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Smart men, how do you deal with your girlfriend/wife being less intelligent than you?

I saw this on r/askwomen and was really surprised, so I am wondering what reactions I’m gonna get here.

View Reddit by Ecthrois_SerphentView Source


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  1. I got better reasoning skill, logic, memory, general knowledge than her. She has better emotional intelligence and charisma. I take the lead when we need to deal with complicated stuff, finance, etc. She takes the lead in social situation. It is a win-win.

    But she is not dumb. Not at all. We have deep and serious talks quite often. We just have different strengths and weaknesses.

  2. I forget a lot which she doesn’t and she has a ton of compassion I lack. I always think you should choose a partner who addresses the weaknesses you have and that’s what she does.

  3. Heh. I’m not super smart or anything, but my ex-wife was dumb as a brick. I would cringe when she would speak.

    During our divorce proceedings, she once started talking and randomly went on a racist rant about Asians . Sigh.

    As dumb as she is, who is the idiot that married her?

  4. I intentionally sought out intelligent women. My wife earned her BS in Physics. She’s a mid-level manager at a medical supply manufacturer. One of my exes is a pharmacist. Another works at a pharmaceutical packaging and dispensing wholesaler.

    The intelligence gap has been much smaller in my romantic relationships than I encounter with most people.

  5. Sorry reverse gender but I do have experience of this..

    My boyfriend is not as smart as me. It’s not an insult, he says it all the time. He is athletic, successful, kind, compassionate and definitely more emotionally intelligent than me, but he is slow as hell with learning new things and very much less knowledgeable than I am. It works okay. He finds smart attractive, I find athletic and stable-minded attractive – maybe we enjoy and seek things that we admire but don’t fully embody.

    I have met a lot of very smart men in life, many also good-looking, but the spark has just never happened. I dont know if I am attracted to pure intellect in men. I have plenty of pure intellect in my life working in a very specialised academic field. I don’t need to come home to that or go to bed with that! As long as he is not actually an idiot (he’s not).

  6. I have better IQ, logic and verbal reasoning, short-term drive

    She has higher EQ, common sense, psychological support, empathy, and long-term drive.

    She’s a bit bossy and has a better job than I, so she isn’t dumb, but just not the same intelligence.

    It’s like Yin & Yang complementarity.

    She starts having memory problem (very first signs, normal in busy life), but I’m here to support her (don’t remind her losses, patience).

  7. Your question reminds me of that House M.D. episode where a r/iamverysmart dude was trying to dumb himself down for his girlfriend by abusing cough syrup. That was the most idiotic subplot on that show.

  8. She isn’t. Her talents run differently than mine. We work things differently. I read faster, she understands Shakespeare better. I have a very broad taste in music, she plays clarinet, oboe, piano, is currently learning ASL, Japanese and helping the kids learn Spanish. I know English and bad English. I can assemble a computer from a stack of components. My wife reassembles broken hearts.

    I can’t say that one knows more than the other, just different.

  9. I’ve never really cared, as long as they’re bright they don’t have to be mensa level. It wasn’t ever an issue. I’ve never dated any dummies, some of them were better at some stuff than i was but it always came down more to motivation than anything. What i can’t stand is a victim mentality and low energy/ambition.

  10. My wife is definitely intelligent in many ways that I’m not. She has a masters and is more emotionally intelligent, but there are gaps. For example if we get sushi she constantly asks if the shrimp tempura roll is cooked. Like the first time fine I get it, but we’ve had sushi for dinner dozens of times at this point. Pretty much anything financial or tax related shes pretty ignorant about. I’m hardly a subject matter expert but I’ve at least taken the time to educate myself on the basics.

    I don’t mind shouldering the burden for some of this stuff (retirement, financial planning, anything house/mortgage related) because I want to be on top of it to make sure nothing goes wrong but what really sucks is that she doesn’t pay attention to her money (which is now our money) as closely as she needs to. She once went months without paying any income tax. She often doesn’t know how much her credit card bill is until she goes to pay it.

    I don’t like having to “babysit” her finances like this but I have to to avoid anymore “surprises”.

    Other than that it doesn’t affect our relationship.

  11. Intelligence is a subjective thing really. Just because someone has a degree in physics or engineering doesn’t really make them smart. It depends on how we look at what intelligence is. Some of the “dumb” people in the world are also the most popular, and can become quite wealthy because of it

  12. Never had any issues unless said person is -really- dumb. Then even its only a problem if they themselves believe they are intelligent.

    Arguing with a person who cant comprehend complex ideas and being told you are wrong is really exhausting. Had a girl once who would argue stuff with everyone at parties or gatherings and it quickly became apparent we werent getting invited anywhere anymore. I saw all the looks of confusion and bafflement, it was clear why.


    I mean, we once had an argument about windmills and how they make everything windier.

    It lasted about an hour, trying to convince her they use natural wind to spin.

    Bottom line, I dont care in the slightest about her intelligence if there is a real emotional component. Just have to know when you arent up to snuff and own it/work on it.

  13. I don’t think I’d let someone be a partner if there’s a significant difference. The constant re-explaining of everything would be tiring, annoying and drain the energy I would have put in caring.

  14. I don’t and it’s becoming a very serious issue in our relationship. We have three children and have been together almost 8 years. The older we both get, along with the children the more complex our issues become. I feel like this has been amplified by the issues caused by the pandemic.

  15. I’m pretty smart (I know, iamverysmart, whatever), but this question is orthogonal to what makes me happy about relationships. I don’t need her to be as smart or smarter than me. I need her to be smart enough to make good decisions, have good conversations, follow lines of thought that are presented to her, and think critically. It’s more of a “you have to be this smart to ride,” rather than at my level per se.

  16. Dont know vs refuse to know

    Like if you warn her about pyramid scheme and she refuses to understand then time to break up. Some degree of ignorance can ruin family (how she raises your child, getting into debt).

  17. I don’t care if someone doesn’t know as much “stuff” as I do. In my sphere I know a lot but in the grand scope what I think I know amounts to less than nothing. Intelligence manifests in many different manners anyway. What actually matters to me is that someone has the capacity to think and reason and enough empathy and curiosity to want to understand the things they don’t. Interestingly, my friends and associates run the intellectual gamut from far outclassing me to seemingly lacking any critical thinking ability whatsoever. People are different and I appreciate that to an extent. I’ve had flings with people with whom conversations were like talking to someone in middle school but I could never have a serious romantic relationship with that. I’m attracted to people who can express their experience, opinions, and perspectives with at least a modicum of decorum and who are also enthusiastic about growing from new experiences, opinions, and perspectives, even if they don’t share them. Creativity is a huge plus.

  18. I’ve left a few girls just because how dumb/immature they were. It was literally like talking to a brick wall sometimes, constantly had to repeat myself and explain things in very simple terms. I honestly can’t put up with it or have any tolerance for it. I’m a very introverted person as a result. I’m not saying this as a way to be like “women dumb, men smart” the majority of women I know and are great friends with are very smart, and they’re all married already. I just don’t know where to find a woman who isn’t a sensationalist or wants constant instant gratification at the cost of their image and my relationship with them.

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