The fact that I was being desired by the most famous and powerful man in America
only amplified my feelings to the point where resistance was out of the question.
Mimi Alford on her Affair with John F. Kennedy

No Money No Honey
Honesty on sexy cutoff shirt in JCPenny Window

You Might As Well Marry a Rich Man as a Poor Man
My ex-fiancees favorite saying.
(yes, I don't think she'd be my ex if I had had lots of money)


   A very interesting article that appeared in New York Magazine (11/17/2003) called "Alpha Women, Beta Men" discussed what happens when women start to earn more than their spouses.  What happens is a lesson in what makes men desirable to women.  The article states that:

According to psychologists (and divorce lawyers) who see couples struggling with such changes, many relationships follow the same pattern:

First, the wife starts to lose respect for her husband, then he begins to feel emasculated, and then sex dwindles to a full stop. 

   The article tells the story of Anna, a public relations executive who saw her relationship with her Web designer husband collapse as she became more and more successful and he floundered.  In the last year of their marriage she earned $270,000 while he brought in $15,000.  She said:

Sexuality is based on respect and admiration and desire.  If you've lost respect for somebody, it's very hard to have it work. 

   Sexuality based on respect?  One doesn't normally associate sex with dignified behavior.  Some people think that to attract a girl they need to act in an undignified sexually aggressive way.  They might be better off trying to earn her respect.  One thing women respect is men who bring in money. 

   Another way to earn someone's respect is to respect them.

    Not all relationships fail between men and their higher earning spouses.  Older women with money sometimes go for young good looking men or blue collar less unpretentious men.  Kimberly Goad wrote an article about this called Dating's New Odd Couples.

   According to an article called Isn't She Lovely that appeared in Discover Magazine Vol 21 #2 February 2000, research indicates that, across the board in mating species, an ugly guy can make up ground with status and/or wealth.  Female scorpion flies won't even look at a male unless his gift--a tasty bit of insect protein-is at least 16 square millimeters wide.   Human females were asked to rate who they preferred among photos of men listed as teachers and doctors.  Not surprisingly, women preferred the best looking man with the most money but below him, average looking or even unattractive doctors received the same ratings as very attractive teachers.  This was not true when men evaluated women.  Unattractive women were not preferred, no matter what their status.

   Powerful men are also more likely to attract women.  It's very flattering to a woman to have a powerful man show interest in her. Henry Kissinger once said "Power is the ultimate aphrodisiac."

That was his answer when someone wondered aloud what this paunchy old guy was doing with Hollywood actress Jill St. John.

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Jill St. John

   Writer Richard Roeper observed: "Kissinger knew that if he had been Hank, the paunchy cabby, he couldn't have come within two states of Jill St. John. But as Henry, the diplomat, he was a magnet for glamorous women." On the other hand Jill St. John once said "Give me an ugly man with a fabulous mind." Still I don't think Hank would have wound up with Jill no matter how smart he was.   On the other hand one could argue that if Hank was very smart he wouldn't have been a cabby.

   Julie Bowen, the star of the TV show "Ed" spoke on the Late Late show with Craig Kilborn about media pictures of her snuggling up to Bill Clinton (New York Post 1/7/02).  She said:

Clinton is a very powerful man, there's something very sexy about that.

  It is common knowledge that women want to marry men with money.

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   The TV show "Who wants to marry a multimillionaire" had plenty of attractive women willing to marry a man they hadn't even met.

   An example of a woman who married for money is Anna Nicole Smith shown below who married the oil tycoon J Howard Marshall II , a 89-year-old wheelchair-bound billionaire. 


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  She regretted having done that later, so there is a lesson in her experience for all you  mercenary females out there.  Darva Conger also regretting marrying Rick Rockwell who she got hitched with on the TV show, "Who Wants to Marry a Multimillionaire?" In fact they annulled the marriage shortly after the honeymoon. 

