Why women should make the first move in online dating

Women of late have been "leaning in,"graduating college at higher rates than men and simply "running the world" (if Beyonce is any measure), but there's at least one forum in which they're not taking charge: online dating.

A recent OkCupid study found men are more likely to send the first message on the dating website than women. This trend was shared among women of all ages, who have sent a median of three to four first messages. Men, on the other hand, send a median of nine to 15 first messages, depending on their age.

    OkCupid Chief Product Officer Jimena Almendares said the company was surprised by the research project's results.

    "There was clearly a unique opportunity specifically for women on OkCupid when it came to messaging first," she said.

    Stacy Kaiser, "Live Happy" editor-at-large and licensed psychotherapist, said many women still hold onto old-fashioned dating traditions like relying on men to make the first move.

    "Fear and rejection are feelings that go along with that," Kaiser said.

    These findings contrast with the idea that young women are part of a hookup culture that has reached its apex with the advent of dating apps like Tinder. Granted, swiping right as a sign of approval to (hopefully) get a match doesn't take much heavy lifting. Sending the first message, on the other hand, seems to be perceived as men's work.

    A quick perusal of Twitter shows that while some women advocate for making the first move, others shy away from it.

    "Why do women have to make the first move? To a certain extent that's not the woman's job -- in terms of chivalry (which this generation lacks)" wrote one woman.

    "Ladies if you want a certain man go get them... Who cares if women aren't suppose to make the first move, go get what you want," another countered.