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Why Women Are Frustrated and Confused About Men and Dating

savvydating's mission is to help women attract positive relationships by establishing personal parameters and greater self-worth.


Many women are confused and frustrated about men and dating....and they don’t know why. Here is my take on this malaise: At one time, men were the hunters and women were the gatherers. On an intuitive level, this essence is still alive today. However, since the advent of the sixties sexual revolution, American cultural standards have shifted.

Men and women are exhibiting somewhat androgynous behavior. It is now becoming politically incorrect to make distinctions between men and women. Mind you, not everyone believes men and women are exactly the same, but some do. Thus, the distinctions between the sexes are blurred. America's sexual revolution has created confusion about the relational roles between males and females.

Consequently, there is a whole lot of friction going on in the world of dating.

For example, in recent decades, women have begun hunting and gathering for the male, so to speak. Traditional romantic roles are going by the wayside. Society has inadvertently produced a new male prototype who has become adept at not putting in the time and effort to pursue a woman who truly interests him---the way men used to do.

Such men are convinced that it is perfectly fine for him to be "a gatherer," but the problem is, women are not natural "hunters." Nevertheless, because women are ever the adapters, they have chosen to compensate for the rise of the culturally androgynous male, aka, the "male gatherer." She has now assumed his previous role---that of protector and provider.

Who is the male gatherer? He is the male who claims to have embraced equality, but who actually doesn't respect women all that much. You've come across him. He is the guy who let's the women come to him. He does not pursue women. He lives solely for his own pleasure. His take is, "If women want equal rights, let her prove herself to me."

The 1960s Cultural Movement

The 1960s cultural movement had good intentions and some positive outcomes. However, the sexual revolution has failed us in the area of love, romance and commitment. Unfortunately, too many American men have morphed into something we did not foresee coming----the "gatherer," who is not adept at committing, pursuing or providing.

Herein lies the crux of the matter: Feminists had the right idea about wanting more equality, as in equal pay, but they got a little side-tracked by the free love thing. What they didn't realize is that most men are more than happy to accept the "No Strings Attached" philosophy of "free love." His philosophy goes something like this: "If we live together, I will enjoy the convenience of having a quasi-wife, but without any messy responsibilities or financial risk."

The male gatherer is into "low stress" relationships. In the event he should decide a woman with whom he is co-habitating doesn't meet his needs after all, he has no problem leaving. His reasons? "She was too much trouble. Who needs the drama?"

Meanwhile, he takes pleasure in having sex on a regular basis. Gratification with no commitment and no repercussions---that's his motto.

Yet sadly, women offer themselves up to the male gatherer, even though he has lost his instinct for honest romance and true commitment. Courting women isn't part of the gatherers' paradigm. He believes relationships should be easy and uncomplicated. Easy come, easy go. His expectations do not mirror the truth, which is that anything worth having requires time and effort to have.

Thus, having experienced disappointment in dating for the umpteenth time, many women carry around a perpetual cloud of frustration and anger. Nevertheless, not wanting to appear passive, women continue the hunt.

“We have to go after guys," they insist. "If we wait, nothing happens." "What choice do we have?"

Women who feel this way have a point, but their premise is wrong. She has another choice. She can let the man seek her. Here’s the thing. Women actually like having the man pursue her. His effort shows her he has a level of interest. She finds his pursuit of her hot and efficient - sort of like the engine of a BMW.

But the gatherer guy....well...he lacks drive. He's a Ford Pinto, or maybe a Volkswagen bus. The easy love thing works for him, but it isn't working for her. Apparently, easy love isn't so easy after all. Unwed mothers who struggle to raise their children without father's know this better than anyone. Unfortunately, the children get the raw end of the deal.

Kids Count Data Center

Percentage of Single Mothers Who are HispanicSingle mothers who are WhiteSingle Mothers Who are BlackSingle Mothers Who are American IndianSingle Mothers Who are Asian & Pacific Islander






Tired single mother.

Tired single mother.

What Needs to Happen

So what's a woman to do? First, she must learn to recognize the male gatherer. She must then stop throwing herself at his feet. Forever. Male gatherer guy does not have the inclination or the stamina for true romance women crave. He always leaves women feeling emotionally shortchanged. Why? Because he is, in fact, emotionally stunted. Chances are high that he didn't have a father to teach him the responsibilities of manhood.