   You don't see swarms of handsome but poor young men surrounding ugly shlumpy rich women in bars.  An article in the New York Post, Rich Man Pour Man by Brian Niemetz 3/22/06, described what you do see.  Here is an excerpt:

HOT club, velvet rope, long line. But of all the hip, beautiful hopefuls, the one group that sails through the door is, naturally ... the pack of brokers. What would have been unheard of 10 years ago has now become commonplace in New York - generic, untucked dress-shirt-wearing, dare-we-call-them schlubs routinely rocking A-list venues...  You don't have to be famous or interesting or even cool-looking to get the nod from discerning bouncers. Today, anybody can book a table at clubs like Marquee or Butter for the price of two $350 bottles of Grey Goose.

Patrons are buying "their own slice of heaven," according to former Chaos owner David Sarner, who's just opened his new club, Pink Elephant.

That means that at Pink Elephant, a party of four looking to book a table can expect it to come with a two-bottle minimum at about $350 each, plus the mandatory 20 percent gratuity. And that's on the low end. One night recently, a table of 12 ended up with a $28,000 bill...

Webster Hall curator Baird Jones agrees that bottle service has opened up doors. "It caters to Wall Street people who just don't care about spending $5,000 to $6,000 in a night. That brings older crowds, groups of girls - and it's especially useful with celebrities who travel in big entourages, which you didn't use to have.",,

"The models and 18-year-olds from Choate who hang out with these hedge-fund guys are underage, and they're flat broke. Not only can they not afford bottles, they can't get served," says our insider, stating that often the only person carded at a table is the one buying the $300-plus liters of Ketel One.

"It goes both ways. You take these young girls out of the picture, and these guys won't want to buy bottles," he says.


    Donald Trump is engaged to the beauty in the picture as of Nov 2004..  If he had been a poor shoe shine man would she have given him a second look?  

   Tommy Mottola, perhaps the most powerful and rich man in the music world married two very beautiful and popular girls. He married Mariah Carey and shortly after that marriage ended he married Thalia. 

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Tommy and Thalia

A video that shows off Thalia's beauty is embedded below.


Would Mariah and Thalia have married Tommy Mottola if he was Tommy the pickle man?  There is a saying that

Money can't buy love
but it's sure hard to tell the difference.

   I disagree.  I think that although a woman is most likely to fall in love with the man she dates and money is likely to influence who most women choose to date and who they admire and respect and who they fall in love with.  

     Singers (good singers) are generally attractive to the opposite sex.  We have all heard of Elvis, and other music stars who became wealthy and who girls were crazy about.  One thing that may play a role in that is that if you are a girl and you are chosen by the object of female adoration, you get prestige among your peers.

     Darcy LaPier is an example of a beauty queen who as the New York Post put it "managed to leap dexterously from wealthy husband to wealthy husband, much as a willfully ambitious little girl in a high-stakes game of hopscotch".  She also fell in love with at least one of them, billionaire creator of Herbalife, Mark Hughes.  She had two children at the time from former marriages.  Darcy said: "I thought to myself: Who would want a 33-year-old woman with two kids?"

     The answer came in the form of 44-year-old Mark Hughes, who had built an obsession with diet supplements, herbal remedies and vitamins into a global empire claiming a billion dollars in annual profits.

    They went out on a blind date - and were rarely out of each other's arms until the day he died.

     Darcy says he drove her to his place in his Rolls.

"By the time we got to the red light, we were making out. We looked up and saw that the light was still red, so we kept kissing. Then we realized we had kissed through eight red lights."

     They were married on Valentine's Day 1999, and moved into a 32,000-square-foot Malibu mansion on seven acres of some of the most valuable real estate in America.

     In their first year of marriage, Hughes lavished his bride with gifts - from a simple rose every single day to a limited-edition Bentley and a $4 million personal helicopter.

     Darcy says they dismissed servants so they could run through the house naked, and she cooked nude to get her husband into the right mood for her next creative project, a new Hughes heir and half-sibling for Alex, his son by his first wife, Suzanne.

     But it was not to be.

