celibacy, life, love, men, relationships, women

The biology of mate choice

In her book “Anatomy of love“, Dr. Helen Fisher defines four categories of personalities. The first is the explorer, a person born free, curious, creative, spontaneous, energetic, novelty seeking and open-minded. This kind of people will look for a partner who will either leap off the coach to go adventuring with them (in the deserts, mountains, seas or cities) or join them at the movies, ballet, theatre or opera, or explore nature or whatever captures their fancy at the moment. Explorers look for other explorers, writes Helen Fisher.

The second category is the builder, a person traditional, calm, cautious, who likes the familiar. That kind of people follows the rules, respects authority, enjoys plans, routines and schedules. They tend to be modest, orderly, and conscientious. Builders look for other builders.

But Helen Fisher says that men and women who are foremost expressive of the traits associated with testosterone and estrogen  can be attracted by their opposite. Men with expressive traits of testosterone have high forehead, heavy brow bridges, high cheekbones, and chiseled jaw. They are also gifted by spatial and math skills.  People with a great deal of estrogen activity tend to see the big picture, are imaginative, display superior verbal skills, excel at reading postures, gestures, facial expressions and tones of voice and are intuitive, sympathetic, nurturing, mentally flexible, agreeable, idealistic, altruistic and emotionally expressive.

The people with a great deal of testosterone activity are called directors.  They are inventive, openly competitive, bold and tough-minded. Helen Fisher writes that this kind of people are the most likely to harass their significant other after a break up.

The people with a great deal of estrogen are called negotiators,  savvy at dealing with people. They are drawn to directors, and idem mutatis mutandis. Helen Fisher says negotiators are the most likely to commit suicide of fall into depression when their significant other let them go.

Our chemical system plays a role in our choice of partners, according to her. For women, the smell of their potential partner is very important. That’s why most of them are at disadvantage with online dating, because they lack the smell cue. Sometimes, we can’t explain why we fall for a person. Psychologists would say we fall for the partner who reminds us of the parent we have the most difficult relationship with. The explanation is not always rational.

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celibacy, dating site, life, love, relationships, thoughts, women

Tinder surprise


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In her book, “Tinder Surprise”, Ana Ker challenged herself to meet 20 men in ten days. She used Tinder to reach her goal because today, unless you go to a single resorts where all of the people are looking for a hookup or for love, it’s almost impossible to get many dates in so little time.

She’s reluctant at the beginning to use that dating app. But Tinder helped her to have the number of dates she was looking for. And she didn’t hesitate to schedule two dates on the same day, one just after the other.

She didn’t spend time chatting with her Tinder matches during a long time before meeting them. Just a few exchanges, and then her matches and her agree to meet for a drink.

A drink is absolutely non committing, and it’s very convenient if you don’t like the person who’s in front of you at the bar. The choice of the bar also tells you if your Tinder guy is putting a lot of effort in your date or not. For instance, if he chooses a bar near his apartment/house, it’s a huge signal you don’t really matter to him. But as the philosopher Alain de Botton says, a date is like an audition. You have to seduce the person who is in front of you.

Ana Ker explained she met only two men who could be more than just one date. The other ones were either liar (about their age, the most common lie with dating apps/sites), socially awkward, or just didn’t make any effort.

People, especially men, as I experienced, think their future partner should embrace them as they are, without making any effort to seduce first. To seduce someone doesn’t mean you have to dress up, pay a lot of tips, invite your date to an expensive restaurant, list all of your achievements in life, or worse, make drink your date in the hope she/he will surrender easily. To seduce someone means to ask some personal questions to your potential dates and reveal some genuine aspects of your personality. A little investigation ahead of your date can help you.

But when you have plenty of dates ahead thanks to Tinder, you can easily forget about that. No wonder why Vanity Fair wrote Tinder is a dating apocalypse. Ana Ker seems to consider Tinder as a way to consume dates like you would consume any staple goods.

Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg insist it’s important to invest in your date (and not financially) instead of collecting dates in the hope to find someone better. Nobody’s perfect. To invest in your date means to prepare your date, and consider the person who’s in front of you at the bar.

Two of my friends met their significant other thanks to Tinder. Another one met her husband thanks to a dating site. We all know couples who met each other thanks to a dating app or a dating site.

I’ve had bad luck with Tinder so far, to be fair. But I learned my mistake.

 

 

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celibacy, life, love, men, relationships, thoughts, women

He likes wealthy women

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I dream about wealthy women. I would like to date one of them who will want to sustain me” said one of my friends. He said that while laughing, adding he will probably last three weeks in this kind of relationship. He’s not a boy toy.

I told him he will be crushed in this kind of relationship because even if he’s not poor, his wealthy girlfriend would probably think he’s lazy or doesn’t do anything good. One of my friends, who used to date a wealthy woman, told me she was very mean with him, always gunning down him in front of other people. Wealthy people are much more meticulous about matters of law and propriety than people who are not that rich. So they are very careful about their wealth. In general.  My friend who used to date one of them told me his ex used him to parade at gala, but he felt she didn’t love him for who he is.

Women marry ‘up’ in income according to Elizabeth McClintock, but they tend to marry high status men when they are themselves high status. I don’t think a high status woman would be kind to sustain a man unless that man used to be high status. And even that case is not obvious.  I can’t see Amal Clooney leaving George to start a relationship with a man who just wants to be sustained by her. Nor Hillary Clinton, nor Melissa Gates,…

I don’t think I would accept to sustain a man either, to be fair. I expect the men I date to be financially independent at least. The only men I would sustain if there was a problem would be my godsons.

But I can understand my friend about some comfort to be in a relationship where your date invite you at his/her second/third/fourth residence located in the Bahamas, Courchevel, … Although I would be proud to pay for my vacations there…

 

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broken heart, life, love, men, relationships, thoughts, women

Why do we cheat?

Why do we cheat? The number one reason is related to sex. When we don’t feel satisfied sexually either by a lack of sex or of emotions, we tend to search other gardens. The next reason is simply because we fall in love with someone else. Some people also cheat out of revenge (because they’ve been cheated). Some people also cheat because they search for different experiences every day, week,…

Recently, one of my friends told me that every woman who is over 40 is a cheater. I was shocked when he said that, because most of my female friends who are over 40 are not that kind. Most of them are happily married. They would admit to me if they were cheating on their husband. Women who are 40 are at top of their sexually, so yes, they can be very demanding sexually. But it’s not a reason to be a cheater because of that.

To be cheated is a betrayal. Some couples do survive infidelity though. And polyamorous couples do accept their significant other’s lovers. But we’re not all forgiving infidelity. Because we’re jealous animals.

Most of my friends told me if their significant other cheat on them, they will have difficulty to forgive. One of them even ask me to tell her the truth about her significant other if I see him with another woman. My friend was cheated when she was younger. She found, three days before of her wedding, her future husband with another girl on his lap kissing and laughing in a bar. Since then, she has had difficulty to trust her other lovers.

My other friend didn’t told me if he was cheated on before. But he changes quickly the conversation when we talk about that. I guess it’s sensitive for him.

Infidelity isn’t only sexual. We can bond emotionally with someone else because our emotional needs are not met in our couple.

But I understand how hard it is to be cheated on. It feels like you’re not the number one in your significant other’s heart anymore. It hurts.

 

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celibacy, life, love, men, relationships, thoughts, women

Lost in emoticons (miscommunication)

Recently, I had a chat with a friend of mine on WhatsApp, and it turned a bit awkward. It went like this.

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He sent me an emoticon with the head upside down. I didn’t understand this emoticon because I’m not used to this. I only use just the ones very obvious and very usual. I thought he was drunk because it was late. I asked him if he was drunk. He said he wasn’t. Then I asked him why he sent me this, and he replied by another emoticon I didn’t understand  either. I felt powerless and left the conversation after sending him a last emoticon.

