Male Quality Control

March 14, 2013

Women are the gatekeepers of sex for a simple reason. The “cost” of a sexual encounter is much higher for women than for men. There is the risk of being impregnated, possibly even by a bad or unworthy man. Women are far more likely to contract STDs than men are. And of course women are more likely to invest emotionally in a sexual encounter, even a casual one. (Note: It’s true that pregnancy can now be prevented or terminated, but our brains haven’t changed in thousands of years.)

The most important thing a woman can do in mating is manage these risks.  She does this by filtering men based on cues that signal an intent to stick around after sex. By delaying sex long enough to assess a man’s intent, character, and reproductive quality she eliminates poor prospects and considers only men with the potential to be good fathers. 

One reader suggested recently that the ideal mating strategy is the one with the highest reward, “if you can pull it off.” What he neglected to consider is that the highest reward often entails the highest “cost” or risk. A good strategy is one that thoroughly considers both costs and benefits, and has the highest “net” payout of all options. 

Here’s an illustration of how this works:

Slide1

Obviously, the best outcome is the top right quadrant, WIN THE LOTTERY. You believed him to be a good man who cared for you and you were right. Well done.

The next highest payout is the top left quadrant, DODGED A BULLET. You didn’t get a good guy out of it, but you did avoid having sex with a bad guy, and thereby prevented the destruction of your future. You have suffered no damage, and you can return to the pool of potential mates unscathed and try again. 

The third best outcome is the bottom right quadrant, THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY. You missed out on a good guy because you judged him unfairly. This is an opportunity cost – you forfeited “what might have been.” But as in DODGED A BULLET, you may return to the dating pool and try again. It’s probable you’ll never know you missed out, but even if you do, there are many guys on the guy tree.

The worst outcome, which is unfortunately very common among young women, is the bottom left quadrant, QUEL DESASTRE. Either he gave an Oscar-worthy performance or you were in denial about his true intent. He made it through your filter, you had sex with him, and it blew up in your face. You will pay a price for this error in judgment. You may be pregnant, you may have contracted a disease, or most likely, you may get hurt and feel used. Every time you experience this you chip away at your own worth, and your hopes for the future. You may return to the dating pool, but you are not unscathed.

It is imperative that you stay out of the bottom left quadrant. 

 

Filed in: Uncategorized
  • The key is to have good discernment, then, because assessing the situation correctly has the top two outcomes. Bad judgment comes with the second worst and worst possible outcomes.

    And because people may lie to obfuscate the assessment, the default position should be skepticism and careful filtering.

    Incidentally, the very same thing applies to business/money deals. Don’t be scammed!

  • HanSolo

    Good post.

    One of the biggest aspects of true female empowerment is for women to realize that they are ultimately responsible for the men they decide to date, have sex with and marry, especially in the rich and safe environments of modern society where they won’t starve or be killed if they don’t have any male in their life.

    Cads will not respond much to shaming so that’s a futile strategy.

    Getting the large portion of women who don’t want to be with cads to be more vigilant is likely a more effective strategy. (The women who do want to be with cads or players like the JR Smith girl are a whole different story.)

    In relationships or hookups with jerks and assholes, whenever women solely focus on how the man is a jerk (or all men) then it shifts the focus from their own accountability and agency and shifts them somewhat over into the category of powerless victims. But that is a futile strategy too. The women chose to sleep with them or marry them. No one held a gun to their heads to do it. Instead of just focusing on the ills of the internet Jacobs or the JR Smith ballers (and some negative attention to them is or may be warranted), more attention needs to be focused on the women choosing them and not sending them much sympathy (a little is alright) but rather asking the question:

    “Girl, there are other men to choose from so why, of all people, did you choose him?”

    If it takes longer to filter before putting out then that’s what women should do.

    And I’m not talking about what men should do (we have lots of room to improve too). Just that women need to accept that empowerment means taking responsibility for discerning who they sleep with and when. Anything less and they are just acting like powerless victims.

  • This is precisely why, from the male perspective, Game is so important: we need to obfuscated the situation, concealing who are the cads and who are the dads, in order to filter out unworthy women for the dads among us.

    If Becky wants a guy like Alex, a stand-up dude with high intelligence and good genes who will be a good dad, then she should certainly filter out anyone who doesn’t fit that criteria. By that same token, Alex needs to know if Becky is good future mother material . . . by seeing if she’ll sleep with any of his cad friends. If Becky decides a “bad boy” fling (or several) will tide her over until her prince charming shows up, the real Prince Charmings among us are going to avoid Becky like a plague rat. Oh, they might screw her — even future dads are horndogs — but her chances of becoming Mrs. Alex and having Alex’s high-quality babies is gone, barring a broken condom.

    If women can tell the cads from the dads right off the bat, then there’s no filtering process for men. We need to know who the Sexually Liberated, Uninhibited Tarts are by their behavior . . . and keep our sperm away from their ova.

