I recently read an essay where a woman detailed how challenging her dating life has been due to a character trait that seems to intimidate men–her sense of humor. Yes, of all the things to seemingly turn off the opposite sex, she believed it was her comical side. Apparently men think she is too funny, and because of this, her love life has not been up to par. Currently pursuing a career in comedy she writes:

“One of my best guy friends once told me at a party, ‘Guys don’t date you because you’re too funny.’ The more I thought about it, the more I realized it was true. Sometimes after shows, men and women alike will tell me, ‘You’re really funny for a girl!’ Some days it’s insulting, other days it’s delightful. Regardless, it reminds me that not everyone is expected or even allowed to be funny. As I learned growing up, becoming a part of that comedy world meant learning how to play with the boys and saying goodbye to being seen as anything other than ‘one of the guys.'”

We all know, or may even be, the “guy’s girl” who can manage to chill with the guys and yet still be feminine. Or there are those of us who fall somewhere in the tomboy category, and are simply viewed as one the guys. Both of these roles can place women in a peculiar position when it comes to pursuing relationships. Moreover, there are the firecrackers among us who know how to effortlessly role out hilarious jabs and can hold our own when it comes to cracking jokes with the fellas. But as funny as it sounds, there may be some truth to the fact that most men can’t handle a woman who is full of wit. According to The Independent:

“Research [published] in a leading academic journal confirms what many female comics –
and funny women – have long suspected: men are frightened by their brand of humour …
when it comes to finding a long-term companion they do not want a partner who will fire a
stream of witty repartee at them, according to the study carried out by academics at some
of the world’s top universities. ‘Men see being funny as a male thing,’ explained Dr Rod
Martin, who led the project. The findings are published in the scientific journal Evolution and
Human Behaviour …”

After reading the essay, I thought back to past relationships and crushes. I’ve always been funny with my girlfriends and even guy friends, however my funny side is not as prevalent around men I like. Maybe I subconsciously tone it down; in relationships I don’t believe I was placed in the “funny girl” category. And in instances when guys seemed to get me and my sense of humor, those are the same guys that remained friends. I jokingly brought the subject up to my significant other, only for him to confirm that men do not like to feel as though a woman is funnier than them. Adding that if a guy says, “your cool,” it’s an indication that he may see you as just one of the guys. I must admit, I was somewhat reassured to hear his reply as I joked, “Well we may have issues being as though I’m so much funnier than you…” Only for him to laugh it off.

So ladies do you always have jokes, and if so, has it made dating harder for you? Fellas weigh in as well.

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  • Carmen

    Another way humor is received differently between the sexes is whenever a woman says something hilariously raunchy, there is a strong chance someone will be unsettled (especially the men in the room). However, men don’t seem to get this reaction. I think society has rules on what is acceptable humor for your gender.

    As a feminist and a funny gal, I think my humor weeds through all the insecure guys out there. If a guy finds my sense of humor cRaZy awesome, then he probably has no qualms about witty women. If a man is intimidated by my humor, then he probably won’t hold my interest anyhow.

    However, I do find myself getting friend zoned quite frequently. I’m not sure if this has anything to do with being funny. But that’s okay because I wouldn’t trade my sense of humor for all the male attention in the world!