If you think chivalry is dead, take a look around. Perhaps it has just changed hands, and you haven’t noticed. As famous actor and UN Women’s goodwill ambassador, Emma Watson pointed out during a speech last year, “I think the key is that chivalry should be consensual. Both parties should be feeling good about that.” She also raised the question about why it should be equally cool for women to open doors for men, and people should feel free to extend courtesies to each other, irrespective of gender.
Emma is obviously a feminist, so is Beyonce and Taylor Swift, and plenty of other women out there. If you find yourself attracted to this intelligent and interesting breed, you should know that it’s not going to be easy to attract them or hold their attention, especially if you’re not up-to-date on your equal opportunity info.
But don’t worry just yet; check out our list of tips on how to go about dating a feminist, and you might just enjoy this perfect combination of beauty and brains.
Chatting Her Up:
- Listen: Like with any conversation, it’s a good idea to establish common interests and shared values, pay attention to her thoughts and respect her opinions, all without judgment. You may not agree with what she’s saying so don’t pretend to, but be polite about it. She expects you to stand up for your beliefs even if they don’t match hers, and will respect you for it.
- Don’t Patronize: When she shares her hobbies or passions, don’t be in a hurry to label her as a tomboy if they are seemingly masculine or tune out and categorize her as being too girly if they are traditionally feminine pursuits.
- Be Sincere: Don’t fake it when you shower her with compliments, and don’t try to provoke her for the heck of it. She’ll see it coming a mile away. Negging, making sexist jokes like asking if she hates men, or claiming that men are truly the weaker and more oppressed gender, are all huge turnoffs and will antagonize her—not the best approach if you wish to go on a second date.
Taking Her Out:
- Respect Everyone: It pays to watch how you treat others when you’re on a date, since it’s not just the way you’re dressed or how you treat her that speaks volumes about your true personality. Being rude to the waitstaff, especially if they are women, referring to all your exes as crazy psychos, or announcing that you’ve ditched your baby sister’s birthday to go on this date, are all red flags that she will notice and take heed of. She knows that if this is your real attitude, it is probably a sign of how you will treat her if she sticks around long enough.
- Prepare For Equal Treatment: Yes, most folks make sure to open doors, pull chairs and share their jacket when it gets too cold, because that’s what a gentleman does. Stay cool when she expects that you will appreciate her doing the same for you too. Isn’t chivalry a way of being polite and showing kindness after all? That’s what she means when she does it for you. So don’t fight it or look shell-shocked.
- Don’t Fight For The Bill: Automatically assuming that she will let you pay the bill is a bad move. This is not the best time to do a little dance and presume she’d be happy to pick up the entire tab either. Be open to discussion, make your offer, but follow her lead. If she does agree to let you treat her to drinks or dinner, don’t assume she owes you anything for it, not even a second date.
Whether you manage to successfully go on a second date, fall in love and are fortunate enough to have this blossom into a real relationship, just know that feminists really and truly believe in equality for all. So if you’re ready to hang up your stale, stereotypical thinking and embrace a new way of being, go on and set up a meeting with that strong, smart and sexy woman you’ve been wanting to date.
And if you’res till not clear about feminists and somehow missed watching Beyonce’s music video for her track Flawless, here’s a snippet of Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s speech that is part of the track: