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Are women more attracted to their partners when they show backbone?


Marriage & Life Partnerships Debunking the old-ball-and-chain stereotype one couple at a time.

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Old 2nd March 2018, 9:44 AM   #1
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Are women more attracted to their partners when they show backbone?

Some might call it "showing backbone." Others might say "becoming a little angry" or "displaying confidence" is a more apt description.

What I've observed in my relationship (and some of my male friends have told me the same happens in theirs) is that when things get a little slow in the lovemaking dept, all it takes to get it rolling again is either an argument where I call my wife out on something she did that upset me, or a display of confidence in which I stand up for something I believe in.

In such cases, she perceives me as being upset and seems inclined to do whatever she can to make things better. She knows that pulling out the sex card works wonders, and the make up sex is always incredible.

Mind you, I don't pick fights just for the hell of it. I do remember her telling me on our flight to NYC last year (during which I was upset about something she had said or done) that she actually gets a little turned on when I'm angry, or something to that effect. We actually went two or so months last year where we were fighting a lot more than the norm, but also having more sex than ever in our 12-year relationship. (I'm talking 5-6 times a week.)

I'm trying to understand why this happens.

I know all women are different, but I've read that, in general, women find it sexy when men:

-Stand up for themselves
- Call them out on their BS
- Aren't afraid to show some fire/backbone every now and then

I'm not saying that men should be like this all the time. That would get tiresome and obnoxious after a while.

My theory is that women prefer a little of everything. They want him to be sweet and romantic in moderation-- even too much of that gets boring. They want him to have his own hobbies/interests, which ultimately communicates the following: "I don't NEED you or anyone else to enjoy life." And they want to see him get a little feisty/passionate every now and then, even if it means objecting to something she's said or done.

Is it not true that if everything is TOO calm and peaceful in a relationship, it does little to get the juices flowing? I would assume that when a woman is upset following an argument, it creates a state of arousal similar to the one caused by being turned on/horny, and it may not always be easy to differentiate the two.

What are your thoughts?

Last edited by DoubleJM1; 2nd March 2018 at 9:48 AM..
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Old 2nd March 2018, 10:00 AM   #2
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Confidence and self assurance is very sexy in a partner.

Anger, yelling or fighting, or calling a woman out on "her BS" is most definitely not sexy. I don't want to be with a man who does this. To me, it's a very unhealthy and immature thing to do in a relationship. I want a partner who treats me with kindness and respect.

Last edited by BaileyB; 2nd March 2018 at 12:09 PM..
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Old 2nd March 2018, 1:46 PM   #3
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Like most such things, it's less about man/woman and more about people.

Some people want their partners to be completely submissive to them. Some people want their partners to be completely dominant over them. And a lot of people want their partner to be assertive and confident, but also loving and supportive.

Some couples like to argue (within reason) and then make up. As long as they know what they want, good for them!
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Old 2nd March 2018, 2:05 PM   #4
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No sane and healthy person of either gender is attracted to a doormat.

That being said, it's entirely possible to have a backbone AND be capable of anger management. Not sure why you think they are in any way related.
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Old 2nd March 2018, 4:49 PM   #5
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On the rare occasions we have an strong disagreement, it takes me a couple of days to get my equilibrium back. My brain feels horrible during this time. Definitely not a sexy time.
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Old 3rd March 2018, 11:32 AM   #6
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I get this post!
My husband is a quite submissive person and maybe part of the reason I both love him and also wish he were more "alpha."

I was in an abusive relationship where anger was horrible, so I was thrilled to find a man who was calm, sincere, and stable. What I traded for that was the less alpha role.

It's not real clear cut and differs with everyone, but the whole thing about women liking,"Bad boys" does have some leverage with me as well as many women I know. Now in marriage, (having had some bad boys when I was younger), I'm not sure I could put up with the roller coaster. Not sure how turned on I'd be if there was let's just say "frequent" arguing. Which I do not miss from past relationships. BUT, some differences and arguments, MAY make me feel a push to step it up and or spark something in me (not currently in my situation..but that's a another deal). It's like the scene where two people have sexual chemistry and are face to face arguing and then suddenly stop and attack each other sexually. Totally YES right there, but how often does that happen in real life?

As women age, they want the bad boy in looks and in bed and some things in life, but also want more stability and kindness. It's a double edge sword. I think many (according to LS) have both, kudos to them. I think that would be a great combination. I don't know too many women who want a wimpy spouse, or too many men who want a naggy wife.

The same could be said for what men what. As the song goes,"I want a lady in the street but a freak in the bed" Just generalizing of course.

