Why being a gentleman is sexy

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Forget what some say – there is nothing sexier than being a gentleman.

There are people who believe, strongly, that the Olde World concept of chivalry is an anachronism that has outlived its time, seeing it as a tool for perpetuating the idea that women are helpless and need protecting by men. To put it simply, they get outraged when a man holds the door open for a woman. They see in this gesture only a patronising attitude.

There’s been plenty written about how masculinity is in crisis, and that men are confused about how they should relate to the opposite sex. It’s easy to empathise with this view when men are told constantly that carrying a woman’s luggage or standing up when she enters the room are insulting actions implying that women are weak or have unequal status.

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Don’t listen to any of that rubbish. If ever there was a time when chivalry needed to make a comeback, it’s now. In the age of the selfie and the self-obsessed, when pornography is warping gender relations in a way that is not in women’s best interests (or men’s for that matter), and dating apps mean you can dial up sex with a swipe of the finger, romance is under siege.

But with this new sexual revolution in full swing, one thing has become clear: there is nothing sexier than a well-mannered man. That’s what chivalry is. Being well-mannered, and not just to women, but other men too. It was always thus.

Chivalry started as a code of conduct for medieval knights. They swore to defend the weak, be courteous and steadfast, not lie, and be respectful of others. There was no demarcation between genders. Showing courtesy is a sign of strength of character. Old-school manners practised with ease should be part of a man’s charm.

In the dating space, a man who’s chivalry comes hand-in-hand with respect for the woman he is trying to woo is an immensely attractive prospect. Chivalry is celebrating her promotions as much as it is opening a door. It’s the awe he expresses for her talent/intellect/capabilities rather than any belittling behaviour borne of a belief that she’s helpless.

Everyone – men and women – want to be cared for, respected, honoured, consulted. Surely that’s what modern-day chivalry is. Most women love having a door opened for them. They love it that men mind their language in front of them even if they’re occasionally potty-mouthed themselves. They like a man walking on the outside of the footpath, not because some chamber pot is going to be tipped out of an upper window, but because it’s an ancient practice that symbolises concern for one’s companion. Chivalry doesn’t undermine feminism or women’s equality. It’d be a rare woman who’d think less of a man who told her she looked lovely or smelt nice. At its heart, chivalry is just respect and kindness.

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And it’s just a fact – a man is less likely to scare off a date by displaying chivalry than he is by being a self-centred oaf. So it’s a no-brainer how you should behave if you want to find a match.

THE CHIVALROUS MAN

  1. Open the car door and help her in. Open other doors and wait for her to go through first.

  2. Carry her bags, at the airport or out shopping.

  3. Stand when she enters or leaves the room.

  4. If you’ve invited her out, pay for it.

  5. If she invites you to her place for dinner, wash up afterwards.

  6. Offer to fill her glass before you replenish yours.

  7. Compliment her on how she looks.

  8. Take an interest in her job, her family and friends.

  9. Let her pick the movie.

  10. Offer her your coat if the weather turns cool.

Do you think chivalry is in need of a comeback? Let us know in the comments below or join the conversation on FacebookTwitter & Instagram. And if you are ready to narrow down the world of possibilities, sign up to eharmony today- find someone made for you.

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