Do Men Only Care About Physical Attraction?

Published On: June 16, 2023|Categories: Advice for Men, Dating Over 50, Dating Tips|10 min read|

Video Summary

When it comes to romance, physical attraction is often one of the first things most people look for in a partnership. But is it the only factor considered by men when looking for “the one”? Join Master Certified Matchmaker Genevieve Gresset and Certified Dating Coach/Matchmaker Heather Drury as they answer the call of a downtrodden woman’s worry about her looks and finding love.

Video Transcript

Heather: Genevieve, we have a letter from a single person in need of our help. So we’re just going to dive right on in the title of this letter. Yes. Is is physical attraction the main thing a straight man looks for when dating? Well, that’s a great question.

Genevieve: Do you want the honest answer or do you want the answer I would love to give?

Heather: Well, yeah, let’s just start there. We’ve got her letter, I think the complexities of her situation. But let’s just stop and start right there. What is your instinct tell you when you hear that question, as often asked to matchmakers and dating coaches?

Genevieve: Yes, but it’s not just men. It’s women as well.

Heather: Good point.

Genevieve: Physical attraction is important for men and women. It doesn’t work just one way. I think men are probably quicker to make judgments about a woman on her appearance and how she comes across and all of those things. Whereas I think a woman will sometimes give a man, you know, a little bit more leeway and sometimes attraction will take a bit more time to grow. We’ve seen that time and time again. That physical attraction isn’t always there at the beginning, which is why we have a three date rule and it grows. We know that, people wouldn’t have affairs if physical attraction was the only thing that brought people together. You know, how many times do we hear about people getting together when they’ve been friends for 20 years or they’ve worked together for a few years and then all of a sudden they’re attracted to each other. So we do know and we do understand that physical attraction grows. It’s not something that is predetermined straight away.

Heather: Absolutely, and I think if we know that two facts, one: men and women both take physical attraction into account when dating. And two: the reality is that attraction changes, grows, morphs into something that both times we’re not even really we weren’t even prepared for. It’s like, “Wait a minute, why are you all of a sudden really cute?” It’s the most interesting thing that happens in dating. Genevieve, you’re right, the three day rule is imperative to dating. I love that our matchmakers constantly remind their clients of that because it’s a game changer when it comes to dating. So first and foremost, just the subject line alone. There’s your advice. But let’s get into this particular letter. The letter writer goes on to say, “I am turning 30 this year and I’m pretty insecure about aging and dating. I don’t look the same way when I did when I got with my ex at 23. I’m worried that I won’t be as attractive to a lot of men and this lessens my chances of meeting someone compared to when I met my ex at 23. Does anyone have advice or an opinion to share? I am talking about long term and serious dating relationships only.” So they’re not looking for that one night stand fling. This person’s looking for increasing the odds of finding a connection at the ripe age of 30.

Genevieve: Well, every milestone birthday has its own complexities and its own vulnerabilities. We hear from people aged 30, 40, 50, 60 and plus. That’s one thing to deal with, is there’s a biological clock also with women around the 30 mark. We hear that all the time. A lot of women feel very vulnerable around 30. Friends could be getting married and settling down and having children and you feel that you’re left on the shelf. Our bodies are constantly changing.

Heather: And what a cool thing. I just want to say, if we could accept that faster that our bodies are changing and no, you’re not 23, but how freakin cool to be a 30 year old. I just have to say, I heard this when I was turning 30 a while ago, we won’t say when. Everything changes when you turn 30. It’s like the the rose colored glasses come off and you can see clearly and you accept yourself and your body. It continues to happen every decade thereafter. So embrace it, Mama. Being 30 is cool.

Genevieve: You accept who you are at the different stages in your life and I think it’s really important. Your bodies are constantly changing. I’m going to be 52 in two weeks, and my body is totally different now than it was when I was in my thirties, forties and twenties, completely different. I probably work out more now than I did then. So I think it’s an acceptance and it’s embracing who you are. If someone wants you because of your body or what you look like, then they’re not the right person that you want to be with long term anyway, because they’re looking at you from a superficial standpoint. They’re looking at you because you are arm candy and you’re going to look great for the parties and everything else. But you’re not someone that they will appreciate your body changing even more. If you want to have children, your body changes. Men’s bodies change just the same way as women’s bodies change. So I think it’s one of those things that we put a lot of emphasis on. We’re different and we’re changing and people are not going to like us and accept us for who we are. And you know what? If they don’t, let them move on because they’re not the right people for you. Let the right ones come in who are going to love you and see you for who you really are and what values that you bring to the relationship.

