10 Men Share How They Know Whether A Woman Is Short-Term Fun Or Worthy Of A Long-Term Relationship

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long-term relationship

Have you ever wondered what makes a guy settle down? Have you ever watched a lifelong bachelor finally decide on someone? What about your guy friends? Have you seen them swoon over one woman and act indifferent to another? Have you, as a woman, sat there before or during a date and made some sort of strategy, whether it was to hold off on kissing, sex, or avoiding or encouraging certain kinds of conversations? 

I've spent a lot of time wondering how men categorize women they meet, strategizing and deciding how much of myself to reveal, give or offer up. After all, that's what will make a good relationship in the long-run.

It's always seemed straightforward: if a woman really likes a man, she should make him work for it and not give up too much. Because if a woman is too quick to hop in bed or seems to be too eager to be involved, a man puts her in that "short-term fling" category, instead of someone he'd want a long-term relationship with.

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People say that it's not fair or not always true. Not every man would pigeonhole a woman who was very sexual or quick to go to bed as just a "bed buddy," and it's not a very forward-thinking feminist view to tell women, "Hey, ladies! Make him wait."

But I still ascribe to waiting and letting him chase a bit, whether feminist or not. Ladies should keep their standards high before revealing all of herself. But it's not just about sex! We decided to gather some men and ask them this question: "What makes a woman short-term fun versus long-term worthy?"

According to what men think, there are many factors that go into whether a guy decides you are just for fun or someone he can take seriously. Here's what they had to say:

1. The reality hits after sex.

"The moments after sex when the animal mind is quiet is when we can truly know how we feel about a woman. It sounds like a line, but it's true for me. Once those sexual needs as satisfied, I can then think about the rest."

In other words, once he's not thinking about sex, it's when he's probably thinking about whether you have long-term relationship potential... or not. But sexual chemistry doesn't equal love.

2. Being attractive only goes so far.

"The looks get my attention for sure, but the brain and personality are what keep me, so if you're missing those two things, it's a wrap! We can party, but that's about it."

Men actually want you to have opinions and ideas. Something about you other than being eye candy.

3. We want more conversation.

"When I was single, it was all about whether I could have a conversation with a woman. And would she talk about the stupid things I was interested in because she liked the topic also? That really mattered to me."

It matters if you two have common interests and things to talk about. If you don't, expect to be a short-term situation. Enough said.

4. Sexual compatibility without anything else is just sex.

"If there are no other compatibilities but sexual compatibility, that equaled short-term fun to me."

It's got to be more than sex for anything to go the distance!

5. How you react is everything.

"If a woman was a b**** after getting cut in line at McDonald's or reacted poorly in a certain situation, that was always a red. For instance, if a girl that I was dating was the type to start something with people everywhere we went over nonsense, I knew I couldn't be with somebody long-term that was that reactionary and childish."

Behave yourself, ladies. Be kind. Do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Simple and easy.

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6. Have class and portray yourself as such. 

"We all live in this age of the unspoken competition where social media is concerned. But if it looks like you're constantly running the streets at all hours, hugged up with a bunch of different dudes, partying all week long and naked half the time, I will make a point to enjoy my time with you, but you're not meeting my mother or anything like that."

Men don't want a woman with a bunch of pouty, half-dressed selfies all on social media. Be sexy, but don't be desperate. If you want a long-term relationship, running as if you're a party girl or trying to portray yourself as one big ball of fun on social media is a turn-off and won't get you what you're looking for.

7. Be there for them, because we all deserve love.

"It's a 'Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I'm 64' vs. 'Had me fighting for air... she told me to come, but I was already there' situation."

Some dudes love musical quotes, but mainly, what he's saying is a woman who shows stability, care and strength is someone worth committing to, whereas a woman who is just focused on being that party gal is more perfect for a night of fun.

8. Friendship matters, and tough women get big love.

"I always asked if I could see myself becoming best friends with whoever I dated. Bottom line: could I trust this person to be there for me when times are tough? For someone who I considered as just fun, all that mattered to me was if I liked her energy and if she'd be fun or not."

Men want someone they can be friends with. They want someone reliable, just like we do. Fun matters, but depth does too. Men aren't all a bunch of shallow-end pools, ladies!

9. A crazy family usually indicates a short-term fling.

"Sometimes I would realize that her family is crazy and I'm probably just not realizing how crazy she is yet. If your family is crazy, try to keep them out of the picture as long as possible."

You should give a woman a chance as she can't pick her family, but if someone was raised around chaos, that person might be chaotic too, and not a good long-term partner.

10. Political tirades aren't cute.

"If a partner was super-extreme and in everyone's face about her politics, that was a turn-off for me."

In other words, be passionate about your politics, but not extremist. It can indicate to some men that you're too harsh, judgmental or unstable.

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Laura Lifshitz will work for chocolate. The former MTV personality and Columbia University graduate is currently writing about divorce, sex, women’s issues, fitness, parenting, marriage and more for YourTango, New York Times, DivorceForce, Women’s Health, Working Mother, Pop Sugar, and more. Her own website is

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