I asked women what their biggest frustrations and complaints are in dating and relationships, and this is what they had to say.
It’s always a goal of mine to continue learning as much as I can about the struggles (and the triumphs) of modern women. This helps me keep a good sense of how they can best use support by a community of fellow women. As time continues forward and people and things evolve, I know this is something that will always be in progress. In my mission to help women with their romantic relationships with men, I’ve found it extremely important to keep certain conversations going this way as it helps me understand where we’re at in the scheme of things. So, you’ll find that I’ll periodically propose what might seem to be simplistic questions, but I promise there is a method to my madness here.
Most recently, I wanted to get an updated audit on the general frustrations and concerns women have in regards to dating and relationships.
I asked followers on Instagram, Twitter, and a few other forums I have an account with. I took note of the most common answers and the themes around those answers.
- Men who expect women to work and help pay bills PLUS the majority of the household chores. In other words, the complaint here is that men are trying to get away with doing far less than an equal share of the overall responsibilities.
- Finding a guy who’s actually ready for a relationship. For example, a guy who isn’t hung up on his ex, has trust issues from past relationships.
- Guys who’d rather “go with the flow” instead of dating with intent.
- Guys who think they’re grown but they have the emotional maturity of a 12 year old.
- Fake nice guys only doing nice things in order to get something in return and then turn psycho when they don’t get their way.
- Navigating personality differences in a relationship.
- Men’s lack of willingness to make commitments such as labeling the relationship (being exclusive) or marriage.
- Ghosting culture. Why can’t they just say it’s over?
- Poor communication skills.
- Lack of getting proper respect and appreciation.
- Guys who fail to heal from childhood trauma (and seeming to have no interest in doing so).
- There are no decent men available anymore.
- It seems men only want “baddies” while smart, quality women are overlooked.
- More men say they want women to chase them now. In other words, men who want to flip the script and be regarded as “the prize.”
- When guys try to control and put restrictions on her preferred lifestyle, in regards to things like going out to bars and clubs, social media activity, how she dresses in public, etc.
All in all I found these to be interesting, though most are not surprising. It’s my objective to help women find solutions and hopefully some relief around these problems, so I’ll be covering these and other topics that may come up through the rest of the year.
What are your thoughts on these talking points? Are there any more that should be on here? Let me know in the comments.
If you would like more help with these or another dating and relationship problem, I am now accepting new clients for 1:1 consulting. For more info, check out the consulting tab up in the main menu bar and from there, you can fill out the application to get started working with me privately.
Until next time,
From a man’s perspective: I wasn’t surprised by any but one of them. Most of the complaints are reflection on how badly our culture has suppressed masculinity.
Nos. 9, 10, & 15 I think are subjective, but can be worked out if a woman puts her mind to it.
No. 13 was the one that really surprised me: it’s probably the most common complaint that I’ve heard from men about women.
There was once a time I could relate to many of these, especially #9. In my experience men have very vague and unclear ways of communicating. They’ll point blank LIE and tell you nothing is wrong when you can tell through their body language that something is clearly wrong. They’ll deny it. Then a week later, they’re blowing up your phone with complaints against you they’ve been holding in the entire time.
I have been there for sure. If I’ve ever asked a man “what’s wrong” then I already know something is wrong and I usually already know what it is. Men definitely have different ways of communicating.
Ooops didn’t mean that to be a reply to you, the night wind.
Thank you for your comment. What made you come to the conclusion that some of these points are a reflection of suppressed masculinity?
Because the vast majority of them seem to about men not taking initiative, acting more like boys who want a mother rather than men who want a soulmate whom they can care for, and guys who are more worried about what people think of them instead of standing on their own two feet and following their own desires. I got the impression from this list that women today are starving for real men who’ll take masculine responsibility.
‘Men’s lack of willingness to make commitments such as labeling the relationship (being exclusive) or marriage.
‘ Women initiating 70-90% of divorces yet somehow surprised men don’t want marriage. Priceless.
Good men will have awareness around why women initiate divorce, what leads to that, and what it takes within a relationship to not become a part of that statistic.
For real. I good number of the 15 complaints are direct result of men checking out of the shit show that is marriage. Who wants to go sky diving when 70% of the parachutes are defective. No thanks. I’ve been married for 34+ years (mostly happy) and I’d never in a million years do it again. Men get the short end of the stick in any divorce proceeding and women initiate 70% or more of them. Even long term relationships without marriage are trouble.
The most funny complaint above is #15. The women want to go out to the clubs just like they are single, while complaining about lack of commitment from the men. Why commit if they’re just gonna slut around as per usual?
You either know how to pursue the right woman for you, or you don’t. Many men understand how to pick and choose their battles and trust that going to the club doesn’t equate to slutting around.
