So Many Guys Say They Love Strong Women When They Actually Don’t

So Many Guys Say They Love Strong Women When They Actually Don’t ©iStock/svetikd

It’s sad but true — guys are often intimidated by independent women. While it’s a shame, it’s something you shouldn’t feel bad about or try to change. When you’ve proven that you can work, live, and survive all by yourself, you can’t necessarily take it all back, and why would you want to? Here are a few ways dating gets even harder when you’re used to fighting the good fight on your own:

  1. Guys often forget all about chivalry. You’re totally willing and able to open a car door for yourself, but damn it, sometimes it’s just nice for someone to take the lead. A guy often switches out of “impress mode” when he knows you’ve been rocking it on your own for awhile. There’s a chance he might assume you’d find these acts of kindness a little insulting, but avoiding them altogether on that first date doesn’t really make you pine for more time that’d allow him to get to know you better.
  2. You could immediately fall into “The Friend Zone.” This zone isn’t just for guys — many, many women fall victim to it. Friendship with a guy is incredible, but if he’s never seen you dating, he might not immediately think of you in a romantic context. Sometimes when a girl doesn’t have a boyfriend for awhile, people assume she’s either too shy or not interested — and trying to prove them wrong is pretty awkward and difficult.
  3. He might not know how to impress you. Guys like it when they know they’re good at something. And, well, independent women are so good at so many things, that they might not be falling over backward over some dude’s ability to strum a few chords on a guitar. A woman on her own often has the time to embrace and practice her own hobbies. He may just be too intimidated to strike up a conversation about his. His loss.
  4. He may be wondering why you’re still single. It’s true. Again, people don’t need to pair up to be happy, but sometimes when someone reaches a certain age, red flags might appear. To be fair, you’d probably do this to a guy, as well — if he seems amazing but is also 40 with limited relationship experience, you may wonder why nothing seemed to stick. You shouldn’t have to defend your position, but you might get asked about your dry spell.
  5. He might feel a little emasculated. It’s 2017 and gender roles really need to go for good, but some guys are still hard-wired to believe that they should be the ones to pay the bills while their wives do all of the housework. Now, you’ve been doing both for so long. In his head, he might read that as you not needing him, totally forgetting that it’s nice to have an emotional partnership as well.
  6. He may be on the lookout for someone he can take care of. And yes, he should really just buy a puppy and move on. But just like some women gravitate towards bad boys that they hope to rehabilitate, some men prefer dating women who they can look after. You’re well above that behavior. In fact, if he even made it clear that that’s what he’s after, you might just laugh in his face.
  7. His viewpoints on women may be a little outdated. Remember the whole “emasculated” point? There’s a totally different breed of guy out there who simply can’t get over the fact that women are kicking ass and taking names. Now, these aren’t the kinds of guys you want to associate with anyway, so it’s no big loss, but their existence definitely makes dating harder. There’s no filter on to really screen this type of jerk out.
  8. He may not know where he’d fit into your life. This one’s definitely valid. You already have your entire week planned. In fact, you may even have your entire month planned. You’re a social creature and your weekends are already booked solid. While this is amazing for you, it can also be intimidating for a guy — especially during the initial dating phase. You can’t really date someone you never see, and if you haven’t blocked out time for romance, he’ll probably lose interest pretty quickly.
  9. You might not let him have any control over dates. Yes, this one’s on you. You’ve been the boss of your life for awhile, which is great. But dating requires a bit of back and forth. You won’t always get your way — in fact, you’ll have to compromise a little bit. While it’s no big deal, it can often be frustrating and hard to do if you’re out of practice. If you go ahead and tell him what movie you’ll be seeing and where you’ll be going out to eat, he could feel a little intimidated and decide to ghost.
  10. Secretly, you just might not want to date. Again, things are going really well for you. You’re saving up for a cool vacation with your friends and are thinking about eventually moving out of your apartment and buying a house — all to yourself. But, you feel like you have to keep going out on dates since your family keeps bugging you about settling down. Know what? A guy can sense this from a mile away, and if you make it obvious that you’re just going through the motions, he’ll probably decide to cut his time with you short. He won’t try to change your mind since he knows it’s a losing battle. Be honest with yourself before putting yourself out there. Maybe you’re being intimidating on purpose.
Karen Belz is a New Jersey native who is currently living in Maryland. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communication with a focus in Broadcasting and Print Media Studies from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. Since graduating, she has written for sites like LittleThings, HelloGiggles, and Scary Mommy and is currently an e-commerce editor at Bustle.

When she's not writing, she enjoys making her phone run out of memory after taking too many photos of her dog. You can find her on Twitter @karenebelz or on Instagram @karenbelz.