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How to Let a Man Know You’re Interested

Recently I asked whether women should make the first move. Overall, there was consensus on the following points:

  1. Equality for women means that chivalry is dead. It’s not fair to expect men to do all the work initiating conversations, dates and  relationships. Worse, it’s bad strategy.
  2. There is a spectrum of behaviors that might be considered “initiating.” If you approach a man in a very assertive way, dressed provocatively and  touching him, he will believe you are signaling that you want to have sex.
  3. Many men enjoy the role of pursuer, but point out that interested women can make it a whole lot easier for them by reducing the risk of rejection.
I think #3 represents the greatest potential for women wanting to indicate interest in a guy without taking over the male role entirely. As Andrew of Rules Revisited points out, when the woman initiates contact she cannot be sure of the man’s real level of interest. Initiating can work well with shy guys, but a woman needs to consider carefully if she is willing to assume that role throughout the relationship if necessary.
Offering sincere and palpable encouragement seems like the best strategy – it reduces risk for everyone without putting all the onus on one party. A woman may avoid the lost opportunities of getting to know the men who never felt comfortable approaching, or even the men who hadn’t noticed her. A man may approach with some degree of assurance if the woman has created a sense of safety.
 
There are two primary ways that women may offer encouragement to men they find attractive. 
  1. Be more approachable.
  2. Clearly indicate interest.

How to Be More Approachable

If you’re out and about and you see a stranger you find particularly attractive, standing in one place and hoping to be noticed is too passive a strategy. How can you provide encouragement without coming across the wrong way? Here’s the best of the web and HUS readers:

Excerpts from Andrew, Rules Revisited

1. Don’t Go Out With Men

Women surrounded by men never get approached, and in the rare event that they do, the men will usually make it difficult or impossible for the approaching male. Having men around you, regardless of their relationship with you or even their sexuality, is the single biggest game killer.

 2. Don’t Hang Out In A Large Group of Girls

Split up into smaller groups, ideally groups of two or three. This gives men an opportunity to meet you without having the burden of entertaining the whole group.

 3. Have Open Body Language

If you and your girlfriends want to meet guys, don’t huddle or sit down, or turn your backs on the action. Stand side by side, or at an obtuse angle to one another. This demonstrates that you are open to conversation. If you have a drink, hold it down, away from your chest. A drink clutched up against your body comes across defensive and unwelcoming.  

4. Don’t Worry About Smiling At Him

I swear all girls must have be told at some point “if a guy you like looks at you, make sure you smile.” I cannot count the number of times I have made eye contact with a girl and had her respond with what is clearly a forced and awkward smile. So here’s the advice: if it doesn’t come naturally, don’t do it.  

5. Make Eye Contact

This is the single most effective way of inviting a man to hit on you. Make eye contact and hold it. While this is actually a form of initiating the interaction, which I wouldn’t normally suggest, it still leaves the ball mostly in his court. Give up and move on if he doesn’t approach after ten seconds of collective eye contact (this could be 2 seconds in 5 different instances, for example). 

6. Get Close

If a guy wants to hit on you, getting close enough to make it happen is usually just a matter of taking a few strides in your direction. However, in some circumstances it can be a little more difficult for him, and then it makes sense for you to get closer. For example, if he is with a group of friends it might be hard for him to get everyone to move to your area. Even if he doesn’t have such hurdles, it never hurts to move closer; just avoid making it too obvious by hovering awkwardly or staying too long.

7. Don’t Stay on The Dance Floor All Night

This one is pretty self-explanatory. You might feel more comfortable or have more fun dancing rather than standing around waiting for guys to talk to you, but when you are on the dance floor you are basically off limits – except to drunken, groping men.  

8. Have A Drink

While no one likes a sloppy drunk girl, having one or two drinks will calm your nerves, help you flirt, open your body language, and generally make you more approachable. It also demonstrates that you are easy-going and like to have fun. Just avoid getting drunk, which is unattractive.

 9. Avoid Loud Places

Don’t hang out in front of the speakers or at bars/clubs where you know they will have extremely loud music. I  almost never approach girls in areas that would require me to shout or lean in to talk in her ear. Outdoor places are usually good in this respect.

 10. Choose Your Location Wisely

Stand somewhere where men are coming and going to, other than the bathroom. Usually the best place for this is the bar, but sometimes it can be too crowded, in which case I would suggest standing towards the back of the crowd. Don’t stand in a corner or away from the action, as you might not be seen. Balconies are always good because they give a man the chance to walk up beside you and comment on whatever you are overlooking. Make sure there is at least one open direction (in front of or beside you) from which he can approach.

11. Don’t Leave Too Early 

I’ve seen girls that I wanted to talk to leave the bar or club before I had the opportunity to meet them. Also, a lot of men need a couple drinks before they feel comfortable approaching girls. Assuming you don’t mind being approached by a guy that needs a little help from the bottle, you need to be around when they reach that point.

12. Don’t hang out with girls that are significantly hotter than you

Obviously every guy has different taste, so you can be liberal in deciding whether or not they are “hotter than you,” but there are some obvious combinations to avoid – like hanging out with an eight when you are a three or four. If you are standing next to a friend that is more than three points hotter than you, don’t expect to get hit on by anyone other than a wing man.

Excerpts from Eric Charles, A Guy’s Take at A New Mode

What makes a girl both approachable and attractive to guys?

Attitude:

Attitude has a funny way of bringing about what we expect.  Attitude is a self-fulfilling prophecy (in other words, what you expect to happen will end up happening)…There is nothing more attractive than a happy woman….Go out with a happy attitude and a healthy attitude towards men and you’ll be far more likely to attract high-quality guys into your life.  We like happy women who like men.

Drop the ego:

Love is a risky game – guys and girls have to put their hearts on the line if they want to play.  That’s the price of admission.

If you want to meet a guy, it doesn’t make you a slut.  It doesn’t mean you’re needy.  In fact, it means you’re human.  Be happy to own that you’d like to meet a guy and leave your ego at the door.

Have Open Body Language:

Smile:

Yes, again, look happy!  Don’t be the girl walking around with a puss on her face.  Don’t act like the diva who’s so cool she can’t look like she’s enjoying herself.  Smile, with warmth and openness.  

Eyes:

If you’re looking down at the floor or staring around above people’s heads avoiding eye contact you’re not going to make much of an impression on people.

Make eye contact with men you find attractive.  Have a warm, inviting gaze.  You’re not staring down the guy or anything, I’m just saying don’t be afraid to make eye contact for a moment if you want to meet a certain guy.

Think generous:

This goes back to attitude.  When I hit on women (hehe) I come from a place of being generous and giving to their evening.  I realize that they don’t know me yet and that they came out because they want to have fun…It’s from a place of being inviting and open as opposed to wanting to get something from them…My favorite kinds of women come from the same attitude of generosity when they interact with people.

Think shieldless:

In most bars and clubs, the vast majority of people hide behind a social shield.  Women put on a super bitchy or super obnoxious persona.  Guys put on a super cocky or super important persona.  And then, after a night filled with interacting personas, everyone goes home drunk, horny, disappointed and alone.

There is no one people respect or envy more than the person who does what everyone else wishes they did themselves.  And in this case, it is the willingness to drop your social persona (shield) and be real…  If you want [guys] to be fun and open, be fun and open with them.  Be the example of what you want from other people.

Choose your friends wisely:

Go out with girls who have enough confidence to be OK with you meeting guys without judging you…Also, beware of the bitchy friend with a negative attitude who is gonna stare at any guy who approaches her friends like he crawled in from the gutter. This girl is an instant man repeller and will send out a negative energy that will ensure no guy gets within 10 feet of her circle.

 Have fun (in and of itself):

Like it says.  Enjoy yourself.  If you want to meet guys, great, but don’t make that the cornerstone of your evening.

Nothing wrong with approaching:

With all that said, there is absolutely nothing wrong with you approaching a guy if you want to meet him…He’d probably think of you as confident, fun and social – all positive qualities.  Trust me, guys appreciate it when you approach them – and hopefully he’ll have enough balls to continue the conversation once you start it. 

Reader Wudang

1. Prioritize house parties and any social event were you can meet guys and make it easy for a guy to talk to you. Choose these contexts over clubs whenever you can.

2. To attract fairly dominant guys:

Spend more time in the less central and less high energy parts of a club. The middle of the dance floor and the bar will be full of high intensity pickup attempts. The most dominant alphas tend to gravitate towards this type of space and so do the most confident girls, and those most interested in hooking up.

Standing in a corner or at a table in a less central location will encourage approaches from a much larger percentage of guys that are relatively confident but not the most dominant.

3. To attract guys who approach less:

a. Use eye contact a lot and smile. It is a good idea to make these signals sweet rather than sexy in order to communicate girlfriend potential rather than hookup potential.

b. One thing I have noticed women doing is stand very close, kinda sideways and sometimes looking over at me or giving me a feeling they are very open to me talking to them. They do this alone and in pairs of two. It usually works very well when women do this.

c. Try to say something that gives him a chance to start a conversation with you. You don’t have to make it an approach, just give him a bone.

d. Don’t test men when they start a conversation with you. Pushing through the testing and bitchiness women often give right at the approach only measures the degree to which a guy is a seasoned player. Most normal, confident guys would have a problem with this. Just give him the same chance you would give a guy at a party in someone’s apartment. This levels the playing field between players and confident guys. 

All these tips really do is to take the club element out of the club. This way you get lesser alphas for the price of beta and avoid the cads that will give you an inflated sense of market value.

Badger  at BbSezMore:

When I talk to women about wh0 gets approached/asked out, it’s amazing to see how little they perceive (or how much they deny) the subtle ways socially-active women get those approaches to happen. Women with lots of men around don’t just do their hair and makeup like they want to be noticed – they are smiling, making eye contact, moving between people, bumping people, initiating themselves every now and then. Most importantly, girls I know who are very social are nice to pretty much everybody, creating an overall comfort value that means approaches will be welcome and if necessary softly rejected.

Sure, the schematic structure is of women receiving approaches, but women with good skills know how to make it happen.

Girls who don’t get approached sit on their hands, with pouty or plain faces, don’t react positively to every indicator of interest, don’t look like they made an effort to look good, or some combination. Or, they gave some guy a nuclear rejection and the rest of guys are off the bloom; don’t underestimate how men pay attention.

 

How to Indicate Interest

If you’re acquainted with someone already, or even friends, you’ll need to clearly indicate your interest to motivate a change in the relationship. Eric Barker’s blog Barking Up the Wrong Tree is a great source of fascinating research, and provides a good introduction to IOIs (indicators of interest).

Is it a man’s fault when he can’t tell a woman is interested in him?

“Sorry, ladies. You have to stop blaming the guys. It’s not their fault that they didn’t notice the “signals” you were giving. You know why? Because even other women have a hard time telling when a woman is interested:

The ability to judge another individual’s romantic interest level—both toward oneself and toward others—is an adaptively important skill when choosing a suitable mate to pursue. We tested this ability using videos of individuals on speed dates as stimuli. Male and female observers were equally good at predicting interest levels, but they were more accurate when predicting male interest: Predictions of female interest were just above chance.”

 What’s the best way for a woman to show interest in a man?

“Based on societal changes in women’s roles and changes in women’s attitudes toward dating behavior women were expected to be likely to approach men. Additionally, based on prior research examining women’s role in flirting, a significant effect for type of opening line was hypothesized. Opening lines that directly indicate an interest in dating were expected to be perceived as most effective and most direct by both men and women. The results were consistent with the hypotheses. Women were indeed likely to approach men and opening lines that directly signal interest were perceived as most effective and most direct by both sexes. However, men rated receiving a phone number from a woman as more effective than women did.”

Clearly, lots of women are already approaching men. Being direct, or “saying what you need to say” may be the quickest way to avoid wasting time.

Reader Rachel

There are a couple of things I do for encouragement:

- I make an effort to get to know the guy. I will purposely sit by him and ask about his life, interests, etc. I actually do more listening than talking. If I know nothing about his job, I’ll ask him to explain it in detail. On the other hand, if I have a similar experience, I will relate that to him. With a shy man, I’m prepared for awkward silences and usually fill those in with more questions or my experiences. Once the conversation starts, a guy will usually be able to hold up his end. Being friendly and open goes a long way. If it’s been 20 minutes and it still feels like I’m carrying the entire conversation, I will try someone else.

- I ask the guy out for coffee, a walk or some other relaxed activity. I choose something that I would do with any friend. If that goes well, I’ll expect the guy to make the next move.

- If he has asked me on the first date, then I will offer an idea for the next meeting.

I’ve been rejected several times: a couple times the guys just stopped calling, another time the guy told me that I wasn’t moving quickly enough, i.e. he wanted to sleep with me before I was ready. It’s disappointing and takes a few days before I eventually accept that it’s probably the best thing anyway. I usually don’t try to connect with men who I feel aren’t interested in me.

BbSezMore Manology Maxim #1: Demonstrate Interest

What’s the application?

For an outgoing woman, nothing. IOIs are an obvious part of flirting and getting to know someone. Duh.

For a shy gal: giving IOIs may feel fake and stressful, but you’ve got to give them to a guy you’re interested in. Unless you let him know that you respond to him, he won’t pursue you.

For a gal that freezes up when the guy you like is anywhere near: take a deep breath and give him an IOI. It isn’t a big commitment, and I promise he can’t see the his and her monogramed bathroom towels you have all picked out racing through your brain. Be calm, friendly, and interested. Take a deep breath. Give him a smile. Take another breath, fiddle with your hair. Repeat with IOI. Breathe. Repeat with IOI. Practice giving IOIs until it feels natural, genuine and real.

IOIs are not a guarantee that he will pursue you, but it’s an opportunity for him to do so.

 

Flirting with a man should be viewed as fun and low risk. Men welcome it and feel flattered. It doesn’t make you look desperate or needy. It makes you look friendly, confident and approachable. 

For a very small investment and minimal risk, the potential rewards are enormous. It could be the difference between meeting someone really good for you and watching someone else meet him instead. If you want more guys to approach you, make it fun for them. 

2 Pingbacks/Trackbacks

  • http://natewinchester.wordpress.com/ Nate Winchester

    Awww, I feel sad I didn’t get quoted. :(

    Ever the bridesmaid… ;)

  • Butterfly Flower

    The only question is – does the typical Beta have enough confidence to take the bait?

    Before I started dating my [Alpha-ish] boyfriend I spent a long time trying to pursue Beta guys. My IOIs were blatant [ex. "You're very cute, we should hang out some time..."] but I think the obviousness of my IOIs intimidated the poor Betas [I'm a virgin but it's possible my initiating made them think I was sexually experienced].

    There is a spectrum of behaviors that might be considered “initiating.” If you approach a man in a very assertive way, dressed provocatively and  touching him, he will believe you are signaling that you want to have sex.

    …so would you always consider physical cues [touching/trying to kiss/dressing provocatively] a bad idea? I mean, as long as you don’t come on too strong, it could work.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      …so would you always consider physical cues [touching/trying to kiss/dressing provocatively] a bad idea? I mean, as long as you don’t come on too strong, it could work.

      It depends on your objective. I wouldn’t dangle any bait that implies sex might be forthcoming quickly if you’re seeking a relationship. That’s a tease, and it usually backfires quickly. I do think that a light touch on the arm while flirting with a guy is nice, and not too intimidating. It’s a pretty clear IOI, so that’s good.

      A good rule of thumb is don’t act sexy unless you want to get sexy. If you act friendly and open most guys will at least get that you enjoy their company. That reduces the risk considerably.

  • Rae

    Captain Awkward has the perfect advice.  (I adore Captain Awkward.)

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Rae
      Thanks for introducing me to Captain Awkward. She’s hilarious!

