The Netherlands, so I’m repeatedly told is a country where sexual equality and female emancipation is the norm. Yet, even here, in the land of shouting warrior princesses, some of the same age-old discussions around what is considered “normaal” when dealing with the opposite sex rage on.

The Shallow Man, not being Dutch nor female, has decided to get a local perspective on a common discussion point between men and women. Who would be better for this thorny subject than the scary antelope? At 1.86m, without the high heels that she often wears, Florence, a blonde haired blue eyed rather sporty and always impeccably dressed young lady,  has a habit of intimidating the opposite sex, hence her nickname. I’ll hand over the rest of this page to the Scary Antelope.

The Dutch battle of the sexes

Thank you, Shallow Man.

I have an English girlfriend called Gemma. She’s not your typical run around Leidseplein in a skirt so short that she gets ice cubes in her knickers type of Brit. She’s a lovely girl, a genuine English rose, very shy and a real lady. On an evening out recently she met and exchanged telephone numbers with a (Dutch) guy. We were walking home when she asked me for advice on how long she should wait before texting him. My response was: “Don’t text him, wait for him to text you.”  This started a heated debate with my friend Koen who’d also been out with us that evening.  “You feminists are so hypocritical,” he said, “You want to be treated equally, but when it comes to dating, you want men to pick up the bill and hold the door open for you. Why should he be the one to text you first? Why should he be the one to ask you out? It should be equal!”

sexual revolution?

The battle of the sexes

Even in the age of tinder, women are less sexually available

For Koen, and all the other men out there that fail to grasp why even in the age of tinder that men should make the first move, I’ll explain. Firstly, yes, we want to be equal, no one is debating that. We want and have won the rights to vote and for equal pay. But the fact of the matter is that men and women are not the same. At least, not biologically.  It all comes down to basic economics. Women are the rarer asset and thus we are more valuable. Not necessarily in sheer numbers, the number of men and women is roughly the same- but in terms of sexual availability, even in the age of tinder.

Evolution has programmed us (women) to be very picky about whom we date and sleep with. We’ve got a finite number of eggs and, compared to men, a relatively short reproductive period. On top of that, pregnancy is risky business for a woman. Nine months of feeling bloated, swollen limbs and mood swings. It sounds awful if you ask me. We can’t afford to sleep around with the risk of having just anyone’s child. Men, on the other hand, continually produce more sperm. The number of children a man can have is virtually limitless. You men are programmed to spread your seed as much as possible, whereas women are programmed to find a partner and reproduce.


It’s about evolution dummy

Now, Koen’s argument against this was that my theory no longer applies. We have condoms and birth control now. But a decade of birth control is not going to undo millions of years of evolution. Women will still subconsciously protect their eggs, birth control or not. This is why, in my opinion, men have to work harder for it than women. It’s the only way we can know if you’re actually interested in us, or if you’re just after sex. So, Koen, I get what you’re saying. I really do. He feels that, because it’s in a woman’s interest (more so than for a man) to learn as much about a potential sexual partner, she should be the one instigating the texting and asking questions, which is a fair point. But it’s simply not efficient.  Frankly, if I were to have lengthy text conversations with every man I meet, I would be texting all day. Step one is to find out how interested they are,  I do that by holding out a little bit. If a guy can’t be bothered to text me or waits weeks before initiating further contact, then why should I bother wasting my time with him?


From the cave to online dating

I still want to have the impression that a man is keen on me and if and when we do meet, that he’ll make an effort to win me over by being a gentleman and will not expect sex on the first or even the second date. So it’s for the man to make the first move. What do you think?  Feel free to comment below.


No sperm donors were hurt during the writing of this post.