This is the 3a post in an ongoing series on Relationships. Part 3 was on The Opposite of Settling is Unsettling. How the word settling has an inherently defeated connotation and that many times, the best people are right in front of you. My hope is that this series supports and intentionalizes more quality, Godly relationships; and stops some of the childish bickering that happens through an insightful and funny series.
Should women take initiative? I recently got asked this question by a friend of mine. My comment turned into a post.
Some thoughts that come to mind:
You don’t want a guy that won’t go after you. That won’t chase you. Percentage wise on how far women should go in initiating, I don’t know. I just know you don’t want to go 100%.
But it is true that guys are way out numbered by girls, like 2-1 or 3-1 so when you do find someone you REALLY like, I am going to guess that some other girls like that guy too. So you ‘have to get yours’. The field is against you. One of the characteristics I said in Proverbs 31 was being diplomatic: Diplomacy is the art of letting someone have your way. I love this quote. Just make him think that he was choosing you ;) As in, he may not even really notice you. It is not one side selecting and the other side just obliging, it is both sides mutually agreeing. I don’t think women should take the initiative, but they can spark interest in a variety of ways.
So you definitely don’t want to go 100%, unless you want a guy with no backbone. No balls. So then the question becomes, what percentage is right? There is not a right answer. Some girls are happily content going 99% of the way, meaning the guy just shows up. Actually, for 1% he just sits there. So is it 87%, 67%, 53% 43%, 25%, 0%?
50/50: the line of demarcation. When you go past 50/50 you are playing offensive. Vulnerable to get hurt. Below the 50/50 line, you are playing defensive. It is your home base. You are safe. You won’t get hurt because you’re not allowing yourself to get hurt. 50/50 means you are there half way and you expect the other partner to come at least half way, which is noble. Now I say ‘at least’ because women are confusing. Women love to play tricks, whether for good, bad or unknowing intentions.
Example: Women piques guys interest by going 74% of the way her way. Guy thinks ‘wow this girl really likes me. I’m interested and I will go on the offensive next time we meet!’ Next time they meet, girl is at 0%, guy is at 74% his side and thinks ‘what the heck did I do wrong?’ Does my cologne stink? Do I have bad breath?’ It’s the chase. Women love to do it. It’s a misnomer to think that some women just play defensive their whole life, because guys just keep coming. That they don’t have to do anything. Sure guys flock to specific women but their secret is that they play offense. There is always a problem. The problem for those girls is finding, filtering, and getting the junk guys out of the way. For others, it will mean playing more offense. Positives and negatives to both sides.
Now if you went offensive for a bit then went back to the 50/50 line, not willing yourself to get hurt, he may find you there. It is those who go back and forth, back and forth, that confuse the male species. It’s not bad, it’s just a work out.
Ultimately, the question is, what kind of guy do you want? A guy that will just play defense? A guy that never goes past 50/50? Or a guy that just takes 3 steps past the line of demarcation? Personally, if I had a daughter, I would want her to get a guy who was offensive, not defensive. There’s an old sports cliche ‘defense wins you championships’. Meaning, know yourself. Know what you want. Recheck that list. Do what you are good at and what characteristics you want in a potential spouse. However, it is very, very rare to win with just defense. Defense can help your offense. There is no way you will win if you are at 0%. However some people may need to be there for a season of their lives. Maybe you are at 25%. Do you need to be at 40%? 1% point makes a big difference. Just don’t stand there at 79%, you’ll look a little desperate.
There is an underlying question to: should women take initiative? Why should you have to take initiative? Because you are worried? Because of the outnumbering of girls to guys? Those are bad reasons. Those are worldly reasons.
Does he not notice you because there are tons of other women grabbing at his attention? Then you may have to go on some offense for a bit. Not always. Just to pique his attention. The chase, right? Some great guys are just blinded, consumed with all the 79ers who entice like no other. Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. So you’ve got to get their attention, the old offense to defense switcharoo, and get those guys ‘working out’ again.