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Friends With Penalties

Dear Susan,

I have been hooking up with a guy consistently for four months. It started out that we both wanted a friends-with-benefits situation, and we would basically hang out, do homework, etc., and of course hook up, but that was it. He made it very clear to me that he wasn’t into me further than a physical relationship and that he was on a break with his gf, so he still had feelings for her. I didn’t really have them for him either, though. I just thought he was attractive and fun, so perfect hookup material.

Throughout these four months, I helped him deal with his gf calling things quits and I have been tutoring him in school, and we have become overall closer friends. He even told me that I am his best girl friend and that he trusts me more than any other girl he knows.

Recently he has started acting really sweet to me and like he wants something more:

  • He gets really upset when I need to leave him and always finds excuses to spend more time with me. 
  • He also has started wanting to go out on what I would usually consider to be “dates”, and he pays for me. 
  • He has been calling me beautiful and gorgeous a lot and he gives me random unexpected compliments much more often. 
  • The other day I awoke from a nap we were taking and he was holding me in his arms and just watching me sleep. 
  • He even mentioned that his mom (yes, I met his parents, but in a “just-friends” situation) thinks I am really pretty and that I seem like quite a catch, and he regards his parent’s opinions very highly. 
  • He also always makes comments about how he could see us being married in the future, but he does it in a joking way of course. 
  • He even wants to do more couple-ish things together, like cook and learn more about each other’s lives. 

Basically, I feel like these are all signs of him falling for me as more than a FWB, but am I just fooling myself? Could he just be doing this because he is single and bored/lonely? Even though he pays for me now, he has never said anything about it being a “date”, and he has never tried to hold my hand or kiss me in public.

I just don’t get why he is trying to be so much more involved with me if he knows he could still hook up with me without putting in the time and monetary investment. So I am pretty much just confused about whether he actually is developing feelings for me or if I am just getting my hopes up for no reason.  

Thanks,

Hopeful But Confused

 

Dear Hopeful,

What jumps out at me immediately from your letter is the fact that you obviously have strong feelings for this guy and hope that the two of you can become a couple. I wonder why you ever thought that “attractive and fun” was perfect hookup material, rather than relationship material? You say that you just were looking for a FWB, but I don’t understand what the benefits of that arrangement were. If you really weren’t interested in a relationship, you wouldn’t have developed feelings for him, right? But it sounds like you fell for him anyway, which is what usually happens in FWB – someone catches feelings. Sometimes both people do, but it’s much more common for one person to get hurt. 

I agree with your perception that his recent actions appear to signal increased interest in spending time together, and a more emotionally intimate relationship. It may well be that he does like you and wants to make something work. There are several things I think you need to be concerned about:

  • Is he truly over his ex?
  • I share your worry that he is lonely and adrift right now, enjoying your company. Is he just biding his time with his great FWB until he falls for someone new, or is he trying to make this something more?
  • He has relied on you for support, both emotional and academic. Does he feel that he owes you in some way? Can it be that he has picked up on your feelings for him, and is responding in a way that pleases you? 

One of the most common mistakes women make is that they read too much into the time they spend with a guy. A guy can spend a whole weekend with you, cook meals together, laugh together, be passionate – do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman – and have absolutely zero emotional investment. If he is in a “no relationship” mindset, or views you as FWB material only, he can enjoy your company and the sex without any worries that you might get hurt, because these are the terms you both agreed to.

It’s time to stop guessing and ask him directly. You don’t need to make a big confrontation out of it, you could just say something like, “You’ve really been acting different lately, what’s up?” to get the conversation going. Because you like him, you need to find out asap whether the feeling is mutual. If not, you need to get out right away. 

There’s an article in The Atlantic today about a new study of FWB relationships, Romance Trumps Friends with Benefits. (H/T: Stuart Schneiderman). Researchers from Harvard, Syracuse and Purdue conducted an online survey of college females, half in FWB and half in traditional romantic relationships. Their findings:

  Friends with Benefits Traditional Romantic
Total # sexual partners 6.4 1.9
Frequency of sex Lower Higher
Non-sexual time spent Less More
Satisfaction with relationship Lower Higher
Comfort expressing needs and desires Lower  Higher 
Comfort setting relationship boundaries      Lower  Higher 
Discussion of other sexual partners Higher Lower
Condom use Higher  Lower 

 

I don’t find most of these findings surprising, but am particularly struck by the difference in sexual history between women in FWBs and women who are dating. This suggests, at least to me, that the casual, no-strings nature of a friends with benefits arrangement leads to faster dissolution of those relationships and increased likelihood of entering additional casual relationships, leading to partner counts for women more than triple the women in relationships.

If you were cut out for casual it wouldn’t matter, but you are not satisfied, you want a traditional, romantic relationship. So why don’t you get one? If not with this guy, with some other guy. As long as “attractive and fun” doesn’t mean “unavailable,” there are many other guys out there. 

Like so many women who try to do the FWB thing, you’ve found that it doesn’t really work. We are not meant to relate to other human beings in a strictly sexual way. We want emotional intimacy. I recommend that you not settle for anything less in future.

Hope this helps,

Susan

  • JP

    I love advice columns (because of the comments sections)!

    This blog needs more “Letters To Susan”.

  • Jonny

    As a man, these are the problems that I wish I had when I was single.

    1. He can string you along. This is his power.

    2. He can get you to commit in a somewhat girlfriend relationship without having you has his girlfriend.

    3. He can still have sex with you while confusing the heck out of you emotionally, which wouldn’t be possible with another arrangement. So perhaps he doesn’t want you to be his actual girlfriend.

    4. His ex-gf is a ruse. He is already over her when having sex with you. Men are like that. New and frequent sex with someone else makes it very easy to get over an old girlfriend.

    5. FWB is a booty call really. You don’t turn a booty call into a girlfriend.

    6. He is paying for you. Perhaps he likes to have you kept. By doing this, you’re sold.

    This is just my amateur opinion. Not to be taken seriously.

  • http://stuartschneiderman.blogspot.com/ Stuart Schneiderman

    Part of the problem with these FWB relationships is that the two people have made an agreement. Now, if either one of them wants to change the terms of the agreement he or she will feel like he or she is going back on his or her word.

    Since the LW is not very clear about what she wants– she is willing to take it further but she is also willing to continue hooking up– she is not in a great place to try to renegotiate the contract.

    If she wants a relationship then she will have to tell herself that the FBW situation cannot continue.

    Obviously, she is reading the signals and I think she is reading them fairly well. If she thinks his parents do not know what is going on, she is very naive. I would say that parental influence is changing the way he sees her and that that is a positive.

    As for what she should say to him– she might suggest that sometimes she thinks that it might be a good thing to renegotiate their agreement… and she might mention that their relationship seems to have evolved in a direction that neither of them expected. That is, describing a situation without speaking for the other person.

    Hope that that’s of some help.

    I too would be happy to see more letters on the site.

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

      @ALW aka Hopeful but Confused

      Great to see you on the thread. Stick around or pop in and out, there will likely be a lot of good comments for you. This advice from Stuart is gold, I think:

      As for what she should say to him– she might suggest that sometimes she thinks that it might be a good thing to renegotiate their agreement… and she might mention that their relationship seems to have evolved in a direction that neither of them expected. That is, describing a situation without speaking for the other person.

      I also think it’s interesting that some of the guys feel that it’s clear he is invested. I didn’t have as strong a sense of that, but I always recommend listening to the guys carefully.

  • INTJ

    I fully cosign Stuart Schneiderman’s advice.

  • GudEnuf

    The higher condom alone probably makes friends with benefits safer than a traditional romantic relationship. (Unless they’re using another BC)

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

      The higher condom alone probably makes friends with benefits safer than a traditional romantic relationship. (Unless they’re using another BC)

      No way, the number of partners is the strongest predictor of STDs. Condoms don’t prevent HPV at all or herpes transmitted orally. Well they would if people used them orally, but no one does.

      Look at this infographic for some rather alarming stats re condom use:

      cc

  • Joe

    To Hopeful but Confused, yes, listen to Susan and Stuart. They are wise. It’s going to be hard to add to what they’ve already said.

    Susan, you’ve always wanted a way to point this blog more accurately towards your desired demographic. Carefully chosen letters like this would be the perfect way to accomplish that without alienating the base you’ve already garnered.

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

      I agree with those who suggest that posts featuring letters from readers are interesting and informative. There are a couple of reasons why I’ve taken a break from featuring them:

      1. The emails became overwhelming, and doing letter posts increased the volume a lot. I now state up front that I can’t possibly reply to every letter.

      2. There were times when the guys came down like a ton of bricks on the writer. For an example of what I mean, see Doug’s comment, then multiply by 25 more guys choking on the red pill. Comments like that are actually not at all helpful. I’ll ask people to refrain from such mean-spirited feedback, and I will delete if necessary.

  • Doug

    She wants the hot handsome guy for more than just sex, the guys willing to date here she’s not into until she is no longer as hot. She’ll finally have an aha moment once she is less attractive, then and only then will she consider less hot guys.

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

      @Doug

      I’d like to illustrate why your comment is unhelpful, even worthless:

      She wants the hot handsome guy for more than just sex

      Hopeful has already stated very clearly that she wants her “fun and attractive” friend for more than sex. No need to add this as an accusation. I will point out that the guy is question is obviously not a player, as he has been nurturing a broken heart after a relationship breakup.

      the guys willing to date here she’s not into until she is no longer as hot

      Hmmm, do you recognize Hopeful from her letter? Is she a friend of yours, or perhaps she rejected you for the FWB? I’m curious how you know anything about her personal life or preferences.

      She’ll finally have an aha moment once she is less attractive, then and only then will she consider less hot guys.

      How old is Hopeful? 18? 24? 32? How do you know where she is on her personal “attractiveness curve?”

      How do you know how attractive Hopeful is? Perhaps she is exquisitely beautiful. Perhaps she needn’t consider “less hot” guys at all, but just guys who aren’t looking for a rebound.

  • Yogini_Hope

    Great response to the letter. Stuff like this is pretty common with FWB situations. I have to agree with Susan that we are not meant to relate to human beings in a strictly sexual way. I think a lot of folks agree to these FWB situations and don’t realize how attracted they are until after the fact. I feel Susan provides some really great advice on how the letter writer can handle this situation moving forward.

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

      @Yogini Hope

      Thanks for the feedback :) My advice is off the mark sometimes, of course, so I’m happy to have people comment to hash it out.

  • Passer_By

    Not to beat a dead horse on this, but I’ll repeat a comment I made the last time some woman was being confused by mixed signals in a FWB. Advice from women tends to be of the “either/or” variety – namely, either he has feelings and you’ll get the “happily ever after” or he doesn’t have them and is in it for just the physical relationship. The likely answer is “neither of the above”, because you are ignoring the male hareming instinct. Yes, unless he’s a dark triad type, he probably does have strong feelings for her – and not just friendship feelings. But it doesn’t mean they are or will be strong enough to cause him to want long term exclusivity. In another society, he might make her one of 3 wives and have very strong loving feelings for all of them. In other words, women tend to associate those feelings with the desire for an exclusive relationship. Men are fully capable of having those feelings for multiple women at once. He might not have them for any other woman right now, but that doesn’t mean his feelings for her are so deep that he will want to forego that possibility. On the other hand, I’m fairly certain he would be quite bothered if she showed interest in other guys.

    But that’s just one possibility – it’s possible that he’s so into her that he wants a gf type relationship. She just has to have a discussion like and adult. If he says no, she might see how he reacts to her dating other guys. lol

  • http://x OffTheCuff

    PasserBy sums up what I was thinking nicely. Clearly this guy is emotionally attached – it’s just that neither are willing to “go on the record” to be explicitly mongamous. She appears much less emotionally attached than him, though, so, she should wait for him to DTR.

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    “Well they would if people used them orally, but no one does. ”

    LOL. Nothing creates intimacy like kissing with a dental dam.

  • JP

    I’m trying to figure out what those 13% of men are doing with their condoms.

  • Escoffier

    In the “how the world has changed” category, it simply never occured to me–or to anyone male I am guessing–that a guy could be having sex with a girl and be emotionally attached to her and still be out hunting other girls. Unless he was a rampant cheater but that had to be done surrepticiously because there was no way any girl would tolerate it.

    Today young men can more or less openly cultivate “harems” as long as there are not in-your-face explicit about what they are doing. But there’s no need to lie, apparently, a little vagueness is enough.

    Way to go, girls, how’s this working out for you?

  • Passer_By

    @escoffier
    I think it’s going a bit too far to suggest that this is calculated harem building on his part. I doubt he is really aware of it – it’s just wired in. Sort of like women aren’t thinking consciously about the flip side – the hypergamy.

  • Lokland

    @LW

    “ould he just be doing this because he is single and bored/lonely? ”

    Yes.
    I’ve done that before myself, increased flirting/romance another woman because you’re lacking intimacy in other areas.
    With no intent of forming a relationship.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Susan’s advice is right on. Don’t settle for being a FWB. That is like putting a sign on your forehead saying “I’m not good enough to be the girlfriend.”

    Stuart’s advice is also good. Renegotiation is tough, but not impossible. You could try for the label “lover” instead of the more official “girlfriend.” Sounds better than FWB and carries connotations of actual love.

    I would say start emotionally escalating if you do have some feelings. Men want to see vulnerability and emotionality in a woman before giving over some of their own emotions.

    He’s possibly testing the waters to see your reaction. If you keep blowing him off to protect yourself, he will do the same and nix his own budding feelings in the bud so he doesn’t get hurt. You have to be the first to tell him you want more, if you want more.

  • Escoffier

    PB, whether it’s calculated or not, what strikes me is that the behavior is even thinkable/conceivable. I don’t doubt that the wish for such arrangements is biologically present in a lot of men, perhaps the majority of men. But in my coming of age, it was just not thinkable because we all knew that no girl would tolerate it for an instant. So unless you wanted to be a skulking cheater, indulging that impulse was impossible.

    It was also a lot harder in those days to be a player, for many of the same reasons.

  • alw

    This has been so helpful, thanks so much Susan! I agree that communication is the best idea in this situation in order to sort everyone’s feelings out. Thank you also to Jonny and Stuart for your male opinions on the situation, it is always nice to hear advice and tips from the guys!

  • http://en.gravatar.com/marellus Marellus

    Dear Hopeful

    Your biggest obstacle in this “relationship” is that ex-gf of your partner. Your war is with her, and not with the condition of your current relationship.

    You’ve gotta beat her. And that means that you will have to be a bit of a coquette.

    And by being a bit of a coquette that means that you must withdraw from the “relationship” ,and give the guy the time and the opportunity to fall for you.

    Give him the gift of missing you.

    Give him mixed messages.

    Alternate between passion and coldness. Drive him mad with this, for it will.

    Game works on men as well.

    Sincerely.

    Marellus.

  • Cooper

    “It’s time to stop guessing and ask him directly.”

    Why? They’ve technically already had this conversation, and I have a feeling he would have brought it up first if his feeling had changed.

    I think the whole FWB-dilemma stems from underestimating how decisive men can be with their relationships, and that spending time together and having sex doesn’t override the initial decision.
    Male relationship-intensions is one instance where I’d argue actions don’t speak louder than words.

    All in all, the dilemma is played out, I’ve seen it IRL too many times. I feel very little desire to spell it out on why isn’t a bad recipe – when its usually from the get-go its’ usually quite spelled out.

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    “Yes.
    I’ve done that before myself, increased flirting/romance another woman because you’re lacking intimacy in other areas.
    With no intent of forming a relationship.”

    I’ve formed relationships because I’m lonely and bored.

    So, I don’t think this applies only to the FWB situations.

    However, that was my first and only experiment in trying to form a relationship with someone to whom I was not attracted, but whose personality I liked.

  • JP

    @Hope:

    “That is like putting a sign on your forehead saying “I’m not good enough to be the girlfriend.”””

    Yeah, but then you can end up in the situation where you are good enough to be the girlfriend, but not good enough to marry.

  • Damien Vulaume

    “A guy can spend a whole weekend with you, cook meals together, laugh together, be passionate – do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman – and have absolutely zero emotional investment.”

    Except maybe for some odd male specimens, this I seriously doubt.
    Besides the fact that I don’t grasp this “friends with benefits” concept, since being friends and sleeping together is no longer being friends, it appears to me, based on the signs she lists, that he is smitten (and probably shy) and doesn’t understand what’s happening to him.
    It looks like this girl is rather insecure about herself. She is questioning the relationship more than she should. So far their “relationship” goes well. They can keep living it and see how much their mutual feelings will grow, or not, and that’s it.

  • Cooper

    @Damien Vulaume
    “He is smitten”
    Nnooo! (Smh lol)

    What Susan said is correct. Why? Cause I personally know guys like this.

    I know guys that will “spend a whole weekend with you, cook meals together, laugh together, be passionate – do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman” like planning the occasional “date” with their FWBs, all while having “absolutely zero emotional investment.”

    What strike out to be is the scary similarity to what Hopeful described, cause I’ve seen it in action. Especially the unexpected “gorgeous” comments, and wanting to go out on dates. I’ve seen these things from guys who say things like “ugh that girl is going to make for a horrible wife for someone” or tall about how they are contemplating giving her the boot cause there’s a new cute girl at the office they want. (the only contemplation they give is whether it not to break it off temporarily when they pursue another girl, cause the consider it the right “friend” thing to do)

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Cooper.
    I guess you know better than me on that one. I’m probably already out of touch with the American Boys/girls dance. What you describe is scary. The only guys I’ve seen behaving like this were the obvious vain professional seducers systematicaly targeting the no less obviously vulnarable girls.

  • alw

    Cooper- I was glad to see all of the positive ideas, but now I am interested in what you are saying ( I am Hopeful, in case you are wondering). I didn’t realize guys were really that mean and deceptive!

    So if he isn’t actually into me, how do I stop this all before I’m in too deep? He is my friend, so I don’t want to be bitchy, but I don’t want to keep being strung along if this isn’t actually going anywhere. If I am going to end things, I want to do it in a way that says I deserve more than this, but I don’t want things to end badly (considering I still have a year of college left with him and it could be awkward having all of the same classes together and not being on good terms.) He is really persistant, and I could see him getting really upset (possibly fake upset, he has good game), and then I would probably end up giving in because I feel bad.

    Basically, how do I stand my ground and tell him I don’t want this if it’s not going to lead to more?

  • JP

    “Basically, how do I stand my ground and tell him I don’t want this if it’s not going to lead to more?”

    This is one of those self-answering questions.

  • JP

    Now that I think about it, this may be the best blog post title that I’ve seen recently.

  • LJ

    Just tell him that your arrangement has become too difficult for you and you’d like to go back to being just friends without benefits.

  • LJ

    Also, this:

    “He is really persistant, and I could see him getting really upset (possibly fake upset, he has good game), and then I would probably end up giving in because I feel bad.”

    Um… you do realize that if he does that then he’s not the type of guy you want to have ANYTHING to do with, right?

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    alw, in my experience, honesty is always the best policy. Tell the truth, non-accusingly, without drama, and without expectations. People appreciate knowing the facts without pressure.

    That way, you will have no regrets, no what-ifs, and can keep or at least salvage your dignity. If he does not give you the same courtesy, you can walk away with grace.

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

      Tell the truth, non-accusingly, without drama, and without expectations. People appreciate knowing the facts without pressure.

      That way, you will have no regrets, no what-ifs, and can keep or at least salvage your dignity. If he does not give you the same courtesy, you can walk away with grace.

      +1 Say what you need to say. No shame. When I did this with Mr. HUS and got a disappointing response, I walked away with my dignity. I even felt ennobled in some weird way for having spoken honestly and with courage.

  • HanSolo

    @alw

    What do you really want out of this?

    Are you in love with him now? Do you just want to be FWBs? Do you want to go back to being friends w/o sex (a difficult path perhaps)?

    First, decide what you want, then focus on what he wants.

    Assuming you really would like a gf/bf reln with him then you can try emotionally escalating a bit more to see if he is distant or responsive to your gestures.

    After trying to emotionally escalate, if he reciprocates then just continue more emotional escalation until you’re bf/gf.

    If he doesn’t reciprocate or do any more of the things you mentioned (that show some interest beyond just FWBs) then that is probably a sign he doesn’t really want to be bf/gf.

    If all else fails, talking to him and seeing where he is and sharing what you’re thinking and feeling is a good move. At least you’ll both know where you stand.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Cooper, with two-faced friends like that, you should be careful yourself.

    Some men claim to treat their “bros” better than “hos.” In my and my husband’s observation, that is not often the case.

  • Cooper

    “I didn’t realize guys were really that mean and deceptive!”

    Can it be consider mean and deceptive if it’s mutually agreed upon?

    The situations I’ve witnessed it’s been where both parties consider themselves “single.” Despite seemingly dating.

    And the guy ‘breaking it off’ before seeing another girl is much closer to “letting them know” because the feel obliged to, (like a common curtesy) out of friendship and perhaps a implied exclusivity.

    Hopeful, I’m not necessarily the ideal advice giver.
    All I want to say is all his “actions” don’t necessarily indicate he wants a (long-term) relationship with you. Only in having him confide to you that he does, will you know.

    “I don’t want to keep being strung along if this isn’t actually going anywhere.”
    I’m not sure if this is how you always felt, but if it is you shouldn’t have entered a relationship with him, in the first place.
    I believe guys are usually quite honest, albiet sometimes vague, in what they see you as. (Cads aren’t required to lie these days!)
    If he was explicit about what he saw you for at first, don’t even consider anything he does as evidence otherwise – unless he starts singing a different tune.

    Not that I really want to encourage you, but him talking about you two married someday is the most promising.

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

      All I want to say is all his “actions” don’t necessarily indicate he wants a (long-term) relationship with you. Only in having him confide to you that he does, will you know.

      I’m with Cooper on this. Forget reading the tea leaves, a conversation is needed. I hope that ALW will be pleased, but here’s the thing. If he likes her, he’ll be thrilled she feels the same way. Bingo, relationship. If he doesn’t, he’ll be required to say so, so that she can make an informed choice. Either way, ALW is better off dealing with this directly, IMO.

      The misunderstandings that have occurred under the heading of “don’t ask, don’t tell!”

  • HanSolo

    @Hope

    That reminds me of the PUA’s in The Game and Project Hollywood where they were trying to pickup each other’s girls behind their backs.

  • Cooper

    @Hope
    Duly noted.

    Though, I don’t feel they are very “two-faced” or deceptive.

    They don’t seem to have any trouble getting girls to accept what they divulge.

    They’re explicit in 1. Not wanting a relationship any time soon 2. Not seeing themselves getting married, or having children 3. Not seeing themselves as “in-relationship” with ‘FB’

    Where are they wrong if girls still choose to sleep with them?

  • HanSolo

    @Cooper

    Yeah, they are not being deceptive, and alw is not being strung along based on the terms of their original agreement.

  • Damien Vulaume

    “Basically, how do I stand my ground and tell him I don’t want this if it’s not going to lead to more?”

    By doing just that. Tell him calmly and carefully phrase your speech so as it doesn’t sound like a ultimatum, and then you’ll see.

  • Lisa C

    @alw (Hopeful)

    “… I don’t want things to end badly (considering I still have a year of college left with him and it could be awkward having all of the same classes together and not being on good terms.) He is really persistant, and I could see him getting really upset (possibly fake upset, he has good game), and then I would probably end up giving in because I feel bad.”

    You have the right to change your mind. Tell him honestly that you thought you would be happy with a FWB arrangement, but now you want something more. He makes his decision, and then if it’s not the one you want, you take a big breath, summon up all your self-control, and make him live with it. If the current situation is working for him, he probably will be upset, but that’s not your doing. Even if your future encounters with him are awkward, that beats painful!

    You haven’t done anything wrong, and he shouldn’t be surprised that a FWB arrangement puts the friendship at risk. Tell him that you enjoyed the past few months, and that you (obviously) like him as a person, but that you can’t be friends in the future. Unfortunately, remaining friends is probably not an option unless you immediately are able to shut down your sexual attraction to him, which is very, very hard to do.

    Good luck! This sounds painful, and I wish you the best. Hopefully, the answer will be that he does want you to be his girlfriend!

  • Damien Vulaume

    “They’re explicit in 1. Not wanting a relationship any time soon 2. Not seeing themselves getting married, or having children 3. Not seeing themselves as “in-relationship” with ‘FB’.”

    Then you’re talking about a completely different situation than what “Hopeful and confused is describing”. At any rate, not very cunning deceiving players.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Cooper, telling a girl to her face that she’s great then talking smack about her behind her back is classic mean girls behavior. It’s why I avoided female herds like the plague. When guys do it, it’s not better.

    But you are right, those girls are still going after those guys. It’s just that I wouldn’t befriend such a crowd. My husband as a restricted guy left his “dark game” friends while still in college (they used him, too). The company a man keeps can be telling.

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

      My husband as a restricted guy left his “dark game” friends while still in college (they used him, too). The company a man keeps can be telling.

      +1

      At the least it is tacitly condoning unethical behavior. I used to tell women to evaluate each guy on his own merits, but after hearing countless stories I’ve realized that assholes are contagious – their “good guy” friends get a very flexible sense of ethics after spending time with them.

      The most important thing any woman can do relative to mating in her entire lifetime is filter out cads. Filtering out friends of cads is smart.

  • Cooper

    ” At any rate, not very cunning deceiving players.”

    On what are they deceiving, if not their relationship intensions?

    Awl’s guy seemed to be explicit in labelling her a FWB. (Red flag!)
    Unless she DTR, or his explicitly addresses them as “in a relationship” – they’re the same scenario IMO.

    She’s been strung along, hoping for more, when the guy hasn’t deviated from what was originally agreed upon. What responsibility does the guy hold in this case? (How does it differ when he finds out there are emotional attachment involved? How about when he doesn’t?)

  • Lokland

    @Hope

    “telling a girl to her face that she’s great then talking smack about her behind her back is classic mean girls behavior. ”

    I disagree here.

    Its entirely possible to call a women gorgeous turn around and says she’s a whore you’d never marry.
    The two are not incongruent statements.

    There’s nothing deceptive about not hurting someone.

    Example, you don’t go up to a fat chick and say she is too fat to be attractive. You say something nice about her personality.

    It’s all about the Golden Rule and not hurting others….

  • J

    The other day I awoke from a nap we were taking and he was holding me in his arms and just watching me sleep.

    This says love to me.

    If I were the LW, I’d mention in the most low-key way possible that the relationship seems to have taken a turn in direction and see what he has to say. If he says his feelings have deepened, then I’d say renegotiate the relationship. If not, move on.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Lokland, if you talk about the Golden Rule, I would strive for honesty. I value honesty very much. I’d rather my husband tell me the brutal truth than lie to me. His honesty is one of his most attractive traits. I am also honest with him. That mutual honesty and open communication is why we have had such a smooth relationship.

    But I’m apparently weird, so probably the games these people play suits them just fine. I just think it’s sad to be the girl if she thinks he likes her when he thinks she’s a whore. I’d rather know the truth and gtfo. The guy before my husband who told me he wasn’t in love with me, he did me a huge favor. I was able to emotionally move on and meet the love of my life.

  • Iggles

    @ J:

    The other day I awoke from a nap we were taking and he was holding me in his arms and just watching me sleep.

    This says love to me.

    I disagree.

    Once upon a time I would have believed this too, but IME I’ve seen that some men love to play the “boyfriend” role with a girl regardless of whether or not they intend to commit to her.

    Cuddling, small actions that read as sweet and thoughtful, holding hands, talking of future — in the latter the guy actually means his words at the time because it feels good to say them. But it’s far more prudent to not just listen to what a man says, but to see if those words are backed up by his actions. In many cases of “future faking” the man bails when he realizes he cannot or does not want to live up to the expectations/promises he made.

    I had a friend who was dating a guy for three months or so. He acted like her boyfriend both in public (proximity, affection, and protectiveness) and in private (amount of time spent together, compliments, kisses, etc). When she brought up exclusivity — not seeing other people as they take time to figure out where this is going — he balked. He wanted to continue to date other people (i.e., spinning plates!) and she said no. They ended things.

    Moral of the story: Acting like a boyfriend does not make a man one!

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

      But it’s far more prudent to not just listen to what a man says, but to see if those words are backed up by his actions. In many cases of “future faking” the man bails when he realizes he cannot or does not want to live up to the expectations/promises he made.

      Indeed. Remember the case of Thomas and Jane? He was spinning two exclusive relationships simultaneously for a year and a half – one home, one school. He spoke to both girls about a future together and professed love to both. Later, when asked, he confessed that on several occasions he’d had sex with both in the same day.

  • INTJ

    Slightly OT, but personally I think the Golden Rule is BS. Another word for the Golden Rule is “projection”. And we all know how well that works out.

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

      Slightly OT, but personally I think the Golden Rule is BS. Another word for the Golden Rule is “projection”.

      WTF the Golden Rule is the basis for great religions.

  • INTJ

    @ Hope

    My husband as a restricted guy left his “dark game” friends while still in college (they used him, too). The company a man keeps can be telling.

    The company I keep is filled with light triad guys who haven’t had any success with girls – and not for lack of trying. You’re right. It is telling… :D

  • INTJ

    @ JP

    I’m trying to figure out what those 13% of men are doing with their condoms.

    “So I put this on my ear, right?”

  • Cooper

    “The company a man keeps can be telling.”

    I’m going to have to derail here, and defend myself.

    I’ve run with all sorts of crowds. I’ve spent weekends club hopping, as well as having LAN-parties.
    I don’t think it’s necessarily a straight unrestricted/restricted split – although the generalization isn’t incorrect.

    The only thing that was certainly different between the “club” and “nerd” groups were one had majority of the guys getting laid regularly, and the other quite rarely. (If not still virgin)

    Now, I’m not at all advocating that a man ability to obtain sex (albeit casual) should be a determinate of anything. But I can tell you that the guys not getting laid were far more likely to admit to thinking so, than the guys that were.

    But much more importantly than getting laid, was how they treat the girls they did go out with. The gamer guys that I hang out with, commonly desperate, would allow girls to walk all over them, put up with all sorts of red flag, and generally just accepted what was offered to them. (as if they concurred they deserved no better – quite sad really)

    Where as the “club” guys were usually quite intolerant of poor behaviour. (Some very intolerant of “emotions” you’d swear) They would not put up with red flags, and would never allow a girl to get away with flaking.
    Simply, the upheld their demands for behaviour. And it was usually done so because they “could afford to.”

    Now, I’m much happier hanging out with friends of mine that i consider on the nerdier side – it’s my fit. (I also hang out with plenty of guys that I would not group into either of these groups) But I do have to defend the players a little bit, cause to me their overall contemptment is far more admirable than the desperate mans’ (overall) complacency.

    It’s kinda like when Susan says if given the choice women choose all alpha, over all beta.

  • Jonny

    “Basically, how do I stand my ground and tell him I don’t want this if it’s not going to lead to more?”

    Goodbye usually works and usually that’s what you’ll get anyways.

  • Lokland

    @Hope

    “I just think it’s sad to be the girl if she thinks he likes her when he thinks she’s a whore.”

    You misunderstand. He does like her…body.
    I don’t comprehend why thats so wrong, he’s simply not insulting her to her face. Most people vastly prefer that.

    “I would strive for honesty.”

    You said yourself that your unique. Most people, men and women are not interested in hearing the truth but platitudes that make it all better.

    I agree with you but I have to deal with others. I play by their rules.
    I don’t tell the kid he is not smart enough to work for me.
    I don’t tell the girl she is not chaste enough to marry me.
    I don’t tell X they are not Y enough, thats what our PC culture asked for.

  • INTJ

    @ alw

    So if he isn’t actually into me, how do I stop this all before I’m in too deep? He is my friend, so I don’t want to be bitchy, but I don’t want to keep being strung along if this isn’t actually going anywhere. If I am going to end things, I want to do it in a way that says I deserve more than this, but I don’t want things to end badly (considering I still have a year of college left with him and it could be awkward having all of the same classes together and not being on good terms.)

    Tell him that the FWB thing isn’t working out for you, and that if you can’t have an actual relationship, you’d rather be just friends (no sex).

    He is really persistant, and I could see him getting really upset (possibly fake upset, he has good game), and then I would probably end up giving in because I feel bad.

    It doesn’t matter if he is truly upset or simply fake upset. Either way, it’s manipulation. There is only one way to deal with to such people who manipulate others by gaining sympathy. You have to cut off contact with them. You’ll want to evaluate whether this guy is worth pursuing a relationship with. If he’s manipulative, get the hell outta there.

    P.S. I know I ended a sentence with a proposition. Nothing wrong with doing that. Don’t sue me.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Cooper:
    “On what are they deceiving, if not their relationship intensions?”
    Giving full caring attention, showing genuine interest, and saying all kind of amourous flatteries to someone and make sure to have him/her on a leach, only to later bash that same person when between friends is to me some kind of deceiving. It looks like that, for some here it’s the definition of politeness, but to me I call such behaviors those of either a bitch or a swine.
    “She’s been strung along, hoping for more, when the guy hasn’t deviated from what was originally agreed upon.”
    From what she writes, he’s been deviating a lot lately.

  • Mike C

    Today young men can more or less openly cultivate “harems” as long as there are not in-your-face explicit about what they are doing. But there’s no need to lie, apparently, a little vagueness is enough.

    Escoffier,

    I’ve mentioned this previously, but I’ve had two distinct time periods roughly 1998-2000, and 2005-early 2006 where I was dating multiple girls simultaneously with various stages of sexual progress. I never lied…I never needed to lie. The operating assumption always was we are not exclusive unless we discussed and agreed to it. As I stated previously, some of these girls never even asked. I think BroHamlet and Jimi would back me up on this, if your SMV as a guy is high enough, many women will by default assume you are seeing other women. I think in some cases they don’t even want to have the discussion. I have no other explanation why many women I was seeing at one time never asked me who else I was seeing or what else I was doing. Maybe things have changed now though. Many of the female commenters here seem to more directly question men they date.

  • Mike C

    I don’t doubt that the wish for such arrangements is biologically present in a lot of men, perhaps the majority of men. But in my coming of age, it was just not thinkable because we all knew that no girl would tolerate it for an instant.

    Escoffier, this is interesting because my experience is the exact opposite, and I don’t think we are that far apart in age…as I think you are about 5-8 years older than me (I’m 38)? Now I didn’t date in my teens (I was a late bloomer), but I was with my first serious GF exclusively from 22 to 24. But at 24-25, like I said, I didn’t experience what you are describing from women at all (that they wouldn’t tolerate it).

  • Cooper

    @Damien
    “Giving full caring attention, showing genuine interest, and saying all kind of amourous flatteries to someone and make sure to have him/her on a leach, only to later bash that same person when between friends is to me some kind of deceiving.”

    Fair enough.

    But I think Lokland has a good point:
    “Its entirely possible to call a women gorgeous turn around and says she’s a whore you’d never marry.
    The two are not incongruent statements.”

    I think it would be deception if the statements were congruent. (Ie “you’re a wonderful gf” then “she’s such a bad gf,” or “she isn’t even my gf” behind their back)

    I think what Susan is rightfully highlighting in this post is to not confuse one for another. The guy could be saying all sorts of things, spending all sorts of time with you, and say he enjoys his time with you ever so much, but it doesn’t speak to his intensions for the relationship. And most importantly that only DTR-talk can be consider DTR – and nothing else.

    I’ve kinda gone off on a tangent, in mention guys wt FWB, when all I was try to do was encourage girls to (strictly) Define the Relationship.

  • JP

    “The misunderstandings that have occurred under the heading of “don’t ask, don’t tell!”””

    Yes, I noticed that this tends to result in lots of crying and emotional pain once the telling part (eventually) happens because the issue is always forced eventually.

  • JP

    ” And most importantly that only DTR-talk can be consider DTR – and nothing else.”

    This DTR thingy is really one of the most interesting concepts that I’ve picked up on this blog.

    It beats stumbling around relationship-world lost and/or confused as to what’s going on.

  • Doug

    It’s because these chicks are a dime a dozen. Nurturing a broken hears? Come in you obviously have zero clue about single men. I commend you for trying but you’re old and married, it’s an entirely different language.

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

      It’s because these chicks are a dime a dozen. Nurturing a broken hears? Come in you obviously have zero clue about single men. I commend you for trying but you’re old and married, it’s an entirely different language.

      Say Goodbye Doug.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Hey Alw!

    Glad you are commenting here. You need to have “The Talk” with this guy, of course, but all the statements here seem to be resoundingly negative. I think it would be nicer if you had a little bit of confidence heading into this talk, rather than mourning some getting shot down experience that might not even happen.

    I remember when I had The Talk. It was actually something I initated, because I didn’t want any misunderstandings. I wasn’t actually sure I wanted a relationship with the girl, tbh, but I figured we should have a talk about where we were going. Didn’t want girl drama. I think I sort of approached it like a jackass, though, sort of a “so…ahhhh…you catch feelings yet?” sort of question.

    She actually shot me down! I was shocked. Don’t girls usually want relationships? Then she told me she only wanted to see me a few more times because she doesn’t like FWBs. Goddam girls are crazy. I actually felt like crap the next day. On my daily multi-mile run, I hamsterized it as “well, at least I have a Fuck Buddy for now! Most guys don’t have that right now. I must be awesome.”

    Oh, hamsters.

    Exactly 7 days and 19 hours later, we were standing in her driveway, and she was asking me to be her boyfriend. I quickly said yes, we saw each other three times that week. Yay hormones.

    I don’t want to build up your hopes, either, but, hey, you never know. Something good might happen.

    @ Hope

    Cooper, telling a girl to her face that she’s great then talking smack about her behind her back is classic mean girls behavior. It’s why I avoided female herds like the plague. When guys do it, it’s not better

    I work with a bunch of 20 year old guys. Recently I apparently said something they didn’t like or started acting douchier than normal. So instead of directly calling me out on it, they decided to make a lot of snarky and sarcastic statements.
    I don’t know when men became women, but goddam. I lol’d my ass off and things are back to normal.

  • Cooper

    @JP

    LOL. I think was SayWhaat and Iggles that were tossing the DTR phrase around, and I was at a complete loss for what it stood for. I tried searching the sites glossary, cntr+F on previous pages for “DTR” results – nothing.
    It was finally the UrbanDictionary, from googling, that I figured it out. (Though I was already familiar with the term)

    Interestingly, I think the DTR-talk is something most girls fear bringing up. Which is a shame, cause it shouldn’t ever be provided their with the right guy. I think what too many girls think is that there it’s more about timing than anything, which I disagree with. If a girl fears that her BF is going to be spooked by DTR, then I argue he went in dreading it. Vice versa, a guy who welcomes it was going to the entire time.

  • Kathrynthegreat

    Care to elaborate about “emotional escalation?” What exactly does that look like?

  • Escoffier

    Mike, every girl I dated demanded exclusivity, as did every girl my friends dated. That was the culture of the time and place. Sam Malone players were very few and few of the girls who got with them were honest with themselves about just wanting a hookup, most tried to convince themselves that they could land him for real.

  • INTJ

    @ Doug

    It’s because these chicks are a dime a dozen. Nurturing a broken hears? Come in you obviously have zero clue about single men. I commend you for trying but you’re old and married, it’s an entirely different language.

    Not all single men are like you or your friends.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “The most important thing any woman can do relative to mating in her entire lifetime is filter out cads. Filtering out friends of cads is smart.”

    This advice runs pretty well in reverse as well.
    Don’t date a girl whose friends are all hoes/club hoppers etc. Regardless of how good she seems.

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

      This advice runs pretty well in reverse as well.
      Don’t date a girl whose friends are all hoes/club hoppers etc. Regardless of how good she seems

      Agree 100%. I have seen these bad attitudes rub off on women as well.

  • A Definite Beta Guy
  • Iggles

    @ Cooper:

    I think was SayWhaat and Iggles that were tossing the DTR phrase around, and I was at a complete loss for what it stood for.

    Lol! Sorry for the confusion. I think it’s on Susan’s acronym page..

    Interestingly, I think the DTR-talk is something most girls fear bringing up. Which is a shame, cause it shouldn’t ever be provided their with the right guy.

    Eh, it’s good ol’ fear of rejection rearing it’s ugly head. The uncertainty feels even scarier when you want something very badly.

    I think what too many girls think is that there it’s more about timing than anything, which I disagree with. If a girl fears that her BF is going to be spooked by DTR, then I argue he went in dreading it. Vice versa, a guy who welcomes it was going to the entire time.

    True.

    I initiated the DTR talk and my boyfriend happily agreed to make it official. I had no way of knowing beforehand though. As I mentioned upthread I’ve seen things go in the other direction with friends. In my case, we both were looking for the same thing and we felt lucky to be with the other person. The value of that cannot be underrated! :D

  • J

    Once upon a time I would have believed this too, but IME I’ve seen that some men love to play the “boyfriend” role with a girl regardless of whether or not they intend to commit to her.

    There is indeed a diffrence between love as an emotion and love as a commitment. That’s why I said that if nothing comes of a DTR talk, she should move on. OTOH, of all the sweet gestures a guy could fake, this is the one that makes the least sense to fake because a sleeping woman isn’t going to see it. I believe this guy does feel something. What he’ll so with that feeling–who know?

    But it’s far more prudent to not just listen to what a man says, but to see if those words are backed up by his actions.

    Always good advice–for both genders.

  • Kathy

    @ Hope

    ” I value honesty very much.”

    Me too, Hope.
    Having had a first husband who was a compulsive gambler and a constant liar, made me very wary in my future dealings with men.

    “I’d rather my husband tell me the brutal truth than lie to me. His honesty is one of his most attractive traits. I am also honest with him.”

    This is how it is for me and my husband. His honesty and integrity were indeed very attractive traits to me. From the first time I met him when he came to my house to give me a quote to cover my patio, I knew that he was something special. His honesty was a breath of fresh air.

    It’s because we are so honest with each other, and trust each other implicitly that we have had a very good solid 17 year marriage.

    “But I’m apparently weird.”

    Well, that makes two of us then. :)

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

    The most important thing any woman can do relative to mating in her entire lifetime is filter out cads. Filtering out friends of cads is smart.

    Yeah IME a man that feels strongly anti assholism wouldn’t be close friends with an asshole, is true that men are loyal to each other but they are selective in the important matters to who they are going to be loyal, YMMV.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “WTF the Golden Rule is the basis for great religions.”

    You say that like its a good thing…

    Watch what I can do with the Golden Rule…

    I want to be cheated on/ have an open relationship and if I were not okay with it I would allow my SO to do it anyway.

    I like it when people punch me in the face randomly.

    I wish someone would kill me.

    —————

    The Golden Rule acts as excellent cover to get away with lots of crap thats unacceptable.
    INTJ is also correct, not everyone wants to be treated equally.

    I like to ignore someone unless I have something important to tell them.
    Most people are not important.
    If I Golden Rule’d that I wouldn’t speak to more than 5 people and be generally considered an antisocial elitist.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    From a random Psychology Today Article.

    “The Golden Rule is so thoroughly embraced as sacred that even folks who don’t believe in sacredness embrace it. The religious say the Golden Rule is the foundation on which their sacred religions are built. Atheists say that anything sacred you build on top of that foundation is superfluous and a distraction, because the Golden Rule is all you really need.

    Still, I’ll argue here that the Golden Rule is empty nonsense on stilts. It’s a fair-weather friend pretending to solve the problems that arise in bad weather. It only works in win-win situations. In conflict, the Golden Rule is mute, so we abandon it, and then give ourselves or our opponents a hard time for not living up to its supposedly gold standard.

    At best the Golden Rule is a paradox: “We should all compromise so no one has to compromise.” As such it’s perhaps a useful way to frame a moral dilemma but it’s neither golden nor a rule. Dilemmas masquerading as principles are a big part of the problem with how humans handle conflict. The supposed rules deceive us into thinking there’s a problem-solving formula when there isn’t. They distract us from wondering about exactly the dilemmas that need our careful attention.

    These are fighting words, I know. But I’m no belligerent. I’m a gentle guy as happy to accommodate others as the rest of us. Indeed, it’s out of kindness that I aim to expose the Golden Rule’s emptiness, since it’s often used as a cudgel for bullying people. If I want you to accommodate me, I can pressure you by saying “Hey remember the Golden Rule! You’d want to be accommodated, so accommodate me.””

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/ambigamy/201208/how-the-golden-rule-makes-us-dumb

  • Jason

    The Golden Rule was merely Jesus summarising the law and the prophets. His own law was a little higher. “Love your enemies,” and as Chesterton opined, “and your neighbours, because they’re generally the same people.”

    Also, when reading rabbinic statements remember that they’re implicitly qualified, not all encompassing. If you start to think, “wow, I could come up with some really stupid interpretation of this,” you’re probably extrapolating it far beyond what the speaker intended.

  • Passer_By

    You know you have a tough crowd when people get all pissed about the golden rule.

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

      You know you have a tough crowd when people get all pissed about the golden rule.

      Haha, seriously!

  • Mike C

    Mike, every girl I dated demanded exclusivity, as did every girl my friends dated. That was the culture of the time and place.

    Escoffier,

    After I got divorced in early 2005, I ordered a bunch of David DeAngelo products as I reentered the dating scene based on the recommendation of a guy who had taken up helping me get back into the game so to speak.

    Anyways, one of the concepts he was big on was not seeing or talking to a girl too frequently to trigger the whole girlfriend/where is this going effect. Revisiting my experience in the late 90s, I had done this simply by sheer accident which is why I think I didn’t have girls demanding exclusivity. I wasn’t giving off the “boyfriend” vibe. I’m not sure it is about the culture of the time and place exclusively but also the vibe and frame that gets set up early in interactions.

    Using the restricted/unrestricted paradigm, I suspect the more restricted a girl is the quicker she will be in wanting to define the exclusive parameters of the relationship or end it entirely. I think the more unrestricted a girl is the more likely she is to go along with a more ambiguous “seeing each other” arrangement.

  • BroHamlet

    @Mike C & Escoffier

    if your SMV as a guy is high enough, many women will by default assume you are seeing other women. I think in some cases they don’t even want to have the discussion.

    Yes. A lot of times, if you don’t say anything, she won’t either. Add to that, the fact that there are plenty of women out there that aren’t looking for commitment, temporarily aren’t looking for commitment (post-breakup), are up for fun with the right opportunity regardless of whether commitment is in the wings, or decide based on the guy what her chances are of actually getting any meaningful commitment and voice their expectations or don’t say anything based on that perception. To me the whole “restricted/unrestricted” discussion is a simplification of what’s going on out there.

    Suffice it to say, as Mike said, when you move up the totem pole a bit, the way women relate to you changes a lot.

  • LJ

    “Using the restricted/unrestricted paradigm, I suspect the more restricted a girl is the quicker she will be in wanting to define the exclusive parameters of the relationship or end it entirely. I think the more unrestricted a girl is the more likely she is to go along with a more ambiguous “seeing each other” arrangement.”

    Presumably in that case she’s seeing other guys as well, and of course you can’t ask for monogamy if you’re not providing it.

  • JuTR

    A modified golden rule seems to work well for me.

    Don’t do unto others as you would not have them do unto you.

  • Iggles

    @ LJ:

    Presumably in that case she’s seeing other guys as well, and of course you can’t ask for monogamy if you’re not providing it.

    Good point.

    My initial reaction to dating several people at once and none of them asking about exclusivity was confusion. How does that work when you meet someone you have chemistry with and can’t wait to see? Where do you fit in the time to juggle multiple dates when as time goes on, presumably the ones you click with will demand more of your time? How do you continue to date and not have it come up at some point? But Mike C’s comment put it in perspective for me.

    The answer it seems is simple: if you’re dating multiple people then you have low investment in each “relationship”, and each one has low investment in you.

    Even damaged girls with low self-esteem will want a sense of what she means to the guy she dating/sleeping with. They may bring it up indirectly or get possessive, but the desire to stake her claim on the guy will be there. If a girl never mentions or asks about the relationship status then it’s likely she doesn’t give two shakes about having the guy she’s sleeping with as a boyfriend…

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

      @Iggles

      Even damaged girls with low self-esteem will want a sense of what she means to the guy she dating/sleeping with. They may bring it up indirectly or get possessive, but the desire to stake her claim on the guy will be there. If a girl never mentions or asks about the relationship status then it’s likely she doesn’t give two shakes about having the guy she’s sleeping with as a boyfriend…

      Yes, that is what I have always observed, with one exception. A girl may avoid asking because she is afraid of the answer. She figures she’ll give it all she’s got to “win” the guy and if she succeeds, it’s all good, no questions asked. It’s a not uncommon mating strategy, especially among low self-esteem women.

  • JuTR

    And I have zero advice for Hopeful.

    I am very sorry that society lied to you about your own gender’s sexuality and how you allow yourself to be used for no connection or commitment, because that’s the norm these days. I do hope you find what you are looking for.

  • Jackie

    @Passer_By

    “You know you have a tough crowd when people get all pissed about the golden rule.”
    ===
    Ha ha ha! That’s bringing the hard-core misanthropy alright! ;)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Mike C, The Rawness had a great post along the lines of what you mentioned, the boyfriend vibe.

    http://therawness.com/raw-concepts-double-messages/

    Ricky Raw’s post is brilliant. Read it, awl!

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

      @Hope

      That double messages post is my absolute favorite by Ricky Raw. It really is brilliant.

  • Jackie

    @ALW

    Hi Hopeful/ALW!

    It’s nice to meet you– and I like your koala avatar! 8-)

    I think the advice you’ve gotten here is very good: Things can’t remain like this. You’re going to have to talk and see what happens. Then, no matter what, you know where you stand. Even if it’s not what you hoped for, it’s better than where you are right now (ie not knowing).

    I do have a question or two, if you don’t mind:
    “It started out we wanted a FWB situation”

    Question: Is there ever really a “we” when it comes to this? I mean, if he had asked you out, not just hooking up, would you have said Yes?

    If so, why did you settle for hooking up? It just seems like such a rip-off, unless you are someone who does not get emotionally attached.

  • passionstudy

    i wanted to point out that the transmission of stds has nothing to do with the amount of partners one has… some people are very unfortunate and get it with the first or second person they hook up with (not even intercourse). this is the reason there is a huge stigma is that promiscuous sluts are the ones with stds when a lot of the times the innocent are that ‘luck of the draw’ and those who engage in a lot of unprotected casual sex are the ones who dont contract anything ever. Being correctly informed about all stds and how to be safe with a person before engaging in sexual activity is a safe way one can attempt to avoid it as best they can.

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

      @passionstudy

      i wanted to point out that the transmission of stds has nothing to do with the amount of partners one has… some people are very unfortunate and get it with the first or second person they hook up with (not even intercourse).

      Um, no. Everytime you engage sexually with someone, you risk an STD. The more times you do that, the greater the risk. The research is very clear – multiple partners is the strongest correlation to STD incidence, by a mile.

  • Deli

    I was reading this and the comments, and I am thinking that FWB is basically the male equivalent of the dreaded Friendzone(tm)
    (btw, I strongly recommend Girlwriteswhat latest video on the Friendzone. Youtube is blocked on my corporate computer, so I can’t link it directly, but it is REALLY good)

    Both FWB and Friendzone(tm) have several things in common:
    1) They fulfill only one side of the equation, only one sex’s idea of what the relationship is about:
    1.1) FWB fulfill the physical side of relationship
    1.2) Friendzone fulfills the emotional *cough*tampon*cough* side of relationship

    2) Both lead to the danger of one side implying(!) that by agreeing to such a one-sided deal he or she can earn (!!) the right to balance the deal with some goodies from the other side
    2.1) Guys in Friendzone want to get some action
    2.2) Girls in FWB want some oxytozin/commitment/emotional attachment

    3) And finally both can be diffused (sometime – though elimination of the contract altogether) by a simple and honest talk about
    3.1) Do we both really want this?
    3.2) Only this?
    3.3) For how long?
    - and I would add –
    3.4) Since we both understand that this relationship is loopsided for the both(!) of us, what are we doing to balance it out eventually, maybe with involvement of other people?

  • Just1Z

    @Deli
    GirlWritesWhat – Look out! It’s a Nice Guy! DESTROY HIM!!11!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9XDb0nxSO4

  • szopen

    @intj, JP

    I’m trying to figure out what those 13% of men are doing with their condoms.
    “So I put this on my ear, right?”

    Condom jokes time!

    There were those two woodmen, who all the day and all the week were working in the forest, not seeing anybody ‘xcept themselves. One day they suddenly came from the forest into a highway, and there was a car, a broken car, with a desperate little blonde sitting next to it. SO one of them looked into the car and, while being no engineer, just by being lucky he was able to fix it.

    She was so pleased she said they can have “it” with her. But she gave them condoms and said “I don’t want to get pregnant or get STD, so wear it!”
    Two months later, one of woodmen broke the silence and asked the second
    “Hey Jim, did she wrote to you?”
    “Nope. You?”
    “No. Do you care whether she gets pregnant?”
    “Sure I don’t. So, what do you say, maybe we should take the condoms off?”

  • szopen

    @anacaona

    IME a man that feels strongly anti assholism wouldn’t be close friends with an asshole

    It takes time to identify an asshole. I was friend with assholes once without realising that they were assholes – and I think I qualify as stronly anti-assholic :)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Here’s another great Rawness post on this subject:

    http://therawness.com/raw-concepts-means/

    Just say no to friendzones and FWBs!

  • Iggles

    @ SW:

    Yes, that is what I have always observed, with one exception. A girl may avoid asking because she is afraid of the answer. She figures she’ll give it all she’s got to “win” the guy and if she succeeds, it’s all good, no questions asked. It’s a not uncommon mating strategy, especially among low self-esteem women.

    True. Not the smartest strategy, but this does happen. Though, I feel like these women are still likely to “stake their claim” in some way, whether its creating drama with suspected rivals (mean girl-ing) or being clingy *shrugs*

    @ passionstudy:

    i wanted to point out that the transmission of stds has nothing to do with the amount of partners one has… some people are very unfortunate and get it with the first or second person they hook up with (not even intercourse). this is the reason there is a huge stigma is that promiscuous sluts are the ones with stds when a lot of the times the innocent are that ‘luck of the draw’ and those who engage in a lot of unprotected casual sex are the ones who dont contract anything ever.

    It’s true that sometimes people catch STDs from their first partner, or while in a committed relationship from a cheating partner.

    Being correctly informed about all stds and how to be safe with a person before engaging in sexual activity is a safe way one can attempt to avoid it as best they can.

    I disagree.

    There are some STDs that are transferable even with condom use, such as herpes, HPV, and crabs!

    The more sexual partners you have, the higher you’re risk of exposure. That is why promiscuity gets a bad rap. Sure you can catch something you’re first time but ultimately it’s a numbers game, meaning that as your partner count rrIses the likelihood that you’ll remain unscathed decreases significantly.

    @ Deli:

    I was reading this and the comments, and I am thinking that FWB is basically the male equivalent of the dreaded Friendzone(tm)

    Yep. I agree that they seem analogous.

  • OffTheCuff

    Wow.

    Passionstudy clearly does not understand the concepts of: probability (people who have sex with multiple partnerts are more likely to catch STDs), risk (certain diseases are more dangerous than others, your risk is the probability times the severity of undesired outcome), correlation (e.g., people who binge drink tend to have more STDs, but drinking doesn’t causes STDs), and causation (swapping bodily fluids is a disease transmission vector).

    An ignorance home run.

  • JP

    Anyhow, I found one thingy on the love doesn’t last issue that Susan points out that I talk about, but that she disagrees with.

    I actually got it from psychology today articles a few years ago.

    Anyhow, here’s an NYT *Opinion* article entitled New Love – A Short Shelf Life.

    I’m not actively searching this topic for data; I just ran across from randomly reading new MetaFilter questions and noticed that it was kind of on point.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/02/opinion/sunday/new-love-a-short-shelf-life.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&ref=opinion

    “When love is new, we have the rare capacity to experience great happiness while being stuck in traffic or getting our teeth cleaned. We are in the throes of what researchers call passionate love, a state of intense longing, desire and attraction. In time, this love generally morphs into companionate love, a less impassioned blend of deep affection and connection. The reason is that human beings are, as more than a hundred studies show, prone to hedonic adaptation, a measurable and innate capacity to become habituated or inured to most life changes.

    With all due respect to poets and pop radio songwriters, new love seems nearly as vulnerable to hedonic adaptation as a new job, a new home, a new coat and other novel sources of pleasure and well-being. (Though the thrill of a new material acquisition generally fades faster.)

