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“Busted!” Why You’re Caught & She’s Not

By January 13, 2011February 17th, 2015One Comment

There are few things worse than when a girl you really like catches you checking out another woman.  There’s that icy cold stare she gives that makes you feel simultaneously frustrated and guilty.  She pushes you away and when you go to hold her hand, she doesn’t hold back.

The really sucky thing is that you really like her…  what she doesn’t seem to get is that your feelings for her, and your need to look at that other girl are totally unrelated.

Where did it all go wrong?  One minute, you’re out with her and everything’s going great…  You’re walking along, hand in hand, all dreamy-eyed, with little squirrels and butterflies playing around you.  But there’s an ominous thundercloud in the distance.

A little motion catches your attention from the corner of your eye…  183 thousand years of evolution has made you a cunning protector-predator, triggering a natural compulsion to turn your head and get a better look…

And you find yourself glancing at a very hot woman.

Now you’re staring

A fraction of a second longer than you probably should have, and you realize… “Oh crap… I’m looking too long… I’ve got to look away!”

You forcefully wrench your head back to a ‘straight ahead’ position… and realize too late that you whipped your head back just a bit too fast… and now your date knows something is up.

The same 183 thousand years of evolution have made her a curious creature, and she now wants to see what the hell was so fascinating to make you act so weird… So she looks… You brace for it…  Her eyes trace the path you were just looking… She sees the hottie, and the icy smile she gives you is about as cold as the shower you’ll be soloing later.

You’re Busted.

Don’t worry buddy… you’re not alone. It happens to all of us.  We goofy guys get busted all the time… and the weird thing is, we never catch women looking.  It doesn’t make sense, right?  Open up any issue of Cosmo, Vogue, Elle… there are mostly naked guys all over those mags…

So what’s going on? Are we really such dogs? Are women really the sweet, innocent angels they seem to be, who only check guys out when they’ve been single for 3 years and find themselves alone with a man on a desert island?

Sure seems like it.  But scientific evidence and real-world observations point to a different conclusion.

Studies show that women check out men at least as much as men check out women.  It’s a fact.  So why don’t you catch her looking?  And why are you getting busted all the time?  Are you really such an unobservant dumb-ass?

Well, in a word… yes.

But to your defense, you really can’t help being both obvious and oblivious when it comes to the whole ‘check-out’ scene.

The fact is, guys aren’t idiots… we’re just… well… check-out-challenged.

You see, it’s a well established fact that women have wider and more developed peripheral vision than men.  Again, a very ‘evolved’ creature, the women would protect children from predators while the men were out hunting.  Just like a horse or other non-predatory animal has eyes on the side of it’s head so it can see everything around it, a woman can see more of what’s around her.

Don’t worry… we weren’t totally short-changed… Men evolved as the predators… and to help them in this task, men developed better depth perception and visual acuity (for our spear-hurling needs.)  These are interesting ‘fun-with-science’ facts, but how does this relate to you?

Well, imagine you’re walking along hand in hand with your girl…  A woman off to your right catches your eye… with your pathetic male peripheral vision, you have to turn your head to get a better look at the woman… in other words, you have to basically turn your head and look right at her.

Now your girl has very good peripheral vision… so she is very likely to notice your head-turn out of the corner of HER eye.

But it’s not just physiology…  evolution fucked us in other ways too…  We’re social creatures, and MEN tend to LEAD.  That’s cool… and many dating experts recommend leading to show your confidence and status.  But there’s a hidden downside to taking that lead literally.

Let’s break down the ‘guy leading’ situation…  Take your left hand and put it out to your side at head height in the “I pledge allegiance” position (no, not on your heart… the OTHER hand).  Notice that it’s just out of your range of vision.  Now move your hand forward just 6 inches (I know, I know… for many of you jokers 6 inches is a lot).  Notice that you now have a very good peripheral view of your hand.  Put it back in that neutral position, and now move it BACK 6 INCHES… and notice that it is totally out of view.

If you’re an average guy, you have about a 2 ½ foot stride… So that 6 inch difference is only 1/5 of a stride

What am I driving at? 

Well, when you’re a fifth of a step ahead of your girl, your head is now right in her visual field, and hers is NOT in yours…

These two factors add up to one very solid equation:  when you turn your head to look, YOU ARE BUSTED! 

Now let’s reverse the situation…  Say you’re walking along and your girl sees a hot guy off to her side.  (I know… I know, with your big 6 inch lead she’d NEVER look at anyone but you…)  Remember, her peripheral vision is much better than yours, so for her to take a look, she barely has to turn her head at all… (Plus, women are more skillful at looking out of the corner of their eyes… men tend to turn their head and DIRECTLY look).

