The Lofty Aspirations of Millennial Women

While reading a recent article about the tradeoff between pursuing a “creative” career and earning real money, this jumped out at me: 

[Economist Sylvia Ann Hewlett] and her collaborators at the Center for Talent Innovation studied the motivations of men and women at work and found that while men’s primary incentives are relatively simple—money and power—women are motivated by seven discrete factors. “It’s not just time for family. Women want meaning and purpose in their work. They value great colleagues. They also like to give back to society in terms of the work they do, some healing of the planet, and they want flexibility, which is not the same as family stuff—it’s so that they can have a life,” said Hewlett. “Women have much more complex goals, but they also do want money and power. They recognize you’re likely to have much more control over your life if you have those.”

That’s a pretty tall order! The privilege of regarding one’s work as an exercise in self-actualization has until recently been available only to a chosen wealthy and/or brilliant few. Throughout most of history, people have worked to live, not lived to work. This strikes me as very similar to the dilemma described by Andrew Hacker in his book Mismatch: The Growing Gulf Between Women and Men:

Men and women marry for different reasons. Both seek more of and from a mate than in the past. Men want the benefits of companionship, but also a nest to which they can repair and relax with the domestic details in functioning order. It’s also a lair where men want to retain much of their freedom and independence. Men generally love their partners less because loving itself commands less of his life. They need to retain, not impair their powers to take on the world.

Men are more satisfied in marriages than wives. They are getting what they want, for the most part.

Women want more from marriage; they are willing to relinquish more for love. And they expect that through marriage they will grow and learn more about themselves. Women are more prepared to alter their identity.

This mismatch is not new, but women are now more likely to leave a marriage when they fail to get what they want. 

If women expect both marriage and career to be vehicles of personal growth leading to something like enlightenment, or at least deep life satisfaction, it’s no wonder they are disillusioned and unhappy. They’re expecting far too much. We weren’t born to have a good time. Our job is to reproduce while maintaining a civilization (and economy) that will nurture our offspring, enabling them to perpetuate the cycle.

Most of the focus on female attrition from the workforce centers on either discrimination, e.g. not enough women in boardrooms, or the difficulties in simultaneously managing career and family. Little attention is given to what women actually prefer. From the Financial Times’ Gender & The Workplace: What do women really want from work?:

An often overlooked piece of the puzzle might be women’s own choices and preferences – and the data on this is persuasive. The US’s Center for Work-Life Policy indicates how women rank a number of career priorities, such as flexible work arrangements and collaboration, ahead of compensation.

Susan Pinker, Canadian psychologist, refers in her book The Sexual Paradox, to the importance women attach to “intrinsic values”, such as an ability to make a contribution, compared with pay. Power, for its own sake, is just not that appealing to most women. In fact, it turns out to be the goal highly qualified women care least about.

Among the highly educated women surveyed by Sylvia Ann Hewlett and Carolyn Buck Luce, 85 per cent are motivated by other values, such as flexibility and working with people they respect.

As Ms Pinker writes: “At least 10 studies show that women, on average, find social aspects of the job more important than men, whereas men find pay and advancement the big carrots.”

Obviously, women do care about pay as well (and the less educated a woman is, the more likely she is to care), just as men also care about the social context of a job. But the weight men and women tend to attach to each differs.

Hewlett, in her 20o2 article Executive Women and the Myth of Having it All, advises women to give careful consideration to their objectives well ahead of time:

1. Figure out what you want your life to look like at 45. 

If you want children (and 86-89% of high achieving women do), you need to become highly intentional and take action now.

2. Give urgent priority to finding a partner.

High achieving women have an easier time finding a partner in their 20s and early 30s.

3. Have your first child before 35.

The occasional miracle notwithstanding, late-in-life childbearing is fraught with risk and failure. 

4. Choose a career that will give you the gift of time.

Avoid professions with rigid career trajectories. Certain careers provide more flexibility and are more forgiving of interruptions. Female entrepreneurs, for example, do better than female lawyers in combining work and family – and they both do better than corporate women. 

I’ll add one to Hewlett’s list:

Get real about what a career can offer in terms of personal growth and happiness. A career that gives you time, meaning and purpose, healing the planet, flexibility, money and power? Hahahahahahaha. 

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

    What those women want is impossible. This is why I have met so many hostile spinsters blaming their problems on men: “You did not give me all I wanted! What I deserved!”

  • angelguy

    Can’t have it all.

  • http://loveashley.net Ashley

    I think people were put on this planet to want different things. Some want to reproduce and others don’t. With overpopulation become an increasing problem, that is a good thing too.

    Bob, it is not impossible. I won’t say it’s easy to achieve but it’s not impossible.

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

      I think people were put on this planet to want different things.

      No. As Helen Fisher has stated so succinctly, we are machines built to reproduce. Around that we can make relationships. You can choose not to have children, but that does not change why you’ve been “put on this planet.”

  • Passer_By

    “Women and men both want meaning and purpose in their work. They both value great colleagues. However, since women’s mate value is not judged by financial success, and because they don’t have the perceived pressure of positioning themselves to become a primary breadwinner, they have the luxury of pursuing a path wherein they believe they are giving give back to society in terms of the work they do, believing they are healing of the planet, and affording themselves flexibility to not have to eat a shit sandwich every day they go to work, which is not the same as family stuff—it’s because society feels they should have a life moreso than men,” said Hewlett. “Women have much more complex opportunities and fewer financial demands, but they also do want money and power, although their sexuality often allows them to get both through other means. They recognize you’re likely to have much more control over your life if you have those, however you acquire them.”

    There. Fixed that for her.

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

    No, impossible. The viciousness and hatred I and other men have encountered from spinsters is unbelievable. And I do mean hate and viciousness. And in every case they did not get want they wanted, and blame it all on men. They did not get home, husband and children. What they got is their “careers.”

    You can home, husband and children, or you can have your “career.” You can’t have both.

    Many young women seem to think, “Well, I’ll go to college, then have a career, then get married and have husband, home and children….hey, where are all the men at? There used to be a lot of them in college…but they’re all gone now! This can’t be my fault! It’s theirs!”

    Carl Jung said women’s greatest flaw is thinking they are always right. When you think you are always right you have to find someone to blame your problems on. In fact, that’s what feminism is based on: men are responsible for all the problems in the world.

    I have heard that claim from the last two spinsters I met.

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

    “Women want meaning and purpose in their work. They value great colleagues.”

    I think there are very few men who don’t value great colleagues (though in most lines of work they may well call them something other than “colleagues.”)

    “They also like to give back to society in terms of the work they do, some healing of the planet”

    How many of the people who talk about “healing the planet” would be interested in this topic if it weren’t being heavily promoted by media and various celebrities? I think in most cases talk about “healing the planet” is a matter of publicly promoting one’s own righteousness…the kind of thing that Jesus Christ warned against, IIRC.

    As an example, my local giant is selling a reusable shopping bag emblazoned with something like: “I CARE ABOUT THE PLANET and I shop at Giant.”

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

      @david foster

      To be fair, Pinker did state that both men and women appreciate those other things, but that the sexes differ in the degree of emphasis they attach to it. She cites biological differences for that.

