Dating Advice

If I Could Give You Only One Piece of Dating Advice…

452px-kate_beckinsale.jpg.

It would be to get this in your head:

Men and Women are different.

Take Kate Beckinsale’s interview comment from the July 2006 edition of Redbook:

Women feel sexy from feeling appreciated and attractive and desired. Men feel sexy from…having sex. [laughs] If you can strike that balance where the man is having sex a whole bunch and the woman is feeling attractive and desired enough to have sex a whole bunch, then you’ve figured out the secret to a marriage that is totally alive.

Case in point. Men and Women are different.

If you read any dating advice or any books, if this truth isn’t evident in what you’re reading, put the book down. ASAP. Most of the conflict, communication problems and misunderstandings stem from this basic fact that we’re just wired differently. Embrace it. Accept it. Learn about the opposite sex. Then you’ll stop saying things like, ” Isn’t it obvious what I need from him? Do I have to spell it out?” or “Why does she always assume something’s wrong when I stay quiet?”

And here are my favorite books for understanding the opposite sex: Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus and Mars and Venus on a Date.

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Article written by:

I love thinking about the intricacies of dating, love and life. I share my tiny lessons in the hope that it helps you as you navigate the dating world.

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  1. Lydia

    Haha! Great quote! I like it because it’s succinct and completely true at the same time.

  2. Dating Advice Lover

    Girls want security and status.

    Guys want sex and someone their friends will like.

  3. MidoriLei

    I’d like to add:

    Women want love and loyalty

    Men want sex and success

  4. Nathan

    That’s a pretty broad generalization, don’t you think? I’ve known women who only seem to be interested in sex and success. And how many guys are there that would say they don’t want love and loyalty?

    Even for a guy, there’s no better feeling in the world than the feel desired. It’s not only flattering, but also a huge turn on (when welcome, anyway). My opinion is that “I want you to want me” is not a gender exclusive sentiment.

  5. MidoriLei

    Good point, Nathan. I guess I should say that although all those things are not gender exclusive, I think that women want love and loyalty more than sex and success and men want sex and success more than love and loyalty. it’s not so much what one sex wants and the other doesn’t but what we prioritize more? hmmmm

  6. Anonymous Guy

    I’m with Nathan on this one, sex isn’t on the top of every guy’s list. Maybe that’s what today’s media wants us to think, in the same way it wants girls to think they should want to be super models, it tells guys they should want sex. The desire to have sex is universal, but it’s not an all controlling priority. Honestly I’d rather cuddle up on a couch and watch a movie. You can’t generalize genders in the same way you can’t generalize race. There are differences, but we’re all human. How can any honest, decent, Christian guy seriously put sex and success first in a relationship? It’s revolting to think about. Firstly because success is so hard to define, because in my Book the least are the first, whereas the world deems a successful man one who has everything everyone else wants. And I know a few young women that have pretty much thrown love out the window and they let everyone know where their loyalty is… sex and success.

  7. Nathan

    Humans are sexual beings, but to automatically assume guys prioritize that aspect more than women do is still a little unfair. That may appear to be the case on the surface, but on a deeper level, what guys really crave is the intimacy that has unfortunately been substituted with sex. There are similarities and best when packaged together, so that’s why our brains are sometimes tricked into getting the two confused. In a way, sexuality has almost become a shorthand for the full experience of a meaningful relationship, because it’s easier and quicker to present.

    Since you love “The Notebook” I will give you this example of why, as much as I enjoyed it, I was also left a bit dissapointed. In the movie, you hardly see any real authentic connection between the young couple. I felt like the audience was really shortchanged with their portion of the story. Where was their relationship, what was it made of? A series of passionate, fiery moments full of desperate energy and hormones. “I can’t get enough of you” is certainly fun and is very healthy in the proper context, but that’s like eating marinara without the pasta. Spice and flavour don’t last without substance.

    I understand that in movies, sometimes those shortcuts have to be made to quickly communicate an idea in a brief amount of time. But real relationships are built on the little things that develop over time, personal things unique to that particular couple that may not resonate the same with other people.

    That’s why some guys get so mixed up, because they honestly believe that sex and intimacy are the same thing. Not surprising when they are constantly barraged with that idea, even in chick flicks. Men need your help, ladies. Remind them: accept no imitations. Let them see how much more fulfilling you are when they get to experience you as a person.

    When a guy finally experiences the full package, he will readily admit how much more amazing it is than just the shallow, surface stuff that he’d been settling for before and was never truly satisfied with. Just ask Neil Strauss.

  8. Lydia

    Very good thoughts, Nathan. You are right.

  9. MidoriLei

    Nathan and Anonymous Guy, you guys make some great points. Very wise my friends. I still believe that men and women are different, but now I’m questioning just how they are. Both sexes have sexual and emotional needs. hmmm…

  10. Jason

    I’d change it around:

    Women want emotional intimacy from their partner and loyalty.

    Men want sexual intimacy from their partner and to have noble sucess(leaders, father figures, providers, respect etc.).

    Now those two types of intimacy have aspects which cross over. They can even (definitely?) mean unique things to their respective genders also, like in fulfilling your partner you obtain fulfillment yourself. But Generally each desire matches its own respective gender more so than the other. (And to be honest I’m probably closer to knowing what men want over what women want :p. So that could be amended further). I think there is nothing wrong with striving after those desires in a marriage and in doing so have a sucessful marriage.

    This is important however: none of these desires can be correctly fulfilled within a relationship without the “Godly order of things” being present. Thing such as putting God first, no sexual intimacy before marriage and the unique Godly roles for men and women in a marriage.

    One last interesting thought. If we desire anything God-ordained, such as marriage itself, then by definition that desire has to be absolutely crystal clear and defined because that desire is from God. I think there can be room for preferences though.

  11. MidoriLei

    Jason! Thanks for your comment. I agree with you 100% as far as what men and women want.

  12. Gabe

    Nathan, I agree with you about the movie The Notebook! Didn’t hit me like it did other people, and for exactly the reasons you stated. Just wasn’t entirely believable because of the apparent lack of substance between the two throughout the movie. This is why I liked A Walk To Remember MUCH more, and thought of it as more believable and more substantive. This movie portrays love better than the Notebook, IMO. So is this the Nathan from Jefferson Academy way back in the day?

  13. Gabe

    And even with the short amount of time a movie has to tell a story, there are plenty of other movies which have developed substance well in that short amount of time. Made of Honor showed the connection between the two very well, and the actors helped translate that out too of course..

  14. hunter

    Jason, no sexual intimacy before the marriage ceremony? That might work, if the couple is past the age of 50. Or, maybe, if you marry someone you are not attracted to, physically/sexually.

  15. Jason

    Hunter.. Statistically, someone who has relations with only one partner over a lifetime is less likely to divorce. Meaning no sexual intimacy before marriage most likely will increase the “marriage bond” if you will, and not decrease it like you suggest.

    Likewise this shows that any notion of a “test driving a car” analogy is wrong. It will only serve to tempt a comparison against your lifelong partner all for momentary gratification.

    Since sexual intimacy is possibly one of the greatest desires in men it would follow that one should search for this first, but that is a hasty conclusion. If the top of the hierarchy is saught after first then there is no foundation. It’s like the sugar at the top of the food pyramid (haha! thats actually a great analogy). Would anyone not enjoy the entire experience of eating food if sugar did not taste as good? I think not. In the same way, sex does not provide the sustenance to maintain a relationship, its just a perk/gift. Without a proper foundation, and I know from others’ testimony, common sense and God’s word, sex is not fulfilling.

    Further, in one particular website I know of, married couples say after 20 years they start having the best sex of their lives because they finally discovered each others’ emotional wavelenghs and proper roles (at the brink of divorce usually). That kinda shows that the connection is more important than the “test driving” when it comes to sex.

  16. Anonymous Guy

    Wonderful analogy Jason, and excellent point.

  17. hunter

    Really?….. No sex before marriage will increase the marriage bond. hhmmm…..I have met several divorced women, who said they had no sex before marriage……their marriages did go 20+ years…

  18. Anonymous

    Men and women are different. Something we all know but conveniently forget too often. Helps to be reminded of it now and then =)

  19. Anonymous

    Great reminder! Haha.. Kind of smacked me in the face there.. but so true!

  20. Jim Bob Junior

    What you have done is pulled a quote that you agree with. It makes it “true” to you because you agree with it. I can tell you with open honesty, that the quote is not true at all. Then you say to put down dating books if it doesn’t support this “truth”.

    We are reflections of the way that we were raised, well, to a degree.

    You are experiencing a conflict between your Superego, Ego, and Id and it is the reason why you are trying to understand all of the things on this website.

