Who is More Romantic, Women or Men? (And a Giveaway!)

Please welcome my fellow Californian, Lynne Marshall, who writes contemporary and Medical Romance for Harlequin, Mills & Boon and The Wild Rose Press. The first book in her Grady family trilogy, Courting His Favorite Nurse, is a March 2012 Harlequin Special Edition release. Also coming in March in e-book only is, An Indiscretion, a contemporary romance with strong medical elements, from The Wild Rose Press. Lynne loves visitors at her website, and you can contact her here: www.lynnemarshall.com

Take it away, Lynne!

One month ago was Valentine’s Day which spotlights a special day of romance. If we base money spent on gifts as a parameter for being romantic, according to an article in Great Britain, men out spend women >2:1 on this national sweethearts day!

In honor of the special day, I listened to a talk show asking the BIG question – Who is more romantic, men or women?  My knee jerk response was – women, silly radio talk host. But as the hour progressed, my mind changed. Caller after caller – both men and women – recited reasons for why men were more romantic. Even though anecdotal in nature, it got me to thinking about my own experiences with the mucho, macho-ier sex. Men!

Are Men More Romantic?

Thinking back over a few of the boyfriends I had before I got married, I’d have to disagree with that talk show host. However, focusing on my husband, I’d say, even though I’m the romance writer in the family – he’s the romantic in our home. He’s the one who lights the candles around our house, especially at dinner time. Once he planned a special dinner, blindfolded me so I wouldn’t figure out where we were driving, and took me to a new restaurant in the next town that I’d mentioned I wanted to visit. He brings flowers for no reason other than they’re beautiful and would look nice on our table. He plans romantic getaways just because. Did I mention we’ve been married almost thirty years?

Psychology Today suggests that it isn’t fair when we measure the art of romance for men on women’s terms. Women may like to keep mementos, but “men keep their love in their heart forever!” Find the interesting survey results here.

On the blog Made Man, Joe Donatelli says: “Men drive the romance because romance leads to two important things – having sex and not getting yelled at.” Read more here.

Okay, this doesn’t exactly sound romantic, but it does produce results, right?  Since men tend to be task oriented, this does make sense.  Also in this blog, the female chemist Donatelli interviews states that men fall in love faster than women.  She also says that men have more intimate conversations with women than women do with men, because men have fewer male friends to have intimate conversations with.

Have you ever noticed how men refer to their wives as their best friends (which is sweet and romantic) more often than women do?  My thought on that is because women have more female friends than men have male friends. What’s up with that?

Romantic Fiction Heroes

In my current book COURTING HIS FAVORITE NURSE my hero, Jack Lightfoot, is definitely a romantic guy who goes out of his way to get the heroine, Anne, to finally see the light.

Here’s the book blurb:

Anne Grady knew better than anyone that love was complicated. When she’d left her hometown, she thought she was leaving her past heartbreak behind for good, as well. But practically the moment she returned to care for her injured parents, she stumbled headlong into their confidant—her first love, Jack Lightfoot.

Jack had been unable to deny his feelings for Annie when he was a teenager dating her best friend, and he certainly couldn’t muffle the spark twisting between them now—even if memories of the past kept threatening to push them apart. This time Jack wasn’t going to let history repeat itself—he was going to show Annie that the two of them were meant to be much more than best friends!

Here’s my shout out question: Who is more romantic you or your significant other?  Care to share why?

 One random commenter will win a copy of Courting His Favorite Nurse – either print or e-book – winner’s choice.

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51 Responses to Who is More Romantic, Women or Men? (And a Giveaway!)

  1. Minna says:

    I don’t have a significant other, so I can’t really answer that.

    • Hi Minna
      How about any observations regarding your parents or with friends and their significant others? Thinking back, my dad was a pretty romantic guy in regards to my mother. I never noticed that much, or it didn’t register as a kid though.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      P.S. What are you and I doing up so early (or late?) 🙂

      • Minna says:

        I can’t say that either one of my parents would have been particularly romantic. They were both no-nonsense farmers.
        What I’m doing up early -well, not so early anymore? Homework! Lots of homework I need to get done by friday. This is how I feel right now:

      • Minna – now I understand why you don’t currently have a significant other. You’re doing something terrific for yourself – going to school and doing homework. Good for you! Loved the picture, BTW. 🙂

      • Minna says:

        Well, it’s university, to be exact. I had a nasty flu for a couple of weeks and that’s why I’m drowning in homework just now. If I can only manage to survive until friday…

  2. christieridgway says:

    My husband is definitely more romantic that me. He brings me flowers every Friday. He’s the one who thinks up romantic dinner opportunities. However, I write great mushy cards that he saves. To each his strength.