      How many of the people who talk about “healing the planet” would be interested in this topic if it weren’t being heavily promoted by media and various celebrities?

      I was surprised to see that listed, and I think it’s silly. How many jobs are there that actively allow a worker to heal the planet?

      There is a ton of sanctimony around this, much of it hypocritical. Laurie David with her private jet and Al Gore with his brightly lit mansion.

  • Passer_By

    “Men are more satisfied in marriages than wives. They want fairly basic and attainable things, so they are getting what they want, for the most part. When they don’t, they tend to adjust their expectations to keep the peace.

    Women often want more from marriage than any marriage could possibly deliver – or that they could deliver themselves if their spouse wanted those things; they are willing to relinquish more for love, provided that love meets the standard set by romance novels. And women’s magazines, fiction and entertainment have created an expectation that through marriage, their every dream will come true. Women are more prepared to alter their identity so long as the new identity meets all of their fantasies.

    This mismatch is not new, but women are now realize they have the power and social approval to leave a marriage and still be supported when they fail to get what they want, regardless of how unreasonable those wants may be.”

    There, fixed that for her. ;)

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

      @Passer By

      There, fixed that for her.

      Clever boy, but your second quote is actually from Andrew Hacker.

  • angelguy

    “Men generally love their partners less because loving itself commands less of his life. They need to retain, not impair their powers to take on the world.”

    I have a problem with this statement. Men are pressured into the role of Provider/Breadwinner from day one. To do that, requires a lot of love, and most that have a wife and kids sacrifice their own wants. If they seem not to love, it is often the pressure of responsibility associated with it.
    Now, I know most Women work, and make even more money than some Men. However, they don’t have the same type of social obligation as Men do.
    Being a provider/breadwinner is something that should not be devalued.

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

      @angelguy

      However, they don’t have the same type of social obligation as Men do.
      Being a provider/breadwinner is something that should not be devalued.

      Agree 100%.

  • Revo Luzione

    Susan, this is one of your best articles yet. This is great advice, and I think men should read this too, since it casts a bright light on female expectations and thought processes.

    One note, as a medical specialist in the fertility field: 35 is too late to be seeking your first child. The first drop in female fertility starts around 27, and the rate of decline in fertility bumps up at age 30. So I’d say most women should be DONE having kids by age 35, if you’re dead-set on having several. Shoot for your first kid by 30. Any kid born after 35 is a bonus, a blessing, not a guarantee.

  • Anacaona

    First world problems galore!
    I mean really “grow and learn about myself” be stopped, is the natural thing to happen, you just live your life and let ‘wisdom’ find you along the way. Unless you are severely stupid that is.

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

      First world problems galore!

      Indeed! We are so entitled! We feel that marriage and our jobs owe us something! In fact, we are the ones who owe – we should be seeking to produce something of value, not receive something of value.

  • Passer_By

    @susan
    “Clever boy, but your second quote is actually from Andrew Hacker.”

    Oooooooohhhhhhh, that MANGINA!!!

  • JP

    “No. As Helen Fisher has stated so succinctly, we are machines built to reproduce. Around that we can make relationships. You can choose not to have children, but that does not change why you’ve been “put on this planet.””

    People aren’t prisoners of their own neurology.

  • Jackie

    “As Helen Fisher has stated so succinctly, we are machines built to reproduce. Around that we can make relationships. You can choose not to have children, but that does not change why you’ve been “put on this planet.”
    ===
    Well, Helen Fisher is speaking biologically, but I believe we have both a soul and a body. Theologically, we are put on earth to bring forth God’s glory, children or no. (It would be interesting to see how many civilizations have had priests/shamans/holy people who abstained from sex and children.)

    Maybe it’s been since talking yesterday to my sister in Africa, but I am all for “every child a wanted child.” We already have have 7 billion+ people on the planet as it is!

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

      @Jackie

      Well, Helen Fisher is speaking biologically, but I believe we have both a soul and a body. Theologically, we are put on earth to bring forth God’s glory, children or no.

      Yes, I was also speaking biologically. The theological view is entirely different and obviously not solely focused on children.

      However, regardless of how one feels about God’s desires for us, our reproductive biology is given by God, and if we failed to reproduce he would see our species perish, no?

      The overpopulation argument is something else again – political.

  • JP

    “Well, Helen Fisher is speaking biologically, but I believe we have both a soul and a body. Theologically, we are put on earth to bring forth God’s glory, children or no. (It would be interesting to see how many civilizations have had priests/shamans/holy people who abstained from sex and children.)”

    “We’re all here to do what we’re all here to do.”

    One of the best lines from the Matrix. And quite true.

    I suppose “bring forth God’s glory” can work.

    It always seemed vague, though.

    Certainly it lacks specificity.

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

      “We’re all here to do what we’re all here to do.”

      I once read in a book about Buddhism that your entire life’s purpose might be moving a flower in a vase from one spot on a table to a different spot on a table. I recall finding that very disturbing. I’m pretty sure that is the opposite effect Zen is supposed to have!

  • JP

    @Anacaona:

    “I mean really “grow and learn about myself” be stopped, is the natural thing to happen, you just live your life and let ‘wisdom’ find you along the way. Unless you are severely stupid that is.”

    That first sentence is partially lacking in information content.

  • Tomato

    “You can home, husband and children, or you can have your “career.” You can’t have both.”

    Absurd. I do. Many other women do too.

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

      “You can home, husband and children, or you can have your “career.” You can’t have both.”

      Absurd. I do. Many other women do too.

      It is absurd. Hewlett makes the important point that some careers give women more time and flexibility. I’ve shared that my biggest mistake was entering a career where constant travel and 70 hour workweeks are the norm.

      Many women have “careers” and still prioritize family. They include teachers, small business owners, online entrepreneurs, physicians and nurses, writers, etc. etc.

      The word career does not have to mean “aiming for CEO.”

  • Anacaona

    That first sentence is partially lacking in information content.
    Ooops thank you. :)
    I meant:
    “I mean really “grow and learn about myself” CANNOT be stopped, is the natural thing to happen, you just live your life and let ‘wisdom’ find you along the way. Unless you are severely stupid that is.”

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

    @Tomato,

    “You can home, husband and children, or you can have your “career.” You can’t have both.”

    ” Absurd. I do. Many other women do too.”

    I don’t think so.

    Many women who have “careers” have them through Affirmative Action (“White Men Need Not Apply.”) Most women who have careers (especially in management) are overwhelmingly unqualified for them. They have meaningless liberal arts degrees, or in Human Resources or a similar worthless degree. The women pretend to work while the men carry them. I and many other men have seen this many, many times.

    Often the kid is given to day-care or pre-school, and the psychological problems these kids have has been noticed over and over. How about maternity leave? Then other workers have to carry her and the pay goes down because it’s diverted elsewhere.

    When I say it is an impossibility for a woman to have home, husband, children and career I mean just that. Your rationalization hamster is spinning furiously. You are completely ignoring the long-term effects of women trying to “have it all” – the effects on women, on children, on society, on the economy.

    To use an ad hominem attack like saying “absurd” is the mark of someone who has no analytical ability whatsoever.

    By the way, wages stopped going up in 1973. There are several reasons for this, but one are women working – whether they want to or not.