    Because if Becky’s number is higher than her age, then Alex is going to want to be in the lower right hand quadrant . . . even if he has to do something caddish to make it happen. Good dads aren’t going to hand over their C-card to low-quality stock.

    Good post.

  • Jonny

    Women are not managing their risks. They seem to just overlook them for short-term gratification. Lessons are not learned.

    There was a time when I thought a 25 year old woman was old. Now, a 35 year old women is old and there are more of them than ever that never married and are currently in the dating pool. The time for stop making mistakes is long past. It is time to be proactive in making the right decisions.

    They filtered poorly, but I’m more inclined to think it is intentional.

  • lovelost

    wow SWOT analysis B-school 101.

  • Jacob Ian Stalk

    My my. What a two-dimensional world you paint for us. I recommend a third dimension to your grid – “Relationship Growth Potential”. There will be eight possible outcomes – try your analysis again and see what it reveals.

    • @Jacob Ian Stalk

      Your charm is nothing short of magnetic. Are you available for birthday parties and bar mitzvahs?

  • Josie88

    There lies the problem…men are really choosing when it comes to making a commitment, and most girls are unaware of that or some girls are.

    This is also why prostitutes exists in the past and countries like India, Mexico, and Thailand. Being a virgin was the only way to get a husband, yet the men visits brothels because they were expected to have their sexual needs fulfilled. No self-respecting girl would have sex with a man other then her husband.

    I was watching this documentary about prostitution in foreign countries, and many of the men that visits the brothels admits that these women are saving many women from rape. They themselves refuse to marry sexually experience women, because they can get a virgin.

  • Sai

    I’m 100% fine with this because I have a habit of examining everyone through the blue quadrant by default (even in a platonic situation), then deciding very slowly who gets further consideration and a chance to be green-quadrant…

    What’s a C-card though?

  • Josie88

    I do agree that women are the gatekeeper of sex, and I acknowledge that I was responsible for my own past. I did it because he lead me to believe that we were to elope, and we were dating for 3 months. He was very respectful, had a nice job, and did give me the commitment that I demanded until I disqualified myself.

    At the same time, had men looks at themselves and see if they are worthy of a restricted girl? I know that this blog has little to do with my 72 year old Uncle, but I also think he was a good example.

    In order to get his c-card, she must be a 20-something women and that was why my 55 year old friend was too old to give his c-card too. (She wasn’t entirely hurt by this, and had already move on).

    It also annoys me when men talks about a woman’s looks and judging her unworthy of commitment as she ages. Men always talks about how as they grow older, they got more options whereas women just grows old.

  • Josie88

    What is a c-card? It means commitment. Seriously, I look at my Uncle or men who tries to date 20-something or even teenagers because women near their age is too old. You are too old!!

  • Josie88 wrote:

    It also annoys me when men talks about a woman’s looks and judging her unworthy of commitment as she ages. Men always talks about how as they grow older, they got more options whereas women just grows old.

    I find your attempt at proof by anecdote a little suspect. The actions of one delusional elderly man, your horn-dog uncle, do not not prove the rule.

    I don’t even think they are useful as an anecdote. By your own admission, a 55-year old women was interested in him. That’s not half plus seven by any means, but it’s still a substantial age gap. When men talk about increasing options as they age, they are principally looking at it from a statistical perspective. Literally, they can pick from a wider field just because of how the histogram of women as a function of age is shaped. If men want to date a women their age, they can. A man who wants to buy a woman’s youth generally has to pay for it by one means or another.

  • Russ in Texas

    I know a handful of gals in relationships with (and children by) much older men, and they’re all happy. I STRONGLY suspect that this would be Terra OhMyGod-ica (is too a word) for the majority of women.

    Totally agree with Susan. Discernment for both sexes is ABSOLUTELY key. If you can’t get your A-game and win the lottery, you can at least avoid having your years of your life ruined by a terrible relationship.

  • SayWhaat

    This is precisely why, from the male perspective, Game is so important: we need to obfuscated the situation, concealing who are the cads and who are the dads, in order to filter out unworthy women for the dads among us.

    Truly a noble cause. You should start a charity for this. Make sure to file for your 501(c)(3) status! 🙂

  • INTJ

    @ Jacob Ian Stalk

    My my. What a two-dimensional world you paint for us. I recommend a third dimension to your grid – “Relationship Growth Potential”. There will be eight possible outcomes – try your analysis again and see what it reveals.

    I recommend a fourth dimension – “Inconsequentiality”. Too bad you’d be unable to think in four dimensions though.

    • @INTJ

      I recommend a fourth dimension – “Inconsequentiality”. Too bad you’d be unable to think in four dimensions though.

      Sorry, I don’t understand. What does this mean?

