Asserting myself while dating

And I realized very quickly that this less sanitized version of myself was not the type of "girl" these guys wanted to deal with.One day, I was talking to a man who asked me what I was looking for relationship-wise. Once he got even a whiff that I wanted a commitment, he ran away at such a breakneck pace that it confirmed everything society had been telling me about straight men: They wanted girls who were chill, not women who wanted a relationship.And for me, getting to this place took more than simply identifying what was wrong with the Cool Girl.I had to actually take that knowledge and use it to change my behavior in order to make a connection that meant something to me.I soon realized that, for me, those things were the foundations for real connections — and that the way I was trying to connect with men before was totally shallow.There are some men who still balk at the fact that I’m so forward about who I am and what I’m looking for.As I entered my 20s and began dating more, I recognized that this "girl" was the type of woman most dudes seemed to go ga-ga over.

I met a guy at a bar who happened to be friends with some guys I knew in college.

I just chose to project my own manufactured reality onto them in order to keep them around.

I’m not saying that I blamed myself for the unfair standards placed on women; I simply decided that there was only one variable I could control in these situations: how I reacted to the pressure to be "cool." So I slowly, but surely, began expressing my actual feelings around the men I was dating.

The popular girls who the boys "liked" back then (whatever the hell that means in fifth grade) were the girls who would run around and play football with them.

When I shared my realization with my parents, they confirmed that, sure, a lot of little boys liked girls who could hang.

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