  • Jackie

    @Susan

    This is really interesting food for thought! Mind if I bring it up in our young women’s group? ;)

    I was actually talking about this with a friend and we both agreed that God places a desire in your heart, body and soul for connection for most people. And that is a good thing! ;) It should be followed, and young women should do as you suggest.

    There are some people, like my sister, who have a different desire placed upon their hearts. I am pretty sure if she has kids, she will adopt like many of her friends/colleagues have. (She already told me that she would adopt ALL the kids she works with in S. Africa if she could!)

    One of my ecclesiastical type friends knows a ton about consecrated singlehood– there are some people who are definitely called to that. I think we are all called to something, though, many of us marriage and kids.

  • DrJohno

    I think number 3 should say: Have your “last” child before 35.

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

      I think number 3 should say: Have your “last” child before 35.

      Hewlett is advising women of a broader age range, and she’s probably a feminist. It’s true that most women will be better off not waiting until 35, the official start of “advanced maternal age.”

  • http://blogelectrons.wordpress.com hbeeva

    No. As Helen Fisher has stated so succinctly, we are machines built to reproduce. Around that we can make relationships. You can choose not to have children, but that does not change why you’ve been “put on this planet.”

    I don’t know whether to start with the wrongness or the bleakness of this statement.

    Let’s say that if you manage to see yourself as a biological machine, then you very well realize what it would look like NOT to act, feel and think like a biological machine. And this is just a step away from making this into your reality. You can be as obtuse as you want, but you cannot lie that the moment you formulate “I am a biological machine”, you also just said the opposite.

    Now, my hands are machines made to grab, fight and whatnot, but I very often impose a certain top-down control, and they make music, a thing unnatural and quite removed, a thing not immediately inferred from their raw design. Most advanced music requires movement that does not belong to the default mode of my hands, it requires something totally outlandish.

    In fact, it was men, great thinking men who noticed that basic bottom-up existence did not add up, did not produce meaning. But some did find meaning, when they “unglued” themselves from the world. Blame Carl Jung for the dangerous ideas of women these days. Also, perhaps Martin Heiddeger, and a bunch of phenomenologists who dared suggest we may act like more than machines guided by instinct, that man can override most of his or her “default mode”.

    I don’t see how admitting to the default mode would be good. I don’t see how sticking to it, even when you see a way out, can be good. It’s a good mode as any, but man can choose to act in other ways, to aspire to other things, and this urge is sometimes as strong as the proverbial biological clock.

    Bah, succinct statements. More like unnecessarily, arrogantly reductive smarty-pants posturing.

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

      @hbeeva

      You’re right of course, I don’t mean to imply that life has no meaning. I didn’t mean to make a general statement saying that. I’ve quoted Fisher before on this, as it relates to mating. What she means is that all our mating instincts drive us to reproduce. We fall in love specifically so that we can reproduce and raise young. Pair bonding evolved to serve that purpose. That doesn’t mean love isn’t noble, that we aren’t creatures with higher order thinking, etc. Biology obviously does not dictate every aspect of our lives, but it’s a very strong player in mating.

  • JP

    “I once read in a book about Buddhism that your entire life’s purpose might be moving a flower in a vase from one spot on a table to a different spot on a table.”

    That’s precisely wrong.

    But then a great number of sentences are precisely wrong, whether their source is Buddhism or Microsoft.

    In fact, you could make an infinite number of sentences precisely wrong.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    I think I’m just over the whole Millennial bashing thing. They’re the products of all the misguided experiments from Baby Boomers to Gen X and so on, and they’re the one who get a bad rap????

    This is just adding insult to injury.

    Comfortable conservatives who got it made a long time ago can call them (us) deluded and entitled, but they are the ones who made the place that way. Poor kids are trying to figure out what to do with their lives in a world that is getting shittier by the minute with wars, abject poverty and unemployment, and a planet going down the toilet. So yes, people want to make something positive with their lives and their environments in spite of all the garbage previous generations have left for us to deal with and still refuse to fix. And sometimes in the middle of that, they might want boring things like having a family and children. It is very convenient to say you can’t do both, but really do we have a choice??? We have to make things work still.

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

      They’re the products of all the misguided experiments from Baby Boomers to Gen X and so on, and they’re the one who get a bad rap????

      It’s not about blaming Millennials – indeed it’s Boomer parents who should be blamed, if anyone. But the truth is that a woman who goes into a career with expectations of receiving immense personal growth is very unlikely to be happy with her lot in life.

      Research shows that women are unhappy – more so than before the Women’s Movement. Adjusting unrealistic expectations may be one way of hitting the reset button.

  • JP

    “In fact, it was men, great thinking men who noticed that basic bottom-up existence did not add up, did not produce meaning.”

    Of course bottom up existence doesn’t *produce* meaning.

    But movies still need the screen upon which they can be projected, don’t they?

    Bottom up existence enables meaning to be *transmitted*, *understood*, and *used*.

    Carl Jung was certainly helpful. In certain ways and for certain things. But he’s no skeleton key.

    The question is where did he go and what did he find?

  • Lokland

    “3. Have your first child before 35.

    The occasional miracle notwithstanding, late-in-life childbearing is fraught with risk and failure. ”

    This is playing way, way, way down at the late end.
    If your super high success 30-32 is probably the latest one should expect to start unless they only want one child.

    An analogy would be saying you need to wait till the day before the exam to study.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Other than that good article.

  • JP

    “I’ve shared that my biggest mistake was entering a career where constant travel and 70 hour workweeks are the norm.”

    I’m not convinced that such “careers” have much value at all, either personal or corporate.

  • Lokland

    “With overpopulation become an increasing problem, that is a good thing too.”

    The world is not over populated.
    We just eat too much.

    Beyond that who cares.
    Africa (or any other random third world country and yes I know Africa is not a country) will starve before North America and then over population goes away and theres enough food again.

  • Lokland

    “The viciousness and hatred I and other men have encountered from spinsters is unbelievable. And I do mean hate and viciousness. And in every case they did not get want they wanted, and blame it all on men. They did not get home, husband and children. What they got is their “careers.””

    +1
    I have a friend who will be turning 30 this year.

    No boyfriend, slept around when younger.
    Absolutely intolerable I kicked her out of my house a few weeks ago. She was railing on all us married folks.

    However, she was one of 50 people around soooooo…. don’t care about spinsters. Too rare to be worth discussing.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    “Beyond that who cares.”
    ===
    What about when “beyond that” = you?

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Many women have “careers” and still prioritize family. They include teachers, small business owners, online entrepreneurs, physicians and nurses, writers, etc. etc.

    The word career does not have to mean “aiming for CEO.””

    Bullshit :P
    Everyone gets to be a CEO in America.

  • JP

    “No boyfriend, slept around when younger.
    Absolutely intolerable I kicked her out of my house a few weeks ago. She was railing on all us married folks.”

    What was she railing about? Care to share? Any good quotes?

  • JP

    “It’s true that most women will be better off not waiting until 35, the official start of “advanced maternal age.””

    You don’t even know if you will have a successful career until you hit about 35.

    The real high powered career action takes place between 40 and 55.

    Before that you are just building a platform for potential future success.

