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Match’s 2012 Singles in America Survey

Match has released its 2012 Singles in America survey, including 5,500 singles over 21. (H/T: Stuart Schneiderman) It’s definitely legit, with some very big names attached: 

Singles in America was funded by Match.com and conducted by MarketTools in association with biological anthropologist, Dr. Helen Fisher; sex and relationship therapist, Dr. Laura Berman; evolutionary biologist with The Kinsey Institute at Indiana University, Dr. Justin R. Garcia; and the Institute for Evolutionary Studies (EvoS) at Binghamton University.

SIA chart

Singles in America, 2012


SIA2

SIA, 2012


SIA3

SIA, 2012

 

SIA4

SIA, 2012

Let’s get to some other fun facts. I’ve highlighted the items of particular interest, either because they’re surprising or frequently discussed here at HUS:

Sex 

  • 47% of singles reported a “friends with benefits” relationship. And those surveyed last year were more than twice as likely to say it turned into a longterm relationship (44%) compared to 20% the previous year.
  • As for one-night stands, the singles survey found that 44% of women and 63% of men had ever had one. Of those, 33% said it had turned into a relationship.
  • 1/3 of singles (31%) had a one-night stand last year (2012).
  • Almost one-third (28%) say they’ve had sex by the third date; almost half (46%) by the sixth date.

How People Feel About Being Single

  • Over 76% of single Americans are happy with their personal life.
  • Nearly 85% of singles either actively want or are open to being in a relationship.
  • 9/10 of singles are optimistic about marriage.
  • Singles’ optimism about marriage has increased over the last 3 years (2012: 90%, 2011: 78%, 2010: 76%).
  • 85% of singles have been in love before – no gender difference.
  • 84% of singles have been in a committed relationship in the past.
  • When asked what the most challenging part about being single is, the most common response – by 44% of men and 30% of women – was not having someone to share my life with.

Relationship Dealbreakers

  • 45% of men are turned off by a woman who “doesn’t care about her career.”
  • 63% of single men and 71% of single women agree that a disheveled or unclean appearance would be a deal-breaker for a potential partner.
  • A majority of men (60%) and women (72%) think being lazy is a deal-breaker.
  • A minority of men (13%) and women (15%) actually said that not wanting kids would be a deal-breaker.
  • 51% of men and 47% of women said a long-distance relationship was out of the question.
  • Nearly half of the heterosexual people (44% of men and 50% of women) surveyed say that bad sex would be a deal-breaker.
  • 38% would cancel a date because of something they found while doing Internet research on their date.
  • 42% would not date a virgin (33% of men & 51% of women).
  • 65% would not date someone with credit card debt greater than $5,000.
  • 54% would not date someone with substantial student loan debt.
  • 49% would consider getting into a committed relationship with someone who lived at home with parents.
  • 71% of women are not likely to date someone shorter than them.
  • 77% of women would not date someone who was secretive with their texts vs. 53% of men.
  • Digital offenses most women won’t put up with – a person who wouldn’t allow their date  to use their phone (74% vs. 48%) password protected their phone (42% vs. 29% of men), was secretive with emails (76% vs. 53% of men), answered calls discretely (69% vs. 47%) or limited their Facebook profile (58% vs. 37% of men).

Relationship Requirements

  • 93% of singles say a partner who treats them with respect is a must have or very important in a potential relationship.
  • Over 80% “must have” a partner who has a sense of humor and is comfortable communicating his or her wants and needs.
  • 73% of both sexes want a partner who is physically attractive to them.
  • 36% of women (and 13% of men) in this Singles in America study report that they “must have” a partner who makes as much money as they do.

Some Surprising Findings

  • 33% of men and 43% of women have fallen in love with someone they didn’t initially find attractive.
  • Only 3% of men would like to ‘just date a lot of women.’
  • 30% of men say they have fallen in love at first sight, while only 21% of women report the same.
  • Over 25% of men will commit to women whom they don’t feel romantically attracted to, provided she has everything else they are looking for in a partner. (If they see all of their buddies getting hitched and having kids, they will feel a desire to follow suit, especially if their partner is pressuring them down the aisle.)
  • Women enjoy having their own careers and they no longer expect or desire financial stability from a mate. Men seem to enjoy this new setup as well, and they like having a partner who has her own life and her own interests.

 How about you? What surprises you most?

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    It is amazing to me that with so many “big names” publishing the survey results, they ignored the fact that people don’t accurately report their own preferences. I guarantee you that if they did a study (which of course would take more time, funding and effort…) to investigate what men and women actually RESPOND to (that is, act on) in the opposite sex, the results would be wildly different.

    There is a big difference between what matters and what people think should matter – the latter of which dictates what they SAY matters.

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

      @Andrew

      It is amazing to me that with so many “big names” publishing the survey results, they ignored the fact that people don’t accurately report their own preferences. I guarantee you that if they did a study (which of course would take more time, funding and effort…) to investigate what men and women actually RESPOND to (that is, act on) in the opposite sex, the results would be wildly different.

      This is a common claim, or dismissal, but I don’t really understand it. Perhaps because I know that when I take an online survey, I am honest about my preferences, and I’m in touch with what they actually are. Looking at this survey, I am struck by how honest people appear to have been in revealing their sexual activity – why do you assume they don’t know what they want, or if they do, don’t want to say so on an anonymous survey?

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    In fairness, though, I do commend them on surveying non-online daters. I hate when the researchers from these websites (I primarily have OKCupid’s blog in mind) make the huge assumption that their users accurately represent the whole demographic, but do nothing whatsoever to substantiate that assumption.

    So at least surveying non-site users is a step in the right direction. Let’s see what they improve in 2013.

  • Cooper

    … And here we thought female virginity had more of a stigma.

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

      @Cooper

      … And here we thought female virginity had more of a stigma.

      Frankly I was stunned to learn that a full third of males don’t want to date a virgin. Why is that? These same males are not avoiding relationships, so it’s not the “she bleeds, she’s needy” thing.

  • http://loveashley.net Ashley

    Not much of this is surprising to me, except for the idea that *that* many people think that love at first sight exists.

  • Deli

    Trusting a person’s self-report on sexual preference is like trusting a person’s self report on his or her sanity. If we did that – we would have to open up all the asylums, as everyone in there believes they are perfectly sane.
    I am not saying that people are liars (some are but this is largely irrelevant)
    I am saying people do not get themselves, because they have not spent as much time studying science about themselves as proper researchers did.

    There is nothing wrong with the idea that an average person has less knowledge about his or her sexuality than an external professional researcher would after proper analysis and studies.

    It’s ok.

    It’s the way human society works. As we get smarter about the world around us and about ourselves, the complexity of our knowledge on a particular subject increases and at one point it bursts outside the scope of common wisdom. And next generation becomes oblivious to that subject altogether, preferring to relegate its management to professionals.

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

      @Deli

      I am saying people do not get themselves, because they have not spent as much time studying science about themselves as proper researchers did.

      And yet there are very interesting parallels between the sexes. Also, these findings are very much in keeping with other surveys readers here have been quick to dismiss, e.g. the annual AskMen survey.

      For example, we now have numerous sources where males explicitly state they prefer women with careers who bring home the bacon. At what point do you accept that a majority of males feel a certain way?

  • INTJ

    In other words, women are pickier than men in everything.

  • SayWhaat

    In other words, women are pickier than men in everything.

    We have to be.

  • SayWhaat

    … And here we thought female virginity had more of a stigma.

    Did we? We have some female commenters (including myself) that are vocal about it here on HUS, but I thought it was a given that male virginity had more of a stigma, especially in light of “all men want is sex.”

  • Vicomte

    Anyone else notice weight was conspicuously absent on the ‘ten things judge’ list?

  • Underdog

    Self reporting is meaningless, especially today when being PC is the standard.

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

      Self reporting is meaningless, especially today when being PC is the standard.

      Personally, I view the opportunity to have my say on a survey, without regard to political correctness, extremely gratifying. No one is watching me answer, I can truly speak my mind.

  • John

    I doubt the veracity of a lot of this. What people want, and SAY they want usually are different.

    Not to mention as Vicomte said weight is absent. I would say one of the first things men judge for either sex or a relationship is 1) how fat the women is 2) does she have any physical defects.

    Once those two big things are passed then we can move on to the other qualifications.

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

      What people want, and SAY they want usually are different.

      I have not found this to be the case. Why is this such an active meme? I think it rests squarely on the assumption that women like assholes but say they like nice guys. In my experience, women who love douchebags will admit that fairly readily, and women who don’t are eager to make that clear as well.

      This is not to say that any man can’t have his own standards and pet peeves – weight being among them. But in a survey of 5,500 singles with no one looking over anyone else’s shoulder, weight did not come up much.

      I think the weight thing is overblown. I’ve been on numerous college campuses and have observed zero obese women. Yes, I’ve seen some women who are overweight, but to be honest, I was far more aware of women who were disturbingly thin.

  • Cooper

    @Saywhaat

    Huh. I thought it was you that suggested the opposite.

  • JP

    Know what’s funny?

    I read Stuart’s blog all the time and my eyes kind of glazed over when I saw the blog post referencing this survey, whereas I read his “Are Republicans Too Polite for Politics” much more carefully.

    I suppose this makes sense since I’m not actually looking to find a date, being that I already have a wife.

  • JP

    @SayWhaat:

    “We have some female commenters (including myself) that are vocal about it here on HUS, but I thought it was a given that male virginity had more of a stigma, especially in light of “all men want is sex.””"

    All I know is that I stayed a virgin much longer than OTC, being that “not having sex” was one of my (perfectionistic) moral goals.

    Winning!

    Yeah!

    Yeah!

    (I note that my goal appears to be the opposite of Cooper’s goal)

  • Lokland

    @Coop, Saywhaat

    Female virginity at worst induces an eww factor because its emotionally entangling.

    Male virginity is a sign of great failure. The response would be closer to visceral repulsion/outright avoidance.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    The most important thing in a mate is that he/she respects me and allows me to confide in him/her.

    As this is an exceptionally rare attribute in people, I will filter people out on the basis of their teeth.

    Sorry, bit of a touchy topic. Mother dearest, in her infinite blue-pill wisdom, decided to sit me down when I was a defenseless, impressionable 13 year old, and tell me that my smile didn’t matter.

    Now, at the age of 26, I never smile. Ever. I instantly repel people when I open my lips.

    Thanks, Blue Pill Mom.

  • Bully

    I guess cosmetic dentistry is a wise investment then.

    Granted, I also think general cosmetic surgery, used judiciously, is a boon for men and women alike.

  • GudEnuf

    INTJ: Yeah seriously. Look at the “Must Haves” list and the things they judge most about the opposite sex. All the charts for women are higher.

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    “Male virginity is a sign of great failure. The response would be closer to visceral repulsion/outright avoidance.”

    This assumes that you were actually trying to have sex with your girlfriends.

    I was always more proud of the fact that I was a virgin.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Bully,

    You are indeed correct, but Blue Pill Disney Wonderland said that such things were superficial.

    Bah.

    I am in a bad mood lately and this survey really doesn’t help things. I’ll be back later.

  • JP

    In other news, Boston is now the Hate Crime Capital of the U.S.

    “Boston is among the most educated cities in the United States. It’s also among the most liberal; the city has hosted some of the country’s most contentious debates over progressive ideas and policies in recent memory, having most recently served as ground zero for the nation’s first legal ruling by a state in favor of gay marriage.

    So it was with some surprise that, given its social-policy leanings, Boston ranked second among all U.S. cities in the number of hate crimes reported in 2011. The city’s 206 reported hate crimes for the year were 21 percent more than third-place Los Angeles (170) and nearly double third-place Phoenix (123). New York led all U.S. cities in reported hate crimes with 240 incidents in 2011, according to Federal Bureau of Investigation crime statistics.

    One could even say Boston is the hate crime capital of the country, at least on a per capita basis. The city’s population of around 625,000 residents is but a fraction of New York’s 8.2 million residents and Los Angeles’ 3.8 million residents, giving it the distinction as the most likely city for a resident to report a hate crime.”

    http://www.bizjournals.com/boston/blog/bbj_research_alert/2012/12/boston-ranks-2nd-in-us-for-reported.html?page=all

  • JP

    @ADBG:

    “I am in a bad mood lately and this survey really doesn’t help things. I’ll be back later.”

    Your mood would be worse if you worked as a Big 4 accountant.

    One of my friends just bailed and went in-house as that partnership carrot kept being pulled further and further away.

    And those are some killer hours.

  • http://happycrow.wordpress.com Russ in Texas

    15% of guys only would balk at the no-kid thing?

    That surprises me. Though it shouldn’t – I know a lot of folks who are proudly on the extinction plan.

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

    How about you? What surprises you most?

    That they put a bow in the female symbol. Is the female symbol and she is pink the bow seems overkill don’t you think?

  • OffTheCuff

    Not to put too fine a point in it, but these are the dumbest fucking categories I’ve ever seen.

  • Tom

    47% of singles reported a “friends with benefits” relationship. And those surveyed last year were more than twice as likely to say it turned into a longterm relationship (44%) compared to 20% the previous year.
    As for one-night stands, the singles survey found that 44% of women and 63% of men had ever had one. Of those, 33% said it had turned into a relationship.
    _____________________
    So according to THIS survey, almost half of singles think in a similar manner to the way I think. Almost half think some casual sex is OK. A one night stand for about a third of singles results in a relationship.. (but I thought the VAST majority of men would “never” have a relationship with a woman who gave it up on the first night)… How little some of you know about life. You are stuck in your little narrow cocoon, thinking all men think like you.
    Great article Susan, bravo

  • http://www.genxfinance.com kc @ genxfinance

    This is an interesting survey. And quite on the mark too. But when you say Match.com, errrrm, I don’t know….

  • Ramble

    It’s a little hard to get all that excited about a survey that reports that “Teeth” are the number one thing that we care about.

    I have a feeling that this survey was constructed in a way where, suddenly, something like “Teeth” becomes very important, like:

    Please tell us which you prefer and how important it is to you:
    1. Good Teeth or Bad Teeth [Suddenly you get an image of some toothless wonder with some random gold shining in her mouth.]

    And you answer: Good Teeth, GOOD TEETH!!!!

    And how important is that to you on a scale of 1-10? 17 million!!!!

    Same deal with grammar. And on down the list. So, instead of having some ideal girl-next-door in your mind, you start focusing on NOT dating some girl that looks like Jaws from Moonraker and talks like she majored in Ebonics.

    What, you are asking me if I care more about whether or not she has an iPad then if she has a full mouth or relatively straight teeth? Come on.

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

      @Ramble

      Americans have very good teeth. Very good. Having crooked teeth, or heaven forbid discolored teeth, can be ruinous to one’s appearance. When I traveled through Ireland in my 20s, people stopped me to admire my teeth. It was the strangest experience – they marveled at them. I mean, they’re OK – they’re straight and strong and not too far from white. But in Ireland, my teeth were in the top 0.1%.

      One frustrating thing about this survey is that there is no tidy PDF somewhere that I can comb through. The stats in this post come from a dozen different articles and press releases on Match. They do not publish their primary source. So I can’t actually see how the questions were asked.

  • Ramble

    Why is this such an active meme? I think it rests squarely on the assumption that women like assholes but say they like nice guys.

    Yes, it is because girls at their hottest (18-24) tend to be really disconnected between what they say they want and what their actions have shown to be the case.

    Traditionally, very, very few girls said out loud that they like douchebags. They will complain, after the fact, that they have dated assholes, with their role as victim firmly in place.

    However, I have found that it seems that girls are becoming more honest than they seemed to be back in the day. It is hard for me to compare since I was not dating in the good old days, but girls seem to fairly upfront, now, about things like looks and physique.

    It seems that the idea of the Nice Guy not being that attractive to girls is a fairly new idea that we see in pop culture. Again, as far as I can tell, we did not see that much of that (Nice Guys being unattractive to girls) in the 80′s.

    However, it is also possible that as girls have become more honest about what they want in their man, they may also be having bigger problems with Projection (i.e. advertising to the men-folk those things that they, as girls, would want to see ["Kylee, make sure that you post pictures of yourself in exotic places having a great time."]).

  • Ramble

    Susan, Yes or No:

    We are fatter now than we have ever been?

    I’ve been on numerous college campuses and have observed zero obese women.

    One, it absolutely depends on the college. And, two, is it just possible, that for the average girl, eating the bad diet that she is likely to have and living in the suburbs (the grand majority of post collegiate, and collegiate, girls live not in cosmopolitan cities, but in suburbs), that she is likely to consistently gain weight throughout her 20s (I am not saying that she becomes obese) and that by the time she ha children (late 20s) that getting back to fighting weight is really unlikely?

    Also, I have said this many, many times, but, the issue of obesity is way overblown. It is almost a strawman.

    If we focus on obesity, then, anyone who is NOT obese can then think, “Yeah, I am doing OK”. But, for a blog like this, where attracting a mate is basically priority number one (assuming that things like, you know, walking and breathing have already been mastered), focusing on obesity is ridiculous.

    It would be like asking about a guys social skills and if he is charming, and he responds, “Well, I have never killed anyone nor have I ever raped a girl.”. Wow, really? Well, then, you should do just fine in attracting that someone special.

    Now, with all of that said, I will most definitely grant you this: in the land of UMC college campuses, you are unlikely to find that many overweight girls, and that is very good.

    But, by the time they get serious about getting married, from what I have seen, lots and lots of girls get the kind of midsection and thighs that come along with a diet of pasta, bagels, wine and cocktails.

    Wine? Wine?! Wine does not make you gain weight!

    Right, a SINGLE glass of wine will not make you gain weight. But, as well all know, that is not how girls drink today.

    But Susan, please reflect on your sentence that I quoted and the contrasting question that preceded it. Surely you must see some sort of disconnect, even if, in Lake Wobegon, you do not see that many overweight girls.

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

      @Ramble

      But, by the time they get serious about getting married, from what I have seen, lots and lots of girls get the kind of midsection and thighs that come along with a diet of pasta, bagels, wine and cocktails.

      Hmmm. I’m thinking of my focus groups, and it’s odd – at least in this case the groups have split out into two distinct subgroups. One is, as you say, putting on the pounds, even if gradually. Working long hours, eating out, etc. all take their toll. The other group is the opposite – these girls look better than I’ve ever seen them. They work out regularly, run, bring healthy lunches to work in bento boxes, limit their alcohol, etc. I’m not sure what separates these two groups.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan
    re: Answers that aren’t 100% honest…

    I don’t it’s an example of trying to give the right answer to the survey organizers as much as it’s an example of trying to give the right answer to themselves.

    A lot of people like to think they’re smarter, less shallow, more interesting, more cultured, etc. than they actually are, and in many cases will lie to themselves and actually believe it. I know I certainly have in the past, including on surveys.

    Ramble also illustrated the issue of the survey format itself with the point about good teeth.

    Now I’m not saying that means those surveys are useless… but it definitely makes me view them with a more skeptical eye.

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

      @Jimmy

      Now I’m not saying that means those surveys are useless… but it definitely makes me view them with a more skeptical eye.

      That’s fair. I found some of it odd myself. Grammar is a priority for both sexes? How surprising! And yet I know that I have judged potential suitors to my own kids harshly on that exact attribute. Girls have showed me texts with poor grammar, wearing a “yikes” expression. IOW, grammar is a proxy for intelligence, and it is not surprising people would select for that.

      Good teeth probably serve as a proxy for good health, possibly an affluent background, as well as an indicator of one’s self-care. It may well be that by paying attention to teeth and grammar, we could make good better mating choices, IDK.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Frankly I was stunned to learn that a full third of males don’t want to date a virgin. Why is that? These same males are not avoiding relationships, so it’s not the “she bleeds, she’s needy” thing.”

    They don’t want to be the “starter relationship”?

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Americans have very good teeth. Very good. Having crooked teeth, or heaven forbid discolored teeth, can be ruinous to one’s appearance.”

    Having stayed up until well past midnight working on teeth whitening patent litigation, I will agree that Americans are really into their teeth.

    I think that I’ve read all of the dental whitening patents known to mankind and a lot of the associated dental patents.

    I probably spent six months on just dental technology in my career.

  • Ramble

    They do not publish their primary source. So I can’t actually see how the questions were asked.

    Right, that was my point.

    I’m thinking of my focus groups, and it’s odd – at least in this case the groups have split out into two distinct subgroups. One is, as you say, putting on the pounds, even if gradually. Working long hours, eating out, etc. all take their toll. The other group is the opposite – these girls look better than I’ve ever seen them. They work out regularly, run, bring healthy lunches to work in bento boxes, limit their alcohol, etc. I’m not sure what separates these two groups.

    Alright, now we are cooking with gas. This is consistent with what I have seen, however, with the added Middle Class that has significantly fewer of the slimmer girls and many more of the “could have lost a few pounds in college and things did not get any better afterwards” set.

  • Sai

    I almost went “aww” when I read how most men really want someone who respects them and that they can trust.

    But like others above have said, some of the figures seem off. Guys are visual, so why isn’t that represented more strongly? And there wouldn’t be such a fuss over “evil slut-shaming” if there weren’t so many sluts to shame, or men willing to shame them, so why would so many men have a problem with virgins? (Just how much blood IS there? All I have to go by are cheesy romance novels and bad fanfiction.)

  • J

    Frankly I was stunned to learn that a full third of males don’t want to date a virgin.

    I assume that the issue is not wanting to be responsible for someone’s first experience or deal with their emotions.

  • Someguy

    Teeth are definitely a proxy for health and background. Working class and poorer people don’t get braces and all that professional whitening as often as middle, upper middle, and upper class folk.

    Of course this survey isn’t honest or accurate enough.

    Guys would just say “hot/pretty” and “not a ball breaker”

    Women would start with ALPHA, HOT, TALL, and WEALTHY… And then attach 20-30 additional “must haves”

  • J

    I’m surprised at how similar the lists are for males and females. Sure some of the items flip positions in the lists, but the most and least important items are pretty much the same.

    I’m nopt at all surprised by the importance of teeth; it’s a proxy for health. Besides, who wants to kiss someone with a dirty mouth?

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

      I’m surprised at how similar the lists are for males and females. Sure some of the items flip positions in the lists, but the most and least important items are pretty much the same.

      Yeah, I thought that was interesting too. I think it lends credibility to the survey. If people were just making up answers, or don’t understand what they find attractive, the answers should be all over the place. Yet the patterns hold intrasexually, intersexually, and FYI, across numerous surveys.

      People are free to dismiss whatever results they don’t like, for whatever reason, but I feel quite confident there is much good material here.

  • Ion

    “I’m nopt at all surprised by the importance of teeth; it’s a proxy for health.”

    In Egypt I saw some really good looking, tall, masculine men 20-40.. attractive by anyone’s standards, looked healthy and everything. Just sometimes they’d open their mouths and their teeth were brown (bottom row and top row). I’ve not seen that even among extremely poor people in the U.S. I can definitely understand off-white, even yellow.. but brown?

  • VJ

    People lie on survey’s to make ridiculous graphs more realistic sounding. News @ 11.

    Somewhere down in the non graphic explanations we learn a bit more of ‘the truthy’ stuff, but this is pretty faintly silly. Good teeth, grammar, clothes hair and nails & accents as most important things women judge men on & vice versa? Jimmy cricket this is profoundly silly. It easily negates most of the folks walking around in the population of almost any age, right? On the grammar alone, we’d be at Zero Population growth like yesterday!

    And please people, we’ve got a name for those ’63% of single men and 71% of single women [who] agree that a disheveled or unclean appearance would be a deal-breaker for a potential partner’. Once they become ‘people of a certain age?’ Most are Moms & dads in my neck of the woods. Many married too. We’ve got mostly disheveled folks, look around!

    Specifically: on “Relationship Dealbreakers”:

    45% of men are turned off by a woman who “doesn’t care about her career.”
    [Read that as not having the right Kind of 'career'. Most women today, perhaps won't qualify here, owning to the fact that most do want kids eventually!]

    A majority of men (60%) and women (72%) think being lazy is a deal-breaker.
    [Umm, definitions please for the 'slacker' generations. Note Plural here!]

    A minority of men (13%) and women (15%) actually said that not wanting kids would be a deal-breaker.
    [Very silly, most women Do want kids, and this is a very common 'deal breaker' for those of child bearing age].

    51% of men and 47% of women said a long-distance relationship was out of the
    question. [Yet strangely enough they're increasing every year and leading to many more transcontinental and transnational marriages than ever before!]

    Nearly half of the heterosexual people (44% of men and 50% of women) surveyed say that bad sex would be a deal-breaker. [Likely a bit higher still...]

    38% would cancel a date because of something they found while doing Internet research on their date. [Or: "How stupid do you appear on the net"?]

    42% would not date a virgin (33% of men & 51% of women).
    [The well known bias against the 'stranger' male virgin asserts itself, and the supposed age old bias in favor of female virgins is here pretty weak tea].

    65% would not date someone with credit card debt greater than $5,000.
    [Yet this is pretty common. You'd do it for the great sex/body/car/hair, right?]

    54% would not date someone with substantial student loan debt.
    [Perhaps the biggest lie here. Average student debt load from college? $26K+ Is that bigger than a bread box? It's larger than your granddad's mortgage perhaps!]

    49% would consider getting into a committed relationship with someone who lived at home with parents.
    [And yet this is incredibly common for many guys, and was common for gals up until the 1970's. Why prejudice such things for someone in their 20's?]

    71% of women are not likely to date someone shorter than them.
    [True enough, and the numbers and marriage stats reflect this reality.]

    On “Relationship Requirements”

    93% of singles say a partner who treats them with respect is a must have or very important in a potential relationship. [Geez it's nice to know that abusive relationships have now become the overwhelming, fractional and disappearing minority in the country!Again a truly nice ideal that's less met in practice and reality, unfortunately.]

    Over 80% “must have” a partner who has a sense of humor and is comfortable communicating his or her wants and needs. [Works on some dates at least. YMMV, restrictions apply in your particular regions and given situation!]

    73% of both sexes want a partner who is physically attractive to them.
    [Finally, right? Where was this on the graphs? In the grammar & hair & grooming?]

    36% of women (and 13% of men) in this Singles in America study report that they “must have” a partner who makes as much money as they do.
    [Yes, on any given day, men are much more relaxed about you matching his income than vice versa. And a good thing too, traditionally it was not possible with most.]

    But yet given the surveyed responses, somehow mates get sorted for/in ‘positive assortment’, and the higher educated & richer ones wind up mostly married to & mating with those of like kind. How does this happen if everyone denies that education level or income or other ‘real’ status markers are not being sought or selected for here? The mind boggles. The ‘ideals’ may be laudable, but reality as they say ‘bites’. Hypergamy is not repealed, perhaps just ‘altered’ just a little bit. Sorry for the length. Cheers, ‘VJ’

  • Anonymous

    51% of woman would not date a virgin?

    How disturbing.

    And ‘Someguy’ posts:
    Women would start with ALPHA, HOT, TALL, and WEALTHY… And then attach 20-30 additional “must haves”

    This is confusing.

    I’m both + the additional 20-30 ‘must-haves’ (including rock hard body) minus the virginity part.

    Do you think woman will over look the virginity part?

    Maybe I should work on becoming famous, that is the only thing I’m missing.

    I’m 34 and don’t want to die a virgin, but I don’t want to hire a prostitute or ask any of my female friends who already volunteered.

    Any suggestions?

  • chris

    “Self reporting is meaningless, especially today when being PC is the standard.”

    A survey done in the Soviet Union in the 1980′s about whether Communism was a successful political-economy would have everyone reply a resounding “yes!”, while they go home to ferret away some money for the blackmarket.

    The times we live in are no different.

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

      A survey done in the Soviet Union in the 1980′s about whether Communism was a successful political-economy would have everyone reply a resounding “yes!”, while they go home to ferret away some money for the blackmarket.

      I doubt it, unless it’s because people believed their answers were not really anonymous and the KGB was tracking them. I recall long lines of openly disgruntled Soviets waiting for toilet paper in the 80s. The black market for American blue jeans was enormous.

  • INTJ

    Also, I clearly need to go have a one night stand before I begin dating. I doubt I’d be able to fake not being a virgin.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    I think the weight thing is overblown. I’ve been on numerous college campuses and have observed zero obese women. Yes, I’ve seen some women who are overweight, but to be honest, I was far more aware of women who were disturbingly thin.

    Then your standards of what is overweight and what is disturbingly thin need readjustment to fall in line with what is actually healthy.

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

      @INTJ

      Then your standards of what is overweight and what is disturbingly thin need readjustment to fall in line with what is actually healthy.

      Excuse me? Might I suggest that your thoughts would carry more weight if your tone was less arrogant?

      I know exactly what anorexia looks like, and how many female college students have it. It’s epidemic on campuses.

      I’ll grant you that you’ll find individual cases of poor fitness among both sexes on campus – I saw as many overweight males as females, though truly not many of either sex.

      I’ve only been on a couple of dozen campuses in total, perhaps UT Austin and Berkeley select for cellulite.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    It obviously varies from campus to campus, but Susan’s observations match what I’ve seen at most of the schools I’ve been to. Obesity isn’t nearly as much of a problem at colleges as it is for the rest of the country, at least based on my observations.

    After spending a good bit of time in college towns, it was pretty alarming to me how many fat people there were when I visited big cities. It’s still usually the first thing I notice.

  • Deli

    //Also, these findings are very much in keeping with other surveys readers here have been quick to dismiss, e.g. the annual AskMen survey.
    It proves that American people are in sync with American culture. (Thank you, Captain Obvious) It says nothing about universal human attractors, which would require – GASP! – cross-cultural study.

    //For example, we now have numerous sources where males explicitly state they prefer women with careers who bring home the bacon. At what point do you accept that a majority of males feel a certain way?

    At the point when this preference will be correctly stated to me?

    Two things.
    Firstly – the only mention of the female career in the survey you published was that NOT having it was a deal breaker for 50% of men.

    Now spot the difference:
    1) NOT having something is a bad thing.
    2) Having something is a good thing.

    Logically 1) != 2) .
    1) Means that if a woman has a career a man is either positive or indifferent, but if she does not have a career a man is negative.
    Which A lot of men would agree with. Not having any work experience is an indicator of a spoiled brat and a strong red flag.
    It is anything BUT a preference for “career women”.

    Secondly – just as the above mentioned statement by men “I don’t want a spoiled daddy’s little princess” was misinterpreted as “I want a breadwinner!” by researchers, men misinterpret themselves a lot, because we assume things that should not be assumed.

    It was widely discussed here, that the reason why a lot of women explicitly state huge preference to caring and nurturing traits in a man is because they assume that the attraction to this man ALREADY exists.

    Which makes sense – once the attraction has been established, that’s when the beta traits shine. But attraction is not a GIVEN! You can’t assume it!

    So, I claim the same with men when they state personality traits as important predictors.
    Sure, in a group of pretty women I would filter for personality traits – maturity, intellect, etc. But I would only do that AFTER I have already made a prefiltering by looks!
    A girl, that is a perfect personality fit for me will never even get on the radar, if she does not pass the filter.

    And I would rather take my chance with adapting to an unpleasant personality trait, that willingly scale down resolution on my “bang-ability” radar.

    And that is why I claim that self-reporting studies are not studies “how people think”, but studies of “how people think they think”.

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

      @Deli

      It proves that American people are in sync with American culture. (Thank you, Captain Obvious) It says nothing about universal human attractors, which would require – GASP! – cross-cultural study.

      Culture has an enormous impact on attraction cues. Universal human attractors may be helpful to know about, but if you’re living somewhere where men prefer a WHR .8 (as they no doubt do in certain areas of Manhattan) then women need to know that. Lose the curves. Preferred breast size is another variable trigger. Universally, men prefer larger breasts, but you’ll find plenty of men in certain sub-populations preferring the A or B cup breast.

      You won’t find more than a passing mention of teeth in the evo psych literature (though it is in there), but it’s obviously important to the 5,500 Americans who took this study. And I believe it – it’s rare to see an American 20-something today without straightened, healthy teeth.

      Means that if a woman has a career a man is either positive or indifferent, but if she does not have a career a man is negative.
      Which A lot of men would agree with. Not having any work experience is an indicator of a spoiled brat and a strong red flag.
      It is anything BUT a preference for “career women”.

      Eh, you’re parsing the language here. The word used was “career.” I don’t think you can assume most men would translate that to “work experience” or make the association to “career woman,” which implies a woman who will prioritize career over family.

      We’ve seen across several surveys now an indication that men selecte spouses based in part on intelligence and earning power. It’s important to American men, that is very clear.

      Which makes sense – once the attraction has been established, that’s when the beta traits shine.

      See the above weighted formula for attraction. LTR traits, which you may consider beta, are part of the spark of attraction. Note the number of people who said they had fallen in love with someone they initially found physically unattractive.

      Sure, in a group of pretty women I would filter for personality traits – maturity, intellect, etc. But I would only do that AFTER I have already made a prefiltering by looks!

      Right, and that is why you can’t understand that we operate differently. You’re projecting.

  • Maven3

    IMHO, it sound like a lots of BS to me.
    Examples:
    - men judge women on teeth and grammar – o really? How about old-fashioned approach aka “ass and tits”
    - only 1/3 of women wont date a guy with lower income. Yeah – right… If he’s trained PUA.

  • Ramble

    It obviously varies from campus to campus, but Susan’s observations match what I’ve seen at most of the schools I’ve been to. Obesity isn’t nearly as much of a problem at colleges as it is for the rest of the country, at least based on my observations.

    After spending a good bit of time in college towns, it was pretty alarming to me how many fat people there were when I visited big cities. It’s still usually the first thing I notice.

    Right. Teenagers tend to have pretty good metabolisms, but the process towards gaining weight starts soon after. And this is especially bad for the (once) middle class and not so bad for the UMC and UC who are getting smarter and smarter at playing the game (i.e. parroting the accepted narrative while living according to fairly un-pc standards)

  • VD

    I have not found this to be the case. Why is this such an active meme? I think it rests squarely on the assumption that women like assholes but say they like nice guys.

    Because, in the experience of the average man, women almost never tell them the truth about anything. We get lied to about what she wants, why she’s not interested in us, and what she is going to do. We see her lie to others, telling people that she hates, hates, hates us even though she was eagerly going down on us a few hours before. We hear her say that she’d only date men over 6’0″ before being excited about a date with a 5’8″ guy. We follow her advice and get blown out, we listen to evil bad men like Roissy and Vox and discover that everything we ever heard from our mothers and female teachers was untrue.

    We catch them out in lies and see they are totally shameless and unrepentant about lying. If I were to attempt to list the lies I have been told by women, it would take more than a thousand pages. So, yes, I am very, very dubious about anything that rests about a foundation of women telling the truth about sensitive matters. And on the more scientific sense, I note that merely the belief that their answers would be confirmed via lie detector was enough to significantly alter female responses.

    I should probably mention that I am almost as dubious about men’s ability to accurately report their own preferences, but that was not directly relevant to the question.

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

      @VD

      So, yes, I am very, very dubious about anything that rests about a foundation of women telling the truth about sensitive matters. And on the more scientific sense, I note that merely the belief that their answers would be confirmed via lie detector was enough to significantly alter female responses.

      I should probably mention that I am almost as dubious about men’s ability to accurately report their own preferences, but that was not directly relevant to the question.

      Let’s accept that women lie to men. That is not the same as women lying on anonymous surveys, where they have no incentive to be dishonest. I think it’s very clear from this survey that women were frank about their sexual experiences – the number of ONSs and FWBs is very much in line with what I would actually expect, for both sexes.

      Furthermore, re the oft-quote lie detector study, here’s the research I did on accuracy in self-reporting:

      Statistical Inaccuracies By Gender

      There’s also the persistent problem that men, especially in the general population, report more sexual intercourse partners than women do. It is logically impossible for men to have a different total number of sex partners than women in a closed heterosexual population. Obviously, this discrepancy is more meaningful and problematic when discussing countrywide statistics.

      Several factors have been shown to influence self-reported sexual activity by gender:

      1. National sampling typically excludes female sex workers. Adding in visits to prostitutes evens the score.

      2. Women report more sexual partners when they are assured anonymity, reducing their fear of a sexual double standard.

      Additional factors apply to college settings:

      3. Nationwide the sex ratio of 60% females to 40% males.

      4. Changing gender norms for sexual behaviors is reducing the discrepancy between male and female reporting. The oft-cited “lie detector study” did not rise to statistical significance. According to its authors:

      Several recent sexuality surveys have found no sex differences in self-reported sexual behavior (Browning, Kessler, Hatfield, & Choo, 1999), incidence of casual sexual interactions (Maticka-Tyndale, Herold, & Mewhinney, 1998; Paul, McManus, & Hayes, 2000), number of sexual partners in the past year (Brown & Sinclair, 1999), or desired number of lifetime sexual partners (Pedersen et al., 2002). The lack of sex differences in these studies and in our analysis may reflect currently shifting gender roles and their subsequent impact on normative expectations and expressions of sexual behavior.

      5. Some studies have found that men admit to greater dishonesty than women, as they tend to round up to larger numbers when recalling the number of past sexual partners. (Their numbers tend to end in 0 or 5.) In one study, removing the men who acknowledged exaggerating eliminated all gender discrepancy in the number of reported partners.

      According to researcher and sociology professor Lisa Wade, a recent online survey notes that 60% of older teenage men lie about their sexual activities.

      If anything men lie more.

      I do not think there is a correlation between what women tell men and what they tell themselves or each other. I agree those are often different, but that just means women have incentives to lie to men, not that they lack self-awareness. (Though I’m sure many do, just as many men do.)

  • mr. wavevector
    Frankly I was stunned to learn that a full third of males don’t want to date a virgin.

    I assume that the issue is not wanting to be responsible for someone’s first experience or deal with their emotions.

    The emotional hazards are twofold. First, if the guy just wants someone to hang with and have sex with, and isn’t commitment minded, there’s the danger that the virgin woman will totally imprint on him and follow him around like a baby duck forever. And it’s real hard to tell that baby duck that things are over and its time to move on.

    Second, there’s danger if the guy is commitment minded, and he falls for the girl and thinks she’s the one, but she starts wondering about all the fun she’s been missing not sleeping around and decides to dump him so she can broaden her horizons.

    Been there and done that for both.

  • mr. wavevector

    For example, we now have numerous sources where males explicitly state they prefer women with careers who bring home the bacon.

    36% of women (and 13% of men) in this Singles in America study report that they “must have” a partner who makes as much money as they do.

    So 64% of women will at least entertain the idea of dating someone who makes less money than they do.

    I see this as a positive thing. The male gender roles of protector and provider are just not sustainable in today’s society. Both sexes need to let go of their expectations on men performing these roles.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      So 64% of women will at least entertain the idea of dating someone who makes less money than they do.

      I see this as a positive thing. The male gender roles of protector and provider are just not sustainable in today’s society. Both sexes need to let go of their expectations on men performing these roles.

      I don’t know if you saw it, but a recent post highlighted the degree of hypergamy in marriage (based on education). The net effect for those with a HS diploma or less was quite large, but the effect for the college educated was negative. There are more hypogamous marriages than hypergamous marriages. That data is from 2000 – and I’m sure those numbers are larger now. It appears there is considerable flexibility here on the part of females. I agree with you that this is a good thing.

  • JP

    @Mr. WaveVector:

    “I see this as a positive thing. The male gender roles of protector and provider are just not sustainable in today’s society. Both sexes need to let go of their expectations on men performing these roles.”

    The average man can completely shred the average woman, physically.

    And last I checked, the houses around me in suburbia were still getting broken into on a regular basis.

    One of the law partners I used to work with was held up at gunpoint in his own garage.

    So, no the model of “protector” is not going away anytime soon.

  • JP

    @Mr. WaveVector:

    “Second, there’s danger if the guy is commitment minded, and he falls for the girl and thinks she’s the one, but she starts wondering about all the fun she’s been missing not sleeping around and decides to dump him so she can broaden her horizons.

    Been there and done that for both.”

    In the first example, the guy is not going to commit.

    In the second example, she may come back later.

  • JP

    @VD:

    “I should probably mention that I am almost as dubious about men’s ability to accurately report their own preferences, but that was not directly relevant to the question.”

    That’s because telling the truth will generally tear your entire social network to shreds.

    So, you lie because it’s less devastating.

    Remember, the truth is catastrophic.

    As in catastrophe theory.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catastrophe_theory

  • Jason773

    It obviously varies from campus to campus, but Susan’s observations match what I’ve seen at most of the schools I’ve been to. Obesity isn’t nearly as much of a problem at colleges as it is for the rest of the country, at least based on my observations.

    This is correct, obesity is rarely seen on college campuses, but remember that you are dealing with 18-23yo with high metabolisms, and once out of college the bad habits continue and the guys and girls start packing on the lbs. I see that a ton in the 24-29yo crowd.

    The more prevalent observation on campuses, for both guys and girls, is the doughy skinny-fat look, resulting from adequate calorie consumption but in the form of alcohol, taco bell and processed carbs. Even in college, it is very commonplace to see a comradery between the guys who are always at the gym busting their asses. We may have not been best friends, but when you see the same 15-20 guys 4-5x a week for years, casual conversation and a mutual understanding just happens.

  • mr. wavevector

    @JP

    In the second example, she may come back later.

    Very true. She did in my case. She discovered those tall dark handsome jocks were jerks. What a surprise. But she didn’t want kids, which was a deal breaker for me. So the second time around, I dumped her.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    I actually got called last night by a survey taker about marriage/relationship attitudes among the 18-29 demographic. The questions were different though.

    Re: teeth. My husband and I both had braces. He also got some kind of staining from when he was very little. I suspect my mother-in-law feels guilty about that, but I never cared about how teeth looked.

    Re: “skinny fat.” It is definitely common for people to not have a lot of muscle and to not eat a healthy, homecooked diet, but still remain looking good in late teens to early 20s. After that, some of those effects start becoming visible. That’s when the working out and healthy foods are needed.

  • mr. wavevector

    One of the law partners I used to work with was held up at gunpoint in his own garage.

    So, no the model of “protector” is not going away anytime soon.

    And what did the law partner do? Go Bruce Lee on the mugger, kick his ass and shove his gun down his throat? Or meekly hand over his wallet?

    When faced with a gun, the average man is as powerless as the average woman. The paradigm of “protector” is merely symbolic. It may still serve as a psychological benefit, despite having little practical significance.

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    @ Susan, Ramble, INTJ, Jimmy Hendrix, etc.
    I doubt the accuracy of the self-reported preferences because I recognize my own inability to “self-report” and therefore doubt others’ as well – especially in light of the ridiculousness of the results (e.g. teeth mattering more than fitness or confidence). I don’t think this is specific to men or women, as some commenters have suggested.
    So why do we feel inclined to say that something matters when it doesn’t? Because of pride: it is MY idea, I recognized it, and I know what other people don’t about what makes us “tick.”
    One day they were looking a hot guy or hot girl and thought “damn she/he has nice teeth… imagine what she/he would look like with bad teeth…” (See the comment above from Ramble @ 9:06 pm) “Wow, teeth really make a big difference in attractiveness!”
    Then the next time that person sees someone hot, they remember their epiphany about teeth from last time, and look at the hot person’s teeth to verify their theory; and again, the hot person’s teeth are perfectly straight, white, etc. (which incidentally is not at all uncommon in the U.S.). THEIR theory is confirmed! THEY know something other people don’t: teeth matter a LOT.
    What they don’t recognize is that they never looked at the fat girl with short hair, or the ugly short bald guy, to see if they had great teeth. The recognition of the importance of teeth (or grammar, or anything else on the list) is only something that we verify on people who are ALREADY HOT FOR FAR MORE IMPORTANT FACTORS – like fitness or hair (for women), confidence or height (for men) or facial symmetry.
    An example:
    In generating the data for the post I made about the various aspects of female beauty on my blog, The Rules Revisited, I essentially sat down and thought “what do I find attractive in a woman?” then tried to describe and quantify the various factors. I had to revise the data several times. In doing so, I became keenly aware of how difficult it is to accurately understand what mattered to me and what didn’t. I constantly found myself wanting to rank small things (like jewelry or high heels) extremely high on the list of important factors in a woman’s beauty. But when I started to see how little room that allowed for the things that I knew from past experience actually mattered, like fitness and hair, I was forced to reduce their importance.
    My inclination to place more importance on small things like heels is just like the survey respondents’ inclination to indicate that teeth were the most important thing for them. They were things that I had noticed, was proud of noticing, and verified on women who were already hot for other reasons.
    It doesn’t surprise me that mixed in with the false results are true ones (hair, clothes). Some people answered accurately. These were probably people educated or experienced in self-perception. And it doesn’t surprise me that Susan and others – who have that kind of education and experience – give the survey results more credit than I think they deserve. This is due to projection (as is my skepticism of the results).

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

      @Andrew

      One day they were looking a hot guy or hot girl and thought “damn she/he has nice teeth… imagine what she/he would look like with bad teeth…” (See the comment above from Ramble @ 9:06 pm) “Wow, teeth really make a big difference in attractiveness!”
      Then the next time that person sees someone hot, they remember their epiphany about teeth from last time, and look at the hot person’s teeth to verify their theory; and again, the hot person’s teeth are perfectly straight, white, etc. (which incidentally is not at all uncommon in the U.S.). THEIR theory is confirmed! THEY know something other people don’t: teeth matter a LOT.

      But what are the odds that enough survey respondents had this exact same experience, to the extent that they cited it as a key attraction feature? You’re describing a sort of psychological fluke, which would extremely unlikely to be repeated across the population to this degree, no?

      And how could such a large survey deliver bogus results across both sexes?

      I get what you’re saying, but I don’t see how that alone explains the survey results. Which didn’t surprise the relationship science folks, btw.

  • JP

    @Mr. WaveVector:

    “And what did the law partner do? Go Bruce Lee on the mugger, kick his ass and shove his gun down his throat? Or meekly hand over his wallet?”

    He wasn’t armed because he was a gentle, liberal type.

    Most partners I’ve worked with had licenses to carry concealed and keep guns in ankle holsters, so in those cases, the mugger would have probably turned around and then been shot in the back.

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    One more time with proper spaces added… (feel free to delete the previous on Susan)

    @ Susan, Ramble, INTJ, Jimmy Hendrix, etc.

    I doubt the accuracy of the self-reported preferences because I recognize my own inability to “self-report” and therefore doubt others’ as well – especially in light of the ridiculousness of the results (e.g. teeth mattering more than fitness or confidence). I don’t think this is specific to men or women, as some commenters have suggested.

    So why do we feel inclined to say that something matters when it doesn’t? Because of pride: it is MY idea, I recognized it, and I know what other people don’t about what makes us “tick.”

    One day the typical survey respondent was looking a hot guy or hot girl and thought “damn she/he has nice teeth… imagine what she/he would look like with bad teeth…” (See the comment above from Ramble @ 9:06 pm) “Wow, teeth really make a big difference in attractiveness!”

    Then the next time that person sees someone hot, they remember their epiphany about teeth from last time, and look at the hot person’s teeth to verify their theory; and again, the hot person’s teeth are perfectly straight, white, etc. (which incidentally is not at all uncommon in the U.S.). THEIR theory is confirmed! THEY know something other people don’t: teeth matter a LOT.

    What they don’t recognize is that they never looked at the fat girl with short hair, or the ugly short bald guy, to see if they had great teeth. The recognition of the importance of teeth (or grammar, or anything else on the list) is only something that we verify on people who are ALREADY HOT FOR FAR MORE IMPORTANT FACTORS – like fitness or hair (for women), confidence or height (for men) or facial symmetry.

    An example:

    In generating the data for the post I made about the various aspects of female beauty on my blog, The Rules Revisited, I essentially sat down and thought “what do I find attractive in a woman?” then tried to describe and quantify the various factors. I had to revise the data several times. In doing so, I became keenly aware of how difficult it is to accurately understand what mattered to me and what didn’t. I constantly found myself wanting to rank small things (like jewelry or high heels) extremely high on the list of important factors in a woman’s beauty. But when I started to see how little room that allowed for the things that I knew from past experience actually mattered, like fitness and hair, I was forced to reduce their importance.

    My inclination to place more importance on small things like heels is just like the survey respondents’ inclination to indicate that teeth were the most important thing for them. They were things that I had noticed, was proud of noticing, and verified on women who were already hot for other reasons.

    It doesn’t surprise me that mixed in with the false results are true ones (hair, clothes). Some people answered accurately. These were probably people educated or experienced in self-perception. And it doesn’t surprise me that Susan and others – who have that kind of education and experience – give the survey results more credit than I think they deserve. This is due to projection (as is my skepticism of the results).

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    @ Susan, VD

    “The oft-cited ‘lie detector study’ did not rise to statistical significance.”

    It wouldn’t if the respondents were convinced of the accuracy of their answers, as I suggest above.

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

      It wouldn’t if the respondents were convinced of the accuracy of their answers, as I suggest above.

      Well it measured the difference between men and women. A common claim around these parts is that women lie on surveys and men don’t. In fact, both sexes lie a bit. However, the Match survey sex answers indicate, to me at least, that people appear to have reported accurately.

  • SayWhaat

    @ Sai:

    so why would so many men have a problem with virgins? (Just how much blood IS there? All I have to go by are cheesy romance novels and bad fanfiction.)

    In my experience, not a lot. I peed after sex and when I wiped, there just happened to be blood. My periods are worse.

    Which is kind of ironic, because you’ll have guys boast about earning their “red wings”, but then completely dismiss virgins “because they bleed”. There’s way more blood involved in the former, Casanova. *rolls eyes*

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

      Just how much blood IS there?

