Can a Manwhore Ever Really Settle Down, Even If He Wants To?

May 7, 2012

Thinking of cheatingSusan,

Your post about emotional prudery really hit home with me.

Quick intro summary: I’m worried that due to my promiscuity (as a guy) over the past several years, I’ve stunted my ability to truly, deeply care for somebody. 

A quick background: I’ve always been pretty good with women, and in college I slept with more than most guys (9 girls, and hooked up with many more), but I wasn’t completely at the level of man-whore yet. I was always fairly detached, and while I kept some girls around for a few months, it was only as a booty call, and I had really no emotional investment whatsoever.

I still had a romantic side though, and I ended up falling head over heels for the last girl I was sleeping with in college. Having never experienced this before, I acted like a needy little boy, and after a couple months she ditched me. I was pretty crushed to say the least. I hooked up with a few more girls before I graduated, but nothing at all serious.

Just after graduation, I met a girl who I started sleeping with. She was funny, snarky, and a ton of fun to go out with. I pretty quickly fell for her, ignoring blaring warning signs (flakiness, extreme mood swings, fighting with other girls a lot) that my friends pointed out, probably because I was so desperate to rediscover that emotion I had before. Long story short, she went back for her masters that fall. We weren’t together per se, so I slept with some other women, but I was still extremely into her and we’d talk every day. I assumed (and we talked about) us dating for real when she moved back to NYC after her masters. Then I found out that she’d been with a boyfriend the whole time we’d been hooking up, and had spun a web of lies to a truly impressive (I’m awed by it today) degree. I spent the next 18 months or so sleeping with more women than I had in all of college. My count now is around 23-24 (can’t remember exactly).

Some of the girls I kept around for a bit as hookups, others were ONS whose names I didn’t know. However, there was no emotional involvement at all. About 10 months ago, I had finally gotten sick of this, and decided I was actually going to look for a girlfriend. After 4 months or so of dating, I found one, who I’m dating now.

Let me set something straight first: I love being with this girl. I’m really happy when I’m around her, we have fun together, she’s kind, thoughtful, reliable, smart, and hot. I’m physically attracted to her, and I enjoy seeing her and miss her when she’s not around. My friends all love her and think I’ve gotten very lucky. However, I just don’t feel the absolute head-over-heels feeling I had with the other girl. It’s just not there, and as much as I try and convince myself it should be, it isn’t.

I’ve tried to convince myself it’s because she’s not intellectually curious enough (she’s very smart, she works in trading at a bank but it’s just work for her and she doesn’t really read or investigate other things, which I do all the time) or that she’s too submissive, but it can’t be just that. I’m worried that my emotional shutdown for the 2 years prior, and my sleeping with all these women who were honestly not much more than warm bodies has emotionally stunted me and prevented me from falling for her.

Also, while the sex is good, I find myself increasingly comparing it some of the wild and varied sex I had when I was single. Even though she’s hot, I find myself comparing her physically to some of the other hot girls I slept with while single, not even because they’re hotter, but because they’re DIFFERENT.

Now, I’ve shared these feelings with a couple friends who’ve been in a few LTRs (this is my first of any significance). I’ve been advised that this happens when the honeymoon phase wears off. Things can get boring, routine can set in. I’m trying to fight it, and I know she is too. She’s asking to borrow books I read so she can get up to speed on some topics I’m into, and while I hugely appreciate that and find it endearing, it rings false to me, as I want to be with someone who’s passionate about the same things. I feel like I never had the true honeymoon phase of being head over heels. It was more like I was really into her, and I was hoping that would come, and it hasn’t.

I know I’d be less happy without her than with her, and the thought of breaking up with her makes me sad, but recently a few of my guy friends have become single, and I’m starting to miss the thrill of the chase and the chance to get something strange. Maybe I was wrong, and I wasn’t ready for a relationship. I started dating her because I really liked her, and was waiting for what you might call “love” to come, and it’s been 7 months and it just hasn’t. Now I know it’s possible that despite how great she is, she’s just not for me, but I’m really worried that my emotional prudery for 2 years and my sexual promiscuity has had the dual effect of rendering love quite hard for me and of making me too hard to please sexually.

Ben

Dear Ben,

Your letter raises some interesting questions about the way humans experience emotions relating to sex and love. The most important one is whether promiscuity has a long-term, negative effect on one’s ability to fall in love. I don’t think it does have a causal effect, though there is a correlation between past promiscuity and compromised relationship quality. I waded into the research on this one and found it extremely informative, so at the risk of seeming pedantic, I’ll summarize it here.

Helen Fisher is the foremost authority on the chemistry of the brain in love. Her work focuses on the three distinct emotional mating strategies that comprise human mating. They are Lust, Romantic Love, and Attachment. These strategies evolved separately to achieve different goals, and they are not mutually exclusive, but act independently of one another. Fisher says that one person can experience all three simultaneously with different people in mind – she describes it as a “committee meeting in your head.” Obviously, humans can feel sexual desire for individuals for whom they feel no romantic attraction or emotional attachment. We are also capable of falling in love with a person other than someone to whom we are attached, though we are not capable of being in love with more than one person at a time.

 
 CharacteristicsPurposeBrain Chemicals
Lust            Sex driveMotivates seeking of sexual union               

Testosterone

Estrogen

Romantic Love

Attraction

Increased energy

Focused attention

Exhilaration

Intrusive thinking

Craving for emotional union

Facilitate mate choice

Dopamine

Norepinephrine

Phenylathelamine (PEA)

Serotonin

Attachment

Closeness

Calm

Comfort

Security

Emotional union

Enables parenting 

Promotes positive social behavior

Vasopressin

Oxytocin

Looking at your history, a few things seem pretty clear:

  • Of the women you hooked up with in college, only one inspired feelings of romantic love in you. The rest obviously excited your sex drive, but were contained within the single mating strategy of lust.
  • You had strong feelings of attraction, or romantic love, for one woman your senior year. It should be noted that the emotional state of “being in love” is not necessarily positive. It may reflect anxiety as well as calm, despair as well as joy.
  • The snarky, lying cad chick clearly met the criteria for romantic love as well, though she was obviously a poor choice, which is very clear in retrospect.

In short, I see nothing here that would impede your ability to fall in love if the right woman came along. In your current relationship, you made a clear decision to seek a girlfriend, and found her in four months. The odds of finding “the one” in that time period seem remote, though it’s obviously possible. Clearly, you feel lust for her, and you also like and respect her. However, the characteristics of romantic love are conspicuously absent from your description of your relationship, which you acknowledge in saying that the feeling “is just not there.” I don’t think this has anything to do with your sexual history – I think you simply did not fall in love with this particular woman.

While I do think it’s possible to will oneself into an emotionally unavailable state, you don’t appear to have done that. You are very emotionally available, in fact – you crave the emotional union of attachment, but there is no love object with whom to experience it. It’s therefore not the least bit surprising that you would feel sexual desire for other women, or just a general urge to get access to variety. If you were in love, you would be pouring your energy and focus into creating the emotional union you craved, and in that state of limerence you’d be far less likely to feel the itch to be with someone else. 

The economist Robert Frank has suggested that emotions serve the purpose of sustaining commitments that require forfeiting immediate rewards.

When one experiences feelings of love for a romantic partner, for example, the immediate positive reward the emotion produces counteracts the pull of desire for an attractive other… In doing so, emotions help us to stick with strategies that lead to rewards in the long run despite the fact that they often necessitate forgoing smaller immediate gains. For example, if one were drawn away from every possible romantic commitment by the prospect of finding a still more attractive mate, one could never reap the fitness benefits of long-term mateship, including cooperative child rearing (Hurtado & Hill, 1992; Marlowe, 2003; Pillsworth & Haselton, 2005) and assurance of mutual care in times of dire need (e.g., Nesse, 2001).

I don’t think we can say why we fall in love with some people and not others, nor can we talk ourselves into that heightened emotional state by breaking the relationship down into specific behaviors, and try as she might, I don’t think your girlfriend’s reading list is going to create that rare magic for you. 

However, there’s another risk associated with male promiscuity. It’s generally not an issue for men who are wired strictly for short-term mating. In this culture, though, plenty of guys have lots of casual sex while young, fully intending to settle down later, marry and have a family. They may find the transition to monogamy especially difficult.

The more women a man has had sex with, the lower the odds that he can be sexually gratified by one woman. Ever.

I. You’re likely to experience a more dramatic drop in your physical attraction to a woman after having sex with her.

Males get a huge dopamine rush upon “getting it in,” and that fades once orgasm has occurred. In general, men find their partners less attractive after sex, while women find their partners more attractive.

Evolutionary psychologist Martie Haselton explains that high-count men lose even more attraction for their mate after sex:

For men who pursue a short-term mating strategy, first-time sex signals both that a goal has been achieved and that there is a possibility of becoming entangled in an unwanted long-term relationship. After first-time sex, the feelings men and women experience do indeed differ. Women more than men experience a positive affective shift toward increased feelings of commitment for their partners (Haselton & Buss, 2001), whereas, men who have had many sex partners (defined as 6+), (and therefore successfully pursue a short-term strategy) experience [an especially] negative affective shift marked by a drop-off in physical attraction to their partners (Haselton & Buss, 2001). These effects are hypothesized to prompt behaviors to secure investment (for women) or to extricate oneself from a potential romantic entanglement (for short-term oriented men). 

II. Marital sexual satisfaction declines more than 5% for every partner a man has been with other than his spouse.

As far as I know, there has only been one study that looked at partner count and sexual satisfaction, which I first referenced in the post Manwhores: For Casual Sex Only. The study measured the effect of promiscuity on later degrees of marital sexual satisfaction. The sample was national and random, from the National Health and Social Life Survey. It included 313 married men and women, aged 18-40, all with their first spouse.

88% of males and 85% of females indicated that they were “very satisfied” with their marital sex life. However, results indicate that for every additional premarital sexual partner an individual has, not including the marital sexual partner, the likelihood that they will say their current marital sexual relationship is extremely satisfying versus only being moderately satisfying goes down 3.9%. 

When running models separately for males and females, the male model was more significant at 5.3%. This means that a man with a number of 10 before marriage is 53% less likely to be describe himself as extremely satisfied in marriage. By implication, all men with 20 previous partners will feel moderately sexually satisfied in marriage at best.

Women’s partner count had a lesser effect, with the likelihood of being extremely satisfied decreasing 4.6% for each partner. The females’ result did not meet the criteria for statistical significance, while the males’ did. From the study:

This may be due to the evolutionary biological theory that males tend to be more invested in or notice more the physical aspects of the sexual relationship, while women tend to be more invested in or notice more the emotional aspects of the sexual relationship (Buunk, Angleitner, & Buss, 1996).  Due to this difference, premarital sexual promiscuity may not influence females as much because the past emotional connections are no longer salient and the focus is on meeting the needs of the current relationship.

Further, women tend to be aroused more and are more likely than men to report attraction increasing in long-term relationships, indicating that having previous sexual experiences may in fact lower the overall comparison levels and comparison level for alternatives for women in a marital sexual relationship (Knoth, Boyd, & Singer, 1988).

III. The Paradox of Choice: Missed Opportunities
 
The primary reason that people are less satisfied the more partners they have is that they have more opportunities to recall or imagine greater sexual satisfaction in prior or future sexual encounters. 
 
When people are faced with having to choose one option out of many desirable choices, they will begin to consider hypothetical trade-offs. Their options are evaluated in terms of missed opportunities instead of the opportunity’s potential. …One of the downsides of making trade-offs is it alters how we feel about the decisions we face; afterwards, it affects the level of satisfaction we experience from our decision.
 
This may explain evidence of a Reverse Sexual Double Standard. An ongoing study of more than 20,000 students demonstrates that the sexual double standard increasingly cuts both ways:
 

A majority of college men still judge their female colleagues more harshly than they do fellow male classmates for the same sexual behavior: 63% of men say they lose respect for women who hook up frequently, and only 41% say they feel the same way about men who engage in the same behavior. But the majority of women hold a reverse double standard, assessing men’s casual sexual behavior more harshly then other women’s. More than 70% say they lose respect for men who engage in casual sex, while less than 60% lose respect for other women.

Given that a minority of students engages regularly in casual sex, this is not surprising. Of course, there may be an element of “sour grapes” or disappointment reflected in these numbers. Whatever the reason, it suggests that women who have previously not engaged in much casual sex may disqualify men with a promiscuous past.

Here’s my advice, assuming you still wish to fall in love:

First, while it’s possible that you will fall in love with your girlfriend in the future, I believe it’s extremely unlikely. It sounds like she may have some sense of this already, but if not you owe it to her to tell her the truth about your feelings. If she’s also approaching her mid-20s, she deserves to make an informed choice about dating a man she will almost certainly not marry. I also believe you owe it to yourself to see who else is out there. You have little incentive to maintain a committed relationship to a woman you’re not head over heels for.

Second, while I can find nothing that suggests you are less likely to fall in love because of your history, it sounds to me like you could benefit from an emotional detox. The last couple of years sound like an emotional roller coaster with some high moments of drama. I would recommend getting back to a state of emotional equilibrium. That means no emotional prudery, i.e., casual sex, and no emotional promiscuity, i.e., jumping into a relationship when you’re not totally feeling it. There’s a significant opportunity cost to pursuing a short-term mating strategy when your goal is long-term mating.

Third, I don’t know if the long-term sexual satisfaction issue can be addressed or remedied, but I do have one idea. I know that when young men develop erectile dysfunction from watching porn, it’s because their brains have linked arousal to specific images, and they lose the ability to become aroused without the presence of that stimuli. The “cure” is to swear off porn completely to rid the brain of the association, and this is generally successful.

Perhaps it can work this way with sexual variety as well. If you can break the habit of casual sex, you may be able to rid yourself of the preoccupation with previous sexual experiences. This may also mitigate any dropoff in attraction you feel toward a woman you do have feelings for. I think this would amount to hitting the reset button on the dopamine reward system, which would be helpful if it’s possible.

Of course, there are no guarantees, and none of this applies if you want to get back to the chase and the novelty of new partners. You’ve got a choice to make – at least now it will be an informed one. 

In closing, I will share a quote from Helen Fisher’s TED talk:

I don’t think we’re an animal that was built to be happy. We’re an animal that was built to reproduce. I think the happiness we find, we make, and I believe we can make good relationships with each other.

Susan

Readers, what do you think? 

 


  • Benton

    I agree with Susan that Ben probably is not with the right person, and is otherwise capable of being in a more fulfilling relationship. However, there is one part of the post that really caught my attention:

    “It should be noted that the emotional state of “being in love” is not necessarily positive. It may reflect anxiety as well as calm, despair as well as joy.”

    It may not be the main part of this article, but can you give some more info about this statement? As someone who tends to be emotionally promiscuous, I find that “being in love” is definitely not all positive, but I don’t understand exactly how it relates to anxiety and despair. Susan, can you elaborate a little more?

    • @Benton

      As someone who tends to be emotionally promiscuous, I find that “being in love” is definitely not all positive, but I don’t understand exactly how it relates to anxiety and despair.

      The most obvious example is unrequited love. And even when things do work out, there is usually some uncertainty in the beginning, which creates both anxiety and anticipation.

  • Senior Beta

    That has to be the mother of all red pill guy confessionals. As to Susan’s advice: well done.

  • SayWhaat

    Solid advice from Susan.

    Ben’s got a fairly good shot at getting the relationship he desires. Although, he needs to keep 2 things in mind: the one girl that he fell head-over-heels for was a Walking Red Flag, and his sexual past. He’s going to have to “reset” things and do some introspection to fix whatever is causing him to pursue these drama-filled relationships before he can find himself the Quality Girl that he can truly fall in love with.

    The other thing is that he’s going to have to do some major work to prove to that Quality Girl — when he finds her — that he’s a reformed manslut. I’m kind of at a loss for this one…I don’t know what it would take for me to “overlook” a man with 20+ sexual partners, if I could even overlook it in the first place.

  • VD

    Readers, what do you think?

    1. Good call on Ben. He’s just not in love with her. There are men with 10x the sexual experience who wind up falling in love… this sometimes hits them harder because they’re not only not looking for it, they don’t even want it.

    2. Interesting data on lack of sexual satisfaction in marriage for sexually successful men. Rings true and explains the much higher propensity for unfaithfulness.

    3. The Reverse Double Standard is most usefully addressed by the Game principle of paying heed to what women do and not what they say. It’s true that virgins, religious women, and women of very little experience will tend to steer away from sexually successful men. Most other women won’t, no matter what they tell their friends. No amount of attempted shaming and public posturing is going to prevent the faux disgusted girl from slipping the charming cad her telephone number or showing up at his place unannounced later that night. I’d even go so far to say that the more they act repelled by a “manwhore” in front of their girlfriends, the more of a sure thing they are.

  • VD

    I’m kind of at a loss for this one…I don’t know what it would take for me to “overlook” a man with 20+ sexual partners, if I could even overlook it in the first place.

