Author: Sarah Meyer & Renée Shen
How do men fall in love?
Well, it’s an emotional and biological process that is easy to trigger in men when you know how to do it, and are willing to do it.
And when it comes to men and dating, there’s nothing more important inspiring a man to fall in love with you.
Because for a woman, a man who falls in love with you is offering you the highest form of value - his emotional resources.
It’s relatively easy for women to get sex, attention, gifts and fun dates, although individual mileage can certainly vary there too!
But a man who is in love with you, provided you love him back of course, will open up your world and your life in a powerful, transformative way.
He will give you far more than you ever imagined anyone could.
And he’ll give completely different, unexpected things, too - things you didn’t even know you needed.
Table of Contents
But first: why do men fall in love?
It may come as a surprise to you, but men actually want to fall in love and commit to a woman, it’s just that many women don’t inspire that emotion in them.
And there’s a reason why they do want to fall in love. It’s because evolution - and biology - wants them to.
It benefits the woman, and it benefits the man and the children you have together in huge ways.
While no-one is perfect, and maybe even because no-one is perfect, a man who is in love is going to act completely differently to a man who is simply looking for sex and companionship.
Part of the reason for this is due to the fact that when a man only wants sex with you, meaning that he hasn’t fallen in love and he considers you to be ‘one of many’ potential women, he doesn’t feel any emotions towards you.
And he won’t feel attached to you either.
But a man being attached to you and feeling for you emotionally is what inspires the most valuable and desirable behavior from him.
I’m talking the type of behavior that inspires deep envy from other women around you - because this is what every woman wants in a man:
Every woman covets that.
It’s just that many of us deny it or pretend we don’t, for fear that we could never have it.
Well, we can.
If you understand how men fall in love and why.
Before we discuss how men fall in love, it’s important to establish exactly why it’s important for a man to fall in love with you, rather than just coming together with you out of convenience.
For most of human history, women and their babies were dependent on men for protection and provision.
Research with early humans (as well as our relatives, chimpanzees and bonobos), speculates that men played a key role in keeping male thieves and rapists away from the “nest”.
If a female did not have a male around who was willing to protect her nest and her sexual resources, she would be vulnerable to wandering predators.
It is also well-documented that paternal investment in offspring was critical to the survival of increasingly fragile human infants, born at earlier and earlier gestations as their heads evolved to be larger.
This does not occur with chimpanzee babies, who are raised exclusively by females.
And then we have the more obvious situations where if a man was in love with you, he being the man) would be doing a large proportion of the hunting, and he would share food with you.
He may also fight off wild animals and intruding tribesmen, protecting both you and the tribe as a whole from outside threats.
Of course, none of this is meant to suggest that women were weak or incapable in hunter-gatherer times.
Women also hunted, and were very much capable of defending themselves, but they simply fared better when they had a man at their side.
And this is how evolution works…
When something works better for us, it tends to persist, and it tends to shape our behaviour so that we associate a feeling of reward and a sense of desire with that particular thing.
Because of these early conditions, we have evolved to share our lives (or at least, to share 4-5 year pair-bonds) with men, and to seek out emotional fulfilment through relationships with them.
Note that I said emotional fulfilment, because this is the key.
It was not a woman’s casual sexual involvement or companionship that helped us obtain protection and provision from men in hunter-gatherer times.
Perhaps casual sexual involvement helped women to some extent, I am sure that it meant men would give them a little something, and as such it was better than nothing for women.
But casual involvement with a man was simply not enough to inspire the kind of self-sacrificial, deeply invested behaviour from men that mattered in terms of women and children’s survival.
Women were best taken care of when men fell in love with them.
Thinking about this today, we don’t necessarily need a man around to fight off other men, or to kill animals for us.
Maybe we don’t even need him to change our tyres or fix the gutter anymore either.
But being in love with a man is still one of the highest forms of meaning to us, and one of the most powerful sources of security, well-being, and happiness in our lives.
