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What She Really Wants: My Take

January 28, 2008

Esquire has a very interesting article on actual women telling what women really want, when it comes to men and their random acts of chivalry (or lack thereof). Read it here.

I used to think I am a feminist until I realise the great privileges of being a girl. We have our fair share of miseries and insecurities but the social pressures to be treated well and proper easily compensate for that. Well, at least it made our lives less unbearable. I know all you feminists out there are itching to slap me now but there is seriously nothing wrong in enjoyin acts of chivalry, generosity, kindness and respect from guys in general. We live in a civil society, and being civil to one another has nothing to do with relinquishing all respect for oneself.

Nah, there are still moments when things cross the line. But really it’s a very fine line and unless you are an expert people-reader or a relationship advice columinist, you may get it not quite right once in a while, and that, is perfectly okay too. In general, guys can get away with any act of chivalry without coming across as hitting on the girl or being pervy, as long as they are a friend of the girl, and/or if they get good vibes from her.

Nothing is an absolute given. Modern men should not feel any pressure to conform or behave in an overly gentlemanly way, but it does not hurt to show some kindness to girls — you never know whose heart you just melted when you gave up your seat to an old lady on the train.

The following are some things that can (and should) be done:

  • Open the door (any door except for the bathroom door)
  • Pull out the chair (ok, some girls get really scared when guys do this but please, if he does, let him)
  • Carry anything that is not the purse/handbag
  • Offer to pay (and eventually pay, or not)
  • Suggest places to go, but eventually come to a consensus or listen to the girl
    Has a good sense of direction and take charge
  • Not talk about any previous conquests/escapades (unless girl is good friend or you don’t intend to see her again)
  • Not talk bad about own parents
  • Talk about pets (shows a softer side)
  • “Ladies first” for most things, except when stumbling into a pitch dark cinema XD
  • Put intoxicated girl in a cab and see her home, but NEVER stay the night (unless you are a doctor and she needs medical attention)
  • Leave quietly if pick-up attempt is unsuccessful (as if any guy wouldn’t)
  • Not use pick-up lines (unless you are hot and funny)
  • Not intervene/interrupt girls’ conversations (even tho you eavesdropped on something you thought you really should comment about)
  • Give up the last whatever on the shelf if a girl happens to reach for it
  • Offer a tissue to crying girl but do not stare
  • Send the girl home, or at least to the nearest train station 

I think you get my picture. Most of them seem common-sensical but surprisingly most guys don’t do it.
Girls are not monsters. They may be opinionated, annoying and overly judgmental sometimes, but deep down some girls are really okay if you let loose or forget some things once in a while. We do nice things too. We listen to you and we provide good company. So let the girl have what she really wants. It might get addictive.

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