    Exactly the same thing that causes most other women to overlook a man’s past history. Have sex with him before you know there is anything to overlook.

  • pvw

    Benton:

    As someone who tends to be emotionally promiscuous, I find that “being in love” is definitely not all positive, but I don’t understand exactly how it relates to anxiety and despair. Susan, can you elaborate a little more?

    My reply:

    Perhaps it has to do with emotional promiscuity being used as a means of filling a vacuum of loneliness? Rather than feel anxious and despair at being lonely, chase down the next relationship just to fill the void.

    Saywhaat:

    I don’t know what it would take for me to “overlook” a man with 20+ sexual partners, if I could even overlook it in the first place.

    My reply:

    Yes, quite true.

    VD:

    Exactly the same thing that causes most other women to overlook a man’s past history. Have sex with him before you know there is anything to overlook.

    My reply:

    But I don’t get the sense SayWhaat is going to do that; her approach might be more levelheaded, that she wants to know what she is getting into before she goes there. Not all women leap in without verifying and looking beforehand….That was my strategy when I was dating, wanting to know and understand first.

  • OffTheCuff

    He should leave his current grilfriend if he wants out.

    Unless he wants children and thus perhaps marriage, I don’t see why he should change a thing. Go ahead, be “in love” for any length you deem useful and get out when it isn’t. If you meet a woman who changes your mind, great. If not, you still are on top.

  • FeralEmployee

    I wonder what the mechanism behind this drop-off in physical attraction is linked to. A ways of maintaining genetic diversity? Wouldn’t seem right, since promiscuous males still have sex. Perhaps an optimization strategy: they know they can get the sex, so why not suppress the urge to create bonds and just go full-fuck mode.

    Only the future will tell. Or Susan. Or Fisher.

    • @Feral Employee

      Perhaps an optimization strategy: they know they can get the sex, so why not suppress the urge to create bonds and just go full-fuck mode.

      Yes, from a reproduction standpoint, it makes sense for the male to feel sated after he gains access. However, the study did show that while men did lose attraction, they did not lose a sense of commitment. So there is that battle where the tradeoff between sexual variety and commitment takes place.

  • Abbot

    “plenty of guys have lots of casual sex while young, fully intending to settle down later, marry and have a family.”
    .
    Because they can and they know it.
    .
    “They may find the transition to monogamy especially difficult.”
    .
    But not because his past is a roadblock for her. Very few if any worthy women would even put a man’s sexual past as a criteria for life-mate consideration on her list. Thus cads are competing will all other men for the best wife material.
    .
    “previous sexual experiences may in fact lower the overall comparison levels and comparison level for alternatives for women in a marital sexual relationship ”
    .
    Hey look, thats a good promo for the “give the sluts a break and marry one” crowd, some of whom lurk and comment on this site. Won’t help but at least they can feel good about something. “Hey Bob, I like your new girl there but if you really want here satisfied later on, throw her back in for a few more rounds. Works wonders”

  • Dogsquat

    Ben said:

    “Maybe I was wrong, and I wasn’t ready for a relationship. I started dating her because I really liked her, and was waiting for what you might call “love” to come, and it’s been 7 months and it just hasn’t.”
    ____________

    Ben, I wonder if you aren’t still a little beat up from getting dumped in college and getting tangled up with the liar. That stuff is terribly painful, and permanently alters your outlook. It takes something out of you that never fully heals.

    You may be over/past those two individual women, but your brain knows how bloody awful that pain and embarrassment and rejection and self-doubt and broken trust actually is. It’s like a horrible disease that’s more debilitating with each reinfection.

    Now I’m going to sound like an arrogant asshole, because I am an arrogant asshole and that’s what I sound like:

    I think you subconsciously settled for a woman who couldn’t harm you. Your market value (or whatever) is a little higher than hers. You’re content but not proud. You’re fond of her and respect her as a person, but you are not awed by anything about her. I’ll bet she’s never once given you The Fear – that moment when you realize that another autonomous human being has a tremendous amount of power over you – and there’s not much you can do about it. Surrendering something.

    Sure, you’ll be bummed for a while if you break up, but she lacks the power to devastate. She’s like a very nice gift from The Universe, not a prize you wrested from It’s grasp.

    Ben said:
    “Now I know it’s possible that despite how great she is, she’s just not for me, but I’m really worried that my emotional prudery for 2 years and my sexual promiscuity has had the dual effect of rendering love quite hard for me and of making me too hard to please sexually.”
    _________________________

    Could be. It could also be that you haven’t really come to terms with how bad those relationships messed you up. Your behavior indicates that, I think – you’re extremely risk averse mentally/emotionally. For you, maybe banging a bunch of casuals is like like taking pain medication when you need surgery for a definitive fix. You might be distracting yourself from a deeper issue – all the while getting hooked on pain meds.

    People often say time heals all wounds, but that’s retarded. Healing is what heals all wounds. Maybe you haven’t done the work you need to heal.

    As an aside:

    I’ll bet if you met a girl who potentially could really give you what you’re looking for tomorrow, you’d run like hell or sabotage things. It would feel too risky.

    That’s my opinion, anyway. Worth almost what you paid for it.

    Good luck, dude – you’ve got some really shitty decisions to make. I do not envy you one bit.

  • Dogsquat

    Feral Employee said:

    “I wonder what the mechanism behind this drop-off in physical attraction is linked to. ”
    ____________________________

    Maybe time and resources? Some threshold that, when passed, causes the lizard brain to decide the price is too high?

  • Herb

    @Susan

    It should be noted that the emotional state of “being in love” is not necessarily positive. It may reflect anxiety as well as calm, despair as well as joy.

    I haven’t read all the way through, but thank you.

    Our culture has blown what is an overwrought state that even when healthy needs to be see as a temporary one that may energize a relationship but can’t sustain it.

    I’m so sick of “I love you, but I’m not in love with you” being a reason to end what began with a solemn vow I want to scream. Plus, we chase it like a drug.

  • ExNewYorker

    “The other thing is that he’s going to have to do some major work to prove to that Quality Girl — when he finds her — that he’s a reformed manslut. “

    Not really. With the current girl he’s with, who he has a high opinion of, and who sounds like a “Quality Girl”, he’s not had to “do some major work”.

    For some subset of women, yes, the reformed manslut would be an issue. But as VD points out, this is a subset of the larger group of women who like their men to be “sexually successful”, even if it’s an unconscious motivation.

  • Doc

    Being “in love” lasts about 2-4 years – long enough to have a child and give it a pretty good chance of survival. So genetically speaking that is its purpose. Now some may disagree, and if that works for them – great. But from an evolutionary stand-point for the species to thrive it would be best for a woman to have children by as many men as possible – as long as the children survive. Of course, a man has competing traits – he wants to ensure the child is his (no need to waste resources on someone else’s spawn), and he wants to get as many women pregnant as he can.

    So it makes sense for “love” to occur – guaranteeing the child is his, but no need to lock someone up for life. Genetically, it’s best to move on after a while.

    So, I would say don’t worry – enjoy life. Your time to settle down is measured in decades – enjoy your time. When you are older you can “settle down” with a hot young babe – of course make sure your assets aren’t available to her via a trust to keep her around and ensure that it’s in writing. Then you can enjoy life while you’re young, and when you get older you can have a brood of children – just genetic test, and you’ll be good to go. Stop worrying about “what if” – just enjoy…

  • Perhaps an optimization strategy: they know they can get the sex, so why not suppress the urge to create bonds and just go full-fuck mode.

    That is my guess and my experience if you think about is like a muscle the more you use it the better it gets and the human body is smart if he knows the guy can seed many women successfully it makes more sense for him to continue to do so till death and play the numbers game than trying to make sure some of them survive. Is like fishes having thousand of eggs.

    The thing is the number is not the best indication I know men that found themselves in sexual frenzy with just a taste of the pool of women. My guess is genetic the sons of Alpha seeders (like most of my friends) will have a harder time settling down if the conditions show that they can get away with numbers instead of quality, the sons of more Beta guys probably will need higher numbers to reach their limit before the body activates “seed everything that moves!” mode, YMMV.

  • .this is Jen

    come on is this even a real question? Of course a man who has slept around can have a successful marriage, why the heck not? Does anyone really question this?

  • El Marqués

    Decent advise. Probably the most important part nowadays is the paradox of choice. Yohami has a great post and video about some TED talk on his site.

    I don’t think Ben will lose his capacity to bond to a female even if he decides to add a few notches and flags over his twenties and thirties. Men and women being different and all that. If a woman wants a man to bond to her, she’d better have his back in the trenches of life, rather than trying to have him bond over sex – like her projecting little self.

    And since language matters. I came across the word “manwhore” first on this site, being European, I simply had not heard it before. First I thought it was a new synonym for “Puto” (male whore in Spanish), but then I realized that it’s connotation clearly is one of shaming male promiscuity with a rather unfortunate term, one that does seem ridiculously misnamed. Now every time I see the expression, the word “penis envy” pops up in my mind somehow…

    • @El Marques

      I believe the term manwhore (variations include manslut and trash dick) arose due to the increased number of men in today’s SMP who have racked up very high numbers – 50, 100, 200. My sense is that the prevalence of STDs makes these men less attractive, as well as their avoidance of relationships. I have described this as the boomerang effect of preselection.

  • SayWhaat

    Saywhaat:
    I don’t know what it would take for me to “overlook” a man with 20+ sexual partners, if I could even overlook it in the first place.
    My reply:
    Yes, quite true.
    VD:
    Exactly the same thing that causes most other women to overlook a man’s past history. Have sex with him before you know there is anything to overlook.
    My reply:
    But I don’t get the sense SayWhaat is going to do that; her approach might be more levelheaded, that she wants to know what she is getting into before she goes there. Not all women leap in without verifying and looking beforehand….That was my strategy when I was dating, wanting to know and understand first.

    Thanks, PVW. I may still be in the “less sexually experienced” category of women, but I wouldn’t blunder in with my skirt up and pussy out without having some idea of knowing what I’m dealing with. And I think that there are a lot of women who behave exactly the same way — at least, the ones I’m friends with (and yes, they’re much more sexually experienced than I am).

    Besides, I’m gettin’ it in twice a night and once in the morning so as far as I’m concerned I’m making up for all that lost ground with few to zero regrets to spare, aww yeah. 😛

  • SayWhaat

    “The other thing is that he’s going to have to do some major work to prove to that Quality Girl — when he finds her — that he’s a reformed manslut. “

    Not really. With the current girl he’s with, who he has a high opinion of, and who sounds like a “Quality Girl”, he’s not had to “do some major work”.
    For some subset of women, yes, the reformed manslut would be an issue. But as VD points out, this is a subset of the larger group of women who like their men to be “sexually successful”, even if it’s an unconscious motivation.

    It’s interesting to me how so many of HUS’ regular “reformed betas” continue to espouse this notion that players will always have success in this regard, no matter what. Fine, don’t take it from me — I’ve heard numerous girls of my acquaintance and good friends who reject manwhores alike.

    There’s a wide gap between “manslut” and “man with [more] sexual success [than me]”. Full disclosure: even when I was a naive college freshman, I said that I preferred a guy with a little more sexual experience than I did, just so that he could teach me. That doesn’t mean 20+ partners than me, that means “maybe just one more” than my own history. Even my boyfriend (who is as beta as you can get) has more sexual experience than I do, but it’s a normal number.

    Girls won’t mind if you have one or more partners than they have. 20+ is a different story.

  • SayWhaat

    First I thought it was a new synonym for “Puto” (male whore in Spanish), but then I realized that it’s connotation clearly is one of shaming male promiscuity with a rather unfortunate term, one that does seem ridiculously misnamed. Now every time I see the expression, the word “penis envy” pops up in my mind somehow…

    *shrug* Suit yourself. Like it or not, you don’t have a say in dictating female preferences.

  • Abbot

    “the larger group of women who like their men to be “sexually successful”, even if it’s an unconscious motivation.”
    .
    Is that why such women are aghast upon “discovering” that men universally desire the exact opposite when its time for commitment? Most women are inherently and effortlessly “sexually successful” and therefore modesty and restraint is highly valued for a woman to be considered special.

  • Dogsquat

    SayWhaat said:

    “I’ve heard numerous girls of my acquaintance and good friends who reject manwhores alike.”
    ____________________
    SayWhaat, do your friends ever define why they make that choice? Visceral distaste, or a lack of trust? Some combination?

  • Abbot

    “you don’t have a say in dictating female preferences.”
    .
    That would be way too much work. Just look how hard those feminists strain themselves.

  • ExNewYorker

    @SayWhaat
    “It’s interesting to me how so many of HUS’ regular “reformed betas” continue to espouse this notion that players will always have success in this regard, no matter what.”

    This is not what we said. What we said is:
    “For some subset of women, yes, the reformed manslut would be an issue.”

    VD put it this way:
    “It’s true that virgins, religious women, and women of very little experience will tend to steer away from sexually successful men. ”

    Obviously, we’re not saying “that players will always have success in this regard, no matter what.” It’s pretty clear that we’re not saying that.

    But the question is, how big is this subset is. From the experiences of the original poster, it seems a minority. I’m sure we’ll disagree on that, but the existence of this blog does seem to suggest certain things…

  • Abbot

    “Of course a man who has slept around can have a successful marriage, why the heck not?”
    .
    As long as there are numerous and various women willing and available for him to select from, he has a pretty good chance.

  • El Marqués

    Actually, SayWhaat, now that you argue it, I’ve heard women say the same thing, that they have or will reject a promiscuous man. Never seen it, though. Actions, words, and the tricky thing in between…

    The other thing I noticed is that somehow, inexplicably, these women always seem invisible to men with the options to be promiscuous in the first place…

  • Todd

    Hey, I can relate to the original letter. In my case, I was dumped by a girlfriend because she didn’t want to bring a Black man home. (For the record, the girl is White.) After that, I went on a reign of terror. Of course, then I found the swing world. Excellent times. Of course, I did end up married, though to someone who has…issues. Severe mental ones. Even still, commitment is still possible. Just learn to not date for a while. It’ll clear your head.

  • THE ASS MAN COMETH

    I had some minor surgery today and am unable to comprehensively address the myriad issues and concerns detailed above. I will confine myself to a very small part of the narrative, indeed, not even the narrative-the photo. Clearly we have here the “ass man”, and as one I must explicate not simply in his defense but in defense of ass men everywhere. Unlike the outgoing, extroverted, Kiwanis-joining, joi d’ vre and all that breast man, the ass man is the thoughtful, introverted one, nay pensive, and he carries a burden so deep and profound it is rarely, if ever, spoken or referred to. And that is this-the ass man is charged with looking at every single delectable female behind that crosses his path-NO EXCEPTIONS. Do not denigrate it by calling it an obsession; it is no more an obsession than Michaelangelo’s dedication to the Cistine Chapel. It is an obligation, a duty, yes, a labor of love but that does not diminish its power one iota. For an ass man to NOT turn and look at a woman’s behind is a dereliction of duty, one that haunts him all day, seizes his imagination, makes him ask “what if? What if that was THE perfect one and I for want of a mere turning of the head have missed it, gone forever in a sea of epicene flesh, never to be glimpsed?” It is too terrible even for idle contemplation.

    I believe there is an eschatological componet (oh yes I do!). I think in Heaven there’s going to be a big sign saying “ASS MEN ONLY”. We’ll all queue up, and God will meet with each one of us individually. GOD: “Did you look at every nice ass I put in your way?” ME: “Yes”. God (dramatically looking over both shoulders, then returning to face me) “Oh, you were addressing Me? I thought for a second some asshole had looked in, ‘cuz there’s no way you’d be dumb enough to say that to Me, me who can still recite the circumference of your circumcision foreskin.” God then hits the switch, and I see reel after reel of missed opportunities, beautiful upside down Valentine asses that I missed. My punishment? On eternity on the boulevard, unable to turn my head.

    BTW I know you gals can tell an ass man. Oh yeah. You see me coming a block away. Your inner radar says “ass man 12:00 o’clock”. You then pass by nonchalantly, but suddenly turn your head as if to say “Was that a giraffe?” , not all the way around,not even 180 degrees even, but with your feminine perspicacity and keen eye you can tell yep he’s right on the button, checking out my money maker. And I am.

    Glad to clear this up. Please continue with the discussion. Pay especially close attention to those who advise you to enjoy your time: ahh my children, much wisdom that.

  • GudEnuf

    tvmunson: Props from another booty lover. If a woman has a baby face and slappable ass, she’s near perfect in my book. (Physically at least.)

  • Ted D

    Ass and leg man here. Which is why I love high heels… And short skirts… Together in fact.

  • Herb

    Hmmm, while ass and boobs are nice, I’ve always been a leg and back man. Long gowns with an exposed back and leg slit need to come back in style.

  • Lokland

    +1 on the ass being most important

    On the manwhores can’t get commitment.
    Seen it work more times than I’ve seen it not. Doesn’t mean they chose to stick around but they had the option to.