      The hymen is just some pinkish tissue, a bit ruffled in shape, that NARROWS the vaginal opening, but does not close it off altogether. As a matter of fact, in some girls the hymen may be stretched or torn during childhood from activities such as ballet, bicycle riding, or gymnastics; and therefore, virginity and the hymen aren’t necessarily related. In the vast majority of girls, the opening of the hymen will allow easy insertion of a tampon.

      The first time a girl or woman has sexual intercourse the tissue of the hymen will either stretch or it may tear a bit in one or two places. Often there is NO BLEEDING and little or no pain.

      http://www.beinggirl.com/article/virginity-and-the-hymen/

      I did not bleed at all the first time I had sex. I assume it is because I had already ruptured my hymen via sports.

  • JP

    @Mr. WaveVector:

    There’s also a difference between thugs and actually trained soldiers.

    With thugs, there is little formal training and they are notoriously bad shots. They don’t understand the gun as a weapon and are really only really likely to hit you at close range. Usually undisciplined and uncontrolled with respect to tactics.

    The two partners I’m thinking of shot guns on a very regular basis, and were hunters, and pretty good shots.

    Now, if you have someone with actual military or paramilitary training, you would be insane to try to fire back because they will kill you before you can even get to your gun.

    I expect that this situation is different in blue state areas, but this was my red state experience.

    One guy, whose brother I knew, lay in wait for a burglar (who he personally knew was likely to break in) to break in and then killed him.

    You never know who is going to be armed in red states.

    Even my assistant just got her licence to carry concealed.

  • Abbot

    “As for one-night stands, the singles survey found that 44% of women and 63% of men had ever had one. ”

    Meaning that there are go-to women for that as they are serving multiple men

  • Abbot

    “So according to THIS survey, almost half of singles think in a similar manner to the way I think”

    Um, no. No man states anywhere they are good to go with the uber multi-penised.

    “Almost half think some casual sex is OK.”

    The word “casual” is mentioned nowhere in the survey. Having a FWB with the woman you are with means that she is your woman and if it turns into something more then you liked her more later. No man is stating that he thinks casual sex is OK beyond what he is having with her.

    “A one night stand for about a third of singles results in a relationship”

    The ONS is with him. There is no other man. If he wants to know more about her past he will ask regardless of how their “relationship” started.

    “I thought the VAST majority of men would “never” have a relationship with a woman who gave it up on the first night”

    To other men. You’re correct. Its not that they would not, but its certainly a stumbling block and women avoid them for that very reason.

    “How little some of you know about life. You are stuck in your little narrow cocoon, thinking all men think like you.”

    Most do. “Most men will be in the normal range, so they have to ask about “N”, and sensible women will therefore need to lie about it.” — JediWonk

    “Great article Susan, bravo”

    bravo indeed.

    .

  • VD

    Let’s accept that women lie to men. That is not the same as women lying on anonymous surveys, where they have no incentive to be dishonest. I think it’s very clear from this survey that women were frank about their sexual experiences – the number of ONSs and FWBs is very much in line with what I would actually expect, for both sexes.

    True, but I was answering your question concerning why men believe women lie on anonymous surveys. To be blunt, we think women lie ALL THE FREAKING TIME. Think about the couples where the woman is gritting her teeth, white with fury, only to gush cheerfully all over the first person she talks to who isn’t her boyfriend. What do you think that does to the boyfriend’s perception of her honesty?

    How many lies can you observe women tell before you simply stop believing they have any interest in the truth whatsoever. Now, obviously men lie too. But for the most part, when a man catches another man in a lie, the liar will admit it. When you catch a woman in a lie, you’re in for a long soliloquy I tend to think of is “It wasn’t really a lie if you look at it in an imaginary context and anyhow even if it was everyone does it and that’s why it doesn’t count and it was a long time ago and so therefore you’re a bad person for noticing it now what is wrong with you?”

    Anyhow, I think it would be very easy to determine how reliable the sexes are on anonymous surveys. You would think that would be the very first thing to test if you’re going to be trading in the business of anonymous surveys. What is the standard margin of dishonesty on such surveys or are social scientists so idiotic that none of them have ever bothered to see about setting some sort of reasonable metric in this regard?

    For example: do you have an STD? Then test everyone. How much credit card debt do you owe? Then check. Do this ten different ways and you’ll have a pretty good idea how reliable people’s answers are.

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

      For example: do you have an STD? Then test everyone. How much credit card debt do you owe? Then check. Do this ten different ways and you’ll have a pretty good idea how reliable people’s answers are.

      But that still wouldn’t address how to measure attitudes and preferences. Do you like blonde women or brunette? Are you a breast man, or do you prefer legs or ass? To claim surveys that measure preferences are bogus, you really do have to assume that people have no idea what they like. IMO, that’s a stretch.

      FTR, I do think that surveys asking for hypothetical behavioral decisions, e.g. “What would you do in this situation?,” are bogus.

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    @ Susan

    But what are the odds that enough survey respondents had this exact same experience, to the extent that they cited it as a key attraction feature? You’re describing a sort of psychological fluke, which would extremely unlikely to be repeated across the population to this degree, no? And how could such a large survey deliver bogus results across both sexes?

    I think the odds are very good, for the following reasons:

    (a) I’ve felt the difficulty of being self-perceiving accurately myself; and as I described above, it was significant. While I would be open to the idea that I might struggle more than the average Joe when it comes to self-perception, I would have to see a lot of hard evidence before believing I am an outlier in this regard. Until then, I believe that cautious projection reasonably indicates what the general population would do. Though I doubt you have the time it would take, I challenge you to sit down and try to enumeration and quantify the components of male attractiveness (to you). I think you will feel for yourself how tough it is. You’ve said before how important a man’s eyes are. Try to fit that into the list and then as you fill in the other factors, watch how you are forced to move it up or down accordingly. There are simply so many “important” or even “critical” factors that you will be forced to down-grade some.

    (b) I used to have a subscription to Men’s Health, where they post survey results like this all the time, and I regularly questioned them as being inaccurate, for the same reasons I question these ones. (They’d have things in there saying that men said they care most about women being ambitious, or that her eyes were her most important body feature.) In other words, this isn’t the first time I’ve seen the phenomenon I am suggesting.

    (c) Teeth are an easy thing to latch on to. If my theory is correct, teeth is an obvious candidate for the top of the list.

    (d) That girls think they care about a man’s grammar as much as the survey indicates is perhaps the most telling, because I see girls saying this ALL the time on dating profiles that are themselves rife with grammatical errors. Granted, they are only saying they care about it in a man, not in themselves, but it seems pretty clear to me that if you value grammar, you’d pay attention to you own, which they clearly don’t. (Again. grammar is an easy one to latch on to, for reasons of pride: by saying I care a lot about good grammar, I demonstrate to others how intelligent I am. Not at all surprised to see it on the list.)

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

      @Andrew

      That girls think they care about a man’s grammar as much as the survey indicates is perhaps the most telling, because I see girls saying this ALL the time on dating profiles that are themselves rife with grammatical errors. Granted, they are only saying they care about it in a man, not in themselves, but it seems pretty clear to me that if you value grammar, you’d pay attention to you own, which they clearly don’t.

      That implies hypocrisy and a double standard, both of which I think are quite common. I don’t know if you saw that joke a while back, where two women put together a horrendous profile on OKCupid, but included a cute pic. Most of the men couldn’t get enough of this chick no matter what she said. So a guy may mention grammar then try and seduce the neo-Nazi with horrendous grammar the next day. It’s very funny if you haven’t already seen it:

      http://www.mandatory.com/2012/11/13/ok-cupid-an-exploration-into-just-how-low-some-guys-will-go/

      ok
      ok1
      ok2

      It also occurs to me that standards will vary for STRs vs. LTRs. Because so few men in this survey were looking to be players (3%), I’ll assume most of the responses reflected preferences for relationships.

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    Also, VD, regarding women “lying” more than men: I think there is some truth to this, but I also think it is unfair to call it “lying.” I think the deeper fact is that women care much more about the emotional truth in a situation than they care about the literal truth, which men tend to pay more attention to.

    To say “women lie all the time” or “women lie more than men” misrepresents the situation to the detriment of women. There is a huge value in maintaining the emotional truth in a situation, and without women to guard it, men would live in a painful world.

    Maybe I should clarify that by emotional truth, I mean honesty in emotions. So a woman might be fine about telling (what she considers) a “white lie” in order to convey an emotion that is accurate.

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    @ VD

    “For example: do you have an STD? Then test everyone. How much credit card debt do you owe? Then check. Do this ten different ways and you’ll have a pretty good idea how reliable people’s answers are.”

    I don’t think this is the same type of thing we are dealing with here. The examples you give don’t involve self-perception of personal influences. I think you you have to do a test where you took the respondents of the Match.com survey, then followed them around to see who they dated, approached, talked to their friends about, looked at pictures of, etc. THESE are the people they are genuinely interested in, not the people they claim to be interested in.

    Actions speak louder than words.

  • mr. wavevector

    @Susan,

    I don’t know if you saw it, but a recent post highlighted the degree of hypergamy in marriage (based on education). The net effect for those with a HS diploma or less was quite large, but the effect for the college educated was negative. … It appears there is considerable flexibility here on the part of females.

    Yes, in fact I posted several links to papers on that topic a month or two back. Those hypogamous women must be learning to value other attributes in their men other than provisioning.

    I think the roles of protector and provider are actually the main source of discrimination against men today. Man as protector cannot be considered a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or sexual harassment perpetrated by those defenseless women – despite the facts that women commit many of these offenses at similar or higher rates than men do.

    For example , among the student set, women commit unilateral violence against their partners at twice the rate men do:

    Among school and college samples, percentage of bidirectional violence was 51.9%; 16.2% was MFPV (male to female personal violence) and 31.9% was FMPV (female to male personal violence).

    But all the discussion in schools on violence directed at men is how they should respect and protect women, despite the fact they are more likely to be the victims, not the perpetrators. Message about respecting and protecting men are rarely directed at women.

    The same goes for the provider role. In family court, the father is treated largely as an economic resource to be exploited, while his value as a caregiver is discounted.

    So it’s encouraging to see that more women are willing to step up in the provisioning, and that men are becoming less dependent on the provide and protect roles for their self worth.

  • mr. wavevector

    Let’s talk about shoes. 18% of men judge women on their shoes? Really? And what are they looking for in shoes, may I ask?

    I mostly notice shoes when some girl is wobbling around on heels that are much too high. It looks ridiculous, and I think less of her for it. I count it as attention-mongering, like showing too much T&A.

  • JP

    “But all the discussion in schools on violence directed at men is how they should respect and protect women, despite the fact they are more likely to be the victims, not the perpetrators. Message about respecting and protecting men are rarely directed at women.”

    Men are generally physically stronger than women.

    The average deconditioned man can basically squish the average woman.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    I really don’t know why we are supposed to focus on this “attraction growing over time” statistic.

    Less than half of women have ever experienced attraction growing over time into love. And that doesn’t mean those half of women experience it a lot: It could mean one time. Out of all the thousands of men they have ever met.

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

      Less than half of women have ever experienced attraction growing over time into love.

      No, that’s not what is says. It says that “33% of men and 43% of women have fallen in love with someone they didn’t initially find attractive.”

      Essentially, that’s the number of people who fell in love after first thinking, “ew.” I wouldn’t recommend relying on that as a strategy though. If a woman tells you she is not attracted, believe her. Still, it’s well proved that familiarity breeds attraction. It’s not at all uncommon.

  • SayWhaat

    Let’s talk about shoes. 18% of men judge women on their shoes? Really? And what are they looking for in shoes, may I ask?

    I don’t know, but IIRC VD commented once that smart women have the best shoes, or something along those lines.

    I remembered that because it struck me as an unusual correlation.

  • mr. wavevector

    Men are generally physically stronger than women.

    The average deconditioned man can basically squish the average woman.

    True but irrelevant. Male violence against females is so heavily sanctioned that even self defense is not considered adequate justification for a man to hit a woman. This gives women a free pass to commit violence against men, as they rarely suffer consequences for doing so.

  • mr. wavevector

    I don’t know, but IIRC VD commented once that smart women have the best shoes, or something along those lines.

    Is it smarts or sexuality? I think shoes are a display of her sexuality (restricted or unrestricted). That’s why they call them “fuck me pumps”, right?

    I’m restricted, so when I see those FMP’s , I think “trouble”.

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

      I’m restricted, so when I see those FMP’s , I think “trouble”.

      This is a very interesting peek into the restricted male’s mind. You don’t think CFM and then surpress it, you think “trouble.”

  • Lokland

    On shoes.

    A woman who wears shitty shoes/clothes around is inherently unattractive because taking care of ones appearance is inherently feminine.

    So a woman in grungy sweats and dirty runners, yeah what fun that will be to have around the house.

    On another note, my wife tried to start wearing sweats around the house. I politely but firmly said no.

    Same with a sweater her mother recently bought her, its designed for 90year old women. No.

    Looking hot, both in public and in private, is part of her job as my wife.

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

      @Lokland

      Same with a sweater her mother recently bought her, its designed for 90year old women. No.

      Haha, you are very particular about clothes! You must have a strong aesthetic sense. I recall your nixing peach colored lingerie and demanding teal instead.

  • Bells

    @Andrew,
    off topic.. but your blog’s amazing! I’ve been reading it for a long time now. Your post on Feminine Beauty is my favorite. And I always fall back to it when I need new ideas on what to improve on

  • Bells

    *grammar edit: “your blog is amazing!”

  • http://www.therulesrevisited.com Andrew

    Thanks. Glad you like it.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Oh this conversation again. Fun!

    I own very few pairs of shoes and don’t glam it up. No makeup and no special hairdos. My husband happens to love my down-to-earth and natural look.

    I wear sweats and pajamas around the house, too. Oh the humanity! :P He has never minded. He also wears t-shirts and casual stuff. We aren’t dressy people.

    Maybe it’s a Utah thing, too. I have a female coworker who said that as she was waiting for a flight back here, she could recognize who was from here. She said they had a more “wholesome look.”

    Too “sexy” gets a girl branded as “trashy” here. It’s the heavily Mormon influence.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brigham_Young_University_Honor_Code

  • Cooper

    “Any suggestions?”

    Maybe Susan has something she can bold, for us. *snickers*

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    I’ve only been on a couple of dozen campuses in total, perhaps UT Austin and Berkeley select for cellulite.

    That could definitely be the case. UT doesn’t select for cellulite, but Texas has a whole lot, and some manage to get through. The majority of UT students are fit, but the minority that is overweight is certainly larger than the minority that is anorexic. Berkeley, on the other hand, definitely selects for cellulite (and mostly in women).

    In general though, I’ve never actually been anywhere (including Northeastern campuses), where the proportion of anorexic females has been larger than say 5%.

    This is anorexic: http://www.medicalsymptomsguide.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/Symptoms-Of-Anorexia-240×300.jpg

    What percent of girls on the college campuses you’ve been to would you say actually look like that?

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

      @INTJ

      That’s a very extreme case of anorexia, possibly near death.

      Anorexia is an emotional disorder that is an obsession about losing weight. Women can actually be anorexic and look normal to someone else – you have no idea where her weight started, and what kinds of behavior she has adopted, e.g. eating nothing but romaine with dijon mustard on it, or eating soaked cotton balls for lunch to achieve fullness.

      Many physicians use the halting of menses as a measure, though my daughter stopped menstruating in high school because she was a competitive runner.

      In any case, most runway models are anorexic. Here are more pics of anorexic women:

      kn

      aj

      mm

      Sadly, I know a handful of girls with serious eating disorder problems, and they are size 0-2. Men find them extremely attractive, they get hit on all the time. That’s one of the reasons the cycle is so hard to break – rexies get a lot of positive reinforcement.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Hope,

    I own very few pairs of shoes and don’t glam it up. No makeup and no special hairdos. My husband happens to love my down-to-earth and natural look.

    I also live in a very outdoorsy and non-fashion conscious location, more hippy than hipster. When I travel to a major city I’m struck by the display the women put on. All that makeup! Those revealing clothes! Those ridiculous shoes! And they dress like that for work?

    I’m happy to get back home to wholesome hippy-ville.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Andrew

    I doubt the accuracy of the self-reported preferences because I recognize my own inability to “self-report” and therefore doubt others’ as well – especially in light of the ridiculousness of the results (e.g. teeth mattering more than fitness or confidence). I don’t think this is specific to men or women, as some commenters have suggested.

    My thoughts 100%.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    But that still wouldn’t address how to measure attitudes and preferences. Do you like blonde women or brunette? Are you a breast man, or do you prefer legs or ass? To claim surveys that measure preferences are bogus, you really do have to assume that people have no idea what they like. IMO, that’s a stretch.

    The problem is, when forced to make a choice, the guy might think “Well, I guess I like blondes better”, when in reality he’s simply attracted to the hottest girl in front of him, regardless of her hair color.

    I think survey format often leads people to fabricate preferences in their own mind when they actually don’t have them in reality.

  • Bells

    @Susan

    The first time a girl or woman has sexual intercourse the tissue of the hymen will either stretch or it may tear a bit in one or two places. Often there is NO BLEEDING and little or no pain

    This is good news. I’ve always worried about feeling a lot of pain while doing it. But I used to be a major tomboy when I was younger so I’m pretty sure that my hymen must be very thin if not already broken

    @wavevector

    The emotional hazards are twofold. First, if the guy just wants someone to hang with and have sex with, and isn’t commitment minded, there’s the danger that the virgin woman will totally imprint on him and follow him around like a baby duck forever. And it’s real hard to tell that baby duck that things are over and its time to move on

    This is depressing! I can definitely see myself acting like a baby duck :/

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Frankly I was stunned to learn that a full third of males don’t want to date a virgin. Why is that? These same males are not avoiding relationships, so it’s not the “she bleeds, she’s needy” thing.

    Well the “she bleeds” thing occurs regardless of whether one is having an STR or LTR with the girl in question.

    Also, I see the part about the girl getting “imprinted” and following me around like a baby duck to be a good thing, but most guys would differ on that.

  • JP

    “Most of the men couldn’t get enough of this chick no matter what she said. So a guy may mention grammar then try and seduce the neo-Nazi with horrendous grammar the next day. It’s very funny if you haven’t already seen it:”

    It reminded me of this SNL Ski Retreat skit:

    http://www.hulu.com/watch/119800

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    @Susan
    Also re: grammar…

    When the respondents said they’d judge potential dates for bad grammar, they were probably thinking that they’d prefer not to date someone similar to that fake profile. That’s a far cry from strictly observing if their date uses “whom” correctly, correctly distinguishes between “good” and “well”, etc.

    I’m someone who would probably answer that I value grammar. I value someone who doesn’t use ghetto ebonics or text lingo every sentence. But I’m also attracted to certain accents and dialects that feature grammar that’s less than perfect, and truth be told, I’d probably be a little turned off by a girl who used 100% proper Queen’s English all the time.

    But my survey answer isn’t measuring that. There’s a lot of nuance missing in the middle.

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

      @Jimmy

      That’s a far cry from strictly observing if their date uses “whom” correctly, correctly distinguishes between “good” and “well”, etc.

      I agree. My guess is that when people hear “bad grammar” they think the worst.

      I just finished a novel with one character who eliminated all contractions from her speech. “I cannot do that this afternoon, but I would be willing to do that tomorrow if that is allright with you.” It was really odd, and made her sound about 90.

  • Erik L

    Someone might have mentioned this above so I apologize if it is a duplicate but- many people on this discussion seem to believe that teeth is the highest priority item. That is not what the survey says. It says the most people judge others based on teeth vs the other items. It doesn’t mean it’s a very important item. It just means it is a common item for judgement. It doesn’t even say anything about what people want. It says what they judge on.

    It actually makes sense that most people would answer yes to teeth once it was mentioned. Teeth are noticeable. Once the survey mentions teeth just about anyone would imagine really gross teeth and answer yes. Even if this section was free text response, I still think teeth are, in the extreme, really easy and obvious to judge so lots of people say yes. It doesn’t indicate a widespread tooth fetish

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

      @Erik

      Even if this section was free text response, I still think teeth are, in the extreme, really easy and obvious to judge so lots of people say yes. It doesn’t indicate a widespread tooth fetish

      +1 Thanks for clarifying.

  • OffTheCuff

    Jason: “This is correct, obesity is rarely seen on college campuses, but remember that you are dealing with 18-23yo with high metabolisms, and once out of college the bad habits continue and the guys and girls start packing on the lbs. I see that a ton in the 24-29yo crowd.”

    This may correlate with more class, than age. I remember not just one, but TWO “fat girl” sororities at my undergrad state college… and that’s excluding the LARP/freak crowd! There is no way in hell obesity is zero or even rare. There were obese women in every class, every party, every bar, every dorm hall, that I can remember. (I mean technical obesity, which isn’t hard to find, not morbid obesity.)

  • INTJ

    The third picture, while definitely on the lower end of the weight spectrum, is not really that unhealthy.

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

      @INTJ

      She looks OK to you, but it’s a picture of a woman diagnosed with anorexia. Remember, it is an emotional disorder. You have no idea of her health prognosis by looking at her.

      In any case, I have seen many girls on college campuses thin enough to make me doubt whether they are menstruating. I’m also very familiar with the culture where college girls either fast, eat non-calorie meals, or pretend to eat when they are being watched. I know from my own daughter’s college experience how rampant this was in the dorms, and then later in her sorority.

      BTW, those extremely skinny girls were very high status. One was dating a high status male, and took him to her holiday formal. During dinner, she reached over to the bread basket to remove a roll. He placed a hand on her arm to stop her, looked at her and quietly said, “Restraint.” As you can imagine, that story made the rounds very quickly.

  • David in Dallas

    I think Susan is right about a lot, but I disagree with her about survey data. To me, surveys are almost always suspect. It is very difficult to design a meaningful, relevant survey and even harder to design one that is predictive of behavior other than answering survey questions. What people say in response to a survey is merely a verbal act in response to a question in a certain context. It does not, in itself, represent what they actually will do in a non-survey environment. It might, but you should be careful in automatically assuming that it does.

    In the context of preference surveys, people are incredibly poor predictors of their own choices. I remember looking at a study referenced in Dan Gilbert’s Stumbling on Happiness, in which people couldn’t even predict what they would eat for lunch later or what food they would buy at the grocery store. Considering people eat multiple times a day for their entire life, it seems unlikely that people cannot tell you what they would like. But the research tells you they can’t. Dan Kahneman has made an entire career as an experimental psychologist by showing, under a variety of circumstances that 1) people do not behave logically or consistently and 2) people don’t know fundamental things about themselves.

    Generally, our mental processes are not transparent to us, and we are largely unaware of that fact. The brain uses various methods to conceal the inferences and methodology of its decision making. See Gilbert’s Stumbling on Happiness and Kahneman’s Thinking, Fast and Slow, both are very readible and in line with gobs of psychological research on the subject. (As an aside, the self-deceptive nature of the brain’s workings are why I think the Manosphere types that attribute maliciousness to people giving advice like “be nice” have it wrong. Many people giving that kind of advice probably believe it and are unaware that they choose mates in a manner inconsistent with that advice.)

    Add to it that it’s match.com (meaning I subjectively doubt they spent the time, effort, and money necessary to design a proper survey), and I would note, perhaps, it tells us what people consider socially acceptable … perhaps. I would not believe it bears much relationship to what people actually do, unless there was some method of objective confirmation.

    @ Susan, Re: 63: Why did you find the convergence of answers between men and women lead you to believe the survey had more credibility? Given that men and women have differing mating strategies and different concerns when choosing a mate, I would suggest that the convergence, more likely, demonstrates that something other than actual preference is dictating the answers, such as either the survey format or societal expectations. Just hoping to rough out your position on that point because, to me, it seems to point in the opposite direction.

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

      @David in Dallas

      FTR, I don’t think surveys are the be all and end all, but I don’t find them useless either. I think that they can pretty effectively take the temperature on culture, at the very least. As I noted above, I agree with you re asking anyone what they would do in a given situation. Hypothetical “would you?” questions are in fact, useless.

      However, when one is given a list of items and asked to rank them in order of preference, it doesn’t strike me as necessarily unreliable. I may not know what I’ll choose at the deli counter at 12:05, but I know it won’t be corned beef. And that I like tuna salad better than chicken salad. I know what I like and what I don’t like. I think most people do.

      To me, the graphic charts at the top of the post are the least interesting. Far more informative are the findings about what people reported having actually done. Falling in love with someone you initially found unattractive – now that is interesting, at least to me. Or learning how many people have actually engaged in FWB or had ONSs.

      Add to it that it’s match.com (meaning I subjectively doubt they spent the time, effort, and money necessary to design a proper survey)

      As stated in the OP, it was funded by Match but designed and carried out by an independent market research firm.

      Why did you find the convergence of answers between men and women lead you to believe the survey had more credibility? Given that men and women have differing mating strategies and different concerns when choosing a mate, I would suggest that the convergence, more likely, demonstrates that something other than actual preference is dictating the answers, such as either the survey format or societal expectations

      Because standards of beauty are well understood in the culture, for both sexes, and there is much overlap. Beautiful teeth are equally appreciated in both sexes, so learning that many men and women selected good teeth as an important feature tells me that if people don’t know their own minds, they’re all ignorant in the same way, which seems unlikely.

  • Sai

    I can’t put too much stock in the provider issue because
    1.) like mr. wavevector said, bullets don’t care what’s between your legs
    2.) like JP said, most men are stronger -but I’ll still have to go out alone at some point, unless I make him give up everything else to tail me 24/7

    “True but irrelevant. Male violence against females is so heavily sanctioned that even self defense is not considered adequate justification for a man to hit a woman. This gives women a free pass to commit violence against men, as they rarely suffer consequences for doing so.”

    +1
    My uncle’s ex-girlfriend tried to pull a knife on him. They were both bashed up, so the cops took HIM away. Apparently that hündin has had similar problems with other ATMs -sorry, lovers, but she got off scot-free and my uncle went to jail and has to pay damages. My dad refuses to tell me her name or address, even though I promised him I wouldn’t attack her. My motives are innocent. Like an angel. http://reilly2040.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/blink.jpg
    TLDR -the point is, women wanted equality, so we should respect men, and expect to pay for it if we go on the attack.

    @SayWhaat, Susan
    Thanks!
    (I should have known the badfic was exaggerating.)

    @Andrew
    Bless you for your honest site.

  • mr. wavevector

    Men find them extremely attractive, they get hit on all the time.

    That’s because they were jerking off to the Victoria’s Secret catalog when they were 13. Skinny women are imprinted on their brain.

    I grew up deprived. No Playboy, no Penthouse, not even a Victoria’s Secret catalog. But I had lots of books with pictures that you would recognize. That chick in the lower right still does it for me ;-) I don’t think she’s a size 0.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      But I had lots of books with pictures that you would recognize. That chick in the lower right still does it for me I don’t think she’s a size 0.

      Bless your heart :)

      You’re an example of those universal attraction triggers unsullied by culture.

  • http://aplace-formythoughts.blogspot.com/ Renee

    From what’s been said from the Kiera Knightly camp, she’s not anorexic and never have been. They were pretty adamant about it. She’s just that small, and from some pictures I’ve seen, while she’s thin, it’s pretty much muscle.

    But of course, I could be wrong.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Mr. Wavevector, thank you for that, and I agree. Many of these bad “symptoms” of SMP/MMP people talk about seem to proliferate the most in big cities.

    Susan, I remember that story from your earlier retelling of it. Women’s bodies are designed to have some fat reserves so they can support life in pregnancy. At that kind of low weight, they risk their own lives.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Sai,

    Didn’t you get the memo? No hündin-shaming!

  • mr. wavevector

    @Bells,

    I can definitely see myself acting like a baby duck :/

    I hope you wait for a commitment minded man then. Failing that, at least a kind one.

  • Jesse

    Only forty percent of men think a woman must be physically attractive for a relationship? Wow. I know I’m not the average guy, but that is not what I expected.

    I think I’m being fairly up-front when I say that, sorry, if I don’t think you’re hot then there isn’t any chance of a romantic relationship. (To add to that I’d be quite disappointed if my woman weren’t aroused by my looks and physique. Neutrality isn’t close to acceptable. Such a fragile ego I have!)

    The obsession with ‘treats me with respect’ is a little strange to me. Of course I want to be treated with respect, but to me it’s something that’s earned and I wouldn’t put up with anything less. I suppose I consider it so obvious that I wouldn’t have even listed it. To me it seems like a whiff of touchiness or defensiveness to list this so prominently. (Are you consorting with people who don’t treat you with respect? Why would that be?) That’s just speculation though.

    Regarding women having their own lives and careers – it’s true that I would want a woman who pursues a career she is skilled in and passionate about, but I also have a strong instinct to take care of and support her, so for me it’s more about her fulfillment than her bringing home the bacon. I’m maybe a little old-fashioned in that regard. I’d be perfectly happy to be the breadwinner, but I wouldn’t want her feeling all cooped up in the house if she felt the need to spread her wings.

    As for the anorexic women, I just don’t find them attractive. I have a strong affinity for curves. That’s not a euphemism for fat, just that I am very attracted to a feminine physique with fat in the right places – breasts and butt, with a slim waist. I’ve already mentioned Marilyn Monroe around here – that’s about as good as it gets.

    I didn’t like that bread roll story. I’d rather she had five pounds too much than not enough, because I think that’s probably healthier physically and less stressful psychologically.

  • WomenAreGutlessCowards

    Hilarious – 84% of women want “someone who treats me with respect”. LOL.
    Of course, that ISN’T what they want at all – we can all SEE what they want, by who they go out with. No shortage of dates for criminals and thugs.
    No dates for men who are capable of love.

    Why didn’t 99% of women say “I want someone who LOVES me”…

    Because you’re terrified of intimacy. You treat affection from a man as ‘rejection’ from a man – if he doesn’t try to jump on you on the first date, you run away – because you know you have nothing to offer, apart from your body. My god – he might want to know who YOU are – how will you cope? If you haven’t got the guts to approach men, forget about finding love, you will never find it.

    Why should men waste our time going up to women who have given us NO clue that they like us? Do you think it’s fun?

    Oh wait – Susan Walsh is going to delete my comment because it’s a ‘thought crime’ – LOL – it made her THINK, and she doesn’t like that. Like the little tyrant that she is, her arguments can’t stand up to rational, open debate…

  • INTJ

    @ Sai

    My dad refuses to tell me her name or address, even though I promised him I wouldn’t attack her. My motives are innocent. Like an angel. http://reilly2040.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/blink.jpg

    OMG you just got major nerd cred right there!

  • SayWhaat

    @ Sai, Bells:

    I wouldn’t worry about pain during first-time sex. I was concerned about it too, but I only ever felt discomfort at most. Pain is the last thing you’ll have during the main event. ;)

  • J

    I did not bleed at all the first time I had sex. I assume it is because I had already ruptured my hymen via sports.

    I bled the first three times I had sex, despite a fall from a horse that also made me bleed. Just lucky I guess. ;-)

    There’s actually a lot of varience in the size, elasticity and toughness of hymens.

  • J

    From what’s been said from the Kiera Knightly camp, she’s not anorexic and never have been.

    That’s what all the publicists say, usually after the star gets hospitalized for “exhaustion.”

    @SW, et al.

    Another disturbing thing about the prevalence of anorexia is that it is often associated with having been sexually abused. It’s a way of feeling in control of one’s body again.

  • J

    I can definitely see myself acting like a baby duck :/

    That’s pretty normal. Choose carefully.

  • pvw

    @Sai: Apparently that hündin has had similar problems with other ATMs -sorry, lovers…

    Me: I would add, that “schweinhund!” Tee hee…

    @Susan re. teeth: I think it ties into what some have mentioned, that it is about demonstrating a high level of self-care, ie., regular brushing, flossing, plus dental visits. But there is more, I would add. When a person has good teeth, s/he is more willing to smile. Smiles are seen as friendlier, and fantastic smiles are seen as arresting, very attractive.

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

      @pvw

      When a person has good teeth, s/he is more willing to smile. Smiles are seen as friendlier, and fantastic smiles are seen as arresting, very attractive.

      Good point! I didn’t even think about smiling, but I’m sure you’re right. A great smile can make a huge difference in attractiveness, because it says a lot about personality and one’s ability to enjoy life.

  • Cooper

    @Andrew

    Is there a delay for comment on your site?

  • Jesse

    Regarding smiling, some research as I understand it has shown that men can make themselves less attractive by smiling. (Ignoring the quality of his teeth)

    http://brooks.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/31/expressive-attraction/

    Pride was the most attractive male expression. The research may have a point but I think things may be more subtle than they realize. There are different kinds of smiles. The worst one for men, I assume, is precisely the ‘I’m displaying my teeth to show I’m not a threat’ type of smile, which I’d guess makes a man look weak.

    I don’t have the whole theory fleshed out but I know there are definitely different kinds of smiles. I am thinking that something more like a grin or slight smirk would be more attractive for a man. Maybe it has to do with the tightness in the upper face and how much the upper lip is raised. I’m not sure.

    I have this belief that emotional expressiveness can be attractive in a man, and that this is not mutually exclusive with masculinity and dominance. I just need more details.

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

      @Jesse

      The most surprising thing in that David Brooks article is that both sexes find expressions of shame alluring in the opposite sex because it implies a moral code.

      OKCupid has published stats that show the men who do best online look away from the camera with an unsmiling expression, and the women who do best look directly at the camera and smile.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ Susan

    No, that’s not what is says. It says that “33% of men and 43% of women have fallen in love with someone they didn’t initially find attractive.”

    Essentially, that’s the number of people who fell in love after first thinking, “ew.” I wouldn’t recommend relying on that as a strategy though. If a woman tells you she is not attracted, believe her. Still, it’s well proved that familiarity breeds attraction. It’s not at all uncommon.

    I may have phrased myself poorly, but this is what I meant. It’s a poor strategy. A minority of women have ever fallen for a man they initially felt “ewwwww” towards. And just because a woman HAS fallen for a girl she initially felt that way towards, doesn’t mean it is a good strategy. It may happen once in an entire lifetime.

    So the winning strategy is to target at girls who are initially attracted to you, and to disqualify ALL girls who are not attracted. Obviously this leaves restricted girls at a disadvantage, because they are unable to expression that males are attractive for…whatever rationale is invented this week, but apparently half of women have been in a one night stand or FWB.

    The strategy, then, is to push for physical intimacy somewhat early, at some level, which she must accept, to some degree. I realize that’s a lot of “somes,” but a lot of our threads seem to have restricted women suggest “letting attraction grow over time,” which sounds like not signalling any attraction at all, which is 100% a losing strategy for men.

    Okay, I will make some exceptions. Having spent a LOT of time and having had a few girls had e-crushes on me, I can see the Hope route working. I also can see the Ana route working. Those seem like special circumstances to me, though.

  • Aimee

    @ “womenaregutlesscowards”
    Perhaps the reason women won’t date you is because you appear to be a black hole of frothing rage and hatred, who thinks that semicoherent emotional uproars somehow equate to “rational debate.” If I encountered a guy with this attitude, I wouldn’t interpret it as “capable of love.” More like “capable of flying into an irrational rage and screaming at me all the time, while blaming me personally for every bad thing any woman did ever.” Verbally abusive men with poor control of their tempers are extremely unsexy to me and to any woman with common sense. Granted there are plenty of women without, but judging by your fury you don’t seem to have located any of those yet.

  • JAG

    How do you interpret something like only 40% of the men state the their partner must be attractive to them?

    I’m very skeptical of that.

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

    I did not bleed at all the first time I had sex. I assume it is because I had already ruptured my hymen via sports.

    Did you used pads or tampons? Most girls I know that also did sports bleed but we poor women used pads always. Using tampons is rare in my culture and from about 200 women I had talked about ‘first times’ all of them bleed, including myself.

    I wear sweats and pajamas around the house, too. Oh the humanity! He has never minded. He also wears t-shirts and casual stuff. We aren’t dressy people.

    Another point for us restricted types. We don’t nitpick that much on superficial items. Hubby make fun of each other when we go down in the scale of groominess around the house so is just another thing to share.

    My dad refuses to tell me her name or address, even though I promised him I wouldn’t attack her.

    This could be a good business: Does your woman abuses you but you can’t do nothing about because you can go to jail? Hire professional bitch beater. Mean bad women that can fight with another woman. The police will look at each other in confusion “Both are women so both are victims…we cannot arrest them can we?” before they can get a hold of our professionals.
    I can see good money there.

    PS
    Domestic violence is a serious matter if anyone feels offended by this. Sorry I have a dark sense of humor.

    From what’s been said from the Kiera Knightly camp, she’s not anorexic and never have been. They were pretty adamant about it. She’s just that small, and from some pictures I’ve seen, while she’s thin, it’s pretty much muscle.

    I was going to say this, she has denied it and it seems to be truth. Kiera’s has my body type weak upper body no matter how much you eat. When you see pics of her in other settings you can see that she puts on weight on her thighs when she is less active. But I know for experience that I needed to fill up my tights well in order to get my toothpick arms not looking like you could rip them off with a smile. So yeah she is not anorexic she just looks like one. I was also accused of this a couple of times because I used to eat a lot and still looked like that. Is just nature.

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

    Okay, I will make some exceptions. Having spent a LOT of time and having had a few girls had e-crushes on me, I can see the Hope route working. I also can see the Ana route working. Those seem like special circumstances to me, though.

    You discovered me secret identity. I’m a poster by day and Super Special Snowflake by night! Damn it now I have to…talk you out of telling everyone ;)

    I’m not sure about Hope but being considered an exception is not as flattery as you might think it is.
    But do whatever you think is best for you.

  • pvw

    Re. not bleeding upon first-time sex–being physically active can do it, ie., sports, as well as tampon use. Include as well, young women who have had visits to the gyno even though they wre not sexually active. It is recommended that young women have their first gyno exam at around 18, earlier if they are sexually active.

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

      @PVW

      Include as well, young women who have had visits to the gyno even though they wre not sexually active.

      Wow, did I lose my virginity to a speculum?

  • Senior Beta

    I think I have solved the mystery of why weight was not a significant factor for men choosing woman partners. The question was not asked. It may be that college women would not present many obese examples. But the survey was women over 21. That had to include some 20 something career women. Ever male I have known for the last 40 years considered weight important in judging a female’s attractiveness. Back to the drawing board.

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

    Include as well, young women who have had visits to the gyno even though they wre not sexually active.

    Do gynos here don’t care about breaking the hymen? I and all my friends went to the doctor before we started our sexual lives and they were very careful not to break it. They used small swabs for samples. Probably knowing we wouldn’t want them to destroy something that is considered important in my culture.
    Now that I think about it they exams back in DR are a lot more friendly. Here that cold thing was a lot more invasive…need to compare notes with female friends back home.

  • pvw

    Ana: Do gynos here don’t care about breaking the hymen? I and all my friends went to the doctor before we started our sexual lives and they were very careful not to break it.

    Me: I can’t say I know what the prevailing gyno view is, but it seems to me that it is not seen as important whether the hymen is broken in that context. If anything, having it broken, or at least having the opening stretched, might be seen as a positive (prevent discomfort the first time?) or as perfectly natural within American culture–tampon use is prevalent.

    I know that when I talked to my mom about menstrual hygiene as a youngster, tampons were seen as a no-no for various reasons, it was seen as more difficult for virginal women, only non-virgins should use them.

    I can imagine all kinds of other reasons. Perhaps it was seen as stretching the opening, it encouraged touching “down there,” while a more American attitude might be more in favor of awareness. I imagine the more traditional attitude ties into the perception that if a woman doesn’t bleed, her partner might doubt she is a virgin, which in itself is problematic, as not all women bleed.

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

    I can imagine all kinds of other reasons. Perhaps it was seen as stretching the opening, it encouraged touching “down there,” while a more American attitude might be more in favor of awareness.

    I though it was the other way around. Masturbation was never condemned in fact a big part of “wait till you are married” was to tell young that satisfying ourselves was a lot better than being constantly ‘hot and bothered’. I seem to recall that the puritan left over in the church are more anti ‘fun’ than in our culture, YMMV.

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

    Oh I learned something interesting too about gynos back home. In here my doctor told me to get my Pap every two years if I’m only having one sexual partner. Back home the doctors recommend every six months. Me thinks the doctors are very are aware of the cheating problem.

  • Joe

    @Susan

    Wow, did I lose my virginity to a speculum?

    Not in any meaningful sense, Susan.

    (See? Contrary to what some politicians would have you believe, words do have meaning!)

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Haha, you are very particular about clothes! You must have a strong aesthetic sense. I recall your nixing peach colored lingerie and demanding teal instead.”

    Do my best :P
    Though, to put it in perspective, so does she. I’ve thrown out a couple pieces I really thought were good.

    Also, teal is old. Now I want green.

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

    Wow, did I lose my virginity to a speculum?

    Yep that is pretty much why they are careful back at home. Hard to be romantic about that.

  • VJ

    Ok it’s obvious by now that the youngin’s just are no longer speaking my language from the profiles seen. This is disheartening. And here I thought it was just our employees who could not communicate in complete English sentences & paragraphs.

    Very disheartening for the prospect for another wife too. Might as well keep the one I’ve got. At least I can understand her. Sigh. Can we change out the chassis at least? Parts replacements? Bueller, what about the boys down at the lab, they’re working on this? Decades away? The full ‘Twilight Zone’ effect and all? Promise? Geez. I won’t live to see any of it either. Shame that… ‘VJ’

  • BradA

    I thought other survys proved looks didn’t matter as much….

  • SayWhaat

    I didn’t start using tampons until I was in college, and neither did some of my other sheltered girlfriends. Something about saving yourself down there for a guy you’ve met on your wedding night. :P

    I kid. Seriously though, my mom never bought tampons for me when I was growing up. The one time she did, it was those awful stubby ones I couldn’t use anyway because they didn’t have a plastic inserter. I still remember going to the beach on a class trip and having to wear a pad in my swimsuit, with shorts to hide the secret. Mortifying.

  • SayWhaat

    Also, I didn’t go to a gyno until I turned 18. Another time, I came in for a check-up and they were like, “oh, you just turned 21 – time for a Pap smear!” So that happened and then I walked funny to my Econ class. So I guess you could say I lost my virginity to a speculum too! :P

    My gyno is cool though, she was super-happy when I told her about my boyfriend and being sexually active. She squealed and said, “I knew it! I told myself, things would be different next time I see this girl! :D”

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

      @SayWhaat

      My gyno is cool though, she was super-happy when I told her about my boyfriend and being sexually active. She squealed and said, “I knew it! I told myself, things would be different next time I see this girl! ”

      I can’t help but contrast this with Hannah Horvath’s visit to the gyno, where she mused about the potential satisfaction of blaming a man for giving her AIDS. :)

  • Iggles

    @ Andrew:

    I think the deeper fact is that women care much more about the emotional truth in a situation than they care about the literal truth, which men tend to pay more attention to.

    I agree. Men tend to be more rigid about the factual data than tackling the underlining issue.

    Example:
    Man – “What’s the issue? I only smiled at Tracy.”
    Woman – “You leered at her like she was a piece of meat! It was disrespectful and made me feel like I was chopped liver!”

    There is a huge value in maintaining the emotional truth in a situation, and without women to guard it, men would live in a painful world.

    Maybe I should clarify that by emotional truth, I mean honesty in emotions. So a woman might be fine about telling (what she considers) a “white lie” in order to convey an emotion that is accurate.

    These are also great points, Andrew (by the way, I love your blog! I’ve sent posts to my sister and close friends)!

    The latter is similar to when people use hyperboles to convey a point. Women and men do that all the time.

  • VD

    Also, VD, regarding women “lying” more than men: I think there is some truth to this, but I also think it is unfair to call it “lying.” I think the deeper fact is that women care much more about the emotional truth in a situation than they care about the literal truth, which men tend to pay more attention to.

    Redefining the telling of factual inaccuracies as “not-lying” does not tend to create more male confidence in women’s ability to tell the truth. It destroys it. One of the reasons I have such a skeptical attitude towards the probability that a woman is telling the truth is that when I catch a woman out, her first response is usually to explain that although she is not telling the truth, she is not lying. At which point I simply put her in the “liar” box and largely ignore her statements about reality unless there is additional evidence in support of them.

    Everyone lies, but never trust anyone who first lies to themself.

    But that still wouldn’t address how to measure attitudes and preferences. Do you like blonde women or brunette? Are you a breast man, or do you prefer legs or ass? To claim surveys that measure preferences are bogus, you really do have to assume that people have no idea what they like. IMO, that’s a stretch.

    Of course not. But if you can’t get a simple factual matter correct to within a reasonable degree of accuracy, what are the chances that you will be more reliable with regards to more nebulous things. And we already know that women are not reliable concerning what sexually stimulates them, as they will deny sexually responding to something even as their body is physically in the process of doing so.

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

      @VD

      And we already know that women are not reliable concerning what sexually stimulates them, as they will deny sexually responding to something even as their body is physically in the process of doing so.

      I assume you’re referring to the Chivers research, so often mishandled and misrepresented in the manosphere. It’s not that women were fully aroused and didn’t know it. They were simultaneously physically aroused and mentally indifferent. The message of increased blood flow to the vagina did not reach the brain, and the women literally did not feel aroused in their genitals even as the equipment measured the early stages of female arousal.

      Scientists remain both puzzled and curious as to why the disconnect occurs:

      “For the discord, in women, between the body and the mind, [Chivers] has deliberated over all sorts of explanations, the simplest being anatomy. The penis is external, its reactions more readily perceived and pressing upon consciousness. Women might more likely have grown up, for reasons of both bodily architecture and culture — and here was culture again, undercutting clarity — with a dimmer awareness of the erotic messages of their genitals. Chivers said she has considered, too, research suggesting that men are better able than women to perceive increases in heart rate at moments of heightened stress and that men may rely more on such physiological signals to define their emotional states, while women depend more on situational cues.

      Ultimately, though, Chivers spoke — always with a scientist’s caution, a scientist’s uncertainty and acknowledgment of conjecture — about female sexuality as divided between two truly separate, if inscrutably overlapping, systems, the physiological and the subjective. Lust, in this formulation, resides in the subjective, the cognitive; physiological arousal reveals little about desire. Otherwise, she said, half joking, “I would have to believe that women want to have sex with bonobos.”

      Besides the bonobos, a body of evidence involving rape has influenced her construction of separate systems. She has confronted clinical research reporting not only genital arousal but also the occasional occurrence of orgasm during sexual assault. And she has recalled her own experience as a therapist with victims who recounted these physical responses. She is familiar, as well, with the preliminary results of a laboratory study showing surges of vaginal blood flow as subjects listen to descriptions of rape scenes. So, in an attempt to understand arousal in the context of unwanted sex, Chivers, like a handful of other sexologists, has arrived at an evolutionary hypothesis that stresses the difference between reflexive sexual readiness and desire. Genital lubrication, she writes in her upcoming paper in Archives of Sexual Behavior, is necessary “to reduce discomfort, and the possibility of injury, during vaginal penetration. . . . Ancestral women who did not show an automatic vaginal response to sexual cues may have been more likely to experience injuries during unwanted vaginal penetration that resulted in illness, infertility or even death, and thus would be less likely to have passed on this trait to their offspring.”

      Evolution’s legacy, according to this theory, is that women are prone to lubricate, if only protectively, to hints of sex in their surroundings.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/25/magazine/25desire-t.html?_r=2&pagewanted=all&

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Evolution’s legacy, according to this theory, is that women are prone to lubricate, if only protectively, to hints of sex in their surroundings.”

    This is what I assumed the research meant.

    It’s a automatic defensive reaction that has nothing to do with actual desire.

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

      It’s a automatic defensive reaction that has nothing to do with actual desire.

      Exactly. Which means that getting a woman wet doesn’t mean a damn thing. :) She can still say hell no and mean it.

  • http://uncabob.blogspot.com/ Bob

    @SayWhaat

    “In other words, women are pickier than men in everything.”

    “We have to be.”

    Said the women who remained alone their entire lives, their rationalization hamsters spinning madly as they blamed all their problems on men and refused to look in the mirror.

  • Jesse

    Susan,

    The attractiveness of shame is a little hard to visualize. What exactly does shame look like anyway? Head in hands? Distraught? Some sort of pensive look of sadness and inner turmoil? I suppose shame can show an inner locus that women would find appealing.

    Communicating shame in a photograph without covering your face would seem like a challenge.

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

      @Jesse

      The attractiveness of shame is a little hard to visualize. What exactly does shame look like anyway?

      I agree, and I can’t personally imagine finding that an attraction.

  • SayWhaat

    “In other words, women are pickier than men in everything.”

    “We have to be.”

    Said the women who remained alone their entire lives, their rationalization hamsters spinning madly as they blamed all their problems on men and refused to look in the mirror.

    No harm in being picky about the right things. If you had to carry a watermelon of genes in your prostate, you would be too.

  • SayWhaat

    The attractiveness of shame is a little hard to visualize. What exactly does shame look like anyway? Head in hands? Distraught? Some sort of pensive look of sadness and inner turmoil? I suppose shame can show an inner locus that women would find appealing.

    I dunno. Maybe through blushing?

    My skin tone hides embarrassment well, but I always betray myself by covering my entire face with my hands.

  • Jesse

    “Maybe through blushing?”

    But that’s embarrassment. The reason I mentioned an inner locus is that embarrassment is presumably driven by what other people think, while shame would be more of an internal disappointment. I say this because women don’t necessarily like a man who is too beholden to the opinions of others.

    Off the top of my head, maybe shame triggers a woman’s desire to help fix a man.

  • SayWhaat

    Off the top of my head, maybe shame triggers a woman’s desire to help fix a man.

    Hmm, this doesn’t seem quite it, though maybe other women do feel that way.