It helps us raise our children well, and it helps us orient ourselves in the world and to cope with hardship and suffering. Or at least- it should.
The problem is that women no longer have the right information or the right models in front of them to show them how to inspire love from men.
On that note, did you know that there’s one specific emotional trigger inside of a man that you can appeal to to make him fall for you?
CLICK HERE to Discover What Is The One Specific Emotional Trigger Within Every Single Man in this World That Inspires Him to WANT to Commit to One Woman, Want to Take Care of Her, Worship Her and Only Her?
How do men fall in love?
Firstly, they don’t fall in love for the reasons that women think they do.
We are taught that we simply need to be the sexiest or the smartest woman available to him.
But what happens then when we get old, or have children and can’t prioritise our careers anymore?
I don’t know about you, but I’m really, really relieved that this actually isn’t how things work with men at all!
This common misconception (that women need to be the sexiest and the smartest), is actually an ideal that’s closer to the way women choose partners.
We seek a mate at the top of the social hierarchy, because it affords us more resources and better potential survival and reproductive success.
Of course, we’re not cold-blooded connoisseurs either, but it’s useful to understand that when it comes to having a man fall in love with you, it doesn’t have very much to do with how impressive or skillful you are at all.
Instead what makes a man fall in love is your:
In the early stages of dating, both men and women go through an often subconscious process of sizing up each other’s mate value.
D.Shen shares more about this in his brilliant article on the Two Traits Of Women That Men Routinely Fall In Love With.
You can also watch his incredible video on this here:
As humans, we are naturally attuned to specific indicators of value that act as proxies for:
Some of this is indeed focused on physical appearance.
For example, for men, the markers that characterise the best mates do include physical things like:
So it wouldn’t be correct to say that sexiness or physical attractiveness don’t matter at all.
But when it comes to the conundrum how do men fall in love, we need a lot more than just sex appeal or a fun personality.
And we don’t need to be the sexiest option out there.
We just need to demonstrate enough reproductive value to him to trigger his initial interest and attraction.
And this will of course depend on the individual man and what he is looking for, as well as the more specific traits that are more generally attractive to men.
A man who is not at all attracted to you in the beginning is probably not going to fall in love with you.
Once we get beyond the initial attraction, though, it’s much less important to focus on physical appearance.
So how do men fall in love?
Let’s look at 5 high value traits that men routinely fall in love with.
Remember as you read through these, that we’re not wanting to just go around and get a whole bunch of men to fall in love with us.
One-sided love is not true love, it’s just infatuation (as Renée describes in this article on How To Make Him Chase You & Value You).
And one-sided love is a whole lot cheaper than the intimate, reciprocal process where two people fall into love together.
With this in mind, it might be more helpful to think of these 5 traits as traits that help facilitate the mutual process of falling in love.
Being attuned to a man is similar to caring about him, and it’s also a prerequisite for caring.
In this context, I’m describing a process by which you can understand your man’s cues, feelings, and intentions in a way that helps you respond to him and connect with him.
This can be harder than we think it is because men and women can run some very different patterns.
Our hormones and biology lead us in different directions (although we can be similar in other ways).
It’s especially challenging that some of the greatest triggers for fear and anxiety in women are actually some of the key ways men release their own fear and stress.
For example, pulling away and focusing on a task is relieving for men, but when a man does this, it tends to stress women out or magnify their fear of abandonment.
So, how do men fall in love?
One of the ways is by being attuned to you and by you being attuned to him.
Without this attunement, he cannot actually fall in love with you!
There’s a whole lot that goes into understanding a man and being attuned to him.
Some of learning how to attune to a man is personal to him, and you’ll have to figure it out for yourself.
If you simply observe him and pay attention to the things that light him up, as well as the things that make him go quiet or get scared, you’ll know a lot more about him.
Other things are more generic to men, like the fact that they can be a little less emotionally expressive than women.
This doesn’t mean that your man doesn’t love you just as much as you love him.
Ultimately, if you are attuned to your man and willing to notice him and learn about him, you will show up as a high value woman in your relationship.