  • Josie88

    I certainly have no problem with women dating and marrying much older men and finding happiness. To each and their own. So long as they were older then 18 or 21 when the courtship begins, whatever dude.

    However, I do have a problem with adult men sniffing around around high schools or colleges for young girls after they sow their oats.

    I do agree with Susan. Women should be more choosing. A man has every right to want a chaste woman as a wife and mother of his child. The problems lie when that man was neither chaste nor a person of character. Then again, this is a world of welfare moms, prostitutes and rich men in corporate offices with trophy wives.

  • Sassy6519

    I’ve dodged so many bullets, they should have cast me in The Matrix.

  • JP

    “The third best outcome is the bottom right quadrant, THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY. You missed out on a good guy because you judged him unfairly. This is an opportunity cost – you forfeited “what might have been.” But as in DODGED A BULLET, you may return to the dating pool and try again. It’s probable you’ll never know you missed out, but even if you do, there are many guys on the guy tree.”

    Unless you set a pressure mine and don’t realize that you did it.

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

  • OffTheCuff

    LOL Sassy. But, you put yourself in the line of fire just a tad.

    Delusional ancient uncle aside, good ol’ alpha Danny easily gets away with hitting the colleges – they’re legal after 17 in most US states. You may not like it, but if the women consent, it’s on them as much as him.

  • SayWhaat

    I’ve dodged so many bullets, they should have cast me in The Matrix.

    LMAO!

  • Lokland

    Is Josie PJ?

  • INTJ

    @ Susan

    Sorry, I don’t understand. What does this mean?

    Oh I see. This question. I apologize for making a personal attack, against your stated recent policy. I’ve just gotten tired of seeing Jacob Ian Stalk’s nonsensical posts and wanted to respond in kind to him.

  • mr. wavevector

    It seems that women’s “accuracy of assessment” has gone to hell over the last few decades. Many of them seem to be stuck in the second row of the matrix – choosing “quel desastre” while “the one that got away” writes endless disgruntled comments on blogs like this one!

    • Many of them seem to be stuck in the second row of the matrix – choosing “quel desastre” while “the one that got away” writes endless disgruntled comments on blogs like this one!

      True that!

  • Eighty percent of women are in the bottom two categories. Pareto’s Law. Another example of Pareto’s Law is 80% of the women who think 80% of the men aren’t good-looking enough. That’s why more women are in the bottom right category than any other.

    • Eighty percent of women are in the bottom two categories.

      Support for that claim please?

  • SayWhaat

    Wavevector and Bob, I’d like to see the stats that support your arguments.

  • Josie88

    Am I PJ? No…but I do think that there nothing shameful about rejecting an older or old man.

    Honestly, I understand why older or old men being attracted to teenage and young women because of the evo-pshy thing.

    What I am trying to said that older and old men shouldn’t feel entitled to a young women or teenager. They shouldn’t shamed them either for being gross out by their age.

    This is why I agree with Susan, in that young girls should be taught to be aware of men thinks that they would be more cautions about dating men.

  • Kiwi

    Women are the gatekeepers of sex for a simple reason. The “cost” of a sexual encounter is much higher for women than for men. There is the risk of being impregnated, possibly even by a bad or unworthy man. Women are far more likely to contract STDs than men are. And of course women are more likely to invest emotionally in a sexual encounter, even a casual one.

    ^^^VERY IMPORTANT POINTS! ^^^

    ” It’s true that pregnancy can now be prevented or terminated, but our brains haven’t changed in thousands of years.”

    Pregnancy termination is not a simple thing. It can be both physically and emotionally traumatizing for women and many women would not consider terminating a pregnancy for these reasons as well as religious, ethical or other reasons.

    And pregnancy cannot be prevented 100% from condoms or birth control pills. Even hysterectomies have been botched and an expected conception takes place.

    SEX IS A HUGE RISK FOR A WOMAN!

  • Kiwi

    “I do think that there nothing shameful about rejecting an older or old man.”

    Who’s suggesting its shameful to do that? Nobody here I hope. On the contrary it is shameful to get with a man old enough to be your grandfather. Even father’s age is pushing it beyond civilized limits. Eww. Gross.

    10 years up or down is ok. 15 years max. More than that its just …. shudders.

  • Kiwi

    ” Then again, this is a world of welfare moms, prostitutes and rich men in corporate offices with trophy wives.”

    And rich men in corporate offices “slumming it” with welfare moms and prostitutes. Hell, some of those welfare moms are those rich mens’ baby mamas!

    How hard is it to pick one assortive mate and stick with her life long? Stretch marks and all.

  • Josie88

    Thanks Kiwi.

    Look, I am sorry for so many posts. I am just responding to some shaming that was inflicted upon me and my sister when we were teenagers by my 30-something sister.

    She had a good time with men in their late 20s – 30s when she as a teenager, so she told so us to do the same. She also told us that we will grow old with wrinkle too, so stop judging.

