I found this fascinating article on Psychology Today about what frustrates the modern man about dating. It lists a number of double binds and double standards that annoy men the most and what they are doing about it. It’s an interesting read and I think both men and women should read it to understand precisely why it isn’t a walk in the park for us either.
There is one particular thing that exasperates single male friends of mine and I’ve come across this a lot. That is when a woman wants…
No problem in itself, but the problem is when it comes with the expectation of exclusivity. At the beginning of the relationship, before it has properly started, some women want to be “friends first” – take it slowly, don’t get too involved, don’t jump into bed too soon. This is perfectly acceptable, sensible and normal as you grow to know each other. But we sometimes find this comes with an extra, unrealistic expectation. Our lady “friend” does not want us to date anybody else while she ponders what she actually wants from the man in question. Perhaps she thinks he should make a romantic gesture to prove that it is her he wants, but ultimately he is taking all the risk for little gain. She holds the cards and that’s exactly how she wants it.
If she ultimately decides no, he’s going to feel angry and frustrated at being led on – especially if she expressly states that she expects him not to see anyone else in the mean time while she figures out what she wants and takes it slowly.
Don’t play that game. By all means go along with their “friends first” approach, but don’t take that to mean anything and continue to see other people. If she has a problem with that then that says one of two things about her:
- She is not being honest with herself about her feelings
- She is controlling
You shouldn’t pressure her, of course, because she’ll run the other way. She does need to understand that you have dignity which will trump chivalry every time so while she figures out what she wants, it is not unreasonable that you should see other people.
What do others think about that? Have you been “friends first”? Did you expect exclusivity?