  • Stanley

    The world would be better if most women learn that.  This is such a great article.

  • http://bloggingbellita.wordpress.com Bellita

    @Rae

    Thanks for sharing the Captain Obvious link!

  • OhioStater

    Long time no see!

    Personally, I don’t like it when girls approach guys because its demoralizing. If a girl is waiting to be approached and she goes home with a guy, you can at least think you would have been that guy if you had the balls to approach.

    If the girl is approaching guys, and she doesn’t approach you, then you know she doesn’t like you. I’ve gone out with girls that may have wanted another guy, but I took the initiative and persisted.

    Furthermore, hypergamous girls are likely to approach the same guys, or SAME guy (singular). Bad news all around.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @OhioStater

      Good to see you!

      Furthermore, hypergamous girls are likely to approach the same guys, or SAME guy (singular). Bad news all around.

      Yeah, those few guys are already getting a ton of approaches from sexually assertive females. I wrote this post for less assertive women, who don’t feel comfortable initiating or escalating, but recognize that in this SMP, perhaps new measures are called for.

      You’d be surprised how much I hear from women who like clueless guys and can’t get them to even recognize their interest. We might need to pass out large inflatable mallets.

  • El Marqués

    Well done Susan.

    My money, and I guess most older guys would agree, would be on Eric Charles. My lifelong observation has been that it seems the attitudes, insecurities and therefore massive egos of – not only the prettiest – women are standing in the way of successful communication with men they’re interested in.

    There’s also this silly game of female dissimulation, worth a whole series of articles, which completely misses the target audience, as only very experienced men can read those clues.

    Flirting is supposed to be something akin to a mating dance. It used to be a Tango that both parties could enjoy, even if nothing ever resulted from it. Now it’s degenerated into some kind of ska punk pogo, where the goal seems to be to assert your self while looking cool.

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    Hum. Do girls have trouble showing interest?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Hum. Do girls have trouble showing interest?

      Yes, some do. In addition to the 200 you banged, there were probably another 200 who were hopeful from afar.

  • Johnycomelately

    Ha!

    The title of the post should be, “How to entrap a man way above your league.”

    Living in a multicultural milieu I have been privy to the machinations of Eastern girls and their wily ways. You’d be very surprised to know how many girls delve into the black arts to snare a man, just pop off to the local mosque and for a bit of cash you can get an Imam to whip up an enchanting spell (caveat, man must drink black coffee, very difficult to slip spells into water).

    How else would I be involved with a 180 pound woman.

  • I thought *I* was Bob

    You can practice. I used to do the male side at the airport. Pick out someone attractive coming the other way, catch his eyes, and smile in the way that says “The world is beautiful, for I see you. Not a come-hither look. Friendly admiration.

    Relax. You almost certainly won’t see him again. He’s on his way somewhere else. If you do it right you’ll brighten his day. His reaction will brighten yours.

    When you are comfortable, do it in a social setting. Your target will come over to talk to you, confident of his welcome.

    Prudent target selection is advisable. Don’t target players or anyone you know you aren’t interested in.

  • rick
  • Rachel

    Hi Susan,

    Thanks for including me in your post! I have to second your inflatable mallet idea for certain men. My favorite experience with that was after I asked a guy out to coffee, he said, “I don’t drink coffee.” And there was silence… I said, “uh ok, well it doesn’t have to be coffee, it can be tea, or another kind of hot or cold beverage.” Then there is a pause, and he says, “Ohhhh, so what you actually mean is you want to hang out.” I felt like saying, “yes, genius,” but restrained myself! He was a good guy, but ultimately a little too unaware for me.

    Rachel

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Rachel

      And there was silence… I said, “uh ok, well it doesn’t have to be coffee, it can be tea, or another kind of hot or cold beverage.”

      Props to you! Here’s the thing, though – I think you are in a small subset of women who are prepared to be tenacious in this way. Most women in this situation would not only feel rejected, they’d feel really put down. You perceived correctly that the guy was speaking literally.

  • Esau

    Butterfly Flower: “I think the obviousness of my IOIs intimidated the poor Betas”

    We’ve been through this before, but it’s appropriate on this thread to bring it up again.  What does “intimidated” mean?  functionally?  To me, someone being “intimidated” means that they expect (rationally or otherwise) things will not go well, or be enjoyable for them; and I think that meaning works very well here.  The “poor Betas” in question might have been in no doubt that you had interest; but did they have reason to think that they’d actually have an enjoyable time with you?  doing anything?

    I think this is a self-defeating trap that women fall into all too easily.  They put themselves out there, somehow, and when it doesn’t work they think “I must have intimidated him!”, as though that’s automatically some kind of shortcoming, particularly cowardice, on his part.  These women never even get around to thinking of the obvious flip side: from what he saw, from his point of view, what experience was he being offered?  Was it an experience he wanted?  Don’t leap to “he’s intimidated” when a much simpler explanation is that you just don’t look like you’re any fun.

    Remember this, ladies: unless you’re incredibly hot, just showing interest is not enough.  You also have to make it clear — somehow — that being with you will be enjoyable.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Esau

      Remember this, ladies: unless you’re incredibly hot, just showing interest is not enough. You also have to make it clear — somehow — that being with you will be enjoyable.

      Agreed. That’s another post – managing the period from first attraction to the Relationship Talk. Women often make blunders during this period. Of course, it’s not enough to pretend for a short while that you are drama-free, low maintenance and enjoyable to be with. You must actually be those things.

  • I thought *I* was Bob

    @Rachael

    The shoe is on the other foot.

    It’s cold comfort to me to imagine that the girls who I read as massively uninterested might have been shy. When I was in the dating world I almost always had to do the heavy conversational lifting. This left me to conclude that she was not only uninterested but terribly, terribly bored.

  • Parenna

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while now; thanks for writing it!  =)

    But I’ve been following this discussion on a number of blogs (this one, Bb’s, and The Rules Revisited), and I’m a bit surprised at how many people associate directness on a girl’s part with aggression or sluttiness!  When I like a guy, I generally tell him so, and this has always worked really well for me.

    I’m an introvert, and as a result I don’t enjoy clubs or bars, so maybe it’s that I’m applying this advice to the wrong context.  I’m also majoring in a STEM field, so perhaps the social rules are a bit nonstandard where I hang out.

    But I figured I would share this anyway, if only to add a datapoint.  I don’t do hookups, and am only interested in very LTRs and also just in making friends.  If I am out (e.g. in a coffee shop), and I see someone who looks interesting to talk to, I just… walk up and talk to them.  If I want to start a conversation with someone and don’t know where to start, I compliment something they’re wearing, or ask what they’re reading, etc.  The important part is that I smile a whole lot.  I also make a lot of eye contact.  My body language is open, calm, and non-flirty.  I think because I’m completely open with people, and because I ignore social rules by approaching and talking to them at all, people are more likely to be open when talking to me.  I listen to a lot of people’s life stories; I always feel really honored when people who just met me feel like they can share these things with me.

    Anyway, I’ve met guys in this way, and I think I don’t come across as slutty or aggressive because I’m cheerful and straightforward.  If at the end of the conversation, I really like the guy, then I just say “We should hang out sometime!” and we trade email addresses/phone numbers.  This always seemed really simple to me and so now I’m wondering if I’m doing it wrong!

    Thanks again, Susan, for writing this awesome blog!  =)

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Parenna
      So good to meet you, welcome! Thanks for sharing your experience.

      Of course you’re not doing it wrong, your strategy is awesome! The way you know that is that it works for you, regardless of what we knuckleheads on the internet say. I’m surprised that you are introverted yet also put yourself out there frequently to meet new people.

      Your being cheerful and straightforward is exactly what Eric Charles recommends – it’s Day Game. You strike up conversations with people just for fun, so they’re not wondering what you want from them, if you’re trying to pick them up, etc. The same guy who will happily discuss the book he’s reading and trade numbers might respond very differently if you rubbed up against him in a low cut top.

      I would classify your strategy as one of meeting new people, which is obviously a great way to increase your chances of getting into a relationship, or of just making new friends! Once you establish rapport, you exchange numbers, suggest a hang, etc.

      I don’t remember which reader said it, but one woman said that sometimes guys do approach, but after a couple of minutes the conversation stalls and the guys say, “OK, I’m going to go back to my friends now.” It could be they are not interested in further contact, but she often suspects they’ve just run out of things to say and feel awkward. If she’s interested she says, “Before you go, let me give you my number.” Obviously, the results are mixed but she has heard from several guys this way.

      The bottom line is: Put yourself out there. Make it easy for guys to connect.

  • Ceer

    One of the biggest challenges in male pickup is to gauge interest of women.  This is so difficult, the usual advice is something along the lines of “If she’s not walking away, using super closed body language, or smacking at you, consider that permission to continue.”  Part of this, I’m sure is that women often aren’t sure what they want, but they also tend not to have much practice in making their interest clear.

    @Butterfly Flower

    You don’t mention checking to see if the betas are actually physically interested, or what you did to assure them that you were in fact not promiscuous.

    My first reaction to the question is that a woman should wait several dates before asking a man if he finds her attractive.  This has a high risk of looking like validation-seeking behavior if it’s done soon, or if the man doesn’t know her well.  It should work properly once a relationship has been established, and the woman has made clear that she is capable of deep introspective thought.

    As far as a preliminary technique, men, especially betas are primarily visual in their sexuality.  You may see his eyes wandering to various parts of your body, this is a tipoff.

    Women for whatever reason have developed the anti-slut defense.  This helps them appear (to them) that they are not promiscuous, when in fact, they may or may not be.  Men tend to see through this.  A more promiscuous vibe will include slinky, sexy clothes, short skirts, tattoos, heavy makeup, touching too early, smiling (like a giggly girl) too much.  Princess vibe is given off by:  wearing top-rack clothes, heavy makeup, talking about family’s money, bragging, asking for/demanding things, talking about your important/high profile/lucrative job.

    In the case of a woman approaching, particularly for beta men… it is best for her to avoid both of these types.  A woman can give off the proper vibe by wearing a sweater, t-shirt, skirt (2 inches above the knee or longer), jeans, khaki pants, or similar clothing.  Tattoos should be covered.  You can accent your figure by wearing a nice bra or other padding.  I would advise a casual, non-smiling approach.  Emphasize your kind, gentle, feminine characteristics.  You just happen to be approaching for a particular reason.  As a hard rule, he shouldn’t know your intentions until you’re at least 30 seconds into the interaction.

    Based on the strategy of a long-term relationship, I’ll give what I think to be the best advice for women.  For the initial interaction itself, the focus should probably be on screening, a careful attention to value must be placed here.  This is similar to how it is for men courting women.  If the other person feels your value is too high relative to yours, they will feel you are “out of their league”.  If they feel their value is too high relative to yours (in their specific area) they will reject you.  Unlike for men, women initially should err on the side of too little relative value, rather than too much.  A woman can do this by screening a man in areas she knows he is already good at.  Once the man is in a better frame of mind, she can demonstrate her value to him.

    Demonstrations of value are different in women than they are in men.  Men are typically easily categorizable into alpha (leader, fighter, jerk, etc) and beta (nerd, artist, dad material, etc).  The same female value may attract one type more than the other.  Here’s a working list:

    Alpha DHV: beautiful, important, good style, high sex drive, demanding, outwardly social, assertive

    Beta DHV:  loyal, hard working, friendly, easy going, intelligent, good with kids, caring, frugal, demure

    You’ll notice that outwardly social is an alpha value.  If the target of affections is beta, it’s quite possible to raise your value improperly, so that your persona (vibe) doesn’t match his mating strategy.  This can be solved, even with the most beta of men.  A rough outline of the initial pickup will go like this:

    1.  Opener with female approach.

    2.  chit chat about random non-personal topic.

    3.  transition to career, expertise, or social topic that should fit the guy’s experience.

    4.  prompt him to demonstrate his value.

    5.  if successful, demonstrate a value from the beta list.

    6.  repeat steps 3-5 several times.

    7.  ask for his contact information.

    Keep several things in mind during your conversation:

    You only have to meet his personal minimum attractiveness standard in order for him to see you sexually.

    Chit chat about random topics should be non personal at first, then you can move on to more personal topics.  Male pickup artists teach this to men.  It makes the conversation more natural seeming.

    If a man is not able or willing to demonstrate his higher value, it’s possible he’s distracted, dense, or uninterested.

    The more confident the man, the less he will need to demonstrate his value before you demonstrate yours.  If he has bad experience in dealing with women, he may assume that it’s important to demonstrate higher value relative to yours.  This isn’t strictly necessary because you’re approaching him, which means you’re already attracted. 10 seconds after the approach, the man already knows whether or not he’s attracted.  The problem then revolves around the question of how to connect on a personal level.

    The very fact that you’re opening him means that you are demonstrating an alpha value, and the fact that you know what you like in men is another; the way around this is to showcase your beta qualities.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ceer
      That is an epic comment, full of useful tactical information and such a great explanation of male psychology. Thank you so much for sharing it. Despite all the male claims that women don’t want beta guys, this is a frequent topic around HUS – how to encourage those guys (the 80% non-manslut guys).

  • http://bbsezmore.wordpress.com/ Bb

    Susan, thanks for the link love!

    Parenna, you sound warm, friendly and real. Who could fault that? I was interested in talking with you just based on your description! (I know I’m the wrong demographic, but still…)

    I think it’s a mistake to assume that this advice is given for women who want to indicate interest to Alpha men only. This is also good advice for women who might be interested in the introverted / shy guy.

    Also there are some girls like me who, FREEZE UP when faced with a guy they’re really interested. I’m not even talking about an approach, just every day interactions When I was single, that guy was often the last person to know / never knew of my interest, and what good is that? If you like someone, show interest—you’ve got nothing to lose.

  • Anacaona

    @Ceer

    Interesting breakdown!

    One of the most frustrating things was trying to attract the very very few seemingly betas in my country I was under the impression that it might had been my body language. For some reason I kept attracting married older men like magnets while the shy guy in the corner wouldn’t read all my IOI no matter how much I tried to smile and hold eye contact and be friendly. It is possible that I showed some high value level before they were able to show theirs (although I kept thinking I wasn’t hot enough for them to try something). I became a model for many reasons but one of them was thinking that if I became hotter guys would might be more willing to ask for a number or an email and even though I did catched more glances from the guys in my age bracket that had my interest, they still wouldn’t approach and worst the married men now were more agressive (that was not fun at all!), so that is one of the reasons I choosed to change strategies and approaching myself. That did worked in the end but I can totally see what a drag is and I pity guys that have to do it all the time. I also think that beta lovers need to learn to be very patient about this. I do consider it worth it though. They are wonderful once they are 100% sure you really like them and they like you back. :D

  • Lavazza

    Rachel: “Thanks for including me in your post! I have to second your inflatable mallet idea for certain men. My favorite experience with that was after I asked a guy out to coffee, he said, “I don’t drink coffee.” And there was silence… I said, “uh ok, well it doesn’t have to be coffee, it can be tea, or another kind of hot or cold beverage.” ”

    Well, you’re not that quick on your feet either. A quick thinking woman would reply with a sexy “Neither do I”.

    Anyway, like for any suggestion or presentation you have to make sure that the audience is there and listening, and sometimes also first get the reasons, context and back ground for the suggestion or presentation. You can jump to the main matter directly if you already have somebody’s attention and you know that the audience already know the reasons and context of what is being said. 

    Anybody who is teaching, selling or advising knows this.

  • Lavazza
    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Lavazza
      Love that video! I especially love that it’s 14 seconds long and right to the point :-)

  • Dogsquat

    Like I said elsewhere on HUS, I’m a fan of the “sexy hug”.

    If you like a guy in your social circle/at work, try this the next time you part company:

    Give him a hug goodbye.  Not a “friendly” hug, where your hips are apart, but a full contact hug with pelvic contact.  Hold it a split second longer than is strictly necessary (one onethousand, two onethousand), then release, make eye contact, smile, and leave.

    If he wasn’t thinking of you “in that way” before, he sure as hell is now.

    Especially if you smell good.  Yum.

    From across the room, or even right next to him, it just looks like a hug goodbye.  It is a very private way of signalling interest, but with even more deniability than flirty repartee.

    This technique may or may not have worked on me more than once.  I may or may not be very glad about that, since I usually read people very well and might have been quite surprised that a (notional, of course) girl(s) was/were interested in your Humble Scribe, young Dogsquat.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Dogsquat

      Like I said elsewhere on HUS, I’m a fan of the “sexy hug”.

      The sexy hug was in the first draft of this post. I’ve been asking around about it. The guys have all said, “Oh, yeah, I love that. That works.” And the women I’ve asked have said, “OMG! I would never!” Two girls jumped up and started bumping pelvises and cracking up.

      The sexy hug is obviously a bold move. I don’t doubt that it could work wonders in certain situations.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    Rachel’s thoughts are excellent. Women have to carry their weight and take control of their own outcomes. The idea that men did all the work in “the old days” while the woman just sat around waiting for the guys to come to her is ludicrous anyway. America gets off on false nostalgia.

    “With a shy man, I’m prepared for awkward silences and usually fill those in with more questions or my experiences. Once the conversation starts, a guy will usually be able to hold up his end. Being friendly and open goes a long way.”

    Bingo. Sounds like a very pleasant conversation. Lots of shy guys will become chatterboxes when they are comfortable and no longer fear your reaction to what they talk about. As a recovering shy person, I have experienced that many times. But you’re never going to get there if you primp and preen and expect him to steamroll you with soliloquoy and blow you away with an amazingly interesting conversational experience in the first five minutes. Not gonna happen.

    I really like much of Andrew’s advice, but I strongly disagree with his (and Bb’s) logic that a woman who approaches a man is sacrificing information about his interest – in other words, not making him “prove” himself enough.

    That advice only works if the guy you are considering is going to approach you if you don’t approach him. Otherwise, neither of you talks to the other and you fall asleep alone with your makeup still on. And it also assumes that women are all fungible in a given man’s eyes, that he really doesn’t care who he’s with and will just go for the path of least resistance, and that’s just not true. At worst, you filter for players and close yourself off to guys who need a bit of a hand starting the engine. The “men present, women select” mindset is going to make a lot of spinsters in the next 20 years.

    Women can shout “I deserve a man with the guts to approach me!” but it doesn’t make any more men approach you, and it’s illogical that a woman shows high value by not going for what she wants. In any case I usually find that explanation to be a coverup of a woman’s rejection aversion.

    I fear, however, that this whole discussion is academic. Women who are truly empowered in their lives will not have a problem approaching men, making conversation, subtly escalating, and most of the rest will put pride and fear above happiness. And, just like male AFCs who go home from the club holding their junk complaining the women they didn’t approach weren’t worth talking to, they can project their lack of fortune onto the other side – “those guys just weren’t man enough to approach me!”

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      strongly disagree with his (and Bb’s) logic that a woman who approaches a man is sacrificing information about his interest – in other words, not making him “prove” himself enough.

      That advice only works if the guy you are considering is going to approach you if you don’t approach him. Otherwise, neither of you talks to the other and you fall asleep alone with your makeup still on.

      Yes, this was my thinking too. From reading Andrew’s blog it’s clear he has a lot of experience with women – he’s a natural alpha. While his insights re male sexuality and psychology are gold, it’s important to keep in mind that he is not typical of most men.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Women who are truly empowered in their lives will not have a problem approaching men, making conversation, subtly escalating,

      I’ve had women express a willingness to do it, but also a fear that they don’t know what they’re doing. They don’t know how to send the right message or what approach is most effective. Just like with men, only a minority of women are outgoing and confident enough to open a stranger.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    Oh, and thanks for quoting me.

    Parenna,

    “I’m a bit surprised at how many people associate directness on a girl’s part with aggression or sluttiness!”

    I concur. Being forward is only sexual if you are being sexually forward.

    “This always seemed really simple to me and so now I’m wondering if I’m doing it wrong!”

    You’re not, keep doing it.

    “You’d be surprised how much I hear from women who like clueless guys and can’t get them to even recognize their interest.

    Again recall that today’s young men were taught not to advance unless a woman is showing clear permission and is drafting a notarized statement of sexual authorization. We just didn’t grow up observing and looking for opportunities to plant one or touch her. Players do this, they take every IOI and opportunity as a signal to advance. Boldness works enough times to make it worth it to them.

    “We might need to pass out large inflatable mallets.”

    Aren’t those called boobs? I’ve always gotten the message if I get hit with one of those.

    “If you approach a man in a very assertive way, dressed provocatively and  touching him, he will believe you are signaling that you want to have sex.”

    There’s a subtle false equivalence in this sentence. Approaching assertively and dressing provocatively are two very separate ideas. I don’t buy the “I don’t want to look like a slut” explanation, because when a guy is super hot or high status women will approach him in packs, bang him in the bar bathroom and brag about it to her friends.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      “We might need to pass out large inflatable mallets.”

      Aren’t those called boobs? I’ve always gotten the message if I get hit with one of those.

      Hahaha!

      I don’t buy the “I don’t want to look like a slut” explanation, because when a guy is super hot or high status women will approach him in packs, bang him in the bar bathroom and brag about it to her friends.

      This is an AWALT remark. HUS readers ANLT for the most part.

  • Wayfinder

    @Parenna & @Badger

    “This always seemed really simple to me and so now I’m wondering if I’m doing it wrong!”

    You’re not, keep doing it.

    Agreed.

    I keep seeing girls who seem to think that starting a conversation is too forward. You’re not propositioning him, you’re just talking to him!

    Past societies used to have elaborate social rituals to get people introduced and talking. We’re a very disconnected society in a lot of ways, including this one. I suspect that this fear of starting a conversation is keeping many girls from meeting men who aren’t super-aggressively forward.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Wayfinder

      Past societies used to have elaborate social rituals to get people introduced and talking. We’re a very disconnected society in a lot of ways, including this one. I suspect that this fear of starting a conversation is keeping many girls from meeting men who aren’t super-aggressively forward.

      Agreed. I think subtle flirting is a lost art.

  • Wayfinder

    @Susan

    You perceived correctly that the guy was speaking literally.

    Most men will often take your words literally. This is a good sign, it means that they are unlikely to be players. A little prompting (“Neither do I” was mentioned) can sometimes clue them in. I think a subset of guys are capable of being flirty, they just don’t have the experience to know when it’s socially appropriate.

    If it’s a marketplace you should be on the lookout for things like this: they signal an underpriced asset. If your goal is to find a guy with good character who also makes you excited, finding these currently undervalued guys is a strategy you will want to consider.

    Think about it from a business perspective: if he’s a stock you want to invest in, you want to buy when the price is low so you can get the benefits when it rises. And, like with stocks, the best way to manage the risk is to buy and hold for a long time. Find a guy who rewards loyalty and you’re literally set for life.

  • http://bbsezmore.wordpress.com/ Bb

    “I really like much of Andrew’s advice, but I strongly disagree with his (and Bb’s) logic that a woman who approaches a man is sacrificing information about his interest – in other words, not making him “prove” himself enough.”

    Badger, that’s Andrew’s position, not mine. (I had a personal preference for men to make “the first move”, but that was related to an SMP of yore and was not just based on initial approach.)

    In fact, I issued a Fall Challenge for Women, where I said:

    I’m ready to rethink the first move filter. Based on the comment stream at useless superpower, it’s clear there are a lot of guys out there who are open and amenable to a woman approaching and/or asking them out.

    If I were single in this SMP and looking to get a boyfriend…I’d take that ball and run with it. In fact, I’d try it for 3-6 months exclusively and see how’d it work: I’d ask out (or actively approach) any guy that I found remotely attractive.

    The male commenters on that post offered some terrific advice. To my knowledge, two women took up the challenge. Bellita, who started to see possibilities for interactions in every day occurrences, and Snow White, who garnered a great first date. We’re all on pins and needles to see where it goes from there.

    Andrew is wary of this experiment. I am cheerfully optimistic.

  • OffTheCuff

    Repeating myself shamelessly:

    1. Get in his personal space.
    2. Brazenly and repeatedly signal you won’t reject him. Keep doing it.
    3. Let him lead.

  • A.

    I was thinking about the point made several threads back that men do what they think they’d like and women do what they think they’d like.  It makes me wonder if the “nice guy” approach (begin with a friendship, then escalate to romance) could work if employed by women, used on shyer guys.  I don’t know for a fact if it could; I’m just wondering.

    For guys, there are two problems with it.  One is that it simply doesn’t work.  That might be different for women.  The other, though, is that it takes a lot of time investment to find out that it didn’t work.  Considering that, any woman who would want to try this strategy should definitely not repeat guys’ mistakes and wait for months to escalate to romance, but just a couple of weeks at most.

    I’ll second the comments that a woman initiating (in a friendly manner) would never cause me to think she was a “slut”; the thought just would not occur to me.  But I’ll also confess that I (as a shy and literal minded guy) could completely miss out that signals like “Would you like to go for coffee?” had a romantic undertone.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @A.

      I think you’re onto something there – women probably can succeed with a friend-zone approach to start, because men are not seeking dominance in women. In fact, they’re avoiding it! I do agree, though, that it makes no sense to pine for a guy who isn’t stepping up. Not long ago I ran a letter from a woman named Connor who liked a guy but didn’t know if he liked her, and it had been three years.

  • Ceer

    @ Susan

    I think a majority of the problem with this society’s dating situation is tied in with the fact that women are taught to go with their instincts, that their hearts will guide them well in love, and the meaning of sex is only personal enjoyment.  We have no illusions about the nature of male sexuality…so much so, that if such advice were given to men, we can easily see the consequences.  Based on the success of some pickup artists, and the attractiveness of that community in general, I think it’s obvious that a women’s instincts can sometimes be a horrible guide.  My friend Andi talked with me about her aha moment on this topic.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t in any position to help her.  Luckily, she’s figured this out while still younger than 30, unlike so many women.

    @ Anacaona

    You got the gist.  For women, dressing up is a double edged sword.  I once went out with a male friend to a religious concert put on by our diocese.  The venue was a little small, as was the number of people who attended.  I dared him to approach two well dressed women with me.  He declined saying, “they’re out of my league”.  This is an intelligent guy who went on to get his masters in mechanical engineering from a top university.  Interestingly enough, he ended up married less than 2 years later to an objectively hotter girl (who he hadn’t met yet).  They met online.

    @ Susan’s response to A.

    I’m of two minds about this.  First of all, a women’s objective attractiveness has a lot to do with any approach being successful.  “Friends first” seems to be a good strategy to use for reasonably attractive girls to bag betas or commitment oriented alphas because their approach to relationships depends much less on the emotional context.

    For alphas and most women, how a person is viewed emotionally at that minute is a much more important factor in getting them to maintain the proper vibe.

    Even if a woman likes a guy for 3 months, there is no excuse for not knowing where he stands on attraction.  By the time a relationship lasts that long, you’ve already past the point where you can flat out ask about his interest without looking like a slut.

    If you’re still worried about looking like one, I’d recommend a sequence like this:

    1.  Explain your personal mating strategy / philosophy in detail

    2.  List the qualities he’s demonstrated that you find attractive.  Keep this list to non-trivial and non-shallow things.  The main thing is that these reasons should not be the product of a rationalization hamster.

    3.  You now have logical reason to be attracted, so you can state this openly without looking like a slut.

    The above procedure may seem very forward / alpha, but this depends on your exact delivery.  Because of step 1, you can spend a great deal of time on how you’ve thought out your philosophy.  Introspection and deep thought are beta qualities.

  • ExNewYorker

    @Susan

    I think you’re onto something there – women probably can succeed with a friend-zone approach to start”

    I can’t believe I’m supporting LJBF as a strategy. That being said, starting as friends first can work, if you know the pros and cons.  It worked on me, with the first woman I was deeply involved with.  We were friends for a couple of years (she was dating someone else for a large part of that time), so when she and her boyfriend broke up, she easily escalated our friendship.

    The pros: You can take your time an ascertain a lot more about the guy.  You can avoid early escalation before you feel comfortable being more than friends.  You can pursue this strategy with multiple guys, even at the same time.  You can gauge his attraction to you over a longer time period (to get a better estimate),.

    The cons: This will tend to work more with commitment minded betas (or reformed betas), which is not every woman’s cup of tea.  There’s more time involved in this approach (which is besides the point if all a woman wants is a drive-thru boyfriend).  If escalation happens, it may change your friendship forever, for the good and the bad.

    If you deploy this strategy, at least be a real friend to the guy, and don’t just use him as a way to receive some male validation while waiting for someone else.

  • Hope

    I would second A’s suggestion for the girl to befriend him. I suspect that guys try to befriend girls in attempt to spark romance because this is what works on them.

    I remember telling my husband early on that I wanted to be friends. Although I was already intrigued by him and wanted to know more, I didn’t know enough about him to fall for him. Becoming his friend meant that I talked to him a lot more and got to know him better, and vice versa. Within a short time of talking more, we fell in love with each other.

    The downside of this is guys are often wary of a girl who wants to be his friend due to the whole “friendzone” thing. But from a female perspective it works because it lets her find out more. If the girl likes him, she likes him for deeper characteristics once she’s gotten to know him. If he’s not such a great guy, then she can ease up without the awkwardness of having gone on official dates.

    Becoming his friend is basically “isolating” him from the group, while also building intimacy, rapport and comfort. It can of course backfire if the guy JUST sees her as a friend. But it’s safer than the alternatives because she does not need to do anything physical like kissing (expected of dates).

    I would agree with A. that if the guy doesn’t seem interested within about two weeks, forget about it and move on. It really doesn’t take men much time at all to make up their minds as to whether or not a girl is “worth” it. Also, don’t make a habit of it (as in, don’t collect guy friends). Befriend one guy at a time with this strategy, because guys will write off girls who are “shopping around” but often pay more attention to a girl who seems genuine with her offer of friendship.

    The bonus? Being in love with and married to your best friend is completely awesome.

  • http://gravatar.com/weezul Chris

    Hold up a second.  People are now suggesting women let a man know she’s interested…by saying, “Let’s start with friendship.”

    Er…why?  If I’m interested in a woman, and she’s actually open enough for me to know/suspect/have a definite inkling she’s interested–and then the words “just” and “friends” come out of her mouth?

    I’m gone.  I can understand why you’d want to use that as a stepping-stone.  But it’s way too tarnished by the “friendzone” impression – other women stringing guys along, then chucking them aside.

    “Starting with friendship” sounds like you’re bartering for time.  Why?  To plan an escape strategy?  Looking for a flaw to toss that “imperfect! *sniff*” guy out?

    Of course there’s value in finding out more about the guy – but remember, he has to find out more about you too.  Dating is not a one-way, woman-benefit-only situation (despite popular claims).  If you’re both interested, let the other person know!  Susan’s original post is full of great ideas for this.

    I’m pretty introverted in social settings.  I have, in dates past, come up completely blank on discussion topics while there’s an attractive woman sitting across from me.  (That’s not fun.)

    But at least I was there.  And I was there because she gave enough indication (e.g., accepting the invitation, giving IOIs) for me to spend my time & energy.

    If she’d said, “Well, I always start friends first,” I wouldn’t be there.  I’d have said, “Okay, I’ll call you next time my friends get together.”  Then not talked to her again.  Because from my perspective, she wasn’t interested.  She said, “Move on, you’re not what I want.”