    Hedonic adaptation is most likely when positive experiences are involved. It’s cruel but true: We’re inclined — psychologically and physiologically — to take positive experiences for granted. We move into a beautiful loft. Marry a wonderful partner. Earn our way to the top of our profession. How thrilling! For a time. Then, as if propelled by autonomic forces, our expectations change, multiply or expand and, as they do, we begin to take the new, improved circumstances for granted.

    Sexual passion and arousal are particularly prone to hedonic adaptation. Laboratory studies in places as far-flung as Melbourne, Australia, and Stony Brook, N.Y., are persuasive: both men and women are less aroused after they have repeatedly viewed the same erotic pictures or engaged in similar sexual fantasies. Familiarity may or may not breed contempt; but research suggests that it breeds indifference. Or, as Raymond Chandler wrote: “The first kiss is magic. The second is intimate. The third is routine.””

  • Lokland

    @OTC

    “An ignorance home run.”

    Bazinga.

  • INTJ

    @ Deli

    There’s one difference between those though. A guy who is unhappy about being in the friend-zone is called a nice guy(tm) and considered a creep for wanting sex. A girl who is unhappy about being a FWB is not considered a creep for wanting emotional commitment.

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

    I like to differentiate between two types of typical FWB arrangement challenges:

    Type 1: things seem great in the FWB, but parting is such sweet sorrow. Why not turn it into an LTR? Wouldn’t that make it even better??!!

    Type 2: FWB is just not fun for one or both parties. (pretty straightforward solution)

    Type 1 can be insidious; because you are getting good performance at one relationship bandwidth does not mean that you can extrapolate from this to safely conclude that it will work for an LTR/domestic type of deal. There are actually people who are very good at being FWB partners—they might not be great in, say, a long-term cohab situation because they are wired like top-fuel emotional dragsters: they give you a lot, then need space to withdraw and recharge, then come back with romantic intensity again, then withdraw and recharge. The space between the meetings is very important to them.

    It is not a person who necessarily does well in captivity, but that doesn’t make him or her a jerk. The Japanese have a concept called “ma”, which roughly translates as “interval” or “negative space” or “lack of clutter” (but of course it is much more sophisticated than this). Aesthetically, it means that it is the true essence of the thing is best retained and appreciated when it is set in isolation from other objects and surrounded by empty space.

    Of course, someone could want an FWB scenario simply because it provides a contingency plan for getting laid if all else fails. I’m talking about something that starts out emphasizing the sex and then gradually grows into a more intricate relationship—the Dear Susan letter writer’s situation seems like this. I think it is important to prevent this from automatically snowballing into a full-blown traditional LTR with shared domestic chores and heavy emotional load-bearing stresses, because you can kill its potential if you put too much on it too quickly.

    IME, over time that FWB situation can morph into something more structured and BF-GF like, but these have to be small, incremental, internally-generated changes and I would caution someone against a highly confrontational Relationship-Defining Talk-type of ultimatum.

  • Zach

    @Susan and Hopeful

    “One of the most common mistakes women make is that they read too much into the time they spend with a guy. A guy can spend a whole weekend with you, cook meals together, laugh together, be passionate – do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman – and have absolutely zero emotional investment. If he is in a “no relationship” mindset, or views you as FWB material only, he can enjoy your company and the sex without any worries that you might get hurt, because these are the terms you both agreed to.”

    Second this. It’s completely true. To us (or me at least) it’s the equivalent of “having fun”. Having sex is fun. Cooking with people is fun. Laughing is fun. None of those to mean to us that we should be invested. There are plenty of women I would enjoy doing those things with but wouldn’t want to date, and that can be for any number of reasons. I tell girls that before the sex, because I think it’s unfair not to, but if they sign on for a not-serious sexual relationship with their eyes wide open, I don’t really feel I owe them anything, no matter what might happen. Also, plenty of guys don’t say that up front, FYI.

    However, I do have to say that your guy does seem to be getting invested (and I’m the ultimate you’re-dreaming-he’s-not-into-you guy). There’s really only one thing to do. Bite the bullet and have “the talk”. Otherwise, unless he grows a pair, you’ll be stuck in limbo forever.

  • Deli

    2 INTJ
    True, that’s what GWW’s video is about.

    On the bright side, the whole idea, that it is actually possible(!) to have a one-sided relationship contract that favors male’s primary attractor is relatively new.

    Unless you also count prostitution, of course.

  • Passer_By

    ALW:

    You need to come back and let us know how it turns out, so that each one of can reframe the facts through our own prism, declare ourself right and taunt everyone who disagreed. Looking forward to it!!

  • JP

    “Second this. It’s completely true. To us (or me at least) it’s the equivalent of “having fun”. Having sex is fun.”

    Whereas I always thought of sex meaning that you have to get married (and stay married) to the person you are having sex with.

    Ideal N = 1.

    The sex=hedonistic fun/FWB was not on my radar as a permissible (read morally appropriate) human interaction.

  • OlioOx

    I just want to add my voice to those recommending girlwriteswhat. Check out her video on Anders Breivik especially.

  • Ted D

    “The sex=hedonistic fun/FWB was not on my radar as a permissible (read morally appropriate) human interaction”

    And add to that, *I* don’t personally believe I’d even enjoy sex without emotional attachment. If I need a “release”, I’d prefer to take care of it myself. I can be done in 10 minutes and on to something more productive. Picking up a ONS would take hours of work, and might not even pan out. I’ve never been rejected by myself, and it seems to me all your get in a ONS masturbation with someone else’s body anyway.

  • J

    Second this. It’s completely true. To us (or me at least) it’s the equivalent of “having fun”. Having sex is fun. Cooking with people is fun. Laughing is fun. None of those to mean to us that we should be invested.

    Right, but you need to realize that “having fun” IS bonding behavior.

    I tell girls that before the sex, because I think it’s unfair not to, but if they sign on for a not-serious sexual relationship with their eyes wide open, I don’t really feel I owe them anything, no matter what might happen. Also, plenty of guys don’t say that up front, FYI.

    From a practical point of view, you may not owe anyone anything, but you need to realize that you are sending out a powerful mixed message. Sex, eating, and laughing together are courtship behaviors that bond a couple closely–even after many years. When the kids are gone for a weekend, those are things DH and I do to renew our bonds, with the conscious knowledge that we are doing so in anticipation of the empty nest that awaits us in a few years and in full recollection of our memories of courting. (“Hey, hon, remember the moring we spent in bed and then I made us stawberries with a Devonshire sauce while you scrambled eggs…”)

    People pay far more attention to what we do than what we say. If you behave like a lover, you’ll be responded to as a lover. Playing house with women will INEVITABLY lead some of them to catch feelings and believe that you have caught feeling as well. Intentionally or not, you are leading them on by acting in a way that encourages the growth of feelings.

    When I was dating, my friends and I would refer to men who acted as you describe as “honest assholes.” Yeah, you warn those women and it’s good as far as it goes, but you are still reaping the benefits of eliciting near instinctual behavior from them when you have no intention of fulfilling their needs. Smart women will run from you like the plague, but don’t kid yourself that you have nothing to do with it when someone gets hurt.

  • J

    “Stawberries” or strawberries, either will work. ;-)

  • Ted D

    J – “Playing house with women will INEVITABLY lead some of them to catch feelings and believe that you have caught feeling as well. Intentionally or not, you are leading them on by acting in a way that encourages the growth of feelings.”

    But that is NOT the guys fault. If woman is naive or doesn’t know herself well enough to realize she WILL catch feelings, why is it the guys responsibility to look out for HER best interests?

    Again, I understand what you are saying and I agree. However, if the relationship is framed as FWB from the word go, IMO it is the woman at fault if she catches feelings. Basically, she is breaking the boundaries she set for herself at the beginning, and he is in NO WAY responsible for it nor does he owe her anything because of it.

  • BroHamlet

    J – “Playing house with women will INEVITABLY lead some of them to catch feelings and believe that you have caught feeling as well. Intentionally or not, you are leading them on by acting in a way that encourages the growth of feelings.”

    Now I totally agree that if you don’t want a relationship, don’t set the boyfriend vibe, and that some of the things two people do together do constitute bonding. BUT, you do realize that the argument you are making is the same one that stereotypical “nice guys” are making when they try to justify catching feelings for girls that owe them nothing (not a relationship, not sex, not even validation) for all of the time they spend with those girls, right? I’m not seeing a difference here, and I have no sympathy for those types of guys. It’s on them to get the self awareness and he skills to keep themselves out of trouble and in the running to get what they want. Same applies here.

  • J

    But that is NOT the guys fault. If woman is naive or doesn’t know herself well enough to realize she WILL catch feelings, why is it the guys responsibility to look out for HER best interests?….he is in NO WAY responsible for it nor does he owe her anything because of it.

    Right, I began by saying, “From a practical point of view, you may not owe anyone anything, but you need to realize that you are sending out a powerful mixed message.” I realize that women need to responsible for their own feelings, but men need to realize that when a woman catches feelings under these circumstances, it is inevitable.

    Let’s try a similar scenario. Let’s say that I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. I walk into the bedroom where DH is reading a book, begin a conversation that gets his attention and then start to strip down in front of him BUT I DO SAY, “Hon, I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower.”

    While talking casually to DH, I turn away, drop my bra strap while looking over my shoulder and wink. I wiggle out of my panties and shake my hips in his direction, then pop into the shower. He follows me in and asks if I want my back scrubbed. I smile and say sure. He scrubs my back and then my front. I climb out of the shower, dry off and put on some flannel jammies…with feet. Then I go to sleep–but hey, it’s OK because I said, “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. “

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

      @J

      LMAO at your shower scenario. One lesson I have learned: If a woman is really not in the mood for sex, she can reduce her chances of having it by not stripping in front of her husband. :)

  • J

    People need to take of themselves, Bro. They really do, I agree, but they also have to take responsibility when they lead others on.

    See my post to Ted.

  • JP

    @J:

    “Let’s try a similar scenario. Let’s say that I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. I walk into the bedroom where DH is reading a book, begin a conversation that gets his attention and then start to strip down in front of him BUT I DO SAY, “Hon, I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower.”

    While talking casually to DH, I turn away, drop my bra strap while looking over my shoulder and wink. I wiggle out of my panties and shake my hips in his direction, then pop into the shower. He follows me in and asks if I want my back scrubbed. I smile and say sure. He scrubs my back and then my front. I climb out of the shower, dry off and put on some flannel jammies…with feet. Then I go to sleep–but hey, it’s OK because I said, “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. “””

    I could turn this into an excellent law school question for contract law.

    Offer, acceptance, consideration, meeting of the minds, etc.

  • Passer_By

    @JP
    “Offer, acceptance, consideration, meeting of the minds, etc.”

    Don’t forget the issue of unenforceability due to public policy.

  • JP

    @Passer_ By:

    “Don’t forget the issue of unenforceability due to public policy.”

    The you get into the question of conflict of laws.

    Did any portion of this happen in Nevada?

  • BroHamlet

    @J
    Then I go to sleep–but hey, it’s OK because I said, “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. “

    Boo hoo, lol. He could just not listen to you and stay on the couch. He’d fall for this maybe twice, if at all. A very notable difference here is that you are legally married versus two people dating- the expectations are VERY different. Need I even bring up the can of worms that female shit testing both in and out of relationships brings up with regards to mixed messages? Every woman would have a “rap sheet” a mile long… and I don’t believe that, do you?

  • Ted D

    J – “Then I go to sleep–but hey, it’s OK because I said, “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. “”

    Well, I for one would NOT have just followed you into the shower without making it clear I intended to knock one out afterwards. Why? Because I don’t like to leave things open to interpretation.

    “but they also have to take responsibility when they lead others on.”

    ahhhh but here is the rub. To the average man, this is NOT leading anyone on. I’m sure he genuinely enjoys spending time with her, but he does NOT intend to make it a permanent deal. He is simply getting as much out of the deal they made as he can, which from a practical standpoint is a VERY good strategy.

    Her fault 100%

  • INTJ

    @ Deli, Just1Z

    Wow, just watched that girlwriteswhat link. I’ve always considered her to be a rational voice in the men’s rights movement. But until today, I hadn’t realized just how brilliant she is. First rate mind right there.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    J, the Rawness links I posted cover all of these examples, including FWB, friendzone, and wife teasing the husband.

    Those people will never stop leading others on, because they’re enjoying it too much. The rest of us need to avoid them.

  • Zach

    @J

    How is going out to dinner, watching movies with wine, or any of that “playing house”? I’m not pretending we have kids or anything. To me it’s simply just dating. I could just skip all that and text them at 10 PM to come over, but it has to do with what I like as well. I enjoy going to dinner sometimes with a girl I find attractive and interesting, I enjoy watching a movie with good female company, and I enjoy laughing and hanging out with girls. Do I have to be in exclusive relationship to do those things?

    However, not every single girl I do those things with is a girl I’m going to want to commit to. If I make that clear to said girl (which I always do), it’s her prerogative to say yes or no. Maybe she likes doing those things as well but doesn’t want to commit either. And if she does want to commit, she should stop.

    And I resent the notion that I’m an asshole because I don’t want to exclusively date every girl I go out with. I have a good time with lots of girls I go out with, and am happy just having a good time without dating them. And “eliciting near instinctual behavior”?? So I should be pissed at women who wear revealing clothing because they’re “eliciting instinctual behavior” from me when I stare at them?

  • J

    Well, I for one would NOT have just followed you into the shower without making it clear I intended to knock one out afterwards. Why? Because I don’t like to leave things open to interpretation.

    Then you are a very special and perceptive man because most men would assume that the sexual teasing was going to lead to sex. That’s what makes mixed messages so effective…and why even Roissy suggests men send them. many of his tactics are in effect mixed messages.

    ahhhh but here is the rub. To the average man, this is NOT leading anyone on. I’m sure he genuinely enjoys spending time with her, but he does NOT intend to make it a permanent deal. He is simply getting as much out of the deal they made as he can, which from a practical standpoint is a VERY good strategy.

    For HIM, but at some point, if you realize that you are doing things that benefit yourself more than others and you keepdoing them, you are becoming a user.

    Her fault 100%

    Fault isn’t the issue. Let’s say that you go into a bad neighborhood, flash a wad of cash and then get robbed. That’s, to a large degree, your fault. But the guy who robbed you is still a thief…and ultimately, it’s on his soul. Or consider the used car dealer who screws you with the small print. Caveat emptor, but sooner or later, he has to ask himself if that’s really who he wants to be. It’s a matter of character.

  • Ted D

    J – “It’s a matter of character.”

    I agree with you totally here. But keep in mind, what constitutes “character” these days is VERY subjective and prone to perspective bias.

    If a woman says she wants a FWB and the guy takes her at her word, his behavior should in NO WAY matter, because clearly she isn’t going to ‘catch feelings’ since she said so. Right?

    “Then you are a very special and perceptive man because most men would assume that the sexual teasing was going to lead to sex.”

    LOL not really. I spent years in a sexless marriage J. I am VERY, VERY clear about my sexual expectations in my current marriage because of it. I learned. ;-)

    Basically, if my wife starts any kind of flirting/teasing with me, I tell her that if she persists, she is gonna get laid. No uncertain terms, no grey area to speculate in. I’m not getting a raw deal again, and I’m damn sure gonna make sure it doesn’t happen. Best part? She doesn’t tease me unless she plans to please me, because I’ve already set the standard for that behavior. I took that right out of Athol’s work: set the default behavior for sex in your relationship the way you want it to work, and then everything else is the exception.

  • INTJ

    @ J

    Fault isn’t the issue. Let’s say that you go into a bad neighborhood, flash a wad of cash and then get robbed. That’s, to a large degree, your fault. But the guy who robbed you is still a thief…and ultimately, it’s on his soul. Or consider the used car dealer who screws you with the small print. Caveat emptor, but sooner or later, he has to ask himself if that’s really who he wants to be. It’s a matter of character.

    What if you’re the one honest used car dealer and you’re going bankrupt because you can’t compete with all the other dishonest used car dealers?

  • Zach

    @J

    “Then I go to sleep–but hey, it’s OK because I said, “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’d like a nice shower. “”

    Ah, but see the correct analogy to what has been said would be your saying, right when you walked into the room “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’m going to give you a little striptease”. Now, personally, I’d try my best to get you to change you mind, but I’d go into it knowing that I probably wasn’t going to get laid. I’d be pissed that I wasn’t able to get you to have sex, but I wouldn’t blame YOU for it. You told me you weren’t going to have sex, so why should I expect it? And if you did it enough, I’d probably toss you to the curb for being a tease.

  • JP

    “Then you are a very special and perceptive man because most men would assume that the sexual teasing was going to lead to sex.”

    Whereas I would be more likely to experience mixed message confusion, since I’m generally not paying attention.

    The words would register on some level, and I may or may not be so lost in thought to notice the non-verbal communication. I may pick up on half of the non-verbal communication or miss the verbal or vice-versa.

    I would probably conclude that *something* had been communicated (maybe), but it would not necessarily be clear to me what just happened. I would be unlikely to do anything due to my confusion as to the nature of the communication.

    So, Ted and I may make the same decision, but he would do it because he demanded clarity whereas I may just be confused, just having my mind knocked out of trying to solve quantum encryption by a nakedish woman.

    (I’m exaggerating a bit, but generally, I am in a fuzzy half-paying attention foggish zone a lot. Ergo, the reason I think I have so-called “Inattentive ADD”.)

  • Zach

    @J

    “Or consider the used car dealer who screws you with the small print. Caveat emptor, but sooner or later, he has to ask himself if that’s really who he wants to be. It’s a matter of character.”

    Actually, the correct analogy would be a used car dealer whose title page reads “WARNING: CAR IS DEFECTIVE AND WILL NOT LAST IN THE LONG RUN” and then buyer saying “I know that, but the color is so pretttyyy!”

  • Lokland

    @J

    “Caveat emptor, but sooner or later, he has to ask himself if that’s really who he wants to be. ”

    No they really don’t.

    You as the person who got used assume that the person using you uses everybody.

    Thats not the truth.

    I used many people for many purposes throughout my life. If they offer, I have no problem taking advantage of someone else’s stupidity.

    There are many others whom I respect a great deal and would never consider using in anyway even if they pinned a billion dollar to cheque to their back that said steal me.

    I’ve had a FWB whom I treated the same way Zach does his own.
    I subsequently went on to date a girl who was worthy of relationship shortly thereafter without using her.
    If FWB had not been a) delusional, b) an idiot she could have had a nice boyfriend who actually liked her and wasn’t using her to cover his own need for intimacy.

    If your stupid enough to flash a wad of cash at 8mile, might be the fault of the thief but your the one out the money.

    Bitching about how you were wronged and it shouldn’t have happened doesn’t bring your money back to you.

    Watch your own back no one else lives with the consequences regardless of who does the wrong.

    PS Your shower story. Evil, pure evil. Jokes.

  • J

    @Bro Hamlet

    Every woman would have a “rap sheet” a mile long… and I don’t believe that, do you?

    Not every woman. Believe it or not, I don’t shit test, manipulate or cock-tease my husband. I don’t believe they are nice or fair things to do, and fairness is very important to me. I also need to live with some sense of internal consistant and integrity, so I don’t play games much. I’m also pretty direct, as I’m sure most can tell by reading my posts.

    @Hope

    I love The Rawness! Such great insights.

    @Zach

    And I resent the notion that I’m an asshole because I don’t want to exclusively date every girl I go out with.

    That’s interesting that you are owning the notion of yourself as an asshole as I was intentionally trying hard to frame that as my perception of some men’s actions towards me and my friends 30 years ago as opposed to your personality today. Re-read the sentence you’re reacting to. I was conveying a conversation (or two) that I actually had. I didn’t call you an asshole, you made that jump yourself. If I had wanted to call you an asshole, rest assured I would have. Right now, I just see you as someone who doesn’t quite understand what his effect on others might be.

    And “eliciting near instinctual behavior”?? So I should be pissed at women who wear revealing clothing because they’re “eliciting instinctual behavior” from me when I stare at them?

    I don’t know that you should necessarily be pissed, but I do think women need to be aware of the impression they create when they lead with their bodies and realize that men will react to them as bodies. I believe I’ve said that numerous times here as well.

  • Ted D

    J – “I don’t know that you should necessarily be pissed, but I do think women need to be aware of the impression they create when they lead with their bodies and realize that men will react to them as bodies. I believe I’ve said that numerous times here as well.”

    Really? Tell that to the NYC police officer that simply suggested woman should stop dressing provocatively in an area with a known, active rapist on the loose. You’d think he told them all to get home and take off their shoes to get started on dinner!

    You see, I agree with you on the “everyone should be aware” line of thinking. But, you and I BOTH know that “should be” and “actually are” don’t match most of the time, and we are seeing it here. Women “should” expect guys to stare at their boobs if they are hanging out. Guys “should” expect women to catch feelings for them if they go out and do date stuff.

    But, the real issue is, we should NEVER assume anything, yet as a society we assume a lot and often.

  • J

    I used many people for many purposes throughout my life. If they offer, I have no problem taking advantage of someone else’s stupidity.

    Different srokes for different folks, I would have problems.

    If your stupid enough to flash a wad of cash at 8mile, might be the fault of the thief but your the one out the money.

    Yes. That’s why people have to be wary. OTOH, the thief shouldn’t deceive himself about who he is or what he’s done. And no court will let him if he’s caught.

    PS Your shower story. Evil, pure evil. Jokes.

    LOL. I just made that up. It is egregiously nasty though. ;-)

  • Lokland

    @J

    “Yes. That’s why people have to be wary. OTOH, the thief shouldn’t deceive himself about who he is or what he’s done.”

    This assumes he robs others. What if your the only person he robs because you made it so easy?
    Should that one moment of dishonesty be the defining moment of his life?

    Personally, as someone who has done similar (never stolen anything), I can assure you the feeling is guilt free.

    “And no court will let him if he’s caught.”

    Unless we buy Susan a black robe and wooden mallet, theres no relationship court. Getting caught doesn’t exist in a FWB situation.

  • Ted D

    J – “OTOH, the thief shouldn’t deceive himself about who he is or what he’s done. And no court will let him if he’s caught.”

    But unlike the thief, a guy taking a woman at her word on a FWB setup is NOT doing anything illegal, or immoral, by treating her BETTER than required by the agreement. If she then “catches feelings”, it is her fault for allowing herself to go past the set boundaries.

    Now, if at the beginning she says “I want to do a FWB thing, but you have to treat me like total shit when we aren’t having sex so I don’t fall for you” and he does it anyway? THEN I’m with you and he is the bad guy.

  • J

    Ted– You’re preaching to the crowd re the NYC police dept. I believe I made this point during that discussion–or hundreds just like it.

    All–To reiterate this point for the thousandth time at HUS. Yes, people need to protect themselves from those who would potentially hurt them, intentionally or not. OTOH, people also need to mindful or their effects on others. Someone else’s stupidity is NOT license to take advantage of them, nor can you morally absolve yourself because of it. You need to own your behavior.

  • Zach

    @J

    There was no jump to make. You were in mid-air, and I described where you were about to land.

    “When I was dating, my friends and I would refer to men who acted as you describe as “honest assholes.”

    Translated: I’m not calling you an “honest asshole”, I’m just saying that guys who behave exactly like you, look like you, and talk like you are honest assholes. But I swear, I’m not calling you one.

    It’s an eons-old bit of semantics that is very, very easy to see through.

  • J

    I could turn this into an excellent law school question for contract law.

    You should, JP. I’d love to hear that discussion! Report back to us if you do it.

    @Lok

    Should that one moment of dishonesty be the defining moment of his life?

    One moment? No, everyone makes mistakes. A pattern of bad behavior justified by the idea that the weak and stupid deserve what they get is problematic though.

    @INTJ

    I have a friend whose husband who is not a used car dealer but does have a history of shady business dealings that have made him very successful and a fantastic provider–better than my DH, actually. They have two kids, a spoiled, petulant daughter and a slimy, little bastard of a son. They also have a beautiful house; I’m glad I don’t live in it.

  • Iggles

    @ Zach:

    Ah, but see the correct analogy to what has been said would be your saying, right when you walked into the room “I’m not in the mood for sex, but I’m going to give you a little striptease”.

    If that’s the case then men who give off the “boyfriend vibe” need to say, “Hey, I’m going to do couple stuff with you because I enjoy them too, but I have no intentions of actually being your boyfriend. Alright, cool!” *pours bottle of wine*

    //end snark//

    Do I have to be in exclusive relationship to do those things?

    In a word, YES.

    Hanging out with a girl one-on-one, cuddling, having sex with her, teasing her, stroking her face, looking at her “just because” with open affection, fostering inside jokes, go to activities with her as your “partner in crime”, etc.. are all fun things to do. For you that’s all it is. But for most women, and on HUS, many of men agree this all behavior that fosters intimacy and bonding of couples. When you do this with a girl you’re non-exclusive, it should be no surprise that since your actions seem to signal you want more than “just sex” — in their view YOU are the one initially changing the dynamics of FWB.

  • BroHamlet

    @J

    “Not every woman. Believe it or not, I don’t shit test, manipulate or cock-tease my husband. I don’t believe they are nice or fair things to do, and fairness is very important to me. I also need to live with some sense of internal consistant and integrity, so I don’t play games much. I’m also pretty direct, as I’m sure most can tell by reading my posts.”

    Good on you for being so well-intentioned. I do think you are exceptionally reasonable based on reading you here. But you are just that: exceptional, and you are years into a loving marriage judging by what youve wrote here. Even our host has a few stories to share, apparently. Some nuances of fairness are in the eye of the beholder, and you have to wonder if there is a generational component to this, because I think most people in my generation would agree that not much is owed either party in an early dating situation.

  • Zach

    @Iggles

    To go through your list of things I do and do not do with FWB:

    Hanging out with a girl one-on-one[yes], cuddling[no], having sex with her[yes], teasing her[yes], stroking her face[no], looking at her “just because” with open affection[never did that even with actual gfs, I find it creepy], fostering inside jokes[happens with girls I go on one date with], go to activities with her as your “partner in crime”[why do women love that expression so much?? can't she just be the person I do it with? no one likes to eat dinner alone], etc.. are all fun things to do. ”

    Further, teasing and having sex are not classic relationship behaviors. Teasing is the ultimate flirting behavior for any guy with any girl. So for you there’s no middle ground between booty call and a committed relationship? I like going to dinner at good restaurants, and I’d sometimes rather do it with an attractive girl than with a couple of dudes. Does that mean I’m “leading her on” to a relationship? If so, I shouldn’t go on a single date ever, because I suppose I’m leading on every girl I ask out. By your definition, essentially every single interaction between men and women is “couple stuff”. I should basically go up to girls, grunt at them, rub my penis against them, and hope they respond because then I definitely wouldn’t be leading them on.

  • BroHamlet

    @Iggles

    “If that’s the case then men who give off the “boyfriend vibe” need to say, “Hey, I’m going to do couple stuff with you because I enjoy them too, but I have no intentions of actually being your boyfriend. Alright, cool!” *pours bottle of wine*”

    Two questions, because this whole “boyfriend/girlfriend vibe” concept is a really slippery slope that people of both genders use to excuse themselves of self-responsibility:

    1) What constitutes a concrete definition of “couples stuff” to both parties early in dating?
    2) When does “couples stuff” stop being metaphorical and become the act of doing things as an actual couple?

  • J

    Not really, Zach, though I can understand your reaction. Internet, tone and all that…nonetheless, I had a point that you are ignoring.

    You can believe me or not, but my point to you is that your behavior, intentional or not (and I did use that terminology in my OP), does not take into consideration its effect on others and that continued behavior of that sort is very harmful–to yourself and others. I attempted to show you how it leads people on. Again, you can believe or not, but what I said is going to be true for all but the most jaded of women. A continued pattern of that sort of action, once you’ve been made aware, IS indeed “honest assholery.” It’s your choice to make, your character development at stake. And the quality of women you attract? We’ve discussed your desire to attract “realtionship quality women” here. An intelligent, relationship quality woman will not want to be with someone who has a history of FWB/”she let me use her” relationships.

    Take it as motherly advice or ignore it, but be honest with yourself that indulging in bonding behaviors with people is going to facilitate bonds that you may not want and then take some responsibility for that. If some girl falls for you because you fed and fucked her, take it as a fact of human existence, not her stupidity or inability to stay with an agreement. Don’t pretend you’re just an innocent bystander. You have agency here, what you do creates an impresion on other women in your environment and people will react to it in ways that influence your other relationships. That’s a fact.

    Sorry, it that hurts you or if you resent it. It’s just honest feedback.

  • Lokland

    @J

    “people also need to mindful or their effects on others. Someone else’s stupidity is NOT license to take advantage of them, nor can you morally absolve yourself because of it. You need to own your behaviour.”

    No, people really don’t.
    If the person receives no ill effect from their treatment of others there is no reason to alter their behaviour.

    Doing so might be a bad idea for themselves because they might end up worse off than they were prior.

    Again, there is no need for moral absolution when there is no consequence. Double that if the person does not fear burning in hell.

    If there is absolutely NO REASON not to do something that will forward yourself other than the harm it does someone else, people are gonna do it.

    Which is why you must learn to protect yourself.
    Any other nonsense about how its the other persons fault for taking advantage of you is merely whining.

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    “No, people really don’t.
    If the person receives no ill effect from their treatment of others there is no reason to alter their behaviour.”

    The funny thing is that life is ultimately fair as time approaches infinity.

    Actions have consequnces.

    When you pick up one end of the stick, you pick up the other end.

    That’s just a feature of existence.

    You can deny that feature, but it won’t make that feature go away.

    See gravity for details.

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

    It takes time to identify an asshole. I was friend with assholes once without realising that they were assholes – and I think I qualify as stronly anti-assholic

    Well that is different I meant if a guy knows another man is an asshole and still seeks out his company a part of him must agree that assholessness is not that bad after all,so declaring himself a good guy is moot,he is just an asshole of lower expression,YMMV.

    Condom jokes time!
    You know you have a though crowd when no one follows this to share more jokes.

    To the average man, this is NOT leading anyone on.

    Isn’t this like the average girl not knowing that her male friends want to sex her up? I didn’t heard any male saying is not her fault that he wants to be more than friends when all she offered was friendship and he agreed, did you?

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    Everybody, soon or late, sits down to a banquet of consequences.

    - Robert Lewis Stevenson

    It’s a feature, not a bug.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    To the folks suggesting that Zach and the guy in the post are giving mixed messages to their FWBs,

    Consider that a FWB arrangement is sort of an imitation relationship, without the label (friendship + sex, how is that not at least a pseudo-relationship?). The FWB is really about benefits for the guy, who can enjoy relationship-like bonding with a girl but stay open to other options as well. Any girl who gets into a FWB situation is basically an idiot (and I say that having been in one before) because she’s essentially giving sex without the expectation of exclusivity, and that is HER mistake.

    I think someone upthread suggested that FWB arrangements are basically a way for lower SMV girls to create sort-of relationships with higher SMV guys, the sacrifice being the exclusivity. I would take that even further, and suggest that the girl makes the arrangement often hoping to “convince” or “convert” the guy to a relationship mindset, by showing him how good a relationship-like situation can be. I can tell you for a fact that when I arranged a FWB situation with my ex four years ago, deep down there was a part of me hoping he would finally take me back.

  • BroHamlet

    @Anacaona

    “Isn’t this like the average girl not knowing that her male friends want to sex her up? I didn’t heard any male saying is not her fault that he wants to be more than friends when all she offered was friendship and he agreed, did you?”

    Actually, read my last few posts. I said exactly that about “nice guys”.

  • HanSolo

    Though women are more likely to catch feelings for their FWB men can also and get attached and then she moves on. That’s happened to me before. I think I’m more on the romantic side of things. I have also had the more typical thing happen where the woman really liked or fell in love with me but I didn’t.

  • Joe

    @Lokland

    Again, there is no need for moral absolution when there is no consequence.

    No, JP and R.L. Stevenson are right. NOTHING you do is without consequence.

    Don’t let it drive you crazy. But recognize it as a fact of life. You either touch others for good or you touch others for ill. You can’t get away without touching them.

  • J

    Good on you for being so well-intentioned. I do think you are exceptionally reasonable based on reading you here.

    Thank you. I appreciate being visible to you.

    But you are just that: exceptional,

    In the ‘sphere, I guess so. IRL, I’m not so sure.

    and you are years into a loving marriage judging by what youve wrote here.

    I see young couples, usually kids of friends heading in the same direction. It gives me hope for my own kids.

    because I think most people in my generation would agree that not much is owed either party in an early dating situation

    I think once people have sex, they open a can of worms and expectations. That’s not generational. What is generational is the expectation that no one is supposed to be hurt when in fact they are.

  • JP

    Well, if I throw a fluffy stuffed duck at somebody in anger and it hits them straight in the stomach with it’s fluffy soft duckness, causing their tummy to jiggle a wee bit, there really isn’t likely to be much in the way of bad consequences.

    So, there’s a common sense component here, kind of like the golden rule fiasco earlier.

  • Ion

    “Tell that to the NYC police officer that simply suggested woman should stop dressing provocatively in an area with a known, active rapist on the loose. ”

    If it’s the incident I’m thinking of last summer… There were tons of flyers posted, etc., because the guy targeted women in the “trendy” neighborhood known as Park Slope. This neighborhood has TONS of “progressive” yuppies, etc., so they shouldn’t be indicative of the entire population of women (even though they’re pretty safe normally).

    I know women were reminded not to wear short skirts, as a perp can easily bend them over and rip off their underwear. So its “easy access” clothing, not just because the clothing is provocative. It is safer to wear exposed cleavage over a short skirt and no tights. I remember hearing “welllll its hot outside, I want to dress this way blah blah”. I believe one of the women assaulted was also ridiculously drunk outside at 2am.

    Now, a cop saying that about East Flatbush, which is so unsafe that women can be assaulted on their way home from church or in their nurses uniform would be a completely different story…..

  • J

    @Lokland

    What JP said in #154, 156.

    It’s just the way it is, really.

    @JP–Dude, you are fcuking brilliant!

    Don’t let it drive you crazy. But recognize it as a fact of life. You either touch others for good or you touch others for ill. You can’t get away without touching them./i>

    Yes, exactly. Very well said!

  • J

    I know women were reminded not to wear short skirts, as a perp can easily bend them over and rip off their underwear. So its “easy access” clothing, not just because the clothing is provocative. It is safer to wear exposed cleavage over a short skirt and no tights. I remember hearing “welllll its hot outside, I want to dress this way blah blah”. I believe one of the women assaulted was also ridiculously drunk outside at 2am.

    She was stupid, but the guy who assaulted her is still guilty of assault. Neither should be surprised at what happened though.

  • Ion

    “I think someone upthread suggested that FWB arrangements are basically a way for lower SMV girls to create sort-of relationships with higher SMV guys, the sacrifice being the exclusivity.”

    Or girls who live in a population where men refuse to commit because of a shortage…say…college campuses.

    Anyone who hasn’t seen average betas bag FWB never went to an Arts school. :-P

  • J

    LMAO at your shower scenario. One lesson I have learned: If a woman is really not in the mood for sex, she can reduce her chances of having it by not stripping in front of her husband

    LOL. Whoduh thought?

    Just to emphasize this to anyone who isn’t reading the thread careful– this is a made up example, not something I did.

  • BroHamlet

    @J

    “In the ‘sphere, I guess so. IRL, I’m not so sure.”

    You need to keep this in mind. The ‘sphere’ seems to overstate some things from what limited corners of it I’ve read, but they’re not wrong or even far from the mark about everything (in fact they’re getting at the truth a good amount of the time based on my real world experience). They tend to overstate the unreasonable behavior we are talking a out because the type of guy who ends up there typically has been subjected to this side of women for a variety of reasons, the most important of which being that many women in my generation can’t respect a guy they couldn’t in some world be attracted to. The rest of us don’t find it shocking because we learned to deal with it before we ever saw it described in writing (or just got to a level where we rarely provoke any of the more questionable instincts women have). But make no mistake, I have seen the way women tend to treat certain types of men, but you know what? I don’t see any mass consequence waiting in the wings for young women who behave badly to guys in innocuous ways (shit testing), so why bitch about it? That is why I lean towards people controlling what they can control and not making some huge moral crusade out of the rest.

  • Ion

    “She was stupid, but the guy who assaulted her is still guilty of assault. Neither should be surprised at what happened though.”

    Absolutely J! Without question he is guilty.

    But we don’t go to dark alley’s while drunk, flashing hundred dollar bills and listening to our iPods at 3am. That’s the same as walking around drunk at 2am with a miniskirt and high heels you can’t run away in. In both cases, the rapist/criminal is guilty, but there are things we can do to lessen our chances of assault.

    Girls need to know how they can help lessen their chances of being assaulted too (without guilty feminists reminding them that they can “wear what they want”, and party as hard as they want), imho.

  • Lokland

    @Joe

    “NOTHING you do is without consequence.”

    Your gonna have to point out where I said otherwise.
    I did say that if the consequences for someone else are bad whilst being good for myself, I see no reason to exploit another persons voluntary idiocy.

    “Don’t let it drive you crazy. But recognize it as a fact of life. You either touch others for good or you touch others for ill. You can’t get away without touching them.”

    Of course.
    I have no problem with doing ill if it does good to me on the condition that the person wants me to do ill to them.

    There is no need for moral absolution as I don’t feel bad and theres no god in my world.

  • J

    Girls need to know how they can help lessen their chances of being assaulted too (without guilty feminists reminding them that they can “wear what they want”, and party as hard as they want), imho.

    Absolutely, that’s why I said, “She was stupid…” She wasn’t mindful of her environment, and environment has a way of trumping any real or imagined rights a person thinks they have.

    My younger son thinks he has the right to go out of town on a Greyhound bus that also serves a federal prison to play music with some friends. He wants to carry with him an expensive bass, an equally expensinve guitar and two amps. He will wear his expensive jacket and carry cash. I told him that when someone cracks his skull open so they can take his stuff, I will write on his tombstone, “He had the right.”

    You can bitch about rights all you want; you just can’t make other people respect them.

  • J

    They tend to overstate the unreasonable behavior we are talking a out because the type of guy who ends up there typically has been subjected to this side of women for a variety of reasons,

    Yeah, I know a lot of guys feel this way. I would never suggest hat every girl out there is an angel. I just worry that the level of rhetoric overshadows the good that’s out there too.

    the most important of which being that many women in my generation can’t respect a guy they couldn’t in some world be attracted to.

    That will have huge consequences for the women as well. We live in a society where the basic respect that people should have for one another has eroded and that affects us all in ways we aren’t even conscious of most of the time.

  • Just1Z

    @Intj
    “Wow, just watched that girlwriteswhat link. I’ve always considered her to be a rational voice in the men’s rights movement. But until today, I hadn’t realized just how brilliant she is. First rate mind right there.”

    Yes!

    I keep mentioning her as she is most impressive.

    I hope that she does write her book. (she has previously written *cough* adult *cough* fiction).

  • Joe

    @Lokland

    Your gonna have to point out where I said otherwise.

    Okay. It’s implicit in your statement:

    …there is no need for moral absolution when there is no consequence.

    I’m point out that there is no such thing as “no consequence” when you’re talking about human beings.

    As for this:

    I did say that if the consequences for someone else are bad whilst being good for myself, I see no reason to exploit another persons voluntary idiocy.

    Lokland, my man, I have two masters degrees in the “hard sciences”, and I have no idea what you mean.

    I suspect the problem we’re going to have communicating isn’t because there is no god is your world. Please don’t take me as trying to psychoanalyze you now, because I don’t know you. But my observations say that, in general, atheists replace god in their worlds with their own egos (ego in the Freudian sense). The term moral absolution can never have the same meaning for me as it does for them.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Sometimes reading these threads really reminds me to go home and tell my husband how much I appreciate him and what a great man he is.

    J, that is why family and true friends are so valuable. They’re about the only people left in this individualistic, mercenary, man-eat-man world who will care for us.

    I hope your sons realize what a great mother they have!

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    Ion,

    Or girls who live in a population where men refuse to commit because of a shortage…say…college campuses.

    Right. A guy in that environment will have an inflated SMV. You know, scarcity leads to increased demand/inflated price and all that…

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    So I am having sex with a girl, but I also go out to dinner with her, and I bake cupcakes with her, and read a book with her, and maybe I might go see her family a few times.

    Sounds like a friend.

    With “benefits.”

    I do understand the confusion, but it doesn’t mean “boyfriend.” Much like you can have a girlfriend you don’t want to marry, you can be friends with a girl you don’t want to make a girlfriend.

  • J

    I hope your sons realize what a great mother they have!

    Oh, sweetie, thank you. That made my day.

  • Cooper

    @Iggles, re: doing “couple stuff” outside of being in a relationship

    “But for most women, and on HUS, many of men agree this all behavior that fosters intimacy and bonding of couples.”

    Without discussing whether these things *should* be, the fact is there *are* taking place outside of relationship.

    That’s why I continue to highlight the vocalization. (DTR)

    Whether we all agree or not, the reality is guys consider certain things “fun” and that they shouldn’t indicate a exclusive relationship – not all, but some do.
    I think girls are overlooking this, whether they disagree or not.

    Namely because what as initially agreed upon! If the guy says “I don’t want a relationship” then acts all “coupley” and seems like he must want a relationship – he probably hasn’t changed his mind on what he said.

    Look at like this,
    I think some girls are counting “couple stuff” as if they count!

    1. He says “I don’t want a relationship” – Score: -2
    2. We see each other more days a week than not – Score: +1
    3. We do “coupley” things, like cookcookies together – Score: +1
    4. He introduced me to his parents – Score: +1
    5. He gets upset when we can’t spend more time together – Score: +1
    6. So on and so on. +,+,+

    When in reality the guy explicitly said 1. and in his mind the rest is harmless fun. And the real score goes as follows:
    1. -1
    2. 0
    3. 0
    4. nil
    5. 0, 0, 0, 0, so on and so on.

    Im not saying it its necessarily right or wrong, but certianly it is how some guys view it.

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

      I think some girls are counting “couple stuff” as if they count!

      1. He says “I don’t want a relationship” – Score: -2
      2. We see each other more days a week than not – Score: +1
      3. We do “coupley” things, like cookcookies together – Score: +1
      4. He introduced me to his parents – Score: +1
      5. He gets upset when we can’t spend more time together – Score: +1
      6. So on and so on. +,+,+

      When in reality the guy explicitly said 1. and in his mind the rest is harmless fun. And the real score goes as follows:
      1. -1
      2. 0
      3. 0
      4. nil
      5. 0, 0, 0, 0, so on and so on.

      This is effing brilliant. I’m thinking a post with this in some sort of graphic form! Any ideas?

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

    There is no need for moral absolution as I don’t feel bad and theres no god in my world.

    Newton’s third law: every action has equal reaction in the opposite direction.
    First Law of Thermodynamics: Energy can neither be created nor destroyed, only altered in form.

    Sometimes reading these threads really reminds me to go home and tell my husband how much I appreciate him and what a great man he is.
    This threads showed me that my husband is not only the best man I have ever meet but he is the best man I will ever meet. My hope is that my son is the second best man I will ever meet after hubby.

  • JP

    @Anacanoa:

    “Newton’s third law: every action has equal reaction in the opposite direction.

    First Law of Thermodynamics: Energy can neither be created nor destroyed, only altered in form.””

    Except that I’m pretty sure that ultimately the system is open and not closed.

    This works for chemical engineering, though.

  • BroHamlet

    @J:

    “That will have huge consequences for the women as well. We live in a society where the basic respect that people should have for one another has eroded and that affects us all in ways we aren’t even conscious of most of the time.”

    It might, but those consequences won’t be evenly distributed, nor will all the bullies in this case be punished, in large part because a lot of people (even myself to a degree) will find their own way around the maze because it’s easier to do that than sit around complaining, and even more people (men, also including myself lol) don’t have the time or the inclination to try to deal with every isolated case.

    People here have been making a moral case regarding the responsibilities of two parties in a FWB arrangement, but what I see is that they are injecting their own morality into interpreting a situation in which two separate moral perspectives are at play, and there is enough of a gray area that both have merit. There is so much subjectiveness as to make it almost moot. It could similarly be argued that female hypergamy and solipsism are both not explicitly “right” in a moral sense. Think about it- wanting only those that stand above your standing in life? Not really fair to those who are your actual peers. Instinctively viewing most everything through your own lens? I don’t even need to explain how that can go awry. Shit testing? We’ve been over that. All of the above have been the root of a lot of shitty behavior, but we accept them as right (and remember that our host does too after much heated debate), because in the end, in a situation with unclear moral boundaries, a lot depends on whose lens you are viewing it through.

  • Passer_By

    @cooper

    But his situation has changed since he said that, and his behavior changed right along with his situation changing. Also, you left out cuddling for hours, talking about marriage and taking long afternoon naps in eachother embrace.

    If he isn’t interested in a relationship, he is compulsively engaging in behavior that will trigger those feelings in her, because it feels very good to share those feelings and bask in them. If he doesn’t want an exclusive relationship, what he really seems to mean by FWB is “we will develop deep and profound feelings for each other bordering on love, and I will bask in them and enjoy the warmth of your undying affection, but I will not be exclusive to you in my affections.” He’s obviously getting off on the fact that the emotional connection between them is way beyond what we would think of as FWB.

    Again, I postulate that this compulsion for guys to behave in ways with women that cultivate this outcome is probably because nature gave us men instinctual bonding behaviors that help build harems (for guys who have the SMV to do it). Having her emotionally bonded to you is much more likely to keep her loyal to your dick.

    I remember, back when I was single and mild hockey hair was still ok, cudling and all that all evening with a woman after having sex with her for the 3rd or fourth time in our relationship, enjoying how much she enjoyed it and feeling good about myself, then the next day I thought “What am I doing? I don’t want this to get too serious.” So I broke it off so as not to lead her on . She just couldn’t understand how I could be deeply affectionate like that but not want the relationship. I’m thinking “Well, we both seemed to like it.” In another society, I would have just kept her and sought others.

  • Cooper

    “This is effing brilliant. I’m thinking a post with this in some sort of graphic form! Any ideas?”

    Take it a step further – splice “I don’t want a relationship” often with a bunch of intimate couple-type activities, and a girl might overlook the #1 repetitively. (If she can come up with enough +’s to outweighs that single – that matters.)

    As for the visual graph, I give it some thought. (Perhaps a stock-market analogy, where “the stock” appears to be rising and rising (with each coupley act) but the true value is still where it sat when they started.)

    Also, it’s important to mention the different ladders guys have. Guys generally are willing to do more with girls that are on a “not good enough” ladder than say vice versa. (Signs of being on (the bottom of) one ladder, is much likely to be indicative of being on another one all together)

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

      As for the visual graph, I give it some thought. (Perhaps a stock-market analogy, where “the stock” appears to be rising and rising (with each coupley act) but the true value is still where it sat when they started.)

      Ouch! I’m squirming just thinking about it, that’s a great idea.

      Also, it’s important to mention the different ladders guys have. Guys generally are willing to do more with girls that are on a “not good enough” ladder than say vice versa. (Signs of being on (the bottom of) one ladder, is much likely to be indicative of being on another one all together)

      Uh oh I think you just took this to 3D :) I have NO idea how I might represent that. I’ll sleep on it and look at it with fresh eyes tomorrow.

  • Cooper

    @passer_by

    “But his situation has changed since he said that”

    Then, what he says should to. Otherwise Score: zip

  • Passer_By

    @coop

    “Then, what he says should to. Otherwise Score: zip”

    Real life doesn’t work that way – people aren’t robots, and changes in feeling are gradual. Honestly, maybe I misunderstood your history, but my impression is that you’ve never been in this guy’s situation (FWB), so I’m not sure how you speak with such authority on it. And I’m not saying he does want a relationship. I’m saying his behaviors are calculated (consciously or not) to cultivate strong feelings and bondedness on her part. Him wanting a relationship is just one possibility.

  • Lokland

    @Joe

    “I did say that if the consequences for someone else are bad whilst being good for myself, I see no reason to exploit another persons voluntary idiocy.

    Lokland, my man, I have two masters degrees in the “hard sciences”, and I have no idea what you mean.”

    Thats because there is a ‘not’ missing. Should read…

    I see no reason not to exploit another persons voluntary idiocy.

    As in, if someone offers me $100 at no cost to MYSELF (obviously they lose out on $100) I see no reason not to take the money. (subsequently is a woman offers me NSA sex, I see no reason not to take it).

    “I suspect the problem we’re going to have communicating isn’t because there is no god is your world. But my observations say that, in general, atheists replace god in their worlds with their own egos (ego in the Freudian sense).”

    You work of the assumption that there is something that needs replacing which may or may not be correct.

    “The term moral absolution can never have the same meaning for me as it does for them.”

    I agree.
    Moral absolution for me involves being guilt free. For you it means squaring what you’ve done with God.

    I’m far less forgiving yet have a far wider range of acceptable behaviours.

  • Cooper

    “Honestly, maybe I misunderstood your history, but my impression is that you’ve never been in this guy’s situation (FWB), so I’m not sure how you speak with such authority on it.”

    “I remember, back when I was single and mild hockey hair was still ok”

    Sorry, which was when?

    “I’m saying his behaviors are calculated (consciously or not) to cultivate strong feelings and bondedness on her part.”

    Then shouldn’t he be comfortable in defining the relationship?

  • HanSolo

    @Passer_by

    +1 For better or worse been there done that.

  • Zach

    @Cooper’s scoring system

    This, this, this, this. If I’m not going to date a girl, period, and I’ve communicated that to her, then why not go to the movies with her? Why not bake cookies? If I’ve already said “no relationship”, I’m not leading her on.

    @J

    I could have very easily been MUCH worse in this current situation. I just the other day told this girl I wasn’t going to be entering into an LTR (I gave some reasons: business school in 6 months mostly, but it’s basically because I’m just not enough into her) and let her choose whether she still wanted to see me. I did this BEFORE I had sex with her. I could have very, very easily waited another few days, fucked her, and then just disappeared. She was completely ready to sleep with me. And let me tell you, that second choice would have been far easier for me (no awkward conversation with her, and I would have gotten laid no problem). It turns out she just broke up with her ex 6 weeks ago (didn’t really share that so much with me) and is on a “no relationship” page as well, and wants to just hang out and see where it goes. So you know what? That’s what I’m going to do, implications to her be damned. She’s going in eyes wide open, so it’s on her from here.

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

      @Zach

      So I guess the casual sex hiatus is over…

  • Sassy6519

    @ Zach

    I could have very easily been MUCH worse in this current situation. I just the other day told this girl I wasn’t going to be entering into an LTR (I gave some reasons: business school in 6 months mostly, but it’s basically because I’m just not enough into her) and let her choose whether she still wanted to see me. I did this BEFORE I had sex with her. I could have very, very easily waited another few days, fucked her, and then just disappeared. She was completely ready to sleep with me. And let me tell you, that second choice would have been far easier for me (no awkward conversation with her, and I would have gotten laid no problem). It turns out she just broke up with her ex 6 weeks ago (didn’t really share that so much with me) and is on a “no relationship” page as well, and wants to just hang out and see where it goes. So you know what? That’s what I’m going to do, implications to her be damned. She’s going in eyes wide open, so it’s on her from here.

    Is this with the shy “sloppy seconds” girl you went on 3-4 dates with, or a different girl?

  • Passer_By

    @coop
    “Sorry, which was when?”

    Yeah, I bet male nature has changed completely from the late ’90s (I was kidding about the hockey hair).

  • Sassy6519

    I think this thread has now given me license to keep a rotation of “beta providers” who I will never sleep with, for lack of attraction, so that they can offer emotional support to me while paying for my things. I’ve been shooting myself in the foot this entire time, and I didn’t even know it.

    I guess I should accept the friend request of that guy I met last week and get this ball rolling.

  • Passer_By

    @zach
    “If I’m not going to date a girl, period, and I’ve communicated that to her, then why not go to the movies with her? Why not bake cookies? ”

    Well, putting aside whether you should be baking cookies at all, you seem to be focusing on the innocuous.

    Why ask those questions? Why not ask “Why not bring her home to meet my mother and tell her what a great catch my mom thinks she is and how I really trust my mom’s judgement? Why not act hurt and upset when she isn’t available to see me? Why not take long naps while I hold her in my arms and gaze into her eyes when she wakes up? Why not talk about marriage (jokingly, of course, for plausible deniability)? Why not tell her I trust her more than any woman alive?”

    Whether he consciously intends this or not, those things are calculated to trigger “relationshippy” feelings in her.

  • Paul Rivers

    I’m a guy, and I was in a friends with benefits arrangement in college for 2 years. Honestly, in retrospect, in some ways I consider it the only meaningful romantic relationship I had (which was kind of sad, admittedly, but it wasn’t for lack of trying – I certainly dated other people, just nothing that clicked romantically enough to fall head over heels after a couple of months of dating them).

    I certainly considered dating her several times. I was pretty sure that if I asked, she would have said yes. But…I could just never convince myself that I would be happy with her long term. She was just…to far below my class level. The problem wasn’t with her looks – while she wasn’t a “9″ or “10″, if I hadn’t been physically attracted to her enough I wouldn’t have been sleeping with her in the first place.

    The problem was that she just didn’t quite attractive enough to me.

    1. She was to lower of a social class…it reads weird when I write it, but she smoked, all her friends were smokers and guys I had absolutely no interest in hanging out with because they were to much of one kind of loser or another. Her best female friend was another college girl…that occasionally did hard drugs, and I had absolutely zero respect for. Her and I were better friends than her and her female friend, and had she been able to make better female friends I’m sure she would have dropped that girl in a second – but, she couldn’t.

    2. I love girly passion and energy. Think sunshine and rainbows, a genuine hope and love for the future. She didn’t have that…at all, unfortunately. I mean I felt like she liked it, but she just couldn’t do it herself. Had she displayed any ability to do that, it would have made a big difference.

    I considered dating her many times. But she just…wasn’t good enough.

    I’m copying a couple of other people’s quotes here, but I would suggest -
    1. Find a week that’s not super busy, like finals, and follow the post on emotional escalation -
    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/06/08/relationshipstrategies/in-this-battle-of-the-sexes-women-need-to-blink-first/

    Dress up sexy, act sexy, treat it mostly as dating. Like it’s someone that you just met, you don’t really know them, but you’re trying to impress them.

    2. If he hasn’t said something within 3 times of this, follow the advice to “Just tell him that your arrangement has become too difficult for you and you’d like to go back to being just friends without benefits.”

    If possible, mentioning that you’re thinking of it, then another mention the next time, then say it explicitly the 3rd (and last time). He may try to reframe it, dismiss it, change the subject – etc. Let him. But don’t let it change your mind.

    If he has become attached to you romantically, this gives him plenty of time to think about it and decide what he wants to do. If he’s been feeling like he’s starting to want to date you, this will give him both the motivation to say something, and the opportunity to process his feelings on the matter.

    3. If you’ve been upfront the 3rd time, then it’s time to pull back and stop doing your friends with benefits arrangement. Send him a facebook / email message saying that you’ve had fun, and you don’t regret it at all, but if it keeps going on you’re going to start developing real feelings for him and end up getting hurt when he doesn’t feel the same way, so you’d rather stop they physical stuff now.

    If he tries to keep things going, you don’t need to be angry at all, but you do need to be blunt. Just straight up say “I still want to be friends, but I don’t want to cuddle at your place as we’re trying to move on from the friends with benefits arrangement”.

    If he’s developing romantic feelings for you, imo as a guy, and a guy who had a friends with benefits situation, this will cause him to do say or do something about it.

    The more he’s an ethical guy – or perhaps I should say “a guy you can actually continue to be friends with afterwards” – the less he’ll try to manipulate you into keeping it going. The more of a douchebag he is, the more he will.

    If – after all this – he suddenly says he wants to date you – I’m not sure what advice to give. If he was *me*, he would actually mean it, as I would never have said that unless I was certain. On the other hand, I’ve heard a ton of stories from female friends about guys who do that to get “that one last lay”, then she falls for him and he stops returning her calls. So…not sure on that one. I would say if he backs off right away, then later say he wants to date, it’s a much better chance that he actually means it.

    If he’s not actually romantically interested in you, this also ends the arrangement with an ego boost for him – it’s flattering that a girl found you attractive enough to sleep with you and start to fall for you. He’ll still be horny afterwards, but – that’s all you can do.

