10 Things You Need To Know When Dating An Independent Woman

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There’s a new woman in your life. And you think she’s amazing. But she’s very different to a lot of the women you’ve dated in the past – she’s fiercely independent.

Or maybe you’ve dated another woman with a similarly independent nature before, but it didn’t work out because you found her independent ways to be a little overwhelming or didn’t know how to deal with them. Or maybe your behavior toward her made her feel a little trapped and she ran for the hills. Maybe you got jealous, felt like she was neglecting you, or tried to hold her back.

Whether this is totally new territory for you or you just don’t want to make the same mistakes again, you’re in need of some advice.

She’s an independent, strong woman and, as cliché as it might sound, she really doesn’t need a man in her life. She might well want one, but she doesn’t need one.

You’re bewitched by her, but find her more than a little baffling. You’re not sure how to approach this relationship in a way that will make both of you feel comfortable and give you both what you need.

But you know that it’s worth it, because if you can make it work with her, it could be a relationship you’ll never forget.

You’ve come to the right place. Here are some tips for dating an independent woman that will help you sustain the relationship.

10 Tips For Dating An Independent Woman

1. Expect honesty – and be honest.

An independent woman will be honest about when she needs you and when she doesn’t. She’ll let you know when she needs your support with something and when she’s better off doing something on her own.

She won’t be shy about being honest with you when she just needs space, and that’s no reflection on her feelings for you, so don’t take it personally. Sometimes she will just need to be alone, and that’s okay. Some people need their own space to recharge their batteries.

If she tells you something, don’t look for the hidden meaning in it – take her at her word. She’s all about honesty and prefers to be direct with what she says.

She definitely has no interest in playing games and she doesn’t thrive on drama. She’s not one to waste her time and would rather just get to the point.

She won’t think you’re coming on too strong if you text her back quickly or are honest about your feelings – she’ll appreciate that you’re being open with her.

So, be upfront about your feelings and communicate your needs to her from day one. Make sure you both know exactly where you stand.

2. Know how to compromise.

There should be compromise in every relationship, but if you’re dating an independent woman, you’ll have to accept that you might be compromising more than you’d expect.

Of course, every relationship has to be a two way street, and you can’t be the one compromising all the time. That’s just not healthy.

But she may well have a stubborn streak in her that means you have to be willing to look for solutions that suit you both.

If you aren’t willing to search for the middle ground between your two points of view, or let her get her own way sometimes, then the relationship probably won’t get very far.

3. Enjoy the freedom.

An independent woman wants an independent man. She wants you to have your own life and interests. She definitely doesn’t want your universe to revolve around her.

So embrace that. So many relationships can be limiting and mean both partners make more sacrifices than they should, so enjoy the fact that you’ve come across someone who wants you to spread your wings and soar.

Find activities that you can do as a couple, but make sure you’ve got your own stuff going on too. Be open to developing new hobbies and interests, and just get out there and live your own life.

Spend time with your family and friends. Make plans that involve her and never make her feel excluded from your life, but also make sure you spend quality time with the most important people in your life without her around.

And give her the space to do exactly the same. Make it clear that you want to get to know her family and friends, but respect that she needs some one-on-one time with them too.

4. Work on your own self-esteem.

If you struggle with your confidence or self-esteem then you’ll struggle to be in a relationship with an independent woman.

If you’ve got low self-esteem, it’ll be easy to see her desire for independence as a sign that you’re doing something wrong, even when it’s not. And that could topple the relationship that you’ve been building.

If you’re not confident in yourself then you probably won’t be confident in her love for you, and that might lead you to mistrust her. And suspicion or a lack of trust is something that can destroy any relationship, but especially one with an independent woman.

5. Beware of the green-eyed monster.

If you’re a naturally jealous person, then be wary of getting into a relationship with an independent woman.

She’s not going to change the way she behaves to appease your jealous nature, and nor should she have to.

She probably has lots of friends from all walks of life, both male and female. You have to trust that that’s exactly what they are: friends.

You’re the one she’s chosen to be with, and that has to be enough for you. You shouldn’t need proof or be checking up on her.

Remember: the only person your jealousy is going to damage is you.