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Chris
      I think befriending a guy can work for guys who take thing realllly slow. It’s basically a way of giving a series of IOIs over a period of time.

  • Dogsquat

    Hey, Susan?

    I probably need to see video of the female pelvis bumping.  You know, to evaluate for correct technique and ascertain the probability of injury, of course.

     

  • Ceer

    @ Chris

    You’ve had enough dating experience to know that the vast majority of women are not red-pill trained.  From a blue pill woman, LJBF is usually a lie or a shit test.

    Obviously, a male approach would make this entire discussion moot, so we’re dealing with women who don’t see the men approaching them.  The context of my friends first advice is as an active female approach strategy.  As discussed earlier, women were sharing their particular difficulty with getting positive results from  men using direct game strategy.  Hypergamy being what it is, it’s particularly rare for a beta man (also the least natural at this) to experience direct game from a woman.  Most of the response is an attempt to form a counter to this, admittedly rare phenomenon.

    The strategy is basically indirect long game for women, rather than true friendzoning.  Think more along the lines of female Krauser text game, or at least Roosh daygame.

  • 108spirits

    I don’t mind if a woman tries to get acquainted with me first before any dating happens, but if she actually says “let’s be friends first”, I’ll laugh and not take her seriously at all.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      I don’t mind if a woman tries to get acquainted with me first before any dating happens, but if she actually says “let’s be friends first”, I’ll laugh and not take her seriously at all.

      Just to be clear: Friendship is not the goal. The strategy is not about establishing friendship first and working slowly toward something more. Rather, friendship may be a means to an end, an opportunity to give consistent IOIs that is less threatening and intense than serious escalation by a female. I’ll agree with other commenters that a short period of time should be enough to establish a flirty vibe. If it doesn’t happen, FIDO.

  • Anacaona

     Interestingly enough, he ended up married less than 2 years later to an objectively hotter girl (who he hadn’t met yet).  They met online.

    Heh had I mentioned that I didn’t told my now husband then LDR that I was a model till he was with me personally in the first trip? It was because a) I though he wouldn’t believe me “so you watch star trek by day and model by night? Yeah right I’m the king of England” and b) I was afraid he will think I was stupid I mean I could had copy pasted all my answer in the net, right? Yes is stupid in hindsight but I have an overactive imagination that can get overboard.Still he was pleasantly surprised and now he got that Christmas a very pretty woman in a bikini in a calendar and I can’t be jealous of her ;)

    I would second A’s suggestion for the girl to befriend him. I suspect that guys try to befriend girls in attempt to spark romance because this is what works on them.

    Mmm I don’t recomend this one. I personally have a friendzone like Fort Knox you might as well tell me you are my long lost brother. I really can’t move a guy from it on my own no matter how much I try, thankfully it hasn’t happened that much but still the only time that actually felt attraction for a friend was when he was away for over a year and in our first meeting he cried in front of me. I’m a sucker for the sensitive type so for me it was very surprising finding myself crushing for him. Of course I never made a move out of being my friend and thinking it was not very nice of me, but then I was a blue pill woman so for me it was a shitty thing to do to a friend back then.

    Although I ask the hubby, my resident shy guy, and even if he admits that he has friendzoned women, he says that if the guy is timid anything is better than sitting and hoping he will notice and that yes shy men don’t notice IOI so tell him, ask him out, hug him dogsquat style, be his friend… whatever just don’t sit and hope that will get you nothing.

  • Matt C

    2. To attract fairly dominant guys:

    Spend more time in the less central and less high energy parts of a club. The middle of the dance floor and the bar will be full of high intensity pickup attempts. The most dominant alphas tend to gravitate towards this type of space and so do the most confident girls, and those most interested in hooking up.

    Standing in a corner or at a table in a less central location will encourage approaches from a much larger percentage of guys that are relatively confident but not the most dominant.

    This is just flat out wrong. The most dominant guys are gonna be on the dance floor? No. The most dominant guys are looking to get laid. Rubbing your dick against a girl’s ass for a 30 minutes and then having the girl walk away is not going to lead to getting laid.

  • A.

    I don’t mind if a woman tries to get acquainted with me first before any dating happens, but if she actually says “let’s be friends first”, I’ll laugh and not take her seriously at all.

    Yeah, I don’t think I meant to imply that someone should literally say “Let’s just be friends”.

  • http://gravatar.com/weezul Chris

    @ Ceer

    You make a good point.  I have indeed seen women use LJBF as a shit test – they’ve done it to me, and then blown up at me a little later when I believed what they said and stopped trying.  “That just meant you were supposed to try harder!  What’s wrong with you?”

    I’m not psychic, that’s what’s wrong!

    As I said, I can see the reasoning behind the “friends first, work up to dating” kind of approach we’re talking about.  It *could* work, but I think the series of IOIs must be very clear.  Otherwise men like me (and men shyer than me) will just assume we’re friendzoned and walk away.

    Really, I understand it’s difficult for women to convey interest sometimes.  But frankly, patience has worn thin on the male side.

  • Someguy

    Because there is no guarantee of success, I think a lot of women will do anything to avoid making the first move. And I mean anything. I’ve had female friends ask me if they should make the first move on a guy, and when I encourage them they mope, drag their feet and clearly show me that this is not what they wanted to hear.

    “But… What if he doesn’t like me back?”

    The answer to that, of course, is that you will pass out from shame and enter a rejection-induced coma, followed by an ignominous and publicized death. I mean, what will people say at your funeral? OMG! Don’t do it!!!!!!!!

    In a bar or house party setting, I think the best advice I’ve seen here is to stand close but to the side of Mr Dreamy, literally “opening yourself” to his advances. Women have picked me up that way. If she’s so close that I can smell her, and I turn and she smiles, then POW! Prolonged eye contact and smiling is often enough to send me a message and I don’t have much of a problem holding up my end of the interaction when a woman shows obvious interest. You could probably say I’m a beta player, if such a thing is categorically acceptable.

    Of course, I’m not sure who really wants to meet someome in a bar setting. Still, the friends strategy seems fraught with pitfalls. I’ve never dated a friend or anyone from within my social circle, but I have found out over the years that several girls within my social circle had huge crushes on me but were too nervous to do anything about it. Eventually her top secret feelings would morph into “friendship”, and after a year or two or this she’d confess her long-dead crush. Of course I was clueless the entire time and wish they had never told me once it was over. It’s like saying “I used to dream about going on all kinds of adventures with you, but not anymore! Ha ha ha!”

    These days I have less platonic female friends (a few go a long way), but sometimes their behavior puzzles me. Are they trying to come onto me, or are they just being friendly? Women can touch you liberally, tussle your hair, laugh at your jokes a little too loud, and then deny any sexual intent. It’s kind of a pain in the ass to navigate all those mixed and weak signals, like looking for life on a distant star. Fun for them but not for me. So I appreciate it when a woman is “direct,” and I’ve never turned a girl down cruelly, for the simple reason that I remember how much it sucks when I was turned down cruelly. I think most guys can relate.

    Of course, some women might define being turned down as cruel in and of itself. But that’s silly: not everything is personal. Also, if you just stand there and weren’t picked, you were not turned down. You really have to do something to get turned down. Simply showing up and standing in one place does not constitute doing something. Suggesting that you’d like to see a guy again in the future or in another setting is doing something. But still, the more subtextualized and elliptic your suggestion, the less likely the man (on average) will be able to decipher what you mean.

    I really do think it’s true that shy beta guys who have never been hit on before are likely to just stare at you blankly, unable to figure out what to do with the attention. That happened to me back in my romantic beta days (daze?) as well, but less often. A few times a girl came on strong and I had no idea what to do. I couldn’t tell if she was making fun of me or if she was going to eat me for dinner. It’s funny how much we change.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @someguy
      That’s a great comment on how men experience the things we’ve been talking about. I think you’re right that most women will avoid any risk of rejection, even if it means fizzling the attraction. I have encouraged, i.e. nagged, a couple of women into initiating recently in small but concrete ways and they have had great success with it. They’ve been very surprised to learn the guy had no idea they were interested or had even concluded they weren’t. One said that he had tried to kiss her, but she was “having none of it and ran away.” She cannot recall any such moment, or any time when he even moved closer! (She responded to this confession by leaning over and planting one on him, which I thought was great. Their first kiss. His response was enthusiastic.) It’s early days, who knows if this will go anywhere. But the point is that if she had not taken a chance and made herself vulnerable to very slight rejection, she’d be wondering why he never followed up.

      The opportunities for communicating at cross-purposes are endless.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “Not long ago I ran a letter from a woman named Connor who liked a guy but didn’t know if he liked her, and it had been three years.

    C’mon, Susan. If I guy contacts a girl for three weeks he likes her, let alone three years. You really were off your usually stellar game on that post. I’ve been that guy if you/she really want to know what is going on there I can fill you in blow-by-blow*.

    He been giving her repeated opportunities to show that she’s a grown woman (as a good man, he’s not going to escalate with her before she demonstrates this – among many reasons, this will keep her count down) who can take the initiative in her own life (in this case, by showing some emotional investment, as she put it).

    If a man suggests a date and you don’t like the suggestion, if you’re interested, a grown woman suggests an alternative. That she doesn’t shows that she either not yet a grown woman, or playing him. Either way, not escalating. She does evidently show enough potential value to keep giving her opportunities, but she keeps showing that she’s not there yet.

    BTW, this has long been standard operating procedure for for how good men find their mates, and I’m assuming almost all women understood it (certainly all the women in my large extended family do). That so many women now misinterpret this as some sort of social ineptitute is an answer to the question of where the good men have gone. Until I stumbled on blogs like yours’ I couldn’t believe that women could have forgotten so much.

     

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius
      Thanks for your comment, I think you make some valid points.

      If I guy contacts a girl for three weeks he likes her, let alone three years. You really were off your usually stellar game on that post.

      Well that one stumped me. I wrote it up in such a way that I invited guys to weigh in. I am a visitor in a foreign land when it comes to male psychology, lol. I think what threw me there was that she felt that she had been rebuffed by him when she suggested continuing the evening, and she would have welcomed physical escalation. When he avoided sitting near her in the cab, she felt that he was saying loud and clear that he was worried she’d misinterpreted his interest. To be fair, the guys had a pretty wide variety of opinions on that thread too – several said he was clearly not interested, and was just stringing her along.

      I think he did like her, and her own insecurities led her astray. If she had done any of the things suggested in this post, she likely would have had a positive answer and avoided all the unnecessary anxiety. She wasn’t willing to risk rejection. I don’t recall his asking her out on a date, though – he just kept sending flirty texts that never really went anywhere. If he had made an identifiable move, she would have responded very positively.

  • Desiderius

    * – for instance, joking about his age, given his high status and otherwise high social skills means, “I’m aware of the ‘creepy’ game younger women play with (especially high value) older men. You’ll need to give me a little more than usual IOI’s in exchange for me risking falling for that game/dealing with other people who think I’m violating social norms. I can’t afford to be a total bull in that china shop.”

    Self-deprecation from an otherwise high-confidence, high-value man is a huge IOI for LTR. That’s why players will throw some in after building alpha attraction, to mimic what the good man does and get around the anti-player shield. The good man will do it before, to signal interest in LTR over casual sex.

     

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Self-deprecation from an otherwise high-confidence, high-value man is a huge IOI for LTR. That’s why players will throw some in after building alpha attraction, to mimic what the good man does and get around the anti-player shield. The good man will do it before, to signal interest in LTR over casual sex.

      I just caught this. I’ve not heard this before but it sounds like something women should understand.

      Desiderious please stick around and share your wisdom some more!

  • Anonymous

    Sue,

    I don’t buy the “I don’t want to look like a slut” explanation, because when a guy is super hot or high status women will approach him in packs, bang him in the bar bathroom and brag about it to her friends.

    This is an AWALT remark. HUS readers ANLT for the most part.

    Obviously it would be difficult to get an accurate statistic on such a thing, but what percentage of women in their 20s would you estimate have had sexual interactions (P in V or oral) with a guy they’ve just met?

    The reason I ask is that it hasn’t seemed very difficult to accomplish this with a bit of boldness and a fair degree of escalation. I don’t know if I’ve just hit upon very promiscuous women, or if this is something that a lot of girls will do if the situation seems right.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Jesus

      Obviously it would be difficult to get an accurate statistic on such a thing, but what percentage of women in their 20s would you estimate have had sexual interactions (P in V or oral) with a guy they’ve just met?

      I’m not sure I can give a confident estimate. I would guess around 20%. Last week Rollo Tomassi said there isn’t a woman alive who wouldn’t do it under the right conditions. Looking at my focus groups – around 20 women – I would say about a third have done so. (Their numbers range from 2 – >40. The 2 has definitely not done it, the >40 has done it many times.)

  • Jesus Mahoney

    That anonymous was me.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    Thank you for your reply.

    “I don’t recall his asking her out on a date, though – he just kept sending flirty texts that never really went anywhere. If he had made an identifiable move, she would have responded very positively.”

    Read her letter again. He in fact asked her on more than one “pre-date”, which unfortunately is now mandatory, as women often interpret a date invite as either a proposal of marriage and/or “too beta”. That’s why there is a dating service called “It’s just lunch.”

    Interesting what we recall. I think you had a high-value reader there and avoided recalling things that if responded to might scare her away. She’s likely missing out on a lot of essential feedback for just that reason. At least that’s my theory on the devolution of mating savvy on the part of many otherwise attractive women.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius
      Wow, I just went back and read that letter, and looking at it through your lens I do see it completely differently. I think she probably is high value – three years of texting certainly is a long time and she said he was very good looking. It seems like she wanted him to really step up and lay it out for her. She wanted the shy guy, but only if he could overcome his reticence enough to take a big risk.

      There’s another thing that is going on here, I think. It’s the He’s Just Not That Into You trap. If he’s not calling, if he’s not asking you out, if he’s not escalating he’s just not that into you. This is all undoubtedly true if he’s an alpha male. But in the current SMP a lot of guys will perhaps be interested in a woman and not do any of those things until a certain level of comfort or reassurance is given.

  • Desiderius

    And no, he’s probably not consciously aware of any of this at the age of 25/27. I wasn’t. But I can look back now and see that this was going on. As to being aware of his effect on women, he’s sort of aware, but a lot of young women make a sport of blowing out good men (the more attractive, the better) to boost their egos, and even more will bail at the first sign of trouble to avoid rejection.

    Players learn to plow through this.

    Good men start to wonder what they’re doing wrong (and of course get all the wrong advice from the women in their lives), hence his behavior in the cab. He’s concerned about spooking her like many of the other women he has pursued. He tries to get around this by including her in his social circle to build comfort, but she shoots this down.

    He knows he’s attractive, he likely gets several IOI”s/approaches a week (I did/do), but likely has a lot of doubts about how he can effectively follow up on that interest. Before discovering game, I did, and I still can struggle as there are elements of game that go against who I am, and I’m not compromising that.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    Someguy,

     

    “_Because there is no guarantee of success_, I think a lot of women will do anything to avoid making the first move. And I mean anything. I’ve had female friends ask me if they should make the first move on a guy, and when I encourage them they mope, drag their feet and clearly show me that this is not what they wanted to hear.

     

    “But… What if he doesn’t like me back?”

     

    The answer to that, of course, is that you will pass out from shame and enter a rejection-induced coma, followed by an ignominous and publicized death. I mean, what will people say at your funeral? OMG! Don’t do it!!!!!!!!”

     

    I was about to say exactly the same thing. When I discuss approaching with women, they seem to have an attitude of “how can I guarantee I get what I want?” and then they give me some anecdote about how their friend’s cousin’s sister-in-law’s sorority big sis approached a guy once, and he said no so asking guys out is a bad strategy. It’s actually kind of like guys whose approach to PUA is “give me some magic lines that make a woman fall in love with me” instead of “how do I put off a generally attractive vibe that increases my chances?”

