30 Reasons Why They Weren’t Right For You

November 7, 2012

 

The world is full of people you could be happy with. It only takes one. 

When a relationship ends, it can feel very disappointing and discouraging, especially when you are the dumpee. However, it’s important to recognize that it wasn’t right for you – that’s why it didn’t work. There is someone out there who is right for you. Look back and be honest with yourself – were there times you had a nagging sense that things were not really right? Almost always, the answer is yes. 

Here are thirty reasons he or she may not have been right for you. It only takes one. We live and hopefully we learn.

1. You never felt 100% secure in her affection.

2. He was moody, and you couldn’t always read him well.

3. She didn’t have her act together. You made excuses for her to family and friends.

4. Your gut nagged at you – something was off.

5. You sometimes thought, “If only he ______________, this would be perfect.”

6. She didn’t trust easily; she was prone to jealousy and suspicion.

7. It was all about him. You were playing the role of a character in the movie that is his life.

8. You never could picture her as a mom.

9. He confided in others about the relationship before coming to you.

10. She was vague or secretive.

11. He didn’t like himself. 

12. She was unreliable, often flaking, canceling or not following through. 

13. He wasn’t working hard toward his future; he lacked a sense of purpose. 

14. She didn’t make a real effort to get to know your friends.

15. He wasn’t smart or curious.

16. She lacked self-discipline. She confused wants and needs.

17. He said, “I’m only ___ years old.” (This is a red flag at any age.) 

18. Someone else broke her heart and it’s still on her mind. 

19. He liked taking risks, he was impulsive. 

20. She invited attention from other men.

21. He lied to you. 

22. She had bitchy or slutty friends.

23. He drank too much.

24. She worked too much.

25. You didn’t laugh at the same stuff.

26. He blamed others when things didn’t go well. 

27. She was focused on her next career move and you were not a priority.

28. He embarrassed you in front of other people.

29. The sex wasn’t good for you.

30. They didn’t want you. 

What got me thinking about this was a song by Brad Paisley I’ve always liked. Everything changes. You will be surprised.

  • Abbot

    31. He asked about your “past”

  • http://theprivateman.wordpress.com The Private Man

    The problem with such lists is that they encourage women to look for reasons to reject a guy, not accept him. The items on your list are perfectly reasonable but it becomes far too easy for the list to devolve into “I didn’t like his shoes”.

    As well, focusing on “the one” perpetuates the soul mate myth. That’s emotional pornography, nothing more.

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

      The problem with such lists is that they encourage women to look for reasons to reject a guy, not accept him. The items on your list are perfectly reasonable but it becomes far too easy for the list to devolve into “I didn’t like his shoes”.

      The list is written for the woman who has already been rejected and is in pain. By definition, if she has been rejected he wasn’t right for her. Applies to both sexes.

      As well, focusing on “the one” perpetuates the soul mate myth. That’s emotional pornography, nothing more.

      Which is why I debunked it in the first line of the post.

      It’s not that there is only one person who can make us happy. The point is that there are hundreds or thousands of people who can make us happy, and we only need one.

      I’m afraid you get an F for reading comprehension, Private Man.

  • Jet Tibet

    The list is written for the woman who has already been rejected and is in pain. By definition, if she has been rejected he wasn’t right for her. Applies to both sexes.

    You should mention that it is for a woman who has been rejected and not for one that is contemplating rejection.

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

      You should mention that it is for a woman who has been rejected and not for one that is contemplating rejection.

      He wasn’t right for you. It’s over.

  • Escoffier

    I disagree with some of these:

    2. Let’s not cast aside the moody. Some perfectly good people get down. Lincoln and Churchill were prone to “black unholy despondency”. But really, mere moodiness should not be a deal-breaker.

    8. What if he sucks at baseball or is just not that athletic?

    13. The dumb and average deserve mates too!

    15. Eh, I don’t think a guy should have to be more than polite with her friends. If he finds he genuinely likes some of them, that’s cool, but the girl should not treat him as a new friend in the set. No guy wants to join a gaggle of hens unless he is the rooster, if you know what I mean.

    17. Risk can be good. Context is key here.

    24. Define “too much”? There can be an early period where “shoulder to the wheel” leads to later happiness. My wife and I went through that and it wasn’t great for either of us at the time but it worked out well for the long term.

    27. ??

  • JP

    I still don’t see how the girls are going to find people who are right for them in the first place.

    My sister comes to mind.

    Talk about complete, chronic, ongoing fiasco.

  • JP

    “12. He wasn’t working hard toward his future; he lacked a sense of purpose.”

    This needs a caveat that attending law school should not count as “working hard toward his future.”

  • http://theprivateman.wordpress.com The Private Man

    But I get an A in hangover!

  • http://selfadoration.com/ Greg Swann

    Wow. Might it make more sense for women to ignore the motes and concentrate on the beams? If the only men you attract are bums, the logical inference would be that you are a bum magnet. What is it about your own character, manner and appearance that is appealing to jerks and repellent to decent guys? There is no guarantee that being a better person will bring you True Romance, but beyond all doubt you will be a better person. Once you are, you will have no problem rejecting assholes without making long lists of their obvious defects.

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

      Once you are, you will have no problem rejecting assholes without making long lists of their obvious defects.

      There are a lot of men and women who are already Better Persons, and they get rejected. The fault does not lie with them.

      For the record, this list is not meant to apply entirely to one individual, LOL. I’ve heard of several breakups recently between people where the reason was on this list, but did not speak to the character of either person.

      What I’m trying to do here is offer encouragement and support to the brokenhearted and disappointed, not describe assholes. I could write a list of 150 reasons they’re bad news.

  • Abbot

    “If the only men you attract are bums…”

    Then good men will be wise and not break her pattern

  • JKNYC

    @Greg Swann

    This does not say a woman shouldn’t be self-reflective (Susan consistently encourages women to do so). It also doesn’t really say the men in question are “bums.” A man who doesn’t make a real effort with a girl isn’t necessarily a bum or an asshole, is he? I don’t think so. This post is just meant to comfort a woman who was rejected by a guy who wasn’t into her. Many of the items on the list are characteristics that would be shown by a man who wasn’t that into the woman, no? Why is it so awful to offer encouragement to a woman who needs to move on from a guy who didn’t like her?

  • Jason773

    Even I couldn’t help but LOL at Abbott’s first comment. The dryness behind putting “31.” in front of it cracked me up for some reason.

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

      @Jason

      I am completely incapable of feeling frustrated with Abbott. I don’t know why – we have no relationship – I don’t believe he has ever even addressed me by name. Furthermore, I don’t think his comment here makes any sense, though it would at Jezebel. I admire his tenacity and his clear consistency. Abbott knows what he is about, and he never allows his emotions to interfere with his commentary. With Abbott, it never is personal, and I appreciate that. Plus, as you say, he is very funny.

  • taterearl

    “4. Your gut nagged at you – something was off.”

    The sun didn’t rise as brightly that day.

    5. You sometimes thought, “If only he ______________, this would be perfect.”

    would do everything I say

    7. It was all about him. You were playing the role of a character in the movie that is his life.

    Because making a woman the main character in your life story ALWAYS works out well.

    “17. He liked taking risks, he was impulsive. ”

    Like approaching her…asking her out…going for the kiss.

    26. He blamed others when things didn’t go well.

    He must have learned something from women.

  • Pixie

    As someone who empathizes with Susan’s intent, I like this list. I also think the list is beneficial to people who perhaps are nostalgic about the “good times” in an old (and not so good) relationship, because they are disappointed or discouraged by their current prospects. And for the gentlemen who dislike this list— keep in mind many of the he and hims could just as easily be changed to she and hers.

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

      @Pixie

      Thanks for the words of encouragement.

      And for the gentlemen who dislike this list— keep in mind many of the he and hims could just as easily be changed to she and hers.

      Done. I really did not intend this as a rant against men, I was just addressing my core constituency. I hope the revised version will allow the point of the post to come through.

  • Marie

    If I had experienced any of these while dating a guy, it would be a red flag. I’m rarely so naive that I don’t see these things while they’re happening.
    The only relationship which still bothers me is the one that ended for no reason. None of these occurred when we were dating. That’s the problem. If they did, I’d sleep well at night.

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

      @Marie

      The only relationship which still bothers me is the one that ended for no reason. None of these occurred when we were dating. That’s the problem. If they did, I’d sleep well at night.

      Sometimes we do get blindsided. Someone disappears from our life and we have no idea why. It doesn’t mean there wasn’t a reason, it just means we don’t have that information. The person that ended the relationship did have a reason, they just didn’t share it with you. That’s very difficult as it prevents us from moving ahead as we struggle to find an explanation. We think that if we understood the reason, we might be able to address it or make it better. What if it’s a misunderstanding or something than can be fixed? These are the hardest relationships to get past for this reason.

      When this happened to me while I was young, I found myself dreaming about that person for years, long after I’d moved on and stopped thinking about him. My subconscious still served that up to me while I slept – I was still trying to find a reason that made sense. I never did. Sometimes we just have to accept our absolute powerlessness in order to get past it in time.

  • Cooper

    Re: Abbot

    I consider his comments like a guilty pleasure – they’re usually what I was slightly thinking, but wouldn’t have said.

    Susan, I kinda feeling for you with how the only comments are male commenters looking to negatively pick apart a number, or a few.
    Possibility ain’t quite my strong suit, but I trying to send the best vibes I can.
    (And hold back the negativity that can arise at times)

    “The world is full of people you could be happy with.
    It only takes one.”

    Good stuff! Though, the length of the lists does seem to make finding that “one” much harder to find than the quote above does, imo.

    Where are the ladies!?

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

      Good stuff! Though, the length of the lists does seem to make finding that “one” much harder to find than the quote above does, imo.

      Some things on the list don’t necessarily end the relationship. As Escoffier pointed out, there are times when one person works a ton of hours, another time one person may become depressed or suffer a family crisis. This is not to suggest that all of these things reflect poor character on the other person’s part (though some do).

      I think it’s important to listen to one’s gut and take a read on how things feel in a relationship. If you’re feeling a bit threatened by other people paying attention to your SO, why is that? Are they just that attractive? If so, can you live with that? Are they unable to resist attention and attraction from the opposite sex? If so, you need to think about what that will feel like over the long-term. That need is probably not going to diminish with time in a monogamous relationship.

      Often times people get very caught up in having been rejected, even if the person who rejected them wasn’t right for them, either because they weren’t that great, or because they are going back to school in the fall, or because they are not over an ex, or whatever. Endings always have something to do with us, of course, but they’re often due to something as simple as a lack of compatibility or different life goals.

      The point is, you really, really don’t want to be in a relationship with someone who doesn’t want to be in a relationship with you.

      Free yourself up to go out and find someone who does. There are many other people out there, new people every day.

  • Cooper

    “I hope the revised version will allow the point of the post to come through.”

    I do think keeping things gender neutral, with they, is better. It might not alway be interchangeable, but it does allow things to be considered both ways, easier.

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

      @Cooper

      I do think keeping things gender neutral, with they, is better. It might not alway be interchangeable, but it does allow things to be considered both ways, easier.

      OK, thanks. In the past, men got frustrated that I was advising guys. :( I’m happy to give this a try.

  • Pixie

    @Cooper

    Do you mean in life or as commenters on this blog?

  • Mosquito

    @Susan

    Can I just say how much I detest audio adverts that auto start?

    Even if the bandwidth is free (and it isn’t always), I don’t appreciate my speakers coming to life uninvited.

    Are you sure that this is a good move for your ultimate revenue? Is BlogHer really doing you a favour?

    BTW
    interesting list, at least 3 or 4 entries apply (I reckon), I wonder what ‘she’ would say her list was…interesting question. There’re always two sides to the tale.

  • http://www.4stargazer.wordpress.com Anacaona

    Great list!
    If I had to add my own missing reason it will be.
    31. His mama/relatives hated you.

    It seems that family doesn’t meddle in this things in America as much but in my culture it will destroy any relationship sooner or later unless the people involved are really firm about having their relationship off limits.

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

      @Anacaona

      31. His mama/relatives hated you.

      Oh, that is a tough one. It does happen here, often around issues like marrying someone of a different culture or religion. I think it can be very, very difficult. I know people who have been disowned by their parents and not even having grandchildren has healed the rift. For every one of these, I think many more relationships end instead.

  • JP

    @Anacaona:

    What is it like to be in a culture where you actually have to interact with your family and not just the people who you choose to associate with?

  • Cooper

    “Do you mean in life or as commenters on this blog?”

    On the blog, I guess. It’s probably safe to say there are too many gender difference to keep a lot of things gender neutral, IRL.

    I guess, the real question is: can Susan advise both sexes with the same advice?

    “In the past, men got frustrated that I was advising guys.”

    I think you can. Invariably, the advice would been received differently by either side, but that’s not to say we can’t find things that we both see differently, as well as to the same purpose.

    It’s like what Ted said, when you told him to “shut it down” in regards to a particular ‘sphere trope. It’s not intended to scare your female readership – it would be pretty sad if that’s the only purpose a male reader, here, has. Which, of courses, is not the case with a few guys around here. Ted is completely right in the fact that if that’s the way we wanted to view things – we’d be “you know where.”

    “I’m looking for a reason to not just give up and live the way much of the ‘sphere suggests,”

  • FeralEmployee

    The list is written for the woman who has already been rejected and is in pain.

    But if the relationship failed due a cause stated in the list, then you can expect people to use the list as a filter while selecting a partner in order to avoid the consequence (break-up). Therefore, people will use this list to screen men. After all, what good would this list be without offering advice for future events?

    And people, greedy by nature, won’t mind trying to tick off every item on that list. Such behavior is encouraged by yourself, saying:

    It only takes one.

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

      @Feral Employee

      Therefore, people will use this list to screen men. After all, what good would this list be without offering advice for future events?

      That’s a good point, the list does indeed serve as a potentially useful filter for both women and men. I would advise against anyone putting significant effort into a relationship that ticked too many of these boxes.

      And people, greedy by nature, won’t mind trying to tick off every item on that list. Such behavior is encouraged by yourself, saying:

      It only takes one.

      I think you know that was not the intent of my saying “It only takes one.” I’m saying there are many men and women out there to choose from. Many. And you only need to find one. It’s a lot more upbeat than the soulmate myth.

      As for people filtering out others using all 30 criteria, that seems like a poor strategy. It’s not that the person in question isn’t right for anyone, it’s that they are not right for you.

      Looking at the list, I count 10 reasons as character-neutral (1,4,5,8,18,24,25,27,29,30) and 20 as character-negative. I would definitely filter people out based on the 20 negatives.

  • http://www.4stargazer.wordpress.com Anacaona

    What is it like to be in a culture where you actually have to interact with your family and not just the people who you choose to associate with?