    • Hi Christie!
      See, our husbands sound similar. Good for you for writing those mushy cards. That is something I need to get better at. I even have trouble picking out cards that go too overboard. I want him to know I love him and am grateful for everything he’s done for me, but some of the cards sound like I wouldn’t be able to breathe without him. I’m too practical for that, I guess..

  3. Charlene says:

    Oh, being a romantic at heart, I think I’m more romantic, but my hubby does do some incredible things for me. Once, he made me a video clip with my kids (like a commercial) and inserted it into my daytime soap opera. It was adorable. He’s made me photo books and a video played to music about our life, this was all before it was so easy to do..years ago. But overall, I think my spirit is more romantic…I find romance in both small and big gestures. To me, I find things like taking a spontaneous trip, without any planning as romantic. Overall, IMHO women have more romantic feelings, but men do come thru sometimes too

    • Hi Charlene!
      So glad you came by. I love those romantic gestures from your husband. Very precious. I love spontaneous trips, too, but my husband is usually the one to plan them!

      Thank you for reading and commenting.

  4. Nan says:

    Hi Lynn, great post! We’re both pretty romantic–I’m lucky to have one of those sensitive engineer types, who loves music and candles and making out on the sofa. Even after almost 39 years, we’re still kinda sappy about each other. My kid is pretty romantic too, but how could he help but be with a romance writer for a mom and very romantic dad?

    • Nan! I love hearing this. I wish I were more romantic, because my husband would love that making out on the sofa bit!

      Good to know the romance rubs off on kids, too. I’m seriously hoping my son is thoughtful and romantic in his relationships. I was really sorry to hear my daughter and SIL were too busy to celebrate Valentine’s Day. What? It didn’t jive with their schedules (and you really can’t always schedule in romance, can you?) Anyway – they assured me they had a great weekend after Valentine’s Day, and that’s the bottom line – to enjoy each other, isn’t it?
      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  5. kris says:

    It’s a tie! Neither one of us is romantic at all!!

    • LOL, Kris! You sound perfectly suited for each other. I bet you do romantic things and don’t even know about it – like pick up each other’s socks, or share your sandwich. LOL.
      I love your candid answer. 🙂

  6. Leanne says:

    Lynne, congrats on your Special Edition! It sounds GREAT!!!:) Loved your blog. I would have to say that I think my husband is more romantic than I am. Looks like the hubbies may be ahead in this poll!:)

    • Hi Leanne!
      Thanks so much regarding the Special Edition. It was a thrill to break into that line.

      See – the data does seem to be leaning toward the guys at this point. Hopefully, we’ll have a lot of input today. 🙂
      Thanks for letting me guest at your beautiful blog – fun!

  7. robenagrant says:

    This made me smile because I recalled a post about the Bowerbird. The male makes an amazing bower nest for his bride to be, and he favors anything blue, bits of glass, bottle caps, paper, and he haords them and decorates the bower. Now that’s romantic. : )

    • Hi Robena – How absolutely sweet. Sheesh, even in nauture the guys seem to be winning all the romance brownie points.

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting. I thought those articles were really interesting.

  8. robenagrant says:

    well..overlook the spelling of hoards.

  9. Roz Lee says:

    My DH doesn’t have a clue what romance is, but he’s a great dad, and a provider, and he’s always supported me in anything I wanted to do, including writing. Turns out he’s a darn good content editor! LOL I keep hoping he’ll figure out the romance thing, but I’ve been waiting over 30 years and it hasn’t happened yet, so I’ll keep focusing on his other attributes.

  10. michelehauf says:

    Yes, I totally believe men can be more romantic than women. My hubby has his romantic moments. More so than I do. He still remembers to bring flowers home on occasion after 20+ yrs of marriage, and he gets all excited when he finds a pretty rock he knows will make me happy (that’s like a stone, not one of those sparkly rocks). 😉

    • Hi Michele – Wow – all these wonderful authors are at this blog – gushing.

