What Women Really Want from Men.

Via Jennifer S. White
on Sep 15, 2013
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Oh, ladies, are we really that complicated?

Unfortunately, yes. (Sorry, gentlemen.)

Okay, I’m not actually sorry, but I do feel a ti-ny bit bad, so I’ve decided to help you out.

Here, spelled out—quite literally—is what women want.

We want to be wooed. 

We want romance and we want chivalry. We want you to want to open a door for us because you respect us and, well, like us.

Because we like ourselves, so we demand to be treated well.

Yet, here’s the catch…

We want to have our cake and eat it too.

While we do want to be treated like ladies, we also want to go to work if we choose, to have friends outside of our relationship with you and to, you know, be independent while still being snuggly with—and loved by—you.

It’s the way it is.

Because we’re also free-spirited and sassy.

(And, admit it, that’s part of a woman’s charm.)

We want you to read our minds.

Ladies, this one’s actually for you.

Repeat after me: (almost all) other people cannot read your mind, especially men.

Your husband, boyfriend, etc is probably not nearly as capable as your sister or your girlfriends at reading your facial expressions and limited wording.

Guys, this isn’t a slam, I promise—it’s the simple truth.

So, yes, we would like you to read our minds and then grant us our every wish, but, women, let’s grow up and use our words instead, okay?

We want to be cuddled.

Leaning into you during a Netflix movie isn’t necessarily a sign that we want to fool around. Sometimes a lady needs to cuddle. Period.

We want to be held and kissed tenderly on the cheek—and that’s it.

However, if you spend more time hugging and cuddling, that’s a sure-fire way for us to want you even more romantically.

We want to be left alone.

Although maybe not in the way that you think.

Many men (and people in general, let’s be fair) are fixers.

When we vent to you, we don’t need you to fix it for us, we just need you to listen. Thanks.

 We don’t want to always get our way.

Sorry, girls, I’m helping everyone out here by telling it like it is.

Guys, we want you to—ahem—grow a pair and stand up for yourself when necessary.

I don’t believe for a second that any healthy woman wants a man who does everything she says. That makes her your mommy—and she doesn’t want to be married to, or have sex with, her son.

Still, we want you to want to please us.

This is different than wishing the door was held open.

This is you wanting to help fold the laundry and brush the kids’ teeth because you sincerely aim to be part of a happy, well-functioning family.

Both of us are tired after a long day and everyone itches to check out from time to time; all we’re asking for is that, when you’re feeling frustrated or selfish, you look at us a little bit more like the girl you dated and wanted so desperately to please rather than the sometimes cranky lady you married or live with.

In other words, ignore our occasionally  tired eyes and possibly-too-frequent snappy tone of voice—this is not from personal experience, mind you—and just jump in willingly with love, and this will most assuredly soften our hard edges—because we feel cared for.

Additionally, we are the most beautiful women in the world.

Go with me on this.

Obviously every woman can’t be the most beautiful from a practical definition, but we can be the most beautiful woman to you—and we need to be.

It doesn’t matter how long we’ve been together or how many new and younger chicklets pop up onto your radar. When we have grey hair and more wrinkles—I mean, memories—than we can count, we still want you to look at us with desire and appreciation.

There’s something in it for you, too: men are more attractive when they make you feel special and wanted.

Oh, and women don’t like bad boys—that’s something assholes made up.

 You know, I think I’ll stop here for now.

There are actually several more things that women want from you, but I think that if you honestly put effort into working on these suggestions then the rest will fall into place, naturally.

Because here’s the real secret about the love-and-marriage-and-baby-carriage balancing act: we want a partner.

That’s it.

Everything that you want, we want it too.

Sure, our ways of communicating and the little differences often get in the way for both of us, but in our heart of hearts our deepest needs and yearnings are the same.

Remember that—and you’ll do just fine.


Bonus: my husband thinks that the Spice Girls know what a woman really wants, so, guys, let’s just agree to leave it at hopefully you’ve read this far and go ahead and stick with the script above. (If you want my take, though, and still would like to see what a woman wants in song, then make sure to check out video number two.) Over and out.