    Hard to explain but I would try, is different and its not all relatives some families are really nuclear with being pretty much mom, dad and kids, some are centipede mom, kids dad in turn, passing boyfriend or none, some others is mom, kids and other relatives like grandparents, some others are mom, dad, kids extended family…It varies by class and location. I was lucky to have a nuclear family more or less big enough to allow for the benefits of the extended family without the constant meddling and gossiping issues of the really extended ones. It does encourages tolerance though you cannot escape a blood tie too easily, so you learn to deal with a huge variety of people practically since birth…is that what you wanted to know?

  • JP

    “30. They didn’t want you.”

    I suppose this one is the most interesting and kind of ties into the fear that you are the second choice, rather than the first.

    And I don’t really see a way around it.

    Because just because someone didn’t want you, that doesn’t mean that they were not the other person’s top choice and that any subsequent partner would rank lower in terms of preference.

    How do people in general get over this problem and not have it bleed into future relationships?

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

      @JP

      Because just because someone didn’t want you, that doesn’t mean that they were not the other person’s top choice and that any subsequent partner would rank lower in terms of preference.

      How do people in general get over this problem and not have it bleed into future relationships?

      I think for most people, being rejected by someone you are choosing at the time is difficult, but I don’t believe that person will remain in the #1 slot. Because when you do find someone who thinks you’re great for them, and you feel it too, the chemistry that arises from that tops anything you had with someone who was ambivalent about you, for whatever reason.

      Also, we humans have a way of rewriting history a bit, or focusing on what’s working now. We learn to be grateful and see the positive in what we have. For those who can’t manage it, the only answer is solitude. This is indeed what we see today among single women who sailed through their 20s without a thought for the future, and who bring long checklists (of the wrong kind) to the SMP.

  • JP

    @Anaconoa:

    ” It does encourages tolerance though you cannot escape a blood tie too easily, so you learn to deal with a huge variety of people practically since birth…is that what you wanted to know?”

    Pretty much. I’m generally just curious. How big do some of the extended family groups get and how much are they generally in each other’s business?

  • http://www.4stargazer.wordpress.com Anacaona

    How do people in general get over this problem and not have it bleed into future relationships?

    Can you ride a bike? Same principle you whether get back on it every time you fall having learn something or never ride one again.

  • JP

    “Can you ride a bike? Same principle you whether get back on it every time you fall having learn something or never ride one again”

    Yes, but say you found the overall relationship experience much more appealing that your current one.

    Then you would always be frustrated that the original relationship didn’t work out and you got stuck with a lesser one.

  • http://selfadoration.com/ Greg Swann

    > There are a lot of men and women who are already Better Persons, and they get rejected. The fault does not lie with them.

    Okay. I’m thinking my objection stands — look to your own character and behavior, especially if you keep rewinding through the same one episode over and over again — but it’s not a major big deal. I like your work better than any woman writing about women and sex that I have seen, so I don’t want to give you too much grief. I don’t think there is anything smart about hooking-up, but I will concede that it might be possible to be less miserable with the consequences, if you consistently make your deliberate errors by informed discretion — something like Gambling Sensibly or Wreck Your Car and Survive. ;)

    FWIW, I hate the gender-neutral re-write. The kvetching is still all obviously females griping about males, but now we seem to have men despairing over defects they would not have even noticed in their ex-girlfriends. Using the plural to describe individuals is even worse: “31. They thought there were too many of you to fit into their sports car.”

    I like you blog, and I apologize for caviling.

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

      @Greg

      I’m thinking my objection stands — look to your own character and behavior, especially if you keep rewinding through the same one episode over and over again — but it’s not a major big deal.

      It’s a valid point, and I appreciate your making it. Blaming the other party for the demise in a relationship is #26! No doubt lots of relationships end because neither party is relationship material.

      FWIW, I hate the gender-neutral re-write. The kvetching is still all obviously females griping about males, but now we seem to have men despairing over defects they would not have even noticed in their ex-girlfriends. Using the plural to describe individuals is even worse: “31. They thought there were too many of you to fit into their sports car.”

      Sorry about that, you inspired it in part. I really did not want to be misunderstood as ragging on guys. Any remaining discrepancy is entirely unintended, I assure you.

      Agree on the awkwardness of the grammar. I had to hold my nose when I changed the title of the post.

  • http://www.4stargazer.wordpress.com Anacaona

    Then you would always be frustrated that the original relationship didn’t work out and you got stuck with a lesser one.
    It depends on the person, most people reframe their POV to get what they want and find out why the other relationship didn’t worked out or just break up of the lesser one and try to find something closer to the original one or a mix of both. Most people try to work with what they have leaving in the past forever was not selected in mass in our species for obvious reasons.

  • Jacob Ian Stalk

    Everything on this list describes either entitlement, privilege or intolerance. To describe such an inhumane list as reasons a relationship wasn’t right is to describe as wrong the very human frailties that are the reasons we need relationships. Susan, if you truy believe what you profess in this post, your inhumanity is utterly revealed and you should shut down this blog before you cause any more harm.

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

      @Jacob Ian Stalk

      Everything on this list describes either entitlement, privilege or intolerance. To describe such an inhumane list as reasons a relationship wasn’t right is to describe as wrong the very human frailties that are the reasons we need relationships.

      If I understand you correctly, you are saying that not one of these reasons would produce a mismatch between two people. Is that correct? For example, let’s take #1. “You never felt secure in her affection.”

      Now, there are several reasons a man might not feel secure in a woman’s affection. They might include:

      1. She doesn’t feel much affection.
      2. He is prone to assuming that people don’t care for him even when they do.
      3. She does care about him, but is not ready to go at the pace he has set, i.e. fast. (This could apply to either commitment or sex.)
      4. His need is greater than her ability to give.
      5. She cares deeply but is quite reserved and not very demonstrative.

      I’m sure others could come up with additional scenarios. The point is not whose fault it is. The point is that the two are not a good match. Ex: She wasn’t right for him, because she is very reserved and independent, and he loves PDA and cuddling.

      Susan, if you truy believe what you profess in this post, your inhumanity is utterly revealed and you should shut down this blog before you cause any more harm.

      Oh my goodness. I’m really scared. Do you think I caused any breakups? Or sent someone spiraling into a depression? Should I shut down the blog tonight? I would hate to be responsible for human tragedy and suffering. Dammit, the post has been up for a few hours. How can I reach people who may have read it?

  • Ramble

    He said, “I’m only ___ years old.” (This is a red flag at any age.)

    This seems off to me. I mean, would you not date some 22 year old that had just gone backpacking through South America or Europe? That is, had you been dating him right before he did this, a conversation may very well have been, “I am ambitious, but, I am only 22. The time to backpack through Brasil is now.”

    Also, I would have liked to see items with Temper and Self Involvement.

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

      @Ramble

      “I am ambitious, but, I am only 22. The time to backpack through Brasil is now.”

      Thank you, my literal friend, for pointing out the errors in my thinking. You are absolutely right. What I intended to refer to was that line in relation to the discussion of commitment while dating. As in, “I am only 24! I just want to have fun with my friends!” or “I am only 33! I am really enjoying my life and independence, I’m in no hurry to settle down.”

      Also, I would have liked to see items with Temper and Self Involvement.

      Those are both great – although I intended to cover Self-Involvement with #7. If you have any examples of what you’d like added, put them here!

  • Lamia

    I think this post is lovely. I think many women tear themselves to shreds over failed relationships.. finding every possible fault with themselves, to try to decipher why they weren’t loveable. But sometimes, it’s just not right (timing, personalities or any of the 30 reasons above) and intuitively they probably knew this but were just smitten with the guy.

    The way I think about rejection now is that without losing in life, you can’t become a better version of yourself. People who win every time that have no impetus to improve themselves. Plus, rejection and pain soften you, make you more compassionate & IMO beautiful (inner). So we should see rejection as one of life’s many gifts, shaping you into a more perfectly imperfect human!

    X

    PS. Cooper, first time I have seen your profile pic & FYI you are a total babe. Can’t understand how you would have a problem finding a kind, beautiful GF.

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

      @Lamia

      The way I think about rejection now is that without losing in life, you can’t become a better version of yourself. People who win every time that have no impetus to improve themselves. Plus, rejection and pain soften you, make you more compassionate & IMO beautiful (inner). So we should see rejection as one of life’s many gifts, shaping you into a more perfectly imperfect human!

      It’s true, there is no joy without suffering. It’s very difficult, and there is much needless suffering, but we should not try to eliminate it from our lives.

      I also agree that rejection makes us empathic. This is why people often claim that the “beautiful people” or popular kids in high school tend to be shallow. They have never experience the feeling of being left out.

  • Ramble

    Then you would always be frustrated that the original relationship didn’t work out and you got stuck with a lesser one.

    This is the kind of thing that people never talk about.

  • Mireille

    @ Susan,

    How could you take the bait of JIS?
    I had some peanuts I was ready to throw at him!

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

      @Mireille

      How could you take the bait of JIS?
      I had some peanuts I was ready to throw at him!

      He’s just another weirdo with poor communication skills. He doesn’t know how funny he is.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    ” This is indeed what we see today among single women who sailed through their 20s without a thought for the future, and who bring long checklists (of the wrong kind) to the SMP.”

    I just figured that everyone was trying to permanently bond with someone else as soon as humanly possible after age 13 or so. I’m pretty sure that’s when I started looking.

    So, I’m honestly kind of confused about the entire hook-up culture because it doesn’t make any sense to me, internally. Of course, I generally ignored pop culture anyway, since I found it distasteful.

    I’ve since come to realize that most people really do take their cues from the surrounding culture rather than develop their own independent worldview.

    Even my partytime sisters had the aim of getting married in their 20’s’, even with various failed short term relationships, and both are now married with children in their early 30’s. I don’t think they went to the SMP with a list. I think they were looking for whatever worked.

    I just know that I would have been devastated if I had found someone I wanted to be with and gotten slammed because they wanted to go out and have a good time.

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

      @JP

      I’ve since come to realize that most people really do take their cues from the surrounding culture rather than develop their own independent worldview.

      Yes, I think you are very rare in that respect. Most people join the herd or the pack.

  • Cooper

    “Plus, rejection and pain soften you, make you more compassionate & IMO beautiful (inner). So we should see rejection as one of life’s many gifts, shaping you into a more perfectly imperfect human!”

    This is very true. Although I don’t immediately come to appreciate being rejected as one of life’s great gift, I have often acknowledged that the angst, in result, is (almost as if) intended to encourage the necessary self-improvement, to overcome it. I hone in on this when I exercise.

    In fact, working out is very similar. Cause it’s “reaching failure” that promote muscle growth, the most.

    PS. Thanks :)

  • Ramble

    Thank you, my literal friend, for pointing out the errors in my thinking.

    I just got e-smacked.

    If you have any examples of what you’d like added, put them here!

    Nothing amazing, just that lots of guys, and some girls, have bad tempers. And, lots of girls, and some guys, are self involved.

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

      @Ramble

      That was not an e-smack. You are a very male thinker, and I am a very female thinker. I need male feedback for balance, and you are very good at that. You are also very even-tempered, and fair.

  • Ramble

    This is why people often claim that the “beautiful people” or popular kids in high school tend to be shallow. They have never experience the feeling of being left out.

    Plus, many pretty people really are much more likely to be simple/shallow.

    “Pretty” features very often correspond with a more child-like look (i.e. large eyes for a face that also has soft features). And those pretty people very rarely pursue fields that demand reasoning and higher logic (i.e. STEM). I understand that Logic and Empathy do not go hand in hand, but that people who are truly empathetic, and not just emotional, are very often quite smart.

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

      I understand that Logic and Empathy do not go hand in hand, but that people who are truly empathetic, and not just emotional, are very often quite smart.

      Yes, people who have high IQ and EQ both are generally both smart and charismatic, e.g. Bill Clinton.

  • Ramble

    “I am only 24! I just want to have fun with my friends!”

    One more thing about the “I am only ___” statement.

    If some girl does hear this from her man, she is actually fairly fortunate. He was quite honest with her. In my experience, a lot of those conversations go something like,

    Kayla: So, where is this going?
    Ryan: [Oh Fuck! Really? She is asking me this at at 24?! Well, just calm down and be cool] Wow. Well, I know this, you are really important to me and I know I don’t want to lose you.
    Kayla: [Aaawww] Aaawww.

    [makeout makeout fuck fuck fuck]

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

      Kayla: So, where is this going?
      Ryan: [Oh Fuck! Really? She is asking me this at at 24?! Well, just calm down and be cool] Wow. Well, I know this, you are really important to me and I know I don’t want to lose you.
      Kayla: [Aaawww] Aaawww.

      [makeout makeout fuck fuck fuck]

      This is a brilliant piece of writing. I’m picturing a graphic novel with thought bubbles. Are you a writer, Ramble?

  • Escoffier

    Well, that one resonated for me because when I was with my “older woman” GF (the hot, unstable one) I used to say “I’m only ___” as a defense mechanism. Did not improve the relationship.

  • JP

    By 24 I was starting to panic about having children. Crud. Gotta get married. Gotta start a havin kids…

    I was a gettin old and didn’t want to end up like my Grandmother who had my Mother at age 40 when Grandpa was over 40.

  • Escoffier

    Aristotle said that a man should not get married before 35.

  • JP

    I say that a man should not get a law degree.

  • JP

    By the time I was 24, my mother was dead and my father was totally disabled from a stroke. Not a good combo.

    I weren’t not waitin till 35.

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

      @JP

      By the time I was 24, my mother was dead and my father was totally disabled from a stroke. Not a good combo.

      Oh, that’s terrible. I’m sorry. One of my worst fears is dying while my kids are young. They still need me, you see.

      It sounds like your family definitely tends towards having kids later. I can see why you wanted to do it the other way round.

  • Sai

    LOL at Abbot (like almost always)

    If I ever need post-breakup reasons I’ll come here.

    “Plus, rejection and pain soften you, make you more compassionate & IMO beautiful (inner). So we should see rejection as one of life’s many gifts, shaping you into a more perfectly imperfect human!”
    I would take caution here… Sometimes the person becomes softer… but sometimes you end up with another Miss Havisham or Dr. House.

  • Jackie

    @Sai
    Hi Sai!
    How is your make-over project coming along? Inquiring minds want to know. ;)
    =====
    “I would take caution here… Sometimes the person becomes softer… but sometimes you end up with another Miss Havisham or Dr. House.”

    Well, I don’t think anyone deliberately seeks out pain– at least I’d hope not! Regarding poor old Miss H and grumpy Dr. House: What shears steel into their souls is the lack of connection with another. Or a positive outlet for their pain.

    Have you heard the phrase (I think it’s by EM Forster?) “Only connect”? I think that represents a huge chunk of it. Either they connect to other people and develop a sky-high EQ or they connect to a skill and develop it as a way to kind of carve through the pain.

