Chivalry, the grand gestures once considered the normal way in which gentleman courted women, is officially on life support.

Once a favored practice originated during days of knighthood, this element of the chase has seemingly been be replaced by lowered standards, a lack of expectations and general laziness. While the debate continues as to which sex is more at fault for chivalry’s demise, I’d suggest that some women are playing themselves short because of their “thirst.”

If you desire a man to “date” you—you know, acts of social activities that allow couples to assess suitability and intimacy without opening a condom–then the standard should be presented upfront.

In the early stages of dating, a helpful barometer for ladies to maintain a balanced effort going forward is “men will only do what you allow them to.” This mantra—which isn’t a concrete fact—is supposed to remind women of their power, which sometimes becomes gets sacrificed in exchange for the chance to update a Facebook relationship status or bragging rights that you’re no longer “single.” Most women know the basic rules of dating, though some do not observe them, instead opting to settle for less than they initially intended.

The “thirst,” or blatant acts of desperation, often pops up before courting truly begins, signaling to a man you’ll do anything to be “someone” to him. For example, excessive calling, text messages, making plans for holiday gatherings with only a hint of his character revealed (cue scary ‘Jason’ music) can totally scare a man off. The thirst can also be a neon sign that little effort is needed to secure attention, making a woman the doormat, possible sidepiece, or an afterthought. Lazy men love thirsty women—it’s an unproven law of attraction.

Perhaps past relationships or frustrations have forced a woman to lower her standards, which inevitably garners some results. But is it really enough? For example, if a man has the luxury of visiting only during late night hours—in your living space—with food prepared and hot sex waiting to be served up on a platter, what is the incentive of doing anything more than simply showing up?

I overstand that circumstances like a failing economy, low funds or a lack of creativity can hinder a typical dinner date at a four-star restaurant downtown, but a walk in the park is free. Everyone is worthy of being seen in public—the true act of dating. Because let’s be real, constant house/room calls were given the side eye even during freshman year of college. So why are some of us settling for less?

Ladies, requests for men to be more chivalrous will probably go ignored if we fail to set different standards in the very beginning. Making yourself too available or quickly altering your schedule to appease his, without expecting the same in return, further validates the notion that very little work receives all the rewards (yes, sex and time are considered rewards). Lowered expectations work in conjunction with the lack of proper courting and the “thirst,” proving that if you don’t carry yourself like a prize through your words and actions, how in the world can we expect men appreciate to treat us as such?

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