Domineering when I date: I give dating advice to men

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your questions. Please use the form above to ask a question. Remember, if you have a pressing question that needs answering soon, please consider a donation to THE GUYS. (Read above for details) This will move your question to the top of the line. (Answered within 1-3 days) Otherwise your question will go into the general queue which has a 3-5 week delay right now.

For those of you who have donated, thank you. It does take a considerable amount of time to answer your questions thoughtfully and thoroughly.


Some recent questions:

Is marriage a more solid commitment than living together?

Confusion: Is my housemate only interested in sex?

Online dating: Should I move forward?

My best friend: What does he want?

What’s the deal with this guy?

Long distance: Should I pursue?

This guy at work: Does he like me? What is he thinking?

Hi There Guys,

I need some dating advice. It appears I’m quite domineering when I date men; I seem to be quick to tell a guy when he’s not doing things the right way. Or if he isn’t courting me at all, I tend to give them a mouthful. For example: I went on a date with a guy a week ago, he asked me out; when the bill arrived he refused to pay for it. I excused myself and went to the bathroom, and upon returning the bill was still sitting there. He then went to the bathroom, came back, and by that time I had asked the waitress to split the bill, so I could pay for myself. This guy says, “So you’re not paying for me?” To which I replied, “Hell no, pay for yourself!”

He made a few other jokes indicating that he was low status. He jokingly stated that he took the bus. The next day he texts me telling me he’s into and would like to see me again. I bluntly gave him dating advice. Some of which would easily blow a man’s ego to shreds. So my question is: How to I keep patient with men who are just so stupid? I feel like stupid men are everywhere? Or perhaps I’m just too domineering. Sometimes I feel like I’m actually doing a guy disservice by not saying anything. A clueless guy should know when he’s being clueless, so that he can apply new knowledge with future women. Perhaps other women can enjoy the fruits of my labor?

Any advice would help.

I’m actually a nice woman, so please be gentle with me.


ps. My other question has to do with how some guys act interested but then don’t organize the date, and put it on me to organize it, when they should be the ones doing it if they’re courting me?

Dear Sandy,

We don’t doubt you’re a very nice woman. Sure you may be a little domineering, but we think the real problem lies with the individual guys you’re dealing with. So our answer is more directed at the men out there, rather than you, or other women reading this.

First of all guys: If you ask a women out to dinner, expect to pay. In fact, you should insist on paying, unless for some reason you and your prospective date have had a conversation before you actually go out. And it’s our experience that if a woman insists on going “dutch” on a first date, she’s likely not interested in anything more than being friends. And guys, if you’re feeling broke, then don’t ask a woman to dinner. Take her out for lunch, or even coffee. If she likes you, she’ll be happy to spend time with you in any capacity.

Second of all guys: All the planning for your date falls on your shoulders. Women like to be surprised. (If it’s a good surprise of course.) But you get big points for being creative, or at least trying. If it doesn’t work out, then try laughing at yourself, which will be disarming, and come across as somewhat charming. (If you want to ask your prospective date for any particular type of food she doesn’t like that’s fine, but never put the burden of figuring out the evening on her. )

Sandy, we can see why acted the way you did, although most women probably would have grudgingly paid the bill and then vowed never to speak to the guy again. Sure you might be a bit more assertive than some, but we’d be just as annoyed by both of the scenarios you’ve painted for us.

Our advice is to keep being how you are. Maybe you’re helping these guys by speaking up about their behavior, but most likely they’re the kind of people that will deflect your barbs and assume it’s your problem. We suggest screening your potential dating candidates a little more closely before you agree to go out with them. Or maybe try meeting guys a bit more organically: Take a class, join a book group, go on a chartered travel vacation, or help out with some charity. There are a lot of different ways of meeting people, and doing something you care about will ensure that you’re meeting people with similar values.

Good luck,


ps. Please consider a donation to THE GUYS. And leave us a follow up comment.



5 Comments on Domineering when I date: I give dating advice to men

  1. I have a question that relates to your response about men paying for dates. I had a wonderful first date with a new guy recently, slightly older than myself. We hit it off on a very real level, and he is extremely kind and attentive.
    But he didn’t pay on the first date, which doesn’t bother me too much, except when I consider conventional wisdom like your advice above.

    He didn’t exactly ask me “out to dinner”, but suggested we “grab drinks or coffee” which I think is standard for first dates via plentyoffish etc. First we were trying to find a less crowded restaurant and he said something like…”hm, do you know anywhere else we could go? someplace reasonable..” That struck me as a little odd like, not sure it was necessary, cuz I don’t think I seem like someone who would take him to a super expensive place. And not something you would really say if you were trying to make a good first impression. You can be frugal, but maybe keep it to yourself at first? I got the impression it kinda slipped out.

    Then, when we got the bill I said “I say we go dutch on this” and he agreed with no hesitation. We get such conflicting messages about this little issue of who pays, but I’ve always preferred to pay my half just because of the implications. Even if I really like the guy, I offer to pay half (as in this case- really into him, and I’m sure that was clear to him.) I think it’s a little unfair to men to have to pay, and it can create a power differential as well as “expectations”. What do you think? Is it odd that he didn’t offer to pay?

    I get the sense that he’s a really liberal guy, probably at least sympathetic to the feminist cause. So it could just be that we share similar values. He’s incredibly sweet and respectful, so I did not take offense to this bill issue so much.

    Obviously I’m partly asking for your opinions here, and I know where you stand on the issue of men paying. But, do you happen to know men who have a different perspective, who don’t push to pay the bill, out of respect for women (from the gender equality angle)? I’m guessing that’s how this guy works, and I just want to make sure it’s a reasonable assumption.

    ps: he’s also a tad reserved/soft-spoken, so not really the type to “insist” on something

  2. @Liz………You seem like you like this guy. (Based on your other question) Plenty of us here are liberal. And we certainly respect women and their right to adopt typical men’s roles. But we are still in full agreement that men should pay. When a guy insists on paying he’s saying, “I’m interested in more than friends.” Because we do agree that amongst male and female friends, going dutch is totally fine, and actually preferred. Now maybe your guy interpreted your enthusiastic offer as something that wasn’t up for debate. And since he was having a great time he didn’t want to get into a stupid argument he accepted it. But we still think men should feel confident enough, and feel secure enough, to pay. And to do it in a way that all woman don’t have a problem with it, even the feminists. Sure, we realize that letting someone pay is like giving up some control, but if done in the right way, most woman seem very happy to get a free meal or drink. Finally, this doesn’t mean you have a problem here. We always say you should evaluate a person by taking into consideration their entire self, not just one aspect. If he’s respectful, kind, and mature then maybe you do have a keeper. But for the next time, don’t offer to pay and see what happens. And then get back to us. Good luck.

  3. Thank you so much, I really appreciate your response! This is so helpful. I agree that it’s nice to have your drink or meal paid for, and I’m never offended when someone offers. Just wish he would have offered. There are so many other good qualities about him, so I’ll hold out judgement for now. It may have to do with a confidence thing, or tight finances? Though he seems pretty self assured. Hm, I’m not sure…
    Anyway, many thanks!

  4. ps: sheesh, now I can’t even find my other post…

  5. I agree with “One of the Guys”, some guys are just that way and some aren’t.

2 Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Mixed Signals; is he just playing me? | The Guy's Perspective
  2. I am confused about this guy; are we in a relationship? | The Guy's Perspective

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

Maximum comment length is 1500 characters.