  • INTJ

    I guess I’m going to be the exception to the norm here. I care very little about ass size (or boob size). Face and low BMI (i.e. athletic body) are most important to me. After that, having that female form which involves having large hips, small waist, and visible breasts is a bonus.

  • Senior Beta

    I am an ass man like Munson. But then we are both INSJ’s.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    It’s interesting to me how so many of HUS’ regular “reformed betas” continue to espouse this notion that players will always have success in this regard, no matter what. Fine, don’t take it from me — I’ve heard numerous girls of my acquaintance and good friends who reject manwhores alike.

    I’d like to think this is true, but my experience has shown otherwise. If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard a girl say a guy was “gross’ or “dirty” because of his high number, only to put out later…. well, I’d have a shit load of nickels.

  • Ceer

    @Ben

    Thanks for writing in.

    I’d like to emphasize something that you said in relation to hookup culture. It made you sick to have only the physical aspects of a relationship, and none of the emotional attachment…in other words, you’ve always been looking for something more. This seems to be the telltale sign of a natural beta.

    Judging from what you’ve been saying, you’ve got plenty of manliness. Keep that. It’s pretty typical for a man to loose it while he’s head over heels in love. Tends to be a big reason why guys get dumped. Young women are typically unforgiving in this area unless they feel the same way too. The signs are obvious to anyone who’s not in love. You can basically do no wrong.

    Your new girlfriend asked you what type of stuff you’re into. I’ve had a couple girlfriends ask me this, and I figure it’s typically a sign of interest in you as a complete individual. My guess is that she’s searching for an activity you two can enjoy together. It’s a pretty common way that men interact with each other, and can serve to help create an emotional bond.

    Keep in mind that this sort of thing is more of a general interpersonal bond, rather than a sexual type thing. I myself have had conversations with friends where they mention activities that I’m unfamiliar with, and I’ve opened up discussion along those lines.

    I like Susan’s idea of taking a sexual break. I know one guy who tried to not view women sexually at all for an entire year. Not just no sex…but no sex, masturbation, romantic contact, etc…for a year. Afterwards, he said his relationships with women improved. In retrospect, it allowed him the time to focus on improving himself as a man and healing his emotional baggage, so he could move forward from a position of confidence.

    I see three immediate options for you.
    1) Try to have it all — Tell your GF you need space to regain your frame as a man. Non-sexual time. It’s not about her. It’s about you. Do your healing, then reengage if she’s game.

    2) 2 in the bush — Dump her. This means that you value strange pussy + potential bliss of mutual head over heels love (rare, but does happen) more than your current girlfriend.

    3) 1 in the hand — Status quo. I’ve seen many couples who just decided to marry their best friends. They tend to be happy, even into old age.

    Yours is essentially a choice. Which do you prefer.

  • Ceer

    @INTJ

    That’s a common misconception. The typical ranking is:
    1) waste to hip ratio
    2) facial beauty
    3) overall weight
    4) breast size/shape
    5) ass shape

    Your mileage may vary. For instance, I prefer 1 and 2 switched.

  • INTJ

    @Ceer

    Well then I’m 3-2-1-5-4.

  • @El Marques
    The other thing I noticed is that somehow, inexplicably, these women always seem invisible to men with the options to be promiscuous in the first place…

    I agreed with this when I read it (and still do), but didn’t realize until after I had scrolled back up to quote that it can be taken two ways.

    The first is the way you probably intended it, which is as a subtle neg, reminding the women in question that the men they preemptively reject don’t even notice them anyway.

    The second is the way I originally read it, which is as a recognition of a right order to things. If the women in question really do want to steer clear of such men (I refer to VD’s group of “virgins, religious women and women of very little experience”), then their invisibility is a kind of blessing. This is not to say that one group is “good” and the other is “bad” . . . just that neither seems to have anything to offer the other, so it’s fitting that they don’t get the chance to. As Lokland would say, it’s a feature, not a bug.

  • pvw

    Saywhaat:

    Thanks, PVW. I may still be in the “less sexually experienced” category of women, but I wouldn’t blunder in with my skirt up and pussy out without having some idea of knowing what I’m dealing with. And I think that there are a lot of women who behave exactly the same way — at least, the ones I’m friends with (and yes, they’re much more sexually experienced than I am).

    My reply:

    You’re welcome; that is exactly what I was getting at!

    SayWhaat:

    Besides, I’m gettin’ it in twice a night and once in the morning so as far as I’m concerned I’m making up for all that lost ground with few to zero regrets to spare, aww yeah.

    My reply:

    That is how I felt when I got married!

    El Marques:

    The other thing I noticed is that somehow, inexplicably, these women always seem invisible to men with the options to be promiscuous in the first place…

    Bellita:

    If the women in question really do want to steer clear of such men (I refer to VD’s group of “virgins, religious women and women of very little experience”), then their invisibility is a kind of blessing…neither seems to have anything to offer the other, so it’s fitting that they don’t get the chance to. As Lokland would say, it’s a feature, not a bug.

    My reply:

    I read it the same way Bellita. But I will take it further, that the promiscuous men might not have noticed them because they don’t give off the “I’m DTF and put out” energy, which is all the better for the “virgins, religious women and women of very little experience”.

    Dogsquat

    SayWhaat said:

    “I’ve heard numerous girls of my acquaintance and good friends who reject manwhores alike.”
    ____________________
    SayWhaat, do your friends ever define why they make that choice? Visceral distaste, or a lack of trust? Some combination?

    My reply: I can’t speak for SayWhaat, but I was in a similar category as she was “way back in the day,” in that I had a lower count for a woman of my age, and my visceral reaction was the same.

    I knew a few manwhores who were buzzing around me back then, but I wasn’t interested.

    Why? Several reasons: by being promiscuous, they left themselves open to a greater possibility that they might get stds and thus infect me. This indicated a blatant lack of respect for their own bodies and the bodies of the women (their future wives) who would give birth to their children.

    They were likely to be the types that only wanted to “pump and dump,” when I wasn’t looking for casual.

    They were likely to want the sex that came with a much more experienced woman and so would compare me to them and dump me because they thought I was lacking in some fashion.

    Instead of trying to grow sexually with me, they would have been more likely to want me to act like a porn star from the first night. All of this indicating, once again, that my genitalia would have been all that mattered; forget character, personality, etc.; will I “put out” in the way they want?

    They might have wanted me to be part of a harem of women servicing them.

    Yet, if they felt ready to settle down and were looking for a “wifey,” my thought was “sure, get your wife amongst your hoochies!” I made the sacrifice, living a decent life and keeping myself chaste, so why should they get the benefit of that when they did not live accordingly?

    Could a manwhore have ever redeemed himself in my eyes back then? Yes, if he experienced the equivalent of a “true conversion,” several years of celibacy and a thorough assessment of the evil in his prior lifestyle, and none of this “the she-devils did me wrong,” but that they wanted the she-devils in the first place.

  • VD

    I may still be in the “less sexually experienced” category of women, but I wouldn’t blunder in with my skirt up and pussy out without having some idea of knowing what I’m dealing with.

    Some idea? Are you claiming that you’ve always known how many women your partners have been with prior to having sex with them? If so, that’s great, but that is also not the norm. I’ve certainly never discussed any numbers prior to sex, except of course for the virgins. Let’s make this a general question: how many here have always known their sexual partners’ N prior to having sex with them? Or, more precisely, how many here have always THOUGHT they knew their sexual partners’ N prior to having sex with them?

    It’s interesting to me how so many of HUS’ regular “reformed betas” continue to espouse this notion that players will always have success in this regard, no matter what. Fine, don’t take it from me — I’ve heard numerous girls of my acquaintance and good friends who reject manwhores alike.

    Because the players continue having observable success in this regard. Now, I’m sure you have heard it… but I’m also sure you have no idea with whom your female acquaintances and good friends are actually having sex. I suspect it would surprise you. Remember, it’s a mantra of Game that any woman who makes open statements about “no more games” or “no players” is tacitly admitting her own vulnerability to them. Keep that in mind when you consider with whom your friends who are saying such things have been in the past.

    • Are you claiming that you’ve always known how many women your partners have been with prior to having sex with them? If so, that’s great, but that is also not the norm.

      This is an area where things are dramatically different in college. There, only a few men rack up a high body count – only 2% over 10, 6% over 5. Everyone in that scene, e.g. Greek, athletics, knows who they are. Ben was in that group, and most likely his partners were too. I believe it’s very rare for a frat rat to get some “strange” in chem lab, for example.

      After graduation, when most people gravitate to large cities, getting this information from a stranger is obviously unreliable. This is why social circle dating is always best for women. There’s at least some degree of vetting that can take place.

  • FeralEmployee

    @SW, 33

    However, the study did show that while men did lose attraction, they did not lose a sense of commitment

    Isn’t that what you’d expect though? Kind of like an addict in need of a justification, or an incentive to keep pursuing the habit? How dull would life be if it’s just “penis goes in, penis goes out, you can’t explain that”. Instead there’s the desire for commitment that keeps driving a manwhore towards women. Not that it matters anyway, since the likelihood of actual commitment has dropped, more importantly: right after sex. After the “seed is in”, it’s time to switch.

    In no way am I implying that the future of manwhores is fatalistic. Habits can be broken, but people underestimate the work required to do so.

  • Ian

    I disagree somewhat that he should leave the current GF. Dating math:

    There’s a much greater reward difference between Nothing and Anyone, than between Someone and Anyone Else. The first time you feel deep attachment or wild lust feels like a deeper strike than the other times. I’m skeptical of those who say they felt something better in later N’s, unless they were feeling something specific for the first time.

    Sample size increasing, you’re more likely to experience a higher rush on your Best Sex and Deepest Affection. Best Sex is best had with Crazy Women, and will not work out long term. Deepest Affection kills Game, makes women sugar-sick, and will not work out long term.

    Geeking a bit, If she’s head-over feet for him, there probably isn’t a histamine incompatibility. A month or two without climaxing might dial back any cravings, open up more constructive ways of getting oxytocin blasts. Dao, tantric, karezza. Nobody ever follows that advice, but it could work.

    It’s the sucky male paradox that you can have any woman you want, so long as you don’t want her. Imperfect world, imperfect biology; our “hand” is better with women we value less, and Ben’s woman seems like a catch despite. Make it work.

  • Ramble

    If she’s also approaching her mid-20s, she deserves to make an informed choice about dating a man she will almost certainly not marry.

    Susan, I thought that this was the most interesting line in the whole piece.

    approaching her mid-20s

    She is not in her mid-20’s, but approaching them, and so she deserves to know that he is not going to marry her. (For the record, I do not disagree with that advice.)

    But, if I were a different person, and were to focus on only that point, I might think that you were a little nuts.

    This is all just my way of saying that by the time this blog has run it’s course, the advice that you will be giving to young women will be little different from the advice that our great-great grandmothers were giving at the turn of the previous century.

  • Ted D

    My rank list:
    1) ass shape
    2)waste to hip ratio
    2) facial beauty
    3) overall weight
    4) breast size/shape

    VD – “Let’s make this a general question: how many here have always known their sexual partners’ N prior to having sex with them? Or, more precisely, how many here have always THOUGHT they knew their sexual partners’ N prior to having sex with them?”

    I always ask before getting intimate with a woman. One of them was a virgin, so at least I know she wasn’t lying…

  • Ben

    Thanks to everyone for the feedback. As an update, I broke up with her in the past 2 days. It hurt like hell, almost as bad as being broken up with myself. I’m going to miss her, but I’ll get over it eventually.

    Feedback:

    @Dogsquat 10

    Don’t worry about it, I’ve been called an arrogant asshole more than once. However, in your case, I don’t see much arrogance. And yes, I’ve given quite a bit of thought to how those two previous experiences scarred me, and it’s quite possible I tried to play it as safe as I could. She wasn’t lower SMV (probably about equal), but I did filter for the most trustworthy, reliable and loyal girl I could find, which she was. I did completely ignore a walking red flag on No 2, probably bc I was trying to rebound from no 1 (they were pretty much consecutive). As for “healing”, I have no idea what does that but time, so that doesn’t occupy much of my mind.

    @Ceer 39

    I think you got the wrong impression from my email. I got sick of just the physical part of it after essentially 2 straight years of banging random chicks. I was very happy doing it for about the first 20 months or so. I love strange p*ssy. I’m a big fan of it. And nothing gets me quite as excited as the thrill of the chase. I just got tired of it after that much time. Also probably didn’t help that most of my friends were in LTRs at the time. The night I decided I was going to try and look for a gf was after I’d had 2 one night stands that weekend, with 2 girls whose names I didn’t even remember. Remember, with girl no 2 (the liar) I didn’t even formally date her, and when she was back at school, despite being emotionally involved w/her, I was hooking up with other random girls in the city. Also, when I decided to be exclusive w/my (ex) gf, I was hooking up with another girl who I had to break it off with. I would say that I fall in your (2) category. I enjoy both, at different times, and would say that after a couple weeks to get over this, I will be joyfully back in full bar pickup swing.

    @All

    She did know I had a pretty extensive sexual history. Even though we didn’t go to the same school, I’d already hooked up with 2 older girls in her sorority before I met her (was a total coincidence they knew each other), and I wasn’t exactly tight-lipped on my opinions about my friends picking up girls, and what they were doing wrong etc. She knew I knew what I was doing around women and had had experience.

    A further note. I’m not looking to “settle down” for good here at all. I wasn’t when I decided I wanted a gf. I’m 25, and have noooooo intention of getting married anytime soon. I wanted a girlfriend, someone who I really cared about, instead of a series of warm bodies. That was my preference at the time. Likely, it will now shift back to warm bodies for quite some time.

  • Ben

    Oh, and I’m an ass man. Big time. One thing I’ll be looking forward to post-gf is more bjs (she wasn’t too enthusiastic), and a nicer ass (hers was just ok).

    • @Ben

      Hi, thanks so much for joining in. It sounds like you are no longer concerned about being emotionally limited, which is great. I also think you made the right call in breaking up, and while I’m sure that was a very difficult conversation to have, it sounds like you’re already enjoying being single again.

      Likely, it will now shift back to warm bodies for quite some time.

      I am curious to know what you think of your original stated concern that you’re difficult to please sexually, and what impact you feel that might have on you over the long term. Do you think you might simply avoid monogamy in future?

      Also, I’m interested to know whether you care about a woman’s N. Based on your description of the two women you did fall for, I assume they were fairly promiscuous themselves. Also your most recent relationship having been based primarily on partying.

      To be honest, I’m having a little trouble seeing your original letter and your comments here as entirely reconcilable – is it me, or have you had a change of heart?

    • One thing I’ll be looking forward to post-gf is more bjs (she wasn’t too enthusiastic), and a nicer ass (hers was just ok).

      Ouch. Glad you’re not too broken up over all this.

  • Ben

    @ Ian

    Not an issue of “making it work”. I wasn’t unhappy in any way. In fact you could say I was pretty happy. But I knew that I wasn’t in love, and wouldn’t be, so the trajectory was a long downward slide. I didn’t want to put her through that.

    As for sex, the issue with having a high N count is I have so many clips in the “greatest hits” reel in my head to compare to. And whatever was going on outside the bed, those hits started to intrude on my thoughts more as time went on. She was good in bed, and had a great body and pretty face, but thoughts such as “well she doesn’t do this as well as X” or “I wish her ass was as nice as Y” would start to come in from time to time.

    And for all of you, the relationship was really built on having a great time partying w/her (we went out for dinner, drinks, bars, etc probably 3-4 nights a week together), sex, some shared TV shows, and small talk. There just wasn’t enough deeper compatability. It showed the most during dinner, where in the last couple months the conversation could get forced at times, because there just wasn’t enough to talk about. I don’t think she noticed/it bothered her as much as it did me, but it stood out quite a bit.

  • Ted D

    Ben – “She was good in bed, and had a great body and pretty face, but thoughts such as “well she doesn’t do this as well as X” or “I wish her ass was as nice as Y” would start to come in from time to time.”

    Yeah this is what tells me you really weren’t in love with her. Of course, I’m at the opposite side of the spectrum from you with a small N, but I know how I behave when I’m with someone, and when I am single. And I can honestly say that when I am “in love” with a women, other women just don’t seem so attractive. I can see a woman when single, and be VERY attracted, and then run into her four months after I started a relationship and wonder why I thought she was so hot. Sure, I will still think she is physically appealing, but the actual desire for her is gone. It is because when I really love a women, I only desire her. I may find other women to be plenty attractive, but my thoughts don’t go any further than that.

  • Abbot

    “grow sexually with me”
    .
    This is one of the strongest reasons [right up there with avoidance of the universal natural visceral feeling] men steer clear of commitment with promiscuous women
    .
    “They might have wanted me to be part of a harem of women servicing them.”
    .
    Well, there you have it. “Say Brent, why don’t you go down to the local harem and get yourself a pre expressed and explored “lady” who was only rode on Sundays by the same 15% of men for five years and then summarily rejected”

  • Sassy6519

    She did know I had a pretty extensive sexual history. Even though we didn’t go to the same school, I’d already hooked up with 2 older girls in her sorority before I met her (was a total coincidence they knew each other), and I wasn’t exactly tight-lipped on my opinions about my friends picking up girls, and what they were doing wrong etc. She knew I knew what I was doing around women and had had experience.

