Alpha Male Training

It’s like training me to pole dance, crack eggs, or kick around a hacky sack–frustrating for both the teacher and the student. Yet, I read and hear women want alpha males, so I persist.

In case you don’t know what an alpha male is, here’s what Wikipedia says:

In social animals, the alpha is the individual in the community with the highest rank. The alpha animals are given preference to be the first to eat and the first to mate; among some species they are the only animals in the pack allowed to mate. Other animals in the community are usually killed or ousted if they violate this rule. The status of the alpha is often achieved by means of superior physical prowess, though it can also be determined by social efforts and building alliances.

Basically, it’s a man who:

  • Knows what he wants and takes it when he pleases.
  • Is confident.
  • Doesn’t care what people think.
  • Takes chances.
  • Demands respect.
  • Is rugged and masculine.
  • Is a dominant leader.
  • Is driven.
  • Keeps himself fit.
  • Dresses fashionably.

Men in show business who play that role would include George Clooney, Charlie Sheen, David Duchovny, and Ashton Kutcher.

The alpha male is not:

  • Depressed.
  • A fan.
  • Overly emotional.
  • Passive.
  • A victim.
  • A team player.
  • Out to please anyone, unless it benefits his cause.
  • Afraid.
  • Lazy.
  • Sad and lonely.

Like most men, I probably fall between the two depending on my company, mood, and if I’m on bourbon number two or three. I become further confused and annoyed when I ask my date which type of man she prefers, and she lies saying she doesn’t want an alpha male. You all do. Admit it: He’s the douche who makes you dewy.

For example, I’m on date number two last night with a lovely specimen who hasn’t done anything to scare me off yet (like burp The Star-Spangled Banner). An alpha male probably would have sealed the deal by the end of that date. I didn’t even kiss her. I went in and she did a reflexive ten-degree turn, which resulted in a corner lip kiss. I suck. I hate myself, which is very un-alpha-ish of me.

The alpha male would have been grabbing her thigh under the table, kissing her earlobe when he hit the john, and told her how badly he wanted to rip her clothes off.

I spoke of polenta.

[Insert that thing we all do when we need to let off steam. I walk in the house after the date, make sure nobody is looking in the windows, and begin punching the air while delivering creative curses, such as “Fuck, shit, piss! I’m such a fucking pussy. Kiss her, numbnuts! Ugh. Fuckity fuck-knuckles.” Then, my cats stare at me and begin calling animal rescue services.]

If I asked her for a kiss that probably would have been the final date. I should have gone in and kissed her. When she turned her face, the alpha male would have grabbed her head, turned it back, and kissed her hard and deep with no apologies. Then, perhaps my night would have concluded with playful fondling instead of a good-bye wave.

Yes, I know: Take control and be the man. It’s not easy when you’re raised to be gentle with the finer sex. I’m a delta (as in “Dummy”) male right now and I need to snap out of it. Training continues.

About the author

Author of humorous essays about relationships and lifestyles.


  1. Hey Phil,

    I know what you’re talking about. They didn’t coin that phrase about nice guys for nothing.

    Men and women both respond to confidence, but faking it when you don’t necessarily have a lot of it at the time is easier said than done.

    I really hate the “monday morning quarterbacking” session that inevitably follows a date gone awry! would shoulda and coulda…sounds like me after many a college frat party.

  2. You’re so funny (shakes head and chuckles). I recently wrote a book about werewolves (strange I know, but work with me) and researched *a lot* into the whole alpha/animal dominance thing. There’s actually only four classes in a wolf pack – alphas, betas, subordinates, and omegas. You might not see yourself as an alpha, but you don’t sound like an omega either.

    You know who you remind me of (in a more socially adept way)? Leonard from The Big Bang Theory. He’s smart, funny, sweet, and cute, yet he’s not very confident. For whatever reason, he doesn’t see how awesome he is. It takes him forever to get together with Penny, his hot neighbor. But he does get with her. Leonard might not be an alpha, but he could be a beta.

    Some women actually don’t want alphas. Some women want betas while they get to be the dominant bad-ass person in the relationship. Betas are the wolves who are *almost* as bad-ass as alphas, except when they challenge alphas they lose. That’s the reason they’re betas. Still, betas are better than everyone else in the pack. And when an alpha is off duty, the beta takes charge. It’s not a bad place to be. ;-)

    1. What everyone fails to remember about Alphas (and this includes guys that THINK they are alphas) is that the main job of an alpha is to protect the pack or group. It doesn’t matter if you are talking wolves, primates or humans an Alpha is never a bully and he doesn’t do what he wants when he wants. He does what is in the best interest of the pack/group. A successful Alpha is actually laid back and calm but assertive and willing to stand between his pack and any threat. What women mean when they say they want an Alpha is that feeling of being looked after, protected, not very modern I know but it is an instinct that is hard to ignore. Also Alphas are always gentle attentive parents, all Alphas have plenty of time and patience for their young, without fail. Alphas don’t look for conflict and they are not self involved. Charlie Sheen is sooo not an Alpha, poser maybe but not an Alpha. David and Ashton don’t really fit the bill either. Clooney is the closest but he has no interest in family and what is a pack leader without a pack.

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