But in "real life," some don't see this as such a huge problem. Perhaps today's guys—the twentysomethings who were raised alongside the girls who were taught that it was cool to be smart—will be more open to ambitious young women. Says Allie, a young aspiring actress from New York, "I sense that some guys want to be with women who are less successful than them and that some guys might feel less masculine if their significant other was the breadwinner. But if a guy were to admit that, I think most people would see that as really out of style." Allie, who says she's been an overachiever her entire life, has never had problems finding guys who appreciate her drive: "The guys I've dated, I think, have tended to admire my ambition and in some cases have sort of fed off it and become more ambitious and successful because of being around me."
Amber Madison, author of Hooking Up: A Girl's All-Out Guide to Sex and Sexuality, who tours the country lecturing at colleges about sex, is very familiar with being a successful woman on the dating scene. She feels that, for the most part, the panic over successful women having trouble finding a mate is inflated, and that the successful gals will find a guy. "As a successful woman, there might be a lot of guys who are insecure who don't want to date you because of your success. But you don't want to date them anyway. The guys who are going to be turned on by your success are the ones who you want to date, and they are out there."
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"At first I think guys might be intimidated when they first meet me, but within five minutes they realize, 'Oh, she's funny and she falls all the time and she's always spilling things. She's not threatening, she's Amber!'," says Madison.
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Allie agrees: "Women should present their success and their accomplishments as something that's really sexy and makes them sexy, and I think that guys will sort of pick up on that and see women's accomplishments and success and such as something that's appealing, too."