Since I’m a guy and a dating coach, women often pick my brain to get insight into men. They know that I’ll tell them the honest truth without holding back. I’ll never forget one time I was appearing on a panel in Cleveland, Ohio and a woman came up to me.
She was a very attractive woman in her 30s with a good education and job. She was frustrated how most of the single men she met seemed utterly clueless about dating and even general social skills. She bluntly asked me, “why are men so stupid?”
I had to laugh since she was asking me, a man, for advice. However, a lot of women think that men are dumb for whatever reason. It might be a lack of social understanding or perhaps a man treated them poorly in the past and they attributed it to stupidity. Or, maybe they truly dealt with someone who was as far from Albert Einstein as is possible.
Not All Men
I want to be clear from the start that I’m not saying all men are stupid (or even most) or that all women are smart. However, this article is going to examine why women might perceive men as stupid and why men might not be seen as all that intelligent in certain situations.
So, before you send me angry messages telling me that all men aren’t stupid, remember this paragraph. The point of this article isn’t to call all men dumb or act like women are superior. But, I do want to explain why women (and even other men) might perceive some guys as stupid or clueless.
Men Can’t Read Social Cues
When I was in high school, a girl liked me and was trying her best to make that fact known. Rather than coming out and telling me, she tried flirting, giving hints, and doing everything possible to get me to pick up on her efforts. Finally, she blurted out: can’t you see that I like you?
I wasn’t alone. Men generally aren’t skilled at reading female emotions. One study showed that while men could read the emotions of other men quite well, when it came to women, they had difficulty. This was even evident in the brain scans of the men in question: comprehending female emotions isn’t computed the same way.
So, the man you think is dumb or clueless might not be stupid, but rather he literally just can’t read your body language and emotions all that well. If you explain yourself and don’t expect him to read your mind, you might find he’s smarter than you think.
One of my former clients had a very bad high school experience with a girl. She was very flirty and acted like she had feelings for him. It turns out she just wanted to use him to get free tickets to a sold out concert. He had developed feelings, took her to the concert, then she dumped him.
He became quite gun shy with women. So, even if a woman practically spelled out her feelings for him, he would become suspicious or second guess it to no end as a defense mechanism. He would come across as stupid and dense in relationships because he wanted total absolute proof.
If you’re trying to get through to a guy and think he’s stupid, realize that he might actually just be second guessing himself constantly about your feelings. You might have to truly spell it out to him in great detail.
Men Aren’t As Smart (On Average)
You might be aware of all the male geniuses throughout history like Nicola Tesla and Elon Musk and wonder why the guy you know seems so freaking out of it. You also might notice that your female friends all seem smarter on average, with fewer highs and lows. If you’ve noticed this, then science backs up your observation.
When looking at IQ, men are more likely to be on both the higher and the lower ends, while women are consistently more in the middle. So, the guy you think isn’t very bright simply might be just that: not very smart. As a woman, you’re probably above average in intelligence, and the guys around you are likely a lot smarter than you, or a lot less intelligent than you.
But, just because a man doesn’t have a high IQ, it doesn’t mean he’s somehow a bad person, whether for dating or anything else. He might be a very loving guy with many different skills and talents. You’ll have to decide what is truly valuable to you.
Back when I was a teacher, I had students who seemed to be unintelligent, but, in reality they were just shy. Too often our culture mistakes extroversion for intelligence. So, if a guy talks a good game, he’s smart. But, if he doesn’t say much you’re asking, “why are men so stupid?”
Don’t confuse shyness with stupidity. Just because he’s a man of few words doesn’t make him stupid. In fact, not saying a whole lot might make him a lot smarter, especially if it keeps him out of drama and other nonsense.
You Just Don’t Understand Him
If you’re with a guy and he seems stupid, then it’s possible you just simply don’t connect with him in a way that is meaningful. I don’t want to make excuses for bad behavior or for idiots, but some people are simply misunderstood.
If you think the guy you like or are dealing with might just be difficult to connect with, then you shouldn’t assume he’s stupid. Rather, just realize that he might not be a typical guy (or even person) and you’ll have to work extra hard to get to know him and understand him.
Now, this might not be worth your time and effort. But, if you need his help or want something from him, it beats assuming he’s dumb. In fact, throughout history many geniuses have been extremely eccentric (like Nicola Tesla).
So, if you’re wondering why a guy in your life is dumb, this article should help you better figure that out. Sometimes, you’re off base and he’s not what he seems. Other times, sadly, you’re probably right. The world is filled with stupid people (both male and female).