Friend zones, friends with benefits, sexless marriages – many relationships are lopsided and unhappy. Why do these relationships exist (and how do you avoid them)?
In dating, there is one truth above all, and that is that men want a few things from women, and women want a few things from men, and not all those things overlap.
The result of this failure to overlap is sometimes you have a woman who is good at getting what she wants without giving the men she gets it from everything (or anything) they want. Likewise, you sometimes have a man who is good at getting what he wants without giving the women he gets it from everything (or anything) they want.
This mismatch is the root of all the most unhappy relationships with the most broken dynamics you see in dating. The friend zone, where a man who wants intimacy with a woman is exiled to her sexless borderlands without it. Friends with benefits, which some women are fine with for some time, but most women eventually go at least a little crazy in. Disrespectful and/or sexless long-term relationships or marriages, where the man is treated as a second-class partner. And neglectful and/or domineering long-term relationships or marriages, where the woman is treated as a second-class partner.
The Zen area of dating, of course, are setups where both partners get what they want: where the woman gets everything she desires, and the man gets everything he desires.
But not every coupling will be this way. Most won’t.
Instead, most fall somewhere into that overlap zone – for a very simple reason.