Pursuing is what I consider the whole process known as “the chase” and includes everything from approaching a person for the first time, to calling them, making plans in the initial stages, etc.  I am bringing this topic up again (& making it my first post since my relaunch), because for any relationship to develop, it first has to start and it’s usually the beginning – during the “pursuit” – when things get hairy for most people.

So, who should do the pursuing…? In my opinion, the guy should. Please note that is not intended to be a directive or to be taken as “if a guy doesn’t, then I am not interested.”  However, I personally believe that a guy should because in every really amazing relationship that I know and admire (from engaged couples to marrieds, & to those who have been together for 50+ years), the guy did the pursuing (which may have simply meant making slightly more effort up front which the girl then reciprocated), & whether it was majorly or minorly, he was/is seemingly more interested/hard-pressed than the girl.  This is not something that either individual in that relationship could or would attest to because as one married friend of mine, Bijal, describes it (sweetly under the wedding picture of her & her husband on Facebook), “The perfect marriage begins when each partner believes they got better than they deserve;” however, what I am describing is something that an onlooker would likely observe.

Now please do not get me wrong…  I do not believe that the mark of a good relationship is how “hard-pressed” or “into” one seems or actually is versus the other partner, but I do think there is something to how men & women are fundamentally that makes sense about my perspective on “the chase.”  We’ve all heard the caveman dating/mating analogy, and well, that’s what I think it boils down to… men get a greater satisfaction of having to break a sweat for the deer they are trying to bring home for dinner versus her just showing up to his front door sitting in a frying pan saying “Here I am.  Eat me.”  Sure, that caveman is likely to fill up on the deer he did not have to work hard to get for a meal or two (how many people do you know that say no to free food…?), but he’s more likely to really crave, savour and appreciate the deer that he had to work hard to get.  & for most women out there, if a man is willing to make the effort initially to “get and keep her,” she ends up feeling much more secure in the relationship.  After the whole pursuit, if the relationship sticks, the caveguy thinks he has the ultimate “prize” girl and the cavegirl feels desired & special resulting in both being happy, valuing each other & treating each other accordingly.  Ok, enough about cavepeople.

Basically, I believe that when a guy is really into you, for the most part, he is NOT casual, cool or nonchalant about it – he is just the opposite!  Ladies, think back to all those guys that you might not have necessarily been that into, but how they were when they were really into you – persistent, sometimes awkward, nervous, texting/calling every day and so on.  Sure, we often did not like these guys the way they liked us, so we did not care for all of that, but if a guy we were into did all that we’d be just thrilled.  When a guy is really into you, he doesn’t miss a beat in letting you know & showing you how much b/c he knows that if he does, some other guy could swoop in & steal his prize.  Most guys are very territorial like that so I believe that if he really wants you, he will do everything in his power to get you.  Now if you are not interested & reject him, that’s a whole other story!

Please do not get me wrong… by no means am I advocating that anyone play games or tease the opposite sex; however, if you meet a great guy/girl who you really hit it off with, and he gets your #/gives you her #, but then you never hear from him/her again, rather than pining for or getting hung up on that individual that you really want, come to terms with what those situations really are (he/she is just not that into you) and start paying attention to the guys/girls that actually are really interested and to those whose actions consistently line up with their intentions.  This can & will be a whole other topic but when you have to rationalize someone’s behaviour and explain to your friends why “he/she could not call you or do not have time to see you” again, unfortunately, he/she is just not that into you (great book/movie – everyone should read/see it).

Also, some people have said this to me after earlier posts on this topic so let me just say this as well… I completely understand that this is the 21st century and am all for “women’s equality” but in many aspects of relationships, in my opinion, it’s not about what’s “fair” or equal, but what makes sense & works, and what works (or so I think) is that a guy who is really interested will do the pursuing and a girl who in also interested will reciprocate in kind.

In addition to some comments from previous posts that I have posted below, I would love to hear what people think & please take a second to answer the survey question (immediate results after)!

