The Dating Woman: From a Man’s Perspective

Despite this performance by my species, I think men know women pretty well. Sure, we don’t know what or why they carry the things in their purses that they do. And we surely can’t come up with the top 5 nicknames they like to be called–outside of the bedroom that is. But if you were to put a gun to my head and make me say which sex “gets” the opposite sex the most, I would have to say it’s the male.

Now, for all of the women out there, that seems like an extremely bias answer, so let me explain myself.

When I think of which sex “worries” about the other sex the most, I’d have to say it’s women. Sure, the stereotypical, nerd-like, pre-pubescent male teen we see on TV and in movies all the time isn’t good with the ladies, but neither is the female of the same ilk. The important thing here is to compare apples to apples. And so even if there are more female-kryptonite men in the world than there are male-kryptonite women in the world, that’s a moot point when it comes to who knows the opposite sex better, because we need only compare like vs. like.

So let’s start with the high-income earners. Take a well-educated, ambitious, successful, male extrovert and compare him to a female of the same vein. In my own experiences, the former has very little issue attracting and finding potential dates and relationship partners. While the latter, the successful female, tends to have a lot more issue. Now some people might say that is a function of numbers–that in today’s changing society, the number of successful women outnumber the number of successful men. And while that may be true, I have still noticed that in places where the numbers aren’t necessarily in favor of men (e.g., in San Francisco), the truth remains that men have less trouble with the opposite sex than the other way around–in my own experience.

Moving on to another demographic. Take the average man, who graduated high school, learns a trade, and lives from paycheck to paycheck while having a comedic personality, and then compare him to a woman of the same vein. That same man, in my experience, still has less trouble with the opposite sex than a woman does, because he tends to play to his strengths and finds someone who can appreciate him for something other than his money (or lack thereof), and can appreciate his humor instead. His female counterpart, on the other hand, often does the same, but is more likely to continue the search for longer while looking for better.

Now this by no means is a scientific study…and I know what you’re saying: “No shit.” But it is my experience, as limited in sample size as it may be, and thus it has colored my perspective of the female looking for love. And that’s not to say it has colored my perspective of the woman in a negative way. On the contrary, I think my curiosity and perspective has made me more inclined to look for the issues a woman is having with dating, in relationships and with settling down. And I’m also more inclined to want to understand the reasons why those issues come to exist.

But in my pursuit of understanding, I’m often dumbfounded. If you ask me, or most any man, women have the power in this dynamic. Sure, in saying that, I appear to be ignoring thousands of years of bigotry, misogyny and even misogamy…but I’m not trying to say that. I’m just trying to say that in today’s modern society, in which women can (at least to a large extent) control their financial destinies, they can control the terms of the early part of a relationship. Because face it, there are a lot of men out there, dumb and smart alike, that will do a lot of dumb things for sex. And because of that, women can really dictate how this whole male-female dynamic works–and usually sniff out the guy who’s willing to do any dumb thing for sex.

Which is why I always find it amazing when beautiful, smart women I know have such a hard time with men. I’m sure some of the problem there is rooted in that whole civilization’s old history of misogyny that I mentioned. And while I don’t want to ignore that reality or be dismissive of it, the male equivalent, the handsome and intelligent guy, doesn’t have the same problems with the opposite sex that women do–despite the fact that the status of the women around him has risen by leaps and bounds since the 1920s. Certainly, a women’s status in this country isn’t where it should be yet, but one would’ve hoped that the gains that have been made would have at least allowed our the most intelligent and beautiful women to take advantage of them.

And I think they have…just not as much as I personally would’ve expected. Because if you asked me in 2006 when I graduated from college whether the intelligent women I was graduating with would struggle with the opposite sex more so than the intelligent men I was graduating with would, I would have said hell no. But time after time, example after example, that doesn’t appear to be the case.

Again, I stress that this is all from the idiotic standpoint of a guy who has been in a relationship forever, and is using the few dozen examples he has from people he knows, most of which are upper-middle class and Ivy educated. So perhaps I’m out of touch. But I paint this picture of the female struggle to let you know where the background and writing for “First Dates” comes from.

Perhaps my perspective is rooted in a forest full of wrong. Perhaps I sound like a complete misogynist. And perhaps these words are more painful to a woman’s ears than they are sensible in my own head. For that I’m sorry, but this perspective is what I have experienced, and it’s some of what you’ll see, along with many other perspectives from my co-writer (a female & my wife) and our cast, in the web series. I encourage you to comment and discuss the elements you agree and disagree with throughout the series, and let us know just how you feel about the world we live in today, and how a woman’s ability to find a partner of the opposite sex compares to that of a man’s.

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