    The drawback of my plan is that it requires a certain amount of emotional control on your part. You have to be able to flirt one week, then the next week if he doesn’t respond with dating, actually pull away. Not everyone can do that.

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

      @Paul Rivers

      Welcome and thank you for that awesome testimonial! There’s great advice there for women, I appreciate it.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Paul Rivers, great post.

    Sassy, brilliant analogy. Collect those $100…

  • Paul Rivers

    “Cooper- I was glad to see all of the positive ideas, but now I am interested in what you are saying ( I am Hopeful, in case you are wondering). I didn’t realize guys were really that mean and deceptive!”

    The best logical model I’ve found for this is to understand deception.

    Deception is about appearing to do something acceptable or desirable, while actually doing something else.

    Problem is – most of the time people being deceitful are actively copying people who are completely not, in any way, being deceitful. The most effective thing to copy is what genuinely well meaning people do. There are some exceptions – “This isn’t what it looks like?” – but that’s because there was no positive behavior for the deceiver to pretend he was doing.

    It’s totally possible that a guy who didn’t have things work out with his ex, and started sleeping with a new girl, really is interested in the new girl now that it’s become clear that things are never going to work with his ex. Which is also exactly why it’s such a powerful frame for someone being deceitful to use – because it’s something regular people sometimes do.

    I mean honestly, it’s not always that someone is being deliberately deceitful. Sometimes it’s that they just follow an emotional pattern, and growing closer to someone they follow that pattern, just lacking in that one feeling you’re hoping they have. Girls do this to guys **all** the time – the “tehehe I was flirting with this cute guy tonight and dancing dirty with him, even though I have a boyfriend and it would never ever go anywhere with this guy (and that last part is actually true)”. Girls will often say this without even a hint of remorse or guilt, in fact if anything they express excitement. That’s like what the equivalent to what the guy could, possibly be doing.

  • JP

    @PR:

    “1. She was to lower of a social class…it reads weird when I write it, but she smoked, all her friends were smokers and guys I had absolutely no interest in hanging out with because they were to much of one kind of loser or another. Her best female friend was another college girl…that occasionally did hard drugs, and I had absolutely zero respect for. Her and I were better friends than her and her female friend, and had she been able to make better female friends I’m sure she would have dropped that girl in a second – but, she couldn’t.

    2. I love girly passion and energy. Think sunshine and rainbows, a genuine hope and love for the future. She didn’t have that…at all, unfortunately. I mean I felt like she liked it, but she just couldn’t do it herself. Had she displayed any ability to do that, it would have made a big difference.”

    Out of curiosity, did you ever discuss #1/#2 with her?

  • Zach

    @Susan

    Eh, not quite. Still not having any one night stands. Thats really what I meant by casual sex. Sex with people I didnt know at all, and didnt spend any time with outside of the bedroom.

    However, I may introduce some more “casual” sex back in. As I predicted, I had almost 3 months of self-imposed celibacy. Thats what happens when you only hook up with girls you take on dates, and kick to the curb very quickly those without relationship potential. When you’re ditching most girls after 1 date and not taking anyone home from bars to sleep with (took a girl back while visiting a friend in Vancouver but didnt sleep with her, had to cross off Canada), you’re not really going to get laid. And I have to say after 3 months (longest celibate streak since junior year of college by 6 weeks), I do miss sex quite a bit. No one night stands still, but maybe I’ll give girls I kind of like a few more dates and see what happens.

  • Jackie

    @Zach
    Hi Zach,

    I posted this on the “Date an Older Guy” thread for you, just in case you missed it:
    =====
    1419
    Zach, you can correct me if I’m wrong, but I’ve never “heard” you connect emotionally to any girl, with the exception of your ex-girlfriend. So much of your conversation reads (to me) like how you evaluate them and what you’re getting out of the deal.

    I almost wonder… so much has come so easy for you. Where have you experienced delayed gratification in your life?

    Have you ever really had to work at anything –I mean, in regards to developing a skill– where there has been no immediate payoff? Where there may never be a payoff?

    Also– and I could be totally mistaken here, please correct me if I’m wrong– but you read to me as a very “bottom line” kind of person.

    You go straight ahead, from one objective to the next, without a whole lot of contemplation or soul-searching. I almost feel like you avoid that kind of stuff. (Or are supremely annoyed by anything that is not concrete and tethered to earth).

    I don’t know what the answer is, Zach, but if I was trying to avoid connection and letting myself actually care about another person (and be vulnerable in return), I would follow a path much like yours. Again, I could be completely missing the mark, but that is how it reads to me.
    ====

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

      @Jackie

      I don’t know why exactly, but I was really missing you today. I am about to sign off for the evening, but I feel especially pleased to see that you commented.

  • J

    I could have very easily been MUCH worse in this current situation.

    True, but you hav been better too.

    I just the other day told this girl I wasn’t going to be entering into an LTR (I gave some reasons: business school in 6 months mostly, but it’s basically because I’m just not enough into her) and let her choose whether she still wanted to see me.

    Or, you could have given her an even more informed choice and said, “I’m just not that into you.” That, of course, would have decreased your chances for sex and her chances for self-deception. But you know that already, don’t you?

  • Paul Rivers

    “A guy can spend a whole weekend with you, cook meals together, laugh together, be passionate – do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman – and have absolutely zero emotional investment.

    In other words, women tend to associate those feelings with the desire for an exclusive relationship. Men are fully capable of having those feelings for multiple women at once.”

    I want to correct this, in my opinion.

    I’ve seen this phrasing used a lot when I was in college (I’m 32 now), and it never seemed to help the woman out, because it was fundamentally inaccurate for most confusing situations.

    When the guy actually has “zero emotional investment” – that usually isn’t hard for the girl to spot. Girls are pretty good at this, if she doesn’t catch on the first time she usually does the second.

    The trouble I would see, is that the girl would try to figure out if he was getting emotionally involved/invested. And you know what? He was. So she couldn’t figure it out – he seemed like he was getting emotionally involved. It seemed like he was getting invested. And they could never break out of it because – he was.

    The correct phrasing (imo) is -

    “A guy can…do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman – and have absolutely zero **romantic** emotional investment.”

    He can have emotional investment. Personal investment. But not be developing romantic feelings.

    But this is a possibility, not a certainty – certainly these are also the signs or behavior that happen when he’s falling for the girl. Nowadays, it’s not true that “men” do this and women can’t – the “friend zone” term came about exactly because women are just as capable of this, they’re just not usually sleeping with you when they’re doing it..they’re still sharing feelings, meeting your parents, doing everything you would do in a relationship except actually getting physical with you. It’s the same with guys – except guys are capable of doing that stuff with the physical component, without developing romantic feelings.

    (Honestly, more and more girls are capable of doing it to, it’s just usually not such as problem as guys usually view a girl who will sleep with him but doesn’t want to date him like they won $1,000 in the lottery but not the $10,000 grand prize – he doesn’t feel like the whole thing is a failure. Usually. Of course there are exceptions.)

  • J

    Think about it- wanting only those that stand above your standing in life? Not really fair to those who are your actual peers.

    While I think we all try to find the best mate we can, I really don’t believe in hypergamy as a major force. People really do mate assortatively, IME. And, FWIW, personally, DH and I are really pretty similar in looks, background, IQ, etc.

    All of the above have been the root of a lot of shitty behavior, but we accept them as right (and remember that our host does too after much heated debate)

    Not all of us do.

    because in the end, in a situation with unclear moral boundaries, a lot depends on whose lens you are viewing it through.

    Well, since I’m on my moral high horse today, I’m gonna come out in favor of clearer moral standards. People can screw whomever they want, let’s say, as long as they are completely honest.

  • J

    “True, but you hav been better too.” should read, “True, but you could have been better too.”

    And I have an italics fail in my response to Bro Hamlet.

    First day with the new fingers.

  • Jackie

    @Susan
    :mrgreen:

    Check the “20 Years” thread before you sign off– People really appreciate all that you do here, Susan. I can’t even imagine the amount of time and effort you put into this communtiy. You rock! :D

  • J

    I think this thread has now given me license to keep a rotation of “beta providers” who I will never sleep with, for lack of attraction, so that they can offer emotional support to me while paying for my things. I’ve been shooting myself in the foot this entire time, and I didn’t even know it.

    Way to go, but never actually say, “Look, I feel no attraction for you.” Just say you’re not ready for a relationship. ;-)

  • Jackie

    @Sassy

    “I think this thread has now given me license to keep a rotation of “beta providers” who I will never sleep with, for lack of attraction, so that they can offer emotional support to me while paying for my things. I’ve been shooting myself in the foot this entire time, and I didn’t even know it.

    I guess I should accept the friend request of that guy I met last week and get this ball rolling.”
    ===
    Ha ha ha! ;)

    This is ripe for satire! After I write my O. Henry-esque tale –instead of Dangerous Liasions, it’s going be along the lines of Digital Liasions– I am taking this trope and going crazy with it. 8-)

    I’m thinking re-booting Jonathan Swift: “A Modest Proposal: Men As ATM Machines; Women as Leeches.” (This could actually be a hilarious satire as graphic novel.)

  • Passer_By

    @sassy

    As long as you tell him up front that you won’t be having sex, it’s ok to let him see your tits while he jerks off, masturbate in front of him and tell him how nice it is to be able to do that in front of someone to whom you feel so close and who makes you feel so comfortable when you’re naked, and maybe once in a while give him a fully clothed lap dance in yoga pants or a bikini. I mean, you told him you weren’t going to fuck him, right?

  • BroHamlet

    @J

    While I think we all try to find the best mate we can, I really don’t believe in hypergamy as a major force. People really do mate assortatively, IME. And, FWIW, personally, DH and I are really pretty similar in looks, background, IQ, etc.

    This has been said before, especially here, and while I think your intentions are good, believing that hypergamy is not a major force is very shortsighted. The reason we are discussing at all, the reason “game”, and blogs like this even exist, is what happens before people decide when good enough is good enough and settle down because that space of time is much longer than in the past. How did it come to this? Maybe Susan will disagree, but hypergamy informs a lot more than just who a girl decides to marry. Point blank, men have stagnated in status relative to women, and that is the reason these discussions are going on at all.

  • szopen

    @lokland
    I see no reason not to exploit another persons voluntary idiocy.
    Clearly, we have different sense of morality. I am atheist too, BTW.

    @J

    A continued pattern of that sort of action, once you’ve been made aware

    Agreed completely. If my son breaks something and then claims “It was not my intention, I didn’t know it works like that!”I may believe him and I would just sile and patiently explain what to do. But ifhe continues to accidentally break things, and his explanation would be always “It was not my intention!” then I may be jst a little bit angry.

    And my son is six, while Zach, I presume, is a bit older.

  • Deli

    @Sassy
    Yes, and actually that’s exactly what the thread is about.

    You accept his invitation and you give him overt and explicit statement that you are not planning to eff him, that you are absolutely sure, and there is nothing that could change that.
    And if he continues being strung along and continues his advances as you regularly provide explicit affirmation to the said overt contract, well he’s on his own. Unfortunately being an idiot is still legal in most countries. *

    *Unless you are an amazing conversationalist and have knowledge in topics he is interested in, so he will be staying in touch for the discussions.
    Not my personal experience, sadly.
    I am yet to find a woman (and have found only about 2-3 guys total) who knows anything about railroad freight operations, internal design of modern diesel locomotives and applied color theory from the perspective of human eye anatomy and color recognition processes in human brain.

    (But I am certain: that foxxy cog. psych.-loving ferro-sexual wrench-wench is still out there waiting for me :) )

  • Just1Z

    @Deli
    “But I am certain: that foxxy cog. psych.-loving ferro-sexual wrench-wench is still out there waiting for me ”

    I note that misplaced optimism is also still legal in most countries…just saying

    but best of luck with your search (you’re going to need it, I’m very sorry to say (we should all get our dream partners)

  • Feelist

    ”There’s one difference between those though. A guy who is unhappy about being in the friend-zone is called a nice guy(tm) and considered a creep for wanting sex. A girl who is unhappy about being a FWB is not considered a creep for wanting emotional commitment”

    A nice guy(average) has low value. Women have naturally high value just for the sake of having a vagina. Its up to him to raise his value. Of course when he does it he’s so used to being sexually starved, he’ll indulge his deepest sexual desires and the women in his -now- social status level complain that he won’t commit.

    How a woman treats you also depends on your social status. The women from rich Countries regardless of how they look treat me as a nice guy. Attractive girls from underdeveloped Countries ”see” me as attractive as the 6’4” young Brad Pitt.

    Of course its hypergamy at play and they’d only put out if I was to give them what they want(a relationship/marriage etc) but its rather funny to be the creepy dude to 50% of the college’s female population and a ”jock” to the rest of the 50%.

  • Feelist

    ”Girls need to know how they can help lessen their chances of being assaulted too (without guilty feminists reminding them that they can “wear what they want”, and party as hard as they want), imho.”

    So I guess girls need to know that going to college looking like they’re about to walk the street for a living is not going to get them the relationships they want, nor the respect they desire?

    How are they going to get the male attention they crave, then?

  • http://x OffTheCuff

    Sassy: “I think this thread has now given me license to keep a rotation of “beta providers” who I will never sleep with, for lack of attraction, so that they can offer emotional support to me while paying for my things.”

    Go right ahead! It’s a useful strategy, though it probably won’t do anything to *get* you the man you want — but maybe it will make hooking up with a pure alpha man more tolerable. Heck, if you’re up front about it like Zach is, that’s very unusally clear of you, and you don’t have to save any idiot’s soul.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Passer_By

    As long as you tell him up front that you won’t be having sex, it’s ok to let him see your tits while he jerks off, masturbate in front of him and tell him how nice it is to be able to do that in front of someone to whom you feel so close and who makes you feel so comfortable when you’re naked, and maybe once in a while give him a fully clothed lap dance in yoga pants or a bikini. I mean, you told him you weren’t going to fuck him, right?

    I would be a bit more efficient that that. Since I have an extensive history in acting/theatre, this should be a cake walk.

    1. I’ll tell him that I don’t want to have sex with him. I won’t tell him it is because I’m not attracted to him. I’ll tell him any other fluff reason (Ex: “I want to focus on myself right now”, “I don’t want to ruin the friendship”, “Sex complicates things”, etc).

    2. We’ll go out together and he’ll pay for my things. I know he’ll pay for my things because every man I’ve encountered has wanted to pay for my things unless I explicitly tell them not to. I won’t be putting a stop to his flow of money this time.

    3. I’ll tell him things like “you are such a great guy” and “any woman would be lucky to have you”, knowing that I don’t mean myself when I say those things.

    4. On nights that I am lonely/bored, I will call him over to cuddle with me. Sometimes, I may even let him spend the night with me as we spoon together in bed.

    5. He will be my emotional tampon, and I will end every talk by telling him how he is such a “nice guy” or “sweet guy”.

    6. Eventually, I will become a bit more physical with him. I will allow him to hold my hand. We may even go dancing together, during which I’m sure he’ll get a hard-on as I carelessly grind my ass against him for an hour.

    7. On a rare occasion or two, I may let him kiss me. I’ll stop him, however, if he presses for more than that. If he asks me why I let him kiss me, I’ll simply say “because it’s fun”.

    8. Rinse, lather, repeat for probably 3-4 more guys. I’ve spun 4 dating plates before. I’m almost positive that I could have 3-4 male orbiters at any given time. I’ve avoided putting men in the “friendzone” in the past, since I always tried to spare their feelings, but I don’t have to do that now.

    9. If any of them complain about the lack of sex, or the lack of potential relationship (since I’m sure some of them will have bona fide crushes on me), I’ll simply hold to my original excuse.

    I wonder how much money I could successfully get from those chumps per month? I may never need to go grocery shopping again, not to mention my entertainment costs will decrease significantly. This should be fun!

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

      @Sassy

      Your list is very comprehensive – an excellent strategy. Just a few more things:

      10. When he asks if you could ever “see him as something more,” be sure to encourage him by saying, “Maybe! I know I love spending time with you! When I’m ready for a relationship, you could be the one!”

      11. If he gets wind of your sexing up alphas and pouts like a little bitch (the usual response), tell him that those guys mean nothing to you, they’re just ways for you to get sex without getting emotionally entangled.

      12. He will try to delve into your psychological state to try and determine why you won’t “let yourself” have the perfect relationship with him. If he gets too curious, just say that there are some things from your childhood that you are very ashamed of and can’t discuss with any man. He’ll be too intimidated to ask for details.

  • Sassy6519

    @ OffTheCuff

    Go right ahead! It’s a useful strategy, though it probably won’t do anything to *get* you the man you want — but maybe it will make hooking up with a pure alpha man more tolerable. Heck, if you’re up front about it like Zach is, that’s very unusally clear of you, and you don’t have to save any idiot’s soul.

    It’s not about getting the man I want. I wouldn’t want those men, since I don’t date betas and I would be sexing any man that I actually wanted. It’s about getting other things that I want, such as money and emotional support. I would definitely still be on the prowl for a man that I was actually attracted to, in the meantime.

  • Joe

    Sassy, it’s getting hard to see the difference between your “plan” (theatrics and all) and the reality that’s out there for betas.

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

      @Joe

      Sassy, it’s getting hard to see the difference between your “plan” (theatrics and all) and the reality that’s out there for betas.

      And they need to step up and put an end to it just the way we’re advising Hopeful. If it feels like crap, stop doing it.

      The point Sassy is making is that according to some rather fluid morality, neither women in FWBs or betas have any cause to blame the person enjoying all the benefits they provide.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Joe

    Sassy, it’s getting hard to see the difference between your “plan” (theatrics and all) and the reality that’s out there for betas.

    That’s not my problem. If some men are eagerly willing to offer me those things, why should I stop them?

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    It’s nice to see that Susan and Sassy are seeing the Friend-Zone script as exploitation. I think I could negotiate with them as equals and wouldn’t put them in a FWB-scenario.

    Most women don’t give guys anywhere near that level of respect, and I am unsure why guys should be bending over backwards for girls who think so little of them?

  • Sassy6519

    @ A Definite Beta Guy

    It’s nice to see that Susan and Sassy are seeing the Friend-Zone script as exploitation.

    Most women don’t give guys anywhere near that level of respect, and I am unsure why guys should be bending over backwards for girls who think so little of them?

    How is it exploitation? If the man consents to such an agreement, it’s on him. The women who put men in the “friendzone” owe them nothing. Why shouldn’t some men be kept in the friendzone, since he goes along with it, if it benefits her? Why should a woman look out for a man in this way?

  • http://x OffTheCuff

    Sassy, looking forward to the field reports! Rain fire on the gammas and deltas, and show them the error of their ways.

  • Joe

    @Susan

    And they need to step up and put an end to it just the way we’re advising Hopeful. If it feels like crap, stop doing it.

    @Sassy

    That’s not my problem. If some men are eagerly willing to offer me those things, why should I stop them?

    Ah! I get it. Two wrongs making a right. Right?

    Not exactly. I realize you’re both mocking the “flexible morality” bit to make a point. But don’t you see that your strawman is mocking the strawman tossed into this pit earlier with the same mocking intention? Sadly, what you’ve described is much closer to reality, not the exaggerated turnabout you intended.

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

      Ah! I get it. Two wrongs making a right. Right?

      You are right, Joe. It would actually be wrong of Sassy to actually undertake that plan, and I would not condone it. Deliberately profiting at someone else’s expense is just not OK.

      I really was just joking around. Sassy’s beef is not with betas, it’s with the players.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Joe

    Ah! I get it. Two wrongs making a right. Right?

    Not exactly. I realize you’re both mocking the “flexible morality” bit to make a point. But don’t you see that your strawman is mocking the strawman tossed into this pit earlier with the same mocking intention? Sadly, what you’ve described is much closer to reality, not the exaggerated turnabout you intended.

    I’m not trying to make a right out of two wrongs. I’m trying to be strategic.

    Also, there are no strawmans here.

    Finally, the situation I described is a reality, but so are FWB situations.

    My question is why should I not take what is offered to me by men of their own volition, even if they aren’t getting sexual “benefits”? It’s not my job to protect them. Why shouldn’t I take what is offered to me?

  • Lokland

    @Sassy

    I’ll be perfectly honest when I say that I see nothing wrong with that.
    Stupid if the guy allows it obviously but not morally wrong.

    ” It’s not my job to protect them. Why shouldn’t I take what is offered to me?”

    You shouldn’t unless you want to be Robin Hood.

  • Sassy6519

    @ OffTheCuff

    Sassy, looking forward to the field reports! Rain fire on the gammas and deltas, and show them the error of their ways.

    You know what? I may attempt this once or twice, just to see how effective I am at getting what I want. I’m kind of curious, actually.

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

    Sassy’s vignette does reflect the reality of existence for many betas. They attempt to trade provisioning and “playing house” domesticity for sexual companionship and believe that the woman is only holding out because she’s chaste and wants an old-fashioned courtship.

    I’ve heard women talk about these guys in some unpleasant ways that I won’t relate here because it would probably be too provocative.

    It’s not that the beta strategy never works—sometimes they can get sexual access if a window of time presents itself (Christmas, b-days, etc.). It just has such serious potential costs in terms of self-concept and bitterness. If a guy is going to take this approach, I think he should exclusively target women way, way above his SMV.

    FWB is often a good format for Fisherian “Explorers”, IMHO. The woman can concentrate on career and still maintain her man-harem of beta orbiters for endless Facebook validation and economic benefits, while the man can spend time on work, exercise, Viking drinking games with the Crew, and other important hobbies/interests. They can get together for the hot sex and weekend sleepovers and retain a sense of mystery and adventure around the relationship that can have its own dopamine kick.

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

      FWB is often a good format for Fisherian “Explorers”, IMHO.

      Agreed. I think people need to realize what they’re made of, and not attempt to “try this at home” if they haven’t got the right equipment, i.e. wiring.

  • http://x OffTheCuff

    I think you, of course, will succeed at getting an orbiter, but not necessarily a perfectly compliant orbiter to the chumpish degree you describe. If you could get one like that, it would flame out fast. I was as gamma as all get-out in high school, but wouldn’t stoop to even a fraction of THAT level.

    Don’t undervalue your face time, though – a night of cuddling is enjoyable. Your best bet for maximal resource-extraction is to to keep all that to the minimum. Texting is your friend here.

  • Mike C

    My question is why should I not take what is offered to me by men of their own volition, even if they aren’t getting sexual “benefits”? It’s not my job to protect them. Why shouldn’t I take what is offered to me?

    Sassy,

    You should do whatever you want, and allows you to look at yourself in the mirror. It isn’t clear to me if you are being genuine or playing devil’s advocate here.

  • Zach

    @Sassy

    I agree, go right ahead. If you can find guys who are big enough chumps to do that, then go for it. Any guy who’s stupid enough to stay in that zone is asking for it. It’s like what I once said to a girl when she walked up to me and said “hey, want to buy me a drink?” “I know I don’t like look an ATM, but THAT guy down the bar definitely does. Go ask him.”

    @Jackie

    I’ve connected emotionally to a couple girls besides my ex. However, neither of those situations worked out at all (for different reasons), and so there’s nothing really to report. I don’t dwell on my past failures. One girl had me so much that I acted bought into every single line she said, no matter how outrageous it was (I was her little beta puppy dog, except we were having sex). The other girl was at the end of college, and she left me for another guy, her fat friend who she “realized she was in love with”, dated for a few months, got sick of and then dumped. I had a bad habit of going after girls who had red flags waving from every point of their bodies. I grew out of it. I learned from those experiences, and am more cautious when evaluating a girl. When you hear me “evaluating” a girl, it’s generally my parsing my feelings into concrete things. So it’s going from my feeling “I just am not hugely into her” to “I’m not hugely into her because she’s X”. I’m 25. I’m not trying to get married anytime soon, so part of what I’m using this time for is to find out what I like and don’t like in a girl. With my ex, we had an awesome sex life, great times partying together, and had fun doing activities together, but there just wasn’t enough to talk about in the quiet times. I really liked her, but it just wasn’t going to work for me long-term, and I knew it. It taught me something.

    And I’ve had to work for plenty of things in my life. I worked really hard to get into the high school I got into, then really hard to get into an Ivy-league university. I’ve worked very hard at my job, and have been promoted twice in 3 years due to that. I taught myself financial modeling so I have a larger skill set when applying to future jobs.

    Things without real payoff I don’t describe as work. They are hobbies. Reading about the social disintegration of America in Charles Murray’s “Coming Apart” has no payoff for me aside from my intrinsic curiosity. I have a pretty busy life, and I don’t really have the inclination to do things just to do them. Those are vacations.

    And yes, I’m very objective driven, and I don’t spend a lot of time to wonder about things. I find religion to be a bit of a joke (sorry), and I think the wishy-washy “finding yourself” is new-age BS. I think if you talked to more men you’d find I’m not even close to alone in my objective-driven perspective. Men are problem-solvers. It’s what we do. So for me, problem might be “how do I get where I want to go in my career”? I then come up with a solution and enact it. I don’t spend time wondering what “career” means, or if the universe has a plan for me. I also don’t sit back and expect things to come to me. I identify the things I want, make a plan to get them, and go out there and execute.

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

    Sassy wrote:
    I wonder how much money I could successfully get from those chumps per month? I may never need to go grocery shopping again, not to mention my entertainment costs will decrease significantly. This should be fun!

    Just remember that while violence is officially the tool of the state in a republic, historically it was how men enforced order with women. There are many betas out there seething with anger over their fate in the sexual marketplace, as you’ve seen for yourself here. So if an angry beta knocks your teeth out in revenge once the game is up, you only have yourself to blame.

  • Joe

    I had to run out. Dentist appointment. I’m back and I’m numb!

    I really was just joking around. Sassy’s beef is not with betas, it’s with the players.

    Oh, I know.

    But Sassy’s about to become busy “raining fire on the gamma and deltas, showing them the error of their ways,” not actually kidding now and being cheered on by the Loklands and OTCs of the world. Sigh. First, they came for the gammas…

    In actuality, this whole thing, joking included, is precisely what Roissy dreams of seeing. I guess we are all belong to the Chateau now.

  • Lokland

    @Joe

    OTC is joking.
    I am serious.

    Should be noted I apply this standard to more than just mating.
    No one watches your back in life. Fact of life is, if you aren’t trying to use others they will be using you.

    Much better to be the user.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Mr. Nervous Toes

    Just remember that while violence is officially the tool of the state in a republic, historically it was how men enforced order with women. There are many betas out there seething with anger over their fate in the sexual marketplace, as you’ve seen for yourself here. So if an angry beta knocks your teeth out in revenge once the game is up, you only have yourself to blame.

    Uh…..no.

    I wouldn’t be to blame for anything. I wouldn’t force men into such arrangements. They would agree to participate in them of their own volition. The consequences are on them, not me.

    If a man decided to “knock my teeth out”, in retaliation, he would swiftly find himself in jail with a restraining order against him. If he doesn’t like the game, he shouldn’t play.

  • Jackie

    @Joe

    Sassy’s hypothetical experiment would only backfire on her, ultimately. Not that she couldn’t get CASH N PRIZEZ out of the men– she could, obvi!

    But what she is describing is tacit exploitation, pandering and manipulation. People seem to think that you can exploit others with no (surface) cost to yourself. This is not true.

    Exploitation hurts the practitioner at a core level, maybe even more than her/his victims. There is no way you can have self-respect or integrity (or peace, for that matter) when you use other people for self-gratification.

    The resulting contempt you have for them — let’s face it, that is the only possible result when someone falls for your manipulation tactics; you hate them for falling for it almost as much as you hate yourself for having to stoop to it– bleeds over into your own psyche.

    In short: No such thing as a free lunch.

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

      Exploitation hurts the practitioner at a core level, maybe even more than her/his victims. There is no way you can have self-respect or integrity (or peace, for that matter) when you use other people for self-gratification.

      The resulting contempt you have for them — let’s face it, that is the only possible result when someone falls for your manipulation tactics; you hate them for falling for it almost as much as you hate yourself for having to stoop to it– bleeds over into your own psyche.

      In short: No such thing as a free lunch.

      I was surprised to learn when I was researching NPD that narcissists are actually miserable and often depressed for this precise reason. They are not blessed with lack of self-awareness – deep down they know how manipulative they are, and that their behavior is wrong.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    ” Fact of life is, if you aren’t trying to use others they will be using you.

    Much better to be the user.”
    ===
    I’ve seen this mindset before in people who have been abused. :( It’s not the only paradigm, LL. There’s a better way.

  • Joe

    I know you’re serious too, Lokland, and yes, it doesn’t just apply to the mating dance either. I see the same dynamic being played out on Capitol Hill right now, too, between the political parties. Ayn Rand described it as the stage after “going Galt” in the larger society.

    Needless to say, I’m not sanguine about the outcome.

  • Just1Z

    I doubt that Hitler, Stalin or Mao lost much sleep over killing people by the multiple millions. People without morals can have free lunches. Society isn’t really teaching morals these days. It appears that laws by the multitude are supposed to restrict our actions, rather than old-fashioned self discipline.

  • Joe

    @Jackie

    In short: No such thing as a free lunch.

    I agree. Lokland and others believe that there are such things as opportunities that occasionally come your way without consequences. They would not agree, I imagine.

  • Jackie

    @Zach
    Hey Tolstoy! Thanks for your reply! ;)

    I appreciate the response — that’s so sweet that you were once devoted puppy! I’m sorry to hear it didn’t work out. :(

    (Though: Why the scare quotes about her realizing she had fallen in love with her friend? Do you not think that’s possible? And why did you point out that he was fat? Do fat people not deserve love?

    Or are you incredulous that a girl could prefer a chunky dude to you and thus want to take him down a peg?)

    I’m with Voltaire, regarding your disagreement with my beliefs. And I have no beef with atheists– I think it’s an orientation, for the most part. Born this way, so to speak. ;-P

    That said, Why do you think religion is a joke? Do you think people who practice religion are “jokes” as well? Is searching for meaning a joke? Or is the concept of a God (or gods) a joke?

    Finally: What I meant about working towards something with no immediate tangible reward– I should have used the concept of “integrity.”

    Do you believe in integrity, Zach (i.e. thoughts, speech, actions in alignment)? If not, why not?

    PS: I know you are busy and these are quite personal, so I totally understand if you would prefer not to respond. Peace, Zach :)

  • Just1Z

    @Joe
    absent a belief in an all powerful god that administers absolute justice in the afterlife, there clearly can be actions without consequences for the perpetrator. it doesn’t make them right, but that doesn’t mean that justice is ever going to forthcoming.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    This thread has just gotten too depressing for me. Time to read video game forums.

  • Escoffier

    This is like Plato’s Gorgias, where Socrates makes the argument that it is far better to endure rather than commit injustice and that the most miserable person in the world is the perfectly unjust man who is never caught or punished. Naturally, all his interlocutors get really angry at him.

    Fond memories, that wasn’t the first dialogue I read but it was the first one that really woke me up. Bernard Williams, RIP.

  • J

    This has been said before, especially here, and while I think your intentions are good, believing that hypergamy is not a major force is very shortsighted…

    Yes, I understand that I’m the outlier here in not believing much in hypergamy, and I acknowledge that it does play a role in fantasy (Cinderella stories, etc.). I just don’t see it play out much IRL. The women who read romance novels in which the shop girl marries a millionaire are generally married to plumbers themselves.

    Hell, I’ll even confess to dreaming of marrying the prince when my mom read me fairy tales, but I “settled” for a smart guy from a somewhat lower SES than me who had a helluva lot of drive. Then we worked together to get what we have, and now we appreciate it. Smart people figure this out early. If not, life has a way of showing them. I feel sorry for women from the Boston slums who think they can marry a Kennedy (as opposed to just getting raped by one) as much as I feel sorry for men who think that game is going to get them a woman 5 HB points above their own SMV. People need to be realistic about themselves, understand what they can have and then go after it.

  • BroHamlet

    @Lokland & Sassy

    I’ll be perfectly honest when I say that I see nothing wrong with that.
    Stupid if the guy allows it obviously but not morally wrong.

    I’m going to cosign this, Lokland. I just don’t really see the evil. She might discover that a pretty face is still worth a monthly stipend to some guys. For some men, it always has been.

    Maybe the moralist sentiment should be aimed at the system that teaches people that their own concept of morality or honesty is the only valid one? Because I see a lot of people here arguing over what constitutes full disclosure by degrees. They will probably never come to an agreement because what is “enough” detail for one person, isn’t enough for the next. Let’s also remember that the social context (this blog and it’s missions) in which the discussion is being had, affects the discussion itself.

    And I can’t remember who, but someone quoted Newton’s third law. IF the world was a perfectly efficient closed system, this would work as an analogy to “Karma”. But it’s not and the world is not that simple.

  • Joe

    Just1z, I’m in Jackie’s camp with this. Even absent a belief in an all powerful god, a person’s actions always have consequences both for others and on the actor. Only some (even few!) of the consequences may become visible to others. More of them, but perhaps not even all can be felt by that person himself.

    I can’t help but think that the example on the table is something like a situation where a masochist is telling a sadist “Beat me! Beat me!”. (Punchline to an old joke – the sadist replies “No!”) The sadist may think he’s got permission and there are no consequences. But there most certain are, especially on the sadist. He is changed.

    Part of the human condition is that ya can’t run away from yourself.

    Of course, with a belief in an all powerful god, and in the face of an actual all powerful God, the moral absolution is still in question, whether the victim gives absolution or not.

  • J

    If the guy says “I don’t want a relationship” then acts all “coupley” and seems like he must want a relationship – he probably hasn’t changed his mind on what he said.

    Except that most women are going to view the coupley behavior as an indication that the guy is changing his mind, just as, in my striptrease scenario, most men are going to view the treasing as an indication that the girl is changing her mind. And that’s normal. It doesn’t make one an idiot if one sees a change in behavior as a change of mind. Actions, as they say, speak louder than words. That’s why is disingenuous to act in one way and then expect that people will take you at your word.

  • Just1Z

    @Joe
    “Part of the human condition is that ya can’t run away from yourself.”

    yeabut, I think that there are people without any real ‘self’ to run away from. even short of having a full on ‘pathy there are many people that can rationalise anything…

    I saw an interview on (UK) national tv of a bunch of kids that lived off of benefits. One young ‘lady’ was asked if she felt guilty for living off of other people. Princess replied that, “nah, cos like, I get me benefits right? but like I pay tax when I buy me fags. so like it’s fair innit”.

    Just what inner dialogue do you think is going on within her ‘brain’? I don’t believe that you could find a self within to be troubled by anything…

    (liked your joke BTW)

  • J

    Go right ahead! It’s a useful strategy, though it probably won’t do anything to *get* you the man you want — but maybe it will make hooking up with a pure alpha man more tolerable. Heck, if you’re up front about it like Zach is, that’s very unusally clear of you, and you don’t have to save any idiot’s soul.

    I suspect that our Sassy is a brilliant satirist and is “taking the piss,” as the British say, out of Zach. However, if a woman is looking to use a guy, Sassy (and later Susan) is providing an excellent blueprint. Notice that it’s pretty equivalent to to the male role in a FWB scenario. The hope that things will become more intimate is never really squashed by the “playa” in either case because we all know that if one person tells the other straight up “I’m not attracted to you” or “I just want sex,” then that person will walk and the “playa” will no longer be able to take advantage.

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

    Sassy,

    I am making a point, although perhaps I am being too obtuse, so let me elaborate excessively. For the record, Mr. Nervous Toes does not partake in nor approach of FWB situations. He has had romantic flings, that generally either failed to make the transition from lust to love or ran into geographical constraints, but these were hardly without emotional intimacy.

    Now, if violence is the masculine tool to enforce social order, shame is the female tool to enforce social order. Violence is illegal in our society (except for the state), shaming is not. Violence is the tool of last resort due to the legal consequences, but precious few women see man-shaming as a weapon of last resort. For shame to be effective, it has to be balanced with reward. Shaming has been losing its effectiveness in our society because women by-in-large are not rewarding men for good behaviour (and also because our social circles are getting so large and volatile). Thus more and more men go, “Fuckit!” because they can either:

    A.) Be shamed by women for being a nice guy, and get no sex.

    OR

    B.) Be shamed by women for having a FWB, and get sex.

    You, on the other hand, run the risk of the same fate as Rihanna. The law can retroactively take vengeance, but it cannot realistically stop a man from hurting you in the first place. Your talk of a restraining order, is like the ‘internet tough guy’ caricature but as a woman. Remember, sexual dichotomy exists. That was the entire purpose of Susan’s last post, was it not?

    From an evolutionary biology perspective, there’s three basic forms of relationships: symbiotic, parasitic, and altruistic. For social animals, the ideal situation is often where animals are slightly altruistic towards members of their own species, as strengthening the tribe tends to help the reproductive success of the individual. For humans in modern society, it’s probably a better idea to aim for symbiotic relationships. A little bit of parasitic or altruistic behaviour at the start of a relationship is ok but the intention should be to return to a state of equilibrium exchange of favours. For example, if you lose your job, going on welfare and becoming parasitic to the state is fine if it helps you not make life-wrenching changes and get a new position relatively quickly. Staying on welfare forever, is not so sustainable and corrosive for the recipient.

    If a man and women get into a budding relationship and she fails to engage her vulnerability game and escalate emotionally, a FWB situation results and she’s at fault. If he intentionally deceives her, then he’s at fault, but how to judge? Similarly if a women engages in your proposed strategy and ‘plays games’ to encourage him to spend money on her, then she’s behaving badly and should be prepared to face the consequences if her game is discovered and he’s angry and drunk. But if he simply fails to physically escalate then that’s his problem — but this is _not_ the situation you have described. Thus the difference between what’s ok and what’s not is the same bugaboo that criminal justice deals with: intent. What’s the difference between murder and manslaughter? A person is still dead, either way.

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

    That should read, “approve of FWB situations,” above.

  • BroHamlet

    @J

    Yes, I understand that I’m the outlier here in not believing much in hypergamy, and I acknowledge that it does play a role in fantasy (Cinderella stories, etc.). I just don’t see it play out much IRL. The women who read romance novels in which the shop girl marries a millionaire are generally married to plumbers themselves.

    Go to any bar on a friday night and you will see it play out. The many chasing the few LOL. Or any college campus. You don’t even have to do that. Just read Susan’s post about the SMV scales for women and men (can’t look up the link, but it basically explains how and why so many women direct their efforts to men at the top of the pyramid). Or just note the existence of blogs about married men keeping their wives interested. One would think that just earning a little more and not getting fat would be enough. Not so. All an outgrowth of hypergamy. Even the system as it exists is built to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to men- it’s comical because it really and truly is one big test. If it’s not already painfully obvious, many of the men who listen to mainstream messages about them are at a real disadvantage when it comes to even attracting someone of their same stature, especially (and most importantly) when those women are at their most attractive.

  • Jackie

    @Bro Hamlet

    “Maybe the moralist sentiment should be aimed at the system that teaches people that their own concept of morality or honesty is the only valid one? Because I see a lot of people here arguing over what constitutes full disclosure by degrees”
    ====
    BH, can you elaborate on this? Most of the morality discussed around here is the Golden Rule, which is central to multiple religions and (theoretically) practiced by billions. Is there another competing concept of morality that we should be aware of?

    And, specifically, can you address how morality is conflated with disclosure?

  • Joe

    Just1z, yeah, I see people without conscience too. Your example is a good one.

    But isn’t that the point? It’s clear that they see no consequences, so their conscience is clear! But there’s a lot of people, me and you, I suspect, who see plenty. Their lack of vision doesn’t change that.

    To bring this back to HUS, that’s exactly the idea that’s plaguing many here. Everybody wants to be loved, but nobody wants to be taken. Why not be a taker then? It’s because that way, you lose. Guaranteed.

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

      @Joe

      Everybody wants to be loved, but nobody wants to be taken. Why not be a taker then? It’s because that way, you lose. Guaranteed.

      I’m with you and Jackie. Only by offering love can you really hope to receive it. We need a lot more risk taking, IMO. Just listen to how afraid the young people here are about having their hearts broken. It’s understandable, but also inevitable, I think. At least for most people. My heart got stomped on a few times. You pick yourself up, reflect and learn whatever the experience can teach you, and get back out there.

      We’re not porcelain teacups, we need to be willing to risk injury for the biggest prize, which is love.

      P.S. This does not mean being weak or supplicating. We can give with dignity and self-respect, and not lower our value in the process.

  • Just1Z

    @Joe
    so…’neither a taker nor a taken be’?

    I’d agree with that.

    it was the ‘this will hurt me as much as you’ hippy stuff that I thought was misguided; there are people that will take regardless of whatever consequences that others can see. caveat emptor

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “P.S. This does not mean being weak or supplicating. We can give with dignity and self-respect, and not lower our value in the process.”

    Yes it does.
    Your either a ‘go get em’ independent tough grl who can take care of yourself or your barefoot and pregnant dependent on others for everything in life.

    Your generation wanted a society of extremes. Good to know in hindsight very few of you realize it was a bad idea.

    “At least for most people. My heart got stomped on a few times. You pick yourself up, reflect and learn whatever the experience can teach you, and get back out there.”

    Difference between now and then.

    Its not a few times.

    I got walked on everyday for 15 years. It was not a few times thing.
    Success (or hell, even indifference from others) was a once in a blue moon type event.

    PS Talking about general life, not just dating, which for me has never involved heartbreak.

    “Only by offering love can you really hope to receive it. ”

    Face palm.

    As a kid I offered kindness and understanding, I got walked on, robbed, had the shit beat outta me.

    As a teenager I tried to be kind, I got walked on, robbed, no one could beat the shit out of me any longer.

    I didn’t start getting anything GOOD until all I started putting out was bad.

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

      @Lokland

      Your either a ‘go get em’ independent tough grl who can take care of yourself or your barefoot and pregnant dependent on others for everything in life.

      What? This makes no sense to me. As I look around I see a lot of women somewhere in between.

      I didn’t start getting anything GOOD until all I started putting out was bad.

      I’ll confess I have absolutely no idea how to respond to this. Perhaps Jackie will do a better job. I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around the idea of getting walked on every day for 15 years, short of being a prisoner, hostage, or something like that.

  • J

    FWB is often a good format for Fisherian “Explorers”, IMHO. ….
    Agreed. I think people need to realize what they’re made of, and not attempt to “try this at home” if they haven’t got the right equipment, i.e. wiring.

    Yep. This is why people need to know themselves. There was a time that I really envied the women like Sassy is pretending to be and felt that they were taking guys who were rightfuly “mine.” Then I realized that I didn’t have the stomach to pull that shit anyway.

    I had to run out. Dentist appointment. I’m back and I’m numb!

    Numb may be the best way to enjoy this thread.

    But Sassy’s about to become busy “raining fire on the gamma and deltas, showing them the error of their ways,” not actually kidding now and being cheered on by the Loklands and OTCs of the world. Sigh. First, they came for the gammas…In actuality, this whole thing, joking included, is precisely what Roissy dreams of seeing. I guess we are all belong to the Chateau now.

    Yep, let’s just burn it all down, while we all sit poolside.

    Actually, I try to take heart in the words of Walter Sobchak, “No, Donny, these men are nihilists, there’s nothing to be afraid of. “

  • Zach

    @Jackie

    Yes, that is exactly why I mentioned he was fat, because I was incredulous that I could “lose” to him. I actually had several friends not believe me when I told them what happened, that’s how physically unappealing this guy was, and how out of his league she was. And this is not a girl who’s generally about the “inner beauty”. Her dating history is mostly one of frat stars and athletes.

    I absolutely believe in integrity. I follow through on what I commit to. And in a FWB situation, I commit to not committing. I’m not in control of others’ perceptions of my actions. All I can do is commit to something (not dating the girl). She can warp my actions to fit any narrative she chooses, but that’s not in my hands.

    Re: religion. I have quite a few religious friends. I don’t think people who adhere to religions are jokes. I just tend to think a bit less of their reasoning capacity. Religion is rife with arbitrary rules, dietary codes being just one example (no real reasoning why food x and not food y; it’s just because that’s how it is), all justified by belief in made up fairytales. Honestly, take away the history and tradition behind it, try releasing the bible today as non-fiction and you’d get laughed out of every publishing house. Water turned into wine? Raising a man from the dead? An omnipotent creator who no one has ever seen and defies any proof of existence? The likelihood of there being a judeo-christian god is just as strong as there being an omnipotent flying spaghetti monster. Even more, this god as described is a raging a**hole. He’s insanely jealous, completely inflexible, and downright cruel (oh hey Job, I know I f**ked you over completely, but I was just pulling your chain, or “you, go kill your son to prove I’m the best”). I could go on, but I think that just about summarizes my view.

  • Escoffier

    The jackass who came up with “flying spaghetti monster” has done arguably more damage to the American education system than anyone in the last century. Way to take 2,500 years of extremely deep thought re: “Athens v. Jerusalem,” reduce it to a cartoon, and convince every freshman philosopher that he’s figured it all out.

  • J

    Much better to be the user.

    Best to neither.

    “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.”

    For the Christians, that’s Matthew 10:16. If you’re Jewish, consider it wise Jewish advice from a bright guy some mistakenly think was the Messiah. If you’re an atheist, think of it as common sense. And if you have trouble with King Jamesian English, it means, “Don’t mess with others, just be smart enough tosee it coming when others mess with you.”

    Exploitation hurts the practitioner at a core level, maybe even more than her/his victims. There is no way you can have self-respect or integrity (or peace, for that matter) when you use other people for self-gratification.

    The resulting contempt you have for them — let’s face it, that is the only possible result when someone falls for your manipulation tactics; you hate them for falling for it almost as much as you hate yourself for having to stoop to it– bleeds over into your own psyche.

    You are such a smart kid, Jackie. I’m so glad that this is your take-away from your own horrid situation.

  • J

    The jackass who came up with “flying spaghetti monster” has done arguably more damage to the American education system than anyone in the last century. Way to take 2,500 years of extremely deep thought re: “Athens v. Jerusalem,” reduce it to a cartoon, and convince every freshman philosopher that he’s figured it all out.

    Bravo, Esco.

    As someone who had a rather long spiritual journey, complicated by a long period of atheism and cynicism, I tire of the sophmoric juvenalia spouted by people who haven’t been in a church or synagogue since their confirmation or Bar Mitzvah. It’s one thing to reject a child’s view of God, it’s another to assume that other people’s views haven’t evolved since 13 or 16. If most of these folks were to have a REAL discussion with their clergy, they’d find that their clergy don’t believe many of the same things they don’t believe.

  • Jackie

    @J
    :oops:
    :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
    8-) 8-) 8-)

    Thanks, J! You made my day.

  • Jackie

    @Esco, J

    Well, I can’t blame people who have a hate-on for religious folks entirely. Think of the most ostentatiously religious people in our culture– they make me crazy in their intolerance and unkindness.

    Last night I was at the gym and I am too stupid to know how to work the tv remotes, so I got stuck watching televangelism for an hour on the treadmill. :cry: At first I thought it was SNL or something, because it was so craven, gross and money-hungry– pimping of imitation leather Bibles. Ugh!

    I think there is a lot of cheap sophistry involved in the current modern atheist movement as well; how I hate the terms “Sky Fairy” and “Jeebus”! And the reading of sacred texts at a cursory, 21st century level is of course going to result in an epic fail of understanding.

    It’s too easy to get entrenched on your side of the turf in the so-called “culture war.” I think to ask the question, Why are we here, with an open heart, and then to listen quietly for the answer is much harder, but necessary.

  • Escoffier

    Seriously, I realize that in our time it’s rare to come across a truly first-rate pious mind on the order of, say, Cardinal Newman, because religion is so atrophied and the educated classes have run away from it the fastest.

    But pick up a book … Augustine, Aquinas, Pascal, Maimonidies, Farabi, and so on, if you want to see what real theological-philosophical depth is like.

    The early modern philosophers from Machiavelli through the Englightenment took faith with the utmost seriousness even though–or precisely because–they were all non-believers. Learn something from them, too.

  • J

    Go to any bar on a friday night and you will see it play out. The many chasing the few LOL. Or any college campus. . ..

    You say this to me as though you think there was no bar scene when I was single, as though I don’t speak to anyone under 50 IRL, and as though I’ve never seen the various blogs you mention. In point of fact, things are fundamentally the same as they always were. I’ve had my share of disappointments as have most of the people here. I fully understand what’s going on. I’m trying to show you guys how to side-step it.

  • Escoffier

    “things are fundamentally the same as they always were”

    I don’t think this is true at all. Certain fundamental forces may be the same as ever, but they are now acting in a different environment, with fewer restraints, so the observed behaviors are mighty different.

  • J

    I doubt that Hitler, Stalin or Mao lost much sleep over killing people by the multiple millions.

    Ah, role models………

  • Jackie

    @Zach

    Thank you for your response! :D

    Regarding Chunky Dude: Don’t you believe you could be loved for your heart and character, Zach? Maybe you need to be looking for girls of better character, who will love you for yourself.

    I mean, it sounds like you believe the way you evaluate girls (ie MUST BE HAWT N SKINNEH) is the same way they evaluate you. Which obviously isn’t true. As hard as it is for you to believe, in that girl’s eyes, CD was extremely attractive.

    I know you have this awesome life that is full of sex and money, but have you ever been loved for who you are? It just seems to me that what you are continually finding is what you are putting out there. And you don’t seem to like the results very much.
    ===
    “I absolutely believe in integrity. I follow through on what I commit to. And in a FWB situation, I commit to not committing.”

    This reads as super-Orwellian to me, somehow. How can you commit to not committing? I mean, how does it work? (It actually seems more like you are determined not to let other people’s feelings affect you. When this does happen, like your ex-GF, you write of profound guilt.)

    It reminds me of when you said you were pursuing casual loveless sex and a girlfriend simultaneously. I disagreed that it was possible: Look at how interconnected our systems are (the mind-body connections alone are pretty staggering to contemplate!). Compartmentalization is not possible; the parts will bleed over into one another.
    ===
    I realize we do not have anything in common, apart from being carbon-base forms of life and a love of Russian literature, but I must address your last point regarding religion:

    What is your personal experience with religion? Growing up what kind of background did you receive? Anything?

    Because it appears you have a very cursory, simplistic and South Parkian understanding of the Abrahamic faiths.

    Have you ever discussed sacred texts with someone who has studied them in-depth? I mean, look at ALL the commentary various rabbis will have on just the few parts of the OT you mentioned. Obviously there is something beneath the surface that has merited thousands of years of discussion and scholarship.

    Have you ever met a Jesuit? Talked to a Red-Letter Christian? Studied the Sojourners?

    I have no intention of conversion, Zach, don’t worry ;) If you’re born an atheist, that is your orientation. I will only refer you to the passage of Talmud that says,
    We do not see the things the way they are; we see things the way we are.
    (Peace)

  • J

    Perhaps I overstated my case, Esco. Human nature is fundamentally unchanging though. People chasing the wrong people is nothing new.

  • J

    Have you ever met a Jesuit? Talked to a Red-Letter Christian? Studied the Sojourners?

    I believe Zach once said he was raised Jewish (though my post-menopausal memory does play tricks on me). If so, I suggest a sharp, campus Hillel or Chabad rabbi as opposed to whatever suburban Bar Mitzvah mill rabbi made him sit through a few hours a week of Hebrew school per week and taught him just enough religion to give him a sense of contempt for it.

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

      I believe Zach once said he was raised Jewish (though my post-menopausal memory does play tricks on me).

      No, that’s Jason. Zach is a WASP.

  • Joe

    @J

    Perhaps I overstated my case…

    No, you didn’t J. You know how it goes. plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose and “History may not repeat, but it rhymes.”

    Don’t know about you, but my problem is a tendency to jump to the end because I have seen it before. Mostly, I’m not surprised by what transpires.

    But history only rhymes. The subtle differences are the changes that us grouchy old codgers rail about. They accumulate until the world seems very strange.

    Hum. My grandfather died thinking that a colored TV was ridiculous and unnecessary. Black and White was good enough for him. My granddaughter is going to wonder why I put up with my bulky CD and DVD collections.

    We’ll always need to allow for a bit of evolution and personal differences if we’re going to grow old gracefully.

  • J

    LL: Your either a ‘go get em’ independent tough grl who can take care of yourself or your barefoot and pregnant dependent on others for everything in life.

    SW: What? This makes no sense to me. As I look around I see a lot of women somewhere in between.

    Me: Let me help you, SW. In the binary thinking of the ‘sphere, your choices are “swing on a star” or “be a mule.” There are no other options.

  • J

    No, that’s Jason. Zach is a WASP.

    Fcuking menopause.

    Has this happened to you yet? And would you happen to know where I left my car?

  • BroHamlet

    @Jackie

    “BH, can you elaborate on this? Most of the morality discussed around here is the Golden Rule, which is central to multiple religions and (theoretically) practiced by billions. Is there another competing concept of morality that we should be aware of?”

    Let me relate this directly to the FWB/disclosure situation we are discussing. Two parties enter into an FWB. Party A tells B that he/she likes what they have but verbally states that no relationship will happen, ever. Party B says it’s cool and they continue. They continue to spend time together, going to dinner, cooking over wine, movies, etc. Party A reinforces that said activities don’t mean a relationship. One day, B is feeling hurt and used and blames A for not being clear. Who is in the wrong?

    From A’s perspective, eating out, etc. do not make a relationship. And A has been verbally clear about what was to go down. To A, all the requirements of full disclosure have been met, and A does not feel at fault or that any moral obligations were skipped over- A’s threshold for what constitutes a moral handling of the situation has been satisfied at the point of verbal disclosure.

    From B’s perspective, A’s words were understood for a time, but the activities they shared triggered unanticipated feelings. B feels that the actions are what was important. For B, the verbal disclosure meant less than the actions that followed.

    Where the problem came in, is that B assumed that A’s picture of the way things should be handled was the same as his/her own. The difference in perspective could have come from any number of factors that neither of them control- social norms, personal history, etc.

    So what I am saying is that you shouldn’t implicitly assume that another person’s understanding of the nuances of what is the correct moral stance in a situation. The person you are dealing with may have a slightly different take on the golden rule as applied to a given situation that still squares with the spirit of the rule, but may be different in degrees than your own. They may be acting “moral enough” to satisfy their own compass. And you can’t control any of that. In that way, there is a subjective aspect to this that makes calls to some objective morality largely a waste of time when there’s a situation where there is a significant gray area in interpretation between two people.

  • J

    LOL. I hear ya, Joe, I hear ya.

  • J

    Party A reinforces that said activities don’t mean a relationship.

    It should be noted that this is a new wrinkle in the discussion. My guess is that few women, if faced with daily reminders that the relationship has no real meaning, affection or future, would not bail early on.

    The popularity of films like No Strings Attached with Ashton Kutcher and Natalie Portman and Friends with Benefits with Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake says something about the culture, no?

  • Jackie

    @Lokland, Susan

    “I didn’t start getting anything GOOD until all I started putting out was bad.

    I’ll confess I have absolutely no idea how to respond to this. Perhaps Jackie will do a better job. I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around the idea of getting walked on every day for 15 years, short of being a prisoner, hostage, or something like that.”
    ====
    Lokland, I think I see where you are coming from. If you are being abused, especially severely, you are doing what you have to do to survive. There is no middle ground: You are either the abuser or the abused; the jailer or the prisoner. For me it was like this:

    Go along to get along, endure (and hate myself) for a long, LONG time.

    Then one day, something rises up within you, and you are *angry* and ready to say eff you, switch roles, or die trying. Now you are the jailer, and you attempt to treat the world your prisoner.

    That is the paradigm: Do to others before to it’s done to you.

    But there is a better way.

    For me it involved a crap ton of CBT and learning how to re-interpret the world and a lot of reading and internal work. Also, the Humane Society helped me view this in action. Having to help animals heal taught me very much. Interestingly enough, this article set me on the right road:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/02/sports/football/02vickdogs.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    It’s about the rehabilitation of Michael Vick’s dogs that were abused in dogfighting. The same stuff you have to do to heal an abused animal is really similar to the work that humans have to do to recover. Creating an environment of trust and safety. It sounds like the family you are creating with your wife is really great. The more love you let in to your heart, the better things will get. You will be in my thoughts, Lokland. :)

    (This is another good one, regarding animals.)
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/02/giving/at-the-gentle-barn-animals-and-people-find-healing-together.html

    Peace :)

  • Zach

    @Esco

    “Flying spaghetti monster” is not a philosophical argument. Whether god (or gods) exist or not is not a philosophical question. It is a scientific question. He either exists or he does not. And the FSM is a helpful analogy. As in there is as much scientific evidence of a FSM ruling the universe as there is of the judeo-christian god (or any god for that matter).

