Sports have unwritten rules. These rules developed over the evolution of the game. They were invented, and enforced, by players and coaches. If an unwritten rule is broken, the offending player will face the consequences.
Relationships have unwritten rules. Technically, all of the rules in dating are unwritten, but there are certain rules in relationships that are so obvious they really shouldn’t have to be explained.
Sadly, we’re going to have to explain them, because some guys are just plain clueless.
There are certain questions, phrases and demands you should never utter to a woman — whether it’s how many men they’ve been with sexually, how sex was for them or anything about their weight. While we could formulate a list of over a hundred (because guys say some incredibly dumb stuff to women) we’re going to concentrate on the 10 biggest gaffes men say to the opposite sex.
So here are the 10 things you should never say to a woman. If one of these rules is broken, the offender will have to pay the consequences.
8. “How Many Men Have You Been With?”
Just as she should never ask how many women you’ve been with, you should never ask her how many men she’s slept with. The reason you should never ask this question is because you don’t want to know. It doesn’t matter if the number is high, low or smack dab on the nose of what you’ve deemed “acceptable” — there is nothing to be gained from the knowledge of how many other men she’s been with sexually. The only thing it will do is change the way you feel about her. If it’s too high, you’ll think she just gives it up to any guy, and if it’s too low you’ll wonder if there is something wrong with her.
Instead Say: “How many long-term relationships have you been in?”
If you must know, or find yourself in a situation where you have to ask, it’s better to steer the question away from sex and more towards relationships. If she’s been in two to three relationships, and all have been more than a couple years, you can take an educated guess as to the total number of sexual partners. If she’s a serial dater, a rough number will pop into your head. If you have to ask, stay away from the word sex, and focus on dating history.
7. “Do You Want To Come Back To My Place?”
The night is wrapping up and the date is going incredibly well. You don’t want to make assumptions, so you drop the question, offering to move the night back to your place. Of course you want her to go back to your place after a date (she made up her mind about it either way during appetizers), but phrasing the question in this manner makes it feel like sex is expected. There are ways to get her back to your place without being so blunt, and frankly, putting her on the spot.
Instead Say: “I just don’t feel like the night should end here.”
This works for two reasons: There isn’t a question that needs to be answered so, in case the answer is no, she doesn’t have to come right out and reject the offer. The second reason it works is because it gives her the chance to make the suggestion. She might say, “Let’s go back to your place,” or even suggest her place. Either way, the choice is hers to make the offer without feeling pressured to answer in the moment.
6. “You Should Meet My Family.”
Meeting the family is a huge deal for women. It can often make or break a relationship — depending on how damaged your family is — and women view the moment as the next huge step in a relationship. It’s a huge step and one that guys don’t necessarily understand the importance of because we tend to do it more often than women. Men introduce a romantic partner to our families, not always because we feel it’s time, but often because it gets them to stop asking about the woman we’re dating. Men will even introduce casual hookups to their parents and siblings. We’re just dumb like that sometimes.
First, make sure you’re bringing everyone together for all the right reasons. Then, you can ask her the following
Instead Say: “Would you like to meet my family?”
She should meet your family. She should meet your family when you’re ready. She should meet your family when she’s ready. Just because you’re ready doesn’t mean she’s ready. Proposing it as a question means you’re ready for her to meet your family, but she has the option of saying yes or no based on her own feelings.
5. “Was That Good For You?”
Don’t Say: “Was that good for you?”
Almost as bad a question as “How many people have you been with sexually” is the query “How was that?” right after sex. You could be the world’s worst lover and if the woman you’re having sex with loves you, she’ll lie and say you’re the best she ever had. She’ll lie, this time with words, instead of fake moans and groans.
Instead Say: “That was amazing.”
If you want to know how you did, without asking bluntly, tell her how good she was in bed. She’ll have to respond in some way, but at least she won’t have to lie.
4. “You Look Awful In That Outfit.”
Don’t Say: “You look awful in that outfit.”
Men make jokes or just openly complain about the amount of time a woman spends getting ready. It’s not as if she’s running around in circles and then five minutes before it’s time to leave she starts putting herself together. Looking good takes time and women spend a good portion of that time in preparation — from picking out clothes and shoes to the color of her hair and nails. Even the best of preparation doesn’t ensure she’ll be happy with the result, so saying she looks bad in an outfit shows zero consideration.
Instead Say: “I just don’t like that outfit.”
If you must voice your displeasure in her appearance, it’s best to blame the outfit and not the person underneath. If you don’t like the way she looks in a dress, shirt or sweatshirt that graduated college with her, make it about the faults of the material. If you want to soften the blow, package the critique with a compliment so it doesn’t sound like she’s the unattractive piece of the puzzle. “I don’t think that color works with your skin tone” or “That dress is making you look heavy in places that you’re not” are at least softer ways of putting down her clothing choices.
3. “Are You Putting On Weight?”
Don’t Say: “Are you putting on weight?”
This one barely needs explanation. If she’s put on weight, chances are she’s already well aware of that herself. The last thing she needs is for her boyfriend to point it out.
Instead Say: “Let’s do something active today. I’m feeling out of shape.”
If you do believe she’s putting on weight, then your ultimate goal is for her to eat better and exercise. Instead of letting her know that you’ve noticed she’s gone up a size or two (and trust us, she knows already), shift the focus to committing to being healthier together. You’re not perfect and could probably stand to lose a couple pounds, too. The focus will then be on sharing healthy activities together, rather than on her weight gain.
2. “I Don’t Like Your Friends.”
Don’t Say: “I don’t like your friends.”
You don’t like her friends. It happens. It actually happens often. In fact, she doesn’t really like your friends, but she probably won’t come right out and say it. Unless the women she spends time with are horrible influences on her life, or do things to jeopardize your relationship, there is really nothing you can do about her circle of friends.
Instead Say: “We should meet some new people.”
Every couple has other couples they regularly hang out with. Those couples often split off into subdivisions of friends (men with men, women with women) and a new couple might be the solution to your issue with her friends: She makes new friends and spends less time with the old crew.
1. “My Ex-Girlfriend Used To Do This In Bed. Can You Do It?”
Don’t Say: “My ex-girlfriend used to do this in bed. Can you do it?”
We’ve all got our sexual fetishes. There is no reason not to express those to your sexual partner. A guy just can’t say to his current lover that his former lover did a certain thing, it turned him on, and therefore he wants her to start doing it. Nothing kills the mood faster than making her think about your ex-girlfriend.
Instead Say: “Let’s try this in bed tonight.”
There is never any reason to mention your ex unless you are asked a specific question about her, or to yell a warning like “LOOK OUT! MY EX IS ABOUT TO CLUB YOU OVER THE HEAD WITH A BOWLING PIN!” Your current girl knows that sexual fetishes come from past experiences (why do you think she dresses you up like a construction worker during foreplay?) so just say “I’d like to try this” and leave it at that.