    So I want to said that I am sorry and hopes for the best for everyone. Now I am off to spring break. Have a nice week.

  • Kiwi

    “This is precisely why, from the male perspective, Game is so important: we need to obfuscated the situation, concealing who are the cads and who are the dads, in order to filter out unworthy women for the dads among us.”

    One way for women to figure out who is dad and who is cad is to become the gatekeeper of not only sex, but of emotional investment as well.

    Let him take the first serious emotional steps such as introducing you to his parents and other demonstratable signs of seriousness. Parental introduction in itself may mean nothing, but if its one of, say, 5 different emotional commitment behaviours, then you can begin, just begin, to consider “ok, maybe this guy is serious about me after all”.

    Don’t give way to wild displays of emotional attachment just yet. Continue to observe him with one cautious eye and one hopeful, loving eye.

  • Kiwi

    “She had a good time with men in their late 20s – 30s when she as a teenager, so she told so us to do the same. She also told us that we will grow old with wrinkle too, so stop judging.”

    I’m not an ageist proper, but every stage of life has its appropriate and corresponding behaviors. Uncles and aunties are meant to behave as such. It is within their age appropriate roles they will get the respect they deserve as elders from us young folk.

  • HanSolo

    @Josie88

    What part of the world do you live in, if you don’t mind me asking?

    The older man, younger woman thing doesn’t seem such a common dynamic in North America.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ SayWhaat,

    How about the 40% of children that are now born outside marriage? That’s “quel desastre” material – especially for the children themselves.

  • Kiwi

    “She had a good time with men in their late 20s – 30s when she as a teenager, so she told so us to do the same. She also told us that we will grow old with wrinkle too, so stop judging.”

    Stop judging? Whatever for? 😉

    Seriously though, we will grow old with wrinkles too and we will do so in tandem and step with our mates of similar age. That way it won’t be so hard on us.

  • Esau

    +several for HanSolo at #2 above, very well stated and important.

    In relationships or hookups with jerks and assholes, whenever women solely focus on how the man is a jerk (or all men) then it shifts the focus from their own accountability and agency and shifts them somewhat over into the category of powerless victims.

    The technical (== unnecessarily fancy) term here, I believe, is hypoagency, and you can turn up some interesting stuff by searching on the word. For example, girlwriteswhat has a thoughtful video essay on female hypoagency, starting with the counterintuitive involvement of feminism but ultimately going back to an evo-psych explanation — which I don’t personally agree with but was interesting to hear — and touching on such topics as women who regularly videogame online along the way. Anyway, you seem like the type to appreciate that there may be deeper explanations for this kind of behavior, rather than simply disrespecting it.

    wavevector at 24: It seems that women’s “accuracy of assessment” has gone to hell over the last few decades.

    Is it fair to say, that this is the main reason HUS even exists, on this scale?

  • HanSolo

    @Esau

    I’ll look it up.

    Yes, feminism ironically creates some areas of female hypoagency by excessively blaming the patriarchy (not that some criticism wasn’t/isn’t warranted) for all of the ills that women face.

  • Abbot

    Where is the female quality control post?

  • Aimee

    Abbot, you do realize that this is a website for advice to women, right?

  • Kiwi

    “Abbot, you do realize that this is a website for advice to women, right?”

    That’s why he’s here.

  • Aimee

    This is a really good post. I think that a lot of women tend to be unaware of this kind of thing, some of them willfully. I know several women who’ve been unchoosy and have ended up badly or less-than-desirably, and I also know several who’ve been very careful and have ended up well. I myself have never dated before my current boyfriend, and we aren’t being sexual (we kiss and get a bit handsy, but the clothes stay on.) I told him upfront that I was intending to wait sex till marriage, and he didn’t complain. I think that if more women would stay out of men’s beds until they had reason for confidence that this was serious, a lot of bad choices would be avoided, because sex muddies things with all the hormones and feelings.
    Side note: with the talk about older men above, I’d like to put my two cents in and say that I will generally not consider a man more than two or three years older than I as a viable option (I am 25), both because I feel that a man with N>2 has been with too many women for my taste (and the older someone is, the higher their N tends to be), and because from what I’ve seen, the older a man gets and stays single, the more bitter he gets and the more likely he is to have issues with women that he might take out on me. My boyfriend is 3 1/2 years younger than I am.

  • Kiwi

    “Side note: with the talk about older men above, I’d like to put my two cents in and say that I will generally not consider a man more than two or three years older than I as a viable option (I am 25), both because I feel that a man with N>2 has been with too many women for my taste (and the older someone is, the higher their N tends to be), and because from what I’ve seen, the older a man gets and stays single, the more bitter he gets and the more likely he is to have issues with women that he might take out on me. ”

    Bingo!

    Also autism in