I don't get turned on per se' if my husband gets angry, but it does open up more dialogue, which in turn may excite me. Also, it may get us out of our usual rut. I have said that my husband has no real passion about too much of anything, including me. We don't fight and I have also thought, maybe that would spark something more for us? Fair fighting and talking it out, never an abusive,controlling or demeaning type of fighting is what I'm talking about.

Most of the time I have to "light a fire" under my husband to do this or that or get this certain things done that I know only he can do, which makes him uncomfortable (for instance a deep conversation he needs to have with someone) and that bugs the heck out of me. I want to say,"Grow a pair." I try to be "Sensitive" when he can't seem to do that but in all honesty, it's a turn off. So I guess I really do see what you mean.

Last edited by MidlifeMama; 3rd March 2018 at 11:34 AM..
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Old 3rd March 2018, 12:42 PM   #7
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I had an ex who told me early on in the interaction that it "turned her on" to see me get angry. In hindsight this was a massive red flag -- I'm talking Oroville Spillway here -- and I missed it in my naive ignorance.

I doubt I will ever meet another woman who would say such a thing but if it ever happens again she's instantly toast.

For me masculinity means being slow to show my anger by not letting anything provoke a negative response. I step back and think about it before reacting.

It's better for a man to talk about emotion but not show it so much. Like, if someone cuts me off in traffic I don't get mad and start cursing, instead I stay collected and say, "That driver is endangering everyone."

I think most women do not want a man who is overly emotional and quick to anger, they prefer someone who acknowledges their emotions but doesn't act them out in a dramatic fashion.

As a man the key to being able to pull this off is to live a life free of toxic influences. Personally, once I got rid of all the toxic influences in my life, I found I rarely express anger or frustration anymore.

It's a reach-able goal.
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Old 3rd March 2018, 3:05 PM   #8
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Well I'm definitely attracted to a confident man with the backbone to stand up for himself and what he believes in but that doesn't mean I want an angry guy who picks fights with me in order to display his masculinity. To me there is nothing sexier than a man who can remain calm and in control even when in a confrontation or disagreement. That's a man who doesn't let his ego or his temper run the show and to me, that's a strong trustworthy guy.

Now when I was very young I did have boyfriends who were quick to anger and I did find it attractive. I think the reason for this was twofold. First it was a continuation of my childhood. My stepfather was a controlling man who was quick to anger the moment I or any woman crossed him. He didn't like anyone who didn't do as he wanted but he especially despised women who stood up to him. As I grew into my teens and my young adulthood I had the mistaken idea that anger and fighting was a show of caring and passion. Secondly I was emotionally stunted myself. I needed to see emotion in order to feel emotion myself, it's like I didn't have any feelings in my own right so I needed someone else to give me my feelings.

By the time I was in my late twenties I had begun to outgrow this need for over the top emotional displays and when an argument would break out and my boyfriend would become angry and yell at me or be critical of me I would just become more withdrawn and definitely not aroused. Now I see that my stepfather was not a strong man. He was weak and full of insecurity.

So I don't doubt that there are plenty of women who are turned on by a man's anger but I suspect that it comes from a place of emotional immaturity and unresolved issues. An exception might be if a woman is partnered with a submissive man who always does as he is told and never takes the lead or makes decisions. I can see that becoming a drag and it might be a little exciting to see that guy stand up for himself or take the lead for once. However being calm, cool and collected does not equal being a doormat.
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Old 4th March 2018, 9:35 AM   #9
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It is not about anger, ever...

It is not about anger, ever...

It is about male confidence, in general. This is the thing that SO MANY MEN don't get.

If (current GF, but it is the same with all women) my GF does something out of line, I call her on it.

Never in an angry way, but more it the "who in the hell do you think your talking to" way. Firm but never angry.

Lots of married guys, let themselves become wimps over time. Totally unattractive.

And I am not a Bad boy, I have not been that for years really.

The thing is, I am unwilling to take any crap of any kind from anybody, I am just too old for that.

And tell me this... Why does she get to pull out the sex card? When I want to have sex, I just take her into the bed room, or whatever.

She does the same thing as well.

The other thing I find odd is that a lot of men allow the women to be the complete gate keeper for sex.... ugh, no way.

They allow their wives to act like, they get sex when they have been a good boy.

Yeah, that is not going to work for me ever. Any woman that acts like that to me, gets to find out how easy it is for me to get laid.

Then she gets dumped...
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Old 4th March 2018, 11:40 AM   #10
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One of the things I find sexiest about the SO is his self-control. Being able to display calmness and thoughtfulness in difficult circumstances and being able to talk through things in a civil manner are very attractive and masculine traits in my opinion. In fact, nothing screams, "Manchild alert!!" to me like a grown man throwing a temper tantrum. Eww.

