What?! I am stunned, flabbergasted and would still be in slight disbelief if it wasn’t for it being true. How could I have possibly gone through my entire dating life and not known that most men do not like Public Displays of Affection?
It is definitely an interesting realization. If you remember, The Man and I were having problems in the beginning of our relationship because I was SO affectionate however he was not. This was a first for me… every guy before was always touchy feely; wanting to hold hands, kisses while out to dinner and such. The stereotypical puppy dog love, what is normally pictured in cartoon with bugged out eyes and floating hearts; or the type of people that whisper about to closest person to you, “those two should get a room”, as the couple sits cozy on dim light couch at Jet Lounge, ignoring everyone and the world around them.
I have to say I was shocked to find this out. I knew The Man had his reasons behind why he was not a fan of PDA, but then I started asking male co-workers and friends how they felt and the same answer came up time and time again … they are just not a fan of it!
So if most men don’t like doing it, why do they? I have come down to three main reasons on why a man would be affectionate in public: because they want to, because the girl wants it, and because they are marking their territory.
Now, since I know more about the women side, I will address those as well. I believe that women are similar to men. They like it to “feel” loved, to show the public that they are taken – as sexist as it sounds, and because they just want to.
Ok, back to the men… I found this article on AskMen.com so maybe this is one of the reasons why men are so against it. Ha ha… According to the article they’ve “broken down some of the most common PDA attacks and their proper place in your relationship”. For right now we will disregard the fact that they refer to a woman showing her love for her man as “PDA attacks” and get to the good points that they do make.
To summarize what the article states, there are two acceptable forms of PDA: hand-holding and kissing (within limits). Space invasion and butt smacks are acceptable but tacky and not advised. Declarations of love, pet names, babying are completely unacceptable. I know I tend to take the guys point of view on some of these things, but unfortunately I will have to do it again and agree. I think for the most part it depends on the location or situation. One of the points that they talk about is space invasion. This is where the “claiming territory” comes in. After reading the paragraph, I believe that the constant touching in public with previous males was because we were younger.
Now looking at it from another angle, I think the peck kiss is like a marking of the territory or putting on a show for others to let them know that you care about the person you are with but with no real benefit to either party. One of my biggest rules has always been, if you are going to kiss me, I want you to KISS me! Kiss me like you MEAN it. What is the point of a small peck good bye; you might as well just hug or wave and say “see ya”!
Since learning of this new profound information I have adjusted to reflect it. I refuse to become more stiff and cold, but I have gotten better about being more conscious of when I start to make The Man feel uncomfortable in public. I have since calmed myself down on all “unnecessary” PDA like silly peck kisses after making fun of him or before getting up to go to the bathroom. But I refuse to give up the small gesture of touching his thigh when he makes me laugh or giving a kiss when smiling doesn’t seem to be enough.
So I guess in the end I want to give some advice to the ladies out there. Pay attention to the way that your man feels when you are out in public and getting all touchy feely. Look at their expressions, their reactions… heck, maybe even ask them how they feel about it. You might be surprised with the answer. Yes, if you are in your teens or early 20’s it might be a little different, but those of you that are beyond the infatuation stage, just might come to the same conclusion as me. No matter what the case, just keep everything in check, make sure that you and your partner feel comfortable in your own skin and are respecting each other’s own comfort zone as well.