This post is inspired by this debacle about a women getting upset when men rejected her. It made me come to a realization, one that has been obvious in my own life, yet never really seen. Men are attracted to kind supportive women, men want a women who is a friend first and a sexual partner second. This I believe is part of why men get so frustrated at being put in the “friend-zone.”
Although I don’t intend to speak for all men I can say that personally sex is not above friendship and support but actually equal to it. Here’s what I mean, if I meet a women and she is relatively attractive generally sex is never taken off the table. Indeed with rare exception… no in my life no exception I am open to having sex with any of my female friends if I weren’t I would be less inclined to be their friend. Yet contrary to what women seem to suggest that doesn’t mean I’m prioritizing sex quite the contrary. It is my and I would say most men’s ability to be a friend and also see someone as a potential sexual partner that allows men to prioritize a supportive friendship over a sexual relationship. This is why men are so frustrated by the friend-zone for men becoming a friend to a women is part of getting to know if she is a good match.
A few weeks ago I was riding an elevator in my building and a women, about my age, maybe a year, 2 at the most younger than I got on. I was carrying my supper on a plate from where I had bought it back to my room to eat my supper. This women, a women who was pretty attractive proceeded to stand close to me and then tell me that my food looked good. I thanked her for the complement but it didn’t end there. She proceeded to point out how good my food looked to others in the elevator, and complemented me on my shirt (I was wearing a plain yellow T shirt with no writing). This soon became awkward, thankfully the doors opened to my floor soon after. She saw me another time and again complemented me on my shirt, but that was it. The whole situation was awkward yet something I’ve been thinking about.
This is not the first time I’ve been hit on. I’m not really even that attractive, I’m a bit over weight I don’t always wear the nicest of cloths, yet from time to time women are interested in me and I get hit on. I am also in a stable relationship so I guess I’m not completely unattractive to women. But I had a realization, if this women had instead made friends with me, instead of making a weird scene about how good my really plain cafeteria hamburger looked, while complementing my not so special shirt her attempt might have worked. Again I’m in a relationship already so it wouldn’t have, but none the less the principle is the same. If she were to become a friend of mine and our friendship were to blossom my sexual attraction would always be latent in the background and when it was appropriate our friendship would become sexual.
But in my experience women don’t have that same ability. The women I have met seem to put men in two camps upon meeting them, friend material, or sexy man material. If a women sees me as a good friend I will never be a sexual option for her. If a women sees me as a sexual option then there is a possibility of becoming a friend also. But here’s the kicker. Of women I’ve been in romantic relationships with that sexual attraction was contingent on my being somewhat assertive and making a move on her pretty quickly if I don’t then her sexual attraction seems to wane. Now I know that there are women who are exceptions to this rule absolutely but it seems in my humble experience to be more frequent than not the case that a women being a friend with a man means that she is not sexually attracted to him. While a man being friends with a women indicates that he values her as a friend but does not preclude sexual interaction later in the relationship.
Ironically in doing this women are preventing the relationships they say they want. Women often say that they just want a man to be their friend and then if it works out their lover later. But in reality it seems it is the men who want that. We men by being capable of looking at a women both as a potential sex partner and as a friend at once are the ones who are capable of prioritizing a strong friendship and non-sexual bond before a sexual one emerges. And this is why so many men become frustrated. They meet a women and become her friend, for them sex is never ruled out so they assume that as the friendship become deeper, as trust is developed, emotional intimacy is established then physical intimacy will naturally follow. But for women the sex comes first if a man is not sexual interesting it doesn’t matter how much of a friend he is, or how much trust is established.
This is actually kind of annoying for a few other reasons. It compels men to sex more quickly then they would like. One of my most uncomfortable sexual experiences arose out of this kind of situation. I was with a women whom I had dated for a few weeks but I wasn’t quite to the point where I was ready for more intimacy but I felt like I needed to be to keep her interest. Needless to say although it wasn’t a traumatic experience it was none the less something I will call a learning experience. It was also an experience that drove home the idea that for me it’s important that I am comfortable with the person before I become more intimate. Yet even since then I have felt that sex and sex happening quickly is necessary to solidify a relationship. Most of my longest and most successful relationships including my current relationship were initiated by me pushing for sex early, while all of the relationships where I waited and allowed a friendship to blossom usually ended in the “friend-zone.” Quite the conundrum.