Jealousy will eat away at the foundations of your relationship until it crumbles, and you lose a chance at something extraordinary.

6. Make sure she treats you with respect.

Being independent is great, but it isn’t an excuse to treat your partner poorly or not respect their emotional needs. Just because she’s independent, that doesn’t mean she’s got an excuse to neglect you or not be there for you where you need her.

For example, it doesn’t mean it’s okay for her to totally abandon you and ignore you at a party.  The two of you shouldn’t be joined at the hip. You should both be happy having your separate conversations. But you’re still there together, and should acknowledge each other, check in with each other, and show each other basic courtesy.  

Relationships are about two people both giving and taking. If you feel like you’re giving and giving and getting nothing back, then you might have a problem.

7. Be realistic with yourself.

If you find yourself struggling to date a woman like her and, try as you might, you just can’t adapt to her, then be honest with yourself about whether the relationship has a future.

Perhaps a relationship like this just isn’t right for you, and that’s okay. Don’t try to force it. It’s just important to recognize that, accept that you’re not going to change her, and know when to move on to pastures new.

8. Let her know you love her just the way she is.

Just because she’s independent doesn’t mean she’s immune to insecurities and doesn’t need reassurance and love.

Let her know that you love her just as she is and that you’ll be there for her when she needs you, come what may.

Be her rock, her cheerleader, and her shoulder to cry on when things go wrong, and she’ll do exactly the same for you.

9. Never try to clip her wings.

The worst thing you can do when dating an independent woman is try to change her or hold her back. Opportunities will present themselves in her professional and personal life and she’ll want to take them, and so she should.

She should take your needs and feelings into consideration, of course. Having respect for your partner in situations like these is what relationships are all about.

But don’t let your insecurities or fears hold her back, as she’ll only resent you for it. Don’t ask her not to follow her dreams for your sake. Let her make her own decisions.

That might make things complicated between you at times, but if it’s meant to be then the two of you will work it out.

Support her ambitions and let her spread her wings, and she’ll support yours in return.

10. Be romantic.

Some men are nervous of being too romantic with an independent woman, as they worry she’ll think they’re coming on too strong. But don’t be shy. Romance her all you like. She still needs reassurance that you care about her and find her attractive. 

Be confident in your displays of affection toward her and honest about the way you feel.

Use small gestures to let her know you care. Take her on imaginative dates. Go on adventures together. Be affectionate. Celebrate her successes and tell her how amazing she is.

Show her just how much you care.

Still not sure how to have a successful relationship with an independent woman? There will be challenges that you haven’t faced before and feelings you haven’t felt. It pays to have someone else to talk to to get the most out of your relationship – someone who can give you good advice on how to deal with the situations that will arise. So why not chat online to one of the experts from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out. Simply click here to chat.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is it hard to date an independent woman?

All relationships have their challenges, but dating an independent woman can be easier in some respects. For one, you won’t have to sacrifice so much of your current life to be with her. You can maintain your hobbies, see your friends, and still be a part of a great relationship.

She’s not going to get upset when you want to go away for a weekend with your friends or that you spend your money the way you want to spend it – because she’ll probably do the same.

The main reason why you might find such a relationship hard is because you’re not used to it. Your past relationships might have involved a lot more ‘us time’ and that’s okay for a lot of people. But to suddenly be with a woman who spends as much time away from you as she does with you can challenge your view of what it means to be in a relationship with someone.

Don’t go into this relationship with any expectations of how it might be. Just take it for what it is and see how you feel about the situation. It might be right for you, but it might not be. Time will tell.

How do you make an independent woman fall in love with you?

No one wants to feel like they have to change who they are for the sake of a relationship, and this is never truer than for an independent woman. Whilst you cannot make someone fall in love with you, if an independent woman is going to love you, she’ll need to see that you accept her for who she is and accept her independence as something that is sacred to her.

You’ll need to be easy going, flexible, and someone whom she feels adds something to her life rather than someone who will restrict her life.

What if I want to see her more than she wants to see me?

If your need for time spent together as a couple is greater than hers, you might have to accept that this is not the right relationship for you.