      I agree, sweet little things like finding you a pretty rock mean so much in any relationship. The gestures don’t have to big and splashy – just thoughtful. That’s true romance.

  11. At my house, the romantic is my husband. He gets irritated by it, too – saying that for a romance writer, I’m the most unromantic woman he knows, lol!

    I think men seem more romantic because they feel so deeply, and they don’t wear their hearts on their sleeves. So when they do something romantic it catches us off guard and makes us fall for them all over again. We don’t expect it; therefore it feels they are the winners in the more romantic contest.
    Great question, Lynne!

    • Hi Christine!
      You’re husband and my husband have a lot in common on the romantic front. I’m afraid I let my poor hubby down in that regard.

      Hey – do you think it’s because we write all of our romance out in our books? I’ve got to remember to keep some leftovers for me and my house. 🙂

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  12. loisgreiman says:

    Lynne, thanks for joining us. Excellent post. My husband is far and away more romantic than I am so I just assume all men are more romantic. Shrug.

    • Hi Lois!
      wow – another favorite author – more gushing.

      So isn’t this interesting about so many romance authors coming forward admitting their spouses are the more romantic of the two. I think we need to give those sweeties more credit!

      Shrugging along with you.

  13. Dee J. says:

    Hi Lynne,

    My husband is definitely more romantic than I am. I tell myself it’s because I do all the grunt work around the house so I’m too tired to be romantic. LOL. (We also joke that he was a female in a past life and I was a guy…one of the many reasons we get along so well. Haha.)

    • Hi Dee J!
      The numbers are definitely adding up on the masculine side of things around here.

      Funny about you two switching roles in past lives. But there’s nothing like a tender-hearted man, is there?

      Thanks for commenting!

  14. Maria says:

    Hmm, I like Joe Donatelli’s explanation of it which does make sense with the whole task/goal driven male thing. I totally believe that men fall in love faster than women do and of course I can think of at least 2 exceptions to that statement, but overall, I think women tend to be more practical, I guess, about relationships. Chivalry and all of that jazz was invented by men and not women. I am sure that women appreciated the poetry and the love from afar but when it came down to choosing a husband they were going with the one who had the ability to protect and provide for the offspring.

    I think this is why women are always moved by a man who holds a baby, changes diapers, feeds the kids, and protects them. For us, that is a strong man, one who nurtures and isn’t threatened by doing so.

    Of course, this is just from my own observations of others. I, like Minna, am not in a long term relationship, but in observing the men around me it always seems as if they make far more romantic gestures than the women do. I’ve always thought it interesting that the man was supposed to plan Valentine’s Day activities or wedding anniversary things. Why don’t the wives? Strange. On the other hand, the two cats who own me do NOTHING romantic.

    • Maria! Wonderfully put. I totally agree with everything you’ve said, especially about the beauty of seeing a man hold an infant. So very sexy! (Notice I said sexy instead of romantic? Man, I’m really not romantic in the slightest,am I?)

      Darlin’ I’m glad you’ve got your head straight – those cats won’t ever put themselves out or come through for you.

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  15. Your book sounds wonderful, Lynne. And your post is certainly intriguing. I think my dh is far more romantic than me, but in terms of the book about love languages, he expresses it in doing things for me, unasked. He spends so much time detailing my SUV to make it look like new, he’ll clean the barn for me, does so much around the house. It sounds like a lot of the significant others noted here are also the more romantic of the pair!

    • Hi Roxanne! (more gushing)
      Thank you so much.

      I do see a definite pattern with the responses here. These guys do an awful lot of sweet things for us. I admit to being considerate in many ways, too. Maybe my DH thinks that is romantic?

      Thanks so much for letting me be a guest at this great blog.

  16. LauraSheehan says:

    I think it most definitely depends on the person. I know plenty of romantic guys and gals, and plenty of terribly UNromantic guys and gals. My husband luckily falls into the former category! He’s so romantic I really have to step up my game. We’ve been together for 13 years and he continues to open doors for me (and any others), gives me elaborately planned gift experiences (scavenger hunts, clues, sentimental gifts, trips to fun places, bucket-list experiences, etc), and constantly calls me sweet names and loves to cuddle. My dad, on the other hand, isn’t the most romantic guy on the planet, but when he does do romantic things, they are all the more special.

