The top five relationship showstoppers for men.

By: Chris Armstrong for Divorced Moms.

Everyone has showstoppers in relationships. These are things that we just can’t look past when it comes to our mate. It’s a question I ask in every relationship learning lecture and session I do. To date, that amounts to 3,542 men and this is an aggregate view of their top five relationship showstoppers.

But first, let me just say that I am not sharing responses that touched on physical attributes.

1. Non-appreciative.

Okay, so this isn’t a shock, at least it shouldn’t be. Men don’t want to feel like they are being taken advantage of. “I work hard, I do my best to provide, I want to know that she appreciates me.”–says men.

2. Woe is me mentality/emotions.

There are a couple of things here. Number one, men will wonder what they’re doing wrong if she is always in the dumps.

Number two, why does her lack of confidence always require me to swoop in and validate her beauty or intellect? It gets tiring.

Number three, men want simple and to them, life should be simple.

You’re having a bad day at work? That’s life.

You just don’t like your job? Get a new one.

You don’t like something your friend said? Why are they your friend?

We’re having issues and you want to talk about it? Make it factual and leave the feelings at the door.

At the end of the day, men just want to feel appreciated. Image via iStock.

Although ranking second in the overall list, this showstopper had the most animated feedback and explanation behind it. Men don't want women that constantly b*tch or complain, especially if they are not going to be solutions oriented. Of course, there is the reality that women don't always want a problem solved, they just want to be heard and to have their feelings validated.

3. Overly conversant.

This is really a matter of 'small talk' or 'frivolous' things versus 'substantive things'. To men, women can often get on a roll about things that simply aren't them.


Men want simple, remember that from the second showstopper and an overly conversant partner defies that. In going a bit deeper, a lot of men pointed out that it puts them in a bad position when their girlfriend 'rambles' because he doesn't want to ignore her, but he just doesn't care about a lot of the things that she cares about.

4. Greedy/materialistic.

Of course, as stereotypes go, one of the bigger showstoppers for men is women that are greedy or materialistic.

Several years ago, this was on the list and it was number one with a bullet but the rationale and explanations were very different.

Then it was all about women using men for money.

"Men want simple." Image via iStock.

Now, most of the rationale is not about men feeling used but instead, men having partners that are all about excess and judgment. A lot of men commented that they are tired of dating women that can't seem to have enough clothes or always want to up their best friends cell phone accessories.

I had one man in a group talk about going to a Halloween party in his neighborhood and his date negatively commenting about the furniture of the host. When he talked about this, the rest of the group, in unison, piled on about their disdain for such things.

5. Clingy.

Does she have her own friends and life? That's a question that man want to know before they get into a relationship with someone. Otherwise, they will worry that she'll be too clingy.

"I want a woman that wants to be with me, but I don't want her with me all the time". So said a focus group member. To which another replied, "Agree bro! And she never seems to know when enough is enough!"

Of course, this was the number two reason several years back when I did this and I can see this evaporating from the list altogether since women have become a lot more independent.

What are some of your relationship showstoppers?

This post originally appeared on Divorced Moms.