  • angelguy

    “Comfortable conservatives who got it made a long time ago can call them (us) deluded and entitled, but they are the ones who made the place that way. Poor kids are trying to figure out what to do with their lives in a world that is getting shittier by the minute with wars, abject poverty and unemployment, and a planet going down the toilet. So yes, people want to make something positive with their lives and their environments in spite of all the garbage previous generations have left for us to deal with and still refuse to fix. ”

    Totally agree with that.
    It is not in their best interests to fix anything.

  • Emily

    @ Mireille (32),

    Agreed! And having worked in customer service in the past, I can tell you that the previous generations are AT LEAST as scummy/entitled as we are.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Jackie,

    Don’t take the bait with LokLand. Some people do think beyond themselves.
    I’m one of those women who has one of thosse useless liberal arts degrees who, according to Mr Wallace doesn’t contribute much to the world.
    I sometimes wonder what it is that the people with “real jobs” do. It couldn’t be scientists since nowadays they’re too busy selling their discoveries to the highest bidder regardless of whether it helps mankind as a whole. Or those acclaimed physicists making all types of toxic stuff for the planets.

    Everyone has their contribution they bring to the plate. I’m sorry if some ‘women’ took jobs you wanted or make your life miserable because they’re spinsters or what not, but get over it.

  • Lokland

    ” What about when “beyond that” = you?”

    I’ve made this point multiple times about multiple groups.
    People don’t care about people who don’t matter.

    Ex. The people in the SMP who need the most help are the ones we tend to discard out of hand as not being worthy of discussion.
    Ie. The delta men who make up the majority of people yet we talk about the alpha-beta split (or just beta).

  • Tomato

    “Many women who have “careers” have them through Affirmative Action (“White Men Need Not Apply.”) Most women who have careers (especially in management) are overwhelmingly unqualified for them. They have meaningless liberal arts degrees, or in Human Resources or a similar worthless degree. The women pretend to work while the men carry them. I and many other men have seen this many, many times.”

    Your anecdotes are equally absurd.

    And it’s simply adorable that you presume to lecture me on my analytical skills. Ad hominem indeed.

  • JP

    Lokland’s point is that people only tend to care about people who are higher value/higher status within their own social game and significantly devalue those at the bottom of the game pile.

    He’s always been “less valuable” in terms of the SMP and has felt this acutely within his own family IIRC, so he recognizes that unless you are aware of your own blind spots, you won’t really help much of anything because you don’t know that you are partially blind.

    ADBG made this point in one of the other threads recently.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @LokLand

    It is not because you cannot see the relationships and links between multiple groups that they don’t matter. We might limit our talks to one segment of the population(s), doesn’t mean that the advice is lost. One can be led to the river but cannot be forced to drink.

    They are clear ways to become more attractive and they are mostly the same for everyone. However, not everyone has to produce the same effort to get there, this is the difference. If by their own lack of effort, they disqualify themselves, no one else is to blame.

  • JP

    “And it’s simply adorable that you presume to lecture me on my analytical skills. Ad hominem indeed.”

    +1 for proper use of “adorable”.

  • Jackie

    @Emily

    ” And having worked in customer service in the past, I can tell you that the previous generations are AT LEAST as scummy/entitled as we are.”
    ===
    According to my sister, who worked customer service AND waitressing, the *worst* (and cheapest) are mean-spirited elderly women. One of them left my sister a FIVE CENT tip! :shock: (On a 30 dollar bill!)

  • angelguy

    “I’m one of those women who has one of thosse useless liberal arts degrees who, according to Mr Wallace doesn’t contribute much to the world.
    I sometimes wonder what it is that the people with “real jobs” do.”

    I don’t think art degrees are useless. You have to be creative to survive in this economy. Being creative shows that one can think for themselves. There are no “real jobs”, only corporate drone positions.
    And they are being outsourced to Temp agencies or overseas.

  • angelguy

    I think the expectations of aspirations are changing with the Millienials being the pioneers for it.

    They are going to be the ones to break the molds of traditional gender roles and expectations.

    Those of us that are older might be resistant to this, but change will come whether you like it or not.

  • Jackie

    @LL

    “People don’t care about people who don’t matter.”
    ===
    That’s an awfully broad brush you are painting with there, LL. And kind of insulting, too. Who is it that doesn’t matter? Why’d you bother getting married by a pastor in a Christian ceremony with that attitude?

    I guess that means that most of the people I admire the most (incl. my sister and Susan) aren’t people.

  • Jackie

    @Mireille

    Argh, you are so right! I should have listened to you, Mireille. LL is trolling par excellence on level with Plain Jane/Butter Naan/Polyamorous Desi!

  • Tomato

    @Mireille “It couldn’t be scientists since nowadays they’re too busy selling their discoveries to the highest bidder regardless of whether it helps mankind as a whole.”

    How else are we supposed to afford that Evil Lair? http://www.villainsource.com/lairs.html

    @JP ;)

  • JP

    “I think the expectations of aspirations are changing with the Millienials being the pioneers for it.

    They are going to be the ones to break the molds of traditional gender roles and expectations.

    Those of us that are older might be resistant to this, but change will come whether you like it or not.”

    That’s generally *not* how the generations work.

    They do place new roles and systems into place, but they are selected from the possibilities first introduced by the Boomers.

    The Millenials didn’t create the “Summer of Love”. They were born in it’s shadow, two generations later.

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

    The Xers are catabolic to the structures created by the GI (remember the themes of nihlism? The Xers were ignored and pushed aside.) and the Millenials are anabolic, building off the ideas of the boomers.

    I suspect that some of the Xers ultimately pick what ideas to use.

  • Lokland

    @JP

    “What was she railing about? Care to share? Any good quotes?”

    Ohh it was a goodie, she got extremely drunk. We were having a small party with both me and my wife’s friends.

    Out of that 50 maybe 30 were foreigners (wife’s friends and a few of my own).

    So;

    1. Went after foreigners including some of her closest friends (I have a blonde friend married + kids to a British guy, we’ve all been mutual friends for 8yrs or so). Stealing jobs made a terrorist remark to my buddy from Iraq.

    2. Went after married people (as a general group). Weak, incapable of being alone etc.

    3. Went after guys married to foreigners (specifically me and 2 of my close friends).

    I think I pulled out the red card when she insinuated that my wife (along with other foreigners married to Canadians) were after a green card (which does not exist in Canada and she had residency before our marriage.)

    She is not welcome back.

  • Lokland

    “Why’d you bother getting married by a pastor in a Christian ceremony with that attitude?”

    I didn’t.
    Our ceremony wasn’t religious.

    A family friend did it, he is a pastor but he kept the god out of it.

  • JP

    @Lokland:

    Wow.

    I think that…she has some….issues.

  • Lokland

    “They are clear ways to become more attractive and they are mostly the same for everyone. However, not everyone has to produce the same effort to get there, this is the difference. If by their own lack of effort, they disqualify themselves, no one else is to blame.”

    Thats actually what I am arguing against.
    Despite the insistence here that they are unworthy of marriage most men are married and most men are deltas (min. 50%) not betas.

    That means that unless most women want to be in a harem they will be married to a delta not a beta.

    If that makes me a troll I will pride my pie dividing abilities.

