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Who Has The Upper Hand In The Dating Market?

July 2, 2017

Which gender has the upper hand in the dating market? Well, each seem to think the other. Men bemoan women’s many options. Women bemoan men’s many options. So which is it?

Disclaimer: This post is focused around heterosexual relationships, but feel free to write me an awesome guest post on the dynamic of gay/ lesbian dating. 

It’s easy to see why men feel disheartened. I’ve been using various apps for a while now, and I’m in the unique position of having used them to meet men and women. I started by dating men, then I used Bumble BFF to make new female friends, then I got fed up with men and decided to switch Tinder to women only for a while (long story). Anyhow, the first thing I noticed was how much more difficult it is to get matches on the female side. When I’m swiping for men, I match most times. But with women, I hardly ever do. Once, I did a social experiment on Bumble where I tried swiping right to all and seeing what came up. For men, I had more matches than I knew what to do with within the first 30 seconds. For women, I didn’t get any matches. So it seems to be that women are much more picky with their swipes.

who has the upper hand in the dating market

Then there’s the flaking. Oh my gosh the flaking. I’ve been on plenty of dates with guys, and while I’ve had a few flakes, most of them show up. The women are on another level entirely. I haven’t been on many dates with girls, but I did a lot of friend-dating while I was living in London and it was an absolute nightmare. I ended up having to organise group things only because for every meetup I organised, without fail someone would flake, sometimes with as little as 20 minutes notice. Group dates aren’t a thing yet, so I don’t know how men manage to date without going insane. I’m pro-traditionalism, but Bumble BFF gave me a newfound respect for manwhores as I don’t know how any man can manage to rack up enough dates to sleep with enough women to be a manwhore.

So it seems that when it comes to quantity, women rule.

But the crux is the quality.

One time a friend asked me, “Have you ever seen any guy on Tinder that you were like I love him?” The truth is, no, I haven’t. I find the men kind of merge into one. It’s more of a case of “you’ll do”. I mean, if I only swiped for hot guys I’d end up with 2 matches who don’t talk back. The women on the other hand were a whole different story. Half the women on there looked like models. And a couple I was talking to, I remember thinking “Wow… if I had to go for a woman, that’s who I would go for”. I also find a lot of guy I’ve met via online methods have been a bit weird, or socially off. While there are plenty of women who’s values I don’t agree with, I don’t get along with, or are just plain mean, I very rarely meet a woman where I think “she has a bad personality” in terms of social skills. So once men get to a certain level, they can pick and choose in a way that even attractive women cannot. I’ve noticed that any guy who’s reasonably attractive tends to meet someone pretty quickly when they’re looking for a relationship, while I see attractive women get ghosted and screwed over all the time.

The modern dating market is also set up to men’s advantage. In a traditional society, men and women are fairly equal. They date, and marry relatively young. However in western society, the time frame in which women are expected to have sex is being pushed sooner and sooner. Then it’s up to the man- they can either continue the budding relationship as a casual thing, a serious thing, or disappear completely. They still have the option of settling down if they want, but they also have to option of playing the field, which they are doing for longer and longer. The men dictate the terms.

There are limits to this however. If you’re a nerdy, awkward guy with sloppy style, you’re probably not going to be living the player lifestyle. But develop the chat and a bit of game, and the dating world is in your hands.


Who do you think has the upper hand?

  • Reply
    Corinne & Kirsty 🌸 (@corinnekirsty)
    July 2, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    I think it is a really hard question to answer. It might depend on so many elements to be honest. I guess that both gender are desperate to be with someone but according to my friends experience, it’s easier for a girl to get a date than for a man… xx corinne

    • Reply
      July 2, 2017 at 7:22 pm

      Yeah I think it’s easier to get dates but harder to find a relationship..

  • Reply
    July 2, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    This is quite an interesting post, I truly think it depends honestly.. I found my boyfriend on a dating app, and we’ve been together for nearly 2 years now. I have to say it mainly depends on the app itself!

    • Reply
      July 2, 2017 at 7:22 pm

      Ooh which app did you use?

  • Reply
    July 2, 2017 at 7:18 pm

    Never thought about this too much, lovely reading it!

  • Reply
    The Unfortunate Virgin
    July 3, 2017 at 12:02 am

    Definitely women. While they may struggle to find quality, men struggle with finding quality and quantity. The vast majority of men do not have more options.

    • Reply
      July 3, 2017 at 7:11 am

      Absolutely. I can’t imagine being as picky as some of the women’s profiles I saw during my time dating. If you can afford to reject somebody for being “only” 5’11” or for having a beard then I guess you must have it easy.

      • Reply
        July 3, 2017 at 7:56 pm

        Depends how tall the woman is. If you’re 6’0″ fair enough, if you’re 5’1″, erm no, leave the tall guys for me!

  • Reply
    July 3, 2017 at 5:44 am

    It is subjective..Both men and women are playing games to attract each other..
    Sometimes a man or sometimes a woman, it all depends on context

  • Reply
    The Guy Who Walked Out Halfway Through A Date To Go To IKEA – Alice In Wonderlust | UK Dating Blog
    August 9, 2017 at 7:01 pm

    […] a guy dresses, but it annoys me a bit if they come in too scruffy on a first date- I mean I know the dating market is skewed in their favour but there’s no need to rub it in my face. He seemed a bit quiet for my tastes but not […]

  • Reply
    Kairi Gainsborough
    March 28, 2018 at 9:57 pm

    Thanks for explaining how modern dating can be set up to the men’s advantage. I will keep this in mind as I put myself out there. I think that it should be fun to start meeting new people online.

  • Reply
    June 3, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    What do you mean by men dictate the terms? Women also have a choice right?

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