     

    I’ve actually noticed a lot of stuff among young women that could most easily be termed control-freak behavior – they want the outcome to be fully in their hands. Love doesn’t work that way, which is part of why it’s so exciting. For all this talk about empowering young women, I find them to be incredibly emotionally fragile, which manifests in massive risk aversion. I think maybe the empowerment talk itself causes them to be afraid of failure, don’t want to let down the sisterhood.

     

    Another sign of this is female fear of commitment and “fun addiction,” which Desiderius references in his comment:

     

    “Read her letter again. He in fact asked her on more than one “pre-date”, which unfortunately is now mandatory, as women often interpret a date invite as either a proposal of marriage and/or “too beta”. That’s why there is a dating service called “It’s just lunch.” “

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Badger

      For all this talk about empowering young women, I find them to be incredibly emotionally fragile, which manifests in massive risk aversion

      Very perceptive insight here. The level of dysfunction is very high.

      Another sign of this is female fear of commitment and “fun addiction

      I know it’s common in the manosphere to say that women avoid commitment. I tend to think that isn’t it – they’ve just set the bar very, very high. Too high. They don’t want to go all in until everything on the list has been checked off. We’ve talked before about female narcissism and entitlement. A few women may realize this and correct for it if they were raised well. But I fear that much of this generation is going to remain single – the demographics, feminism, the disastrous self-esteem movement/increasing female narcissism – these will all play a role, but get ready. Men will be blamed. If you haven’t already seen it check this out:

      Why Men Are in Trouble

      5500 comments so far

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    “I don’t buy the “I don’t want to look like a slut” explanation, because when a guy is super hot or high status women will approach him in packs, bang him in the bar bathroom and brag about it to her friends.

    This is an AWALT remark. HUS readers ANLT for the most part.”

    My point wasn’t exactly about banging in bathrooms – it’s that when there’s a hot guy around, women have zero trouble competing for his attention. In wild, sex-crazed packs, even. Think chicks making out at frat parties with bros watching. I have seen it dozens or times. So if they don’t want to approach the Plain Joe, they’re communicating “you’re not hot enough for me to make a public show of myself.”

    Which is a great feeling for a guy to receive.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    add to myself:

    I think this control thing is part of why we’re seeing a flaking epidemic among young women (the other being the sheer flood of male attention, inducing choice addiction, even modest women get in the marketplace). If they’re not 100% committed to the idea of being with whatever guy they are seeing, it induces unbearable anxiety.

    This is how I know Hanna Rosin is wrong and women aren’t going to take over everything in the next generation…in business and politics, you have to be able to make decisions with imperfect information, and to be comfortable allowing results to happen that you can’t totally control (but that you can react to at the next step of opportunity). Meanwhile a large contingent of educated women can’t so much as start a conversation with a guy they are interested in.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Meanwhile a large contingent of educated women can’t so much as start a conversation with a guy they are interested in.

      Sadly, this is obviously true. We need remedial instruction in basic male-female dynamics. I suppose it’s not surprising if the only sex that anyone has in college and perhaps after is basically just drunken groping without the preliminaries. No one is learning how to date. Expressing interest is the first step in dating, for both women and men. I think a lot of women are looking for male validation or interest via such meaningless activities as making out at the bar. It’s a whole lot easier than conversation.

  • Wayfinder

    Read her letter again. He in fact asked her on more than one “pre-date”, which unfortunately is now mandatory, as women often interpret a date invite as either a proposal of marriage and/or “too beta”. That’s why there is a dating service called “It’s just lunch.”

    I agree with this. If a man is trying that hard to spend time with you, there is a very good chance he’s interested in you. No guarantees, of course.

    @Susan

    I think what threw me there was that she felt that she had been rebuffed by him when she suggested continuing the evening, and she would have welcomed physical escalation. When he avoided sitting near her in the cab, she felt that he was saying loud and clear that he was worried she’d misinterpreted his interest. (emphasis added)

    OK, here’s where I think she went wrong. My guess is that he was trying to evaluate her and either was worried that she wasn’t receptive or was trying to figure out if she was worth the risk. If he’s a “good guy” without much experience, he may actually have thought that he needed a relationship with her before escalating.

    I think one of the main gaps between girls and beta guys is that while the girls are expecting flirting, definite escalation, and so on, the guys are thinking that it’s either wrong or will scare her off.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      I think one of the main gaps between girls and beta guys is that while the girls are expecting flirting, definite escalation, and so on, the guys are thinking that it’s either wrong or will scare her off.

      Agreed. That’s what’s behind this post and others like it. If women would only accept the idea of meeting guys halfway in the early stages! It’s pretty clear that women aren’t going to march up to guys and ask them on dates or say they’re attracted. Not gonna happen. But if they can at least figure out what an IOI is, and what it takes for a guy to receive one, maybe there will be fewer missed connections. Seriously, look at Missed Connections on Craigslist! Most of those could have been a start if only one of the parties had said “hi.”

  • Wayfinder

    @Badger

    it’s that when there’s a hot guy around, women have zero trouble competing for his attention. In wild, sex-crazed packs, even.

    Notice that when I was younger, I expected that any girl who was actually interested in me to display it very visibly. I have no idea how many stand-offs I was completely unaware of. It took one girl who did approach me to make me realize that most women don’t aggressively approach like that.

  • Valentin

    - …the guys are thinking that it’s either wrong or will scare her off.

    No it’s not a thought: it’s called past experiences.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    - …the guys are thinking that it’s either wrong or will scare her off.

    No it’s not a thought: it’s called past experiences.”

    I think we’re seeing two things:

    -That plausible deniability is part of the female mating strategy. She can be subtly begging for the kiss, but then if the kiss sucks (the purpose of kissing is to evaluate hormone compatibility), she can reframe it as “I wasn’t interested, you were reading me wrong.” THis is probably all semi-subconscious.

    -That women’s windows for escalation are very short. A woman can be deeply interested at one moment, but if her hindbrain gets the idea it’s been rejected or blown off or he’s not moving fast enough, the feelings will vanish quickly.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      A woman can be deeply interested at one moment, but if her hindbrain gets the idea it’s been rejected or blown off or he’s not moving fast enough, the feelings will vanish quickly.

      I think there’s something to this, although in Connor’s case she wrote to me a full year after that cab incident. Of course, he was still texting but she was still hoping to date him. I don’t think it helped that he is six years older. She probably had some idea of him as worldly and sophisiticated wrt dating. It’s entirely possible lhe hasn’t “dated” that way any more than she has.

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    Badger,

    Your comment about choice addiction  hit something for me.

    Abundance of choices + responsibility + judgement + limited information + self under developed + appearances + deniability + trends + herd + ….

    Gonna be mumbling that for I while. Thanks for the angle.

  • Hope

    Here’s the thing about flakiness and women: we are scared of commitment but also crave it at the same time. Hence women will throw out subtle hints and flirt around, but back off when the guy actually wants to take things further into commitment territory. We don’t want to choose the wrong guy, at least those girls who are marriage-minded and don’t want to have anything to do with casual. Plausible deniability definitely plays a role here, because if things go wrong, she wants to give herself room to back out.

    I’ve been there, on a different level. I almost flaked on my husband at the beginning — I was terrified to quit my nice job with no backup (in 2009, after the start of recession) and move across the country to be with him. Sure, I really wanted to be with him, but overcoming that fear of the unknown took a lot of guts. I was very torn for a while, and we had many conversations where he asked me to take a chance, and I was hesitant. In the end, my hopes won out over my fears, and I’m glad for that.

    So it’s not all about preserving the ego. Women don’t want to make all the moves because often what she wants changes so quickly, especially for young women who have big dreams and hopes for the future. I remember at a young age feeling like the fantasy is often nicer than the reality, and that it’s better to hold the guy at an arm’s length and admire the fuzzy image from afar, than to have to deal with all the realities. Because reality often involves lots of disappointments, and modern society has not equipped us to properly deal with them.

    See Susan’s original post advising girls not to start mentally picking out matching towels when going up to a guy she’s interested in — that is a large part of what marriage-minded girls do when they start really liking a guy. It might even be just a vague feeling in the background, but it’s definitely there. So the skittish girls that don’t want to initiate are not only scared of rejection, but also scared of the whole big picture that might either materialize or vanish. Tons of internal conflict, and high stakes for her, even though it’s just indicating to a guy she likes him.

  • Valentin

    -That women’s windows for escalation are very short. A woman can be deeply interested at one moment, but if her hindbrain gets the idea it’s been rejected or blown off or he’s not moving fast enough, the feelings will vanish quickly.

    Amen to that, damn if you do damn if you don’t. And of course ultimately it’s our fault we “weren’t men enough”. I am so tired of women putting in zero effort and still reserving judgment on us…

    But then again I’m asking for sympathy for men and that’s just ridiculous isn’t it?

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    Girls, I´ve got a mini poll for you:

    When bad stuff happens, when reality strikes and your wishes crumble, when you try and fail, when the shit hits the fan, when you dont get the reward, when the outcome is not what you intended… What do you feel first? what comes more natural? 

    A) This is SO unfair.

    B) If I want a different outcome I have to do something different, or be someone different.

    Extra points if you give me some more data: 

    – Which option produces you a gut rejection?

    – Can you experience both options at the same time?

    – Do you have any of those options banned / blocked / out of your reach?

    – For how long do you need to experience A or B, before one state transforms into the other?

    Thanks a lot.

     

  • Wayfinder

    @Hope

    Here’s the thing about flakiness and women: we are scared of commitment but also crave it at the same time.

    That’s definitely been my experience. I’ve had girls get really nervous when things were going too well and they knew I was serious about them. Had one girl who repeatedly told me things that she felt would scare me off, in an apparently unconscious bid to protect herself.

  • http://lafemmeroar.wordpress.com/ lafemmeroar

    What a great list of tips for catching a man’s attention. I should have read this post before I developed my own strategy. Now I’m off to have the tattoo removed on my forehead that says “Available but not easy.” It will be a painful, expensive and long process to get rid of it. Thank goodness for bangs.

  • Hope

    @Yohami

    When I was in the hospital and the ultrasound was not showing a heartbeat for our baby that I had been carrying for 9 months, I was in total denial. As in, no, it couldn’t be happening. It took many different doctors and nurses to tell me that our baby has passed away. I was in shock.

    Then came the WTF how is this possible? This is totally unfair. Then came I should have done something different. Trying to find a reason why it happened. Maybe I shouldn’t have exercised. Maybe I should have come to the hospital earlier. Etc.

    I’m still working on the acceptance. It still makes me want to bawl when I think about it. Yeah shit really hit the fan. I tried and failed. The outcome was not what I intended. I’ll try again, right?

    Then I got pregnant again and had a missed miscarriage at 9 weeks. Then I got an e. coli uterine infection that put me in the hospital with a 105 fever and probably would have killed me if I waited longer. And since the miscarriage I didn’t stop bleeding for two months.

    I don’t know whether to choose A or B. I’m just trying to deal with the hand I’ve been dealt and trying to remember that other people go through problems, too, some way tougher than mine. Trying to see the light in all the dark. Trying to find moments of happiness in all the sadness. As bad as it all has been, at least I didn’t have to go through it alone.

    These days I like to steel myself by saying to myself, “What’s the worst that can happen? I die? So what, I die!” Death is not such a terrible thing when you have spiritual grounding and do not fear it so much. And I’ve faced it down at least twice now.

    Frank Herbert and Robert Heinlein both wrote stuff to the effect of, young men and women have to face death in different ways to truly grow up. Young men go through war, and young women go through childbirth. I’m not totally mature yet, but I think I’m getting there.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Hope
      I’m so sorry, I didn’t know. I knew you’d taken a break with the blog, but I’m so sorry for your pain and disappointment. I hope you are fully recovered from your infection. I appreciate your taking the time to comment here.

  • Richard Aubrey

    There’s another contingency, the “congenial colleague”.  As long as it is at work, in a civic activity, in school, a recreational activity, and there is no outside contact, the woman can get to know a guy–presuming there’s a guy worth knowing involved, I mean–without either IOI or other contacts.

    For example, she comes up to the guy at the judo club and asks him to teach her the hip throw.

    Okay.  She wants to know something important to her.

    And, she is saying by her asking that she is going to give the guy access to her body, confident he isn’t going to turn this into a gropefest.  He knows his business and knows how to teach it.  He will not use his size and strength and weight to embarrass her, hold her at arms length laughing.  He will not inadvertently injure her.  All of which is a whole lot more than she knows about ninety-nine percent of the guys who cross her path in a given month.  Maybe he gets that.

    Or she could be saying, once we get this thing down, practice involves me slamming your lower torso into my ass, fifteen times right and fifteen times left.  Isn’t that as good as an introduction?  Why do you think I asked about the hip throw as opposed to, say, the one-arm shoulder throw?

    Maybe he’ll get that.  The point, however, is that she gets to decide what it means when she does it.  If he gets it right, fine. If she didn’t mean it, that’s fine, too, because they’re their to do judo and this was doing judo.

     

  • http://bloggingbellita.wordpress.com Bellita

    @YOHAMI

    Are A and B the only choices allowed? If all you’re asking about is my gut reaction, then it’s something closer to:

    C) There will never be a different outcome, so I should just give up fighting . . . but there’s no reason I can’t bloom where I’ve been planted.

    I’ve had a vocation to religious life and a major plan to relocate across the world blow up in my face, with absolutely no back up plans each time. Compare it to being ready to get married, with all the guests already in the church, and then having someone come in and tell you that the person you were supposed to marry has just been killed in an accident. Or, as in Hope’s example, being ready to have a baby, with the nursery all set up at home, and then being told that your unborn child is dead. There’s nothing to do but pick up the pieces and start from square one again.

    From there, it’s easy to move to B, and I guess did end up choosing B those two times. But that was because I had to, not because I had the luxury of doing things differently to see if they could get me better results. I had already accepted that I wouldn’t get what I originally wanted, so it was what I wanted that had to be the first thing to change.

  • Isabel

    When bad stuff happens, when reality strikes and your wishes crumble, when you try and fail, when the shit hits the fan, when you dont get the reward, when the outcome is not what you intended… What do you feel first? what comes more natural?

    A) This is SO unfair.

    B) If I want a different outcome I have to do something different, or be someone different.

    Erm. Probably B. Can’t remember the last time something bad happened that wasn’t actually my fault tbh. I reckon most of my problems are self-created or self-imposed to an extent.  Also ‘C’ is my most natural reaction and the one that leads to B in the first place:

    C) Should have known better. Had the chance and you blew it but there’s probably some way around it anyway so like … whatever.

    - Which option produces you a gut rejection?

    Gut reaction you mean? A elicits feelings of incoherent anger whilst B elicits feelings of optimism so probably A because it’s more visceral. You’d have to be in a calm state of mind to experience B, none of that gut stuff.

    - Can you experience both options at the same time?

    In the same day, yes. At the same time, no.

    Do you have any of those options banned / blocked / out of your reach?

    Don’t get this question.

    - For how long do you need to experience A or B, before one state transforms into the other?

    In the event of A: at the most a few hours or days before it becomes B and C. I’m always optimistic so whenever bad things happen, I either rationalise it by saying “wasn’t meant to be/didn’t like it anyway” or by getting excited and making new plans. Especially if the new plan involves making bullet point lists. ¬_¬

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Yohami
      I don’t ever feel this is so UNFAIR. But I do usually respond initially with this is so TERRIBLE. Just kind of wallowing in disappointment. From there I quickly get strategic but at first I just sit with the fact that I’ve been dealt a blow. I don’t take it personally, though.