    A further note. I’m not looking to “settle down” for good here at all. I wasn’t when I decided I wanted a gf. I’m 25, and have noooooo intention of getting married anytime soon. I wanted a girlfriend, someone who I really cared about, instead of a series of warm bodies. That was my preference at the time. Likely, it will now shift back to warm bodies for quite some time.

    You sound like a real charmer.

    **Barfs in bag**

    You probably don’t know it, but you did that girl a HUGE favor by breaking up with her.

  • Ben

    @Susan

    I am, and was pretty broken up about it. Given that this is the internet, I’m going to let you know I cried for a good 20 minutes after she left. I felt awful. My comments are crude, but I’m trying to move forward and get over it, and that means focusing on what there is of the bright side, gross though it may be.

    I know I’m going to avoid monogamy for the near future. I’m applying for bschool next fall, so I don’t see the point of a relationship now when in a little over a year I could be anywhere.

    The change of heart may relate to the fact that the more people I’ve talked to, the more I’ve realized that my situation was not that untypical, and was just the wrong person for me. However, I am still concerned about my ability to be satisfied with a girl, given my past history, and also my ability to emotionally open up. I was pretty guarded with this girl, and I think dogsquat at #10 is right in a way, I may have emotionally cauterized myself after my previous experiences. I shut down my emotions so fully when I was sleeping around that I’m not sure I can really open them up again easily.

    And yes, Susan, you’re correct in that the first two girls were pretty promiscuous. My (ex) girlfriend, I’m not sure how much she was. I could never really get a feel. I think she made out with a fair number of guys, but from everything I could gather she didn’t sleep around a ton.

    @Sassy

    Sorry, next time I’ll lie to her and hide from her something that all my friends know about her. I met her at a bar; it was a complete coincidence that she was in that same sorority from that same school. Sometimes New York is a small world. Maybe I should have disqualified her on the spot because she chose the wrong sorority and school…

    And I’m sorry, I wasn’t aware it was illegal to date people before you’re ready to get married. I’ll update my processes accordingly.

    And yes, I’m a guy. When I’m single I sleep around. I know that comes as the news flash of the century, but there it is. Sorry, next time on hooking up smart, I’ll refrain from mentioning that I hook up.

    I never cheated on my girlfriend and never even entertained the thought of doing it. I never flirted with a single other girl. Cheating’s for losers. I treated her extremely well. I got her diamond earrings for valentine’s day. For her birthday, I remembered her favorite dish which she’d mentioned months ago and cooked it for her at home. We got in one fight, ever, and it lasted for 10 minutes and was over. I think she’s an amazing girl, I’m just not in love with her. You don’t know sh*t about how our relationship was, so shut up about it.

    • @Ben

      I don’t think anyone judges you for having casual sex – I don’t. I think the crudeness of the comments was a bit much for the women here – perhaps this is how you need to think of her to move on, but after reading in your letter how much you dreaded hurting her, hearing you say her ass wasn’t that great is a bit…harsh. I’m assuming she was in love with you – if so, she’s likely devastated right now. The guy who gave her diamond earrings only three months ago has tired of her and is dissing her online. She doesn’t know it, but we do.

  • Herb

    @Ben

    A further note. I’m not looking to “settle down” for good here at all. I wasn’t when I decided I wanted a gf. I’m 25, and have noooooo intention of getting married anytime soon. I wanted a girlfriend, someone who I really cared about, instead of a series of warm bodies. That was my preference at the time. Likely, it will now shift back to warm bodies for quite some time.

    Ben, I was with you until the bold part.

    Have more respect for yourself than going back to that. It hasn’t fucked you up in forming attachments yet, but why risk it.

    If you’re really worried about being a manwhore being bad for your future, stop being one. I think you’ll enjoy life more to be honest.

  • Don’t have much time except to leave a drive-by comment, but I’d like to address a few concerning me:

    1. Yes, I do know my boyfriend’s N, and I knew the N of a few other guys I dated.

    2. My girlfriends expressed visceral distate at the thought of manwhores. One evenrefuses to date guys more than 2 years older than her because she doesn’t want his N to be much higher than hers (she doesn’t have a high N, she’s a fairly classy girl). I know the N of most of my girlfriends. We discuss our sex lives at brunch.

    3. If you aren’t meeting girlswho dislike manwhores you’re meeting the wrong girls, or eliminating th right ones from your scene.

  • Herb

    @Ben

    But I knew that I wasn’t in love, and wouldn’t be, so the trajectory was a long downward slide. I didn’t want to put her through that.

    See my comments on being in love as well as those of others. If you want to chase it, just start doing coke instead. You’ll get high more often and reliably at a lower cost.

    As for sex, the issue with having a high N count is I have so many clips in the “greatest hits” reel in my head to compare to. And whatever was going on outside the bed, those hits started to intrude on my thoughts more as time went on.

    See my comment above about breaking things.

    @Susan and Sassy

    Ouch. Glad you’re not too broken up over all this.

    You sound like a real charmer.

    **Barfs in bag**

    Yeah, who wouldn’t want to pass that up.

    @Ben again
    Dude, when guys agree with that, you might want to rethink things.

  • Iggles

    Ben – From reading your follow up comments, you did the right thing by ending your relationship with your girlfriend. You weren’t in love and didn’t have deep feelings for her, so I agree it’s best not to drag it out.

    I’m sure she’s hurt right now, but if she truly knew how you feel and what you think of her she’d realize it’s for the best. Really, you set her free.

    That said, honestly I wouldn’t wish a guy like you on any of my friends (who are all LTR-minded). The reason being, if you find the right girl and fall in love you might be able to make things work. But it will likely be an uphill climb since you enjoy the thrill of the chase and new “strange”. That’s completely fine with regards to short-term dating, but in long term relationships there are ups and down.

    When things are “down”, you may find yourself itching to play to the field again to fill that void and/or replaying “greatest hits” in your head. Neither is conducive to maintaining a relationship and may lead to a break up or infidelity.

    Ceer’s comment below may be a good strategy for high number men to employ when they feel ready to settle down:

    I like Susan’s idea of taking a sexual break. I know one guy who tried to not view women sexually at all for an entire year. Not just no sex…but no sex, masturbation, romantic contact, etc…for a year. Afterwards, he said his relationships with women improved. In retrospect, it allowed him the time to focus on improving himself as a man and healing his emotional baggage, so he could move forward from a position of confidence.

  • Sassy6519

    Sorry, next time I’ll lie to her and hide from her something that all my friends know about her. I met her at a bar; it was a complete coincidence that she was in that same sorority from that same school. Sometimes New York is a small world. Maybe I should have disqualified her on the spot because she chose the wrong sorority and school…

    And I’m sorry, I wasn’t aware it was illegal to date people before you’re ready to get married. I’ll update my processes accordingly.

    And yes, I’m a guy. When I’m single I sleep around. I know that comes as the news flash of the century, but there it is. Sorry, next time on hooking up smart, I’ll refrain from mentioning that I hook up.

    I never cheated on my girlfriend and never even entertained the thought of doing it. I never flirted with a single other girl. Cheating’s for losers. I treated her extremely well. I got her diamond earrings for valentine’s day. For her birthday, I remembered her favorite dish which she’d mentioned months ago and cooked it for her at home. We got in one fight, ever, and it lasted for 10 minutes and was over. I think she’s an amazing girl, I’m just not in love with her. You don’t know sh*t about how our relationship was, so shut up about it.

    **Slow claps**

    Are you finished?

    Okay.

    No one is expecting you to lie to women, and I could give a rat’s ass as to whether or not you hookup with other people. That’s on you.

    The issue I have is the haphazard approach you have been taking to the dating world, in general. It seems like you don’t even truly know what you want or need. You don’t have a goal or a purpose. You have no driving desire to strive for. Instead, you are running around like a bull in a china shop, causing damage. You do what you want, without really giving a sincere iota of thought about the potential consequences, and the chips fall where they may.

    What you don’t realize is that you are harming yourself, as time goes on, and harming other people. You got into a relationship on the spur of the moment, admittedly after having ONS with random girls a few days beforehand. You are doing things in the dating world out of whimsy instead of conviction. That’s the problem I have with this situation.

    If you’re so willing to be a drunk driver on the “road of love/relationships”, that’s on you. Just don’t be surprised that people are shocked/appalled when you run over people.

    Get off the road, sober up, then try to drive again. Do some self reflection and don’t get involved with anyone for awhile. Figure out what you truly want and what you are capable of doing, then move forward.

    @ Susan

    I don’t think anyone judges you for having casual sex – I don’t. I think the crudeness of the comments was a bit much for the women here – perhaps this is how you need to think of her to move on, but after reading in your letter how much you dreaded hurting her, hearing you say her ass wasn’t that great is a bit…harsh. I’m assuming she was in love with you – if so, she’s likely devastated right now. The guy who gave her diamond earrings only three months ago has tired of her and is dissing her online. She doesn’t know it, but we do.

    That too.

  • Iggles

    @SayWhaat:

    1. Yes, I do know my boyfriend’s N, and I knew the N of a few other guys I dated.

    2. My girlfriends expressed visceral distate at the thought of manwhores. One evenrefuses to date guys more than 2 years older than her because she doesn’t want his N to be much higher than hers (she doesn’t have a high N, she’s a fairly classy girl). I know the N of most of my girlfriends. We discuss our sex lives at brunch.

    3. If you aren’t meeting girlswho dislike manwhores you’re meeting the wrong girls, or eliminating th right ones from your scene.

    +1

    Emphasis added with the bold part.
    Promiscuous people always tend to overstate/overestimate how promiscuous everyone else is, so those who aren’t are invisible to them. Their neighbor might be a virgin but they’ll perceive her not to be one because they assume she isn’t!

    My friends and I care about this kind of stuff! One of my best friends and I can count on one hand the number of partners we had (including kissing/making out). Both of us are repelled by manwhores and view them as as bad bets for LTRs.

    Regarding #1, I actually don’t know my bf’s N but given what I know about him — before we dated he went several years without a serious gf and he doesn’t like casual sex — our values align on this issue.

  • @SayWhaat
    3. If you aren’t meeting girlswho dislike manwhores you’re meeting the wrong girls, or eliminating th right ones from your scene.

    In fairness to anyone who can’t find such a girl, VD already pointed out that we already actively avoid them; and El Marques has observed that even when we’re around them, we’re invisible.

  • Iggles

    @ Sassy6519:

    What you don’t realize is that you are harming yourself, as time goes on, and harming other people. You got into a relationship on the spur of the moment, admittedly after having ONS with random girls a few days beforehand. You are doing things in the dating world out of whimsy instead of conviction. That’s the problem I have with this situation.

    If you’re so willing to be a drunk driver on the “road of love/relationships”, that’s on you. Just don’t be surprised that people are shocked/appalled when you run over people.

    Get off the road, sober up, then try to drive again. Do some self reflection and don’t get involved with anyone for awhile. Figure out what you truly want and what you are capable of doing, then move forward.

    + 1

    I couldn’t agree more!

    I get that for a lot of guys, they’re primarily living in the present. Doing what feels good at the time. But, I don’t think they understand how hurtful it is for the girl when a guy does “boyfriend-like behavior” when he actually doesn’t have any plans to fulfill that role. His actions don’t add up. He gives off the appearance of wanting to stick around, when he’s still making up his mind and will likely bolt when commitment is brought up.

    I’ve been on the receiving end of that before. It’s confusing and it sucks.

    In Ben’s case, he was “the boyfriend” and by his account played that role well. Giving a girl diamond earrings for V-Day implies permanence, the idea that you can see a future with her. That may have not been your intention, but it’s hurtful all the same when the “good guy” she’s with suddenly dumps her because he “not that into her”…

    Feelings do change. It doesn’t make you a villain to change your mind. But if you’re going to get close to someone, intimately so, make sure you know what you want before choosing to do so!

  • AnonForNow

    Ben doesn’t want love, he wants infatuation. He is chasing a feeling. He thinks this feeling is love, but he is wrong. It’s one step higher than chasing sex, but it’s not going to lead to real love.

  • Abbot

    “Promiscuous people always tend to overstate/overestimate how promiscuous everyone else is”
    .
    Misery loves [wants] company? Well, this is exactly the premise or desired premise of all that “sex positive” mass confusion and anguish. There are probably no women claiming to be “sex positive” who were raised by caring and nurturing parents. Case closed. Men, please choose wisely.

  • AnonForNow, that’s exactly it.

    This should be a clear warning to Ladies: guys with high partner counts = automatic deal-breaker.

  • @Ben
    You did the right thing by breaking up with her as much as invested she was now it would only get worse and if she is around your age she should be thinking on finding a guy to marry to avoid hitting the wall. She will nurse her wounds now and move on, probably to a guy that can give her what you couldn’t. So can you.

    I read it the same way Bellita. But I will take it further, that the promiscuous men might not have noticed them because they don’t give off the “I’m DTF and put out” energy, which is all the better for the “virgins, religious women and women of very little experience”.

    I will say that I have had my share of dogs that of course assume all women fall on their laps with asking them for a beer. They usually label you a lesbian if you don’t react as usual and move on really quickly I will say this is better than having one trying to convince you so be happy if you are invisible to manwhores less time wasted on avoiding them.

    Let’s make this a general question: how many here have always known their sexual partners’ N prior to having sex with them?

    I know the number and even know names and have seen pics and I meet one in person. But again this is outlier club it seems like, anyway. 😉
    I do agree that when a woman is really attracted to a guy almost nothing matters (married, manwhore and in one occasion even if the guy is gay) but there is a subset of women that don’t place themselves in the position of being that attracted to anyone till they know what is the deal. That is the missing key if you fall for a guy for looks and shallow dominance you have to accept what it comes with him, but if you need something deeper chances are this things are harder to ignore, YMMV.

  • Ben

    @ Herb

    Yeah, some guys don’t like it. It generally follows the expression “those who can’t do, teach”. In dating, with men, it goes “those who can’t do, disapprove”. Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.

    @Sassy

    I knew exactly what I wanted. For 2 years, I wanted nothing to do with a relationship. Then I wanted one. 4 months later, I was in one. There was a 4 month gap between when I decided I wanted one and when I got into one, during which I went out with quite a few girls, looking for the one I thought would be right for me. I thought it was this girl (my ex). I was wrong. I’ll try batting 1.000 next time. And yes, I know people get hurt. I felt fucking horrible enough about breaking up with her without your input. I could barely keep myself together when I did it, and I broke down and cried for about 20 minutes after she left. News flash: these things happen to plenty of people who know exactly what they want. I have a few friends who are dedicated serial monogamists, who’ve had one gf after another almost in succession for years. They have broken far more hearts than I have with all the girls I’ve slept with. I don’t lie to girls I have casual sex with. I don’t promise them anything in terms of a relationship, and I’m not cruel or douchey to them. I don’t use “dark triad” to pickup women. I don’t use “game”. I use simple, good old fashioned charm, confidence and humor. When I’m single, I enjoy casual sex. When I’m in a relationship, I’m fully committed to that relationship until it’s not working anymore. I don’t see a problem there. And believe it or not, most of the women I know in my life think I’m a pretty damn good person. Yes I’ve been called a douche, because I’m pretty open with my thoughts and can be a bit sarcastic, but on a several occasions my roommate’s girlfriend (who he’s been dating for 3 years and is deeply in love with), who I see 5+ times a week, has aggressively gone to bat for me with other girls as a good guy without me even asking her to. It’s generally girls who haven’t taken the red pill and aren’t really self-aware who don’t like what I have to say.

    @Susan

    Well most of what I can talk about is personal experience, and so that’s what I’m doing. I would never put enough detail on here so that anyone could identify her. As far as talking shit, I’m trying to get over her, so part of what I’m doing is trying to look at the positives. I may have been a little crude there, but it’s not going to help me by concentrating on how great she is (which she is). I expect she’s doing the exact same thing. I probably right now am being painted as a villain, and that’s her prerogative. I have no interest in doing that to her, but I’m going to try and concentrate on any positives I can find here, because really the only one I focused on was not leading her down a barren path, which doesn’t do much for my happiness going forward.

    @All who’ve suggested I take a sabbatical:

    Not going to happen. I’m a man, and I like to have sex, so I’m going to have sex. My right hand isn’t a very attractive partner believe it or not. Luckily as a man I don’t really have to face the prospect of my sexual history being a major disqualifier for relationships in the future. It may be a double standard, but it’s there. And yes, I know from some women on this thread you say I’d be discarded, and that’s true, you’re generally the exception vs. the rule. Preselection works in my favor in this scenario.

