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Do Men Like Aggressive Women?

I just had my first radio interview for my upcoming book,’ When Mars Women Date: How Career Women Can Love Themselves Into the Relationship of Their Dreams.’ My interviewer said that most of his peers were not attracted to aggressive women and this sparked today’s topic in me. This morning I thought, ‘Is being aggressive the same as being assertive?’ Is this another case of that potato/potata song?

I associate being assertive with something positive and aggressive with something negative. For me, assertive means that you move in the world in the direction of health, with a sense of self and purpose.

Being aggressive (according to the dictionary) involves attacking, invasions, being menacing and competitive.

Most women like assertive men. Do most men today (in our peer group) like assertive women? Do most singles like aggressive people in general? I think not.

Our words and connotations are so important, I think, as I venture to describe what I call the Mars woman. Can she be soft and kind, yet self-assured, decisive and outspoken? Can feminine and masculine energies co-exist and still be compellingly attractive in dating and love?

I believe so. I call to mind images of Oprah, Arianna Huffington and (at risk of totally dating myself) the character of Erica Cane on the soap opera ‘All My Children.’ I’m sure we could think of many more women who make a powerful difference in our world, in their careers and in their relationships, who are assertive and outspoken without being aggressive. In fact, women like Golda Meir, Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama and others may repair our world with their assertiveness rather than destroy it. Of course these are things I wish I had thought to say at the time.

And, do men like women who do not hide their accomplishments, who openly share their truth and who even ask them out or express romantic interest? According to some research I quote in my book, when a woman asks a man out, 51% of female initiated dates lead to a relationship lasting more than 6 months! So maybe times and perceptions of attraction are changing.

One thing’s for sure, our social climate is. Half of the labor force is women, more women have undergraduate and graduate degrees than men and women under 30 in cities are making more than their male peers. There are 105,000stay at home dads and many more peer couples.

So, do we still accept the paradigm as the ‘attractive male’ being the assertive aggressive hunter and the ‘attractive woman’ being the soft receptive homemaker?

I’d love to hear your thoughts directly on that and on the radio conversation we just had. Click this link and then select ‘Play episode.’


My Best in love,