Archive | October, 2014

The Dating Game: Where’d Chivalry Go?

31 Oct
Credit: innerbonding.com

Credit: innerbonding.com

I recently came across an article about something that rarely exists in our culture nowadays, something that almost made me grab a dictionary to rediscover what it meant.

Chivalry.

I hear it all too often from my female friends: “Love isn’t how it is in the movies.” Of course not; they’re movies. They’re a distorted perception of reality with an incredible amount of entertainment value because they provide an escape, a way for us to live through our favorite characters on the big screen. That’s why we watch them, cherish them, as if they were autobiographies of our lives.

But real life doesn’t come with a script.

You live. You love. You learn. You move on.

Typical romantic comedies – or chick flicks – often lead to unrealistic expectations within one’s own relationship.

That being said, that type of love can be possible – with the right person.

What we used to know as chivalry has become an ancient concept. It’s all but nonexistent. Men generally don’t take care of women the way they used to. And while women aren’t the ones who display the utmost examples of douchebaggery, so to speak, they can still be held somewhat accountable for chivalry’s endangerment by tolerating this type of behavior.

This takes me to one of my favorite quotes, from “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”:

We accept the love we think we deserve.

Movies may not always be realistic, but there are many lessons that can be learned from them.

Just because a man does something nice for a woman does not mean he should feel a sense of entitlement, nor should a woman feel obligated to date him. I’m a believer in chivalry, but I don’t think women owe me anything in return. That’s not the point of being chivalrous. I do it because it’s right, and it’s how I was raised. Plain and simple. Having an ulterior motive would nullify being a gentleman in the first place.

But more often than not, kind gestures are underappreciated. Men who hold doors, pick up the tab at dinner, or make any genuine effort to sweep a woman off her feet are often misconstrued as clingy or desperate. If being a gentleman makes me desperate, then I won’t stop being desperate until my desperation leads me to an equally desperate woman who will appreciate my desperate actions.

Yeah, let’s go with that.

Ladies, when we do nice things for you, we aren’t suggesting that you aren’t competent enough to handle it yourself. If we open a door for you, it’s not a way for us to secretly check out your ass. Yes, a friend of mine was accused of this once. I’m not sure if he’s held a door for a woman since. If we pay for your dinner, it’s not because we don’t think you’re financially stable enough to put food on the table. We do these things because we feel like we’re making your life easier. We want to show you we aren’t like the other guys. We’re different.

Please forgive the nice guys of the world for wanting to show you more than their bedroom ceiling.

The hookup culture is so prevalent in today’s society, but if it’s what both parties want, then I’m not here to tell them otherwise. Unfortunately a lot of men, especially in college, go about it the wrong way, scheming women into having sex with them. They have charm, they say and do all the right things, but once they get what they want they’re nowhere to be found.

Sure, a wild night in bed might place a man squarely on top of cloud nine, but if he were to take a step back and consider the mental, emotional and potentially physical damage he inflicted upon a woman he took advantage of, he may not feel so high and mighty.

But that’s just it. These men don’t truly care about women. They only want to “get theirs.”

On the plus side, the men who do treat women with respect won’t settle for the bare minimum, which ultimately means they will probably end up with a woman who won’t settle, either.

And when that happens, the sky is the limit for your relationship.

Allow yourselves to be treated by someone who genuinely cares about you. Only then can you create the fairy tale you’ve always dreamed of.

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