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Ed: Bryonie Wise


About Jennifer S. White

Jennifer S. White is a voracious reader, obsessive writer, passionate yoga instructor and drinker of hoppy ales. She’s also a devoted mama and wife (a stay-at-home yogi). She considers herself to be one of the funniest people who ever lived and she’s also an identical twin. In addition to her work on elephant journal, Jennifer has over 40 articles published on the wellness website MindBodyGreen and her yoga-themed column Your Personal Yogi ran in the newspaper Toledo Free Press. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in geology, absolutely no degrees in anything related to literature, and she currently owns a wheel of cheese. If you want to learn more about Jennifer, make sure to check out her writing, as she’s finally put her tendencies to over-think and over-share to good use. Jennifer is the author of The Best Day of Your Life, available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. She's also as excited as a five year old to announce the release of her second book, The Art of Parenting: Love Letters from a Mother, available on Amazon.


19 Responses to “What Women Really Want from Men.”

  1. lisab says:

    The one thing that is perfect about this article is the last bit about wanting a partner. Definitely. Was the rest of the overtly gendered info meant as tongue and cheek that would ultimately lead to that bit of truth?

  2. Valter_V says:

    > "We want to have our cake and eat it too."
    Sigh. Yes, you do. At least you're honest about it.

    I would add two more things that, IMO, are missing from this article:
    – Women want to be loved inconditionally; no-matter-what; just because they exist.
    Sounds good and fair and proper to you? Ok, now try thinking the same, said for men. Would you love a man – any man – that way?
    – (most) Women want everything. In other words, it's never enough.
    You do not believe this? Let's check: count the women you know, perfectly content with their partner, not wanting anything more.

    > "Everything that you want, we want it too."
    Yes, as long as it's what YOU already want.

    No surprise happy couples are that hard to find…

  3. Valter, sadly there's some truth in your response because people are often very self-centered. I think considering what women want and what we can have—if we want a happy relationship, that is—is an important distinction, and not one that's made in this playful article (but one that's pointed out in many of my more serious relationship-oriented pieces).

  4. Aurelie Belle says:

    I agree whole heartedly with the above sentiments – would be interesting to see what guys actually want too 😉

  5. Kai Lee Herbertson says:

    I clicked on the title with trepidation, hoping that instead of yet another iteration of the severely gendered roles that our society prescribes women and men today, I would be surprised by something as simple as "respect" or "honesty" or something like that. I am a woman. I have some authority on what a (singular, meaning me and only me) woman wants out of a partner (who may or may not be someone who identifies as male). I'm sure you'll get some flack for this article, so let me be clear: I totally respect your views and your wants in a relationships, but I find it unfair that your wants are being generalized to me and every other woman that exists.

    I don't want to be wooed–I want someone that will treat me as an equal. I want to hold the door and show him I care, too.
    I don't want to be treated like a lady–I want to be treated with respect as a human.
    I DO want physical intimacy that recognizes that I am not a sexual being at all times, you're right! I also recognize that a man is not always only after physical intimacy in order to reach sex.
    I don't want an inanimate ventee, I want to process my frustrations with someone who will help me see other points of view while supporting my valid feelings.
    I don't want to be told I am the most beautiful person in the world! It's a boldfaced lie and not helpful at all for my development as a person, as vanity leads to separation from reality and from my fellow people. What I want is someone who recognizes the beauty of my expression of self, and sees no need to compare it to her or her or him or her.
    Yes, I want a partner. Well, right now, I want three, and that's what I have, but regardless of the number, I want me and my partner(s) to recognize that we are each independent beings that can help each other experience more of the beauty we find in the world and in ourselves. Two pairs of eyes see more than one, and I want someone with me who will share what they see and help me expand my concept of the world.

    I truly believe you wrote this with your heart, and (again) I am NOT trying to invalidate your wants as a partner to whatever lucky person you choose to share your time with. I am simply trying to communicate that in such a huge population of women, other viewpoints are valid as well, and other types of courtships and relationships that you describe are equal in worth. It is damaging to assume that our experiences mirror exactly those of others, as it makes one path the 'acceptable' path. There are as many paths toward love as exist, and have existed, lovers.

    Blessings, and may you find a man who lives up to your wants.

  6. Dylan says:

    Is that it? Well, let me tell you what we men want……..

  7. aretesr45 says:

    PSSSST: Did you know that's Audrey Hepburn and Mel Ferrer, then married, in the photo at the head of this nifty article?! Great to see them so young and fresh from the days when I was both myself!