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “What? This makes no sense to me. As I look around I see a lot of women somewhere in between.”

    I agree.
    However, your debate with some of the guys recently was exactly what I just gave you. Why did that occur if it is not a realistic interpretation of reality?

    J is inaccurate on a few things:
    i) I am in no way involved with the sphere, don’t read it, don’t think about it
    ii) our entire society is based upon binary thought processes, not just the sphere, not just here, its everything we are

    Examples,
    Men are either players or total losers (which of course corresponds to only evil-nice).
    Women are either hard ass workers or barefoot and pregnant.
    You either got to university and live a good life or don’t go to post-sec and become a degenerate loser.
    If your not for X, you must be against X (god forbid you every say you don’t really care about racism. Its the equivalent of being a racist apparently.)

    I think this binary thought process is an idea(l) that the boomers thought of as it would make everyone a winner or loser, all that needs be done is alter the definitions of winning….

    Beyond that, I actually did lead a binary life which went from good to bad in the span of approx. 6 months.

    Its very easy to say how wrong it is to be robbed if you flash cash at 8 mile until your actually robbed at 8 mile while flashing cash.
    Then you realize that blaming the predators for preying on you is a rather fruitless endeavour.

    Rabbit: How dare you try and eat me lynx, you are morally corrupt.
    Lynx: Yes but your dead and I’m full.

    Therefore, the responsibility of not being eaten is on the rabbit, not the predator. Bitch about it all you want but it is what it is.

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

      @Lokland

      However, your debate with some of the guys recently was exactly what I just gave you. Why did that occur if it is not a realistic interpretation of reality?

      Ha, you are too clever by half.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around the idea of getting walked on every day for 15 years, short of being a prisoner, hostage, or something like that.”

    Thats because you were never an Omega who had such an idealized view of humanity that self defence was not a necessity as others would never take advantage of you.

    Which in reality was a cover for weakness and an inability to defend oneself.

    Its quite simple, being at the absolute bottom entails being walked on by everyone. People are not kind, good or moral.

    They will use, abuse and extort everything they can as long as they do not face consequence.

    The only option is to become stronger.

  • BroHamlet

    @J

    First of all, it shouldn’t be one adult’s responsibility to tell another adult the same thing that was said day after day. I threw that in there so that nobody would get hung up on what would or would not happen, and focus on the differences in perspective as a philosophical matter.

    For what it’s worth, I have had FWB’s too. One asked me to tell her if and when I felt we’d never work out. I did just that in the bluntest terms possible. She kept sleeping with me. So I really think people need to ditch this notion that women are always gunning for commitment and are incapable of looking out for themselves while at the same time having fun. The world is rarely so simple IME.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    ” Just listen to how afraid the young people here are about having their hearts broken. It’s understandable, but also inevitable, I think. At least for most people. My heart got stomped on a few times. You pick yourself up, reflect and learn whatever the experience can teach you, and get back out there.”

    I think the problem is that you continue accumulating pain. So each time you get stomped on, you just get more total pain.

    It also depends on how deep the emotional wound is. Some heal. Some don’t.

    Plus, being in a puddle on the floor crying for several weeks, so to speak, doesn’t sound like fun to people.

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

    I am yet to find a woman (and have found only about 2-3 guys total) who knows anything about railroad freight operations, internal design of modern diesel locomotives and applied color theory from the perspective of human eye anatomy and color recognition processes in human brain.

    Maybe you should go for a woman willing to learn this things? I know next to nothing about Orcs and Miniature painting and even though far from an expert I can talk with my hubby about it and cheer him up when he finish a piece he is proud of. You just need to do your homework and filter for the ones that won’t get into to that, just FYI.

    I wonder how much money I could successfully get from those chumps per month? I may never need to go grocery shopping again, not to mention my entertainment costs will decrease significantly. This should be fun!

    This sounds like a good script for a thriller. Forget boiling bunnies and femme fatales and Black Widows marrying for money and getting other men to kill you. Beware the Cockteaser!

    I doubt that Hitler, Stalin or Mao lost much sleep over killing people by the multiple millions. People without morals can have free lunches.
    Hitler defeated killed his wife and himself, Mao agonized about dying asking his doctors his condition, Stalin was found on a pool of his own piss who he had been lying for hours before dying 4 days later. It might look like a small punishment for their deeds but time is relative and their last hours I’m sure were like centuries in hell for them.
    I have talked to many older people at the edge of dying and in their golden years all they can remember is all the people they wronged, even if you don’t believe in the afterlife me thinks that leaving this world with the memories of all the shitty things you did seems like a terrible way to go. And trust me your brain won’t remember just the sex, but the little voice in the back of your mind that knew very well what you were doing exactly and how. I never seen anyone not paying in one way or another for their bad deeds, YMMV.

    Hell, I’ll even confess to dreaming of marrying the prince when my mom read me fairy tales, but I “settled” for a smart guy from a somewhat lower SES than me who had a helluva lot of drive.

    But you did married your prince is just a smaller kingdom ;)

    And I can’t remember who, but someone quoted Newton’s third law. IF the world was a perfectly efficient closed system, this would work as an analogy to “Karma”. But it’s not and the world is not that simple.

    I did what make you think this planet/world/universe is not a closed system?

    But isn’t that the point? It’s clear that they see no consequences, so their conscience is clear! But there’s a lot of people, me and you, I suspect, who see plenty. Their lack of vision doesn’t change that.

    Still the consequences of her lifestyle will catch up to her in due time. Living as a parasite doesn’t work forever.

    Last night I was at the gym and I am too stupid to know how to work the tv remotes, so I got stuck watching televangelism for an hour on the treadmill. At first I thought it was SNL or something, because it was so craven, gross and money-hungry– pimping of imitation leather Bibles. Ugh!

    And He said to them, “It is written, ‘MY HOUSE SHALL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER’; but you are making it a ROBBERS’ DEN.”

  • INTJ

    Where do I fall on the morality spectrum? I believe that in a selfish world such as this, people should look out for themselves like Lokland does. I also tend to do the right thing and be rather altruistic, even though my moral system suggests I should look out for myself.

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

    I really feel for the betas sometimes. They are the noble beasts of burden of the SMP, they harbor a sense of loyal duty that perhaps only canines can really fathom/deserve, they are the factory workers who were promised lifetime employment and then had the rug pulled out, they are the workhorses who ultimately make the Great Female Call Option—Mommy Track or Career Track—possible.

    The alphas either want to become players with soft harems or they want to become “toxic maximizers”, to use Lori Gottlieb’s phrase, who demand drama-free, nymphomaniacal Stepford Wife/Barbie Dreamhouse perfection with attendant daily BJs, perfect ribeyes, and end of day celebrations featuring flattery, Thai massage, and Macallan 25.

    The betas carry the load for all of us, really. Their hours are long and, in this SMP, their “pay” kind of sucks.

  • Zach

    @Jackie

    Obviously you can be loved for your heart and character. I have found plenty of girls who have fallen for me and would have liked a relationship due to my character, but I wasn’t interested in relationships with them. It has to go both ways, and I tend to be picky. However, you’re quoting the exception, not the rule. The rule is that people fall in love with someone’s character, as long as that person is physically in the same ballpark of attractiveness. Every time people see a fat guy with a hot girl, or a handsome man with a fat girl (very, very rare), the question is “how did that happen?”. That wouldn’t be the case if character was the only consideration. Physical attractiveness is a key feature of assortative mating.

    In terms of my religious background, I’ve actually taken quite a few courses on religion, and I’ve read much of the Bible, a good deal of the Torah, and parts of the Qur’an. I find it a fascinating topic, mostly from the perspective of it as a social and societal phenomenon. What causes people to believe? Where did it come from? Is there a psychological basis to it? How does it affect world affairs? In terms of family religious background, my father was raised Christian Scientist, and left the church soon after his 12 year-old sister died of pneumonia because his parents refused to take her to a hospital. My mother was raised episcopalian, but was never particularly religious. She attends church on Christmas, but that’s about as far as it goes. A large number of my friends are Jewish, and a number are quite observant. They know my views, and I’ve had long debates with a few of them on religion (especially the “I won’t date a non-Jew; I consider it no better than “I won’t date black people” since so much of Judaism is tied into ethnicity). My foundational problem with religion is the belief in a supernatural being for which there is absolutely no proof, and basing large parts of ones’ life on that belief. To me, it’s as if I decided my tea-pot was a god, and set up an altar to it, and only drank tea for the rest of my life. The only difference is the number of people who do it, and the length of time it’s been around.

    As far as religious philosophy goes, it’s fruit of the poisoned tree (belief in a god). Take away god, and a lot of it falls apart. What person would possibly be able to justify killing their own child without such a Deus (literally) ex Machina as an all-powerful being who told them to? You can cherry-pick some of the “nice” stories in the bible, but that doesn’t make the other ones disappear. To me the New Testament was a way to make the god of the old testament (judged in human terms, an egotistical, vengeful, bloodthirsty, wildly jealous, capricious person) slightly softer so he would appeal to more people.

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

      @Zach

      The early Christian church was absolutely brilliant at marketing. That sounds like your real beef here – the marketing of religion rather than the truth of whether there is a God.

      A lot of people, even religious clergy, think of God in a much less concrete way – a divine energy. You can step that back all the way to the Big Bang or the first atom.

      I heard a fascinating segment on NPR recently – a Stanford anthropologist who is a non-believer wrote a book on the activity of prayer in evangelical churches. When God Talks Back

      “The way I think about it as an anthropologist, I don’t have the authority to pronounce on whether God is real or whether God is not real,” she tells Fresh Air’s Terry Gross. “I don’t feel like I have a horse in that race. I don’t feel I have the authority to say whether God showed up to somebody or did not. I do think that if God speaks to someone, God speaks to the human mind. And I can say something about the social, cultural and psychological features of what that person is experiencing.”

      She studied brain activity and cognitive processes to figure out what happens to people when they pray, from a physiological standpoint. It was fascinating. For me, the most interesting part of the interview was her description of how the project changed her. (It did not make her religious.)

      “There’s this amazing prayer by a Jesuit father that says ‘Fall in love with God, stay in love with God, and it will change everything,’ ” she says. “I don’t have this ontological commitment to this God that’s kind of out there, but I do have the sense that I’m a little more able to allow myself to experience the good and the aliveness of the world, if that makes any sense.”

      Ultimately, she found a spiritual advisor who taught her how to pray. Not because she believes in God, but because prayer is an amazing experience that makes people feel grateful, contented and loved, even when they are suffering. She became a believer in the power of prayer. I’m going to read her book.

  • Escoffier

    “Whether god (or gods) exist or not is not a philosophical question.”

    So, you’ve already concluded that you’ve figured all this out, which was precisely my point.

  • BroHamlet

    @Anacaona

    “I did what make you think this planet/world/universe is not a closed system?”

    From a social dynamics perspective? A whole host of things, not the least of which is the fact that a poor person stealing out of need or a looter isn’t struck by lighting or locked up every time. Consider this- the world is full of complex and lengthy transactions- there are certain inefficiencies that can be exploited for a time, and many people make a living doing exactly that (and it’s not always the case that said exploitation is illegal, or even wrong). In addition, if the consequences of an action don’t come to fruition before you leave this planet, what then? There’s some slip in the system even if it is “closed”.

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

    Zach…”What person would possibly be able to justify killing their own child without such a Deus (literally) ex Machina as an all-powerful being who told them to?”

    You don’t think there were atheist Marxists in the Soviet Union and its satellites who turned in their own children to the secret police for political deviations, knowing that this would result in almost certain execution?

  • Escoffier

    BB, it’s not all bad for us betas. My wife is not quite a Barbie and definitely not Stepford but I do get most of the rest of it. I try to limit my ribeye intake to once a quarter or so, though, I much prefer wine to Scotch.

  • JP

    @Zach:

    ” My foundational problem with religion is the belief in a supernatural being for which there is absolutely no proof, and basing large parts of ones’ life on that belief.”

    I’ll bite.

    What would constitute Zachian “scientific proof”.

  • JP

    “The betas carry the load for all of us, really. Their hours are long and, in this SMP, their “pay” kind of sucks.”

    What carries the load is the fact that we found a bajillion gallons of concentrated sunlight in the ground and we’re burning it as fast as we can so that we can build McMansions and apparently pollute all of China.

  • JP

    ” Zach is a WASP.”

    I thought he was an atheist.

    And he could be French, which would make him neither Anglo nor Saxon.

    What if his family came from Huguenot stock?

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

    In addition, if the consequences of an action don’t come to fruition before you leave this planet, what then? There’s some slip in the system even if it is “closed”.

    My point is that they do. The thing I think is perception but people do pay for their actions and they do get their rewards is just that the events sometimes are not witnessed by the wronged party.

  • JuTR

    Jackie wrote: “Exploitation hurts the practitioner at a core level, maybe even more than her/his victims. There is no way you can have self-respect or integrity (or peace, for that matter) when you use other people for self-gratification.

    The resulting contempt you have for them — let’s face it, that is the only possible result when someone falls for your manipulation tactics; you hate them for falling for it almost as much as you hate yourself for having to stoop to it– bleeds over into your own psyche.”

    I think this is very true for a small percentage of people, and I think you are projecting (it’s ok, I’m in that percentage). Most require some form of understood societal disapproval to prevent them from participating, which I think is rapidly eroding. Some, it will really not matter to at all, regardless of the consequences to other people.

    Right and wrong only matter to the majority of people when there are repercussions.

  • Zach

    @Escoffier

    No, I’ve concluded that whether something exists or not is a true/false statement. Turning the existence of god into a philosophical argument is providing a crutch to those who can’t demonstrate it empirically.

    @David Foster

    And your point is? An immoral philosophy is not made just by pointing out that there are other, equally immoral philosophies. A slight variation of two wrongs do not make a right.

    @JP

    An empirically demonstrable, repeatable proof of existence. A test that could be consistently repeated and have the same result. In general, the religious response is that “god is special and he doesn’t abide by every other single thing in the universe so you can’t measure him that way”. It’s an evasion, not an answer. There’s just as much proof that I walk around with an invisible bucket floating over my head as there is proof of a divine, omnipotent, all-powerful being who intervenes in human life.

    Secondly, your question is another common evasion in response to the god-does-not-exist argument. It’s placing the burden of proof on me to say it does NOT exist. When someone claims something exists, the burden of proof is on them to prove it does exist. Otherwise, I could assert that there are tiny people living in my computer keyboard, and as long as you couldn’t say 100% for sure they didn’t exist, by your logic I’d be right.

  • Zach

    @JP

    I suppose you could call me a WASA. My family’s religious background is protestant, and cultural background is half English, half German-French.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @SW

    If he is in a “no relationship” mindset, or views you as FWB material only, he can enjoy your company and the sex without any worries that you might get hurt, because these are the terms you both agreed to.

    I know you’ve blogged about FWBs before. I did some research of my own, and was kind of surprised…

    Great summary of the whole phenomenon:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3163778/

    Fewer women than men even see them as “beneficial”:
    http://www.livescience.com/20119-men-women-sex-friendship.html

    Most common characteristic is “awkwardness”. Great way to manage one’s social life:
    http://www.ithaca.edu/news/releases/friends-with-benefits-lets-couples-get-close-but-not-too-close-20143/

    Mr. Schneiderman in #3 claimed there’s always an arrangement going in. 73% of the time, apparently there are no ground rules or negotations whatsoever:
    http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10508-007-9211-2

    Only 10% ended up as actual romantic relationships? That’s less successful than “hooking up”. 25% of friendships completely end as a result? That’s probably just a short-term minimum statistic. I don’t know many people, man or woman, who’d be comfortable dating or marrying someone who was still “friends” with a former sex partner.

    Not that I’ve come across them very often, but FWBs have always seemed like “relationships in denial” for one party and “silent relationships” for the other party. For the most part, that breaks down along gender lines IMO.

    These unorthodox attempts at relationships, “hooking up”, etc. seem to have really high failure rates. Though not ideal, you’ve certainly convinced me that serial monogamy under certain circumstances is the next best alternative in the current environment…

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

      @Megaman

      Thank you for all the FWB links. You have given me a new homework assignment. :)

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Ultimately, she found a spiritual advisor who taught her how to pray. Not because she believes in God, but because prayer is an amazing experience that makes people feel grateful, contented and loved, even when they are suffering. ”

    That’s because it’s essentially spiritual respiration.

    Took me awhile to figure that one out.

    You don’t have to “believe” in the atmosphere or “believe” in oxygen for breathing to work.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    We are not designed to be rational, we are designed to be rationalizing.

    What I have found is that “rational” atheists in general just like picking on religious people because it’s an easy victim for them. Zach, I don’t know if you are this, but 100% of the people you run into are going to have blind-spots, and you can’t lose respect for them over that.

    That’s how we evolved.

    My two “atheist” friends pop to mind…

    One signed up for OKCupid, and started flirting with a religious Christian. Then he decided he didn’t like her anymore, and started making fun of her using Russel’s Teapot.

    He likes to talk about politics, and his “arguments” are pretty much straight out of the Daily Show. One of his favorite arguments is the sarcastic “we have more aircraft carriers than everyone else combined, clearly we need more!” When you try to explain to him that “number of aircraft carriers other people have” isn’t a relevant measure, he shuts down the debate and says he doesn’t care. He has an opinion and he is sticking to it.

    Friend #2 is pretty much the same way. He hates the manosphere: depresses him. He also dated a religiously conservative girl who didn’t have sex with him for 2 years then put out for a cad within hours after meeting said cad.
    That’s not the relevant part, he constantly goes on about how rational he is, blah blah blah, and he has a point, since he, you know, worked for NASA. On the other hand, you can’t have a political conversation with him, either, because everything is always the fault of the Republicans. I can’t tell him that Al Gore would have passed most of the same tax cuts as Bush, for instance, and tell him that Gore was also going to increase spending, and probably would have made the deficit even worse than Bush, because “RAGGGGGHHHH CORPORATIONS!”

    They are good guys, but they have blind-spots. That’s cool: I have mine, too.

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

      He likes to talk about politics, and his “arguments” are pretty much straight out of the Daily Show. One of his favorite arguments is the sarcastic “we have more aircraft carriers than everyone else combined, clearly we need more!” When you try to explain to him that “number of aircraft carriers other people have” isn’t a relevant measure, he shuts down the debate and says he doesn’t care. He has an opinion and he is sticking to it.

      Sounds like most of the dinner parties I attend in Massachusetts…Stewartian smugness included. If I disqualified these people from my social circle Mr. HUS would be my only friend. My BFF is one of these knee-jerk liberals.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ BB

    The betas carry the load for all of us, really. Their hours are long and, in this SMP, their “pay” kind of sucks.

    I would not trade places with Roissy or Roosh for millions of dollars :)

  • JP

    “She became a believer in the power of prayer.”

    So she believes in the electrical outlet, just not the power plant.

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

      @JP

      “She became a believer in the power of prayer.”

      So she believes in the electrical outlet, just not the power plant.

      I got the sense in the interview that she was questioning. Which probably doesn’t place her too far apart from some very religious people.

  • BroHamlet

    @Anacaona

    “My point is that they do. The thing I think is perception but people do pay for their actions and they do get their rewards is just that the events sometimes are not witnessed by the wronged party.”

    I understand your point. A significant number of people across the globe agree with you, and to a point I do too but I think you’re being overly simplistic about this. Frankly, I think you are viewing the world through rosy glasses if you believe nobody has ever changed their ways before their luck ran out, or that dastardly things done in the name of survival have never gone unchecked (or that some of those things were not justified in the end), or that nobody has ever gamed the system and ended up largely unaffected by the consequences.

    I am thankful that I live in a place where this morality is largely upheld (and no, I don’t want to get into a pissing match with anyone about how corrupt the west and the US in particular has become), but I don’t pretend that my experience applies to everyone.

  • JP

    We become like what we worship.

    This is a good reason to not worship teapots.

  • Jackie

    @Zach
    Now, *this* is way more interesting! Fascinating discussion trump dismissive comments, any day of the week! Thank you for being open, Zach. :D

    It appears to me that you tend to live in your head in regards to this: You seem to be seeking incontrovertible, concrete, substantiated *proof* of God. “Scientific” proof, to boot!

    It reminds me of your approach to dating– very transactional. You need to be getting something out of the deal, nothing is freely given without expectation in the realm of your heart (or head), or so it seems to me.

    Zach, I’d be interested to know what it’s been like for you, experientially. Have you ever felt any kind of longing for the infinite? Wonder about eternal questions– why are we here? Where do we go after we die? Have you ever felt that you were drawn to anything spiritual?

    I ask because the majority of people do; you appear to be in a rather small minority.

    Also, I ask because you appear to be the polar opposite of me. I remember being drawn to God and talking about spirituality since I was really little. Not to debate it, but just to kind of bask in it like sunshine.

    When I was a teenager I felt an internal part of me hunger and thirst for this, in a way that is difficult to explain even now. I would feel a kind of irresistible drawing towards God in a way that I couldn’t explain. It was something my brain or heart was always chewing on.

    Besides that, there were so many occurrences, especially when I was young, that were spiritually sensitive in nature.

    (This might sound morbid, but it wasn’t when it happened, just more matter-of-fact. I used to get dreams about a person’s death before it happened, same with weddings, same with fatal illnesses. It happened more than a dozen times, mostly when I was a child/teen.

    As you mentioned, may be some kind of a psychological link that may be embedded way down deep in our brain functions. Kind of like the people who will see a light at the end of the tunnel when they are technically “dead.” I would also be in certain places– ie visiting a historical cult-y church– where I would get so upset and feel so “wrong” that I had to leave and throw up.)

    This is getting super-long but I have been enjoying hearing what you have to say, Zach. Peace :D

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    I was raised non-religious, as was my husband. We were both agnostic, then both went through an atheist phase, and when we met we were both “spiritual.”

    Being this way, I can see the wisdom in all religions and find meaning in them. But I don’t have a real “belonging” to any particular group or creed.

    I’ve also had spiritual experiences, and I definitely felt that way about meeting my husband. I believe Love is a fundamental of spirituality. I don’t know if I would call it “God,” but I think each of us has something of the divine within us.

    We’re all learning our own lessons in this existence, so I don’t push my beliefs onto others. They are learning/forging/choosing their own path.

    I’m also a fan of scientific reasoning, logic and rationality. An old joke from IRC: I try to keep an open mind, but not so open that my brain falls out. :P

  • Tom

    I can understand why a FWB situation is attractive. For the guy, no strings sex. For the woman, sex with a familiar person, not much of a chance of running up large numbers, occational sex when desired with no committment.
    Problem is, it isnt called making love , for nothing. Normally one or the other falls in love and it normally is the woman. Then he has to send her away until she gets her feeling for him in check. Normally it ends badly. The woman starts to feel used because her feelings HAVE changed.
    Not to say men cant fall in love, but it isnt as common.
    I also think men and women initially enter into a FWB relationship for different reasons. For him, he gets to keep his options open for variety. For her, she gets non commital sex without having to sleep around with strangers.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Ha, you are too clever by half.”

    My grade 9 math teacher used to say that all the time. That and ‘you have a mischievous looking face, you always look like your up to something.’

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

      That and ‘you have a mischievous looking face, you always look like your up to something.’

      You probably were!

  • Escoffier

    Lol, what is philosophy about if not whether things exist and how that can be known? You have accepted a set of recent philosophic answers without realizing that you have chosen a side, without knowing what the alternatives are, or what the questions are.

    Demanding an “empircal demonstraion of the existence of God” means you’ve already accepted the premises of modern science, glided past the differences between ancient and modern thought, and rejected the possibility of revelation. You’re closed to the essential question.

    This is the thing I hate most about our expensive education system today. Our “best” schools are supposed to take our “best ” students and teach them these things but they fail utterly.

  • JP

    @ Escoffier:

    I think he’s in revolt against the insanity of Christian Science.

    Plus, I’m not sure he understood what you said.

  • J

    One asked me to tell her if and when I felt we’d never work out. I did just that in the bluntest terms possible. She kept sleeping with me.

    Then, in your case, it sounds like you were as honest as possible, and she did what she wanted to do. I can’t argue with that, though I do find the woman atypical.

  • JuTR

    Megaman’s Livescience link for friendships is interesting. Not so much in a “FWB” definition, but more of a ‘can men and women really just be friends’ insight.

    “Although older adults reported fewer opposite-sex friends than the younger group did, everyone was very positive about these friendships, ranking them as overwhelmingly beneficial. But when people listed attraction on the “costs and benefits” list, it almost always fell under a “cost.” Almost half of the young adults in the study spontaneously mentioned attraction as a problem in their friendships, the researchers reported April 25 in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.”

    That lends some credence to the mindset of making friends with hot women. Either they will turn out to be uninteresting, and then, why would you want them as a friend? Or they will turn out to be interesting and even more attractive, and just subsuming the attraction around them becomes more of a cost than the benefit of the friendship itself.

  • doomwolf

    @J

    ” I tire of the sophmoric juvenalia spouted by people who haven’t been in a church or synagogue since their confirmation or Bar Mitzvah. It’s one thing to reject a child’s view of God, it’s another to assume that other people’s views haven’t evolved since 13 or 16. If most of these folks were to have a REAL discussion with their clergy, they’d find that their clergy don’t believe many of the same things they don’t believe.”

    +1, and fits me, as my beliefs have changed a *lot* in the past ten years. University was uncomfortable that way, something to do about thinking for myself I presume.

  • BroHamlet

    @J

    “Then, in your case, it sounds like you were as honest as possible, and she did what she wanted to do. I can’t argue with that, though I do find the woman atypical.”

    Atypical? Not really. She found another relationship, got married and started a family not long after that like countless other women. And while this was all going on, she was still dating a few other guys, as in letting them take her out to dinner, then coming to me to complain that they were too complementary (too nice! so hilariously cliche I had to chuckle to myself). According to her, she “dated a lot of guys, but didn’t sleep with a lot of guys”. Where have we heard this before? This may have been true (I still have every reason to believe it was), and if it was, it gives every guy a reason to ask how wide the good girl/bad girl line is, or if that question misses the mark altogether (I think the latter).

    Experiences just like that one are why I think the whole restricted/unrestricted two-sided explanation is not complete at all, and doesn’t account for the time and location-varying parts of the formula. And they’re also why I think most of the ivory tower studies this blog holds up as the standard need not be taken at face value. When those scientists can stop studying in a controlled (and thus influenced) environment and get out in the real world to tell (and show) those of us who have lived things that lie beyond the scope of (and perhaps ahead of the curve of) their studies something we don’t know and doesn’t conveniently fall in line with comfortable social norms, then I will be happy to listen and take them at every word. It’s like they are revealing two faces of an unknown shape in the dark and then telling us they know what shape it is.

  • Paul Rivers

    Unfortunately, I’m not sure how to quote other people in the comments section…

    “Great summary of the whole phenomenon:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3163778/

    Fewer women than men even see them as “beneficial”:
    http://www.livescience.com/20119-men-women-sex-friendship.html

    These “studies” are based on asking people questions. What they measure is not the experience itself, but social attitudes and what answers are expected.

    Let’s say you had 100 guys, and 100 girls. And somehow, they all had a sexual experience that would be described as neutral. And you surveyed them about it.

    About 75 of the girls would say they regretted it – even though the actual experience for them had been neutral. Among the guys, at least 75 of them would say it was a positive experience – even if he had just been thinking that it was so meaningless it wasn’t really worth it.

    Studies that have people fill out questionnaires about how they felt about issues that have strong societal expectations of how they *should* feel – mostly reflect how society thinks people *should* feel – not how they actually feel. Sometimes they actually feel that way…other times they do not.

    But when people aren’t sure how they feel about it, they give the “socially appropriate” answer.

    “Mr. Schneiderman in #3 claimed there’s always an arrangement going in. 73% of the time, apparently there are no ground rules or negotations whatsoever:
    http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10508-007-9211-2

    Only 10% ended up as actual romantic relationships? That’s less successful than “hooking up”. 25% of friendships completely end as a result? That’s probably just a short-term minimum statistic. I don’t know many people, man or woman, who’d be comfortable dating or marrying someone who was still “friends” with a former sex partner.”

    People often throw out statistics about how many lead to a real relationship, but don’t put them in comparison to real relationships.

    For the vast majority of people I’ve seen get married and stay married, they’ve only dated 2-3 people – 2.5 on average. That means dating – for the *most* marriage-minded people – is only about 40% effective per relationship.

    40% is the *best* – on average (sometimes someone gets lucky) – there’s a whole lot of people with a much, much worse rate.

    Pointing out that the friendship sometimes ends (25% isn’t actually a terrible rate), to me, would also need to be balanced against the friendship loss rate over the same period due to other factors. A lot of friendships end – or change to a “friendly aquintance whom I sometimes comment on their facebook posts” state when the other person starts dating someone seriously. I’ve lost female friends because -
    1. They become wrapped up in the new guy and just don’t have any interest in their old friends any more
    2. They become so wrapped up in their new guy, while they make attempts to stay friends they’re changed so much – or their interests have changed so much – that we just don’t have enough in common to stay friends any more
    3. My spending time with them – even in public settings (and these are girls I had no romantic or physical interactions with) – suddenly is constantly monitored with the “would my boyfriend like this” rule. Were we laughing to hard? Were we having to good of a time? Were we connecting on a vibe that was somehow different than she connects with her boyfriend on?
    4. Ditto with her boyfriend wondering if there’s something going on between her and I – when there 100% isn’t – just because they’re going through a rough patch, and her and I are hanging out and having fun.

    I could go on, there’s several more, but the rate of losing opposite gender friends by *not* having a FWB relationship with them is *also* pretty high.

    I’m by no means saying that one should enter a FWB looking for a relationship – that’s really unlikely to work. But I’m also not sure the studies are saying nearly as much as they seem to be saying at face value…

  • Paul Rivers

    lol, sorry to drag up an older topic in the comment thread, but I just wanted to say to this -

    “Sassy, looking forward to the field reports! Rain fire on the gammas and deltas, and show them the error of their ways.

    I really was just joking around. Sassy’s beef is not with betas, it’s with the players.”

    That getting beta orbiters by no stretch of the imagination hurts players. It’s like one gets hit by their brother, so they kick the friendly and always-loves-you family dog – the people being punished are *not* the people you’re angry with…unfortunately.

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

    I understand your point. A significant number of people across the globe agree with you, and to a point I do too but I think you’re being overly simplistic about this. Frankly, I think you are viewing the world through rosy glasses if you believe nobody has ever changed their ways before their luck ran out, or that dastardly things done in the name of survival have never gone unchecked (or that some of those things were not justified in the end), or that nobody has ever gamed the system and ended up largely unaffected by the consequences.

    I’m willing to be convinced otherwise if there is proof that they do get away with it, but IME there is not such a thing as a free lunch is the pure truth, YMMV.

    I’ve also had spiritual experiences, and I definitely felt that way about meeting my husband. I believe Love is a fundamental of spirituality. I don’t know if I would call it “God,” but I think each of us has something of the divine within us.

    According to twin studies spirituality and religiosity are very likely genetic. We don’t inherit religions but how to live that religions so your probably would be a tolerant Christian like Jackie if you were to convert, the same for any other denomination.

  • Paul Rivers

    Hope – Paul Rivers, great post. Sassy, brilliant analogy. Collect those $100…
    Susan Walsh – Welcome and thank you for that awesome testimonial! There’s great advice there for women, I appreciate it.

    Thanks. :-)

    It’s actually kind of awesome to leave a comment and get thanks back. :-) So often on the internet you get nothing but responses where they act like they misunderstood your comment, so they can get mad at you kind of stuff.

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

    ““1. She was to lower of a social class…it reads weird when I write it, but she smoked, all her friends were smokers and guys I had absolutely no interest in hanging out with because they were to much of one kind of loser or another. Her best female friend was another college girl…that occasionally did hard drugs, and I had absolutely zero respect for. Her and I were better friends than her and her female friend, and had she been able to make better female friends I’m sure she would have dropped that girl in a second – but, she couldn’t.

    2. I love girly passion and energy. Think sunshine and rainbows, a genuine hope and love for the future. She didn’t have that…at all, unfortunately. I mean I felt like she liked it, but she just couldn’t do it herself. Had she displayed any ability to do that, it would have made a big difference.”

    Out of curiosity, did you ever discuss #1/#2 with her?”

    #1, Yes, we definitely discussed the smoking a lot, and the friends and social group thing some. I helped her quit smoking more than once, but she always ended up smoking again. For the friends part, it was pretty clear that I had a low opinion of her friends – but she didn’t really have a much higher opinion about them either, those were just the best friends she could find. Without money to do stuff, I didn’t have any better suggestions myself – I mean, I had a few friends that I trusted and that was kinda it at the time. Past my freshman year, I didn’t (unfortunately, but not uncommonly) have any way of making new friends.

    #2, mostly no. I didn’t really figure out why that certain feeling was lacking until later. I was only a human being, lol – I just knew something important was missing. Don’t get me wrong either – there were other feelings that I wanted that she didn’t have, but I was willing to forgo those (I wasn’t insisting on a picture of perfection – not even close). But that one feeling I could just never convince myself I would be happy without it. There were a couple of other reasons I probably never really said anything about it -

    a. I really didn’t know what that feeling was about until later. I was just a human being – I didn’t really understand myself in that regard at the time. When I write about it it’s something I looked back later and said “Oooooh, *that* was it”. I just knew that a feeling that I felt was really important was missing, and I could not puzzle my mind into feeling like it was there or ever going to be there.

    b. I was really, really certain it was not possible for her to give off that kind of energy. My subconscious mind really, really wanted it to happen, and I just could not find the slightest glimpse of hope for it. Bring up smoking and stuff like that was a lot easier, because even if she was never going to actually change, it was **possible** for her to change it. Bringing up “here’s something I’m looking for in a girl that you can never, ever, do, I just don’t think you’re good enough for me because of it” just seemed kind of cruel.

    Note that both a & b were true at the same time – I might have said something more about it had I actually understood it in a way that let me articulate it, myself.

  • Just1Z

    “I’m willing to be convinced otherwise if there is proof that they do get away with it, but IME there is not such a thing as a free lunch is the pure truth, YMMV.”

    Yes, my experience does vary very much.

    I’m willing to be convinced otherwise if there is proof that they do NOT get away with it, but IME there IS such a thing as a free lunch is the pure truth, YMMV.
    (I’m not saying that every transgressor gets a free lunch, but some clearly do).

    Stalin dying alone over a few hours doesn’t even start to compensate for the tens of millions of people he murdered. Hitler pulled a trigger, no biggy when if you don’t the russkies gonna get yer.

    What would you do to that psycho Brevik that killed 77 people, send him to bed early with no tea?
    http://thestreetjournal.org/2012/08/brevik-norwegian-mass-killer-gets-21-years/

    The Daily Mail often wails about ridiculously meagre sentences from doddery old Judges, but you make them look like men of steel(!).

    I’m somewhat surprised, I had guessed that you were more of a believer in Law and Justice being delivered in a demonstrable manner. pour encourager les autres. I guess that religion won out. thanks for the education.

  • Just1Z

    Further on the paying for sins thing, I came across a BBC documentary about memory erasure (I think that audio stuff can be downloaded by ‘foreigners’, video not-so-much). It’s from ‘BBC Radio 4′, which is the news / factual(ish AGW, HBD etc) / philosophical service, in case you were going to poke round the archives (there’s a ton of interesting stuff)

    “Erased Memories and Spotless Minds”
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b012lj4m

    so with this Stalin, Hitler and all the other psychos could have their memories wiped, so no death bed regrets…free lunches for all atheists.

    For Radio 4, Dr Mark Lythgoe investigates the science of memory erasing.

    In a Hollywood movie it’s a simple choice. You take the blue pill and wipe away all those unpleasant memories that are hard to deal with. Or you take the red pill and bear their burden, possibly forever. This is not Hollywood -but soon that choice could well be yours.

    Captivated by the media headlines over the past few years claiming scientists can now ‘erase bad memories’, neuroscientist Dr Mark Lythgoe travels to New York to examine the latest research in memory modification.

    Looking at work done in animals and humans Mark discovers how close scientists are to wholesale erasure of specific memories.

    ‘We had that animal very well trained and then we erased that memory by injecting Zip in the motor region of the cortex, the memory was gone and the relearning process was not any quicker- it still took a week of slow learning to build that skill so that’s why we think it really is a true erasure’: Dr Todd Sacktor.

    Near the site of Ground Zero he meets some of the people who have been victims of trauma to find out whether they would trade their distressing memories for memory erasure, and he talks to a victim of a violent armed robbery who believes memory manipulation has cured him of his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

    Unravelling the ethical dilemmas involved in these technologies Mark asks what happens when we open this Pandora’s box and people use memory modification to erase feelings of something bad they have done or something bad that has been done to them; eliminating memories like you would eliminate a headache, with a pill.

  • Just1Z

    One last ad for the Beeb.

    The Moral Maze is pretty good, unfortunately they only allow playback of the last couple of episodes.

    seeing as you’ve just voted in Obamacare with all that ‘death-panel’ scare stories;
    “Rationing the NHS” – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01p0s0v

    In the week of the 70th anniversary of the Beveridge report that was to lay the foundations for the welfare state, a Conservative MP, who’s also a practicing GP, says patients suffering from lifestyle-related diseases such as type 2 diabetes should pay for part of their care. And in a recent online poll more than half of the doctors who took part said smokers and the obese should be denied non-emergency treatment until they changed their lifestyles. We now spend over £90 billion a year on the NHS, but with more spending cuts likely in next week’s Autumn Statement how much longer can we afford the principle that treatment should be based on need and be free at the point of delivery? When money is tight and demand for, and costs of health care are increasing, who should the NHS be for? Is it fair for those who look after their health to see their taxes being squandered on treatment for those whose poor health could be described as “self-inflicted”. But exactly what is the definition of ‘self-inflicted illnesses? Obesity? Alcoholism? And what of injuries sustained while playing sports? It’s a moral minefield too – how does one decide which illness is the result of sheer self-indulgence, and which is the result of uncontrollable inner demons at play? And do we blame ourselves for the ills that befall us, or should society take the rap and pay the bill? Is the concept of deserving and un-deserving patients inherently immoral, or a healthy dose of reality? Combative, provocative and engaging debate chaired by David Aaronovitch with Kenan Malik, Melanie Phillips, Matthew Taylor and Claire Fox. Witnesses: Dr Steve Davies – Education Director, Institute of Economic Affairs, Joyce Robbins – Patient Concern, Tam Fry – Spokesman for the National Obesity Forum; Chairman of the Child Growth Foundation, Dr Vivienne Nathanson – Director of Professional Activities at the British Medical Association

    (my opinion of the NHS is mixed – don’t assume that I’m pro or con)

    Big business and tax avoidance;
    “Ethical consumerism” – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01p424r

    Christmas is fast approaching and as usual, the competition for where we should spend our money is hotting up. This season we’ve been joined by a new phenomenon – where not to spend it. Campaigners are appealing to consumers to boycott companies like Starbucks, Amazon and Google that have been accused of immorally avoiding paying their fair share of tax, even though what these companies are doing is perfectly legal. Is it our duty as consumers to not only spend our money wisely, but to also think about the moral consequences of where we spend our money? Is the pound in our pocket a tool to express our moral and political outrage, or are these boycotts just empty gestures and like those ethical Christmas presents, is it more about assuaging our own guilt about all that conspicuous consumption? It might be easy to make a joke of all those goats being bought for Christmas for African villagers, but, at this time of year especially, shouldn’t we think of others as well as ourselves? At times it might feel like the competition from charities for our money is as fierce as on the high street and the endless Christmas appeals with their increasingly emotional tones may overwhelm and irritate in equal measure, but don’t we have a moral obligation to contribute to charity? If the latest figures are anything to go by, more of us are putting our own needs before those of others. Charitable donations have fallen by 20% in real terms in the past year – that’s the equivalent of £1.7bn less being given to good causes. We live in one of the richest countries in the world. If we wouldn’t think of passing a drowning child in a pond without trying to save them, why don’t more of us donate more to charities that undoubtedly save lives? And do charities really care if we’re giving out of a sense of guilt, rather than a sense of genuine empathy and pity? Morality and money on the Moral Maze – the gift that keeps giving. Combative, provocative and engaging debate chaired by Michael Buerk with Michael Portillo, Anne McElvoy, Matthew Taylor and Claire Fox. Witnesses: Andy Redfern – Director, Ethical Superstore, Toby Ord – James Martin Research Fellow, Department of Philosophy, University of Oxford, George Monbiot – Journalist & environmental campaigner, Jack Lundie – Director of Brand & Communications, Save The Children UK

  • szopen

    @Zach

    Whether god (or gods) exist or not is not a philosophical question. It is a scientific question

    It is not. Science cannot answer whether God exists or does not exist. I am atheist and I spend hours on discussion with religious people and other scientists. You cannot prove God exists. You cannot disprove he exists. You either believe it or not. Hence, as this is a question of faith, this is not scientific question.

    Think about it that way – if God exists and is omnipotent, then he could create world just yesterday, and create it that way that you cannot find out about it.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Ana, I think genes/epigenetics are influenced by a variety of factors, including environment and “random chance.” So what is truly random? I choose to believe, that’s all. :)

    Paul Rivers, very interesting. Both my ex and my husband smoked, and it was a dealbreaker for me, so they quit and thanked me that I “made” them quit. But the ex never had the masculine leadership and presence that my husband does.

    I also do understand the class thing. It’s not strictly about income (when I left the ex he was making significantly more at the time than when I first met my husband). It’s more intangible than that.

  • Cheshire

    “‘A guy can spend a whole weekend with you, cook meals together, laugh together, be passionate – do all the things that feel like being in love to a woman – and have absolutely zero emotional investment.’

    Except maybe for some odd male specimens, this I seriously doubt.”

    “Absolutely zero” is an exaggeration, but it’s close.

    I’ve been in relationships that I didn’t think were going to last, but where we went out and did stuff, cuddled, shared feelings, etc. All of those things are fun to do, even if you’re planning on taking another offer if it comes in. (Also, I paid for most stuff because I had more money, and because I felt a little guilty that I wasn’t willing to put a commitment on the table.)

    Since I’m old, we called those relationships “dating other people” or “no strings attached” instead of “friends with benefits,” but there’s nothing about enjoying being romantic with someone that means you’re in for the long haul.

    In hindsight, it was not a nice thing to do, but I was young and a guy, so I thought as long as we were upfront that the relationship was open and NSA, it was at least defensible.

  • Zach

    @Szopen

    Sure, you can’t prove completely and absolutely what does and does not exist. I can’t prove absolutely that there is no giant bucket full of water floating above my head. However, it’s about shadings of probability. It is extremely probable that the chair I am sitting on does exist. I can weigh it, I can touch it, I can smell it, I can sit on it, etc, etc. My point is that God as described is equally as likely to exist as a giant invisible bucket of water floating over my head, or as likely as anything that anyone makes up on the spur of the moment. I could also “imbue” that bucket of water with special qualities that makes its existence non-provable. However, I don’t live my life by having faith in a floating bucket of water.

    @Escoffier

    I actually have read Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Nietzsche and most of the philosophers you’d probably mention. They offer interesting logical games and questions about human nature and the world. However, modern science is not a form of philosophy. To call it so is belittling it. Philosophy was not empirically tested. Philosophy can’t cure disease, can’t create an atomic bomb, can’t propel a rocket to the moon. Philosophy is better described as an atheistic mirror to religious doctrine, attempting to answer questions that science cannot answer, such as why are we here, what is the meaning of life, etc. I would even say that the part of philosophy that attempts to describe human behavior is rapidly losing out to advances in neuroscience and psychology. Philosophy is useful for the questions where we have no good scientific answers. It’s an attempt (as religion is) to put an answer in place of “I don’t know”. However, in a large number of cases, modern science has rendered that completely moot. As Szopen said, it is not possible to completely disprove that a god exists. However, on the preponderance of evidence (or lack thereof), it is extremely unlikely he exists.

  • INTJ

    @ szopen

    It is not. Science cannot answer whether God exists or does not exist. I am atheist and I spend hours on discussion with religious people and other scientists. You cannot prove God exists. You cannot disprove he exists. You either believe it or not. Hence, as this is a question of faith, this is not scientific question.

    Think about it that way – if God exists and is omnipotent, then he could create world just yesterday, and create it that way that you cannot find out about it.

    Ahh but here’s the thing. Science rejects the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The same reasoning used by science (namely, the principle of parsimony) to reject the Flying Spaghetti Monster can be used to reject God.

  • BroHamlet

    @Anacaona

    “I’m willing to be convinced otherwise if there is proof that they do get away with it, but IME there is not such a thing as a free lunch is the pure truth, YMMV.”

    So no one has ever successfully committed a robbery? No politician has ever received a bribe under the table without being caught? Not likely. And we haven’t even considered cases where the perpetrator gets a free lunch and the public pays the cost of his/her indiscretions. Sometimes that is your “equal and opposite reaction”.

  • Just1Z

    @Intj
    well I sure hope that His Noodly Goodness forgives your lack of faith come the day.

  • Jason773

    Susan,

    This is easy, but I don’t like the advice that you have given to this reader. She shouldn’t verbally bring it up because it puts her in a lower strength position and the answer can be had in a different manner.

    If she has the willpower she should just pull back completely, stop things in both a sexual and platonic manner and put the onus on the guy to ask ‘why’. Trust me, when she pulls back, he will ask why, and promted she can give him the ol’ “I can’t maintain this kind of relationship with you. It either has to be something more, or nothing at all”.

    She could state that directly from the start, but my approach is all about frame control and has a better chance of being successful.

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

      @Jason

      She could state that directly from the start, but my approach is all about frame control and has a better chance of being successful.

      That amounts to deploying the Principle of Least Interest. She goes away with no explanation in order to cause him discomfort and anxiety. If he wants a relationship with her, he’s in a state of dread. If he doesn’t, that will be pretty clear by the manner in which he asks.

      Why not state up front that she’s noticed a change in his behavior and wonders what’s up? Or even refer to her own feelings ; “Hey I could get used to this, are you f*cking with my head?”

      I think her best chance of success at getting a relationship without making him feel resentful and manipulated is honest disclosure, without shame.

      Instilling dread may work to get guys sex, but it harms relationships. Not a good way for her to proceed, IMO.

  • Ramble

    Ultimately, she found a spiritual advisor who taught her how to pray. Not because she believes in God, but because prayer is an amazing experience that makes people feel grateful, contented and loved, even when they are suffering. She became a believer in the power of prayer. I’m going to read her book.

    For some reason this made me think of a woman who does not believe in love, but with the help of a sexual surrogate, learned how to masturbate.

    Secularism is an interesting religion.

  • Deli

    2 david foster December 5, 2012 at 4:43 pm

    //You don’t think there were atheist Marxists in the Soviet Union and its satellites who turned in their own children to the secret police for political deviations, knowing that this would result in almost certain execution?

    As a local resident russian and just so you could properly use this argument in the future:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pavlik_Morozov
    “The most popular account of the story is as follows: born to poor peasants in Gerasimovka, a small village 350 kilometers north-east of Yekaterinburg (then known as Sverdlovsk), Morozov was a dedicated communist who led the Young Pioneers at his school, and a supporter of Stalin’s collectivization of farms. In 1932, at the age of 13, Morozov reported his father to the political police (GPU). Supposedly, Morozov’s father, the Chairman of the Village Soviet, had been “forging documents and selling them to the bandits and enemies of the Soviet State” (as the sentence read). The elder Morozov, Trofim, was sentenced to ten years in a labour camp, and later executed.[1] However, Pavlik’s family did not take kindly to his activities: on September 3 of that year, his uncle, grandfather, grandmother and a cousin murdered him, along with his younger brother. ”

    It’s role-reversal (a child sacrificing his father – instead of the other way around) and there might be a good dose of fiction to it, but this story was taught in schools for about 50 years with not irony or reservation. It was accepted as a correct course of action for a patriotic russian to do. So, yes – we did our share of sacrifices made on the altar of ideology.

    But then again, communism – as in the ideology behind the soviet union – was a religion in all but name. It had its saints and sinners, rituals and holy scripture, the whole shabang. Planned economy – meaning the economic system we had – was basically trying to tie up an industrial economy around an a theocracy.

    It did produce stunning results in some areas and was much more complex that just “bad commies did bad things and made puppies cry”. History of the Soviet Union is really worth to have some basic grasp of.
    It was a beautiful, if inherently flawed, experiment in human nature.

  • Ramble

    So no one has ever successfully committed a robbery? No politician has ever received a bribe under the table without being caught? Not likely. And we haven’t even considered cases where the perpetrator gets a free lunch and the public pays the cost of his/her indiscretions. Sometimes that is your “equal and opposite reaction”.

    Bro, you are getting lost in the semantics.

    When that bank got robbed, someone payed for it: the Bank.

    And we haven’t even considered cases where the perpetrator gets a free lunch and the public pays the cost of his/her indiscretions.

    Right, it was not actually free. Someone payed for it. That is the point behind the Heinlein/Friedman “Free Lunch” statement.

  • Lokland

    @Ramble

    I agree.
    Some others are trying to use karma to explain that the cost inflicted upon another by your actions will come back to bite you in the ass.

    Fun thought.
    Not real.

    Life isn’t fair.

  • alw

    Thank you for all of the wonderful responses and words of advice! You all have been such a help and an inspiration.

    So, we had the talk. It got kind of emotional and I’m not good at showing my feelings, but I honestly feel so much more relieved to have put everything out in the open.

    Anyhow, he told me that he really likes me and cares about me more than anyone in his life right now, but he is still hurt from his last relationship and isn’t ready to jump into something new. Which is understandable, but he didn’t say anything about considering a relationship with me in the future, so I am assuming that he just doesn’t want one with me. In all honesty, I am okay with that, I can’t force him to like me or want to be with me if he just doesn’t see it happening.

    I told him that I have developed feelings for him over these few months and it’s too hard for me to keep hooking up with him and acting like we are dating if it’s not going to turn into something more. He said he understood where I was coming from and that he would respect my wishes of not hooking up if I really didn’t want to anymore, but he said he wouldn’t know what to do if he didn’t still have me in his life at least as a friend. He told me that I am an amazing person and that he still wants to spend time with me even if it means that we won’t hook up. So we decided that we are still going to stay good friends but just cut out the hooking up aspect. I guess we will have to see how this one goes…

    After this whole talk he slept over and he held me all night but respected my requests of not hooking up. He could definitely tell I was sad so he was trying to comfort me I guess. In the morning I had class so I let him sleep, and I came back to my room all cleaned and a really sweet note on my bed. He even cooked me breakfast and waited for me for the 2 hrs my class went on.

    He just kept hugging me and kissing my head and saying how he wishes he could make me happy and see my beautiful smile all of the time. He said he never wants to see me sad again so he kept on trying to do funny things to cheer me up. So now I guess he just feels bad, which I didn’t mean to do at all. But the friendship thing is working out well so far. I helped him with a project the other night and we hung out after and just played the game where you draw a picture on the other person’s back and have to guess it and we showed each other new songs we like. And it was nice to just hang out as friends. I am glad that we became close enough that we can still be friends and not have that awkward FWB falling out.

    I just hate that we still have sexual attraction- we both still definitely want to jump each other’s bones. I can just tell by the way he looks at me. And he confused me even more because he asked if I want to go home with him the next time he visits his family, and his house is like 5 hours away from our college. Is he doing this because he feels bad for me and is trying to be nice or does he actually feel something and really just isn’t ready for a new relationship yet? Did I write him off unfairly? I just don’t see why he would take a girl who he is only friends with on a long trip home to spend time with his family and childhood friends. So confusing!!!

    So overall, I think that this came out to be a good thing. I am glad I listened to you all and talked to him. Maybe one day he will realize that I would make an awesome girlfriend, or maybe he really does just need more time to get over his ex, but I feel like maybe I will have already moved on by then. I’m realizing that this is just one guy and that there are many other fish in the sea. I’m just glad to know that he is a real friend and actually still wants to be with me even if I won’t hook up with him anymore. But I still don’t see why he spends so much time with me and does such nice things for me if he isn’t interested in me. Ugh, what’s a girl to do?!

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

      @alw

      Maybe one day he will realize that I would make an awesome girlfriend, or maybe he really does just need more time to get over his ex, but I feel like maybe I will have already moved on by then. I’m realizing that this is just one guy and that there are many other fish in the sea. I’m just glad to know that he is a real friend and actually still wants to be with me even if I won’t hook up with him anymore. But I still don’t see why he spends so much time with me and does such nice things for me if he isn’t interested in me.

      Wow. That is NOT what I expected. I’m as surprised by your willingness to do the friend thing as I am about his reaction. He is obviously very invested and sexually attracted, so I think the only explanation must be his not being over his ex. The timing is bad. It’s only been 4 months, right? That’s not a long time, it sounds like she did a number on him.

      Also, FWIW, I hate the whole idea of people taking a “break.” That never works, it’s just Breakup Stage One, and it wreaks havoc with the other person’s emotions.

      Anyway, if you can do this friend thing with no sex and enjoy yourself without getting sad and feeling hurt, I’d say there’s a decent chance he will come around. You’ll have to be patient, though. His heart is still healing. Meanwhile, you should most definitely be open to developing an interest in someone new.

      Timing really is a bitch.

      Best of luck, alw, I’m interested to hear what others think.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Alw

    1. I 100% don’t believe that men and women can be friends, EXACTLY for the reason of sexual tension. If you two continue to hang out, you will either end up sleeping together again, or your feelings for him will only continue to grow.

    2. Listen to what he is telling you. He doesn’t want a relationship with you. I repeat, he doesn’t want a relationship with you. Either you accept that and move on, or you sit around twiddling your thumbs while waiting for him to magically consider you worthy of being his girlfriend.

    3. As much as it may hurt you, and as much as he claims that it may hurt him, I think you need to walk away. Of course he would be upset if you decided not to be his “friend” again. You are an activity buddy for him that he always has the possibility of seducing into bed. If he only wanted a “friend”, I’m sure he has male acquaintances that could fill that role nicely. The problem is that he doesn’t want to bone his male friends. You add that benefit for him.

  • Jackie

    @alw

    Hi ALW,

    “Anyhow, he told me that he really likes me and cares about me more than anyone in his life right now, but he is still hurt from his last relationship and isn’t ready to jump into something new.”
    ===
    This is where you needed to end your post. I’m really sorry :( but it’s far better you know the truth.

    I think you need to cut off all contact, cold turkey. Don’t be his “friend”– that’s not an option. A real friend wouldn’t lead someone on and make them care if there was no possibility for a relationship.

    Again, I’m really sorry, ALW, but cutting this guy off puts you that much closer to a guy who really wants to be your boyfriend. Don’t settle for less than that.

  • HanSolo

    @alw

    I can understand where he might be coming from. I can believe he really likes you and your company and not just for sex but doesn’t feel strongly enough to commit to you and only you for a long time. That may be because of feelings for his ex or he may not be capable of being into you enough (even w/o the ex-gf feelings).

    I have dated girls w/o committing (though we didn’t explicitly call it FWB) and I really liked them but never grew to love them enough or feel compatible enough and eventually we broke up.

    I think you should try to see other guys and not fall further in love with him. As long as you realize that he may never fall in love with you or commit to you then you can see how things go with him as friends (who feel attraction) and if he ever comes around. Just don’t keep hoping for him for too long if he doesn’t. There are surely other great guys that you can love and that would love to date you and one of them may really fall for you so by continuing too much longer with him you might be missing out on someone else.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Also, FWIW, I hate the whole idea of people taking a “break.” That never works, it’s just Breakup Stage One, and it wreaks havoc with the other person’s emotions.”

    My wife’s cousin did this. That couple is not happily married with kid, but no prior relationship was involved. They had been dating since HS, though.

  • alw

    @Susan

    I am thinking the timing thing may be the culprit as well. He told me he thought she was the one and that she is the first girl he was ever in love with, so he is definitely going to take a while to get over her.

    I care about him and want to be here for him as a friend, but I am not going to sit around waiting for him to get over her, so I am definitely going to be open to someone new coming into my life. If he comes around, we can reassess the situation, but for now I am happy to know that he wasn’t using me for sex and that he actually likes me as a person.