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

      That means that unless most women want to be in a harem they will be married to a delta not a beta.

      In which case it must be true that many women are attracted to deltas.

  • Lokland

    @JP

    “I think that…she has some….issues.”

    Yeah. Quite a few.
    This is not the first incidence like this.

    On another note, she was the girl who booked multiple dates on one night to get free drinks from one guys before going on her ‘real’ date.

    Hindsight is 20-20 but I must be an idiot for allowing her to stay in my social circle.

    ——

    Note: She is the only woman I have ever met like this. Most of the rest exist on the normal spectrum of human behaviour.

  • Abbot
  • Lokland

    “Who is it that doesn’t matter? Why’d you bother getting married by a pastor in a Christian ceremony with that attitude?

    I guess that means that most of the people I admire the most (incl. my sister and Susan) aren’t people.”

    Whatever group that doesn’t have the power to control the resource in question or offer something of value in exchange.

    I know nothing about your sister.
    I would say Susan does matter because she is offering something of value, free advice that actually works.

    I wouldn’t be here if I thought what she was doing was ineffective or not inherently good for society.

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

      I wouldn’t be here if I thought what she was doing was ineffective or not inherently good for society.

      That’s a relief, I’ve been pouting since you said you disagree with me 9 times out of 10.

  • Anacaona

    @Jackie
    I know it was not your intention but as a person that grew poor and in a third world country I must say that this coming from anyone that grew up in the first world sounds like “I have nothing and you want me to not even have a family?”, YMMV.

    Also Genesis 1:28
    “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

  • Lokland

    “so he recognizes that unless you are aware of your own blind spots, you won’t really help much of anything because you don’t know that you are partially blind.”

    +1000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000

    OMFG thank you.
    Thats what I have been trying to say.

    Susan has always been in the higher value end of the range.
    Therefore confirming that the alpha-beta mix is adequate is good, great even but most men do not rise that high in value nor do most women.

  • Anacaona

    Everyone gets to be a CEO in America.
    And the streets are paved with cheese! :D

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

    To all concerned:

    Men created civilization, science and technology. Women did not, and cannot. Camille Paglia, who although a lesbian, does not hate men. Yet even she said that without men, women would still be living in grass huts. I like what the humorist P.J. Rourke said: without men, civilization would last until the next oil change.

    Whatever women are doing today, it was done on the accomplishments of men. And yes, I do lecture fools, including on their misuse of logic and their inability to understand long-term consequences.

    One – and I repeat one – of the reasons that many societies is the past have collapsed in the past is because they gave women power they couldn’t handle. If this wasn’t happening today, the hostility seen in the Manosphere – itself a reaction to “feminism” – would not exist.

    Once things collapse – and they will – feminism (which is supported completely by the government) will disappear – as will women’s pretend jobs.

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

      One – and I repeat one – of the reasons that many societies is the past have collapsed in the past is because they gave women power they couldn’t handle.

      One – and I repeat one – of the reasons that many societies is the past have collapsed in the past is because men gave women power.

      Once things collapse – and they will – feminism (which is supported completely by the government) will disappear – as will women’s pretend jobs.

      We will enjoy the decline, thanks!

  • Jackie

    @Ana
    “I know it was not your intention but as a person that grew poor and in a third world country I must say that this coming from anyone that grew up in the first world sounds like “I have nothing and you want me to not even have a family?”, YMMV.”
    ===

    Ana, I am not sure I am understanding you? Is this in response to my belief in “every child a wanted child”? Or something else? If someone wants a family, they should have one. Obviously, I couldn’t stop people even if I wanted to!

    But I do have a hard time seeing children who are not wanted and neglected.

  • JP

    “Men created civilization, science and technology. Women did not, and cannot. ”

    Marie Curie was a man?

  • Anacaona

    But I do have a hard time seeing children who are not wanted and neglected.
    You said this as something that might had been influenced by your sister in AFRICA a poor third world country. Got it?

  • Joe

    @Jackie

    But I do have a hard time seeing children who are not wanted and neglected.

    The vast majority of children are wanted and not neglected, Jackie.

    Fact of the matter is, for most people throughout almost all of history, wealth was counted, not in money or possessions, but in children. In most of the world, right now, it still is. It is only the few, here and now, who think children lead to poverty.

    I bring this up because you said earlier that you think overpopulation is a problem and use the 7 billion people figure as de-facto proof of that. But 7 billion people really isn’t a magic number. (If you’re worried about resources, there’s plenty of evidence that the earth could sustain many times that number even if people weren’t so very clever at using available stuff in new and better ways, which only increases that number, btw). In many European and Asian countries the problem is a lack of children and young adults – not that there are too many.

    Children are wanted and cherished by most everyone. To not want and cherish them is an anomaly and an indication of a problem that should be addressed. Ana is quite right to want a family and rail against anything that would stop her.

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

    Mirielle, my dear… Chemists create toxic materials. We physicists produce radioactive materials. Please be clear in the distinction in the future.

    Salutations distinguees, Mr. Nervous Toes.

  • Tomato

    Actually, I would like to thank Bobby here for helping me to see the light. You see, when I was applying for my current job I went through the tedious task of detailing my credentials, awards, conference presentations, publications, and grants.

    But now I see that I really only had to put down one thing in order to take that job away from a more qualified and harder working male:

    “Qualifications: VAGINA.”

    BAM. Instant job. Brilliant!

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

      @Tomato

      You see, when I was applying for my current job I went through the tedious task of detailing my credentials, awards, conference presentations, publications, and grants.

      I never made the connection, but perhaps this explains the strong anti-credentialism of some commenters here.

  • http://www.thesanctuary-spacetraveller.blogspot.ch/ JT

    Bob,

    You are right about civilisation not surviving without men.
    And I agree that many women do believe that their jobs are crucial to the world. Often, it is not.
    But their jobs may well be crucial to their own little economy – i.e. the economy of their family.
    So a woman’s job, no matter how insignificant to the world economy, is significant to a small group of people – her family.

    A married woman’s time is best used to care for her children if she is a mother, yes.
    But if the greater need is that she earn money for the family, with husband’s consent, then that too is a noble task for her, albeit she will have to be creative about how she manages childcare.

    Men create civilisations, but whose actions ensure that those civilisations continue?
    Yes – childbearing women.
    Both sexes have a function.
    And both are designed that way by God.

    Whilst it is regrettable that women compete with men in the workplace nowadays, it is important to remember that women have always worked too…even in the old days many women worked on farms, etc. but always with their children close by (whereas today the woman is often geographically separated from her child, which is not good for the child). In this sense, women contributed to civilisation by aiding men rather than fighting them, as happens today.

    So you are right that men are required. But you forget that women are also required – civilisation canot continue without women bearing the next generation of people.
    The quality of the next generation however depends on women making good choices…this is a little off, admittedly, but it doesn’t take away the fact that women are still needed for civilisation to prosper.

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

      @JT

      A married woman’s time is best used to care for her children if she is a mother, yes.
      But if the greater need is that she earn money for the family, with husband’s consent, then that too is a noble task for her, albeit she will have to be creative about how she manages childcare.