     IN MAY, Hughes threw an 87th-birthday party for his grandmother, and toasted her repeatedly with white wine. After all the guests had gone, Hughes swooned into an alcohol-induced sleep in an armchair.

     Darcy woke him to suggest he go to bed, but ended up going to their room without him. By the time he slipped between the sheets beside her, she was asleep. When she awoke the next morning, he was dead, and his body was already cold.

     An autopsy revealed that his blood-alcohol level was three times the legal level for driving in California, and that the booze was mixed lethally with Doxepin, an anti-depressant that Hughes apparently took for insomnia.

     Darcy  has been unable to bring herself to move Hughes shoes from their place by the armchair where she last saw him alive, or to take his last cigar from the ashtray.

     Dating, let alone remarriage, seems remote. "I would always be comparing," she says.

    Clearly Darcy was in love with Hughes and clearly one of the reasons she married him was his money.

    Not only is money a reason women marry men, it is also one reason they stay with them.  One reason my ex-fiancee broke up with me was she felt that I wouldn't be able to "support her in the style to which she was accustomed". 

   Earlier I gave the example of Donald and Melania Trump.  Their daughter Ivanka is very beautiful.  She is also very smart, she graduated Summa Cum Laude from Wharton and now works for her father's real estate organization where I'm sure her brains and her beauty will bring her great success.  Men want to please beautiful women and that is a great advantage when you're making financial deals with them.  Her father already gives her a lot of responsibility and she's 25 years old at the time of this writing.  She was interviewed by Lisa DePaulo for Gentleman's Quarterly who asked her what she looked for in a man.  She answered:

I like very strong guys.  Successful guys.  Not necessarily financially.  But that said, I'm not one of those people who would be with somebody who didn't have their finances in order, because that's not a way to live.  I'm just not interested in that.  I'm not interested in paying for anyone.

    Ivanka could easily pay, yet she says that she's not interested in paying for anyone.  I think that's because she wants someone she can look up to and respect.  Again we learn the importance of inspiring respect if you are a man who wants to attract a woman.  

    A study was done in which men and women were asked what the determining factor was in choosing who they'd date and they said they were looking for someone with similar interests.  However when another study was done which determined who they chose in speed-dating they did not choose the person who was similar.  Instead men chose the beautiful women and women chose the richer men.  It may be that women don't want to admit to their mercenary motivations and men don't want to seem superficial and so answer differently than they behave.  Perhaps they also believe their answers because they don't want to face the truth about themselves.  I don't want to be totally cynical here, I am sure that the kindness of the other person and how they feel about you plays a role as well.

    Nowadays women often make more money than men.  I have heard though that as a general rule women who make a lot of money still want to date men who make more.  Consider who wealthy female celebrities marry.   I don't know of any of them marrying a man who was poor.  

   If women are asked what they look for in a man they are unlikely to say money but that's because it sounds mercenary, not because it isn't true.  Women are likely to say they want a man who is confident, who is funny anything but who is rich because it sounds bad.  I remember a woman when asked by a guy what she was looking for saying that she wanted a man who was funny.  The guy then started to crack funny jokes but to no avail.  When relationships fail women are unlikely to say it's because their partner didn't have enough money even if it is.  

    I was engaged to a beautiful girl who complained that I didn't have enough money to support her in the style to which she is accustomed.  One of the favorite sayings of my ex-fiancee was

You might as well marry a rich man as a poor man.

     She followed the advice in her favorite saying and left me, a poor struggling graduate student, for a man with money.  The reason she gave for leaving me was not money yet she left me for a psychiatrist who was making plenty of money.  The problems we had I think were in large part her looking for excuses to end the relationship because I didn't have money.  A lot of problems can vanish when there is money.  If a woman wants a man's money and prestige and if she respects him for being a success, she will have the incentive to make things work.  If she's in a relationship with a poor man and a rich man comes along who wants to date her and who she wants to date, she will have the incentive to make things not work with the poor man so that by the time she breaks up with him she will be able to cite every reason except for money for ending their relationship. 