  • Ben

    @AnonforNow

    Couldn’t agree more. I’m 25, and I’m not looking for companionate love at this point. I think settling for that at my age is just giving up. I want what the psych profs call romantic love, which is heavily characterized by infatuation. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triangular_theory_of_love . Commitment comes with time, but for me it has to start there. This past relationship just didn’t have the intimacy aspect.

  • What a great article. The statistics regarding martial sexual satisfaction in accordance to how many partners someone had were of real interest to me, especially as I have a friend who has slept with many more women than Ben and I often talk to him about relationships and long-term happiness.

    Interestingly enough, I’ve also been looking up information on porn addiction and how it can affect sexual gratification, so it was nice to see that pointed out as I think it correlates in a similar manner to sleeping with lots of women as well. Too much of either porn or sex with multiple women seems to overload the brain and numbs you to the pleasure over time.

    Not only did I think this was some great advice for this particular situation, but it is some of the wisest I have read from the myriad of love and relationship blogs out there which all too often rely on cliche and typical advice that paint with much too broad of a stroke to help people with their issues. Bravo 🙂

    • @Chris

      Welcome, and thanks for the kind words. I also appreciate the tweet! Congrats on the new blog, it looks great. Be sure to sign in with Comment Luv if you want to promote your newest post!

  • @Susan
    To be honest, I’m having a little trouble seeing your original letter and your comments here as entirely reconcilable – is it me, or have you had a change of heart?

    I’ve felt the same cognitive dissonance, to the point that I wondered whether Ben had trolled you with the letter. (Hahahaha! But I was clearly just paranoid there.) I think that now that several men have chimed in to assure Ben that sleeping around does not hurt a man’s ability to pair-bond, and that his lackluster relationship with his former girlfriend is not proof to the contrary, Ben no longer sees anything to worry about.

  • Iggles

    @ Ben:

    @All who’ve suggested I take a sabbatical:

    Not going to happen. I’m a man, and I like to have sex, so I’m going to have sex.

    Your mind seems made up, so keep doing what you’re doing. It’s no skin off any of our backs. We’re only commenting and offering our thoughts/advice.

    However, as Dr. Phil says: “How’s that working for you?”

    Can’t say I’d be surprises after you’ve got your fill of empty sex – i mean warm bodies – that in a few years you might find yourself in the same spot again. Wondering if being an emotional prude is a detriment to finding real love.

    Just for laughs, and because I think we would all agree that liking to have sex isn’t the problem I could resist making a substitution:

    @All who’ve suggested I go on a diet:

    Not going to happen. I’m a human being, and I like to eat, so I’m going to keep eating.

    😆

  • pvw

    Anacaona:

    I will say that I have had my share of dogs that of course assume all women fall on their laps with asking them for a beer. They usually label you a lesbian if you don’t react as usual and move on really quickly I will say this is better than having one trying to convince you so be happy if you are invisible to manwhores less time wasted on avoiding them.

    My reply:

    Oh my, I recall one of them early in my graduate school career, before I met the husband, who wanted me in his harem as he had a long distance girlfriend. We were acquaintances; we might have had lunch or dinner once. He never acted as though he was interested in dating, so I didn’t chase, even though I liked chatting with him and eventually got to know him as a peer and colleague.

    One day, we were chatting and he said that he would be open to taking things in that direction–sexually. He started talking about “terms,” meaning the terms of engagment so to speak, and I asked, would your girlfriend know about it? He said no, and I just listened, becoming more and more horrified at an obvious manhore who knew how to juggle multiple women.

    The funny part is that he always had black women in the community falling over themselves to help him as he had a very well developed “decent black man trying to do good” persona. Long after, one of the older ladies I knew at the school who worked in support staff seemed shocked that I wasn’t chasing him–“the single appearing black man in graduate school.” If she only knew.

    • One day, we were chatting and he said that he would be open to taking things in that direction–sexually. He started talking about “terms,” meaning the terms of engagment so to speak,

      He sounds like Christian Grey 🙂

  • Sassy6519

    @All who’ve suggested I take a sabbatical:

    Not going to happen. I’m a man, and I like to have sex, so I’m going to have sex. My right hand isn’t a very attractive partner believe it or not. Luckily as a man I don’t really have to face the prospect of my sexual history being a major disqualifier for relationships in the future. It may be a double standard, but it’s there. And yes, I know from some women on this thread you say I’d be discarded, and that’s true, you’re generally the exception vs. the rule. Preselection works in my favor in this scenario.

    There’s none so blind as those who will not see.

    You worry that lots of casual sex will hinder your ability to bond with someone later, yet you want to run right back out and do it some more.

    Brilliant.

    It’s generally girls who haven’t taken the red pill and aren’t really self-aware who don’t like what I have to say.

    Uh huh.

    You must be new here.

    I’m probably the woman who is most at peace with her dose of the red pill.

    I’m also not afraid to identify and call someone out over crappy behavior.

    If you want to be haphazard and run back out without a plan based on introspection, go right ahead. Don’t be surprised if it keeps rendering the same results.

    @ Iggles

    Your mind seems made up, so keep doing what you’re doing. It’s no skin off any of our backs. We’re only commenting and offering our thoughts/advice.

    However, as Dr. Phil says: “How’s that working for you?”

    Can’t say I’d be surprises after you’ve got your fill of empty sex – i mean warm bodies – that in a few years you might find yourself in the same spot again. Wondering if being an emotional prude is a detriment to finding real love.

    Bingo.

  • Abbot

    “Ben doesn’t want love, he wants infatuation. He is chasing a feeling. He thinks this feeling is love, but he is wrong. It’s one step higher than chasing sex, but it’s not going to lead to real love.”
    _____________________
    “This should be a clear warning to Ladies: guys with high partner counts = automatic deal-breaker.”
    .
    Yes. Ladies choose their reason [in this case, the inability to love], and it does not matter what that reason is, and reject the promiscuous for life mate status. So why is that there is sooo much angst out there when men do the same thing? What is going on here? Could it be just the sheer number of women compared to men who face slut-status rejection?

    • @Abbot

      So why is that there is sooo much angst out there when men do the same thing? What is going on here?

      You’re preaching to the choir here, you know that.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Abbot

    You seem to enjoy arguing with yourself an awful lot.

    Seriously, does it ever end?

  • Iggles

    Couldn’t resist*

    ah, typos!

  • Ted D

    Ben – “Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.”

    yeah, that’s exactly the reason. *rolls eyes*

    Sorry man, you are a bit full of yourself, and I’m not interested in inflating or attempting to deflate your ego. Knock yourself out getting sex, just try not to hurt any decent women.

  • Rocket

    Perhaps monogamy is not the only answer? Maybe you can have a LTR. Then you and your partner can still get some strange, occasionally.

  • pvw

    Susan: “He sounds like Christian Grey,”

    My reply: Isn’t that the 50 shades of grey guy? The one that our neighbors (umc suburban soccer mom types that you and I live near) supposedly are so into? Meh….Baffling, what they see in that! I recall, though, your earlier post on it; I think I lurked primarily.

    I must give “Mr. Grey” (tee hee) credit though; at least he was a cad who was honest and up front about his tomcat status, compared to the type who would pretend and gull naive girls.

  • @Sassy
    You worry that lots of casual sex will hinder your ability to bond with someone later, yet you want to run right back out and do it some more.

    I believe Ben genuine was worried about that. But with the exception of Herb, every man on this thread has told him that there’s nothing to worry about. Their explanation is that his lack of emotional response to his ex-girlfriend had more to do with her not being the right person and him still being hung up on the two women who disillusioned him in the past. Of course, this sidesteps the question of whether a long string of casual hookups does take a heavy toll on a man . . . whether those causes particular to Ben’s case can co-exist with that more general cause.

    • @Bellita

      Of course, this sidesteps the question of whether a long string of casual hookups does take a heavy toll on a man

      It was interesting researching the post. What I found was a lot of “chicken or egg” questions. You may recall a post I wrote not long ago about the evolution of narcissism and other Dark Triad traits. They are thought to have been the adaptive strategy of men not suitable for long term mating. In and out before she kicks you to the curb. They were the men who did not embrace the evolution of pair-bonding. Even today, research shows that men who prefer casual sex to more emotive ways of relating sexually are generally lower in agreeableness and more dependent on the dopamine fix. Which came first? We know there is a correlation, but we don’t know the causation. The research implies some men are just wired this way, but I wonder whether engaging in extensive casual sex with strangers creates a disagreeable dopamine addict.

      I don’t know the answer to that question, but I do know that men with that stated preference are bad bets for commitment. I don’t think there is really such a thing as a “reformed alpha” – I think there are just guys who commit and cheat anyway.

  • Herb

    @Iggles

    I get that for a lot of guys, they’re primarily living in the present. Doing what feels good at the time.

    Change that to people and I’ll sign off.

    @Ben

    Yeah, some guys don’t like it. It generally follows the expression “those who can’t do, teach”. In dating, with men, it goes “those who can’t do, disapprove”. Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.

    Son, you’re new ’round here as a quoter. Let me give you some advice: don’t write checks you can’t cash.

    Not only can I get more sex than you, I’ve already had it on more continents than you and I already have your wet dream: a girlfriend with a girlfriend. I only know of one other poster whose sex life is as unconventional as mine (and I’ll admit Ozy handles it better for a variety of reasons).

    I spent last weekend at a retreat centered around sexuality where I was one of five men in a group of twenty-seven.

    So, go back and read what I said about hurting yourself. Ozymandias and myself are in relationships where sex outside of the relationship is okay (and where the relationship might involve more than two people). One thing we get that you apparently don’t is that having a very open sex life that can include casual sex has tons of emotional and mental land mines in addition to the obvious physical ones (speaking of, when did you get your last STD screening…I called to get the lab sheet written up today because it’s six months and I’m due).

    We also restrict said sexual activity to communities of people who are open to it instead of oscillating between monogamous relationship and sleeping around with people who don’t know which one we’re doing. We don’t necessarily disapprove of casual sex. I disapprove of people who shit in other people’s chocolate pudding (and that goes both ways, getting mad casual sex people aren’t doing the relationship thing with you is just as bad).

    Oh, and unless you can tell me who both of your play partners this Saturday are going to be already I expect you to start complaining while I’m doing.

    @Susan
    In this case, I can answer your title question: no.

  • @pvw
    Heh lovely typical “Of course all women want me, she wants me to I will be generous and give her a chance” attitude. I think that is why they rather label you lesbian or frigid or something their egos couldn’t sustain themselves if they started to notice how many girls are just repelled by then.
    Oh well more for other women that can have meaningless sex with them and wait for commitment that will never come. A dream come true! :p

  • Herb

    @Rocket

    Perhaps monogamy is not the only answer? Maybe you can have a LTR. Then you and your partner can still get some strange, occasionally.

    Being in that relationship, and now that I’m taking Hope’s advice and enjoying what I have (well, she said enjoy it or give it up, don’t keep it and bitch, and I decided to keep it) I will say this:

    Ben isn’t self-aware enough (at least not yet) to do that.

    I’ve seen bad poly drama. He’s a prime candidate.

  • @Susan
    You’re preaching to the choir here, you know that.

    What he may not know is that the choir has started tuning him out. (Pun not intended.)

  • Maggie

    Ben:

    I think Susan’s advice was right on and it’s best that you broke up with this young woman. She deserves more than you could give her. I just wish you would follow her advice about getting back to an emotional equilibrium (but you probably won’t).

    Two things to think about:
    1. In both of the relationships that you say you felt romantic love, the women had the upper hand. Do you need to feel this tension and constant excitement to feel romantic love?
    2. You talk about wanting to feel “head over heels” The relationships in which you’ve felt this way have not brought you happiness. That feeling doesn’t alway last and there are many happy long term relationships where neither than man or woman ever felt it.

    Please consider taking a break.

  • Cooper

    “Wondering if being an emotional prude is a detriment to finding real love.” -#76

    I like to think so. Since starting to frequent HUS, I’ve really enjoyed hearing over and over the pros of not being promiscious, or having casual-sex.
    But I have to say, I don’t find going without very rewarding.

    I don’t know if it’s the complete void of sexual-validation, or the fact that I look down upon those I know who are promiscious and can’t help wondering if I’m actually of lower-value, or the fear that I’ll one day have to settle for someone who already had an entire emtional-slut phase.

    Whatever it is, I rarely feel gratification from the choices I’ve made in being what is being described as “emtionally prudent.”

    It seems a shame that having a prerequisite of emotional-affection puts a guy at the “end of the line,” so to speak.

    As much as I speak out against casual-sex, I think Ben may have a point.
    “Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.”

    If my college years weren’t filled with unrequited-feelings and rejection, and rather full of casual-encounters, I’m not entirely certain I would have the same perspective on all this.

  • Maybe we should have a name for the phenomenon of good girls being invisible to guys (both manwhores and nice guys) since it seems that it happens a lot more often than not.
    The Cordelia Effect? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_lear

  • Re: VD’s question. I knew my husband’s count, and he knew mine, before we got physical. We also discussed medical history and STDs. It’s only prudent in this day and age when looking for a long-term relationship to know exactly what you both want and who the other person is.

    Re: Ben’s quest for pleasure/sex/love. When I was younger I also bought into the idea of chasing after “love.” I didn’t want casual sex, but I wanted the high that came with “being in love” and kept looking for that. I was not a very self-aware or conscious person, and I was not spiritually balanced.

    It is true that the long-term oxytocin/bonding phase doesn’t properly happen without the initial jolt of the dopamine/infatuation phase. The risk is that the person will never be satisfied with the companionate love and constantly seek the passionate phase. You don’t have to be high-count either, I was feeling that way when I was younger, and I had few past partners.

    What changed for me was a kind of spiritual awakening, which I won’t go into because it’s off-topic, rather new agey and will bore everyone. Suffice it to say though that I had to work on myself and change myself before I could have a good relationship.

    Herb, glad to hear things are going well for you. You certainly seem more content and at peace, and that’s really cool.

  • Herb

    @Ana

    Maybe we should have a name for the phenomenon of good girls being invisible to guys (both manwhores and nice guys) since it seems that it happens a lot more often than not.
    The Cordelia Effect? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_lear

    Virtual glasses?

    Given “men don’t make passes at girls who wear glasses”…

    Then again, I’ve been glad of that…makes the field easier for me 🙂

  • Herb

    @Hope

    Herb, glad to hear things are going well for you. You certainly seem more content and at peace, and that’s really cool.

    Between HUS and the retreat I sat down and said:

    “What do I need?”
    “What do I want?”
    “Are there unhealthy reasons I want some of those things and would I be better working on the unhealthy reasons than trying to get the band-aids?”

    So, I found what I needed and how to express that to my gf and, to be honest, asked one question that made all the difference. The hard part was while some answers would mean I had what I needed other would mean walking away because I couldn’t get it.

    As for the wants, there were some very unhealthy reasons. You read the surface form here, but the whole “I’m inadequate” goes much deeper…the ex-wife didn’t make it, she just feed a long term undercurrent steroids.

    The fact is, prior to her I was okay with open relationships (hell, I fantasized about being a rural doctor married to the rural vet who lived with their girlfriend and were the scandal of the town when I was in HS/freshman in college). Then we were monogamous and I was fine. It was how she left that made me so insecure I wanted monogamy not because I need it but out of insecurity.

    In all honesty I’m open to both, although even in an open or polyamorous relationship I suspect I’ll be less active than my partner. Although, despite Ben, not because I can’t but because I’m not as variety driven as some men.

    That said, my prior gf wanted a play date this weekend since my gf and I are going to the same party as the prior gf. They’re negotiating now.

    Say, Ben, would you gf hook you up with other women? Just askin’ 😉

  • Abbot

    “As much as I speak out against casual-sex, I think Ben may have a point.
    “Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.”
    .
    Do men really disapprove of it whether they are getting it or not? That is odd. If a man is not able to get it casually, would that preclude him from finding a woman willing to have a relationship with him that includes sex?

  • Herb

    @Abbot

    “As much as I speak out against casual-sex, I think Ben may have a point.
    “Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.”
    .
    Do men really disapprove of it whether they are getting it or not? That is odd. If a man is not able to get it casually, would that preclude him from finding a woman willing to have a relationship with him that includes sex?

    No, men disapprove of it for a variety of reasons.

    I don’t think Ben is wrong in the sense that there are some men whose only objection to casual sex is they aren’t getting any.

    Others object to it because they have strong moral convictions against fornication.

    Others object to it because the people engaged in it do it in ways that harms others.

    Others object to it because the people engaged in it do it in ways that harms themselves.

    There are certain other reasons and I suspect most have some combination of reasons.

  • FeralEmployee

    @SW, 83

    Ha, reminds me: guess who got in the TIME 100 most influential people two-four weeks ago? I don’t recall who “promoted” her, but I do know Gloria Steinem and Elizabeth Gilbert got to “recommend” someone. As usual, hardly any STEM people in the list. People have a skewed opinion on what is “influential” these days.