    We talked about in my church group this week, among other things, about the concept of the sacred wound. The place where we are hurt the most is also the source of our greatest strength.

    Imagine Miss Havisham’s devotion and strength of will being positively channelled if her fiance hadn’t ditched her at the altar. Or what could have happened if she decided to throw the ancient wedding cake in the trash and open the curtains and let in the light. :) As for Dr. House, I imagine a position in Lupus Research (that was a joke!) ;)

  • Ramble

    You are a very male thinker, and I am a very female thinker.

    Wonder Twin Powers Activate.

    You are so nice. Either way, I was definitely not offended.

    You are also very even-tempered

    Sometimes. Again, you are always paying me compliments.

    Keep it up.

  • Ramble

    Are you a writer, Ramble?

    Holy shit, no! I can barely form sentences. And I can never find the words that I am looking for.

  • Jackie

    @JP

    JP, I am so sorry to hear about your loss. My thoughts are with you. And I really like reading what you have to say, you have a rare perspective. :) Peace–

  • Ramble

    Jackie, who was your favorite character on House? This is a serious question.

  • lafcina

    This doesn’t hold water, and is a typical instance of chick logic… (Sorry for being harsh.)

    Because, let’s say that any given man has 50% of probability of fulfilling any of the requirements above. Simple math (0.5 ^ 30 = 0.0000000009) shows that just ONE man in one billion will satisfy all thirty requirements.

    I repeat: just one in one billion men will satisfy all of your 30 requirements. Now, take a deep breath, pause, and give it a good thought, on how useful these “lists” actually are.

  • http://photoncourier.blogspot.com david foster

    lafcina…your analysis assumes that the 30 criteria are independent. Which they most likely are not. “Had bitchy or slutty friends” and “drank too much” probably have a pretty good correlation coefficient. Ditto for lots of other pairs of criteria.

  • Jackie

    @Escoffier

    Re: Aristotle

    Esc, Aristotle came up in our discussion group! He was quoted within a different book, regarding happiness. Real happiness, according to A, meant the full development of the self physically, emotionally and spiritually. The person leading out group believed that if he were alive today the list would include psychologically and sexually.

    Here were the other comments on happiness in this text, which may be of interest:
    2) We can never be happy as long as we confuse pleasure and happiness (can’t imagine too many PUAs would like this book!)
    3) Real happiness depends on making genuine contribution in life
    4) We must be actively engaged in service through our gifts/talents to be happy
    5) It is the process of bringing to completeness all the gifts we have been given

    I only know Aristotle’s work at a most superficial level, but appreciated the discussion it brought forth.

  • Ramble

    Simple math (0.5 ^ 30 = 0.0000000009) shows that just ONE man in one billion will satisfy all thirty requirements.

    lafcina, disagreeing with the list is one thing, but then implying the statistical improbability of almost any man meeting the “requirements” is something else.

    For instance, had Susan listed out genuine “requirements”, there is a good chance that a large list of guys could pass through it’s filter. For instance, working from really generic to more specific, her list might look like this:

    1. No Serial Killers
    2. No Rapists
    3. Speaks same language as me
    .
    .
    .
    17. Non-Smoker
    .
    .
    .
    23. Enormous and Powerful Cock
    .
    .
    .
    etc.

    It’s easy to see that applying a factor of 0.5 to most items would be ridiculous.

    Susan, btw, if you are using this list to setup one of the girls in your group, well, I satisfy all of the requirements.

  • Jackie

    Hi Ramble!

    Do you mean which character I liked the most, or the one found the most interesting?

    (People like Dr. House are best appreciated from a far, far distance. He may have a tart wit and sport rather awesome canes but I would greatly dislike being around someone like that IRL. Outside of TV shows, those kind of people are usually bosses from Hades and supremely difficult to work with.)

  • Mosquito

    Cameron *sigh*
    Gorgeous, overflowing with empathy

  • Ramble

    Well, which character did you most look forward to seeing? Granted, I was really curious to see if it was House.

    Cameron *sigh*
    Gorgeous, overflowing with empathy

    Cameron was a little piece of (empathetic) ass.

  • Mosquito

    So, you won’t stand in the way of our happiness then Ramble?
    Woo-hoo

  • lafcina

    David Foster… Even if I generously shave off dependency-effects, I would still end up with an astronomical number. (One in 100 million perhaps? One in ten million? Heck, even one in 100,000 is still a huge number.)

    The point is, this clearly illustrates that such “lists” are unrealistic. I’d say that, in real life, if you still need to apply some filter, stick to two or three criteria only.

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

      The point is, this clearly illustrates that such “lists” are unrealistic. I’d say that, in real life, if you still need to apply some filter, stick to two or three criteria only.

      10 of these are absolute and firm dealbreakers. I personally know many men who clear the hurdle easily. Settling on any one of those is poor judgment. This is the right kind of checklist to have.

      1. You never felt 100% secure in her affection: dead end, total fail, move on.

      2. He was moody, and you couldn’t always read him well: very anxiety producing, move on.

      3. She didn’t have her act together. You made excuses for her to family and friends: If you can’t be proud of the person you’re dating, NEXT.

      4. Your gut nagged at you – something was off: Always trust your gut instinct. Always.

      5. You sometimes thought, “If only he ______________, this would be perfect.”: Not necessarily a dealbreaker. Some examples that would be OK because they are unrelated to character:

      got a job
      were two inches taller
      lived closer
      was Jewish

      Examples that should be dealbreakers:

      was straight :P
      treated me better
      was able to say “I love you”
      wasn’t still hung up on his ex

      6. She didn’t trust easily; she was prone to jealousy and suspicion: Look to your own behavior. Are you doing anything to cause that? If you are not deliberately doing so, and you are unable to reassure her then it’s probably not a good match.

      7. It was all about him. You were playing the role of a character in the movie that is his life.: NPD. Dealbreaker.

      8. You never could picture her as a mom: Obvs not an issue if you don’t want kids. This one is about the match.

      9. He confided in others about the relationship before coming to you: Obviously not ideal and can ruin a relationship but can also be addressed to possibly make the relationship better.

      10. She was vague or secretive: Shady behavior is always a tipoff. Dealbreaker. Don’t ask don’t tell often falls under this one.

      11. He didn’t like himself: A massive time and emotional suck for either sex. Don’t go there.

      12. She was unreliable, often flaking, canceling or not following through: This behavior deserves two warnings, on the third strike you’re out.

      13. He wasn’t working hard toward his future; he lacked a sense of purpose: Men might not mind this, IDK. For women it should be a dealbreaker.

      14. She didn’t make a real effort to get to know your friends: Worth exploring. Is shyness an issue? Miscommunication about mixing it up with other people? If she cares about you, she’ll care about people important to you.

      15. He wasn’t smart or curious: Not a problem for a woman who isn’t smart or curious. :)

      16. She lacked self-discipline. She confused wants and needs: Be on the lookout for big spending, and other self indulgences. If an issue, communicate that you view this as a problem, and give her a chance to improve.

      17. He said, “I’m only ___ years old.” (This is a red flag at any age.): Only relates to the issue of avoiding commitment. If you’re not looking for commitment, party on.

      18. Someone else broke her heart and it’s still on her mind: Rebound. Not a fault of the injured party, but very high risk for the new bf. Proceed with extreme caution.

      19. He liked taking risks, he was impulsive: Highly dependent on nature of risks. Helicopter skiing OK, driving drunk not OK. Spontaneous trip OK, shooting up heroin not OK. Worrisome only around destructive or irresponsible behaviors. Also about the match, though – I guess two heroin addicts could be good together, e.g. Jessie and Jane.

      20. She invited attention from other men: Another three strikes and you’re out behavior. Point out that you have noticed this and don’t like it. Ask why she does it. Provide reassurance if that’s the issue. Move on if she’s an attention whore.

      21. He lied to you: Depends on the size of the lie and its impact.

      22. She had bitchy or slutty friends: Not a dealbreaker, but definitely worth thinking about. When good people choose to hang out with bad people, it’s a red flag.

      23. He drank too much: Most likely an indication of immaturity as many guys between 18 and 30 drink too much. The question is whether he is willing to spend time sober with you, or he is hell bent on getting blackout every weekend.

      24. She worked too much: Not a dealbreaker unless it signals her intention to make you a lower priority than her career. Can definitely strain a relationship, though, so it’s important to assess whether the long hours are temporary or permanent, e.g. medical residency vs. workaholic by nature.

      25. You didn’t laugh at the same stuff: Not a dealbreaker, but awfully nice to have. Laughing together is one of my favorite aspects of marriage.

      26. He blamed others when things didn’t go well: Contextual. OK if it is others’ fault. Not OK if this is his knee jerk response to all setbacks or failures.

      27. She was focused on her next career move and you were not a priority: See #24. OK temporarily, probably won’t work out long-term.

      28. He embarrassed you in front of other people: Three strikes and you’re out. Also contextual – did he put you down or did he get drunk and put a lampshade on his head? IOW, did he disrespect you or himself? The former is worse.

      29. The sex wasn’t good for you: It’s your responsibility to speak up and work toward sex that pleases you. If he or she is not concerned with your pleasure, it’s a dealbreaker, but many couples work on figuring sex out over time.

      30. They didn’t want you: Obviously you need to get the hell out of there immediately if they aren’t feeling it for you. If a person doesn’t want you, it’s not a match, obvs.

  • Mosquito

    Men have short lists (NMALT)

    Boner test
    Bitch test

    We’re good to tussle

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

      @Mosquito

      Men have short lists (NMALT)

      Boner test
      Bitch test

      We’re good to tussle

      For marriage too? I’m talking looooooonnnnggg-term commitment here.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Here was my list of dealbreakers (some unfortunately learned from experience) when I was single again at 25 and before finding my husband.

    1) Illegal drug addiction. I had tried and failed to put up with this expensive and excuse-ridden habit, but frankly I much prefer non-potheads. No offense to anyone, just a personal thing (I hate smoke).

    2) Emotionally volatile, yells at me, not in control of himself. Now I will never put up with yelling.

    3) Not “in love” with me. Yeah, I’ve gotten the “I love you but I’m not in love with you” line from a guy.

    4) Lied, cheated, and otherwise disrespected me multiple times.

    5) Doesn’t want to get married or have children.

    I was ready to have kids by my mid-20s. Most guys I knew were not, but my husband and I were on the same page about kids. That was huge.

    On that note, our boy has started really smiling, and it totally melts my heart when he looks at me and breaks into a smile. Makes the late nights all worth it!

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

      @Hope

      On that note, our boy has started really smiling, and it totally melts my heart when he looks at me and breaks into a smile. Makes the late nights all worth it!

      Do you have a pic? I’ll post it right here!

  • Escoffier

    Hope, I think any one of those is a deal-breaker. Two, and you need to run. Five are, as the historians say, “overdetermined.”

  • Jackie

    Hey Ramble,

    Re: Dr. House, my feelings went from intrigued and impressed by his quick wit to dissolving into something very much like pity in very short order. He has the EQ of a toddler, I’m sorry to say, and traffics in contempt. I bet his relationships get real old real fast.

    Pornography and prostitutes are much more his style since he can have a purely transactional relationship. Caring for someone besides himself is probably scary as hell for him. Much safer to only put his money out there and not his heart.

    Happily, between his contempt for religious people and curmudgeonly ways, someone like that would avoid me at all costs. Didn’t Cameron have a crush on him in the beginning?

    He may be a jerk but he had her number: She didn’t want him, she wanted his brokenness.

  • Ramble

    I’d say that, in real life, if you still need to apply some filter, stick to two or three criteria only.

    OK, she thinks to herself, he is,
    1. Not a Serial Killer
    2. Not a Rapist
    3, And, he is a Non-Smoker

    Alright, filter passed. I am going to marry him!

  • Ramble

    Emotionally volatile, yells at me, not in control of himself. Now I will never put up with yelling.

    Susan, this is what I was referring to. Many guys are unwilling to check their temper.

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

      @Ramble

      Susan, this is what I was referring to. Many guys are unwilling to check their temper.

      True, but the female equivalent is an addiction to drama. Can’t believe I left that out, seeing as how I just wrote a post about it. Those are both worthy additions to the list.

      The bottom line is that there are a lot of good people out there, but also a lot of selfish people who are not relationship material. Every week spent with the latter has considerable opportunity cost. Filter aggressively for bad news traits before you ever get into a relationship. If there are red flags in the first month, there is no way that should turn into a 6 or 12 month drama that ends badly. Tick tock tick tock.

  • Sassy6519

    I’d say that, in real life, if you still need to apply some filter, stick to two or three criteria only.

    Only 3?

    Uh huh, sure. Not going to happen.

  • Mosquito

    House had immense EQ, he just didn’t follow societal rules on how to show it. Unless that was the route to the most fun. He did plenty of apparently cruel things that were actually for the best for others.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble

    “Shared values” (or “compatible values”) would be a pretty huge filter! You could encompass just about every action (smoking, etc) under that

    “Good character” would be the other, for moral fitness.

    You could construct a filter like a sieve with just those two, I think.

  • INTJ

    Considering that I easily meet all of the reasons here that aren’t specific to a particular relationship, I endorse this list. :D

  • http://www.4stargazer.wordpress.com Anacaona

    I’m the only one that got bored with House? I mean every episode was the same “indeterminate disease that was killing someone they team made their research there were a couple of death scare, they find the cure at least minute and voila! the patient lived” rinse and repeat.
    The characters were not that compelling IMO to keep the formula going for a while so I got bored. I mean I will forever thank the creators since the show saved my sister’s life but it ended up as repetitive as Pokemon and I have hard time seeing the same thing playing all over again, YMMV.

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

      @Anacaona

      I’m the only one that got bored with House? I mean every episode was the same “indeterminate disease that was killing someone they team made their research there were a couple of death scare, they find the cure at least minute and voila! the patient lived” rinse and repeat.

      I had the exact same experience. Also, my BFF is an ER doctor, and she told me that House is the most inaccurate medical show she’s ever seen. The writers literally do not care if the illnesses, diagnoses, etc. make sense.

  • Sai

    @Jackie
    Ironically, when I found a good exercise DVD they piled more work than ever on us. I am slowly getting there. (Also, the negative calories in celery myth is just that.) I am searching for foundation/concealer that won’t break me out and hope to stop by a Bare Escentials store soon.

    (I think Miss H. would have made a servant chuck the cake. I am willing to touch a snake but not a giant spider nest. That wouldn’t have been good for her heart.)

    @Hope
    All good children love their mamas. :)

    @Anacaona
    I actually slowed way down in my watching of House. His antics gave me lots of uncomfortable laughs but then it all made me pretty sad.

  • http://bastiatblogger.blogspot.com/ Bastiat Blogger

    I think that any selection filters should be linked to self-appraisal. I use a simple matrix that separates activities by Enjoy Doing/Do Not Enjoy Doing and Good for Me/Not Good for Me.

