Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Dating Chase

Guys chasing women. It's the old heterosexual norm. Something I tried to fit into during my 20s, but eventually realized was bringing me more grief than anything else.

I'm not into dating games, and chasing feels like a game. In fact, these days, when I get the vibe from a woman that she wants me to chase, I'm much more likely to walk away than anything else.

There's a difference between making an effort to demonstrate your interest and chasing. I'm more than willing to show some interest, and put in my share of effort. However, if there is little or no response in return from the woman in question, I move on. End of story. If someone is naturally shy, I might put a little more time and effort in, but at some point, there has to be some kind of positive response.

The gendered narratives around romance suggest it's sexy for a man to keep calling, keep writing, keep pressing for dates, even if she doesn't respond. It's all about the man being active, while the woman is receptive at best, and more often in a passive position.

Although some might argue otherwise, I believe there is change afoot. More women are stepping up and being proactive in both starting relationships, and also while in relationships. I have actually had an easier time meeting women, getting dates, and developing relationships since I stopped trying so hard with women who probably weren't that interested anyway. While the idea that it's attractive to have a man showering you with attention, and "going the extra mile" even before you know each other still lingers, it's power is starting to break down. In part, I believe, because of how often the same kind of attention is used by players and casual sex seekers to get women into bed.

In the end, chasing is always a one way street. One person does all the work, while the other person sits and judges whether said person did enough to get a date or be considered "relationship material."

It's very different from a mutual effort where both parties do something, say something, or otherwise express something that shows an interest in the other. To me, this is the healthier, more mature approach.

That's my take. What about you?


  1. I have totally been told the "he needs to chase you" story my whole life. As a feminist I don't appreciate that I, the woman, must be passive in the early stages of a relationship in order to be considered "attractive and feminine" by a man.

    However, in my experience when a man isn't willing put forth effort in starting a relationship with me, he also isn't willing to put forth any effort into maintaining a relationship with me. A man needs to consider me worth some amount of effort or the relationship will not be fulfilling for me.

    I try to also make an effort in a relationship. I return phone calls or texts in a reasonable time. I guess I'm not sure if I want to be chased exactly...Maybe I think of dating as participating in a mutual metaphorical game of tag where we each take turns chasing the other.

  2. "A man needs to consider me worth some amount of effort or the relationship will not be fulfilling for me." This makes sense to me. I think a more balanced approach is better for both people.

  3. I've written about this before, about wanting to feel desired. I've probably said it all in that post, but because it is fairly long I basically agree with the OP. I want to have some hint that my attentions are wanted before I push ahead beyond an initial comment/contact/etc and in general I just want as much effort back as I put in.

  4. Totally agree. The chase is over-rated. Be it the guy or the girl, it is a waste of time and energy. Better to work on the relationship from the ground up - from friends to ??

  5. Yes, Snowdrops - that's another issue behind this. Guys want to feel desired too. Some women seem to forget that. Thank you for offering the reminder.

  6. I truly learned about many of this, but never the less, I still thought it was beneficial. Good task.