It’s rare for a man to meet a woman that truly understands him.
It’s also rare for a man to meet a woman who is actually interested in him and who he is, rather than just thinking about what he can do for her.
When you show up as this woman, it will be incredibly hard for him to just forget about you.
Of course, a man needs to be attuned to you too, and to show this by adjusting his behaviour in response to yours as he gets to know you.
Falling in love is not possible without a high level of mutual attunement.
But if you are willing to take the lead on this and establish that deeper connection with a man in the early stages, this will make him far more likely to come back to you with the same kind of generosity.
When a man meets you, he’s very quickly going to decide whether you’re the ‘one and only’ type of woman, or the ‘one of many’ type of woman.
I won’t go into this in great depth here, because it is a thesis in and of itself (and as if this article isn’t already a thesis), but this is an area that the relationship expert Renée Wade has plenty of insight on.
As Renée shares with us, men place the women they meet in one of two baskets:
How a man treats these two women is like night and day.
And how a man feels about the women in these two baskets is also like night and day!
In fact, if you’re in the ‘one of many’ basket, he will have no feelings towards you at all.
He will just keep you around for as long as he needs to as a source of sex, attention and company.
However, if you show up with the 5 feminine traits of ‘the one and only’ woman, he will fall in love, be attached to you and want to take care of you for life.
(The promise of this course is for you to have your chosen man fall in love with you & beg you to be his one & only by embodying these 5 feminine secrets, even if he’s been distant, avoidant, or losing interest…)
Men tend to fall in love with women who are open to them.
This can seem like a subtle trait, but it’s actually crucial and fundamental to deeply connecting with men.
If you want to pick one thing to focus on, pick this one.
Because a woman’s openness brings out a different part of a man.
It inspires a different pattern of behaviour in him that builds polarity between the two of you and creates the conditions for deep, lasting emotional attraction.
Let’s look at some specifics.
If a man feels that a woman is open to him, that signals first of all that he has won her approval and acceptance.
This is a great feeling for him, and, if he is a well-adjusted man who is attracted to you, this allows him to begin to trust you and invest in you emotionally.
This process often begins quite early after meeting someone that you’re attracted to.
In the early dating stages, you can demonstrate your openness by:
Your openness is particularly important for inviting a man into emotional intimacy with you.
Emotional intimacy is not necessarily natural to men the way it is to women- so you need to be the one to trigger that in him and help him to form that bond with you.
Now, to build emotional intimacy, you need to be responsive to the things he does, and to show your genuine emotional reaction as the relationship progresses.
You need to show him that you appreciate and value his presence in your life.
Specifically, you need to show him that:
And when you have sex, you need to show him how this truly makes you feel - vulnerable and invested in him.
You also need to be open to the pleasure that he can make you feel, and allow him to surprise you and show you parts of yourself you didn’t know were there.
In a good relationship, all of this will happen naturally.
And in that sense, being open to a man simply means not suppressing and covering up all of those natural responses that you have as a woman.
As much as we’re often taught not to be a burden to a man, he actually needs to feel needed and useful to you in order to fall in love with you.
Otherwise, why would you be loyal to him?
Throughout your relationship with a man, being open to him continues to be really important.
The process of falling in love (and staying in love) is to some extent about experiencing openness together, and slowly removing the barriers between you so that you share in each other’s joy and suffering.
Try to remember that this openness is perhaps the greatest gift that you can give to a man.
It is also the greatest source of meaning for the two of you as a couple, and it will go a long way towards creating a healthy relationship that can last a lifetime.
Much of the dating advice out there is based on gimmicky tips that encourage you to hold back your time, attention, approval and energy.
The goal is to present these things as scarce resources that are difficult to obtain.
To be perfectly honest, if you’re lucky, this can work in terms of building attraction in a very superficial, short-lived way.
Before a man truly has an opportunity to get to know you and intuit your value as a partner, you might be able to manipulate him into thinking that you’re better than you really are.