Thanks for reading and write soon,




Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is a full victory. – Mohandas Gandhi


Interested Observer said… I guess I am what you would call a “modern” traditional guy. I think it is my responsibility to ask a girl out, pay for dates, open doors, ensure a girl makes it home safely, etc. However, I think it’s nice when a woman is an active player in the courting process. For instance, a thank you after a date; a phone call here and there; suggestions on what to do next. Most of my guy friends think the same way. There are too many women out there who will go out with a guy just because he’s making it easy and convenient – even though she has very little interest in him. A woman who gives active input without being overbearing differentiates herself. And think about it – if you’re REALLY into a guy, you cannot help but do all of the “active” things I mentioned, “Rules” or no “Rules.”  Also, when women are interested in a guy, they SHOULD take steps to make it known. It doesn’t have to amount to asking the guy out. It can be an email to ask about the guy’s weekend, or saying hello at a social event. What’s there to lose? The time investment is minimal, and it’s not like you’re really putting yourself on the line. If the guy likes you, he’ll ask you out! And if he doesn’t then you’ll have made a positive impression on someone – and that will only be beneficial in the long run.

Smile Moon said… I personally do not know many girls who would go out with a guy if they weren’t interested (at least not past a date or two) & my goodness, I would hope that all girls would say “thank you” after a date; however, I am not saying that girls like that are not out there.

& I completely agree that both people need to be making an effort & that a lot of that stuff will come naturally when both parties are on the same page & things are transparent. I find that when there isn’t clarity in a relationship – even if it’s just in the beginning stages – that there’s a lot of game playing & second guessing every maneuver (should I do text him? what next? etc.)

Vijay Mehta M.D. said… I guess the right answer is ‘no one should be doing the chasing.’ This is not a Hindi movie where they guy is going to chase you. Even though Bollywood movies might make you believe that. This is a matter of give and take.

Every relationship needs at least one hero. The hero is able to rise above the usual and lead the relationship to the ultimate goal – goal being, is it going somewhere or not?

You need to be able to tell the difference between a guy who is shy or ‘I am so busy or disorganized that even if I feel great about you I am not able to convey you in so many words.’ versus the one who is giving you a signal that, ‘I am not so interested in you’

Based on what is the reason for him not taking the lead the female needs to have the appropriate response.   Once again, it may be an appropriate topic to talk about in the initial stages as to what is your preferred method of giving the feedback?

All said when in doubt this is how you should weigh two options.   Suppose the guy was not interested and you did call him up and found out that he was not into you. What is the downside? He was never yours, to begin with.  Suppose the guy was shy, busy or for some reason was not able to give you a clear signal and you contacted him. The upside is you might have rescued your relationship from misunderstanding and presumption that he is not interested.

constructively honest said… the role of the man and the women were much different 50+ years ago. Way back men and women did not have as many ways to meet each other. There were fewer people to choose from and the marrying age was much younger. Back then women waited to be pursued because they welcomed it.

Now both men and women work and are well educated. Travel, technology and population levels have given men and women more options and thus “dating” A.D.D.” Safety issues are a larger concern as well.  If a girl is not interested in the chase or the pursuer, then he is a stalker and creepy. Yes, I know you mentioned this. If she likes him then he is the love of her life.

Guys and Girls have many requirements now regardless of love – height, weight, looks, occupation, education and income levels. A guy could trip over himself to pursue a girl but that effort could be null and void if the above is not met.  If it is going to happen, it will happen. Not every relationship is a great story; not every psychological breakthrough is like what you saw in Good Will Hunting.  If you are open to being pursued – emotionally, physically and metsphysically then it will happen.

Anonymous 9:00 said… Hello!  I have a question for a guy. Maybe Vijay Uncle, Sunny, or any other nice-normal guy can PLEASE answer.   So, lets say you made acquaintance with a guy off a dating site. You have not yet met in person. They call you once, and then are you supposed to call them back? Is this where you take turns calling each other or do you just let the guy call EVERY TIME or MOST OF THE TIME. Nice-normal guy, please answer.