There is a proverb that:

When poverty comes in at the door, love flies out of the window.

On the other hand if a man has a lot of money, although his wife may have a lot of incentive to get along with him other women who are after his money do as well, so he may have the incentive not to get along with his wife to justify cheating on her.

    It may seem very unfair to us impoverished men that women go for wealth.  Still we need to remember that as future mothers it is only natural that they are concerned about the ability of the husband to support children.  Also it is part of nature that the female goes for the more powerful male.  We men generally go for more attractive women.  That could be considered unfair as well. (Women want attractive men as well, I remember a married man trying to convince a very attractive girl to date his cousin and the first question the girl asked him was "Is he good looking?")

       A sad story that illustrates the importance of money and status to women is Carolyn Bessettes betrayal of her boyfriend Michael Bergin in order to be with John F Kennedy.  Michael Bergin wrote a book about it called The Other Man: A Love Story: John F Kennedy Jr. Carolyn Bessette, & Me.  They had a relationship and she became pregnant.  He offered to marry her and said

         "We can make this work". 

"How?" she said, shaking her head from side to side, defeated.  "How are we going to make this work?  How are we going to survive?"

"I love you," I said, "We'll manage."...

You don't even have medical insurance," she said.  "Do you know how expensive it is to raise a child?"

"We'll be fine," I said.

"Oh Michael, come on!" She was frustrated.  "It's not going to happen that quickly or easily.  You can't support a family.  You don't know where your next job is coming from."

   Throughout their relationship Michael was suspicious that Carolyn was dating Kennedy but she kept insisting that they were just friends until one day she told him that she couldn't risk being seen with him again because it would jeopardize her relationship with Kennedy.  

   Although a major reason Carolyn left Michael was that he didn't have money, eventually he managed to get a job as an actor in Baywatch where he made a lot of money.  Then she rekindled her relationship and wanted to marry him.  He didn't want to be responsible for her leaving Kennedy and he didn't want the scandal.  She said to him "We can do this."  Michael Bergin said to her:

Look, I love you and I've always loved you, but if you think you're just going to get up and walk out on him, you're not thinking very clearly.   This is not the type of scandal that people forget.  This will follow us around for the rest of our lives"...

"Please" Michael she begged.

"No" Michael said.

   Michael's acquiring money was enough to change Carolyn from a woman who aborted his baby and who left him even though he offered to marry her, to one who was willing to leave her husband and willing to endure a scandal just to be with him.

   Leonardo DiCaprio and Michael Johnson are famous and wealthy men.  On March 1, 1999 newspapers reported that while Leonardo DiCaprio was in Thailand to film a movie he woke up to find that a beautiful blond women had broken into his apartment and was stripping in front of him.  Women have been throwing themselves at Leonardo ever since he acted in the movie Titanic.   I saw an interview with Magic Johnson (the basketball star) in which he explained his unfaithfulness to his wife.  He says when he went to a hotel the lobby was full of beautiful women who were waiting for him and one was more beautiful than the next.


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  Hugh Hefner must be doing something right.  He is in his 70s as of April 2001 and has 7 girlfriends all young and beautiful.  His advice is to be a good listener, regarding their physical and emotional needs.  Although that may be excellent advice I don't think that is enough to explain why he has 7 young and gorgeous girlfriends.  Many of these girls see Hugh as their ticket to success.  If they appear on the cover of Playboy that makes their beauty official and could help launch a career for them.  One woman in response to an article about Hugh Hefner wrote that the women are just using him for their careers.  How many married men are being used by women to get a nice house and a nice lifestyle?  They may care about their husband too but they may have picked him over other men because of the lifestyle that came with marrying him.