  • alw

    And I agree with everyone that is telling me to look for others. I am happy to be here as his friend, but I am honestly okay with moving on to look for other people now. Now that we talked, I feel like I have closure and I can start to look for another guy because I don’t feel bad about this situation anymore.

    Thank you all again for your help!

  • Lokland

    @alw

    I’m gonna be cynical.

    You told him you didn’t want to have sex unless there was a relationship.
    He doesn’t want a relationship.

    He could be maintaining the friendship in an attempt to get you back into bed.
    The options of friendship + potential sex is better than the option of no friendship + no sex.

    Frankly even if its all on the level, why waste your time creating emotional entanglements?

    Theres a ton of others guys out there.

  • HanSolo

    @alw

    Your words in 363 reminded me of Jane Bennett in Pride & Prejudice and being over Bingley. ;) We all know how that ended. I’m teasing. It sounds like you still really like him but are willing to move on while still keeping open the possibility of him falling in love later. Sounds like a good plan to me.

  • BroHamlet

    @Ramble

    “Right, it was not actually free. Someone payed for it. That is the point behind the Heinlein/Friedman “Free Lunch” statement.”

    I agree with regards to that concept. But, notice that this is not the same as the individualized morality/Karma principle that Anacaona appears to be arguing, where the consequences are neatly dumped right back in the lap of the transgressors (and only those who did wrong). I am saying the same thing Lokland is- the world is not that simple and life isn’t fair. Sometimes one party pays the ultimate price and the other, though punished, does not. Sometime people are wrongly convicted. And sometimes people just plain forgive and forget.

  • LJ

    he said he wouldn’t know what to do if he didn’t still have me in his life at least as a friend. He told me that I am an amazing person and that he still wants to spend time with me even if it means that we won’t hook up. So we decided that we are still going to stay good friends but just cut out the hooking up aspect. I guess we will have to see how this one goes…

    Ack! NO, do not do this! You CANNOT be friends if you have feelings for him. You have to treat this like a breakup. Seriously — no contact at all for at least 2 months.

    It is selfish of him to want to keep you around for emotional support (this might even be worse than just using you for sex) when what you want and what he wants are fundamentally incompatible, and continuing any kind of physically or emotionally intimate relationship is just going to cause you pain. You will be much better off in the long run if you move on, and pour newly found free time and energy into friends/hobbies/school/dating/etc

  • Escoffier

    Like I said, you’ve accepted the modern premise both without understanding its alternatives or even understanding that there ARE alternatives.

    Modern science is a branch of philosophy, the most successful branch, but still just a branch. The distinction between “science” and “philosophy,” which you take for granted, is only about 200 years old and is wholly based on modern premises which today mostly go unexamined but which are not self-evident.

    Philosophy literally means “the love of wisdom.” Philosophy is the quest for wisdom which must remain a quest since it appears that final wisdom is not possible for man. It is the attempt to comprehend the whole, i.e., everything but most of all the limits and outline of the whole and the relation of all the parts to one another. Philosophy is the ongoing attempt to replace opinions about things with knowledge of those things, or the truth about those things, especially about the most important things.

    It’s clear that modern philosophy has succeeded spectacularly in chemistry, very well with much left to be done in biology, and quite well but with tons left to do in physics. It is, needless to say, more successful in all these areas than ancient philosophy was.

    You take this as proof that modern science is superior to ancient philosophy, but you don’t know the difference between the two, you don’t understand the strength of ancient philosophy—especially in comprehending man and his place in the whole—and, worst, you take modern philosophy’s stance toward religion as the foundation of truth rather than as an argument against something it tried to replace. Modern philosophy might in fact be the truth (I think it isn’t) but to know that you would have to understand the two alternatives it was trying to place, and from there WHY it was trying to replace them. Modern philosophy is an argument, not a revelation.

    A modernity of strength would be one that understands itself, and understands what it was reacting to and why. That force spent itself a long time ago. Now modernity is just our ancestral code. The same way in ancient times the good was held to be identical to the old or the ancestral, so today the good is held to be the same as the new or the latest. Progress forever onward. The early moderns actively sought to make that change but they understood what they were doing.

    Our elite education system has failed us completely and with every year that goes by we just get dumber and civilization gets a little dimmer.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Agree with everyone else saying don’t be friends.

    He will never fall in love with you, never want you as a wife, never see you as the potential mother of his children, and he will never give you all that you want and need. Walk out of his life now… actually, run, don’t walk.

  • HanSolo

    @alw

    I think the most likely (though not only) answer is that he’s not into you enough to want to be your boyfriend. You can give it more time if you want but only do so knowing that he’s not likely ever going to fall in love with you enough.

  • Zach

    @alw

    This may sound harsh. You CANNOT be friends with him still. You talked, but neither of your feelings changed because of that talk. He still wants to bang you, you still don’t want to bang without a relationship. Being in close proximity, and doing the things you’re doing will just create tension and more drama.

    In terms of him feeling bad, I can imagine that he does. I felt bad when I broke up with my ex girlfriend, because I still thought highly of her as a person, just not as my gf. I wanted to stay in touch, BUT ONLY TO ASSUAGE MY OWN GUILT. It was very selfish, and she rightfully said no. There was no advantage to it for her. Your guy probably feels the same way. Hell, I feel bad for you reading your post (nobody likes to see someone get their heart broken).

    As far as his ex is concerned, I call bullshit. It’s the same kind of excuse as “I just don’t have time for a relationship”. It’s conditional. What it really means is “its too soon for a relationship WITH YOU”. If there was any truth whatsoever to it being too soon, he wouldn’t have started seeing you at all. To be even more frank, you were a rebound.

    My advice is to break off all contact and find some other guy.

  • Lokland

    @Hope

    “never see you as the potential mother of his children”

    This might be projection on my part but;
    He very well could see her as mother of his child(ren). He might lack the vision where he acts as a father.

  • Zach

    @Escoffier

    You present your argument re: philosophy and science as a fait accompli, which ignores a foundational difference between the two. If you blanket everything under “searching for truth”, then you’re correct. However, I could easily include the spreadsheet I’m working on in the philosophy category if that’s the case. I’m searching for our gross margin in the last thirty days. I’m searching for the truth of our gross margin.

    The extremely important (in fact, the definitive feature of the scientific method) facet that you’re leaving out is that one (science) is empirically testable, and one (philosophy) is not. One (science) actually provides solutions, and one (philosophy) provides intriguing thought exercises and moral frameworks. Philosophy deals in suppositions and ideas, science deals in facts.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Zach and Escoffier’s arguments got me thinking. Given the rate of atheism/agnosticism among young, intelligent and college-educated men, I wonder if a young woman could actually up her chances if she became non-religous.

    What about the more restricted guys? Is religiosity a dealbreaker? Would you much rather have a non-religious woman over a religious woman, assuming similar looks and other qualities? Why or why not?

  • Escoffier

    “Philosophy deals in suppositions and ideas, science deals in facts.”

    You’re not even trying to think beyond the modern position and recognize the alternatives because, like I said earlier, you think you already have the most important issues figured out. You’ve taken sides with modernity without realizing that it is a side and without knowing what the other side has to say.

  • Zach

    @Escoffier

    As I said, I have read most of the classical philosophers. I’ve heard what they have to say. I’ve also read Burke, Rousseau, Voltaire, and many other more modern writers (Kant, Nietschze, Camus). And absolutely I’ve taken sides. Modern science has so thoroughly outmoded their answers to most questions that what they’re left with is those that science has no answer for, such as why we are here (in the metaphysical sense), what the purpose of life is, how to achieve happiness (and they’re losing ground to science on that one every day), and how we should behave and live together. Similar to religion, philosophy was a previous answer in place of “I don’t know”. Now that we do know, in many cases, that answer is no longer necessary. And in a lot of cases, psychology and neuroscience are further eroding the usefulness of philosophy in the practical sense. Philosophy already has seen its practical use eroded heavily by science, and once the practical application is gone, it’s merely a diverting intellectual exercise.

    Your argument is the equivalent of saying “well, you’ve chose to drive a car without properly evaluating the horse and buggy first”.

  • Zach

    @Hope

    For me (not restricted) it depends on the level of religiosity. Goes to church every couple of months and believes there’s a god? Fine. Bases major parts of her life and behavior on the dictates of her religion? No thank you.

  • Lokland

    @Hope

    “Is religiosity a dealbreaker? Would you much rather have a non-religious woman over a religious woman, assuming similar looks and other qualities? Why or why not?”

    Depends on the intensity.
    I broke up with my first girlfriend because she wanted a bit too much Jesus in my life. I’d have the same problem if a woman demanded kids grow up religious.

    I’m fully down for spiritual not good with religion.

  • Zach

    Also @Escoffier

    I actually have to say that Thucydides, while not a philosopher per se, is my favorite of the Greek bunch. Similar to Machiavelli, his work contains some pretty timeless insights on human behavior.

    But, as I noted, psychology is replacing some of philosophy’s answers even in that arena. We now know the chemical causes of bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, and other mental disorders. Any abstract explanation for them is unnecessary. However, science cannot as of yet explain to me why certain people prefer communism to capitalism (although some recent advances in neuroscience are getting closer). So in those situations, I find philosophy compelling.

  • Zach

    @Lokland

    Just curious, can you define the difference between “spiritual” and “religious”? Spiritual seems to me to be a pretty wishy-washy term for incense, crystals and other new-age BS.

  • Escoffier

    You just keep stating modern ideas over and over as if they are obviously superior and no further thought is required. Horse and buggy, lol.

    Hey, as long as you’re happy, no sweat, but you don’t know what you don’t know and what you don’t know is not insignificant.

  • HanSolo

    I’m not restricted (anymore) but religiosity isn’t a deal breaker as long as they accept me as I am.

  • Escoffier

    BTW, to say that modernity is obviously superior to prior thought is not exactly self-evident in the age of thermonuclear weapons, pollution, the gulag, the Holocaust, technology-abetted tyranny, the Last Man, feminism, hedonism, nihilism, and so on. You sure you read Nietszche?

    Modern “science” narrowly understood as physics, chem and bio plus engineering has been spectacularly successful. Whether all this has been good for man as man is another question, which we can’t answer until we know what the good is, which requires recourse to earlier modes of thought. If your answer to this is “But we are richer and can better control nature to alleviate suffering and so on” you still have to make a case for why those things are not only intrisically good but also why they are better than the alternatives, which again requires knowing what those alternatives are.

    Modern social science or political philosophy is manifestly infeferior to prior modes of thought, both on its own terms–as a proscriptive (society should be like this) and predictive (if X occurs, Y follows) science–and even in ancient terms, as a descriptive or theoretical science.

  • JP

    @Escoffier:

    I think modernity has already ended.

  • Lokland

    @Zach

    “Just curious, can you define the difference between “spiritual” and “religious”? Spiritual seems to me to be a pretty wishy-washy term for incense, crystals and other new-age BS.”

    ROFL.

    I’ll let my crystal ball answer you.

    —————

    I don’t thank god for my food.
    I thank the earth. Not a living entity, a ball of rock.
    I am dependent on it so I thank it.

    I tend to romanticize the bond with my wife into something that it is an almost real and tangible. (I realize it is not.)

    I enjoy the sun on my skin, the feel of grass in the summer. I focus on those things and their beauty. And not just enjoy but actually FOCUS on their beauty.

    My favourite sensation ever, is the warmth of my wife’s skin while cuddling against me in a rainstorm in the middle of the summer. I romanticize the protector and nurturer aspects of our relationship.

    It has very little to do with god.

    The closest parallel would be Taoism but I’ve never seriously looked at it.

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

    I’m somewhat surprised, I had guessed that you were more of a believer in Law and Justice being delivered in a demonstrable manner. pour encourager les autres. I guess that religion won out. thanks for the education.

    I am but I also had been observing people for a long time, just because my personal medieval torture was not implemented on certain subjects doesn’t mean they didn’t paid for it. Hell is personal and subjective and very real, again YMMV.

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    “I tend to romanticize the bond with my wife into something that it is an almost real and tangible. (I realize it is not.)”

    It’s real and tangible.

  • Lokland

    @JP

    Ever read Orsonn Scott Card?

    Philotic connection is the closest analogy I can think off.
    Again, nothing to do with god.

  • HanSolo

    @Zach and Escoffier

    Science is a branch of philosophy that limits itself to what can be rationally modelled and empirically verified. However, that does not mean that the whole sum of existence is or ever could be discovered by science.

    Also, the idea of an objective universe that science (with objective subjects) can discover is an assumption, an assumption that is impossible to prove and has many flaws in it, especially due to quantum mechanics where the wave function of all possibilities is reduced to one reality under certain conditions (e.g. being observed, when the electron strikes the screen and is detected).

    This all comes back to the problem of is there any reality beyond one’s own perceptions and thoughts. This cannot be proven. Then if you assume there is such a reality, how to prove that you’re not biasing it by your own assumptions.

    As a practical matter, I assume all these things. And, of course, the fact that science allows for experiments to be performed over and over again and produce the same results within the margins of errors, and the technologies based on the ideas of science, show that it is the best system for acquiring knowledge that we have, within the scope of its limitations. However, there may be influences in the universe that are not readily measurable enough to discern with our current apparatus and may never be but yet still impact the world.

  • JP

    “However, there may be influences in the universe that are not readily measurable enough to discern with our current apparatus and may never be but yet still impact the world.”

    Starting with the thoughts and actions of the 7 billion residents of earth.

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

    So no one has ever successfully committed a robbery? No politician has ever received a bribe under the table without being caught? Not likely. And we haven’t even considered cases where the perpetrator gets a free lunch and the public pays the cost of his/her indiscretions. Sometimes that is your “equal and opposite reaction”.

    So I think you are arguing that a person’s actions can only have one set of consequences, like a politician should get caught right away to be a valid payment for his taking a bribe? I think that is more nuanced coming from a place where many people take bribes people get a varied of consequences that might or might not involved getting caught by the big wigs? Having someone find out and blackmailing you in return for example is a classic, wouldn’t that be a consequence?

  • Zach

    @Escoffier

    You and I have been talking at cross-purposes. I don’t consider social science “Science”. It’s more like informed discussion. When I refer to science, I’m strictly referring to biology, physics and chemistry. Again, in your references above, you veer from scientific discoveries (H bomb) to philosophies and behaviors (nihilism, hedonism). They are non-overlapping magisteria.

    You’re certainly right, there may be more wisdom in ancient ways of organizing society than modern methods. I don’t agree with you that it is inferior as a descriptive “science” though. Insights gathered through data and experiment are much more applicable than the musings of one person. Aristotle didn’t have access to the census, or to rich labor and employment data, or marriage status, etc, etc.

    @JP

    Actually, writ large, human actions are becoming more and more predictable. Brain chemistry (genetics) and experience (the two factors which have been shown to influence behavior) across a population (and human reaction) is more similar than brain chemistry between two people.

    @HanSolo

    Of course science can’t answer all of our questions, or describe anything. However, the default answer to “what can’t it describe” should be “I don’t know”, not an all-powerful, all-knowing being who proscribes certain behaviors to humanity. “God” is a story invented thousands of years ago to replace “I don’t know” (and to alleviate the fear of death). It’s no more plausible than any story I can come up with today. It just has history and tradition on its side. I refer you to Russell’s teapot, which I believe is still the most compelling argument in this case.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ Hope

    What about the more restricted guys? Is religiosity a dealbreaker? Would you much rather have a non-religious woman over a religious woman, assuming similar looks and other qualities? Why or why not?

    She can believe whatever she wants to believe, and I will try to be accommodating. But I don’t want to be thought of as immoral solely because I am not religious, and I hate dealing with religious parents.

    My SO’s entire family is hardcore religious, and her mother has given extensive lectures on “proper” relations between unmarried men and women.

    Other friends have similar stories dealing with hyper-religious parents. They are not flexible or understanding or respectful of their children’s adult choices.

  • JP

    @ADBG:

    “Other friends have similar stories dealing with hyper-religious parents. They are not flexible or understanding or respectful of their children’s adult choices.”

    There are Rules, and you Do Not Disobey The Rules.

    Ever.

    For Any Reason.

    There are Rules.

    Those Who Disobey The Rules Must Be Punished.

  • JP

    @Zach:

    “Actually, writ large, human actions are becoming more and more predictable. Brain chemistry (genetics) and experience (the two factors which have been shown to influence behavior) across a population (and human reaction) is more similar than brain chemistry between two people.”

    Yes, particularly when people are on autopilot.

    I spend most of my day on autopilot.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Those Who Disobey The Rules Must Be Punished.

    http://thefilmexperience.net/storage/1980s/TopGun1.jpg?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1305635162624

    Awwww isn’t that cute, they have “principles” ;)

    Guess what, if you make my life so much hell that I can’t date your daughter anymore, there are plenty of other girls out there for me. Not so many options for her that are going to endure that bullshit.

    And if the ONLY complaint you have about me is “he believes in premarital sex!” good fucking god you have no idea how good she has it!

  • Jason773

    Susan,

    That amounts to deploying the Principle of Least Interest. She goes away with no explanation in order to cause him discomfort and anxiety. If he wants a relationship with her, he’s in a state of dread. If he doesn’t, that will be pretty clear by the manner in which he asks.

    You’re projecting here. When a guy just pulls away from a woman her hamster starts running a mile a minute, and dread ensues. In this case though, when she pulls away, the guy is going to be more curious than anything, and wonder why the sudden change has occurred. The dread issue will not be at the forefront of his mind like it would be for a woman, and may not even be there at all. And as you stated, she will get her answer this way.

    But I’m just giving what I believe will work best. Making the guy pursue (if he is interested at all) will work much better in this case than being blunt with her feelings, as he can just deflect that conversation (I know, because I’ve done it).

  • Jason773

    LOL. In my last response I hadn’t even read the update from alw, and I called it perfectly. She dished her feelings, he deflected, he tried to keep the status quo (because why wouldn’t he? The onus was never put on him) and this will end up with them hooking up even more, him not committing and alw being even more hurt and upset. Just watch…

  • Jason773

    ALW,

    Good luck trying to look for someone else and keeping him as a friend. I’m sure the new ‘someone else’, if he has any social awareness at all, will realize that your ‘friend’ consistently had sex with you without any real commitment. That’s not really putting you in the ‘keeper’ category as this is price discrimination at its finest.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ ALW

    I would suggest running like the wind

  • Passer_By

    @ALW

    What zach said above is correct, particularly calling bullshit on the “timing” thing. If he was that broken up still, he wouldn’t be able to do the things he’s done. He likes you – a lot. Just not enough to exclusively commit to you. If he could have multiple “girlfriends” is the true sense of the word, you’d probably be one of them.

    Go fuck ten other guys. Oh, wait, that advice is for guys, not girls. Go LJBF ten other guys or whatever women do to get over a guy.

  • JP

    “Go LJBF ten other guys or whatever women do to get over a guy.”

    That’s very funny.

    I’m trying to imagine how this would work in a college situation.

    I suppose you could walk around the mechanical engineering area until you attracted a small cohort of beta orbiters. Depending on how many you wanted, you might have to do this for a few days in a row.

    I suppose you could then have each one take you on a date.

    To save time, after you dated all the orbiters, you could then gather them together and LJBF them as a group if you were pressed for time.

  • Passer_By

    Also, as Jason says, no sane guy is going to want to date you while he senses that you’d rather be fucking and in a relationship with your best friend. And this guy will do just enough to claim territory so that the new guy knows it. It might not even be conscious or premeditated – it’s instinctual.

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

      Hhmmmph. I guess I got it totally wrong thinking that alw’s boy is really heartbroken rather than HJNTIY. If he is still hoping for sex, given her confession of real feelings, he’s a shit. IDK, he sounds very fond of her – wanting her to come home with him for the holidays? I can see why she is confused – his behavior looks like commitment, smells like commitment, yet isn’t. I guess “Isn’t” is the bottom line.

  • http://x OffTheCuff

    Hope: “What about the more restricted guys? Is religiosity a dealbreaker? Would you much rather have a non-religious woman over a religious woman, assuming similar looks and other qualities? Why or why not?”

    Fun question. No, it’s not a dealbreaker itself, but since (Christian) religion highly correlates with either prudery or hypocrisy, it is in practice. I couldn’t marry a woman who was seriously invested in being religious, but decided to fuck outside of marriage; but if she won’t fuck *me*, then it’s extremely unlikely I’d marry her in the first place. I dunno if there are other sexier religions, that aren’t so stuffy, though.

  • JP

    “I couldn’t marry a woman who was seriously invested in being religious, but decided to fuck outside of marriage; but if she won’t fuck *me*, then it’s extremely unlikely I’d marry her in the first place.”

    Now there’s a modern day Catch-22.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    And, with that last question… I’ve fixed my URL to put my avatar into full context. Wasn’t aware it has been broken so long,

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Also, as Jason says, no sane guy is going to want to date you while he senses that you’d rather be fucking and in a relationship with your best friend. And this guy will do just enough to claim territory so that the new guy knows it. It might not even be conscious or premeditated – it’s instinctual.

    Going +1000 this.

  • Cooper

    @AWL

    Sorry, I’m late. And I’m posting before reading everyone’s comment, though I skimmed a few.
    Sassy nailed it. So did Hope. As well as Zach.

    Anyways, I’m probably the umpteenth person to say, don’t be friends.
    The only reason he wants to is assuage his own guilt as Zach said, or to wait and see if you’ll fall back into a FWB, and continue sleeping with him.

    The “timing” excuse means nothing. If he had feelings he would have mentioned you two eventually becoming a couple, which it sounds like he avoid purposefully. Or he would have insisted he has space to get over his gf, until he’s ready for you and him to have a relationship.

    Lol, playing the back-drawing game. Talk about kino.
    I think he’s simply keeping you close, so in case you change your mind.

  • JP

    @ADBG:

    I’ll see your +1000 and raise you another +1000.

  • Cooper

    I’m also going to have to throw my support behind not looking for other guys, while remaining friends.

    Jason is spot on. Any other guy is going to notice, or suspect it. And it would do nothing good, if not completely ruin any chance with a new guy.

    I’d suggest you never introduce any future guy, that your looking to date, to this guy.

  • Jackie

    @Religious discussion

    Wow. Just… wow. This is what I have learned about religious people on this thread:

    *Regarded as having “less of a reasoning capacity”
    *Correlates with prudery or hypocrisy
    *Not sexy enough
    *It’s okay as she believes in God, as long as she doesn’t actually practice her beliefs (and thereby inconvenience you)
    *Too much Jesus
    *Hate dealing with religious parents
    *Wonder if a woman could up her chances at a guy by giving up her faith. (Tantamount in my experience to soul suicide and also cutting her off from family, friends and community.)
    ===
    I wish I could get on my high horse and strike back, ’cause this really hurts. (A lot.) :(

    But I can’t. I wouldn’t deny your experience and I can’t change your opinions.

    All I can say is that many religious people aren’t there to throw hypocrisy in your face or throw shade with hardcore judgment. Speaking for my kind, we’re not here to preach or convert. We don’t want to call you names or use religion as a tool to hurt or manipulate.

    Many of us are hippie-types who believe Christ came to teach us compassion and to care for the least among us:

    The “omega” guy, the chubby girl, the people it’s easy to look down upon or dismiss. The poor, the “uglies,” the ones society puts down and laughs at. Anyone who has ever felt lonely, lost or rejected.

    Those are our brothers and sisters that we are called to care for, speak up for and love, unconditionally. We strive for compassion. We want the hungry to be fed and the outcast to be welcomed. We believe in peace.

    And that each of us is worthy of love.

    Thank you for considering my perspective.

  • BroHamlet

    @Anacaona

    “So I think you are arguing that a person’s actions can only have one set of consequences, like a politician should get caught right away to be a valid payment for his taking a bribe? I think that is more nuanced coming from a place where many people take bribes people get a varied of consequences that might or might not involved getting caught by the big wigs? Having someone find out and blackmailing you in return for example is a classic, wouldn’t that be a consequence?”

    No disrespect, but where you have managed to conclude that I have been arguing a one to one correspondence between action and reaction, through all of my repeating that there is a wide potential set of consequences for any given action, is beyond me. I have been saying over and over that there are many potential ways things could shake out in response to an individual action (“the world is not that simple”- how many times have I said that?). What I have also been saying, is that sometimes people’s actions do not come back to bite them in any meaningful, practical, or timely way FROM AN INDIVIDUAL PERSPECTIVE. I shouldn’t even say sometimes, because this literally happens all the time.

    This sentence of yours: “I think that is more nuanced coming from a place where many people take bribes people get a varied of consequences that might or might not involved getting caught by the big wigs?”

    That sentence is exactly what I have been saying all along, and apparently we have been talking past each other, you referencing the generalized concept of for every action a reaction (or reactions plural), and me talking about this same concept from an individual perspective. Fact of the matter is, that from an individual perspective, the full cost (or benefit) of people’s actions doesn’t always come to them in a way that greatly affects them, so it makes sense to look out for you, because “justice” may not come when and where you want it, nor will it always be so cut and dried as to even allow you to claim that you were wronged if you knowingly agreed to a loose contract of some sort a la the FWB “contract” we have been discussing.

    That’s my point, and that’s enough on this topic.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    JP: “Now there’s a modern day Catch-22.”

    Yes and no. Had I started found a steady girlfriend at 14 or 15, 16 tops, and had no long dry spells, I probably would’ve been fine marrying with n=0. Something about being alone really changes one’s mind about that.

  • JP

    @BroHamlet:

    “Fact of the matter is, that from an individual perspective, the full cost (or benefit) of people’s actions doesn’t always come to them in a way that greatly affects them, so it makes sense to look out for you, because “justice” may not come when and where you want it, nor will it always be so cut and dried as to even allow you to claim that you were wronged if you knowingly agreed to a loose contract of some sort a la the FWB “contract” we have been discussing.”

    I’m not even sure where FWB falls on the karmic scales, so to speak.

    Justice is cut and dried within it’s own context.

    However, it’s not subjective, it’s objective, which means that people don’t get a vote, just like we don’t get a vote on gravity.

    Build your tower however you want to, just don’t be surprised or whine when the lightning strikes.

  • JP

    @Jackie:

    “Thank you for considering my perspective.”

    There’s nothing wrong with your perspective.

  • J

    Basically, how do I stand my ground and tell him I don’t want this if it’s not going to lead to more?

    All you need to say is that you thought a FBW relationship would work for you, it doesn’t, so you’re done. Don’t allow him to think you are trying to issue some sort of ultimatum like, “I’ll only stay if you give me more.” Just let him no that you understand that he only has so much to give you, that it’s not working out for you as you thought it would and that you need to end it. No hard feelings, my mistake, I misjudged myself, it’s been nice, bye. That way, you at least get out with some dignity. Do it in a public place, keep it short, keep the drama to a minimum.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Jackie, you are assuredly the exception to what I wrote. I’ve never met, nor corresponded with, any strong Christian like you, who actually walks the walk. Not one, and I spent a good 20 something years in my own church, before I grew out of it.

    My point in 413 is that I wouldn’t have the attitude I have, if it wasn’t such a gigantic fail in practice. If the church is serious about getting young men actually wanting a true Christian marriage before they give up and just grt out, they better get their crap together.

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

    Go fuck ten other guys. Oh, wait, that advice is for guys, not girls. Go LJBF ten other guys or whatever women do to get over a guy.

    We cry,eat a lot of ice cream and/or chocolate our girlfriends talk with us and bash the guy as lesser/we could totally do better/his lose and shortly after we are over him.

    That sentence is exactly what I have been saying all along, and apparently we have been talking past each other, you referencing the generalized concept of for every action a reaction (or reactions plural), and me talking about this same concept from an individual perspective.

    Oops it seems that we indeed are in the same page but our sexual chromosomes got in the way. I agree to agree :D

  • J

    I seem to be tardy to the party. I didn;t realize that the situation had resolved itself. Sorry it did not work out in the way you wanted.

    And he confused me even more because he asked if I want to go home with him the next time he visits his family, and his house is like 5 hours away from our college.

    That is confusing. It’s the sort of mixed message you are trying to get away from in the first place.

    Is he doing this because he feels bad for me and is trying to be nice or does he actually feel something and really just isn’t ready for a new relationship yet? Did I write him off unfairly? I just don’t see why he would take a girl who he is only friends with on a long trip home to spend time with his family and childhood friends. So confusing!!!

    None of that really matters. What matters is that you need to avoid being caught up in this stuff again. Under no circumstances should you go home with him.

    So overall, I think that this came out to be a good thing. I am glad I listened to you all and talked to him. Maybe one day he will realize that I would make an awesome girlfriend, or maybe he really does just need more time to get over his ex, but I feel like maybe I will have already moved on by then.

    You should definitely move on. And, though I think he cares for you on some level, I think the stuff about his ex is an excuse.

    But I still don’t see why he spends so much time with me and does such nice things for me if he isn’t interested in me. Ugh, what’s a girl to do?!

    I’m of two minds. Part of me says, remain friendly, but do not be friends. Don’t allow him to eat up time that you could be spending moving on. He will only get in the way of the next guy who will see him as a competitor. A smaller part of me says let’s see how long he sticks around without sex. I’m guessing not long. You should definitely decrease the amount of time you spend with him.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Jackie, I didn’t mean to offend. But I did grow up in China where religion was scarce. And I feel all that you’ve said without knowing Christianity.

    I like to question everything and keep an open mind. It was not my intention to disparage you or your beliefs in particular. My apologies.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    J, some men love emotional validation, too, especially from an attractive girl. He gets the warm fuzzies and sexual tension without actually being in love or interested in a real relationship. He also gets preselection, psychological support, ego boosts, nice company, all without the pressure of anything official so he’s free to date and find other women.

  • J

    Indeed he does, Hope.

  • BroHamlet

    @JP:

    “Justice is cut and dried within it’s own context.”

    Agreed.

    “However, it’s not subjective, it’s objective, which means that people don’t get a vote, just like we don’t get a vote on gravity.”

    In practice, however objective you may view it to be, people have many different versions of justice in their heads across cultures and personal experiences. It is wise to take that into account when dealing with people, and don’t immediately assume that their version of justice lines up with your own.

    “Build your tower however you want to, just don’t be surprised or whine when the lightning strikes.”

    I’m more on your wavelength than you seem to think. We all have our successes and failures at acting morally and conscientiously, some of these we know and understand, and some we don’t, and some we never even find out about. All we can do is the best we can do. That is a really big part of the human condition, don’t you think?

  • JP

    @BroHamlet:

    “In practice, however objective you may view it to be, people have many different versions of justice in their heads across cultures and personal experiences.”

    My point is that, at the end of the day, it really doesn’t even matter what I view justice to be or what my culture views justice to be.

    “We all have our successes and failures at acting morally and conscientiously, some of these we know and understand, and some we don’t, and some we never even find out about. All we can do is the best we can do. That is a really big part of the human condition, don’t you think?”

    My problem is that life can only be understood backward, but it has to be lived forward.

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    “HJNTIY”

    Oh, man. This is getting just too hard to keep up.

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

      @Passer By

      He’s Just Not That Into You

      I’m sure you’ll agree that needs an acronym.

  • szopen

    Discussing God existence and communism on HUS. That what “hooking up smart” really means.
    @Zach

    However, it’s about shadings of probability. It is extremely probable that the chair I am sitting on does exist

    You cannot assign any probability to the existence of God, or to Flying Spaghetti Monster. As for the chair, you assume philosophical position of metaphysical realism, then :). You assume your senses do not lie. You assume the world exist. Probably, if you waste your time on discussion with me, Escoffier and HanSolo, you assume we exist too. That’s a lot of assumptions.

    You see, your example with probability only works if you believe in a lot of things in a first place.

    But more in serious matter, it just science is not concerned with God, as you probably also agree. If you cannot empirically prove or disprove thing, or even assign probabilities, then that thing is not matter of science. Which, I guess, you also said, just in other terms, so we are more or less in agreement here.
    @INTJ

    The same reasoning used by science (namely, the principle of parsimony) to reject the Flying Spaghetti Monster can be used to reject God.

    It’s not. The lack of proofs for something or rule of parismony is not be proof of non-existence. It’s just a sign that there is no point to assume the existence. Existence of neither FSM nor God are scientific questions.

    @Deli

    It did produce stunning results in some areas and was much more complex that just “bad commies did bad things and made puppies cry”.

    Communism was a system inherently built on lies, which promoted immoral people and was forcing moral people out of the country. It also promoted double morality and a lot of other things. I don’t know about Russia, but in my country we would be much, much better without communism.

    @hope

    What about the more restricted guys? Is religiosity a dealbreaker? Would you much rather have a non-religious woman over a religious woman, assuming similar looks and other qualities? Why or why not?

    For me this was a non-question. My wife is catholic and insisted on church marriage in addition to civil one, I agreed but insisted on also separate civil ceremony. I had to ppromise I wouldn’t intervene in religious raising of my children, and I am keeping this promise.

  • Iggles

    @ szopen:

    You see, your example with probability only works if you believe in a lot of things in a first place.

    But more in serious matter, it just science is not concerned with God, as you probably also agree. If you cannot empirically prove or disprove thing, or even assign probabilities, then that thing is not matter of science. Which, I guess, you also said, just in other terms, so we are more or less in agreement here.

    + 1000

    Perfect rebuttal to atheists. Science seeks to explains things, but there are some thing it cannot prove or disprove. You just have to take it on faith (or not; whether you do or don’t believe in something is totally up to you!)

    FTR, believing what your sense tell you is a huge leap of faith. Our brains interpreted electrical signals sent to us by interacting with our environment, but it can get things wrong. For example, people who experience hallucinations are seeing things that aren’t actually happening; their sense of sight and hearing are failing them. However for everyone perception is reality.

    The assumption here, of course, is there is a reality out there, that we have in common: an external environment in which we live and move and breath. How we experience this reality depends on the particular sensory apparatus we have and – crucially – how the we use our brain processing to interpret this sensory input and assemble it into a conscious experience.
    Source: http://www.wineanorak.com/constructing_reality.htm

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Back on topic, it seems like the poster’s man acts exactly like a boyfriend, so what does she want him to *do* differently? Act *exactly* the same, except upgrade the title to “girlfriend”? How does his current behavior differ from a Susan-style LTR where the commitment level is “meh, as long as I feel like it”? Is this disconnect just about a label?

    I agree if she can’t get him to commit, and she wants that, she should leave. But committing means nothing anyway, and maybe he knows that.

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

      a Susan-style LTR where the commitment level is “meh, as long as I feel like it”?

      Please stop saying “meh.” The way I defined an LTR was being into another person enough that you are willing to foresake all other opportunities to be with someone else. The difference between that and marriage, which is the only real commitment, is the vow to remain a monogamous pair for life. Anything short of marriage = “as long as I feel like it” and today even marriage may mean that little.

      But committing means nothing anyway, and maybe he knows that.

      Young people enter LTRS for companionship, support, emotional and physical intimacy. They fall in love. It is deeply disingenuous to say that LTRs mean nothing. They don’t get a lifetime guarantee, but those are generally hard to come by.

      As for what the guy knows, he has expressly stated that he is not over his previous gf, and in his heart he is still committed to her. So your comment makes no sense.

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

    Susan, I don’t think your intuition is wrong re: the guy. He may not be acting with a long-term strategic plan—he may be reacting to events on a day by day basis, dealing with what’s 6″ in front of him. In other words, he may not really know what he wants and may be feeling his way through it.

    We should keep in mind that the planned-obsolescence college LTR script with a pre-defined implosion point around graduation time makes it very difficult for a young person to know how much to invest today. Emotionality and vulnerability may be energizing for women and seen as worthwhile ends in themselves, but they are often very fatiguing for men. I’ve heard it expressed that men have a finite emotional bank account and that we tend to want to conserve it for a small, lifelong circle of people.

    If an FWB arrangement is working out for one party, that party may not want to change it simply out of concerns that shifting upgear to an LTR or downgear to a friendship w/o benefits might ruin things. This is a legitimate concern: I know that I’ve been in situations wherein I ending up thinking that “we should have stuck to FWB—we got along a lot better then.”

    There is a natural tendency among both genders to think that an LTR will have all of the good parts of the FWB arrangement w/o the bad parts (uncertainty, jealousy, etc.), but it doesn’t necessarily work out that way. It’s like thinking that if you enjoy seeing someone 3 days a week, you will *really* enjoy seeing that person 7 days a week. Maybe not! Perhaps you only have 3 days of high-quality time available and 7 days would only dilute the relationship. It all depends.

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

      @BB

      We should keep in mind that the planned-obsolescence college LTR script with a pre-defined implosion point around graduation time makes it very difficult for a young person to know how much to invest today. Emotionality and vulnerability may be energizing for women and seen as worthwhile ends in themselves, but they are often very fatiguing for men.

      That’s interesting. I have heard Helen Fisher speak about men falling in love sooner than women, and grieving failed relationships for longer, in part because the woman is often the only source of emotional intimacy in the man’s life. It sounds like the whole experience is more emotionally wrenching for men, precisely because it is more unusual.

  • Lisa C

    OTC – if he acts like a boyfriend 24/7, then I agree that fighting for the promotion to “girlfriend status” would seem less important. But I think what probably happens in many FWB relationships is that the person who does not want a commitment acts like a boyfriend/girlfriend when it suits him or her, and at other times, distances himself or herself and labels the other “just a friend.” That’s one of the reasons that I think even a de facto exclusive FWB arrangement (where neither party is actually seeing anyone else, but there is no commitment and no public acknowledgement of the relationship) can really be detrimental to a person wanting a commitment.

    It’s hard not to find the OP endearing, and I hope it all works out well. Even if she can’t break away completely, a healthy start would be ending the sleepovers.

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

      @Lisa C

      But I think what probably happens in many FWB relationships is that the person who does not want a commitment acts like a boyfriend/girlfriend when it suits him or her, and at other times, distances himself or herself and labels the other “just a friend.”

      Exactly. alw mentioned that he has never held her hand in public, for example, despite the real intimacy they share in private. He is not willing to say to the world, “this is the girl I like.” If she has feelings, of course that will be painful.

      I would add that commitment in college relationships is often negotiated over a period of time. It’s not very romantic, and I don’t think those hard-won concessions generally lead to good relationships, but navigating from “regular hookups” to “bf/gf” often involves a process of wearing the guy down, presumably using sex as a carrot. I’ve heard many stories of that process that look something like this:

      DTR – no relationship.

      Fight – no relationship.

      Male jealousy, fight, crying – no relationship.

      Fight – no relationship.

      Ultimatum: “We’re in one or we’re done.”

      Relationship.

  • JP

    “That’s interesting. I have heard Helen Fisher speak about men falling in love sooner than women, and grieving failed relationships for longer, in part because the woman is often the only source of emotional intimacy in the man’s life. It sounds like the whole experience is more emotionally wrenching for men, precisely because it is more unusual.”

    I think that this is why lots of men see other men essentially being emotionally crippled by these break-up experiences and then decide that the cost for failure is too high to risk anything but as close to 100% certainty as possible.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    “the cost for failure is too high to risk anything but as close to 100% certainty as possible.”

    Which is why agreeing to a FWB is such a bad idea, if the girl catches feelings, because the guy has basically verbal agreement from her that she did not fall for him from the beginning and wanted no emotional entanglements with him.

  • JP

    “It’s like thinking that if you enjoy seeing someone 3 days a week, you will *really* enjoy seeing that person 7 days a week. Maybe not! Perhaps you only have 3 days of high-quality time available and 7 days would only dilute the relationship. It all depends.”

    This is kind of my point with respect to the “fun” part of the relationship vs. the “work” part.

    When you are in the “fun” part, you generally don’t have any of the stresses that go along with day to day life. It’s really a bubble where life doesn’t impose on the relationship and cause stress.

    When you aren’t in an LTR/marriage, you have much more flexibility in terms of making friends, bonding with people, etc.

    Once you get together, you are no longer free to form relationships outside the bond, or engage in activities, in nearly the same manner that you were before, so there are significant limitations imposed on your life.

  • Zach

    @Szopen

    No, “god” himself is not of interest to science. However, pretty much everything that is attributed to him is. Creation of the universe, the rise of man (evolution), weather, life/death, etc. For almost every single action that is attributed to him, there is a far more compelling scientific explanation. So if you take all of that away, what exactly is god? Some non-corporeal being that just exists for the sake of existing? And if that’s the case, why concern yourself with him if he doesn’t effect anything?

    And sure, you can go down the rabbit hole of “you assume the world exists”, but that really is just a fun thought exercise, not something that is practical or actionable in any way shape or form. So casting that aside, everything is really a shading of probability. And yes, that rests on certain assumptions, but without those assumptions you’d essentially curl up in the fetal position and wither and die (how would you know the food was real? how do you know you’re hungry? ). As I said, fun thought exercise, but that’s really about it.

  • Zach

    @Jackie

    I’m with OfftheCuff 417. Almost never, ever seen someone who really walks the walk. In my experience, religion has been far more divisive than conciliatory.

  • Thrasymachus

    @ Escoffier:

    Modern social science or political philosophy is manifestly infeferior to prior modes of thought, both on its own terms–as a proscriptive (society should be like this) and predictive (if X occurs, Y follows) science–and even in ancient terms, as a descriptive or theoretical science.

    This is an extraordinary claim. Can you provide some evidence or argument to support it? Do ancient theories of, say, macroeconomics or voting behavior have greater explanatory value than their modern counterparts?

    Contemporary philosophy (as exemplified by Kripke, Dummett, Parfitt, Putnam and the late W.V.O.Quine) is relentlessly analytical, technical and devoted to conceptual analysis. As far as I know no prominent contemporary philosopher considers that he is offering alternative explanations of natural or social phenomena to those provided by natural or social scientists. Philosophers tend to focus on questions such as “What criteria should we adopt for accepting or rejecting a scientific theory?” I certainly believe that philosophers have much to contribute to these debates, and there have been some fruitful exchanges between philosophers and scientists.

    With respect to the social sciences, today’s philosophers are generally concerned with epistemological and normative questions. They do not claim that they can explain economic, political or social trends better than social scientists can. Those philosophers who write about social and political theory (the late John Rawls, Jurgen Habermas, Thomas Nagel, Michael Sandel, Peter Singer, etc.) refer quite extensively to the results of social science research. In fact, their work presupposes that at least some contemporary social science has significant explanatory value.

    Can you identify contemporary philosophers who would endorse the claims you made for the discipline?

  • JP

    @Zach:

    ” For almost every single action that is attributed to him, there is a far more compelling scientific explanation.”

    A lot of the time, there’s going to be a “scientific explanation” for things, because science is extremely useful to the practical questions that can sufficiently explained by science within the context of what people want science to do.

    For example, science and engineering are extremely good at asking “how do I make a skyscraper in modern America”, or “how do I get rid of this infection.”

    However, science has a somewhat hard time explaining how cosmic soup made itself into very beautiful galaxies and New York City.

  • Zach

    @JP

    Galaxies are still of a bit of an unknown, but science is very good at explaining star and planetary formation, solar systems, and many other aspects of the cosmos. My point is not that it can explain everything, but why would the answer possibly be “god did it” instead of “I have no idea how it happened” (or, equally as likely as “god did it”, a giant floating Datsun did it).

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

    Susan: yes, I think that Helen Fisher is correct (as usual) on this. If you tell a young woman that she will get married in approx. 10 years and will gain valuable insights and skills by falling in and out of love 3-5 times before she settles down, this may make sense to her. Perhaps there is evidence that a woman with N=5 makes better marriage/mating decisions than a woman with N=1.

    However, I don’t think this scheme makes any sense at all to most men; it sounds like buying a new puppy and then selling your furry best friend every 12-18 months. Perhaps we just get attached to things differently—few ladies have understood the nostalgia that I have for an old, beaten-up pair of boxing gloves, for example, but my attachment seems to make perfect sense to my male friends.

    Two former SEALs that I know of attended the same business school that you did and then went on to basically create the market for MRI scans for pets. Their reasoning: “Fuck, we’d do anything for our dogs.” I recently lost my dog and I was a basket case for weeks.

    I hate to stretch the cliche cats and dogs analogy further, but this SMP today is basically rewarding “cats”, at least for the decade between high school graduation and marriage, and punishing “dogs.”

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

      @Bastiat Blogger

      I missed your comment yesterday about your dog, I’m sorry. I had two and lost one, and now I get anxious about what happens when she passes.

      Re attachment styles, you may be right about sex differences, but this must depend on the guy, because many do change up their girlfriends on a regular basis.

      Hmmm, I just realized my George Clooney recommendation will have made no sense at all to you.

  • http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&ved=0CDUQtwIwAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DE7XzcGnUCI0&ei=gATCUKaBJ6a00AH OffTheCuff

    Zach – when I say “walk the walk” I don’t mean sainthood or perfection (nobody is), but rather, if someone claims a moral standard that they either 1) adhere to it or 2) repent when they don’t. “Repent” means a) stop doing it and b) have contrition.

    Lisa C, at 433 – hey, that does makes a lot of sense. Good explanation.

    Susan – I see zero practical difference between this FWB arrangement (where there’s no other people actively involved – if there was a third party that’s different) and what you call an LTR if the latter can be terminated for “any” reason, no matter how small, as opposed to some reasonably huge dealbreaker. Because that “any” reason can then just be “Until we go outside!”. It’s the same thing to me.

    Of course, I’m not stupid – I know the reality is that either party really *can* walk for any reason, and we have to act accordingly. I just think consciously holding that attitude is what actually makes it a FWB.

    Perhaps we are just disagreeing over just terminology of “any”, though.

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

      @OTC

      if the latter can be terminated for “any” reason, no matter how small, as opposed to some reasonably huge dealbreaker.

      You act like there are rules, OTC, that we can agree on and abide by. There are no rules. No one is obligated to remain in a relationship for any reason before marriage. You may hope for the best, but if someone falls out of love with you, you certainly won’t expect (or even want) them to stay with you. At least I wouldn’t. I’m describing reality, not the ideal way that I’d like to see human beings treat one another.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    BB, but cats form great bonds, too. There are tons of famous cat videos and memes, so clearly lots of guys love their cats.

    Anyway, it doesn’t really matter why this guy is not available for a relationship. We’re not giving him advice. Awl should not stick around to play therapist friend, but cut him out of her life.

  • JP

    “No one is obligated to remain in a relationship for any reason before marriage. You may hope for the best, but if someone falls out of love with you, you certainly won’t expect (or even want) them to stay with you.”

    The “falling out of love” thing is kind of funny. Fine before marriage, not fine after.

    I think historically there wasn’t much of an issue with the being “in loveness” to last the duration of the marriage anyway because that wasn’t necessarily the point of marriage. I was surprised when I learned this because I thought, as many Americans thing, that love means you get married.

    There are a ton of older married couples out there who really don’t have any really feelings of warmth toward each other, and sometimes anger/resentment. I’m not talking about my marriage, but I certainly see these types of marriages in my extended family. They’re certainly not in love with each other and haven’t been for years, but their worlds are too intertwined to detach.

  • Lokland

    @Zach, Esc, others

    Science is not capable of proving anything.
    Its very definition is that a hypothesis is falsifiable not verifiable.

    Therefore all one can do is repeat an experiment until your fingers fall off to show that something does not happen.

    Ex. (because its so easy) gravity.

    Hypo: If I drop the pen, then the pen will fall towards the ground.

    Repeat, repeat, pen falls every time.

    At this point you have not proven gravity exists.
    You have failed to prove it does not exists which allows an inference to be drawn that it does in fact exist.

    As a practical matter, duh, we all know gravity exists. Technically its never been proven.

    The most important aspect of this system is not its explanatory but predictive capacity.

    If I drop the pen from an airplane, If I drop the pen from a chair, then the pen will fall, accelerating at 9.8 m/s^2 until it reaches terminal velocity.

    ———–

    God, has excellent explanatory capacity but an absolutely atrocious predictive capacity.

    Which in practical terms makes god an utterly useless concept for humans because it doesn’t allow anything to be accomplished. (Unless you count feeling better as worthwhile. Personally I think thats why we have wine.)

    However, that doesn’t necessarily mean there is(are) no god(s). Nor that that god(s) have no power.

    Science has 0 ability to disprove the existence of god which would entail proving that god does not exist. Not possible.

    Science is capable of indirectly demonstrating existence (ie. gravity) not non-existence (ie. god).

  • Jackie

    @Hope
    I really appreciate your reply, Hope. Thank you.

    If you haven’t grown up with it, the traditions and practices are going to involve almost every facet of your life. From before you eat, before you sleep, how and where you will spend your money, who you will involve yourself with– everything. I can tell you my life would be MUCH easier without adhering to my faith. Much, much easier, in every dimension. But it would also be — for me– almost completely devoid of meaning and joy.

    Basically faith, in my experience, is like the center of a wheel with the various facets of your life as the spokes. Without it (again, I speak for only myself!), like in the famous Yeats poem,

    Things fall apart/the center does not hold.

  • Jackie

    @BB

    Bastiat, I am so sorry to hear of your beloved dog. They are family members and a tremendous loss. My thoughts will be with you, Bastiat Blogger.

  • Jackie

    @OTC & Zach

    It’s sounds like you guys have encountered people who use religion as a tool to divide, hurt, manipulate and shield their own hypocrisies. Either people who are annoyingly condescending hypocrites (see: Pharisees) or people who are solipsistic (YEAH I SAID IT) and ignorant enough to think everyone should have thei same experience. Or! People who want to use Christ’s teachings to cloak their own evil (See: Every preacher trope EVER).

    Even Christ’s own disciples were always betraying him, selling him for silver, arguing who would be the most awesome in heaven, doubting Jesus constantly or falling down on the job.

    They also missed the point frequently. (When Christ tells them he has meat for them which they do not know of — he was speaking of spiritual sustenance, but the literalist dopes kept asking, What, huh? Where’s the food, we can’t see it?)

    I’m sorry– those folks drive me crazy, too! Just ask Olive! ;) The majority of atheists are far more Christ-like.

    It doesn’t mean that Christ’s teachings are wrong for believers. (And I am not holding myself up as some kind of perfect person who never makes mistakes. On the contrary, I fail all the time. It’s okay– I’m doing my best, and just like everybody else, if I could do better I would.)

    Zach, you seem bound and determined in your atheism. Guess what? I have no interest in changing it. ;) It would be morally wrong, because it would be denying you your experience. Peace–

  • http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&ved=0CDUQtwIwAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DE7XzcGnUCI0&ei=gATCUKaBJ6a00AH OffTheCuff

    Sue: “No one is obligated to remain in a relationship for any reason before marriage.”

    Sure. But there’s no obligation to stay in a relationship, even during marriage.

  • doomwolf

    @Jackie #452

    +1

    @Zach

    For your interest (and anyone else in the debate), I have copy/pasted part of a letter I mail to a friend a couple months ago (we had a couple letters back and forth explaining what we believe; she’s agnostic for what it’s worth).

    “Also, the idea that, if you believe in God, you can’t believe in evolution, drives me nuts. One is an explanation of why we are here, how to live a moral life, etc, and the other is the scientific explanation (based on observable evidence) as to how species develop/emerge. Please explain to me where these even cross paths. Yes, I know in Genesis 1 it says God created the world in seven days (well, technically six, as he took the seventh off, which is to be encourage if you ask me), but this is also an account that was written down thousands of years ago in an entirely different culture and even if God explained the Big Bang, evolution, dinosaurs, ice ages, etc, to the prophet in question, the guy would have either a) not understood what the Big Man was getting at, or b) the knowledge would have driven him cuckoo, or c) he would have understood, but when he tried to explain it to everyone around, they would have written him off as batshit crazy-insane. And then possibly have stoned him to death. ”

    All this to say it is entirely possible to be a committed Christian without believing in the literal truth of everything written in the Bible. In the same vein, I can interact with people without ramming my worldview down their throat, and I’m in the junior ranks of the military, so the # of people who agree with me on faith is pretty damn small; most of my peers would rather go to a strip club over church.

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

    “Also, the idea that, if you believe in God, you can’t believe in evolution, drives me nuts. One is an explanation of why we are here, how to live a moral life, etc, and the other is the scientific explanation (based on observable evidence) as to how species develop/emerge. Please explain to me where these even cross paths. Yes, I know in Genesis 1 it says God created the world in seven days (well, technically six, as he took the seventh off, which is to be encourage if you ask me), but this is also an account that was written down thousands of years ago in an entirely different culture and even if God explained the Big Bang, evolution, dinosaurs, ice ages, etc, to the prophet in question, the guy would have either a) not understood what the Big Man was getting at, or b) the knowledge would have driven him cuckoo, or c) he would have understood, but when he tried to explain it to everyone around, they would have written him off as batshit crazy-insane. And then possibly have stoned him to death. ”

    d) All this knowledge is of no use to people that only want a simple explanation for suffering and a way to escape it , heck the big bang is not use to 90% of the planet now in practical sense.

    Also fundamentals can’t accept evolution because it renders the concept of original sin moot. If we never were on the Garden of Eden physically then why we suffer in a world made by a loving God? And what is worst there was no need of Jesus dying to redeem us from that sin if it never happened. Catholics, Muslims, Jews and some other religions have a more broad concept of how God interacts with the world but Christians fundamentalists are in a catch 22 with evolution so denial is much needed for them, YMMV.

  • JP

    ” If we never were on the Garden of Eden physically then why we suffer in a world made by a loving God?”

    Why do you go to a gym? No stress, no growth. However, stress needs to be just right, not too little or too much.

    “And what is worst there was no need of Jesus dying to redeem us from that sin if it never happened.”

    The problem of all early religion was human sacrifice. This solves the problem; it’s the logic of sacrifice. It too me a while before I tripped across the answer. No pseudo-sacrifice of animals required, either.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Ana

    Catholics, Muslims, Jews and some other religions have a more broad concept of how God interacts with the world but Christians fundamentalists are in a Catch 22 with evolution so denial is much needed for them, YMMV.

    That sounds like some peoples’ approach to social science around here, too! :wink:

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    Gotta agree with the guys here…

    If I have to decide between a FWB or a relationship with a shelf life, I’m going to take the FWB option every time.

    I don’t see what a guy really has to gain by going from FWB to serial monogamous relationship. They’re essentially the same thing, except the former is the more honest and open understanding of what the relationship essentially is.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    So essentially, I have no interest in forming a LTR with a girl that I don’t see a very real possibility of marrying.

    If there are any doubts about that, whether personal or practical, my philosophy would be “let’s just admit what this really is, and not read too much into it.” No reason to get invested in something with an expiration date.

  • Just1Z

    @JP
    “I think that this is why lots of men see other men essentially being emotionally crippled by these break-up experiences and then decide that the cost for failure is too high to risk anything but as close to 100% certainty as possible.”

    ahhh, I think that another piece of a puzzle that has been mystifying me just fell into place. misplaced ‘certainty’ can lead to very bad decisions.

    thanks for the pointer, though I shouldn’t have needed it.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Jimmy 458-459: exactly. Excellent summary.

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

    Jackie- Thank you so much for the kind words re: the death of my dog. I really appreciate your comments.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @OTC

    Exactly. Excellent summary.

    Just to be clear so a blockhead like me can understand:
    Your ideal male lifestyle is complete non-monogamy, albeit with “friends”, until, somewhere down the road, a woman shows up who’s marriage material, guaranteed for life?

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    No.

    Ideal would be an LTR that was not dependent upon some built in implosion date or subject to the “I met someone better, now fuck off” mindset.

    Second would be a FWB situation which also meets emotional needs.

    After that comes Susan style serial monogamy. (FWB + exclusivity)

    Last, comes trying and failing to be a player.

    ——————————-

    The only difference between Susan style serial monogamy and FWB is that now he has become exclusive with a woman where the relationship is doomed anyway.

    Much better to just keep options open for someone better (already allowed) or fuck multiple women.

    Why limit oneself to one person when that person is not the one?

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    “The only difference between Susan style serial monogamy and FWB is that now he has become exclusive with a woman where the relationship is doomed anyway.”

    I think that her point is that the relationship isn’t necessarily doomed.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks
    Heh, I think I’ve got your MO pretty well understood. :wink:
    However:

    Second would be a FWB situation which also meets emotional needs.

    Oxymoron.

    Interesting, but no mention of preliminary dating, which is the best way to find someone who *might* fit your ideal situation, and doesn’t necessarily mean NSA sex. Hey, at least your guys are illustrating some great red flags for young women to avoid… :mrgreen:

    Why limit oneself to one person when that person is not the one?