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    Bellita, Hope,

    Thanks, neither A or B or (C) are incorrect, but I do have a lot to say about them. I dont want to hijack this thread so I´ll continue here

    http://yohami.com/blog/2011/10/07/poll-cant-always-get-what-you-want/

  • Isabel

    Back on-topic. Why would you even contemplate the LJBF approach? =/

     

    It’d be confusing to insist on being friends whilst, at the same time, giving out IOIs that signal your desire for something a lot more than friendship. I doubt that type of guy has the social intelligence to suss her intentions within the given timeframe in the first place and even if he did; isn’t three months too long to finally find out that he doesn’t really fancy you back?  Also, you would need to have very similar interests for him to justify spending so much platonic time with you.

     

    Wouldn’t it just be a lot easier to ask him out the normal way and make it clear that you fancy him? I’d rather get rejected on the spot than three months down the line tbh.

     

     

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      No one has suggested LJBF as an approach, though ExNewYorker made a little joke about it. So there is no insisting on being friends. My only point is that getting to know a guy as a friend is a way of increasing the comfort level between you enough to demonstrate interest by flirting, lightly touching, etc. Young people today, at least in the US, do most of their hanging out in friend groups. From there people may pair off. Often someone is a friend, or at least an acquaintance for a while before a drunken hookup happens. I’m really just thinking about ways to move things forward, no alcohol needed.

  • Hope

    The “friends first” approach is not without problems, as clearly people have been burned by being friendzoned (I have, too). But I think its potential for generating heat is far better than the “tingle on first date or s/he’s out” method that’s popular these days. You just can’t know that much about someone within a few hours. I can’t speak for other girls, but I don’t get attracted to guys I barely know, and a guy’s looks don’t do much for me (not since I was like 14).

    I never “insist” on “only” being friends. I usually don’t even articulate the “friends” phrase, I just do stuff to be *friendly* but not romantic in any way. That is, I talk a lot more to the person one-on-one, I seek the person out, I do things to be nice, but no hugging, no touching, nothing physical. This is what I do at the beginning of female friendships, too, so yes it is platonic. But with a guy, it’s amplified, and if he’s interesting, I keep up the conversations. Sometimes they fizzle out, and other times the guy realizes that this girl who seeks him out is interesting and available, and so the talks heat up.

    I require a lot of emotional, mental and, dare I say it, soulful connection with a guy before I can even begin to get the tingles, and even begin to think about touching him. This is why I advocate the becoming friends approach, but perhaps for other girls (who aren’t weird like me) it’s counterproductive. I’ve never made out with a guy who didn’t tell me he loves me. If I had to do “dating” I would be totally out of my element, because guys would think I was some kind of a cold, stiff prude.

    I take my time to get to know a guy, to really find out who he is and let him find out who I am. I don’t have a bunch of friends; I have very few good ones (classic sign of introversion). I don’t take the word “friend” lightly either; my friendships go deep. And I only get passionate and romantic and loving once the deep connection has been made. I don’t care about the time or effort it takes to establish that connection, because it’s so rare to meet someone “on my wavelength.”

    That said, this approach will really turn off some guys. It’s not going to get any alpha jock frat boy’s attention, nor is it going to reach the cynical guy who doesn’t want to risk his heart at all. Also, some guys hate girls that try to find out more about them. But it worked for me and for what I was looking for, genuine love and connection (and I found it).

  • Desiderius

    Hope,

    I think that’s right on the money, and so much better than Connor’s “he must not like me if he doesn’t want to fuck me.” Chances are better than 50% that she knows full well and she’s the player there.

    I don’t want to fuck a girl I like right away because I know my alpha hormones will be blaring “next!” as soon as I’m done. I want to have built some emotional connection strong enough to overcome that urge before putting a girl through that.

    I’ve learned this from experience and also from what my alpha father did to my very high-value but still abandoned mom. I don’t want to do what he did, but way too many women (especially the most attractive) interpret that aversion as “too beta”?

    What the hell?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius

      I don’t want to fuck a girl I like right away because I know my alpha hormones will be blaring “next!” as soon as I’m done. I want to have built some emotional connection strong enough to overcome that urge before putting a girl through that.

      I’ve learned this from experience and also from what my alpha father did to my very high-value but still abandoned mom. I don’t want to do what he did, but way too many women (especially the most attractive) interpret that aversion as “too beta”?

      What the hell?

      This is highly admirable but I believe it’s also very unusual. Many women will never meet a single guy who sets a slow pace. I do hear women speak very appreciatively of a guy who doesn’t even try to “come up” after the first handful of dates, especially if there’s a passionate kiss or some hand holding. Women view it as a sign of respect, and it often is, though your attitude may be more common than I think.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    I’m going to let you in on a secret – that guy trying to get with Connor was an alpha. Alphas are defined by options, not what they do with those options. She states at the outset that all the girls wanted him when they first met – that’s alpha.

    Not all alphas are players, although there has been a huge erosion. Back when monogamous civilization was working better than it does now, alphas who had better things to do than chase pussy all day (i.e. the vast majority of us) signed up to play by the traditional monogamous rules and got a lot in return: stable families for our kids, support in our career/avocations, and someone we could support in family/community-building and even in some cases (like my grandparents) in her career and interests.

    I think a lot of us get trapped by girls like Connor – equivalent of the alpha who won’t commit to exclusivity/marriage, Connor would never commit emotionally/carrying her share of the risk. There are also just as many girls who won’t return calls/flake as there are men who pump and dump.

    Same dynamic, and its usually the weaker person relationship-wise who’s doing the premature pull-outs.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Not all alphas are players, although there has been a huge erosion. Back when monogamous civilization was working better than it does now, alphas who had better things to do than chase pussy all day (i.e. the vast majority of us) signed up to play by the traditional monogamous rules and got a lot in return

      Yes. When I was in college and grad school in the late 70s and 80s there were far fewer players. One didn’t even hear men aspiring to be players. Assortative mating didn’t take care of everyone’s needs, but it was far more functional than what we’ve got today.

      The Principle of Least Interest didn’t rule either – couples had conflicts, got jealous, etc. naturally, but there was not this constant struggle for the upper hand.

      I also think there was less distinction between alphas and betas. With more winners, being on Team Alpha was not so important. There was more focus on getting educated and getting ahead. Men didn’t devote their time to chasing pussy and women didn’t devote their time to attention whoring.

  • Desiderius

    The final word on Clueless Bill:

    “Modern Social Conservatives are in many ways like the elderly World War I generals who told the young men under their command to fix bayonets and to charge fruitlessly into machine gun fire for “duty and honor”.

    They were so bound up in tradition and their view of how they though the war should be, that they were unable or unwilling to adapt to the new reality. Millions needlessly died.”

    So money.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “It seems like she wanted him to really step up and lay it out for her.”

    If she wanted that, she would have asked for it. I think she was just fine with the arrangement – regular validation boosts from a hot guy all the other girls wanted without having to risk making a relationship work.

    Everything else is likely just an excuse to keep him at arm’s length providing that validation. He’s her validation buddy.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius

      If she wanted that, she would have asked for it. I think she was just fine with the arrangement – regular validation boosts from a hot guy all the other girls wanted without having to risk making a relationship work.

      Everything else is likely just an excuse to keep him at arm’s length providing that validation. He’s her validation buddy.

      Why are you so certain about Connor? Why do you think she doesn’t want a relationship? I sounded to me like she hadn’t forgotten this guy in all this time – there was real interest there. I think she was very uncomfortable giving IOIs because she was not certain that she was as attractive as he was, and so was worried he just liked her as a friend. As ridiculous as it sounds, women do not understand that men generally don’t put effort into forging platonic friendships. Guys can call and text and tell jokes and if they don’t make a move, the woman thinks she’s being viewed like a little sister.

  • Lavazza

    SW: “I know it’s common in the manosphere to say that women avoid commitment. I tend to think that isn’t it – they’ve just set the bar very, very high. Too high. They don’t want to go all in until everything on the list has been checked off.”

    You have to include “staying commited” in “commitment”, but the same applies there. Many women have a very high bar for staying committed, adding new things to the list to be checked off.

  • Desiderius

    One last comment here and I’ll cool off for awhile. Have you seen this article?

    http://www.paulgraham.com/nerds.html

    The basic take away is that becoming socially adept is hard work that requires a lot of time, effort, and energy. There is a real trade-off between academic/professional excellence vs. social acuity/status. A lot of these women who have been pushed their whole lives into dedicating themselves to their careers are not aware of how this has lowered their SMV/MMV by leaving them inexperienced at reading social signals, being aware of cultural norms, or being able to empathize with other people, not just men, which used to be a woman’s ace in the hole.

    I’ve always had women who would give me strong IOI’s (playing with hair, nervousness) while saying they’re too busy with work to get together. I think this is an attempt to DHV, as busy men are attractive to women, and I’ve also learned that its a shit test and if I persist I can get through it, but for several years, that was it, I was done. Why would I be interested in someone for whom I was such a low priority? Another DHV?

    In general, a lot of women are treating men in the manner that would turn them on if wen treated them that way – a good rule of thumb for the socially inexperienced, but disastrous for male/female relations.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      In general, a lot of women are treating men in the manner that would turn them on if wen treated them that way – a good rule of thumb for the socially inexperienced, but disastrous for male/female relations.

      This also explains why women think men should be delighted that they are successful in their careers, well-traveled, etc. When men don’t appear delighted after all, women fall back on the “He’s intimidated” excuse. At 35 they’re still claiming men are intimidated by them.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Desiderius.

    WRT  WW I.  Not true.  The generals were all veterans of colonial wars–Boer War, ex.–where manuver was a big, big deal.  Cavalry was the socially most prominent arm.  The problem was breaking through, traditionally the job of the Infantry.  But, due to new circumstances such as a restricted battlefield which could be manned many lines deep, and certain other technolgical issues, the Infantry could never manage a breakthrough.

    The Brits and French spent huge resources keeping large cavalry formations ready for the breakthrough–which never came–until more than obvious it was never going to happen.

    The only alternative was attrition, which the Allies barely won.

  • Lavazza

    The dynamics discussed here made me search out this funny music video from the eighties.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnvJfRkK6oI&feature=related

  • Anacaona

    The answer to that, of course, is that you will pass out from shame and enter a rejection-induced coma, followed by an ignominous and publicized death. I mean, what will people say at your funeral? OMG! Don’t do it!!!!!!!!

    I really think there most a correlation between what a women thinks when she rejects a guy and her inability to make the first move. If the guy she rejects comes from being invisible to “creep how dare you! go and die” and this is the kind of ideas her girlfriends share, then chances are this is the same treatment she expect a men to have and we know that for women social embarrassment even if mentally or imaginary is the worst thing ever. If the women in question is just thinking “thanks, but no thanks” I think she might be more open to put herself out there, YMMV.

    Here’s the thing about flakiness and women: we are scared of commitment but also crave it at the same time.

    I think the dichotomy is that many women want commitment till they actually have it. After all few people actually had seen a relationship with all its ups and downs without breaking apart so the longingness and the chase can become a goal on itself. So once the guy finally is yours…what I’m supposed to do with it? One of the reasons I hated dating is that I know what to do in a committed relationship and that is where I can do my best. I sucked balls at dating so catching the man was for me something more challenging that actually have one. I think that is part of the Beta dilemma that has been raised to know how to deal with a committed relationship but not how to actually attract a woman to get one YMMV.

    lafemmeroar

    Heh funny.

  • Hope

    @Susan, thank you. I’m still recovering, but things are getting better. I have a great family (I love my mother-in-law!) and support from a few good girl friends, and of course an awesome husband. So I count my blessings.

    @Desiderius, that sounds about right. I’m one of the nerds, and my social skills are not great. Ironically, that’s partially why I did what I did, not playing games, not being aloof, always answering calls and always being eager. Because I was socially awkward, I didn’t get the mainstream girl message that I was not supposed to pick up the phone and not supposed to confess to the guy that I liked him.

    What also helped my case was that I didn’t like the popular guys. I disqualified guys that seemed like they got too much female attention or gave off the player vibe. I always had a lot in common with the nerdy guys, and even when the romance didn’t work out, there were still the good conversations and all the neat and interesting stuff I learned.

  • GudEnuf

    Susan: This also explains why women think men should be delighted that they are successful in their careers, well-traveled, etc. When men don’t appear delighted after all, women fall back on the “He’s intimidated” excuse. At 35 they’re still claiming men are intimidated by them.

    The only reason game works at all is because women can have careers these days. If women depend on men for money, rich men have a tremendous advantage on the marketplace. Women wouldn’t be able to afford shacking with attractive but broke guys.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @GudEnuf

      The only reason game works at all is because women can have careers these days.

      Are you saying that men should be thankful for, and attracted to, women with careers? I might respond that if women didn’t have careers, men wouldn’t need Game. Game is a direct response to the SMP that feminism created. I’m not saying that women should not have careers, obviously. Just that they shouldn’t think their careers are sexually arousing to males.

  • Ceer

    I guess that educating women on the basics of a game style that would work for them would be difficult.  Their average capacity for hamster wheel spinning seems greater than men’s. 

    I have a working theory.  It’s commonly thought that women have too little self esteem because of all the hookups our culture experiences, particularly with alcohol.  It seems counterintuitive at first, but I think it’s false.  Allow me to explain.

    If a woman has a high opinion of herself, she’s likely to rationally decide against pairing up with any man unless he fulfills the 463 bullet point checklist (he doesn’t).  She will occasionally go to drunken parties or clubs because she “feels like it” or because “her friends are doing it” (her higher functions have failed to provide a mate, so her base insticts are prodding her).  Alcohol, game, or high alpha demolish the checklist, and a hookup is made.  Is this person likely to be good for her?

    A second woman has a medium opinion of herself.  She’s sensible, and only lists her bare essentials on her checklist.  She gets into several relationships, which may or may not be romatic/sexual, but connect on a personal level.  Such a woman does not necessarily go to a drunken party/bar for several reasons:  her different set of friends aren’t into that, she has a boyfriend already and they go out together, her instincts have more recently been satiated by her rational self…  Is this woman as likely as the first to be in position for an alcohol fueled hookup?  Is this woman as likely as the first to accept such a hookup?

    A third woman has a low opinion of herself.  She views sexuality as a bargaining chip to be played for commitment early and often.  She does not need alcohol for sex, but is as young and beautiful as the first two women, so she tries for the same set of alphas, because that’s what she feels best with.  She’s the one pulling her friends to the clubs because she enjoys going and attracting the lesser guys only to blow them off.  Which of these three women is likely to be in the best long term position? 

    My answer to this problem is the middle one, admittedly based on my preferred strategy.  I think it’s helpful to a woman to raise her self-perception only so far.  The optimum self-esteem is going to be one that prods a person to go for real commitment and genuine personal compatability, but doesn’t promote pride and the lengthy checklist of must haves that no man has and no man worth anything will try to fill.  The weakness of the checklist is that it doesn’t apply equally.  Men who are alpha, who come up on the woman while she’s drunk, or who have game, or who are much more physically attractive than others don’t have it applied to them so readily. 

    Your thoughts?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ceer
      Good comment. You’ve touched on several themes here than I’ve written about before. First, the woman who has a high opinion of herself, with a long checklist. This is where the 9-10s often reside. They know they have high SMV, they refuse to do random hookups with the guys who would have committed to them happily in an earlier era. They will have moments of weakness, but they tend to hook up less than other women. They’ve pretty much priced themselves out of the market.

      Second, the middle group of women is likely to be the 6-8s. They know they’re not the hottest, but they try harder. They are the “weak bidders” so they differentiate themselves in other ways to get men. Their success depends on which men they target. Those aiming for alphas to have casual sex with are strictly P&D. Others may lock down a good man early on by behaving exactly the way you describe.

