Understanding Women- How to Answer a Woman’s Awkward Questions

Understanding Women – Awkward Questions

Awkward questions are just the worst, aren’t they? You’re sat there wondering how you’re ever going to answer it, or struggling with understanding women?“Does my bum look big in this?” and “are you attracted to other women?” are just two of the many awkward questions that women will ask. If you want to know how to avoid digging yourself into a hole, then read on…

Daniel Bettridge, contributor, MSN Him, 07/06/2011

How to answer a woman’s most awkward questions

As the man whose vandalised Peugeot 206 shot to infamy last month will no doubt testify, there are right and wrong answers to your partner’s more difficult questions. Even if it involves telling a lie. Provided you’re not hooked up to a lie detector, you’ll be okay. Yes, it would appear that hell hath no fury like a woman unfavourably compared with Pippa Middleton’s behind, as the red-faced motorist who was snapped driving around Birmingham with “Is Pippa’s bum still better than mine???” spray-painted across the side of his ride discovered.

It’s hard to have sympathy for a chap who really should have known better, but we can understand his predicament or understand women; we’ve all at some time or other been on the receiving end of those catch-22 questions that women seem so fond of firing at us from time to time.

So from ‘does my bum look big in this’ to ‘where do you see this going’ here’s our handy guide to navigating the trickier questions of the relationship minefield, and what your partner’s really asking when they serve you up a relationship riddle. Read on to discover how to answer a woman’s most awkward questions

“Does my bum look big in this?”

What not to say

Woe betide any man who thinks that his partner is asking them a literal question. Whatever you do, even if it’s only joking, don’t say yes. You have been warned.

What to say

The chances are your partner is looking for you to give her self-confidence a shot in the arm rather than a critique of her physique. So why not oblige? We all like to be told we look good every now and again so use this as an opportunity to fire a few well-chosen compliments in your partner’s direction.

What does she really want to know

According to relationship and behavioural expert Marisa Peer, “Women are always looking for reassurance. When they say ‘is my bum too big’ or ‘is this too tight’ what they really want you to say is that they look gorgeous and sexy.”

That’s all well and good of course but what if they really have made a fashion faux pas? “Use the sandwich technique,” Marisa advises, “answer by paying her a compliment then answering the question. For example, ‘I love your bum – it’s gorgeous and of course it’s not too big. The skirt does cling to it though and makes it look a bit bigger. Maybe you could wear something looser and keep the tight clingy stuff for me?'”

“How many women have you slept with?”

What not to say

A lot of people seem to want to know about their partners’ past lovers, but it’s almost always a bad idea. Don’t give her a running total. No one wants to be another notch on your bed post, and unless you’re a hormonally ravaged teenage boy, you really shouldn’t be keeping score anyway.

What to say

Whatever you do, don’t answer the question directly. She doesn’t really want to know the answer and you don’t want to tell her either, so navigating this particular minefield is going to take some skill. Ask her instead why she wants to know and what that would mean to her.

What does she really want to know

Dr Gian Gonzaga, director of research at dating website eHarmony.co.uk is on hand to offer us this particular pearl of wisdom: “Many times questions are not literal and the right answer will change depending on where your relationship stands. Is she asking this when the two of you are considering making the relationship serious? Then she may be trying to find out how valuable she is to you, and whether you are a suitable long-term partner. The number here is also a big determinant of whether this relationship is a serious one. If the woman is number 101 she might not see it as a good sign for the longevity of this partnership.”

“Where do you see this going?”

What not to say

Don’t try to be cocky. Whatever you do, don’t try to play it cool. It isn’t going to get you anywhere.

What to say

Forced to answer off of the cuff, most men are going to make a mess out of this one. She’s asking you a brave question and one that’s likely to inform where your relationship is going to go in the future. As such it deserves a considered answer and an honest discussion, so there’s no harm in taking your time rather than blurting out the first thing that comes to mind.

What does she really want to know

“Again she’s looking for reassurance,” Marisa Peer explains, “she’s not comfortable talking about where she wants it to go in case you are not on the same page and is putting the ball in your court.”

“Are you attracted to other women?”

What not to say

There’s no right answer to this question, but there are plenty of wrong ones. If you say yes before reeling off which of her friends have caught your eye, then you deserve everything you’re going to get (none of which will be good, trust me).

What to say

There’s nothing wrong with appreciating beauty, so long as you take the opportunity to reassure your partner. Why not try something along the lines of “I’m attracted to you and love being with you, but that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate seeing a beautiful woman. At the end of the day I am with you and I don’t ever want anyone else.”

What does she really want to know?

According to Dr Gian: “While it is natural to be attracted to others, your partner may be picking up on something that concerns her. Find out why she is asking this question. She may be concerned about something specific that you can reassure her about.”

“Do you like my hair?”

What not to say

If she’s already gone through with a change of style, whatever you do, don’t tell her you don’t like her new barnet. And gents, make sure you take the time to tell her how good it looks, even if you’re only feigning interest.

What to say

If she’s thinking of changing the style or colour, be honest with her. Tell her if you like it long or if you prefer it short; if you prefer it blonde or think she should go darker. Not only will she look good in your eyes, but she’ll also appreciate you taking an interest.

What does she really want to know

Again it’s all about reassurance and she wants to know that you find her attractive. A few well-placed compliments, even the simple act of recognising when she’s had a haircut, can go a long way to making her feel wanted.

“What are you thinking right now?”

What not to say

This one can feel like an interrogation, especially if you’re just spending some quiet time together. Whatever you do, don’t snap, and if you are thinking about who’d win in a fight between ninjas and pirates, when you should be thinking about her, then don’t tell her.

What to say

Depending on the situation, tell her you’re thinking about her, or how good a time you’re having. It is tough being interrogated like this and it can feel quite intrusive, so just deflect her by saying you’re taking some time for yourself, or thinking about all the things that you have to do today.

What she really wants to know

She’s trying to understand you better, to get to know who you are and how you think. True, it’s probably not the best way to go about it, but at least she cares.

“What would you be doing if we had never met?”

What not to say

The honest answer is of course, probably that you’d be with someone else; or that you’re harbouring dreams of sailing the world in a superyacht with a female model. It shouldn’t take a relationship expert to tell you not to blurt this out.

What to say

Luckily we do have a relationship expert to help you with the right answer, which according to Marisa should be along the lines of: “I don’t know, I can’t think about that, I am just glad we did meet and I don’t know what I would be doing if I hadn’t met you.”

What she really wants to know

“In my experience when women ask men questions, they want them to answer like a girl would,” Marisa continues. “It doesn’t feminise men, it just makes them more empathetic. Empathy means saying ‘I don’t even want to think about that, I can’t answer that, it’s too horrible, let’s change the conversation’ but a lot of men don’t understand empathy because they simply aren’t wired for it.”

“What do you love most about me?”

What not to say

Come on, admit it, your first thought was going to be boobs, bum, or that thing you do in bed on special occasions. Sure, all of those are compliments to your other half but she asked you why you love her not why you’re attracted to her.

What to say

According to Marisa: “You can be honest here but don’t make it all physical. If you say ‘I love your body or your sexual techniques’ she’ll think you only like her superficially, so praise her personal attributes as women need to know men have noticed these things. Make sure you cover it all – pick a looks, a personality and an intelligence thing to love.”

What she really wants to know

“She wants to know what you really mean to her, and she’s affirming what love means to you,” says Dr Gian. But what does she mean if she asks you what you don’t love about her? “You’re probably in a fight, or about to be. Don’t give her a literal answer but instead try to understand why she is asking the question.”

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