If you are a women reading this, you’ve probably at some point in your life consulted Google on why your date is behaving a certain way. You’ve probably books, watched YouTube videos, read countless dating columns or advice columns in women’s magazines, had hours of chats with friends over drinks – dissecting why your boyfriend or date said this or did that.
You may have also subscribed to email lists of dating “gurus” and “experts” – not naming names here – who tell you how to craft texts to send to him, how to get your ex back (eyeroll) or how to flirt/behave/talk/dress to catch that man’s eye.
You’ve probably also rewatched He’s Just Not that into You countless times to take notes and compare them to whatever is going on in your dating life.
And on and on it goes.
Do you see where this is going? Take a step back and think about this
Do you ever see men fretting over stuff like this?
Nope, not really.
Most of them are just themselves. They might have conversations with friends about the quarrel you guys had. They might have posted on a forum about what they should have done to salvage the date etc.
But you rarely see men reading articles on how to treat their woman better or attending USD$10,000 relationship retreats to learn how to be better in a relationship. If more of them did though and invested as much into knowing how to have a healthy relationship with women, then perhaps romantic relationships may not be as messy as they are today.
Most importantly though, Do you ever see relationship advice or experts selling their expertise to men?
The relationship advice is always targeted at women. Isn’t that… interesting?
Why is having a good, healthy romantic relationship solely the responsibility of the woman?
If a man isn’t fully interested for whatever reasons that may or may not have anything to do with us – why does it seem like the onus lies solely on us to “make” him interested again?
That if he’s not showing up in the way that we want him to, it’s because we didn’t try hard enough. We weren’t sexy enough, pretty enough, funny enough. We screwed up the date. We said something wrong.
It’s Always The Women’s Fault.
Of course dating gurus and experts targetting women wouldn’t have existed if there wasn’t a demand for their services. But by doing so, women are just buying into the notion that they are able to change xyz in the relationship or about themselves and the man will be interested again
Newsflash: Relationships don’t work that way, you have a false perception of control and a man who treats you better because you changed your looks/personality isn’t someone you should be with anyway
Messing with freewill and the illusion of: If I do x, he will respond with y
If I see one more “relationship guru” writing an email or posting an article containing the following headlines, I don’t know what I would do:
- 50 text messages to send him to make him fall in love all over again
- Do these 5 things if he’s pulling away and make him come back to you
- 6 things to say to your ex to make him change his mind
- 25 sex positions to master – so amazing he will never leave!
I have a huge problem with advice like that. It reeks of blaming the woman and worse, people pleasing. Yet “gurus” are still dishing them and women are still lapping it all up and then wondering why it doesn’t work and their romantic lives are so topsy-turvy.
#1 The man has his own freewill; you can’t “make” someone like you if they don’t in the first place
All of us have our own freewill. In simple terms, it means that every human being – including you – who walks this Earth has their own power and capacity to choose what they want for themselves and our lives.
Sending 6 “perfectly scripted” texts to an ex will not work if he doesn’t want you back in his life.
Doing 5 “amazing things” to a guy who is blowing hot and cold, not valuing you and not committing to you is not going to suddenly make him do a 180 and ask you to marry him.
Getting into 25 amazing kama sutra positions for a guy who only seems to have time in his life for you, is when he’s using you for a booty-call, is not going to make him suddenly want to commit to you.
Attempting to do x to manifest y is advice that is popular in many new age spiritual circles. And the rest of the non-spiritual world seems to be following along.
For those of you who are reading this and thinking that you are not forcing, but merely “influencing” the guy – one question. Why are you so invested in influencing a guy who is ambivalent about you that you have to resort to using such methods to get his attention, has broken up with you and clearly does not want you to be a big part of his life?
Because believe you me, ANYBODY, anyone – not just men – will carve out time in their lives to spend time with you if that is what they want to be doing.
You don’t have to resort to scripted text messages or karma sutra positions to force his hand and make him spend time with you. A guy who wants you – all of you – will make time and space in his life for you AUTOMATICALLY and in his own freewill. You don’t have to bend over backwards or kill precious braincells thinking of ways to get his attention and commitment.
So for now, let’s boost that self-esteem, start valuing ourselves more and stop chasing after people who have made it clear they do not want or value us in the way that we want them to. If they want us, they will showing and doing whatever it takes to come to us.
#2 Love is NOT made up of formulas of: If I do ABC, he’s definitely gonna respond with DEF and all will be good in the world. You can’t control people and relationships this way
Sorry ladies, I wished love was that simple. But it doesn’t work that way. The earlier you recognise that, the easier your romantic life will be.
Love is amazingly complex. It’s 2 incredibly dynamic and complex people coming together and spending alot of time with each other. Love is amazing, but it’s also full of unpredictability because at the heart of it – you can never truly predict what a person is going to do next, and you can’t 100% tell for sure that you know what is in his/her head.
Therefore trying to simplify human interactions by giving advice like if you do x, he will do y really doesn’t cut it.
You are trying to exert control over something – love – and someone else, both of which are complex and cannot be controlled.
Instead of trying to figure out love formulas and simplify love, why don’t we bask in the delicious complexity it has to offer us and start loving ourselves more?
Because when you are start to love yourself – and I mean to truly fall in love with yourself and every single part of you, you will find that you aren’t looking for anyone to complete you and you’ll find that you are at ease with the complexity that love and life has to offer you.
Women are socialised to have their self-worth constantly tied to love and family
One thing that has to be addressed here is the way that women have been socialised since time immemorial.
For centuries, women have been socialised to people please, to always be nice to others, to always make other people happy – often at the expense of our own happiness. We have been socialised to put others’ needs over our own, to stay in horrible relationships “to make it work”, to accept the barest minimum.
We have been taught not to value ourselves or our worth. And our worth is also usually reduced to whether we are in a romantic relationships, whether we are married, how many kids we have and how successful they are.
It’s like any achievements outside of having a relationship, marriage or popping out kids isn’t worthy of mention.
We need to start showing up more for ourselves and what we truly want and need, and not what society or our peers are telling us we want or need.
We need to start listening to ourselves more and valuing our needs more.
So what do I do then if dating gurus aren’t the answer?
For the record, I don’t think all dating gurus are bad. Some are good and if you’ve found a good one that doesn’t make you feel bad about yourself, stick with them.
Where I diverge alot of dating experts is that I:
- Don’t believe that the onus of having a good relationship falls solely on the woman
- Don’t believe that we need to control and coerce our partners to make them like us
- Believe that putting women at the center of relationship “issues” creates alot of guilt, shame and people-pleasing behaviour, and may result in people staying on in relationships longer than they should
Instead, we should be encouraging other fellow women to be doing the following:
- Building a deep sense of self-love because when you love yourself deep enough, whether a man likes you or not doesn’t really matter anymore
- Build and strengthen one’s self-esteem so that you know when a relationship is meeting your needs and aligning with your values and have the courage to leave. Because you deserve better
- Change your stories around relationships and your approach to it.