And one way to do this is to make him feel like he has to work for your attention.
The problem with this is, if you want a loving relationship with a man, he’s going to have to get to know you eventually.
And that’s going to happen quickly - because humans are actually very responsive to signs of what we call high mate value.
Sooner rather than later, your potential value to him as a mate will be all too apparent, flaws and all.
So it really doesn’t serve you to try to keep this information from a man by trying to make him work harder for your time and attention.
This may create short-term interest, but it will only delay the process of actually getting to know each other.
Ultimately, this just leads to more pain and more wasted time.
Playing power games like this also does you a massive disservice as a woman.
It also makes it much harder to work out a man’s intent.
Because maybe he’s really enjoying the game, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to fall in love with you.
His interest and his intrigue are cheap, and can easily shift to the next woman when he gets bored.
When we think about the question - how do men fall in love, we need to understand that we are aiming for emotional attraction and emotional connection.
And in order to maximise emotional attraction and emotional connection, you and your man both need to show up as your full, unique selves, with all your natural capacity to care for and respond to each other.
Otherwise, what is the point of having a relationship? It cannot happen if you play power games.
Case study: From icebreaker to engagement in just 8 months… Discover the exact steps Yana took and the specific banter lines she used in order to attract the man of her life online and inspired him to propose after a short 8 months. (And then married within another 2 months…)
In fact, if you play games, you come across low value.
A desirable, high value man is going to notice scripted and fake behaviour, and he’s going to notice perfectionism and manipulation.
Even if he doesn’t know exactly what’s going on at a conscious level, he will sense that what you’re doing feels off, and he will be repelled.
The only men who will be attracted by this behaviour, in contrast, are more low value men, or narcissistic men.
So if you want to fall in love with a high value man, and have him fall in love with you, throw away the play book and be willing to make mistakes.
Open yourself up to pain and humiliation - and also to euphoria and connection.
Note that this doesn’t mean that you should stop working on yourself, or stop trying to get out of your own head and attune yourself to a man.
Those things are valuable and necessary.
But playing games to create short-lived excitement and attraction will get you exactly that: short-term results at the expense of long-term connection.
Now: did you know that there are 7 common signs that a woman is low value in the eyes of all men?
Do You Know What These 7 Signs Are & How to Avoid Them Like the Plague?
(Why is this important? Because men and women perceive value very differently and you don’t want to be making mistakes that would cause quality men to dismiss, abandon or alienate you.)
The final trait that makes men fall in love is playfulness.
This may not be an obvious one - most people would guess things like physical attributes or career success instead.
But playfulness is actually really important, both intrinsically and because it is associated with many other signs of high mate value.
Playfulness brings an infinite quality to a relationship.
It fosters things like:
Playful women are more likely to be securely attached, and they tend to be better at building attraction with men, a process that ideally continues throughout a long term relationship and marriage.
By the way, if you’re curious to know whether you’re securely attached or insecurely attached, you’re in luck because we have a women-specific quiz that can help you find out.
(Why is this important? It is because your core attachment style largely dictates and influences what happens in your relationship. Thus it’s imperative you understand your core attachment style!)
Playfulness has infinite value in your romantic relationship and in getting a man to fall in love.
Humour and fun are great at reducing tension and creating connection, and they are also sustaining in hard times and times of suffering.
While women may be more attracted to masculine humour and wit, it seems that men are attracted to a playful disposition in a woman.
A woman’s playfulness signals that she is open to the man, and that she appreciates what is special about him.
She will be able to laugh at his jokes and enjoy and respond to his humour, which will help him feel her loyalty and respect.
Playfulness also indicates that a woman trusts a man, enough to suspend her sense of certainty and control.
Having just begun to venture into this kind of trust with a man myself, I can say that this is no small thing.
It says a lot about what I think of him, and about who he is as a person.
When we think about the question, how do men fall in love, playfulness is a great place to start.
There are a lot of movies that depict playful beginnings to relationships that end up lasting a lifetime- like, spoiler alert, in the Notebook.
