Monday, August 24, 2009

Women Are Romantically Irrational

There are some men who think that women are impossible to understand or comprehend. I am not one of those men. However, it makes sense to me why some would have that sentiment. Though women are comprehensible, they are typically romantically irrational. Though there is certainly nothing precluding them from acting and speaking rationally, this is not the status quo in modern America.

What exactly do I mean by irrational? Something that is rational is driven by logical thought and follows the ideal path as set forth by the intellect. Therefore, irrational behavior is anything that is inconsistent with logical, intellect-based living. More specifically, when I refer to the romantic irrationality I mean a few different things. First, a woman's stated romantic criteria often differs from her actual romantic criteria. Second, a woman's romantic interest and romantic pursuits are governed more by emotions, physical chemistry and subconscious psychological drives than by their rational criteria. Third, few women realize this discrepancy.

By irrational, I do not mean simply that women often make decisions primarily based on non-logical criteria. For example, supposing intellectual reasoning and emotional resonance lead to the same decision, there is nothing intrinsically irrational about making such a decision. However, when conscious thoughts and emotions lead in opposing directions, choosing to follow one's emotions even when it will result in a substantial loss or personal harm is irrational since the decision flies in the face of reason and logical behavior. A pattern of behavior is irrational if, when a woman is confronted with choices that causes her intellect and emotions to be divided, she consistently chooses to make choices based on emotion rather than intellect. In such a case, she is primarily governed by non-logical, non-rational urges. This is not something that is biologically hardwired into women, since scientific experiments have shown that men and women typically reach the same decisions when using pure logic and intellect. Since there is not a biological reason for irrational romantic behavior, irrationality is a choice.

Often in searching for a romantic partner, men and women have a list of qualities that they are looking for. However, for women, the type of man they are actually looking for and the sort of criteria they are actually seeking are quite different than the qualities that they say they are looking for and truly believe they are looking for. Examples of this are evident everywhere. I have no doubt that you know of some girl who has rejected a suitor or broken up with a boyfriend who nearly perfectly matches her stated criteria. Personally, I have been told, "You are exactly the sort of guy I'm looking for; I just don't love you that way." With said girl, I know for a fact that I met virtually all of her stated criteria. But, she wasn't looking for the sort of man she thought she was. Another common example of this irrational behavior is witnessed with girls who are in unhealthy relationships, but are unable or unwilling to leave. Recently, I was talking to a friend who was considering breaking up with her boyfriend. He is broke, selfish, alcoholic, slightly overweight and doesn't treat her considerately. All of her friends were urging her to dump him because of his parasitic effects on her life, but after a few days of deliberation she chose to stay with him and try to work things out. Her logical mind sees the obvious truth, but that is not what drives her to make the choices she does. These two examples are hardly rare.

Does this inner divide render women incomprehensible? Not at all. This practical divide does make interacting with women quite confusing. When you assume that women want what they say they want and you get an unexpected reaction, it leads you to question something. One might think that women are intentionally lying and being manipulative. Though true in some circumstances, this is generally not the case. Most women are quite convinced that what they think they want is what they actually want. Both men and women err when they think that a woman's mind is what drives her decisions and causes her to act. Once a woman's irrationality is taken as a given, she then becomes comprehensible.

Since a woman is romantically driven by emotions, physical chemistry and subconscious psychological drives, understanding these is key to understanding women. Understanding the thoughts that fuel emotions, physical conditions that affect emotions, and psychological drives that trigger attraction set a solid foundation for better interaction. Possessing the ability to discern the real meaning of a woman's words, rather than simply interpreting them literally, is also integral to developing and sustaining quality romantic relationships. Because of this, knowing how to listen for the deeper message in a statement or question is a vital skill to have. Learning to read the tonal variances and body language of a woman will provide much more insight into what she is thinking and feeling than her words ever will.

Is it a bad thing to be irrational? Not necessarily. Though foolish decisions are harmful to everyone involved, irrationality itself isn't always a harmful thing. In some ways, the very fact that women are emotional creatures who are more empathic, more nurturing and more driven by emotions than men makes them special and beautiful. Gender differences are meant to be enjoyed, valued and savored. When the romantic irrationality of women is not properly understand it will unswervingly lead to confusion and frustration. However, when people recognize that women do not primarily interact with the world on a logical, intellectual basis, then they are free to fully enjoy the best that women have to offer.


  1. i've found women often turn logical when they need to rationalize their behavior or that of a man whom they love/care for.

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