    I’m just thinking of the recent “pet-shaming” trend, and why it is so endearing. Maybe someone who is ashamed is endearing somehow? Though that doesn’t seem to be it, either…

    I’m more inclined to believe it has something to do with similar moral compasses. As in an indication of similar moral values.

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

      I’m more inclined to believe it has something to do with similar moral compasses. As in an indication of similar moral values.

      I think you’re onto something. At the very least, seeing an expression of shame on a man’s face means he can’t be Dark Triad, or even a narcissist. It might be a filter for selecting men who have a moral compass. I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t work as a similar filter for men as well.

  • Jesse

    But shame in a photograph won’t tell you if your moral values are at all similar.

    Nonetheless, I believe there is something something charismatic and endearing about being able to share shortcomings and insecurities sometimes. It can be hard to foster the human connection if you’re always fine and everything’s always perfect.

    It’s hard for one person to learn the entire landscape in these matters, because I feel like men and women have at best been given only half the instructions. I know a fair bit about what looks good in a woman, and I have an idea of what it’s like to be a man, but I lack that feminine ability to tell what makes a man sexy. To some extent I think we speak different languages, especially the more masculine and feminine among us.

  • Ramble

    I doubt it, unless it’s because people believed their answers were not really anonymous and the KGB was tracking them.

    It would not have been unreasonable for them to think that the secret police WERE tracking them.

  • Ramble

    This is correct, obesity is rarely seen on college campuses, but remember that you are dealing with 18-23yo with high metabolisms, and once out of college the bad habits continue and the guys and girls start packing on the lbs. I see that a ton in the 24-29yo crowd.

    The more prevalent observation on campuses, for both guys and girls, is the doughy skinny-fat look, resulting from adequate calorie consumption but in the form of alcohol, taco bell and processed carbs.

    Yes, this is correct.

  • Ramble

    Most of the men couldn’t get enough of this chick no matter what she said.

    Everything about that girl’s (fake) profile said:

    I’m hot.
    I’m ditzy.
    I’m really, really “fun”.
    I’m easy.

    Hopefully it is not surprising that a lot of guys wanted to contact her.

    But these guys said they were looking for relationships?!

    And many of them were probably telling the truth. However, I am guessing if a man had this in his profile:

    (Yes or no for all questions)
    1.) Looking for relationship? Yes.
    2.) Willing to bang some hot young piece of ass that looks like she would be an easy and hot fuck? HELL YES!!!

    He would not do so well.

  • Ramble

    It says that “33% of men and 43% of women have fallen in love with someone they didn’t initially find attractive.”

    Susan, I am curious, what if you overheard your daughters boyfriend say to one of his friends (in a private conversation):

    BF’s Friend: So, you and little Susan are getting pretty serious.
    BF: Oh yeah. Definitely.

    BF’s Friend: So, do you LUUUUUUUV her?
    BF: Haha. Actually, yeah, she is amazing.

    BF’s Friend: Wow, I was just being a dick. Really? I wasn’t sure that you liked her all that much when we all initially met.
    BF: No, I definitely love her. And, yeah, I am a little surprised myself. I mean, well, you know, I didn’t think she was all that when we met, but, she is so smart and kind, funny, caring, unselfish….god, I am such a bitch. No, she is great.

    BF’s Friend: Wait, what? Do you think she’s hot?
    BF: I dunno. We get along so well. I mean, this is, by far, the best relationship I have ever had. Granted, it’s not like I dated a ton of girls before her.

    BF’s Friend: Oh, OK. Hey, great.

    How happy would you be for your daughter that her BF, when no on was watching or caring, declared that he absolutely loved her to a male friend?

    Would you be happy at all knowing that he really wasn’t that attracted to her?

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

      @Ramble

      How happy would you be for your daughter that her BF, when no on was watching or caring, declared that he absolutely loved her to a male friend?

      Would you be happy at all knowing that he really wasn’t that attracted to her?

      It’s not possible to fall in love without being profoundly sexually attracted. The question describes a situation where someone did a 180 on finding the other person attractive, as they got to know them, or for some other reason. As I said above, familiarity breeds attraction. I’m not at all surprised women would experience this, I am surprised men would.

  • Ramble

    A while back you told a story about some extremely thin girl who’s BF wanted her that way and would even make comments to her when she was eating a moderate amount of regular food.

    I found this really odd, and then you said, weeks later, that it was quite possible that he was gay…which made a lot more sense to me (even though exceptions to general rules exist everywhere).

    However, on more than one occasion you had implied that guys (NAMALT, of course) are really attracted to these ultra thin girls.

    So, with that said …

    Sadly, I know a handful of girls with serious eating disorder problems, and they are size 0-2. Men find them extremely attractive, they get hit on all the time.

    Susan, don’t do this.

    Men, in general, do not find anorexic girls attractive. I am confident that I don’t know a single guy that finds the more emaciated Angelina Jolie more attractive than the healthier looking Angelina Jolie.

    Guys do not lust after the ultra-thin, boyish “couture” runway models.

    They do not have posters of Keira Knightley on their dorm room walls.

    Now, do slim girls get hit on? Absolutely.

    And, is it possible that some non-emaciated girl, but slim girl, who does have an eating disorder (or, more likely, is on some spectrum of an eating disorder), gets hit on? Again, absolutely.

    But, in general, very, very few guys go for that heroine chic look. Very few.

    That is a female obsession, not a male one.

  • Ramble

    In any case, I have seen many girls on college campuses thin enough to make me doubt whether they are menstruating. I’m also very familiar with the culture where college girls either fast, eat non-calorie meals, or pretend to eat when they are being watched. I know from my own daughter’s college experience how rampant this was in the dorms, and then later in her sorority.

    BTW, those extremely skinny girls were very high status.

    Yes, it is a sign of status amongst a certain group of UMC and UC girls. But, this barely exists at all in the LMC and LC (we are getting to the point where we don’t have a Middle Class any more, but that is a discussion for another day).

    And it is important to point out that they gain status amongst girls, not guys. Yes, yes, I know that we now have a whole culture of UC feminized males with undescended testes that rely on female-to-female status cues to determine what they, the “men”, are attracted to, but, I would like to think that they make up a small minority. I am also hoping that they are committing evolutionary Seppuku.

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

      And it is important to point out that they gain status amongst girls, not guys.

      That’s a really interesting observation. I don’t know if you saw the recent post about social dominance in both girls and boys from 5th to 10th grades. Male-male competition established the crew of popular boys, and it worked the same way for females. Those two groups comprised the popular kids and were each others’ natural social partners.

      So it may be that the highest status girls are anorexic and because they highest status boys select from among that group, they select anorexic girls. Perhaps there is some cognitive dissonance that goes on, IDK.

  • Ramble
    From what’s been said from the Kiera Knightly camp, she’s not anorexic and never have been.

    That’s what all the publicists say, usually after the star gets hospitalized for “exhaustion.”

    Well, I have never met the girl, and I am certainly no expert, but she has been around for a good while now. And, AFAIK, there have never been any reports of things like, fainting, hospitalizations, or other major health problems that you would associate with anorexia.

    And, it is not like she has fluctuated in her weight a great deal and she has been in front of the camera a lot since she was, what, 15.

    Granted, that picture of her does look like she is at her thinnest, and it does not look healthy.

    Still, your response seems like the pat, “Well, they all have eating disorders and they all lie about it, so you can’t trust anything anyone says about it, unless it implies that she IS starving herself”.

  • Ramble

    OKCupid has published stats that show the men who do best online look away from the camera with an unsmiling expression, and the women who do best look directly at the camera and smile.

    Something that so rarely gets talked about nowadays, even when the question of “What is it that girls offer to guys?” is asked is that girls, traditionally, were seen as a source of pleasantness in a man’s life.

    And smiling was most definitely a part of that. Girls are pretty. And smiling girls are even prettier.

  • Mike C

    However, on more than one occasion you had implied that guys (NAMALT, of course) are really attracted to these ultra thin girls.

    So, with that said …

    Sadly, I know a handful of girls with serious eating disorder problems, and they are size 0-2. Men find them extremely attractive, they get hit on all the time.

    Susan, don’t do this.

    Men, in general, do not find anorexic girls attractive. I am confident that I don’t know a single guy that finds the more emaciated Angelina Jolie more attractive than the healthier looking Angelina Jolie.

    Guys do not lust after the ultra-thin, boyish “couture” runway models.

    I do not know whether Susan meant to imply this or not but reading her statement one might conclude that women who are size 0 or 2 as a general rule might likely have an eating disorder. This would be extremely false. Any smaller framed woman (bone structure) who is at a low but still yet healthy bodyfat level could be a 0 or a 2. Medium bone structure woman maybe 2-4 and perhaps the largest bone structure maybe pushing 4-6. If you are 6 or beyond, bottom line is you have extra bodyfat you could stand to lose. The equivalent would be around a 34-36 waistline on a guy as the upper boundary.

    These women are most likely size 0s, 2s, and 4s at most. Nothing unhealthy or eating disorderish going on:

    http://www.bikinimodelfitness.com/

    There is a big difference between a bonafide eating disorder and recognizing you probably shouldn’t have that extra piece of bread or roll if you are already starting to push beyond 20 to 25% BF level. If someone wants to enjoy that food item and tradeoff some physical attractiveness so be it, but is just fiction to try and normalize that higher BF level as more attractive.

  • Ramble

    It’s a automatic defensive reaction that has nothing to do with actual desire.

    Wait, is this some sort of fact?

    My understanding was that the “automatic defensive reaction” idea was simply a theory.

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

      Wait, is this some sort of fact?

      My understanding was that the “automatic defensive reaction” idea was simply a theory.

      The excerpt I quoted clearly states it is a theory, and the prevalent theory among sex scientists today. It’s more credible than women wanting to have sex with bonobos or lions. Female sexuality is highly complex and even today not well understood.

  • Ramble

    There is a big difference between a bonafide eating disorder and recognizing you probably shouldn’t have that extra piece of bread or roll if you are already starting to push beyond 20 to 25% BF level.

    Hey Mike, before you and Susan get into a whole thing, I want to point out that, in my experience, tons and tons of girls have all sorts of weird issues with food and eating.

    Now, that does not mean that they all have genuine eating disorders (I am thinking that they are still in the minority of those girls I just referenced), but, I think it is slightly more complicated than:

    - Eating Disorder, or
    - Proper recognition of overeating or bad diet.

    I am not saying that you were saying it is that black and white, but, I am trying to do a public service in attempting to prevent a whole back-and-forth where you two end up speaking right past one another.

  • Mike C

    Hey Mike, before you and Susan get into a whole thing, I want to point out that, in my experience, tons and tons of girls have all sorts of weird issues with food and eating.

    Well….fwiw, in my experience tons of girls have all sorts of weird misconceptions when it comes to diet and exercise.

    You take me to any gym anywhere in the country with a group of guys and we identify the few that look the hottest to us, and I’ll bet my entire future income they ALL weight train. The best looking girls in any gym all hit the weights, that is how they get that toned look and build that ass from squatting that makes guys salivate. Most women are under the misconception that if they touch a weight they are going to explode with muscularity like a male bodybuilder when that is impossible because they don’t have the testosterone to make it possible.

    Regarding diet, in my experience many girls will resort to some bizarre mish-mash of crappy eating with many skipped meals or a meal with one piece of lettuce to make up for the earlier pig-out session. Proper meal/dieting is actually very simple in theory. A quality protein at each meal with a vegetable, and maybe a small serving of some starchy carb. Definitely a bit tougher in real life since it takes discipline to eat the regimented way you have to to really hit a ideal BF level. I’m all for anyone choosing and prioritizing whatever they want. If a person would rather enjoy more of that eating/food consumption part of their life in exchange for sacrificing some physical attractiveness, that is totally cool….I’m just not onboard with trying to move the goalposts of what actually is that ideal point simply to accomodate that more enjoyable/less discplined lifestyle. FWIW, I’m carrying some extra BF myself right now, but if you ask me, I’ll say “Yeah, I’m fat right now”…I won’t try to rationalize it away.

    I am not saying that you were saying it is that black and white, but, I am trying to do a public service in attempting to prevent a whole back-and-forth where you two end up speaking right past one another.

    FWIW, I wasn’t trying to start anything which is why I prefaced my statement the way I did. I had one simple point. A woman could be a size 0 or 2 and be very healthy. It would be false to say size 0 or 2 = eating disorder

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

      @Mike C

      Regarding diet, in my experience many girls will resort to some bizarre mish-mash of crappy eating with many skipped meals or a meal with one piece of lettuce to make up for the earlier pig-out session.

      This is hilariously equivalent to your views on restricted women. LMAO

  • Esau

    Just as a personal note, I can say that there are few things that I’ve found as depressing and unattractive on a date as a woman who doesn’t eat! I suppose I might be put off by real excess, like seeing a woman start on her third ice cream sundae (unassisted), but I’ve never seen that in person. What I have seen is the “You eat, I’ll just have a salad with non-fat dressing” act, and it came across as supremely un-fun; plus, how would she ever be able to appreciate my cooking? which has always been a strong suit. So, yes, the drive for ultimate thinness can be taken way, way too far, to a really unattractive degree IMO.

  • JP

    @Ramble:

    “My understanding was that the “automatic defensive reaction” idea was simply a theory.”

    It is a theory.

    However, it also makes a lot of sense, so I’m going with it unless someone disproves it.

  • Mike C

    FWIW, the entire concept of “thinness” is very misleading because it obfuscates the granularity of body composition and how that translates to actual physical appearance.

    You’ve got muscle, bone, and fat. Different people have different frames so right off the bat you’ve got significantly different bone weights you could be working with even depending on height.

    What is often referred to as “too thin” or “excessively thin” is really the dual combination of low bodyfat PLUS very low muscle weight. The person essentially gets reduced to skin hanging on bone. That is a ghastly look that I don’t know any men prefer that I’ve ever talked to. What happens with women with eating disorders is the body cannibalizes its own muscle tissue for energy, and they may not be eating enough calories to even support a certain level of muscle. Muscle is very dense so it has a high weight to volume ratio.

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

      I was curious about size zero (American). Here’s what I found:

      Measurements:

      Bust: 31.5″
      Waist: 23″
      Hips: 34″

      In recent years, many designers, including Prada, Versace, Armani and Victoria Beckham have banned runway models who are size 0 and/or have a BMI < 18.5, due to the prevalence of anorexia at that size.

  • Jesse

    If I can count a woman’s ribs, she’s too thin. I do not want to see bones.

  • OffTheCuff

    Mike is totally right about the weight-training thing. The women who really have that lithe look, and aren’t 17, lift weights. They invariably weigh a lot more than they look, clothed. Then women try to attain that look by starving without lifting. It’s sad. Eat more – just not a ton. Pick up heavy things.

    My kids godmother has gone from a lifetime obese woman, to now in the normal weight range. She still looks “chubby” due to her apple body shape and age, and probaly will never have a flat stomach as I have, but at least she’s finally broken through to the idea that LIFTING is what’s really matters to maximize what she has. (It also helps her husband lost 260 pounds and can probably quad press a car.)

    That said, I don’t have the “overweight is disgusting” mindset that so many manosphere folks do have. This doesn’t mean I’m a “fatty chaser” and only like heavy people, just that *some* overweight, even obese, women are are still attractive. It’s mostly a face thing.

  • a

    INTJ – that photo is idiotic. It’s a content farm website and the photo is a photoshopped-to-emaciation Lindsay Lohan, not a case of anorexia. Seems like you really know what you’re talking about! Eating disorders can often look like just very “normal” thin.

  • Jesse

    Everything else aside, you can’t get bigger if you don’t eat enough calories to make it happen. So any woman can lift weights, and as long as she doesn’t eat too much she won’t get bigger. Calories in, calories out.

    Having said that, given my personal preferences it’s not clear how much weight training would enhance a woman’s attractiveness. (I know muscle definition on a woman does nothing for me.) The variables she controls are lean mass (i.e. amount of muscle) and body fat percentage. But she doesn’t control the shape of her figure. So she may put a little more muscle on her posterior, sure, but I don’t see how weight training would give a woman a nice hourglass figure.

  • mr. wavevector

    This just in:

    Women with high SMV have the sexual capital to “buy” the type of relationship they want, which is exclusive relationships with fewer partners.

    McClintock’s study shows that just as good looks may be exchanged for status and financial resources, attractiveness may also be traded for control over the degree of commitment and progression of sexual activity.
    Among her findings:

    Very physically attractive women are more likely to form exclusive relationships than to form purely sexual relationships; they are also less likely to have sexual intercourse within the first week of meeting a partner. Presumably, this difference arises because more physically attractive women use their greater power in the partner market to control outcomes within their relationships.
    For women, the number of sexual partners decreases with increasing physical attractiveness, whereas for men, the number of sexual partners increases with increasing physical attractiveness.
    For women, the number of reported sexual partners is tied to weight: Thinner women report fewer partners. Thinness is a dimension of attractiveness for women, so is consistent with the finding that more attractive women report fewer sexual partners.

    And apparently, male status alone isn’t enough to get the hot babe:

    Another of McClintock’s recent studies (not yet published), titled “Desirability, Matching, and the Illusion of Exchange in Partner Selection,” tests and rejects the “trophy wife” stereotype that women trade beauty for men’s status.
    “Obviously, this happens sometimes,” she says, pointing to Donald Trump and Melania Knauss-Trump as an example.
    “But prior research has suggested that it often occurs in everyday partner selection among ‘normal’ people … noting that the woman’s beauty and the man’s status (education, income) are positively correlated, that is, they tend to increase and decrease together.”
    According to McClintock, prior research in this area has ignored two important factors:
    “First, people with higher status are, on average, rated more physically attractive — perhaps because they are less likely to be overweight and more likely to afford braces and nice clothes and trips to the dermatologist, etc.,” she says.
    “Secondly, the strongest force by far in partner selection is similarity — in education, race, religion and physical attractiveness.”
    After taking these two factors into account, McClintock’s research shows that there is not, in fact, a general tendency for women to trade beauty for money.
    “Indeed, I find little evidence of exchange, but I find very strong evidence of matching,” she says. “With some exceptions, the vast majority of couples select partners who are similar to themselves in both status and in attractiveness.”

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

      @Mr. wavevector

      Ha! The McClintock study is my next post!

  • Mike C

    Everything else aside, you can’t get bigger if you don’t eat enough calories to make it happen. So any woman can lift weights, and as long as she doesn’t eat too much she won’t get bigger. Calories in, calories out.

    This is somewhat correct. More importantly, women do not have the hormones to really build much upper body muscle. Women can build fairly sizable amount of muscle mass on their upper thighs and glutes, and there comes a point where they should not go any heavier or push any harder. Muscular hypertrophy is actually a very complex process involving a lot more than just caloric intake. Testosterone levels, growth hormone levels, fast twitch versus slow twitch muscle fibers, etc. But the main point is women simply are not going to build large upper body muscles from lifting weights, but it will help very much in giving that toned look as opposed to the “skinny fat” look many have who do nothing but cardio. Female sprinters who usually do some weight training have the look I am describing:

    http://www.multivu.com/assets/58395/photos/58395-Allyson-Felix-original.jpg?1350598111

    But she doesn’t control the shape of her figure. So she may put a little more muscle on her posterior, sure, but I don’t see how weight training would give a woman a nice hourglass figure.

    It’s true that a woman doesn’t control here bone structure. There is nothing one can do to make narrow hips much wider so a woman with very narrow hips isn’t going to be able to have the classic hourglass. I personally find a wide range of bone structures and heights attractive. I’ve been attracted to 5’2″ women and 6’0″ women. I’ve been attracted to women with wide hips and women with narrow hips. It really comes down to bodyfat % level. I probably have a much lower setpoint that I can still find attractive on a woman then the typical guy. But there is some upper point that I suspect pretty much all guys lose the ability to be attracted unless they have a fat fetish.

    About muscle on the posterior…IDK…sometimes I get confused because some discussions here bear no resemblance to any discussion with any discussion with a flesh or blood guy in real life that I’ve ever had, but based on my experience 100% of guys find a round full ass much sexier than a non-existent flat one. I’ve never had a guy say, “oh yeah, I really get turned on by a girl who has literally no ass”.

  • Jesse

    “About muscle on the posterior…IDK…sometimes I get confused because some discussions here bear no resemblance to any discussion with any discussion with a flesh or blood guy in real life that I’ve ever had, but based on my experience 100% of guys find a round full ass much sexier than a non-existent flat one. I’ve never had a guy say, “oh yeah, I really get turned on by a girl who has literally no ass”.”

    No, this is true. A girl who doesn’t naturally have much of a butt will look better if she fills it out a bit with muscle. But my strong preference is for all things soft and feminine, so there is a difference between buttocks of muscle and the natural shape of a woman with an hourglass figure. My understanding is that a shapely (not fat, just shaped like a violin) woman’s breasts and butt are basically fat. I like it to be a bit soft and jiggly – when it’s really good it drives me wild, frankly. Anything rock-hard is not my cup of tea.

    Actually, if you ever take a look you’ll see there is a huge difference in shape between masculine and feminine buttocks. To me a manly butt is just so ugly compared to a womanly one. A man’s butt, even if it’s muscular, is kind of droopy. A woman’s butt is soft and luscious and full and pert and it almost seems to stick out like a nice semicircle. Night and day in my opinion.

    No buns of steel for me – though I’d guess a lot of women like it that way.

  • Iggles

    @ Jesse:

    No, this is true. A girl who doesn’t naturally have much of a butt will look better if she fills it out a bit with muscle. But my strong preference is for all things soft and feminine, so there is a difference between buttocks of muscle and the natural shape of a woman with an hourglass figure. My understanding is that a shapely (not fat, just shaped like a violin) woman’s breasts and butt are basically fat. I like it to be a bit soft and jiggly – when it’s really good it drives me wild, frankly. Anything rock-hard is not my cup of tea.

    + 1

    This made me smile. Its true that some women are naturally thin without curves, but the vast majority of women of all sizes do have curves. In the push to live up to media meme “thin is in” they lose their feminine curves. FYI, I’m naturally slender and petite (size 4), but I still have curves.

  • SayWhaat

    But the main point is women simply are not going to build large upper body muscles from lifting weights, but it will help very much in giving that toned look as opposed to the “skinny fat” look many have who do nothing but cardio. Female sprinters who usually do some weight training have the look I am describing:

    http://www.multivu.com/assets/58395/photos/58395-Allyson-Felix-original.jpg?1350598111

    Just wanted to add that women can get that same look through dance. Depends on what kind of dance you do, but IME muscle builds more/better when you’re using your own body as a weight.

    I’ve heard that male ballet dancers don’t often use gyms, because they get jacked just through lifting other bodies.

  • J

    This made me smile. Its true that some women are naturally thin without curves, but the vast majority of women of all sizes do have curves. In the push to live up to media meme “thin is in” they lose their feminine curves. FYI, I’m naturally slender and petite (size 4), but I still have curves.

    That’s because curves are dictated by bone structure, not fat. If you have a female pelvis, you’ll have a feminine WHR.

  • J

    I found this really odd, and then you said, weeks later, that it was quite possible that he was gay…which made a lot more sense to me (even though exceptions to general rules exist everywhere).

    I actually do know a man who used to do this quite often to his STB ex-wife, who is actually a real beauty. He is a narcissist and, I believe, used her looks as part of his narcisist supply. She couldn’t just be beautiful; she had to be perfect.

  • OffTheCuff

    Definitely, your own bodyweight is the best first weight to master, counts as weightlifting in my book. I am a big proponent of old-school stuff like pull-ups and push-ups.

    J: “That’s because curves are dictated by bone structure, not fat. If you have a female pelvis, you’ll have a feminine WHR.”

    Not always. You can have a great WHR when normal weight, but when obese, that might go well over 1.0. People often put on weight non-proportionally.

  • J

    Not always. You can have a great WHR when normal weight, but when obese, that might go well over 1.0. People often put on weight non-proportionally.

    Yeah, you’re right. There are some apple-shaped heavy women, but most gain around the hips and thighs.

  • J

    There is nothing one can do to make narrow hips much wider so a woman with very narrow hips isn’t going to be able to have the classic hourglass.

    I found the one thing a woman can do. I had a kid.

    Before babies, I had the sort of narrow-hipped, large-breasted but skinny figure that Roissy so loves. After babies, hourglass. I was 5 pounds lighter after losing the baby-weight than I was before I got pregnant, but I went up a jean size. I couldn’t understand it, so I mentoned it to my gyno. He explained that pregnancy can actually change a woman pelvis.

  • OffTheCuff

    You’re so awesome, can I carry your books home??

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

    I found the one thing a woman can do. I had a kid.
    Not all women :(

  • mr. wavevector

    So it may be that the highest status girls are anorexic and because they highest status boys select from among that group, they select anorexic girls.

    Perhaps it’s the other way too; boys desire high status girls, those girls are very thin based on their own intrasexual competition, so boys develop a preference for very thin girls. It starts with the adult women that are presented as high status and beautiful to adolescent boys, like the Victoria Secrets models. In this way, the intrasexual status preferences of women could influence the intersexual preferences of the next generation of men.

    This picture is what informed the female ideal for the boys of my generation. Cheryl Tiegs was certainly slimmer than the average woman, but nothing like the anorexic models you see today.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      In this way, the intrasexual status preferences of women could influence the intersexual preferences of the next generation of men.

      Exactly. I recall reading that the universal male preference for a .7 WHR will be overridden in societies where culture dictates a different standard. I’ve posted it many times, so I won’t do it again now, but Gisele Bundchen’s WHR looks to be about .9. Any semblance of curves is strictly the work of photographers.

  • Tilikum

    This survey is hamster fodder sadly, as it doesn’t address the initial attraction cues (which most can’t verbalize) and focuses on the 10 or 20 things that the survey taker could think of.

    Once again, nobody is really asking why, a particularly female farmer trait while dealing with the maintenance of her draft horse. And its hilarious that the little male draft horses want a farmer that is kind to him, while the female farmer needs the draft horse to respect her.

    P R E D I C T A B L E

    And this is why I have taught my two boys the two most important questions when considering taking a woman as a wife, to avoid being sucked into this disgusting and pervasive cultural wasteland of involuntary servitude.

  • mr. wavevector

    the sort of narrow-hipped, large-breasted but skinny figure that Roissy so loves

    I guess that type of figure suggests a good sport sex and perhaps someone who can keep up with the guys on the mountain biking and rock-climbing outings. In other words, a buddy you can fuck.

    We breeders prefer big bottoms!.

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

      @Mr. wavevector

      One of the young women in my focus groups has a slender but curvaceous body. The other girls affectionately tease her about her “bubble butt.” I think this is ridiculous, as I would have killed for her ass in my youth. In any case, one night a group of them went out together for a drink, and as they entered the bar, she was the first in line. Watching her walk in, the bouncer turned to her friends, nodded appreciatively and said, “She does lunges.” That shut them up! (To give credit, they were happy to eat crow on that one.)

  • Bells

    @Tilikum,

    And this is why I have taught my two boys the two most important questions when considering taking a woman as a wife, to avoid being sucked into this disgusting and pervasive cultural wasteland of involuntary servitude

    So I’m curious. what is the two most important questions you tell your sons to ask when considering a wife?

  • Ion

    Susan
    “banned runway models who are size 0 and/or have a BMI < 18.5, due to the prevalence of anorexia at that size."

    Makes sense. Mila Kunis might be a size 0 and looks healthy, but a 5'10 runway model at that size would be anorexic, more than likely.

    Here is a side by side difference of Crystal Renn (this girl fluctuates constantly, but here's her before and after anorexia). I think many men would prefer her in the after image, some might prefer the earlier:

    http://considermoon.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/model-crystal-renn.png

  • Ion

    “Perhaps it’s the other way too; boys desire high status girls, those girls are very thin based on their own intrasexual competition, so boys develop a preference for very thin girls.”

    Great observation. Plus female curves are now considered too “sexy” and “scary” and threatening. Super thin fits the upper class, elegant, virginal and waspy mold much better. :-) Curves are synonymous with “cheap” looking and low class. A relatively new concept, I think.

    I just assume many more men would prefer Kate Upton.

    http://i3.mirror.co.uk/incoming/article1502405.ece/ALTERNATES/s927b/Kate+Upton+

    To Keira Knightly in a swimsuit.

    http://wondrous.ipl.netdna-cdn.com//wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Keira-Knightley-in-Bikin-37.jpg

    But we’d consider Upton to look more trashy and low class.

  • Jesse

    Ion, even Kate Upton in that picture is not what I would consider a great female figure. She’s not fat but she just looks bloated in the stomach and waist area. She has big tits and that’s about it.

    I mean no offense to her as a woman, but even questions of facial attractiveness aside her figure is far from what I’d consider superb.

    I also haven’t a clue what would be threatening about a shapely woman. Unless you mean ‘dangerous’ in the femme fatale/sex symbol sense, which is probably as much about how you flaunt it as it is about what you’ve got.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    re: Higher Status Girls Affecting Boy’s Preferences

    It may be that the girls with the highest intrasexual status are more likely to engage than the lower status girls. It’s very difficult to make conversation with someone who won’t talk to you. I always found it hard to tell the difference between terribly shy and profoundly uninterested.

    That would also be the reason girls think guys prefer bitches. It’s not that we like them, it’s that they’ll engage. If they want you to go away they have no trouble telling you to buzz off.

    Try not to be so thoroughly turned off by that awkward approach, if the rest of him doesn’t show any immediate deal breakers. Find a way to encourage him, however awkward you feel doing it. You may warm up as he does.

    Learn to be the girl who is easy to talk to. It does have drawbacks. You will have to limit the time you spend on any one guy you aren’t attracted to. Don’t string the poor guy along.

    You’ll have more choices. That has to be better.

  • SayWhaat

    Learn to be the girl who is easy to talk to. It does have drawbacks. You will have to limit the time you spend on any one guy you aren’t attracted to. Don’t string the poor guy along.

    IME, another drawback is that the guy is all too quick to assume you have a crush on him/are interested, before you even have a chance to figure out what’s going on. It’s bad when you’re unattractive and bad when you’re attractive. In other words, it’s his responsibility to manage his interest, not mine.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    IMHO Kate Upton has that dangerous version of babyface that signals spoiled brat.

    She can’t choose a swimsuit, either. It does not display her figure properly. I think it’s too small.

    I’ve seen worse pictures of Keira Knightly. She seemed to have decent muscle on her arms. When I see pipestem arms I want to check for needle marks.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    @SayWhaat

    IME, another drawback is that the guy is all too quick to assume you have a crush on him/are interested, before you even have a chance to figure out what’s going on. It’s bad when you’re unattractive and bad when you’re attractive. In other words, it’s his responsibility to manage his interest, not mine.

    I was thinking of a girl I fell for in college. She used to come looking for me. We spent hours together listening to music and talking.

    Don’t do that if your hindbrain has already vetoed him.

  • SayWhaat

    To illustrate.

    When unattractive: guy does his best to avoid you/talk shit behind your back about how he can’t get rid of the “clingy girl who has a major crush”

    When attractive: guy takes you out on dates, without informing you that they are dates. Will also probably tell other people you’ve done things you haven’t done.

    Lose-lose.

  • Ted D

    “Curves are synonymous with “cheap” looking and low class. A relatively new concept, I think.”

    Wait… What? Curvy girls are considered low class and cheap? Just one more reason I’m glad to be from humble roots. You rich guys can keep your 2×4 “girls”. I can spend an entire day riding around a woman’s curves, and when it’s all said and done I don’t feel like I’ve been throwing myself against a brick wall for hours. I will admit that dancers tend to be very nicely built, but for me that is as muscular as a woman should be. I prefer some softness when I snuggle with my wife. If she was all muscle it would feel like snuggling with a good smelling man. :-p

  • mr. wavevector

    Unless you mean ‘dangerous’ in the femme fatale/sex symbol sense, which is probably as much about how you flaunt it as it is about what you’ve got.

    ‘Dangerous’ – like this?

  • Iggles

    @ SW:

    The other girls affectionately tease her about her “bubble butt.” I think this is ridiculous, as I would have killed for her ass in my youth.

    Haters! :P
    Much like when some women proclaim their “friends” are skinny bitches. It’s immature, petty, and passive aggressive.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    @SayWhaat

    It sounds as though you’ve been burned two different ways. I hope you’ve changed social circles. It’s not worth putting up with people like that. It’s not worth putting up with people who put up with people like that.

  • Iggles

    Dinkney Pawson, re: Kate Upon -

    While I agree that her swim suit top is too small, some of your other criticisms are starting to sound like a familiar meme…

    http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/238/425/586.jpg

  • INTJ

    @ Mike C

    I do not know whether Susan meant to imply this or not but reading her statement one might conclude that women who are size 0 or 2 as a general rule might likely have an eating disorder. This would be extremely false. Any smaller framed woman (bone structure) who is at a low but still yet healthy bodyfat level could be a 0 or a 2. Medium bone structure woman maybe 2-4 and perhaps the largest bone structure maybe pushing 4-6. If you are 6 or beyond, bottom line is you have extra bodyfat you could stand to lose. The equivalent would be around a 34-36 waistline on a guy as the upper boundary.

    These women are most likely size 0s, 2s, and 4s at most. Nothing unhealthy or eating disorderish going on:

    http://www.bikinimodelfitness.com/

    There is a big difference between a bonafide eating disorder and recognizing you probably shouldn’t have that extra piece of bread or roll if you are already starting to push beyond 20 to 25% BF level. If someone wants to enjoy that food item and tradeoff some physical attractiveness so be it, but is just fiction to try and normalize that higher BF level as more attractive.

    100% cosigned.

    This is what I was trying to say earlier (but failing badly at it).

  • Iggles

    Speaking of memes, have you guys seen this?
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/unflattering-beyonce

    Those photos had me and my bf in stitches last night! My favorite is crab one (Dr Zoidberg!). His the bodybuilding one :lol:

  • Bells

    I agree with Ion. I’m a slim but curvy woman. And there are certain types of clothes that I have to avoid if I want to still seem respectable. ex: I bought a dress that technically covered every part of my body. The dress was very long, the material was not excessively tight, and its top was high—no cleavage was exposed. Yet when I put it on, my curves were highlighted waayy too much. I’m sure the dress would have fit perfectly well and still be deemed classy for a thinner woman with smaller curves. However, it was not acceptable for me. It was way too sexy for comfort so I immediately returned it.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    @Iggles

    I’m allergic to cats.

    I was commenting on the picture. The picture is not the person. Perhaps I was not clear. She does look better in video. Either way she’s acting for the camera.

    The comment about the swimsuit was personal. I thought it might be a candid shot. I was probably mistaken.

    I’ll never meet Kate Upton. I’m married. I’m too old for her anyway. When I was her age she was out of my league. I think I might have maneuvered for a closer look and then sheered away.

  • some guy

    “Digital offenses most women won’t put up with – a person who wouldn’t allow their date to use their phone (74% vs. 48%) password protected their phone (42% vs. 29% of men), was secretive with emails (76% vs. 53% of men), answered calls discretely (69% vs. 47%) or limited their Facebook profile (58% vs. 37% of men).”

    Are security and privacy completely foreign concepts to these retards?

    Modern phones are connected to so many online services that it’s insane to not have a lock of some kind. An unauthorized person uses your phone and suddenly he’s got access to your e-mail and Facebook, and more. And if you trust someone so little that you have to search their phone, then maybe it’s time to go your separate ways.

    I don’t limit my Facebook profile because I don’t have one. I guess that makes me “secretive” and therefore undateable.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    some guy is right.

    My life is on my phone. Of course it’s password protected. No, you can’t borrow it.

    People, password protect your phones now. Back them up frequently. Subscribe to Find My iPhone or whatever the equivalent is so you can wipe them remotely.

    While I’m thinking about it, I had better go back mine up.

  • Jesse

    That sounds more like self-consciousness than a genuine problem with the dress, Bells. Unless people really are judging you for the shape of your body, in which case my first reaction is to say screw them.

    Can’t a woman modify how she acts depending on how sexy she wants to come across? If you’re perfectly reserved, polite and chaste then is this still a problem?

    Hell of a problem to have. I’d have to say it’s a damn shame if your body is so stunning that you feel you have to wear a paper bag. ;-)

  • Iggles

    @ Bells:

    I agree with Ion. I’m a slim but curvy woman. And there are certain types of clothes that I have to avoid if I want to still seem respectable

    Same here!

    I tend to wear sweater dresses in the winter. They look great on me, but I’ve got junk in my trunk (which my bf loves!) so when I’m at work I usually layer it with a loose black sweater that minimizes my curves.

    @ some guy:

    Are security and privacy completely foreign concepts to these retards?

    I hear what you’re saying, but I view those as red flags. I don’t snoop through my boyfriend’s phone, but I know his password to unlock it and he knows mine. Whilead we don’t share email and Facebook passwords (I don’t see the practical need for us to “have to” sign into each other’s account), I would be offended if he placed me on limited profile! It would make me feel like he doesn’t trust me and is hiding something.

    @ Dinkney Pawson:

    I’m allergic to cats.

    Aww! Guess you really are one of the 2 out of 10 then! ;)

  • Jesse

    When they said ‘digital offenses most women won’t put up with’ I thought it was about sticking your fingers where it’s not welcome.

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

      When they said ‘digital offenses most women won’t put up with’ I thought it was about sticking your fingers where it’s not welcome.

      ROFL!

  • Bells

    @Dinkney Pawson,

    It may be that the girls with the highest intrasexual status are more likely to engage than the lower status girls. It’s very difficult to make conversation with someone who won’t talk to you. I always found it hard to tell the difference between terribly shy and profoundly uninterested

    As an introverted girl, I really like your advice. Being quiet definitely creates more of a stumbling block for attracting the men that you desire. In the past weeks, I’ve been working on making more sustained direct eye contact, smiling, and being open to talk for just about everyone. It does feel awkward but I know it’ll prove useful in the long run.

    I think I’ve already got the avoiding-people-that-I’m-not-interested-in down pat! So, I don’t think men will have trouble with misconstruing my intentions.

  • HanSolo

    @Bells

    Never underestimate the male ability to misconstrue intentions. ;)

    And you really must go buy that dress again.

  • Bells

    @Iggles,

    Speaking of memes, have you guys seen this?
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/unflattering-beyonce
    Those photos had me and my bf in stitches last night! My favorite is crab one (Dr Zoidberg!). His the bodybuilding one

    Those pictures are hilarious! This is my first time hearing of this meme. Not that I would love Beyonce any less; everyone has their ugly angles!

    @Jesse,

    That sounds more like self-consciousness than a genuine problem with the dress, Bells. Unless people really are judging you for the shape of your body, in which case my first reaction is to say screw them

    Yea you’re right. It probably has to do with self-conscious issues. After hearing since childhood that girls should dress conservatively- it’s hard to let that mindset completely go. But I completely agree. It’s great for a woman to look sexy on occasions. Another thing I have to work on.

  • SayWhaat

    I hope you’ve changed social circles. It’s not worth putting up with people like that. It’s not worth putting up with people who put up with people like that.

    Yep, I have.

  • Emmanuel Viaud

    What’s the most sensitive and productive way of spending a freezing sunday evening (-2 c in Prague, oh la la), when your way-too-young-beloved-one breaks away for the week end to go get some counseling/hearing session from her grandma? HUS springs to mind -:).
    @Susan:
    Nails, shoes, grammar, electronic devices they carry, teeth, cars….? Are you people kidding, or was this put as a serious set of questions in the first place? Next, “the tooth paste tube pressed in the middle” or the “toilet seat kept down” cited as reasons for a break up?……
    What kind of studies are those, and based on how many answers? As much as I’m willing to take some studies seriously, that kind of rubbish won’t do. Offthecuff #29 comment was my first initial reaction.
    Susan, although I understand that you post these studies for the sake of discussion, I however sometime think you put too much emphasis on those surveys which are, anyway, based on superficial and biased questions, along with the fact that “science” won’t give us all the answers.
    As for one-night stands, the singles survey found that 44% of wo men and 63% of men had ever had one. Of those, 33% said it had turned into a relationship.
    Again, how many people from the 18/30 age range were asked about this? Below 900, you know this is rubbish math, just like all polls below that number. I very much doubt that the multiple one night standers are that populous.
    @ViconteAnyone else notice weight was conspicuously absent on the ‘ten things judge’ list?
    Yes, of course. I noticed that right away. The PC adapted studies (since the weight problem hits the majority of the people now in America)…. Funny it is not even mentioned in any of the categories by that study………………..which means it makes no sense.

    @loklandFemale virginity at worst induces an eww factor because its emotionally entangling.
    Male virginity is a sign of great failure. The response would be closer to visceral repulsion/outright avoidance.

    Yes, it’s true, although in my own case I could very much be as emotionally involved with a non virgin girl, whatever the number, who cares. It’s all about the way you meet, the chemistry, character, etc. There are no rules in this domain. Well, maybe “grace” is. However, your comment about male virginity is more than spot on, as most women will always look up to a man with a bigger number, as, among other things, a sign of dominance, confidence, experience, etc.
    @MrWavelectorI see this as a positive thing. The male gender roles of protector and provider are just not sustainable in today’s society. Both sexes need to let go of their expectations on men performing these roles.
    Yes, yet deep inside women won’t be satisfied by this either.

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

      @Emmanuel
      Is this a permanent switch from Damien?

      I’m glad you turn to us when your beloved is away. She is obviously not way too young for you, so you can stop saying that now!

      Point taken re the surveys. You’re not alone, as you can see. I confess to succumbing to temptation sometimes when these surveys come out and get a lot of press. I can put up a post like this in an hour or less. With more than 600 posts under my belt a no-brainer is very welcome on occasion. Also, as you say, they do spark some interesting discussions. Personally, I think the value is highly variable – but not always low.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    @HanSolo

    Never underestimate the human ability to misconstrue intentions.

    @Bells

    Yea you’re right. It probably has to do with self-conscious issues. After hearing since childhood that girls should dress conservatively- it’s hard to let that mindset completely go. But I completely agree. It’s great for a woman to look sexy on occasions. Another thing I have to work on.

    Don’t think of it as a liability. A woman who always dresses to show off her body cannot modulate her signal the way you can.

  • Ramble

    It’s not possible to fall in love without being profoundly sexually attracted.

    Susan, as you have noted many times, fat people are getting married in droves. I know that you usually like to follow that up with something like, “Well, if they are getting married, then, the man must be attracted to her”, but, I would like to think that deep in your heart you know that isn’t true.

    Tons and tons of guys “fall in love” with girls that they were not initially attracted to. But, for other reasons (often enough, loneliness plays a big factor), they do “fall in love”.

    So, I am still curious since you never answered the question, “Would you be happy at all knowing that he really wasn’t that attracted to her?”.

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

      @Ramble

      So, I am still curious since you never answered the question, “Would you be happy at all knowing that he really wasn’t that attracted to her?”

      I didn’t answer it because I don’t think it applies. Falling in love occurs at a state of heightened attraction and arousal. It is not possible without sexual attraction.

      However, I wouldn’t be happy to hear that anyone was in a relationship with someone they were not attracted to.

  • Ramble

    This picture is what informed the female ideal for the boys of my generation.

    wavevector, that picture was a poster. That was full-boobed, full-hipped dorm room poster material.

    The posters that go up on guys wall today are not much different: full-boobed and full-hipped.

    Yet, those girls are not the high status women that are being referred to when speaking about the ultra-thin set.

    So, I can see boys from Exeter developing a preference for the ultra-thin set, but, in general, boys are still showing a preference for girls with hips and tits.

  • Ramble

    @mr. wavevector

    In this way, the intrasexual status preferences of women could influence the intersexual preferences of the next generation of men.

    Exactly.

    No, not exactly. See previous comment.

  • Ramble

    Ignore comment 249. I had meant to include that comment in the previous comment and then when I realized I hadn’t I was too abrasive in how I referenced it.

  • J

    J: I found the one thing a woman can do. I had a kid.
    Ana: Not all women

    J: That’s only because you have the audacity to continue to be tall and thin. Come the revolution, all former models will be shot, and I and the other vertically challenged women will be considered tall and sylph-like. ;-)

  • Emmanuel

    @J
    That’s only because you have the audacity to continue to be tall and thin. Come the revolution, all former models will be shot, and I and the other vertically challenged women will be considered tall and sylph-like. .

    Well, you know about all those “marketing momentary female criterias”. It is rubbish, of course. The fashion industry/movie industry (well, just Hollywood in this case)….

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

    J: That’s only because you have the audacity to continue to be tall and thin. Come the revolution, all former models will be shot, and I and the other vertically challenged women will be considered tall and sylph-like.

    Yikes! I’m going to start slouching again that sure take some inches off, or maybe I will get voluptuous with the second kid, ;)

    I am surprised men would.
    I’m not. Someone mentioned here that women are filters and men are nets meaning that a man will rationalize everything from a willing female in order to get sex. I’m sure the most unrestricted guys will quit it and hit it but I suspect restricted guys might be more likely to fall for the willing female if she offers enough incentives. Really our species has to reproduce like Terminator said paraphrasing: “Healthy specimens in the peak of their fertility, it shouldn’t be that complicated” Its not we make it complicated with a lot of other things but in the end is not that hard, YMMV.

    I also haven’t a clue what would be threatening about a shapely woman.

    She is fertile and fecund? = not a lot of fun. I think the unrestricted are caught in the dilemma of wanting to bang the most willing and the most fertile without having to take care of the offspring so probably willing takes precedence over fertility, YMMV.

  • mr. wavevector

    I also haven’t a clue what would be threatening about a shapely woman.

    As Dinkney Pawson put it, “When I was her age she was out of my league.”

    A shapely woman has high SMV. If you are a male with a high libido but an SMV lower than hers, you experience two incongruent emotions when you look at her: a shock of desire that surges through you like electricity and makes your head spin; and an oppressive sense of inferiority, knowing you will never inspire a reciprocal desire in her – if she even notices you at all.

    It’s that awareness of an overwhelming mismatch in sexual power that makes a very shapely woman intimidating to many men. Most men have experienced this – one that hasn’t must be very unusual in some way. He might have a very high SMV, a very low libido, or some personality disorder that makes him unaware or impervious to social dynamics.

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

    one that hasn’t must be very unusual in some way. He might have a very high SMV, a very low libido, or some personality disorder that makes him unaware or impervious to social dynamics.
    Or he might be wired to invest more in closely matched females instead of wasting precious time on females so beyond reality. ;)

  • Jesse

    Wavevector, I thought the context was that hourglass figures have become more threatening than they were in the past.

    At any rate I’m a little harder to intimidate than that, and without sounding like an asshole my bar as to what constitutes a very attractive woman is set fairly high, so I don’t reflexively drool over the first halfway decent-looking thing that walks down the street.

    I also tend to believe that women aren’t the only ones who can derive significant power from their physiques, which may help me avoid being psyched out so easily. In a nutshell my sentiment is that anyone anointed as smoking hot is put into a dominant position, because they can tease, arouse and deny at will. I do not like to give the woman that control.

    As for SMV (sexual market value?) I’m firmly of the opinion that whatever mine is now, I can raise it significantly by using my time productively – acquiring skills, creating a more attractive physique, and so on.

    So on balance… no, I do not think I’d find a shapely woman intimidating. If I find her attractive I will pursue her.

  • HanSolo

    Or he might be wired to invest more in closely matched females instead of wasting precious time on females so beyond reality.

    Yeah, most men aren’t wired that way.

  • HanSolo

    To most men it’s an involuntary reaction towards that type of woman that sets his heart raising and his &!@# rising.

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

    Yeah, most men aren’t wired that way.
    How do you know? That they are most I mean. You need to remember that I used to model and although I’m not that high I had seen men that are blind to this hotties, weird but true and not they are not gay. Is the same that having some women here that don’t find Chris Hemsworth attractive to use a comparison.

  • Emmanuel

    @Susan
    Is this a permanent switch from Damien?
    I guess this will have to be it from now on. That’s my real first name anyway, so better than that “Damien”-dreadful name -:) Besides, hiding behind pseudonyms feels false in the long run…
    I’m glad you turn to us when your beloved is away. She is obviously not way too young for you, so you can stop saying that now!
    Is “Us” meaning HUS, or something else? You’re right, I should shut up about it anyway. Yet, those men/women differences are at times more than tiring/facinating/complicated, and, after 20 years of a more than sizeable experience with the fairer sex, downright puzzling… Enfin bref, I’m already running out of adjectives, although not in a bitter way by any means. Yes, in the end, vive la différence.
    As for surveys… as of today, the only ones I’ve ever trusted were the ones giving you “solid, verifiable” sociological numbers such as the divorce, mariage, nuptial % rate, etc. The rest is often interesting but more often than not, not very scientific and based on “opinions”, media/fashion trends, etc. Let’s beware of that soul- eating/trend-setting crocodile called the mass-media. I know some of the inside out of it in some areas, and it is neither a pretty picture nor the people living off it any prettier.

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

      @Emmanuel

      Is “Us” meaning HUS, or something else?

      Ah, I mean this smallish community of HUS regulars in the comment threads. For me, there are certain names which are of course familiar, and I am always happy to see those people pop up in a thread. Some have been around for 3 or 4 years now! We have shared important life events as well as opinions. Yours is one of those names now – though it will take me a minute to get used to Emmanuel, which I agree is a much nicer name.

  • HanSolo

    @Anacaona

    Though I didn’t state it, to be more detailed, for every man, there is a subset of women, likely few, maybe many for a few really horny guys, that will set his heart racing and give him an OMG feeling, even bordering on feeling punched in the gut when he comes across that woman in person that pushes all or most of his buttons. Most times, they will be out of his league. That involuntary reaction of overwhelming attraction is what I was referring to.