Granted I’ve been out of the dating pool for over a decade at this point, but a couple quick notes:
– #11: The guy I dated prior to my husband embodied this one. I remember a conversation where his mother apologized to him an acknowledged that some of the ways she raised him weren’t okay and asked him not to perpetuate that in the future. He shrugged and said “It’s all I know” in a tone that made it clear he had no intention of even trying to be better in the future.
– In my experience, the minute that I (as a woman) flip the gender script and tell the guy that I only want sex and am not open to any sort of deeper relationship …. suddenly that’s all he wants. I thought I was doing him a favor by being transparent but apparently not.
I have two daughters that are starting to date. They’re smart and we’ve been talking for years about good relationship dynamics, so I hope they continue to look for the right things and talk to us about how to navigate.
Haven’t seen or heard from you in ages. Hope you are well.
Nice to run into you again! Wish I had more time to blog and I should be better at keeping up with your blog. Hope you’re doing well!
Thank you for sharing, Athena. It can be scary to talk to your mom about your dating life, but looking back now, I’d give anything to have my mom back so I can talk to her about some things.
I can see your perspective.
As a male who’s been out of the dating mixer-settler tank [from the perspective of Attachment Theory, as a function of age, it’s not really a “dating pool”] for decades, I have a different take on them.
On #11, if he truly grew up in that environment, his tone would indicate “change into what?” Both of my parents were alcoholics. My parents had a dismal 0-5 track record in marriages. My mother should have been in jail for DV. Until I got older and understood regular sex and the tax benefits of filing a joint return, I thought marriage was the grotesque punishment God inflicted on adults for original sin. I couldn’t name a single happy marriage. I saw a few tolerable marriages.
My wife and I were in marriage counselor’s office within 2 years of our marriage, partly because I wasn’t “living up to her expectations.”
Some guys will have the motivation to change, some won’t. Personally, if what I was doing wasn’t contributing to my happiness, my thought was to try something else. My father had a great eye for women but lousy judgment when it came to marrying them. But, the most important lesson he taught me was that if someone doesn’t respect you and treat you well, get rid of them and find someone who does. When he realized that it wasn’t working, he left. When he divorced my mother, he took me with him.
If you’re a woman and you’re in a relationship with a guy like this, you have your work cut out for you and your odds aren’t good. At some point, if you have any self-respect, you say, “Enough” and leave. People aren’t who they are because of the relationships they have, they have the relationships they have because of who they are. By the time people enter adult relationships, that template is pretty well set.
People make that mistake all the time. It’s reversing cause and effect. It’s also why NAMALT/NAWALT doesn’t work in the long haul. You can’t save someone who doesn’t want to be saved. Once I figured that out, I began to understand a whole lot things.
With respect to your second comment:
I was dating a woman in the mid-80s. We’d been going out for about 3 months when, over dinner, she asked, “If I don’t sleep with you, is that the end of the friendship?” My response to her was “Probably.” She was taken aback and asked why?
I told her that I was looking for a woman who’d be more than a friend and I was going to keep looking until I found one. When I did, that’s where I’d be spending my time. I told her that would could hang out until one of us got a better offer. I appreciated her candor. It would save me time and effort. When I see a “Dead End” sign, I don’t need to go down the alley to prove it.
She said that was the most brutally cold answer she could have received but it was also the most honest answer.
I don’t remember if it was that night or shortly after but one night after I parked the car at the ferry to take her home, she said, “Don’t say or do anything,” and she kissed me like no woman ever had until then and no woman ever has since. [kissing is a lost art] When it came to kissing, no woman has ever come close to her, not even my wife.
The game was on and, although it didn’t end well, it lasted 5 years.
Scharnhorst always with the excellent insight. I agree that kissing is a lost art. That might be a good future topic of discussion, actually.
What guy wouldn’t want #14?
On a serious note, with our society becoming more “enlightened”*, an explanation but not an excuse for #4 and perhaps a few others is, neurodivergence. Or when I was growing up, we said: “slow learner” or “behind the curve” or simply awkward.
* I like enlightened better than Woke, even though it’s the same wine in a new bottle.
Good point, Mysteries. I also definitely prefer enlightened over woke.
I’m so happy all the old gang is still here to comment after the last few years of my hiatus and inconsistent posting.
Sometimes we forget that we start out as complete amateurs at relationships. As we grow up there’s this assumption that we just pickup all the skills to run even a mildly competent relationship with another person. We are generally completely incompetent so have to learn by trail and error. I tell my kids to just inform their potential partner of their incompetence and accept there’s going to be some stuff ups on the way but not to take it too seriously and be a truthful much as possible even if it hurts and the dog ends up not liking you. Big problems usually come from using popular media as a learning source and one side assuming that they are fantastic at relationships while not being competent. Joy to you Ash, bye.