    Oh, boy… I’ll refrain from commenting on that incongruity!

  • Lokland

    @JP

    “I think that her point is that the relationship isn’t necessarily doomed.”

    Assuming college level relationships, most don’t make it past graduation.
    So I think she means they are.

    @Mega

    “Oxymoron.”

    No.

    Do a FWB with the whole relationship experience.
    Dates, cook together the whole bit.

    Don’t label it a relationship.

    I met someone better and I stopped fucking my FWB sounds much better than I met someone better and I broke up with my girlfriend.

    Which is more of a red flag?

    “but no mention of preliminary dating, which is the best way to find someone who *might* fit your ideal situation, and doesn’t necessarily mean NSA sex”

    Shopping while in a relationship would be seen as wrong by both sexes I assume.
    Shopping while in a FWB style relationship is not wrong.

    Therefore if the relationship isn’t going anywhere, don’t label it a relationship. Keep it a FWB which enables the people involved to continue DATING other people without setting off a ton of red flags. Thus, sex + fake relationship intimacy + ability to still find the one.

    It really is the ideal situation while trying to find the one.
    Labelling her as girlfriend is less ideal because ending a relationship because you met someone better is generally seen as a red flag (if they did it once, they’ll do it again).

    Note: This assumes being in a FWB situation is in and of itself not a red flag.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    No.

    Yes. Definition #1 of FWB from the Urban Dictionary:
    Two friends who have a sexual relationship without being emotionally involved.

    What you’ve described isn’t a FWB, but a “relationship in denial” by one or both parties. I observed that in #315. But by all means, redefine away! :wink:

    Note: This assumes being in a FWB situation is in and of itself not a red flag.

    Bingo, that was the point of my original question… to somebody else. Guys who’ve only ever been in those situations, who’ve avoided GFs and monogamy, well, I’m pretty sure they’re low on the list for women looking to marry.

    A track record of non-serious, non-monogamous, non-romantic relationships, with “friends” no less = BIG red flag. That obviously goes both ways BTW, lest I be accused of bias against the male genders… again!

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

      The whole point of FWB is to avoid emotional entanglement of any kind. It is not an exclusive arrangement either – it’s generally understood that the minute one person finds someone they like, they’ll split. It’s simply a way of getting laid without the effort required for a ONS, and it’s considered “safer” as well, though I’m not at all sure about that.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “What you’ve described isn’t a FWB, but a “relationship in denial” by one or both parties. I observed that in #315. But by all means, redefine away! ”

    Happy too.

    Though that of course means that another category needs to be added to my list, subdivide FWB into those with and those without intimacy.

    “I’m pretty sure they’re low on the list for women looking to marry.”

    I’m going to maintain that being in a FWB style relationship probably has little to no effect on relationship potential when the one comes along. If not being a positive over dumping your current girlfriend for the one.

    Because

    Women are fickle. Given enough of X (and time), a certain amount of Y can be forgiven.

    I wouldn’t date a girl who was going to dump her bf to be with me.
    I wouldn’t date a girl who was in a FWB.

    Women probably favour the first statement fore strongly than the second due to lack of caring about past partners. If not their an idiot because if he dumped her to be with you, he’ll dump you to be with her.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    I’m going to maintain that being in a FWB style relationship probably has little to no effect on relationship potential when the one comes along.

    Really? Even if the guy remains “friends” and hangs out with women he’s slept with? Hmmm… some GFs might be that fickle. But I seriously doubt that 90% or more of women looking to marry for life are, though. Of course, I don’t live in Canada… :wink:

    Here’s a novel concept: men and women *highly* prefer to date each other when both parties are completely single, over and above other situations. Why dither and worry about these alternative arrangements, when the failure rate is so high?

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

    Susan, no worries—I totally understood the Clooney Lifestyle recommendation. He seems to be able to handle the “eternal bachelor” thing with noteworthy elegance.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    “I’m going to maintain that being in a FWB style relationship probably has little to no effect on relationship potential when the one comes along.”
    ====
    Lokland, I disagree. Since we were talking about Aristotle earlier… his quote “We are what we repeatedly do” I have found to be very true.

    Someone who has been FWB-ing it has been practicing sex without emotional attachment, the principle of least interest and divorcing relationship behavior from their concept of a relationship.

    This is what they have repeatedly done and, in Aristotle’s view (and mine), this is who they are.

    The idea that you can turn things (emotion, morality, relationship vs “relationship”) on and off like a switch seems to permeate the FWB-subscribers. I disagree with all of it.

    I think it teaches you to be disconnected from what you say you want (a relationship) while practicing a type of sexual parasitism.

    There’s no such thing as a free lunch and it feels like all these things (FWB, etc) are dodges and trying to play the system. But the cost still exists: You are damaging yourself by training your heart not to care.

  • Jackie

    @Religious Discussion
    I found this really interesting comment from Joseph Campbell that made me think of our discussion:

    “Half the people in the world think that the metaphors of their religious traditions are facts. And the other half contend that they are not facts at all. As a result we have people who are believers because they accept metaphors as facts and we have others who classify themselves as atheists because they think religious metaphors are lies.”

    (Joseph Campbell, Thou Art That: Transforming Religious Metaphor)

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    I think you can emotionally care about a FWB. It’s just not necessarily monogamous (thought it might be). Not caring or liking them as people, is more of a “fuckbuddy” or “booty call” arrangement. I see no reason why being “emotional” with someone requires strict monogamy. They correlate a lot but are not in lockstep.

    Mega isn’t really interested how we think, Lokland, he’s trying to draw us into some logical trap or something, so he can get an a-ha or two.

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

      I think you can emotionally care about a FWB. It’s just not necessarily monogamous (thought it might be). Not caring or liking them as people, is more of a “fuckbuddy” or “booty call” arrangement.

      FWB = fuckbuddy. Let’s not start redefining terms again.

      FWB =/ monogamy, unless the monogamy is default or involuntary, i.e. no better options at the moment. It definitely does not include any sort of agreement to be monogamous, though ethics does require the disclosure of sex with another party.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    mega: “Your ideal male lifestyle is complete non-monogamy, albeit with “friends”, until, somewhere down the road, a woman shows up who’s marriage material, guaranteed for life?”

    Non-monogamy? No, not commitment, which might include non-monogamy, or monogamy of a short duration.

    Guaranteed? No, you’re changing what we wrote. Has wife *potential*.

    The cost of a high N is nearly nil. Susan said male N has to get around 40, FORTY, before it becomes “icky”. That said, n=20 or so by marriage can’t be accomplished by LTR’s, because the L is not long enough to be L. I think n=10-15 is probably a reasonable lifetime goal. Show me the women who consider even a 2x median (n=12) an unconditional deal-breaker.

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

      The cost of a high N is nearly nil. Susan said male N has to get around 40, FORTY, before it becomes “icky”.

      I’ve been thinking about this. In reviewing the book about Casanovas, it was clear that players don’t necessarily even have higher N than other men. The key difference is that they view themselves as players – men seeking short-term sex without commitment with multiple partners, if possible.

      This is the biggest risk, IME. A wannabe player with N of 10 is a far worse bet for marriage than a good-looking benevolent alpha type with N of 30. And I suspect it’s that typically “douchey” attitude that repels most women, who find it a very obvious and convenient filter.

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

    Why do you go to a gym? No stress, no growth. However, stress needs to be just right, not too little or too much.

    and

    The problem of all early religion was human sacrifice. This solves the problem; it’s the logic of sacrifice. It too me a while before I tripped across the answer. No pseudo-sacrifice of animals required, either.

    Again you are open to an alternative non-biblical explanation. Not the case if you are a fundy. logic < bible, YMMV.

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

    Show me the women who consider even a 2x median (n=12) an unconditional deal-breaker.
    *raiseshand* ;)

  • HanSolo

    A date with goldilocks. Upon finding out I used to be Mormon and a virgin she told me that if I were still a virgin I would have to go out and have sex with 2 women before dating me seriously and having sex with me because she doesn’t want a less-experienced guy. Then she told me that she was with some guy and he told her she was going to be N=32 and she said that anything over 20 was too many. So her limits were 2 to 20. lol

    The crazy thing is that she said that if I were a virgin that she would still want to date me but that I’d have to go out and get some experience before having sex with her.

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

      @HanSolo

      The crazy thing is that she said that if I were a virgin that she would still want to date me but that I’d have to go out and get some experience before having sex with her.

      That is truly illogical, as having two ONSs wouldn’t teach you much, and certainly nothing about her! Why can’t you “get experience” with her? You’re right, that is crazy.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @OTC

    Mega isn’t really interested how we think, Lokland, he’s trying to draw us into some logical trap or something, so he can get an a-ha or two.

    I sorta know *what* you guys already think, though it’s not altogether consistent. But that does explain why you don’t like to answer questions. Too much Swiss cheese around here… :wink:

    Has wife *potential*.

    So, you meet a girl who’s wife-potential, and she finds out you’re currently in a FWB situation. I don’t think it’s unreasonble to expect the DQ to come shortly thereafter… :shock:

    Show me the women who consider even a 2x median (n=12) an unconditional deal-breaker.

    Well done with the not-so-subtle change of subject! If we’re talking about husband *potential* here, I could introduce you to a bunch, though I doubt you’d believe ‘em.

    Wasn’t the discussion about FWB while single vs. marriage? That’s why I asked the question. I could just as easily say, show me the women who find a track record of non-monogamy on a guy’s part to be the makings of a faithful, loving husband…

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

      So, you meet a girl who’s wife-potential, and she finds out you’re currently in a FWB situation. I don’t think it’s unreasonble to expect the DQ to come shortly thereafter…

      I agree. I think this signals a man who does not associate sex with emotion. Most people are not comfortable in FWBs, and they tend to work very poorly. It’s obviously a plan for the highly unrestricted – they can’t abstain from sex, even when not in a relationship, and they have no problem “using” someone else as a masturbatory aid. Major red flag for either sex.

  • HanSolo

    Meaning, go have sex with other women while I was still sexlessly dating her.

  • J

    @BB

    Aw, sorry about your dog. We’ve lost a few over the years. It’s so sad.

    Susan, you too.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    You can ask me all the questions you want. My brain’s a little scrambled on beer, and Jimmy/Lokland are much clearer at explaining things than I am.

    “So, you meet a girl who’s wife-potential, and she finds out you’re currently in a FWB situation. I don’t think it’s unreasonble to expect the DQ to come shortly thereafter”

    Surprisingly, this is not the case. Women are not men. It’s amazing! It’s almost as if you’re trying to convert people back to blue-pill thinking.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Ana: “Show me the women who consider even a 2x median (n=12) an unconditional deal-breaker.”

    Awww, Ana, my 19-year old self would gladly propose to you for life, and you could LJBF my dorky naive ass. A match made in logical impossibility!

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @OTC

    Surprisingly, this is not the case. Women are not men. It’s amazing! It’s almost as if you’re trying to convert people back to blue-pill thinking.

    Well, I certainly don’t advocate combining alcohol, pharmaceuticals, and cynicism. But hey, you’re on all 3 and apparently know exactly how the world works! :mrgreen:

    It’s a little ironic that a simple question/observation = some kind of SMP proselytizing. Heaven forbid anybody should even acknowledge that abnormal state of being called monogamy…

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    I’ve been off the pain meds for months, but the cynicism I assuredly admit to.

    So: we have one woman admitted it’s a dealbreaker, who married as a virgin. Even Susan admits the fantasy is to turn a player to the light side, to cure a damaged soul. You gotta be damaged first, then.

    My wife DTR’d and insisted on monogamy, of which I was happy to assent, but she assumed I was already swimming in women. So it wasn’t a dealbreaker. She was stunned when my N was practically zero.

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

      Even Susan admits the fantasy is to turn a player to the light side, to cure a damaged soul. You gotta be damaged first, then.

      The typical female fantasy is the one outlined in romance novels – emotionally unavailable alpha of excellent character falls madly in love for the first time and becomes a passionate and faithful lover. Rakes and rogues generally meet a bad ending, e.g. Heathcliff, Mr. Wickham. Sometimes they get the girl if they are “emotional virgins,” e.g. Christian Grey.

      In today’s SMP, women hypergamously go for STRs with men of higher SMV and undoubtedly fantasize about locking them down, but their being players is not a plus.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @OTC

    My wife DTR’d and insisted on monogamy, of which I was happy to assent, but she assumed I was already swimming in women. So it wasn’t a dealbreaker. She was stunned when my N was practically zero.

    Hmmm, I think this whole topic pretty much explains that reaction, in case you missed it:
    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/11/19/hookinguprealities/men-want-sex-with-girlfriends-not-randoms/

    And she didn’t DQ you, lose interest, run away, or laugh, huh? My wife had a similar reaction, though she found it “pleasingly refreshing” (her words). Made me feel like a new can of 7 Up about to be opened…

    See? Even your own personal anecdotes sometimes back up the research sometimes everybody says is crap!

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

    Awww, Ana, my 19-year old self would gladly propose to you for life, and you could LJBF my dorky naive ass. A match made in logical impossibility!

    Hubby’s number is a lot lower than 12, your argument is invalid.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    She was fine with it, but it wasn’t a dealbreaker if I wasn’t. That’s the whole point. This is why I say male virginity/inexperience is neutral at best, negative at worst.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Ana: my N was 0 at age 19. I bet it’s still lower than his now.

  • Iggles

    @ OTC:

    “So, you meet a girl who’s wife-potential, and she finds out you’re currently in a FWB situation. I don’t think it’s unreasonble to expect the DQ to come shortly thereafter”

    Surprisingly, this is not the case. Women are not men. It’s amazing! It’s almost as if you’re trying to convert people back to blue-pill thinking.

    *raises hand*

    I don’t think Megaman is far off about this. For a lot of women, being taken aback or exiting the situation completely is the rule — not the exception.

    My bf and I moved very quickly from dating to formally entering a relationship (3 weeks). If before we had become official I found out he was in a FWB with a girl whilst dating me I would have distanced myself from him emotionally at the very least. It would have slowed things down for us for sure if either one of us were dating/sleeping with other people — and this before we discussed exclusivity!

    Personally, I don’t like to share. Knowing someone else is in the picture in some capacity, would do the opposite of inspiring me to be vulnerable and emotionally escalate. Honestly, if I’m dating someone and we’re connecting well him continuing to date other women would lead to a DQ. I spoke with a gay male friend of mind who is European, and he says other there the default script isn’t spinning plates. You meet someone you have chemistry with, and maybe after a few dates you take the time to get to know this person one-on-one for a least of month before deciding whether to go further.

    It’s not “insta-couple”, but they realize it’s hard to get to know someone well while spreading your attention to dating several people at the same time. If you click, then you become exclusive. If not, after a month you move on and resume dating others. It’s simple, and straightforward.

  • Iggles

    Meant to say:
    ” and he says over there “

    Typos…

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

    So: we have one woman admitted it’s a dealbreaker, who married as a virgin.

    Also I did rejected men due to number and being married and I can assure you neither of them even knew that was the cause, I mean how many times a woman dumps a guy or rejects him and gives him a full list of reasons why she did it? The only data we have is the women that accepted this but we don’t know what percentage of women are rejecting the men in question because of too much dick use because those women are not going to say it, I mean why would they?

    Even Susan admits the fantasy is to turn a player to the light side, to cure a damaged soul. You gotta be damaged first, then.

    The fantasy can be cure the lonely guy as well. Romance novels sport that plot too.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @OTC

    This is why I say male virginity/inexperience is neutral at best, negative at worst.

    Yes, for someone who’s admitted to being unrestricted with a preference for non-monogamy, I’m sure you’d feel that way. I’ll agree that a fair number of women have a neutral view on it, but if there were a significant number that penalized it, a lot more young women would still be unmarried at age 30. After all, married men report a median of 5, less than the general population…

    The funny thing is, an N of 1 or 2, for a guy or girl, could mean a great deal of relationship experience, which is a major cue as to someone’s long-term marital quality. Women are free to DQ those guys at their own risk…

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

    Ana: my N was 0 at age 19. I bet it’s still lower than his now.

    So was mine ;) That being said I would had dumped you/never got involved with you in the first place for suggesting or showing an interest on threesomes or poli sexual relationships not for the 0. A lower number including multiple sex partner or being open to that is a deal breaker for me. Although I’m also sure I’m not your type anyway so whatever I liked or not, wouldn’t had been even registered while you were 19 either way.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    OTC,
    Just for clarity’s sake, are you interchanging “virginity” and “inexperience”? I ask because Megaman has introduced the idea that a guy with an N =1 or 2 may have plenty of experience, and while I’m certainly not disputing that claim, I’m not sure that’s what you’re talking about.

    I agree that male virgins, especially when they hit their 20s, are at a disadvantage (and my BF was a virgin when we met). However, I doubt a guy with at least a little experience would be DQ’d so quickly, depending on the context of the experience.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Mega: “The funny thing is, an N of 1 or 2, for a guy or girl, could mean a great deal of relationship experience, which is a major cue as to someone’s long-term marital quality.”

    That is true. Better 1 or 2 than zero, then, right?

    Ana: “That being said I would had dumped you/never got involved with you in the first place for suggesting or showing an interest on threesomes or poli sexual relationships not for the 0. A lower number including multiple sex partner or being open to that is a deal breaker for me. ”

    19 year old me is not the same as 38yo me. At 19, I had zero interest or experience in such things. I was as innocent as they come for a good 20 years.

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

    19 year old me is not the same as 38yo me. At 19, I had zero interest or experience in such things. I was as innocent as they come for a good 20 years.

    Well I have never given the LJBF talk to anyone the very few men I rejected knew very well why “Had a girlfriend/was married/was a misogynist bastard/had a harem and I wanted me on it…” thus I didn’t wanted them as friends either.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Iggles
    Thanks for your testimonial. Clearly female input is indispensible on a female-oriented blog. :wink:

    For sake of example, let’s say your BF had been in a FWB with one or more women, but had stopped prior to you two meeting. However, he was still “friends” with those women and they hung out socially from time to time. How might you feel about that? I know how a man would feel in the same situation.

    I can understand why Mr. OTC would dodge that question, as he’s an advocate of FWB arrangements. Howeer, despite claims that women are fickle and “don’t care”, my guess is his wife would have a big problem with it.

    PS: Europe’s certainly got it’s problems, but there are some countries where the divorce rate is lower, and N is lower, and family life is more important than the good ‘ol U.S.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    For sake of example, let’s say your BF had been in a FWB with one or more women, but had stopped prior to you two meeting. However, he was still “friends” with those women and they hung out socially from time to time. How might you feel about that?

    As a resident Jealous Queen, I’ll take a stab at that. The FWB relationships themselves would not bother me, but the continuous contact would. I don’t believe men and women can ever be “just friends,” especially after having sexual contact. As such, I also don’t think it’s acceptable to maintain anything other than acquaintance-like interactions with exes.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan

    The whole point of FWB is to avoid emotional entanglement of any kind.

    I disagree. The point is to avoid expectations of a minimum level of emotional intimacy that a relationship requires. Instead the couple (or most likely, the guy) can test things out and find a level of emotional intimacy that brings some benefefit while keeping expectations and obligations low. I.e. “I like cooking, cuddling, and going out and doing fun stuff with you… But I have zero desire to meet your parents, exchange gifts, or do any serious date-type activities.”

    I’m not saying this is more ideal than an actual serious relationship… But I do think it’s more ideal than a relationship with a shelf life. At least then, the guy (or girl) for a relationship partner that wouldn’t have a shelf life.

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

      find a level of emotional intimacy that brings some benefefit while keeping expectations and obligations low

      It’s clear that few people are capable of this. Most people, of both sexes, have difficulty carrying on sexual relationships with cuddling, cooking together and hanging out without becoming emotionally invested. I suspect the number of women who can pull this off is 5% or less, and they are likely to be bicurious, promiscuous, etc. Not even Karen Owen wanted that.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    *free to look for a relationship partner without a shelf life

  • INTJ

    @ Megaman

    Europe’s certainly got it’s problems, but there are some countries where the divorce rate is lower, and N is lower, and family life is more important than the good ‘ol U.S.

    Those are the exceptions, not the norms. Overall Europe has higher Ns, lower likelihood of marriage, and fewer children.

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

      @INTJ

      Overall Europe has higher Ns

      Does it? That surprises me a great deal. For example, I know via my SIL that Italians generally live with their parents until the age of 30 or first marriage. There is no hookup culture there – people do find ways to have sex, of course, but most often in the context of romantic relationships. I believe there are some men who enjoy meeting foreign exchange students whenever they can. ;)

      Do you have some data about N in various European countries? I’d be interested to see that.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    I second what Iggles said. A guy who can separate sex and emotions is a big red flag to me.

    A guy with FWB arrangements is equivalent to a girl with lots of LJBF orbiters. Both are users and probably see themselves as “better than” the people they use; neither is mature enough for a healthy marriage. Best to steer clear.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    I just asked my wife. She assumed I was already getting laid casually, since I was a senior. She said as long as I cut it off when asked, she was fine with it and wouldn’t hold it against me.

    Now, had I was *monogamous* to the other woman, it would be MUCH worse than just a casual thing, since I would be cheating, and we both would never begin a relationship with cheating. That would have been the dealbreaker.

    As for the extra part you added, I imagine she’d also want me to cut off any one-on-one “friend” time with them… but, that would be totally reasonable, so I’d agree. You end the FWB/casual/plates when you DTR.

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

      She assumed I was already getting laid casually, since I was a senior.

      I think there is a large difference between the college guy who hooks up and gets lucky sometimes, and the guy who is comfortable in a FWB.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Mega: “Thanks for your testimonial. Clearly female input is indispensible on a female-oriented blog.”

    Mrs. C, isn’t posting, but she is assuredly female.

    Olive: “The FWB relationships themselves would not bother me, but the continuous contact would. I don’t believe men and women can ever be “just friends,” especially after having sexual contact. As such, I also don’t think it’s acceptable to maintain anything other than acquaintance-like interactions with exes”

    The Mrs. and I definitely agree here.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    I’ll add that I think compromise is absolutely a cornerstone of serious relationships with the ultimate goal being marriage.

    But if that goal isn’t there, you better believe I’m going to forget compromising and try to get as much benefit with the least amount of obligation as I can. There’s zero incentive for compromise in that kind of “relationship.”

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

      @Jimmy

      But if that goal isn’t there, you better believe I’m going to forget compromising and try to get as much benefit with the least amount of obligation as I can.

      Nothing wrong with that, as long as you’re up front about it. But the research shows that you’re unusual. Most men in college do want a LTR – they want the experience of falling in love. I don’t think most people go into LTRs in college thinking of splitsville in May of the 4th year. Many college couples do talk about staying together, doing LDR, etc. It’s just that most fail.

      It seems to me that this would always have been the case – Unless you’re dating a woman in your own class, you’re going to graduate and leave school while she has another 1-3 years. The expiration date is nothing new.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Olive
    That’s the best argument against FWBs. Not only do they kill platonic friendships (at least 25% of the time), which I do believe can work between men and women, they can also sabotage actual future relationships, if the “friend” is still in the picture. I understand the boys’ objections to (orthodox) monogamy. They’re just pretenses, though…

  • Damien Vulaume

    “I’ll add that I think compromise is absolutely a cornerstone of serious relationships with the ultimate goal being marriage.

    -Marriage, or not. Both can seriously be committed to one another without that piece of paper. But that’s another debate I guess.

    “But if that goal isn’t there, you better believe I’m going to forget compromising and try to get as much benefit with the least amount of obligation as I can. There’s zero incentive for compromise in that kind of “relationship.”

    -You’re talking about those confused FWB things, right? Where both seem to want the bread and the money of the bread without getting too heated emotionally or is it something else?

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    Ugh why do I suck so much at blockquotes? Reposting…Susan, feel free to delete my comment at 510 if you wish to declutter.

    Not only do they kill platonic friendships (at least 25% of the time), which I do believe can work between men and women

    Let’s just say that my boyfriend has zero close female friends, and I am quite happy about this! I had a bad experience with an ex who had a very close female friend, to the point that when we had problems, he went to her instead of me. :-/

    My mom once gave me a stern lecture about cultivating male friendships when I’m in a relationship. I try to stay away ever since.

    they can also sabotage actual future relationships, if the “friend” is still in the picture

    This depends on the friend still being in the picture, though. To me, it isn’t unreasonable to ask a SO to dump the friend, especially if he/she is still trying to hint at sparks.

    I have a friend in this situation. Her BF hooked up with one of his friends one time, and eight years later, she STILL talks about “missing him” and “wanting to visit.” My friend is not amused, but feels she can’t tell her BF to drop the friend. I’d have no problem asking lol.

  • J

    my N was 0 at age 19.

    Me too. And though I worried about myself at when I was 19, I really don’t think it was all that odd in retrospect.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @INTJ

    Those are the exceptions, not the norms. Overall Europe has higher Ns, lower likelihood of marriage, and fewer children.

    Well, whoop-de-do. That wasn’t even my point.

    BTW, 35% of Europe is *more* sexually conservative than the U.S. That’s more significant than just an exception to the norm.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @mega: “BTW, 35% of Europe is *more* sexually conservative than the U.S. That’s more significant than just an exception to the norm.”

    I’d be curious to here more details about that. Which Europe? The E.U or everything put together?… Can you break it down to specific countries? Those 35% originate from where? Latin countries, former east block ones, Balkan states?… Very vague…

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “For sake of example, let’s say your BF had been in a FWB with one or more women, but had stopped prior to you two meeting. However, he was still “friends” with those women and they hung out socially from time to time. How might you feel about that? I know how a man would feel in the same situation.”

    You missed this portion on the beginning of my relationship.

    Story in club, hanging out with friend, shortly after starting to date my wife.
    Wife comes around corner, looks jealous/hurt. Runs away.
    I make decision and it was her over friend.

    Wife gets to feel like she claimed superiority over other woman.

    Intrasexual competition win, check.
    Preselection, check.
    Some other checks.

    Friend= FWB/prior gf/ everything in-between for approx. 2 previous years.

    I stopped speaking to that friend within 2 months of that event and haven’t communicated with her in any form since.

    Chick nip.

    —————————

    Beyond that, you’ve suddenly progressed my argument to places it did not go.
    (Cough* straw* cough* man* cough)

    I suggested ONE FWB with whom intimacy needs are accomplished with minimal input.

    Rest of time continue pursuing the one until the one is found.
    This removes the entanglement of having to dump a girlfriend/boyfriend to get a new girlfriend/boyfriend which IMHO is Jerry Springer level interaction. (And thats my lil incongruent self who thinks that. I hope you think much worse.)

    Acts to keep the N low, satisfy sexual/emotional/intimate needs and does not reduce the chance of finding the ONE.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    I did not suggest one have multiple FWB style relationships.
    Merely that one FWB > one Susan style relationship in the ease with which one is able to disentangle oneself from it.

    This is important for when actually meeting the one as when opportunity is knocking one opens the damn door.

    Also, I stopped talking/seeing my friend > I broke up with my gf, to be with you.

    Therefore, from a mans POV.

    Susan style LTR is a hindrance to achieving ACTUAL life long monogamy.
    Therefore the alternative is to create a pseudo-relationship that is not officially labelled as such capable of meeting needs until the one is found.

    Combines the need-meeting ability of Susan-style LTR whilst increasing the escapability of the situation.

    far superior.

    Unless your a woman who wants the title of girlfriend for a predetermined amount of time.
    If not its good for her too.

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

      @Lokland

      Susan style relationship

      Knock it off, I know you’re doing this to piss me off.

      I don’t design ‘em, I just report on ‘em.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    My wife is extremely jealous of all cross sex friendships (excluding one).
    I’m also jealous.

    Unsurprisingly beyond the SOs of friend we have 0 cross sex friendships.

    I am not a believer in male-female friendships.

  • szopen

    @zach

    For almost every single action that is attributed to him, there is a far more compelling scientific explanation. So if you take all of that away, what exactly is god? Some non-corporeal being that just exists for the sake of existing? And if that’s the case, why concern yourself with him if he doesn’t effect anything?

    That’s not the point, whether you can find scientific explanations without God. I repeat: science is not concerned with God. But finding plausible explanations for things attributed to God cannot convince believers. If God exists, then he created the world and all scientific explanations can be false, no matter how plausible they are. If God does not exists, that’s another thing.

    Once again, Zach: omnipotent God could create world yesterday, including all data which could be used to prove that world exists for millenia.

  • szopen

    @anacaona

    The fantasy can be cure the lonely guy as well. Romance novels sport that plot too.

    Exactly. In few romances my wife enjoys (don’t you think romances are like porn for guys?), the plot is variation of a theme:

    The guy loved one woman/was married, but she died/dumped him and he remained hurt for many,many years, until our heroine finds a way to his heart

    In other words, not really an alphish hero.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Mega

    So, you meet a girl who’s wife-potential, and she finds out you’re currently in a FWB situation. I don’t think it’s unreasonble to expect the DQ to come shortly thereafter…

    Speaking from a detached and logical perspective, I don’t think it’s unreasonable either. But logic doesn’t exactly run the SMP these days.

    Obviously there’s a risk of being DQ’d for that. Nothing comes without risk… but in my experience, in today’s early 20s SMP, that risk is minimal.

    My anecdotal experience is that average beta-type behavior brings a much higher risk for DQ from early 20s girls than having FWB relationships does.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Damien

    I’d be curious to here more details about that. Which Europe? The E.U. or everything put together?… Can you break it down to specific countries? Those 35% originate from where? Latin countries, former east block ones, Balkan states?… Very vague…

    Hah, I get no respect for citing sources anyway, so why bother? :mrgreen:

    Suffice to say, there are at least 7 countries in Europe proper with a combined population equal to the U.S. that are less promiscuous on average. And the divorce rates are all lower than the U.S. as well. That isn’t insignificant by any definition.

    Marriage and birth rates may not be as high, and there are other reasons to be skeptical of European society as a whole. But I’ve never been impressed when folks commit the perfectionist fallacy. And they do it a LOT around here…

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Combines the need-meeting ability of Susan-style LTR whilst increasing the escapability of the situation.

    I’ve gotta say, and I’m not casting aspersions on your brilliant intellect, but this pseudo-(non) commited, (sorta) emotional, (non) monogamous, (un) romantic, (de facto) FWB-type quasi-relationship is one of the weirdest, most contrived thought experiments I’ve ever heard. I don’t see how any intelligent, feeling person, man or woman, would choose to be on the short end of that stick! :shock:

    For all the bellyaching around here about women who “waste” the best years of guys lives in relationships that will definitely end (and I’m still unclear how anybody can know that in advance), this is essentially very similar, except that there’s a conscious decision to keep another human being on “standy” for dumping. So why criticize women for being less callous than that?

    Methinks you either love to disagree and equivocate just for the sake of argument, OR you believe that what apparently worked wonders for you would do the same for all other young guys, regardless of whether they’re “restricted” or not… :wink:

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Megaman
    Let me guess, in that mysterious list of those 7 countries, do you have Malta, Spain, Poland, Slovakia, Portugal, Croatia? Again, just curious.

    As an aside, there is no such thing as a “European society”.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “I don’t see how any intelligent, feeling person, man or woman, would choose to be on the short end of that stick! ”

    You’d be utterly astounded at how low people are actually capable of acting given the right incentives.

    “So why criticize women for being less callous than that?”

    I don’t. I think the man who is willing to partake is an idiot. I’ll say the same for the women in my above situation, assuming she wants a relationship.

    “you believe that what apparently worked wonders for you would do the same for all other young guys, regardless of whether they’re “restricted” or not… ”

    Why do you think I have ever done exactly this?

    Regardless, pretty much every guy here has expressed a deep dislike of the Susan style LTR which comes with emotional/physical investment but with a pre-determined implosion date (graduation).

    The solution is then to find something more workable.
    Ie. Pseudo-relationship(s) lasting an indefinite amount of time that may or may not be monogamous. (Ie. Hook up culture.)

    @Susan

    “This is the biggest risk, IME. A wannabe player with N of 10 is a far worse bet for marriage than a good-looking benevolent alpha type with N of 30. ”

    Excellent use of the apex fallacy. I always had trouble deciding between Jessica Alba (pre-baby) and (insert other hot celebrity).

    Benevolent alpha is not an option for most women.

    “And I suspect it’s that typically “douchey” attitude that repels most women, who find it a very obvious and convenient filter.”

    I suspect looks is far more of a repellent/attractor than any amount of personality, good or bad.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Knock it off, I know you’re doing this to piss me off.”

    I’m honestly not.
    You reported it, I named it after you.

    It doesn’t follow the classical LTR script which implies some sense of loyalty.
    Perhaps a College LTR or MTR works for you?

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

      It doesn’t follow the classical LTR script which implies some sense of loyalty.
      Perhaps a College LTR or MTR works for you?

      I think that kids in LTRs today do feel some loyalty. The description of the modern day LTR is not a description of what people do, it reflects what people may choose to do. Your girlfriend goes abroad for a semester or a year? No one will fault you if you don’t want to sit on the beach that whole time. No one will fault her if she doesn’t want to stay in on weekend nights in Rome. You’ve been offered a great job at Google, and your girlfriend is a sophomore at University of North Carolina? No one will fault you – either of you – for deciding that isn’t going to work. Your girlfriend is wearing you down with her constant suspicions and jealous fears? You think she may have read all your texts while you were in the shower? No one will blame you for deciding you don’t want to do it anymore.

      I propose that this is nothing new. The same rules have applied for 100 years.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Does it? That surprises me a great deal. For example, I know via my SIL that Italians generally live with their parents until the age of 30 or first marriage. There is no hookup culture there – people do find ways to have sex, of course, but most often in the context of romantic relationships.

    I believe Southern Europe is the exception, for precisely that reason.

    It’s been a while since I saw the N data, so I’ll try to dig it up some time.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    FWB = fuckbuddy. Let’s not start redefining terms again.

    You were the one that had put up a chart in a post a few years back differentiating FWB, fuckbuddy, and, IIRC, “cum-dumpster”.

  • INTJ

    Ahh, here’s the chart: http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2010/07/08/hookinguprealities/the-matrix-of-modern-relationships/

    Wasn’t “cum-dumpster”. It was “frenemy WB”.

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

      @INTJ

      On the chart, you can see that the arrow between FWB and Fuckbuddy goes in both directions, indicating equivalency.

      Frenemy with benefits is completely different!

  • Lisa C

    @Susan @Lokland

    I always thought that FB and FWB were at different places along the continuum of behaviors from ONS to marriage.

    In my mind -

    ONS = sex with someone you never plan to see again

    FB = booty calls; contact is made solely for sex.

    FWB = sex plus other friendly activities (hanging out, cooking etc …)

    LTR – committed relationship

    Marriage

    So, in other words, FB is like FWB without the friendship. Maybe the distinction doesn’t matter to you, but I think it matters to at least some of the people involved in these arrangements. (I imagine it’s harder to delude yourself that a LTR is going to emerge with your FB, whereas many people get hopeful in a FWB arrangement.)

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

      @Lisa C

      So, in other words, FB is like FWB without the friendship. Maybe the distinction doesn’t matter to you, but I think it matters to at least some of the people involved in these arrangements. (I imagine it’s harder to delude yourself that a LTR is going to emerge with your FB, whereas many people get hopeful in a FWB arrangement.)

      I think what’s important is that both parties understand the terms of what they’re doing, including the rules and expectations that guide the arrangement and behaviors. It doesn’t matter what they call it.

      I have heard women use each of these terms to describe each of your meanings. IOW, I have known “fuckbuddies” who are in the same social group and hang out a lot, and I have known FWBs who generally only see each other after 2 a.m. Of course, the language is always evolving and malleable – anyone would be very foolish to be hopeful for a relationship in either arrangement, IMO.

  • Jackie

    @INTJ, Susan

    OMG, that chart was crazy! Do you guys actually know people who fit all these categories?

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

      @Jackie

      OMG, that chart was crazy! Do you guys actually know people who fit all these categories?

      The chart was actually meant to be humorous…I was struck by all of the terms I’d seen and heard used, many of which implied wacky or unstable behavior by at least one party, if not both. I made it for fun as an illustration of what the SMP looks like. It was certainly not meant as a piece of scholarship!

  • INTJ

    @ Lisa C

    Definitely. And from the usage I’ve heard IRL, FWB tends to be much more, well, friendly, while FB is much more of two people using each other just for sex.

  • INTJ

    @ Jackie

    I know people in a few of those categories, and some of the people I know have been in a few of the other categories in the past. But, being an introvert, I don’t know enough people to know people in all the categories.

    P.S. I also know a guy who, during summer break in his home town, had an affair with a Romanian drug-dealer’s wife.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    “I suspect looks is far more of a repellent/attractor than any amount of personality, good or bad.”
    ===
    Maybe Iggles, Hope, Ana, others and myself are all outliers but bad character can turn someone ugly in an *instant* in my eyes. It has actually happened to me. (BTW, character is different from personality.)

    The frat guy I rejected for being promiscuous (I later found out he broadcast the convo on speaker phone to his “bros” after talking about conquesting me, which makes for poetic justice :mrgreen: ). He would be considered conventionally “hot” and, I suppose, alpha.

    But to me, hearing about his behavior was the equivalent of bathing himself in a sewer. Utterly repellent.

  • Jackie

    @INTJ
    “P.S. I also know a guy who, during summer break in his home town, had an affair with a Romanian drug-dealer’s wife.”
    ====
    :shock:
    Does your friend also enjoy dancing on landmines?

  • Lokland

    @INTJ

    “P.S. I also know a guy who, during summer break in his home town, had an affair with a Romanian drug-dealer’s wife.”

    Thats actually the worst idea I’ve ever heard of in my entire life.

    @Jackie

    “others and myself are all outliers but bad character can turn someone ugly in an *instant* in my eyes. ”

    Of course.
    But if the persons already ugly, there is nothing to lose with women like you anyway.
    There are women that are attracted to bad character however, regardless of looks.

    Telling an ugly guy to have good character is irrelevant, he’s already ugly.

  • Iggles

    @ Olive:

    As a resident Jealous Queen, I’ll take a stab at that. The FWB relationships themselves would not bother me, but the continuous contact would.

    I agree with this.

    I don’t believe men and women can ever be “just friends,” especially after having sexual contact. As such, I also don’t think it’s acceptable to maintain anything other than acquaintance-like interactions with exes.

    I think men and women can be close platonic friends if there’s no sexual interest. This works fine if one is gay/lesbian and the other straight, or if they both find each other physically unattractive.

    When sexual attraction is thrown into the mix, I think it gets in the way of close friendships forming. Being too close emotionally to someone you’d like to sleep with (and vice versa) absolutely threatens romantic relationships. Your SO should be your chief confidant and activity partner. If someone who you’re attracted to is either fulfilling or vying for that role then of course it’s going to lead to relationship problems!

    I don’t see any issue with men and women having opposite sex friends as long as those friendships are primarily casual friendships or they’re acquaintances. The level of emotional intimacy between them along with proximity (how often do they see and speak to one another?) definitely matters.

    TL; DR – I believe men and women can be platonic friends as long their friendships aren’t close friendships.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    “Telling an ugly guy to have good character is irrelevant, he’s already ugly.”
    ===
    Dude, you have a very strange sense of morality! You don’t have good character to get things out of people (sex, relationships, etc). It’s not like people are vending machines where you can put “character” coins in them and somehow relationships or sex will come out. That kind of character — transactionally based– would not be good character at all.

    You have good character because integrity is its own reward.

  • Iggles

    @ Olive:

    I have a friend in this situation. Her BF hooked up with one of his friends one time, and eight years later, she STILL talks about “missing him” and “wanting to visit.” My friend is not amused, but feels she can’t tell her BF to drop the friend. I’d have no problem asking lol.

    Yikes! That would drive me crazy!

    I hope your friend finds the strength to assert how she feels about this.

    @ J:

    Me too. And though I worried about myself at when I was 19, I really don’t think it was all that odd in retrospect.

    Me three, lol. My N was also 0 at that age.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “You have good character because integrity is its own reward.”

    I’ve gone over this before.
    Good character is not rewarded but punished.

    My nickname as a kid (among many) was Robin Hood because I was always willing to help people out with everything.

    Call me an ass or immoral for expecting equal treatment in return. I’ll live.

    Most people learned to abuse/extort things from me. They realized I was a giver so they took.

    Its easy to say being good shouldn’t result in a transactional system when you come out on top most of the time.

  • Iggles

    @ SW:

    I agree. I think this signals a man who does not associate sex with emotion. Most people are not comfortable in FWBs, and they tend to work very poorly. It’s obviously a plan for the highly unrestricted – they can’t abstain from sex, even when not in a relationship, and they have no problem “using” someone else as a masturbatory aid. Major red flag for either sex.

    + 1000

  • Iggles

    @ Lokland:

    “you believe that what apparently worked wonders for you would do the same for all other young guys, regardless of whether they’re “restricted” or not… ”

    Why do you think I have ever done exactly this?

    I have no idea whether or not you actually put this into practice. But I recall reading that you had a one-sided open relationship with your wife (then girlfriend), where you were able to sleep with other women. Is this correct? If so, were these other women ONS or FWBs?

  • Iggles

    @ Jackie:

    Maybe Iggles, Hope, Ana, others and myself are all outliers but bad character can turn someone ugly in an *instant* in my eyes. It has actually happened to me.

    Omg! Yes, this has happened to me before too. Knowing a guy is a cheater, an abuser, or racist can make him gross in my eyes despite his physical appearance!

  • Sassy6519

    Maybe Iggles, Hope, Ana, others and myself are all outliers but bad character can turn someone ugly in an *instant* in my eyes. It has actually happened to me.

    Ditto for me.

  • Lokland

    @Iggles

    ONS would be closest descriptor. (Which to me implies a degree of spontaneity).
    Though they were planned, STD tests a requirement.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    Lokland, that is so cool about the Robin Hood nickname you had as a kid. :)

    “Its easy to say being good shouldn’t result in a transactional system when you come out on top most of the time.”
    ===
    LL, do you think I “come out on top” most of the time? Really?

    Do you know how many times I’ve been dumped because of keeping the integrity of my beliefs? Do you know how difficult this makes things? Do you know that’s why my ex-fiance *cheated* on me — after telling me to quit school and my scholarship?

    Lots of people — even in my own family, like Abusive Norma Desmond– have hurt me, lied to me, manipulated me, exploited me. People have used my religious principles to exploit me for money and free stuff.

    Just a few weeks ago, someone smashed in my car window downtown and stole everything I had– even my winter coat. (And hilariously, a Britney Spears CD from 1999. I can laugh about it now. ;) )

    Does that justify me exacting revenge in kind? No, it does not.

    There are weak people who only feel power when they can abuse others. It’s sad as hell and pathetic to boot. They’re low and want to drag you down to the filth with them.

    By giving in and sinking to their level, then they have truly given me the deepest wound of all. I refuse them that. They don’t get the best part of me.

    They don’t get to steal my joy. They don’t get to take my integrity. They don’t even get the time of day from me. They’re just a few bad apples who wish they could spoil the barrel.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Why do you think I have ever done exactly this?

    Apologies, that’s what I though you were describing in #515. Unfortunately, this unorthodox situation of yours is so nebulous, I wouldn’t even know how to recognize it. Might as well call it relationship window dressing! :shock:

    Regardless, pretty much every guy here has expressed a deep dislike of the Susan style LTR which comes with emotional/physical investment but with a pre-determined implosion date (graduation).

    Pretty much every guy @ HUS has expressed a deep dislike of normal relationships? Even those who are currently single? I must have missed all those testimonials. Are these nasty “Susan-style” relationships confined to college, or do they have the same problems post-college? I don’t recall her ever advocating entering a serious relationship with someone with the intent to abandon it later… I’ve asked this question before, so I might as well be talking to the wind, but how many people know that in advance that a relationship will end, honestly?

    And on that point, at least 15% of college relationships survive graduation, and go on to actual marriages. I’ve speculated that perhaps an equal number continue on after graduation as cohabitating LTRs. Let’s not engage in a false dillemma fallacy, though I know it’s a popular one around here! :wink:

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan

    It’s clear that few people are capable of this. Most people, of both sexes, have difficulty carrying on sexual relationships with cuddling, cooking together and hanging out without becoming emotionally invested. I suspect the number of women who can pull this off is 5% or less,

    I don’t disagree with the 5% of women part…. but I think the number of men who can is significantly higher than 5%.

    After all, the whole premise of this post is that guys are very capable of having sexual relationships with some level of emotional intimacy without wanting to completely commit or take things to a higher level.

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

      @Jimmy H

      After all, the whole premise of this post is that guys are very capable of having sexual relationships with some level of emotional intimacy without wanting to completely commit or take things to a higher level.

      Yes, I agree with you, as you can see by my warning to Hopeful in the post. I don’t know if it’s a case of all men having a wider range of noncommittal behaviors, or great variation among men, but more men overall who can comfortably do the FWB thing than women can. IOW, are 100% of men able to pull it off, or 25%, which is still way more than the number of women? I suspect it’s the latter, based on the intrasexual male variation in restrictedness, which is much greater than the variation between the sexes overall.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan

    I don’t think most people go into LTRs in college thinking of splitsville in May of the 4th year. Many college couples do talk about staying together, doing LDR, etc. It’s just that most fail.

    For the record, I don’t have any issue with people going in with the best intentions and it not working out. That happens.

    But I still think it’s unwise to go all-in on a relationship if it isn’t the #1 priority for both people.

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

      @Jimmy

      But I still think it’s unwise to go all-in on a relationship if it isn’t the #1 priority for both people.

      Agree 100%! I’ve always said that “halfwaying it” is a colossal waste of time, because it carries an enormous opportunity cost. You could have that all-in relationship with someone else.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “a deep dislike of normal relationships?”

    Now calling them college relationships not Susan style. No need to incur the ban hammer on myself. (Susan, jokes, I know you don’t use it.)

    If that is a normal relationship….thats sad. Zero loyalty.

    The only difference between that and what I’m advocating is a status change on Facebook and an agreement of exclusivity which is only good until you feel like it.

    I’d hope normal could be defined where your with the person not as a placeholder but for some strange reason you actually like them and are loyal.
    Key point being loyalty.

    Ohh well.

    Perhaps y’all ain’t so different from me after all.

    “I must have missed all those testimonials. ”

    (Insert joke about poor reading comprehension.)

    “Are these nasty “Susan-style” relationships confined to college, or do they have the same problems post-college?”

    I’ve been assuming only college since most other relationships don’t come with a built in implosion date and are free to progress towards marriage unhindered.

    “15% of college relationships survive graduation, and go on to actual marriages.”

    Yes, but in some of these cases, future educational/employment decisions may need to be made depending on the needs of the other in the relationship. (my wife chose her grad school based upon where I was living and working.)

    Something that was brought up by OTC in another thread and instantly discounted as (insert feminist rant about patriarchy) though I should mention he advocated it not by sex but first-come-first serve.

    Beyond that, 1/6ish is not something to jump up and down about.
    5/6 still aren’t doing that.

    Nutty Russian roulette.
    ——-

    Conclusion,

    Most of the men here (which admittedly is definitely not representative) want relationships where there is a reasonable chance of progressing towards (insert end goal, typically marriage).

    That is not a realistic option in college. Therefore men would prefer to not engage in entanglements via relationship.

    The product is essentially one that is capable of meeting emotional/sexual needs without providing commitment.

    Men want variety, if she isn’t going to be your wife, why stick to only her.
    Especially if its not required.

    Ie. Hook up culture.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @SW

    Do you have some data about N in various European countries? I’d be interested to see that.

    Hah, look who you’re asking. I wouldn’t hold your breath on that one. :wink:

    I’ve done a little reading on this topic before. Prof. David Schmitt at Bradley University published a study in 2005, which surveyed 14,000 people across 48 countries. It was specifically aimed at measuring sociosexuality, and asked questions about lifetime N as well as ONS counts, how many partners people wanted over the next 5 years, and how they felt about casual sex:

    http://www.bradley.edu/dotAsset/163308.pdf

    I misspoke earlier (sorry, Mr. Damien). There are actually 9 big countries *more* sexually conservative (on average) than the U.S., mainly Iberian, Mediterranean, and Eastern European: Greece, Italy, Turkey (not a suprise), Spain, Portugal, France (big surprise), Poland, Romania, and the Ukraine.

    There are definitely more on the list, I just picked the big ones. Those countries have a combined population of over 365 million, or 40% of Europe. Exceptions to the norm? No, a significant minority, almost 1/2 in fact.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “People have used my religious principles to exploit me for money and free stuff.”

    You have every right to do whatever you want but it sounds like you keep running into a wall, getting back up and running back into the wall because god tells you too.

    I’m more pragmatic.

    If it isn’t working, it needs replacing. That includes moral principles, religion, cars, friends etc.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks
    We agree on one thing: anybody (man or woman) who wants an actual, serious, romantic, committed, monogamous, loving relationship would be stupid to settle for the situation you’ve laid out. Which begs the question, what kind of person would insist on such an arrangement? Red flag? More like red alert. Abandon ship! :evil:

    I guess I’m the kind of guy who’d rather end a relationship if there was no future in it, at such time that it became obvious, instead of keeping things going and *wasting* the lady’s time. Obviously, a non-marital relationship requires some forethought, which might be too much to expect from some college students.

    But hypothetically-speaking, if I had had a GF back in college, there would have been a serious discussion right at the beginning of senior year as to the post-graduation relationship. Who’s going to graduate school? Who’s got a job lined up? Should we tie the knot and/or move in together? But hey, that’s just me…

  • JP

    Anacoana:

    “Again you are open to an alternative non-biblical explanation. Not the case if you are a fundy. logic < bible, YMMV."

    I go with whatever explanation seems the most likely to be true.

    Logic works for the sphere in which it works, but you can't take it any further than that.

    I'm not a fan of sola sciptura.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sola_scriptura

    I am a fan of things that work, and both secular humanism and scientific materialism are on par with fundamentalism as to "things that don't work".

    My initial "religion" would be best characterized as scientific materialism, although I went to church growing up. It was only later that I figured out that religion actually "works", so to speak.

  • JP

    @Megaman:

    “But hypothetically-speaking, if I had had a GF back in college, there would have been a serious discussion right at the beginning of senior year as to the post-graduation relationship.”

    Or in my case, a chance to get out of a relationship that I didn’t really have much desire to be in in the first place.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Mega: “I guess I’m the kind of guy who’d rather end a relationship if there was no future in it, at such time that it became obvious, instead of keeping things going and *wasting* the lady’s time. Obviously, a non-marital relationship requires some forethought, which might be too much to expect from some college students.”

    This exactly what I’ve been saying, but I think we are using slightly different terms. If there’s no future, then you can terminate the ‘monogamy’ part, but not *necessarily* friendship/benefits/physical part.

    Interesting language here – “wasting her time”. Why isn’t she wasting *your* time? Why do you have to serve her ideals? Don’t you count, too? What if she’s the kind of high-achieving woman in the article who doesn’t want a boyfriend right now… is it our job to save her from herself?

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    ““People have used my religious principles to exploit me for money and free stuff.”

    You have every right to do whatever you want but it sounds like you keep running into a wall, getting back up and running back into the wall because god tells you too.”
    ===
    LL, how does this follow? People exploit others beliefs all the time– it doesn’t mean the beliefs are wrong or they are “running into walls” for sticking to them.

    Here’s a (secular) example: A store’s return policy. I’ve seen people exploit return policies (30 days w/receipt) by returning a USED LIPSTICK. I mean, come on! Does this mean the policy is crap and they should make it so miserly and rule-bound that no one will ever be able to “put one over on them”?

    Interestingly, to follow this analogy, places which have the most generous policies seem to be doing very well. (I’m thinking of Amazon.com service policies.) Whereas the more miserly and parsimonious types never seem to reach that kind of success.

    Maybe some people just have much higher loss-aversion/risk-aversion than others, by way of explanation.

    You are also discounting everything else that I have received from my beliefs, on account of having been burned before. To me, it has been worth it, unquestionably.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Lokland, my husband was also hurt as a kid because he has good character. He tried the “dark path” for a little while and hated it. He refused and now walks the “light path.” He had dropped all of his service to self friends from childhood onward.

    When I met him he was determined to walk it alone, for life. He didn’t care if it didn’t attract the women who want dark triad Machiavelli. I fell in love when I saw what a brilliant, kind, good, and amazing man he was.

    I’m thankful all the time for meeting him and being with him. Even if one day he changed to the dark side again, which is unlikely, I will be grateful that he has shown me the light.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Megaman.
    I’m willing to take your stats at face value. Given the countries you name, it makes perfect sense to me. France being in the lot is a bit of a surprise (divorce rate) but not some much when it comes to promiscuity. Anyway, thanks for sharing that list.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    Yeah we agree kind’ve agree.
    In college where the relationship—> marriage route is a no go however theres nothing to be lost by dating around.

    In that case however, why limit oneself to one person.
    Create a pseudo-relationship capable of meeting needs (no exclusivity) until graduation then start looking for a wife.

    Thats the only quibble occurring here.
    Why be monogamous if it isn’t going to become marriage? (I’m not suggesting an open relationship). I’m suggesting no relationship but a pseudo-dating style thing with no firm commitment or exclusivity.

    Easier to leave, less emotional turmoil involved upon termination, leaves sides open.

    The only people it hurts are those who want monogamy. However they want serial monogamy whereas the people employing this strategy actually want life long monogamy but realize that it is not yet attainable, so, might as well have fun.

  • Iggles

    Lokland – Thanks for answering my earlier question. Honesty, above all, is important in relationships and builds trust. It’s good that all of this was done above the board, and that you and your SO came to an agreement about this.

    Re: college relationships..

    Beyond that, 1/6ish is not something to jump up and down about.
    5/6 still aren’t doing that.

    Nutty Russian roulette.

    Most relationships last 3-5 months. Is that a reason not to date because most dates won’t work out as relationship material?

    Relationships started in college may have a higher failure rate than which begin after, but I think it has more to do with age than being in college. IME, previous crushes, dates, relationships for romantic experience, which helps you to identify what qualities to look for / avoid in romantic partners.

    My relationship history is short – 2 – but my first LTR made it clear what to AVOID. The 5 months I spent dating before I met my current boyfriend helped to figure out HOW TO get what I wanted(namely how to escalate emotionally and how to filter better).

    @ OTC:

    Interesting language here – “wasting her time”. Why isn’t she wasting *your* time? Why do you have to serve her ideals? Don’t you count, too?

    Because the situation works in the guy’s favor. He’s getting what he wants (sex, affection, activity partner) and she’s getting more attached. Probably dreaming of their future together. Once he knows there’s no future for them, he feels staying the relationship would be dishonest. At that point, he’s using her to get his need met.

    FWIW, I agree with Megaman. I lose interest in someone if there’s no future/ clear incompatibility.

    What if she’s the kind of high-achieving woman in the article who doesn’t want a boyfriend right now… is it our job to save her from herself?

    Strawman argument. Most women in college aren’t in relationships just for sex and actively want to limit emotional ties.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “LL, how does this follow? People exploit others beliefs all the time– it doesn’t mean the beliefs are wrong or they are “running into walls” for sticking to them.”

    If something doesn’t work and changing/replacing it will make it work, its broken. (If nothing can change it then its impossible.)

    I have almost no aversion for risk.

    That doesn’t mean I’m an idiot who doesn’t stack the deck.

    @Hope

    I suspect that most of the hardcore players are at heart very hurt overly optimistic romantics.
    I suspect thats what most dark people are, overly optimistic people who got burned one to many times.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    One of the reasons he gave me for not using “dark game” was because he didn’t want the girls whom he attracted using those games. He wanted a girl who was actually attracted to his lightness.

    He had no history of LTRs, FBs or FWBs when I met him. He did fall in love twice before me but realized those girls were not the right ones. He took a risk on me despite some bad spots in my past, but he liked that I didn’t play those types of games with him.

    We play the other kind of games. He joked yesterday that our son is going to think of “mommy and daddy fighting” as “they’re fighting monsters in a dungeon.”

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Hope: “, my husband was also hurt as a kid because he has good character. He tried the “dark path” for a little while and hated it. He refused and now walks the “light path.””

    I’ve heard this sentiment a lot, from religous and non-religious: people are only really respectable once they go down a dark path and return. Everyone prefers the prodigal son, over the brother who stayed. It’s almost as if honest people can’t be trusted, for fear of them imploding some day.