Anonymous said… let the guy call.

Vijay Mehta M.D. said… One who is more serious and mature should call. But calling more often need not be an indication of desperation but a determination that ‘I am not going to waste my time!”

Sunny said… It doesn’t really matter to me if a girl calls me first, but it seems they always want the guy to make the first call. After that, you can call but do not get clingy calling everyday or every hour (I am assuming you’re asking before the meeting). I am also on a dating site and I usually do not have more than 3 phone conversations before meeting unless both of us have really busy schedules that we weren’t able to meet yet.

Anonymous 5:44 said… I do not advocate playing games, but there is something to be said about maintaining an allure/mystery. The guy *should* be the one pursuing the girl, otherwise, it’s probably not a good match. Ideally, you are busy, have a life, have friends, and so you’re not intentionally avoiding calling the guy back, but at the same time, you’re not hanging around WAITING for him to call or trying to figure out if it’s okay for you to call him. Have confidence that if he’s into you, he will call; if not, it’s his loss. The guy NEEDs to be making the effort, otherwise, he will not appreciate you when he has you. That’s just my two cents as a guy.


  1. Anonymous

    Great blog SM, and well agreed and depends on the dynamic. There are masculine energy males and feminine energy males, just as there are masculine energy females and feminine energy females. I think a first step is get real with one’s self about which one (for the most part) one is. There are many masculine energy females I know who are looking for masculine energy males (Mr. Manly Man), but they find themselves lonely because, these women do all the decision making, leaving the guy feel like he can’t show up like “Mr Man”. Naturally these masc energy men get intimidated and peace out. I think your article pertains to the feminine energy female who’s looking for a “Mr. Manly Man” to pursue them, which certainly works! I also don’t mean to generalize at all, because obviously there are complexities to people…but the above is more on a surface note as a courtship note. Then of course, more personal connections follow suit 🙂 — just a few thoughts.

  2. Anonymous

    My opinion from when I was single to today, happily married, is that the man should instigate courting. And then after the first date (where date does not mean random hook-up or meeting at a party or spending a weekend together on a ski-trip with mutual friends), all is equal and fair. I feel like so many girls wait and wait for that first call after a date and I always wonder why they do not just ring him? If he did not call because he was not interested then at least you know and are not stewing over his feelings and reliving the date in your head for days. Moreover, I think that courting sometimes gets confused with interest. If I guy is interested, I assure you if will feel like you’re being courted and pursued because an interested man will not hide his feelings. If you feel like he is not “courting” you, he probably is “just not into you”.

  3. I agree with the male/female energy aspect and what kind of energy you’re looking for. I have to admit I watch the Millionaire Matchmaker. When girl millionaires are on the show (which presumably have male energy) Patti advises that the girls always let the guy take the lead and plan the date even though they were initially pursued the guy in the sense that they “chose” him. Patti says that way you act in the beginning sets the tone for the entire relationship in terms of who is the leader. This leads to a a question I often pose for myself when dating online: Is it okay to initially send a flirt or contact to a guy and then change gears and allow the guy to pursue you for the rest of the relationship. I find myself doing that sometimes and wonder if I am being hypocritical.

  4. Monica Marwah

    Hey Smile Moon-
    Great Blog!! In my personal opinion, a guy should make the first move and show keen interest, because whenever I have seen women make the first move and pursue the relationship, the relationship or marriage falls apart. The guy may succumb to marriage because of parental pressure, but it is he who has to deal with the intricacies of married life. He may not be ready to take on that responsibility or he simply doesn’t care enough. Be careful who you marry, as the desi divorce rate is skyrocketing….