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In any event, any woman who truly wants an emotionally satisfying relationship with a man must first decide to place more value on her worth, her time, her career and her passions. In so doing, she changes her own perspective about the value of her life. Women must realize that meeting a great guy is icing on the cake. Icing is delicious; it can make a lovely difference---but it is still optional.

Women Have to Step Up Their Game as Well

She must learn to appreciate her womanhood and everything that being a woman entails, to include embracing her femininity. She doesn't have to become a man to be "equal." We are all equal by virtue of our humanity.

I knew a man who was a former hippie. He was highly educated, but the gatherer/hippie mentality never really left him. Anyway, he told me that he had lived in a commune where he really enjoyed his life. He talked about how fun it was to get naked and paint women's bodies. This, I gathered, was a type of foreplay. He went on to say that the only disagreeable aspect of commune life was that the women were, "Really messed up."


I guess so. Having multiple partners, not knowing who the father of your child is, and whether or not your lover(s) even remembered you from the day or night before would make any woman "a mess." The dirty little secret about the free love men of the 60's is that they were rampant chauvinists. They made love, smoked pot, quoted Nietzsche, Karl Marx, and existential poetry. They didn't do much else.

Meanwhile, the woman cooked, cleaned, scrabbled for food and even made herself available to other lovers at the request of her "main man." You know, equal love and all that. It's no wonder these women were so "messed up."

Meet the New Boss: Same As the Old Boss

The point is, male gatherers of the 1960's sexual revolution got used to the perks of free love. Not hard to comprehend. The problem we have today is that many men are content to view women in the same disrespectful manner as did the hippies back then. Unfortunately, women are still falling for gatherers. The problem however, is that when the going gets rough, because gatherer guy believes "she has too many expectations that don't match with my idea of fairness," it is all too easy for him to walk away. His feeling is, "I'll go my way and she can go her way."

To be sure, not all men act that badly, and I am not at all making that assertion. What I am saying is that our permissive society has created the "male gatherer" who does not understand why love and commitment actually matter. He thinks what matters is his freedom. After all, no one taught him how to respect women. His frustrated mom was probably working all of the time, and good ole' dad was MIA. Maybe his mom even lost the values she once had. Thus, the male gatherer had no positive role models to teach him what it means to become a grown-up. Consequently, he remains self-serving his entire life.

Common Reasons Why Men Don't Commit

  • Males can get sex without marriage more easily than in times past
  • Males can enjoy the benefits of having a wife by cohabiting rather than marrying
  • Men want to avoid divorce and its financial risks
  • Men fear that marriage will require too many changes and compromises
  • Males face few social pressures to marry

~Rutgers University's National Marriage Project

"Cohabiting men tend to be less committed to the relationship."

— The Negative Effects of Cohabitation, Linda J. Waite

Shifting Focus

So naturally, it behooves the woman to shift her focus toward worthwhile men who actually enjoy pursuing a woman, who exhibit patience and caring, and who are willing to ignore the trend that presupposes men and women are exactly the same in every way.

Men and women are not exactly the same. Our bodies are different, our brains are wired differently, we communicate differently, we have different mannerisms, and in some cases, we have unique needs. But the male gatherer would have you believe this cannot be true, as that would not be fair or equal for him.

Long story short, women must become adept at letting the male gatherer go. In other words, she must learn to pare down the dating field. The smart woman values herself far too much to waste her time on a man who treats her as if she is worthless.

Finally, women must learn to become responsible for all the bad romantic choices she has made. She absolutely must take personal responsibility for her poor decisions; only then will she be able to turn her life around and thus begin to let go of the anger and frustration she had carried before. She will now be in a position to proactively guide her dating life in a manner that will finally allow her to experience true love and romance---the kind that has purpose, meaning, and staying power.

Confidence is sexy!

Confidence is sexy!

The smart woman does not play hard to get---she is hard to get. Let me explain. Playing hard to get suggests that a woman feigns disinterest in a man to whom she is attracted. Being hard to get has to do with the psyche of a woman who is selective about the kind of men she chooses to date in the first place.

Once a woman has determined she is interested in someone, she is free to capture his attention. However, she does this with care. She does not rush into a situation without first finding out what she is getting into. She learns to make better choices, always with long term consequences in mind. She becomes a more responsible and thoughtful woman.

A Word About Communication

Communication is a good thing, but some ladies mistakenly believe they must open up about every single thing that has ever happened to them "because that is only fair and honest." But the truth is, there is no reason for any woman or man to reveal everything about their feelings or their past relationships, in the beginning stages of dating.