So, not only is her head movement smaller and less noticeable, your lame peripheral vision means you’re even less likely to notice her head turn.  Add your impressive 6 inch lead, and the rest takes care of itself.  You’re never going to catch her.

So… what’s a guy to do?

Well… here are a few suggestions:

Option 1:  The Honest Approach

You can find a woman who doesn’t mind if you look… and then you don’t have to care either… The flip side of this is that you can’t bust her if SHE is looking…  If you can deal with that, then this option may be for you.

I have a buddy who is really great with the ladies, and I noticed he’d blatantly check out girls and even point them out to his girlfriend.  He’d rate their asses, comment on their faces, hair, breasts…  It was actually pretty funny.  I asked him about it, and he told me this thing he says to women when he starts dating them.  He just waits till she busts him for OBVIOUSLY looking at a hottie, and then he tells her:

“Here’s the deal:  I’m a people watcher… I enjoy observing people… And, being human, I like attractive people… And being a guy, I like attractive women.  So you’re going to see me checking out attractive women.  It’s going to happen.  It doesn’t mean anything other than a) I’m straight and b) I find it fascinating that people who all look so very different can also all be attractive in their own ways… I like analyzing what that ‘attractiveness factor’ is in people…  And that appreciation is part of why I am sitting here with you and not with them.”

This kind of honest and matter-of-fact approach usually goes over really well.  And as he told me, he doesn’t really want to date a girl who is too insecure to deal with his wandering eyes, so for him it’s a test to see if he’s going to get along with this girl.  Blunt honesty can be refreshing, and you just might find out that she likes checking out people with you too…

Since then, I’ve had many fun afternoons hanging out with girlfriends comparing ratings of different women…  and sometimes even men (hey, you can know if a guy is attractive without being attracted… and being able to acknowledge that makes you incredibly self-confident in the eyes of your woman).  Plus, if you tend to be on the insecure side, it can’t hurt to know what guys she finds attractive…  Call it an ‘advanced warning’ in case she adopts someone you know is her type as a ‘friend’.

Option 2: The Sly Approach

Take a tip from women and learn how to look.  Learn the art of subtlety.  If you want to ‘look under their radar’ it’s going to take some work.  Here are some quick tips:

a)    Expand Your Range
You can actually work to develop your peripheral vision.  Martial artists do this all the time…  Practice consciously trying to make out details of things to your left and right without turning your head…  It’s a handy skill to have.  Yes, even you can improve upon those 183 thousand years of evolution.

b)    Tilt Your Head
You’ll find that tilting your head down will increase your peripheral vision (Warning Note: this may also look like bad posture, so use carefully).

c)    Sly Eye Corner Guy
Look out of the corner of your eyes.  You can learn to use your eyes and not your head when you are looking.  If you pay attention to her, she probably does this a lot more than you realize.

d)    Let Her Lead
If you position her slightly AHEAD of you, she’s not going to catch you… but you’ve got a good view of her, or someone else…

Option 3: The Reversal Approach

Learn how to use these types of situations to your advantage.  Getting busted looking at other women isn’t always a bad thing.  As a matter of fact, in the hands of a guy who knows what he’s doing, it can seriously boost your game and speed up attraction…  But you have to know how to handle the situation right… There’s some great information out there on how to be the kind of guy that can turn a situation like this into an advantage…  check it out and study up!

Most importantly, stop worrying about getting busted.  We’re all human, we all are fascinated by attractive people, and the best way to show you’re cool and together is to not let it be a big deal, either when you’re busted, or if you start busting her.  It’s natural to look, and even to be a bit jealous.  Now get out there and have fun.

(you can put your left hand down now).


One Comment

  • Jonathan says:

    As hunters, wouldn’t men need peripheral vision to watch out for predators like lions and tigers while they are hunting prey? They are alone, without women to watch out for them, are they not?
    Don’t men also need good hearing to hear what they don’t see? Like a lion and tiger behind them, they need to hear the grass.
    Weren’t men the ones that fought battles in the ancient past? Women have little time to fight battles, as they have to take care of kids.
    Women need peripheral vision to watch the kids at the same time as gathering fruit or cooking. They don’t need vision longer than cats or dogs, who have shorter vision than humans.
    men take more risks. In the modern world, men with poor peripheral vision are selected against by being hit by a car crossing the road. Therefore, they have fewer offspring. Men with good peripheral vision survive crossing the road and have more children and therefore pass on more genes. Right?
    But enough of that. Do women or men have more rods near the center of the fovea? Do wometrash this comment, I wish to know why.

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