    So a proposed activity will ideally fit into 1 of 4 boxes:

    1. Enjoyable + Good for Me
    2. Not Enjoyable + Good for Me
    3. Enjoyable + Not Good for Me
    4. Not Enjoyable + Not Good for Me

    Clearly I want to emphasize Box 1 activities and to make them the anchor for my lifestyle.

    Box 2 activities are all about efficiency and speed. If I can outsource these, I will. I don’t want to dwell on them; they are the “necessary evils.”

    Box 3 activities are special rewards and I am concerned more about managing the downside risks and doing these in moderation.

    Box 4 activities are to be avoided.

    A relationship should, to me, naturally gravitate towards whatever **BOX 1** activities you have in common with the other person. This is the win-win zone, sustainable, etc. If all of you have in the Box 1 overlap is sex, then limit the relationship to sex. If you are limited to an overlapping interest in big cat conservation, then that’s your target activity together.

    The relationship could sort of define its own parameters if both parties have gone through a period of deep reflection and can honestly and accurately describe their Box 1-4 activities. Too often, I think, people today tend to think about general benefits they want to receive from another person or features that they require the other person to have, with the result that the other person is dehumanized and objectified in a very Consumer Reports-type of way. It can become exploitative because everyone will obviously want an expensively-featured premium product for bargain prices.

    Some of this is certainly a good idea, but it may not actually reveal how specific activity components of desired lifestyles are going to line up. It also can be advantageous for those who are still searching, because you can go ahead and proceed with your own Box 1 activities and goals and hopefully meet someone in the natural course of doing what you honestly enjoy doing.

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

      @BB

      I love your four box model. It would make a perfect matrix. Are you sure you didn’t work for BCG?

      I think we can say that for most people, hookup culture is a Box 3 phenomenon. Even if a man or woman enjoys it, it can be “not good” for them in the sense that the partying and alcohol consumption that fosters it usually has negative effects on health, both mental and physical, as well as on academic performance. I’ve written about a study that looked at those things – people having casual sex were significantly more troubled in college than others, not necessarily all in the same way.

  • JP

    “Box 2 activities are all about efficiency and speed. If I can outsource these, I will. I don’t want to dwell on them; they are the “necessary evils.””

    Most of life is lived in Box 2.

  • http://bastiatblogger.blogspot.com/ Bastiat Blogger

    JP: Yes. Because Box 2 activities are not enjoyable in and of themselves, they can cause tension and stress. I think that the out-sourcing and/or automation of Box 2 activities (after they have been correctly identified) is an important life mastery skill.

    Of course, basing a relationship on shared Box 2 activities is probably not such a great idea, since you will become conditioned to associate the other person with an unpleasant or embarrassing task. I think it is better to take care of these on your own and not them to the relationship, because they will inevitable be viewed as baggage/problems/complications.

    Sharing Box 2 workmate tasks might have worked at a time when people were less spoiled, more attracted to Stoicism, more willing to compromise, more duty-bound, etc. But those times are long past and everyone’s favorite radio station has become WIIFM–“What’s In It For Me” (I include myself in this).

  • JP

    “JP: Yes. Because Box 2 activities are not enjoyable in and of themselves, they can cause tension and stress. I think that the out-sourcing and/or automation of Box 2 activities (after they have been correctly identified) is an important life mastery skill.”

    You can’t exactly outsource work and family life.

  • http://uncabob.blogspot.com/ Bob Wallace

    I’m always been amused by women who seek Mr. Perfect while simultaneously being self-centered low-quality people themselves. And yes, I’ve seen it among guys, which is usually demonstrated by the view, “She’s gotta be beautiful.”

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

      I’m always been amused by women who seek Mr. Perfect while simultaneously being self-centered low-quality people themselves. And yes, I’ve seen it among guys, which is usually demonstrated by the view, “She’s gotta be beautiful.”

      Yes, notice what is not on this list:

      Good looks

      Income

      Nice car

      Nice rack

      Social dominance or popularity

      Height or size

  • http://chromedcurses.com LL

    This list is interesting because in the preface paragraphs, you state:

    When a relationship ends, it can feel very disappointing and discouraging, especially when you are the dumpee. However, it’s important to recognize that it wasn’t right for you – that’s why it didn’t work. There is someone out there who is right for you. Look back and be honest with yourself – were there times you had a nagging sense that things were not really right? Almost always, the answer is yes.

    Here are thirty reasons he or she may not have been right for you. It only takes one. We live and hopefully we learn.

    Some of the list invites introspection, putting it on you as the reason why the other person might not have found appealing as a compatible mate. “You never felt 100% secure in her affection.” Insecurity can be unattractive. On the flip side of that, maybe she just never really gave you the level of affection you needed to feel that 100% commitment.

    But a lot these seem like self-justifications for accepting the break-up. You get dumped, but “She had bitchy or slutty friends,” so it’s ok. Or he stopped calling and avoided you, but “He drank too much,” so that’s probably the reason you’re heart-broken.

    What I find funny is the reaction of some of the men to what you have written. They were assuming from the post that it is a checklist of reasons to break-up, but it appears to be a list of reasons to ACCEPT the break up, like a military AAR (after action report). I think that says a lot about their assumptions of their expectations for women writers and “lists.” You’re definitely not a “The Frisky” or “Your Tango” writer. haha

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

      @LL

      Welcome, thanks for leaving a comment!

      But a lot these seem like self-justifications for accepting the break-up. You get dumped, but “She had bitchy or slutty friends,” so it’s ok. Or he stopped calling and avoided you, but “He drank too much,” so that’s probably the reason you’re heart-broken.

      I certainly don’t think it’s useful or helpful to start rationalizing a breakup, e.g. “He sucked anyway.” That’s not what I’m trying to do here. For one thing, as you say, that prevents introspection and without that we can’t learn anything useful as we move forward toward a new relationship (hopefully).

      Based on what I’ve seen a lot of relationships, especially among very young people are fairly low in quality. For example, they are hard to come by in college, so women will often put up with a lot for the sake of saying that they and their regular hookup partner are now “dating.” There is often at least some ambivalence on the part of the male – many women use the “we’re in one or we’re done” ultimatum to get a relationship. However, that gets them a reluctant boyfriend, and that is reflected in the relationship. Emotional intimacy may be low, for example. There is also data that suggests that college students today cheat a lot more than people in relationships cheated two generations ago. The emotional ties are just not as strong, and there is continual temptation for some.

      You’re definitely not a “The Frisky” or “Your Tango” writer. haha

      Haha, no I made a conscious decision years ago to avoid that style of writing.

  • Escoffier

    Those boxes — I have definitely lived that. I had a GF who was definitely in box 3. Around the same time, I was hanging out with this group and there was a girl in the group who was into me, or so I thought, but I just could not muster up any interest. My parents really did not like the GF of the time, not that they saw her much, but they really wanted her gone. So at some point I told my mother about that other girl–my mother never did meet her but what she learned about her made her very interested–and I offhandedly used the phrase “plain & stable.” My mother went on a campaign to get me to dump “hot & crazy” and take up with “plain & stable.” It’s the only time she ever really mucked around in my love life.

    In the end I did dump hot & crazy but I never saw plain & stable outside that group.

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

      My mother went on a campaign to get me to dump “hot & crazy” and take up with “plain & stable.”

      Haha, that’s what some males have accused me of trying to do here.

  • JP

    “13. He wasn’t working hard toward his future; he lacked a sense of purpose: Men might not mind this, IDK. For women it should be a dealbreaker.”

    Well, if the woman wants to have kids, not work, and stay home with them, that’s certainly purpose.

    Any interest in a career? The answer is No? Great!

    Good to go!

  • Escoffier

    Susan, I think “if only he would get a job” can indeed be a character issue, depending on the circumstances of his unemployment.

    Also, “if only he were Jewish” (substitute any religion or ethnicity) can also be a dealbreaker depending on how important it is to that person. There are people who just really don’t want to marry outside their religion/community. For such people, falling in love with someone not like them can be quite painful. I’d advise them simlpy to stay out of those dating pools altogether.

    Or, put it this way, if I were dating a Jewish girl and she were saying to herself “If only he were Jewish,” I’d want to know and I think we’d have to break up. I certainly would not want to marry her in spite of her doubts and endure some bad consequences later.

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

      @Escoffier

      Susan, I think “if only he would get a job” can indeed be a character issue, depending on the circumstances of his unemployment.

      Agreed. Cue our fave example – Blue Valentine.

      Also, “if only he were Jewish” (substitute any religion or ethnicity) can also be a dealbreaker depending on how important it is to that person. There are people who just really don’t want to marry outside their religion/community. For such people, falling in love with someone not like them can be quite painful. I’d advise them simlpy to stay out of those dating pools altogether.

      Yes, my point was that some of these filters are contextual. It’s not about judging someone as good or bad, it’s about whether they are the right person for you.

  • JP

    “For marriage too? I’m talking looooooonnnnggg-term commitment here.”

    Long term commitment is all about deciding to be committed long term and then staying in the relationship.

    It’s just an exercise in will.

  • http://bastiatblogger.blogspot.com/ Bastiat Blogger

    JP: there are a few options available to the person who is spending life in Box #2.

    1. Fully embrace the suck. Take pleasure in being a martyr or at least a cautionary tale to others.

    2. Nuke the situation a la “Eat Pray Love/Beat Lay Move” and start over.

    3. Grind through, seek temporary respite via sit-coms and escapist fiction, hope it all eventually pays off, look forward to retirement, etc.*

    *This one seems to be popular.

  • JP

    “3. Grind through, seek temporary respite via sit-coms and escapist fiction, hope it all eventually pays off, look forward to retirement, etc.*”

    This applies to lawyers, generally.

  • Mosquito

    @Susan
    re “For marriage too?”

    http://pjmedia.com/drhelen/2012/10/19/name-5-reasons-a-man-should-get-married/

    As the Good Dr Helen says;

    Another day, I talked to a hair dresser at a salon about men and marriage and she said she had a cousin who had a boyfriend who wouldn’t marry her, even though they had two children together. “She is desperate to get married,” said the hairdresser. “What’s in it just for him?” I asked. She couldn’t think of anything.

    As I think about it, I wonder in today’s anti-male climate, whether there are financial and legal reasons that a man would want to marry. Maybe I’m being too cynical here. Can readers help me out?

    So…NO, not after the Red-Pill…except for very extenuating circumstances and a very exceptional woman.

    YMMV

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

      So…NO, not after the Red-Pill…except for very extenuating circumstances and a very exceptional woman.

      YMMV

      It does vary considerably.

  • Mosquito

    oh, and there’s comedy gold in the comments on Dr Helen’s thread

  • JP

    “As I think about it, I wonder in today’s anti-male climate, whether there are financial and legal reasons that a man would want to marry. Maybe I’m being too cynical here. Can readers help me out?”

    To me it was always primary a moral driver.

    Do I want to have sex? Yes.

    Then I have to get married.

    I never looked at marriage as a social or legal arrangement separate from the underling moral structure.

  • JP

    “So a proposed activity will ideally fit into 1 of 4 boxes:

    1. Enjoyable + Good for Me
    2. Not Enjoyable + Good for Me
    3. Enjoyable + Not Good for Me
    4. Not Enjoyable + Not Good for Me”

    You also have to think about overlying social/cultural/civilizational objectives.

    What do I want the culture to look like? What ideals should be put in place?

    Are there any specific cultures or sub-cultures that I feel need to be eliminated because they conflict with my idea of what the world should be like?

    What am I trying to accomplish in terms of longer-term civlizational objectives for the next 200 – 400 years?

    Basically, what do I want the future to look like?

  • Mosquito

    “Do I want to have sex? Yes. Then I have to get married.”
    Luckily, in this legal climate, NAMALT.

    “I never looked at marriage as a social or legal arrangement separate from the underling moral structure.”

    Best of luck with that.

    As ‘other’ blogs say, the divorce rate amongst the religious really doesn’t differ from the norm by much. I guess if you’re in the right sect…roll those die

  • Mosquito

    “It does vary considerably.”

    clearly.

    varied gender (from those whom the question was targetted)
    varied generation from your target audience
    varied current marital state
    varied purely hypothetical vs your balls on the block

  • JP

    “Best of luck with that.

    As ‘other’ blogs say, the divorce rate amongst the religious really doesn’t differ from the norm by much. I guess if you’re in the right sect…roll those die”

    I’m really not that religious, more of a moral absolutist than anything else.

    I think I’m my own sect.

  • Cooper

    ““As I think about it, I wonder in today’s anti-male climate, whether there are financial and legal reasons that a man would want to marry. Maybe I’m being too cynical here. Can readers help me out?”

    Hahaha, there aren’t any on my list of reasons.

    Financial and legal reason are both things that I have a desire to marry in spite of.

  • Mosquito

    “I think I’m my own sect.”

    I would say that that would give you a lot of flexibility, but in your case, probably not…but best of luck, everyone gets to set their own way.

  • Joe

    I can think of one reason for a man to get married – to avoid a relatively meaningless existence.

    Sadly, that’s a negative reason, not a positive one. But a career, even a fine one, is no substitute. Eventually everyone has to come to grips with the idea that no one ever met death wishing he had spent more time at the office.

  • Cooper

    ” no one ever met death wishing he had spent more time at the office.”

    Or, that they wish they had spent more of the twenties single.

  • JP

    “” no one ever met death wishing he had spent more time at the office.”

    Or, that they wish they had spent more of the twenties single.”

    The real problem with life is that it can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.

    I certainly wouldn’t have made most of the life choices I made knowing what I know now, but at the time you simply don’t know what you are doing, so you end up making horrible choices.

    I would *love* to have my 20’s back to live over again.

  • Mosquito

    @Joe
    I can understand wanting meaning in life, but I really do not see any meaning inherent to marriage.

    Everyone, both sexes, ought to ask “what’s in it for me?”. Then they need to look very closely at those reasons. And make sure that they were realistic and applicable.

    The link I gave had 500ish comments, I didn’t read them all, but I saw nothing persuasive. YMMV. Some of the answers were from the 50% who were still married, some of them liked it, some described misery. The other 50%? not so keen at all.

  • Mosquito

    “I would *love* to have my 20′s back to live over again.”

    Yeah, me too, but ‘back in the day’.

    I wouldn’t want to be in my twenties now. It’s very hard to know how to plan for the future when the future is so uncertain.

  • http://chromedcurses.com LL

    Susan, you say, “I certainly don’t think it’s useful or helpful to start rationalizing a breakup, e.g. “He sucked anyway.” That’s not what I’m trying to do here.”

    But earlier, you said, “The list is written for the woman who has already been rejected and is in pain. By definition, if she has been rejected he wasn’t right for her.”

