Single Women: You Don't Want What You Think You Want

Sexual chemistry and infatuation can cloud your judgment of your man’s character. Here’s how to avoid disillusioned dating.

We know it sounds like a cliché, but in this case it's true: single women are often initially attracted to qualities in a man that become problematic in marriage. Most won't realize this until the fog of infatuation lifts. How can you single women be sure this won't happen to you?

Let's take one example: women are more likely to experience romantic love with highly dominant men—not dominant in a healthy, let-me-serve-you way, but dominant in a controlling kind of way (which, at the start, looks like he's just taking care of you). These men often demonstrate less ability to express the kind of companionship, relational skills, and emotional attachment that women ultimately desire in a lifelong mate. In other words, women, if you simply follow your feelings and get swept off your feet by a take-charge guy, he's likely going to thrill you for 12 to 18 months as a boyfriend, and then frustrate you for five to six decades as a husband.

Why 12 to 18 months? Because that's the average neurological lifespan of an infatuation. At the end of 18 months, you start to actually get to know the person you're dating. The fog lifts, your eyes open, and suddenly, you see the man you thought you'd been seeing all along. If you doubt this, just ask yourself how many of your married or dating friends explained the ending of a relationship by telling you, "He's not who I thought he was"? That's a true statement. During infatuation, the "idealization" of your affection is so strong you don't see him for who he is. It's not that he's changed—it's just that your eyes have been opened.

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May 25

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