      The truth is that only a small minority of mothers work by choice. They may enjoy their work, of course, but most families require two incomes. A Forbes survey of mothers indicated that 84% aspire to stay at home with children and consider it a luxury. If a man wants his wife to stay at home full time, he’d better be a great provider.

  • Jonny

    “Women have much more complex goals, but they also do want money and power. They recognize you’re likely to have much more control over your life if you have those.”

    In relationships, people cannot be managed as if they are workers in a company. The professional women seem to love their jobs more than their marriages. It’s a sad state of affairs. Maybe women should marry a wife if she can be found. That Slate article was hilarious.

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

    “And they expect that through marriage they will grow and learn more about themselves”

    People of whatever gender who are focused mainly on learning more about THEMSELVES are narcissists. I’m reminded of something C S Lewis said…

    In A Preface to Paradise Lost, C S Lewis contrasts the characters of Adam and Satan, as developed in Milton’s work:

    “Adam talks about God, the Forbidden tree, sleep, the difference between beast and man, his plans for the morrow, the stars and the angels. He discusses dreams and clouds, the sun, the moon, and the planets, the winds and the birds. He relates his own creation and celebrates the beauty and majesty of Eve…Adam, though locally confined to a small park on a small planet, has interests that embrace ‘all the choir of heaven and all the furniture of earth.’ Satan has been in the heaven of Heavens and in the abyss of Hell, and surveyed all that lies between them, and in that whole immensity has found only one thing that interests Satan.. And that “one thing” is, of course, Satan himself…his position and the wrongs he believes have been done to him. “Satan’s monomaniac concern with himself and his supposed rights and wrongs is a necessity of the Satanic predicament…””

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

      @david foster

      People of whatever gender who are focused mainly on learning more about THEMSELVES are narcissists.

      Our culture is rapidly breeding narcissists. The “nurture” side of the equation is out of control.

  • JP

    Here’s something I pulled out of the history books.

    Hope you like it:

    “The 1930s have been called a “golden age for spinsters.” In the 1920s and the 1930s some women, especially college-educated women, chose to remain single. These women expected to find spiritual and emotional—perhaps sexual—fulfillment from other women. The decision to remain single was often part of a commitment to a career in social reform, academic life, or a profession. In spite of the discrimination women faced in the tight labor market, the Depression provided opportunities for these young women to become self-reliant. Their experiences of economic independence inhibited their desires to hurry into the dependency of marriage. As one women from Providence, Rhode Island, explained, “It’s not that I didn’t want to get married, but when you are working and have your own money.…” The Depression also created a scarcity of men financially able to marry and led to many broken engagements. Another woman explained that she did not choose to remain single, but her obligations to her family came first: “During all the years I worked, I had a boyfriend, but we both had responsibilities at home.… Now they say ‘career woman/ but at the time you wouldn’t call yourself that. It’s just because you felt you had a responsibility at home too.” Whether committed to lives with other women, or inspired by their experience of economic independence, more than six million single women supported themselves or contributed to their parents’ households in the 1930s.”

    http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/Working_women.aspx

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

      @JP

      That golden age of spinsters sounds similar to “Boston friendships.” Maybe they’re the same thing. Perhaps these will become popular again in the coming decades as a result of the lopsided college sex ratio.

  • Jackie

    @Ana

    Ana, I can see how that could appear incredibly condescending. That was definitely not my intent! Do you feel as though I have made an attack on you? That is definitely not my position– you are pretty much the dream wife-mother of HUS!

    And I am not saying that those women in S Africa were neglecting their kids. I have seen a TON of neglect and unwanted children at very high socioeconomic levels (ie children as accessories) right here in the good old USA.

    What I *do* believe is that children should be wanted and planned for, as much as possible. I *do* have issues with people who have 10, 12 + kids because both mother, baby and family suffer.

    I *do* have issues with people who have a baby for revenge or to prop up an unhealthy marriage. I *do* have issues this not because I hate people, but because on the contrary I value human life. A baby is not a band-aid.

    I was reading an interesting history of birth control in the New Yorker, the quotes from women who were at the first family planning clinic in the US (before it got banned and shut down). They were all begging for help planning their families so they could give their current children *what they needed*. I support that.

  • Maggie

    @Mireille
    I think I’m just over the whole Millennial bashing thing. They’re the products of all the misguided experiments from Baby Boomers to Gen X and so on, and they’re the one who get a bad rap????

    Unfortunately the few entitled, narcissistic young people are the ones getting all the media attention. Maybe it’s a function of where I live, but I find Millennials to be polite, kind and amazingly upbeat considering how screwed they’ve been by the economic downturn. Lots of young people have started off with lofty aspirations and learn to temper these aspirations when reality sets in. It’s all part of maturing. I think this generation is going have great accomplishments in years to come.

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

      @Maggie

      Maybe it’s a function of where I live, but I find Millennials to be polite, kind and amazingly upbeat considering how screwed they’ve been by the economic downturn.

      I believe this is true of many Millennials. In fact, I believe this generation may already be changing things – the percentage of women prioritizing family over career is rising, as is the number of women who have no desire to “have it all.” What Millennials will have to do is aggressively rebel against the culture. There is some sign that his already happening.

  • Jackie

    @Joe

    “The vast majority of children are wanted and not neglected, Jackie.”
    ==
    That’s great, if it’s true.

    I think that *most* children are wanted, but I think there is much more negligence, abuse and abandonment than is acceptable.
    ===
    “Fact of the matter is, for most people throughout almost all of history, wealth was counted, not in money or possessions, but in children.”

    This is probably where we may be getting off track: Conflating material possessions and human life, as both measures of “wealth.” Spiritually and emotionally, children have worth beyond any earthly measure. The same cannot be said of “wealth” which can be quantified and measured. Children are also not possessions.
    ===
    ” Ana is quite right to want a family and rail against anything that would stop her.”
    We are in agreement!
    ===
    “Children are wanted and cherished by most everyone. To not want and cherish them is an anomaly and an indication of a problem that should be addressed.”

    This is not true. There is something like 20% of the population that is childfree *by choice*. They are not an “anomaly,” they just don’t want kids, and that is perfectly fine.

    I am much more okay with these people than I am with the people who emulate “16 and Pregnant” or the other MTV reality shows. Because they are living with their choices and not inflicting anything on a baby, who *definitely* needs a healthy family to grow and thrive.

  • Anacaona

    Ana, I can see how that could appear incredibly condescending. That was definitely not my intent! Do you feel as though I have made an attack on you?
    Of course not. I’m not African ;).
    But I do think that some people that never lived in poverty assume that poverty is the root of all evils and assume that poor people are basically children uncapable of making choices. Lack of resources is bad and many people can do horrible things. But as the daughter of parents that had a lot of lacks but never used them as excuse to go to ‘the dark side’ I try to make sure that this idea is not as widespread. I can excuse an starving man for stealing bread for him and/or his loved ones. I can’t excuse an starving man from murdering another man to steal from him. Get what I mean?

  • JP

    ” Lots of young people have started off with lofty aspirations and learn to temper these aspirations when reality sets in. It’s all part of maturing. I think this generation is going have great accomplishments in years to come.”

    They had better have great accomplishments.

    Since it’s their generational job to have great accomplishments, being that their purpose is anabolic.