Quote:
she actually gets a little turned on when I'm angry
Each to their own I suppose, but this would be a huge red flag to me. I DO get turned on by consensual sexual dominance in the bedroom. I do NOT get turned on by legitimately angry men! If I suspected a man of being unable to control his anger, I would run.
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Old 4th March 2018, 11:49 AM   #11
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I have known some VERY scary dudes in my lifetime...Ex cons, tough guys, head crackers.outlaw bikers, etc...When I think of it, probably only one of them is what I would consider conventionally attractive...The rest.? eh...I guess looks are subjective, but I ain't seeing it...

One thing they all had in common is that they all had no problem with attracting women...Most of these women were very attractive as well..

While I suppose you could question the judgement or mental capacity of these women, but the facts just don't lie...If these guys were just garden variety run of the mil Joe's, they would probably be on here complaining how no women give them a chance..

There is something in that type of attitude that women do find desirable..To what level is the real question I suppose..

TFY
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Old 4th March 2018, 11:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefooloftheyear View Post
I have known some VERY scary dudes in my lifetime...Ex cons, tough guys, head crackers.outlaw bikers, etc...When I think of it, probably only one of them is what I would consider conventionally attractive...The rest.? eh...I guess looks are subjective, but I ain't seeing it...

One thing they all had in common is that they all had no problem with attracting women...Most of these women were very attractive as well..

While I suppose you could question the judgement or mental capacity of these women, but the facts just don't lie...If these guys were just garden variety run of the mil Joe's, they would probably be on here complaining how no women give them a chance..

There is something in that type of attitude that women do find desirable..To what level is the real question I suppose..

TFY
The question is, what kind of woman do they attract? Looks can only go so far in a relationship. If the women look good but are mentally screwed up (which seems quite likely), both of them will most certainly suffer for it.

In a similar vein, plenty of women with extremely intolerable personalities or who have spent time in jail or are drug addicts have no problem attracting men, but those men are REALLY not the kind of guys that any sane woman would want a LTR with.
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Old 4th March 2018, 12:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elswyth View Post
The question is, what kind of woman do they attract? Looks can only go so far in a relationship. If the women look good but are mentally screwed up (which seems quite likely), both of them will most certainly suffer for it.

In a similar vein, plenty of women with extremely intolerable personalities or who have spent time in jail or are drug addicts have no problem attracting men, but those men are REALLY not the kind of guys that any sane woman would want a LTR with.
Of course, that's why I mentioned it in the post...

But tell a "nice" guy that's spent the last 25 years with nothing but his dick in his hand if they'd want a woman that is "off" and they'd probably sign on for that...

The point I am making is that it's highly unlikely that every single woman that were with those guys were "mentally screwed up"...I didn't ever really get close enough to say, but they were sane enough to have regular jobs, and careers...

And to use your example. IME, Only good looking crazy/outlaw type women attract men...Ugly one's won't....These guys aren't attractive, so the same rule wouldn't apply...


It's an attraction for many women...I think most women(even completely sane and normal one's) prefer a guy to be more intimidating and dominant than meek..It may not mean shyt to you, but then you aren't them...


TFY

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Old 4th March 2018, 12:12 PM   #14
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A backbone is always going to be more attractive than a lack of backbone, but the best guys are the ones who have a backbone but know when and how to be sensitive and humble. That seems to be harder than anything for them.
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Old 4th March 2018, 6:58 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefooloftheyear View Post
I have known some VERY scary dudes in my lifetime...Ex cons, tough guys, head crackers.outlaw bikers, etc...When I think of it, probably only one of them is what I would consider conventionally attractive...The rest.? eh...I guess looks are subjective, but I ain't seeing it...

One thing they all had in common is that they all had no problem with attracting women...Most of these women were very attractive as well..

While I suppose you could question the judgement or mental capacity of these women, but the facts just don't lie...If these guys were just garden variety run of the mil Joe's, they would probably be on here complaining how no women give them a chance..
Problem is that a lot of this is anecdotal and self-confirmation (that is, we remember the things tht happen that fit our view of what should happen, and forget the exceptions)

I've known plenty of guys who complain that no women give them a chance... when they've dated twice as many women in their lives as I have men.

There are nice guys who are happily married right out of high school. There are jerks who can't get laid without paying for it. There are plenty of average joes who date plenty of average janes and still think that somehow there's a conspiracy against them. There are plenty of women sighing that 'the only guys who approach me are married!' while brushing aside single men's approaches.

People are just too varied to sum up in any single way. "What men like" "What women like", it'll always be wrong.

Much easier for us to do counter-examples. Like, if someone tried to claim that NO women like bad boys, you could pretty obviously prove them wrong!
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