  5. thanks everyone for reading & for your comments. @ anonymous 11:35, i definitely believe that people have different energies but even females that i know who could be labeled as having a “masculine energy” have still wanted to be pursued at least initially; they might end up “wearing the pants” in the relationship but i think that’s a whole different topic. to date (& i know a LOT of women), i have never blatantly known any one of them who want to be the pursuer or take on the lead from the get go. also, i think rather than manly men, most women are just looking for a decent guy, who – if really interested – is willing to make just a little bit of effort up front & who understands the basic things that makes a woman thrive (& reciprocate very generously) in a relationship.
    @ anonymous 12:12, i agree with what you said but i think most girls feel that if after a “real” date, a guy doesn’t call then “he’s just not that into you” but if he does call even once afterwards, most girls would (i hope) then be willing to call and start reciprocating effort.
    @ lanna, i’m not going to lie but i have also seen an episode or two of the millionaire matchmaker (& other shows like jersey shore & real housewives that i swear i do not watch regularly but have sat through! :-P) i’m with patti on letting the guys take the lead since she obviously got to where she is in her field by knowing a thing or two about how things work out best for both people in the relationship. & personally, i don’t think you are being hypocritical at all in your approach with online dating. a lot of girls aren’t willing to *wink*, express interest or anything of the sort & are just sitting on their hands waiting, so if you have the guts to initiate a contact & a guy is interested back, i think it’s only natural to then want him to make the next move.
    @ monica, thanks girl & i agree with you 100%. i’ve heard of stories of guys either succumbing to parental/girlfriend pressure to take things to the next level rather than it being something coming from their own volition, & it either doesn’t end well (i.e. – like you said, it ends in divorce) or both partners remain in an unhappy marriage simply for the sake of not getting a divorce.
    ultimately, relationships revolve around how people feel, & i think both women and men can attest to what i described above & how it feels completely different (off? not as great?) when as a female, you are pursuing the guy or as a guy, you are being pursued by the girl.

  6. In general all things are more satisfying if you work for them…I do agree with you about the chase. The chase, falling in love, “kuch kuch hota hai” feeling is hard to come by but when it happens, it is overwhelming and euphoric. I think when this feeling is there, either person will make an extra effort to woo the other.
    But ultimately I think the power is with the woman. For the most part, guys who have self worth, confidence and are not jerks, will appreciate a woman who shows some interest. A woman is worth chasing if she wants to be caught. If she shows no interest initially then there is a fine line between romance/courting and creepy stocking.
    Everyone thinks they are a great catch, so why so many awesome single girls and guys? After meeting several girls and not really clicking, when I do meet a girl that I am interested in, it is challenging to show interest and not scare off the girl.
    So perhaps some readers can help answer one question for me…I’ve met quite a few intelligent girls, strong personalities, and very pretty. Awesome conversations, intellectually stimulating but these girls rarely share their insecurities or personal experiences – experiences which are critical for two people to really get to know one other. How does one get these amazing women to open up and let down their guards? I am most certain I don’t understand the “type” of guy they are searching for, or perhaps they don’t quite know the type of guy they want either (btw most guys probably don’t know what they want either).
    All I know is that I am attracted to these girls, but in end it seems like it ends the same.
    As per relationships lasting over 50 yrs being correlated to guys doing the pursuing…that is an interesting observation. Most long lasting relationships I know were arranged marriages in which neither person did the pursuing.
    Anyway good post, enlighten me…confused desi guy :^)

    • As per relationships lasting over 50 yrs being correlated to guys doing the pursuing…that is an interesting observation. Most long lasting relationships I know were arranged marriages in which neither person did the pursuing.
      I have been married for 43 years. My task was simplified. My roommate expressed my feelings to his friend from his extended family that would be GOLD medalist is exploring possibilities for a working young lady from Agarwal family. My would be brother-in-law brought the attractive photo to my university hostel, and I liked his sister’s photo, her teaching profession, and met her once for 10-20 minutes, while going to my home town during trimester break. The proposal was brought to my family by my father-in-law over next few weeks. The local Pandit got some money for fixing the wedding date during this trip (first and last trip to my town). Both of us are relatively imperfect human beings and are enjoying our life in USA. We were really blessed; we did not to chase each other. The secret of our lasting marriage is FORGIVENESS. We had little expectations from each other- it worked well for us. Many professional young men from India are looking to get married following the old fashioned tradition, and then establish relationship. In this western culture, perhaps, friendship, relationship and wedding come in this order, if the girl and guy are lucky. In my opinion, many times some great and successful guys may be shy, busy or slow respsonder and thus there is no harm, if girl expressed the interest in subtle way.