    And from the post itself, I thought this was mostly based upon the bolded parts of the quote in my first comment, which basically indicates looking back at what happened and realizing that the person, whether you were the dumper or dumpee (but especially the dumpee), wasn’t right for you.

    But depending on which position you are taking (the one breaking up or the one being kicked to the curb), this list is either a checklist of what are acceptable reasons to get rid of someone or justifications why it was ok and how you should just accept the failed relationship because “he sucked anyway.” I am having a hard time reconciling the two, disparate reasonings here.

    If it is a pre-dumping list, I concur with some of the men that this is not a good way to look at things. Looking for reasons to get rid of someone should be reason alone to just move on, and to honestly say the relationship has run its course. If it’s afterwards and you’re looking back, it appears to be either a way to explain to yourself that it’s ok because x, y, z reasons, or it can be a way to look back at yourself and ask yourself why you accepted his drinking, his ignorance, his gauche behavior or whatever and readjust what you are looking for in the future. But from the original post and throughout comments, I’m losing which point was the primary.

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

      @LL

      But depending on which position you are taking (the one breaking up or the one being kicked to the curb), this list is either a checklist of what are acceptable reasons to get rid of someone or justifications why it was ok and how you should just accept the failed relationship because “he sucked anyway.” I am having a hard time reconciling the two, disparate reasonings here.

      I’m sorry, I can see how that is confusing. Here’s how I envisioned it when I wrote the post, which was inspired by a couple of unhappy young women IRL:

      The first step is in realizing that this ending is a good thing in the long term because this guy was not right for you. If you are honest with yourself, you will recall there were some red flags that you chose to ignore or hoped would improve. They did not, and now he has ended the relationship. This is a gift of sorts, because you are now free to spend time and energy seeking a better match, and you are no longer preoccupied with a relationship that really wasn’t going to work out for keeps.

      The second step is to take what you’ve learned from this failed relationship and use that information as you move forward. What would you do differently if you had to do it again? Where did you fall short? Where did he? Or did you learn that you just can’t be with someone who thinks The Three Stooges is the best comedy ever written? Or that it’s not going to work for you to be with someone from a very different culture, because you learned that some of their traditions conflict with your own beliefs? Etc.

      In short, the list is written now for the dumpee, but should be printed and slipped into her wallet when she gets back out there. :)

  • J

    @Ana

    31. His mama/relatives hated you.
    It seems that family doesn’t meddle in this things in America as much but in my culture it will destroy any relationship sooner or later unless the people involved are really firm about having their relationship off limits.

    That’s true overall, but even in America you can still stumble into crazy in- laws. Mine were troubled and people, and they liked to share that around.

    Re Dr. Helen

    She is desperate to get married,” said the hairdresser. “What’s in it just for him?” I asked. She couldn’t think of anything.

    Dr. Helen panders to this stuff a lot. I can think of two reasons for the guy to marry his babymama– his two kids that he’s responsible to.

  • Ramble

    I’m the only one that got bored with House?

    No. After the 3rd season or so, I stopped watching. Also, all of the added drama was simply not needed. The best parts were when House tore down “nice” people. And then when Wilson would mock House.

  • Mosquito

    “Dr. Helen panders to this stuff a lot. I can think of two reasons for the guy to marry his babymama– his two kids that he’s responsible to.”

    He’s there, he’s looking after them, what does marriage add for him?

    Part of the Red-Pill is not subordinating your interests for no reason.

    Marriage is a greater risk for the man, so why should he do it unless there are some gains?

    And shaming isn’t very effective anymore, for either (unmarried father / unmarried mother) sex. (slut walks etc too)

  • Ramble

    True, but the female equivalent is an addiction to drama.

    For me, the difference between Self Involvement and “Addiction to Drama” is splitting hairs. So, yeah.

  • Ramble

    I can think of two reasons for the guy to marry his babymama– his two kids that he’s responsible to.

    J, I am curious. If you were one of those babies (and assuming that he did then marry her for that reason) and you knew that your married parents did not love one another (it was fairly obvious) and that they married for the children, would you have preferred they got married or that they had not gotten married?

  • Doc

    31) The problem, really is you! He/she was just too nice to say so.

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

      31) The problem, really is you! He/she was just too nice to say so.

      Very possible! I wish people weren’t too nice – we could all use a good, honest exit interview on the way out.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble,

    Ramble, I know you asked J, but I’m sticking my nose in anyway. ;) If I was one of those kids what I *wouldn’t* want is for my parents to stay in this eternal limbo of “will he ever legally commit or not?”

    Because there are about a million unspoken things that these children are learning about relationships from their parents’ actions. I would much rather have them (the parents) put their cards down on the table:

    How are you going to raise our children? What kind of relationship are we modelling for them? Do we want them to have the same kind or something different? If so, what?

    I suspect the answers are so divergent that it makes both parties uncomfortable and so they just avoid it all. Meanwhile, the kids are like sponges, absorbing every bit.

    If I was the mom, I would much rather know the truth. If a guy is not wanting to marry you after birthing two of his children, it doesn’t sound like he is that interested in being a devoted father. I would have to ask myself very difficult questions and proceed in their children’s best interest.

  • Jackie

    Oops, just realized there is bunch of weird syntax between your/our, their/the. But hopefully the general idea is clear! :)

  • Cooper

    “Dr. Helen panders to this stuff a lot. I can think of two reasons for the guy to marry his babymama– his two kids that he’s responsible to.”

    The financial and legal obligations to care for offspring would not keep me married.
    To me, those are consequences for not doing so.

    I fully intend to everything to avoid having a failed marriage, but if there isn’t intimacy, a whole slew of financial and legal consequences could not keep me from breaking that goal.

    Maybe another male commenter can elaborate on this better.

    I guess what I’m trying to say is the obligation to children would never be able to be substituted for the reasons I wanted to in the first place.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    In China having a child out of wedlock is just not an option. I guess I internalized that cultural stigma even though I immigrated to the US.

    http://www.noweddingnowomb.com/in-china-it-is-illegal-to-have-a-child-out-of-wedlock-jo-gan-of-life-behind-the-wall-event-post/

  • JP

    @Hope:

    “In China having a child out of wedlock is just not an option. I guess I internalized that cultural stigma even though I immigrated to the US.”

    Illegitimate/bastard children used to be strongly disfavored in the U.S.

    I don’t know what changed this, honestly, since it seemed to work.

    “In common law, legitimacy is the status of a child born to parents who are legally married to each other; and of a child that is born soon after the parents’ divorce. Conversely, illegitimacy (or bastardy) is the status of a child conceived outside marriage. The consequences of illegitimacy have pertained mainly to a child’s rights of inheritance to the putative father’s estate and the child’s right to bear the father’s surname or title. Illegitimacy has also had consequences for the mother’s and child’s right to support from the putative father”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legitimacy_(law)

  • http://chromedcurses.com LL

    There seems to be some commingling between hooking up and relationships and that is where the women get led astray. I understand that is the whole purpose of this blog, but I’m a brutal realist. You get what you deserve especially if you are willing to put up with certain treatment or behaviors from men, so the whole heartbroken whining afterwards elicits very little sympathy from me.

    Thanks for clarifying, Susan.

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

      @LL

      You get what you deserve especially if you are willing to put up with certain treatment or behaviors from men, so the whole heartbroken whining afterwards elicits very little sympathy from me.

      Fair enough.

  • Soullite

    This list doesn’t seem that bad to me. I can sort of see why people have complaints – Lord knows, the last thing most women (probably men too, but I never tried to date one) need is another excuse to be coltish – but most of the line-items are reasonable, or are at least reasonable given the stated goals of the site. Most of it should be boilerplate for any relationship (which is, I think, the point).

    #4 is iffy, because most people have terrible judgment. But it isn’t without wisdom – if most people have bad judgement, you’re better off going with your bad judgement than someone else’s. I’ve seen too many friendships end that way.

    #5 is good policy, and I even disagree with the clarifications. I’m male, and all of 5’7. That’s too short for some women (and that’s fine; I’ve DQ’d women for shallow reasons before). It doesn’t make you a terrible person if you need a man to be 5’10 to find him attractive. It doesn’t even make you terrible if you need them to be 6’2 – kinda foolish, because that’s starting to get pretty rare, but not bad. And even if it did, denying those preferences wouldn’t change that. It would just make you a terrible and miserable person. It’s okay to have any preference, just make sure you know that such things have to be balanced (don’t demand tall and rich and brilliant; don’t demand gorgeous and busty and awesome cooking). Of course, that does make you wonder why they got involved with someone who didn’t pass muster to begin with, but hey, we all like to think that we’re better people than we actually are.

    #13, is a little simplistic. It’s not enough to be driven, you both have to mesh on where you want to go and how fast you want to get there. For instance, I am in the nuclear industry. That did not at all go over well when I tried, once, to hit on a hippie girl.

    I think #17 is mostly okay until you hit 25 or so.

    Like I said, I get the complaints. I don’t really get the hostility, though. If you disagree, then hey, what do I know? I’m just a lurker anyway!

  • http://7thseriesgongshow.blogspot.com Mr. Nervous Toes

    Just a quick comment as someone who is a product of a nasty divorce: the purpose of marriage is to provide a stable environment for children to grow up in. Love doesn’t have to be forever, and if the marriage does falter, you want to be in it with someone who will put the welfare of the children ahead of their own.

    The only way to evaluate this is to wait and see how someone handles adversity. If they bail when the going gets tough, they aren’t parent material.

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

      @Mr. Nervous Toes

      The only way to evaluate this is to wait and see how someone handles adversity. If they bail when the going gets tough, they aren’t parent material.

      That’s a great point.

  • Emily

    >> “I am searching for foundation/concealer that won’t break me out and hope to stop by a Bare Escentials store soon.”

    Every person’s different, but I really like the Revlon Colorstay Foundation. I tend to use the “Dry Skin” one in the winter and the “Oily Skin” one in the summer.

  • Ramble

    If I was the mom, I would much rather know the truth.

    Hey Jackie,
    From what I can tell, the mother already knows the truth: She is desperate to get married and the man is most definitely not.

    From the quote:

    … she said she had a cousin who had a boyfriend who wouldn’t marry her, even though they had two children together.

    The cards are already on the table and the mother is desperate for this man to marry her.

    So, this is why I had asked J about it. How good is it for these children to be raised by, once unmarried (and, I am presuming, not living together), and now married parents? (“Now married” if they follow J’s advice)

    I don’t know the answer. However, from what I have seen, I am guessing the children are better off if their parents, in this situation, don’t get married. Granted, as far as I can tell from reading the story, these kids are in a lose-lose situation. Their mother failed at the most important decision she will ever make: who do I spread my legs for?

    Here is the original quote(s) for reference that begged the question:

    She is desperate to get married,” said the hairdresser. “What’s in it just for him?” I asked. She couldn’t think of anything.

    Dr. Helen panders to this stuff a lot. I can think of two reasons for the guy to marry his babymama– his two kids that he’s responsible to.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    In the legal sense, J is absolutely correct: “I can think of two reasons for the guy to marry his babymama– his two kids that he’s responsible to. ”

    If the guy was not named as the father on the birth certificates, and the mother died, the guy would not have any legal rights to the children. That is just the basics. If he is not legally a guardian, he wouldn’t be able to sign for them in hospitals, register them for school, etc. All sorts of things are more complicated when parents are not married.

    I just added our son as a beneficiary on my life insurance. Life is full of little administrative stuff like this.

    Not to mention, whose last name do the kids have? It’s so much simpler when I have my husband’s last name, and our boy has the same last name.

  • Cooper

    “Life is full of little administrative stuff like this.”

    But, these aren’t reason to get married.

    Or, should I say, I don’t want these to be the reason for someone to want marriage with me.

    “Not to mention, whose last name do the kids have? It’s so much simpler when I have my husband’s last name, and our boy has the same last name.”
    Men put themselves on the line when marrying these days. We aren’t going to for the sake of simplicity.

    Am I crazy in thinking that the only real answers to ““What’s in it just for him?” should be love, or a bond. Nothin should replace that answer. Not birth certificate, legal rights, life insurance or financial reasons, or last names – but loving devotion! Amirite? Regardless of whether I am, that’s how I see it.

    And, in regards to the Dr. Helen example, I’d say she shouldn’t marry him. He obviously doesn’t love her – or else he would.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Cooper, as much as I am a romantic, arranged marriages have worked out because of people doing their “duty” and for finances, family and tradition. Why? For the kids.

    Now, if one parent is truly awful and abusive, then it’s better to leave than to even be living near that person. Otherwise, if both kids are his biologically, being married is the best protection for their legal rights.

    I say this as the child of divorced parents, BTW. I envied kids with in tact families, even if their parents didn’t totally seem to be in love with each other. Living together arrangements can end any time. Marriage is for life, and that’s the kind of commitment a father should make to his children.

    That was not the kind of commitment my father made to me. In fact, I feel like I don’t really have a father. So… yeah. I feel pretty strongly about this one.

  • Jacob Ian Stalk

    He’s just another weirdo with poor communication skills. He doesn’t know how funny he is.

    I see. So mockery and ridicule is your chosen approach for someone who can’t communicate well enough for you. This was precisely my earlier point – this sort of character is behind much of what you write. It belies a miserly spirit that can’t be disguised by salubriousness or clever invective. It’s unwise to take the advice of someone who has low regard for those they perceive as lesser mortals. What’s not harmful here?

    Now tell me…how is the fisking slapdown approach you seem to be cultivating here considered good communication? Take it slow so a poor communicator like me can understands y’all. Hyuk.

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

      So mockery and ridicule is your chosen approach for someone who can’t communicate well enough for you.

      Out of curiosity, I did a search on all the comments you’ve left here. Around 5 I think. All were critical without being constructive, judgmental without facts, and quite rude and dismissive.

      Those are the hallmarks of poor communication. If you have something you want to say, some way in which you want to be understood, then telling a blogger to commit blog suicide is probably not the best way of getting heard. Just saying. In addition, your comment didn’t make sense on the face of it. I still don’t know what you meant.

      If you don’t have anything you wish to discuss, then there’s no reason to leave a comment at all.

  • JP

    “If you have something you want to say, some way in which you want to be understood, then telling a blogger to commit blog suicide is probably not the best way of getting heard.”

    Blogicide.

    I just coined a new word.

    I’m a lexicographer!

    Go, Me!

    Winning!

  • Cooper

    @Hope
    Btw, when I said:
    “The financial and legal obligations to care for offspring would not keep me married. . . the obligation to children would never be able to be substituted for the reasons I wanted to in the first place.”

    I did intend for it to include love for the children. If I were staying for children, it would also be for the love of them, more so than for their financial or legal benefits.

    Re: arranged marriages
    Of the ones I’ve had a opportunity to learn about, IRL, they seem very, very loving. Something about them seems to imply that “love” included in the “duty” they fulfil.