    • @FeralEmployee

      People have a skewed opinion on what is “influential” these days.

      As you know, I thought the book was terrible. But I have to admit this woman got a lot of people to open their wallets, created a new market in a dying industry singlehandedly (naughty books for women on Kindle), and inspired the sale of gray silk ties everywhere. It’s not admirable, perhaps, but she may be the most influential writer in the world right now. Sadly.

  • Abbot

    “There are certain other reasons and I suspect most have some combination of reasons.”
    .
    add to the list good fathers who have daughter[s] and are raising them well
    .
    The sad part is that when men calmly state they do not approve [not talking here about placard carrying protests], they are stifled by others who call them archaic throwbacks and the like. Sometimes, they are all lumped into the “cant get any category” or denigrated with the Nice Guys® label

  • Ian

    @Ben re: sabbaticals

    Not going to happen. I’m a man, and I like to have sex, so I’m going to have sex. My right hand isn’t a very attractive partner believe it or not.

    You’ll reject this, seeds for later:
    On a brain scan, an orgasm resembles a hit of morphine. With any pleasure progression (inc. sugar) tolerance develops and higher doses than new equilibrium are required.The blast of oxytocin can compensate/replace other sources, including a comfortable, pair-bonded relationship.Prolactin is a stress hormone released after orgasm, related to sleep and menstruation, generalized bitchiness, the opposite of dopamine. A novel partner re-excites the dopamine dearth.Testosterone receptors decrease in a MPOA area of the brain, related to male-specific sexual, but also paternalistic behaviors.
    It’s possible to have sex without orgasm, or while scaling back orgasms. The Eastern practices I listed earlier or just plain developing stamina and fakin’ it at the end. It’s odd, it works; most beneficial is withdrawal from that initial sugar-craving.

    And yes, I know from some women on this thread you say I’d be discarded, and that’s true, you’re generally the exception vs. the rule. Preselection works in my favor in this scenario.

    Troof. It’s easier to reject a word like “cad” than a warm, handsome 1%-er. Observation, most the the personal stories here are revulsion-countering-attraction at the thought of being in a harem, not the preselection N-aspect.

    • I miss Jesus Mahoney. His wisdom and experience would be welcome in this thread. He did show up briefly recently, so at least I know he’s not lying dead in the middle of a ditch somewhere.

      /momworry

    • @Ian

      Observation, most the the personal stories here are revulsion-countering-attraction at the thought of being in a harem, not the preselection N-aspect.

      That’s a brilliant observation. I think that’s exactly what’s going on. Some women – not all, but some – are able to see a promiscuous male, perceive exactly why he does well with women, and then….

      Second order thinking occurs. Like a child near a stove, her synapses fire their message.

      Disease.

      Cheater.

      Arrogant.

      Selfish in bed.

      etc.

      Some women – not all, but some – who experience this rapid-fire series of warnings will actually say no thanks.

      My job is to increase the size of that group that makes it through the mental maze.

  • Ted D

    Cooper – “As much as I speak out against casual-sex, I think Ben may have a point.
    “Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.””

    I have never once in my entire life tried to get a ONS or a fuck-buddy. I’ve intentionally pushed off one or two women that were interested in such (although I think one of them was attempting to snag me for a relationship by using her vagina, but I am probably being too generous)

    Maybe I was a dumb ass for doing so. I certainly don’t feel as sure about it today as I did prior to the red pill, but it does mean that I am completely justified in taking the high ground when it comes to the morality of “romantic” relationships, and I’m very happy to have that ground. Of course it doesn’t make up for any lost “fun” I might have had, but knowing how deeply I feel about sexuality, I really don’t think I would have enjoyed it if I tried.

    Ben can believe whatever he wants, but I know a few guys other than myself that have passed on casual encounters for various reasons. The idea that any guy that speaks out against casual sex can’t get laid is simply lazy or self delusional thinking. I’m very sure there are plenty of men left in religious organizations that abstain from casual sex. Is it because they cannot get it, or because they value their intimacy too much to squander it on women that don’t deserve it?

  • OffTheCuff

    I’m just grinning, watching the women get up in a lather here. He broke up honestly and didn’t cheat.

    Bel: “But with the exception of Herb, every man on this thread has told him that there’s nothing to worry about. Their explanation is that his lack of emotional response to his ex-girlfriend had more to do with her not being the right person and him still being hung up on the two women who disillusioned him in the past. Of course, this sidesteps the question of whether a long string of casual hookups does take a heavy toll on a man . . . whether those causes particular to Ben’s case can co-exist with that more general cause.”

    I should clarify: I think they very much can take a heavy toll, and perhaps get to the point where he would be unable to manage a 10+ year marriage without cheating. But not the point where he couldn’t find a decent woman to get in a mongamous relationship with for a few years, to cohabitate with, or to even marry and tolerate him cheating. The first two allow him to fall in and out of love as much as he likes.

    I believe that will be a less-than-optimal environment to raise children, and i have no idea if he wants to. If women are free to be intentional single mothers, then he can be a suboptimal father.

    There are more women like thisisjen than SayWhaat and her friends. All the hand-wringing about how “I wouldn’t date him and my friends won’t” while perhaps true, is irrelevant from Ben’s perspective.

    • But not the point where he couldn’t find a decent woman to get in a mongamous relationship with for a few years, to cohabitate with, or to even marry and tolerate him cheating.

      I agree that Ben should have no difficulty getting any of these arrangements. I was under a rather different impression when I wrote the post, not having realized that Ben was ruling out companionate love in favor of infatuation, and preparing to enter an indefinite phase of “emotional prudery,” the very worry that prompted him to write.

      Oh well.

  • Abbot

    “The idea that any guy that speaks out against casual sex can’t get laid is simply lazy or self delusional thinking.”
    .
    Then this must be true
    .
    The idea that any woman that speaks out against casual sex can’t get laid is simply lazy or self delusional thinking.
    .
    Its easy to jump to conclusions as the path of least work

  • Herb

    @Susan

    It’s not admirable, perhaps, but she may be the most influential writer in the world right now. Sadly.

    And to think I was annoyed when it was the Harry Potter chick.

    I didn’t know how good we had it.

  • Herb

    @OffTheCuff

    I’m just grinning, watching the women get up in a lather here. He broke up honestly and didn’t cheat.

    Well, I’m not a woman, but I was the lone man cited by Bellita so I figured I can answer.

    He did break up clean and didn’t cheat. I’ll give him credit for that but that’s behavior I expect of anyone of either sex. Minimal effort is more than some do but it won’t get you my job, just the minimum wage.

    Sadly, it is too much to expect for most people in the SMP these days so perhaps we should give him more kudos.

    I also didn’t think much of how he referred to her post break up about getting more bjs and a better ass. I don’t think he’s wrong to think those things. I’ve said before a woman who breaks up with you or you break up becomes less attractive. I’ve also made reference to the fact I don’t get bjs often.

    What I don’t do is vocalize them in a public advice forum immediately post breakup.

    I believe that will be a less-than-optimal environment to raise children, and i have no idea if he wants to. If women are free to be intentional single mothers, then he can be a suboptimal father.

    And I’m free to have the same opinion of him as I do intentional single mothers (including ELP divorcées).
    It’s called class and I wish more people tried to have it.

  • @OTC
    If women are free to be intentional single mothers, then he can be a suboptimal father.

    I’m not sure what you’re getting at here. I don’t think anyone on this thread is a cheerleader for single mothers.

    Or are you being ironic, because women really aren’t “free” to be single mothers?

  • Herb

    Damn, that broke. It should read:

    What I don’t do is vocalize them in a public advice forum immediately post breakup.

    It’s called class and I wish more people tried to have it.

  • Jonny

    “Not only can I get more sex than you, I’ve already had it on more continents than you and I already have your wet dream: a girlfriend with a girlfriend.”

    What the heck is this about? Ben the manwhore and Herb the manwhore of manwhores.

    Its ridiculous.

  • Herb

    @Bellita

    Or are you being ironic, because women really aren’t “free” to be single mothers?

    I think he was referring to the fact women have absolute control over how much interaction a man has with children he fathers in this country, including if they are born, if he knows about them, if he sees them, and if he pays for them even if he doesn’t see them.

    Or he could be referring to the fact that instead of calling women who choose to get pregnant, sometimes using a sperm bank, while not with a father for the children are considered heroes instead of selfish.

  • Abbot

    “the thought of being in a harem”
    “Some women – not all, but some – who experience this rapid-fire series of warnings will actually say no thanks.”
    “My job is to increase the size of that group that makes it through the mental maze.”
    .
    Is the realization that this “harem” phenomenon is well established and women have been duped for decades finally sinking in, at least a little? It will be very interesting to see articles claiming that the “harem” is a myth made up by a bunch of pearl clutchers designed to make women feel icky about their sleep-around “choices”

  • Herb

    @Jonny

    “Not only can I get more sex than you, I’ve already had it on more continents than you and I already have your wet dream: a girlfriend with a girlfriend.”

    What the heck is this about? Ben the manwhore and Herb the manwhore of manwhores.

    Its ridiculous.

    Actually I’m not a manwhore 🙂

    The Navy helped with the continents and the gf with a gf is a product of my sexuality which is even problematic for me.

    I was more making the point that my suggestions he respect himself and that he respect his just dumped gf and show some class had nothing to do with how much sex I can get.

    I think having some self-respect and class have more to do with the answer to the headline question than his N.

    Read the stories of Don Juan and Casanova and ask yourself after all the women they bedded why one was reviled and one was loved and honored.

    If you’re going for casual sex which one would you want to be?

  • Ted D

    Susan – “I miss Jesus Mahoney. ”

    JM is probably enjoying his new relationship and detoxing from the ‘sphere. I for one am glad he is out enjoying life and taking a break. I was starting to get concerned that the darkness that lives in the ‘sphere was seeping into him. I’m perfectly fine with absorbing some of that because I’m generally not a shining beacon of joy anyway, but I really hate seeing generally positive people beat down into submission.

    Don’t worry. I suspect he is going the same route as DS and is just too busy for us. Not only am I OK with that, but I actively encourage it. He’ll be back. After all, even DogSquat couldn’t stay away forever. 😉

    • @Ted D

      I’m sure you’re right. I think the 50 Shades of Gray post was the final straw, and I’d rather see him get away from that and enjoy his gf. I just get too attached for my own good.

  • INTJ

    @Ben

    You came here, asked for advice, and then proceeded to ignore it. You now have dumped a girlfriend because you couldn’t get an infatuation for her (as if infatuations last), and because you kept comparing sex with her to sex with others (casual sex can do that). You were worried about the dangers of casual sex but are now going to jump right back into it.

    Yeah, some guys don’t like it. It generally follows the expression “those who can’t do, teach”. In dating, with men, it goes “those who can’t do, disapprove”. Most men who disapprove of casual sex do so because they can’t get any.

    What about porn? I don’t watch porn. Are you seriously going to make the case that this is because I can’t get any porn?

  • @Herb
    I’m actually anti single mother myself, so I get all that. What I don’t understand is what that has to do with Ben’s case.

  • @Susan

    I was under a rather different impression when I wrote the post, not having realized that Ben was ruling out companionate love in favor of infatuation, and preparing to enter an indefinite phase of “emotional prudery,” the very worry that prompted him to write.

    Oh well.

    Trolled after all? 🙁

    The saddest part is that it wasn’t even intentional!

  • Herb

    @Bellita

    I’m actually anti single mother myself, so I get all that. What I don’t understand is what that has to do with Ben’s case.

    I think the idea was OTC was agreeing in the long run manwhoring may impact his ability to sustain a marriage and that if he wants kids he’ll be a less than ideal father for that reason.

    He then wonders why we should condemn that specific effect in the current environment.

    I actually agree.

  • OffTheCuff

    Bel, it was a tangent. I was saying that even if he wanted to be a poor father, he has the same right to do so, as women who choose to be a poor mother. Wasn’t directed to anyone here as supporting single moms.

  • OffTheCuff

    Herb, exactly. Thank you.

  • @Herb
    OTC actually reminds me that while we ponder very deeply the impact the choices we make will have on our long-term mating prospects, we rarely talk about the impact they will have on our children.

    • OTC actually reminds me that while we ponder very deeply the impact the choices we make will have on our long-term mating prospects, we rarely talk about the impact they will have on our children.

      I confess I never even thought of that. At least not directly.

  • Herb

    @Bellita

    OTC actually reminds me that while we ponder very deeply the impact the choices we make will have on our long-term mating prospects, we rarely talk about the impact they will have on our children.

    People don’t care about the feelings of their fashion accessories or must have shiny new toy.

    One of the very valid complaints of the manosphere is too many women doing the “career than marriage” route think of men as accessories. One of the very valid complaints of women is too many men in their 20s think of women as toys.

    Combine those two and what do you expect with respect to thinking about children.

    Hell, the current SMP and MMP are side effects of 20+ years of leaders in politics, media, and philosophy caring more about grinding their axes and getting their jollies than caring for their children.

  • @Herb
    I actually think about my future family a lot. The only reason I don’t ask “What about your children?” type questions here is that I anticipate that someone will answer that he or she never plans to have children anyway.

    Still, despite the obvious, it’s always a shock to me when someone explicitly points out that people are behaving the way they are because they don’t value children.

  • J

    I believe the term manwhore …. arose due to the increased number of men in today’s SMP who have racked up very high numbers – 50, 100, 200. My sense is that the prevalence of STDs makes these men less attractive, as well as their avoidance of relationships. I have described this as the boomerang effect of preselection.

    I agree that fear of an STD counters preselection, but I’d add that racking up high numbers means that the man involved may have an inability to form healthy relationships, be satisfied with one person, etc. Guys like that scared the hell out of me as a young woman, and, were I to find myself single again, I’d still avoid them like the plague. In fact, I’d actively look for a guy with a history of fidelty to a dead wife or one who’d been frivilously divorced by someone he’d been faithful to.

  • Ben

    @Susan

    There was no intent to mislead with my email. Bellita has it pretty spot on. I was worried that I’d done serious damage to my ability to pair bond, but having seen umpteen guys on this thread say that it was probably just this particular girl, I’m less concerned than I was (I’ve also talked to quite a few guys in person who’ve been in many more relationships than I have, and they had the same takeaway).

    Also, not selfish in bed. Perhaps TMI, but I prefer to defend myself here. I loooove going down on girls, and often will do it to make sure they’ve gotten off even after I’ve finished. On another note, one of my biggest turn ons of anything is listening to a woman get off.

    @All

    First, not new here. Been around for about a year. Possibly posting/writing under a different name because I’ve revealed too much about who I might be under my usual one.

    If you notice carefully, my letter was NOT asking for advice on whether I should have casual sex or not. It was expressing a worry that my history of having it had affected my ability to pair bond, and asking for advice on what to do with my now (ex) girlfriend. Believe it or not, Susan was not the only person I talked to about this. I’m now pretty satisfied that it hasn’t. I’m still a little worried that it has affected my sexual satisfaction long-term, but at this point I can’t erase my past sexual history. I’m not ignoring the advice of “take a sabbatical”, I just think it’s not gonna make me forget the last 24 girls, so what’s the point. I’d just be depriving myself of a good time, and I’m not one for self-deprivation. (FYI, I’m a committed atheist, and I think Passover, for instance, is a waste of good bread. Probably just opened up a whole ‘nother can of worms with that one).

    @Herb, Ted D, INTJ

    That comment was not meant to be either a dick-measuring contest, nor an absolute statement. It was a generalization which I believe is true. I’m leaving aside those who object on religious grounds, because that’s a totally different ballgame. I have many friends who can get casual sex, and some who can’t. I couldn’t find one of the former who would object to it, and very few of the latter. Find me an alpha (or a man who’s good with women) who disapproves of casual sex (note: not dislikes) and I’ll respond by finding you a needle in a haystack to accompany him.

    I also don’t see an issue with posting this online. I thought it was relevant to what is discussed on this forum, and I took steps to make sure no one (not even my ex) could identify who either person is. It’s the old “if a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it”….

    @ OfftheCuff

    I VERY much resent the accusation that I will be a sub optimal father/husband or a cheater. I’ve never cheated in my life. I’ve never ever flirted with other girls when I’m with someone, even if I’m getting sexually bored. I think it shows weak character.

    At this point, I don’t want to have kids, but I’m 25. I may want to in the future. I don’t think my sexual history has any bearing on my fathering capabilities. My father, fyi, was also quite the ladies man when he was young (dated models), but has been married to my mother now for 30+ years, with nary an incident of cheating, and has been about as good of a father to my brother and I as I could imagine. If you think it’s environment or genetics btw, my brother would disagree with most everything I’m writing. He’s a hopeless romantic who’s dislikes casual sex.

    @Herb again

    No interest in any sort of poly arrangement. It wouldn’t work for me, I’d feel too guilty. And not sure if it was a joke, but I wouldn’t go near any of my gf’s friends, even though one of them flirted with me incessantly. I’ve already hurt her enough, that would just be cruel. Also, I get STD tested every 6 months, and always use protection. College did teach me something (I hope).