      Your description of the third woman doesn’t resonate with me. It works if she is not beautiful. The woman putting out for alphas but not attractive enough to get commitment. This woman often has a distorted sense of her own SMV.

      I agree with you about self-esteem. Too high or too low and relationships are problematic. It’s true for men too.

  • Valentin

    Sorry Ceer but we all know the problem of female ego since long before. There’s a saying I’ve read somewhere recently about how to get romantic interest. From a man: stroke his ego, from a woman: smash it to bits. Simple, but very true.

  • Jesus Mahoney

    Susan,

    I’m going to let you in on a secret – that guy trying to get with Connor was an alpha. Alphas are defined by options, not what they do with those options.

    Meh. Alphas may not be defined by what they do with their options, but certainly they’re defined in part by the fact that they perceive those options. A hot guy might have loads of interested women orbiting, but if he’s clueless, he’s in the same boat as the lesser betas who are stuck home googling porn because nobody lusts after them.

  • Ceer

    @Valentin

    I’ve never heard this outside the context of game literature.  As I’m relatively new to HUS, I tried to use as much tact as possible.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ceer

      As I’m relatively new to HUS, I tried to use as much tact as possible.

      And that is much appreciated!

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    Susan, GudEnuf

    Not sure how to read that. Are you saying if women didnt have careers, they wouldnt be attracted to the most dominant guy in the room? or…

    As I see it game was “invented” because there are no males to learn stuff from. It counters a brainwash. Its independent of women having jobs or not.

    But what do you mean?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Yohami
      I see feminism as having had a dramatic effect on male roles, and male role models. American men really don’t know what role they can and should play in American society. A media that seems hostage to feminists, politicians that vote with the feminist lobby – we’ve lost our ability to appreciate males and their opportunities have greatly diminished. Mystery codified Game after the Women’s Movement dramatically influenced sexual mores and women’s independence.

  • GudEnuf

    Susan: Are you saying that men should be thankful for, and attracted to, women with careers?

     

    There’s more to choosing a wife than sexual attraction. All things equal, it’s better to marry a woman with money.

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    “all things being equal” is a big IF

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    “I know it’s common in the manosphere to say that women avoid commitment. I tend to think that isn’t it – they’ve just set the bar very, very high. Too high. They don’t want to go all in until everything on the list has been checked off. ”

    …but avoiding “commitment” until you know it’s guaranteed to be good isn’t commitment at all. Commitment has as a subtext an element of accepting imperfection, that you’re going to stay in when the going gets tough, and that you are making a decision with imperfect information. It’s a logical incongruence to commit to a sure thing. You don’t have to be “committed” to something you’ve engineered to not get tough, which is what these women are looking for (and as we know, is nigh impossible – there’s just no such thing as a sure thing in relationships.)

    It’s like how if a shortcut wasn’t difficult, it wouldn’t be a shortcut, it would just be “the way.” Or like the phrase “it’s not gambling if you know you’re going to win.”

    I think we’re saying the same thing – young women don’t want to stick their necks out, they want the man to absord all the risk so they can enjoy the profits. Dalrock writes ad nauseum about this; married women complain they are “trapped,” and by trapped, they mean committed.

    The basic trend I’ve noticed in young women in my cohort is they are paralytically afraid of being “boxed in.” Girls who would gladly escalate, even screw, guys in a semi-drunken bar crawl or house party get really skittish when that escalation is contextualized by a one-on-one date. Several dude bloggers have written about this lately – they recommend against dating not because PUAs say it’s for chumps, but because it’s an ineffective way of acquiring female companionship, you’re better off meeting for a quick drink and pushing for a bang. It’s sad, obviously, esp for a guy like me who really values date experiences and doesn’t feel like he should have to schmooze his way into her pants before she’ll let him take her to his favorite dive or go minigolfing (isn’t that a weird reversal of dating logistics?)

    I don’t think it’s girls’ nature as much as they’ve been sold on it by some extremely bad teachers. They’ve taken the blue pill about using their “freedom,” the women’s centers are obsessively concerned about “controlling” behavior from their boyfriends. The default notion is that men are creepy and predatory and thus he must be trying to mindmeld you or something. At its worst, it means that a relationship is not a mutual sacrifice, but simply an accessory to a woman’s life so she has someone to eat with and take to weddings.

    My football coach used to talk about commitment to the team, which meant when we lost games or wanted to puke, we wouldn’t hang it up and go home to sneak beer out of our parents’ refrigerators. It’s easy to get kids to turn out when they anticipate an undefeated season. It’s a lot harder to get them moving when the outlook is cloudy – but the best teams are forged from the lessons of bad seasons, when they had guts and stuck with it. Coaches also learn more from unsuccessful seasons in the W-L column, because when you’re committed, you get a lot more creative when challenges arise.

    “We need remedial instruction in basic male-female dynamics. I suppose it’s not surprising if the only sex that anyone has in college and perhaps after is basically just drunken groping without the preliminaries. No one is learning how to date. Expressing interest is the first step in dating, for both women and men.”

    Dating rituals provide a clear binding of action with intent – an invitation for a date is a indicator of interest, escalating date scale is an escalation of interest, invitations inside homes = booty time. What I’ve noticed among men and women my age is a lack of understanding that dating requires some sense of urgency. If your date calls you, you better call back! If you want to keep dating the person, you better find a hole in your schedule and get together. Some people have this bizarre idea they can reset-restart the process at will like a DVR – I’m busy next week, maybe the week after, oh wait I’ll text you in two months when I’ve got some more time, remember me we went to that movie six months ago – and that’s just not legit.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Badger

      Commitment has as a subtext an element of accepting imperfection, that you’re going to stay in when the going gets tough, and that you are making a decision with imperfect information. It’s a logical incongruence to commit to a sure thing.

      Agreed. I was reading Eckhart Tolle on relationships yesterday (love him). He says that the only possible way to have a functional relationship is to fully accept the other person exactly as they are, right now. I’ve been thinking about it – what a tall order! I realize I don’t even do this with my husband. I wish he wouldn’t do x as much, and did y a little more. It’s just a recipe for dissatisfaction. So we’ve got high expectations, which keep us from really going all in. I do think it’s about risk aversion. Going all in is very scary, it’s standing naked and defenseless in a much more profound way than standing naked in front of a stranger before sex.

      It’s sad, obviously, esp for a guy like me who really values date experiences and doesn’t feel like he should have to schmooze his way into her pants before she’ll let him take her to his favorite dive or go minigolfing (isn’t that a weird reversal of dating logistics?)

      That really is upside down. I also think that women and most men have lost the art of flirting or even making conversation. They avoid phone calls and would rather text. They have casual sex and get the hell out of there in the morning. It’s sexualization without socialization.

      Some people have this bizarre idea they can reset-restart the process at will like a DVR – I’m busy next week, maybe the week after, oh wait I’ll text you in two months when I’ve got some more time, remember me we went to that movie six months ago – and that’s just not legit.

      Yeah I’ve been hearing this too. I realize people are busy, but it’s just whacked to think you’re dating someone when you actually are face to face every three weeks. To anyone in that situation I say: Diversify your portfolio.

  • http://bbsezmore.wordpress.com/ Bb

    Hope, I’m so sorry. Dealing with such huge losses, and having to process through the pain and grief is so tough. Grief can be akin to a chronic illness, coming and going in waves. I’m so glad that you have the support of your friends and family.

  • Anacaona

    I don’t think it’s girls’ nature as much as they’ve been sold on it by some extremely bad teachers. They’ve taken the blue pill about using their “freedom,” the women’s centers are obsessively concerned about “controlling” behavior from their boyfriends. The default notion is that men are creepy and predatory and thus he must be trying to mindmeld you or something

    “Oh boy so this. A man has agency and wants something that you don’t and he is not willing to bend to your will and make you happy? You are in abusive relationship, you deserve better, there are plenty of men in the world”

    Although I blame The Gift of Fear for this. The book clearly says that when a woman feels in danger or threatened her sixth sense is telling her the truth and she most listen to it, that after telling statistically speaking how many women die at the hands of men. Recipe for the disaster specially with the already molded for misandry brains of young women, I wouldn’t be surprise if Susan’s neighbor that called the 911 because the man looked read that book before.

  • Wayfinder

    @Anacaona

    Although I blame The Gift of Fear for this. The book clearly says that when a woman feels in danger or threatened her sixth sense is telling her the truth and she most listen to it, that after telling statistically speaking how many women die at the hands of men.

    Seriously? There’s book? This is worse than I thought. No wonder women are avoiding commitment, if they are simultaneously afraid of anything that isn’t a sure thing and are consciously giving into their fear.

    @Badger

    The basic trend I’ve noticed in young women in my cohort is they are paralytically afraid of being “boxed in.” Girls who would gladly escalate, even screw, guys in a semi-drunken bar crawl or house party get really skittish when that escalation is contextualized by a one-on-one date. Several dude bloggers have written about this lately – they recommend against dating not because PUAs say it’s for chumps, but because it’s an ineffective way of acquiring female companionship, you’re better off meeting for a quick drink and pushing for a bang.

    I was confused the first time I noticed this in the girls I was dating. They were all pathologically afraid to commit to anything. I eventually wised up and realized that I was better off alone than with someone who was basically afraid of her own choices.

    Even if you try to follow one of the dating rituals of the past, it’s way too easy for the two of you to unconsciously have different scripts and wonder why the other one is so incomprehensible.

    I’m not interested in “banging a lot of girls”, I’m looking for a mother for my future children. Very few of the opposite sex seem to have the future orientation necessary to stick with a relationship when the going gets tough. Some will undoubtedly develop the maturity out of necessity after they become mothers, but that’s a hell of a risk to take.

    For all I know, large swaths of men have similar problems committing, but I’m not them so that isn’t my problem. If anything, it makes me more valuable.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Wayfinder.  More valuable to who?  Whom?  Whichever.

     

    Wrt The Gift of Fear.  de Becker makes the same point made in the book “Blink”.  We take in information without knowing it.  Remember the fuss about “subliminal” advertising in movies?  We process it without consciously knowing it.

    To paraphrase de Becker, conscious conclusions are like eighth grade math problems where you show your work.  It can be checked.  Hunches,  bad vibes, feelings, says de Becker, are just as valid, percolating up from the unconscious, but the “work” done to reach them is not visible.  Thus we tend to dismiss them.

    “Blink” says our first impressions of practically everything of which we have first impressions are more than likely right and congruent with the impression we get after long familiarity. Claims to have some empirical data, as well.

    de Becker also says following your hunches is a good way of avoiding trouble.  If an elevator door opens and a couple of guys on it look edgy, waiting for the next one costs you forty-five seconds.  Maybe it was a wasted forty-five seconds, but still….  If you go with the social dance despite your feeling, maybe you’ll be okay.  But if you’re wrong, the forty-five seconds you saved don’t amount to much.

    wrt relationships, if the other person raises your back hairs, there’s probably a reason for it.  And if there isn’t, the time and anxiety involved in getting through the raised-back-hair period to the mellow period is probably far too long to keep from poisoning the relationship anyway.  That’s just bad luck, but that’s the way it goes.

  • Desiderius

    Badger’s been all over it this thread. I’ve bookmarked your blog.

     

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius
      Oh, did you find me via Badger? Badger is a fan favorite around here. So glad you’ll be back!

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “She probably had some idea of him as worldly and sophisiticated wrt dating. It’s entirely possible lhe hasn’t “dated” that way any more than she has.”

    He is definitely more worldly and sophisticated than she is (the “he must have a limited social life – only 100 FB friends” was classic), but dating per se among that age group is not the norm – many people in the know don’t date. But they don’t just hook up randomly either – they do a lot of group socializing that can involve some pairing up with a lot less pressure.

    And a lot of them are still finding marriage partners, especially the higher up you go on the social scale, where its important to watch what they do, not what that say*. The problem is lower down the scale, and those who fall through the cracks without finding a mate by 25. Then things get very hairy, especially for women, but also for men who don’t get clued in by the Roissys/Dalrocks of the world.

    * – Many of our leading progressives (sic) are flaming socons in their personal lives. See the first couple.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “Why are you so certain about Connor?”

    Ain’t nothing certain in this world. You call ‘em as best you can, then take your chances.

    “Why do you think she doesn’t want a relationship?”

    Oh, she does. She just wants other things more. It wasn’t just the guy I could identify with in that e-mail. I’ve been in Connor’s shoes more than I’d like to admit. It is extraordinarily easy to procrastinate these days, for men or women. It’s just that doing so hurts women more. I’m getting to the age where my alarm is finally going off, so I’ve had to try to figure some of this out.

    “I sounded to me like she hadn’t forgotten this guy in all this time – there was real interest there.”

    Meh. I’ve yet to meet a woman who could have real interest without emotion, or a man for that matter, if we’re talking the sort of interest that matters. She wasn’t letting herself get interested until things got physical. For good men, the most important thing when looking for a mate is to find someone who values some things more than the physical – that comes and goes, especially with the hormones involved with childbearing.

    He is generous to perceive her putting the physical first as immaturity rather than unsuitability.

    “I think she was very uncomfortable giving IOIs because she was not certain that she was as attractive as he was, and so was worried he just liked her as a friend. As ridiculous as it sounds, women do not understand that men generally don’t put effort into forging platonic friendships.”

    Bullshit – we forge them all the time, but not with flirty e-mails. C’mon, Susan. She knows. I’m a teacher. Kids play dumb all the time. Bad teachers believe them. They want you not to believe them. It’s like a shit test. Sorry you failed this one. Have you heard from her recently?

    As far as how attractive she is, that’s his problem, not hers. If he’s attractive to her, she needs to be assertive about getting to know him better to see if he’d make a good life partner.

    “Guys can call and text and tell jokes and if they don’t make a move, the woman thinks she’s being viewed like a little sister.”

    Still think he’s beta, Jesus? One of Roissy’s main pieces of advice is to treat women you are attracted to like your kid sister to build attraction.

    As for the title of that post – Player or Beta? WTF? Gee, is Connor a Whore or a Prude, Susan? Don’t you think you might be leaving out a category or two there? Kinda hard to find Mr. Right when you divide all men into two categories of unsuitable. She’s got Mr. Darcy staring her right in the face and she’s too busy judging the performance to notice.

    The big problem is conflating what Roissy calls “anti-game” (he is gold on this – required reading for all men) and what Marcotte calls NiceGuy behavior, which basically boils down to constant approval seeking on the one hand, with honorable behavior that men value in men and that women used to as well – trustworthiness, honesty, a proper humility, basically the inverse of the dark triad – on the other, all under the label beta.

    There are not a few alphas who still abide by that code of honor (you’ll find many in various uniforms) who are currently being rejected/betrayed by women who one can fairly call socially, and even more morally, retarded.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius

      Sorry you failed this one. Have you heard from her recently?

      Thanks for your condolences :-) Actually, I know you’re right, which leads me to your second question. I emailed her yesterday to let her know the thread had been revived here, and that I thought the input was worth her taking a look. No response yet.

      Thinking of this as a swing and a miss with Mr. Darcy is making my heart pound. I think I’m getting too caught up in this job.

  • Desiderius

    Ceer,

    (her higher functions have failed to provide a mate, so her base insticts are prodding her)

    Among those who don’t pair up by 25 (maybe extend that to 28 in the big cities – but only for those from strong families themselves), this has become the default.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “He says that the only possible way to have a functional relationship is to fully accept the other person exactly as they are, right now.”

