What do women really want?

I can’t figure women out. I’ll date a woman for a few weeks, and just like clockwork, they tell me they’re not happy, or it’s not working out. I dated one girl for a year, and she was constantly upset with me. I can’t figure out how to make women happy. What do they really want?

Every woman is different, so they all want different things. Some care about money and others care about sex. Some want to travel and some want to nest. Some want to spend every minute with you; others crave space.

On some level, making a woman happy is about figuring out what makes you happy and finding the woman who’s right there with you.

I don’t know you, so I can’t tell if you’re picking women based on criteria that doesn’t work. Ultimately, if you share the same values and especially the same vision of what makes for a happy future (if you share the same end game), then you’re off to a good start. For a long-lasting relationship, anyway.

With all that aside, there is one thing I think all women want whether they realize it or not, and that’s certainty. Certainty is important because it makes things predictable, and predictability makes it possible to plan your day, your week, your year, your future. It allows you to know what choices to make as issues come up, because you can easily identify your options and predict whether each option will make you happy. Without certainty, we can’t make our own best decisions for our own lives. When we can’t do that, we tend to freak out. And when we freak out, we do so all over the relationship.

True of men as much as of women.

So, without knowing much about you, I’d ask if you’re creating too much uncertainty in your partner. Are you unpredictable? Do you say one thing and do another? Do you say one thing one day but then say something different another day?

On an emotional level, do you feel the need to remain a mystery to your partner, to maintain a sense of control so you don’t get hurt? Does needing to keep your promises feel too constraining or confining? Do deep connections or commitments make you feel claustrophobic?

Or maybe you’re just a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants type of person who is unknowingly coming across as erratic?

Whatever the reasons, if she gives you the impression that she can’t count on you, can’t really get a sense of you, can’t rely on the things you say, and so on, then you may need to do some adjusting.

It’s worth pointing out that being predictable is not the same as being boring. Be spontaneous. Surprise her. Delight her. Just do it as a person she has little doubt about rather than as someone who leaves her confused and anxious.

Again, without knowing you, I’d say that if you date women who share your worldview and goals, and if you work to create as much certainty in your relationship as is reasonably possible, you should be fine. This doesn’t mean your relationship will work out. There are no guarantees. It just means that you’ve got a solid chance. And that’s not nothing.