Boys trying to ride the dating train get a tough time of it these days. During the 90’s we were all convinced and cajoled into showing our more “feminine” and sensitive sides”. So we did. Yay for progress.
But as the noughties came and went, women decided that actually they wanted their manly men back please. All beards and tattoos thanks. Stop your crying, buy a motorbike.
Girls get it equally tough too. But for today, we’re going to write this piece from the man’s side. Next week, we’ll cover the same topic from the lady’s side.
During this shift in goal posts, women have (rightfully) been clawing their way back to some kind of even footing with the boys, which is all good. But it’s made them hate us even more than they used to. I know they had to fight to vote, fight to drive, fight for jobs and all that, so it’s fair enough, but it’s made it tricky for us guys, who were nothing to do with the repression of women in the first place.
No one is too sure what’s going on anymore. Should I, as a male, offer to carry her bag, or will that be condescending? Should I pay for dinner? Or should I assume that she is going to split it 50/50. The beefs go on. A lot of blokes just don’t know where they stand any more. They simply curl into a ball, tie a knot in their scrotum and pop on some sports TV.
I thought I’d put this list together for anyone who is currently having issues with their girlfriend and can’t work out whether she’s just playing the angry feminist card or whether she actually thinks you’re a div and is counting the seconds before she kicks you to the kerb.
Here are a few clues, which when taken in conjunction, probably mean your girl is off the boil, big time:
1) Regular Delays In Reply
When you are first hooking up with someone, there’s that shit and massively annoying game where you have to pretend you aren’t too keen. Both parties know it’s bullshit, but that’s what has to happen.
So, when you get a message or whatever you are NOT allowed to reply immediately because then you are seen as being too needy and perceived as “waiting by the phone”. Even though nowadays the phone is literally in your pocket, so you are always “by” the phone.
Like I said, it’s a bullshit game, because if you were to act that way after being in a relationship for a few months she’d kick you in the balls if you didn’t reply to her tweet within 30 seconds.
However, if you’ve been together for some time and she stops replying to your messages and calls, and emails in a timely fashion, you can take that as a shitty sign. Not if it happens just once, but if it is regular. Look out.
In the age of infinite connectivity there is rarely a reason to not reply for one or two hours. You saw the two blue ticks on WhatsApp two hours ago. What’s up with that?
If she regularly takes that long to respond you can consider the alarm bells well and truly rung.
2) Avoiding Contact
This should be a no-brainer really, but sometimes us fellas miss out on the simplest of cues, because we’re too busy… well… doing whatever blokes do. Ignoring each other, pranking each other, wrestling, you know, stuff.
But take a note of how your girlfriend responds to you once in a while. If she won’t look you in the eyes, and she shrugs you off when you’re putting your arm around her: DING DONG THE ALARM BELL IS RINGING AGAIN.
In general, girls like to be shown public affection (I’m not talking a hand job in the village square, I mean, more like hand holding and that sort of thing – you pervert). So as soon as that goes off the boil there is probably some beef in the wind sock. Take heed.
3) The Rebirth Of The Group Date
A lot of these signs that your relationship is on the downward slope kind of look like your relationship is going into reverse. When you first met, you probably went on group dates, or hung out with her and her friends. It’s safer for the lady, if she doesn’t already know you well, and she’ll value her friends feedback on how much of a douche you are (or aren’t).
As the relationship goes on, she’ll want to spend more time going out with just you. That’s the norm. So if you see this unravelling and the group date becomes more of a feature than the alone time, get out your bells and whistles, there’s a shit storm a’brewing.
4) Talking About Other Men
This is another one that should be obvious but isn’t. Most men are not particularly perceptive and most women are achingly subtle. So subtle, in fact, that they don’t even know what they want some of the time.
This is one way in which a woman, often completely without realising it herself, will tell you that you’re on the way out the back door without a spare key.
She’ll start talking about other guys. Not necessarily people she knows, that would be too blatant, but chatting about her “perfect man” (who happens to be the exact opposite of you), or a guy out of a movie with biceps bigger than your thighs.
She probably doesn’t know it herself yet, but she is on the hunt and you are off the menu.
5) The Jealousy Is Gone
Initially, this will be a breath of fresh air. All your female friends used to be “skanks” and “hoes” but not any more. The name calling has stopped. Hurrah!
Unfortunately, though, this lack of giving a shit is not a good sign at all. It’s a bit of a shit sign if anything. She’s basically told you, by actually behaving civilly for the first time, that she no longer gives a fuck who you fuck.
Like I said at the top of this piece, if you see just one of these signs, you are probably still OK. Don’t sweat it. But if you are seeing three or more of them, it might be a good time to ask this lady of yours what the major malfunction is all about?
However you decide to handle the situation from here on in, rest assured that whatever goes down it will be “totally your fault”.