    I know this isn’t what you were trying to say, but citing legal or financial benefits, as if they can stand as sole reasons to marry, to me, seems like saying a man can’t expect to receive love after having children. That, even if he married for the former, he’d be expected to stay for the latter, once the formers gone.
    But I realize this is not what at all what is being said.

    I think I’m thinking about it too hypothetically. Because I know I would most definitely stay, despite a certain amount of abuse even – for the kids.
    I kinda have a similar view on Abortion. I’m 100% for letting people choose, and if I were advising someone very young, I’d probably tell them to “deal with it.” But I’d never choose to myself, no matter how much it was going to change my life.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Cooper, I would judge the man who had a baby out of wedlock as much as I judge the woman. Then again, my upbringing is different. In China, women would definitely have abortions if they got pregnant without being married. Personally, I never had to face that decision, for which I am grateful.

    Financial and legal matters are just part of having kids. The little buggers are expensive, and they are other human beings you have to take care of for a long time. I would not say love itself is sufficient, but it is necessary. Maybe the unmarried father loves his kids, but offers no financial or legal protection to them. In my opinion that’s lame.

    I do view marriage as a kind of duty, in addition to being a union of spiritual connection, love, sex and friendship. So if a man doesn’t want the duty part, then that’s not really a man I’d want to be with either. The woman is not really able to decide that because she already had the kids. But really, if he doesn’t love her, why is she staying with him? The answer is, for the kids.

  • Jacob Ian Stalk

    Those are the hallmarks of poor communication.

    Poor communication is the bathwater you yourself have decided to sop up here. It has nothing to do with my point so I’ll leave that slippery little mess for you to clean up as you see fit. It’s your house, after all.

    If you have something you want to say, some way in which you want to be understood, then telling a blogger to commit blog suicide is probably not the best way of getting heard.

    But it worked. So what’s your point?

    Just saying.

    No you’re not. You’re shaming, which is its ugly stepsister.

    In addition, your comment didn’t make sense on the face of it. I still don’t know what you meant.</blockquote.

    Then the rules of good blog hosting suggest that you ask for clarification. I don't need to do this myself, nor I would think does any other reader, as you're a good communicator and make yourself understood quite clearly.

    If you don’t have anything you wish to discuss, then there’s no reason to leave a comment at all.

    There you go with the slap-down thing again. I am trying to relate to you despite having an untutored commenting manner and poor communication skills but you’re just slapping me down according to your own perceptions and lack of understanding. This, again, was my earlier point about relationship. We are now trying to relate and that is the beginning of relationship. Had I accepted your tacit assertion that I was “unmatched” and just skulk away we will of course have failed to relate.

    This exchange is the best example I can give why we ought not merely rely on a good fit when seeking relationship. People are different, and weak and frail, or strong and robust…but we also change, adapt and grow. Relationship is a promise available to everyone with anyone if both parties are prepared to overcome their present-day bias and make an effort for future gain. Similarity or compatibility are neo-tribal metrics, possibly a product of a culture dominated by the feminine.

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

      This exchange is the best example I can give why we ought not merely rely on a good fit when seeking relationship. People are different, and weak and frail, or strong and robust…but we also change, adapt and grow. Relationship is a promise available to everyone with anyone if both parties are prepared to overcome their present-day bias and make an effort for future gain.

      I don’t believe I ever said that a good fit is the only requirement for relationship. Furthermore, you do not distinguish among different kinds of relationships. I have many relationships with people that I do not choose; I relate to them out of necessity or convenience. We may work to achieve mutual satisfaction and go our own ways without being the least bit compatible personally. However, I am writing about seeking life partner, and none of us has the luxury of giving equal opportunity for relationship to all comers. We must select based on our available options, and stop searching when we feel that we have found the best possible match. Asking a young person to throw in their lot with someone based on the theoretical possibility that the other person may change, adapt and grow is foolish. That person may change, adapt and regress, all for the worse.

      Similarity or compatibility are neo-tribal metrics, possibly a product of a culture dominated by the feminine.

      Similarity is not at all the same as compatibility, though often similar people are compatible. I don’t know what “neo-tribal metrics” even means, but I would never enter an agreement of lifetime monogamy without compatibility. It sounds as if you are saying that there is no such thing as one person being wrong for another, or right for another. If so, I couldn’t disagree more.

  • Jacob Ian Stalk

    Sorry…html tags in my previous comment were messed up. Hopefully Susan will correct.

  • Cooper

    “I do view marriage as a kind of duty”

    I value this. Far too many people, at least young ones I know, do not view marriage like this. Coincidentally, or not, they tend to be the same ones that express little desire to marry, at all.

    I’ve actually started to find there is a slight coorilation between ones relationship-orientation, and the persons’ parents marial status. (Not speakin about you)
    Quite a few of the people I know who are vocally against marrying, at least right-now while they’re in their twenties, have come from families that are very happily seperated.

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

      @Cooper

      I’ve actually started to find there is a slight coorilation between ones relationship-orientation, and the persons’ parents marial status.

      The correlation is strong and has shown up in many studies. Parental divorce is a strong predictor of promiscuity for both sexes. It is also highly common among men and women who say they prefer hooking up casually to relationships because relationships are time consuming, messy and require a lot of work.

      Divorce is really, really rough on kids. I’m not saying it’s never justified, but it’s a tough thing and it stays with kids into adulthood.

  • Madelena

    @Ramble

    J, I am curious. If you were one of those babies (and assuming that he did then marry her for that reason) and you knew that your married parents did not love one another (it was fairly obvious) and that they married for the children, would you have preferred they got married or that they had not gotten married?

    My response:

    I agree 100% with J and Hope. For me as well, having children out of wedlock is NOT an option. I do truly believe it is best for children to have two parents in the house, assuming there isn’t abuse of any kind there for all sorts of physical, psychological, emotional and role modelling reasons.

    I also believe in concepts like duty and obligation and if you happen to have kids then your priorities change and you need to put their welfare first, including providing them with an intact family structure.

    I have an uncle living in the US who was “trapped” into pregnancy by a woman he did not love. In any case, they have now two children and a third on the way. There are rocky patches in the relationship but they both knew their duties were towards the child so my uncle went and married her in City Hall in order to ensure his child was not a bastard. They are now on child number 3 and the kids are thriving.

    This type of thinking is not common in the North America I think, because the individual is the most important thing and everything is subordinated to self-interest.

  • Madelena

    In my dating travails, I’ve come across a few men who are fathers (my preference is for men without kids but a few slip through the filters). I would rate a divorced father far more highly than I would a man never married to the mother of his child. At least, by marrying, he demonstrates that he values the institution.

  • Ramble

    I wish people weren’t too nice – we could all use a good, honest exit interview on the way out.

    Susan, very few people are looking to become more self aware. I understand that this is a sitcom that I am referencing, but, The Office is/was a show based almost entirely on the concept of Self Awareness. The more self aware were made to suffer the less self aware fools, except when the cool/intelligent/tall/attractive “beta” punked Dwight.

    Again, I understand that these are fictional characters, but do you think that Michael, or Dwight, or Kelly really want to be any more self aware than what they were?

    Also, many, many dumpees are relieved of their duties for pretty basic/primal stuff. And telling them these things as you kick them out the door (very often with your new squeeze already in place) only gives them that much more ammunition do destroy you within your social circle.

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

      @Ramble

      Again, I understand that these are fictional characters, but do you think that Michael, or Dwight, or Kelly really want to be any more self aware than what they were?

      No, but I think that the person who gets stuck on “Why, why, why?” is probably a person who really wants information and to analyze what happened. I suspect this is related to intelligence.

  • Ramble

    For me as well, having children out of wedlock is NOT an option.

    Madalena, the point is, in this story, that ship has already sailed. She has already had 2 children with this guy out of wedlock.

    The question is: now what?

    If you were born to a mother who had multiple children with a man that did not want to marry her, what would you want? Would you want him to marry this woman that is desperate for him to marry her, or, would you want them to remain unmarried and raise you as separate parents?

    Again, I don’t have the answer.

  • Madelena

    @Ramble

    First of all, this woman has made a colossal mistake in selecting a man who was not willing to commit to her to be the father of her children. Huge mistake. She compounded her poor judgement by having a 2nd child with him.

    If I was one of those two children, or if I was related to the mother or if I was related to the father, in each case I would want the father to marry the mother. Let them put on their grown up pants and do the right thing.

    Unfortunately, that likely won’t happen because the family, religious and societal structures that would have strongly pushed for marriage in the past are not as strong as they used to be, at least in North America.

    I’ll take a guess and say that the couple probably are lower middle-class or working class as I think the upper middle classes know the benefits of marriage both as a source of stability and wealth-building for themselves and their offspring.

  • Sai

    @Bastiat Blogger
    I like that matrix and your reasoning, especially this:
    “you will become conditioned to associate the other person with an unpleasant or embarrassing task.”
    That’s why I could never understand how two people in the same calculus class would want to be together. For me it would be “the work must be done, I’m tired of YOU, let me work, I have to work!”
    I really hated calculus.

    @Emily
    Thanks for the idea.

    @Hope
    “I do view marriage as a kind of duty, in addition to being a union of spiritual connection, love, sex and friendship.”
    The more I read the more I think you’re absolutely right.
    (Even if it means more calculus)

  • Ramble

    If I was one of those two children, or if I was related to the mother or if I was related to the father, in each case I would want the father to marry the mother. Let them put on their grown up pants and do the right thing.

    Well, the woman in the story is already on the same page as you. She desperately wants this man to propose to her. So, she already has her “grown up pants” on…granted, this is after she easily took them off. Twice.

    So, to clarify, knowing what your mother did (bore a child to a man that did not want to marry her…and then did it again) and who you father is (I do not want to marry that woman), you would still want your father to marry her?

  • SayWhaat

    @ Ramble:

    So, to clarify, knowing what your mother did (bore a child to a man that did not want to marry her…and then did it again) and who you father is (I do not want to marry that woman), you would still want your father to marry her?

    Hope has already answered your question, why did you not accept her answer?

    Myself, I grew up *wishing* my parents would get a divorce. Now that I am older I can see that grudgingly staying together eventually yielded the best possible outcome for all of us. Our family is intact, and my sister and I grew up learning that love was not required for a marriage to succeed. (Now imagine what a wondrous combination Love + Determined Commitment would produce!)

  • SayWhaat

    Er, oops forgot to add this:

    So basically, yes, if I was a child in that scenario, I would want my parents to marry.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Susan Walsh

    Divorce is really, really rough on kids. I’m not saying it’s never justified, but it’s a tough thing and it stays with kids into adulthood.

    Definitely.

    I’m probably as apathetic/commitmaphobic as I am about relationships because my parents had such a nasty divorce. I don’t really know what a healthy relationship looks like, to be honest.

  • Mosquito

    So, again, WTF is in it for the man? Apart from avoiding shaming, and that is SO unfashionable to care sbout these days.

    Just why is it so hard to believe that a man CAN / SHOULD act in his own interests?

    We know that the woman gains legal rights in marriage – of course she wants it.

    What about the man who doesn’t care about your BS views about how it should work…

  • Sassy6519

    @ Mosquito

    If a man sees no benefit in marriage, he doesn’t have to get married. No one is forcing him.

    I’ve recently started to question the benefit of monogamy. If I don’t see a benefit of monogamy, I simply won’t be monogamous. It’s as simple as that. No one is forcing me to be/do otherwise.

    I’m not exactly sure what you are arguing/complaining about.

  • Mosquito

    @sassy
    The women asserting that he is a bad man for not getting married. The reasoning appears to be that they think he should…for the children.

    How about the fact that all it does for the man is further add to his legal liabilities and that the only concrete beneficiary is the woman who already (stupidly by her lights) gave him his genetic legacy.

    Once again women seem incapable of empathising with HIM.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Mosquito

    I empathized for the man. I think that each individual should reserve the right to get married or not.

    Having said that, I’m also aware of the fact that not everyone will agree with me on that. People have OPINIONS. You are honestly wasting your breathe if you think that you can persuade people, male or female, to hold your same beliefs. It’s presumptuous and a fool’s errand.

    I think that too many people spend their time/energy meddling in the business of other people. If some of the women here believe that parents should be married, there’s nothing wrong with that. If you or I believe that people should choose to get married or not for their own reasons, there’s nothing wrong with that.

    What’s tiresome and tedious is that you insist on attempting to change their opinions. I don’t know why you feel the need to do so. You aren’t in relationships with the women who comment on this blog. Their opinions don’t directly affect you or your future dating/mating life.

    Once again, why are you complaining? Can’t other people’s opinions simply stand and coexist with yours on this blog?

    Excuse my french, but this is the exact same fucking bullshit that took over the other damn threads. Why is it so hard for some people accept that not everyone thinks the way they do? Why do some people nearly pop blood vessels when someone offers a differing opinion than theirs?

    This shit is getting boring. Either accept that their opinions won’t change, or go comment somewhere that people hold exactly the same views as you on the subject. Bitching about it here won’t get you anywhere.

  • Mosquito

    “No, but I think that the person who gets stuck on “Why, why, why?” is probably a person who really wants information and to analyze what happened. I suspect this is related to intelligence.”

    Yes, and a desire to understand WTH just happened…

  • Madelena

    @Mosquito

    No one is forcing this man…he is going along his merry way, unmarried to the mother of his 2 children.

    You argue for self-interest, and that is your right. I come from a different place, one where there are rights, duties and obligations, especially to your offspring. There is a fundamental difference in values and that difference is one of the big ones that I screen for. (forgive me for ending this sentence with a preposition)

    In aggregate, I understand that men don’t see the benefits to marriage due to the legal system being stacked against them but I can only take action on an individual level, and I know there are men who think like me, that marriage is an institution that benefits a couple and their children.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble
    “I don’t know the answer. However, from what I have seen, I am guessing the children are better off if their parents, in this situation, don’t get married. Granted, as far as I can tell from reading the story, these kids are in a lose-lose situation. Their mother failed at the most important decision she will ever make: who do I spread my legs for?”
    ======
    Then the father failed just as much as the mother. They are equally culpable in my book. Assigning blame is irrelevant, as the kids are the ones who suffer here. :( Poor things, they need all the support they can get.

    People’s situations are so different. If don’t think we can paste a “one size fits all” answer on this. I *do* know that I would be beyond heartbroken and doubt I could bear the shame or the pain. Society may not assign it to me, but my conscience definitely would. :(

    Let’s be kind to those kids, if we can. That’s all I can say definitively for now.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Divorce is really, really rough on kids. I’m not saying it’s never justified, but it’s a tough thing and it stays with kids into adulthood.”

    This is certainly the case with my assistant who is still freaked out by her parents’ divorce…when she was 13.

    She has no interest in getting married at the moment due in no small part to this.