    @Maggie

    I don’t think companionate can evolve without first being passionate/romantic. That’s my viewpoint. I fully accept I won’t always be completely infatuated with the person I’m with, but I find it hard to see myself staying with them if I never was.

    Tried to cover everyone here, but if I missed anyone, please speak up.

    • @Ben

      Just to be clear, I did not believe you intended to mislead in any way. I figured, to be honest, that I had perhaps not understood the whole story – a common risk in responding to emails. Also, several days have passed, and you’ve obviously talked to others and taken action, so I assumed your thinking on the matter had evolved.

      Obviously, you are now less concerned about your ability to relate emotionally to women. Now that I have more information, I’m more concerned, but hey, it’s none of my business. I’ve already shared what I took exception to.

      I’m sure you would agree that a woman seeking anything more than a short-term fling would be well advised to steer clear of you for the foreseeable future. As long as you’re honest about your intentions, any poor choices are on them. Some people just really like going off the high dive.

      Glad you hear you like to go downtown. One thing that characterizes casual sex is a very low rate of orgasm for the female. I’m sure your thoughtfulness is much appreciated.

    • I’m not ignoring the advice of “take a sabbatical”, I just think it’s not gonna make me forget the last 24 girls, so what’s the point.

      I think this is a rational argument. If any of the effects in the post are inevitable…

      1. Destined to experience sharp dropoff in attraction after first sexual encounter.

      2. Likely to feel only somewhat sexually satisfied in LTR or marriage.

      3. Perceived as poor bet for LTR or marriage due to sex and relationship history.

      …You’ve already past the point where they kick in. Might as well enjoy the ride.

  • J

    @Feral Employee

    I wonder what the mechanism behind this drop-off in physical attraction is linked to.

    I think the body can only maintain production of/sensitivity to dopamine for so long. Then, as is the case with a lot of addictive drugs, the high disappears. At that point, there is an underlaying friendship or an oxytoxin attachement that keeps a relationship together…or not.

  • Herb

    @Ben

    No interest in any sort of poly arrangement. It wouldn’t work for me, I’d feel too guilty. And not sure if it was a joke, but I wouldn’t go near any of my gf’s friends, even though one of them flirted with me incessantly. I’ve already hurt her enough, that would just be cruel. Also, I get STD tested every 6 months, and always use protection. College did teach me something (I hope).

    Less joke, more sarcastic aside, re: why we’d object to casual sex.

    I’m glad you know it doesn’t work for you. Like I said, I’m polyfriendly but it’s hard and pushes buttons I didn’t expect.

    That said, if you genuinely worry about casual sex affecting attachment and you know poly would cause you issues, I’d re-evaluate doing the casual sex thing. I suspect, I cannot prove, but I suspect poly is the healthy outlet for people able to emotionally engage in casual sex. That is, poly is the way to be “casual” that fucks you up less emotionally if only because it is a deliberate act instead of, well, casual.

    That’s also what I read in Sassy’s remarks. Just diving back into random ONS and FWB implies that you’re doing this without thought. Taking time to take stock and while you do it not having new partners or hooking up with old ones would be very healthy, IMNSHO.

  • J

    Maybe we should have a name for the phenomenon of good girls being invisible to guys (both manwhores and nice guys) since it seems that it happens a lot more often than not.

    Happened to me, happens to a lot of us. I think of it as the Hermione Syndrome, but that’s just how I identify.

  • Re: future children

    My perception was that it wasn’t PC to bring them up, because that kind of talk eventually leads to moral judgments, and even Susan has said that she doesn’t write about morality, but about strategies. I do respect that . . . but for me, future families are the whole point.

    We tiptoe around that here when we use rhetoric like, “Choose the dad, not the cad,” or remind women to start thinking long-term in college because a woman’s fertility starts hitting the wall in her late 20s. This may not be true for everyone who wants a long-term relationship, but I think most of the women here (commenters and lurkers) do want to have children someday and that it would really make a difference (to their filtering, their dating, and so on) if it were openly acknowledged.

  • It is possible to keep the dopamine in a long-term relationship going.

    1) Novelty. Doing new things together will stimulate dopamine production, which can have a transference effect onto the significant other.

    2) Lots of sex. This probably only works if you have a good relationship otherwise and are attracted to each other. Also involves open, honest communication — like, asking for more bjs if you want them and aren’t getting them.

    3) Spirituality / meditation. By this I do not mean just religion. Plenty of “atheists” have touted the benefits of meditation. It means being connected to your inner self and finding greater meaning. Mutual meditation and deep talks are amazing preludes to sex.

    It does involve conscious effort and a past history of mutual healthy love. But I believe the passion doesn’t have to leave a relationship over time. Brain imaging research backs this up. A couple can still be in love after 20 years, minus the fear and anxiety and negative stuff of new love:

    http://healthland.time.com/2011/01/11/what-your-brain-looks-like-after-20-years-of-marriage/

  • @J
    I think of it as the Hermione Syndrome

    But Viktor Krum saw her well enough, didn’t he? 😉

  • OffTheCuff

    Ben, I’m not saying you won’t or can’t be a faithful husband or good father, but there is less chance of it. You have very little experience being faithful to anyone, and a few years is jack shit when it comes to the lifetime of a child.

    People rarely change, I find. They can, of course, they just don’t do so all that often. It’s best to assume they won’t, and hope they do.

  • Herb

    @OTC

    People rarely change, I find. They can, of course, they just don’t do so all that often. It’s best to assume they won’t, and hope they do.

    Hope is not a plan. Ben clearly doesn’t want a plan.

    Plus, his response to the suggestion that how he’s commenting lacks class gives me little hope:

    I also don’t see an issue with posting this online. I thought it was relevant to what is discussed on this forum, and I took steps to make sure no one (not even my ex) could identify who either person is. It’s the old “if a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it”….

    Integrity is doing what’s right when no one is looking.

    Integrity is integral to being a faithful spouse or good parent.

    He has no plan to change and, more importantly, figures why work on changing until “it matters”. The lack of insight into how much harder that change will be is bad enough. The lack of concern is even worse.

  • Abbot

    I think most of the women here (commenters and lurkers) do want to have children someday and that it would really make a difference (to their filtering, their dating, and so on) if it were openly acknowledged.
    —————————
    A man who wants to have children also has to filter in order to select the most optimum mother of his children. Not to be taken lightly. A rich history of recreational sex may not be a good starting point, especially if you dont want such a world view passed to your children or around you in the first place

  • Alias

    Bellita:
    “I actually think about my future family a lot.”
    —–
    > I’ve always thought about how my behaviors would impact my future children/my legacy- from the time I was a child.

    ________________
    Bellita:
    “The only reason I don’t ask “What about your children?” type questions here is that ”
    ——
    I’ve brought it up before on here, questioning how it is that all of this “sexual agenda”/evo psych stuff will impact children and all I got was crickets chirping.
    Later, I took a peak at David Buss’ table of contents for his “Evolutionary Psychology” and noticed that there’s a section under -Ch8 Problems of Kinship – about “Grandparental Investment” which makes me wonder what it says about lifetime monogamy. ?? I might get to that someday.

    __________________
    Bellita:
    “I anticipate that someone will answer that he or she never plans to have children anyway. ”
    ——-
    I sure wish they’d get permanently fixed not to, but they don’t.

  • VD

    I don’t think there is really such a thing as a “reformed alpha” – I think there are just guys who commit and cheat anyway.

    It’s a poor bet, to be sure, but they do exist. Remember, we’re not hapless slaves to our past behavioral patterns. There are even alphas who have become celibate monks. But it either takes a) tremendous willpower and commitment, b) religious conversion, or c) true love. I know alphas who commit and cheat shamelessly, even on ridiculously hot women. I know some who are permanently single or divorced. But I also know a few who have been perfectly faithful for decades despite three-digit premarital N.

    • @VD

      I know alphas who commit and cheat shamelessly, even on ridiculously hot women. I know some who are permanently single or divorced. But I also know a few who have been perfectly faithful for decades despite three-digit premarital N.

      Vox, do you have any sense of what separates the third group from the others? I’m wondering how a woman could make an informed bet. Is it qualifying the relationship as true love?

      I know you consider yourself a sigma, but perhaps you fall into this group (or something like it).

  • Herb

    @Susan

    I’m not ignoring the advice of “take a sabbatical”, I just think it’s not gonna make me forget the last 24 girls, so what’s the point.

    I think this is a rational argument. If any of the effects in the post are inevitable…

    1. Destined to experience sharp dropoff in attraction after first sexual encounter.

    2. Likely to feel only somewhat sexually satisfied in LTR or marriage.

    3. Perceived as poor bet for LTR or marriage due to sex and relationship history.

    …You’ve already past the point where they kick in. Might as well enjoy the ride.

    I’m going to disagree. The human brain is plastic and through effort we can change it. The degree isn’t great and the more we move it one way the harder to get back to start and aging makes it harder.

    However, to point out the degree of capability I’d point out an inveterate brothel crawler became the man we remember as St. Augustine. While people love to revile his quote, “Lord give me chastity, but not yet,” the full context explains this is the later Augustine criticizing his former self. He knew he went through a period where he spoke the words of chastity only to later embrace the words then embody them.

    You could say Ben is saying, “Lord, let me love but not yet.” I believe, if he chooses to undo the damage and strives to undo the damage he can. However, at some point the first step to stop saying not yet is to quit going to the brothels.

  • @Alias

    Bellita:
    “I anticipate that someone will answer that he or she never plans to have children anyway. ”
    ——-
    I sure wish they’d get permanently fixed not to, but they don’t.

    Or that they’d make it clear early on . . . Not that it’s on them to say so.

    I know it’s inadvisable to ask men early in the dating stage what their thoughts about family and children are, but I’m going to start doing that so that I stop wasting time.

    Last week, a blogger I know complained about men who “casually” mention during first dates that they hope to marry women who want to be stay-at-home mothers and homeschoolers. She thought it was an unreasonable thing to expect. Perhaps it is, but it’s also an excellent way to filter. Besides, it’s what they really want.

    • @Bellita

      I know it’s inadvisable to ask men early in the dating stage what their thoughts about family and children are, but I’m going to start doing that so that I stop wasting time.

      That’s a tricky one, but I agree – that is very important info to have asap. I was lucky in that my husband mentioned having kids on our third date. Since a lack of interest on his part would have been an automatic dealbreaker for me, it would have been terrible to fall in love and then learn that detail.

      How on earth to get that information early without seeming overeager and inappropriate? I have no idea.

  • Dogsquat

    Bellita said:

    “Of course, this sidesteps the question of whether a long string of casual hookups does take a heavy toll on a man . . . whether those causes particular to Ben’s case can co-exist with that more general cause.”
    ____________________________________

    Consider my feet held quite closely to the fire!

    Susan had an article awhile ago about choice addiction, which I think plays a larger factor then sheer number of sexual partners. Of course, Ben and I are different people, but here’s why I think what I do:

    I was much, much more tolerant of flaws in potential partners at age 23 than I am now. Now, if I see something I don’t like/she won’t fix, I break up with the girl and move on. More sexual partners didn’t cause this – just getting better with women did.

    I was worried about myself for a bit, because I’d hang out with these women and think,”Hmm. I kinda like you, but I wish you had Suzy’s X and Sara’s Y. Then I’d like you more…I wonder if Janie has X and Y….I think I’ll send her a text right now.”

    To be clear, this was not done after I gave any sort of commitment – this is in the flirting, first date, “getting to know you” phase.

    Might be I’m super picky about women, or I was having bad luck, or I was having fun exercising my power in the marketplace – but I’ve had similar thoughts to Ben’s.

    After some amount of emotional investment, my mind would flip from “Actively Rule This Girl Out Mode” to “Let’s Make It Work Mode”.

    I think it’s the emotional investment part that Ben’s going to have problems with. Those women that dumped him damaged his Mode Select switch. As evidenced by his comments here, he’s not aware of this, nor does he seem willing to investigate right now.

    That’s fine, by the way – don’t forget that he’s just had an upheaval in his life. It’s not as hard as getting dumped, but it’s not fun, either. I sincerely hope Ben does some introspective work and figures out his wiring before he hurts too many other women, though.

    As everyone’s favorite Chinese Warlord Sun Tzu said:

    “It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.”

    Right now the score is Girls – 2, Ben – 1. He is, as Sun Tzu would say, still in peril.

  • Alias

    Bellita:
    “She thought it was an unreasonable thing to expect. Perhaps it is, but it’s also an excellent way to filter. Besides, it’s what they really want.”
    ———-

    If it scares people off, I think it’s a good thing. Why waste time? That’s just MY take on it. However, the problem is that most people aren’t upfront on their intentions and half the time they don’t have a clue what they want- so you have to be really careful. You shouldn’t solely take on the task of vetting someone, get other trustworthy people to help you in the process.

    One way to get people to indirectly talk about their values is to discuss other people- in movies, books, in your/their environment. Don’t forget to observe them in their environment. I have no doubt you already know all of this.

  • Thrasymachus

    There seems to be a huge disconnect here between the comments about male promiscuity and the experience of male players.

    When female promiscuity was discussed in a number of threads many male posters stated that it was a distinct turn-off for most men where long term relationships were concerned. Bluntly speaking, men were reluctant to marry sluts, although they were more than willing to have sex with them in one night stands, friends with benefits hookups or no strings attached relationships. Some posters – notably Jess and Tom – disagreed, saying that this narrative did not match their experience. In their view, most men do not care about a woman’s number, and the ones who do are not usually the highest status or most desirable men.

    The main problem with this claim is that (most) women’s actions do not match this scenario. Women with high numbers often decline to reveal them to potential lovers, and underestimate these numbers even in anonymous surveys. If you read “sex positive” feminist web sites you see a considerable amount of nervousness about the subject. The entire campaign to reclaim the word “slut” shows that at least some sex positive feminists know very well that many high status men do not want a “woman of experience.” That is why these feminists fight so hard to change attitudes on this issue.

    The situation with respect to promiscuous men seems very different. There are women on this thread and elsewhere who claim to reject manwhores. While this is no doubt true for some sub-sets of women, it does not seem to translate into any significant reduction of opportunities for players. Note too, that players are not successful only with the 20 percent or so of the most promiscuous women – they accumulate their numbers from a much wider range of the female population. Players do not find it necessary or even desirable to understate their numbers, although some cads (like Tom in a previous thread) may fake commitment in order to get sex. When sex positive feminists indulge in shaming language towards men the usual insult is “you can’t get laid,” not “you’re a manwhore.”

    If a substantial number of attractive women rejected players these guys would behave very differently – more like women with high numbers. As far as I know no reputable source suggests that this is happening. The fundamental question remains – if so many women are repelled by manwhores, why doesn’t this force them to change their behavior? Either these guys are simply stupid or they find that a high number does not significantly reduce their options. The evidence strongly suggests that the latter proposition is more likely to be true.

    Game advocates would also reply that this demonstrates the truth of one of their fundamental tenets – look at what women do, not what they say. In this instance at least it would be difficult to disagree with them.

    • @Thrasymachus

      Great comment.

      When female promiscuity was discussed in a number of threads many male posters stated that it was a distinct turn-off for most men where long term relationships were concerned. Bluntly speaking, men were reluctant to marry sluts, although they were more than willing to have sex with them in one night stands, friends with benefits hookups or no strings attached relationships.

      I asked Ben about the sexual history of the women he’s fallen for, and he did confirm they were promiscuous. There are two things I find interesting about that. The first is that Ben did get very invested in two women who started off as fuckbuddies. That does indeed run counter to what most men here have said. The second has to do with Ben’s social scene. He mentions he met the most recent gf in a bar, and that their relationship is based on partying together. This is anecdotal evidence for my own theory that the 20% of male and female players generally get with one another. It’s clear what a small world it is when he describes that even in NYC, he hooked up with three women from the same sorority and school by sheer coincidence.

      If a substantial number of attractive women rejected players these guys would behave very differently – more like women with high numbers. As far as I know no reputable source suggests that this is happening.

      Eh, I don’t want this to devolve into the usual debate on NAWALT, but I’d like to point out something about this. First, I have both read and heard here that the guys most successful at getting laid still get a ton of rejections. IIRC, Game literature suggests that even with tight Game, you’re going to have a high failure rate. One of the reasons these men are successful is that they don’t take rejection personally at all. They just find another target and try again. Because men have a lower standard for casual sex, they may have a sizable pool of women attractive “enough” at any bar in town. A guy who goes out drinking four nights a week and approaches women aggressively is going to rack up bodies if he’s any good at it.

      But here’s the thing – he’s going to be culling those same venues, mostly clubs and bars. Ben said so outright. If Ben decided instead to focus on female club soccer teams, or women studying at the New York Public Library, his pool would shrink dramatically and his hit rate would plummet.