Heather: Right, your unique and lovable self. And really, yes. Is attraction important? Absolutely. But it’s not one dimensional. And I think that’s the thing that we have to really start understanding as daters that are serious. It’s like she just ended her letter. She specifically said, “I’m not talking about anything other than serious dating and relationships.” So if that’s the case, then we have to then re-educate ourselves on what attraction really is. It’s not one dimensional. It’s not a physical being right now. It’s just there and exists and “Oh, that’s attractive, I want that.” That sounds like a fun time, very lust filled, but that doesn’t sound like the makings of a long term partnership. There are so many other factors to attraction. So can you share with me what do you think the layers of attraction we should be looking for when we’re dating? Aside from physical attraction.

Genevieve: Well, you know that the physical side is what’s going to draw you in initially to get you curious. I want you to look beyond that. What I always say to people is, as long as you don’t find someone physically repulsive, that’s something to to embrace. That’s a good start. So, if you’re curious about somebody and you’re curious about their personality, that curiosity will drive you to uncover more about that person. You should be looking for the companionship, the friendship, the little quirky ways that you like about that person. What makes them tick? What makes them attractive to you? Is it their smile? Is it their humor? We know humor is the number one key to attraction. It’s understanding what attraction is to you. It’s going to be different for different people. There will be some people that are very superficial and want the visual look, and that’s the only thing that drives them. That’s okay. That’s great. Leave them to their journey. If they don’t find you attractive, that’s okay. If you don’t find someone else attractive, that’s okay. People are attracted to different things, that’s just human nature. I think it’s really important that people don’t get stuck in what attraction is by other people’s standards, but understand what it is for you. Personality is the most important thing because at the end of the day, when your looks fade, you’re 95, walking on sticks and you’re dribbling, you need someone to help you to do other things. Or maybe you’re 95 going off to do yoga and climbing mountains and you want someone that’s going to be your partner in crime. You need someone that’s going to not hold you back, but encourage you in life. All of those things are attractive qualities.

Heather: Yeah, absolutely, and the way somebody makes us feel, which again, I’m not giving power to somebody about how they make us feel. But otherwise, when somebody does what they say they’re going to do, for example, they show up on time. They’re eager and excited to see you as opposed to somebody that’s flaky. Someone that really tells you that “you’re really pretty” but can’t show up on time to save his life. How does your body feel when you’re when you’re given that?

Genevieve: Someone is doting on you. That’s a big red flag. Someone’s telling you how sexy you are, how great you look, and is making it all about your looks. Run! Get out of there. Because they’re not interested in you. They’re interested in a trophy, and you are that trophy. You will be treated like a trophy. You won’t be seen for who you are. It’s really important to not get drawn in to the superficiality of someone who thinks you’re beautiful and puts you on a pedestal. Now, I’m not saying if someone says, “Oh, you look beautiful.” but if focusing on beauty is all it’s about, those actions speak louder than words. If someone’s only giving you lip service and they’re not showing up on time, then they’re not making an effort, they’re not following through with their words and actions. The two don’t meet up, right? Do you really want to be in something that’s superficial and not real? Your body will feel it. Your heart will feel it. You’ll know it. You might think, “Oh, I love being told I’m beautiful, I love being told all these things.” We can feed off of that. But eventually that wears off. And when someone can’t follow through with all the other really important things, it doesn’t mean anything. It’s empty.

Heather: It’s almost a bandaid to the situation that you wish that you were in. It’s like I can get this right now, feel good, have a lot of fun and distract me. But then if we don’t pay attention, we’re actually hurting ourselves in the long run.

Genevieve: Totally.

Heather: It’s a quick fix for a “good time.”

Genevieve: It is a quick fix, but this this lady’s written into saying she wants a long term, committed, loving relationship. There are very different qualities that people bring to the table to sustain a long term relationship.

Heather: I also want to point out really quick, she compares her 23 year old self to her 30 year old self, where she’s meeting people all as well. Maybe she’s going back and defaulting to what she’s used to. So I would say to this writer, investigate and research matchmaking services. I know it’s like, “Of course you’re going to say that,” but of course I’m going to say that because the vetting process that she’s trying to do, she doesn’t have the tools to do. She doesn’t know how to qualify somebody based on their intentions, based on their future goals, based on what they want. So she’s forced to use what she knows, which she’s admitting. Going into a smorgasbord of human beings that don’t have the right intentions, you’re going to end up hurt. Use the right tools, you need a matchmaker.

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