GroupLens, a research Lab from the University of Minnesota, found that different people had vastly different interpretations of some popular emojis. Using emojis can be at high risk of miscommunication.

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So, yes, it’s tricky to use emoticons in a conversation.

My friend is very complexed by his writings, and he usually sends me a lot of pictures and emojis to fill the conversation. Fortunately, he’s a much  better conversation face to face and in groups.

But I wouldn’t recommend anyone to use emoticons to make a move with someone you fancy.

It’s the best way to fall into endless back and forth, and feel frustrated because it leads to nowhere.

A clear and firm invitation to meet for a drink, a coffee, a restaurant, … is always a better option.

Texting has its limit.

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celibacy, life, love, relationships, thoughts, women

Asking your friends to set you up

Some people, tired of bad dates, ask their friends to set them up with their single friends. It’s not a bad idea, because people with similar values and interests tend to stick together, so the friend your friends want to set you up  may share a few values with you.

Taylor Swift’s latest boyfriend was introduced to her by their common friends, who thought they would match easily, for an example. For famous  people, the friends circle is  the safest way to meet a potential date. They can’t go on Tinder or any other apps because they will probably be harassed.

But non famous people can also feel safer with dating if their friends pre-approve your date because they know him/her.

There are no guarantee though your setup will turn into a relationship. A friend of mine told me she was set up with a man who wasn’t her type. She ended up furious over her friend who chose to set up the date. “I felt she didn’t know me very well” she said. In that case, it’s as unpleasant as if you were not warned you were set up. Last year, I ended up sitting next to a single man at a wedding. When he learned I was a journalist,  he started to rant against my profession. I tried to avoid him during the rest of the evening because he was just a jerk, and I was pissed off at my acquaintances for trying to set me up with that guy.

Your friends can also take the offense if you don’t like the  guy they picked for you. They might think you’re too picky.

Besides, being in the middle can be difficult for your friends if your setup for a reason don’t call you back, goes M.I.A.,… or if you don’t get along very well and complain to your friends about the setup.

That’s why some people avoid setting their friends up.

One of my friends told me she can’t set me up with her single male friends, because she knows they won’t be my type. “I know all of you very well, and I know you wouldn’t be a good match” she said. It’s wise, because we’re still friends, and I avoided some disastrous dates.

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Acceptance or isolation of your couple

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The new French president, Emmanuel Macron, raised some eyebrows because of the age difference between him and his spouse, Brigitte.  In our society, unfortunately, it’s not considered normal for a man to marry someone who is his senior, especially if the age gap is very large. My mother is two years older than my father. They haven’t met any reticence when they started their relationship. People don’t notice that difference. They just look as old together.

Those couples who have a large age gap do meet some reticence.  But it’s the same for couples who don’t share the same religion, the same background and pedigree, … Those couples are more fragile because of the pressure of their relatives and friends, over the society.  If their relatives and friends don’t accept the significant other, either the relationship survive by staying away from their circle or the relationship die. Love is not enough. Our circles have to validate our couple. Nobody likes to be cut from their friends and family, even if it’s for love.

Shakespeare grabs that difficulty for those couples in “Romeo and Juliet”. In the end of this tragedy, both lovers die, because their love would never have been accepted by their family.

Without strong links and reliable social circle, that certainly to have a destiny together can unbundle. At the risk of loneliness and the feeling of invincibility” said Serge Hefez, a psychologist in a french magazine.

Acceptance of your significant other from your family and friends is important.

A friend of mine told me his brother-in-law turned suddenly agressive toward him and his mother, after years of mocking from them because he wasn’t an intellectual like all the members of my friend’s family. “He was just a nurse, but recently he became CEO of a prosperous company he founded thanks to his IT skills. And since then, he has been agressive with us” he says. His sister has been torn for years between her family and her husband, and the feud isn’t over.

It’s not easy for family and friends to accept our significant other if he/she doesn’t fit into their ideal.

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