  • Lokland

    @Iggles

    “Thanks for answering my earlier question.”

    Np.

    “Most relationships last 3-5 months. Is that a reason not to date because most dates won’t work out as relationship material?”

    Most courtships, not relationships.

    No. Merely given the option between a relationship that is almost guaranteed to end OR a pseudo-realtionship (as described prior) some fraction of men will prefer that over serial monogamy. (Likely in part due to male sensitivity/attachment/emotional turmoil at the end of relationships.)

    “He’s getting what he wants (sex, affection, activity partner) and she’s getting more attached.”

    There is no girlfriend label. There is no relationship.
    If she is getting attached, thats her problem.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Thats the only quibble occurring here.

    No, it isn’t. I just happen to draw the line at using another human being as a means to an end, whether they want to be or not. Sorry to disappoint, blame my conscience! :???:

    @OTC

    Interesting language here…

    I’ll ask to not have words put in my mouth, por favor. If both parties mutually determine that there’s no future in the relationship, no problem, they can go their separate ways.

    But if one party makes that determination, and doesn’t end the relationship or communicate it to the other party, then the relationship is a *waste* of time at that point. For the person in the dark, mostly IMO. That’s what I meant. Crystal clear now?

    It’s funny, but even you married guys come off as pretty self-centered at times… could just be online personas run amok, I suppose. Still fighting the “singles battle”, even though you haven’t been so for quite some time… :wink:

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Iggles: “Because the situation works in the guy’s favor. He’s getting what he wants (sex, affection, activity partner) and she’s getting more attached. Probably dreaming of their future together. Once he knows there’s no future for them, he feels staying the relationship would be dishonest. At that point, he’s using her to get his need met.”

    But isn’t this the same exact thing as an mongamous MTR with a unstated implosion date, or, a “until someone better comes along” exit policy. Hey, I’m just using you as a boyfriend label, until the next better deal.

    This is true if he keeps her in the dark, or lies about it. Bad stuff. Otherwise, it seems to me she’s free to go, and any attachment is her problem. To say otherwise, is to believe men have the responsibility for her mistakes. I believe women are strong and independent and can make their own decisions. ;)

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Mr. Damien
    You’re welcome. And point taken earlier. I should have said European “societies” (plural).

  • Jackie

    @Lokland
    ““LL, how does this follow? People exploit others beliefs all the time– it doesn’t mean the beliefs are wrong or they are “running into walls” for sticking to them.”

    If something doesn’t work and changing/replacing it will make it work, its broken. (If nothing can change it then its impossible.)”
    ==
    LL, did you read the analogy that followed that sentence? The point it, my beliefs do work (for me), even if there is some incidental loss along the way. It’s still the better path.

  • Jackie

    @OTC
    “I’ve heard this sentiment a lot, from religous and non-religious: people are only really respectable once they go down a dark path and return. Everyone prefers the prodigal son, over the brother who stayed. It’s almost as if honest people can’t be trusted, for fear of them imploding some day.”
    ===
    That is an interesting point, OTC. I’ve thought about that parable many times. The Prodigal son is certainly more dramatic, makes for a better story. But think of how his life must have been at the end– I am imagining from Breaking Bad: Jesse’s hell-pit house with all the party people there.

    It’s interesting, too, how we praise people who observe and learn from others’ mistakes in the SMP, without making the same ones themselves. But actually venturing to the “dark side” seems to be the only way the gain credibility and authenticity in regards to faith. I can’t imagine people here would give tons of credence to the repented promiscuous. ;)

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “No, it isn’t. I just happen to draw the line at using another human being as a means to an end, whether they want to be or not. Sorry to disappoint, blame my conscience! ”

    You do realize that I view being in a relationship that is not headed for marriage as being used right?

    Its okay for a woman to slap the temporary boyfriend label on me? But not for me to do the same, minus the label of course? :)

  • Iggles

    @ Hope:

    One of the reasons he gave me for not using “dark game” was because he didn’t want the girls whom he attracted using those games. He wanted a girl who was actually attracted to his lightness.

    ^^ This!

    The reason many players and PUAs end up with terrible views of women is because of the terrible quality of women they attract with those tactics. All they see are the women who are merely interested in them because of the darkness and who can not appreciate the better sides of the man.

    @ Lokland:

    “Most relationships last 3-5 months. Is that a reason not to date because most dates won’t work out as relationship material?”

    Most courtships, not relationships.

    You’re right that it’s early, it can be considered still the courtship phase. The average LTR probably is between 2-5 years. However, I’ve heard courtship applied to the entire relationship before the engagement…

    My point is most relationship do not make the distance, yet people continually seek them out. To me that’s a GOOD thing — not a negative! Most people ARE NOT compatible, so it’s better to break up early and resume looking for someone who is a better fit!

    There is no girlfriend label. There is no relationship.
    If she is getting attached, thats her problem.

    I think we have our wires crossed. I was responding to Megaman’s scenario regarding college relationships, not FWB situations.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “LL, did you read the analogy that followed that sentence? The point it, my beliefs do work (for me), even if there is some incidental loss along the way. It’s still the better path.”

    Yes. Its easier for a mega corporation to absorb the cost of a tube of lipstick than it is for the individual.

    I’ve never returned anything that wasn’t obviously broken. I consider it morally wrong to change your decision and cost others.

    Beyond that, anecdotal evidence won’t cut it for economic standards for me.

    Numbers that stricter return policy = lower business or bust.

  • JP

    “My point is most relationship do not make the distance, yet people continually seek them out. To me that’s a GOOD thing — not a negative! Most people ARE NOT compatible, so it’s better to break up early and resume looking for someone who is a better fit!”

    I don’t even really know what “compatibility” means in the context of a relationship.

    You can make a lot of relationships go the distance if you want to; see history for details.

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    “You do realize that I view being in a relationship that is not headed for marriage as being used right?”

    There needs to be a “relationship class” for the clueless.

  • Lokland

    @Iggles

    What JP said.
    Compatibility is a 1st world concept that is over the top in its ridiculous level of standards.

    Can’t even be human half the time or your incompatible.

    Relationships are about choosing to make it work not some movie script.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks
    You can decide for yourself what’s o.k., o.k.? This isn’t an exercise in validation-seeking from women, I’m sure. :wink:

    We’ve come pretty far afield from the OT, which was FWB strictly speaking. Which by definition means sex with a “friend”, no emotions involved.

    This race to the bottom of amoral equivalence isn’t particularly compelling, either. I find myself admiring nobody in these hypothetical situations…

  • INTJ

    @ Lokland

    You do realize that I view being in a relationship that is not headed for marriage as being used right?

    As do I, Jimmy Hendricks, OTC, and probably Escoffier and Ted D, just to name a few.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    Okay, let’s say I toss out my beliefs and principles. How would you advise me to deal with the following:
    *The person who did the worst damage is dead and gone
    *The person who broke into my car and stole is anonymous

    How do I extract my revenge?

  • INTJ

    @ JP

    There needs to be a “relationship class” for the clueless.

    In the old days, parents used to teach “relationship class”. These days, they just tell their daughters to be “empowered” and tell their sons to be pedestalizing betas or “just be yourself”.

  • Iggles

    @ OTC:

    But isn’t this the same exact thing as an mongamous MTR with a unstated implosion date, or, a “until someone better comes along” exit policy. Hey, I’m just using you as a boyfriend label, until the next better deal.

    Nope.

    I had an LTR in college. It did not have a built in end date. (In fact, we moved in together after college and dated 3 more years)
    I think most women in college who enter a serious relationship do not have an end date at graduation. They keep it going once they leave by living the same city or doing in LDR. What Susan is saying is that 85% of these relationships ultimately end (they couple does NOT get married). But that’s the understanding when they are started.

    Truth is, MOST relationships fail. Most people are not lucky enough to find “the one” when they’re young. As with every serious, both parties enter it with good faith.

    Casual relationships are a different animal. By definition they’re temporary because there’s low investment. If two people are “hanging out” there’s not much holding them together if a better option comes along. Certainly there are a LOT of casual relationships in college. (For example, frat girl and guy who party together and have drunken sex at the end of the night. Other than parties and sex, the two don’t have many shared interests. Note – Not all frat/sorority couples are like this, but a fair number are!)

  • JP

    Well, I just learned that I used my college girlfriend because there was no way I was going to marry her.

    Fortunately, someone explained this to me so that I could fix the problem before it got worse.

    Again, though, there needs to be “relationship class”.

  • Iggles

    Crap!
    This is riddled with TYPOS! ugh.

    Meant to say:
    I think most women in college who enter a serious relationship do not have an end date at graduation. They keep it going once they leave by living in the same city or doing in LDR. What Susan is saying is that 85% of these relationships ultimately end (the couple does NOT get married). But that’s NOT the understanding when they are started.

  • JP

    “Truth is, MOST relationships fail.”

    Mostly, because people don’t want them to work.

    I’m still confused by this entire compatibility thing.

    The non-lesbian/gay marital relationship failures I know of were caused by people not wanting them to work as far as I know.

  • INTJ

    @ Hope

    When I met him he was determined to walk it alone, for life. He didn’t care if it didn’t attract the women who want dark triad Machiavelli.

    Yup. This sentiment is the main reason most of us haven’t gone over to the dark side.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    As do I, Jimmy Hendricks, OTC, and probably Escoffier and Ted D, just to name a few.

    Amazing. Do all these guys really have the same views on dating, relationships, marriage, commitment, etc.? Based on what they’ve said in various discussions, I doubt it. They certainly don’t subscribe to the same strategies and tactics vis-à-vis obtaining sex.

    As an analogy, this reminds me of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, TIL of course. :mrgreen:

  • J

    They don’t get to steal my joy. They don’t get to take my integrity. They don’t even get the time of day from me. They’re just a few bad apples who wish they could spoil the barrel.

    Brava!! Don’t give the bastards any real estate inside your head.

  • INTJ

    @ Megaman

    Amazing. Do all these guys really have the same views on dating, relationships, marriage, commitment, etc.? Based on what they’ve said in various discussions, I doubt it. They certainly don’t subscribe to the same strategies and tactics vis-à-vis obtaining sex.

    My views are almost identical to those of Ted D and Cooper. I also agree quite a bit with Escoffier. Lokland and OTC are much more on the unrestricted-side of the spectrum, while Jimmy Hendricks and Just1Z are somewhere in between, as far as I can tell.

    We all agree that the end goal is a committed permanent relationship, and that a relationship with an expiration date is rather undesirable for us. The only difference is in whether we prefer celibacy or prefer FWB/hooking-up.

    As an analogy, this reminds me of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, TIL of course.

    No, that would be analogous to hate-fucking.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “How do I extract my revenge?”

    Where did you get the idea of revenge from?
    I’d suggest calling the cops and trying to get your stuff back.
    Thats not vengeful.

    What I mean is that, if your beliefs cause you to be targeted more often for a negative behaviour, drop the beliefs and you won’t experience that negative behaviour.

    Theres no need for vengeance.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “You can decide for yourself what’s o.k., o.k.? This isn’t an exercise in validation-seeking from women, I’m sure”

    No, you’ve danced around this answer a million times before and now I’m annoyed.

    Do you or do you not believe that it is wrong for woman to waste a mans times if the man views what she is doing as negative?

    Yes or no?

  • Just1Z

    and put your stuff in the trunk, out of sight

  • Iggles

    JP, Lokland – Re: Compatibility

    Okay, I’ll explain.

    At it’s core, for me, compatibility is how well suited you are for each other on a number of levels.

    - Do you want the same things out of life? (marriage? babies? views on happiness?)

    - Do you get one another? (one of the greatest indicators of this is shared humor. Does the other person make you laugh? Or does their jokes annoy you? If it’s the latter that’s a bad sign)

    - Do you balance one another? (for example, one partner is an idealist and the other pragmatic)

    - Are you on the same page regarding sex? (Frequency of sex? Are you both vanilla? Or both kinky? Does one partner enjoy taking charge while the other enjoys being taken? etc)

    - Do you have shared interests? And are you comfortable compromising in regards to non-shared interests? (How often you go out to dance vs staying in? etc.)

    - Do you speak the same language in regards to physical and verbal affection? How about in regards to being supportive/comforting/encouraging to each other?

    - Do you similar outlooks on money? (spending? saving? budgeting?)

    And those aren’t even the BIG issues that usually are sorted out pretty quickly such as:
    - Do you want kids?
    - Where do you want to live? (urban/suburban/country-side)
    - Do you have a job?

    @ Lokland:

    Relationships are about choosing to make it work not some movie script.

    Sometimes you can. Sometimes, it would just make one or both of you MISERABLE.

    With my Ex, he couldn’t hold down a job. He had zero ambition to accomplish anything on his own. And he was very passive. I was leading the relationship and I hated it. I lost respect for him and attraction for him. *shakes head*

    I did my best to try to make things work, but when you start off with sub par raw material, there’s a limit to the quality of what you can build. YMMV..

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @INTJ

    We all agree that the end goal is a committed permanent relationship, and that a relationship with an expiration date is rather undesirable for us.

    Novel concept for the guys: Just be HONEST. What’s the objection? It’s easy. Let every young woman you date know the following prior to sex:
    I’m looking for a wife. Beyond that, I won’t promise commitment, exclusivity, monogamy, or anything else.

    Real life doesn’t allow for 100% certainty of outcome. Avoiding relationships with people who aren’t “spouse material” is excellent advice. You can then either avoid relationships period until after college, or do what Loks suggests, treat them as glorified FWBs, for as long as that lasts, which probably isn’t very long anyway…

    No, that would be analogous to hate-fucking.

    Clearly you didn’t understand the tongue-in-cheek analogy. It’s always ironic when ideological opposites supposedly agree on something.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Do you or do you not believe that it is wrong for woman to waste a mans times if the man views what she is doing as negative?

    Are you inebriated on a Sunday afternoon? I’m honestly having a hard time understanding this question.

    I explained what I thought of wasting someone else’s “relationship” time in #575. What was unclear?

  • Damien Vulaume

    “But if one party makes that determination, and doesn’t end the relationship or communicate it to the other party, then the relationship is a *waste* of time at that point.”
    Exactly.

    “Still fighting the “singles battle”, even though you haven’t been so for quite some time…”
    Lol!! That’s what comes to my mind when I read comments Like “I have five kids, we’re married”, and then going on ranting about girl’s attitudes towards sex, open way relationships or not, wanting “more” or whatever else. Why being married and having children in the first place if they know that that testosterone level will never be satisfied within the family life frame determined by women. I say this because at least women who want to settle down with the guy they choose are not hypocritical about that.

  • INTJ

    @ Megaman

    Novel concept for the guys: Just be HONEST. What’s the objection? It’s easy. Let every young woman you date know the following prior to sex:
    I’m looking for a wife. Beyond that, I won’t promise commitment, exclusivity, monogamy, or anything else.

    Real life doesn’t allow for 100% certainty of outcome. Avoiding relationships with people who aren’t “spouse material” is excellent advice. You can then either avoid relationships period until after college, or do what Loks suggests, treat them as glorified FWBs, for as long as that lasts, which probably isn’t very long anyway…

    Your tone suggests you’re disagreeing with me, but I can’t tell what the disagreement is…

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    Mega: “Novel concept for the guys: Just be HONEST. What’s the objection? It’s easy. Let every young woman you date know the following prior to sex:
    I’m looking for a wife. Beyond that, I won’t promise commitment, exclusivity, monogamy, or anything else.”

    Honesty is good, though I’m curious why you imply men have the responsibility to bring it up this before sex. What’s her responsibility to disclose to me? Does she have respnsibility to ask?

    That, and “honesty” is not the same as laying your entire emotional state on the table, offering up your emotional guts… ready for slaughter.

    But, this actually pretty darn close. It’s like this: “If I commit to you, it’s because I see you as *possible* wife material now, and we may progress there. If you are dead-set against this, or see me as transitional or temporary now, fine, then let’s just remain casual.”

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    Iggles,

    I think men and women can be close platonic friends if there’s no sexual interest. This works fine if one is gay/lesbian and the other straight, or if they both find each other physically unattractive.

    I’ll give you the point about being friends with someone who’s gay/lesbian. However, I still think two straight, opposite-sex friends will run into problems. Which isn’t an issue unless SOs are in the picture.

    I’m not positive, but I suspect that certain men and women have “friends” who are really more like orbiters. Two of my college friends were dating for awhile this past year, and they were at a party with one of my other friends. The guy said to my second friend, “why didn’t we ever hook up?” RIGHT in front of his GF. The second friend was weirdly happy about this, despite the fact that she’s friends with the GF. He also took one of his “friends” to a work party last year, while he was still with the GF long distance. She drove several hours to be able to attend the party. I highly doubt it was just platonic, even if he saw it that way.

    This can of course happen with the genders reversed as well, i.e. a woman can have male friends who are “totally platonic” but find her sexually attractive.

    If you haven’t already seen it, I highly recommend viewing When Harry Met Sally. Besides being a fairly good holiday movie, it’s got a great dialogue about this very topic (and, well, the whole movie is really about this theme).

    One more thing: I think it’s interesting that you and Megaman, two of the less Red-Pill-inclined commenters at HUS (not a value judgment, just an observation) believe that (straight) cross-sex friendships are possible. Whether or not you agree with it, I think the Red Pill perspective tends to portray male-female interactions in a sexual context, without the possibility of real camaraderie.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @INTJ

    Your tone suggests you’re disagreeing with me, but I can’t tell what the disagreement is…

    Heh, could be. Please pardon my observations, as I don’t normally make these kind and they could be wrong. But you’re in an awful Catch 22, perhaps of your own making:

    - You want a monogamous relationship that WILL (not *might*) lead to marriage. How anybody can predict that, I’m still unclear on, though I’d love to know where you can sign up for that kind of guarantee.

    - You believe women in college aren’t serious about those kinds of relationships, despite the fact that some do turn into marriages, others into LDRs or cohabitating LTRs after college, and quite a few women are already married IN college, moreso than men.

    - You also believe that women don’t want “inexperienced” guys as mates, yet you fear being “used” and the damaging effects that experience would cause to your emotional state. Since (I assume) you haven’t been through such an experience, I don’t see how you can know that for certain.

    - Add to that your general belief that most women are either “sluts” or restricted but only date and sleep with assholes, both of whom are unappealing for the kind of relationship you’re looking for.

    We might agree on a few token points, but not much else. You’re just stuck in a feedback loop, unfortunately…

  • JP

    @Olive:

    “One more thing: I think it’s interesting that you and Megaman, two of the less Red-Pill-inclined commenters at HUS (not a value judgment, just an observation) believe that (straight) cross-sex friendships are possible.”

    This is pretty easy after you’ve dated a person.

    If it didn’t work out, then it’s pretty easy to keep them as a friend, presuming that nobody was in love with anybody else.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @OTC

    If I commit to you, it’s because I see you as *possible* wife material now, and we may progress there. If you are dead-set against this, or see me as transitional or temporary now, fine, then let’s just remain casual.

    Exactly.

    That, and “honesty” is not the same as laying your entire emotional state on the table, offering up your emotional guts… ready for slaughter.

    Amen. No guy in his right mind should ever directly say it. Most girls hate direct communication (especially girls in their early 20s).

    My philosophy is just to simply hold off on any kind of investment until she’s displayed that she’s clearly invested herself. Until I see that, she’s just someone I like to hang out and hook up with.

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

      My philosophy is just to simply hold off on any kind of investment until she’s displayed that she’s clearly invested herself. Until I see that, she’s just someone I like to hang out and hook up with.

      Exactly! It is the male’s responsibility to escalate sexually, and the female’s responsibility to escalate emotionally. The roles are not easily switched with success.

  • Iggles

    @ Olive:

    I’ll give you the point about being friends with someone who’s gay/lesbian. However, I still think two straight, opposite-sex friends will run into problems. Which isn’t an issue unless SOs are in the picture.

    I don’t dispute this.

    I think cross-sex friendships are indeed possible, as long as it’s not a close friendship. Acquaintances. Casual friends (more prone to say “hey” on Facebook than to call or text one another).

    No confiding and 3am phones calls. That I wouldn’t be okay with.

    I’m not positive, but I suspect that certain men and women have “friends” who are really more like orbiters.

    Yep.

    If you haven’t already seen it, I highly recommend viewing When Harry Met Sally. Besides being a fairly good holiday movie, it’s got a great dialogue about this very topic (and, well, the whole movie is really about this theme).

    I’ve seen it.

    One more thing: I think it’s interesting that you and Megaman, two of the less Red-Pill-inclined commenters at HUS (not a value judgment, just an observation) believe that (straight) cross-sex friendships are possible.

    I’m not sure what you mean about this.

    Am I less Red Pill because I don’t accept everything the Manosphere as fact? While I think they’re right about some things, I’ve read a lot of bitter generalizations that I don’t agree with.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    This is pretty easy after you’ve dated a person.

    If it didn’t work out, then it’s pretty easy to keep them as a friend, presuming that nobody was in love with anybody else.

    I fundamentally disagree. If there was any kind of sexual contact (kissing, cuddling, hand holding, backrubbing, whatever), the friendship is a danger to a new relationship.

    I have absolutely no romantic feelings left over for my ex (we broke up 6 years ago, so it’s been awhile) and I still have no desire to talk to him beyond our once a year “how ya doin” small talk chat via the internet.

    A woman who works for my dad nearly divorced her husband this past summer because she found a high school boyfriend on facebook. I just know of way too many situations in which contact with an ex meant bad news for everyone.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @OTC

    Honesty is good, though I’m curious why you imply men have the responsibility to bring it up this before sex. What’s her responsibility to disclose to me? Does she have responsibility to ask?

    I was speaking as a man, to other *single* men, who do most of the complaining. I feel like I have to child-proof everything I say around here. How about: Party A and Party B are responsible for mutual honesty? Anybody can and should ask anything, but that doesn’t mean you get a pass for obfuscation.

    Why declare one’s intentions before sex (but after dating)? Because then, everything is above board, no grey areas or ambiguity. We’ve discussed how deception is a prime sexual strategy for a lot of guys. Nobody can then claim they were a victim who was taken advantage of. What’s the real objection to this?

    BTW for a happily married guy, you seem to have “casual” on the brain a lot. Living vicariously, perhaps? :wink:

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Olive:
    “I think the Red Pill perspective tends to portray male-female interactions in a sexual context, without the possibility of real camaraderie.”

    I agree with that Olive, that’s true. And it’s quite obvious from the reactions from the posts here. But as far as Male/female “friendship” is concerned, I think it can only work when both parties have a mutual lack of physical and or emotional interest towards one an other.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Jimmy

    My anecdotal experience is that average beta-type behavior brings a much higher risk for DQ from early 20s girls than having FWB relationships does.

    I’ll admit to not being in sync personally with all the intricacies of the social/dating scene amongst college students/graduates these days.

    But I’m just curious… with all your worldly wisdom on the subject, for example, how young women seeking LTRs prefer self-centered indifference and non-monogamy in their guys. And how they disappear at the mere whisper of a DTR conversation…

    Do you have anything positive to show for it? Personally-speaking, I mean?

  • Sassy6519

    I was speaking as a man, to other *single* men, who do most of the complaining. I feel like I have to child-proof everything I say around here.

    Hahahahahahahahahaha!!!

  • Iggles

    @ Damien Vulaume:

    But as far as Male/female “friendship” is concerned, I think it can only work when both parties have a mutual lack of physical and or emotional interest towards one an other.

    +1

    This sums it up perfectly.

  • JP

    @Olive:

    “I fundamentally disagree. If there was any kind of sexual contact (kissing, cuddling, hand holding, backrubbing, whatever), the friendship is a danger to a new relationship.”

    I may depend on the intensity of the prior relationship and who did the breaking up.

    People I’ve dated are at the bottom of the list of “dangers to new relationship” because there is a very specific reason that I am no longer dating them.

    The high school thing you referenced is what I was talking about earlier regarding the “lost love” thingy. You can reignite a relationship at the same level it was when it was terminated, depending on the nature of the termination, however this is not the same a being friends with an ex.

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sticky-bonds/201207/my-lost-love-is-my-its-complicated-part-1

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

    Exactly. In few romances my wife enjoys (don’t you think romances are like porn for guys?), the plot is variation of a theme:
    The name around this parts is emotional porn.

    The guy loved one woman/was married, but she died/dumped him and he remained hurt for many,many years, until our heroine finds a way to his heart
    In other words, not really an alphish hero.

    Heh the funny thing is that in the Romances where the heroine ends up with a friend or something allong the lines is completely analyzed as “fantasy” or the friend was always Alpha or the friend is the place holder for a woman. In spite that at least 20% of romances use that plot and that many affairs are with this “sexless friends” interesting dichotomy “No a woman will never want to sleep with her male friends they are just beta orbiters, but I don’t want my woman to have any friends of the opposite sex because she might end up having sex with them” Does.not.compute.

    Maybe Iggles, Hope, Ana, others and myself are all outliers but bad character can turn someone ugly in an *instant* in my eyes. It has actually happened to me. (BTW, character is different from personality.)
    +1. Not even that I remember a particular case where I was so dissapointed that I forgot that guy existed I realized I passed in front of his house when someone called to my attention that I didn’t say hello when I did it. It was like he never existed, just FYI.

    Greece, Italy, Turkey (not a suprise), Spain, Portugal, France (big surprise), Poland, Romania, and the Ukraine.

    Mmm is it me or this are mostly Catholic countries or with a long tradition of catholicism?

    My initial “religion” would be best characterized as scientific materialism, although I went to church growing up. It was only later that I figured out that religion actually “works”, so to speak.

    Yeah one needs time to get all this info in perspective.

    I suspect thats what most dark people are, overly optimistic people who got burned one to many times.

    Nope truly optimistic people cannot stay in the dark long, they end up self destroying. The way you react to the world says more about you than about the world.

    It’s funny, but even you married guys come off as pretty self-centered at times… could just be online personas run amok, I suppose. Still fighting the “singles battle”, even though you haven’t been so for quite some time…

    Heh I’m pretty sure they are nice to their wives at home, this is their place to vent and fantasize about what if, YMMV.

    LL, did you read the analogy that followed that sentence? The point it, my beliefs do work (for me), even if there is some incidental loss along the way. It’s still the better path.

    Is like running a company, you always have to calculate for losses but if you plan to win all the time in your terms you are going to end up without a company in no time. There is not a win them all person you can win a lot or just enough but there is always some loses.

    I’ve heard this sentiment a lot, from religous and non-religious: people are only really respectable once they go down a dark path and return. Everyone prefers the prodigal son, over the brother who stayed. It’s almost as if honest people can’t be trusted, for fear of them imploding some day.

    You surely remember that J and I had a discussion about how much I hated this particular parable. I don’t think going to the dark side and coming back has more merit than always knowing the dark side is not for you, ever. Although I admit I’m in the minority in that aspect, I do admire a person that comes out better from a bad situation, but the person that never got him/herself in it on the first place has a lot to teach about life as well, YMMV.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “Do you or do you not believe that it is wrong for woman to waste a mans times if the man views what she is doing as negative?

    Are you inebriated on a Sunday afternoon? I’m honestly having a hard time understanding this question.”

    Nope.
    I’m curious why every piece of advice you have for young men involves giving MORE to women while asking for nothing in return?

  • JP

    @Anacaona:

    “You surely remember that J and I had a discussion about how much I hated this particular parable. I don’t think going to the dark side and coming back has more merit than always knowing the dark side is not for you, ever. ”

    It’s pretty obvious that it’s toxic if you’ve got any real sense of those sort of things.

    The ones who wander in there and come out leave because it’s so obviously toxic.

  • SayWhaat

    I was speaking as a man, to other *single* men, who do most of the complaining. I feel like I have to child-proof everything I say around here.

    Megaman +20, lvl up. :P

    Late to the convo, but add me to the chorus of girls who:

    1. Would DQ a guy for a too-high N and ugly character, and

    2. Would make my SO end contact with “friends” he has previously had sex with.

    Let the record show that I have done all of the above. And no, I’m not a damn outlier, I’m the norm, fuck you very much.

  • Ramble

    My anecdotal experience is that average beta-type behavior brings a much higher risk for DQ from early 20s girls than having FWB relationships does.

    This is what I am seeing as well, which is why I recommend “betas”, especially STEMy Betas to amp up their douchiness. This does not mean that they should become complete douchebags, but that they should understand how the game is being played.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “Is like running a company, you always have to calculate for losses but if you plan to win all the time in your terms you are going to end up without a company in no time. There is not a win them all person you can win a lot or just enough but there is always some loses.”

    ??

    Except if you find a way to minimize losses you do it.
    You don’t sit and twiddle your thumbs because god doesn’t want you to win.

  • Iggles

    @ Ana:

    I suspect thats what most dark people are, overly optimistic people who got burned one to many times.

    Nope truly optimistic people cannot stay in the dark long, they end up self destroying. The way you react to the world says more about you than about the world.

    True.

    I’ve been hurt. I’ve been disappointed. I’m been down on myself for years at a time, thinking I don’t matter and I’m not pretty, not deserving, etc.

    I’m very pragmatic. But at my core, I am still an optimist.

    It’s not something I’ve chosen, but I’m grateful for it all the same. Ask me and I will answer that the cup is half full. The ability to see good and hope for better days as carried me forward more times than I can count.

    @ SayWhaat:

    Let the record show that I have done all of the above. And no, I’m not a damn outlier, I’m the norm, fuck you very much.

    Duly noted, haha.

    +1000 :D

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    I’m curious why every piece of advice you have for young men involves giving MORE to women while asking for nothing in return?

    I don’t recall ever doing so. Not sure you’re even reading what I type anymore. I’m going to have to ask you to quote me where I’ve explicitly done so? I dislike having words put in my mouth.

    Here’s a bit of advice I’ve put forth before, which applies to either gender: don’t date complete strangers!

  • Just1Z

    @Lokland
    “I’m curious why every piece of advice you have for young men involves giving MORE to women while asking for nothing in return?”

    this is classic trad / soc connerie. as a feminist I think that we should have honesty all round, or at least same standards

  • Iggles

    @ Megaman:

    Here’s a bit of advice I’ve put forth before, which applies to either gender: don’t date complete strangers!

    My bf was a stranger when I met him. (online dating)

    Q: What are strangers?
    A: People you haven’t met yet! :lol:

    I would say, don’t marry a stranger. Don’t have sex with a stranger. Don’t lean money to a stranger. Don’t let a stranger babysit your kids. Etc.

    As for dates, how about you get to know someone and soon enough they won’t be a stranger? Same thing with making new friends. We all start off as strangers. That’s not the problem. Skipping steps — i.e., “getting to know you”– is the problem in our instant gratification culture..

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Anacoana:
    “Mmm is it me or this are mostly Catholic countries or with a long tradition of catholicism?”

    I’ve you guessed it right, Turkey being something else, though.
    It’s also funny to see how some of those countries “moved beyond” towards what is now known as the “battle of the sexes” in the western world.
    Some of the elder women in southern France (within my family or elsewhere) who actually rebelled in their time against “macho (and catholic) domination” where always the proud, dignified and strong feminine type. They never seemed to need some type of feminist cruch to get around in a male dominated environement. My own grandmother now looks at the male/female relations as uterlly pathetic (in her own words) and as of today, if any man would show lack of respect towards her or her grand daughters, or women in general….I’m sure she would kick their knees just like any footballer on the playfield.

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

      My own grandmother now looks at the male/female relations as uterlly pathetic (in her own words) and as of today, if any man would show lack of respect towards her or her grand daughters, or women in general….I’m sure she would kick their knees just like any footballer on the playfield.

      I would love to sit down and have a glass of wine with her!

  • Ramble

    The reason many players and PUAs end up with terrible views of women is because of the terrible quality of women they attract with those tactics.

    Even if the PUA/Player is not picking up a bar skank with his “dark” game, he may still have a low value of women in general because the “dark” game worked.

  • Ramble

    Iggles,

    I think men and women can be close platonic friends if there’s no sexual interest. This works fine if one is gay/lesbian and the other straight, or if they both find each other physically unattractive.

    I’ll give you the point about being friends with someone who’s gay/lesbian. However, I still think two straight, opposite-sex friends will run into problems. Which isn’t an issue unless SOs are in the picture.

    IME, it is fairly rare for their to be NO sexual interest whatsoever between two platonic friends of the opposite sex.

  • Ramble

    Am I less Red Pill because I don’t accept everything the Manosphere as fact?

    There is a difference between the Red Pill and the ‘Sphere.

    The Red Pill usually just refers to the “truths” that have been exposed that go directly against more PC and mainstream teachings.

    The ‘Sphere is more of a collection of womyn’s-haters. While they are capable of providing insight from time to time, their bitterness, anger and disappointment all too often (badly) colors their message(s).

  • HanSolo

    I have a lot of female friends that are simply friends. I either am not attracted to them at all or turn off and don’t focus on whatever attraction could be there (some married women come to mind). There’s a 3rd class of female friends that I am attracted to and don’t turn off the attraction for (very much) and would be open taking it to more than friends if the opportunity arose.

    For me it is definitely possible to be friends with women. Not all other people are like that though.

    I definitely disagree with the 100% blanket statement that men and women (even ones who find each other attractive) cannot be friends with nothing more going on–I’m one example of such a person. Yeah, there’s more of a risk of attraction derailing the only-friendship but for many people (me included) it’s not impossible.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    About going to dark side and coming back, I don’t prefer it, but at the same time I don’t hold it against my husband.

    There’s something to be said for trying it out before realizing it’s not for you. I tried alcohol before swearing it off forever. But I didn’t need to get totally blackout drunk a gazillion times to know it wasn’t for me. Just a glass, and that was enough.

    Like I said, my husband never had FWBs or anything like that. He never got very far on the “dark path.” I wasn’t talking about redeeming the player with double digit N.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Mega

    But I’m just curious… with all your worldly wisdom on the subject, for example, how young women seeking LTRs prefer self-centered indifference and non-monogamy in their guys. And how they disappear at the mere whisper of a DTR conversation…

    If you look back, I’ve never said most prefer it. My observation is that most don’t girls don’t straight up DQ a guy because he’s had a FWB or 2. I could be wrong, but I haven’t seen that happen.

    My stance is that the situation puts the guy in a more advantageous position than forcing a conventional relationship — and all the added obligations that come with it — if it has an expiration date anyway. Hence, hookup culture. As Ramble said, it’s not about being an outright douchebag, but knowing how the game is played.

    As far as DTR? Yes, I believe that it’s generally bad news for the guy to initiate that unless he’s clearly higher value than the girl. It certainly never ended well for me. Which leads me to:

    Do you have anything positive to show for it? Personally-speaking, I mean?

    Absolutely. In fact, I think my change in perspective is the single most important thing that’s happened in my life. I no longer feel obligated to follow the conventional (blue pill) life script, no longer feel an obligation to society, and severely cut back on materialistic goals. It motivated me to quit my boring and secure office job and go back to grad school to pursue my dream career. If I would’ve stayed with the blue pill mindset, I don’t think any of that would’ve happened.

    In terms of relationships, I’ve had a few casual relationships that also involved a certain level of intimacy. Maybe you’d call them “relationships in denial”, but whatever they were, they allowed me to have more control over the situation than my previous self would have playing under the “facebook official” serial monogamy script.

    No drama, still on good terms with those girls, and in a better position today to mold relationships into what I want them to be instead of sit at the mercy of girls’ whims, hoping they don’t abuse their power.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Mega

    Here’s a bit of advice I’ve put forth before, which applies to either gender: don’t date complete strangers!

    I don’t disagree with this at all. Never been a fan of cold approaching. Large social circles pay better dividends.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ Jackie

    t’s sounds like you guys have encountered people who use religion as a tool to divide, hurt, manipulate and shield their own hypocrisies. Either people who are annoyingly condescending hypocrites (see: Pharisees) or people who are solipsistic (YEAH I SAID IT) and ignorant enough to think everyone should have thei same experience. Or! People who want to use Christ’s teachings to cloak their own evil (See: Every preacher trope EVER).

    I run into this so much and it’s so very depressing.

    To be honest? I even see it on this thread and it’s a little bit painful. Societies can be inclusive or exclusive, and being “inclusive” generally takes a lot of work and appreciation that people don’t want to do. It’s much easier to “exclude” and to divide all of us into “us vs. them.”

    That’s what these religious people do sometimes, unfortunately. My best friend once said he considered himself much more moral than me, solely because he was Christian and I am atheist. He was regularly insulting people, stealing, etc. Didn’t matter to him, he was Christian, I wasn’t, and that was the end of that.

    Superiority based on “purity” based on exclusion on superficial traits.

    Watching “Lincoln” yesterday, I was thinking about this, because my SO and I are both very progressive on race issues, despite coming from racist families. I am a little color-blind: one evening she was going on about how she didn’t have many black friends, and she said I met one, and I was dumb-founded until she mentioned a name…apparently I had spent a whole weekend with the guy and didn’t realize he was black.

    On the other hand, at family events, my family throws out N-bombs like they are candy.

    Racism isn’t PC, though, and being a racist is enough to get you instantly labelled a “bad person.” Society is trying to be more inclusive, by not allowing exclusion on the basis on something so superficial as skin color. I expect some comments from VD on this later…

    Something always rubbed me wrong, and I think I get it now: this kind of “inclusion” isn’t complete enough. Human diversity is very, very broad, and each of us are entitled to basic human dignity and respect, and each of us has to forgive other people for their failings.

    Our “inclusion,” though, isn’t real “inclusion.” It’s just recognizing protected classes and saying you can’t discriminate against them on the basis of gender, race, whatever. That’s cool, that’s awesome, that’s so Gen Y.

    You can absolutely exclude people for other people reasons, and I am sure a lot of us here felt very “excluded” when we were younger. Hell, during middle school, I ate lunch with the janitor because I had no friends. I remember being treated like a human being and a friend at some points, and wanting to run away, because it felt so weird to have friends.

    Not many people too worried about my “inclusion” at the time.

    I like people who work hard to appreciate humans as they really are, and try to better them and include them. My impression is that many religious people are NOT focused on this, and are more focused on exclusion and trying to make other people feel worse in order to make themselves feel better.

    I’ve got no use for that.

    And I can totally get why a lot of smarter guys might sour on the religious, especially when smart guys try to analyze and religious people just dismiss that.

    For me, though, openness to religious and philosophical messages really only became possible with increased knowledge about how people operated. Like a lot of the guys here, college was a miserable experience. I had an underlying core of bitterness that was really poisoning the world after all that…too many people that didn’t care about me.

    Only excuse I could come up with is that they are both dumb and evil, and then how can you believe in God? And how could you join a religion that included so many of those people that you hate, especially when they consider themselves superior to you JUST FOR BEING IN IT?

    Hell, I couldn’t handle ANY positive messages. I couldn’t listen to fucking Disney music because it seemed so ridiculously naive.

    Understanding, though, is a good step in the path for forgiveness…understanding hypergamy and the shitty culture we are raised in, for instance, makes it easier to forgive women when they fuck up, and stop seeing them as pure evil. Although there was a phase of “women are the DEVIL” in there after the wool was torn off my eyes.

    Similarly, it’s good to see how evolution has shaped our brains to behave in different ways, and realize that we are machines, and machines are broken and imperfect. And that you can still have positive relationships with broken machines, as long as you try to understand them and forgive them for their mistakes.

    Which is, well, part of the whole Christian message, right?

    Rambling a bit now, let’s just keep going before I go to sleep :P

    I watch Glee with the SO sometimes. Makes her happy. There’s a new character on the show, who has a very obvious dyslexia problem. It was never treated, and he always felt stupid, so he simply stopped studying and started goofing off. What’s the point, after all?

    He finally gets tested, and when he comes out of the room, he’s riding himself for being stupid. His fill-in coach says “You aren’t stupid. Your brain just works a little bit differently.”

    The unstated line there, because it didn’t really need to be stated, and shouldn’t be need to be stated is And we love you anyways.

    It is a touching thought.

    And very sad, because our actual world is far from that.

    Our major religions, which should be making our world MORE like that, do not seem to do that.

  • Mike C

    In that case however, why limit oneself to one person.
    Create a pseudo-relationship capable of meeting needs (no exclusivity) until graduation then start looking for a wife.

    Thats the only quibble occurring here.
    Why be monogamous if it isn’t going to become marriage? (I’m not suggesting an open relationship). I’m suggesting no relationship but a pseudo-dating style thing with no firm commitment or exclusivity.

    Easier to leave, less emotional turmoil involved upon termination, leaves sides open.

    Lokland,

    What is interesting about your description/scenario here is that I believe on a number of occasions Susan has mentioned the college “relationships” (official boyfriend-girlfriend title) often lack any sort of emotional intimacy, and there is rampant cheating especially amongst guys. So in a sense, these relationships really are such in basically name/title only probably because most of the people go in knowing this isn’t the person they realistically have any chance of being partnered really long-term/marriage with.

    I think you are correct in that one can at least ask the question whether or not to dispense with the official titles and “relationship” and maintain the pseudo-relationship/dating you are mentioning.

    This may be a difference between restricted and unrestricted but to many of the comments, I would simply point out it is possible to meet a woman you feel physically/sexually attracted to, but for any number of reasons she isn’t someone you would consider wifing up. And if you’ve been burned once like I was, then you tend to be even more discriminating in your filter about which women can pass the “potential wife” test. I have no problem whatsoever with a guy who says either A. I”ll be celibate or B. Only have sex with a potential wife. For many guys, that is going to be an unacceptable set of choices for any lengthy period of time which is where the Susan relationships with a time expiration or Lokland pseudo-relationship come into play.

  • Mike C

    I’m still confused by this entire compatibility thing.

    JP,

    Really? It isn’t that confusing. Here are just 4 examples amongst countless many

    1. Spending patterns/financial objectives – A person who is a spendthrift is going have compatibility issues with someone who is frugal and wants to save.

    2. Myers-Briggs extrovert versus introvert – This can also result in compatibility issues (I know from experience). I believe this can work but it requires an extrovert who can understand the needs of introverts (such as alone time for recharging)

    3. Emotional display/communication – We just had this conversation here recently. For example, my fiancee and I are the type like I think it was Ted D where we can simply enjoy each other’s presence without non-stop communication. We don’t have to talk the entire time at the table while we are eating. There were some other people that were uncomfortable with this. They needed a more active ongoing engagement between the two partners. For example, my fiancee and I are both introverts and I am NOT a morning person. We barely speak in the morning getting ready for work. If I had someone who was constantly trying to engage me in the morning, I really would have to tell them to STFU. That would be a major compatibility issue.

    4. I’ll call this particularity. Running a household day to day involves certain procedures, ways of doing things. I’m pretty particular about certain things. There is a “right” way for things. There would be a compatibility problem if someone always insisted on doing things the “wrong” way. Another way to put this would be daily life of spontaneity and chaos versus order and predictability. The former and latter don’t mix well

  • Sassy6519

    1. Spending patterns/financial objectives – A person who is a spendthrift is going have compatibility issues with someone who is frugal and wants to save.

    2. Myers-Briggs extrovert versus introvert – This can also result in compatibility issues (I know from experience). I believe this can work but it requires an extrovert who can understand the needs of introverts (such as alone time for recharging)

    3. Emotional display/communication – We just had this conversation here recently. For example, my fiancee and I are the type like I think it was Ted D where we can simply enjoy each other’s presence without non-stop communication. We don’t have to talk the entire time at the table while we are eating. There were some other people that were uncomfortable with this. They needed a more active ongoing engagement between the two partners. For example, my fiancee and I are both introverts and I am NOT a morning person. We barely speak in the morning getting ready for work. If I had someone who was constantly trying to engage me in the morning, I really would have to tell them to STFU. That would be a major compatibility issue.

    4. I’ll call this particularity. Running a household day to day involves certain procedures, ways of doing things. I’m pretty particular about certain things. There is a “right” way for things. There would be a compatibility problem if someone always insisted on doing things the “wrong” way. Another way to put this would be daily life of spontaneity and chaos versus order and predictability. The former and latter don’t mix well.

    Those are definitely major aspects of compatibility.

    When I look at things objectively, my ex of one year and I were not compatible with each other on any of those 4 items. We squabbled over them all the time. We were very compatible in other ways, which bolstered the relationship for a time. Ultimately, however, it definitely was not sustainable.

  • Mike C

    When I look at things objectively, my ex of one year and I were not compatible with each other on any of those 4 items. We squabbled over them all the time. We were very compatible in other ways, which bolstered the relationship for a time. Ultimately, however, it definitely was not sustainable.

    Well….I think…no I know…it is possible to be very fundamentally incompatible yet have a very high level of physical attraction/sexual chemistry. Those can be problematic/complicated situations especially if you get emotionally vested. Those might be the situations where a fling or friends with benefits might make sense if you can manage to enjoy the physical/sexual side without getting deeply emotionally attached.

  • Mike C

    One more thing: I think it’s interesting that you and Megaman, two of the less Red-Pill-inclined commenters at HUS (not a value judgment, just an observation) believe that (straight) cross-sex friendships are possible. Whether or not you agree with it, I think the Red Pill perspective tends to portray male-female interactions in a sexual context, without the possibility of real camaraderie.

    Must watch video here:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_lh5fR4DMA

    What is funny is to contrast the responses from the men answering versus the women answering. One comes away thinking on the whole men are more naive, oblivious, and perhaps politically correct while when pressed you see women know the real deal.

  • Mike C

    Just to add to that comment because initially the women said yes, but then when pushed on the guy’s real feelings most seemed to know the guys do have some sexual interest in them.

  • Mike C

    Late to the convo, but add me to the chorus of girls who:

    1. Would DQ a guy for a too-high N and ugly character, and

    2. Would make my SO end contact with “friends” he has previously had sex with.

    This is the second time you’ve used that term “make my SO”. First time I ignored it, but I am curious now if this is really the way you see it…that your SO is someone you can boss around and make do stuff. I actually agree with you on the contact issue with “friends” your SO has had sex with, but there is voicing your displeasure and communicating your feelings and then there is “making” him do something.

    Megaman +20, lvl up. :P

    Megaman, you need to step it up. I’m sure you can get a +1,000,000 or even + 1000. You just need to attack “bad male stuff” a bit stronger, maybe a few more insults at INTJ, a bit more passive-aggressive snark, and you should be able to get there.

  • Mike C

    Like I said, my husband never had FWBs or anything like that. He never got very far on the “dark path.” I wasn’t talking about redeeming the player with double digit N.

    Hope,

    I am genuinely curious because you’ve mentioned this several times about your husband. What specific behaviors, actions, events, etc. did he engage in that you believe were just the few steps on the “dark path” before he returned back to the “light path”.

  • szopen

    @Anacaona

    this are mostly Catholic countries or with a long tradition of catholicism?

    Turkey: Islam
    Greece, Romania, Ukraine: Orthodox (Ukraine partly uniates)
    That’s 4/9 non-catholic.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XzcGnUCI0 OffTheCuff

    SayWhaat: “Late to the convo, but add me to the chorus of girls who: 1. Would DQ a guy for a too-high N and ugly character, and 2. Would make my SO end contact with “friends” he has previously had sex with.

    As you rightly should. I am not sure who you are disagreeing with. (My position was that high N is pretty high, and that the existence of a current/past FWB was usually not a dealbreaker.)

    SayWhaat: “Let the record show that I have done all of the above. ”

    Really? Your old position was all men rejected you, and that’s why you were single.

    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/01/03/hookinguprealities/after-the-red-pill-good-women-are-hard-to-find/#comment-87909

    Or were these two examples both the homeless guy?

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Mike C ” I am genuinely curious because you’ve mentioned this several times about your husband. What specific behaviors, actions, events, etc. did he engage in that you believe were just the few steps on the “dark path” before he returned back to the “light path”.”

    Without going into too much detail, his struggle with the darkness was from being around male friends who were into manipulating and using other people, often with regard to money and power, though they also introduced him to game. By darkness he also meant focusing on sadness, pain, anger and hurt. He also had a suicide attempt, which he referred to as a very dark time in his life.

    Here are his own words:

    “I would not have reached my own balance if I had not grown up basically surrounded by the darkness and failing to understand for a long time WHY I was different. I realized that my light was being sucked out of me by the dark people I associated with. By experiencing the darkness, I was able to recognize and strive toward the light.”

    On game, which is probably the part you’re more interested in, he said:

    “I’ve never been a player. At one point I sort of thought I wanted to be… very quickly realized I was wrong. That was in college, when I was living in the party house with my vampiric service-to-self friends, and my “best” friend was teaching me about game. So I learned the stuff, ’cause my friend was really pushing it on me, and then at some of the parties I would use the techniques. But it was like… I would get just about to the point where the physical stuff would begin to happen, and, be like wtf am I DOING, I don’t want this. I felt like I SHOULD want it, but it wasn’t right, and it really confused me actually.

    What’s REALLY funny… and this is serious, I actually started to wonder if I was gay or something because I was being told by all the guys that I should just want a lot of casual bedding but, I didn’t. Although I quickly realized that was not the case. I was just not the least bit attracted to guys while being very attracted to girls.

    Anyway I eventually realized that the girls who were “interested” in me were not the kind I was really interested in… I didn’t see us as being truly compatible. I have “studied” the game… and I know how to win… I know how to do it. But… the game is not me. The game is not the genuine and heartfelt connection I want with another soul. The game is a card trick in a poker game.”

  • JP

    “I would not have reached my own balance if I had not grown up basically surrounded by the darkness and failing to understand for a long time WHY I was different. I realized that my light was being sucked out of me by the dark people I associated with. ”

    I today’s metaphysical lesson, we learn that you want to avoid the lower vertical because it’s a pit of darkness and despair.

    I’ll use Jain cosmology to illustrate the vertical:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Jain_universe.JPG

    I would prefer an illustration using Dante’s work, but this one is easier to find.

    And it is like a card trick.

    Essentially, it’s a form of psychological magic.

  • http://marellus.wordpress.com/ Marellus

    HanSolo wrote :

    The crazy thing is that she said that if I were a virgin that she would still want to date me but that I’d have to go out and get some experience before having sex with her.

    Suzan replied :

    That is truly illogical, as having two ONSs wouldn’t teach you much, and certainly nothing about her! Why can’t you “get experience” with her? You’re right, that is crazy.

    It’s so obvious. The woman was shit-testing. And it was a pretty nasty shit-test at that.

  • Ted D

    Mike C – Yeah, that was me. It is a blessed thing that my wife and I can literally spend hours together without saying more than a few sentences. If she felt compelled to talk constantly (as many people do for some reason) I would be compelled to jump off a bridge.

    She is an extrovert, but she scored around 30% on the E, so not a strong extrovert. When it comes to compatibility, our biggest issue is her F to my T. We tend to bump heads at times because she approaches most issues from a “how does it make me feel” perspective where I approach from “what logically makes the most sense” viewpoint. On occasion, we go round and round very much like the best circle-jerks here at HUS. We are learning to get around this, but it takes time. Plus, although she does a good bit of accomodating my I, I find that when it comes to F/T, I have to do a little more. For whatever reason, feelers just have HUGE problems seeing things from a purely logical perspective. I can however make a good effort at seeing things from the feeling perspective, so in these cases I tend to do more legwork to find common understanding.

    It really is give and take, we simply give and take differently.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    You just need to attack “bad male stuff” a bit stronger, maybe a few more insults at INTJ…

    Heh, Dr. Wily he most certainly isn’t. I’ve ceased and desisted, though. Unlike him, I’ll admit when I’m wrong, which I was.

    On the other stuff, I’m sure Susan’s felt the irony, and Mr. Munson used to get a lot of mileage out of it. HUS is certainly an odd place for guys to advocate non-monogamy… constantly!

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Jimmy

    Hence, hookup culture. As Ramble said, it’s not about being an outright douchebag, but knowing how the game is played.

    By positive, I meant whether you had a SO or a love in your life. It doesn’t sound like it, though. Some of your observations sound a bit cliched, but that’s probably because they’re coming from the unrestricte scene.

    Seems like the qualities and behavior some girls find attractive for hooking up are the polar opposite of what others find attractive in a marriage partner…

  • Ted D

    Susan – “The roles are not easily switched with success.”

    Although I agree with this statement, my wife and I completely switched roles during our “courtship”. She escalated the physical stuff while I escalated the emotional. After we had the DTR talk, my wife explained that she was interested in a relationship, but was fearful since we were both coming out of divorce that we would become a “rebound” relationship, so she put off that side of things. I told her I was unwilling to put any time and effort into a relationship that had no future, and at that point she understood that I wasn’t just getting over my ex. (Truth is, I “got over” her long before we divorced. I was simply unwilling to give up on my commitments and feared the loss of my children)

    Plus honestly, she is by far the more “sexual” person in our marriage. Not drive mind you, just comfortable with her sexuality. I’m probably the most comfortable of my own sexualy now than I have been my entire life. Mostly because I now realize there is absolutely NOTHING WRONG with my desire for sex. I occasionally have to remind myself though, when I find my brain dwelling on thoughts of being a “perv” or some such simply because I’m horny. It still happens once or twice a week, but considering it used to be a constantly running thread in my head, I’d say that is a vast improvement.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Your girlfriend goes abroad for a semester or a year? ”

    Pardon the bluntness.

    If a relationship can’t survive more than 4 months of separation, its not a relationships but a glorified FWB situation.

    Thats the only real difference between what your describing and FWB.

    The girl gets to feel special and have a girlfriend title.

    Beyond that, we’ve both done that for longer than a year.
    I’ll continue to look down at those that are incapable.

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

      Beyond that, we’ve both done that for longer than a year.

      At age 20, in a college environment?

      I’ll continue to look down at those that are incapable.

      It’s not necessarily a question of whether one is capable of doing it, but a reflection of the costs and benefits of doing it.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Agree 100%! I’ve always said that “halfwaying it” is a colossal waste of time, because it carries an enormous opportunity cost. You could have that all-in relationship with someone else.”

    ?

    How does this reconcile with 650?
    You could always have it all with someone else. Until your with them and the same situation arises again, and again, and again.

    If everything is a deal breaker no one makes it to the finish line.

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

      @Lokland

      I use the term “halfwaying it” to describe a relationship that is Facebook official but largely devoid of emotional intimacy and investment. They usually occur because women issue an ultimatum – R or no sex. I refer to these men as Reluctant Boyfriends.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Agreed w/ Lokland.

    Not willing to make things work through life changes like that=no real commitment=not a real adult relationship=not a LTR=”glorified” FWB=girls wanting the girlfriend label but not wanting real commitment

    I wouldn’t blame a guy for not wanting to emotionally invest in such nonsense, or a girl not wanting to invest in such nonsense.

  • Ramble

    No one will fault her if she doesn’t want to stay in on weekend nights in Rome.

    But hopefully they will know why she chose to “study” in Rome and not in Beijing or Tokyo or Singapore.

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

      But hopefully they will know why she chose to “study” in Rome and not in Beijing or Tokyo or Singapore.

      Yes, I believe most of those FX students are male. :)

  • Ted D

    I’m starting to think that the definining characteristic of a “real” relationship hinges largely on BOTH people having the drive to make it work no matter what happens. As much as we keep reminding ourselves that love is conditional, the truth is it is ONLY conditional IF one or both parties places conditions directly on it. Meaning, if both people are truly fully invested AND willing to work through any issues that arise, their “love” may very well appear to be unconditional, because the “condition” the couple set is: there ARE no conditions.

    Now trying to find a mate that is willing to go all in like this will probably be rather difficult, especially in a world where common wisdom is “don’t do anything unless you get something out of it”, because to keep a relationship going, there may be times when someone “loses” on an issue. The key is to work together so that this type of no win situation never occurs.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “At age 20, in a college environment?”

    23 and 20. Grad school, grad school (or some freaky equivalent I can’t pronounce).

    “”I use the term “halfwaying it” to describe a relationship that is Facebook official but largely devoid of emotional intimacy and investment”

    So college relationships as per your description, no?

    @Ramble, Susan

    “But hopefully they will know why she chose to “study” in Rome and not in Beijing or Tokyo or Singapore.”

    +1

    The break up cause I’m spending a semester abroad is a very slutty red flag.
    Meant to mention that.

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

      “”I use the term “halfwaying it” to describe a relationship that is Facebook official but largely devoid of emotional intimacy and investment”

      So college relationships as per your description, no?

      No. As seen in the Casanova post, most college males want relationships because they like someone, they catch feelings, they want emotional and physical intimacy, etc. The same is true for females.