    That doesn’t necessarily mean he pursues her or spends his time on her. Likely he doesn’t because she’s likely out of his league.

    My point is broader than Wavevector’s talking about shapely women, though his point is valid as a subset of the larger phenomenon. It could be a face or a curve or the right kind of cleavage, whatever specifically happens to trigger that man.

    As to models, not all of them are stunning to every (or even any) man necessarily. Most runway models are far too thin for my taste though I am more of a face man so I can give some leeway on the body if the face is pretty. Alessandra Ambrosia is really hot in my eyes, mostly because of her face and because she’s not fat. However, if her hips were wider and her bones were slightly thicker she’d be even sexier in my eyes.

  • Emmanuel

    Falling in love occurs at a state of heightened attraction and arousal. It is not possible without sexual attraction. (…) However, I wouldn’t be happy to hear that anyone was in a relationship with someone they were not attracted to.
    That should be a quote framed on the wall above every teenager’s bed, regardless of their gender. And beyond teenage life as well, of course. If truth exists, then this statement is part of it. There is no “adjustement” or “going around it” to be made from that. Wether this is fair or not is a silly, self exhausting debate.

  • HanSolo

    An example that’s sort of similar to what Mr. Wavevector described happened to me in high school. It was torture. This non-fat girl with some of the biggest breasts in school (and with a fairly pretty face too) sat beside me in class. One day she wore a transparent shirt with opaque fabric only on the upper front half. So from the side, when she put her elbows on her desk and leaned forward you could just see right into her shapely and tantalizing bra and boobage.

    I think that naughty temptress did it on purpose to torture me, in just the right way so that I could see in, while pretending she had no idea in the world. I kept stealing peaks, feeling guilty as a religious lad, and then staring some more. My heart was racing, my gut felt queasy and I just wanted her so bad.

    However, she had a bf and so this was just 100% cock teasing from my point of view. I wanted her but she was out of reach, and knowing that her drama-club, long-ugly-curly-haired bf with a drab olive colored coated was fucking her and sucking those tits made it even worse. I haven’t forgotten that hour of torture to this day.

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

      @HanSolo

      I wanted her but she was out of reach, and knowing that her drama-club, long-ugly-curly-haired bf with a drab olive colored coated was fucking her and sucking those tits made it even worse.

      There’s that male competition again, as well as the usual male disdain for the hipster! I do find this fascinating, as it is so far outside the female experience. This kind of wanting would never happen to a girl in a classroom, nor would a visualization of a hot guy having sex with his gf. Once we cared about a guy, of course his exes would come back to haunt us to some extent – women have “fuck phantoms” too.

  • Emmanuel

    A shapely woman has high SMV. If you are a male with a high libido but an SMV lower than hers, you experience two incongruent emotions when you look at her: a shock of desire that surges through you like electricity and makes your head spin; and an oppressive sense of inferiority, knowing you will never inspire a reciprocal desire in her – if she even notices you at all. ??
    Something I experienced only ONCE, because I was still way too unexperienced and all too willing to put the fairer sex on a pedestal, yet not in a naive way. I don’t think I’ve ever had a personality disorder (for whatever that means) nor a higher SMV (again, for whatever that means).
    I’ve dated truly oustanding women over the years, some both incredibly attractive and intelligent, but with an intelligence and/or sensuality often very differently orientated than mine at the time, and that is that. All this comes down to variations, meeting the right one at the right moment, etc.

  • Jesse

    See Han, I’d either pursue her for sex or I’d completely ignore her, not too kindly I might add if she was indeed being a teasing bitch.

    There’s nothing wrong with finding her attractive or trying your hand, but I flatly refuse to let the woman be in charge like that.

  • Ion

    Iggles re Beyoncé meme.

    “(Dr Zoidberg!). ”

    Yeah, that one was my favorite! Too funny for words!

    P.S. why won’t they add Futurama to Adult Swim in place of Robot Chicken???

  • Mike C

    How do you know? That they are most I mean. You need to remember that I used to model and although I’m not that high I had seen men that are blind to this hotties, weird but true and not they are not gay.

    It isn’t a question of “wiring” but of “conditioning”. It is possible for a guy to desensitize himself to that “awe inspiring/intimidation” effect high to very high SMV/physically attractive women can have. I’ll be graphic for effect, but it is possible to get to a state of mind where you internalize they sit on the toilet and take a sh*t just like everyone else, and there is no reason to find them intimidating. Repeated exposure and interaction can help which is why the guys you are talking about were that way.

  • Dinkney Pawson

    @Anacaona

    Please don’t slouch. It does not make you look shorter. It makes you look deformed.

    Tall women have many advantages. I’ve mentioned some before.

    Do your bit to Keep America Beautiful.

  • Ion

    Bells, Iggles, Jesse, and Ted D, +1 re your comments!

    Mr. Wavevector:

    “It’s that awareness of an overwhelming mismatch in sexual power that makes a very shapely woman intimidating to many men. Most men have experienced this – one that hasn’t must be very unusual in some way. He might have a very high SMV, a very low libido, or some personality disorder that makes him unaware or impervious to social dynamics.”

    Very possible. We can watch Keira Knightly prance around in a wetsuit ’til the cows come home, its not considered as explicit since she doesn’t have big boobs and hips.

    Marilyn Monroe type would receive more explicit sexual comments/be considered more provocative than Audrey Hepburn would, even if they wore the same clothes. What is a classy tight black dress on Hepburn would be Marilyn showing off her body for attention, even if their behaviors and personalities were quite similar.

  • Ion

    “Tall women have many advantages. I’ve mentioned some before. ”

    Tall women? Advantages?

    I’m intrigued.

  • HanSolo

    @Jesse and Mike C

    Some guys may not feel it ever or much but I was talking about most guys feeling it once in a while, with the right girl that for whatever reasons triggers him.

    Of course, conditioning or experience can inure a man to that reaction to a degree, even a large degree. Another manifestation of that might be to tamp down that feeling if it’s noticed, whereas some men may naturally or via effort come to the point where they never feel that overwhelming flood of attraction.

  • Ramble

    Falling in love occurs at a state of heightened attraction and arousal. It is not possible without sexual attraction.

    OK, well, I had made sure that the “falling in love” part was always in quotes for a reason, but, I will follow you path instead.

    So, if I am following you, this is what I am getting:
    1. We can’t fall in love unless we are sexually attracted
    2. Tons and tons of overweight* girls, and guys, want love (* forget the obese, they make up a relatively small and unique portion of the population. It is much more fruitful to focus on the overweight like Lena Dunham)
    3. Even if some overweight, or otherwise unattractive, girl (or guy) hears their significant other say “I love you”, they should be suspect.

    With these things in mind, and knowing that we are fatter than we have ever been, what might a popular and influential blogger tell her female followers?

    ===================================

    Susan, there is a reason why this is a hobby horse of mine. The modern narrative basically won’t touch it with a (realistic) ten foot pole. Girls have worked overtime to make sure that the subject is completely taboo and that all BFs and Husbands be immediately beheaded the second they make the tinyiest mistake regarding the subject. Popular Culture has overloaded itself with sources of “You are beautiful just the way you are and if he does not love you (i.e. is attracted to you) as you are then that means there is something wrong with him, not you.”.

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

      @Ramble

      I assume that the market will sort out the question of female attractiveness. Obese women don’t have many suitors, right? Or perhaps their suitors are obese men?

      People know when they are in love, and when someone is in love with them. I urge everyone, male and female, fat and thin, to avoid entering marriage unless one is head over heels. Outside the culture of arranged marriage, I can’t even imagine a marriage without that level of emotional investment lasting.

  • Ion

    Bells

    “And there are certain types of clothes that I have to avoid if I want to still seem respectable.”

    Totally get what you mean. Why not still buy it, and surprise a guy you’re dating in the future by wearing it after your first couple of dates? You sound like you have a perfect body, and I’m sure it would be a nice surprise outfit for a lucky guy . :-D

  • Jesse

    But Han, it’s not attraction that’s the issue. (And that sounded more like lust anyway.) I love full breasts as much as the next guy. The issue I was speaking to was who held control in the situation. If you’re panting and sweating and your heart is pounding and you keep trying to steal glances at her breasts, you’re not in control. If she caught you looking, what would you do? If you would quickly look away then you’re not in control.

    It’s fine to be very attracted. I just insist on being in control. I’m not saying it’s easy, but either go for it or forget about her.

  • Emmanuel

    Mike c …and there is no reason to find them intimidating. Repeated exposure and interaction can help…
    Oui, spot on. And girls who melt for their “George Clowneys” should keep that in mind as well. There’s always a fine line between being physically attracted and being a sucker for beauty, i/e a whimpy poodle. Repeated interaction, among other things, solves the “problem” over the years.

  • Mike C

    Of course, conditioning or experience can inure a man to that reaction to a degree, even a large degree. Another manifestation of that might be to tamp down that feeling if it’s noticed, whereas some men may naturally or via effort come to the point where they never feel that overwhelming flood of attraction.

    As Jesse is kind of alluding to, I think there is a distinction between what you FEEL and then managing your outward reaction/display. I think there will always be that powerful attraction effect felt especially if it a woman that is really your “type” but then do you keep control or do you turn into a salivating, supplicating guy. I’ve been around guys where you get a hot girl around, like say a server at a bar, and they are just pathetic.

    It’s like poker. You’ve got to get to that point where you are sitting with a royal flush or full house but don’t show a single outward sign of how great your cards are otherwise the whole table will fold if you sit there grinning like a guy who just won the lotto. In my experience, I think really hot women have a positive reaction to a guy who it seems like don’t get hypnotized by their physical attractiveness.

  • Jesse

    And I can more or less guarantee that however much a woman tries to arouse or tease you, a slobbering mess of a man is not what she’ll find attractive.

    If you turned the tables and went for it maybe you had a ten percent chance. But if you sit there and piss your pants then I’d peg you at zero.

    (I’m not ragging on you specifically – just trying to flesh this out, partly for my own edification)

  • HanSolo

    @Jesse

    Control is good.

    I was talking more about attraction and lust (however you want to call it) and that sometimes the right woman comes along and you feel a wave of involuntary desire. What a guy does with it is up to him and not obsessing on it and giving up his power is the smart way to respond.

    OTOH, there will be some guys that are so desperate that they will go around looking for any woman to lust after and obsess over and create that kind of feeling in themselves and give away all their power.

  • Emmanuel

    @Ion. Tall women? Advantages?
    I’m intrigued.

    Why should you be? I think it all comes down to the fact that tall women generally have long legs. It is not the height per say. To me, legs, along with hips and breasts, are a naturally very attractive factor when it comes to female desirability.
    The down side of it is that the fashion industry tends to focus solely on the leg factor when it comes to female beauty…

  • Mike C

    Re “curves”, “thinness”, etc….I’ll make this point one more time…you can distill any appearance to some combination of bone structure, muscle mass level, and bodyfat. There is no other magical component that contributes to body shape.

    I like “curves” as well, but the problem is many use that as a euphemism for being fat/having excessive bodyfat. The most prominent “curve” on a woman is going to be her waist to hip ratio. Her bone structure is obviously very important here. A woman with wider hips is going to have more “curves” right off the bat.

    Now men and women generally speaking have different bodyfat storage patterns. Most men store the bulk of their bodyfat in their abdomen. The vast majority of it gets directed there. Its why right now I still have defined muscular arms but I have a gut. I couldn’t look at myself and not laugh if I tried to say my excess stomach fat was just “curves”.

    Women tend to store a good chunk of their bodyfat in their hips, glutes, upper thighs. Now I actually agree that a certain amount of bodyfat there is aesthetically pleasing and has a smoothing effect since fat layers on top of muscle (except for visceral fat). I think Jesse was talking about this in terms of preferring a smooth, softness. That is the fatty issue on top of the muscle. Now at some point, that fat level being piled more and more on the hips and glutes and thighs is just plain unattractive. Different guys are probably going to have different preferences. But as that fat level on the hips goes up and up and up and up, at some point its just nonsense to maintain that as “feminine curves”. No, at some point you are fat.

  • HanSolo

    @Jesse and Mike C

    My original point was in response to Anacaona seemingly implying that some men are wired to just focus their attention on someone in their league. I replied that most men will feel high lust for a particular woman that is really his type, just to point out that though the guy may focus on women in his league he still will feel that strong lust or attraction occasionally for that hot woman.

    To be fair, I think Anac. was probably meaning that a guy could feel high attraction for a certain woman out of his league but was “wired” or conditioned to be more realistic and not waste time on the hot woman.

  • Mike C

    Why should you be? I think it all comes down to the fact that tall women generally have long legs. It is not the height per say. To me, legs, along with hips and breasts, are a naturally very attractive factor when it comes to female desirability.
    The down side of it is that the fashion industry tends to focus solely on the leg factor when it comes to female beauty…

    Yes, generally speaking, more of female height comes from legs compared to men whereas more of male height comes from torso length. I’m 6’3″ and wear a 34″ long jeans and that is even slightly long. Many women who are 5’10 to 6’2″ actually have longer legs than that with some models sporting 36 or even 38 inch long legs. And then there is Stacy Keibler who has 42″ legs at 5’10″ who incidentally is dating George Clooney

    http://search.aol.com/aol/image?q=stacy+keibler+legs&v_t=aolrt-ff&s_it=searchtabs

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

      Looking at the pics of Stacy Keibler, I wondered about her age. She is 33. Interesting that George Clooney prefers that post-wall depreciating asset, especially for his typical shortish window. :)

  • Mike C

    My original point was in response to Anacaona seemingly implying that some men are wired to just focus their attention on someone in their league. I replied that most men will feel high lust for a particular woman that is really his type, just to point out that though the guy may focus on women in his league he still will feel that strong lust or attraction occasionally for that hot woman.

    Well…I agree with basically all of your points. But yes, the 3 guy, the 5 guy, and the 7 guy ALL feel strong lust/attraction for the female 9. Ana’s point though brings up the interesting idea that this isn’t true in reverse. In other words, the 3 woman, or the 5 woman does NOT feel strong lust/attraction for the 8-9 guy because she immediately rules him out as out of her league. That said, most guys are well aware of say 5-7 women who basically are just harem booty calls for 8-9 guys. Not sure how to reconcile that…perhaps the restricted/unrestricted plays into that somehow. Perhaps less attractive restricted women are “wired” to not be attracted to say 8-9 men.

    To be fair, I think Anac. was probably meaning that a guy could feel high attraction for a certain woman out of his league but was “wired” or conditioned to be more realistic and not waste time on the hot woman.

  • HanSolo

    It seemed like Anac. was either denying or ignoring the attraction/lust that most men will feel when she said they were wired to just focus on women in their league and not waste time on the hot chick.

    But how they choose to act is very different than whether they feel the lust for some particular women or not.

    I was trying to point out that most men will feel that strong lust for some (possibly small) subset of women.

    Now, what they do about that is a totally different matter.

    I just wanted to make sure that it was understood that most men will feel a strong lust for at least a short burst of time for some subset of women.

  • HanSolo

    @Mike C

    Not sure on the exact percentages but it’s probably 90/10 for straight guys feeling quite a bit of sudden lust/attraction for women (that are attractive to them) while it’s probably 20/80 that way for women and a lot of women take anywhere from a few hours to even days or months to feel that strongly for a man.

  • Emmanuel

    Many women who are 5’10 to 6’2″ actually have longer legs than that with some models sporting 36 or even 38 inch long legs. And then there is Stacy Keibler who has 42″ legs at 5’10″ who incidentally is dating George Clooney
    Ouch, I’m lost when the metric system is not used. Anyway, I agree. Most of the time, women’s height comes from their legs. As for that girl dating Clowney, well… I’m sure she has enough spare time counting the flies on the bedroom wall, LOL…

  • Jesse

    Mike C,

    Fat storage patterns are exactly on point. A woman with the right genetics will store fat in just the right places, and she needs fat in those places in order to reach her greatest sex appeal in my eyes.

    If the waist starts to grow then the whole thing goes kaput. But the best bits on a woman are fat.

    As far as ordinary women lusting after attractive men, there are examples of this phenomenon. Elvis, the Beatles, just about any big-time sports star, etc.

    Someone also mentioned women in the ’5-7 range’ being booty calls for attractive men. Personally I’m a little conflicted about this. I love sex and want to get busy with just about any attractive woman I see, but the catch is just that – I have to find them attractive. Being able to procure some mediocre-looking woman at the drop of a hat so I can stick my penis into her just doesn’t sound that enticing.

    I’d say it’s a balance. High sex drive… but some standards too.

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

    I just wanted to make sure that it was understood that most men will feel a strong lust for at least a short burst of time for some subset of women.
    I will agree with most but this is a subject thing. Again I had seen women really hot that some men find ‘cold’ heck I had a friend that dated a famous dancer, she really looks like a swimsuit model filled up in the right parts, she could pass as double of a Hollywood star and he bolted halfway it because he was not feeling it and the guy was not a high SMV.
    So yeah I don’t think a man that doesn’t get it up for a type of woman is necessarily low libido is just that he doesn’t have it in him to get it up, YMMV.

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

    Tall women have many advantages. I’ve mentioned some before.

    I’m no that tall 5’8″but I’m a few inches taller than J so she likes to give me crap about it, Is all in good faith :p

  • Jesse

    And regarding 90/10 for men and 20/80 for women, I don’t have much evidence for this but my gut tells me that people vastly overestimate the difference between men and women in this regard.

  • HanSolo

    @Jesse

    As to women feeling lust for these 0.1%-ers like Elvis and the Beattles, I would agree that a much higher percentage than the 20% I gave would feel it.

    It would be interesting to see if they would feel that way if they had never heard of them and were just dumped into the concert and heard the other girls screaming. I bet a lot of those would feel some strong lust but there might be others that wouldn’t as much but if they had had three or six months prior to listen to their music and daydream about them then they would.

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

      Teenage girls screaming for the Beatles were experiencing heightened emotions of a romantic nature, not lust. I was one of them, so I know. We fantasized about meeting Paul (or J, G, or R), dating them, our first kiss, and then a procession up the aisle.

      I can guarantee that at Shea Stadium in 1965 the hysteria was not based on visual images of Beatle penises.

  • Jesse

    To elaborate on 293 a bit, it is commonly understood that there is a mechanism by which a man is willing to drop his pants and get to business at more or less first sight of the right woman.

    I believe there is a similar mechanism for most women that society tends to forget about. It might not be quite as strong, but it’s there, and it might be quite a bit stronger than people would think.

    It’s commonly assumed that women are the sexy ones who can flaunt it and be sex bombs. I’m guessing men can do this as well, moreso than is commonly thought. A lot of emphasis is put on status for men, which isn’t necessarily wrong at all. I just have a hunch that the right man could pull off some pretty impressive things even if he weren’t world famous and women didn’t know about him beforehand.

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

      I believe there is a similar mechanism for most women that society tends to forget about. It might not be quite as strong, but it’s there, and it might be quite a bit stronger than people would think.

      This may be true for the few women who are wired very much like men, but in general this statement is false. Female arousal is complex and takes time. There is no female equivalent to “boner at first sight.” Attraction, yes. Desire, no.

  • Ion

    “Ouch, I’m lost when the metric system is not used. Anyway, I agree. Most of the time, women’s height comes from their legs. ”

    6’3 dad is a 34 inch inseam, 6’5 brother sometimes borrows pants from Dad. But a 37 inch inseam is perfect on me, and I’m 6′..I usually get the 38s and roll the cuff up. Much easier than having to use the seam ripper to remove the stitching at the bottom, and then ironing out the cuff on a 36…but anyway.

    “Perhaps less attractive restricted women are “wired” to not be attracted to say 8-9 men.”

    I fit into this camp. I rarely find guys 7-10 attractive because I assume they’re out of my league. I can see a handsome face, but I don’t get tingles because I can’t see how the relationship would be possible.

    My female friends (all attractive) have made fun of me for liking “unattractive men” though…so I know it’s possible that I’m an outlier, I’ve even heard “why do you like that unattractive guy?” from male acquaintances. There are also a lot of friends who would even prefer a man younger than themselves with a nice body to one who is older and looks like a “loser” (that pensive and slightly seasoned look I love so much that all the exes and dates have had). Many of them were unrestricted, so, it could be that combined with NYC culture, no idea.

  • Emmanuel

    I believe there is a similar mechanism for most women that society tends to forget about. It might not be quite as strong, but it’s there, and it might be quite a bit stronger than people would think.
    Oh yes… much more than most people would think. And I won’t comment any further on that one. However, it is not so much something that society tends to forget about as much as it is something not as easily accepted, at least in the (yawn, again) anglo-saxon cultures.
    Make any woman feel right at what is for her the right moment, and for the right reasons, and there you go…
    I would say that the main “raw” difference is that when it comes to making love, men often just need, say, a chair, a table, a matress, etc, whereas a woman needs a reason first.

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

      Make any woman feel right at what is for her the right moment, and for the right reasons, and there you go…

      That is more like it. Hardly at first sight.

  • HanSolo

    @Jesse

    I agree that many women are capable of feeling intense lust and infatuation quickly. However, I think it is a much smaller % of men that are able to inspire that in her than the % of women that can inspire it in men. Also, I would suspect the number of men that would be willing to fuck quickly after meeting is larger (with a wider range of females that they’d be willing to do it with) than vice versa.

  • Mike C

    Also, I would suspect the number of men that would be willing to fuck quickly after meeting is larger (with a wider range of females that they’d be willing to do it with) than vice versa.

    Han,

    Can’t find the link now, but this test was run on a college campus, and the results confirmed exactly that.

  • HanSolo

    @Mike C

    I’m familiar with those results.

  • Bells

    @Ion

    Totally get what you mean. Why not still buy it, and surprise a guy you’re dating in the future by wearing it after your first couple of dates? You sound like you have a perfect body, and I’m sure it would be a nice surprise outfit for a lucky guy

    Thank you. I think I have a pretty decent body but I don’t want to mislead anyone to think that it’s perfectly stunning! There are plenty of women with hotter bodies on a much higher scale.

    I actually do have one racy dress that I couldn’t give back because I missed the return expiration date. I’ll just have to use it for my future bf :p And I like your idea about collecting hot dresses for personal use, I’ll keep that in mind the next time I go shopping

    @Mike C,
    I’m not sure if your comment at 283 was kinda directed at me. But I’m definitely not using curvy as a euphemism for fat! I’m not really a gym person so it may be that I just don’t understand your technical definitions of fat. But I like to be involved in active stuff like biking, swimming, dancing, etc. And the last time I checked, my waist to hip ratio was 0.73

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

      I’m not sure if your comment at 283 was kinda directed at me. But I’m definitely not using curvy as a euphemism for fat!

      I was puzzled by this too. Has anyone used the word curves to describe fat? I described a woman with a .9 WHR as lacking curves, but I was referring to bone structure.

      I also referred to a young woman I know who is slender but curvaceous. The gods smiled on her and gave her a body that is close to perfect, so no euphemism needed there.

  • Mike C

    @Mike C,
    I’m not sure if your comment at 283 was kinda directed at me. But I’m definitely not using curvy as a euphemism for fat! I’m not really a gym person so it may be that I just don’t understand your technical definitions of fat. But I like to be involved in active stuff like biking, swimming, dancing, etc. And the last time I checked, my waist to hip ratio was 0.73

    Wasn’t directed at you…just a general comment. As far as a “technical” definition, nothing magical..really simply BF level. If you are 30% bodyfat as a female you are fat to the point where it is aesthetically a negative. Probably 25% as well although that is probably on the bubble. 20% is probably a sweet spot where the vast majority of men would find attractive. 15% gets down to sort of female athlete territory. That might be a bit “hard” for some guys, but I personally find it a turn-on. Once a woman gets below that, that is too low both aesthetically and it starts to get unhealthy as well. Those are rough numbers give or take a few percentage points.

    Bottom line, a person knows if they stand in front of a mirror naked if they have some fat to lose. If there is stuff jiggling or hanging, you are too fat.

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

      People can look vastly different with the same body fat percentage:

      bf

      In this chart, the 25% photo looks closest to what many men appear to find ideal, based on swimsuit modeling, celebrities, etc.

      bfp

      Here are some celebrity bodyfat percentages I found:

      Megan Fox 15%
      Mila Kunis 20%
      Scarlett Johanssen 22%
      Jessica Alba 23%
      Jennifer Aniston 24%
      Jessica Biel 24%
      Penelope Cruz 26%

      Obviously all of these women have plenty of male fans, so male preferences must vary.

  • Bells

    @Mike C,

    Bottom line, a person knows if they stand in front of a mirror naked if they have some fat to lose. If there is stuff jiggling or hanging, you are too fat

    hmm, although my arms are pretty small, my armfat still jiggles when I move around. For me, that would be a really high standard to desire for every body part to be tone and non-jiggly. I don’t think I could ever get there

  • Mike C

    hmm, although my arms are pretty small, my armfat still jiggles when I move around. For me, that would be a really high standard to desire for every body part to be tone and non-jiggly. I don’t think I could ever get there

    Well…I think it depends on how much…if you can grab 2 inches on the tricep part of your upper arms that is probably excessive. Again, a certain amount of fat is going to have that smoothening, softening appearance which most would associate with more feminine.

    It is difficult to stay lean in today’s world. Terrible food choices are all around us constantly….often cheap and convenient. Many of us work sedentary office jobs where there is a minimal physical effort. I’ve been very lean and overfat off and on and the only times I’ve stayed lean is when I work out 5-6 days a week. Unfortunately, we all have trade-offs we have to make on what we prioritize in our lives. The bodyfat level that is actually unhealthy is fairly north of what I would consider the aesthetic ideal so one has to decide how much effort is worth hitting what level. Having excessive bodyfat doesn’t make someone a bad person, but the realist in me recoils at trying to make “normal” bodyfat levels which are excessive.

  • Mike C

    This is hilariously equivalent to your views on restricted women. LMAO

    Susan, fwiw, I’m glad I could provide you a laugh :)

    I have someone I know well who actually runs a diet consulting business. She is a former figure competitor, and she works primarily with women (it helps she is a woman and has done figure contests). Most of what I’ve heard comes directly from her. The vast majority of women are oblivious to the concept of multiple mini-meals with the right proportion of macronutrient profile (protein, healthy carb, healthy fat). My previous statement was obviously exaggerated for effect, but it isn’t too far from what she has told me is the conception many women have of “dieting” to lose weight.

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

      The vast majority of women are oblivious to the concept of multiple mini-meals with the right proportion of macronutrient profile (protein, healthy carb, healthy fat).

      Are the vast majority of men up to speed on this? I’m aware of this only because I read Livestrong pretty religiously, and I daresay the women I know with beautiful figures have no clue.

  • Anne

    @Ion
    I don’t think Kate has a superb figure. If she had a small waist and a perky bum, she’d be amazing. I still support her though, in the battle against size 0 model she’s still a positive :)
    It is perfectly possible to be slim and curvy at the same time. My hip to waist ratio is 0.67 and I am not fat or “big” in any way. I am very tired of fat or just chubby women claiming the term “curvy” as their own.
    It is true that for most women, it is a battle between being fashionably skinny and sexy. To look good in mostclothes, you should be as skinny as possible, whereas *most* men like curves (some do not it seems, my ex likes size 0).
    It is possible to be slim and curvy. I would go as far as to say that you need to be non-obese for the curves to show. A woman’s curves is not just breasts and hips, it’s that arch in her back and all the lines on her body.
    Candice Swanepoel is undoubtedly skinny, but she has a great hip to waist ratio.
    http://www.listal.com/viewimage/3221552
    Hourglass is not just about breasts either, it’s about proportionate shoulders to hips.
    I would guess most women want to be quite slim with a defined waist, whether they say so or not.

  • Madelena

    I gained a whole lot of weight during a very stressful part of my life several years ago and then slowly lost it through first conventional calorie-restricted dieting and low-intensity cardio (walking, mainly), then through discovering paleo where I kept losing inches mainly through diet. The diet was protein and fat based, with carbs coming from fruits, veggies and occasional starches. Occasional high intensity interval training plus body weight training gave my body a nice toned look, showcasing key parts of my figure. Even when I slack off on exercise, the diet keeps me in maintenance mode without thinking much about it.
    My bf is a few pounds overweight which I didn’t mind as he is very attractive but he told me that he recently had to tighten his belt as he is losing weight since he started adopting the way I eat. He didn’t mind losing the pasta and bread as he got to eat as much meat, bacon, eggs, butter and assorted veggies and fruits as he wants.
    Someone mentioned above finding it off-putting when girls on dates order salads. I recall a few of my dates getting very pleasantly surprised whenever I ordered some sort of protein dish that was not chicken, e.g steak. Apparently, an appetite for food correlates to an appetite elsewhere, as long as you are a slender and fit woman.

  • J

    I guess that type of figure suggests a good sport sex and perhaps someone who can keep up with the guys on the mountain biking and rock-climbing outings. In other words, a buddy you can fuck.

    Perhaps it does. I used to get a lot of unwanted attention from men who were looking for that. I look more earth mother-ish now, softer.

    Oddly, when I first met DH, a friend of this told me I was too skinny for him and bustier than previous gfs. I wasn’t DH’s type.

  • Jesse

    Well, given the Beatle fans were fourteen years old you have a point.

    (God, how annoying were they? Many a concert completely ruined… even the band members themselves agreed.)

    I’m not necessarily insisting on first sight, but I do mean a very short timeframe – enough to see how he looks, moves, talks, looks at you – enough for a bit of flirtation. You don’t need to share life stories to get at what I’m talking about.

    I agree that it has to be the right man – a lot of boxes have to be ticked. But in a broader sense culturally I don’t think men are even aware of trying to be sexy. Sure, they might hit the gym, but there’s a lot more to it than that – it also has to do with how you flaunt what you’ve got.

    (For me I think this applies to women as well to a significant extent. The appeal of the most attractive woman I can think of is maybe 60% looks and 40% how she acts – which is not to imply at all that she’s less than stunning. She is. It’s just that how she acts can nearly double the appeal. From the male perspective it is not strictly tits and a slim waist.)

  • mr. wavevector

    @Anacaona 255;

    Or he might be wired to invest more in closely matched females instead of wasting precious time on females so beyond reality.

    Well, that’s me. I always had good sense in choosing women who would appreciate my attention. And I’m not 20 anymore so my libido is calmer. But I still occasionally get knocked senseless by a hot woman! It’s hard to explain the sensation – the sense of physical impact, the temporary emotional and mental disorientation.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jesse 259,

    So on balance… no, I do not think I’d find a shapely woman intimidating. If I find her attractive I will pursue her.

    I admire that level of self confidence. If you have what it takes to make the pursuit successful, more power to you.

    However, I have known guys who set their sights too high, and had the confidence to act on their goals but not the attractiveness to obtain them. Those guys usually ended up bitter about their lack of success. They would have done better with more realistic goals from the beginning.

  • someINTP

    Regarding the SIA infographic, was it appropriate to ask singles to “judge” a potential mate? Doesn’t this confine them to a super ego driven perspective. If you ask people what are the best things about being with someone you love, you would get a much more human sounding list. It would activate their personal memory, what has been tested to make them happy–not some product checklist.

    Teeth? Are they selling toothpaste? What is nice teeth without nice smiles and sincere kisses? Grammar? What is excellent grammar without kind words? Hair? What is immaculate hair if it can’t conduct a tingle down your spine? Clothes? Should they compliment the fabric on our furniture or should it come off once in a while? Nice hands? Or gentle hands? Shoes? What are expensive shoes if they are always stepping on your toes?

    I can reconstruct a shopping trip or an evening worth of television commercials from this list. I can’t reconstruct a human being. It is rather sad that they were prompted this way. But then I’m sure their romantic lives are viewed as opportunities for products.

    And there is more. Respect and trust? I swear I thought those were already in the dictionary, under “relationship”. Shall we define other terms presented in the question? Just what kind of relationships were these people having? There are other words for those. Maybe a vocabulary test would have been more revealing.

  • Bells

    @Jesse,

    The appeal of the most attractive woman I can think of is maybe 60% looks and 40% how she acts – which is not to imply at all that she’s less than stunning. She is. It’s just that how she acts can nearly double the appeal. From the male perspective it is not strictly tits and a slim waist

    ooh this is interesting.. Could you please try to objectively describe how a woman acts in order to elicit the remaining 40% of attraction?

  • mr. wavevector

    @Mike C 302

    If you are 30% bodyfat as a female you are fat to the point where it is aesthetically a negative. Probably 25% as well although that is probably on the bubble. 20% is probably a sweet spot where the vast majority of men would find attractive. 15% gets down to sort of female athlete territory. That might be a bit “hard” for some guys, but I personally find it a turn-on. Once a woman gets below that, that is too low both aesthetically and it starts to get unhealthy as well.

    @ Susan 318,

    In this chart, the 25% photo looks closest to what many men appear to find ideal, based on swimsuit modeling, celebrities, etc.

    I also vote for 25% as the ideal. But Mike C’s opinions reflect the contemporary obsession with muscle tone and leanness in women. It’s the difference between wanting a woman as the mother of your children vs. a workout buddy.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      But Mike C’s opinions reflect the contemporary obsession with muscle tone and leanness in women.

      No doubt culture plays a role here. I read that a woman can’t get a six pack until she’s down around 15% bodyfat, and I also read that under 18% bodyfat a woman does not have the necessary fat stores for healthy bodily function. I wonder how many men actually find that attractive, as it should signal low fertility.

      Comments from men here have tended to favor a softer look as more feminine, though obviously YMMV.

  • SayWhaat

    I also vote for 25% as the ideal. But Mike C’s opinions reflect the contemporary obsession with muscle tone and leanness in women. It’s the difference between wanting a woman as the mother of your children vs. a workout buddy.

    It could also be a restricted/unrestricted difference. Restricted men want mother potential, unrestricted men want fuck machines.

  • SayWhaat

    I think I have a pretty decent body but I don’t want to mislead anyone to think that it’s perfectly stunning!

    Send some pics to Susan, she’ll mislead us for you. :P

  • Ted D

    Sweet spot for me is between 20% and 35% body fat. Any less and a woman looks too thin (IMO of course) and over 35% you start heading into fat instead of curve territory.

  • Jesse

    To further clarify, “boner at first sight” is not quite what I’m getting at. The responses are not perfectly analogous, especially if we take that women tend to be more submissive.

    The male response is, “Wow, I’d like to fuck her.” It’s active. The female response is “Mmm, I wouldn’t mind being fucked by him.” It’s more of a passive heat. Women themselves may not even be aware of it, because as far as I know they don’t always have a good conscious grasp of these things.

    It’s just a theory based on a few scraps here and there. I wouldn’t expect surveys or research to necessarily uncover it.

  • OffTheCuff

    Mike’s a fitness buff. The men who go through the effort to do that, often apprecitate the same in women. I see it all the time on the fitness boards. And, it works in reverse – the women who work out to the point of having visible abs (not my thing) generally are not interested in a man who can’t bench 100 pounds. I see it more of a common value thing, than considering a person a “fucking machine”.

    Me? I think 15 -35 all look fine, with 25 as ideal. I don’t have the seething hate for chubby women that many seem to have (both female and male), and I’m exactly middle on the restricted scale.

    The 15 vs 15 that appears to be starkly different is more of a function of lighting and prep, and being in a fitness competition right after a cut.

  • SayWhaat

    The female response is “Mmm, I wouldn’t mind being fucked by him.”

    I can’t say that I have ever felt that way. It’s too bad we don’t have many unrestricted female commenters who could chime in on this matter.

  • mr. wavevector

    fixed:
    @Susan,

    I wonder how many men actually find that attractive, as it should signal low fertility.

    Maybe the low fertility is the point. There is an erotizing of the masculinized, infertile woman in some parts of society. She offers the pleasures of unrestricted sex without the onerous consequences of commitment and children.

    I second SayWhaat’s answer:

    It could also be a restricted/unrestricted difference. Restricted men want mother potential, unrestricted men want fuck machines.

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

      There is an erotizing of the masculinized, infertile woman in some parts of society. She offers the pleasures of unrestricted sex without the onerous consequences of commitment and children.

      Interesting. This does imply, as SayWhaat pointed out, that unrestricted men are going for the hardbodies.

      I wonder how sociosexuality correlates to the desire for children?

  • Ted D

    SayWhaat – ”
    The female response is “Mmm, I wouldn’t mind being fucked by him.”

    I can’t say that I have ever felt that way. It’s too bad we don’t have many unrestricted female commenters who could chime in on this matter.”

    I spent a decent bit of high school orbitting a group of unrestricted women. (although I didn’t realize I was orbitting at the time. LOL) I heard the exact words quoted above from at least a half dozen of women regarding any number of men. I also was once told that a specific guy made a specific girl so hot that she “just needed to find something to back into”! Hang out with band groupies for awhile, and you’ll see all sorts of “unrestricted” behavior going on.

    I still just can’t wrap my head around the concept of someone being “so hot” that I could barely resist banging them. I’ve been completely dumbstruck by a hot women and STILL didn’t find it difficult to keep my thoughts away from sex.

    I’m pretty sure it was conditioning, because now at 42 (to be 43 in July) I’m finding it more difficult to keep those thoughts away. NO worries, I won’t be cheating anytime soon. Thing is, I stopped feeling guilty for finding women sexually attractive, and low and behold I see a lot of attractive women around me! Amazing how that works, and perhaps a slight peek into the world of the unrestricted?

  • Bells

    @Saywhaat,

    Send some pics to Susan, she’ll mislead us for you

    Is that a call-out Saywhaat?? :) Haha, I’m fine. I’m not yet comfortable with sending pictures. But if I ever do, it’ll probably be more of a face picture
    And just because I have a good body doesn’t mean that I don’t have liabilities that disadvantage me in attracting a wider pool of men. I recognize them and I’m working hard to make up for those areas. But I apologize if I came across as being prideful.

  • Mike C

    Looking at the pics of Stacy Keibler, I wondered about her age. She is 33. Interesting that George Clooney prefers that post-wall depreciating asset, especially for his typical shortish window. :)

    Ahem….interesting indeed.

    George Clooney is 51 so he is 18 years older than Stacy Keibler. He is actually at the lower bound of the divide by 2 plus 7 formula with her.

    We had a thread here not too long ago where many were absolutely INSISTENT that early 30s women don’t date 50 year olds. So much for that theory. I don’t recall exactly where you were at on that one. I know J mentioned “age appropriate” dating, and I specifically queried here what range she meant by that, but I never did receive an answer on that question.

    Yes, George Clooney isn’t the typical 50-year old. He is a handsome man with massive status. But that is exactly the point. An attractive 51 year old man is still an attractive man. And Stacy Keibler isn’t exactly the typical 33 year old. She is at the very top of physical attractiveness, and in theory could just as easily date a very good looking 35 year old man. She actually looks better than most twenty-somethings.

    FWIW, I wouldn’t characterize her post-wall…not at 33. In 10 years, yes. My guess is she might still look really good at 43. Jane Seymour and Suzanne Somers are two examples of women who have aged unbelievably well

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

      @Mike C

      George Clooney is 51 so he is 18 years older than Stacy Keibler.

      But he can get anyone, why wouldn’t he go for a woman who is at her physical peak?

      We had a thread here not too long ago where many were absolutely INSISTENT that early 30s women don’t date 50 year olds. So much for that theory

      I think that general statement was probably not directed at George Clooney, lol. In fact, I bet Sean Connery could do that well at 82. I usually find it’s not particularly illustrative to use movie stars to describe the general population, and invalid to extrapolate their experience.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ OffTheCuff,

    Mike’s a fitness buff. The men who go through the effort to do that, often apprecitate the same in women. I see it all the time on the fitness boards. And, it works in reverse

    Like attracts like.

    “Secondly, the strongest force by far in partner selection is similarity — in education, race, religion and physical attractiveness.”

  • J

    the hysteria was not based on visual images of Beatle penises.

    Sigh. Paul was my “first love”–those big, brown puppy eyes!

    There is no female equivalent to “boner at first sight.” Attraction, yes. Desire, no.

    Attraction, I think, is automatic. Desire is mediated by feeling safe. Women have to give themselves permission to desire.

  • J

    Marilyn Monroe type would receive more explicit sexual comments/be considered more provocative than Audrey Hepburn would, even if they wore the same clothes. What is a classy tight black dress on Hepburn would be Marilyn showing off her body for attention, even if their behaviors ….

    Exactly. Buxom girls need to dress very carefully; many men will draw inaccurate conclusions about your morality based on …what? Wishful thinking?

    It’s hard to look classy with big boobs.

  • Tilikum

    To Susan @312

    George is soft spoken, very private and introverted; highline girls are difficult if not impossible to find at that level. Stacy respects his individual need for considerable privacy and that is valued quite highly. And she is attentive, low key, genuine, and infinitely feminine. A very nice and cordial girl.

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

      @Tillikum

      I have nothing against Stacy Keibler, I know nothing about her. GC has a history of serial LTRs – he embraces the female preferred form of promiscuity! As long as she’s not looking to marry, her career should benefit from the relationship.

  • SayWhaat

    Is that a call-out Saywhaat?? Haha, I’m fine. I’m not yet comfortable with sending pictures. But if I ever do, it’ll probably be more of a face picture
    And just because I have a good body doesn’t mean that I don’t have liabilities that disadvantage me in attracting a wider pool of men. I recognize them and I’m working hard to make up for those areas. But I apologize if I came across as being prideful.

    Not at all, I was just teasing you. :) I’m well aware of the pitfalls of having a curvy body. My mother forbade me from wearing tank tops to school because it looked “indecent”. I let my girlfriend borrow the same top and she looked perfectly fine. -__- I wore a bikini once and I absolutely hated how “on display” my body was, as though I were flaunting. I’ve stuck with pin-up one-pieces ever since.

    However, I don’t agree with this notion that we should be trying to attract the “wide pools of men”. IMO, there are so many preferences from both sexes that one should just focus on being the best possible version of oneself, and work to attract the person in the niche that suits you best.

  • Ion

    “We had a thread here not too long ago where many were absolutely INSISTENT that early 30s women don’t date 50 year olds. So much for that theory.”

    Hate to state the obvious, but George Clooney is a rich, handsome, famous (alpha?) actor who probably has a team of experts to give him perfect salt n pepper hair, great skin, and a youthful body. I don’t think anyone would argue that 30 year olds or even 20 year olds wouldn’t want to date a man with his status and looks.

  • Mike C

    People can look vastly different with the same body fat percentage:

    Yes, as I’ve repeatedly stated on this thread, every body appearance can be distilled down to bodyfat level, bone structure, and muscle mass level. The big difference in your first photo comparison is muscle mass level. That said, I’m skeptical those two are both 15%. They simply do not have the same level of fat separating the skin and muscle definition. You can actually compare your first comparison to your second set of photos and visually the one labeled 15% in the first comparison looks closer to the 10-12 below than the 15-17.

    I actually was off about 5% in my original comments because I forgot the male-female differential. A man and woman who look “the same” visually in terms of muscular definition will be 5%. In other words, the 10-12% “ripped” look will be 5-7% on a guy for that same visual look.

    In this chart, the 25% photo looks closest to what many men appear to find ideal, based on swimsuit modeling, celebrities, etc.

    I agree. That look is the closest to “soft, smooth, feminine, curvy” without looking fat. I don’t think any guy is going to have any issues with the 25% look. From there, I think it depends on personal preferences in each direction. I personally find the 15-17% look attractive but not the 10-12% at all which is why I like the look of female fitness and figure competitors but NOT female bodybuilders. I personally still find the 30% look attractive but that starts to push the envelope. 35% would be lights off in the room.

    Megan Fox 15% Mila Kunis 20% Scarlett Johanssen 22% Jessica Alba 23% Jennifer Aniston 24% Jessica Biel 24% Penelope Cruz 26%

    These numbers don’t mean too much without a specific photo to tie them to since I am sure these women fluctuate especially for different roles. I know at one time Jennifer Aniston was sporting a more fitness type look because she was in one of the magazines my fiancee reads (Oxygen maybe or Women’s Fitness…can’t remember) but all of those are near that 25% look which I’ll say again I think is very attractive. I’m actually glad you posted those photos so we can associate a specific look with verbal descriptions. I think the 25% you posted is feminine curves whereas I think the mainstream media is more likely to just as easily say the 35% is feminine curves when that is fat.

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

      the mainstream media is more likely to just as easily say the 35% is feminine curves when that is fat.

      I disagree. I cannot ever recall a MSM publication calling that body type ideal or feminine. A few years ago Dove soap had a campaign featuring “real Looking” women, most of whom were not even as fat as 35%.

      ds

      There was a huge backlash – commuters were bitching about having to see the billboards on their way to work. I don’t recall a single publication claiming those women were beautiful or possessing feminine curves. Even though several of them are perfectly attractive and healthy looking IMO (though I’m not claiming they’re sexy to men).

      The feminist media does it’s anti-fat shaming thing, but that’s hardly the MSM. And AFAIK, they don’t claim fat is attractive, they just don’t want to be actively shamed for being fat.

      I think this is an important point to make – I think our culture is extremely fat-shaming overall, and claims that the MSM promotes fatness as an ideal are overblown, IMO.

  • Mike C

    “We had a thread here not too long ago where many were absolutely INSISTENT that early 30s women don’t date 50 year olds. So much for that theory.”

    Hate to state the obvious, but George Clooney is a rich, handsome, famous (alpha?) actor who probably has a team of experts to give him perfect salt n pepper hair, great skin, and a youthful body. I don’t think anyone would argue that 30 year olds or even 20 year olds wouldn’t want to date a man with his status and looks.

    Did you stop reading my comment after part you quoted because you’ll see right after that I stated exactly what you just said. Which again is my point. An attractive man is an attractive man is an attractive man. Yes, George Clooney is all of those things which is why he can attract a 33-year old, and could probably attract a 23-year old as well. The “age issue” disappears off the table IF and ONLY IF the man in question is bringing enough other attractive traits to the table. It has never been my position that the Average Joe Blow Slob who is 50 years old has his pick of 30-35 year olds.

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

      An attractive man is an attractive man is an attractive man.

      No. Just no.

      A movie star, a rich man, a head of state – these are cues that propel a man into status territory mere mortals cannot reach.

      Fame, money, power. If you’re old and you want young chicks, you need to have some combo of these. Pick 2.

  • Ion

    Anne “It is possible to be slim and curvy. I would go as far as to say that you need to be non-obese for the curves to show. A woman’s curves is not just breasts and hips, it’s that arch in her back and all the lines on her body.”

    I agree with everything you wrote. I’m not sure how curvy became synonymous with fat or even overweight, I have some resentment with feminists/the militant obese ruining a perfectly good term.

    Jennifer Hudson and that Kirstie Ally pic Susan posted are proof that one can become curvy if they remove the barrel waist from being overweight. I personally have never argued otherwise.

  • Jesse

    Susan (318),

    I don’t know where those celebrity numbers came from, but I’m skeptical that anyone can estimate body fat to within one percent without actually testing.

    I think the most accurate test is the one where you weigh the person underwater. I can’t recall its name. If those women haven’t actually been evaluated, then 23 versus 24 percent just doesn’t pass the smell test.

    Wavevector (321),

    You have a point. My reference to increasing one’s own value is pertinent though. It’s not just about being able to stare down an attractive woman. It’s about being motivated every day to improve yourself in interesting and useful ways, thereby making yourself more attractive.

    I may not be able to land my ultimate woman now – I wouldn’t want to meet her now anyway – but later, after years of work (no, I don’t just mean accumulating money), I’ll be in a better position. I make myself more worthy of her.

    SayWhaat (326),

    Personally I will disagree with this. I consider myself reasonably unrestricted, by which I mean I want to have sex with different attractive women. (I haven’t completed any evaluations.) It’s precisely the tits and ass that arouse me. I am masculine so I like feminine bodies. I consider rippling muscles to be masculine and therefore am not aroused by them.

    Evolutionarily speaking I want to put my sperm in fertile-looking things. And if we’re discussing the nature of the sex itself, I can tell you that a woman’s physical strength or athletic ability is not necessary.

    I don’t think there’s much difference between my ideal body type for a fling versus a marriage. Beyond the eroticism I think there’s something soothing about the feminine shape.

    Bells (323),

    I’ll get back to you. I just have to think about how to formulate my response.

  • Jesse

    J (339),

    This is a shame, and I’m not just saying that because of my penis. (Ha…)

    I can’t know exactly what kind of judgments people make when you’re a curvaceous woman, but I really hope women can live their lives without worrying about it.

    I still think (hope) that how a woman acts can influence this. If your behavior does not hint at licentiousness then I would hope you don’t have to worry about whether some weak, pathetic men would like to characterize you as a slut in their own minds.

  • Ion

    Mr. Wavevector

    “Maybe the low fertility is the point. There is an erotizing of the masculinized, infertile woman in some parts of society. She offers the pleasures of unrestricted sex without the onerous consequences of commitment and children.”

    An enthusiastic +1, as usual.

  • Ion

    “It has never been my position that the Average Joe Blow Slob who is 50 years old has his pick of 30-35 year olds.”

    Exactly, we were saying the same thing. I’m sorry that I misread your comment.

  • SayWhaat

    Personally I will disagree with this. I consider myself reasonably unrestricted, by which I mean I want to have sex with different attractive women.

    I thought this was a male thing in general?

  • Jesse

    SayWhaat,

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I thought your point was that unrestricted men might tend towards masculinized women.

  • J

    We had a thread here not too long ago where many were absolutely INSISTENT that early 30s women don’t date 50 year olds. So much for that theory. I don’t recall exactly where you were at on that one. I know J mentioned “age appropriate” dating, and I specifically queried here what range she meant by that, but I never did receive an answer on that question.

