly. I mean, why would any man want to be with a woman who only cares about who he is on the surface level?
I’m not here to argue if men feel one thing or another. That’s not my place. I’m not a man. What I can say, however, is that I think that how women actually feel is quite different from how men perceive it.
On the other side of the equation, I have heard from numerous women that they feel men focus way too strongly on the physical and seem to ignore that we have souls.
When I say physical, I mean two separate things: how a woman looks and her willingness to be a partner in the bedroom.
The counterpart to men feeling insecure about their ability to provide is a women’s insecurity when it comes to body acceptance. Women fear rejection based on how their body looks and how youthful they maintain themselves.
Neither of these are the fault of either gender. We’ve had it continually reinforced by media that our value is tied to these this.
It’s very rare that you see a luxury car commercial where the driver behind the wheel isn’t a man. Ads program women that only super hot, size 2 women can wear lingerie.
So we assume that this translates to dating and we make a mess of it by trying to fit into that mold, whether consciously or subconsciously. The difficulty is that the rejection from someone based on these point of vulnerability, whether real or assumed, can do serious damage. It creates learned behaviors.
I firmly believe this is one of the solid roots of animosity toward the opposite gender. Men feel resentful and start to see women as gold digging vultures who want nothing more in the dating world than free drinks, free meals and lavish gifts. Women feel objectified that unless the can be arm candy that is willing to do whatever a man wants in the bedroom, they have no value.
This. Is. Ridiculous.
There will always be exceptions to anything. Sure, there are guys out there who will exemplify the shallow man who sees women as nothing more than a human sex doll. Sure, there are women out there that are looking for a free ride with a man of high status. It does happen.
I don’t think it happens often enough for either men or women to come to accept it as a norm and tailor their attitude or behavior to either play into it or to take a toxic stance against it.
If we’re going to make any headway in dating authentically, we have to shake off these notions. They serve us no good. If we can stop concerning ourselves with what we think other people want and focus on what we are, we’ll get somewhere.
It requires self examination to understand what we really do bring to the table and doing the solid work to find someone who will appreciate that with us settling for less. It’s going to take take time. It’s going to take effort. But, I can guarantee you one thing: it’s going to be worth it.