      I’m not saying Game only works on bar sluts. I’m saying that from a Risk/Reward perspective, bar sluts are the way to go. Manwhores can get laid as much as they like just by going to places where women who hook up go to drink. There was a guy who used to comment here who had been with 200 women, all of whom were musical groupies. That doesn’t say anything about how well he might have done with kindergarten teachers.

      Does anyone have real information (other than Solomon’s preacher’s daughter sexting him her bare breasts) that suggests that players do in fact reach into a wide part of the female population? Because I know for a fact it’s not true on college campuses, where the number of highly promiscuous men and women are about equal.

  • Bellita, there are more subtle ways to feel out the man’s views on marriage and children.

    When I first started talking to my husband, it was around Valentine’s day. My friend Jenny invited me to her place because she knew I was single. She was married and had four kids, all babies or toddlers, and I played with them and helped her take care of them for a short time. Her husband was also around and helping her out.

    Later in conversation, I mentioned this to him, and I said that playing with those kids and seeing them behave with such personality made me absolutely certain that I want kids of my own. I also said that seeing their harmonious marriage was really nice, and I would aspire to that. This prompted him to say that he also thought family was very important, and that he was similarly influenced when he was abroad in a rural African village and saw how they placed such importance on family.

    As Alias said, a way to get people talking about their own values is discussing third-party scenarios. You don’t have to go all direct interrogation mode. Read between the lines, and people reveal a lot about themselves.

  • Alias

    Bellita,
    Sorry for repeating what you’ve already stated- that people aren’t upfront, it’d be so much easier if they were. That, of course, makes it difficult to weed people out- so what I was getting at is that you shouldn’t try to do it alone, if possible get others involved and pay careful attention to their input.

    Even if you meet someone in a public place, you’re getting valuable input from how that person you’re meeting interacts with the people around you. You don’t get that info from emails/texts/phone calls/snail mail.

  • Lavazza

    From Ricky Raw:

    “Part of the reason why it’s so easy for codependents to turn into narcissists with the right incentive and for narcissists to turn into codependents with enough ego-crushing life setbacks is because there is a little bit of a narcissist in every codependent and a little bit of a codependent in every narcissist.”

  • Iggles

    Integrity is doing what’s right when no one is looking.

    Herb, you rock! 🙂

    I feel that you have been on point this entire discussion. It’s too bad Ben doesn’t seem interested in taking your advice.

    Honestly, I think that one line can sum up the difference between people who think like Ben and people who disagree with them. The former, don’t understand the point. After all, no one will know if you do the right thing or not!

    Meanwhile, the latter realize that THEY will know they didn’t do the right thing (or rather what truly feels right to them, in accordance to their values), and that will leave a mark on their conscience.

    To quote Harry Potter (hey, it’s already been mentioned on this thread!):
    It’s the “choice between what is right and what is easy”

    Contrary to popular opinion, this group doesn’t choose to do the right thing because they’re weak. They do it due to strength of character. Anytime you choose to delay gratification because you know it’s better for you to personal do so, you’re inner resolve is on display.

  • @SayWhaat
    “Fine, don’t take it from me — I’ve heard numerous girls of my acquaintance and good friends who reject manwhores alike.”

    It’s fun having your positive experiences and social network totally marginalized, huh?

  • Lavazza

    More:

    “They need someone more narcissistic and selfish and emotionally manipulative than themselves in order to generate intense chemistry thanks to their childhood issues with their parents. When they were codependents it was especially easy to find people more selfish than themselves, so they could find chemistry all levels of narcissists, from the midly narcissistic to the pure narcissists. However now that they are compensatory narcissists and higher up the narcissistic ladder themselves, the only people who can now generate chemistry for them are pure narcissists.

    The problem is, compensatory narcissists are rookies and pure narcissists are vicious professionals. The pure narcissist will eat the compensatory narcissist alive, bones and all. The compensatory narcissist is no match for the pure narcissist, as he soon finds out. So the pattern a PUA seems to go through seems consistent: Alternate between finding a string of codependents to be the narcissist to until you get tired of and disgusted by their codependency or suck them dry of narcissistic supply, and finding the occasional pure narcissists to be the codependent to, until the pure narcissist gets tired of them and disgusted by their codependency or sucks them dry of narcissistic supply. I defy you to read the book and still deny that this pattern is not repeated throughout it.”

  • Lavazza, Ricky Raw is an incredibly insightful writer and thinker, and his posts are great.

    As I come across red pill / truth seekers, many eventually turn to spirituality. This post of his deals with spirituality and personal growth:

    http://therawness.com/the-limits-of-knowledge-part-2/

  • Lavazza

    Hope: I am a yogi, so for me there are 5 obstacles.

    Translated into English, these five (pañca) Kleśa-s or Afflictions (kleśāḥ) are[1]:

    Ignorance (in the form of a misapprehension about reality) (ávidyā),
    egoism (in the form of an erroneous identification of the Self with the intellect) (asmitā),
    attachment (rāga),
    aversion (dveṣa), and
    fear of death (which is derived from clinging ignorantly to life) (abhiniveśāḥ).

  • INTJ

    @Ben

    That comment was not meant to be either a dick-measuring contest, nor an absolute statement. It was a generalization which I believe is true. I’m leaving aside those who object on religious grounds, because that’s a totally different ballgame. I have many friends who can get casual sex, and some who can’t. I couldn’t find one of the former who would object to it, and very few of the latter. Find me an alpha (or a man who’s good with women) who disapproves of casual sex (note: not dislikes) and I’ll respond by finding you a needle in a haystack to accompany him.

    Your reasoning is completely flawed. I disapprove of casual sex, and yet I’m confident that if I wanted to, I could learn PUA and become an alpha. There aren’t many alpha males who dislike casual sex because the people who dislike casual sex don’t want to be alphas.

  • INTJ

    @Thrasymachus,Herb,SayWhaat,Megaman

    I think you’re both correct. There is certainly a small subset of women who dislike manwhores. Most of the female commenters on HUS belong to that subset.

    The problem is that women who actually dislike manwhores might constitute perhaps 20% of the population. On the other hand, guys who aren’t manwhores probably constitute about 40% of the population. Simply, there just aren’t enough girls to go around.

  • Ben

    @Herb

    You completely misread my “tree falls in the forest” comment (and perhaps I picked an easily confused metaphor). The only person discussing this could hurt would be my ex-gf. Since she never reads this site, the odds of her even finding the post are very low. Even if she did find the post, she won’t ever be able to figure out it’s about her. So the bottom line is NO ONE IS HURT BY THIS. I wasn’t advocating being a dick because you can get away with it; I’m disagreeing with you that posting about this is being a dick. It’s like smoking weed. It’s illegal, yet would you say it’s immoral? Should I not do it even though no one is hurt by it? (I don’t smoke weed fyi)

    And leave your integrity speech somewhere else. I keep my word, and I’m fiercely loyal to my friends and those I care about. In my book, that’s what counts.

    @OTC

    Um, did I mention I’m 25? Should I have been in consecutive LTRs since I was 14 in order to mentally prepare for having a child at some point? If you’re arguing that you can’t be a good father unless you’ve invested years dating someone, I would both ask why and point out I’m still pretty damn young.

    @Susan

    Yes, absolutely a girl looking for something serious should steer clear of me in the near future. However, I never misrepresent what I’m looking for. I’ve never lied about my intentions to get a girl in bed, and I’ve never promised something I’m not intending to deliver. Some girls still end up getting attached to me, despite the fact I’ve given them no encouragement to do so (I once had a girl who did it who I never talked to except on weekends from 10-4 AM). Some girls have realized I’m not going to date them and break it off quickly.

    @Dogsquat

    I admitted in my first post that I may still be emotionally f’ed up from those two previous encounters. I say may bc I’m not sure exactly how I’d judge that. I do have very serious dealbreakers when dating so that I don’t let myself get yanked around (ie she cancels more than twice, she’s done). It may rule out some girls who would be worthwhile otherwise, but I find there are enough who fall into the parameters that I’m ok. It’s quite possible I was emotionally guarded with my gf and that prevented a degree of intimacy, although I don’t think that was the case. I shared some pretty intimate things with her and acted in ways I’d never act w/a FWB. If anything, she was too guarded. Her emotions ranged from happy to annoyed to frustrated. I never once saw her cry and never once saw her truly angry. Even when I broke up with her she remained stony-faced, with no real discernible emotion (which made me feel even worse; it felt like I was attacking something defenseless). I felt in a way like she kept me out, and maybe that prevented me from ever truly being in love with her.

  • INTJ

    @Lavazza

    Hope: I am a yogi, so for me there are 5 obstacles.

    Translated into English, these five (pañca) Kleśa-s or Afflictions (kleśāḥ) are[1]:

    Ignorance (in the form of a misapprehension about reality) (ávidyā),
    egoism (in the form of an erroneous identification of the Self with the intellect) (asmitā),
    attachment (rāga),
    aversion (dveṣa), and
    fear of death (which is derived from clinging ignorantly to life) (abhiniveśāḥ).

    Attachment, aversion, and within limits fear of death are all very healthy things, and should nto be viewed as afflictions.

    This is why I disagree with most Hindu philosophies. They place far too much emphasis on spirituality and removal from everyday life.

  • Abbot

    ¨…You’ve already past the point where they kick in. Might as well enjoy the ride.¨

    Once beyond a certain N it just becomes a mind numbing N² that your potential future spouse could not even put into perspective. Heck, that way it becomes impossible to explain what any one person was like.

    ¨I also know a few who have been perfectly faithful for decades despite three-digit premarital N¨

    It happens to be sure.

  • Alias

    Hope:
    “a way to get people talking about their own values is discussing third-party scenarios. You don’t have to go all direct interrogation mode. Read between the lines, and people reveal a lot about themselves.”
    ———-

    Absolutely.
    People can’t help but reveal themselves.
    What often happens is that when they do, many disregard that information thinking it’s not significant. It may not be, only when it’s coupled with other red flags that pop up eventually, together they draw a picture of the person’s true character or their lack of.
    It’s more reliable to make conclusion based on these observations than to go by what people say- because most people answer what they think you want them to answer.
    Even when discussing 3rd party scenarios- one must be careful because a lot of people are harsher at judging others than they are at judging themselves- so they’ll talk a lot BS about how they disagree on a behavior that they themselves engage in (pot calling kettle black- hypocrites- double standards).
    Wow- I’ve got to stop being so Pollyannaish! lol

  • Lavazza

    INTJ: The idea is that nothing comes to existence nor ceases to exist. So death is just an illusion. And the same goes for life and birth.

    For certain is death for the born
    And certain is birth for the dead;
    Therefore over the inevitable
    Thou shouldst not grieve.

  • Dogsquat

    @Sassy and Bellita:

    Abbot is the collective Id of the dudes who post here. I like him.

    I picture him standing in some control center like NORAD, buried deep in an extinct volcano. Myriad monitors are scroll media concerned with gender politics. People sit at workstations or bustle about looking at clipboards, brows furrowed. Phones ring at polite, but urgent volume. The women all wear tight clothes, and the men have powerful handguns holstered at their hips. A quiet hum of electronics fills the air. The faint smell of ozone, electrical insulation, and stale coffee complements the men’s regulation Old Spice.

    Abbot stands tensely at the Command Console, taking it all in. He’s wearing a starched referee’s jersey with sharp military creases. Hawk-like, his mind plucks a wriggling tidbit of hypocrisy out of the stream of information. His jaw clenches, torturing the already abused stogie in the corner of his mouth.

    “Motherfuckers….” he whispers to himself. His eyes harden as he picks up a red telephone.

    “Johnson! Abbot here. We got another one. Put me through to HUS immediately.”

    • @Dogsquat

      I love your description of Abbot and I love Abbot. I can’t help it, I just think he’s a very, very good man. I confess to applying a double standard there – I let him get away with some comments that I’d delete for others. Blogger’s prerogative.

  • Dogsquat

    Cooper said:

    “If my college years weren’t filled with unrequited-feelings and rejection, and rather full of casual-encounters, I’m not entirely certain I would have the same perspective on all this.”
    _______________________________

    You wouldn’t have the same perspective on this exact issue, but you’d be having an existential crisis about something else. You’d be thinking of joining the Foreign Legion, or wanting to do relief work in some fucked up country, or researching some job field you’re suddenly infatuated with.

    Right now, women are your Everest. You want to “figure it out”, prove something to yourself, make sure you’re measuring up favorably against The Universe. You’re testing your philosophy against observable reality. It’s just how men work.

    Aren’t you in your early 20’s? I think that’s the worst time to be a man. Tons of testosterone, not a lot of life experience, no clear self-identity, and usually much lower status than guys just 5 years older. Fugging miserable.

    Shit, dude – just look at Ben. Does that guy seem happy to you? Sure, he’ll tell you he is, but would you believe him?

    It gets better. Slowly, but it does.

  • Abbot

    ¨ In their view, most men do not care about a woman’s number, and the ones who do are not usually the highest status or most desirable men.¨

    Yeah, that was funny as heck. Somehow, just somehow, 20 percent or less of men are good to go with the sour visceral and other negatives associated with N² women. Yeah, especially because high status men probably have more to lose including a tarnished reputation among friend and family for having chosen such a woman.

  • Dogsquat

    Herb said:

    “No, men disapprove of it for a variety of reasons.”
    _____________________________
    Some don’t disapprove at all, but live life in other ways.

    I think cucumbers taste better pickled. Doesn’t mean I assume raw cucumber lovers are inferior people.

  • Lavazza

    I’ll stop the yogic detour with this:
    2.13 As long as those colorings (kleshas) remains at the root, three consequences are produced: 1) birth, 2) span of life, and 3) experiences in that life.
    (sati mule tat vipakah jati ayus bhogah)

  • Alias

    Susan:
    “I’m wondering how a woman could make an informed bet. Is it qualifying the relationship as true love?”
    ——–

    Are we betting to win or are we looking to get struck by lightning?

  • Lavazza

    “Because I know for a fact it’s not true on college campuses, where the number of highly promiscuous men and women are about equal.”

    Since it is more difficult to become a promiscuous man than to become a slightly promiscuous woman, I doubt that the groups are equal in number. A man does not need to have a very high count to have at least two virgins.

    • Since it is more difficult to become a promiscuous man than to become a slightly promiscuous woman, I doubt that the groups are equal in number. A man does not need to have a very high count to have at least two virgins.

      Fair point. And there are always the freshmen girls, i.e. “fresh meat” who fall into the claws of those raptors. My guess is that most of them get with slutty women regularly, but have probably deflowered a few along the way, as you say.

  • Dogsquat

    @Thrasymachus:

    “The fundamental question remains – if so many women are repelled by manwhores, why doesn’t this force them to change their behavior?”
    _______________________________

    I know you know this, but:

    Some of the women who now say it’s a deal breaker will re-evaluate or change their minds if presented with the choice in real life. Other women like Bellita or SayWhaat who would actually disqualify a man for that are fairly rare.

    Sure, they exist – but not in numbers significant to cause large scale change. Their collective activation energy isn’t high enough to start the reaction.

    It’s a different story with men. Lots of dudes dislike committing to promiscuous women. The sex pozzies have made it disadvantageous for men to be open about this.

    I think that’s unfortunate. I’ve seen the result of this cause significant pain to some very cool women. In a way, they’ve been betrayed in a manner similar to men raised beta-fashion.

    It might be worse for those women, actually. The men can actually change things once they figure it out. The women have either got to lie about it, or become so ridiculously awesome that their past is outweighed by their present. Those women who eschew lying have a harder task and less time to complete it. If they choose neither of those options, their pool of potential LTR mates is significantly reduced.

    I really think they got the shaft*.

    *snickergigglesnort

    • @Dogsquat

      I think that’s unfortunate. I’ve seen the result of this cause significant pain to some very cool women. In a way, they’ve been betrayed in a manner similar to men raised beta-fashion.

      True story, giggles notwithstanding. Many young women are genuinely horrified and stunned to hear guys talk about sluts behind their backs. I recall one young woman who told me the story of going on spring break in the Caribbean with a big group, and the guys were talking about their “main squeezes” back at school in the most disrespectful manner imaginable. Like getting rimjobs, calling them holes, etc. Even though the girls overhearing this were not in that scene, they had always imagined that the guys preferred these girls over everyone else. They were right, of course – the guys did prefer them – as warm holes.

      Girls feel that they’ve been lied to – why didn’t their fathers tell them how men really feel about this issue? Why did their teachers tell them sexual exploration was healthy?

      Sound familiar? 🙂

  • VD

    Vox, do you have any sense of what separates the third group from the others? I’m wondering how a woman could make an informed bet. Is it qualifying the relationship as true love? I know you consider yourself a sigma, but perhaps you fall into this group (or something like it).

    Let me think. It’s not intelligence or success. It’s not a lack of options. It’s not delayed gratification. Most, though not all, of the reformed players I know are now religious and were not previously. The unreformed players are all irreligious, so that’s a factor but not an entirely reliable one. I’m a bit nervous about qualifying the relationship as true love, because that’s