    Sorry, I must have gotten busy with something else and missed your question. I have said many times on various threads though that I think ten years max is OK. After that, no matter who is older, there’s a big gap in personal power and experience.

    BTW, I don’t think Clooney, who is gorgeous, rich and powerful, is a good example of the attractiveness of older men to younger women. He’s not just an old guy; he’s Clooney. Even in the odd event a young starlet wouldn’t find him hot, just being seen with him helps the career. Even less attractive men in Hollywood benefit from that.

    I also never said that NO young women are attracted to older men. I have said that the typical trade-off is youth for money except in cases where there were other emotional issues. I have said that typically MOST young women are not attracted to older men and that I personally was repulsed by the average older guy when I was in my 20s. In my 30s, a 50 yo guy would have struck me as not repulsive but a bit too high mileage.
    However, even a 20 year old J would have been impressed by Clooney and was in fact impressed by Paul Newman. But their movie stars, not real people.

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

      Here’s a new game for the girls:

      Which Geezer Would You Do?

      Because of my age, I’ll stick with much older men than myself. I nominate Clint Eastwood, Jeff Bridges and the aforementioned Sean Connery.

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

        Also, I just watched The Big Lebowski again, gotta include Sam Elliott.

        Jeremy Irons
        Kevin Kline
        Al Pacino
        Robert Redford

  • SayWhaat

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I thought your point was that unrestricted men might tend towards masculinized women.

    Sorry, got my wires crossed. Yes, that was basically my point, but as others have pointed out, there seems to be certain types of men/enclaves of society who celebrate the masculine woman. There are some guys in my office who absolutely moon over Giselle Bundchen, for example, but she doesn’t exactly have a typical feminine figure.

  • HanSolo

    I’m just one data point but I got 8/9 on all three areas of that test so I’d say I’m both quite unrestricted but also have a high desire for marriage and 4 kids.

    I like the 20-25% photos best. I don’t like the muscled-up look at all. A bit of muscle is fine. I liked the non-muscular 15% photo and up to the 35% (though she was starting to look a little too chunky).

    The 40%+ photos are definite boner killers for me.

    Here’s another comparison picture:

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-r4BngiCEOTg/T_XG3pFViGI/AAAAAAAAAc8/bdkuJXKcMn0/s1600/BF+women.jpg

    I like the 20-21% photo the best, then 17-18%, the 25-26% is fine. The 34% is too much (though I could still get it up for her) and the two low photos are too little fat and too much muscle in the 11-12% photo.

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

      @HanSolo

      The two low photos look like men, especially the 11-12% one. Do these women take steroids?

  • SayWhaat

    However, even a 20 year old J would have been impressed by Clooney and was in fact impressed by Paul Newman.

    My girlfriend and I watched “Absence of Malice”, and by the end of the movie we were both like, whoa, Paul Newman was a FOX! Lol.

    But yeah, movie stars are not valid examples, given their outsized fame/fortune/fantasy.

  • J

    It has never been my position that the Average Joe Blow Slob who is 50 years old has his pick of 30-35 year olds.

    Then, I’m really confused because every time this issue comes up the women do acknowledge that there are outliers like Clooney. Hell, he’s not even my type, but he’s unicorn enough that if I were single, I’d do him–just on general principle.

    We are arguing at crosspurposes. The men say ,” X is true but Y is an exception. LOOK AT HIM,” and the women answer, “Yes, Y is an exception, but X is true.”

    Look at the converse. Sophia Loren is a fossil at this point, but there are guys in their 50s who would have sex with her. Unfortunately, few women at that age–she’s what, 105 now?–who look that good. In fact I’m 100% sure that Sophia doesn’t look that good first thing in the morning.

  • mr. wavevector

    @J 337,

    Attraction, I think, is automatic. Desire is mediated by feeling safe. Women have to give themselves permission to desire.

    Interesting. This seems consistent with my “what women want” hypothesis that I’ve been using for years:

    1) A man she can look up to (in some way that is important to her)
    2) To be desired by that man
    3) To feel safe with that man

    #1 is the attraction element with a hint of hypergamy. #2 addresses the responsive nature of the typical woman’s sexuality. #3 is the comfort elements, which involve several different things: his emotional investment in her; his character and emotional self control; and his performance of the protector and provider roles (which even self sufficient women seem to desire, at least symbolically).

    You didn’t mention being desired, but I’m guessing that Paul’s interest in you was a key element of your fantasies! As Susan said:

    We fantasized about meeting Paul (or J, G, or R), dating them, our first kiss, and then a procession up the aisle.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      This seems consistent with my “what women want” hypothesis that I’ve been using for years:

      1) A man she can look up to (in some way that is important to her)
      2) To be desired by that man
      3) To feel safe with that man

      This is excellent. It’s perhaps not comprehensive, but you’ve got the basics right there.

      This is why attraction takes a little while and arousal quite a while. A woman isn’t really “ready” for sex until these conditions are met. Of course, many women go ahead and have sex before they are ready – that’s the problem with hookup culture. But they’re not going to have the same quality experience, it just is not possible.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Interesting that George Clooney prefers that post-wall depreciating asset, especially for his typical shortish window.

    That’s the point isn’t it? Who cares if it’s a depreciating asset if you’re only investing in it for a short while?

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

      That’s the point isn’t it? Who cares if it’s a depreciating asset if you’re only investing in it for a short while?

      At 33, she’s largely depreciated, just two years below the infertility crisis bracket (advanced maternal age). Why wouldn’t he go for a newer model?

      That is the point I was making.

  • J

    whoa, Paul Newman was a FOX! Lol.

    Back in the early 60s, he had enormous inter-generational appeal. Everyone from teenagers to grandmothers loved him. He is not really my type–my guys were the young Pacino, De Niro and Hoffman*–but I still find Newman gorgeous.

    *Sadly, only DeNiro is holding up well.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    The thing is, if Y is the exception, then X isn’t true.

    It is simply untrue that women will not date men 20 years older than themselves. Period. It takes ONE example to disprove absolute statements like that. There is clearly something at work that makes Y happen.

    It could be money.

    Could be status.

    Doesn’t matter, point is X isn’t true.

    Period.

    Now, if I may editorialize, and this will come off the wrong way, BUT still needs to be said:

    My impression is that some of the female commentariat has been drifting back towards “well, X is generally true, and Y as an exception does happen, but you’re just a normal guy, and you can’t improve yourself, so don’t worry about Y, it doesn’t happen.”

    Sort of like how 80% of women are “restricted,” but half are having FWBs and ONSs. Math don’t work. Clearly large chunks of women are behaving unrestricted, which males have been assured many times here does not happen in large numbers,

    Similarly, that “love growing over time” stat…

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

      @ADBG

      Sort of like how 80% of women are “restricted,” but half are having FWBs and ONSs. Math don’t work.

      Sure it does, it just means that many restricted women have had a ONS. That doesn’t surprise me at all.

      In the valley of the sluts, the one ONS girl is chaste.

      My impression is that some of the female commentariat has been drifting back towards “well, X is generally true, and Y as an exception does happen, but you’re just a normal guy, and you can’t improve yourself, so don’t worry about Y, it doesn’t happen.”

      There has been a backlash against male hamsterbation here recently. Men can chase whatever and whomever they like, it makes no difference to me, or to other women here. But we really don’t intend to sit around while men tell us how our own equipment works. Nor should we have to listen to men complain about what women are attracted to or whine because women are not as visual as men are.

  • INTJ

    The 25% pic is definitely best to me. The 20-22% is a very close second (bordering on too much muscle toning). The 35% is also really attractive, but could stand to lose some fat. 15-17% looks too masculine (especially the shoulders and upper arms), but still passes the boner test. 40% and above are obese and out of the question. As for 10-12%, it literally looks like a male body.

  • HanSolo

    @Susan

    No idea but I don’t like the look, though I’m sure the less muscular one would look better with a bit more fat to smooth things out.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “Also, I just watched The Big Lebowski again, gotta include Sam Elliott.”

    That is one of my most favorite movies.

    It’s one of the few movies that’s really fun to watch several times.

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

      It’s one of the few movies that’s really fun to watch several times.

      I don’t roll on Shabbas!

  • INTJ

    So overall, my ranking would be in this order: 25%, non-muscular 15%, 20-22%, 35%, 15-17%, everything else fails boner test.

  • J

    @ wave

    Sure to all your points, though I’m not a big believer in hypergamy. I think we all–male and female– want the best mates we can find, but I don’t think it’s a status thing as much as it’s a survival thing. It may confer status to some, but frankly I dont really care much what others think.

    I’m a fairly self-sufficient woman, but once kids came into the picture, all bets were off. My feeling is that once a woman has kids, she is really” at the mercy” of those kids’ father. If he’s a good guy, she never really feels it in that way. If he’s not, it’s readily apparent. I don’t feel the elaborate and submissive regard for DH that many of the female commenters in the ‘sphere claim to feel, but I certainly would not have put myself and future children into the hands of man I did not respect–not for simply being born with a penis, but for having wonderful individual characteristics. I have complete confidence in DH’s ability to manuever himself in the world in a manner that enables him to provide for me and the kids. I also appreciate the time and effort he puts into that. I’m sure he’d be happier writing music in the basement than he is at the office, and I appreciate the sacrifice. And I know what trouble we’d all be in if I had picked a fuck-up to be with. If that’s hypergamy, OK.

  • J

    Which Geezer Would You Do?

    De Niro…. twice. Same type as DH.
    Clooney…just to say I did it.
    Newman at 60, not now obviously.
    Maybe Robert Vaughn, out of nostalgia.

    Paul McCartney has not aged well. Sad.

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

      @J

      Newman at 60, not now obviously.

      Haha, biggest laugh of the day!

      You’re right, Paul didn’t age well, he just got an old babyface. That happens to some really cute boys – they stay boyish, which looks pretty strange after about 30.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Susan,

    Fame, money, power. If you’re old and you want young chicks, you need to have some combo of these. Pick 2.

    A few years ago I was the recipient of a sustained (unsuccessful) seduction effort from a younger woman. Our ages were 48 and 29 at the time. I don’t have amazing amounts of fame, money, or power, nor am I tall, dark, and handsome.

    I had a good bit more money and power than she did, however, and I also had some significant DHVs of an artistic nature, which was something she valued. And she was clearly wanting male attention, despite her “strong independent woman” act.

    My point is these factors are highly relative. A guy doesn’t necessarily have to be a movie star to attract the attention of a young woman.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      A few years ago I was the recipient of a sustained (unsuccessful) seduction effort from a younger woman…My point is these factors are highly relative. A guy doesn’t necessarily have to be a movie star to attract the attention of a young woman.

      Fair point. Especially in situations where you become acquainted over a period of time, the male will have more opportunities to DHV, as you’ve illustrated. You had high status relative to her, and creative cred to boot.

      However, you say seduction, and I assume she knew you were married. Also that she was invested in being independent. So this was perhaps a short-term project rather than a desire to date or have a real relationship.

  • J

    Also, I just watched The Big Lebowski again, gotta include Sam Elliott.

    Love The Big Lebowski, wouldn’t do Sam Elliott. My BBF would; she also LOVES Daniel Craig and Robert Redford, neither of whom appeal to me.

  • JP

    “It is difficult to stay lean in today’s world. Terrible food choices are all around us constantly….often cheap and convenient. Many of us work sedentary office jobs where there is a minimal physical effort.”

    I’m not “lean” but I’m somewhat calorie immune.

    Which means that I can generally sit down and eat as many doughnuts as I want. (According to the Internet, I ate 1,000 calories worth of doughnuts the other day).

    My body has apparently decided that it really likes being at about 195 and really isn’t moving and I’m not watching what I eat.

    Well, I watch the doughnuts in the hallway.

    Then I eat them.

    Apparently the speed with which I eat is absolutely breathtaking.

    I’m great with Pizza Hut pan pizzas too. Although, I rarely eat more than a half of a large pizza at one sitting. (Apparently 1,100 calories).

    Hmmm.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    At 33, she’s largely depreciated, just two years below the infertility crisis bracket (advanced maternal age). Why wouldn’t he go for a newer model?

    That is the point I was making.

    He’ll probably be with someone else in two years, so it isn’t a big deal. Also, she’s extremely attractive – more attractive than like 99% of women in their 20s – so she’s still extremely high value, at least in the short term.

    Basically, the attractiveness of a typical woman rises rapidly during her teens and peaks around 21 (it varies from person to person – some peak in their late teens, but generally the most attractive women are somewhat late bloomers, peaking in their mid 20s), and then it plateaus, falling very gradually. Somewhere around 35-40 (varies from woman to woman and ethnicity) the woman is still not much less attractive than she was at her peak, but her attractiveness starts falling rapidly, and continues to fall very rapidly until she reaches menopause and her looks have faded dramatically (not surprising given that looks are indicators of fertility, and her fertility is exactly 0).

    Now, for someone like me looking for a permanent relationship, the net present value of a 20 year old is vastly superior to that of a 33 year old (even a very attractive one). On the other hand, for someone like George Clooney, who is not planning for the long term, the value of any woman is directly proportional to her current attractiveness, and therefore a very attractive 33 year old has more value than most 20 year olds.

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

      On the other hand, for someone like George Clooney, who is not planning for the long term, the value of any woman is directly proportional to her current attractiveness, and therefore a very attractive 33 year old has more value than most 20 year olds.

      But he could easily get an extremely attractive 21 year old. He could date the hottest Victoria’s Secret model in the world. Even a well-preserved 33 cannot compete with that, physically speaking. Which is why swimsuit models pretty much retire in their 20s.

  • INTJ

    @ HanSolo

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-r4BngiCEOTg/T_XG3pFViGI/AAAAAAAAAc8/bdkuJXKcMn0/s1600/BF+women.jpg

    I like the 20-21% photo the best, then 17-18%, the 25-26% is fine. The 34% is too much (though I could still get it up for her) and the two low photos are too little fat and too much muscle in the 11-12% photo.

    Same ranking for me. The 20-21% is extremely good looking, 17-18% is also quite good looking, 25-26% is a bit fat but still not bad, 34-35% is obese and in my case, probably fails the boner test. The two lower fat pictures look like bodies of men, and I’m not gay.

  • Ion

    ” “well, X is generally true, and Y as an exception does happen, but you’re just a normal guy, and you can’t improve yourself, so don’t worry about Y, it doesn’t happen.”

    To me, an analogy would be obesity. Truth be told there are going to be obese women who marry (seriously, my hometown is proof), and even high status guys where obesity is acceptable. That doesn’t apply to MOST guys, and the exception is so rare you’re better off dating some other obese guy, or losing weight. Saying “well!!! there are ALWAYS exceptions, look at Roseanne Bar” would be considered fat-positive “go gurrrl” hamster chanting.

    That being said, I dated someone much older (my professor), when I was 21-22, so I know it does happen. But wealthy and UMC older handsome bachelors 40-55 are incredibly rare. There are plenty of 20-35 year old women who would date such men, which tells us absolutely nothing about who an average middle aged guy can pull.

  • INTJ

    @ Ion

    “It has never been my position that the Average Joe Blow Slob who is 50 years old has his pick of 30-35 year olds.”

    Exactly, we were saying the same thing. I’m sorry that I misread your comment.

    I think it has been the experience of most older manosphere commenters that because of their lack of charisma and strong betaness, they were not attractive to females when they were young, but as they became older they gained large provider capability and status, and their intelligence became more attractive. In fact, they as they reached their 30s and 40s, they became more attractive to women in their 20s.

    Incidentally, I’ve noticed that smart older men are viewed (by males as well as females) as dominant and attractive, whereas young smart guys are viewed as dorks.

  • SayWhaat

    Fame, money, power. If you’re old and you want young chicks, you need to have some combo of these. Pick 2.

    and

    I had a good bit more money and power than she did, however, and I also had some significant DHVs of an artistic nature, which was something she valued.

    Wavevector picked Money and Power! It was super-effective! + 30 XP!

    (You just proved Susan’s point. :))

  • Jesse

    Basically, the attractiveness of a typical woman rises rapidly during her teens and peaks around 21

    I don’t intend to quibble with you, and I hate to keep bringing up Marilyn Monroe, but she was shockingly attractive at 30/31. From the photos I’ve seen that is her peak. Look at stills or clips from The Prince and the Showgirl if you’re interested, especially the white dress.

    Another woman I’ll bring up is Selena Gomez. (I try really hard not to pay attention to popular culture, so it pains me to mention her, but I digress.) She’s what, twenty? She still has this prepubescent look about her. A lot of fat in her cheeks. I can’t find her attractive. Maybe she’ll look better in ten years.

  • Ion

    “Which Geezer Would You Do?”

    Harry Belafonte no questions asked, Bruce Willis, Harrison Ford, Jimmy Smitt, etc., not really geezer territory yet, but I’d do them even if they were 20 years older. :-P

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    But he could easily get an extremely attractive 21 year old. He could date the hottest Victoria’s Secret model in the world. Even a well-preserved 33 cannot compete with that, physically speaking. Which is why swimsuit models pretty much retire in their 20s.

    Yeah, but the 21-year-old probably has a much flatter personality than Stacy Keibler. Beyond a certain point (and Stacy Keibler is definitely beyond this point), the woman is so good looking that due to diminishing returns, there’s really not much reason to go for marginally “hotter”. Much better to go for other attributes like personality.

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

      Yeah, but the 21-year-old probably has a much flatter personality than Stacy Keibler.

      Why do we think SK has a good personality? Her experience as a professional wrestler? Reality show star?

      Here are recent pics of her, clearly a very attractive woman who looks her age:

      sk

      sk1

  • INTJ

    @ Jesse

    I don’t intend to quibble with you, and I hate to keep bringing up Marilyn Monroe, but she was shockingly attractive at 30/31. From the photos I’ve seen that is her peak. Look at stills or clips from The Prince and the Showgirl if you’re interested, especially the white dress.

    Marilyn Monroe isn’t a good example, since I don’t find her all that unusually good looking (at any age) – too much lipstick I suppose. But that was the point I was trying to make, which was that in her early 30s, a woman is almost as good looking as she was in her 20s.

    Another woman I’ll bring up is Selena Gomez. (I try really hard not to pay attention to popular culture, so it pains me to mention her, but I digress.) She’s what, twenty? She still has this prepubescent look about her. A lot of fat in her cheeks. I can’t find her attractive. Maybe she’ll look better in ten years.

    Yeah she still has baby fat. She’s going to be one of the mid-20s late bloomers that I mentioned.

  • Ion

    INTJ

    “Incidentally, I’ve noticed that smart older men are viewed (by males as well as females) as dominant and attractive, whereas young smart guys are viewed as dorks.”

    I totally agree and I fell for this. There were nerds abound who I could have had a conversation with, but I assumed (incorrectly) that only older men could dominate me intellectually.

    If I were a young male dork, I’d probably abandon any indication that I’m dorky. I’d not admit to playing video games, or liking sci fi, dress like I was employed, and act wise beyond my years. That’s the dominance that many restricted women are looking for. Totally ridiculous to tell restricted young women to chase sloppy-seconds some 20 years older for “maturity” when there are young men around their age who are as intelligent and that they are compatible with.

  • J

    @Jesse

    Nice of you to say so. Actually, to some extent, age and circumstances have solved the problem. I’m married with two teenage sons. I find that few men are willing to get obnoxious in their presence, but I still get the horny old bucks here and there when I’m on my own. I also get attention from some genuinely nice men who back off when I point out the wedding ring.

  • Jesse

    They’re just two data points, of course, so it wasn’t meant as a contradiction.

    20 year-old women can obviously trump if we’re only talking about pert body parts, but if we talk about facial attractiveness I am not sure they have an advantage over women ten years older. Whether these are subtle bone structure changes I don’t know, but if a 30 year-old woman has 95% of the body of the 20 year-old, and she’s more attractive facially, and we haven’t even gotten to the issue of personality yet…

    With some respect to the Clooney discussion, in a nutshell you might say that 20 year-olds are fine for casual sex, but when looking for a relationship (not even marriage necessarily) they will struggle to compete with the right 30 year-old.

    Maybe I’m just biased, because without tooting my horn I think I can hold a decent conversation despite my age.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    I disagree. I cannot ever recall a MSM publication calling that body type ideal or feminine. A few years ago Dove soap had a campaign featuring “real Looking” women, most of whom were not even as fat as 35%.

    Yeah I’d say a rough estimate of them is 25-35% bodyfat (most of them around 25-30%).

    There was a huge backlash – commuters were bitching about having to see the billboards on their way to work. I don’t recall a single publication claiming those women were beautiful or possessing feminine curves. Even though several of them are perfectly attractive and healthy looking IMO (though I’m not claiming they’re sexy to men).

    None of them are anywhere near curvy. The waist-to-hip ratios are 0.8-0.9, and nowhere near 0.7. With the exception of the leftmost woman, they’re all healthy and quite attractive. However, I can see exactly where the backlash comes from: they’re making very narcissist poses (much more narcissistic than most beauty product models I’ve seen). And unlike swimsuit models, they don’t even have the exceptionally good looks to back up their narcissism.

    The feminist media does it’s anti-fat shaming thing, but that’s hardly the MSM. And AFAIK, they don’t claim fat is attractive, they just don’t want to be actively shamed for being fat.

    Literary media in general (newspapers, feminists, etc.) tend to make a big fuss about how fat people have poor body image and how eating disorders are rampant. Implicit in that is the view that fat people should not have poor body image – i.e. there is nothing wrong with a fat body.

    I think this is an important point to make – I think our culture is extremely fat-shaming overall, and claims that the MSM promotes fatness as an ideal are overblown, IMO.

    I think there’s a big difference between popular media which idolizes thin celebrities (and which women tend to read/view), and news media, which is constantly defending fatness.

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

      news media, which is constantly defending fatness.

      Can you provide a couple of quick examples? I’m truly baffled by this claim, but I’ll be happy to stand corrected if I’ve missed it.

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

        @INTJ

        Two recent examples from The Atlantic:

        A Case For Shaming Obese People

        The Fine Line Between Educating and Shaming

        And the problem with using just sticks, no carrots:

        “Considerable evidence demonstrates that individuals who feel stigmatized or shamed about their excess weight engage in higher calorie intake, unhealthy eating behaviors, binge-eating patterns, as well as avoidance of exercise.” And previous studies done by these researchers revealed that exposing people to stigmatizing images worsens their attitudes toward obese people.

        I do not believe this equates to telling fat women their fat is attractive, or trying to redesign cultural norms.

        FTR, I googled “fat is beautiful” and it was all personal blogs of fat women. I could find no MSM collaboration of this unhealthy slogan.

  • J

    Paul didn’t age well, he just got an old babyface. That happens to some really cute boys – they stay boyish, which looks pretty strange after about 30.

    Yeah, that old babyface look is nasty. That happened to a male teacher I know. Girls loved him because he looked fresh out of ed school at 38. At 40, he had that nasty old babyface look. He fell apart almost overnight.

    I like faces with more definition. If you have cheekbones to hold things up, you age more nicely.

  • Ted D

    INTJ – “Incidentally, I’ve noticed that smart older men are viewed (by males as well as females) as dominant and attractive, whereas young smart guys are viewed as dorks.”

    Yeah funny how that happens huh? Young smart guy = nerd/dork/geek while older smart guy often = powerful/exciting/attractive.

    And I’ll add my anecdotal “evidence” to the mix. I’m getting FAR more female attention today than I have in my entire life. Sure, I’m in better shape than the last 10 years, but when I was in my late teens and early 20′s I was in decent shape as well, and I’m certainly no smarter than I was back then. (well maybe street smarts, but I’ve lost many brain cells along the way no doubt!)

    What’s different then? I care less and less about what other people think of me by the day. I speak my mind without much concern for what other people think of it. I tend to appear to know what the hell I’m talking about 90% of the time (which is partly why I read such a diverse bunch of blogs and websites. I like to know a little bit about everything so I can work my way into a conversation without sounding like a compeltely moron.)

    Other than looking better, the primary difference between my 32yo self and my 42yo self is: confidence. I think much of the plight of the young man is a lack of it, and honestly that doesn’t surprise me much. Many of the ways men used to get confidence have been removed as options, or are so looked down on that to be involved is to invite redicule. Unless a young man is in sports or something physical, chances are he won’t get much in terms of self confidence until he is much older, mostly because those intelligent traits simply don’t pay off until well after a career is established. Meaning, smart guys don’t come into “their own” until well into their 30′s much of the time. You don’t get a rep as a bad ass because you are king of the Chess Club. But, work your way into a company like Google and all of a sudden that Chess Club king is grabbing the attention of younger women left and right. Did he get hotter? Better looking? More physically attractive?! Probably not. But, I bet he feels MUCH better about himself, and it shows.

  • J

    Yeah she still has baby fat. She’s going to be one of the mid-20s late bloomers that I mentioned.

    Adorable now,will not age well. She won’t lose the fat; she’ll round out like a fat little peasant woman.

  • Ted D

    “so I can work my way into a conversation without sounding like a compeltely moron.)”

    LOL LOL LOL! And I look like a complete moron! Stupid phone, with or without spell check I still screw up posting on a touch screen. :P

  • INTJ

    @ Ion

    If I were a young male dork, I’d probably abandon any indication that I’m dorky. I’d not admit to playing video games, or liking sci fi, dress like I was employed, and act wise beyond my years. That’s the dominance that many restricted women are looking for. Totally ridiculous to tell restricted young women to chase sloppy-seconds some 20 years older for “maturity” when there are young men around their age who are as intelligent and that they are compatible with.

    I’m in the process of getting a much more mature wardrobe (and if I’m lucky I’ll actually get employed soon after graduation :D), so hopefully that’ll help.

    Personally, as a non-geek nerd, I don’t play video games and don’t watch popular sci-fi (I watch Stargate Universe though), but as soon as people find out I’m good at and actually enjoy math, programming, physics, etc., they tend to lump me in with all the basement-dwelling geeks.

  • J

    Harry Belafonte–extemely handsome until about 5 years ago (Daylight come and me not ready to go home!* Then he hit the wall.)
    Bruce Willis–sure
    Harrison Ford, Jimmy Smitt–the years have not been kind

    And, speaking of the wall, WTF is wrong with Stallone’s face now?

    *for the young’uns:

  • Jesse

    I was always sort of dismissive of young Paul’s appeal. He was clearly so boyish. Hell of a melodist though. John was a bit more manly.

    I guess I just tend to admire more manly, slightly more ‘dangerous’ looking men. You know, like if you met them backstage you might actually have to do something about it. ;-)

    I don’t know if this has been discussed here, but I read a couple articles that attempted to explain the phenomenon of girls screaming their heads off. The hypothesis was that these are young girls who are just beginning their sexual awakening, and the wild screaming is sort of a communal rite whereby they show each other that they’re starting to find boys appealing. The catch is that the object of desire can’t be too manly, because they’re not ready for the heat of actual copulation. So they latch onto harmless looking things like Paul and a certain singer today whose name I shall not allow to cross my lips.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Why do we think SK has a good personality? Her experience as a professional wrestler? Reality show star?

    Yes. She’s done more than just model for Victoria’s Secret, and at age 33, she’s likely matured somewhat in comparison to the brainless Victoria’s Secret models.

    Here are recent pics of her, clearly a very attractive woman who looks her age:

    The first pic shows that she’s very attractive (definitely passes the boner test or even the “OMG she’s hawt” test that Clooney likely uses).

    The second picture suffers from severe JPG artificing, so it’s useless.

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

      brainless Victoria’s Secret models.

      Way to stereotype! Here’s a VS model with an IQ probably north of 130 (went to high school with my son, then Columbia):

      http://www.ted.com/talks/cameron_russell_looks_aren_t_everything_believe_me_i_m_a_model.html

      I know one other successful model, the niece of a good friend from grad school. She was her hs valedictorian and also went to Columbia. (NY is obviously convenient for models.)

      But hey, that’s nothing compared to a bit of NFL cheerleading and WWF!

  • J

    Here are recent pics of her, clearly a very attractive woman who looks her age

    She looks good. I think a lot of men wouldn’t mind how she’s aged. She has laugh lines, rather than scowl lines–men hate that angry look–and her chin is still firm. She also appears pretty natural–no work, just make-up.

  • J

    I was always sort of dismissive of young Paul’s appeal. He was clearly so boyish. Hell of a melodist though. John was a bit more manly.

    Young girls really like that non-threatening look. Think Bieber. I wanna wipe his butt for him now, but I’d love him if I were thirteen.

    I guess I just tend to admire more manly, slightly more ‘dangerous’ looking men. You know, like if you met them backstage you might actually have to do something about it.

    That’s why it’s weird/pedo when grown women like Bieber.

    I don’t know if this has been discussed here, but I read a couple articles … So they latch onto harmless looking things like Paul and a certain singer today whose name I shall not allow to cross my lips.

    Exactly. I mentioned the name, didn’t I? Sorry…

    BTW, are you a guy or a girl?

  • J

    I don’t roll on Shabbas!

    Funniest line, followed by “Shut up, Donny, you’re out of your league.” “Don’t mess with the Jesus.” and “No, Donny, these men are nihilists, there’s nothing to be afraid of. “

  • Ion

    “Harry Belafonte–extemely handsome until about 5 years ago (Daylight come and me not ready to go home!* Then he hit the wall.)

    Lol, it’s impossible for Harry Belafonte to hit the wall, impossible!

    The youngins knew who he was if they watched Beetlejuice movie (one of the best movies ever)…he’s basically the whole soundtrack. Sometimes Jamaica Farewell still makes my heart hurt, one of my favorites (right after Jump in The Line of course). :-)

  • SayWhaat

    I don’t know if this has been discussed here, but I read a couple articles that attempted to explain the phenomenon of girls screaming their heads off. The hypothesis was that these are young girls who are just beginning their sexual awakening, and the wild screaming is sort of a communal rite whereby they show each other that they’re starting to find boys appealing. The catch is that the object of desire can’t be too manly, because they’re not ready for the heat of actual copulation. So they latch onto harmless looking things like Paul and a certain singer today whose name I shall not allow to cross my lips.

    Yes, this has been brought up before. It was also an NYTimes article, I believe. I think they also found that when screaming girls were strategically placed throughout the concert, other girls would also start screaming, even if they were not previously fans of the artist. Talk about herd behavior. :P

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

      @INTJ

      1. From your first link, the takeaway line: Being fat might not be a death sentence. It’s also an article about health care, not beauty.

      2. The second link objects to using the term “real women,” implying obesity, to describe a 6′ size 12 Ralph Lauren model who is not fat. The article does not defend fatness, it takes issue with the hypocrisy of RL’s use of the term “real woman.”

      3. The third article highlights the risk of obesity but questions the use of the BMI to measure it, a common complaint among health providers:

      When we talk about the obesity epidemic, it’s important to understand where the numbers come from. Most large-scale evaluations of public fatness—including the CDC’s—employ BMI, a calculation that uses an individual’s height and weight to determine whether he or she is underweight (BMI less than 18.5), normal weight (BMI between 18.5 and 24.9), overweight (BMI between 25 and 29.9), or obese (BMI of 30 or higher). BMI calculations can be famously ridiculous—Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo’s BMI of 28.8 (he’s 6 feet 2, 224 pounds) puts him at the upper end of the overweight category.

      Among the people interviewed for the article is Paul Campos, a law professor who believes the case against fat is being blown out of proportion. However, his is the dissenting view, and it has nothing to do with beauty or self-esteem.

      4. Deals with attempts to move away from obsession with extreme thinness as an ideal. The campaign targets the 25 million young women suffering from anorexia and bulimia. One study reveals that 54% of women said they would rather be hit by a truck than be fat.

      5. Written by an anorexic. Not a defense of fatness, but a critique of obsessive starvation in an effort to attain extreme thinness.

      6. Article rejecting “anorectic weight standards.” The article promotes the following statement by Jennifer Lawrence:

      Clearly, celebrity interviews provide no shortage of encouraging words. “I’m never going to starve myself for a part,” the Hunger Games actress recently told Elle magazine. “I was trying to get my body to look fit and strong, not thin and underfed.”

      Again, it’s about avoiding anorexia, not promoting or defending fatness.

      7. Article about fat women blogging for other fat women. No defense of fatness by CNN.

      INTJ, this is why Megaman has no patience for you. You spout opinions without anything to back them up. I appreciate your taking the time to find links, but not the time I wasted in reading 7 articles that serve to prove you can’t find an examples of the media “defending fatness.”

      Like I said, huge, overblown manosphere meme. If fat chicks want to stay that way, leave them alone, it’s none of your business. There is no promotion of fatness in the media, and in fact the U.S. government is extremely active and aggressive in fighting obesity. Whether that effort is working is another question.

  • Iggles

    @ ABDG, Mike C:

    It is simply untrue that women will not date men 20 years older than themselves. Period. It takes ONE example to disprove absolute statements like that.

    Not one of the women here have argued this! I don’t know why you guys keep bringing it up! You’re arguing against a point no one has made..

    What we (the women of HUS who have commented on the matter) have said is that generally young women stay within 10 years of their age. 25 year old women, unless she has a daddy complex, aren’t lining up to date 40-50+ men in droves. If he has money, some women will date/marry/procreate with him for that reason alone. Not physical attraction.

    Pointing out George Clooney or other rich, powerful men who date decades younger is meaningless. They are the exception to the rule. Exceptions always exist, so it’s a fool’s error to speak in absolutes. In aggregate, virtually all women prefer men up to ten years older, depending on their age. (For example, more women in their late 20s would be willing to date a man in his late 30s than there are 20 year old women who want to date 30 year old guys. (When I was 20, a guy in his 30s would have very mismatched in terms of life experience for me to entertain dating him!)

  • mr. wavevector

    @Susan,

    This is why attraction takes a little while and arousal quite a while. A woman isn’t really “ready” for sex until these conditions are met.

    Agreed, at least for a restricted woman. In my observations, the “feel safe” part is what usually takes the most time.

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

    It’s hard to explain the sensation – the sense of physical impact, the temporary emotional and mental disorientation.

    Science did that for you. Men get less smart and apt to solve problem after watching pics of attractive women. It seems that in the presence of a fertile female men’s brain rush to the part that control the sexual response and diminish the rest undoubtedly an evolutionary adaptation.

    It’s too bad we don’t have many unrestricted female commenters who could chime in on this matter.

    Where is Sassy when you need her? ;)

    I spent a decent bit of high school orbitting a group of unrestricted women. (although I didn’t realize I was orbitting at the time. LOL) I heard the exact words quoted above from at least a half dozen of women regarding any number of men. I also was once told that a specific guy made a specific girl so hot that she “just needed to find something to back into”! Hang out with band groupies for awhile, and you’ll see all sorts of “unrestricted” behavior going on.

    Two points: It seems that you are attracted to the unrestricted type so maybe your conscious brain was assuming they were restricted but they really were not hence why you hang out with them.
    Second girls talk a lot of shit. The proof would be how many of them actually tried to get that man to have sex with them or how would had they reacted to being alone in close proximity.

    She is at the very top of physical attractiveness, and in theory could just as easily date a very good looking 35 year old man. She actually looks better than most twenty-somethings.

    An attractive 35 year old man doesn’t want to date a 33 year old woman, he wants to date younger is obvious by the comments here that most men want young and hotter and will make a play for it 99 times even if they only get the number 100 younger hottie that will take them. For all we know she had tried but her younger counterparts had won him and she ended up adjusting to older men. aka Clooney.
    No to mention Clooney doesn’t look 50. He could pass as late 40 years old. Women try to select for the age men look as well.

    I wonder how sociosexuality correlates to the desire for children?

    I will say unrestricted people I know have little patience dealing with children so I would say probably a lot. Another point why they are minority hard to have a parent that doesn’t like you.

    Then, I’m really confused because every time this issue comes up the women do acknowledge that there are outliers like Clooney. Hell, he’s not even my type, but he’s unicorn enough that if I were single, I’d do him–just on general principle.

    The same way some men like Big women, or older women or women that dominate them sexually…exceptions exist everywhere. If you happen to find the exceptions more attractive but you are not in the category you are bound to think all women are the same, when is only all women you want that are the same, YMMV.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “Second girls talk a lot of shit. The proof would be how many of them actually tried to get that man to have sex with them or how would had they reacted to being alone in close proximity.”

    Just a note but girls talking shit probably constituted 95% of the women I moved from girlfriend to slut pile. YMMV.

  • J
  • J
  • Jesse

    J, I’m a guy. I just turned 21 recently. I knew I wrote that message in an ambiguous manner.

    About Victoria’s Secret models:

    I don’t want to comment on their intelligence, because that can of course vary. What I will say is that to me it is not an interesting career, which has an effect on my level of interest in the woman.

    What is the trajectory of a model? At fifteen she is discovered on the beach or in the mall, then when she graduates from school she moves to New YOrk and gets shuttled all over the world to pose in front of a camera. And she’s washed up before she’s 30, I take it?

    Some of them may well be smart, and some of them become educated. (I’m not arguing postsecondary education is a prerequisite for a woman to be interesting.) But I just don’t see modeling as an interesting career that a woman passionately pursues.

    I like women who are talented and determined to improve in their field. I want to support them in doing what they love. Acting can fit that bill, as can dancing. Modeling doesn’t quite fit to my mind.

    Note that none of this is an endorsement of Stacy Kiebler. I don’t know anything about her. It just reflects my slight apathy towards supermodels. That and they aren’t curvy enough.

  • mr. wavevector

    However, you say seduction, and I assume she knew you were married.

    Yes, she knew I was married.

    Also that she was invested in being independent.

    That was all rationalization. It was clear she wanted a man.

    So this was perhaps a short-term project rather than a desire to date or have a real relationship.

    She kept asking to see me alone. And when were were alone, she kept steering conversation to sex. She also expressed a wistful desire for a husband to take care of her. Regardless of what she thought she was doing, I’m pretty sure that on the hormonal she was reacting to me as a potential mate. After all, the female propensity to mate poaching is well documented.

  • Ted D

    Ana – “Two points: It seems that you are attracted to the unrestricted type so maybe your conscious brain was assuming they were restricted but they really were not hence why you hang out with them.
    Second girls talk a lot of shit. The proof would be how many of them actually tried to get that man to have sex with them or how would had they reacted to being alone in close proximity.”

    I was dating a very restricted girl from the time I turned 16 until graduation, and although I was indeed orbiting these young women I wasn’t actually trying to parlay it into sex. Now I can admit I find these women very interesting, but mostly from a “how the other half lives” standpoint. I’ve spent most of my life trying to understand how the unrestricted view all this stuff, without much success I might add. LOL

    As far as talking shit goes? About a 50/50 split. Some of them talked a good game but didn’t act on it, some of them changed boyfriends (and by boyfriend I mean any guy they were having sex with at the moment) more often than I changed the water in my fish tanks. Which is to say many of them swapped sexual partners every few months or so. But to me, the outside observer, it didn’t matter either way. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck…

    It may help to point out that I was from the poor town in a “better off” school district. I didn’t hang out with the jocks or popular people much, and instead spent most of my time with the “poor kids” and the “trouble makers” of the school. I’d say the popular girls didn’t tend to act nearly as crazy as the poor girls did, but for the poor girls it was the only shot they had at landing a jock or some other popular guy. They never realized those boys were only in it to hit it and quit it. But I heard all the sob stories after it went down.

    So I don’t think it is so much that I’m attracted to unrestricted girls, but more along the lines of lower SES ranks being filled with more unrestricted than restricted folks. I’ve never been involved in “polite society” other than a few expeditions for work events. I mostly hang out with the beer swilling masses, since that is where my roots are planted. Let’s just say down here, self-control and responsibility are often very lacking in folks.

    Lokland – “Just a note but girls talking shit probably constituted 95% of the women I moved from girlfriend to slut pile. YMMV.”

    I wouldn’t have considered a single one of them for the GF slot even if they were interested. (and they probably wouldn’t have told me half the shit they did if they didn’t view me as “safe”, meaning that I wasn’t expressing sexual interest in them) I think at least a few of them totally enjoyed trying to get a rise out of me, and those were mostly the 50% that talked a lot and didnt’ act. The others? I can say that they practiced what they preached.

  • J

    Also that she was invested in being independent.

    That was all rationalization. It was clear she wanted a man.

    Thoise two aren’t as contradictory as they sound. There’s a difference between need and want. Most of us can survive without a man. Nonetheless, many of you are quite nice to have around. ;-)

    And yes, it does sound like this woman was attracted to you.

  • J

    If fat chicks want to stay that way, leave them alone, it’s none of your business.

    According to a doctor friend of mine, 97% of people who lose weight put it back on..and more. The best way to gain weight is to diet.

  • Ion

    “fat is beautiful”

    Has there in recent history been widely popular movies that stars a fat woman as the love interest, or in an action movie as the girl the guys fight over? Hundreds of movies come out every year, the vast majority (if not all in many years) are women in the size 0-6 range. Bridget Jones Diary is of course a rare example, perhaps I’m missing something here.

    We’ll know pop culture is promoting fat people as beautiful when they’re marketed as desirable “love interest”, romantic lead, hot girl in a movie. There are definitely fat people on T.V., but they’re the comedic/ugly sidekicks to the prettier and thinner love interest, or big bloated guts following “obesity epidemic in America” captions. So you Keira Knightly being desirable and classy, compared to Rosie O’Donnell (who is “curvy”, according to media). Both are insane extremes.

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

      @Ion

      Bridget Jones Diary is of course a rare example, perhaps I’m missing something here.

      And her weight was a constant source of shame for her throughout. She weighs herself obsessively and chastises herself constantly. As I recall, she looked pretty good in that Playboy bunny costume. Hardly the fat pig she claimed to be.

  • mr. wavevector

    @SayWhaat,

    Wavevector picked Money and Power! It was super-effective! + 30 XP!

    Well, yeah, but my point was how relative it is. I’m a fairly normal UMC guy, not some captain of industry.

  • Ion

    J, I see your point on Belafonte! He was bound to get old eventually :-(.

    He was so breathtaking young and old…up until that last pic you showed. I think he just looks way better with hair.

    Bruce Willis’ sweet spot was the age he was in in The 5th Element, but he’s still pretty hot.

  • Lokland

    @Ion

    “Has there in recent history been widely popular movies that stars a fat woman as the love interest, or in an action movie as the girl the guys fight over? ”

    Shallow Hal. And they dressed up a skinny chick to do it. That should be indicative of somethings.

    ———

    I think INTJ overstates the case that MSM is defending the tubbies.
    I think what is stated (especially on FB) is all the love the real woman articles. Which of course is ridiculous, all women are real, I can poke you to prove it. Whats actually being argued in those cases is love all the fatties who are undeserving of love (from the men they are interested in).

    Real is a useless term. We’re all real. attractive vs. not attractive is a better description.

    Also, as a man, rejecting a woman because she is fat seems pretty reasonable. I can tell my buddies that without meeting resistance but god forbid I tell a woman who is not my mother (whom actually would agree with me).

    That will rile up a shit storm of epic proportions.

    As for rejecting her, no need to be rude about it but she isn’t good enough.

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

      Whats actually being argued in those cases is love all the fatties who are undeserving of love (from the men they are interested in).

      Is this being argued by fat women? If so, it’s hardly a bias in the MSM, it’s just self-promotion. I don’t think it’s a very good strategy, and I believe those women would be better off losing the weight.

      The accusation essentially amounts to claims of a feminist conspiracy in the MSM. I have seen zero evidence for that. If Roseanne Barr wants to shout that fat is beautiful, she should be able to do so. That’s her constitutional right. It’s no different than any other form of identity promotion, and at least it’s not identity politics. We’re not hearing demands for special tax breaks for fat people or legislation that specifically addresses the needs of the obese.

      Personally, I’d like to see the government outlaw those motorized scooters for the obese. They clog up all the aisles and make shopping a nightmare. A friend told me that on her recent trip to Disney World, they could hardly walk down Main St. for all the fat people who had rented those chairs and were zipping around. Do they then pop out and get in line for Space Mountain?

      I also think airlines should charge obese passengers for two seats. The last time I flew I had a clammy, sweaty, fat upper arm of some guy resting on my torso for an entire flight. He “overflowed” so much into my seat I could have leaned down and licked his arm.

  • Lokland

    On the appropriate level of BF.

    I like the 21-22% Han linked or the one Susan posted (and said men would like).

    Both seem about ideal.

  • Lokland

    @J

    “According to a doctor friend of mine, 97% of people who lose weight put it back on..and more. The best way to gain weight is to diet.”

    Though I both agree with this stat and would hate to rain on your raining on the parade this essentially works out to ‘if your fat and ugly, your stuck like that, you can’t improve get over it,.’

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    Should note I mentioned specially earlier in that paragraph that INTJ was incorrect about the MSM.

    Frankly, I think there should be a fat tax to alleviate the burden caused on the healthcare system. A tax break for being healthy sounds nice but just increases the problem.

  • INTJ

    Wait do people really think Keira Knightley is unhealthily thin?

  • Sassy6519

    I’m very curvy, and I can relate to what J and some of the other ladies have said. I have to try pretty hard to find the perfect balance between raw sex appeal and decency/appropriateness. My boobs have a tendency to enter a room before the rest of my body does. My ass pulls up the rear (pun intended), and that doesn’t help my chances of not seeming somewhat too sexy/trashy in appearance.

    I’m not sure if other women experience this, but here is another side effect of having a curvy body. After puberty, I was socially trained to avoid direct eye contact with a guy whenever his lady is present. If a man and his woman approach me, I focus all of my attention/eye contact on the woman. I experienced a few bad situations, while growing up, when I failed to give my sole attention to the woman present. The ladies often take my eye contact directed at their guys as flirtation, not matter what the context of the conversation is. You can imagine how difficult it was for me to do this when I was a cocktail waitress during my college years. I kid you not, but I had more than a few women become huffy with me after I dared to engage in eye contact/conversation with their men. I’m even talking about women with men who were in their 40s-50s.

    Curvy women, or women who appear to be very fertile, do catch some serious flack in our society.

  • mr. wavevector

    @Ion,

    I totally agree and I fell for this. There were nerds abound who I could have had a conversation with, but I assumed (incorrectly) that only older men could dominate me intellectually.

    Are you only attracted to men who seem smarter or more knowledgeable than you? I’ve heard several smart women say exactly that.

    If I were a young male dork, I’d probably abandon any indication that I’m dorky. I’d not admit to playing video games, or liking sci fi, dress like I was employed, and act wise beyond my years. That’s the dominance that many restricted women are looking for. Totally ridiculous to tell restricted young women to chase sloppy-seconds some 20 years older for “maturity” when there are young men around their age who are as intelligent and that they are compatible with.

    That’s a good point. “Dorkiness” signals a limited engagement with the real world and probably emotional limitations too. Older men naturally have the advantage of more worldly experience, and that experience can give them a wider emotional range. Women tend to like those things because men who have them are more useful to women than those who don’t.

    Experience and maturity are things a young man can pursue. The question is – why should he? A lot of the young men I know seem to find dorkiness preferable to dating. The vision of a white wedding apparently isn’t enough of an incentive to put down the Xbox controller ;-)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Past a certain point, too much diet and exercise can be bad. But in general, everybody should exercise regularly and eat healthy, good, and nutritious foods. It’s great for your body, health, mood, physique, and it adds to quality of life in general.

    I dropped my post-partum weight within six months after giving birth, through both diet and exercise. Though, this time, I am producing milk, which is probably burning an additional 500+ calories a day.

    BTW, SayWhaat, I uploaded the video of our baby boy that you requested. :)

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Way to stereotype! Here’s a VS model with an IQ probably north of 130 (went to high school with my son, then Columbia):

    http://www.ted.com/talks/cameron_russell_looks_aren_t_everything_believe_me_i_m_a_model.html

    I know one other successful model, the niece of a good friend from grad school. She was her hs valedictorian and also went to Columbia. (NY is obviously convenient for models.)

    But hey, that’s nothing compared to a bit of NFL cheerleading and WWF!

    Jesse nailed it. When I talk about intelligence, I’m not just talking about IQ, but applying one’s mind and effort to something worthwhile. Most Victoria’s Secret models (including, as far as I can tell, Cameron Russell) haven’t done this, whereas Stacy Keibler obviously has.

    Anyways, I’m not sure what you’re arguing here. Are you trying to argue that George Clooney couldn’t have gotten with a hotter girl with at least as good a personality as Stacy Keibler, but for some weird reason went for the lower SMV Stacy Keibler?

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

      @INTJ

      Which of Stacy Keibler’s accomplishments do you deem especially worthwhile?

      Personally, I have more respect for a Columbia degree than a stint on Dancing with the Stars. To each his own.

      Are you trying to argue that George Clooney couldn’t have gotten with a hotter girl with at least as good a personality as Stacy Keibler, but for some weird reason went for the lower SMV Stacy Keibler?

      I’m pointing out the silliness in the 30 = The Wall meme, another Sphere Top 10. George Clooney could have someone considerably hotter/younger. Even for GC, it’s not all about looks. One of the highest SMV men in the world apparently loves a woman with a crepey neck and distinctive crow’s feet. :)

  • Tom

    It’s not possible to fall in love without being profoundly sexually attracted
    ___________
    Not sure I agree with that. Im sure there are people who do not lust after one another and still fall in love (without lust.) There are men who love and marry really ugly and over weight women and profess their love. Im doubting they are intensely or maybe not even remotely sexually attracted. Goes both ways.
    I agree attraction can grow with being familiar.
    I would think the norm is to be attracted, but certianly not in every c
    ase.

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

      Im sure there are people who do not lust after one another and still fall in love (without lust.)

      You are wrong. Do your own research.

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

    I like faces with more definition. If you have cheekbones to hold things up, you age more nicely.