  • Ramble

    Hope has already answered your question, why did you not accept her answer?

    Like I said, I wanted to clarify. And, that wasn’t Hope.

  • Ramble

    Then the father failed just as much as the mother.

    Jackie, in short, no, he didn’t. Please do not take this as some sort of tacit approval of him, but her failure was much greater than his. In many ways (from his POV) he did not fail at all. I would be ashamed if I were him, but I am different than he is.

    In short, Different Standards.

  • Ramble

    No, but I think that the person who gets stuck on “Why, why, why?” is probably a person who really wants information and to analyze what happened. I suspect this is related to intelligence.

    True.

    Still, we are not going to see the Dumpers being more honest to the Dumpees. There is, basically, nothing to gain. If we started seeing more and more Dumpees saying to the Dumpers, “Thank you for your honesty”, then we might, but that is not going to happen.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble

    Ramble, I confess, I am mystified. How can her failure be greater than his? How is he any less accountable than she is? Look at the stories people have shared here about how much damage is done by a negligent father. There is a TON of collateral damage that is done by a negligent parent, mother or father.

    How could *any* POV think that had not failed at all? These children need an involved father. He does not meet the standard. End statement

    By the way, if this story is true, he doesn’t have to be a failure. He could step up and take an active role in his children’s lives.

    Ramble, did the story mention anything about either parent’s upbringing (ie absentee parents)? I would be interested. Thank you :)

  • Ramble


    Louis: I am The Keymaster!
    Dana Barrett: I am The Gatekeeper!

    Successful Gates (i.e. Locks) and successful Keys perform very different functions.

    His Key, from a LMC POV, worked just fine. Her Gate (Lock), OTOH, let in the wrong key.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    The LMC ad LC in East Asia do not condone out-of-wedlock births. It used to be the case in the US as well. Men and women have to both locked up sexually for that.

    There is no way to restrict women but unrestrict men and have good results. The Mideast with men throwing acid and raping women all the time doesn’t sound like a nice society for family. That doesn’t happen in East Asia.

    Keep thinking locks and keys, and you’ll encourage picklocks and objectification. The way to go is to emphasize respect, self-discipline, conscientiousness, values and familial support.

  • Ramble

    The LMC ad LC in East Asia do not condone out-of-wedlock births. It used to be the case in the US as well. Men and women have to both locked up sexually for that.

    There is no way to restrict women but unrestrict men and have good results.

    Hope, how far do the “corner boys” get with girls in China?

    Those Chinese guys that sit around hollaring, “Hey girl, you gotta man?”, how do they do?

  • Sai

    “The Mideast with men throwing acid and raping women all the time doesn’t sound like a nice society for family.”
    I love this because it’s such an understatement.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Ramble, actually in China most men do not initiate like that. “Thug culture” is not really a thing there, and it is looked down there. Getting pestered by street vendors, yes. Getting pestered by guys trying to get laid, no.

    Also, this is going to sound bad, but even if a girl gets pregnant, and she’s not married, she’s going to have an abortion.

  • SayWhaat

    Hope has already answered your question, why did you not accept her answer?

    Like I said, I wanted to clarify. And, that wasn’t Hope.

    Well, I will let Hope speak for herself, but from my perspective her response about feeling neglected by her father answered your question in volumes.

    I also answered your question directly, and I see you did not respond to that, which makes me wonder about the purpose of asking such a question.

  • Ramble

    Ramble, actually in China most men do not initiate like that. “Thug culture” is not really a thing there, and it is looked down there. Getting pestered by street vendors, yes. Getting pestered by guys trying to get laid, no.

    Also, this is going to sound bad, but even if a girl gets pregnant, and she’s not married, she’s going to have an abortion.

    Right. The Gates are different there and, consequently, so are the Keys. Trying out the “corner boy” life in China would be a total fail. Your Key would be worthless. But, in modern America, many women have changed that.

  • Ramble

    Again, it was not Hope. It was Madelena. I asked Madelena for clarification and, this, for some reason, has obviously bothered you. Granted, this would not be the first time.

  • Ramble

    I also answered your question directly, and I see you did not respond to that, which makes me wonder about the purpose of asking such a question.

    I am assuming that you are referring to this:

    So basically, yes, if I was a child in that scenario, I would want my parents to marry.

    OK. Good.

  • SayWhaat

    Again, it was not Hope. It was Madelena. I asked Madelena for clarification and, this, for some reason, has obviously bothered you. Granted, this would not be the first time.

    Lol, I don’t think you have ever said anything that has really bothered me, Ramble. I actually really admire your communication style. :)

    I simply thought Hope had answered your question and was wondering why it “didn’t count”. Thank you for clarifying.

  • SayWhaat

    FWIW, I will readily cop to any perceived sensitivity when a female commenter’s opinion is summarily dismissed for the arbitrary reason that said opinion belongs to an “outlier”. I think it is only fair to accept opinions at face value, particularly when those opinions have been consistent, or when it is backed by data. :)

  • Ramble

    FWIW, I will readily cop to any perceived sensitivity when a female commenter’s opinion is summarily dismissed for the arbitrary reason that said opinion belongs to an “outlier”. I think it is only fair to accept opinions at face value, particularly when those opinions have been consistent, or when it is backed by data.

    Whose opinion did I dismiss? I genuinely wanted to clarify what Madalena had said. And I most certainly did not dismiss any opinion from Hope or yourself.

    Thank you for clarifying.

    You got it.

  • Iggles

    @ Madelena:

    In my dating travails, I’ve come across a few men who are fathers (my preference is for men without kids but a few slip through the filters). I would rate a divorced father far more highly than I would a man never married to the mother of his child. At least, by marrying, he demonstrates that he values the institution.

    Interesting. As someone without kids, dating a man who does is a non-starter for me so I never gave this much thought. However, I see your point and agree!

    If I was open to dating men with kids, a man with OOW children ranks lower for me as well. My concern would be, if he didn’t marry the mother of his first kid was that child an unintended pregnancy? If the answer is yes, then it reflects poorly on his character that he did not take sufficient measures to ensure he was married before reproducing — and worse, he produced a child with a woman he did not view as worthy of lifetime commitment! That he tied himself forever to someone who wasn’t “good enough” for him in the long term shows lack of judgement.

    In my view, it’s entirely different if he conceived a child with a woman he was married to. Or even, a women who he later married — though they may have put the cart before the horse but the desire to build a life together as a family is still there!

    In both cases, he has children with an ex-wife. Divorces can happen for a number a reason, so being divorced in itself doesn’t automatically reflect bad on him. Whereas, a man who can knock a woman up without any intentions of raising a family together is not one to be trusted. If he can pump and dump is baby’s momma then he can absolutely do the same to any future girlfriends. And once he finally does marry, his future wife’s life is complicated by multiple OOW children and unstable arrangements (if any) with his childrens’ mothers. No thanks!

    Re: divorce comments,

    As a child of divorce, I concur that it’s terribly rough on children. It would have been lovely if my parents could have been different. But in my case, my parents’ marriage had to end and I’m glad it did. I am under no illusions — I am well aware of my parents’ flaws and when abuse is involved there’s just no healthy way for it to continue.

    That said, I believe in marriage and lifetime committment. I want that for myself, badly, and I realize how important choosing the right partner is.

    Perhaps my “stubborness” is not caring about the statistics or prelevant divorce is in regards to getting married myself in rooted in my optimism. It’s a big part of who I am. My sense that “I always land on my feet” (personal motto) and that I won’t make the same mistakes others have (why should when I’ve seen what not to do?). I sincerely believe happiness is a choice, and when you have the “right” person (someone you’re in love with, who is compatible with you and shares similar outlooks on life + relationships) making it work is also a choice. You have to “work” at keeping the relationship healthy to keep it going. (Don’t ever lose sight of the other person, because once you do then you’re in trouble!)

    I know life isn’t simple, but the things you want the most usually aren’t!

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

      @Iggles

      Perhaps my “stubborness” is not caring about the statistics or prelevant divorce is in regards to getting married myself in rooted in my optimism. It’s a big part of who I am. My sense that “I always land on my feet” (personal motto) and that I won’t make the same mistakes others have (why should when I’ve seen what not to do?). I sincerely believe happiness is a choice, and when you have the “right” person (someone you’re in love with, who is compatible with you and shares similar outlooks on life + relationships) making it work is also a choice.

      I totally agree! My parents did not divorce, but I spent my whole childhood waiting for the other shoe to drop and I witnessed some terrible fights, both emotional and physical (on my mother’s part!). I decided early on I was going to be very different, and I have been. It is a choice.

  • Ion

    Great post Iggles

    “If I was open to dating men with kids, a man with OOW children ranks lower for me as well. ”

    For me, a man with kids OOW is a dealbreaker. I would (and have) dated a man who was divorced (his reason for the divorce was that his wife and him just “drifted apart”, whatever that means? I never asked him to specify, just took that at face value). Post red pill, I’ll probably have to ask for more details in the future…….

    ” If he can pump and dump is baby’s momma then he can absolutely do the same to any future girlfriends. ”

    And many are indeed repeat offenders.

    I’ve heard that men like this with multiple OOW rule out single mothers in their preference. They actually don’t like kids all that much, which makes you wonder why they chose to have a whole litter of them OOW in the first place.

  • Passer_By

    Sometimes I think that if Susan posted “The sun sets in the West”, a bunch of guys would come on here to take issue with it and accuse her of feeding the hamsters, justifying hypergamy and EPL, and just generally batting for team woman. Jeez, the point of the post was to help someone to stop pining and obsessing over a person they can’t have.

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

      @Passer By

      Jeez, the point of the post was to help someone to stop pining and obsessing over a person they can’t have.

      Thank you. The truth is, a lot of people are hurting. That’s why they find me. I want to offer them something – the debates about feminism won’t do the trick. Sometimes I write for the “regulars.” Sometimes I write for the other 99%. This post is for the others.

  • Mosquito

    Why do all the women here assume that no marriage means that the man takes no part in the raising and financing of the kids?

    Not married doesn’t mean not cohabiting.

    He’s still on the hook for child payments, it’s only the wife that might be disadvantaged if they break up. Some might say that it might preserve the stability of the relationship; she has less financial incentive to split up.

    The kids’ interests are not necessarily the same as the woman’s.
    The man’s interests may very well not be the same as the woman’s.

    There are other viewpoints than her’s

  • Iggles

    Mosquito,

    I’ve never been married but I have cohabitated before for over 3 years.

    As someone who has been there, I can tell you living with someone you are dating is NOT the same thing as marriage! No way, no how. It’s lacking the permanence of marriage – building a life together and the joining of two families (creation of in-laws). It’s sharing a household and bills – but roommates do that too.

    For me, it’s not a stable enough foundation to raise kids. I wouldn’t want to raise kids with a man who wasn’t willing to go “all in” with me. Might be good enough for you, but for many folks it’s settling for crumbs.

  • Mosquito

    I thought it was all about the kids?

    There is no “permanence of marriage ” when no fault divorce exists. There’s just a bigger bill for the man if the split happens.
    ‘She’ initiates the divorce ~70% of the time, so the less financial incentive she has to split, maybe the better for the kids…it’s a thought.

  • Ion

    Mosquito

    “Why do all the women here assume that no marriage means that the man takes no part in the raising and financing of the kids?”

    No one is assuming that.

    If a man who has OOW children wants to date, there are plenty of single mothers who he can date who have a similar situation. So many that he can date any type of woman he wants from that pool.

  • Mosquito

    He’s not necessarily dating…maybe he’s cohabiting with the woman and kids – is this so difficult a concept to get?

  • Ion

    “He’s not necessarily dating…maybe he’s cohabiting with the woman and kids – is this so difficult a concept to get?”

    For people who had parents who were married, want to get married, or have organized their lives not to become involved in a tangled mess of complicated living arrangements, and OOW drama, yes.

  • Mosquito

    There’s no drama required. They live together, there’s no marriage certificate – that’s all.

    apart from a woman that had two kids then starts whining about a marriage certificate.

    Why is the legal noose required now, when it wasn’t required to have the kids?

    This would raise major red flags for me, if I were him. No way in hell would I give her more legal leverage. I would be very suspicious that a subsequent splitting up and the related, improved, financial benefits were on her mind.

  • Iggles

    Mosquito – I already explained why cohabiting is unsatisfactory in my previous comment.

    No, it’s not just about the “kids”. If that was the case, then why don’t either sex raise children with platonic friends? Don’t be obtuse.

  • Mosquito

    @Iggles
    me, obtuse?

    bit fucking rich coming from someone unable to understand that I am describing the same domestic harmony as they are, lacking only a piece of paper. A piece of paper that comes at horrible risk for the man and none to the woman given how family courts actually operate.

    You seem to believe, and you are far from alone here and in society, that ‘she wants to be married’ means that ‘he should do what he’s told regardless of consequences’. And furthermore, that no other viewpoint is possible…hmmm…what’s the word again? solip…solip-something

  • Sassy6519

    @ Mosquito

    bit fucking rich coming from someone unable to understand that I am describing the same domestic harmony as they are, lacking only a piece of paper. A piece of paper that comes at horrible risk for the man and none to the woman given how family courts actually operate.

    You seem to believe, and you are far from alone here and in society, that ‘she wants to be married’ means that ‘he should do what he’s told regardless of consequences’. And furthermore, that no other viewpoint is possible…hmmm…what’s the word again? solip…solip-something

    I don’t think any woman said that their aren’t other possible viewpoints, to this situation. Most of the women seem to be saying that after considering all the options, they would still ideally prefer that people with children are married.

    What you seem to want is for them to not hold that view. As I said earlier, everyone has a right to form their own opinions on different matters. You don’t seem to like differing opinions than your own, on this matter.

    It’s pointless for you to keep complaining about it. It’s not like you can reach through your computer screen and force them to change their minds. Why can’t their differing opinions just stand?

  • Iggles

    Mosquito,

    You are being obtuse. I’ve already explained why your arrangement does not work for women (and men) who believe in marriage.

    You’re concerned about minimizing risk. That’s the antithesis of going “all in”. To me, there is no point in having children with someone who thinks that way. Everything of importance in life involves some degree of risk. Falling in love comes with the risk of being heartbroken if the relationship doesn’t work out. Most people do it anyway because the reward is worth it.

    You want the “reward” (i.e.,committed relationship with a woman, her bearing your children and making a pleasant home life for you – cooking meals, cleaning the house, standing by your side through good times and bad) yet are making provisions for the worse case scenario to minimize any personal loss to you (oddly, all you’re concerned about is the financial costs), effectively increasing the risk for the woman you supposedly love :roll:

    Is it any wonder why women who have healthy self-esteem would avoid making such a lopsided deal? If she is willing to go “all in” then she wants a mate who is willing to do the same.

    A woman who thinks she is incapable of finding a more dedicated mate may settle for the arrangement you’re settling. She’s sure to have relationship issues of her own because “you get what you give” rings true.

