If you’ve ever sat through a two hour lecture for a biology, anthropology, or sociology class, you’re probably well aware that there are undeniable physiological rules of attraction. The simply unromantic truth behind what makes us hot states that men are attracted to women with a certain waist-to-hip ratio and women are subsequently attracted to men who can provide for themselves and their family. Blame it on hormones, chemistry, or whatever you’d like. However, at one time or another, it’s likely that women will find themselves dating a man more in tune with his feelings than she.
So, what happens when the man you’re dating isn’t exactly what you’d consider a man’s man, and more importantly how do you identify him? At what point does sensitive behavior become a barrier to successful relationships? Are you dating a man-child? Ladies, you might have unknowingly signed yourself up for a bigger headache than you bargained if your guy does any of the following:
1. He pauses “Fight Club” to talk about intimacy.
Sorry, Brad Pitt got it wrong. The first rule of “Fight Club” is “don’t talk about your feelings.” Don’t get me wrong, there very well may be an appropriate time to chat about the status of your relationship and where it is or isn’t going. That moment is definitely not during any manly activities including but not limited to: watching television, playing sports, eating food, or reading Playboy. And when you do talk, he uses words that make him seem open, honest, and deep, but in the process he makes the conversation awkward. As a side note, the word “penetrate” is NEVER sexy, not even if you’re Ryan Gosling.
2. He tells you a dramatic story from his childhood on the first or second date (or, if you’re really lucky before you’ve even been on a proper date).
We’re not talking about divorced parents, mean siblings, or being the shortest kid on the basketball team. We’re talking about serious, maybe you should see a shrink so see if it’s impacted you later in life things: abductions, abuse, addiction. These are all serious things that should be discussed, but if you’re going to spring this kind of emotional baggage on a woman, at least let her have an appetizer first.
3. He’s ALWAYS looking at signs (primarily as a way to avoid making his own decisions).
If his computer freezes at work, it’s a sign he’s in the wrong job. The cab you’re kissing in stopped short, it’s a sign you’re relationship is doomed. Signs are objective. They take on the meaning you assign to them. Likely, he just needs a new computer and the taxi driver needs to pay better attention. This has less to do with you, God, or the Universe than it does him. It’s about his personal journey, the man he’s been and the man he wants to be.
4. Your phone won’t stop ringing, vibrating, lighting up, and beeping.
Or you’ve had to delete your messages more than once a week to free up space in your mailbox. This may encroach on stage-five-clinger territory, however, it’s often followed up by behavior that is sometimes hot and sometimes cold. He may tell you how much he likes you on Friday, only to not talk to you until the next Wednesday. (Word of advice: if he’s pushing you away, run.)
5. He’s constantly seeking gratification, advice, and endorsements from you and others (just don’t expect him to take it or appreciate it).
It doesn’t matter if you had a late management meeting, if you’re dating a man child you make time to comment on his Facebook post. The attention he’s requesting may be very well justified, but a heightened emotional response over the tone of your emails could send your romantic weekend into a frenzy.
6. You’re the big-spoon, better half, breadwinner, or all of the above.
Sure, everyone likes to be held now and again. But ladies, if you’re waking up sore in your arms instead of your nether regions, something has got to change. It’s also undeniable that when dating a man child, you’re the more stable one (in terms of job stability, past relationship experience, or even deciding where to have lunch). At first his sensitivity may be charming, but instead of making you feel like a woman, this behavior will leave you feeling like a girl.