How to Be Sensitive to Your Mate_Header

Most people have insecurities – especially in dating – which lead to a fear of being hurt. Of course each person has different self-doubts, but there are some common insecurities for both men and women that seem to pop up again and again! Most of us just want to be loved and accepted for who we are. If that includes you, then it’s important to finds ways to be sensitive to your partner or date’s needs so that you can create a kinder, more open dating environment for both them and you! Here are five of the most common insecurities for both men and women and ways to combat those insecurities.

Biggest Insecurities for Men:

1.  Hair Loss

Many men worry they are balding and women won’t like them. Some women don’t like balding men, but many women find this attractive. If you sense a guy you like is insecure about this, compliment him on his attractiveness in some way, once you feel comfortable.

2.  Weight Loss

More men than women worry they aren’t attractive due to their weight. I found this interesting because men seem less self conscious. I think it’s good for women to know that while they are worrying about their stomach, he may be too. And once you get physical, you can tell your partner how much you love their physique.

3.  Aging

Men often worry they are getting old and will be less vital and attractive. Many women like older men due to their experience and wisdom; if that’s true for you, compliment your man on these qualities.

4.  Career & Money

Some men worry they don’t make enough, or aren’t successful enough, to attract a woman and compete with richer men. Women can let a man know that she thinks it’s great that he is a writer or a school teacher, and is so passionate about what he is doing.  Sometimes men need women to remind them that it’s not all about their money and that other qualities are just as attractive.

5.  Height

Men know that many women like tall men and they worry they’re too short to be appealing.  Some women say they need a taller man to feel feminine, but this is starting to change. To me there are far more important things in a relationship than height, but every person must decide what they need in order to be happy.

Biggest Insecurities for Women:

1.  Sexual Attractiveness

Women sometimes compare themselves to other attractive women and feel they can’t compete. A man can help with this by telling his woman that she is the most beautiful woman to him. Women can embrace their own looks and also appreciate their brain, spirituality, heart, etc.

2.  Age

Women worry men like younger women and their biological clock is ticking, so if they don’t hurry up, they may miss their chance to become a mom.  Today surveys show most men would date an older women, and many find older women very appealing. Today women are getting pregnant at much older ages due to in vitro and fertility aid so this is less of a concern, or it at least stretches the biological clock somewhat.  And many singles who want to be parents are also willing to adopt. If you’re a guy who thinks age is just a number, and doesn’t care about age difference, you can say so and allay those fears.

3.  Weight

Women worry that men won’t like them, even if they are just 10 pounds overweight. Although traditionally men have cared even more about looks than women, surveys show that most men say they’d date a woman 10-20 pounds overweight. Sometimes women are harder on themselves about this than men are. So, if you are getting physical, tell her you love every inch of her and wouldn’t change a thing.

4.  Level of Commitment

Some women worry that men will sleep with them and won’t commit. This is changing as now more women are hooking up without thought of commitment. If you like a woman and want to allay possible fears about this, bring up the conversation that you like her, and don’t want to see anyone else (of course only if that’s true).

5.  Being Cheated On or Left

Some women worry that they will be betrayed once they’ve invested their heart in someone. This is sometimes triggered from past betrayals and actions, like men hiding their phones, not calling when they say they will, flirting with other women, and so on. This is her issue, but you can do your part to further the relationship by being honest, consistent, and letting her know if you are dating other people or not.

Ultimately, it’s your date’s insecurities and their job to address them. A good way to do so is to go to therapy and increase self-esteem and self-confidence.  But in lieu of that, here are some tips to help you challenge your own insecurities:

5 Tips to Challenge Your Own Insecurities:

1. Tell yourself that you are loveable and the right person will love you just as you are.

2. When you begin to focus on the few things you dislike about yourself, switch focus and tell yourself three things you do like.

3.  Recognize that you would not be as hard on your date about this thing as you are on yourself.  And watch how you talk to yourself – if you wouldn’t speak that way to a child, don’t speak that way to yourself!

4.  Remember that someone can only love you as much as you love yourself. Notice how you speak to yourself 24/7 and pretend that you are your own best friend. What would you say instead?

5.  If you think no man would like a woman 10 pounds overweight, take some time to think of some exceptions. There are many exceptions and it only takes one great match to last a lifetime.

It’s good to know that both men and women have similar insecurities, and to remember that in dating we are trying to leave people better than we’ve found them. Of course attraction is important and part of dating is passing on people as a relationship prospect, but you can still be positive, kind and affirm what you do like about them. This is good dating karma; and, as always, we should follow the Golden Rule to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” So go and, as Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Sprinkle joy.”

Dr. Paulette Kouffman Sherman is a psychologist and the author of “Dating from the Inside Out” and “When Mars Women Date.” She also works as a love coach and runs groups on dating and relationship issues in Manhattan. Learn more at: and
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