We must open up at our own pace. In so doing, we are respecting our parameters and sense of privacy---and this is as it should be. A secure partner will respect your need to share your life stories at your own pace. In fact, no one really has to reveal anything that isn't relevant to the current situation. On the other hand, excessive secrecy in any individual is a red flag.

Dating: An Art

A woman who is thoroughly uncomplicated and too eager to please will not attract the love of a man who has the masculine fiber women crave. Her confidence as a woman, combined with her feminine spirit, is the magnet that consistently attracts truly good men her way. The woman who knows how to date well is very much at ease with her femininity. A worthwhile man will readily pursue a woman like her, but he is easily bored with a woman who does not provide him with any challenges whatsoever. A good man isn't looking for a doormat to walk over. The worthwhile man respects a woman who has backbone. Only gatherer's hate being challenged.

Positive dating also recognizes and appreciates the core differences between men and women. In truth, regardless of our cultural leanings, it's actually quite pleasurable to embrace the distinctions between male and female, rather than constantly fighting against them or, worse yet, attempting to act like the opposite gender. Masculine and feminine traits actually complement one another quite nicely---sort of like two pieces of a puzzle.

From now on, let the male gatherer do whatever he wants to do, just so long as he isn't doing it with you. Your responsibility as a woman is to turn your attention toward the man who shows you that he cares---through his actions. Listen to your woman's heart and mind. Only then will you be assured of love that will stand the test of time.


© 2012 savvydating


RubyRedRR on August 03, 2020:

For those of us who hate online dating it's going to be a looooong lonely time.

Can't get a date when you can't meet new people. I went from zero guys approaching(except the ubiquitous players and creepers who seem to not be deterred by anything) to guys litteraly keeping a six foot distance.

savvydating (author) on July 29, 2020:

I'm not so sure. I think young people are largely unafraid of getting deathly ill from Covid-19. If they are healthy, their symptoms tend to be non-life threatening and rather mild.... from what I have learned thus far.

No one ever stopped dating forever due to any other virus. The young people I know continue to date. They wear their masks and they get tested.

The pandemic really isn't going to stop anyone from dating who wants to date, but it is a convenient excuse for those who have already given up and would rather stay home and watch porn..... sorry to say..

The fear isn't from the pandemic so much as it is from a fear of rejection. Both men and women experience rejection all the time. It is an unfortunate part of life, but that is no excuse to hide in the basement forever. FYI: I am not referring to you or all men and women... but only a small misguided percentage.

I appreciate your input, MG Singh.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on July 28, 2020:

This is a nice article but statistics can be interpreted in any way. Overall I feel the present pandemic is going to bring a sea change in dating between men and women. The fear of contracting the virus is going to be an inhibiting effect and is not going to go away for quite some time or maybe never. Women by nature are more sentimental than men and that is the crux of the issue, that won't go away and could lead to heartbreak.

savvydating (author) on July 28, 2020:

Tolatenow..... Perhaps a viewpoint for you and your inner circle, but plenty of people are seeking intimate relationships, dating, and still getting married every day. However, younger people are delaying marriage and some date casually.... as in "hanging out" and nothing more. But I come across plenty of young people your age, all the time, who are happily involved in romantic relationships, Covid or not.

Relationships are not beyond repair. However, the attack upon the nuclear family has created a rift which is a significant societal problem due to many factors.... but that is another complicated story.

Tolatenow on July 28, 2020:

Maybe it’s a good thing, as a number of post I’ve read state . Relationships between men and women in the USA are broken beyond repair. I completely agree, maybe covid19 will keep us separated for a few years then the next generation might be able to reach a more equitable society.

Until then I’m with he majority of men my age (23) when I say .. let’s just be friends.. online friends that never meet lol

savvydating (author) on July 27, 2020:

Hello RubyRed..... It is important to have empathy, but if it makes you feel any better, a worldwide ( all over the world) survey was taken of 70,000 women regarding what they find desirable in a man. Looks and wealth were nowhere near the top of the list.

At the top of the list was kindness. In fact, most women actually preferred men who were somewhat average-ish. Women in their mid 30's and up even prefer men with "Dad-bods" So, a lot of the hype about money and looks is self imposed.... primarily due to media and false advertising on commercials for men's products.

