Things Women Do That Are Major Turn-Offs For Men

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Sarah Koch


As a lifestyle blogger focusing on relationships, I often receive questions from female readers wondering what common behaviors turn men off. After consulting my own experiences and polling male friends, I have compiled a list of key turn-offs to avoid in early dating as well as long-term relationships.

Many of these issues can easily be addressed once aware of them. Modifying these behaviors could not only lead to greater relationship success but also increased self-confidence and personal growth. So read on for the top turn-offs, how to identify if you demonstrate them, and tips to improve.


One of the most common complaints from men is a new fling or girlfriend who texts constantly throughout the day. While communication is great, over-texting can make you appear clingy or desperate. It can also come across like you are trying to control or monitor your new love interest.

How to Tell if You Are Over-Texting:

  • You send multiple texts without a reply.
  • You feel annoyed if several hours go by with no response.
  • You regularly text just to say “thinking of you” or “how’s your day.”

How to Fix It:

  • Wait for the guy to initiate most conversations, at least initially.
  • Refrain from double-texting without a reply.
  • Engage in other activities instead of fixating on your phone.

Getting anxious over delayed replies or lack of contact will only push a man away long-term. Relax and let things progress naturally.

Acting Jealous or Possessive

Expressing irrational jealousy over past lovers or female friends is another surefire turn-off. Men desire trust in a relationship, and an overly possessive girlfriend can signal insecurity or drama.

What is Too Possessive?

  • Obsessing over past relationship details
  • Forbidding contact with exes
  • Picking fights over innocent interactions, like liking social media posts
  • Demanding explanations for every female coworker or friend

To curb possessive behaviors, work on your self-confidence. Remind yourself if a man truly cares for you, a little outside attention won’t end that. If you still struggle with jealousy, try addressing the root issue via counseling.

Having No Outside Interests

A great passion in life beyond one’s romantic relationship is attractive. But men report some women become so focused on the new boyfriend they drop all other hobbies and friends.

Without outside interests, you risk appearing overly-needy while also becoming less interesting. After all, your partner fell for you and your vibrant life in the first place!

How Can You Branch Out?

  • Reconnect with old friends
  • Engage former hobbies like sports or arts
  • Explore new pursuits like cooking classes
  • Plan regular activities without your significant other

Carving time for yourself and others will make you appear more self-assured and independent. Your partner will likely find this renewed sense of self very enticing!


One annoyance men cite again and again? Excessive nagging. This could refer to frequently critiquing appearance, career, health and lifestyle choices. Or persistently reminding your partner to complete tasks like chores or errands.

But here is the thing about nagging: it rarely brings about desired change. It often has the opposite effect, breeding annoyance and avoidance.

Before nagging, reflect honestly: is this a battle worth fighting? Can you accept his choices even if different from yours? Pick nag-worthy topics sparingly.

Then frame requests positively not critically. And know when to let things go with grace.

Using the Silent Treatment

Some women use silence as a weapon when upset with a partner. This involves ignoring calls, texts, or conversation sometimes for days. The silent treatment seems designed to indicate displeasure and inflict punishment or guilt.

However, this passive-aggressive maneuver often backfires.

Why Men Hate the Silent Treatment:

  • It feels manipulative, even abusive
  • It leaves the guy feeling powerless
  • It fails to resolve underlying issues

If truly upset, state that directly early on. But avoiding communication only builds resentment on both sides long-term. Any healthy partnership requires open and honest conversation.

Being High Maintenance

What constitutes “high maintenance” behavior? This refers to any overly-demanding, time-consuming or expensive tastes and habits. Think requiring fancy restaurants, salon visits, designer goods and vacations your partner cannot reasonably afford.

Sure, some pampering is nice. But a woman who expects constant material displays or lavish outings often appears self-centered and entitled. Men desire partners who enhance their life not drain time, energy and finances.

Here is the kicker: high maintenance tendencies usually reflect deeper insecurities. Work should focus on self-development vs fixation on status symbols.

Common High Maintenance BehaviorsBetter Alternatives
Demanding gifts/trips beyond budgetAppreciating simpler shared activities
Criticizing failures to pamperDiscussing love languages and reasonable expectations
Flaunting status symbolsCultivating non-material sources of confidence
Insisting on luxury establishmentsTrying new spots for uniqueness vs expense
Spending obsessively on appearanceInvesting in inner growth and self-care

Emotional Instability

Men often cite emotional unpredictability as distressing in relationships. This can include frequent public outbursts over minor frustrations and intense mood swings.

Sudden tears or anger can signal deeper psychological challenges. Men tend to recoil from walking on eggshells or handling hysteria.

What is Behind Emotional Instability?

  • Childhood Trauma
  • Hormonal Shifts
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Substance Abuse Issues

Seeking counseling helps address roots of labile emotions. Learning distress tolerance techniques also helps regulate mood. This facilitates maintaining steadier, more satisfying bonds.

Lacking Confidence

Few things are more attractive than genuine self-confidence, which starts from within. But some women display the opposite: frequent self-criticism, focus on perceived flaws, or comparison to others.

This probable stems from media ideals promoting narrow beauty standards. But poor self-image and self-esteem kill female appeal faster than a few extra pounds ever could.

Building Real Confidence Requires:

  • Identifying and appreciating your unique strengths
  • Regular positive self-talk and affirmations
  • Cutting comparisons with others
  • Surrounding yourself with supporters
  • Taking small daily risks to grow
  • Checking thought distortions like all-or-nothing thinking

As you learn to exude real confidence, men will be drawn to your complete (im)perfect self!

In Conclusion

I hope illuminating common female turn-offs helps women identify areas of self-improvement. Remember change takes time so have patience both with yourself and current/future partners.

The right person will embrace you, flaws and all. But ironing out a few wrinkles never hurts. Focus on reducing anxious/needy behaviors and cultivating self-love.

The rest will organically follow not only in dating but all aspects of life. Because empowered, thriving single women naturally attract healthy partnerships. They don’t require them to feel worthy or whole.

At the end of the day, don’t settle for less than you deserve. If certain behaviors seriously disturb you in a woman, move on. But in new flings and long-term partnerships alike, open communication goes far.

Feel free to build on the topic in comments with other female behaviors that bother men. Just keep it constructive!

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