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I don't particularly pay attention to people until there's some reason to. I see hundreds of people every day. There has to be something to separate someone from all the rest of the people I see all the time, because otherwise I'll be occupied with my thoughts. There has to be some forum in which one can show me something I would find attractive. For instance, in college, speaking in class, or in a discussion section or study group, a club, etc. Something that provides an opportunity to reveal something about themselves which would pique my interest. I first noticed one woman who I ended up dating in a study group for the first exam of a philosophy class. Her interaction was what caught my interest. I can truthfully say that never has just seeing a person made me take any interest in them or want to talk to them. However, the more I see from them that interests me, the more attractive they become to me. The thing is what would provide an opportunity for someone to show something about themselves which would draw my attention from my thoughts in my head to her.

As far as what I find attractive...

Intelligence: Intelligence is a must. A relationship cannot work if there is a sizable gap in intelligence levels, because I'll end up bored or annoyed. I've encountered ditzy women and women utterly lacking in common sense, and both are turn offs. I'm not one of those guys who likes dumb women or is intimidated by intelligent women. Intelligence is attractive to me, and unintelligence is unattractive. She should have a college education, as since I have a college degree, I would prefer that she should have one as well. Sometimes I say things that go over some people's heads, and I don't want that in a partner. I've been made cognizant of my difference from most people my entire life, so I don't need to be further reminded of that with my own partner.

She should be intellectually curious and willing to discuss and debate. I like to discuss various subjects, and sometimes I'd like to have a sounding board, to discuss new things I think about, share things I've learned and explore new ideas with someone close to me. So if she's uninterested in having serious or deep discussions, then she's not for me. I'd like for her to bring new ideas and perspectives I haven't thought about before. I'd like for her to give me something new to think about. I get tired of people just saying, "That was deep," after I've said something. Are you saying you're shallow, then? Challenge me intellectually. Make me think.

A sense of humor and playfulness: When people get to know me, they find out that I have a good sense of humor, and any potential partner should have one as well. I'm prone to banter when I'm comfortable enough to start revealing facets of myself, and she should be able to give as well as she gets. If not, it's likely not going to work. I'm not serious all of the time.

Confidence: Confidence is attractive to me. Insecurity and lack of self-esteem is not. I'm not attracted to women whose self-esteem is contingent on whether they have a man, women who need a man to define them, women who find a relationship—no matter how bad—preferable to no relationship at all. For women like this, there wouldn't be anything special about me per se, just the fact that I'm breathing and have a Y chromosome and a penis. Not interested.

I've found that there are some women who have continually entered into bad relationships become overly docile when they come across someone they see as "a catch," and try to fit into her gender role and do everything she can think of to "hold onto" him, which isn't attractive to me. One woman kept asking me what I liked for every little thing, and it became annoying because she acted like she couldn't think for herself or possess an opinion of her own. It got to the point where I was like, what do you want to do? Every action, clothing choice, etc., does not have to be done with me in mind, to please me. Ugh. A Stepford significant other is not attractive to me.

I don't like when women say things because they think it's what you want to hear, or when they feign interest in something just because you like it when they have no interest in it themselves. I don't expect or require anyone to do anything they aren't interested in. I want a woman to be her own person, not what they think I like or am looking for in a woman. I have female friends who are trying to be what they think their men want in a woman instead of being themselves, and that is a surefire way to lose my interest. If someone doesn't want you for you, then why on earth would you want to be in a relationship with that person? Why would you act like someone you're not?

Maturity: She should be mature. I never liked immaturity when I was a kid, so I certainly don't like it now that I'm a grown man.

Reliability and dependability: One thing people who know me say about me is that I am reliable and that when I say something, it is as good as done. I would like the same assurance in my partner. It is not a good feeling to have everyone laud you for how reliable and dependable you are, but not be able to rely and depend on your partner. It causes me to become even more self-reliant, as if I am unable to depend on you, I will simply deal with my own problems myself, as I know that the one person I can count on is myself. She should be as considerate to me as I am of her. But I've found that if you do too much for some people, it could lead to them taking you for granted.

Loyalty/fidelity: This is a must. I'm a one-woman man, and she should be a one-man woman. Loyalty, however, does not mean "standing by your man no matter what, including when you know he's wrong." If I'm wrong, she should say so. It does me no favors to do otherwise. Yes-women are not attractive to me.

Honesty/trustworthiness: Relates to the above, but for me specifically, I have trust issues due to being raised in an environment in which I was not able to trust, one in which lies, deception and manipulation were a regular occurrence. That was my reality. As a result, I am slow to trust people. It can take a while to earn it, which is longer than many people care to wait. But once broken, it can never be recovered. If you are not honest with me or I can't trust you, then we have no future together. As a child, I had no choice. But as an adult, able to choose the people I let be around me, I can choose to eliminate any dishonest, untrustworthy people from my life.

That's probably enough, as it's already in "TL; DR" territory. But it's the non-physical that will attract me and make me interested in a woman. When women start off with the physical, I actually become disinterested. I've never understood why a woman would be interested in me after knowing nothing about me but my physical appearance, since as far as she knows, I'm a serial killer who lures women in and, after gaining their confidence, kill them (I'm not, BTW, but I'm just making a point). One time after talking to a woman on the phone for the first time, when she started talking about my body after the first 15-20 minutes, I lost interest. I want to know what a woman has to offer other than her body/physical appearance. If she has nothing else to offer, then she has nothing of interest for me. To each his or her own, and if that's what she's primarily interested in, then she should do her, but we're clearly not looking for the same thing.
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