    The Id is your primal nature. The nature that strict Christians try to repress completely, well because everything in the Bible pretty much goes against what the Id is all about. Christians may call the Id “sin”. Vegas should have been called ID City. Just kidding, that would be lame and many people would not understand what it meant. Just take an undisciplined dog for example. This dog will hump, hiss, bite, drool, do whatever it wants. Spontaneous and maybe crazy. Yes this is an unregulated Id. People behave like this undisciplined dog when they don’t regulate their Id.

    The Superego is that voice inside your head. Depending on the way you were raised, the Superego is the voice of your parents. Maybe your parents were overprotective and shielded you from many experiences as a child and said that it was dangerous or attached some kind of fear to it. As a grown woman, your Superego will repeat these voices to you. Maybe your parents were critical of your abilities, body, capabilities, etc. The Superego will repeat these critical words to you. Question: Whats the difference between 2 same sized/shaped/age/height/same everything girls who look in the mirror: One sees a fit healthy girl and the other sees an overweight mess? If you guessed Superego, you are correct! This voice will never really leave you and it always has an opinion (just like parents, right?) If your parents always had good opinions of you and were always positive to you in a realistic way, said “I love you” to you often, and taught you to become independent at an early age and to trust people you probably have a pretty good/healthy Superego. If your parents always had discerning opinions about you, never really praised you that often, brought up complaints, sheltered and overprotected you because they loved you and taught you the world is a pretty crazy and usually an unsafe place, then you probably have an unhealthy Superego. This causes lots of problems. You become a reflection of your parents expectations, become detached from your own feelings/emotions and as a result become dependent on others for guidance. Also as a result of not being in touch with your own feelings/emotions you become distressed by your people pleasing nature and suffer from all kinds of emotional stressors which may or may not incude relationships. Also leads to poor self esteem, etc. etc. etc. On one page, you say that you have narcissistic tendencies. A tough Superego would explain this quite well. Strict overprotective parents are narcissistic because they use the children to fulfil their emotional needs. So when child grows to adult, nobody met their emotional needs cause the parents were secretly taking it, so now the adult has no confidence/self esteem and must seek it from another person, hence a relationship.

    The Ego is the grand regulator of both the Superego and the Ego. Many times (and mostly girls, but now a lot of guys too) have fragile Ego’s for the reason above! Tough Superego’s (given to us from our parents, remember?) strip us of our identitiy in many different ways (see Superego paragraph). So, if we have no real identity, how are we supposed to have a necessary Ego to balance the Superego and crazy Id? We don’t and as a result we can’t manage stress! The Id is making us feel like we want to do all this crazy crazy stuff, but then our Superego (all that stuff taught to us as children, including the strict religious stuff) says “NO HEATHEN! Do not do it!!” So then we are in a pickle. This great urge in ourselves wants to do stuff and this parent like Superego makes us feel super guilty for even thinking about it. Oh what a mess.. “If only I had a healthy Ego in between to manage everything, but I don’t because I was stripped of a healthy Ego, because I never knew how to regulate, let alone, understand my emotions and feelings. I don’t know what I want. Everything is so stressful”. Stressful x 100 if not 200.

    WELL, all of this is done and in the past. So we are now adults and we want certain things. We want our emotional needs to be met. We never figured out how to do it cause our parents were taking it, so we have no clue. Maybe if I just meet that perfect somebody all my emotional needs will be met??? Sound familiar? “And geez! What about that stress? It’s too stressful to believe that guys and girls are the same because that would make things sooooooooo complicated so lets make it as black and white as possible so my brain isn’t so friggin stressed. Men want sex and girls want cuddles” This is all done below the radar of course, subconsciously. So ya put guys in handful of categories and girls in a handful of categories and voila! Simple as finding that 1 guy category guy out there. Let’s see, 7 categories of guys, 3 billion guys in the world, assuming the categories are spread evenly, that leaves roughly 280 thousand “category 1 pefect guys” ripe for the picking. Right? Wrong. You can’t use categories, because categories are soooo black and white and the world is sooo complex and people are sooo complex. I understand why girls (and guys) want to categorize and understand. It’s a defense mechanism to stress. I repeat, it is a defense mechanism to stress. See above. ID is acting crazy and wants you to act on your undisclosed desires and Superego is telling you NO NO NO! and if you had a healthy Ego, all would be okay and you would regulate the 2 properly, but because you don’t, unfiltered stress comes out and you have to resort to many different means to reduce that stress. Stress reduction “defense mechanisms” 1. Making things black and white, why? If you can wrap your mind around it, your brain will be somewhat more comfortable with it. But your brain is not stupid, it finds the inconsistencies. It knows your logic is not right. So you get stuck in this cycle of figuring out the truth. And let me tell you right here and now that you or any other human in this world will never figure it out. Things that are unexplainable and too large for our brains will cause us stress if we allow them to cause us stress. We must simply accept them as that. Beyond our control, out of our hands. Give it to God. But you say, people like reading about relationships and stuff like this, and its true, people do, but thats because none of us are perfect and a little bit of all of our Superegos, Egos, and ID’s are not perfect so we like to read things. If you make it a life long agenda to figure out “relationships” “people” you will spend your entire life trying to figure it out and still be right where you started at the end. It’s a viscious loop.