  • J

    Both the Hewitt and Hacker quotes really resonate with me.

    Hewitt has a done a great of identifying what many women out of a job. I actually was very lucky to have held such a job for about a decade. I didn’t make a lot of money, but I dervived an awful of satisfaction from my work that compensated and was lucky enough to have a husband who could have supported the family on his own. I doubt I will ever have another job like it. I miss it a lot.

    I find the Hacker quote to explain a lot about the fact that most divorces are initiated by women. When I first come into the ‘sphere, the subject of gray divorce was a hot one with hypergamy backed as the #1 reason. IRL, I know a number of women who have divorced after 25-30 years of marriage without hypergamy being a factor at all. These women look at their lives, feel that their marriages have stagnated and realize that they wil probably live another 20-30 years. They just aren’t willing to do so in a dead relationship. Their husbands, OTOH, seem quite content in dead relationships as long as dinner is on the table, the house is reasonably clean and the woman is still willing to have sex. It’s a fundamental difference between men and women.

    It’s Maslow in action. Women used to be more able to put their emotional needs aside when they needed financial support from men in order to survive. With their increased ability to support themselves, women have become fussier about the emotional quality of relationships. I think some of the ‘sphere senses this. That’s why we hear these calls for civilization to collapse, for Big Daddy government to die or or for the work world to become less female friendly. Some men really long for the days when all a man needed to was provide. In fact, it’s the beta provider’s lament.

  • Lokland

    ” That’s a relief, I’ve been pouting since you said you disagree with me 9 times out of 10.”

    Your joking right?

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

      @Lokland

      ” That’s a relief, I’ve been pouting since you said you disagree with me 9 times out of 10.”

      Your joking right?

      No! Nor am I being sarcastic (I hate sarcasm, and never use it.) I am teasing, though. I’m not really pouting. But I was surprised to learn that we disagree 90% of the time.

  • Tomato

    “That’s why we hear these calls for civilization to collapse, for Big Daddy government to die or or for the work world to become less female friendly.”

    Civilization will not collapse, it will simply move on without them. I think that frightens them more.

  • Passer_By

    ” ‘That means that unless most women want to be in a harem they will be married to a delta not a beta.’
    In which case it must be true that many women are attracted to deltas.”

    Well, if we redefine most of the guys that most would call betas to be deltas, then I guess so. But what’s the point? And, in that regard, WTF is a delta (as opposed to a beta)? Does the “D” in Delta stand for Dorky Beta?

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

    Lokland wrote:

    Your joking right?

    Yes she is being sarcastic. You told her something she already knew. Now go learn the difference between ‘your’ and ‘you are’.

  • JP

    “Civilization will not collapse, it will simply move on without them. I think that frightens them more.”

    The civilization collapse issues has more to do with the potential future nonavailability of cheap energy, ecological degradation, and drug-resistant bacteria.

  • Jonny

    What women want from marriage isn’t marriage. It is a civil union with higher aspirations. There is no husband and wife. Its a union of equals, a legal partnership. Sometimes I feel this way when I sign a contract. A contract assumes equal effort with maximum gain (thus higher aspirations). The marriage contract assumes both will assume traditional roles. Many women assume marriage keeps the woman down. For those that don’t subscribe to it, the civil union contract makes more sense. However, we must rid the notion of chivalrous behavior of men that women plainly won’t give up as well as giving up hypergamy.

    Perhaps another type of contract suits a woman’s sensibility to have it both ways. Call it Civil Union Marriage. The a la carte trappings of marriage formalized as a civil union contract.

  • Jacob Ian Stalk

    @Susan

    These are not “lofty” ambitions. They’re irreducibly foolish.

    1. Figure out what you want your life to look like at 45.

    This makes as much sense, particularly to young women, as getting a tattoo. People enter our lives, we grow and learn about ourselves as relationships deepen, and our perspectives change. This is especially true for under 30-women, whose SMV changes (and their relationships with it) rapidly as they age. In my experience, the buds of wisdom don’t start showing in women until they’re SMV has stabilised, which is typically in their late 30′s. How can a young woman map out a life in advance with all of this going on? The best she can do is use the romantic notions that people like Hewlett want to project onto her of her true capabilities, how much the world truly cares about her, and her likely productive output – which must surely bear only a passing resemblance to the truth. Better, in my opinion, for a young woman to commit herself to a true understanding of things like mercy, justice, faith, compassion, honour and grace and let the path unfold before her.

    If you want children (and 86-89% of high achieving women do), you need to become highly intentional and take action now.

    Great. Treat men like breeding stock and women as buyers of horse flesh. It would be just as ugly to describe a high-achieving woman (as opposed to a ‘high-achiever’), as one who has converted as many of her eggs as possible to live offspring. This is different to trafficking how exactly?

    2. Give urgent priority to finding a partner.

    High achieving women have an easier time finding a partner in their 20s and early 30s.

    This is indeed a lofty aspiration. Hewlett clearly has no idea how little high-achieving woman’s abilities attract the men the women themselves find attractive. Grace, compassion, a sense of justice, beauty and femininity will serve these women far better.

    3. Have your first child before 35.

    The occasional miracle notwithstanding, late-in-life childbearing is fraught with risk and failure.

    Childbearing, or rather a desire for it, is already fraught with danger. Feminism has built so many social roadblocks and bottlenecks to stop a young woman from becoming a mother, it’s a miracle for a child to be born at all. It’s a lofty aspiration indeed for women to think that a career comes anywhere close in value, importance, satisfaction or FREEDOM to being a mother. I’d therefore change this recommendation to “Abandon feminism before you reach 25.”

    4. Choose a career that will give you the gift of time.

    Avoid professions with rigid career trajectories. Certain careers provide more flexibility and are more forgiving of interruptions. Female entrepreneurs, for example, do better than female lawyers in combining work and family – and they both do better than corporate women.

    I’m all for women entrepreneurs. I wouldn’t encourage any woman to become a lawyer or a corporate executive as both are antithetical to good mothering. Lawyering especially seems to destroy the feminine allure of a woman – just as weak-kneed submission destroys the masculine allure of a man.

    As for your addition to Hewlett’s list:

    Get real about what a career can offer in terms of personal growth and happiness. A career that gives you time, meaning and purpose, healing the planet, flexibility, money and power?Hahahahahahaha.

    Have a child. Be a mother. This career offers them all. Feminists are destroying the one career prospect that can satisfy this lofty aspiration. Stop them before this option is lost to you.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ J

    These women look at their lives, feel that their marriages have stagnated and realize that they wil probably live another 20-30 years. They just aren’t willing to do so in a dead relationship. Their husbands, OTOH, seem quite content in dead relationships as long as dinner is on the table, the house is reasonably clean and the woman is still willing to have sex. It’s a fundamental difference between men and women.

    NAMALT are like that, I guess. This type of relationship wouldn’t be enough for me. I like to share interests and I like to talk a lot. About pretty much everything. Except for past sexual partners. Let’s not talk about that.

    Chores, Food, and Sex are definitely essential, but just…more? Can’t we have a talk about something, even if it is just the relationship drama on Glee or whatever?

  • mr. wavevector

    @ J,

    Their husbands, OTOH, seem quite content in dead relationships as long as dinner is on the table, the house is reasonably clean and the woman is still willing to have sex.

