Ep. 17: Are Men Intimidated by Strong, Smart and Successful Women?
Sex, Lust & Love...What Matters?
Women tend to think that the more successful they become, the more they will intimidate a man and oftentimes this gets used as an excuse for never finding Mr. Right.
While there may be some men out there who definitely feel intimidated by a successful woman, I believe the majority of them would prefer to find a woman that possesses the qualities that lead her to becoming so successful.
Women sometimes console each other with the classic line, “He’s probably just intimidated by you, that’s why he’s not asking you out.”
While this may be true in some instances, I believe the majority of the time he’s probably just not interested or not available to pursue you.
So how does the ever-increasing success of women affect a man’s ability to feel comfortable pursuing you?
This week we asked the question:
“Do you ever get intimidated by a woman because you think she’s too smart or too successful?
A 36-year-old married college recruiter from Detroit said: “Yes this happens and the insecurity can come up easily. It’s never stopped me because I’ve always liked strong successful women but I do see it happen all the time with other men.”
I asked: “Do you ever see men not pursue a woman because of their intimidation?”
“Oh definitely, especially if the guy isn’t feeling ready to commit because he’s not in a confident place himself, then he will pass her up every time; it’s a shame but it happens a lot.”
“I see this all the time in men and it’s usually because the guy is emasculated by the woman and he lacks the confidence that is necessary. It hasn’t happened to me personally but I’ll be honest, if I had met my girlfriend when I was in between jobs and trying to start my own company, I probably would have passed her up because at the time I didn’t think I had much to offer a woman.” –A 38 year-old single medical device representative from South Florida.
A 42 year-old single real estate executive from South Florida said: “For me, yes it’s totally possible, but I wouldn’t pass her up. I would look at it as though I could learn something from her and she could teach me a better way to do something, especially if she loved me for who I am. I would rather find a successful woman who was more my equal than have a huge discrepancy in our achievements.”
So maybe successful women do intimidate men, but it appears as though he’s not going to pass up pursuing you because of it.
“Yes, men become very self conscious and don’t feel like they are up to par with the woman. It’s happened to me before. Some men won’t even bother trying. He could be really into her but he won’t consider pursuing her. It has nothing to do with her looks either.”- A 38-year-old single comedian from South Florida.
Or perhaps they do pass up pursuing successful women.
A 33-year-old single firefighter from Delray Beach shared, “Yes it can totally happen and a guy has to be ready for it. That one perfect woman might come along before you have your shit together and that can really mess with your head, so it’s best to get your shit together as soon as possible.”
I think the better question might be to ask men if it’s the qualities of being so strong and independent that often accompany very successful women, are actually what turn men off? Sometimes women who are extremely successful seem very abrupt and appear cold and insensitive. These are not the qualities most men are looking for in a woman; they can find them in the men at their office all day long.
A 42-year-old single business executive from Fort Lauderdale said: “Yes this happens all the time and yes he’d pass her up. A guy will choose his pride over a woman 99 times out of a 100. If he feels like he has nothing to offer her and his confidence is in the shitter than he will pass her up rather than try only to have her reject him for not being good enough.”
And finally a 50 year-old divorced entrepreneur from NYC shared: “Yes, absolutely men get intimidated by a strong independent woman and if she’s smart too then he’s almost always intimidated. Women today have so much offer and they’re self sufficient and don’t need men anymore and this makes a lot of men pass up women like that all the time.”
I would say it’s not exactly clear whether, as a rule, a successful woman intimidates men. It doesn’t appear to have made any of the men I interviewed squeamish but almost all of them said they knew someone that passed up a successful woman due to feeling intimidated.
What does seem clear however, is if a man is feeling secure in himself, his career is somewhat established and he feels as though he has something to offer a woman, then he would actually prefer to find a strong independent successful woman.
Personally I think men admire successful women but they want that same independent woman to be comfortable being vulnerable and feminine when she gets home.