A woman should expect to be treated like a woman - special, taken care of, respected. You BOTH should be honest and trust each other. You should never, ever hit each other, nor should you get into yelling fights. In a real, decent relationship you will learn to "fight" with respect, not yelling and pushing. You should both be free enough to spend time on things that interest you, but should enjoy doing lots of things together.
But Courty is right - everyone has their own expectations. Mostly it's finding someone that makes you feel special, someone that you WANT to be with, NOT just because you can say you have a man!
I think honesty, trust, respect and love. And by "love" I mean that he wants your happiness and does things that he knows will make you happy. By respect I mean he listens to you and that your opinion counts in terms of what you do and how you do things together. By honesty and trust, you are open about everything and you believe each other.
These things should be evident every place: in discussions, in the things you do, in the way you spend money, in bed, in dealing with children---these aspects should be evident everywhere.
FInally, I need a man who I am attracted to!! (that is an extra, but it is important because a good sex life is important)
That's just my opinion. So far I've found men who had some of these things but not all. I'm still looking at age 39!! So ---I wish I would have taken this task more to heart sooner in life!
There are as many answers to this question as there are women. That's why Freud never got his answer when he asked "My God, what do women WANT??!!" There is no what "women" want, only what each individual woman wants. Women are just as different and individual as men are.
I can just tell you what I want and need in a man. And I suppose that also means I "expect" it, or at least won't hang around long if I don't get it. HONESTY is number one for me. I'm not the casual "just having fun" type of gal. I'm not looking for fun for the night, I'm looking for my best friend. And a good friend doesn't lie to you. About anything. Especially about things that would hurt you, like "Oh, I didn't mention that I was sleeping with other women because I knew it would hurt you." Uh-uh.
Which leads us to respect. Someone who respects you won't do things that he knows will hurt you, not just because he's afraid he'll get caught, but because he cares about you, thinks highly enough of you, respects and loves you enough to not want to do anything that will be a betrayal to you, whether you would ever find out or not.
For me, another big one is shared values. Some things I can let go of, I don't need someone who loved all the same music or movies or books that I do, but someone who is on the same page as me when it comes to morals, values, world view, rules for life, what's important in life, etc. And where we do differ, someone who can respect the way I feel and not try to debate me or talk me into changing my mind, and someone who presents and forms ideas in such a way that, even if I don't totally agree with them, I respect them and won't try to change his mind.
Lastly, but also important, someone I have a natural, biological chemistry with. I know some women don't need that but to me, without that, it's not a romantic relationship, it's a roommate/platonic friendship situation. That chemistry, that attraction, has to be there. In short, my ideal is someone who eases my mind, stimulated my brain, warms my heart, and curls my toes.
Anything that doesn't resemble my ex ... I just look back at him and then think opposite and voila..... actually, the ex left me with one great thing - what I won't accept in any man and what I expect from every man.... respect, honesty, and he's got my back through thick and thin.