A while back, I wrote an article titled “The Truth About New York: How Big City Dating Corrupts Single Men.” It was about how big cities make it easier for men to buck traditional trends when it comes to dating. Put more succinctly, it was about how big cities make it easier for men to be assholes. One of the last comments on that article posed a question that I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about, but hadn’t been able to put into substantial words until recently.
“Does there EVER come a point when we expect men to hold _themselves_ to a “higher” standard that is _NOT_ based on women’s actions/inactions?
No. Expectations communicated through words and actions will forever be key. They’re what set the tone for things to come. Managers are often promoted to their highest level of incompetence. Men are often promoted to the highest level of what they’re allowed to get away with. People don’t perform unless you require them to. And even then, sometimes they still don’t perform and you gotta *Kanye voice* drop ‘em from the team. That’s the simple answer. But then it occurred to me how often I get questions or scenarios from women involving men they took an initial liking to that eventually fell short of hopes and evaded dreams.
I really like this guy, but he just keeps on texting instead of calling. How do I get him to pick up the phone?
I give guys my number and they don’t call. What can I do to get them to take it to the next level?
We got physical, I thought we were on the same page, then next thing you know he had a girlfriend. What the eff gives?!
The advice I’ve given most: Stop worrying about us and do you. You can’t make us do anything, but you can point us in the right direction. If we choose to go the other way, that’s on us.
When it comes to men stringing women along in a fluid state of ambiguity, I hear a lot about how men need to “man up” and say what it is…even though we initially tell women exactly that. But apparently and for reasons I’ll never understand, many women believe men are responsible for periodically checking in and saying stuff like “You know I’m not looking for anything serious right? Right? You know what? Let me put this thing away. We’re not on the same page.” Yeah, that’s the noble thing to do…in a fantasy world where every guy looks like Idris and shares his feelings. Sometimes reality tastes like booboo. I say that with a smiley face.
For all that I’ve gotten away with over the years, there’s always been a woman on the other side with equal opportunity to put the kibosh on us — whatever we were– but she didn’t. She allowed me to be a minimalist. I knew I could save my best for the last woman I’d date before hanging up my jersey and becoming a color commentator on marriage.