    Is funny but I do look better now thanks to having cheekbones that I used to hate when I was younger because I looked even more skinny.

    So they latch onto harmless looking things like Paul and a certain singer today whose name I shall not allow to cross my lips.

    Unless you are reading your posts out-loud you can type Justin Bieber.
    Not sure why everyone hates the kid though, he seems cool enough guy he hosted SNL and he is totally in on the joke that ‘he looks like a lesbian’ How can you hate someone with that sense of humor? :/

    I also think airlines should charge obese passengers for two seats. The last time I flew I had a clammy, sweaty, fat upper arm of some guy resting on my torso for an entire flight. He “overflowed” so much into my seat I could have leaned down and licked his arm.

    I remember that someone thank me in a plane for not being fat. Is like the elephant in the room no one mentions this to the fat people but everyone else is thinking it. I don’t think keeping it a secret helps anyone.

  • mr. wavevector

    If a man and his woman approach me, I focus all of my attention/eye contact on the woman.

    Now I understand. I always wondered what was up with women who only engage my wife. It’s like I stumbled into some secret society of the sisterhood and suddenly became invisible.

    You can imagine how difficult it was for me to do this when I was a cocktail waitress during my college years.

    Damned if you do, damned if you don’t, I guess, because I’m the one paying the tip, and that waitress who wouldn’t look at me isn’t getting a good one.

  • mr. wavevector

    @J,

    Young girls really like that non-threatening look. Think Bieber. I wanna wipe his butt for him now, but I’d love him if I were thirteen.

    Also the non-threatening sound. All the male pop singers sing in a high tenor or even higher falsetto. They sound pre-pubescent.

    To hear singers that sound like grown men you have to listen to country. Or opera.

  • Ion

    “Wait do people really think Keira Knightley is unhealthily thin?”

    I remember the first movie I saw her in “Bend it like Beckham” http://www.teenidols4you.com/blink/Actors/keira_knightley/keira_knightley_1191170961.jpg. I was like “oh here’s this probably lesbian athlete, and that’s cool”, next thing I know she’s a multimillion dollar sex symbol. She has no boobs, no hips, and a very strong jaw so I’m just confused as to what her appeal is with men (though I do think she was cute in that movie in a butch “I kick ass” kind of way).

    I cannot vouch for her being too thin or not, because I’m not a guy.

  • Jesse

    Unless you are reading your posts out-loud you can type Justin Bieber.
    Not sure why everyone hates the kid though, he seems cool enough guy he hosted SNL and he is totally in on the joke that ‘he looks like a lesbian’ How can you hate someone with that sense of humor? :/

    I don’t hate him. I just don’t want to know about him. He represents things I do not want to become involved in.

  • SayWhaat

    Wavevector picked Money and Power! It was super-effective! + 30 XP!

    Well, yeah, but my point was how relative it is. I’m a fairly normal UMC guy, not some captain of industry.

    Right, I don’t think the women here were disagreeing. I’d say a lot of UMC men could be considered a catch.

  • SayWhaat

    I was like “oh here’s this probably lesbian athlete, and that’s cool”, next thing I know she’s a multimillion dollar sex symbol. She has no boobs, no hips, and a very strong jaw so I’m just confused as to what her appeal is with men

    Hahahaha!

  • SayWhaat

    After puberty, I was socially trained to avoid direct eye contact with a guy whenever his lady is present. If a man and his woman approach me, I focus all of my attention/eye contact on the woman

    Yep, I learned to do this as well.

  • SayWhaat

    To hear singers that sound like grown men you have to listen to country. Or opera.

    It’s interesting, in opera the bass singers are usually assigned villainous roles, whereas the heroes/good guys sing tenor. I wonder if the “comfort” of a man’s voice is related to his pitch.

    Side note: boyfriend sings bass. I get shivers when I hear him sing (when I’m not covering my ears to avoid going deaf, that is!). :)

  • SayWhaat

    Hope, Aidan is ADORBS! :D

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

    @J
    I used to be really skeptic about modeling as a career. Until I became one. Models are like athletes walking the cat walk looks easy but is not you have to practice almost daily to do it and then rehearse how to make the design your are using the best. You sometimes do photo shoots in the most difficult situations and you still need to control every single part of your body to look the best and at the same time relaxed. Again no a small feat. And then you have an army of people that are no shy calling you fat and ugly every-time you go to a casting call. There is a reason models both retire young and also tend to try to have other careers you need an iron will to get through that and still look like you are at the top of the world the occasional time you get to work.
    I stopped modeling because my chances were slow, I’m what they call in betweener, meaning that I was not short enough to be a short model not tall enough for run way, no fat enough to do plus size and not skinny enough for 1 size. No pretty enough for photos and not ugly enough for photos (yes sometimes being ugly is an asset to sell certain products), my hair was not long enough but neither I was willing to go bald, I don’t look good like that, so although I managed to get some money it stopped of being fun and I was getting realistic about investing time on this.
    If you can catch a few episodes of America Next Top Model is a lot like that. I remember a casting for a soap where you have to shower and look nice showering and the water is cold because hot water makes the skin look red and get vapor around, not good for shooting. Spending 20 hours in cold water in an air conditioned space and still look like a million dollars is really hard.
    It looks like a shallow job but I feel nothing but respect for the ones that make it in the business, YMMV.

  • SayWhaat

    I actually agree with Ana re: modeling. It takes some skill to recognize your best angles in order to deliver the best shots for the photographer’s needs, as well as market the product, all while standing up to people who point out all your various imperfections. It takes more than good looks to deliver a great shot in hellish conditions (though good looks certainly help)!

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Which of Stacy Keibler’s accomplishments do you deem especially worthwhile?

    She’s a good bit of acting, including in a Psych episode. Not especially worthwhile, but certainly better than nothing.

    Personally, I have more respect for a Columbia degree than a stint on Dancing with the Stars. To each his own.

    We all know how much you’re stuck on credentialism. However, I doubt George Clooney would care about the college education of a woman he’s dating.

    I’m pointing out the silliness in the 30 = The Wall meme, another Sphere Top 10.

    As I said earlier, the actual physical wall occurs after 35-40. However, net present value of attractiveness (which is a big factor in MMV, but not SMV) does drop significantly around 30.

    George Clooney could have someone considerably hotter/younger. Even for GC, it’s not all about looks.

    I never realized it was a ‘sphere meme that looks are the only thing that matter in a woman.

    One of the highest SMV men in the world apparently loves a woman with a crepey neck and distinctive crow’s feet.

    You missed a few imperfections: http://i1.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/238/423/a4e.jpg

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

      @INTJ

      Not especially worthwhile, but certainly better than nothing…We all know how much you’re stuck on credentialism.

      Columbia degree = >>>>> especially worthwhile. The credential indicates successful completion of a rigorous course of study.

      However, I doubt George Clooney would care about the college education of a woman he’s dating.

      Perhaps not, but I wasn’t addressing that. I was questioning your claim that Stacy has a super personality unmatched by gorgeous 20 year olds. IMO, you have yet to make that point successfully. I suggest that you know nothing of SK or GC, their personalities or their preferences. You overreached by commenting on that in the first place.

      As I said earlier, the actual physical wall occurs after 35-40. However, net present value of attractiveness (which is a big factor in MMV, but not SMV) does drop significantly around 30.

      Having never heard this before, I assume you made it up. If I am incorrect, please advise as to your qualification to make such a statement.

      I never realized it was a ‘sphere meme that looks are the only thing that matter in a woman.

      You should get out more.

  • mr. wavevector

    @SayWhaat,

    It’s interesting, in opera the bass singers are usually assigned villainous roles, whereas the heroes/good guys sing tenor. I wonder if the “comfort” of a man’s voice is related to his pitch.

    Don Giovanni is a good example.

    Don Giovanni, a young, arrogant, sexually promiscuous nobleman, abuses and outrages everyone else in the cast, until he encounters something he cannot kill, beat up, dodge, or outwit.

    That’s alpha, 18th century style!

  • Jesse

    Anacaona,

    If your message was directed at me, I absolutely agree it’s a skill. Not just anyone can control their bodies and facial expressions to look great in a photograph, no matter how good-looking you are.

    Rather I was questioning whether this is a performance art that one can be passionate about and try to push their boundaries in. If you’re an actress you take challenging roles. If you’re a model, what do you do – go shoot in the Arctic?

    What I am asking is whether Victoria’s Secret models are passionate – sorry to keep using that word – about fulfilling their talents and becoming brilliant models. Is Kate Upton pursuing performance art or did she fall into a nice career?

    I don’t have anything bad to say about Kate Upton as a person – as a matter of fact I once read an article in the Times that made me somewhat sympathetic towards her, because a person in the modeling industry quite harshly described her as being cheap and common. But Kate Upton does not have an interesting career, and I’m not sure her career is making her an interesting person.

    I guess I’m just a sucker for women who are excited about projects they’re pursuing, especially when they involve talent and skill and pushing yourself.

  • Tom

    Im sure there are people who do not lust after one another and still fall in love (without lust.)

    You are wrong. Do your own research.
    ______________
    So you are saying two obese people who are 300 lbs each are “lusting” after one another? They just cant wait to feel each others rolls and heat rashes?..Sorry I dont need research to know this is false. They may have fell n love with the others mind, but I doubt anyone would find a person 180 lbs over weight sexually attractive. … however I “could”be wrong, I guess . Stranger things have happened.

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

      @Tom

      So you are saying two obese people who are 300 lbs each are “lusting” after one another?

      I have no idea, but if they are not, they’re not in love.

      r I “could”be wrong, I guess . Stranger things have happened.

      Priceless.

  • INTJ

    Many guys might differ on this, but I view models the same way I view hipster bass players. Sure, it might be very difficult. But I’m not really going to respect it as a worthwhile thing to do.

  • Tom

    Susan ,in 5 minutes I found several articles that agreed with me

    Sexual Attraction ˜ Love? | Tilted World

    Erosophia

    Can you be truly “in love” without having sexual attraction? – CafeMom

    There were many more.

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

    @jesse
    No this was addressed to J. I don’t think any model is not there without passion. Enduring rejection is not fun.

  • Jesse

    No this was addressed to J.

    No problem. My mistake.

    I don’t think any model is not there without passion. Enduring rejection is not fun.

    The money’s good too.

  • Tom

    Monitor of psychology
    American Phychological Association
    “Love’s not sex”
    Why romantic love isn’t limited by a person’s sexual orientation.
    By Christopher Munsey
    Monitor Staff
    February 2007, Vol 38, No. 2
    Print version: page 42
    We all know normally sexual attractiveness and being love go together.
    This is interesting what this reseacher says

    “”What turns you on physically is not necessarily what turns you on romantically,” she says.

    In a curious twist, while both men and women find the attribute of physical appearance as sexually attractive, men misunderstand what women seek, and women misunderstand what men seek, Regan says.

    Men think women find a man with resources highly sexually attractive-while women think men find a woman who’s stereotypically feminine attractive. THE TRUTH IS men and women both list physical appearance as the quality that’s most sexually attractive.

    But the list is more comprehensive for romantic attraction. Both men and women list qualities of kindness, warmth, a sense of humor, sociability, trustworthiness and a stable personality as attributes sought in a romantic partner.

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

    The money’s good too.
    You only get real money after a lot of rejection. The average model doesn’t make that much.

  • J

    Though I both agree with this stat and would hate to rain on your raining on the parade this essentially works out to ‘if your fat and ugly, your stuck like that, you can’t improve get over it,.

    Oh, it gets worse as you get older. DH was recently diagnosed as pre-diabetic, and my triglycerides won’t go down as they usually do from fine-tuning my thyroid meds. We are officially old and fat now and have doctors’ orders to do the damn near impossible. Through paleo-diet and exercise DH has lost 23 pounds which he will put back on the minute he stops eating paleo. I cut the crap out of my diet, am working out and have lost NOTHING.

  • J

    Also the non-threatening sound. All the male pop singers sing in a high tenor or even higher falsetto. They sound pre-pubescent.

    They geld them.

  • Jesse

    You’re right. I should have added ‘dreams of stardom’ or something.

    I’m going to quit hating now. :P

  • SayWhaat

    @ wavevector:

    Ha! I think my boyfriend actually covered that role in a recent gig. :)

  • J

    No this was addressed to J.

    In response to what comment? I don’t recall saying anything negative about modeling as a profession–just some envious teasing about your being tall and slender.

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

    I’m going to quit hating now.
    Is okay. I’m just informing from the trenches. Is my duty as a former model. We got a code of honor you know? ;)

  • Ramble

    Original comment

    2. Tons and tons of overweight* girls, and guys, want love (* forget the obese, they make up a relatively small and unique portion of the population. It is much more fruitful to focus on the overweight like Lena Dunham)

    Susan’s reply:

    Obese women don’t have many suitors, right? Or perhaps their suitors are obese men?

    I went out of my way to make sure that the question avoided the subject of the obese (who, again, make up a small percentage of the population) and focus on the chubby and mildly and moderately overweight who are much, much more prevalent.

    Susan, I know that you can’t stand when I bring up this particular hobby horse, but, one of the reasons why I do is that you almost always dodge it or cop out.

    So, I keep bringing it up.

    I have no interest in trying to make certain people feel bad but rather get out an important truth that so few adults are willing to talk about open, honestly and realistically and without couching so many answers and pieces of advice in the name of health when very often the more accurate answer has to do with simple attractiveness.

    So, with that said, I am going to ask again, but, as always, you can simply delete the comment if you feel that I am pushing to hard…
    .
    .
    .

    So, if I am following you, this is what I am getting:
    1. We can’t fall in love unless we are sexually attracted
    2. Tons and tons of overweight* girls, and guys, want love (* forget the obese, they make up a relatively small and unique portion of the population. It is much more fruitful to focus on the overweight like Lena Dunham)
    3. Even if some overweight, or otherwise unattractive, girl (or guy) hears their significant other say “I love you”, they should be suspect.

    With these things in mind, and knowing that we are fatter than we have ever been, what might a popular and influential blogger tell her female followers?

    =====================================

    People know when they are in love, and when someone is in love with them.

    Yet, as you well know, tons and tons of chubby girls (and guys) get married each year. Are they not in love? I mean, there is a really good chance that the guy (even if he is as chubby, or worse) is simply not that attracted to the girl. And, with out that attraction, as you have noted, there can not be genuine love.

    I urge everyone, male and female, fat and thin, to avoid entering marriage unless one is head over heels.

    So, again, if the girl looks like Lena Dunham and you can assume that the guy is not that attracted to her belly and figure in general, should she not marry until she has lost some weight?

    These are genuine questions I am asking.

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

      @Ramble

      Yet, as you well know, tons and tons of chubby girls (and guys) get married each year. Are they not in love? I mean, there is a really good chance that the guy (even if he is as chubby, or worse) is simply not that attracted to the girl. And, with out that attraction, as you have noted, there can not be genuine love.

      I have no idea whether they are in love or not, as I don’t know any obese couples. My guess is that obese people do fall in love with each other, or even with thin people! When I was in college, there was one obese guy in a frat – he had about 4 chins, went by the name of “Doc” and was extremely confident and well-liked. He had a very slim sorority girlfriend, and they married a few years later. I found him extremely unappealing but she was always on his lap, adoring him.

      So, again, if the girl looks like Lena Dunham and you can assume that the guy is not that attracted to her belly and figure in general, should she not marry until she has lost some weight?

      I’m sorry, I don’t think this question makes sense.

      If Lena Dunham can’t get a guy to fall in love with her, she should lose weight and see if that helps.

      If she does get a guy to fall in love with her (she’s supposedly engaged to the lead singer from fun.), then he is very attracted to her “as is.” Perhaps he would like it if she lost weight, IDK. In any case, she sealed the deal with her belly fat, so she’s good.

      If a guy falls in love with her and says, “I love you and desire you, but am concerned for your health. And I think I would be even more blown away by you if you lost the extra weight,” then I think she would be smart to pay attention and do that.

      None of these scenarios have anything to do with marriage. Personally, I would only counsel marriage under the second scenario. For the third, I would wait and see what other “requests” he has up his sleeve.

  • Mike C

    Through paleo-diet and exercise DH has lost 23 pounds which he will put back on the minute he stops eating paleo.

    Ummm….maybe I’m stating the obvious here? but given what you’ve described here don’t you think it would be wise then to not stop eating the paleo diet and make it a permanent lifelong change in diet?

    I cut the crap out of my diet, am working out and have lost NOTHING.

    Could be hormonal. My fiancee had some hormone issues that caused some weight gain and it had to do with progesterone levels. She started supplementing with something intended to “correct” (I think) the progesterone to estrogen ratio. What does your workout regimen consist of? If you haven’t yet, you should be gradually working towards higher intensity cardio beyond just brisk walking….if you can eventually works towards some interval cardio, and if you are not lifting weights start lifting. Lifting weights has hormonal benefits for weight loss, but as a woman ages bone density becomes an issue and lifting some weights (not too heavy) will aid in bone health and help with weight loss.

  • Ramble

    But he can get anyone, why wouldn’t he go for a woman who is at her physical peak?

    and

    But he could easily get an extremely attractive 21 year old. He could date the hottest Victoria’s Secret model in the world. Even a well-preserved 33 cannot compete with that, physically speaking. Which is why swimsuit models pretty much retire in their 20s.

    Wasn’t he just banging some sorority girl not long ago? And, I mean, literally, a sorority girl.

    As far as I can tell, Clooney likes to bang lots of different kinds of girls and has a slight interest in the “somewhat classy looking but still fairly slutty” type.

    I mean, Stacy Kiebler has a rocking body and a cute face, she does not look like trash and yet, quite early in her career veered towards the trashy stuff.

    Clooney apparently swore off marriage and children a long time ago and ever since then has seemed to want to taste the variety pack ever since.

  • INTJ

    @ Ramble

    Ummm….maybe I’m stating the obvious here? but given what you’ve described here don’t you think it would be wise then to not stop eating the paleo diet and make it a permanent lifelong change in diet?

    My reaction exactly.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ Iggles

    Not one of the women here have argued this! I don’t know why you guys keep bringing it up! You’re arguing against a point no one has made..

    Here’s the thing.
    Y matters. A lot. Even if the rule is X.

    The female commetariat trying to continually insist that Y doesn’t matter, don’t even worry about it, just focus on X.

    That absolutely will not fly with the male commetariat on this issue because it’s literally the price discrimination issue: these numbers imply that fully a third of “restricted” women are engaging in behavior that is unrestricted. We are interested in determining why that happens and steering that towards our favor so we have greater option.

    I do understand that this is a relationship blog and not necessarily the place to discuss this. Nonetheless, your insistence that Y does not matter and only X matters will never, EVER fly with male commetariat. You may not want to discuss it, which is fine, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t matter.

    You may also wish to insist that these things are isolated incidents or something beyond the reach of normal men. This is true, none of us would have a chance with the woman Clooney is dating REGARDLESS of our age, because he is Clooney and we are not. That does not mean that we cannot learn things from studying Clooney to bolster our own chances with younger women.

    Again, this may not be the blog to discuss that, but saying that isn’t relevant is untrue and all the guys here are going to ignore anything that smells close to that.

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

      @ADBG

      Y matters. A lot. Even if the rule is X.

      The female commetariat trying to continually insist that Y doesn’t matter, don’t even worry about it, just focus on X.

      Why on earth would I blog for the “exceptions to the rule?” How large is the audience of men who have George Clooney’s SMV? It becomes ridiculous to go further and further afield to find a single example that “proves the rule.”

      You can assume that every single thing I write about is distributed in the population in a bell curve, unless I state otherwise. I’m not interested in focusing on the long tails, for the most part. The divide between restricted and unrestricted is going to be that line down the middle. Mean, median, whatever you prefer. It’s arbitrary, and you can draw your line somewhere else. If you want to consider all women within 2 standard deviations of the mean unrestricted, that’s your right, but I don’t think it makes any sense to put my energies there, and it’s not a productive approach to debate here.

  • Emmanuel

    @Anacaona
    Is okay. I’m just informing from the trenches. Is my duty as a former model. We got a code of honor you know?
    Do you know about Amparo Muñoz? One of the most respectable “beauty” ever to contest in those dreadful beauty pageant contest, and one of the very few to keep her integrity and pride intact, although as a “miss world”, she had been more than abused by the showbiz creatures.

  • Bells

    @Jesse,

    The male response is, “Wow, I’d like to fuck her.” It’s active. The female response is “Mmm, I wouldn’t mind being fucked by him.” It’s more of a passive heat. Women themselves may not even be aware of it, because as far as I know they don’t always have a good conscious grasp of these things

    I’ve never thought “I’d like to be fucked by him” at the simple sight of an attractive male. My attraction process is more like “oh, he’s goodlooking” to “does he have the values I’m looking for?” to “yes, he does!” to “ooh, I’d like to be fucked by him”

    @Saywhaat,

    However, I don’t agree with this notion that we should be trying to attract the “wide pools of men”. IMO, there are so many preferences from both sexes that one should just focus on being the best possible version of oneself, and work to attract the person in the niche that suits you best

    I was just playing as well :) .I have nothing to argue against in this statement so I’ll concede my previous words.

    @ (J, (Jesse))
    Yeah she still has baby fat. She’s going to be one of the mid-20s late bloomers that I mentioned

    Adorable now,will not age well. She won’t lose the fat; she’ll round out like a fat little peasant woman

    .

    Hey, not always true! I come from a history of baby faced women who’ve remained youthful in terms of facial and body features, despite old age. Though I didn’t enjoy being a late bloomer, I’m sure this same attribute will prove very useful for when I’m much older.

  • Emmanuel

    two obese people who are 300 lbs each are “lusting” after one another
    Sure, why not? At least they found each other. Besides, the weight problem in America is not gonna go away just by a snap of the finger, or what’s the saying in English?

  • Mike C

    Here’s the thing. Y matters. A lot. Even if the rule is X.

    The female commetariat trying to continually insist that Y doesn’t matter, don’t even worry about it, just focus on X.

    And it isn’t even a case lik X is some rule with 99.9999999% applicability and Y is some black swan unicorn leprechaun.

    And then you get conflation and misdirection. For example, a bunch of the responses are basically he is George Clooney so you can’t compare him to a “regular” 50 year old. No shit Sherlock. And he is dating 33-year old Stacy Keiber who is super hot and a celebrity in her own right. It’s not like he is dating some semi-attractive 35-year old Target store manager. You don’t have to have George Clooney’s celebrity status to attract the average 30-something who isn’t super hot like Keibler and a celebrity if you are older.

    And then you get an example like Wavevector and the 20-something that was interested and the bobbing and weaving and hamsterbating begins. I can’t tell you how many comments I’ve read in just the last month on a couple different threads of somewhat older guys basically saying, hey I got my ass in the gym, got in shape, picked up new wardrobe, and now I’m dating a woman 10-15 years younger.

    This is one of those issues where there is such an enormous gap between observable reality and tons of examples of older guys dating younger women versus the level of insistence on the female side that it is some type of male fantasy. A perfect example of ignore what they say and watch what they do

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

      @Mike C

      And it isn’t even a case lik X is some rule with 99.9999999% applicability and Y is some black swan unicorn leprechaun.

      That’s exactly what George Clooney is. He’s possibly the highest SMV male in America.

      This is one of those issues where there is such an enormous gap between observable reality and tons of examples of older guys dating younger women versus the level of insistence on the female side that it is some type of male fantasy.

      Here’s observable reality for you. The US Census http://www.allcountries.org/uscensus/56_married_couples_by_differences_in_ages.html

      Here is how the age difference in marriages breaks down.

      Husband 20 years older: 0.8%
      15-19: 1.5%
      10-14: 4.9%
      6-9: 12.3%
      4-5: 13.8%
      2-3: 22.1%
      within one year: 32.4%

      Wife 2-3 years older: 4.9%
      4-5: 2.9%
      6-9: 2.2%
      10-14: 0.9%
      15+: 0.4%

      In 7.2% of all marriages men are 10 years or more older.
      In 11.3% of all marriages women are 2+ years older.
      In 76.1% of all marriages, the age difference is 5 years or less, for either sex.

  • Emmanuel

    If a guy falls in love with her and says, “I love you and desire you, but am concerned for your health. And I think I would be even more blown away by you if you lost the extra weight,” then I think she would be smart to pay attention and do that.
    Oh la la, then it’s rotten from the start. No romance nor spontaneous connection at that point.

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

      Oh la la, then it’s rotten from the start. No romance nor spontaneous connection at that point.

      I think you’re right. It’s a caveat, and that’s not something one should see in matters of the heart.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    I am more interested in the dynamic of restricted vs. unrestricted than the age question, personally. Based on these numbers, a large minority of supposedly “restricted” women are engaging in behavior that could/should be interpreted as sluttish.

    I would not be surprised if the women who have NOT engaged in that, have simply not run across a man attractive enough to meet that threshold, as opposed to that threshold not exisitng. I remember a U of M study saying the vast majority of women would have a ONS with Jonny Depp for instance.

    I do not see why, assuming these conditions, men should not be pushing for early sex always, and DQ’ing all women who reject. You rule out the truly restricted, of course, but you are also DQ’ing the far more likely scenario of a girl not really being interested in you (who would still have a ONS with some other guy and probably has in the past).

    I am increasingly in the “visceral immediate attraction” camp and for DQ’ing ALL girls besides that, or qualifying them so harshly that very few girls would ever make it through.

    Age I have never been concerned about. All the men in my family look young. I am 26 and still get carded to get into movies. I have no doubts that if I stay in shape I could pull late 20s when I am 40. Some benefits to looking young!

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

      I am increasingly in the “visceral immediate attraction” camp and for DQ’ing ALL girls besides that, or qualifying them so harshly that very few girls would ever make it through.

      If you pursue that strategy, I’d be very interested to hear how that works out. Specifically, whether those DTF girls turn out to be good relationship material.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Susan,

    Our approach as men is to improve ourselves, and that involves looking at successful men, how successful they are, what they are capable of, why, etc.

    And then how we can apply it to our own lives.

    Telling us to ignore that makes absolutely no sense to guys. You might as well be telling military planners to ignore Napoleon because they can never be as good as Napoleon.

    Pushing things to extremes also reveals how things behave. Running into a sufficiently attractive man will cause a girl to lower some of her rules. This doesn’t mean we can all be Clooney with a ONS, but it is important to know what improving ourselves will give us. All the other boys try to chase me, but here’s my number, so call me maybe?

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

      Our approach as men is to improve ourselves, and that involves looking at successful men, how successful they are, what they are capable of, why, etc.

      And then how we can apply it to our own lives.

      I’m sorry, but I honestly believe there is nothing, absolutely nothing, that you can learn by observing George Clooney. By all means, if you find that a useful strategy go ahead and use it. I do not presume to order people to follow any particular strategy.

      This doesn’t mean we can all be Clooney with a ONS, but it is important to know what improving ourselves will give us.

      Then you need to find a man with your SMV who has his act together and feels good about his success with women. Look at the women he scores. If you determine that he has what you want, then mimic him.

  • Ion

    Mr. Wavevector

    “Are you only attracted to men who seem smarter or more knowledgeable than you? I’ve heard several smart women say exactly that. ”

    That’s exactly right. And I have been since I started dating, at 21. The Professor was my first. He was working on a book, and we’d talk for hours about content, I traveled to see him in his hotel room (it was a LDR), spent the night with him while looking over the pyramids since I took his course abroad (we’re both from U.S.), etc., I admit it was very exciting.

    “Older men naturally have the advantage of more worldly experience, and that experience can give them a wider emotional range. ”

    Exactly, but that’s really the main/only plus of a girl dating someone many years older than herself. I’ve been trying to think of a “worldly experience”/wisdom vibe a young guy can give off to impress the restricted girls his age?

  • Ramble

    I have no idea whether they are in love or not, as I don’t know any obese couples.

    Jesus Christ!

    Susan, I love you. Really, I absolutely love your blog and I think it is one of the best things going.

    Now, with that said … I have gone out of my way to NOT focus on the obese and make sure that I asked about people who were specifically NOT obese. In fact, I am not that much interested in “fat” people either, but rather, the mildly overweight, the doughy, the chubby, etc.

    That is where our society is.

    Yet, no matter how many times I structure and re-structure my sentences and questions, you absolutely insist on focusing on the one set of people I am trying to EXCLUDE from my questions.

    Honestly, it is like you are being deliberately stupid. And you are obviously not that kind of person.

    Now, if you are simply yanking my chain, then, as an asshole, I could respect that.

    If Lena Dunham can’t get a guy to fall in love with her, she should lose weight and see if that helps.

    No-no-no, that is not the question. This is all deriving from scenario where a guy is saying he is in love with someone that is obviously not that attractive and we know that he was not that he was not attracted to her “at first”.

    But, he most definitely is saying (and possibly believing) that he is love with her. According to your logic, should she not honestly doubt whether or not he is actually in love with her?

    Again, here is the basic logical path that I am so desperately trying to inspect:
    1. (per Susan via Buss et al) with out sexual attraction there is no genuine love.
    2. Many pudgy and doughy and chubby (FORGET THE OBESE) girls (and guys) “fall in love” and even get married
    3. Should these chubby girls not be suspicious of how “in love” their boyfriend is knowing that very few guys are sexually attracted to belly fat?

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

      @Ramble

      Sorry, I think you threw me off with Lena Dunham. To me, she looks obese.

      This is all deriving from scenario where a guy is saying he is in love with someone that is obviously not that attractive and we know that he was not that he was not attracted to her “at first”.

      But, he most definitely is saying (and possibly believing) that he is love with her. According to your logic, should she not honestly doubt whether or not he is actually in love with her?

      Yes, I would doubt it. However, these things do happen. There are “beauty and the beast” stories out there. And aren’t there some men known as chubby chasers who prefer more zaftig girls?

      I think a woman knows when a man is in love with her, and she certainly knows how ardent his desire is during sex. And why would a man lie? If a guy is saying “I love you” but cringing at the sight of your belly, something is definitely off. But I truly believe there are plenty of couples in love where the girl is chubby. And don’t forget all the chubby guys.

      I’m not trying to be obtuse, I just think your hypothetical is odd.

  • Emmanuel

    @Mike c
    And then you get conflation and misdirection. For example, a bunch of the responses are basically he is George Clooney so you can’t compare him to a “regular” 50 year old. No shit Sherlock. And he is dating 33-year old Stacy Keiber who is super hot and a celebrity in her own right. It’s not like he is dating some semi-attractive 35-year old Target store manager. You don’t have to have George Clooney’s celebrity status to attract the average 30-something who isn’t super hot like Keibler and a celebrity if you are older.
    Oh la la, do you live on planet earth or on the Disney one?…
    Have you ever had any kind of contact with those “celebrities”? Clooney is gay and it’s a red herring in the film world. Who cares anyway? What’s funny is this gullible view of the famous by the average mortal. I hope that most people here realize how much marketing is shaping things…

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Susan,

    I don’t see myself pursuing that strategy for now ;)

    FTR, my current SO DID respond in a rather visceral way rather quickly. I would put as relatively close to the center of the restricted/unrestricted spectrum, actually.

    That being said, your stats show 7.2% of men being married to women 10 years or younger than them. Obviously not common, but this is not Clooney-only.

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

      That being said, your stats show 7.2% of men being married to women 10 years or younger than them. Obviously not common, but this is not Clooney-only.

      I never said it was, not for 10 years. We’ve discussed that 7% figure before. Of course, we have no idea of the SMV of those women. Presumably it’s lower – a compromise on both sides.

      I think what’s really going on, to be honest, is that some men approaching middle age are highly invested in the thought that they could still pull a babe in her early 20s. Dream on, sleigh boy. (Santa Clause reference :P ) Some can (see Emmanuel). But they are few.

      You see Rollo suggesting that a man’s SMV peaks in his 40s (an appreciating asset!). And these guys glom onto him for dear life. I think there’s a phrase for this, and stereotypically the purchase of a sports car is also involved.

  • SayWhaat

    And then you get an example like Wavevector and the 20-something that was interested and the bobbing and weaving and hamsterbating begins. I can’t tell you how many comments I’ve read in just the last month on a couple different threads of somewhat older guys basically saying, hey I got my ass in the gym, got in shape, picked up new wardrobe, and now I’m dating a woman 10-15 years younger.

    And here’s another arguing against what he wants to hear, instead of what is being said.

    It is entirely possible for a man to date a woman 10-15 years younger.

    It is less likely that he will date a woman 10-15 years younger if she is in her mid-20s or younger, but still possible.

    Necessary conditions for the man: power, money, prestige (which, incidentally, Wavevector had in spades in comparison to the woman who was after him)

    Necessary conditions for the woman: lack of power, lack of money, lack of prestige

    Daddy issues come into play at an age gap of >15 years.

    As always, YMMV.

  • Ramble

    Susan, I apologize if it feels like I am harassing you. Because, to a degree, I probably am.

    And, if that is how you feel (that I am harassing you) then just ignore the questions. Like I said previously, you absolutely do not need to respond to each question. It must be a ton of work.

    Still, I keep asking same question more than once because you are never actually addressing the question I ask, which is disappointing. And, again, I feel that this is a really important subject for girls to get a good, and realistic, grasp on, which I feel our popular culture does an absoutely terrible job of addressing.

    Thank you in advance.

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

      @Ramble

      I am not feeling harassed, just puzzled. I’m having trouble understanding what you are getting at.

      There are three reasons I don’t generally traffic in posts about weight:

      1. I’m sick to death of it – the obsession with weight pervades the culture and tortures the young women I know.
      2. I don’t find it particularly interesting.
      3. I don’t know much about it as a factor in attraction. I assume that overweight women elicit less attraction in men, so as far as I can see, the market regulates itself. Why the need for intervention?

  • Bells

    Re: Older Men
    In my opinion, I think it’s pointless to date an older man (~10+ age difference) at my young age. For one, I want children. I don’t want a man who’s way older because it is well known that men are statistically more likely to die earlier than women (And I don’t want to be left as a young widow) Secondly, I’d like to wait at least four years before having kids yet meanwhile his age is continually declining (I don’t want an old father who can’t keep up with his children).

    Thirdly, I’d prefer to have a companion to grow with through life. Not to say that I don’t want an intelligent and wise man. But I’d feel like an older man would have lived life way beyond the point of mutual relation. Then the relationship would feel more like a teacher-student kinda thing and that’s definitely not what I’m looking for.

    However, I could see the perspective of other women who could consider older man, especially if she has no priority in creating a family. I’d probably treat it as a short-lasting, unrestricted romp with no long term potential (note: I’d only focus on goodlooking, hard-bodied, intelligent, well-off older men not horribly aging, low income, wrinkled tubs).

    I think it’s doable but I’m sure these younger women would have much higher standards for an older man because they are sacrificing the benefits of youth for old age. Youth almost always trumps old age hands down.

  • SayWhaat

    Oh la la, do you live on planet earth or on the Disney one?…
    Have you ever had any kind of contact with those “celebrities”? Clooney is gay and it’s a red herring in the film world.

    HAHAHA! If this is true…hahahahahahaha!

  • Ted D

    ADBG – yeah that pretty much sums it up. I’m firmly in the “visceral immediate attraction” camp myself. Not because the “slow burn toward attraction” can’t work, but because of how long that burn can take. In addition as I’ve pointed out before, being with a woman that has such a strong attraction to you provides a bit of a buffer for those occasional shit test fails. ;-)

  • SayWhaat

    Bells at 498, +1.

    I’ve shared this here a few times before, but my co-worker in the next cubicle (;)) once told me how she wouldn’t consider guys who were more than 4+ years older than her (at 23), because she considered them to be in a different generation and didn’t want to date a guy who was “more experienced” than she was.

    Basically, even guys who are just 4-6 years older than us are perceived as being of an “older” generation because they came of age in a different technological era. I remember she scoffed, “[26yo associate] doesn’t even know how to create a PDF!”

  • Emmanuel

    @Saywhaat:
    It is entirely possible for a man to date a woman 10-15 years younger.
    It is less likely that he will date a woman 10-15 years younger if she is in her mid-20s or younger, but still possible.

    More than “still possible.”

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

    Oops sorry @J. Jesse started with J and I tough it was a comment by you.
    So yes Jesse my long “essay in defense of models” was addressed at you.
    Sorry for the confusion.

  • Ramble

    That’s exactly what George Clooney is. He’s possibly the highest SMV male in America.

    That is going down because of his age, but, for a long spell, he undoubtedly was. And isn’t it fascinating that he went out of his way to make sure that he did not pass on his genes?

    Brad Pitt, had trouble convincing girls to have his babies (I believe both Paltrow and Aniston were uninterested in having his babies).

    A significant number of the best looking men have either had trouble convincing girls to have their babies or wanting them in the first place.

    (Plus, all of those guys that waited till the last minute to have a kid: Richard Gere had his kid at 51)

    A similar thing has happened with girls as well: Katherine Heigl, Ava Gardener from way back and, when you consider all of those gorgeous girls that waited until the last minute to have kids, the numbers start pile up.

    Interesting.

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Columbia degree = >>>>> especially worthwhile. The credential indicates successful completion of a rigorous course of study.

    Economics and political science are not rigorous courses of study.

    Perhaps not, but I wasn’t addressing that. I was questioning your claim that Stacy has a super personality unmatched by gorgeous 20 year olds. IMO, you have yet to make that point successfully. I suggest that you know nothing of SK or GC, their personalities or their preferences. You overreached by commenting on that in the first place.

    I’m speculating that she has a certain maturity or personality attribute that is somewhat better than that of gorgeous 20 year olds that makes up for the very slight difference in attractiveness of the two. I don’t see why you’re disputing this. After all, it’s you that is trying to make the point that “looks aren’t everything”…

    As I said earlier, the actual physical wall occurs after 35-40. However, net present value of attractiveness (which is a big factor in MMV, but not SMV) does drop significantly around 30.

    Having never heard this before, I assume you made it up. If I am incorrect, please advise as to your qualification to make such a statement.

    Uhm, seriously? It’s obvious why I’m qualified to make such a statement: I have a dick. That (and the fact that I’m heterosexual) makes me highly qualified to assess female attractiveness as a function of age. I’m sure other qualified commenters here would back me up on my assessment of when women hit the wall.

    As for net present value, I am fully capable of basic arithmetic, and can accurately calculate net present value based on the above assessment.

    I never realized it was a ‘sphere meme that looks are the only thing that matter in a woman.

    You should get out more.

    Some links would be helpful. I admit to not being an expert on manosphere posts, but everything I’ve read in the conservative manosphere greatly emphasizes femininity, nurturing qualities, ability to cook, etc. as very desirable things in women.

    As for game blogs, Heartiste once wrote an article on “girl game” which said 95% of it was looks. However, that was probably tongue-in-cheek, as it directly contradicts his dating market value test.

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

    I think what’s really going on, to be honest, is that some men approaching middle age are highly invested in the thought that they could still pull a babe in her early 20s. Dream on, sleigh boy. (Santa Clause reference :P ) Some can

    I will go on a limb that for every woman that wants or doesn’t mind a guy 10+ older than her. There is 4 or 5 guys waiting for this. In my country were May-December relationship are not illegal you can find older men going to the places the young girls visit, some of them even wait out outside HS. And even if a minority of girls do fall for this, the majority laugh at them behind their back and the ones that accept 80% are into it for money.
    Guys all you have to do is look at romance novel written by women for women how many leading men are significantly older than their leading lady? Like significantly Christian Gray is on his 20′s if you need an example. All things being equal a woman will prefer a guy that is not older than 10 years old. The fact that some compromise doesn’t change this, and I would suspect that the most hypergamic the woman the more likely she will compromise on age difference, YMMV.

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

    @Ramble
    You are rambling more than usual. I think the % of men that will get their boner destroyed by 20 pounds extra in a woman they are already attracted to is very low. Hence why you don’t have more talks like this. No one cares, YMMV

  • Ramble

    Sorry, I think you threw me off with Lena Dunham. To me, she looks obese.

    Oh, OK, I can understand that. And, again, sorry for the attitude. You have been gracious.

    And aren’t there some men known as chubby chasers who prefer more zaftig girls?

    Yes, they exist, and they are a tiny minority.

    And why would a man lie?

    Come on, surely you understand that lonely people, and, I mean, really, really lonely people, tell themselves all sorts of things. Did you ever see Eddie Murphy “Delirious” where he talks about the starving guy stranded on a island who gets rescued and is offered a cracker: “What?! What is this? This ain’t no cracker. This is way too good to be a cracker. Is this a Ritz? This must be Ritz. Damn this is good!”.

    And who can blame them?

    If a guy is saying “I love you” but cringing at the sight of your belly, something is definitely off.

    Who says he is cringing. Many people have basic self awareness and are uninterested in hurting another persons feelings. Especially when it comes to girls and weight. Most of society understand what a taboo that is. Combine that with nice-guyism and/or white-knighting and/or not being “shallow” and/or at least a half dozen other modern factors and you have a bunch or pudgy and chubby girls being told, “I love you”.

    And don’t forget all the chubby guys.

    I made sure to include them in almost every reference I made. However, I did try to shift the focus to girls since guys and girls have different attitudes, views and instincts when it comes to our attraction cues and desires and priorities.

    I’m not trying to be obtuse, I just think your hypothetical is odd.

    You know, if I were born and raised in SoCal in the late 50′s and early 60′s and now living in Brookline, I might find it odd as well. But, again, I will repeat, the modern West has likely never been this fat and unattractive before. When you combine that with things like bad attitudes, snarkiness, masculine girls, increased shit testing and all the rest, it is not odd to see couples where the guy is not that attracted to the girl and yet he is telling her he loves her (and girls towards guys as well).

    Because, for many, it is either that, or they tell no one they love them (i.e. she is the best so far and I do not see things getting any better).

  • Emmanuel

    What does YMMV means? Looks like some kind of sick pattern/secret nobody wants to touch upon.

  • Ramble

    You are rambling more than usual.

    I don’t get to stop by too often, so, I am trying to take advantage when I can.

    I think the % of men that will get their boner destroyed by 20 pounds extra in a woman they are already attracted to is very low.

    I wouldn’t disagree.

    However, that is not what I am referring to.

    Let me back up for a moment. Susan thinks of Lena Dunham as being Obese. Here is a fairly recent photo:

    http://img2.timeinc.net/people/i/2013/stylewatch/blog/130121/lena-dunham-600×450.jpg

    She is not obese. However, regardless of what descriptor you, or anyone else, would like to use, she is significantly closer to what the average girl looks like than most of the girls we see on TV (she is probably heavier than the average girl, but, not by much. Mindy Kaling is probably an even better example of the average girl.)

    Whether or not Lena was famous, sooner or later she would very likely find her beau and get married. And, that guy would be saying things to her, and to himself, like, “I love you”. Yet, there is a very good chance that he would not be that attracted to her and would not get all that excited about seeing her naked (which is different than being excited about having sex).

    So, this has nothing to do with some guy who was initially sexually attracted to some girl, seeing her gain 20 pounds and then lying to himself. This is about all of those people who get together where the guy is not that attracted to the girl (and/or vice versa) and telling her, and himself, that he loves her.

    According to Susan’s logic (and one that I do not disagree with), if he is not attracted to her, then she should be suspect of whether or not he is actually “in love” with her. And with how many pudgy and chubby and mildly overweight people there are in America and the West, I know that this is the case with tons and tons of people.

    And yet this message is basically never being communicated to girls (or guys) in an adult, intelligent, and responsible way.

    And it is shameful.

    And it is one of the reasons why it is one of my hobby horses.

  • Ramble

    YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary

  • Ramble

    I am not feeling harassed, just puzzled. I’m having trouble understanding what you are getting at.

    Ok, please understand me when I say: good.

    I would rather be confusing then mean.

  • mr. wavevector

    @Ion,

    “Older men naturally have the advantage of more worldly experience, and that experience can give them a wider emotional range. ”

    Exactly, but that’s really the main/only plus of a girl dating someone many years older than herself.

    @ Bells,

    Re: Older Men
    In my opinion, I think it’s pointless to date an older man (~10+ age difference) at my young age. For one, I want children. I don’t want a man who’s way older because it is well known that men are statistically more likely to die earlier than women (And I don’t want to be left as a young widow)

    I agree with both of you. I would not recommend dating someone much older than yourself. Find someone you can grow together with, not someone who’s on the downward slope.

    @ SayWhaat,

    Basically, even guys who are just 4-6 years older than us are perceived as being of an “older” generation because they came of age in a different technological era.

    Ha. Kids these days. You think tweeting is computer science. ;-)

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

    Brad Pitt, had trouble convincing girls to have his babies (I believe both Paltrow and Aniston were uninterested in having his babies).

    But Angie is surely making up for that.

  • OffTheCuff

    Bells: “I’ve never thought “I’d like to be fucked by him” at the simple sight of an attractive male.”

    I heard on NPR (On Point, WBUR) that 90% of men have fantasized sexually about women they just met. The much-maligned eye-fucking concept.

    And for women who have just a man? Is it zero, or near zero, as claimed here by our restricted lasses?

    61%.

    (If memory serves me correct, they were throwing around a lot of stats.)

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

      @OTC

      Can you recall when you heard that and what the topic was? I’d like to have a listen…

      Women do have sexual fantasies, of course. See romance novels for how they work.

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

    Yet, there is a very good chance that he would not be that attracted to her and would not get all that excited about seeing her naked (which is different than being excited about having sex).

    I think the problem is that you are assuming that the average man won’t find her excited to see naked. Why he would not? Had you seen ancient art? Men had find women attractive for thousands of years and the ideal body type has changed all the time too. Simetry, clear skin, shiny hair, and hip to waist ratio. That is all a woman needs to get sexually attractive. Is when this are overshadowed by so little body fat that she couldn’t carry a child or so much body fat that she couldn’t carry a child that things get problematic.
    What proof do you have that men are not attracted to the average girl? Aside from your personal observation that you find them completely unatractive?

  • Ramble

    1. I’m sick to death of it – the obsession with weight pervades the culture and tortures the young women I know.

    And yet the culture almost never deals with it in a realistic way. I’ll give you just one quick example:

    NPR a few months back had a series on weight in America and the whole things began with a woman who has always struggled with her weight and had to deal with a berating father who always told her she was ugly.

    Jesus Christ if that just does not fit perfectly in the ridiculous world-view that the likes of “intelligent” NPR has created for itself. And front and center is woman as victim.

    Weight is an obsession of girls because, down deep, they understand how important it is to their SMV. Yet, we rarely in popular culture speak about it in any intelligent and adult way. It is almost always about people looking to appear morally superior (i.e. white knighting and the like) or playing the victim.

    There is absolutely no narrative in the modern West that goes like this:

    “Young women care deeply about being attractive. A girls “ideal” wight will have her neither carrying extra belly fat nor looking emaciated. While it is, obviously, important to be healthy, it is also possible to be healthy and still have that pudgy or chubby belly. So, improving your health may be one step, but it may also be important to reduce the carbs simply to improve your sexual attractiveness.

    And, your sexual attractiveness is important for a number of reasons, not least of which because of the role it plays in “genuinely” attracting a man.

    Hopefully none if this will be misconstrued to imply that a girls sexual attractiveness is the only thing important to a man, or obviously, herself.”

    As far as I can tell, that basic sentiment exists no where is our modern culture, yet, I would like to think that it is a fairly reasonable, and short, summary of why a girl would care about such things and what a healthy view of it might be.

    3. I don’t know much about it as a factor in attraction. I assume that overweight women elicit less attraction in men, so as far as I can see, the market regulates itself. Why the need for intervention?

    Because of the fucked up and schizophrenic and victimhood focus narrative.

    So much of what you do here is to cut through the politically correct bullshit in an attempt to get the girls the (sometimes hard) truth so that they could pursue healthy relationships in our modern and subverted culture.

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

      @Ramble

      So much of what you do here is to cut through the politically correct bullshit in an attempt to get the girls the (sometimes hard) truth so that they could pursue healthy relationships in our modern and subverted culture.

      I don’t think healthy relationships are dependent on appearance. Appearance is something the guys constantly emphasize. In my years of blogging, I’ve generally only commented on appearance as it relates to communicating one’s sociosexuality, i.e. don’t dress for a ONS if you aren’t looking for one.

      Ramble, if you don’t like chubby women, don’t date them. I just do not share your sense of outrage about this, nor do I see an emphasis on victimhood. If anything, fat kids are regularly shamed and demeaned, outright by their peers, and more indirectly by the adults in their lives.

      Overweight women are well aware of the disadvantage they face in the SMP, and if they don’t care enough to make changes, that’s their problem. I do not see why you concern yourself. Just date thin women – as you’ve said, there’s no shortage of them in your SES group.

  • OffTheCuff

    It is possible to love someone with flaws, it’s called being attracted to the whole person and focusing on their good qualities, and not letting the unimportant things bug you. Wives have may stretch marks, and bellies, and even rips and tears from childbirth, they may lose breasts due to cancer. Men lose toes (my dad had a law mower accident), or have a scar, or back hair. Grow the hell up, people.

  • Ramble

    But Angie is surely making up for that.

    She had him adopt 437 kids and gave him 2, or something like that. I honestly do no read up on these things.

    =========================================

    I think the problem is that you are assuming that the average man won’t find her excited to see naked.

    Yes, I am assuming that, and I am doing so with a great deal of confidence.

    Why he would not?

    Because she has way too much belly fat.

    Had you seen ancient art?

    It is a subject that I have great interest in.

    I don’t have a ton of time to go into it, but, in short, in the last 500 years or so, men have shown little interest in fat women. Certainly the female that was depicted in, say, the 1500s looks different that what we might focus on today.

    However, the ideal, back then, was never fat (Reubens was not representative of the “masters”) and was representative of a day where fertility was value in the midst of feast and famine and high rates of death during and after pregnancy.