      That doesn’t mean those relationships will last forever. They are usually entered into quite quickly – well before both parties know each other very well. Long-term compatibility is by no means assured. That is why dating —-> monogamy —-> engagement —-> marriage. A trial period is deemed advisable, and relationships do end quite frequently before engagement, for reasons of long-term incompatibility.

      The break up cause I’m spending a semester abroad is a very slutty red flag.
      Meant to mention that.

      FWIW, most of the cases I’ve heard of have been initiated by males. And several more cases of men who didn’t break up but then were not celibate once they got there. :( It’s the same with LDRs. I don’t find it surprising, as most men are not really down for commitment without sex.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Ted D. #669
    Well, this time you took words right of my mouth. I totally agree. Who would have thought:-) Just kidding.

    “especially in a world where common wisdom is “don’t do anything unless you get something out of it”
    You hit the nail here. That to me is unfortunately a common way of behaving in the western world, and one of the most “morally flawed” aspects of the said “western world”.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan

    IOW, are 100% of men able to pull it off, or 25%, which is still way more than the number of women? I suspect it’s the latter, based on the intrasexual male variation in restrictedness, which is much greater than the variation between the sexes overall.

    To be honest, I have no idea what that number ultimately is, but I don’t think your estimate sounds unreasonable.

    Your girlfriend goes abroad for a semester or a year?

    I’d end the relationship right away, because that tells me she’s not invested. Intentionally putting a huge roadblock to the progression of the relationship for something that’s not essential clearly demonstrates that the relationship and building a life with me isn’t her #1 priority. It works the same way if you switch genders.

    You’ve been offered a great job at Google, and your girlfriend is a sophomore at University of North Carolina?

    That’s obviously a little more difficult. If both people were truly invested, I don’t see why long distance couldn’t work with clear plans in place. If either party isn’t completely invested (which is more likely), I don’t see the point of the relationship in the first place. Limit the opportunity cost by keeping it casual, and maybe you’ll find someone who’s actually more compatible with your circumstances.

    Like I said earlier, there’s bound to be tons of relationships that just don’t work out. I’ve been there. We’ve all been there. I don’t have any problem with that. What I do have a problem with, is the culture that says “You can’t find a lasting relationship in college, so don’t even bother. It’s the time for personal development and everything else takes a backseat.”

    There’s absolutely nothing wrong with focused personal development, but I don’t think it mixes very well with relationships. If I run into a girl with that attitude, I’m be inclined to keep it casual and not invest anything.

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

      @Jimmy

      Your girlfriend goes abroad for a semester or a year?

      I’d end the relationship right away, because that tells me she’s not invested. Intentionally putting a huge roadblock to the progression of the relationship for something that’s not essential clearly demonstrates that the relationship and building a life with me isn’t her #1 priority. It works the same way if you switch genders.

      You hit the nail on the head there. I think it is fair to say that for most college students, building life partnership is not the #1 priority.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    Damn typos… *I’m inclined to keep it casual and not invest anything

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    By positive, I meant whether you had a SO or a love in your life. It doesn’t sound like it, though. Some of your observations sound a bit cliched, but that’s probably because they’re coming from the unrestricte scene.

    Cliches exist for a reason.

    Seems like the qualities and behavior some girls find attractive for hooking up are the polar opposite of what others find attractive in a marriage partner…

    Hooking up is the pathway to relationships in college. People don’t just look for relationship partners. If you’re not attractive from a hook up standpoint, you’re not getting a relationship without going far down the ladder in value/attractiveness.

    That’s what restricted guys need to learn… even if you don’t want to hook up, you have to at least cultivate the ability to if you want to get anywhere. I was pretty bummed when I figured that out back in the day. It was incongruent with my beliefs/values at the time. But I got over it, and am better off now.

    I admit, the whole system is ridiculously dumb, but it’s the culture that’s in place.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    Not willing to make things work through life changes like that=no real commitment=not a real adult relationship=not a LTR=”glorified” FWB=girls wanting the girlfriend label but not wanting real commitment

    I wouldn’t blame a guy for not wanting to emotionally invest in such nonsense, or a girl not wanting to invest in such nonsense.

    Amen.

  • Sassy6519

    I’ve never been interested in having a long distance relationship. I just don’t think I am cut out for it.

    With my ex of one year, he applied for a programming job on the East Coast without telling me, and he didn’t tell me about it until 4 days before the interview. I was furious. I asked him why he didn’t tell me about it sooner, and he said that he didn’t want me to be upset with him. He and I argued about it constantly for the 4 days leading up to his interview.

    Funny thing is that he assumed I would be okay with being in a long distance relationship with him for 1-2 years. He wanted me to continue our relationship, despite the time apart, and couldn’t understand why I was reluctant to agree with the idea. I admit that the opportunity was a great one (salary starting at 120,000+), but I was never fully able to get on board with the idea. He didn’t get the position, however, and he had a majorly sour attitude for awhile afterwards.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan

    You hit the nail on the head there. I think it is fair to say that for most college students, building life partnership is not the #1 priority.

    I recognize I might be an outlier with this viewpoint, but to me the goal of building something together is the whole point of serious relationships.

    Without that goal in mind, I don’t really see the point. Might as well just make it FWB.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “FWIW, most of the cases I’ve heard of have been initiated by males. And several more cases of men who didn’t break up but then were not celibate once they got there. It’s the same with LDRs. I don’t find it surprising, as most men are not really down for commitment without sex.”

    Thats a load of shit.

    http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2008/12/04/genderabroad

    My 10 secs of googling proves you wrong.

    2/3 students abroad are female, which means men/women enter study abroad programs with equal frequency (accounting for gender differences at school) .

    Me and my wife were separated by immigration however, not choice. Not lack of investment. Thats when our situation arose, I will give you that point.

    “As seen in the Casanova post, most college males want relationships because they like someone, they catch feelings, they want emotional and physical intimacy, etc. The same is true for females.”

    Why does that entail exclusivity and/or giving the women a girlfriend label?
    Might as well keep it casual if its not going anywhere.

    The only difference here is I think denying the women the validation of having a boyfriend is a good thing because its not really investment on her part.

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

      @Lokland

      A gender gap in study abroad doesn’t prove anything about how males and females respond to the separation. Either party on either end of the separation may end or suspend the relationship. (It’s common to “take a break.”)

      In my limited anecdotal experience, more guys suspended relationships, and more cheated while abroad. Again, this makes sense to me because of the higher male sex drive.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “That is why dating —-> monogamy —-> engagement —-> marriage. A trial period is deemed advisable, and relationships do end quite frequently before engagement, for reasons of long-term incompatibility.”

    I agree.
    Why should a man go for monogamy if its not leading to engagement?
    Especially if he doesn’t have to be.

    What benefit does it offer HIM?

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

      What benefit does it offer HIM?

      From the post on Smiler’s book on players:

      What we know is that most guys do get into relationships, they enjoy relationships, they do a lot of things in relationships that are not about sex and they’re not doing them just to put up with them in order to get sex.

      Guys get something out of relationships; they like relationships. If you add in the fact that average age of first marriage is something like 28 for guys, a lot of guys have the sense that this girl they’re starting to date at 17 or 19 or 21 probably isn’t going to be the one — and yet they are choosing to date. They could easily choose to just hook up — or instead of spending that money in a bar you could get a prostitute — but they’re consistently choosing to be in relationships.

  • JP

    “I recognize I might be an outlier with this viewpoint, but to me the goal of building something together is the whole point of serious relationships.”

    This is kind of my point.

    The relationship has to be directed *toward* something, some kind of joint project. For many couples, the project is their children.

  • Ted D

    DV – “Well, this time you took words right of my mouth. I totally agree. Who would have thought:-) Just kidding”

    I wouldn’t be surprised to find that we have more in common than you think. When working for a cause, it is often necessary to be more extreme in appearance than one might bein private, partly because sensationalizm gets attention.

  • JP

    “What benefit does it offer HIM?”

    Freedom from profound guilt?

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Ted D:
    “partly because sensationalizm gets attention.”
    Agreed. But the “phrasing” of that “sensationalism” can sometimes have the opposite effects, especially on blog that is primarily aimed at a college girl audience.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Lokland

    I agree.
    Why should a man go for monogamy if its not leading to engagement?
    Especially if he doesn’t have to be.

    What benefit does it offer HIM?

    This is what confuses me.

    It seems like men here are arguing for the following:

    dating (going on dates, non-exclusive) —–> profession of high level of commitment from one of the women being dated ———–> engagement/marriage.

    How on earth does that work? How does one know that someone is worthy of marriage before a trial period? This is what I don’t understand.

    It seems like men want it to be like this:

    Date 2-4 women at the same time (go on dates with them, perhaps sleep with them) ——–> single out one woman who seems worthy of commitment ——–> enter into an exclusive relationship with guaranteed commitment towards marriage ——–> marriage.

    Again, how on Earth would that work? How can any person guarantee that they want to marry another so quickly?

    I know that men have a hard time handling breakups, but this is ridiculous.

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

      Again, how on Earth would that work? How can any person guarantee that they want to marry another so quickly?

      This is what I don’t understand. Lokland says you should stay together out of loyalty, but the last thing I would want is to marry someone who was no longer in love with me but constrained from leaving by a sense of duty. That robs me of the opportunity to meet someone who would or might remain in love with me.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    How on earth does that work? How does one know that someone is worthy of marriage before a trial period? This is what I don’t understand.

    I’m all about having a trial period…. but it all depends on the context.

    “I can see myself marrying you, but let’s test the courtship out for a year or two before we sign any papers.” No issues.

    “I’m going to take a year or two to make up my mind to see if I think you’re worth marrying or not.” Issues.

    To me, entering into an LTR means I’m finished making up my mind, provided there aren’t any major red flags that pop up. The trial period is just to confirm that I made the right decision.

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

      To me, entering into an LTR means I’m finished making up my mind, provided there aren’t any major red flags that pop up. The trial period is just to confirm that I made the right decision.

      This is really interesting, I think this may be a sex difference. We know that female attraction is far more complex than male attraction. Buss identifies something like 14 female attraction cues, and some of them are character-related like, industriousness, ambition, dependability. It takes time for a woman to observe some of these traits fully. Another one is the ability to demonstrate love and affection. Again, this is something a woman would want to observe over time, not just at the outset.

      I also think it’s important to observe how the relationship functions in times of stress or crisis. For example, I recently shared a story about a guy who broke up with a girl because he has been unsuccessful in finding work two years after being laid off from a high status job. She is heartbroken, but the fact that he could not continue the relationship is understandable given how he was feeling about himself.

  • Lokland

    @Sassy

    Not what I’m suggesting.

    My point is that as noted college relationships have an abysmally high failure rate.Pretty much every guy here has said that if its not realistically going to work out, why bother making it serious.

    We also know that relationship is not exactly spewing relationships out even though both sexes want them.

    We can also conclude that LTR means different things to men and women.

    Perhaps the reason there are few LTRs in college is that women/men are not offering what the other wants.

    Men want ACTUAL investment. Women want non-investment with the option to trade in/go to Rome, etc.

    The solution/compromise is hook-up culture.
    Which is exactly what I am describing. Hooking up without commitment occasionally (stupidly on the guys part) making it exclusive.

    Everyones unhappy cause their not getting what they want but what men vs. women want is so radically different there is no way to make both happy.

    ——————————————————————–

    To answer your question directly.

    I don’t think it should go from date to engagement instantly.
    What I suspect most guys would prefer is dating —-> LTR (male style, ended with major deal breakers) ——> engagement ———->marriage.

    Barring the second step, the result is hook up culture until the second step is able to be passed after college.

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

      @Lokland

      You’re arguing that men should not invest in LTRs in college, and I’m sure many agree with you and refuse to do so. Plenty choose to go for the LTR. No one is forcing men to enter relationships or shaming them for refusing to enter them. I am not sure what you are advocating if everyone is following their own desires.

  • Ted D

    Sassy – “How on earth does that work? How does one know that someone is worthy of marriage before a trial period? This is what I don’t understand.”

    I don’t think any man here has claimed there should be no “trial” period. I think the contention is: what exactly constitutes and appropriate trial period.

    “It seems like men want it to be like this:

    Date 2-4 women at the same time (go on dates with them, perhaps sleep with them) ——–> single out one woman who seems worthy of commitment ——–> enter into an exclusive relationship with guaranteed commitment towards marriage ——–> marriage.”

    This plan is lost on me from the start, because I don’t personally think dating 2 or more women at the same time is a proper method. Since I’m not big on interpersonal stuff, I’d find dating multiple people at once to be utterly exhausting. I much prefer to pick one woman and date her until I either conclude she is marriage material, and if not end the relationship and start over.

    If it is true that there are hundereds if not thousands of women in the world I could be happy with, what purpose is there in spinning so many plates? I don’t need to find a unicorn, I just need to find one woman that I am compatible with. This idea of finding the “better” or “more perfect” mate is the root of the problem to me. If I put my mind to it, I could find any number of women that *might* be a better mate than my wife. But, if we are both happy and it works, why would I even consider it?

    Some people are simply never satisfied with what they have, even when what they have is pretty damn good.

  • Lokland

    @Sassy

    Beyond that Sassy.
    I can identify women who would be good vs. bad wives in a few hours.
    Maybe not necessarily for me, we’d be incompatible for X or Y but for the right guy they’d be incredible.

    Theres others who give off an ‘I’m gonna cheat on you, steal your shit, key your car and divorce you vibe.’

    Now that I’ve learned to identify it, its really obvious.

    I knew my wife was wife material in about a month (coincidentally the time she DTR’d, which I agreed to happily). The following 2-3 years were checking if I was wrong/ major deal breakers.

  • Ted D

    “To me, entering into an LTR means I’m finished making up my mind, provided there aren’t any major red flags that pop up. The trial period is just to confirm that I made the right decision.”

    This. This is the model I use for the dating -> LTR -> engagement/marriage deal. Dating is the trial period. If/when an LTR is agreed upon, in my mind it is already decided that marriage is an option, and the LTR is used to suss out IF a marriage is possible. (this would be the time I would start looking at serious compatibility issues and generally just trying out the “living together” thing in one form or another.)

    How long that takes largely depends on the people involved, and the current environment. I don’t see an issue with a LTR that lasts 5 years while both parties finish college or whatever they need to do in order to get to a place where marriage is possible. (FWIW I don’t see college as a reason to postpone marriage, but its fair that other people may see otherwise.)

  • Lokland

    What Jimmy said about issue vs. non-issue.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Jimmy Hendricks & Lokland

    To me, entering into an LTR means I’m finished making up my mind, provided there aren’t any major red flags that pop up. The trial period is just to confirm that I made the right decision.

    What I suspect most guys would prefer is dating —-> LTR (male style, ended with major deal breakers) ——> engagement ———->marriage.

    Alright, now we are getting somewhere.

    You both mentioned red flags/dealbreakers.

    Would any men be willing to give a list of valid red flags/dealbreakers that a woman could break up with a man for?

    I get the impression that many men think that women breakup with men for shallow/superficial/absurd/illegitimate reasons. I definitely agree that some women do. I think it would be very helpful for the women who read HUS to understand what reasons men accept being broken up with for, and the reasons that are seen as petty.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    Date 2-4 women at the same time (go on dates with them, perhaps sleep with them) ——–> single out one woman who seems worthy of commitment ——–> enter into an exclusive relationship with guaranteed commitment towards marriage ——–> marriage.

    You’re getting hung up on “guaranteed”… Nobody has used that word.

    I don’t think the guys here are asking for any guarantees… I know I’m certainly not.

    But what I am asking for, is legit investment on the girl’s part (she’d be wise to require the same from me).

    If I get a whiff of any noncommittal “We’ll see where this goes,” or “Who knows, I might want to study abroad next year,” or something similar, I’m not going to want to invest myself in that relationship. Let’s just call it a FWB at that point, because that’s what it is.

    I don’t throw my commitment around to just anyone.

  • Ted D

    Sassy – “I think it would be very helpful for the women who read HUS to understand what reasons men accept being broken up with for, and the reasons that are seen as petty.”

    LOL. I think you are looking to open a can of worms with this, but it might be interesting. I’ll refrain from jumping in until the more “moderate” male voices are heard from.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Ted D

    LOL. I think you are looking to open a can of worms with this, but it might be interesting. I’ll refrain from jumping in until the more “moderate” male voices are heard from.

    I think this is vital information for women to receive and understand. What I have learned over the past few weeks include the following things:

    - Men take breakups much harder than women do, on average.

    - Men appear to be more romantic/idealistic/sentimental about relationships/commitment than women are, on average.

    - Men would rather remain in uncommitted relationships if the possibility of dating someone seriously, with the potential for future marriage, isn’t an option.

    Women need to learn how to date with a purpose. I think I have ended things with men I have been in relationships with/dated for very valid reasons. Not all women are like me, however. I think women would benefit from learning what reasons are viewed as valid reasons, by men themselves, to be broken up with. This concept also ties into the idea of “frivolous divorce”.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    I get the impression that many men think that women breakup with men for shallow/superficial/absurd/illegitimate reasons. I definitely agree that some women do. I think it would be very helpful for the women who read HUS to understand what reasons men accept being broken up with for, and the reasons that are seen as petty.

    I actually think anyone can end a relationship or DQ anyone else for whatever reason they feel like. No issues there.

    For me, it’s all about intention. I’m just not going to enter into an exclusive serious relationship unless I know the girl has strong intentions to prioritize the relationship and its future, and is willing to compromise other things to reach the ultimate goal. I’d hope she’d expect the same from me too.

    Obviously, things don’t always work out. That’s okay. But I need to see that investment up front if she wants to be anything more than FWB to me.

  • Lokland

    @Sassy

    +1 to what Jimmy said.
    Anything non-commital will result in exactly that.

    I do think this question is kinda pointless.
    Women qualify, men disqualify.

    Qualifying takes time. The problem is for the guy that 2 years from now when she decides she doesn’t like your shoes and therefore cannot be with you, or that Mr. X has more of Y, thats 2 years of money/time wasted.

    Women are going to disqualify guys not for what they do but for what they don’t/are not able to.

    Find disqualifiers won’t help them be happy.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Lokland

    I do think this question is kinda pointless.

    No worries. I don’t require your input.

    I’ll wait for men who do see a point to the question to respond.

  • Ramble

    I get the impression that many men think that women breakup with men for shallow/superficial/absurd/illegitimate reasons.

    Well, Sassy, we are not going to see all the normal scenarios debated here because many are not that interesting to debate. For instance, we don’t talk that much about girls breaking up with cheating bastards, because, well, what’s the point? He was a cheating bastard. Case closed.

    Combine that with the fact that HUS is one of the few places where you see a large gathering of women talking about how ridiculous Eat Pray Love is and you will see a lot of guys focusing on the more shallow/superficial/absurd/illegitimate breakups.

  • INTJ

    @ Jimmy Hendricks

    I recognize I might be an outlier with this viewpoint, but to me the goal of building something together is the whole point of serious relationships.

    I used to think I was an outlier in this regard. But speaking with my friends (granted, they’re not a random sample of guys), I realized that this is a rather common viewpoint amongst males.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “That robs me of the opportunity to meet someone who would or might remain in love with me”

    Not what I’m suggesting.
    Since love is a choice, loyalty would imply you never fell out of love. by doing so you’ve already been disloyal.
    (Love is not an all happy feeling. Seriously you should know that.)

    As mentioned above, women qualify, takes time, no way around it.
    However, since most times in college, the qualification fails (more so than any other area) why bother? Wait till after college when the odds of success are better and until then fuck around or be celibate.

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

      Wait till after college when the odds of success are better and until then fuck around or be celibate.

      Yeah, I get that. I would probably give this advice to my own son, FWIW.

  • Ted D

    “a lot of guys have the sense that this girl they’re starting to date at 17 or 19 or 21 probably isn’t going to be the one — and yet they are choosing to date”

    I don’t get this. When I was 16 and in a LTR, I fully intended to marry my mate at some point. I knew it would be at least two years, and probably more. (I remember saying that I woudln’t marry until I could legally drink a toast at my reception. LOL) If I didn’t intend to marry her someday, I would have left the relationship. It didn’t work out (mostly because of our 2 year age difference. She was ready to marry at 22, and I wasn’t ready to marry at 20.)

    I guess I’m not a “comfort” mate. That is, it seems to me that guys willing to stay long-term with a woman they don’t plan on marrying are looking for the comfort of a stable relationship regardless of who the woman involved is. (as long as they get along) I’d be much more comfortable being alone than with someone I had no intention of staying with.

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

      I don’t get this. When I was 16 and in a LTR, I fully intended to marry my mate at some point. I knew it would be at least two years, and probably more.

      Well, you would have been unusual even then, according to the average marriage age, but you’re more unusual now. The average college guy marries at 30! That’s 14 years when he’s 16, and even his senior year in college, it’s still 9 years away. And that delay is by no means solely at the hands of women. Guys are in no rush to marry.

  • Ramble

    But hopefully they will know why she chose to “study” in Rome and not in Beijing or Tokyo or Singapore.

    Yes, I believe most of those FX students are male. :)

    I was really surprised to here this considering the discrepancy between males and females in College. So, I did 2 minutes of searching:

    The number of Towson students studying abroad has more than doubled, from 157 in 2000, to 388 in 2010. According to the report, only 26 percent of the students who studied abroad were male.

    “There were roughly 120 people in my International Studies Abroad program to Florence, and there were only 12 guys. Needless to say, we were outnumbered,” junior graphic design and advertising major Kevin O’Conor said.

    Rebecca Pisano, director of the Study Abroad office, said that the cause of the distorted ratio of males and females studying abroad is an enigma.

    “These numbers are not unique to Towson,” Study Abroad Program Assistant Caitlin Ginter said. “This is an issue that Study Abroad offices are working with at a national level.”

    The Institute of International Education’s Open Doors Data for 2000-2010 showed that male participation in study abroad programs peaked at 36.5 percent during the 2009-2010 school year, while female participation was as high as 65.6 percent during the 2003-2004 academic year.

    [Florence, I love it. I forgot that Florence was a cutting-edge leader in Science, Technology, Trade and Finance.]

    and

    Take Austin, for example, which, at about 80 percent, sends one of the highest proportions of its students abroad. But even with that critical mass, out of 390 total in 2006-7, 248 were women and 142 were men (like at many liberal arts colleges, Austin’s overall undergraduate population skews somewhat female, but not to the same degree).

    In recent years, as study abroad has ballooned across the nation, fueled by growth in short-term programs and increasing diversity in participating students’ majors and destinations, a 2-to-1 female-to-male ratio has stayed remarkably stagnant. In 2006-7, the most recent year for which data are available, 65.1 percent of Americans studying abroad were women, and 34.9 percent men. A decade earlier — when the total number of study abroad students was less than half its current total — the breakdown was 64.9 percent female, 35.1 percent male, according to Institute of International Education Open Doors statistics.

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

      @Ramble

      I don’t know much about study abroad programs, but I do know it’s very hard to go if you’re STEM or pre-med, because most of the programs don’t feature enough of those courses, and kids wind up losing the opportunity to fulfill important requirements.

      As you implied, Florence is going to be strong on art, history, literature, etc – the liberal arts. However, I don’t think there are many (if any) programs where a Comp Sci major can take the courses he needs abroad.

      Naturally, the has a large effect on the gender ratio, and of course don’t forget the college ratio is heavily skewed to begin with.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    No.
    I’m arguing that men and women do not define LTR the same way.
    In doing so, they are unable to meet the needs of the other which results in a lacking of LTRs. (80% problems)

    If there was a plethora of people able to provide men and women with an LTR in college they would be in them and you and me would not be arguing.

    Perhaps the reason the 80% don’t get together is because they don’t want the same thing.

    I’m proposing a mechanism by which the problem for the 80% may be arising and subsequently an area in which compromise is required to make both groups of people happy.

    But yeah, I’m probably just an asshole.

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

      I’m proposing a mechanism by which the problem for the 80% may be arising and subsequently an area in which compromise is required to make both groups of people happy.

      OK, I missed that. Forgive me for being obtuse. Can you lay out the mechanism in simple terms?

  • Lokland

    @Ramble

    Excellent choice in link sir.

  • Ted D

    Susan – “This is really interesting, I think this may be a sex difference. ”

    Perhaps so. In line with what Jimmy H. said, I tend to view the LTR as the period after I’ve decided she is marriage material, and the period where I say “I do.” I have no desire to waste time and energy figuring that out until after there is some form of commitment given.

    So it goes:
    Date -> does she seem like wife material?

    Yes – LTR and dig deeper
    No – eject and move on

    LTR -> do we get along? Do we have common goals? Can we live together without wanting to strangle each other?

    Yes – Engagement
    No – Eject and move on

    The hard part to me is figuring out all those small compatibility issues, and I don’t want to waste my time working them out if she isn’t doing the same, hence my desire for commitment first.

  • INTJ

    @ Lokland

    I’m proposing a mechanism by which the problem for the 80% may be arising and subsequently an area in which compromise is required to make both groups of people happy.

    Frankly, I don’t think compromise is possible. Women are not going to offer long term investment, and society has already been trying to shame men into forgoing hookup culture for dating culture. Neither side is going to back down.

  • INTJ

    * society has already unsuccessfully been trying to shame men into forgoing hookup culture for dating culture.

  • Damien Vulaume

    “Sassy – “I think it would be very helpful for the women who read HUS to understand what reasons men accept being broken up with for, and the reasons that are seen as petty.”
    “Ted D. I think you are looking to open a can of worms with this, but it might be interesting.”

    I think Mike c summed it up quite well in his “4 points” at comment #639 and that Sassy felt the same way at #640.
    I agree with both and think that those reasons why couples living together on a 24h a day basis most often split for those precise reasons. The rest is immature gender frustrations or not realizing that there was incompatibility on a daily basis.

  • JP

    Do we know whether the median age is 30?

    Do we know whether there is a big glob at mid 20′s and then another big glob at mid 30′s?

    I’m reminded of the massive bi-modal distribution in starting salaries in law.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Can you lay out the mechanism in simple terms?”

    Men want relationships with a reasonable chance of success (ie. marriage and children).

    Women want relationships for validation. Success or failure irrelevant.

    Men realize that college relationships have a very, very low success rate and therefore do not partake in relationships.

    Both men and women want relationships. Stand them next to each other and say, go at it, and they refuse.

    We’ve always assumed because they were shooting to high.

    Perhaps it is instead because when the sexes claim to want relationships they mean different things.

    College is not an environment capable of providing male style relationships due to built in implosion dates etc.
    Women are unwilling (reasonably or unreasonably) to provide male style LTRs.

    Men respond by foregoing even female style relationships and either hook up or play Halo.

    Women will not provide men with male levels of commitment.
    Men in turn do not provide women with boyfriend validation.

    Note: I’m not suggesting a grand conspiracy or something. More likely a subconscious reaction to bad conditions. I’d even argue that it actually improves the odds of finding a suitable mate for a man.

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

      @Lokland

      Women want relationships for validation. Success or failure irrelevant.

      Oh boy. Disagree, bowing out.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    Then what do they want?

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

      @Lokland

      Then what do they want?

      I believe that men and women want the same thing in relationships: connection and intimacy, both emotional and physical.

      Now, I agree that men get status via sexual access, so it validates them. Women get status from commitment, so that validates them. But I don’t see those drivers for validation as obscuring the truth of what people really want. There are men who eschew casual sex, and women who avoid relationships. Most people want both kinds of intimacy, and they meet in the middle to get it.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive
    Your girlfriend goes abroad for a semester or a year?

    I’d end the relationship right away, because that tells me she’s not invested. Intentionally putting a huge roadblock to the progression of the relationship for something that’s not essential clearly demonstrates that the relationship and building a life with me isn’t her #1 priority. It works the same way if you switch genders.

    *Shrugs* to each his own. Pretty close to the beginning of my relationship, I went abroad for the semester. It’s not that I wasn’t invested, it’s that I had already pretty much decided to go abroad when I met my BF.

    I think it’s Hope who often says that if two people are in love, they can make it work. That’s basically how I feel too.

  • Passer_By

    @lokland
    “Then what do they want?”

    A relationship, maybe?

  • Lokland

    @PB

    But what do they gain out of it?

  • Ramble

    As you implied, Florence is going to be strong on art, history, literature, etc – the liberal arts. However, I don’t think there are many (if any) programs where a Comp Sci major can take the courses he needs abroad.

    Naturally, the has a large effect on the gender ratio, and of course don’t forget the college ratio is heavily skewed to begin with.

    Susan, my point is this: most Study Abroad stuff is bullshit to begin with. It is, for most students, simply a reason to go hang out in some place that you think is cool, which is why a stagnating economy like Spain that, for most of the 20th century was not know for is universities, is so popular. So many girls want to go their and hang out in the warm weather and have a great romance.

    And, I don’t blame them.

    But I am not going to pretend it is anything else. It is shocking how low on the list places like Japan and Singapore are…and how high Costa Rica (i.e. Tropical Paradise) is.

    Germany is fairly low on the list as well as most of the colder European countries, even though they have better economies and more prestigious universities (in general, the better the economy, the better the universities).

    Granted, China is #5 on the list. Still, I would love to know the male/female breakdown of those going to Florence, Barcelona and Paris and those going to Guangzhou.

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

      @Ramble

      If I were a student considering studying abroad, I would definitely select a place that would be pleasant and fun to visit. The classes on offer are just about the same everywhere, so why not choose paradise with indoor plumbing?

  • Ted D

    Passer_by – ““Then what do they want?”

    A relationship, maybe?”

    I think the question is more: if they don’t want a LTR with the intention of marriage, then what do they want it for?

    If the goal is to get married, then working towards any other goal (or none at all) is counter productive. What is the point in wasting all that time and energy?

  • Ramble

    Olive, it does not have to be “to each his own”. Nobody is saying that you have to break up, or that your BF needed to break up with you.

    But, would you have found it unreasonable if your BF had said to you, “oh, we are not going to have regular sex for the next 3-6 months? Oh, ok, well, best of luck”.

    Now, for all I know, you 2 were not sexual at the time you left, and, you should also imagine him phrasing the concept much better than I just did, but, still, I am guessing that you get the point.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Olive: “if two people are in love, they can make it work.”

    In theory, but it takes more than that. The absence of the loved one is a very “corroding factor” for both. And I’m not talking about paranoid jealousy here. There’s a wise saying that goes: “far from the eyes, far from the heart”.
    I don’t know how it will work out for the both of you, but I went through those relationships twice, once with an English girl and another with a Dutch one, both were very honestly emotionally involved relationships. It never worked out in the end.

  • Escoffier

    my college GF did one semester overseas. I went and visited for 10 days.

  • Lokland

    @Olive

    As someone else who has done it and made it work.
    Don’t listen to the inept.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “ut I don’t see those drivers for validation as obscuring the truth of what people really want. There are men who eschew casual sex, and women who avoid relationships. Most people want both kinds of intimacy, and they meet in the middle to get it.”

    Ahh I see.

    I did not suggest wanting validation is in anyway negative. Its a very positive trait that causes people to do better.

    If my wife wants my validation and is willing to tousle her hair and wear uncomfortable heels. I will not consider it a negative.

    “I believe that men and women want the same thing in relationships: connection and intimacy, both emotional and physical.”

    I think we quite obviously do not.
    At least not from 17-21.
    Or else they would be in relationships.

    Also, I was under the impression that woman’s closer social network met emotional needs which is why breakups were NBD.

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

      Also, I was under the impression that woman’s closer social network met emotional needs which is why breakups were NBD.

      Breakups are a very big deal to women. Do you think we do not bleed?

      Helen Fisher has said that men struggle more with breakups because they had been used to emotional intimacy, but just with that one person, and it’s difficult when that is removed. Women do turn to female friends for emotional intimacy, but that doesn’t mean they don’t experience heartbreak when their love is rejected.

  • Passer_By

    @lokland, Ted

    “if they don’t want a LTR with the intention of marriage, then what do they want it for?”

    1. Women tend to feel a lonely void without it.
    2. Women tend to not enjoy sex outside that context, so the hook up paradigm is not satisfactory to them. Is that not what the blog is for.

    I think what the women here don’t get is that, other than the dark triad types, men tend to develop a strong protectiveness and feeling of obligation to women they are sleeping with. Consequently, they are likely to stay with it long term absent deal breakers arising. Women, from what I can tell, don’t tend to develop that strong sense of protectiveness and obligation to men they are in a relationship with. As always, exceptions exist (that was for SayWhaat’s benefit so she won’t hunt me down and kill me). Consequently, as I’ve noted before, on average, in cases where a man ends a relationship that she wants to continue with, he tends to feel badly for her and has a continuing sense of obligation and concern. Conversely, I haven’t seen that as much from women who choose to end the relationship. I think this obviously makes some evopsych sense – it’s usually more in his genetic interest to continue to be protective and obligated than it would be in hers to do that.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    Ramble,

    Susan, my point is this: most Study Abroad stuff is bullshit to begin with. It is, for most students, simply a reason to go hang out in some place that you think is cool

    As someone who studied abroad twice and worked in her school’s study abroad office, I disapprove of this message. ;-)

    But seriously, it very much depends on the program. I knew a lot of kids who studied abroad in places like Greece and Italy, made no effort to learn the language, and were basically there to binge drink, skip class, and hook up with foreigners. So that’s obviously more akin to the bullshit scenario you’re talking about.

    My first program, in Mexico, was sort of like this. We did spend a lot of time going to bars and being idiots, but the #1 valuable aspect of the program was the opportunity to enhance my language skills. I went in with one year of beginners college Spanish under my belt (no high school experience) and walked away speaking it somewhat fluently. Language skills are very valuable, especially something like Spanish that can be used in the U.S. I need to remember that as I apply for jobs…

    My second program, in Panama, didn’t offer the same opportunities to interact with the local folks, but it was quite academically rigorous. In the end I conducted my own (somewhat low quality, IMO…) research project, wrote a 20-page paper (in Spanish), and ended up presenting it at a University of Notre Dame conference. I didn’t really care for the quality of academic guidance, but I had a personal spat with one of the program directors so maybe I’m a little biased.

    Anyway, my point is that not all study abroad stuff is bullshit. It’s true that you likely won’t see as many STEM folks participating (although one of my physics major friends did a program in the UK), and a lot of people don’t choose to study abroad for the right reasons (if I had a nickel for every time I heard someone wanted to go to Denmark, for no other reason than 20 of his friends were going…). But again, program choice is key. I tended to judge people for their program choices when I worked in the study abroad office. ;-)

    Sorry for the rant lol.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Susan “men and women want the same thing in relationships: connection and intimacy, both emotional and physical.”

    Yes. I’ve never even met a girl who wanted a relationship that was just for “status and validation.” What a rubbish thing to say about all women.

    This is probably the sort of thing that drives women away from HUS, unfortunately. Young women want to fall in love, but they read here that men’s hearts are hardened steel.

    Reminds me of why I took a long break from reading any blogs around the time I fell in love with my husband.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @lokland: “As someone else who has done it and made it work.
    Don’t listen to the inept.”

    Lol. Get out of here. In your own words, you could be a 90 year old woman….
    I very much doubt you went through such experiences yourself.

  • Lokland

    @Damien

    Excuse me?

    Doubt me all you want I don’t particularly care.
    The only person who can ask me to leave is Susan.
    Nice try, but your not the boss…settle down doggy.

  • Ted D

    Hope – “Yes. I’ve never even met a girl who wanted a relationship that was just for “status and validation.” What a rubbish thing to say about all women.”

    So, if we assume that women want “love and emotional connection” from relationships, then why not form those relationships with men they intend to someday marry? It just doesn’t make sense to me for anyone to enter a LTR knowing that it will expire. You may get “love and connection”, but it leads to nowhere in the end.

    I don’t see the point in “love and connection” with someone you don’t plan to stay with. To me, that is simply a “good enough for now” relationships at best. Is it a form of promiscuous emotional exclusivity?

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    Ramble,

    Now, for all I know, you 2 were not sexual at the time you left,

    Haha yeah we weren’t. I’m that weird person who waited a year into my relationship to get busy (because I was a virgin and all).

    But, would you have found it unreasonable if your BF had said to you, “oh, we are not going to have regular sex for the next 3-6 months? Oh, ok, well, best of luck”.

    So I guess I should put this into context. My BF and I were actually long distance for two years before I moved to his city. Then when I got sick and moved back in with my parents, we were long distance for another 6 months. Probably the 6 months were worse than the two years, only because having to go back to long distance was worse than not knowing anything else.

    Also, going 3-6 months with regular sex while still living together would just piss me off. If he had to go on, say, a long business trip, I’d deal.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Breakups are a very big deal to women. Do you think we do not bleed?”

    Not by recent descriptions from women here.
    Though, I’ll accept your right on this.

    My original comment up top still stands. If you need to edit it for happy reasons replace “boyfriend validation” with X or whatever it is. People can assume I’m an idiot who didn’t know.

    The format of the argument is more central than the individual points.

  • Passer_By

    @lokland

    “Get outta here” is a figure of speech. He wasn’t actually demanding that you leave the blog.

  • Lokland

    @PB

    Ohh no.
    That probably doesn’t help the case that i’m not a 90yo woman.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Passer by: “Get outta here” is a figure of speech. He wasn’t actually demanding that you leave the blog.”
    Thank you, that what I meant. But Loks paranoia is telling.

  • Ramble

    The classes on offer are just about the same everywhere, so why not choose paradise with indoor plumbing?

    You mean like Indonesia? Or Japan?

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

      You mean like Indonesia? Or Japan?

      I don’t know, do they have good exchange programs? As Olive mentioned, Copenhagen is a very popular destination, even during the midwinter when there is no daylight. Another factor is language – not all of the programs are in English. Many students go abroad to perfect their language skills in a second language – again, as Olive described.

      For this reason, England, Australia and New Zealand are all popular destinations as well. My daughter, whose language was Italian (due to family connection) chose Florence (just an hour from my brother). The curriculum was very artsy fartsy, but the lifestyle was not a partying one at all. In fact, the girls stopped going to local bars after repeatedly being approached by Italian men asking them to fuck like an American. My daughter also had her ass slapped by strangers half a dozen times while walking in broad daylight.

      I think you’re overplaying the “Gidget Goes to Rome” angle.

  • Ramble

    Anyway, my point is that not all study abroad stuff is bullshit.

    Of course, it is a generalization. But their is a reason why some places like Spain and Italy, which are not known for their amazing universities (at least not in the last 200 years) are so popular while places like Japan and Indonesia are not.

    And, in general, I don’t disapprove of people going abroad to have fun. But, as always, I care about the narrative.

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

      places like Spain and Italy, which are not known for their amazing universities

      Most of the programs are not at foreign universities, but at programs set up by American colleges. For example, in Florence the largest and most popular program is an NYU program – they have their own campus.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @SW

    Plenty choose to go for the LTR. No one is forcing men to enter relationships or shaming them for refusing to enter them.

    Bingo. That was my takeaway from the post on Smiler. Add to that the number of college students who are already married in college, and the “hookup” pathway to relationships get smaller and smaller. I’m still unclear on how anybody, man or woman, can know that a relationship has an expiration date going in. Unless there’s malice aforethought. But there doesn’t appear to be a revolution brewing amongst college guys to avoid commitment. Or marriage, for that matter. Jimmy’s point that *every* guy needs the unrestricted mindset in order to be successful in a LTR/marriage… I’ve never met any guy who *did* succeed with that mindset. Value neutral qualities like confidence and assertiveness, I’ve never had a problem with.

    This discussion on guys only being interested in high-probability LTRs that lead to marriage got me thinking… should women (1/2 of the equation) in the same situation not invest sexually whatsoever in a guy unless he puts forth an olive branch? After all, as soon as she does put out and makes the investment, the ball is in his court for the most part. Restricted guys can certainly be trusted on that one… but unrestricted?

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

      @Megaman

      should women (1/2 of the equation) in the same situation not invest sexually whatsoever in a guy unless he puts forth an olive branch? After all, as soon as she does put out and makes the investment, the ball is in his court for the most part. Restricted guys can certainly be trusted on that one… but unrestricted?

      Ha, that is an excellent question! Is it reasonable for a woman to say, “I hope to marry the man I give my virginity to. Do you see us on that path? Are you willing to commit to me now?”

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    Of course, it is a generalization. But their is a reason why some places like Spain and Italy, which are not known for their amazing universities (at least not in the last 200 years) are so popular while places like Japan and Indonesia are not.

    Well, I think you can chalk some of it up to cultural stereotypes, rather than academic rigor. Many students (especially rich, UMC students) feel more comfortable heading to Europe because it feels like home. Which, to me, should not be the point of studying abroad. I once had a discussion with a friend who studied in the UK, and she said she wouldn’t be able to study in Latin America because she couldn’t survive without all the pleasures and conveniences of industrialized society.

    Japan, of course, is industrialized, but this brings me to my point about language. People take one look at Japanese or other East Asian languages and freak out, while they know that plenty of Europeans speak English. Another detail indicating that people will want to study abroad in a place that reminds them of home.

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @JP

    Do we know whether the median age is 30? Do we know whether there is a big glob at mid 20′s and then another big glob at mid 30′s?

    Excellent questions. Susan’s often pointed it out, but the Census Bureau says the median age of first marriage for college-educated AND non-college educated is the same: 28.

    What median never tells you, and that’s why it’s less useful in discussions, is how long had the couple been exclusive prior to the wedding? For many post-college couples, that could be anywhere from 1 to 5 years, which means they *weren’t* celibate or sleeping around all that time. And many forgo marriage and opt for permanent cohabitation, which doesn’t appear to increase their risk of divorce…

  • Ramble

    Many students (especially rich, UMC students) feel more comfortable heading to Europe because it feels like home

    If that were the case, you would expect to see a lot more people going to Denmark, Holland, Sweden, Finland, Norway…hell, Germany is pretty low on the list and I think that more white people in America are of German descent than anything else. But, girls do not fantasizer about German lovers and German romances.

    The UK being number 1 is easy…it is one of the closest to America and they speak English. I get that.

    Japan, of course, is industrialized, but this brings me to my point about language. People take one look at Japanese or other East Asian languages and freak out, while they know that plenty of Europeans speak English.

    Well, English is understood pretty well in Tokyo and, if your theory was right, China would not be #5 on the list. Now, my guess is that almost all of the people going to China are in Business/Trade/Finance/etc. and that they are disproportionally male.

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

      @Ramble

      Germany is pretty low on the list and I think that more white people in America are of German descent than anything else. But, girls do not fantasizer about German lovers and German romances.

      Let’s be honest. Germans still suffer an enormous taint from WWII. I’m sure it affects tourism very dramatically, not just study abroad programs. I do know that Munich Oktoberfest is a popular destination for students studying abroad all over Europe :)

  • INTJ

    @ Megaman

    Friends-with-benefits arrangements are very common in college:

    http://www.livescience.com/5391-survey-finds-friends-benefits-common.html

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

      From a post I wrote on FWB, which I believe references the same study INTJ cites:

      So what does the data say? Who’s happy, who’s unhappy with the status quo? A survey of the scholarship on FWBR reveals the following:

      60% of college students have experienced at least one FWBR.
      10% of these relationships evolve into romances.
      33% remain friends after halting the sexual part of their friendship.
      25% end both the sexual relationship and the friendship over time.
      47% of participants in FWBRs believe in “deep love,” while 60% of non-participants do.

      Do young women and men experience FWBRs in the same way? The research shows that there are profound differences between women and men in their answers to the following questions:

      Is your current FWBR an emotional relationship? F yes: 63%, M yes: 38%
      Is your partner more emotionally involved than you are? F yes: 14%, M yes: 44%
      Are you more friends than lovers? F yes: 84%, M yes: 15%
      Do you wish the two of you had sex more often? F yes: 14%, M yes: 44%
      Would you like to have more than one FWBR going at the same time? F yes: 5%, M yes: 35%

      Clearly, women are more focused on the friends aspect of the relationship, while men are more concerned with the benefits. In addition, researchers have studied how FWBRs differ in their relational dynamics from platonic cross-sex friendships:

      There is a prevalent emotional rule in FWBRs stating that both parties must avoid falling in love, and must work to minimize jealousy.
      Openness occurs less naturally in FWBRs than in platonic friendships. However, a continuous process of negotiation is required to assure clarity for both parties.
      FWBRs include less supportive communication, including giving assurances and advice.
      The sexual part of the friendship is often kept secret.
      The sex in FWBRs is characterized by less passion than romantic sex.
      FWBs often try to spend time with mutual friends to avoid focusing too heavily on sexual activity.
      There is more emphasis on the role of equity in the relationship, i.e., who has the “upper hand.”

      http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2009/02/11/hookinguprealities/are-women-cut-out-to-be-friends-with-benefits/

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

    I don’t know much about study abroad programs, but I do know it’s very hard to go if you’re STEM or pre-med, because most of the programs don’t feature enough of those courses, and kids wind up losing the opportunity to fulfill important requirements.
    IME STEM students want to come to USA (UK second choice) because all the good science is done here or so is the perception, for the rest of majors Europe is the first choice. I have no idea about China never meet anyone that wanted to go there voluntarily the language barrier was a real problem, just my two cents.

    The rest is immature gender frustrations or not realizing that there was incompatibility on a daily basis.
    Or not knowing how to negotiate differences? Hubby and I had two of the compatibility items list and we make it work,. It also helps that having to share my life with 5 other people that were very different helps to separate making a relationship work from ejecting you cannot quit your bloodlines no with a good enough reason. Maybe that is the part of people looking for excitement on relationships are so eager to jump ship when the partner doesn’t provide it comes from? I would think being 100% compatible makes things boring really quickly, YMMV

    So many girls want to go their and hang out in the warm weather and have a great romance.

    In what universe is Spain warm? I had a friend that describe it as cold hell and the Spaniards smoke 24/7 not very attractive men in general terms, YMMV.

    There’s a wise saying that goes: “far from the eyes, far from the heart”.

    My hubby, then boyfriend, used to say: absence makes the heart grow fonder he told me that when I got rejected for a tourist Visa to come and visit him thus our future visits were in danger and I told him I would understand if he gave up in the relationship. We have almost 8 years together now.

    But, would you have found it unreasonable if your BF had said to you, “oh, we are not going to have regular sex for the next 3-6 months? Oh, ok, well, best of luck”.

    You lack imagination there, There are planes to visit, there is cyber sex phone sex if you are fancy you can have an epistolary torrid sexual connection… Also there is the cost benefit analysis, if you have a great woman that you trust and truly sexually desire you waiting for her to come back after a few months sounds better than going back to dating hell, I would guess for some men the chances of scoring even if is with crazy bitches on those months is better than waiting it out, but this really depends on dating environment, YMMV.

  • http://www.femaleframechanges.blogspot.com Olive

    If that were the case, you would expect to see a lot more people going to Denmark

    Admittedly I know nothing about national rates, but Denmark was one of the most popular destinations at my school.

    Tons of people go to Italy, France, Greece, Spain… all European countries.

    Australia is also big… not a European country, but it falls into the same category in my mind. Industrialized country, English is the primary language.

    China would not be #5 on the list. Now, my guess is that almost all of the people going to China are in Business/Trade/Finance/etc. and that they are disproportionally male

    Yeah I’ll give you that. Out of curiosity, do you have a link for the top countries list? It’s not that I doubt your source, I’m just curious about which countries are the most popular.

  • Ramble

    Tons of people go to Italy, France, Greece, Spain… all European countries. Right. Romantic Countries.

    Australia is relatively low on the list, but that will be changing soon.

    Yeah I’ll give you that. Out of curiosity, do you have a link for the top countries list?

    I did have it, however, I do need to run for a while. I’ll try to remember later.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Mega

    Jimmy’s point that *every* guy needs the unrestricted mindset in order to be successful in a LTR/marriage

    That wasn’t my point. I said guys need to have the ability to secure hookups (whether they actually intend to follow through or not) if they want to be competitive in the majority of college social scenes.

    After college can be different. But no guy in his right mind wants to wait till after college to finally start seeing success.

    should women (1/2 of the equation) in the same situation not invest sexually whatsoever in a guy unless he puts forth an olive branch?

    Sure. That would certainly be my advice.

  • Damien Vulaume

    @Anacoana: “Or not knowing how to negotiate differences? Hubby and I had two of the compatibility items list and we make it work”

    Of course, this not a perfect list, but a good start. And I agree that perfect compatibilities with that list often make for boring, rational and unimaginative couples.

    “In what universe is Spain warm?”.

    In the “European universe”. Based on the anual yearly temperatures, Spain, or, rather, southern Spain (specifically Andalusia), is the warmest place on the continent.

    “My hubby, then boyfriend, used to say: absence makes the heart grow fonder.”

    To each his or her own saying….and experiences. Your husband’s saying turned out to be true just like mine turned out to be.

  • Lokland

    @Damien

    “Thank you, that what I meant. But Loks paranoia is telling.”

    Interesting, so you feel the need to deny my experiences because you don’t like them? Or some other reason?

    Should others feel free to deny the existence of yours, mine or others experience based upon no other reasoning than that they don’t like them? (Admittedly a large problem here.)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Ted D, I always looked for “forever” relationships and went into them thinking thusly. But guess what? Life isn’t perfect. Men lie, cheat and do bad things, too.

    As Susan said, we also get our hearts broken. It took me years to get over some things. Do you honestly think every college girl goes into a relationship expecting it would end? The hope is that it wouldn’t end.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “should women (1/2 of the equation) in the same situation not invest sexually whatsoever in a guy unless he puts forth an olive branch?”

    Yes and no.
    Not giving anything while expecting everything ain’t going to fly for either sex.
    A balance of give and take is required.

    My quibble is that the balance of the relationships being discussed are heavily skewed in the woman’s favour. If the guy is happy with the result, no problem.

    But since the 80% are not getting together, something in that compromise needs to be changed to meet the needs of both groups.

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “For many post-college couples, that could be anywhere from 1 to 5 years, which means they *weren’t* celibate or sleeping around all that time. And many forgo marriage and opt for permanent cohabitation, which doesn’t appear to increase their risk of divorce…”

    Do you have any hard data on what % of people are in relationships in college and the years in between there and marriage?

  • Lokland

    @Ramble

    I know quite a few guys who went to those countries (fun ones) back in the day as well.

    I think the separation was along liberal arts vs. social & core sciences.
    A lot of business guys went to the UK. Couple science guys (though much rarer). I don’t know if they do this in the states but undergrad sciences here do internships in between 3rd-4th year.

    Some of those involve working in some pretty distant places though wouldn’t fall under studying abroad (as they are paid, no school, working full time).

  • Lokland

    @Hope

    “Yes. I’ve never even met a girl who wanted a relationship that was just for “status and validation.” What a rubbish thing to say about all women.”

    This is not what I meant.

  • SayWhaat

    @ Mike C:

    “This is the second time you’ve used that term “make my SO”. First time I ignored it, but I am curious now if this is really the way you see it…that your SO is someone you can boss around and make do stuff.”

    I absolutely do not view my boyfriend as someone I can just “boss around”. I am sure that dynamic would make me very unhappy.

    In this particular case, yes, I did in fact “make” him do it because it was a relationship deal-breaker otherwise, and he was resistant to it. That was a rare instance where I needed to stand my ground and not negotiate.

  • SayWhaat

    @ OTC:

    HAHA, I had forgotten about that homeless guy! :)

    “Really? Your old position was all men rejected you, and that’s why you were single.”

    Lol, yes, that was my old position. It has changed since then. :)

  • SayWhaat

    @ Ramble:

    I wanted to study abroad in Beijing, but they didn’t have the Econ courses I needed to continue my major. :(

  • SayWhaat

    @ Passer_By:

    “Women, from what I can tell, don’t tend to develop that strong sense of protectiveness and obligation to men they are in a relationship with. As always, exceptions exist (that was for SayWhaat’s benefit so she won’t hunt me down and kill me).”

    Lol. I obviously disagree, but here, have a hug. ((Passer_By)) :)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    On random encounter with a girl who followed the boy after graduation.

    I leased an apartment from a girl who was moving to another state to be with her college boyfriend. She sold me her desk, tables, chairs and bed for cheap, as she was traveling light.

    It was apparently a lucky place to be for love, because shortly after I moved in, I met my husband. I then also moved far away to be with him. But I kept the table. It’s now in our formal living room. :)

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Is it reasonable for a woman to say, “I hope to marry the man I give my virginity to. Do you see us on that path? Are you willing to commit to me now?”

    Yes.

    I am not sure if this is supposed to be a serious question.

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

      @ADBG

      I am not sure if this is supposed to be a serious question.

      It was indeed! And I think that 95% of men would consider that a “psycho” question from a college female.

  • Ramble

    For this reason, England, Australia and New Zealand are all popular destinations as well.

    Actually, Down Under is not that popular. However, I imagine that has to do with a smaller population relative to Europe and the cost of getting there and back. And, it is becoming more popular.

    I think you’re overplaying the “Gidget Goes to Rome” angle.

    I am not really playing it that much. What I am saying is that girls are never going to be that hip on going to Asia where, in general, they do not find the men to be that attractive. Denmark, while not sunny, has the tallest (and one of the blondest) populations in the world.

    And, I don’t blame them.

    For example, in Florence the largest and most popular program is an NYU program – they have their own campus.

    And they also advertise specifically to girls. That was also in one of the articles. I am guessing they have an easier time selling Italy than Japan.

    I do know that Munich Oktoberfest is a popular destination for students studying abroad all over Europe

    Right, it has cachet.

  • Ramble
  • A Definite Beta Guy

    On making relationships work, I think this goes back into unrealistic collegiate expectations…

    Drawing on personal experiences, from SO’s family: Her brother was dating a girl at college. They graduated this past year, and immediately started having questions about the future. He wanted to move out to Colorado, she wanted to move out East. This was, of course, after his dream of moving to a foreign country was dashed.

    She was willing to subordinate her wishes to his, as long as they were on a marriage path. He wouldn’t commit to that, so she broke up with him. I feel for the guy, but can’t blame her for that.

    He is now working in the area, because that’s where he could find a job. Father is now training to rein in Son’s dreams of extravagant vacations, lots of money, etc, because, hey, Chicago is FREAKIN EXPENSIVE and he isn’t making THAT much.

    Ohhhhh, UMC-dreams.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Susan,

    It was indeed! And I think that 95% of men would consider that a “psycho” question from a college female.

    I would readily agree with this, and this is because any notion of valuing virginity has been obliterated by our wonderfully intelligent society.

    I have said it before, and I will probably say it again, but it is extremely disappointing that American Pie, which is actually a story about young men realizing sex doesn’t matter THAT much, immediately all get laid after learning this important revelation.

    The only boy in the group who is NOT a virgin at prom, is still working as a down-trotten temp and living with his mother more than a decade later. And the star of the movie with the best sex life, is the guy with N=1 (I ain’t counting that fuck-up at the start of American Pie 2!)

    Lesson learned from American Pie series, though?

    FRAT CULTURE IS AWESOME BRO!

  • JP

    Are you more friends than lovers? F yes: 84%, M yes: 15%

    “Clearly, women are more focused on the friends aspect of the relationship, while men are more concerned with the benefits. ”

    And this is pretty much the entire story of “friends with benefits”.

    I’m filing this under “things that should be obvious”.

  • JP

    “Let’s be honest. Germans still suffer an enormous taint from WWII.”

    Is this still true for Millennials?

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

      @JP

      “Let’s be honest. Germans still suffer an enormous taint from WWII.”

      Is this still true for Millennials?

      When my son was in middle school, a German family moved in to the area and their daughter Frederika enrolled in 8th grade. Towards the end of the first week, a group of boys stopped her in the hallway and demanded to know what her grandfather and great grandfather had been doing during WWII. They were disciplined, of course. The point is, they were well aware, though they’d been born in 1987. My sense is that reading Anne Frank’s Diary and studying the Holocaust has ensured that Millennials know at least the basics of the history of WWII.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Ha, that is an excellent question! Is it reasonable for a woman to say, “I hope to marry the man I give my virginity to. Do you see us on that path? Are you willing to commit to me now?”

    Perfectly reasonable.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    It was indeed! And I think that 95% of men would consider that a “psycho” question from a college female.

    There’s already general impression amongst college people that virgins are clingy, so I’m not sure if such a question would change things much. Unfortunately, I think the majority of guys would be scared of such a female, though there are a significant minority of us (much bigger than 5%) who would not care.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    Is it reasonable for a woman to say, “I hope to marry the man I give my virginity to. Do you see us on that path? Are you willing to commit