   What about behavior and attraction?  A country singer (I think it was Garth Brooks) was interviewed on TV and said that he never was good around women but that once he achieved celebrity status women were waiting for him when he walked offstage and he would just pick the one he wanted and go home with her.  On the other hand wealth and power isn't everything. There are other considerations besides money that influence who women want to marry.  Stephanie Reichel who had a boyfriend at the time, got into an affair with Bill Gates the richest man in the world, she ended it after 7 months.  There were other things she wanted in a man besides money that she felt were missing from Bill Gates.  The story of her romance with Bill Gates is told in The Microsoft File: The Secret Case against Bill Gates by Wendy Goldman Rohm.  Bill Gates is married now to a woman who impresses me a great deal so the point I'm making is not that Bill Gates is missing anything, (I never met him and don't know anything about him other than that he is rich and smart).  My point is simply that to some women wealth and power aren't everything. 

   There are women who married men who had nothing because they loved them.  Likewise there are men who marry women who are not that attractive because they love them.  My wife married me and I still don't make much money.  That doesn't change the fact that men who earn a good living and attractive women have an advantage in the marriage marketplace.   The topic of beauty is discussed on another page of this web site.

   For those of us who are good looking, rich, famous and powerful our personality becomes a more important factor.  A Discover article quotes Henry James, who fell in love with Mary Ann Evans (known by her penname as novelist George Eliot) as writing:

She is magnificently ugly-deliciously hideous.  She has a low forehead, a dull grey eye, a vast pendulous nose, a huge mouth, full of uneven teeth, and a chin and jaw-bone qui n'en finissent pas....Now in this vast ugliness resides a most powerful beauty which, in a very few minutes, steals forth and charms the mind, so that you end as I ended, in falling in love with her.

    One would think that if status is important for women than boasting of your status when you meet them is the best way to attract them.  A study on speed dating showed that this is not the case.   According to an article about the study:

The top-rated male's best line was "If you were on Stars In Their Eyes, who would you be?", while the top-rated female asked bizarrely: "What's your favourite pizza topping?"

Failed Casanovas were those who offered up hackneyed comments like "Do you come here often?", or clumsy attempts to impress, such as "I have a PhD in computing".

   It seems that questions that get them to talk about themselves are better than boasting about one's status.  On the other hand the question "Do you come here often?" is a question about themselves that failed.

   One's attitude is important as well.  One woman told me that the most important thing to her was if her man loved and cherished her.  Yet many of us remember when we felt amorous feelings toward another and were met with rejection anyway.  Desiring someone doesn't make them desire you back.   These lines from the song Habanera from the opera Carmen says this very well.

Love is a rebellious bird
That nothing can tame...
Nothing will work, threat or pleading,
One speaks, the other stays quiet;
And it's the other that I prefer...
it is simply in vain to call it
If it is convenient for it to refuse.
Love is the child of the Bohemian,
It has never, never known any law,
If you don't love me, I love you,

  Most of us remember times when displaying desire did nothing to attract the object of our affections.  According to an article called "How Average Guys Catch Beauties" showing desire may prevent the object of one's desire from feeling attracted toward oneself.   A girl I know told me that when men came on to her it was often a turnoff.  I asked her why expression of desire on the part of men evoked this response in her.    She said she didn't know but if they expressed desire with a smile it wasn't a turnoff. I remember hitting on a very beautiful girl in a subway and she appeared reassured by my smile and we spoke until I had to get off.  Now that I have given you a hint you can answer the following questions that were posted on MSN in 6/26/00:

   Rank the following moves in top-to-bottom order as they attract a man at a social gathering:
A. "Accidentally" brushing up against him
B. Nodding at him
C. Dancing alone to the music
D. Smiling at him
E. Looking at him and flipping your hair
F. Licking your lips during eye contact
G. Patting his buttocks

  The MSN answers were:

In descending order from most to least successful: smiling at him; dancing alone to the music; looking at him and flipping your hair; "accidentally" brushing up against him; nodding at him; licking your lips during eye contact; patting his buttocks. Hey, this is science here! Researcher Monica Moore set up a study in which she observed 200 women at a party and recorded their successful "nonverbal solicitation signals." A wide, welcoming smile was more than twice as likely to attract as anything else.

