One reason women go for ‘masculine’ men
In what seems to be my never-ending bid to figure out single life, a few months ago I decided to do a little deep dive into my dating patterns.
A walk down memory lane of boyfriends-who-once-were. Just to see if there was anything that they all seemed to have in common.
As someone once drunkenly slurred to me at a party: "When the common theme to all your breakups is you … well you might need to have a look at what you're doing wrong, not them."
Ahh yes, those drunken chats that lead to anxious worry the next day. So, in the haze of my hangover, I did just that. I had a look at what I was doing wrong.
It will come as no surprise to anyone who has read along on some of my dating adventures that I seem to have a big throbbing heart beat for anyone a bit scary, dangerous or anyone who could be perceived as a bad idea. Like, a really bad idea.
Call it Daddy issues, call it lust, call it whatever the heck you want (lord knows I've read it all … thank you Twitter) all I know is, I see someone with a temper problem or perhaps an addiction issue, and I think: "Heck yeah, I'm up for a project."
Throw in a bit of hot/cold/disinterest from their side of the fence and you've got yourself a girl that looks not dissimilar to that ridiculous love heart eyes emoji.
Perhaps it was the drama of it all, or the chase, or the challenge but these relationships always kept me on my toes. The WhatsApp group was often blowing up with screenshots that the girls and I would joyously dissect, until the relationship (or fling) would eventually blow up, I would admit defeat, and off I trotted back out into the single world.
When the pandemic struck, and I had plenty of thinking time, I realised that pattern isn't really working for me anymore. I don't want to be stuck in a house with a bloke that actually drives me slightly bonkers.
I want to be stuck in a house with someone who is more of a best friend. A sexy best friend who I would quite enjoy seeing naked from time to time.
So I dived into the Google-sphere to figure out how to break the pattern and what I discovered was pretty darn interesting!
Turns out women are more attracted to bad boys, or what one article referred to as "hyper masculine" blokes at a particular time in our menstrual cycle. Yep!
Madeleine A. Fugère, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Eastern Connecticut State University and co-author of Social Psychology of Attraction and Romantic Relationships says research shows women are more attracted to masculine men during the middle of their menstrual cycle, when they're most fertile.
"Men with very masculine traits may have better quality genes, so it could be attractive to women on an unconscious evolutionary level," she notes.
Not to shirk responsibility, but it kinda seems like it was out of my control. Damn you ovaries! Note to self: stay off Hinge in two weeks' time.
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Never-the-less, there had to be a way of fixing this ridiculous 'type' I seem to be going for.
It wasn't until I come across an interesting chat on Louis Theroux's podcast Grounded with his guest Michaela Coel and she was discussing why women like going out with certain men.
"I really struggle with 'I like a particular general group', because for me, it sounds like you're only part relating to a human," she said.
"Each of them is a human and I imagine that they're all probably different and they vary in their feelings, their thoughts, their bodies are different, their faces. How can you just like a group like that? I find it quite strange."
She makes a good point. Was I going for these blokes because what they had to say was actually interesting? Made me feel? Gave my life extra meaning? Or was I looking for some form of protection and they seemed to fit the bill?
Having grown up in a fight-or-flight mindset, I guess I was just looking for someone to have my back. What I was denying myself, was an actual bond.
So after a couple of months of pondering on this, I've seen a real change in the way I date. I've started going on dates with blokes outside my form of normal.
They've lived lives very different to mine, had jobs that I've never even heard of, recommended books that I might find interesting and one in particular took me by surprise. I told everyone that he wasn't my type. An older gent with a career in quite a feminine background, who is very open with his feelings and has a unique empathetic nature. SO outside my normal 'macho tough guy' type.
For once, I fell head over heels for someone who was actually quite lovely.
Now Mum, before you get the wedding dress out, calm down, it didn't work out how I wanted, but I had a break up that didn't involve fireworks, just a really honest conversation and a nice hug at the end.
Good lord, who have I become? I've gotta be honest, I don't hate this change.
Originally published as One reason women go for 'masculine' men