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Give And Take: Why You Can't Land Prince Charming Without Putting In Some Work

On the hunt for a "real man," have some of us lost touch with what it means to be a "real woman"?

It seems there's no shortage of articles and opinions criticizing our guys for not living up to certain standards, but what about the girls? Has no one stopped to think that maybe the right kind of woman has a lot to do with bringing out the best in the right kind of man?

Don't get me wrong; this isn't to say there aren't a lot of quality women out there who have been duped by jerks, bad luck and poor timing.

On both sides of the fence, there exists that rare unicorn breed of a man or woman who is looking to give as much love and attention as he or she is hoping to receive.

Then, there are the one-sided romantics. Unfortunately, it does seem that more women than would care to admit fall into this category. You know the type: She's an endless hunter (and subsequently complains about said fruitless hunting) for Mr. Right.

Her efforts continue, only for her to discover that despite all the batting of the eyelashes and perky conversation, he just wasn't looking to be the Prince William stand-in she's so convinced she deserves.

Nowadays, and rightly so, women hold their heads, heels and standards high, and there's nothing wrong with that. We expect common courtesy, honesty, kindness, humor, selfless gestures and much more from our guys.

We expect these things because we understand our worth, and we know that it's pointless to settle for anything less than the very best.

From a man's perspective, as far as I can tell, it seems that it's no longer all that easy to find, even in the most basic sense, a "nice" girl. When asking women what their expectations are from the opposite sex, there's no shortage of replies.

However, when asked what it is THEY bring to the table, everything suddenly goes very quiet.

Well, you expect him to take you out to great dinners and love the idea of him playing chef in the kitchen, but do YOU cook? Your eyes glaze over as you dream of coming home to flowers mid-week "just because," but have you ever surprised your man with the latest Grand Theft Auto "just because"? It goes on...

A good man is hard to find and a good woman is hard to define. Those of us looking for something real want just that: an authentic person looking to put into a relationship what he or she takes out, plus interest.

While it may still be less common to stumble upon a group of men complaining that their girls don't "care enough," they still carry those feelings, even if they internalize them. A good man wants a woman who is going to compel him to be that romantic gent she dreams about.

Everyone is capable of exceeding expectations, but only when they feel motivated to do so, and when they feel the other side is worthy of their very best. Often, we look to the other person to identify the problem.

When you find yourself kissing yet another toad, it may just be more of a reflection on what you didn't put into the relationship, instead of a fault from the other person.

Quite simply put, we get what we give. If we want that fairytale, we need to play our part, as well. We can't hang the weight of "happily ever after" solely on the guys.

At what point did we neglect to consider that these guys might have some expectations of their own? Pause for gasp and offense. Sorry, ladies; you heard right.

You want him to hold open every door, bring you flowers "just because" and play the ultimate gent? It might just require you turning some old school tricks and playing the lady.

Good luck and Godspeed in those glass slippers, girls.

Photo Courtesy: We Heart It