If you think women are initially attracted to men that are open and concerned about their feelings, you're wrong. At least that's what a new study is claiming.
However, men find a kind-hearted, sensitive woman appealing -- and so goes the topsy-turvy world of adult relationships.
The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya, the University of Rochester, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign recently collaborated on several experiments that examined what men and women find appealing and unappealing during a first encounter.
The initial study was designed to examine responsiveness and whether or not it is perceived as feminine or masculine with regard to how each gender reacts to the notion of being responsive to things said in a first conversation. The study revealed that men found women who were responsive during a conversation more appealing while women weren't as inclined to find responsiveness an attractive quality in men.
For the study the researchers defined "responsiveness" as a characteristic "that may signal to potential partners that one understands, values and supports important aspects of their self-concept and is willing to invest resources in the relationship."
The study's lead researcher, Dr. Gurit Birnbaum explained of the findings, "Sexual desire thrives on rising intimacy and being responsive is one of the best ways to instill this elusive sensation over time. Our findings show that this does not necessarily hold true in an initial encounter, because a responsive potential partner may convey opposite meanings to different people."
The researchers then asked those in the study to interact with both responsive and non-responsive individuals of the opposite sex. Sample responses from those being interacted with by the study's participants were "You must have gone through a very difficult time" as a responsive reply, versus "Doesn't sound so bad to me" as a non-responsive reply.
Once again, a larger percentage of men found the women who gave responsive replies appealing while the men who gave responsive replies didn't rate as high with the women.
"Some women, for example, may interpret responsiveness negatively and feel uncomfortable about a new acquaintance who seems to want to be close. Such feelings may impair sexual attraction to this responsive stranger. Other women may perceive a responsive stranger as warm and caring and therefore as a desirable long-term partner," added Dr. Birnbaum.
The researchers also concluded that while "responsiveness" remains a key within any relationship, be it a friendship or a romance, the study reveals that it isn't a big a factor during an initial encounter...at least not for women.