  7. Its gotta be the guy! Im the hunter and provider it wouldnt feel right being anything other than that . Anything else demasculates

  8. You can have 100’s of guys hover around you, flirt with you, have conversations.. for years and years ..but never make the move to pursue you. So what do you do if you’re a woman? I’m ok with being smiley for a few months, but then if he keeps hanging around and not making a move, he’s just wasting my time and space.
    And to BK
    “How does one get these amazing women to open up and let down their guards?”
    What’s wrong with just talking to them as if you would talk to your friends, sisters, family, etc. After a few conversations, it’s a lot easier to ask them for coffee or whatever. The only time I see women put their guard up is if a guy comes on too strong.
    “rarely share their insecurities”
    I think you’re asking too much for a girl to share her insecurities if you are just casually dating. She doesn’t know if you’re going to stick around. Just think of how you built relationships with your closest friends. Sharing insecurities and personal experiences happens naturally with time as two people began to trust each other. People have multiple layers. It might take years!

  9. yay to more people getting involved in the convo!
    @ BK, i’m not sure if women really have the power when it comes to relationships developing. sure, they can give a guy signals that they are interested, but the “power” of taking things beyond flirtation & which direction things will go afterwards is really in the hands of the guys in my opinion. i also agree with both points that JP made although i’m curious what you meant about “insecurities” & how the scenario plays out. like do you share your’s & the girl doesn’t do the same… & what exactly would qualify as insecurities? i know that must sound dumb of me to say, but i’m thinking back on past situations where i’d definitely share my worries/concerns with a person i’m seriously dating, but i’m not necessarily going to say “ugh, i’m feeling fat today” which is what i would qualify as an insecurity.
    @ JP, you are a lot more patient than i am with being okay being smiley for a few months (although i do understand that sometimes it takes that long for a couple of interactions to happen). if after a few meetings of a guy being seemingly interested (+ getting the green light from me) & him still not doing anything, although i won’t be rude, i will definitely stop engaging that person & reciprocating, b/c you’re right – that is both a waste of time & space. on the space topic, i feel like girls need to realize is that if you’re always letting the guy who does/wants nothing occupy yours, a possible real potential won’t ever make a move.

  10. woops & @ asianmale, it’s nice to hear a guy’s perspective. as you know, i agree completely but am so curious as to how the 25% of people who disagreed with my post. if any of you who disagreed are reading, i’d love to hear how you think it works best or if you really think it works just fine in the long run when a girl does the pursuing.

  11. A.D., for someone who finds talking about relationships so non-entertaining, it’s interesting that you not only read my post but were bothered enough by it to comment… uncle’s response is great, but the point of my post was not about a one-sided bollywood-esque pursuit by the guy – it was about dating in its initial stages & it seems most people who read agreed with my sentiments. as for venting out opinions, it seems almost ironic that you’re saying that but okay, if you say so… & although there is no one solution to this problem, so you know, vijay uncle & me (& many others who write about the topic) engaging in this conversation HAS resulted in actuality changing for some people. see ankur’s post (2nd from the top) in http://localhost/realtalkwithsmita-latest/praise-3

  12. ‎”Ankur says… Smile Moon’s blog introduced and emphasized Vijay Uncle’s ideas on dating for me. Dating in general is complicated, but it’s even more so in the Indian community. Smile Moon and Vijay Uncle’s thoughts and approaches were ones I actually implemented and tried in my dating life. I was skeptical at first but gave it a shot. The result? A much better dating experience that resulted in me realizing more surely and quickly that one girl in particular was definitely “the one??? for me. I proposed last year and we are getting married this year.”