  When you smile at someone you show them you have a positive regard for them.  When you send overtly sexual signals you may make people feel uncomfortable and they may feel that you don't respect them or that you have no self respect.  I once had first hand experience of the power of a smile.  I met a beautiful girl on a ski trip once and didn't have the courage to ask her for her number but I did ask her what singles events she went to.  I then frequented those events and met her.  She didn't seem that interested till one day I smiled at her.  The next thing I knew this beautiful girl was sitting next to me at my table and asking me for a kiss!  I kissed her on the cheek. 

    Although smiles are great that doesn't mean one should go around grinning all the time.  Then one will look like a disturbed idiot. If someone smiles at you though that's probably a good time to smile back. 

  Although different women are attracted to different men, there are universal attributes that women are attracted to such as self confidence, warmth, sincerity, good looks, if a man is a sharp dresser and sometimes even if he has a nice smelling cologne.  This web site has a page with some thoughts about improving one's  appearance.

  One thing that makes a woman attractive to me is if she looks up to me and thinks I'm wonderful.  I'm sure that women are more attracted to men who have a high regard for them.  While I've been on the singles scene I've noticed how quickly people make negative judgements of the opposite sex. They think the worst of other people.  When they do that they make themselves unattractive to the people they look down on.  Also their negative judgements make them unaware of the treasure that is around them so that they don't even know what they've lost when they leave the singles event and tell each other what a bunch of losers were there.  They are the losers.

  Another thing that makes someone attractive is if they are interested in what you do and admire you for what you do.  If someone has a joie de vivre, a joy of living that makes them attractive.  One way to express this is to say that a positive person is attractive.  Someone who has a positive outlook toward life toward himself and toward others.  Someone who tries to see to it that others feel good about themselves and who tries to make their date have a great time.

    A depressed friend of mine complained to me that she couldn't attract boyfriends.  I said to her that being depressed makes her less attractive to men.  I set her up with another depressed friend of mine and she complained to me that she wanted someone who could make her laugh.  He complained to me that she was a real downer and so he didn't want to be with her.  Even depressed people don't want to be with other depressed people.  People want to be around happy people and like my female friend said, someone who makes them laugh.  Someone with a depressed outlook is unlikely to be a barrel of laughs unless he's Rodney Dangerfield.  I think that what she said though is a of crucial importance to men trying to attract women.  Get them to laugh.  Maybe a good way is to memorize  jokes before you get together with them.  Be a fun person to be with.  Another recent friend of mine told me the best dates she's had have been with men who are funny.

   MSN Dating and Personals had an article which asked the question Does a Man's Salary Matter?  Of course the answer was yes but one of the men interviewed when asked if he had any advice to women said:

In general, a woman should ignore finances and pick the guy who makes her laugh. All the money in the world won’t matter if sitting across the dinner table from this guy night after night bores you to tears.

   Yeah but what about a man with a sense of humor and money?  If you get a man without a sense of humor and a lot of money you can buy your own comedian.  How many women after reading Does a Man's Salary Matter are going to change their minds and look for poor funny guys?  Women want men who make them laugh and that's an asset but  I doubt woman will choose a poor funny guy over a serious rich one.

   Todd Gold's interview of Britney Spears in the June 4, 2001 issue of Us quotes Britney in which she says one thing she liked about her boyfriend Justin Timberlake is that he makes her laugh.. 

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  Todd wrote:

Then there's her boyfriend.  "He Makes me laugh," she says.  Is she in love?  "Yes I'm very in love,"she says.   "He's such a beautiful person, inside and out.  We have so much fun together."

    On the other hand Britney broke up with him and married someone else.  

     Making women laugh doesn't meant telling sexual jokes as one can inadvertantly offend people by telling them or people may think one is serious and abnormal.  By the same token one should have a sense of humor and not conclude that someone is wierd or perverted because they made a joke.

