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What Women Want.

Let me say there’s absolutely no way I would trade places with our men.

We may get the short end of the aging stick, but our men definitely have it far harder these days when it comes to dating.  Show up masculine and strong, and we wish you were more emotional and vulnerable.  Show up open and vulnerable, and we say you’re not strong or masculine enough.

It’s a mixed message dating world out there and no one seems to have a translator.

I recently re-entered the dating world and have experienced both surprise and disappointment in the tea/coffee date trend.  What’s up with this?

Seems every woman I know, feels the same about the dreaded ambiguous coffee/tea date.

A man asks us to tea or coffee and we have absolutely no idea why you’re asking.

Does he want to date me?

Does he want to be my friend?

Does he want a business connection?

Does he need my help?

Many men tell me they believe this strategy relieves women of dating pressure, but really the only one having pressure relieved is the man asking.  Yes, men are subjected to rejection and vulnerability when asking a woman out; we know this and  have total respect for your courage.  Because of this, most women are gentle in their rejection knowing the perilous position you’ve put yourself in.

On the flip side, playing it so safe that you no longer reveal your intentions doesn’t illicit respect.

If a woman is interested in you she will say yes to a date; but if she’s not interested in you romantically, she will most likely still say yes to tea assuming you have purely platonic intentions.

In the end all you’re doing is buying yourself more ambiguity.  It’s truly not the TEA, its the thinly veiled attempt to refrain from asking for what you want.   Let me repeat that…it’s truly NOT about the tea…it’s about the ambiguity.  Say to us: “I’d love to take you out to tea and get to know you more”. and we know it’s a date!

When a man makes it clear he’s interested in getting to know me and asks me to lunch, dinner, a walk,  heck… even tea, I know I need to be 100% clear and honest with my answer.  You guys work hard for your money and most women don’t want to waste your time, money or attention!

If I say no I do it gracefully.  If I say yes, you can bet I kinda like you.  😉

Women may vary in appearance and personality; but we’re pretty much the same when it comes to our dating communication preferences.

Being brave and asking for what you want is SEXY.

The safe way out, “let’s have tea” and pretend it’s not really a date is yawn, BORING.  Tea says nothing.  Again, it’s not about the TEA, it’s about the ambiguity of it.

Guys, women are tired of men approaching with the “let’s be friends” angle only to find out much later, you had an agenda. Sure sometimes loves sneaks up on you, but I’m referring to the manipulation from day one when you knew you never only wanted   friendship.

When a man pretends to want friendship and then months later we find out you wanted far more from the very beginning, it’s heart breaking and feels icky.

My point?

Own it. If you are attracted, curious, interested in us, ask for what you want. Make it clear.

If perhaps you’re trying to avoid rejection by taking the safe route, chances are you’re doing this in other areas of life.  Consider a few things inside yourself right now:

  • When you’re not fully putting yourself out there in vulnerability asking for what you want, chances are you’re holding back in other areas of your life too.
  • When a man is clear with his intentions: I’m interested and want to get to know you better, its 100% sexy whether we say yes or no.
  • When we hear the “want to meet for tea or coffee?” question, there’s no clarity.  It’s not about the money you’re spending on us, coffee or tea can be perfectly acceptable for a date; if you’re clear.  Revealing that you’re interested in getting to know us more as a friend or even romantically earns our respect.
    When men don’t shoot straight it leaves women wondering what you want.  Why are we meeting?  We’re not fully ourselves because we’re wondering about you and your intentions.

Chances are you’re not your 100% powerful confident self either.  There is a monkey in the middle of the room.  Everyone is wondering about it and no one is talking about it.

We all want to be sexy right?  What’s über sexy is a man being open, honest and vulnerable enough to put himself “out there” clearly with a woman.  What isn’t sexy in life or dating is evasiveness and manipulation.

Clearly it’s not easy out there with the host of  blurry boundaries, messages and ever-changing rules, but remember this: women respect strength, honesty and vulnerability.  That combination is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

When you jump in with both feet and ask for what you want,  you may not get the YES answer every time but you WILL end up leaving every “reject-or” wondering if they made a mistake since you were so dang sexy in the way you asked!  ;-)


All images courtesy of chicken by karen shaw, couple by Francesco Marino, tea by graur codrin, shy boy by Arvind Balaraman.

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