  13. A.D., it’s unclear to me what method of getting married you are a proponent of because honestly I’m a bit lost on what – from the Mustim muthas to the primitives of the amazon – you are exactly talking about. That is not me trying to be rude; I’m just honestly completely lost & that’s likely because I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed.
    I might be wrong, but since the opposite of dating would (IMO) be an arranged marriage, I’m guessing that’s what you believe works best. Personally, I know people who have gotten arranged marriages (our parents generation & our own) who are blissfully happy and also those who are painfully miserable (or somewhere in between) and the same goes for those who’ve dated the Western way (I have no idea what the clear distinction between “legit courtship & at will dating” is but would love to understand). Anyone in either category who is on the happy side of the spectrum is going to say that their “way” is the best option b/c it’s what worked for them. Anyone on the unhappy side of that spectrum would likely say the path they took or are on is the less favorable one or if they were practical, they would say that the path had nothing to do with it & it was their being matched with that partner (either by their own choice or others) that was wrong.
    Amongst my family/friends/acquaintances, although I definitely know tons of single people who are still in the “dating game” (& I’m one of them), I also know just as many Indian-Indian, Indian-American & plain old American people who have dated “successfully,” which means they dated, dated some more & kept on dating until they found their right match. Sure, this process might go on a lot longer than many would have hoped, but I don’t think anyone would regret it once they’ve met their future life partner.
    Anyway, I’ll stop because I’m not even sure what you were asking me if anything at all. I’m also completely lost on what you are saying about “proper consultation w/ a certain tradition” and what “the concern is about children who are the products of such dating relationships”… I’d love to understand though.
    Anyway, thanks for your thoughts & glad that you’re finding discussing dating so entertaining now!

  14. i like Vijay Unkils response
    “Vijay Mehta M.D. said… I guess the right answer is ‘no one should be doing the chasing.’ This is not a Hindi movie where they guy is going to chase you. Even though Bollywood movies might make you believe that. This is a matter of give and take.”
    First of all talking about relationships is the last thing on my entertainment list.The contention that talking about things brings us nearer to solving them is not so valid IMO.If venting out opinions and notions is the object then perhaps it is the only way, but it has no bearing on the the actuality of the situation.

  15. reading of your posts and not being entertained is a conflict and i am ready to entertain that conflict for a bit lol.Perhaps those who changed did not have an opinion in the first place,but let me go through what u have posted and I shall post my response later on.
    happy valentines..

  16. ok i read Ankurs reply the man disliked dating but was ready for the sport and tried it out..are you referring to that act as change?
    perhaps Dating is frivolous to the core of it.An Islamic mutha marriage is way far better than the Yanky concept of dating.I mean here in, the man can date n number of women and have children with them which is allowed,but a man cannot marry multiple women as that is not considered CIVILIZED..what a joke I say.How come hard headed women are silent on this matter i wonder.
    If you go the gist of it,you will realize that all marriages are in fact an arrangement.Excessive individualism is no more than trying to re discover the wheel.

  17. that is fine.But still most people who date go through terrible times.I am still not convinced that it is the method.
    Many americans date n date for years to never get married.It is unhealthy to the core of it.Such experimentation causes many more problems than solving many.
    Considering dating as new age would be foolish.As the primitives of amazon also date.Without proper consultation with a certain tradition is like building a dam again n again.Sheer labour..nada more.
    What about children who are the by products of such dating relationships?What do u recommend for them? There is a clear distinction between legit courtship and at will dating.

  18. No need to move out of here. Post your reply on both places.
    This discussion actually goes to the heart of the problem (if you see this as a problem). We are so busy talking about ‘what would not work’ that we forget that our mission is to define ‘what would work!’ After all that is where we need to be focused – What would work for me?
    And the reason I did not post a response to Amit was that from my stand point he was not asking a question to me but more expressing his personal truth.
    American do it – Chinese do it – and the rest of the word do it. Let us not get lost on esoteric discussions but stay focused on what strategy would bring the results that we are striving for? That is what I have been pondering for years now.,

  19. I enjoyed the post Smile and agree to a certain extent but looking at it from another angle, it sounds like you think the female should be the “ultimate ‘prize'” and therefor the one with all the power in the embryonic relationship. I understand that most guys chase the girls but I prefer to take a different approach. Instead, the male should be confident and realize that he has value/worth and the scale of power should be balanced.
    I guess to put it simply — the guy should signal his interest first but after that they should both be working hard to win the other over.