    Appearing desperate for a girlfriend, causes women to find one unattractive.  I had a depressed friend who I set up with a woman friend.  So that the woman would be understanding of my friend's depression, I explained to her that he was depressed because he didn't have a girlfriend.  She went on a date with him and was cold to him throughout the date.  Later she explained that my telling her that he was depressed because he didn't have a girlfriend led her to think that he was desperate.  She said his being desperate made her lose interest in him.

    Another nice guy and I took out two women for dinner.  At dinner he asked them if they knew any suitable woman for him to meet.   After he left I heard the women agreeing that he was too desperate.  One of them said that one reason she wasn't interested in him was because he was too desperate.

   If one is desperate one is likely to come on too strong.   I have chased away more than one woman of my dreams by coming on too strong.

   One misconception that I have had is that in order to attract a woman I have to tell her how attracted I am to her.  Often that has driven women away.  That doesn't mean that there isn't a time when expressing one's passion is a good thing to do, it's just my experience that it has not been helpful to do it too soon, like the first few times you communicate with her. 

   I think attraction comes in its own time and it's better to simply one's positive self , and have a good time, than trying to show someone how much you are attracted to them or to make sexual statements toward them. 

   A woman I know was telling me about past boyfriends.   She said that she had some boyfriends who had worshipped her but she didn't feel attracted to the ones who didn't realize that they were good enough for her.  She asked "If they didn't realize it why should she?"

    In nature the buck that beats the other bucks gets the does. Among humans a man who has more bucks, power,status and looks is seen as more desirable by women other things being equal. What's interesting about this is that even women who have a lot of money and status tend to look for men with money and status.

    Women tend to prefer men who are confident.   That may be partly because of the nature of females to desire the dominant male.   On the other hand I as a man find a woman who has self confidence a lot more attractive than one who lacks self confidence.  If a woman knows that she is attractive she acts in a way that makes her more attractive.  There's nothing more attractive than a self confident smile.  That doesn't mean one should go around grinning in order to be attractive.  Also it doesn't mean forcing a smile when one doesn't feel like smiling.  It's important to be oneself.  I heard that if a man offers a handshake that makes him appear self confident.

   My girlfriend has told me that when men go around with a "lean hungry" look they are less attractive.  If one approaches women with the attitude I need you desperately one will probably have that look. 

      If a man is confident that he has a lot to offer he will be more attractive to the opposite sex than if he is afraid that he is not and the same applies to women.  If a man lacks confidence that can lead to a self feeding cycle in which he is rejected by women.  

    Men prefer women who are confident.  I once set up two friends on a date and the date didn't work out and I asked the man about it and he explained that the women was completely lacking in self confidence.  The woman told me "How can I be self confident if no one wants to be my boyfriend?".  She is caught in a vicious circle.

    I told her that she looked beautiful the day of the date and a little on the conversation she said "He must think I'm ugly".   By drawing that conclusion she is destroying her self confidence and feeding the cycle of rejection.  The conclusion to draw that would help her attract a boyfriend is that

If I'm more confident in my appearance and more self confident in general I will be more attractive.

    Her lack of self confidence also drives me (her friend) crazy.  In a conversation I will try and make her feel good about herself and then she will argue with me about it.  For example I told her she looked beautiful when she went on her date and later in the conversation she said "Joe must have thought that I was ugly".  I don't want to keep arguing with her about that and it makes me want to avoid conversations with her.

    A woman friend of mine told me she decides who she is interested in based on how they look, on their expression and how they carry themselves.  If they look angry or depressed she doesn't want to talk to them.  If they are fat or disheveled she doesn't want to meet them either.  I think things people would notice would include if the person is dancing or standing in the corner.  If the person looks happy or sad.  If the person smiles in their direction or not.  Often the appearance has the biggest impact.  I remember a beauty at a dance party who had an impenetrable wall of men around her.

    I've noticed that women are often attracted to men with a lot of enthusiasm. I overheard a woman chatting with her friend about a guy that she liked gushing how he had so much energy.  She also said that she liked the way she was when she was around him.  (I've also noticed a man who was very calm hitting it off with women so I'm not sure whether or not enthusiasm is important).