Every time I see a commercial advertising male sexual performance products, I can't help but grimace. Frankly, most women don't want that enormous thing coming at them every minute. (Thus, the preference for "average")

2nd or 3rd on the list, as I recall, was the ability to communicate, hence, a certain amount of intelligence.

Mostly, women want a decent guy who will treat a woman with respect. Looks and money are secondary. Those are the facts.

Hang in there. This Covid thing will be behind us in due time. I have been working throughout the pandemic. Still healthy as can be.... knock on wood.

Thanks for stopping by and continue to do well in your studies!

RubyRedRR on July 27, 2020:

Back on this thread, got the covid19 lockdown blues. I got so desperate for human contact I logged into plenty of fish..

While the attention I get from all the guys is nice ( and a tremendous ego boost) I don't have any interest in meeting anyone online. School starts up in two weeks, my brother's are all ready to go but I'm terrified my gym teacher died a few weeks ago from it at 43.

It was hard enough trying to date ( I litteraly threw a donut at a guy a few months ago caus I know likes me he just won't ask me out. )

Why men are so brave (careless) with their own safety but terrified of simply asking a girl on a date.

Again , I think we women really underestimate how much social pressure men experience, to have money, height, looks, etc in a society that spent the last two decades tearing them down and telling them they are worse than useless.

I can read the resentment, the self hate, the sadness in this thread and it makes my cry.

savvydating (author) on May 27, 2020:

Hello BCream..... Thank you for your apt response....."Hate is destructive but love is productive."

Well said, indeed. Many thanks.

BCream on May 26, 2020:

Thanks YVes and no problem. Anything we can do as a community to eliminate political/social gender wars and promote appreciation and understanding towards one another will create happy and lasting relationships. Hate is destructive but love is productive.

savvydating (author) on May 14, 2020:

B Cream..... My bad. I see that you said " I did not say let's have sex, I said I find her attractive and desirable."

I agree that there is nothing wrong with those words. I appreciate your pointing out my slip-up.

BCream on May 13, 2020:

YVes - My advice to you is you should read comments twice before you respond, some of the questions you ask back are already answered in my comment. Secondly your judgement is very much one sided. If you read my comment again, I have said there are questions she asked me which made me felt uncomfortable but I let her express herself anyway. You should not pretend someone who you are not, as long as you are polite and respectful.

But you are saying is men are supposed to suppress their feelings and play by the rules women have set, that is very unfair and definitely far from being equal. If that is how most women think then I can see I am probably never going to have a meaningful relationship, but I am optimistic that there are women who are WILLING to understand men and their feelings and not just all about their own feelings alone.

savvydating (author) on May 13, 2020:

MG Singh... I agree that men view sex as a reward. I do not judge them for that. However, women in love or in lust do not relate to the word 'reward.' Reward connotes services rendered... and that is not okay with your average woman.

B Cream.... I do not know how you expressed your desire for the woman. If you came right out and said you would like to have sex with her as opposed to "Let's have sex," naturally, any decent woman would reject a man who speaks that way as soon as a 2nd date. It is best to keep your sexual feelings to yourself. All women KNOW men want to have sex even if you do not say "Let's have sex.". That's a given. If you say so, you come off as quite odd, to say the least.

You may want to take things slowly and keep your musings to yourself. Women already know what men want. They can read your body language quite easily.

BCream on May 12, 2020:

Hi MG Singh and Yves, just so I am clear, if we are promoting equality, we should not say sex is a reward for one gender alone. It should be viewed as a mutually beneficial pleasure. Men should understand and respect women's NEED for commitment and women should respect and understand mens NEED for sex, neither should judge each other negatively for their NEEDs.

One women rejected me this past week because I expressed my desire for her after the 2nd date. I did not say let's have sex, I said I find her attractive and desirable. She said it was too soon to expressed those feelings. While everything else was going well and we had things in common, this was a huge turn off for her. While I tolerated lot of her unusual questions, I was not allowed to express my feelings, which I thought was unfair. While rejection hurts, I feel much happier that it was not a good match, because who knows what else would have turned her off after the next date, lol.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on May 10, 2020:

It is a very complex topic and one can argue both ways. One fact is that sex has for centuries been a reward for man. It's changed somewhat during the last 5/6 decades but this concept haven't gone overboard comletely. I have been dating for so many years but there is no concept of platonic dating.

savvydating (author) on May 09, 2020:

Hello B.... I would never imply that sex is a primary reward for men. Anyone who thinks that about any of my articles is highly mistaken. Women are so much more than that.