  20. hey A.I., thanks for reading & commenting. i know anything that i write will be interpreted in a way that i may not have intended, so it’s probably pointless for me to try to explain what i was trying to say, but i can’t help myself 😛 i definitely don’t think that the female is any more the “prize” than the male (as i really do believe in the quote above from my friend: “the perfect marriage begins when each partner believes they got better than they deserve”) & nor do i think that she should have more power in a relationship. the concept of “power” in a relationship is actually lost on me because to me that almost means domination, control or manipulation & i would hope that no one in a relationship would want more of or feel that they have the “power” in the relationship. also, as for confidence/worth, that’s another thing that both partners should have & i would hope that my saying that a guy should do the pursuing did not come across as he is less than the female or he should be her “yes man.”
    what i hope i said clearly was that ideally (for the sake of both individuals & ultimately the relationship), a guy will “do the pursuing” which means make more effort initially & then the girl – who is now completely clear on where the guy stands (i.e. – he’s really interested) – should then reciprocate or like you said, they should both be working hard win the other over. as for my post, i’m not saying this b/c it’s what i prefer, but b/c that’s the scenario that i’ve seen work the best.

  21. Ahh OK thanks for clearing that up. I think the quote about the girl being the “ultimate ‘prize’??? in the caveman analogy is what confused me. What are your thoughts about the initiator when we move the situation to a Indian dating or matrimonial site something i’m intimately familiar with :))? Do your views hold true for that medium as well or do the lines get blurred a little more? Does a message at a dating site hold the same weight as a guy telling you, face to face, he is interested?

  22. Hey, I just stumbled onto your blog (athough not through stumble!) and I’ve just started a blog on the same thing. I’m in my mid-20s and of course the family is starting to panic now about dating, so I started by blog to force me to do all the things I would never do: a speed dating event, join shaadi.com, etc. The idea is that I have no clue what I want and am in no way ready to marry, but maybe all these random experiences will help me get a better idea of what I want and maybe I’ll learn about myself in the process.
    Anywho, I’ve just been reading a book called “Decoding Love” about the science of attraction, and apparently though guys do the obvious pursuing, meaning they walk up to you and introduce themselves and ask you out, etc, it’s the girl that gives a lot of indirect clues likes smiles and such to encourage the guy to pursue. According to the science of it, men are quite risk averse and need to be encouraged multiple times and through multiple ways by a girl, before they make a move. Conversely, they also need to be discouraged numerous times and through numerous ways before they realize a girl is not interested. So….I guess both contribute to the chase. We want men to make to lead in the chase but we have to subtly encourage them on…I think I agree with that.

    • Anonymous

      Definitely agree with that message. Women drop the hints; men do the pursuing. If the women don’t drop the hints (and enough obvious ones, cuz us guys can be pretty clueless), then the guys won’t do the pursuing! So women actually have a lot more “power” than they think…

  23. SM, this is the best article simple and clearly put about successful relationships, dating and more..
    I agree, a man who is a good match, really loves and cares for the lady he is pursuing, will in most cases lead to a happily ever after… whether by dating, arrange marriage or a mixture.

  24. i don’t think merely empirical evidence is sufficient to justify your conclusion. i could counter that many of the successful marriages & relationships i know are where the woman pursued, even popped the question, some lasting 20+ yrs and still going. plus, if you lived in seattle, you’d know that the men here are too reserved & shy and perhaps socially awkward, so it usually takes the woman pursuing, even all the way to the alter. men who lack confidence in dating might still make committed & devoted husbands, in part because they might draw confidence from being married to such a great woman. but i would say that from a primordial biological perspective, men are wired for hunting & pursuing.