    A woman told me that she was looking for a man who wasn't serious all the time, one who had a lighter side and made her laugh. She said she didn't want to come home to a serious atmosphere. I myself am attracted to women who have a joie de vivre.  I am also attracted to women who think I'm wonderful and who act like they're glad to see me.  I prefer a woman who is relaxed instead of one who is anxious.

    There is an interesting aspect to this. Suppose a man finds that he isn't successful with women. Supposing he harbors some hostility toward them based on past rejections. Then he's not likely to act like he's glad to see them.   When he is around women he will most likely not be a bundle of joy. He won't be making her laugh. He won't treat her as if she is wonderful.  His fear of rejection is likely to make him anxious.  She will most likely reject him.   That rejection will increase his fear of rejection and his hostility  and a self feeding cycle toward rejection is thus created.

Where Does the Attraction Fade?

   I once went to a singles discussion where a good looking man expressed his consternation that as his relationships continue the initial attraction he had for the girl fades.  He wanted to know why?

   I don't claim to know all the reasons why but I know from my own relationships what some of the reasons are.  One very obvious one is if one partner doesn't take care of their appearence and gains 30 pounds.  Aside from letting one's appearence deteriorate there will always be something the spouse or significant other, does or doesn't do that annoys their partner.  Their partner has to communicate that.  That constittutes a complaint or constructive criticism.   How that criticism is made and how the person being criticized reacts is likely to determine in large part what happens to attraction in the relationship.  Complaints and fights destroy attraction.

   We all need to make constructive criticisms but we can do it in a loving way.  Making it in a hostile way simply will cause our partner to reject the criticism and destroy the attraction in the relationship.  We also need to be able to take criticisms in a loving way and to appreciate them.  Sometimes I have found it helpful to ask my wife after I explain something to her, to let go of her anger and give me a hug.

   Manipulating a partner through guilt destroys attraction.   There are other ways to motivate someone to do what you want besides guilt like showing appreciation when he or she does.  Arguing with your partner when they try and stop your self destructive behavior such as overeating or smoking or drinking too much will kill attraction.  It's much better to show appreciation to them and to try and carry out their suggestions. 

   Nagging destroys relationships.  If you need to say something say it once and that's it.  I was in a car with a couple and the man was driving and the woman told him he had passed a sign for the exit he should have taken.   He denied it and they got into an argument in which she kept insisting that he had passed the sign.  He asked her to let it go but she kept insisting.  She would have been better off letting it go even if she was right.  Nagging kills attraction.

    If a couple starts fighting than a serious atmosphere is created and the attraction that came from a light happy atmosphere is gone. Frequently when people become close, they have to adapt to each others needs and this creates problems which can lead to fights.  This in turn can lead to the development of negative attitudes toward each other which destroy attraction.  There is a book called Fighting For Your Marriage which is based on the premise that how you fight depends on whether or not you have a successful marriage.  I discuss this book in the Communication web page of this web site. 

    One way out that people cope with problems in a relationship is to blame the other person, break up and find someone else. If it wasn't the other person's fault or was only partly their fault than than the same situation is likely to repeat itself with the next partner. Although blaming others is good for one's ego and sometimes may be justified, it may not be justified and in that case if we are to be successful in our relationships we have to be willing to face that we may have problems that we have to work on.  Even if the other person is at fault if they are willing to improve it's only fair to give them a chance.  Nobody is perfect and if one dumps everyone who isn't one will wind up with noone.    

Changing Behavior

    Changing one's behavior on a date to appear more happy and more self confident may not be enough to make one's dating problems go away.   Frequently our mannerisms, and our tone of voice, give away that we are not happy.   Achieving happiness and self confidence may take time and it's important not to become discouraged if one does not have instant social success when one attempts to appear happy.

Constructive Criticism

    If your significant other complains to you that some habit of yours is annoying and it is a habit that one would expect to annoy people, it is important to take the complaint seriously if one wants to remain attractive to one's significant other.  Also it's important not to counterattack when one gets such constructive criticism.


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