    Almost the second the Industrial Revolution hit, the female idea started to change and by no later than the late 1800s (and way before the subversive period of the flappers) girls and women were looking slimmer, while still having their hips and curves emphasized.

    IOW, once we were able to “afford” to have women look feminine while not needing to look like they could survive 4 straight bad harvests, girls started looking slim (though not skinny) and feminine. Well, the ideal girls did.

    What proof do you have that men are not attracted to the average girl?

    OK, I am glad you asked this because it means that I might be communicating poorly.

    If we discount heavier girls, then I think that the average guy is most definitely attracted to the average girl. Again, for the longest time, the average guy dreamed of marrying the girl next door.

    So, when I say “average”, I mean the “average” we are seeing today where we are much heavier than we used to be ( a trend that started in the 70s and may have, hopefully, plateaued in the late 2000s. I hope).

  • Bells

    @OTC,

    I heard on NPR (On Point, WBUR) that 90% of men have fantasized sexually about women they just met. The much-maligned eye-fucking concept.
    And for women who have just a man? Is it zero, or near zero, as claimed here by our restricted lasses? 61%. (If memory serves me correct, they were throwing around a lot of stats.)

    That sounds like a really high amount. It’s an interesting concept but it would be nice to see their methods of evaluation for clarification.

    Like Susan said, they may have just been talking about fantasies rather than realistic options. I think one of the top female fantasies is to be taken by a handsome stranger. But that doesn’t mean that the same woman would actually have the same physical response when confronted with a real-life scenario.

    There are a lot of factors at work when females evaluate males. It’s more complicated than having boner.

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

      I think one of the top female fantasies is to be taken by a handsome stranger. But that doesn’t mean that the same woman would actually have the same physical response when confronted with a real-life scenario.

      In the fantasy, the woman is in control. She creates a storyline where she feels safe. The handsome stranger is a good man, a kind man. He has ample alpha and beta traits.

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

    @Ramble
    Can you link a picture of the average woman no man want to see naked you are surrounded by? Because I’m not getting it either.

  • Jesse

    Bells, you asked about how a woman’s demeanor can maximize her attractiveness. First off, I want to say that this will depend on your physical attractiveness. If a man already finds you very visually appealing then maybe you can double your appeal. If you were not quite his type to start it will probably have less effect.

    You asked for an objective analysis, which is difficult to provide. In the abstract I suppose I’m saying that if you hit a man’s sweet spot physically and dispositionally then you’re probably worth twice as much as a woman with the same looks but a mediocre or off-putting temperament. That’s probably not a radical idea. (Are people really saying a woman’s appeal is mostly derived from looks?)

    In my case, if I met a gorgeous woman whose personality was bland, or worse distasteful, I might want to have sex with her but I won’t want to spend time with her. Even if I could play her like a violin, at some point even no-strings sex will become boring, because there are other women out there and I won’t want the aggravation of interacting with a person who annoys me.

    If she draws me in by how she acts, well, then I will want to make her mine.

    I can only describe what I happen to be fond of. In a nutshell, I like a combination of sex appeal and cuteness. I will try to elaborate on this.

    First off I should probably note that I am more of a dominant type of guy, so I want to be in control, and I tend to prefer feminine, submissive women. Now, that doesn’t mean she has to be a doormat – it just means she has to enjoy me ultimately being in control.

    As a matter of fact they are much more interesting if they are not doormats. I really like it when they challenge me in certain ways, or make certain dominance plays as it were, only for me to lovingly reassert my authority. One example of this is that I really like it when a woman knows how to play the sex kitten. I have mentioned before that I think being the sex object carries a certain amount of power and dominance because it gives the sex object the power to arouse the other. So I really enjoy it when the woman knows how to flirt and tease and flaunt, because from my dominant position I consider it a very cute attempt to grab some of my authority. (It can be a fine line between a cute dominance play and a more distressing one, the latter of which I might take as a serious indication of the lady’s ill-suitedness as my mate. I would have to think that the right kind of woman would intuitively understand these nuances so it’s probably not worth fretting over.)

    So knowing how to ooze sex is a big part of it, and it’s probably a pretty rare skill even among attractive women. You have to learn how to walk sexily, you have to have the breathy, delicate voice, and you have to know what to do with your eyes and lips.
    The flipside to this is cuteness and innocence. I suppose you could say this is the ‘real’ side of the woman, and that the sex kitten is just an act that she puts on and that I enjoy. Maybe being able to play the sex kitten gives her a bit of flair. It’s a bit hard to describe cuteness and innocence, but I can tell you what it’s not. It’s not loud, boorish, cussing, ungraceful, petty, backbiting, greedy, unappreciative, thoughtless, or indecent.

    It’s a soft voice, a little laugh, an earnestness and a desire to please. It’s like a little girl, except that carries other connotations and I don’t actually want a little girl. You might say it’s a somewhat persistent, mild state of wonder and appreciation. It’s a desire to cuddle up and nuzzle against my shoulder, and to press your head and body into my chest and look up at me.

    I’m not saying that you can’t be smart, knowledgeable or educated – hell, you can be smarter than me, it’s fine, really – but if you ever give off a hint of being a know-it-all or similar disdain you are way, way off target. If you blandly remark that we’re out of milk or that the lawn needs to be mowed you are not close. If you give off a whiff of entitlement you’re just killing it.

    The final component that I should mention is tenderness. Despite being a decently unrestricted, testosterone-laden sort I have a very strong instinct to help, protect and take care of the right kind of woman. I think that paradoxically certain flaws can strengthen my desire to be with her, particularly if they are the kind I can help her overcome. If she had some issues or trauma from her childhood that she struggled with, and I judged her to be a fundamentally loving, sweet, kind person who simply needed some help, then this added to the rest of her appeal might send me over the edge and make me insist on making her my wife. So for a woman to expose some tenderness or weakness can have a very strong effect on the right man. Showing some vulnerability can be a powerful thing, and it’s probably related to the innocence.

    If you add all these things together, they can make the difference between a merely attractive woman, and a rare pearl, replacements for which may be nearly impossible to find. You might be able to make yourself irreplaceable, and therefore probably irresistible.

    Phew, that took a bit of effort to write. I’ve tried to flesh out my tastes as I understand them. I hope this message has been communicated effectively. Let me know what you think.

  • HanSolo

    @Jesse

    Great description.

    Spot on.

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

      @Jesse

      Great description.

      Spot on.

      Extremely articulate and thoughtful presentation for a 21 year old! Wow!

  • Ramble

    Can you link a picture of the average woman no man want to see naked you are surrounded by?

    Lena Dunham.

    Oh, and I am not surrounded by them. Come on.

    I focus on this because of how fucked up the narrative is, not because I am paranoid. It is no different than how Susan focuses on how fucked up modern social (dating) dynamics are. It is not because she herself is having problems dating but that it is a very real thing that is not getting the proper attention. And, there is a reason why Lena Dunham and Mindy Kaling are writing these subjects into their stories, because they are not being realistically addresses in pop culture.

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

      And, there is a reason why Lena Dunham and Mindy Kaling are writing these subjects into their stories, because they are not being realistically addresses in pop culture.

      If they’re writing the stories, and the stories are hits, which they are, then the topic is being addressed and heard in pop culture.

  • OffTheCuff

    Susan: http://bit.ly/VcrwJf – may be grist for an article. It’s a book on relationships, interview with the two authors.

    Bells: “That sounds like a really high amount. It’s an interesting concept but it would be nice to see their methods of evaluation for clarification.”

    it DID strike me as high, too! I had just turned it on, and may have missed some context, though.

    Bells: “Like Susan said, they may have just been talking about fantasies rather than realistic options. I think one of the top female fantasies is to be taken by a handsome stranger. But that doesn’t mean that the same woman would actually have the same physical response when confronted with a real-life scenario.”

    Of course it’s *fantasies*, that’s what they were talking about, it’s the word they used IIRC. Sue’s said repeatedly this doesn’t happen to women and, again, this number popped out contravening it.

    I may have misheard the context or number, but I think the specfic words were “sexually fantasizes about someone they had just met”.

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

      @OTC

      Of course it’s *fantasies*, that’s what they were talking about, it’s the word they used IIRC. Sue’s said repeatedly this doesn’t happen to women and, again, this number popped out contravening it.

      That is incorrect. I have not said that women do not fantasize about strangers. Many women enjoy rape fantasies, in fact. That is an entirely different animal then feeling aroused upon meeting someone. Women do not see a stranger, feel their clit throb, and think, “I want to fuck him!” There is no comparable experience to the male erection at first sight or stimulus. There is actually no real “tingle,” if by tingle you mean physiological sensation. That comes later.

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

      @OTC

      Thanks for the podcast. I haven’t listened to it yet, but will today. I can tell you one thing right off the bat – the co-author is a well known sociologist and sex-positive feminist. She very definitely has an agenda. Still, their sample is 70,000. I’m interested to hear what they have to say.

  • SayWhaat

    Basically, even guys who are just 4-6 years older than us are perceived as being of an “older” generation because they came of age in a different technological era.

    Ha. Kids these days. You think tweeting is computer science.

    Hahaha! :)

  • Ramble

    I don’t think healthy relationships are dependent on appearance.

    Now I’m confused.

    Wasn’t this you like 5 minutes ago:

    Im sure there are people who do not lust after one another and still fall in love (without lust.)

    You are wrong.

    And you have a billion other examples of where you say that physical attraction is a must for genuine love.

    Ramble, if you don’t like chubby women, don’t date them.

    This is not about me. I don’t tell you to not date assholes and douchebags when you go on about them. I understand that you are capable of thinking outside of yourself.

    Overweight women are well aware of the disadvantage they face in the SMP

    No, some are. But they are fed a ridiculous schizophrenic message from pop culture that then gets reinforced from friends (“OMG, you are so beautiful”).

    But, let me finish with this:

    If some girl in your group who looked a lot like Lena Dunham (though, without the fame and money) just told you that her bf told her he loved her, and you knew him as well and thought that he was not all that successful with girls before meeting her, what would you think?

    What would you tell her?

    What do you think would be the best thing that she could do to improve her love life?

    And, if you did conclude that losing weight would be a really high priority, would you, as a trusted source of advice (i.e. Aunt Sue), tell her that?

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

      @Ramble

      I don’t think healthy relationships are dependent on appearance.

      vs.

      And you have a billion other examples of where you say that physical attraction is a must for genuine love.

      These are not mutually exclusive. Physical attraction is a prequisite for falling in love (not genuine love, which can take many forms). Once attraction has been established, given the appearance of both parties, then that appearance should be no impediment to a healthy relationship.

      If some girl in your group who looked a lot like Lena Dunham (though, without the fame and money) just told you that her bf told her he loved her, and you knew him as well and thought that he was not all that successful with girls before meeting her, what would you think?

      I would take it at face value. You are operating from the assumption that people cannot fall in love with someone unattractive. Even if they are unattractive themselves! That is ludicrous. Walk around your city today and note how many unattractive people there are.

      By your logic, every bald man or short man should doubt his wife’s attraction for him. Would you say the same about a flat-chested woman? He couldn’t possibly be really attracted to her because she has no breasts?

      You do not allow for individual differences. Attraction is malleable, and most people are able to feel attracted to people of similar SMV to their own, even when that SMV is low. YMMV.

      I do not agree that the culture rewards fatness or tells fat women they are beautiful. I think there is a fringe element of large women who would rather practice self-acceptance than self-loathing and they’re vocal about it. I ignore them.

  • J

    Ummm….maybe I’m stating the obvious here? but given what you’ve described here don’t you think it would be wise then to not stop eating the paleo diet and make it a permanent lifelong change in diet?

    Don’t I think or doesn’t he think? The doctor, who actually wrote DH a letter about making “sustainable changes, ” and I are in the “permanent lifelong change in diet” camp. DH however is it his way because he “knows his body.”

    Could be hormonal. My fiancee had some hormone issues that caused some weight gain and it had to do with progesterone levels. She started supplementing with something intended to “correct” (I think) the progesterone to estrogen ratio.

    Well, I am menopausal. I just had thyroid levels checked. If I don’t start losing soon, I’m calling the endocrinologist.

    What does your workout regimen consist of? If you haven’t yet, you should be gradually working towards higher intensity cardio beyond just brisk walking….

    I walk for 35 minutes on the treadmill for about 1.75 miles. I can’t jog or run because I have a screwed up meniscus. My heart rate goes up to about 145. The trainer at the Y has started me on five of the Magnum machines–the leg press to strenghten the muscles around the knee (just went from 70 to 90 pounds! Yay!) and four other that work the arms and chest–bilateral press, bilateral pulldown, I forget the names. Sometimes I do the reclining bike, which I used to do in physical therapy for my knee. (See I’m not joining when I say that 3 out of 4 of our knees are messed up.)

    I actually build muscle rapidly. My father was a boxer at one time. It may be that I’ve lost a bit of fat and gained some muscle, so maybe there is no net loss yet. I’m frustrated because exercise or re-adjusting thyroid meds usually does it for me and I’m beginning to think that I’m going to have to diet. I hate that, but middle-aged eventually catches up to the best of us.

    I’ve done the grazing thing, which actually makes me happier than eating big meals. Eating is good, you should do it all day! What sort of things does your friend recommend her clients eat?

  • Ramble

    Oh, and please stop advising me to not date girls who are chubby, or fat, or obese.

    When I go on about another one of my hobby horses, the plight of the lower class, no one tells me to not date poor chicks and invest in mutual funds.

    I am capable of thinking outside of myself, caring about the plight of others and knowing that the accurate truth is extremely important in improving one’s lot in life. (For instance, the other day Escoffier dropped some hard knowledge about the Grad School scams and how to avoid them. This was news to me.)

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

      @Ramble

      I am capable of thinking outside of myself, caring about the plight of others and knowing that the accurate truth is extremely important in improving one’s lot in life.

      I can see you are passionate about this topic. Why not become an activist of some kind? It seems like a more effective strategy than trying to convince bloggers to share your message on their platforms.

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

    She had him adopt 437 kids and gave him 2, or something like that.
    3 for 3.

    So can any of the guys here say if they find Lena incapable of genuinely get a man to find her attractive?

  • J

    *(See I’m not joking when I say that 3 out of 4 of our knees are messed up.)

  • Madelena

    @Ramble

    I’m following the conversation between you and Suanne with great interest, even though I am not quite sure what you’re trying to arguye. As a woman who was once overweight, I’ll tell you with absolute certainty that the market makes you aware of your low SMV in a crystal clear manner. A few overweight girls with nice figures, lvely faces and the confidence to dress well still do well but the majority of us are aware of our value in the hierarchy of things, despite the “you go girl” bravado. We are so well aware of our sexual value, or lack of, that some of us simply opt to take ourselves out of the dating market.
    I didn’t need to have anyone tell me that my weight, and the resulting lack of confidence, was interfering with my ability to find love, I was all too well aware of it myself. It would have just been cruel for any of my friends to point it out because, trust me, I was not under any illusions and despite what you might think, most fat girls aren’t under those illusions either.

  • Madelena

    Please excuse the typos.

  • J

    @OTC

    Great post # 521. i just may let you carry my books. ;-)

  • https://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @SW

    INTJ, this is why Megaman has no patience for you.

    Actually, it’s more for this type of behavior: 1) Makes a dubious argument; 2) Provides little or no support for it; 3) Doesn’t answer questions or respond when challenged; 4) Goes MIA down his rabbit hole; 5) Reappears later as if nothing happened; 6) Acts more intelligent, despite 1-5) being indicative of the opposite… :???:

    To tweak Goldinger’s quote: Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, the third time it’s a pattern.

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

      @Megaman

      Actually, it’s more for this type of behavior: 1) Makes a dubious argument; 2) Provides little or no support for it; 3) Doesn’t answer questions or respond when challenged; 4) Goes MIA down his rabbit hole; 5) Reappears later as if nothing happened

      Exactly. I find the bolded parts particularly annoying. After dropping his 7 links, none of which supported his argument, he stopped responding. Yet chose to continue arguing about the mental acuity and winning personality of a reality show actress he knows nothing about. Ultimately resorting to the HUS equivalent of “Because I said so.” (“I have a dick.”)

      INTJ is a good kid, but he gets very bratty and trolls. I’m just going to stop engaging him unless he changes his communication style.

  • Bells

    @Jesse,

    The flipside to this is cuteness and innocence. It’s a soft voice, a little laugh, an earnestness and a desire to please. It’s like a little girl, except that carries other connotations and I don’t actually want a little girl. You might say it’s a somewhat persistent, mild state of wonder and appreciation. It’s a desire to cuddle up and nuzzle against my shoulder, and to press your head and body into my chest and look up at me

    I think I’ve naturally got the cute femininity part down pretty well. Many people comment on how innocent/trustworthy I look— and I can’t deny this fact. I am innocent in terms of experience but that doesn’t mean I’m not knowledgeable about the ways of the world.

    So knowing how to ooze sex is a big part of it, and it’s probably a pretty rare skill even among attractive women. You have to learn how to walk sexily, you have to have the breathy, delicate voice, and you have to know what to do with your eyes and lips

    It’s just this whole sex kitten act that I’m still having trouble with. I can act sexy to attract men but I find it difficult to sustain this play for long periods of time. After a while, I get drained and eventually return to my laidback sweet girl mode. *sigh* I guess I shouldn’t look at it as work but as something that should be blended seamlessly through my mannerisms.

    …Despite being a decently unrestricted, testosterone-laden sort I have a very strong instinct to…

    –You sound like a really cool guy.. Too bad I avoid unrestricted men. I’m not sure if this has been explicitly stated but I personally correlate unrestricted men with being overly promiscuous. I can’t refuse men the biological urge of desiring to have sex with as many women as possible. But I’d personally caution that you should be aware that you’re more likely to alienate the affections of high character women with too many sex partners.

    So for a woman to expose some tenderness or weakness can have a very strong effect on the right man. Showing some vulnerability can be a powerful thing, and it’s probably related to the innocence

    -Vulnerability. Such a tough issue. It’s takes a while for me to become emotionally comfortable with people :/

    Phew, that took a bit of effort to write. I’ve tried to flesh out my tastes as I understand them. I hope this message has been communicated effectively. Let me know what you think

    .

    I appreciate your time taken to fully answer my question. Your comment has introduced a lot of new ideas and interesting spin to various aspects that I need to build upon.

  • Bells

    edit: “But I’d personally caution that you should be aware that you’re more likely to alienate the affections of high character women if you have too many sex partners.”

  • Abbot

    Such a survey is moot in certain locations

    http://trends.truliablog.com/files/2013/02/singles-nyc.png

    .

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Anacaona,

    So can any of the guys here say if they find Lena incapable of genuinely get a man to find her attractive?

    Yes, I think some men would find Lena attractive. First, I think sexual desire is elastic for most men. They may want the hot chick but they will take what they can get. (And men are as adept at rationalizing as women are.) Second, some men like plumper women. Third, despite what some of the guys here are saying, personality counts for a lot for some men.

    While I would say Lena is below my standards, that’s only because I have enough SMV to get hotter women. But I’d sure rather have a Lena than no woman at all. If she were the best woman who would have me, I’m sure I would find her attractive – physically, anyway. (Her personality is a different issue.)

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

      Lena Dunham is in a serious relationship (possibly engaged) with Jack Antonoff. He is the guitarist for the band Fun., which won the grammy Sunday night for Song of the Year. Here they are at the Grammys.

      ld

      They are both famous, high status, and not gorgeous. Their SMV seems compatible. I don’t know why people can’t grasp the idea that they might actually (and clearly do) have the hots for each other.

  • mr. wavevector

    @Bells,

    It’s just this whole sex kitten act that I’m still having trouble with. I can act sexy to attract men but I find it difficult to sustain this play for long periods of time. After a while, I get drained and eventually return to my laidback sweet girl mode.

    While I agree more or less with what Jesse wrote, he clearly likes an exaggerated femininity more than I do. I find the “laidback sweet girl mode” much preferable to the “sex kitten act”. (This may be way before your time, but I much prefer Mary Ann to Ginger).

    -Vulnerability. Such a tough issue. It’s takes a while for me to become emotionally comfortable with people :/

    Vulnerability is attractive in a woman, but not if it’s too obvious or quick. A high value man wants to be needed, but a woman who is too vulnerable looks weak and clingy. Like sex, it’s something you want to hint at but not give away early in a relationship.

  • Lokland

    @Bell

    “I am innocent in terms of experience but that doesn’t mean I’m not knowledgeable about the ways of the world.”

    Cute and feminine is a plus. As a note though, being vague, especially with regards to experience will always be regarded as either lying or I’m a slut in sheep’s clothing by any guy who actually cares about it. If your low N, inexperienced honesty would be the better policy.

    “I can act sexy to attract men but I find it difficult to sustain this play for long periods of time. After a while, I get drained and eventually return to my laidback sweet girl mode. ”

    This isn’t a negative.
    Cute and sweet is great to have around most of the time. I’d much rather (and do) take the cute and sweet girl to meet my friends/family and pretty much anywhere we interact with people. Most of the time at home as well.

    Let the sex kitten come out in sustained bursts in the bedroom (and others, always necessary) then go back to cute and sweet.

    Lady in the streets, freak in the sheets. Unless your dating a sex addict most time will be spent in the streets, fact of life.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “So can any of the guys here say if they find Lena incapable of genuinely get a man to find her attractive?”

    Kind of a stupid question.
    I can’t speak for all men.

    A better question would be to ask who find her attractive and then determine the proportion of the population that she is capable of pulling.

  • Iggles

    @ SayWhaat:

    Basically, even guys who are just 4-6 years older than us are perceived as being of an “older” generation because they came of age in a different technological era. I remember she scoffed, “[26yo associate] doesn’t even know how to create a PDF!”

    Ha! I can attest to feeling the age difference of 4+ years when I was in my early AND mid 20s! Not for your same reasons as your coworker (see seems rather haughty about “technological eras” :lol: ), but for the longest time I did not want to date someone older than me. I preferred my age or slightly younger (1-2 years).

    I started dating again in earnest when I was 26. I have a youthful look (always have looked much younger than my age) and felt it was a mismatch to date guys in their 30s. People by and large do not age well. With men I could definitely see the difference in appearance of an early 30s guy and a mid 20s guy. It’s ironic, but one of my friends urged me to date older because she said older guys were more likely to want serious relationships (which I was seeking). I’m really glad I listened to her! My boyfriend was 31 when we started dating (he’s 4 years older than me). When I first met him, I did notice he looked his age to me. I don’t mean that in a bad way, after all most people DO look their age or older. My impression of him was that he was handsome, had a great smile (he was literally smiling the whole date. So was I), and I could tell he was very much attracted to me (his whole body language and our constant eye contact). It’s funny because now I see so many youthful qualities in him both physical and personality wise (he’s very playful). Anyway, I’m totally losing my train of thought. Got to head to work!

    On last comment..

    @ Ana:

    I will go on a limb that for every woman that wants or doesn’t mind a guy 10+ older than her. There is 4 or 5 guys waiting for this.

    Co-sign!

  • Iggles

    Ugh, ipad autocorrect fail..

    Not for THE same reasons as your coworker (SHE seems rather haughty about “technological eras”..

  • Underdog

    Now that he’s got his exposure, he’s going to dump her in a few months.

  • Underdog

    Also, *shudder* @ that arm.

  • Abbot

    “In the fantasy, the woman is in control. She creates a storyline where she feels safe. The handsome stranger is a good man, a kind man. He has ample alpha and beta traits.”

    The odds of that fantasy being played out during a hook up are practically zero. No BFE for you! That wears at a woman and forever affects her deeply. Each time, a part of her is raped right along with her self worth, the ruination of her reputation in the future notwithstanding
    .

  • Thrasymachus

    I’m not sure what the issue is concerning older men and younger women. It is true that most people mate assortatively, and this applies to age as it does to other demographic characteristics. While there may be some PUA’s who have argued that age does not matter if you have sufficiently tight game, this view is far from universally held in the manosphere, and no one in this forum has supported it.

    On the other hand, if over 7 percent of women are married to men a decade older than they are, that is a far from insignificant figure. We are well out of George Clooney territory here. As several posters have reported, men who get their act together by hitting the gym, dressing properly and establishing themselves financially can attract attention from younger women. These men are not superstars. The women are not below average in terms of appearance (if anything, they are more attractive than usual), nor is there much evidence that most of them have “daddy issues.” Incidentally, men married to younger women live longer than those married to their age group peers. Women do not derive a similar benefit from marrying younger men, and older woman-younger man marriages are far more likely to end in divorce.

    An average 45 year old man who thinks that he can pull hot 21 year old women is clearly delusional, but no one on this thread has suggested this. This does not, however, mean that high status men (not only superstars) are not considered attractive by at least some younger women. There is simply too much anecdotal and statistical evidence for this proposition, whatever claims are made to the contrary.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Susan Walsh

    Exactly. I find the bolded parts particularly annoying. After dropping his 7 links, none of which supported his argument, he stopped responding. Yet chose to continue arguing about the mental acuity and winning personality of a reality show actress he knows nothing about. Ultimately resorting to the HUS equivalent of “Because I said so.” (“I have a dick.”)

    INTJ is a good kid, but he gets very bratty and trolls. I’m just going to stop engaging him unless he changes his communication style.

    If it makes you feel any better Susan, I barely acknowledge most of the things that INTJ says. I can completely understand Megaman’s views of him as well.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Susan Walsh

    Lena Dunham is in a serious relationship (possibly engaged) with Jack Antonoff. He is the guitarist for the band Fun., which won the grammy Sunday night for Song of the Year. Here they are at the Grammys.

    They are both famous, high status, and not gorgeous. Their SMV seems compatible. I don’t know why people can’t grasp the idea that they might actually (and clearly do) have the hots for each other.

    I watched the Grammy’s, and I admit to squealing at the television when I saw Lena and Jack together. I think that they make a very interesting couple, and they seem very similar.

    I think it is very possible for people lower on the SMV scale to be attracted to one another. I think, however, that they find themselves attracted to quirky aspects of each other or more obscure features. A woman may have a gut, but her man may really like her big eyes and soft hair. A man may be bald, chubby, and short, but his woman may really swoon over his velvety voice or great teeth.

    I’ve even found myself appreciating some less mainstream aspects of men I’ve met. I could meet a guy that I wouldn’t typically date, due to his physical appearance, but I can be struck by the amazing cologne he wears. Some men also have killer eyes or killer smiles, despite their overall average or below average appearance.

  • Jesse

    Bells, I don’t actually know the definition of an unrestricted man, so it may have been unwise of me to take up the label. I assume it refers to more masculine, assertive, higher-testosterone men, and that fits the bill for me.

    If you like manly, take-charge men, you will probably have to accept that they have substantial libidos and have probably at least in the past enjoyed the attention of different attractive women. Now, that’s not to say you need to put up with ill treatment, but certain types of people tend to be a certain way and you may as well have your eyes open. Just remember that just because some of us have teeth doesn’t mean we can’t be very, very good to the people we love. You might actually want a fierce and protective animal on your side.

    From my perspective, I recall a study purporting to show that more feminine, attractive women are more likely to cheat. Personally, I absolutely cannot tolerate an unfaithful woman, but when you’re fond of a certain type – love makes you willing to enter relationships and take risks. You try your hardest to make it work and to help the other person make it work.

    I’d also mention that for me certainly the aim is not to have sex with as many women as possible. To me there is something pathological about solely racking up numbers. Quality matters.

    Lastly, regarding vulnerability, as I said it can be attractive but just be careful you don’t allow yourself to be manipulated. I like sex as much as the next guy, but I find it very, very unfortunate when a good woman is taken advantage of by men merely looking to use her for cheap thrills.

  • SayWhaat

    @ Bells:

    It’s just this whole sex kitten act that I’m still having trouble with. I can act sexy to attract men but I find it difficult to sustain this play for long periods of time. After a while, I get drained and eventually return to my laidback sweet girl mode. *sigh* I guess I shouldn’t look at it as work but as something that should be blended seamlessly through my mannerisms.

    There is a balance to sex kitten/cute innocence that you can pull off, without having to draw a stark divide between the bedroom and the outside world.

    You have a nice body, so let’s start with that. My boyfriend says I tend to wear conservative clothes (eh, better to err on the side of caution), but I do try to follow Susan’s “1 in 3” rule by highlighting one of my “assets”. For instance, if I wear a low-cut shirt, I’ll wear an A-line skirt to minimize attention to my rear. On the other hand, if I want to wear a tight skirt, I’ll wear a blouse that has a higher neckline. None of my skirts hit higher than a hand’s length above my knee (though I can get away with shorter skirts since I am a short person). And, because it’s chilly right now in NYC, I wear stockings. I love, love stockings. They give me the coverage I need, while making my legs look slim and long. I’d wear them year-round if I could. Also, don’t underestimate a man’s interest in stockings. They love stockings. They love to peel them off. (I think it’s a porn thing.)

    Next, makeup. Natural makeup as much as possible, but you can play with eyeliner to give your eyes a more “kittenish” look, like http://images.totalbeauty.com/uploads/editorial/lg420x280/eyeliner-l.jpg (but maybe not so obvious as this http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-LGYp4KhePXw/UAmJQnKvnAI/AAAAAAAACFI/OjltBFqb9Sk/s1600/winged+eye+liner.jpg) .

    I don’t know what your hair is like but longer is better, as long as it has shape. I used to have long hair down to my butt, but it looked dreadful because it completely overwhelmed me and I looked like this http://images2.fanpop.com/images/photos/5600000/Addams-Family-Cousin-Itt-addams-family-5684028-356-288.jpg.

    Now, as for attitude. Don’t try to have a coy, sexy attitude if you don’t think it suits you, because it will come off as contrived/trying too hard. However, what you can do is practice eye contact and smiling with perfect strangers as you pass them on the street. There will be no consequence to this, as you are just passing by, so why not smile and brighten someone else’s day? Also, I read a study somewhere that showed men are attracted to a gait with a slight sway. See if you can practice an easy, measured walk with a slight sway of hips. It’ll feel awkward at first, but over time it’ll feel more natural – and your body probably does it anyway, to be honest.

    Okay, the men can correct me here if I’m wrong, but I think what men respond to a lot is a peek at the mystery. They go insane if they think she’s teasing them, all the while oblivious to the fact. Upthread we had Han Solo talking about how he went nuts about that large-breasted girl who had no idea he was looking. Now, I’m not saying you should go around flashing boys! But if you know that they are checking you out without your knowledge, then you can have some fun with that by just being at ease with your body and yourself. I don’t know how to explain this better without a video of sorts, but I think it’s safe to say that if you are completely at ease with your body, then you can “tease” by doing simple things like absentmindedly playing with your hair, stroking your neck, touching/licking/briefly biting your lips, etc.

    And by the way, I don’t buy it when men say that they don’t like a cocktease. They love it. THEY LOVE. IT. So don’t be afraid to be one.

    Hope that was somewhat helpful. ^__^;

  • SayWhaat

    Sassy,

    I’ve even found myself appreciating some less mainstream aspects of men I’ve met. I could meet a guy that I wouldn’t typically date, due to his physical appearance, but I can be struck by the amazing cologne he wears. Some men also have killer eyes or killer smiles, despite their overall average or below average appearance.

    I go weak at the knees for a man with a strong nose. Are we still doing that “Geezers I Would Do” thing? Add Adrian Brody to my list!

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

      I go weak at the knees for a man with a strong nose.

      Me too! I really like a strong nose on a man.

  • Abbot

    That Match.com survey does not reveal reality. Slut angst runs deep in the US

    “Mark actually does judge her since he feels the need to find an excuse for Maggie’s sexual history.”

    That ol “you are judging” whine

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/shannon-colleary/how-many-premarital-lover_b_2024084.html

    .

  • Abbot
  • SayWhaat

    Iggles,

    Ha! I can attest to feeling the age difference of 4+ years when I was in my early AND mid 20s! Not for your same reasons as your coworker (see seems rather haughty about “technological eras” ), but for the longest time I did not want to date someone older than me. I preferred my age or slightly younger (1-2 years).

    Yes, she could be rather haughty at times. :)

    Actually, I wouldn’t mind going 6 years older, though that’s the max for me right now. My boyfriend is 3 years older than I am. Oddly, I’m weirdly hypergamous in that I really can’t get attracted to a guy younger than I am, even if it’s just a matter of days. I can’t explain why, though I’m sure I will feel differently as I age.

    I dunno though, dating a much younger guy would make me feel weird, probably like how other girls would feel weird dating shorter guys. There’s also the matter of him using you to get “experience”, or just to have an older woman as a notch on his belt.

  • Abbot

    Wow! The first ever slut-tell infographic

    http://www.girlschase.com/images/how-many-partners-0.jpg

    .

  • Jesse

    I caught this snippet and will respond.

    And by the way, I don’t buy it when men say that they don’t like a cocktease. They love it. THEY LOVE. IT. So don’t be afraid to be one.

    Again, from my perspective there is a fine divide here, which I alluded to in my explanation to Bells. A cute attempt to tease or arouse me with her body is fine. It’s fun and I will take control.

    A sincere attempt to jerk me around and deny me, on the other hand, is absolutely not acceptable and I will construe it as an aggressive and hostile act. As I said, it’s about control.

    If I’m sitting on the couch and she walks by, jiggles a bit of cleavage at me and tries to run away, I’m going to leap up, arrest her, pin her down on the floor and ravish her. In a loving way. At least that’s what I want to do, and if that bothers her then she is playing games and trying to dominate me, which is grounds for being thrown out immediately.

    I’m not really exaggerating. I would be very upset.

    It’s fine for her to resist. That can be very fun. But there are lots of nuances that delineate from a flair of personality that attempts to intrigue me versus a genuine attempt to put me on my knees.

    I think more submissive men are more accepting of being teased and denied. That’s a completely different dynamic, and it’s utterly foreign to me so I’m of no help there.

  • Abbot

    The survey leaves out important facts

    “sleeping around is easier for women. Regardless of how you feel about promiscuity, we can all agree that a guy who manages to rack up a lot of sexual partners has to have some skills. It’s challenging for men to rack up partners, even for men with low standards. A man needs social intelligence, interpersonal skills, persistence, thick skin, and plain old dumb luck. For women, though, a vagina and a pulse is often enough. Whenever an accomplishment requires absolutely no challenge, no one respects it. It’s just viewed as a lack of self-discipline. People respect those who accomplish challenging feats, while they consider those who overindulge in easily obtained feats as weak, untrustworthy or flawed”

  • SayWhaat

    Again, from my perspective there is a fine divide here, which I alluded to in my explanation to Bells. A cute attempt to tease or arouse me with her body is fine. It’s fun and I will take control.

    Yep, this is what I meant. For an attractive man, this is an invitation to take control — either by asking her out on a date, dragging her to the bedroom, etc. (Depending upon the familiarity of your relationship.)

  • Lokland

    @SW

    “And by the way, I don’t buy it when men say that they don’t like a cocktease. They love it. THEY LOVE. IT. So don’t be afraid to be one.”

    Caveat.
    Cocktease without the fun at the end is a royal PITA and is literally a huge shit test when done in a relationship.

    However, to get the ball rolling, its quite a bit of fun. Dragging it out makes it better by approx. +1000000000000000, give or take a few.

  • Lokland

    @SW

    “There is a balance to sex kitten/cute innocence that you can pull off, without having to draw a stark divide between the bedroom and the outside world.”

    Disagree. Theres two divides. The 1 in 3 rule is what separates lady in streets from lazy sloth plodding along the side walk.

    I will note that after entering (or starting to enter a relationship) that the line between lady in the streets, freak in the shits is better when it becomes a little blurred.

    Upon initial meeting, its not a good idea unless she wants a P&D.

  • OTC

    Perhaps we are agreeing, but just not understanding each other. To me, sexually fantasizing about a man you just met is indeed thinking “i want to fuck him” … Otherwise what are you fantasizing about? Playing checkers ? Mutual knitting?

    That’s a very different thing than “i am *going* fuck to him” or “i want to duck him in real life”. People fantasize about stuff they’d never do in real life!

    The whole part about no physiological response, makes perfect sense. I don’t walk around uncontrollably popping wood everywhere either.

    Good luck with the podcast. I have a huge backlog of On Point to work through , and that’s just on sociosexual topics alone.

  • SayWhaat

    Perhaps we are agreeing, but just not understanding each other. To me, sexually fantasizing about a man you just met is indeed thinking “i want to fuck him” … Otherwise what are you fantasizing about? Playing checkers ? Mutual knitting?

    His and Her monogrammed towels.

  • SayWhaat

    Disagree. Theres two divides. The 1 in 3 rule is what separates lady in streets from lazy sloth plodding along the side walk.

    Which is precisely why I suggested the 1-in-3 rule.

    Upon initial meeting, its not a good idea unless she wants a P&D.

    WADR, I’m addressing this from the female POV. As J and others have noted, it is possible to project a sexual nature that is entirely due to a man’s wishful thinking. Wearing a tight dress can look sexy on one girl and demure on another.

    My advice aims to harness this tendency of male projection in ways that can help girls like Bells to attract the attention they want without having to compromise their dignity to get it.

  • OffTheCuff

    Say: “His and Her monogrammed towels.”

    Are you 13 or something? ;) Unless you’re using those towels to gag or tie each other up… that’s a romantic fantasy, not sexual.

    Oh, and I would suggest avoiding the word “cocktease”. It means a someone who delights in sexually frustrating a man and walking away (which of course men hate), which is 100% the opposite of being fun, playful, teasing, or coy which is awesome.

  • SayWhaat

    OTC, precisely. Men have sexual fantasies at first meeting, women have romantic fantasies.

    (Also, that bit about towels was a joke. Yeesh.)

  • J

    I go weak at the knees for a man with a strong nose. Are we still doing that “Geezers I Would Do” thing? Add Adrian Brody to my list!

    Adrian Brody is a geezer? Now I feel really old.

    @Ion

    Sorry about bursting your Harry Belafonte bubble. He’s about 85 now; he had a better than average run, but he had to hit the wall eventually.

    @ SW, Sassy, et al, re Lena

    I too squealed when I saw Lena and bf on the Golden Globes show. They are perfect for each other.

    @Underdog

    Now that he’s got his exposure, he’s going to dump her in a few months.

    I hope not. I’m sure he can find some hotter girl who will love him for his money, but I doubt he can find someone else that he will have as many things in common with–and despite the ‘sphere meme that attraction is everything, it really doesn’t last.

  • OffTheCuff

    Say: “Men have sexual fantasies at first meeting, women have romantic fantasies.”

    But that’s not what the interviewer said, though (again, IIRC). The question was SEXUAL fantasy.

    Unless you want to define that a female sexual fantasy is a romantic fatnasty, in which case we can define black is white, and all get killed in the next zebra crossing.

    And I was kidding too. :P The joke was too good to pass up…

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    J, I think the biggest culprit is probably carbs, and your husband might just have to go low-carb permanently. My MIL was forced to do that due to her medications, but she lost tons of weight. She is skinnier than when she was 30 years younger. It might be the way the body responds to those spikes in blood sugar.

    Re: larger conversation about weight. Yeah I try to stay in shape, because that is what I want to do, and I feel happiest around 19BMI. But just because a girl is skinny doesn’t guarantee love and happiness. Unmarried guys here can go on forever about what a woman looks like, but OTC has it right. And he’s the one married with kids.

  • SayWhaat

    Fair enough, I haven’t listened to the podcast yet. Giving it a go now.

  • J

    J, I think the biggest culprit is probably carbs, and your husband might just have to go low-carb permanently

    I think that’s likely. He loves his bread and pasta though. We both do

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    J, oh my mother-in-law LOVES carbs. Rice, bread, pasta, etc. She used to bake her own bread, and she was a total chocoholic. Now she has to be on prednisone for an autoimmune disorder, and she deals with being basically diabetic.

    Her doctor mentioned that most people gain lots of weight on the medicine. She has incredible willpower, so she just cut out all high carb foods altogether and lost a ton of weight. She can have all the fat, meat, protein and dairy, as well as vegetables, but literally nothing that is easily broken down into sugar.

    However, being thin is not the end-all and be-all of health. You have to figure out what works for you and your family. The changes need to be sustainable.

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

    A better question would be to ask who find her attractive and then determine the proportion of the population that she is capable of pulling.
    Fair enough. That is a better question indeed. So any guy here finds Lena attractive in a sexual way?

  • Emily

    >> “It is possible to love someone with flaws, it’s called being attracted to the whole person and focusing on their good qualities, and not letting the unimportant things bug you. Wives have may stretch marks, and bellies, and even rips and tears from childbirth, they may lose breasts due to cancer. Men lose toes (my dad had a law mower accident), or have a scar, or back hair. Grow the hell up, people.”

    Yeah, this is the big problem with Ramble’s theory. If it’s impossible for a man to really truly love somebody who looks like Lena Dunham, then there’s absolutely no hope that my husband would love me when I’m 80. I refuse to accept this premise.

  • Mike C

    Fair enough. That is a better question indeed. So any guy here finds Lena attractive in a sexual way?

    I don’t.

  • Mike C

    Yeah, this is the big problem with Ramble’s theory. If it’s impossible for a man to really truly love somebody who looks like Lena Dunham, then there’s absolutely no hope that my husband would love me when I’m 80. I refuse to accept this premise.

    I’m not sure the problem is with Ramble’s theory. The problem is with the theory wanting to directly link sexual attraction with love. I can be highly sexually attracted to some 24-year old hottie that I don’t have any emotional feelings for whatsoever. On the flipside, I would still love my fiancee/future wife if she gained 40 pounds, but it would most certainly kill sexual attraction for her.

    Re Ramble….I think he has been tip-toeing around trying to avoid being mean or offending or whatever that I can’t quite figure out the main crux of his point. I think the main flaw is Susan’s insistence that people MUST be sexually attracted or highly sexually attracted to fall in love, and I think that is false. True, to some extent, familiarity breeds attraction, but assuming two really ugly people, they probably “fall in love” more with each other’s personalities than anything else. It is probably more of a “companionship” love. I’d say it is pretty close to ludicrous that say two obese people who marry feel the same level of sexual attraction to each other as say a male 9 and female 9 that pair up.

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

      Honestly, I do not know why some of you need to feel that ugly people can’t desire one another sexually. Falling in love is a physiological hormonal process. We are mammals. Does the less physically perfect lion fail to generate mating enthusiasm for the less physically perfect lioness? It’s called assortative mating. If ugly people didn’t get the hots for each other, they would have been bred out of the population by now. Yet there are ugly people all around me, and they’re having babies. In fact, the lower SES groups, which are higher BMI, are having more babies.

      It may well be that there are couples who love each other but do not desire one another sexually. In that case, they have not fallen in love. This is not a matter of opinion or up for debate. This is science.

      http://www.helenfisher.com/downloads/articles/Article_final_JRS_06.pdf

      Moreover, romantic love is associated with a specific
      set of physiological, psychological and behavioural
      traits (Tennov 1979; Hatfield & Sprecher 1986; Shaver
      et al. 1987; Hatfield et al. 1988; Harris & Christenfeld
      1996; Fisher 1998; Gonzaga et al. 2001); and most of
      these traits are also characteristic of mammalian
      courtship attraction, including increased energy, focused
      attention, obsessive following, affiliative gestures,
      possessive mate guarding, goal-oriented behaviours
      and motivation to win a preferred mating partner
      (Fisher et al. 2002a,b; Fisher 2004).
      Romantic love begins as an individual starts to
      regard another individual as special and unique. The
      lover then focuses his/her attention on the beloved,
      aggrandizing the beloved’s worthy traits and overlooking or minimizing his/her flaws. The lover
      expresses increased energy, ecstasy when the love affair
      is going well and mood swings into despair during times
      of adversity. Adversity and barriers heighten romantic
      passion, what has been referred to as ‘frustration
      attraction’ (Fisher 2004). The lover suffers ‘separation
      anxiety’ when apart from the beloved and a host of
      sympathetic nervous system reactions when with the
      beloved, including sweating and a pounding heart.
      Lovers are emotionally dependent; they change their
      priorities and daily habits to remain in contact with
      and/or impress the beloved. Smitten humans also
      exhibit empathy for the beloved; many are willing to
      sacrifice, even die for this ‘special’ other. The lover
      expresses sexual desire for the beloved, as well as
      intense sexual possessiveness, mate guarding. Yet the
      lover’s craving for emotional union supersedes his/her
      craving for sexual union with the beloved. Most
      characteristic, the lover thinks obsessively about the
      beloved, ‘intrusive thinking’. Rejected lovers first
      experience a phase of protest, during which they try
      to win back the beloved and often feel abandonment
      rage; then they move into the second stage of rejection,
      associated with resignation and despair. Romantic love
      is also involuntary, difficult to control and generally
      impermanent.

      Since romantic love shares many characteristics
      with mammalian courtship attraction, it has been
      hypothesized that this human preference system
      would also be associated with the monoamines,
      specifically elevated activity of central dopamine
      and/or central norepinephrine (Liebowitz 1983; Fisher)

  • OTC

    I disagree, Mike. I think two people of matching attractiveness would feel the same whether they are on the low or high end. I think we perceive our payments attractiveness on relationship to ourselves. Even us trolls get to enjoy sex, too!

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “That is a better question indeed. So any guy here finds Lena attractive in a sexual way?”

    We’re approx. equal SMV. No.

  • Lokland

    @Mike C

    “True, to some extent, familiarity breeds attraction, but assuming two really ugly people, they probably “fall in love” more with each other’s personalities than anything else. It is probably more of a “companionship” love.”

    +1

  • Mike C

    I disagree, Mike. I think two people of matching attractiveness would feel the same whether they are on the low or high end. I think we perceive our payments attractiveness on relationship to ourselves. Even us trolls get to enjoy sex, too!

    Maybe I’m misunderstanding your point. Take this hypothetical. Kind of short, obese guy with a face on the ugly side married to an obese woman with a kind of ugly face. Are you telling me he feels the exact same level of sexual attraction for his wife compared to if one day a Playboy Playmate showed up on his doorstep naked?

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

      Are you telling me he feels the exact same level of sexual attraction for his wife compared to if one day a Playboy Playmate showed up on his doorstep naked?

      By this standard, very few husbands desire their wives. This is dangerously close to Rollo’s “depreciating asset” comment. You fail to account for any emotional component. Since falling in love is an emotional process, this makes no sense.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Mike C

    Maybe I’m misunderstanding your point. Take this hypothetical. Kind of short, obese guy with a face on the ugly side married to an obese woman with a kind of ugly face. Are you telling me he feels the exact same level of sexual attraction for his wife compared to if one day a Playboy Playmate showed up on his doorstep naked?

    No one has argued whether or not unattractive people can be attracted to each other as strongly as they could be attracted to very attractive people. The question is, and has been, whether or not people who are ugly/unattractive by mainstream standards could be sexually attracted to other ugly/unattractive individuals AT ALL.

  • Bells

    Re: natural cuteness vs high sexuality

    I think I may have heard in HUS, and elsewhere, that it is possible for a woman to act too nice for a man. Thus, he’d lose interest because he is not as challenged in comparison to another woman with a more intense sexuality. I believe that a popular book called “Why Men Love Bitches” also speaks of this concept (though I’ve never actually read book so I could be misinformed)

    @mr.wavevector and Jesse (because you basically said the same thing)

    Vulnerability is attractive in a woman, but not if it’s too obvious or quick. A high value man wants to be needed, but a woman who is too vulnerable looks weak and clingy. Like sex, it’s something you want to hint at but not give away early in a relationship

    I think this is a good advice; I’ll keep this in mind. Now I don’t feel too terrible about not being as emotionally expressive.

    @Jesse,

    If you like manly, take-charge men, you will probably have to accept that they have substantial libidos and have probably at least in the past enjoyed the attention of different attractive women. Now, that’s not to say you need to put up with ill treatment, but certain types of people tend to be a certain way and you may as well have your eyes open. Just remember that just because some of us have teeth doesn’t mean we can’t be very, very good to the people we love. You might actually want a fierce and protective animal on your side

    I don’t accept the fact that all masculine men must have high sexual partners. Maybe this theory exclusively applies to masculine and very attractive males. In that case, I would be willing to trade off some good looks for a masculine man with a lower sex count.

    I’m sure that there is a certain amount of men who can have their cake and eat it too (ie sleep with lots of women and eventually settle with a nice woman). But I personally wouldn’t want to gamble my future with a former promiscuous man. Plus, I feel like this would put me in an unfair position.

    @Saywhaat,

    You have a nice body, so let’s start with that. My boyfriend says I tend to wear conservative clothes (eh, better to err on the side of caution), but I do try to follow Susan’s “1 in 3” rule by highlighting one of my “assets” …Natural makeup as much as possible, but you can play with eyeliner to give your eyes a more “kittenish” look… I don’t know what your hair is like but longer is better, as long as it has shape

    Thanks for the tips! I think I’ve been doing pretty well in terms of the external fashion area. I recently got a new style that works so much better on my medium long hair and I’m often complimented for being well-dressed. However I’ll definitely incorporate more tightly fitting clothing into my wardrobe in order to look sexier. Plus, I’ll give the kitten eyeliner look a try; it could turn out to be really nice.

    Also, I read a study somewhere that showed men are attracted to a gait with a slight sway. See if you can practice an easy, measured walk with a slight sway of hips. It’ll feel awkward at first, but over time it’ll feel more natural – and your body probably does it anyway, to be honest

    I’ve actually tried doing this once! But I felt so silly and uncomfortable with the fact that I was drawing too much attention, that I immediately stopped. Acting sexy takes so much confidence to maintain
    .

    As for the coy seduction aspect, I don’t think I completely understand this ability. Plus, how should one walk the fine line between being coy and being a cocktease when you’re not yet in a relationship?