  8. Kenneth says:

    Well… Whenever I do attempt to stand up for myself it turns into some kind of heated debate that snowballs. Sure, I know I should stand firm, but it's oh so much easier to say: yes, dear… everything else on the list I pretty much got down to perfection, so there has to be more to it then this, perhaps I need to hone my mindreading skills even more 🙂

  9. ECharette says:

    That sounds a bit bitter. I am very happy with my husband, and want no other. I don't have any friends that want another man. Some, understandably, want their SO to improve in their relationship. It's not about loving any man or any woman, it's about loving the right man or woman. I would question what kind of women you are attracting, rather than assuming all women are like the few you have dated. When you find yourself surrounded by less then healthy relationships, you must look into yourself to see what you are doing to attract them. Then, either accept it or change.
    I know what my husband wants from me. It's easy to figure it out. He wants me to love him, even when I'm upset with him.He wants his space. He wants to know I trust him. When he is upset or in a bad mood, he wants to be left alone. But, he still wants to know he can count on me to be there to support him. He wants to know that through the years I am still turned on whenever I look at him. He wants "that look", the one that is only meant for him….the sparkle in my eyes and light in my smile that only happens when I see him. He wants me to appreciate the things he does for me, even if he does them wrong. He wants me to respect him as a man. His ego is fragile and I need to make sure I take care of it. But most of all,, he wants me to be honest. All of this must come from the heart, or it is meaningless.

  10. foopster says:

    Ideally, no one should have to read anyone else's mind. We should ask for what we want from our partners, understanding that we might not always get it, but how can we get it if we don't ASK? Every human is an individual. I hope you find one who communicates with you and loves you as much as you can stand. 🙂

  11. Mariana says:

    "We don’t want to always get our way."

    Topic at hand lately with a friend and I. So true!

  12. Robert says:

    I appreciate the humour and truth in this article. I have to admit, I suck at reading minds; including my own. 🙂

    I think the key to it all is truthful communication. Keep it real from the get go and everything will go fine. Keep the ego in check would be another way of relating to this article for me. Thanks for sharing.

  13. JohnH says:

    Wow, what a breath of fresh air to find a woman who wants to be a partner and not some princess/goddess waiting for some superman to complete her. I like your humor at sorting out the complexity of socialized fairytales and grounded human needs. Beyond the gender roles, we are merely human and that is magnificent enough…

  14. Amy E says:

    Right on, John H. I sure don't want to be a princess, or wait for Superman!

  15. My name isn’t Fernando, it was a joke, ignore it lol.

    That’s not what woman want at all they just consciously think they want that. Woman don’t actually like it if a man can read there minds because then men would always be right and a fight allows a woman to assert dominance to a certain extent just like men also need too. If a man knows what a woman wants always then a woman can’t tell a man he is wrong even if he knows what the woman wants. If a man knew what the woman wanted at all times then he would be to agreeable and there would be no diversity in the relationship.

    Next incorrect assumption about woman woman don’t like to be left alone deep down subconsciously we want to be accepted and the term coined “being left alone” simply means to both male and female you aren’t saying the right thing to make me want to be around you or continue to talk to you. Everyone has been in a big fight and deep down you know what you want that person to say but they don’t say it so you say that you need to be left alone because you care for them or love them and you don’t want to hurt them considering most of the time you (men and women both) just turn around and vent to a friend you know will agree with your point.

    Woman never want to truly feel like they are the most beautiful girl in the world simply for the fact that if a guy truly meant it a girl would never believe him because a girl only sees her flaws where he sees all the ways she is the most perfect girl for him so what a girl really wants is to not catch him looking (assuming it’s innocent and if it’s not she wants to catch him and rightfully so), she wants to be in a room with him and feel like she is the only girl in the entire room he notices. Also a woman wants a reason to feel pretty so if she doesn’t have a need to chances are the relationship is stale and needs to end or counseling for a few different reasons of one or both of them together. I could tear this apart all day long.

  16. Nanarman says:

    Considering there are way more women than men in this world, this article is pretty much broken…

    …or, it's actually helping us guys into leveraging competition between women. Find another woman who will let you love her based on what you are and not on a wishlist. If any woman is actually asking you some of the above way too much, leave her, there'll be another one for sure.

  17. Nanarman says:

    But good humorous article, thank you for the read.

  18. Paul says:

    Beautifully expressed, Kai Lee Herbertson. Thank you so much.