    The anti-marriage “it’s just a piece of paper” crowd has always struck me as self-deluded. If marriage is “just a paper” and cohabitating is “just as strong as a marriage” then why not sign the paper and get the thousands of legal benefits tying the knot provides?

    My view is such people want to be married but they’re terrified of becoming divorce. Either they aren’t confident in their own judgement that they have selected the right partner or they are worried they will self-sabotage the relationship at some point with their own neurosis. It feels safer for them to avoid marriage and disparage the institution than to admit to their own failings. YMMV

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

      An interesting comment by Athol Kay on his newest post seems apt here:

      ““Half my assets” should read “Half our joint assets” shouldn’t it?

      Married Game is easier than Single Game. How do you take a woman who was so into you she wanted to marry you, and then make her dislike you so intently she wants to shred your world and cash out?

      It’s also not failed pickups that put you on the hook for child support et al… successful hookups can do just the same.”

      http://marriedmansexlife.com/2012/11/but-the-blue-pill-tastes-so-much-sweeter/#comments

  • Mosquito

    “What you seem to want is for them to not hold that view”

    no, just acknowledge that other views are just as valid. Even, more legally justified. Every woman here that bothered to proffer a view sided with the woman and cast a negative view on the man. Somebody got pretty close to a ‘man-up’, that always goes down well with red-pillers. The other favourite with us is pretending that her interests were identical to the kids’ interests.

    What I value HUS for is an ability for the sexes to communicate and understand each other. Without that you can kiss society goodbye. My frustration comes from a recent impression that the women here can’t (or won’t) grasp that men are different. If women here are after marriage, they should understand (or attempt to, anyway) why that might be tricky to obtain, increasingly tricky.

    Some website recently showed a graph extrapolating from current trends in the marriage rate showing marriage rates hitting zero by around 2050. I can’t remember which site, but the graph looked plausible (basically take it or leave it).

    Now it will clearly never hit zero (there’re always going to be sects that do it), and that’s your children’s generation (or the next)…but hey, aren’t you women interested in what is going on? and why? shouldn’t you be worried by the trend that is already present, squeezing your chances? With college degrees tending to females the marrying up option is going to get harder and harder to do. (yeah, the hypergamy thing). Even without adding in increased male awareness about the family court realities, a trend that can only continue.

    (and yes, I know that you, Sassy, don’t want kids. I’m just trying to explain why others should be interested)

  • Iggles

    @ Ion:

    For people who had parents who were married, want to get married, or have organized their lives not to become involved in a tangled mess of complicated living arrangements, and OOW drama, yes.

    Agreed. When it comes to committment and marriage, I’ve always wanted 1 person to have my back, and I’d have his. Together we would share our lives together. I don’t need 3 boyfriends. I don’t have an OOW kids, so what would I want to entangled myself with a man who does?

    @ Sassy:

    I don’t think any woman said that their aren’t other possible viewpoints, to this situation. Most of the women seem to be saying that after considering all the options, they would still ideally prefer that people with children are married.

    + 1

    No amount of semantic twisting arguments will change my mind on this. It’s a difference of values.

  • Mosquito

    “get the thousands of legal benefits tying the knot provides”

    What benefits? thousands? and to who

    “(oddly, all you’re concerned about is the financial costs) ”

    The financial costs are the only thing that can be minimised.

    Oh, and you did see that she already had the kids?

    Clearly having the kids OOW wasn’t an issue, but somehow now there is an issue…I think that she fucked up somewhere if being married was a prerequisite for sprogs. He has every right to refuse deal-creep.

  • Mosquito

    “Either they aren’t confident in their own judgement that they have selected the right partner or they are worried they will self-sabotage the relationship at some point with their own neurosis.” or she’ll decide to get a no fault divorce

    How very typical of you to say that only bad judgement or his neuroses can pull the rug out from under his marriage.

    You have seen the stats right? 50% of marriages fail. Over 70% of divorces instigated by the woman.

    I don’t give a crap what you want for yourself – you go grrrl! You get the best that you can get.

    my issue is your solipsism; no other viewpoint of ‘what is right’ is possible.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Mosquito

    no, just acknowledge that other views are just as valid. Even, more legally justified. Every woman here that bothered to proffer a view sided with the woman and cast a negative view on the man. Somebody got pretty close to a ‘man-up’, that always goes down well with red-pillers. The other favourite with us is pretending that her interests were identical to the kids’ interests.

    What I value HUS for is an ability for the sexes to communicate and understand each other. Without that you can kiss society goodbye. My frustration comes from a recent impression that the women here can’t (or won’t) grasp that men are different. If women here are after marriage, they should understand (or attempt to, anyway) why that might be tricky to obtain, increasingly tricky.

    I think most women on this site are fully aware that men are different. I think the problem is that some women, due to the differences, hold completely different views from men concerning relationships and reproduction. The differences cut both ways.

    The key is that nothing is stopping anyone from pursuing people who hold similar views to themselves. If some women want to get married, there are marriage minded men out there to choose from. If some men would prefer to cohabitate without getting married, surely there are women out in the world who would happily oblige to that.

    I still don’t understand why you are upset. No one is forcing men to get married if they don’t want to. If a man doesn’t want to get married, he shouldn’t marry. It’s as simple as that. Women who want to be married should avoid men who don’t want marriage, and men who don’t want to marry should avoid women who desire marriage.

    I don’t give a crap what you want for yourself – you go grrrl! You get the best that you can get.

    my issue is your solipsism; no other viewpoint of ‘what is right’ is possible.

    Most people have moral/ideological convictions. As I said earlier, most people have varying opinions about almost any subject.

    You think your own ideas of marriage are right and can’t seem to understand that other people think that their ideas of marriage are right. The same thing goes for religion and politics.

    I guess I just find it pointless to try to argue someone out of their beliefs and moral convictions. It’s highly unlikely that they will change their minds.

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

      No one is forcing men to get married if they don’t want to. If a man doesn’t want to get married, he shouldn’t marry. It’s as simple as that. Women who want to be married should avoid men who don’t want marriage, and men who don’t want to marry should avoid women who desire marriage.

      Agree. I find marriage to be a mutually beneficial arrangement, and I know that my husband does too. Others will feel differently. To each his own. It doesn’t make sense, IMO, to argue the absolute value of marriage as an institution. If you perceive that the benefits outweigh the risks, you’ll marry. Otherwise, you will refuse to marry and pursue some other arrangement.

  • Iggles

    You think your own ideas of marriage are right and can’t seem to understand that other people think that their ideas of marriage are right. The same thing goes for religion and politics.

    I guess I just find it pointless to try to argue someone out of their beliefs and moral convictions. It’s highly unlikely that they will change their minds.

    Sassy, you’ve hit the nail on the head here!

  • Mosquito

    “I still don’t understand why you are upset.”

    I’m not upset, you haven’t seen me when I was upset.

    “You think your own ideas of marriage are right and can’t seem to understand that other people think that their ideas of marriage are right.”

    And again, you are wrong. I absolutely understand why women think that marriage is great, for the vast majority of women marriage has no downsides.

    Many men are okay with the concept of marriage, in fact like the idea. It’s the reality of it that is the problem. Men are betting the farm, while the woman can cash out if she wants to, or stay married – win-win.

  • Mosquito

    “semantic twisting arguments”

    do you have any idea what you’re babbling about?

    what semantic twisting?

  • Iggles
  • Iggles

    @ Moquito:

    Oh, and you did see that she already had the kids?

    Clearly having the kids OOW wasn’t an issue, but somehow now there is an issue…I think that she fucked up somewhere if being married was a prerequisite for sprogs. He has every right to refuse deal-creep.

    I was not responding to that article. My original comment at #199 said, “Re: divorce comments”

  • Iggles

    @ Mosquito:

    Many men are okay with the concept of marriage, in fact like the idea. It’s the reality of it that is the problem. Men are betting the farm, while the woman can cash out if she wants to, or stay married – win-win.

    I agree that marriage law needs to be revised because it is unequal. We need to push for that as a society to make it more fair. However, internet debates are not productive towards that end..

    I get reasons why a man would be anti-marriage, given the current laws, and that’s his right. If a man is not confident in his choice of partner and is concerned that his changes of divorce is high, then by all means he should not get married.

    Women who do want marriage, have the right to DQ a man if he does want to get marry and move onto one who does. We all have choices here!

  • Ion

    “How very typical of you to say that only bad judgement or his neuroses can pull the rug out from under his marriage.”

    Blah blah blah blah.

    Look. If women don’t want men with their defunct problems and inability to commit or marry, that’s our right. I’d even ponder over signing a pre-nup. But under no situation would I date a man who refuses marriage, but had OOW all over the place. That’s our right, just like it’s your right not to get married.

    Move on.

  • Iggles

    Meant to say:
    his chances of divorce

    The divorce statistics do not matter if you’ve chosen wisely. (see my comment #199)

  • Iggles

    @ SW:

    ““Half my assets” should read “Half our joint assets” shouldn’t it?

    Go Athol!

    When you marry, yours and mine becomes “our”.

    It’s concept that keeps anti-marriage types awake at night..

  • Mosquito

    “Women who do want marriage, have the right to DQ a man if he does want to get marry and move onto one who does. We all have choices here!”

    Yep, fine.

    “That’s our right, just like it’s your right not to get married.”

    and so is that.

    Why? because you finally acknowledged that men have a legitimate ability to see things differently, finally.

    it’s like pulling teeth

  • Mosquito

    Due to female hypergamy (NAHALT), it is highly likely that half of joint assets is more than half of hers => she gains.

    Kid => she gains the house in all liklihood.

    FRA / FDV => he’s banned from the house maybe loses contact with his kids.

    He loses his job and the court refuses to take that into account regarding monthly payments => he’s in gaol for falling behind in payments. this shit happens (to men).

  • Iggles

    @ Mosquito:

    Why? because you finally acknowledged that men have a legitimate ability to see things differently, finally.

    it’s like pulling teeth

    Um, we’ve only been having this argument in your head!

    I never said all men have to marry. I only talked about my position as a woman who SUPPORTS MARRIAGE that I would not date a man with OOW kids, nor have kids man with a man who does not want to be married.

    How complicated is that? Whatever happened to reading comprehension???

    You were the one try to argue that cohabiting and living together with kids is no different than marriage. :roll:

  • Mosquito

    “It’s concept that keeps anti-marriage types awake at night.”

    So women line up to get robbed? is that what you’re saying now?

    I get that women love marriage unconditionally – free stuff!!! Yay!!!

    I mean you still love him, you’re just not in love with him…so rob the fucker, he just made a mistake (you)

  • Mosquito

    “You were the one try to argue that cohabiting and living together with kids is no different than marriage.”

    for everybody except the woman, yeah…

  • Iggles

    Great. Again, why did I feed the troll? Ugh.

  • Mosquito

    @Iggles
    wassup? has the love died?
    that is actually a shame (not joking)

  • Mosquito

    “Go Athol!”

    Bit of a premature ejaculation (of joy) I think you’ll find. I’d read the post and comments first, if I were you.

    excerpts:
    “Eeek! Random Gay Man Sex is sounding attractive! Eeeeeeeek!”
    “But my failed pickup attempts don’t take half my assets, my children or enslave me with punitive support orders.”

    lmao

  • Tasmin

    @Iggles
    “…then it reflects poorly on his character that he did not take sufficient measures to ensure he was married before reproducing — and worse, he produced a child with a woman he did not view as worthy of lifetime commitment! That he tied himself forever to someone who wasn’t “good enough” for him in the long term shows lack of judgement.”

    Applying this same (character) judgement to women doesn’t bode well for all those single mothers out there either and with 40% OOW reproduction in the US, there are plenty. But then single mothers are a protected class to the point of being heroic. That said, I’m on board with your view here with a couple of caveats.

    First, I’m assuming that you are also considering that the reproductive rights are vested entirely with the woman, that is, a man can have an OOW child as a result of sex and sex alone whereas a woman can have an OOW child based on sex and the subsequent decisions that are hers alone to make. Decisions that are ultimately what ties the man and his genetic material and some measure of his ability to provide over the long term to her. These decisions are post facto to the multitude of readily available birth control methods. Yeah it takes a sperm and an egg, but there is is one rather obvious method of control for men and many, less than obvious, methods for women.

    Second, given this kind of binary filter on a man’s character, at what point does it become reasonable for a man to DQ a woman based on her past decisions to share intimacy with x number of men, live with x number of men, etc.? How we chose to screen is our business, but in the wider context of the SMP it seems that when men similarly screen in terms of N – her past choices in types of men and context of her intimacy, there is quite a bit of resistance in terms of how those choices represent her character or worth as a future partner.

    After all, men have no way of knowing if a woman has made those same choices as the man above, but has avoided the OOW child via birth control, morning after, or abortion. With an estimated 45% of all abortions happening in college aged women resulting in est. 1 in 5 women having an abortion by age 25, there are a lot of women out there who have exhibited the same character judgements but have exercised their right to expunge the record of such. A man has no such option. And those are the cases where a pregnancy is actually confirmed; this doesn’t even account for “close calls”.

    So a man must decide if a woman is worthy of a lifetime commitment prior to sex, whereas a woman has a tickler of options. This is why many MRA types recommend only having sex with women who are very much pro abortion, but that is a whole other tangent. I guess just find it interesting how these character judgements that DQ men seem to be so black and white, yet discussions of a women’s past choices, re: N and/or partner choices fall somewhere between off limits and irrelevant, often ending up full-circle, i.e. a man’s concern (judgement) of such actually representing a character flaw in him (insecurity).

    I don’t take issue with your views on men with OOW children at all, just as I am sure you wouldn’t take issue with my views on women who view sex as a sport or how I choose to consider her past choices of men she has shared intimacy with in terms of context and ultimately N as a reflection of her character and thus value as a potential partner in the long term. While I am free to evaluate as I wish, I think we can agree that the prevailing culture does not, however, support a woman’s past sexual choices as a valid or worthy measure of her character.

  • Acethepug

    I try, I really do, but if I had a Spirit Guide, it would be Eeyore.

    Of course, my dating history is much like the mythical city of Brigadoon, flickering into existence every decade or so :) Heh, at least I have my self-depricating sense of humor (and a pug and boxer)

    As much as it hurts, I can see myself in some of your points …

    Thank you for posting this. Your articles and the comments are always a good source of getting an outside POV. Have a wonderful day!

  • Plain Jane

    There’s some valid stuff on that list but a lot of it is just mind chatter.

    At some point people have to learn to turn off the mind chatter and be in the now.

  • june

    You’re not allowed to marry someone if they have slutty friends? what kind of logic is that? i personally have a few friends people would deem “slutty”, that doesnt make me slutty. I’m 23 years old and have had 2 sexual partners.