  25. @ AI, glad we could clear things up! 🙂 as for what i think works best on the dating websites (& i’m looking forward to learning more about yours), i can honestly tell you that for at least my first 5-odd years on various sites, i was completely passive on the websites essentially (& as awful as this sounds) waiting to be contacted or more like leaving it to the guy to make the first move. today, although i can’t say i’m searching or contacting guys as much as i probably should or could be, i am initiating interest way more than i did before.
    however, i still think that most women prefer that men express interest initially whether it be online or in person. yes, a lot of guys are tired of being rejected, never responded to or just plain old confused by women, but i think that’s something that just comes with the pursuit & i hope that guys (not just for my sake but in general) don’t give up on reaching out to women whatever the medium may be. one thing about online websites that i can’t stand (sorry if i’m hating on something that is an option on your site) is password protecting pics, or pics available on accept or just no pics. i believe that you are supposedly “seriously looking” then you should have the cahunas to put yourself out there entirely. i wonder if people are embarrassed that their friends will see them, if they share how attractive they are with the world they will be overwhelmed with responses or what. all i know is that i hate it when a guy with a seemingly great profile expresses interest but then i see his picture after the fact, & eek, i’m not attracted to him. i would imagine this would feel much worse for whoever it is that goes through this, but more on that topic later.
    as for the kind of online message, well, i think it’s unfortunate that one the websites that do charge fees to send personalized messages, that so many men & women (especially the men) don’t bother becoming a paid member. i don’t think guys fully understand the value of sending a non-generic website-generated message. i also think more women shouldn’t be so passive & if they are exploring a website where communicating your contact info becomes possible if you pay, then they should do it. i think far too many people are out there thinking “i’m not going to pay or if he/she is interested he/she will pay” but a lot of possibilities never transpire as a result.
    @ not cupid, thanks for your post & for mentioning my blog in your sites on your blog (Coconut Diaries!). i think it’s great that a young-to-mid 20-something like you is sharing your experiences with dating & the whole fun process of “searching/putting yourself out there.” i’d be curious to hear your thoughts on my latest post in response to the WSJ article “Where Have the Good Men Gone?” about guys & girls your age and dating.
    also, i completely agree with what you posted from that book although after all these years i still never know what to do in a situation with a painfully (or at least seemingly painfully) shy guy in a non-going out situation who is cute & seems sweet. i’m never able to smile out of nowhere or send any kind of positive signal, when a guy like that has a look of panic & fear on his face! 😛

  26. @ AS, i agree that there are exceptions to every rule, trend or norm and it seems that what’s happened with your friends circle/people in seattle definitely goes against that. i was, of course, writing about the general norm of what people – both guys & girls – prefer & what (based on what i’ve seen) works the best long-term. i don’t know of any situations where the girl did all the pursuing and have never heard of a desi girl popping the question, but i would love to learn more about them & how that worked! i’ll connect with you off-line & will see if we can maybe anonymously interview one or two of these couples since i think their story would really challenge the way most people think.
    also, what you said about a lot of desi guys being reserved, shy or socially awkward is true, & i say kudos to the girl who sees the potential in this kind of guy and is willing to make the effort to initiate interest & doing the pursuing.

  27. I do not believe in the cave man analogy…at all. I had to go through a great deal to get my ex-girlfriend and ever since we parted, I vowed I would never do that for any woman again. Now my ex GF was fantastic. She was amazing, but I still have a hard time forgiving her for putting me through all that rubbish in the beginning. Now the most I do is walk up and talk to a girl. I get the number, text a few times, then call. That is as far as I will go. Any girl that does not show substantial enthusiasm after that gets dropped immediately. I ask myself, if this girl I really like walked up to me and dropped hints she was interested in me, would I play any stupid game? Would I make her jump through hoops just to get me? No. End of discussion.