A new survey confirms that women spend far more time checking out their own sex than lusting after passing hunks. Half of the 2,000 women polled confessed they enjoyed comparing themselves with women at work, their friends and women they pass in the street. Men barely got a look-in. It’s not just fashion details they’re looking for, but everything from breast size and body shape to hair roots that are over-ripe for retouching. Men have been glorified eyeing women they lust after but it doesn’t work when it comes to the same sex. Men watching men — unless he is a gay — is strictly taboo. Nikita takes a pragmatic view at ogling. She dispels many myths about ‘staring at’, in the weekly column, exclusively for Different Truths.
Men stare, women stare, everyone seems to ogle at “other women”. Show me a woman, who claims not to check out other women’s appearance at every opportunity. Women gawp and stare at their own sexes and it’s not unhealthy or weird in their dictionaries, unlike men.
A new survey confirms what most women already know — we spend far more time checking out our own sex than lusting after passing hunks.
Half of the 2,000 women polled confessed they enjoyed comparing themselves with women at work, their friends and women they pass in the street. Men barely got a look-in.
It’s not just fashion details we’re looking for, but everything from breast size and body shape to hair roots that are over-ripe for retouching.
Men have been glorified eyeing women they lust after but it doesn’t work when it comes to the same sex. Men watching men — unless you are gay — is strictly taboo.
“As women we are socialised into believing our value lies in our appearance,” says psychologist Dr. Linda Papadopoulos. “And at the same time, unlike men, we’re taught to compete covertly rather than openly. So we end up looking at other women — and comparing ourselves — in order to see how we measure up.”
While men ogling gets uncomfortable and disturbing sometimes, women hardly pay any attention to other women staring at them.
Imagine sitting in a fancy restaurant with your boyfriend/husband, having a wonderful night out together and suddenly a woman passes by and your man cannot stop looking at her. Suddenly there’s a rush of emotion, jealousy, anger, pain, insecurity. A torrent of questions runs through your mind: Does he want her? Does he think she’s more beautiful than me? Is he not attracted to me anymore?
Sound familiar? That’s because it’s probably happened to every woman, at some point. Because, let’s face it, men like to look. To be clear, that’s all men; not just your man, not just single men, not just players and cheaters and womanisers, but all men.
What “the Look” means?
1. He finds her physically attractive.
2. When he saw her, a chemical reaction happened in his brain. Neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin were released, giving him an involuntary surge of pleasure.
3. Part of him wants her, or wonders what it would be like to be with her, in a completely harmless and innocent way.
What it doesn’t mean?
1. He finds her more beautiful than you.
2. He isn’t attracted to you.
3. He isn’t happy with you, and your relationship.
4. You don’t satisfy him.
5. You aren’t _______ (attractive, skinny, sexy, loving, affectionate, etc.) enough for him.
Simply put, men ogling at other women has nothing to do with your relationships. The female body is one of the few beautiful sights of the world just like we stop in midst of anything that we’re doing and take a moment to look at the sunset or a flower. It’s normal.
Why do Men Look at Other Women?
For men, sexual attraction and emotional connection do not go hand in hand. They could be committed and happy with one woman and still ogle at other women occasionally. They can be turned on by women with whom they have no emotional contact.
A research study published in the 2013 Archives of Sexual Behavior revealed big differences in the way men and women are drawn to potential partners. Women tend to be more attracted to men based on familiarity; preferring men who closely resemble their current partner, and rating men more attractive, the more often they see them. Men, however, are attracted to novelty. They are drawn toward the new and different, attracted to many different women, with many different features and body types.
When is it a Problem?
While it is normal for men to notice other women, to look and admire, and even fantasise a bit, there is a line that a committed man will not cross. Looking is one thing, staring is another; and it can be hurtful, embarrassing and offensive. One cannot help a momentary reaction when they see an attractive woman. But once the moment passes, they would quickly turn their attention back to the woman they are faithfully devoted.
Blatant staring, inappropriate comments, touching, flirting and (obviously) cheating are all red flags. This kind of behavior indicates that a man is either not mature enough to control himself, or he doesn’t respect you (or women in general) or care enough about you to reign in his impulses. Either way, it doesn’t bode well for the future of your union.
How to Deal with your Guy’s Roving Eyes?
1. Do not assume
When you notice your man looking at other women, don’t read too much into it. Remember, it’s just a glance, not a betrayal. You just might be building castles in the air. He chose you over a lot of women that were interested in him. There has to be a reason bigger than physical attraction.
2. Tell him how you feel
3. Be realistic
‘Perfect Couple’ do not exist. The more you raise the bar, the higher would be the disappointments. Accept your partner as a human being and evaluate him on that meter not on the one inside your head. Don’t expect him to never notice any woman.
4. Set boundaries
Space is important in any relationship. You cannot suffocate another person under the weight of your expectations. There has to be a limit to how far or how long his eyes go wandering but do not levy heavy burden on him.
Reference: Thought Catalog
Pix from the Net.
Nikita Goel is a Texas-based writer. She is actively associated with Aagaman Literary and Cultural Society’s English Publications. She has worked as the managing editor for Purple Hues. She has co-authored three books. Her poems have been published in five anthologies. She has been featured online on Readomania, Aagaman -The Arrival, Writers e-zine, Writing Geeks, Literary and Creativity Magazine. Her blog, Enchantress, has been adjudged India’s best blog for three consecutive years.