On the other hand, if you have only recently started seeing each other, you should wait a while before making any decisions – she might just prefer to slowly increase the amount of time you spend together so as not to disrupt her existing plans and schedule too much. She might be waiting to see how well things go before dedicating more time to the relationship.

In the long run, a key component of compatibility is wishing to spend a similar amount of time together. If it doesn’t seem like this will ever be the case, cut your losses and find someone who is better matched in this regards. You’ll never feel happy if you don’t see her as much as you would like – you’ll feel neglected and resentful.

How can I get her to spend more time with me?

Whilst you should never pressurize her into spending more time with you, there are ways you can make it happen. The key is to realize that many independent women are also highly driven and enjoy a challenge.

One way to see her more often is to suggest that you both take on a physically or mentally demanding hobby or project. She’ll likely jump at the chance to push herself, and the fact that it involves you will be an added bonus.

This could mean starting your own side-business together, or you might like to learn rock climbing as a couple.

Or it might be that you suggest taking a big adventure together, like driving from coast to coast in an old campervan, sleeping under the stars.

Whatever it is, you have to appeal to her sense of being a capable individual who doesn’t rely on anyone to get by in life.

How do I find my role in this relationship?

In a more standard relationship, your role as a partner is a lot clearer. You become one half of a couple that is likely to do a lot of things together and you will probably form a really close friendship as part of your relationship.

Whilst you can still be great friends with an independent woman, you won’t fill as big of a space in her social life and this can mean you have to find a new way to be a partner.

You have to accept that your role is not to make her happy because she already has things in her life for that. You will be one of those things, but unlike in many relationships, her happiness is something she will take responsibility for.

You have to remember that it is better to feel wanted than to feel needed. Having a girlfriend who needs you isn’t always a good sign that she wants you – she could be using you or simply like the attention you give her. Feeling wanted for who you are and what you bring to the partnership is a far better feeling.

It’s also important not to tie your sense of self-worth to being needed by this woman. You have to be assured in yourself and realize the worth you have as a person and not just as a partner. Learn to occupy yourself when she is not around so that you have other meaningful things going on in your life and other relationships that you value.

But also ensure that she knows how you like to be shown love so that when you are together, you get the most out of it – and vice versa, ask her how she likes to be shown love.

Do independent women ever want to settle down?

It might seem as though settling down would not be on the cards for a woman who prides herself in being independent. But it all comes down to how you define settling down – it doesn’t have to mean becoming reliant on each other for your emotional, practical, and financial needs.

It is quite possible to move in together, get married, and even have a family whilst still retaining a level of independence. It might look a little different to most marriages and families, but it can work out just as happily.

Chances are, though, that if an independent woman wants to settle down, it will come at a later stage in her life than many other women. And not all women will want to have children even if they do end up getting married.

Again, you have to ask yourself what you see in your future and when you’d like the major events to happen. Though it’s not first date conversation material, you can be pretty blunt with an independent woman and ask her what she thinks of marriage or kids and she will give you an honest answer. Then it’s up to you both to work out whether the relationship makes sense in the long run.

Can independence be taken too far?

There are varying levels of independence, and some women might take it to an extreme whereby they simply don’t place enough value on a relationship or partner for things to ever work out.

They might view a relationship as something akin to a service they can call upon when they feel the need for that particular type of company. They may even use their partner for sex because it’s convenient for them.

You can tell the difference by the way they treat you and how much connection they are willing to build with you. If they seem aloof when you’re together or avoid showing any form of vulnerability, they might not be as into you as you’d like.

Similarly, if you don’t really know each other all that well despite being a so-called ‘item’ for a number of months, you have to ask yourself why this is. Even if you don’t spend a huge amount of time together, you should still be able to let your guards down when you do and to forge a close bond of sorts.

If this woman often bails on plans at the last minute to do something else, that should tell you what sort of priority you are in her life. Most independent women won’t do this because they still value commitment.

Could you use some personal advice on how to handle an independent woman? Click here to chat to a relationship expert now.

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About Author

Katie is a writer and translator with a focus on travel, self-care and sustainability. She's based between a cave house in Granada, Spain, and the coast of beautiful Cornwall, England. She spends her free time hiking, exploring, eating vegan tapas and volunteering for a local dog shelter.