    That can lead down the road to the celebration of mediocrity if one isn’t also able to call a wart a wart, and I’m not going to accept you letting yourself go to pot any more than I expect you to accept me turning into a simpering, approval-seeking doormat. When one understands that the best people get to be the best people through the process of a good marriage, then you’ve got something to shoot for, together. Of course, you’ve also got to understand that shooting sometimes involves missing, but that the best shots are also those who’ve missed the most times.

    “Love doesn’t make a marriage last, marriage makes a love last.”

    – Bonhoeffer

    “Going all in”

    How did going on a date become “all-in”? I used to go out with people to get to know them better – it boils down to women avoiding that at all costs. The ideal always beats the real, and with hypergamy unbound, second-best is never good enough.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius

      When one understands that the best people get to be the best people through the process of a good marriage, then you’ve got something to shoot for, together.

      I don’t disagree. Tolle recognizes the desire/need for self-development and achievement, but he’s all about living in the moment. If that is all you have (and it is) then you can only fully love someone if you accept them. I suppose the implication is to choose someone who you can feel that way about. It makes no sense to fall for a person based on how they might improve, or withdraw affection as punishment for your not getting what you want. If you can’t accept them, then the relationship has an element of dysfunction.

      How did going on a date become “all-in”?

      That isn’t what I meant by “all-in.” I meant giving a relationship its best chance at survival by risking loss or eventual disappointment. I speak with young women who are in “serious” relationships of a couple of years duration, and I’m often surprised by how little emotional sharing goes on. There’s a self-protective mechanism at work. It’s understandable – kids in college know they’ve got years before they’ll likely marry, so getting too attached seems unwise. But the end result is that relationship skills are seriously underdeveloped in young people, both because of the dearth of relationships, and the caution with which people approach them.

  • Wayfinder

    @Richard Aubrey

    Wayfinder.  More valuable to who?  Whom?  Whichever.

    To women who are actually looking for marriage and prepared to invest in committing to something. I can tell you right now that some of the women I’ve dated in the past have slim chances of finding someone who is at all my equal, in character, education, earning potential, or a number of other measures. Which I thought was a low bar, until I saw the competition.

    And, maybe more importantly, more valuable to myself.

    On Intuition

    Thing is, subliminal advertizing has been proven to be completely useless. Blink has had numerous criticisms and responses that suggest that our intuitive minds are quite fallible, and uncritically accepting a split-second judgement can actually be dangerous. The process being described here is exactly the “rationalization hamster”: these women are having a split-second gut feeling and make up rationalizations to validate their feelings, all while avoiding examining the actual reasoning and risk.

    If you first prime the pump with frighting imagery and statistics (which have been proven to significantly alter that split-second judgement we’re relying on) you get women who are afraid of vanishingly rare dangers, like rape by a stranger, children getting kidnapped at random, shark attacks, the black guy minding his own business, beta men, and other such imaginary dangers.

    This would be bad enough, but it often means that by avoiding the intuitive dangers they steer smack into the actual dangers. Children of single mothers are vastly more likely to be sexually and physically abused, rape and other violent crimes are usually perpetuated by those with prior relationships, kidnapped children are most because of a custody dispute with the other parent…we can’t keep telling people to trust their instincts in cases where their instincts are provably dangerous.

    And, relevant to the audience here, I suspect that an aggressive, alpha player she is hooking up with is more likely to perpetuate domestic violence and non-consensual sex than those icky, dangerous betas who are trying to to ask her out on a date.

  • Wayfinder

    @Desiderius

    How did going on a date become “all-in”? I used to go out with people to get to know them better – it boils down to women avoiding that at all costs. The ideal always beats the real, and with hypergamy unbound, second-best is never good enough.

    I’ve dated at least one woman who was apparently desperate to avoid me getting to know her because she was afraid that seeing who she really was would scare me away.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “This is highly admirable but I believe it’s also very unusual. Many women will never meet a single guy who sets a slow pace. I do hear women speak very appreciatively of a guy who doesn’t even try to “come up” after the first handful of dates, especially if there’s a passionate kiss or some hand holding. Women view it as a sign of respect, and it often is, though your attitude may be more common than I think.”

    Why would it be unusual? I was raised on Helen Reddy and Marlo Thomas. You do know that first wave feminists really liked both sex and procreation, right? Did you think all the male offspring so produced mysteriously disappeared? We’re likely the ones who are the most angry these days, since we’re naturally attracted to women like our mothers (and aunts and grandmothers) and they’ve pretty much disappeared (or to be fair, paired up in their early 20’s like I should have and have healthy marriages).

    Women speak one thing, but often do quite another, which is one source of the anger, but the gravest source is the fact that doing the things you describe in the above paragraph will directly disqualify a man for a great many women (you’ll go straight to friend zone). Ironically, the ones who will respond favorably are the most traditional women who don’t exactly give off the Marlo Thomas vibe, if you know what I mean, and it has nothing to do with sex, although that usually ain’t so good either.

    When Connor’s man asked her “what next?”, he was asking “are you the kind of girl who will blow me out for making a move here, or the one who will blow me out for not making one?”. “You tell me” means “I’m not mature enough to communicate my own preferences/needs yet,” so he got her home and checked on her like a good big brother would.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “Thinking of this as a swing and a miss with Mr. Darcy is making my heart pound.”

    The fact that her’s never did tells me that she’s not worth getting that worked up about.

  • Desiderius

    Wayfinder,

    “I’ve dated at least one woman who was apparently desperate to avoid me getting to know her because she was afraid that seeing who she really was would scare me away.”

    I spent a good ten-year chunk of my life doing that in various ways myself. Has a lot to do with your own parents getting divorced, I think. Maybe that’s why we’re seeing so much of it now.

    Susan,

    “did you find me via Badger?”

    I found you via Dalrock via Roissy.

    Roissy changed my life – every last bit of it. It may be hard for a woman to understand just how profound his insights are, and how liberating when put into practice, but I would have every young man that you know at least read his posts on anti-game. If it is a man you really care about and trust – have him read the whole thing.

    He can tell the good from the bad.

  • 108spirits

    The basic trend I’ve noticed in young women in my cohort is they are paralytically afraid of being “boxed in.” Girls who would gladly escalate, even screw, guys in a semi-drunken bar crawl or house party get really skittish when that escalation is contextualized by a one-on-one date. Several dude bloggers have written about this lately – they recommend against dating not because PUAs say it’s for chumps, but because it’s an ineffective way of acquiring female companionship, you’re better off meeting for a quick drink and pushing for a bang.

    Badger, it is exactly the same where I am too, and depending on what you mean by young, I’ve personally seen this behaviour right up to 28 y.o chicks. Then we get online and hear women bitching about not getting dates. Well, you can’t get them if you don’t want to go on them!

    Yet they think nothing of a drunken hookup. Apparently that’s not serious, but having a one on one in a date context, without any pressure for sex, is too serious too soon.

    Best way – going to events with mutual friends, arranging the logistics, getting drunk, hooking up – then you can choose the type of relationship you want from there.

    Dating is for guys who love to be on the receiving end of the worst female behaviours.

  • 108spirits

    You know, if someone ever tells you that women are more social savvy than men (like the entire MSM and 99.999% of people you run into), just point to something like this.

  • Wayfinder

    @Susan

    This is highly admirable but I believe it’s also very unusual. Many women will never meet a single guy who sets a slow pace. I do hear women speak very appreciatively of a guy who doesn’t even try to “come up” after the first handful of dates, especially if there’s a passionate kiss or some hand holding. Women view it as a sign of respect, and it often is, though your attitude may be more common than I think.

    Just another anecdotal data point, but this is how I started and it got me precisely nowhere. I’m a tad more aggressive these days, but only with women I see as being worth pursuing. This is partially because I have the exact opposite of the view you expressed above:

    Going all in is very scary, it’s standing naked and defenseless in a much more profound way than standing naked in front of a stranger before sex.

    Look, if a women won’t let herself be vulnerable around me, I understand. The world’s a scary place (though not nearly as scary as she thinks) and those who have been hurt in the past try to protect themselves. But I think there’s something disturbing about someone who can be bodily vulnerable while hiding their emotions in an impenetrable shell. The body and the mind are part of the same organism, and you can’t separate them that easily.

    Maybe it’s just how I was raised, but I’d prefer some degree of emotional intimacy before giving anyone physical intimacy. This seems to put me out of step with the women I meet.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    Desiderius,

    Thanks for visiting my blog. Wild discussion going on over there right now.

     

  • tm

    Great posting and comments on a great subject :)

  • Desiderius

    “I don’t disagree”

    And I didn’t mean for my original response to imply that I disagreed with you*, although it sort of reads that way. I was more clarifying what is meant by acceptance by highlighting the limits, but certainly for better or for worse is the heart of what marriage is for/why it is needed (vs. an LTR with L undefined). See Dalrock on that crucial distinction.

    * – I think I’ve sufficiently demonstrated an alpha capacity to express actual disagreement at this point, no? Can you see how I might have scared a girl or two away?

    “he’s all about living in the moment. If that is all you have (and it is”

    If that were all we had, we wouldn’t be $16 trillion in debt. Past moments are interested in us, even if we aren’t in them. Future ones too. The key is a healthy balance between the real (present) and the ideal (future informed by past).

    “I suppose the implication is to choose someone who you can feel that way about.”

    Keeping in mind that that feeling is as much a choice (a leap of faith that requires, yes, faithful effort to maintain over time*) as it is a scientific survey of a fleeting emotional state.

    “It makes no sense to fall for a person based on how they might improve, or withdraw affection as punishment for your not getting what you want.”

    Why is the first involuntary (fall), but the second (withdraw) voluntary? I very much look for a person who knows how to improve, not so much counting on specific improvements. Whether we like it or not, there is an element of affection that is not volitional, and that will fade over time if the other partner’s commitment to the marriage/family/spouse/herself erodes.

    * – yes, of course, we all hate Jerry Falwell. Hate, hate, hate! But faith is a big part of how we got here as a society.  We’re missing (at the very least, several connotations of) it. You know, Semper Fidelis – we all love the Marines, right?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      * – I think I’ve sufficiently demonstrated an alpha capacity to express actual disagreement at this point, no? Can you see how I might have scared a girl or two away?

      Oh yes. So far I’m seeing you as an amalgam of Badger, Esau and Vox Day. A stellar intellectual power, a biting wit, and a low tolerance for foolishness. Guys like you are not always easy to be around :-)

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    “Oh yes. So far I’m seeing you as an amalgam of Badger, Esau and Vox Day. A stellar intellectual power, a biting wit, and a low tolerance for foolishness. Guys like you are not always easy to be around :-)”

    Now I’m left to figure out which adjective applies to me…I’ll start with stellar intellectual power :-0

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Now I’m left to figure out which adjective applies to me…I’ll start with stellar intellectual power :-0

      All three, for all three of you. You’ve been especially cynical lately, though. Careful, it’s a ladyboner killer. You’ll find indifference more effective. :P

  • Desiderius

    “Now I’m left to figure out which adjective applies to me…I’ll start with stellar intellectual power”

    I would not disagree.

    Susan,

    The low tolerance is learned behavior. I’m actually by temperament and philosophy exceptionally open-minded. But you know what they say: A mind is like a parachute, if its open all the time its a real drag.

    Men need to be the closer.

  • Esau

    “Oh yes. So far I’m seeing you as an amalgam of Badger, Esau and Vox Day. A stellar intellectual power, a biting wit, and a low tolerance for foolishness. Guys like you are not always easy to be around :-)”

    Now I’m left to figure out which adjective applies to me…I’ll start with stellar intellectual power :-0

    No fair, I wanted stellar intellectual power!  Now I’ll just have to settle for biting wit.  (I would have assumed they’re listed in corresponding order, but apparently I’m not the brains of the outfit.)

     

  • Desiderius

    Esau,

    “apparently I’m not the brains of the outfit”

    Maybe if you’d struck a harder bargain on the whole birthright deal…

    Susan,

    I was this guy.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius
      That link is hilarious. God, I love the Onion. I can relate to it as well – I try to be respectful here but I am pretty dismissive of BS, and I often get rather short with feminists, for example. One commenter here, Dogsquat, is so diplomatic I am in awe of his gift. I am very political by nature, but not especially tactful. Which reminds me, I thought Scott Brown’s response to Elizabeth Warren was hilarious.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    ” (I would have assumed they’re listed in corresponding order, but apparently I’m not the brains of the outfit.)”

    It’s not a problem, it just makes Vox Day the ornery one.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      It’s not a problem, it just makes Vox Day the ornery one.

      Oh he’s ornery allright! Check out this post:
      http://voxday.blogspot.com/2011/10/failure-to-communicate.html

      I was so inspired by this I wanted to copy it, but I don’t have the nerve! I must continue to respond to the Manboobz crowd!

  • Rachel

    Dear Susan,

    This week, I had a concrete example of being approachable! I ran into this guy I knew from college at a ballroom dancing lesson, of all places.  I made an effort to say hello and see how he was doing since we hadn’t seen each other in several years. It turned out that he’s a Ph.D. student at the same university where I’m getting my master’s degree.  The whole time I knew him in college, he had a girlfriend so our interactions had been purely on a friend level.  We also didn’t hang out much because we were in different social circles. I think it was me who mentioned something about coffee and we agreed to communicate on Facebook.  A few days later, he contacted me and we ended up meeting at a Starbucks and having a good time.   I know that it was a little easier because I’d already met the guy, but my behavior still made a difference. At the ballroom dance lesson, I could have easily just said, hi, how are you? You’re doing well, that’s good.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Rachel
      Thanks for the field report, that’s awesome! At the very least you’ve made a new friend, and possibly more.

  • Desiderius

    Susan,

    “That link is hilarious.”

    Here’s another. We’re not the first down this road. Juvenal also comes to mind.

    Brendan especially would be struck by how much of his thought overlaps with Percy’s, I think.

    Probably went a little overboard with the comments here this weekend (thx for the tip, Jesus. You’re just alright.), so I’ll make myself alpha for a while.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Desiderius
      Love in the Ruins sounds a bit like a Catholic Tom Wolfe. If so, I think I’d like it. I’ve only read The Moviegoer by him.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    Rachel,

    Great work.

    “I made an effort to say hello and see how he was doing since we hadn’t seen each other in several years.”

    Didn’t this used to be called being friendly? It’s amazing it’s not SOP for everybody.

    “At the ballroom dance lesson, I could have easily just said, hi, how are you? You’re doing well, that’s good.”

    Eric Barker had a piece where he highlighted some research showing that you get better compliance from someone if you ask them how they’re doing and then say “I’m happy your well” or something like that in response. It was amazing.

  • Rachel

    @ Badger

    Yes, it is being friendly. It’s what I would do if I saw a woman in the same situation. I did wait for him to contact me, but that was partially due to my busy schedule. When I’m not at all romantically interested in a man, I won’t think about who makes the first/second move. I used to be shy and when I wanted to approach a man, it helped to imagine my behavior if he actually were a woman. I then was in a the friendship frame of mind, rather than the dating mindset.

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  • PBateman

    I would love it if more shy women took this advice. Just make the approach easier because, with shy women, they tend to accidentally (or maybe intentionally haha) send out vibes that they aren’t interested. Even if you engage a shy girl, sometimes it can become a one-way conversation and you just get tired of doing all the work.

    I can tell you right now, most of the guys I know would much prefer a sweet and shy girl as opposed to the loud-mouth and aggressive type they continually meet. Shy girls are also less likely to be sluts. I have two good friends. Never thought they’d be in serious relationships again. They both met two, sweet and somewhat shy girls. Never seen them happier. If they continued to meet your run-of-the-mill attention whore or out-going girl, I can guarantee you they wouldn’t be in relationships right now.

  • dave

    Never approached a woman in my life. If she is so interested, then she will approach me, and I will know that she is not married, no boyfriend, not just dumped, etc.