He’s Not Cheating . . . He’s Just Being a Man!

He was so sweet in the beginning . . . and he called me every day. Now he barely calls me at all. What did I do wrong?

We slept together; everything seemed okay, and now he doesn’t return my calls. What should I do?

We girls also have a tendency to become insecure when the flowers, dates, and phone calls drop to a minimum. But what women need to understand is that courtship—in human and animal kingdoms alike—is designed solely to entice the female to say “yes” to her male suitor. That’s it. Once she has accepted the gifts or is thoroughly spellbound by the way he flexes his muscles, his job is complete. This next phase of the relationship is no longer about the chase; it is about starting a family. It’s about getting down to the nitty-gritty of survival.

Wine, rings, and roses are not supposed to go on forever. Traditional Native American courtships lasted a few days. A male elephant proves himself to his lady by bringing her food, squirting her down with water, and generally just showing how nice he is . . . for a few days. Reptiles are known to have one of the longest courtships in nature, which lasts for . . . a few months. And of course our modern romances start to lose their sparkle after . . . well, a few months.

This is not a bad thing. Human and animal courtships are short-lived for a reason. Courting threatens our survival.

Falling in love makes us dizzy and disoriented. And no animal in nature can protect his survival if his head is in the clouds. A lion would not remain king of the jungle for long if he sat with his eyes glossed over, waiting for the missus to return from her hunting expedition. Sex every 20 minutes for four days straight during mating season is plenty. To keep his standing in the animal kingdom, this cat needs to be in his right mind, alert and focused at all times.

Once a male animal has provided a sample of his strength and wits, there is no more need to put on a dog-and-pony show to get a female’s attention. He must now live up to his claim and prove that he can indeed protect and provide. Actions speak louder than words.

So ladies, the next time you feel neglected by your spouse, it might not be that he is losing interest in you, after all. It could truly be that he is exhausted from working eight hours every day to provide for his family.

We are not built to stay head over heels for months and years at a time, no matter what the tabloids say. Our natural inclination is to stay with both feet firm on the ground, to protect ourselves from shady folks with deals too good to be true.

To be fair to us ladies, there is a genetic explanation behind us wanting our romances to burn into infinity. We live in a world where uncommitted relationships are the rule rather than the exception. Relationships with no NEXT STEP leave us stuck in a perpetual world of dating.

And where there is dating—whether insect or mammal—there is romance.

Sorry, men, you are rattling a billion-year-old cage. Computers and planes may be advancing at lightning speed, but not our genetics. Women are hardwired to expect gifts or plays of affection when there is sex involved. It’s not a material thing: it’s a biological thing; every female animal has this desire programmed in her DNA.

In the animal kingdom, female animals typically conceive during those romantic interludes. This is not always the case with human females. But just because there is no bun in the oven doesn’t mean that her biology is not preparing as if there were. It also doesn’t mean that a man’s hormones are not changing to prepare for the “big event” of fatherhood.

During the blossoming phase of new relationships it is not uncommon to hear men talk of wanting to fulfill their educational or financial dreams. They may desire to work more, ask for a raise, or finish college . . . Oops, but there is no family to provide for.

Women, on the other hand, during this same phase, often start to demand more of their relationships, more of a man’s time, and just like a pregnant female animal (whose baby will need a father), they are likely to become suspicious of other females trying to take their men . . . Oops, but there is no baby in this case.

Needless to say, in our modern, non-committed, free and easy hookup culture this built-in prepare-for-the-nest feature can have some negative consequences in a relationship. He may start to feel suffocated by her encroachment. And she may start to feel “put off” by his distance.

For our romances to have a fighting chance, we must find a way to lessen the gap between our culture and our genetics. Our DNA is not some ancient artifact that exists only in laboratory test tubes. It rules our romantic lives, and plays a big part in our ability to keep the man or woman of our dreams.