Are Men Shifting Dating Roles to Protect Their Egos?

Recent discussions reveal a growing sentiment among men who advocate for stepping back from traditional roles in initiating romantic pursuits. They argue that making the first move has become “too risky,” citing potential negative reactions such as being perceived as creepy, facing harsh rejections, or simply encountering disinterest. In response, some suggest that it might be time to flip the script by demanding that women take the lead in pursuing men. They’re pitching this as a modern twist, but could it just be a convenient cop out?

In a recent Instagram post, I humorously suggested that women shouldn’t chase men. It ruffled a few feathers, particularly among some men.

One comment stood out:

This commenter, like many others, was quick to defend the new narrative of men stepping back, arguing that the fear of being labeled negatively has forced men into a corner. Meanwhile, women are stepping back from casual flings—raising the bar and shaking things up. But this change seems to be causing a bit of a crisis among the guys. A few rough rejections and suddenly they’re ready to hand off the baton of initiation to women. Are we witnessing a true evolution in romantic roles, or is this just a tactical shift to avoid vulnerability?

Equality or Just Passing the Buck?

The call for women to take the lead in dating is getting dressed up as a bold move towards empowerment and equality. But what’s really going on here? Is this shift genuinely about leveling the playing field, or is it a slick move to dodge the emotional grunt work and fear of rejection that men traditionally faced?

There’s a hint of convenience that’s hard to ignore. It seems like some guys are quite happy to let women take the reins, not out of a desire for genuine equality, but as a way to sidestep the vulnerability and potential knocks to the ego that come with making the first move.

This narrative of women as chasers might appear progressive at a glance, but it could also be a smokescreen for a deeper reluctance among men to deal with the messier, more emotional aspects of courting. By pushing women to pursue, perhaps these men are hoping to bypass the sting of rejection, cloaking their own insecurities in the guise of fostering female agency.

So, what are we really seeing here? A step towards a truly balanced dating culture, or just a tactical role reversal that lets one side skirt the emotional hurdles?

Redefining the Rules of Modern Romance

While the dating world evolves, it’s time to get real about what balance actually looks like in today’s dating scene. These shake-ups in romantic roles force a hard reevaluation of how interest and pursuit are played out.

Cheers to women who willingly choose to initiate and make the first move. They should feel free to do so without any pressure. However, this freedom shouldn’t be twisted into a mandate. Women shouldn’t be forced or manipulated into approaching or pursuing. They should engage on their own terms, in ways that feel genuine and comfortable to them.

My take? Quality men get it. They know how to approach and woo a woman without compromising her safety or comfort. Women have a sea of options by nature, and many of us naturally gravitate towards men who aren’t just willing but are also skilled at pursuing with respect and finesse.

While the dating rulebook gets tossed and rewritten, we’re deep diving into expectations and gender roles. The arena is shifting and it’s demanding a complete overhaul of how interactions are created. Maybe it’s time to dismantle old methods and building from the ground up with mutual respect and engagement at the core.

We’re in an era where courtship needs to echo modern values, where how you approach someone is just as important as the attention you aim to receive. Men who adapt to these evolving standards, and respect boundaries while clearly expressing their interest, are the ones who truly stand out.

Until next time,

Ash Pariseau



  1. One of the reasons why women do not make the first move in dating is rejection. Why is that a good reason? Ash. You obviously don’t think it is a good reason for men
    Men are worried about false accusations as well. This can happen if a guy ask out the wrong woman. Creepiness, rejection, ect are also a concern for men

    It comes down to men being tired of doing everything. A guy has to make conversations(that interest her) ask her out, be a gentleman, pay for everything. Lead conversation in the date or he will be deemed a bad communicator even though the lady only said a couple sentences during the whole 4 hour date. Most women expect men to do most of the work. It can be annoying.

    • A lot of the reason why women don’t make the first move is because they don’t have to. They already have a lineup of men who are willing to put in the effort.

      It’s completely understandable why you’d want a little reciprocity. In that, I’d take a closer look at the type of women you’re approaching.

      Other than that, it’s important to understand the playing field.

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