While a lot of guys think getting a girlfriend will be the end of all their worries, entering a relationship brings its own special sorts of anxieties. You’re no longer necessarily focused on your appeal to women in general, but rather to this one particular woman who you care for very, very much, and who has the freedom to leave you at any time, for any reason. Phew!
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Every man has his own unique relationship anxieties, but certain themes tend to occur, usually around body image, financial security and masculinity. The good news is, on the whole, women are far less hung up on these things than you imagine them to be, and your girlfriend almost certainly isn’t as critical as you think she is.
So, here are 10 things you probably think your girlfriend cares about, that she really doesn’t:
Body image issues are tough, and while women’s struggles in this area are well publicized, men are not immune to them, either. Mainstream media presents the perfect man as tall, muscular and broad, and a chiseled six pack has become synonymous with an ideal masculine form.
But in the same way that, deep down, you don’t actually care if your girlfriend doesn’t have a breathtakingly gorgeous ass, she’s highly unlikely to be spending any mental energy wishing you had a harder stomach. For most people this stuff is bonus territory, and to others it’s not even desirable — human attraction is a beautifully varied thing — so you can rest assured that your soft belly is not keeping your girlfriend up at night.
Of course, penis size anxiety is another body image issue, but this one is an especially intimate, all-consuming concern. It makes sense: porn in particular reinforces the idea that unless you are hung like a horse, you’re not going to be able to satisfy a woman.
While penis size is important to some women , if your penis size was a dealbreaker for your girlfriend, you wouldn’t be together. It really is that simple.
A person’s “body count” is a touchy subject. Often, women are expected to minimize theirs in order to avoid being perceived as ‘slutty’, and men sometimes face the opposite pressure to exaggerate their count, especially if they are not very experienced in the bedroom.
Long story short — it’s in the past, and it doesn’t concern her, so we’re pretty sure she’s not worried about anyone who came before her.
Money is a difficult topic, because, to put it frankly, it matters. In a late capitalist society, we all need it to survive, and when there’s not enough of it to go around, that causes real tension.
But the idea that you need to be a millionaire, or even close to it, to keep your girlfriend interested is nonsense. Most people aren’t rich, but they still manage to have happy, long-lasting relationships. Assuming you’ve chosen someone who isn’t shallow, and as long as you’re not mooching off her, your girlfriend is unlikely to be bothered by a humble income.
Competence with cars is closely linked with traditional masculinity — there are decades worth of movies and TV shows reinforcing this idea. But especially if you’re a millennial, there’s a good chance you’re clueless when it comes to cars, and perhaps don’t know how to operate one at all.
While it’s always nice to have someone who can drop you at the airport when you need it, most cities have enough public transport to get around and, if they don’t, your girlfriend has access to the same ride sharing apps we all do. There’s no need to sweat this one.
Coming too fast, or not being able to get it up, is a source of major anxiety for lots of men, and when you’re bringing these issues into a relationship, it can cause you to feel huge amounts of shame that are a barrier to connection.
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Often, these issues are due to nerves, and you will be able to talk them through with your girlfriend. She’s not going to leave you or laugh at you for having perfectly normal sexual problems, so try not to stress too much if this is a problem you have, and remember that your doctor can help, too.
We can’t believe we still have to say this in 2018, but if your preferred drink is a cosmopolitan or gin basil smash rather than, say, beer or whiskey on the rocks, you’re still a Real Man, and your girlfriend couldn’t care less. Truly.
At a certain point you’ll be wanting to introduce your girlfriend to your parents, and chances are they’ll be very… well, parental when you do. That probably means cringeworthy dad jokes and your mom rushing to dig out embarrassing photos, and your siblings may even provide bonus humiliation.
Relax: even though this is torturous for you, your girlfriend is probably finding it a combination of hilarious and heartwarming, so try to lean into the crushing embarrassment of introducing your girlfriend to your folks.
Emotional vulnerability is difficult for men. Men are socialized to believe that crying is weak and something only girls do, so men often feel ashamed by the very normal, natural impulse to weep when things are sad or frustrating.
The good news is, most women aren’t bothered by men crying, and some even find the display of vulnerability endearing. If your girlfriend isn’t accepting of the fact that you’re not made of stone, she’s probably not the right one for you — but our money’s on her really, really not caring about this one.
Do you stammer when you get nervous, twitch your leg or turn bright red at the drop of a hat? Do you hem to the walls at parties and tend to be quiet in group situations? And do you feel like way less of a man when you do? Well, you’re not alone.
A lot of men suffer from social anxiety, and feel as though it negatively impacts their relationships with women. This is very normal, human stuff, though, and your girlfriend isn’t judging you for in — in fact, she’s there to support you. Talk to her about it: you probably have way more in common here than you think.
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