If you’re serious about becoming more playful and would like to discover unique and high value ways to incorporate more playfulness into your personality, look no further than playful banter.
Specifically, you’ll benefit from utilising the dark feminine art of high value banter.
David Shen, the co-founder of NCRW and The Feminine Woman has a free class on High Value Banter.
If you’d like to apply some of this knowledge about how men fall in love to online dating, here’s something special…
Here’s a quick video from Renée on The one Trait of Dating Profiles That Men Fall In Love With:
Ultimately, none of us gets to answer the question of how do men fall in love without falling in love ourselves.
We can’t just use this to stay one step ahead of men so that we can feel in control.
It only works when you’re responsive and ready to open yourself up to the possibility of pain, loss, euphoria, and fulfilment.
So many of us are not truly willing to do this.
This really is more of a practice - a practice of openness to life - than it is a process of making sure all trauma has been dealt with so that you're “ready” to fall in love.
Finally, let’s answer some frequently asked questions on the topic of “how do men fall in love”.
Case study: Learn how Kristin went from being completely burnt out with online dating, sick of getting ghosted and completely exhausted from giving her heart and soul with nothing in return… To having high value men begging for her attention & having the most “electric” date of her entire life. (…All by changing one simple strategy.)
Some studies have suggested that men may fall in love within around 88 days.
They may be faster to fall in love than women, and they’re likely to express their affection earlier on than women.
This may reflect differences in male and female biology, where women are naturally more cautious than men about who they fall in love with.
Women carry more risks and burden if they choose the wrong partner, so they are slower at falling in love.
This was especially true before the invention of the contraceptive pill and when infant mortality rates were high.
In the modern social environment, however, it may be the case that men face more risks through divorce court and marital legislation than they did before.
It’s also certainly not true that men did not face any costs for falling in love in a primal environment - because generally speaking this would mean that they did not pursue other mating opportunities, at least for a long period of time.
It may also be the case that for men, falling in love with a woman is more of a unique bonding experience than it is for a woman.
Women often have close, deep emotional connections with other women.
But men’s friendships tend to have a very different emotional quality, with connection built on shared experiences and interests.
Perhaps once a man goes through the process of opening himself up to a woman and becoming emotionally invested in her, it’s very hard for him to hold back because most likely, he hasn’t felt anything like this before.
According to evolutionary theory, men who are looking for long-term partners pay attention to characteristics that indicate a woman will be a good, invested mother.
This happens at a subconscious level, even if the man does not want to have children.
After all these years of evolution, we are to some extent hard-wired to find these kinds of characteristics appealing, because they are good for our genes.
Maternal characteristics that are attractive to men include include:
Men are also drawn to personality traits that indicate that a woman will be a good partner.
These include signs of
Generally speaking, men are more likely to fall in love with women who are playful, open, trusting, who look up to them, and who approach him with warmth and caring.
QUIZ TIME: Anxious, avoidant or secure attachment patterns? Which one do I have? CLICK HERE to find out with our specially crafted women-specific 10 Question Quiz! (Why is this important? It is because your core attachment style largely dictates and influences what happens in your relationship. Thus it’s imperative you understand your core attachment style!)
Studies estimate that it takes men between 88-97 days on average to express their love for a woman they are dating.
Ultimately, the time that it takes for a man to fall in love depends on how you met and how much time you’re spending together.
It also depends on how confident he is that you love him in return.
But it’s clear that the process of falling in love is usually in full force after about 3 months of dating.
Sarah has a Masters in psychology and works as a special education advisor in early childhood. She lives in Auckland, New Zealand, with her partner and two children. She has a passion for evolutionary psychology, attachment theory, and personality psychology.
Author & Editor For National Council for Research on Women. Founder of the popular women's dating & relationship advice website, The Feminine Woman and co-founder of NCRW.
P.S. I hope you've enjoyed this article. Here are some other articles that I think you'd really like too...
© Copyright National Council for Research on Women. All Rights Reserved