    • Hi Laura!
      You’re right, anecdotal info doesn’t exactly qualify for scientific evidence.It takes all kinds to make the world go around. I’m glad to see a large number of ladies here with romantic fellas at home, though. The little things in life matter the most, and that gesture of opening a door or making sure you’re comfortable etc. means so much, doesn’t it?

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      • LauraSheehan says:

        I bet you romance readers have more romantic lives than the average population. I’m basing this theory on the idea that people who are fans of romance will seek it out in their real-life relationships, as well as their fiction choices. Also, I know several women who don’t like romance because it’s too “unrealistic.” I think these women are either a) not sentimental, and therefore won’t seek it out in a mate, or 2) sadly unlucky in love. They may WANT romance, but haven’t found it, and romance novels might make them depressed. Anyway, just a random thought!

      • Very good observations, Laura. But a few of us romance authors here admitted to being less than romantic in our own lives. LOL. However, we are all very appreciative or our spouse or significant other being romantic.

        One reader told me she was hesitant to share one of my books with her friend because her friend wasn’t in a relationship and she worried it would make her sad. I could see where a woman might not want to read about what she doesn’t have or feel she has a chance at having. However, I also know of many widowed or single and devoted Harlequin readers. So, once again, I guess it is totally individual how one reacts.

  17. Anne Kemp says:

    I love this post! I consider myself a romantic, but sometimes my practicality gets in the way. I’ve dated men that are for sure waaaay more romantic than I ever thought about!! LOL


    • Hi Anne!
      I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. I think you hit the nail on the head that women are often very practical and perhaps that strangles out the romantic in us. That seems to be the general consensus here today, anyway.

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  18. Hands down, my husband is more romantic than I am. It wasn’t always that way. Over the years he’s learned he can melt my heart when I’m feeling down by cutting a rose from our garden and presenting it to me in a wine glass or hitting up friends to help us move outrageously heavy furniture across the room because I ‘think it will look better over there’…and then it doesn’t and they have to move it back! The romance part of that scenario comes in when he tells his friends I’m worth it.

    When I met him, he was a diamond in the rough and now – he’s just a true gem!

    • Kathy – you made me choke up a bit there. Really. That is so sweet and romantic. Any guy who moves heavy furniture back and forth, then tells you you’re worth it – well – he is, as you say, a gem.

      Again, the key is to see that diamond in the rough (the practical side of many women) and to help it along until the true romantic emerges.

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting today.

  19. Shannon says:

    I’m single at the moment, but in the past the man has usually been more romantic. I like romance, but I’m just too awkward to start LOL Maybe I should follow the lead of some of the books I read.

    • Hi Shannon – I understand what you mean about risking a romantic gesture to only have it fall flat. It’s just as hard for the guy, though. 🙂 Let us know if any of your romance book techniques pay off, okay?

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  20. Laney4 says:

    I’m guessing that men are more romantic in general. I don’t consider my husband nor I romantic in the slightest. However, after 30+ years now, we DO recognize the twinkles in each other’s eyes, we do hold hands when walking or driving (depending on the traffic during long-distance drives), and we do take advantage of opportunities when the kids are out of the house! I’m sure I was referring to going out to restaurants when the kids are out (grin)!

  21. Well – it’s getting late and I have put names in a basket and come up with Kris as the winner of Courting His Favorite Nurse – either print or e-book – your choice.

    Kris – please contact me via my website – see top of this blog, and we can make arrangements for getting the book to you.

    Thanks so much everyone for all of the fun and observant comments today. Also – thank you Christie Ridgway for letting me be a guest at your wonderful group blog today. I had a great time!

  22. My boyfriend is miles and miles more thoughtful and romantic than I am. I think it is because he is more selfless and I have more to learn in life about that. I also make a concerted effort to special things for him but it doesn’t come as naturally to me as it does him. With enough practice and willingness, maybe it will be natural to me some day as well.

    • Wildgeesethatfly – this is very perceptive of you about yourself, and I think you will definitely develop that more selfless, romantic side soon because of your awareness of that. 🙂
      Thanks for reading the blog!

  23. Desere Steenberg says:

    I am so sorry I am late again ! Great post Lynne I adore the blog tour ! Please do not enter me for the contest I have already won a copy of the book !


  24. Desere – it is always great to see you on the cyber road!

  25. I am. And I have no idea why!

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