    OCD is a way that people deal with stress/anxiety. Check this out, from wikipedia: Purely Obsessional Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (also called Pure Obsessional OCD, Pure-O, OCD without overt compulsions or Primarily Obsessional OCD)[1] is a lesser-known form or manifestation of OCD. For people with Purely Obsessional OCD, there are usually no observable compulsions, such as those commonly seen in those with the typical form of OCD (checking, counting, hand-washing, etc.). While ritualizing and neutralizing behaviors do take place, they are almost entirely in the form of excessive mental rumination.[2]

    EXCESSIVE MENTAL RUMINATION. How many times have you searched the internet to figure out stuff about yourself? Meyers briggs, etc.. Relationship sites, and countless other things to help “explain” yourself. And over time you go back over and over the same info over and over again?

    And on the same wiki page:

    Relationship Substantiation: in which someone in a romantic relationship endlessly tried to ascertain the justification for being or remaining in that relationship. It includes obsessive thoughts to the tune of “How do I know this is real love?” “How do I know he/she is the one?” “Am I attracted enough to this person?” or “Am I in love with this person, or is it just love?” The agony of attempting to arrive at certainty leads to an intense and endless cycle of anxiety because it is impossible to arrive at a definite answer.

    “Impossible to arrive at a definite answer.”

    You may see me as just a crazy person, but I know what I’m talking about because I have been there before. You have to give it up, or it will take over your life.

    I’m going to be anonymous. So post on here if you have any questions and I’ll check up on it later. Don’t try emailing that email, cause its fake.

    Adios!

  21. MidoriLei

    Jim Bob Junior,

    I DO think you know what you’re talking about! Way more than I do! I’m sure I have/had an unhealthy superego.

  22. MidoriLei

    nonetheless, I still think men and women are different.

  23. Anonymous

    Fantastic issues altogether, you simply gained a emblem new reader. What would you suggest about your put up that you just made some days in the past? Any sure?

  24. Travis Ridley

    I applaud you JimBob, for using psychology to explain this.

    To make this simple, I will use two phrases:

    Men and women are different.

    BECAUSE

    All people are different.

  25. Single Stephanie

    Men and women ARE different. In the end it comes down to a woman being the one who has to give birth, so she needs a stable reliable man.

  26. MidoriLei

    Single Stephanie, that makes total sense!!!

  27. Joshone

    Your content is very useful. Thank you so much for providing plenty of useful content. I have bookmarked your site and will be without doubt coming back. Once again, I appreciate all your work and also providing a lot vital tricks for your readers.

  28. Ethan Alexander

    I agree with the premise that men and women are different. Not just in the way they are raised, their expectations, or their views of the opposite sex. They are fundamentally different in the way they think and problem solve. Women are much more emotional in their approach to the world. While men are generally down graded by their fellow males and even by many women for being emotional, women are encouraged or expected to be emotional. If there was one bit of dating advice that would be universally helpful, it would be to let people be who they are, and not what we or our culture expects them to be.

  29. Anonymous

    You have written concerning a lot of points in this article. There are actually nice, and I really understand what you mean.

  30. Lisa Shield

    I love this post. Men and women are different on the PERSONALITY level. At the SPIRITUAL level, we all want the same things. A lot of dating advice today focuses on the personality differences between the sexes. You need to look at both. In the end both sexes want compassion, trust, honesty, kindness, passion, playfulness, openness, intimacy, etc in their relationships. How we get there might be different, but where we are going is to the same place.

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