  • Bells

    sheesh, that was long

  • Lokland

    @SW

    “My advice aims to harness this tendency of male projection in ways that can help girls like Bells to attract the attention they want without having to compromise their dignity to get it.”

    Interesting theory. Not sure why you think I would disagree.
    how are you defining sex kitten and how is it being projected to the world? (I suspect our definitions are quite different.)

  • OffTheCuff

    Mike: “Are you telling me he feels the exact same level of sexual attraction for his wife compared to if one day a Playboy Playmate showed up on his doorstep naked?”

    No, I am not saying that. I’m saying that Playmate’s boyfriend probably views her, just like obese-guy views his wife. I think how we perceive attraction is more differential in SMV, than absolute value.

    Otherwise, average to ugly people wouldn’t reproduce anymore. They’d just “ew” and give up.

    IOW, hot people see other hot people, just like average people see each other average folks. The only difference is the average people find the hot people are amazing gods from another planet; while the hot people think nobody is all that amazingly good looking, plus, all the average trolls should just die.

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

      @OTC

      ’m saying that Playmate’s boyfriend probably views her, just like obese-guy views his wife. I think how we perceive attraction is more differential in SMV, than absolute value.

      Otherwise, average to ugly people wouldn’t reproduce anymore. They’d just “ew” and give up.

      Yup. Sorry, I posted my comments before I saw this, you got there first.

  • OffTheCuff

    Bells: “Plus, how should one walk the fine line between being coy and being a cocktease when you’re not yet in a relationship?”

    Coy: I might want to have sex with you, but will pretend not to – and we both know it.
    Cocktease: I definitely don’t want to have sex with you, but will pretend to – and only I know it.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    OTC, that was a funny description of average vs. hot people’s perceptions.

    Personally, I don’t see the super hotties (as agreed by lots of people, media, etc.) as demi-gods. I don’t care for them at all. My husband feels the same way and doesn’t care for celebrities. We need a really strong connection before we find someone incredibly attractive on a visceral level. In fact I find the guys who are “ultra high SMV” to be kind of repulsive.

    I’m not saying these feelings are representative of the obese people getting married, but when we were getting married, we thought of each other as “10s,” even though neither of us is objectively. For me, probably because of the NF thing, feelings lead to attraction. Without those feelings, the person might as well be an alien. Then again, maybe it’s us who are the weird aliens…

  • HanSolo

    @Bells

    I think I may have heard in HUS, and elsewhere, that it is possible for a woman to act too nice for a man. Thus, he’d lose interest because he is not as challenged in comparison to another woman with a more intense sexuality.

    I wouldn’t believe much about what books like “Why Men Love Bitches” and the Rules say about what women like in men. I really think that’s largely projecting what women like in men (being somewhat hard to get when she likes him). With a man that likes you, error on the side of being feminine and nice and sweet, with some sultry and sexy mixed in. Of course, a girl could go toooooooooooooo far in being tooooooooooooo nice and sweet but that’s not the problem of most girls these days. The vast majority are waaaaaaaaaaay to snarky, too bitchy and too mean.

    Now, why do women think bitches get men? Probably because the bitches are pretty and pretty trumps a lot of things. Or they’re DTF and slutty and easier lays. But few men want to have an LTR with a bitch. Some accept it as the price to pay to have anyone in their life.

    Also, if a girl were just nice but with no sensuality and sexiness then that could be seen as too prudish or something.

    Be nice, be feminine, be sweet. But mix in some sultry stuff and flirt and hint at the naughty side or show it once you’ve progressed to that point where it’s appropriate.

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

    I will cosign Hope idea. I studied arts and for me hot people are as attractive as the Michelangelo David or Nefertiti bust they look good but it doesn’t inspire me to do anything but stare at them and I enjoy staring but it doesn’t translate on anything physical, not butterflies in the stomach or just this irresistible urge to get my husband’s hand all over my body and to taste his tongue when I meet him in person.

  • Emily

    The thing is too, if the obese/ugly couples were so unhappy together, you’d think that they’d put more effort into their appearance so they could attract somebody that they actually liked.

    I think a lot of it boils down to what Mike C was saying about priorities re: appearance. The ugly couples must be at least somewhat content with their situation because otherwise they’d be trying a lot harder to change it. Sure, maybe they’d secretly like to have a better looking partner, but not as much as they’d like to have those donuts.

  • Bells

    @Hansolo,

    With a man that likes you, error on the side of being feminine and nice and sweet, with some sultry and sexy mixed in

    Also, if a girl were just nice but with no sensuality and sexiness then that could be seen as too prudish or something.
    Be nice, be feminine, be sweet. But mix in some sultry stuff and flirt and hint at the naughty side or show it once you’ve progressed to that point where it’s appropriate

    Thanks for the help. This makes sense; and it alleviates the pressure of balancing sexiness with cuteness.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Does the less physically perfect lion fail to generate mating enthusiasm for the less physically perfect lioness?”

    Yes. Typically being dead hinders mating however.

    Male lions have harems. Lions bros/fathers work in tandem to control a harem and kill opposing males (and their sons).

    The women mate with ONLY the winner.

  • Lokland

    Also btw, Lions are an absolute horrible analogy to humans,

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

      Also btw, Lions are an absolute horrible analogy to humans,

      Yeah, yeah, but you get my point. Choose a species where males mate more evenly.

  • SayWhaat

    @ Lokland:

    how are you defining sex kitten and how is it being projected to the world? (I suspect our definitions are quite different.)

    Hmm, probably.

    I subscribe to the top UrbanDictionary definition:

    Usually a young, sweet, cute looking girl, but who ooze’s sex appeal and who is most probably a lot less innocent than they look. They are usually very flirty and playful.

  • SayWhaat

    Bells: “Plus, how should one walk the fine line between being coy and being a cocktease when you’re not yet in a relationship?”

    Coy: I might want to have sex with you, but will pretend not to – and we both know it.
    Cocktease: I definitely don’t want to have sex with you, but will pretend to – and only I know it.

    ^ Yes, this.

  • Ramble

    I’m following the conversation between you and Suanne with great interest, even though I am not quite sure what you’re trying to arguye.

    There seems to be a consensus as to my poor ability at communicating my thoughts. It has been the bane of my existence.

    As a woman who was once overweight, I’ll tell you with absolute certainty that the market makes you aware of your low SMV in a crystal clear manner.

    Right. The SMV and our Modern Culture are not in line with one another. This is one of the reasons why Susan’s Blog and Lena’s show have been so popular, they are addressing issues that are not being properly addressed even though they exist in the real everyday world.

    It would have just been cruel for any of my friends to point it out because, trust me, I was not under any illusions and despite what you might think, most fat girls aren’t under those illusions either.

    Personally, I am not interested in regular people being cruel to one another. No more than I am interested in seeing neighborhoods destroyed by drug users and dealers. However, in places like Baltimore, that kind of crime is very real and shows like The Wire are a great addition to our modern culture. It helps open our eyes to what is really happening.

    So, like you said, the market is not lying to you, but our popular culture absolutely sends a schizophrenic message that rarely, if ever, addresses things like:
    - How should a guy tell his gf that she has gained weight and she does not look as attractive.

    Things like this, basically, never get addressed in pop culture. Yet, knowing that we are fatter than we have ever been before, it comes up all the time.

    And, not only does our popular culture not deal with issues like that, it has gone out of it’s way to communicate the idea that commenting on your wife’s weight is taboo. And, if you do, you are evil.

  • Ramble

    While I would say Lena is below my standards, that’s only because I have enough SMV to get hotter women. But I’d sure rather have a Lena than no woman at all.

    This is exactly right.

  • Ramble

    If they’re writing the stories, and the stories are hits, which they are, then the topic is being addressed and heard in pop culture.

    Oh, Susan, I have said it before, it seems that, just recently, and specifically with those two people (Lena Dunham and Mindy Kaling), things are starting to change.

  • Ramble

    Physical attraction is a prequisite for falling in love

    Right, this makes sense to me.

    Once attraction has been established, given the appearance of both parties, then that appearance should be no impediment to a healthy relationship.

    Now, you lost me again. What are you trying to say here?

  • Ramble

    You are operating from the assumption that people cannot fall in love with someone unattractive.

    Actually, that is what I am getting from your statements, like the one I just quoted above (and here):

    Physical attraction is a prequisite for falling in love

    Personally, I more interested in the schizophrenic narrative that our modern culture delivers with respect to female beauty.

  • Ramble

    By your logic, every bald man or short man should doubt his wife’s attraction for him. Would you say the same about a flat-chested woman?

    Well, a man should doubt her attraction to his fat belly. However, as you have said so many times before, male sexual attraction and female sexual attraction are not the same thing.

    re:flat chested woman

    Are we talking about a petite girl with a cute figure or a girl that looks like a boy?

    Petite Girl? Cute (at least to this guy)
    Boy? Not cute.

  • Ramble

    I do not agree that the culture rewards fatness or tells fat women they are beautiful.

    I don’t think it rewards fatness. I think that it does it’s best to reinforce the idea that guys that care about things like looks are superficial and shallow, while, at the same time, telling girls via RomComs (and the like) that, “OMG, he thinks you are the most beautiful girl ever”.

    Now, it makes sense to me that girls want their guys to find them beautiful. However, the whole narrative of guys being superficial or shallow for caring about a girls looks is ridiculous.

  • Ramble

    I can see you are passionate about this topic. Why not become an activist of some kind?

    I am passionate about tons of subjects. And, by “this topic” I am assuming you are talking about “fatness”, whereas my interest is with the narrative and it’s affect on our culture. (If that is what you meant by “this topic” then, sorry).

    For instance, I am also really interested in how boys get hosed in school because of our modern culture, but you cover that subject pretty well. So, I don’t say a ton about it.

  • Ramble

    I don’t know why people can’t grasp the idea that they might actually (and clearly do) have the hots for each other.

    If you had to bet money, would you bet that he is, or is not, attracted to her figure?

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

      If you had to bet money, would you bet that he is, or is not, attracted to her figure?

      I would bet that his boner is rock hard and that he wants to have sex with her constantly. I couldn’t say which parts of her arouse him. Maybe her eyes, maybe her hair, maybe her marshmallow boobs. How do I know? People like all sorts of things.

      I like Nathan Harden’s skinny arms – remember that debate? I was mocked for it, told it was impossible, that women want to vomit when they see men like Nathan Harden. Yet to me, he is extremely attractive. Another example is male hipbones jutting out. Love that, especially on a hipster.

  • Ramble

    If it’s impossible for a man to really truly love somebody who looks like Lena Dunham, then there’s absolutely no hope that my husband would love me when I’m 80. I refuse to accept this premise.

    Would you accept the premise that 80 year old men and 18 year old men have different priorities and testosterone levels?

  • Ramble

    Re Ramble….I think he has been tip-toeing around trying to avoid being mean or offending or whatever that I can’t quite figure out the main crux of his point.

    Again, there seems to be a consensus that I have done a shitty job at communicating my thoughts.

  • Ramble

    If ugly people didn’t get the hots for each other, they would have been bred out of the population by now.

    Actually, there seems to be some evidence that we have gotten more attractive over the last few thousand years (or longer), just as we have gotten more intelligent.

    However, our modern societies are now enabling all sorts of things and we are seeing some really interesting changes.

  • Ramble

    Susan, it was just the other day that you said you missed me. I bet you are rethinking that sentiment.

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

      @Ramble

      Susan, it was just the other day that you said you missed me. I bet you are rethinking that sentiment.

      No, I am delighted to have you here! In fact, you will like the new post. I almost formally dedicated it to you. :)

  • Ted D

    Susan – “It may well be that there are couples who love each other but do not desire one another sexually. In that case, they have not fallen in love. This is not a matter of opinion or up for debate.”

    I’d say a fair amount of this is going on in the lower SES levels. Lots of people simply settle for what they can get knowing full well they can’t have what they truly want. Better to have an ugly wife than no wife at all, and as you said beauty is only a light switch away.

    The best of these relationships I’ve seen end up as roommates having sex, and the worst end up bitter and combative.

    Re: Lena Dunham – Not at all interested. I honestly and truly do not think she is attractive at all. Cute at best. That being said, I’d say her BF is a relative match for her and I can see why they are together. But FWIW they are both rather unattractive for being famous people IMO.

  • Ramble

    Lots of people simply settle for what they can get knowing full well they can’t have what they truly want. Better to have an ugly wife than no wife at all, and as you said beauty is only a light switch away.

    The best of these relationships I’ve seen end up as roommates having sex, and the worst end up bitter and combative.

  • Ramble

    I would bet that his boner is rock hard and that he wants to have sex with her constantly.

    Susan, you have definitely been gracious in responding to, what basically amounts to, spam (sorry about that).

    But you have avoided many questions and that is disappointing.

    But, after responding to your most recent comments, I am going to drop it. I have not done myself any favors in my attempts to communicate my thoughts.

    And, it is so odd that you think that it is her eyes that give him a hard on. When you say things like that, well, I am not sure what to say.

    It’s like guessing that putting bleach in your car will help fuel it up.

    No, I am delighted to have you here! In fact, you will like the new post. I almost formally dedicated it to you.

    Which one? The Barista one or the Attractive women being he least slutty?

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

      The Barista one or the Attractive women being he least slutty?

      The Attractive less slutty one. Because the study has some very good data on BMI. The women who had the most romantic relationships and the least casual sex were underweight (<18.5 BMI) or normal weight. That’s some pretty powerful information for young women.

      Also, being thin was as powerful an attractor for males as being beautiful.

      I’m sorry you feel I didn’t answer your questions. Honestly, I tried. I don’t know how men get attracted, or to what. My husband’s eyes made me melt the first time I ever saw him. Basically, I’m not able to project on those hypothetical questions.

  • mr. wavevector

    @Susan 548,

    In the fantasy, the woman is in control. She creates a storyline where she feels safe. The handsome stranger is a good man, a kind man. He has ample alpha and beta traits.

    The paradox of the romance fantasy is that the woman achieves control via the man’s emotional investment in her, which she achieves through her submission to him. It’s topping from the bottom.

    And the irony is, it works in real life too, but most women are too hung up with being in control to submit. So they fail to elicit the emotional investment that would give them a more profound control than that which they fear to let go of.

    The crux of the female submission / control paradox is the male caring and protective instinct that female submission triggers. Exploiting that instinct is a much more effective way to get a man to do things for you than to assert equal status and negotiate, or to assume dominant status and boss him around.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      The paradox of the romance fantasy is that the woman achieves control via the man’s emotional investment in her, which she achieves through her submission to him. It’s topping from the bottom.

      That’s brilliant, it really is! I love that.

      The crux of the female submission / control paradox is the male caring and protective instinct that female submission triggers. Exploiting that instinct is a much more effective way to get a man to do things for you than to assert equal status and negotiate, or to assume dominant status and boss him around.

      When I was a kid my parents teased me that I was just like Lucy van Pelt. I was bossy and dominant. In relationships I have always been a bit feisty. But I naturally take a submissive position to my husband – we have discussed this before. I do not want to be told that I have to submit, or that Eve’s sin means women have fallen below men. But I know how to make my husband feel good and happy, and that is by triggering the caring instinct. Not just for me, but for our kids. I know exactly how to make him feel like the best father in the world (which he is!) and seeing that pleasure in him is incredibly gratifying for me. It’s the Principle of Most Interest.

  • mr. wavevector

    One more thought: true feminine submission is not being a doormat. It’s an active (and sometimes manipulative) behavior which is often highly motivated by self interest.

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

      One more thought: true feminine submission is not being a doormat. It’s an active (and sometimes manipulative) behavior which is often highly motivated by self interest.

      I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that my comment above confirms this. I choose to take a “one down” position to my husband because it puts him in a very good mood. :)

  • HanSolo

    @Mr. wavevector…634

    Very good point. Women triggering that in men is much more effective. Kind of like Khaleesi and Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones.

  • Jesse

    For some submissive women the crux of the matter is that they need something to submit to. If your partner is a flaccid limp of a man, then what are you submitting to? You may as well submit to the sofa.

    I think this especially holds true for the more spirited ones, whom I am fond of. They need something to push against. They want to fight and lose.

    There are women who refuse to actively pursue men and ask them out. For a good while I thought that was a great way to make it known you’re a conceited bitch. But there’s a rationale. If you pursue the man then how do you know he is dominant? I’ve come to think it’s a necessary filter for these women.

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

      @Jesse

      I think this especially holds true for the more spirited ones, whom I am fond of. They need something to push against. They want to fight and lose.

      You continue to amaze me with your insight for such a young guy. This is very, very true.

      Even as a kid I loved the old films with a lot of sexual tension based on conflict. Every guy I’ve ever had a personality conflict with became a suitor. I realize I am not for all markets, but I have found that a significant minority of men like the idea of taming a wild thing. (Wild does not mean promiscuous in this case.)

      When I’ve been with extroverted males, there’s too much conflict and competition, and it never gets resolved. With more introverted people, the “opposites attract” thing really works. My husband and I are opposites, but very complementary.

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

    In the fantasy, the woman is in control. She creates a storyline where she feels safe. The handsome stranger is a good man, a kind man. He has ample alpha and beta traits.

    I will like to add that the man is no a stranger because in the fantasy she created him as the perfect man both inside out. Is like a guy having a fantasy with a cheerleader the cheerleader won’t be fat full of acne and flacid boobs. She will be what he finds the hottest. So that fantasy is not with a stranger on the real sense of the word. Is what THE stranger, YMMV.

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

      @Anacaona

      I will like to add that the man is no a stranger because in the fantasy she created him as the perfect man both inside out.

      True, he quickly moves from “stranger” to “favored male.” He has probably been secretly in love with her or watching her from afar. It’s never some indifferent cable TV guy. That’s strictly a porn script.

  • Jesse

    Yeah, I understood the rape fantasy as being raped with the caveat that she actually really likes the guy.

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

      Yeah, I understood the rape fantasy as being raped with the caveat that she actually really likes the guy.

      Definitely. And the rape leads to a loving relationship, guaranteed.

  • HanSolo

    Well, maybe Khaleesi isn’t the best example of submission per se but she did elevate sex from mere doggy-style fucking to emotional bonding by looking into his eyes and also being quite sensual and proactive in bed. So, in her own way she emotionally escalated with him and got him to fall madly in love with her and do whatever she wanted, even though that ended up costing him his life.

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

      @HanSolo

      That scene where Khaleesi introduces him to a different kind of sex is the best example of emotional escalation I have ever seen.

  • mr. wavevector

    For some submissive women the crux of the matter is that they need something to submit to.

    This is why many women have been poorly served by our emasculating culture.

    I’ve realized that being benevolently dominant in my marriage is more for my wife’s immediate benefit than mine. It makes her happy. She feels safe and desired. The benefit to me is a consequence of that.

  • mr. wavevector

    Yeah, I understood the rape fantasy as being raped with the caveat that she actually really likes the guy.

    It blew my mind early in my sexual career how several of the girls I dated liked to “play rape”. One relationship ended over it. She wanted to be “raped” more violently than I was up for.

  • mr. wavevector

    Susan:

    I choose to take a “one down” position to my husband because it puts him in a very good mood.

    Me:

    I’ve realized that being benevolently dominant in my marriage is more for my wife’s immediate benefit than mine. It makes her happy.

    It’s almost like we’re that way for a reason ;-)

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

      @mr. wavevector

      It’s almost like we’re that way for a reason

      In both cases, the focus is on giving rather than taking.

  • Jesse

    I’ve realized that being benevolently dominant in my marriage is more for my wife’s immediate benefit than mine. It makes her happy. She feels safe and desired. The benefit to me is a consequence of that.

    I’ve also read from a few women that their sex drive explodes as their husband takes charge. Sometimes they decide they’ll be available for sex whenever he wants (though she may still resist a bit if they enjoy that, and of course the whole thing depends on good judgment on his part) only to find that they almost can’t get enough of him.

    I get the feeling that you need to be enough of a leader and a man to thoroughly satisfy the woman and evoke her submissive desire, and then she’ll more or less blissfully float around the house, happy as can be.

    If I can find the right woman I’m definitely getting married one day. There’s just something that tickles the dominant part of me that wants to make a woman my wife. There’s something sexy about that. Plus I just think beginning sentences with “My wife…” sounds nice.

    I know some guys say you can get the same benefits without marriage, but I don’t think it’s the same. The relationship hasn’t been consummated. Long-term girlfriend is not on the same level as wife.

  • mr. wavevector

    I’ve also read from a few women that their sex drive explodes as their husband takes charge.

    It’s been true for me. But there’s a catch. You need a lot of kindness, caring, and empathy to balance the dominance and assertiveness over the long haul. It’s a balancing act that needs careful attention. It’s not easy to do, and you won’t get a clue how to do it reading the likes of Roissy.

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

      You need a lot of kindness, caring, and empathy to balance the dominance and assertiveness over the long haul. It’s a balancing act that needs careful attention.

      Yes. Do not run Asshole Game on your wife!

  • Jesse

    It blew my mind early in my sexual career how several of the girls I dated liked to “play rape”. One relationship ended over it. She wanted to be “raped” more violently than I was up for.

    I actually really like rape (or ‘ravishment’), which I interpret as merely taking what I want. It’s nothing mean or violent, it’s just that she’s mine and I take what I want. I think it can add a whole new dimension of rush and adrenaline if you’re actually trying to take it, as opposed to two people just sort of lying there and convulsing together. When I phrase it like that I can really start to imagine why a lot of couples get pretty stale in the bedroom.

    I think I just like it animalistic. I very much want to be the active party. I wouldn’t want to tie up a woman because it would be much more fun and involving to hold her down myself. The lovemaking doesn’t always have to be forceful, but I never want to just be a blob lying there.

    However, anything that involves masks and holding a knife to her throat is probably further than I’d like to go. I always want to be in control and I might want to toss her around a bit, but it’s just fun roughhousing.

    One thing I just don’t get is the degradation. I would never want to call a woman a slut in the bedroom or God forbid, spit on her. If anything I’d compliment her for being a good girl for me, or just call her a little vixen or what-not. I may be forceful, but there are no bad feelings involved.

  • Jesse

    I think the site ate one of my replies… darn. That’s why I normally compose in notepad.

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

      @Jesse

      I think the site ate one of my replies… darn. That’s why I normally compose in notepad.

      Sorry, it randomly went into mod. Out now and I’ve whitelisted you. Shouldn’t happen again.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    One thing about Asshole:

    it means something totally different for nice guys. Having to lay down the law used to make me feel like an asshole, until I just figured it as the natural course of things.

    Also, what you can learn from George Clooney is that women flex the rules for guys that look attractive and that even average girls will do this. Improve your attractiveness.

    FWIW, my father’s high school picture looks practically identical to George Clooney’s, and he somehow managed to convince my mother that was 6-7 years his senior to date him, despite their first date literally being in a garbage truck. My mother was apparently not unattractive herself, having dated the football players in college and once causing a pizza delivery man to have a concussion because he was literally entranced by her body.

    My mom’s statement is that my Dad really came off as a jerk.

    I would suggest that most men can probably improve their attractiveness at least a little bit and also get the rules “bent,” even if they can’t bend them as much as George Clooney can. Even if my Dad looked the exact same as George Clooney, he would never have his entourage of personal assistants, his money, his pre-selection, and a carefully managed public image.

  • Jesse

    It’s been true for me. But there’s a catch. You need a lot of kindness, caring, and empathy to balance the dominance and assertiveness over the long haul. It’s a balancing act that needs careful attention. It’s not easy to do, and you won’t get a clue how to do it reading the likes of Roissy.

    Well, I do want to love and take care of her. I imagine there will be a lot of cuddling and kissing. The emotional bonds need to be strong.

    I don’t want to be a jerk. I just want to be in charge. I don’t think assertiveness and affection are mutually exclusive. I mean, if she’s in the kitchen you can just grab her and kiss her. If she’s had a long day you can insist that she rest and beat her upstairs to take a nice, relaxing bath. That’s assertive and caring to me.

    To me the main point of being in charge is to take care of and help the woman. I am there for her. The sex is nice, but I’m not just there to use her. I think you need to really engage with her emotionally. You need to look into her eyes and see them light up.

    Yes. Do not run Asshole Game on your wife!

    I don’t actually read much game. I really don’t identify with the PUA folks. There’s just something about the atmosphere that rubs me the wrong way.

    It’s funny, because in a way I think I’m the type of guy who wouldn’t tend to fit in here. I define alpha in a very positive way, and I want to be masculine and strong and all that. My digit ratio is pretty low. The way I define beta there’s nothing positive about it at all. But I often just find women more pleasant to interact with. When a group of guys get together they often act dumb and do stupid things, especially if alcohol is involved. The loutishness can be aggravating. The atmosphere here is so much less cloudy and angst-ridden. I mean, have you seen the comment section at the Heartiste place? Argh.

  • Jesse

    Well, thanks. Guess I rewrote that spiel for nothing. ;-)

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “To me the main point of being in charge is to take care of and help the woman. I am there for her. The sex is nice, but I’m not just there to use her. I think you need to really engage with her emotionally. You need to look into her eyes and see them light up.”

    +1

    I think this is pretty normal. Taking care of your woman feels good. Theres no need for a woman to try and force it, we quite enjoy it.

  • mr. wavevector

    I don’t think assertiveness and affection are mutually exclusive.

    Right you are. You need to exhibit them both simultaneously. It’s a hard concept for a lot of guys to grasp. That’s why we get all the ridiculous conversations on the Nice Guy / Jerk dichotomy.

  • Sassy6519

    For some submissive women the crux of the matter is that they need something to submit to. If your partner is a flaccid limp of a man, then what are you submitting to? You may as well submit to the sofa.

    I think this especially holds true for the more spirited ones, whom I am fond of. They need something to push against. They want to fight and lose.

    This is so true.

    I would definitely consider myself one of those “spirited” women (my username is Sassy for crying out loud). I like the tension and the “push-pull” aspects between myself and a man. That’s what incites the spark, and that’s what makes me want to jump a guy’s bones.

    I’m feisty, so I need a guy who isn’t afraid to give me a run for my money sometimes. It’s probably why I like “Alphas” so much. They aren’t afraid of my personality/looks, and they aren’t afraid to rock the boat sometimes.

    With that being said, I’m starting to understand that I need to find a guy with a little more “Beta” mixed in as well. Don’t get me wrong. I like a man who can be a dominant “hardass” from time to time, but I also need a guy who isn’t so hard that he is rigid or inflexible. I’ve run into a few men who were so rigid and hard that I felt emotionally stifled. Those relationships would have been better, and I probably wouldn’t have ended them, if the men involved were more balanced.

  • J

    Typically being dead hinders mating however.

    Hence the cooling of my passion for Paul Newman.

    Makes you reflect on the transitory nature of life and beauty. Every rerun of Hud has me wondering how someone so gorgeous could have aged and died. He should have lived forever as some sort of testament to how beautiful men can be.

  • J

    “In the fantasy, the woman is in control. She creates a storyline where she feels safe. The handsome stranger is a good man, a kind man. He has ample alpha and beta traits.”

    “I will like to add that the man is no a stranger because in the fantasy she created him as the perfect man both inside out. Is like a guy having a fantasy with a cheerleader the cheerleader won’t be fat full of acne and flacid boobs. She will be what he finds the hottest. So that fantasy is not with a stranger on the real sense of the word. Is what THE stranger, YMMV”

    Brilliant, the both of you.

    One more thought: true feminine submission is not being a doormat. It’s an active (and sometimes manipulative) behavior which is often highly motivated by self interest.

    I’m bothered by the manipulative element in that; I really am. I tend to be an honest and straightforward person; the men who have been attracted to me have valued that. A lot of female submission feels dishonest and frankly below me. I also have trouble respecting men who fall for it.
    I can see how female weakness calls forth male protectiveness, but I think that natural differences in size and strength or the need to rely on a man while caring for children should be enough to elicit that from the male. I don’t get the need to be all phony and baroque in expressing that.

  • J

    I don’t actually read much game. I really don’t identify with the PUA folks. There’s just something about the atmosphere that rubs me the wrong way.

    So what you are saying here is that you are a sane man?

  • J

    Honestly, I do not know why some of you need to feel that ugly people can’t desire one another sexually

    Some of the happiest couples I know are 3s and 4s who perceive each other as beautiful. They are often happier than truly hot couples.

  • J

    Even as a kid I loved the old films with a lot of sexual tension based on conflict. Every guy I’ve ever had a personality conflict with became a suitor. I realize I am not for all markets, but I have found that a significant minority of men like the idea of taming a wild thing.

    Tracy and Hepburn. Sam and Diane. J and DH.

    Can’t be that unusual.

  • mr. wavevector

    I’m bothered by the manipulative element in that; I really am. I tend to be an honest and straightforward person; the men who have been attracted to me have valued that. A lot of female submission feels dishonest and frankly below me. I also have trouble respecting men who fall for it.

    Sure. “Manipulative” connotes something less than honest. But honest or dishonest, my point is that female submission is often very active. This is contrary to the usual portrayal of the submissive woman as a completely passive, cowed doormat who lets her man walk all over her. In reality, women use submission to elicit desired behavior from their men, as Susan confirmed. Whether they are honest or not is another issue.

    but I think that natural differences in size and strength or the need to rely on a man while caring for children should be enough to elicit that from the male.

    You are presenting the feminist position that all desired male behavior should be obtained by pseudo-moral coercion (e.g. “should be”), rather than rewarded by a reciprocal exchange. No, it is not enough. Women are not entitled to male support simply by being female. The type of caring, protective, supportive behavior that women desire is very expensive for a man. You have to do something to merit it. Submission is one possibility – it has the advantage of working really well for many people – but I’m sure there are other ways for those who find submission distasteful.

  • J

    Sure. “Manipulative” connotes something less than honest. But honest or dishonest, my point is that female submission is often very active. This is contrary to the usual portrayal of the submissive woman as a completely passive, cowed doormat who lets her man walk all over her. In reality, women use submission to elicit desired behavior from their men, as Susan confirmed. Whether they are honest or not is another issue.

    Oh, absolutely. While there are doormats, there definitely are women who actively use a sort 0f pseudo-submission or “feminine wiles” to get what they want. I’m not one of them, but I’ve seen it done–and done well. You refer to it as “topping from the bottom.” I too have called it that in other discussion here and at Dalrock.

    At it’s most extreme, it’s a powerplay for some (though I fully understand that your wife isn’t one of these women). I feel very bad for men who don’t get that and are fooled into thinking that they are getting something they really aren’t. My MIL for example was the queen of taking men for all they had and thendiscarding them. She was cute and helpless and batted her eyes, then stuck in the knife.

    You are presenting the feminist position that all desired male behavior should be obtained by pseudo-moral coercion (e.g. “should be”), rather than rewarded by a reciprocal exchange.

    I think you’re misreading me. I’m saying I shouldn’t have to do some sort of “act” that demonstrates to my husband that I’m smaller and weaker. It’s already pretty obvious that I am.

    No, it is not enough. Women are not entitled to male support simply by being female. The type of caring, protective, supportive behavior that women desire is very expensive for a man. You have to do something to merit it.

    Right, I get that. I’m pretty big on reciprocity actually. For example, I’m in the middle of experimenting with a low-cal version of one of DH’s favorite dishes so he can have a sustainable diet that won’t give him diabetes. (He was recently diagnosed as pre-diabetic.) But that’s not “feminine wiles;” I’m not manipulating. I just want a live husband. ;-) It is reciprocity. He works behind a desk all day so the family can thrive; he deserves a healthy meal when he gets home.

    Submission is one possibility – it has the advantage of working really well for many people – but I’m sure there are other ways for those who find submission distasteful.

    There are a lot of different shades of that being discussed on the net. What you describe in your relationship isn’t to my taste, but it doesn’t strike me as onerous. If it makes you and your wife happy, I’m fine with it. It’s the stories of wearing crotchless panties for/being spanked by an ex-cheater that bother me.

  • Jesse

    So what you are saying here is that you are a sane man?

    I don’t want to criticize them too harshly. There’s nothing wrong with wanting sex or desiring self-improvement, but they just seem to take the passion out of it.

    I think a lot of the fun is in the seduction. Looks are important, but it’s more interesting if it’s a challenge. The PUA guys don’t seem to emphasize confident geniality and charisma. I have no more interest in being a supplicating ‘nice guy’ than they do, but that doesn’t mean you have to have to be a flippant jerk. There are too many gimmicks.

    You have to enjoy engaging with the woman… but I can steadfastly maintain that I won’t take shit from anyone without going around tossing condescending one-liners at women. I just imagine some slightly skeevy-looking guys who rub their hands with anticipation about how they’re going to game some ‘seven’ and her friends at the club, then when I see a picture of a woman they rate highly I’m almost always underwhelmed anyway.

    I get that the principle of it is that increasing your status over the woman, or feigning it, increases her attraction. There’s nothing wrong with that sentiment, and in the abstract it’s probably applicable to a lot of happy relationships, but couldn’t you do it by increasing your own appeal as opposed to belittling hers? Don’t get me wrong, teasing is a lot of fun, but there’s just this essential element of good-naturedness that I feel they’re missing. Even if you’re trying to get a fling, I prefer to think of it as seducing the woman rather than short-circuiting her brain so it goes on the fritz and she somehow winds up in bed with you.

    Apparently it’s alpha to text “gay” to women at random intervals to pique their interest in what you’re thinking. What? If that’s how a woman is attracted I don’t think I want her. Sorry, I value my punctuation and coherence.

    I don’t know if I’ve effected the gist of it, but there you go.

    /rant

  • Jesse

    Ms. Walsh, sorry, but I appear to be struggling with the site again. If the problem might be on my end and you’re aware of some common fixes, you can let me know.

    Sorry again, and thanks.

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

      @Jesse

      I thought I had already whitelisted you, but I guess it didn’t take. I’ve tried again.

      I feel like the spam filter has a poltergeist. It behaves randomly and strangely – there is no rhyme or reason to it! I apologize, but believe me, you don’t want me removing that filter. We’ll get hundreds of spam comments on every post! I’ll try to keep an eye out.

  • Ted D

    Susan – “I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that my comment above confirms this. I choose to take a “one down” position to my husband because it puts him in a very good mood. ”

    Why be embarrassed? I think you should be preaching this to every young woman within ear shot of you. Shout it from the rooftops! The fact that it embarrasses you seems to be a societal problem to me, because we both know it is VERY effective and makes for a win/win. For my part, knowing that my wife willingly took that “one down” position for me VERY MUCH increases my desire to work harder for her happiness as well as mine. Doing so places a lot of trust and faith in me, and I don’t like to let the people I care about down. That being said, a woman doing this for a man that is selfish and only interested in his own well being will probably end up on the receiving end of a shitty relationship.

    “When I’ve been with extroverted males, there’s too much conflict and competition, and it never gets resolved. With more introverted people, the “opposites attract” thing really works. My husband and I are opposites, but very complementary.”

    How interesting! So if you don’t mind me asking, does your husband enjoy “taming the wild thing” or have you calmed down considerably since you were wild? I’m asking because of the introverts I know, most DO NOT have any ambition to “tame” anyone, and doing so would probably take just about all the energy they have for socializing. Of course, I will fully admit that my problem is I do like a bit of spirit from a woman, I just don’t like it to be directed at me. Because “taming” really drains me quickly. So I’ve always tried to find just enough “spirit” in my mates to keep my interests, but not so much that I have to push back often. Obviously I failed miserably with my first marriage, partly because I miscalculated my exes level of “wild” and completely missed exactly how I was supposed to “tame” it. In fact, I’d say that prior to finding the Red Pill, I thought my job was to simply endure her “wild” tendencies since it wasn’t “my place” to tell her to settle down…

    Jesse – “If I can find the right woman I’m definitely getting married one day. There’s just something that tickles the dominant part of me that wants to make a woman my wife. There’s something sexy about that. “

    Yep I feel the same way. There is a sense of ownership that comes with the title “husband/wife” that I fully enjoy. Yes, I do find it sexy that my wife belongs to me, and truthfully I find it sexy that I belong to her. No lie, the thought of her belonging to me turns me on.

    Mr. Wavevector – “It’s been true for me. But there’s a catch. You need a lot of kindness, caring, and empathy to balance the dominance and assertiveness over the long haul. It’s a balancing act that needs careful attention. It’s not easy to do, and you won’t get a clue how to do it reading the likes of Roissy.”

    True! My problem has never been the kindness/caring part. I have that in spades. Building the dominant part has been difficult because I find it hard to determine where the balancing point is simply because I’m too close to it. I can’t step back and take a fully objective look at my behavior because I’ll second guess everything if I do.
    I’m not sure what is harder to accomplish while in a relationship:
    1. Adding more alpha because of over betaization
    2. Adding more beta because of alpha assholean behavior.

    J – “I’m bothered by the manipulative element in that; I really am. I tend to be an honest and straightforward person; the men who have been attracted to me have valued that. A lot of female submission feels dishonest and frankly below me. I also have trouble respecting men who fall for it.”

    There is a simply fix for all this. If your husband knows what you are doing, then he isn’t “falling” for anything. He is simply playing his part, and you are playing yours. It doesn’t have to be underhanded and manipulative. Same thing with dominance. Many of the women here and certainly tons at MMSL know full well what the MAP is and what their husbands are doing. Guess what? It still works. I’ve even seen a few women over there say that they dislike that it works, but it does. *shrug*

    “I can see how female weakness calls forth male protectiveness, but I think that natural differences in size and strength or the need to rely on a man while caring for children should be enough to elicit that from the male. I don’t get the need to be all phony and baroque in expressing that.”

    Let me explain. Most men (at least the ones I know) need to be needed. They DESIRE a woman that needs them. What exactly they are needed for may vary from couple to couple, but for my part I want my wife to need my strength, my financial resources (yes I like that she depends on my income, not from a power perspective, but because it allows me to feel like I’m doing my job), my intelligence, and my love/affection. Now, my wife is 5’8” and was on the HS wrestling team. She can open her own jars. But, sometimes she still asks me to do it for her. I usually do it with some flare, and she makes some comment about my bulging muscles. We both laugh, because we both know I wasn’t necessary at all. But, somehow, it still satisfies my need to be needed.

    “I’m saying I shouldn’t have to do some sort of “act” that demonstrates to my husband that I’m smaller and weaker. It’s already pretty obvious that I am.”

    LOL well maybe it is obvious in your marriage. As I said above, if my wife and I ever got into a real physical altercation, I think we would both get very, very banged up. In fact, we joke around that the reason we don’t really wrestle is because we would wreck the house in the process. I fully believe that if my wife swung at me intending to knock me out and I didn’t dodge, I’d find myself on the floor with bells ringing in my ears. In some ways I like that a lot. I know she can take care of herself if need be. (she was the only girl in a family of four kids. She has lots of experience taking down boys/men. One of her brothers told me about a time he called her a slut and she broke his arm in the fight that ensued. He also said they all knew how to sheetrock by the time they hit middle school from putting holes in the walls. LOL) I was an only child and have probably only been in a handful of physical fights in my life, so in terms of actual fighting experience she has me hands down. My biggest advantage is I tolerate pain fairly well. I’ve managed to avoid fights simply by shrugging off a direct hit to the jaw and replying with “now I’m pissed”. Amazing how many people put all they have into a sucker punch and then run when it doesn’t do the job. :P

    Anyway my point was, at least in our marriage, my wife isn’t all that much smaller or weaker. So, if I am to be the “stronger” person in our relationship, the only way to accomplish it is for her to purposely be the “weaker” one, so to speak. She willingly makes that accommodation because she knows it’s important to me. But we both know that when push comes to shove, she is about as physically capable as I am, and in those situations I’ll be glad to have her strength at my side.

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

      @Ted

      How interesting! So if you don’t mind me asking, does your husband enjoy “taming the wild thing” or have you calmed down considerably since you were wild?

      Oh lord, that taming took place in 1981. I think expecting him to still be doing that would be the female equivalent of instilling dread. However, I will say that I remain a very “lively and spirited” person, which he likes. :)

  • J

    I don’t want to criticize them too harshly.

    It’s OK Jesse. Knock yourself out.

  • Ted D

    Susan – “Oh lord, that taming took place in 1981. I think expecting him to still be doing that would be the female equivalent of instilling dread. However, I will say that I remain a very “lively and spirited” person, which he likes.”

    So not so wild these days. ;-)

    I think the sweet spot for me is the former “wild child” that calmed down on her own. Of course the problem with that is: I have to wait until they hit their late 20′s to early 30′s before they wear themselves out, and they always take a crazy path on the way.

    Like I said, I love a woman with “spirit” as long as it isn’t directed at me in negative ways. She can give the world hell every day, but don’t bring it home!

    In fact, I’ll take it a step further and admit that I enjoy seeing her run someone up and down with her “spirit”, but I don’t expect to deal with it myself. We mostly manage a truce in that respect, because I’m a pro at dishing back what is sent my way. If/when she starts in on me, I’ll push back with the same intensity. It wears me out, but I do it on principle. And it seems to work. I just find it tiresome and unnecessary. We both know the outcome before it even starts. I think she just forgets on occasion. But it is in those moments I get very frustrated with her, because she knows I’m not caving. Thankfully those “tests” are few and far between, and getting fewer and further pretty regularly. Now that I know exactly what they are, I stand my ground easily because I get pissed, and I’m best at digging my heels in when I’m angry.

    its funny. The one thing I should have done in my first marriage is actually GET angry, and it was the one thing I always tried to avoid.

  • J

    @Ted
    There is a simply fix for all this. If your husband knows what you are doing, then he isn’t “falling” for anything. He is simply playing his part, and you are playing yours. It doesn’t have to be underhanded and manipulative.

    In our case, DH would not only know, but would turn up his nose at it. He really hates that sort of thing. I once asked him, based on my reading in the ‘sphere, if he would like me to be more submissive. The answer was a resounding no.

    Let me explain. Most men (at least the ones I know) need to be needed. They DESIRE a woman that needs them.

    Oh, I think everyone wants that or some variation of it. If they don;t need to be needed, they need to be wanted or loved or desired. I’m not criticizing that need, but my husband would prefer to be loved on a different, more personal and intimate level–not as the big, strong provider–which is not to say he doesn’t want some gratitude for the great job he does there–but more for himself, for his personal characteristics.

    LOL well maybe it is obvious in your marriage. As I said above, if my wife and I ever got into a real physical altercation, I think we would both get very, very banged up….

    Wow. My bone structure is fairly petite. DH could break me in half if he wanted to. We have some horseplay, but he watches his strength.

  • Ted D

    J – “Wow. My bone structure is fairly petite. DH could break me in half if he wanted to. We have some horseplay, but he watches his strength.”

    To give you an idea…

    http://db.tt/ttxqatG0

    With those heels on she is couple inches taller than me. Mind you I’m 5’11″!

    She’d probably get angry at me saying this, but in this picture she was a little heavier than I was. Since then she’s dropped about 20lbs and is now lighter than I am by a few. Soon as the physical therapy for her bum knee is done, we are hitting the track for the couch to 5K take two. I never once tried to talk her into exercising with me, I just kept at it. I think she decided to join in when I passed her up. She has a huge competitive streak that I don’t, but I’m more than happy to make it a competition if it gets her motivated. Either way we both win. ;-)

    That being said, I need to weight myself again soon. I suspect I’ve lost a chunk of weight this week because I’ve been sick and not eating. Not the healthiest way to lose weight, but I’ll take it!

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

      With those heels on she is couple inches taller than me.

      Good for her for being able to rock those shoes! I’d kill myself if I attempted it. (Not to mention looking ridiculous while doing so.)

      Not the healthiest way to lose weight, but I’ll take it!

      I was once at a lecture for a women’s group and the speaker asked if there was a single woman present who hadn’t been secretly glad for a stomach bug after the fact. Not one woman raised her hand.

  • J

    @Ted

    Yes, your wife is a big gal. I’m barely 5’2″.

    You look amazing BTW (alpha nod up and all ;-) ) keep up the good work. Good luck to your wife in her weight loss endeavors. It’s good to deal with the weight issue while you are young; it’s better for your health.

  • Ted D

    Susan – “Good for her for being able to rock those shoes! I’d kill myself if I attempted it. (Not to mention looking ridiculous while doing so.)”

    She absolutely looks graceful wearing those stilts. I haven’t a clue how, but she insists its all in how you plant your feet.

    J – Thanks for the compliment. :-) I’m actually about another 10lbs smaller than in that pic, but at this point it doesn’t show nearly as much as it used to. I can tell in the fit of my pants though, and any day now my wife will be complaining that she can’t see my ass because my jeans are too baggy. Lol.

  • Ted D

    J – FWIW I just like thick framed women. The shortest LTR mate I had was my ex wife. She was 5’4″ but measured 36-26-34 so short but thick frame. My tallest was 5’9.5″ and she ran track with a solid C cup by her senior year of HS.

    But I’m a pretty thick framed guy, and I’m only slightly kidding when I say I would worry about breaking a tiny woman. I’m a big hunky Polish guy, I’m looking for the kind of female build you’d expect to see serving large mugs of beer wearing pigtails in the Middle Ages. As funny as that sounds, my wife is 50% “from the motherland” Irish. Her father was adopted by an American couple from Ireland when he was a toddler. The rest is a mix of German and mutt. And she looks super hot in pigtail braids, especially when she is bringing me a beer. Lol I have my own Pauli girl! (And I just found my new pet name for her…)

  • J

    I grew up with loads of Polish and German kids. I was always the smallest kid in class.

  • Ted D

    J – Yeah we really are just beefy folks. :P

    But at least German’s are known for their ingenuity and great mechanical skills. Us Poles don’t have the best reputation for intelligence, but we have strong backs and are often courageous to a fault. How many other countries sent their cavalry up against tanks? (which is bull by the way: http://www.polamjournal.com/Library/APHistory/Cavalry_Myth/cavalry_myth.html)

  • Sai

    Re: unflattering
    That is hilarious. The publicist must have no sense of humor.

    “I can’t help but contrast this with Hannah Horvath’s visit to the gyno, where she mused about the potential satisfaction of blaming a man for giving her AIDS. :)”

    …rhymes with DITCH.

    “Here’s a new game for the girls:

    Which Geezer Would You Do?”
    007 and that’s it. But then when I got married and my husband found out he’d choke me.

    “So they latch onto harmless looking things like Paul and a certain singer today whose name I shall not allow to cross my lips.”

    LMAO
    This hypothesis makes sense to me.

    “After all, the female propensity to mate poaching is well documented.”

    FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

    “There’s a difference between need and want. Most of us can survive without a man. Nonetheless, many of you are quite nice to have around. ;-)”

    +1

    “Real is a useless term. We’re all real. attractive vs. not attractive is a better description.”

    I am SO GLAD somebody said that, the ‘real women’ thing used to really bug me.

    “I also think airlines should charge obese passengers for two seats.”

    +1


    Don Giovanni, a young, arrogant, sexually promiscuous nobleman, abuses and outrages everyone else in the cast, until he encounters something he cannot kill, beat up, dodge, or outwit.

    That’s alpha, 18th century style!”

    Love to hate him :D

    “And, your sexual attractiveness is important for a number of reasons, not least of which because of the role it plays in “genuinely” attracting a man.”

    What are the other reasons?

    “You have to learn how to walk sexily, you have to have the breathy, delicate voice, and you have to know what to do with your eyes and lips.”

    Is there a book or video on how to get the voice right? Most of my female relatives live too close to Tracy Chapman-land…

    “Actually, there seems to be some evidence that we have gotten more attractive over the last few thousand years (or longer), just as we have gotten more intelligent.”

    YAY~

    “The crux of the female submission / control paradox is the male caring and protective instinct that female submission triggers. Exploiting that instinct is a much more effective way to get a man to do things for you than to assert equal status and negotiate, or to assume dominant status and boss him around.”

    I’m slowly understanding more of this concept. (Trying to eliminate worry over feeling of ‘you lose again, woman.’)
    If I do everything he tells me to, what percentage of the things I ask him for will I get? Yes, I’d like to quantify this if possible. *shot*

  • Snow Flake

    “The crux of the female submission / control paradox is the male caring and protective instinct that female submission triggers. Exploiting that instinct is a much more effective way to get a man to do things for you than to assert equal status and negotiate, or to assume dominant status and boss him around.”

    Without “asserting” or “assuming” any status, how about just openly communicating our needs in a straightforward and honest way?

    On the one hand men say “We’re not mind readers, be clear about things” and on the other hand we get comments like the one above. So how ’bout it? How about just normal, healthy, clear and calm communication?

  • Jesse

    I don’t know if anyone is following this thread any more, but I’ve been thinking about this care-evoking submission versus open communication discussion.

    As I define those two things, they both serve slightly different tasks. They operate on different levels. Open communication operates on a cerebral level, and it’s certainly important to know that a woman is honest. However, if she presses her body against me and nuzzles her head in my chest, that arouses strong feelings deep inside me, perhaps much deeper than words alone can.

    As I said, open communication is important, and I’d say honesty and open intentions are a necessary ingredient to earn my devotion – I certainly would not put up with dishonest manipulation – but the right demeanor can make the lady’s allure much more powerful. I suppose you can call them feminine wiles or whatever you like, but I’m not sure this is any different or less honorable than a man’s decision to go the extra mile in his efforts to take care of the woman, which is also communication through one’s actions. Both are attempts to keep the other around and maybe signal that we’d like to build a life together.

    Both parties can use their actions to draw the other party in and create a loving bond. Between the right two people, a woman who knows how to communicate with a man’s head and heart makes a much stronger case for a relationship.

    That’s what a short thought experiment gives me, anyway. Not speaking from experience. Hopefully my writing is clear – I’m a bit sleepy.