He called me his “princess.”
He called or texted me several times every day.
He took me out for multiple dates, wining and dining me.
He matched my first name with his last name to see how it would sound.
We talked about how our kids would look and turn out.
But when I wanted to call him my boyfriend he said “I think it’s too soon for that.”
I said “okay.”
I had somehow found myself in a Friends with Benefits relationship.
How did I get there?
Keep reading to learn exactly how, and how you can avoid the same unfortunate fate.
I. Let’s Get Right to It – The Point of this Book
Low Self-Esteem Leads to Lowly, Unfulfilling Relationships
Unfortunately, many women suffer from severe low self-esteem. Low self-esteem starts in childhood and progresses as you get older. I believe this is mostly the result of poor parenting, negative media influences and insufficient education.
Low self-esteem starts with feelings of being unwanted and unloved by a father or mother. It starts with someone teasing you in school for the way that you look naturally. It starts with someone telling you that you’re “just a stupid girl” or you’ll never amount to anything special and no one ever steps in to defend and tell you that simply isn’t true. It starts with seeing women who look absolutely nothing like you on the cover of every magazine and starring in every show on television.
These negative influences are very real and very strong in the lives of people across the planet. These negative influences develop and strengthen the negative self-talk that we struggle with for much of our lives.
In a woman, these negative influences tell us that we’re simply not enough. That we’re not worthy. That we’re ugly. That we’re lucky if someone loves us.
Sometimes a woman’s self-worth is so down in the dumps that she convinces herself and the men that she dates that she is okay with being used for sex in casual relationships, otherwise known as “friends with benefits” or booty calls.
The premise of this brief, to-the-point eBook is that women should not accept the role of a “friend with benefits.” My main point is that women don’t get much out of a friends with benefits relationship while men get a whole lot of what they want: sex minus feelings. In their younger years, a lot of men are absolutely fine with this type of arrangement.
My theory is based on a simple hierarchy of needs and priorities that is different for each gender. Keep reading to find out what the hierarchy is for both men and women.
Men Are from Here, Women Are from There
It’s pretty clear that men and women have different priorities and needs. We’re excited and inspired by different things. That’s why they say that men and women are from completely different planets.
But do we women really recognize, acknowledge and respect these differences?
We’re quick to accuse men of being inconsiderate jerks, but is it possible that we are just misunderstanding them (and them us)? They simply don’t think the same way that we do and that isn’t going to change anytime soon.
I have personally been on both ends of the spectrum while dating men. I have been “pumped and dumped” (tossed to the side soon after a sexual encounter) and I have been the sole object of a man’s love to the point that he eagerly put a beautiful ring on my finger. So I know how it feels to be treated like gold AND how it feels to be treated like gum on the bottom of someone’s shoe.
While analyzing my own past failed relationships, I developed a list of the priorities that men have when it comes to women and vice versa (particularly for heterosexual relationships). Here are the final lists:
A Man’s Hierarchy of Desires/Needs in a Woman
A Supporter Who Believes in Him
A Friend and Confidant
A Woman’s Hierarchy of Desires/Needs in a Man
A Friend and Confidant
Of course, there are exceptions, but I think that on a large scale most women and most men would agree with these lists of priorities. As you can see, women and men clearly have very different priorities, right or wrong, when it comes to finding a mate. Of course in some cases these priorities are out of order, but in reality this is what men and women prioritize in many cases.
Chasing Men Just Keeps Them on the Run
I see a lot of relationship experts and guides telling women how they can track down and keep a man. They tell women that they have to do this or that to “snag” a man, trap him in a net and drag him on home.
I think this is bad advice only because it subconsciously teaches women that they have to eagerly give chase, instead of relaxing and allowing a man to chase YOU. Chasing men is sometimes short-term effective, but it is not long-term effective. Yes, you may catch a few but, at least in my experience, most relationships where the woman aggressively pursues the man just don’t last very long.
Men are hunters—pursuing a woman is like playing a video game or going on a hunt. They want to seek and conquer. If you take on that role, then it’s like they’ve already defeated the game or the hunt. What’s the point?
I sincerely believe that the best relationships happen when you let a man chase YOU. Not just in the dating phase, but throughout the relationship.
Some Women Are Afraid to Exert Their Power
There are two main types of women: the type who demands what she wants because she honestly believes that she deserves it and the type who accepts whatever comes her way out of desperation, fear or low self-esteem.
Which one are you? Be honest with yourself. That’s the only way to grow.
Some women are so eager for a relationship that they won’t let a man be a man. While I do have some woman-power ideals, I don’t think that women should take on the role of men in heterosexual relationships. I still believe men were meant to protect and provide for their women and families. If you don’t agree, look at the current state of affairs. Men who do NOT take on the role as protectors and providers are sad, confused, angry people and their families are in a shambles. The women are struggling, sad, depressed and angry.
Too many women do not establish basic standards for themselves when it comes to dating men. They pay for dates and pump their own gas. They allow grown men to live in their houses without paying any bills. They sway to every whim imposed on them because they are afraid of not having a man (any man) in their lives.
Men have a lot of power over women because too many women are way too emotional when it comes to love and relationships. We give too much (sometimes everything) but don’t demand much for ourselves in return (that’s childhood programming at work). The result is a generation of men who don’t feel they have to do much to get and keep a woman—they just sit back and let her do all of the work.
So the two main messages of this eBook are as follows:
1) You deserve better than being a booty call or a friends with benefits. That type of arrangement might be great for a guy, but it SUCKS for you as a woman.
2) Let guys chase YOU. You are the prize, so it’s time to start acting like it.
Simply put, if what you’ve been doing up until this point hasn’t been working, obviously something must change.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result. That’s insane!
Lynn Gilliard is the author of the relationship guide Let Him Chase YOU (available soon) and the eBook Friends With Benefits SUCKS (At Least for Women). She is an in-demand writer and transformational blogger helping people get in touch with their inner greatness.