    And why not? Those things are what they got married for. They didn’t get married for the “relationship”. That was just something they had to do to get the wife.

    I recommend Athol Kay’s”married man game” to friends in this situation. It gets this type of guy thinking of the dynamics of the relationship and that they need to bring something more to the table than a paycheck. To “game” his wife, a guy has to be thinking about what she’s thinking and feeling, which is something that might not have occurred to him to do otherwise. That’s a big start on the problem, regardless of whether all that alpha/beta stuff works or not.

  • mr. wavevector

    With their increased ability to support themselves, women have become fussier about the emotional quality of relationships.

    The flip side of this is as women’s ability to support themselves has gone up, the value they bring to marriage has gone down while the demands they make have gone up.

    And young men have become less interested in marriage as the demands have gone up along with the liabilities. A young man can’t presume he will get a hot dinner, a clean house, or regular sex from his wife. But he can be certain of “fussy” emotional demands and the ever present threat of a ruinous divorce.

    My advice to my married friends is to read Athol Kay. My advice to my unmarried friends is “don’t do it, Dude”. Not that I’m opposed to marriage in general. But I think each young man should think good and hard about the liability that a wife represents before making that commitment.

  • Lokland

    @Mr. NT

    “Yes she is being sarcastic. You told her something she already knew.”

    I don’t recall telling her anything.

    “Now go learn the difference between ‘your’ and ‘you are’.”

    Pff, gave up on that a long time ago old habits die hard.

  • Ramble

    One – and I repeat one – of the reasons that many societies is the past have collapsed in the past is because men gave women power.

    While I understand what you were attempting to do, you shouldn’t necessarily employ someone else’s type of argument in an attempt to defeat them.

    Women were greatly empowered by the Industrial Revolution, but it is not like James Watt and the other Industrial Geniuses were a bunch of Feminists or mewling betas.

    The same could easily be said for the Technological Revolution which may have had an even bigger impact of female empowerment.

    Women (and men) will continue to benefit from the technological insight and creativity of men (and, it will be men who move these things forward, it always is), but it will not be because a bunch of STEMmy guys got together and sought to give women more power.

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

      @Ramble

      Women (and men) will continue to benefit from the technological insight and creativity of men (and, it will be men who move these things forward, it always is), but it will not be because a bunch of STEMmy guys got together and sought to give women more power.

      Of course not. But the reality is that men have been key allies in the Women’s Movement, and still largely enable feminism today.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Wave vector

    I think women bring more value now to marriage than they added before. Actually women have always brought value to marriage, it is just that most men dismiss it as real value because they are the ‘face’ of the couple to the outside. Men should stay out of marriage if they can not appreciate what women bring, that I’ll agree with you. Women were raised and policed to always imagine and anticipate the needs of men but that men have to do the same seems like an herculean feat for some to the extent that they’d prefer to abstain from marriage. I say, great, but do I really want to hear from the same guys how they can’t get a woman to have sex with/date/marry? Not really.

    The point is marriage is hard for everyone, men and women. I don’t understand the point of saying someone has it better than the other. Like all things in life, there are negative and positive aspects. And since it is a life endeavour, people should think about what it entails before engaging. I find it funny that you’d advise other men to not get married, especially after bragging about how blessed your marriage is.

  • Californio

    Naturally, the problems are with….someone else (usually someone you don’t like to begin with). Chemists are “evil” – or at least to the liberal arts degree-ed. Susan tangentially hit it – “moving the vase maybe your life’s purpose” – of course that is disturbing as it is not what YOU want. the truly disturbing idea is that your life’s purpose may have nothing to do with what you want. A woman may want to “save the planet” but later it appears her life’s purpose was to give birth to the wife of the man who does that very thing – by inventing a super bomb that destroys alien invaders. ( a crazy example) (whaaat! A bomb! not a super poem!? Damnit – my life was wasted!!!) But why not? the hard part is conceiving that what you want and HOW you want it may not be what happens and has meaning.
    Now I am off to work on my later-in-life’s purpose – to look beautiful at court and learn polo in Argentina. [and this is an improvement. Past familial life's purposes were encompassed by the phrase: "Well, back to work - those peasants are not going to oppress themselves!"]
    [already procreated and produced smart, beautiful modeern super-Californios.]

  • Lokland

    @J

    “That’s why we hear these calls for civilization to collapse, for Big Daddy government to die or or for the work world to become less female friendly. Some men really long for the days when all a man needed to was provide. In fact, it’s the beta provider’s lament.”

    I think the beta providers lament is less to do with what occurs when they are in their 50s and 60s and more to do with the here and now.

    Women don’t require provision and are therefore free to choose on other qualities (alpha) which gets into the alpha or alpha-beta choice. The problem is then that most men don’t fall into those categories.

    I highly doubt many men in the manosphere are worried about their 60yo wife leaving him in X years.

    @Susan. PB

    “Well, if we redefine most of the guys that most would call betas to be deltas, then I guess so. But what’s the point?”

    This is my point.
    Susans beta is essentially a mixture of alpha-beta/Roissies high beta.

    But, most women don’t get that because most men are not that nor will they become that.

    So, for the delta guy reading along, he will come to the conclusion that he is inadequate which is true if he is going after a beta/tier 2 female.

    Assuming he is content with being a delta and the tier 3 women available to him he is at an acceptable level. (They are in the majority.)

    Despite what he may read here.

    Ditto for the delta/tier 3 woman who probably need girl game more so than the hot girls.

    “In which case it must be true that many women are attracted to deltas.”

    Not sure on this but despite whether or not they like them they get that, P&D’d or nothing.

    Just a numbers game.

  • Lokland

    @Mir

    “Women were raised and policed to always imagine and anticipate the needs of men but that men have to do the same seems like an herculean feat for some to the extent that they’d prefer to abstain from marriage.”

    Only quibble.
    Used to be, no longer the case in North America.

    “but do I really want to hear from the same guys how they can’t get a woman to have sex with/date/marry? Not really.”

    HUS is for single people to learn how to get a SO.
    Specifically women but I think there is quite a bit of value for a single guy here as well.

    Listening to people complain about being single is the only way we can offer specific advice to an individual because thats the only way to see what they specifically need to change.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ LL

    I doubt it. I think it is also one of those myths like “women don’t want relationships” or they are ashamed of wanting one. It is the meme that keeps repeating itself. Obviously there is a lot of posturing on both parts, like married people enjoying their union telling other people how “awful” it is. Give me a break! It’s like telling someone about work “you get a paycheck but working is just horrible”.

    What I’m saying is that women have always been told they need to adapt and adjust, whether it is in the traditional direction or the so-called progressive one, and have integrated the idea of changing themselves, even if it is only in their bodies. Men are just discovering it now and they all act all shocked. It’s fine to whine if you still go what you have to do to achieve your goal. Giving up is not the solution. Nor is listening to people who failed themselves admonish those who want to try.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Mireille 101,

    I think women bring more value now to marriage than they added before.

    In what way? They bring more earning power, true, but that isn’t really what most men want from a woman. The female things that men do value – nurturing, child bearing, home making – are things many contemporary women don’t want to do. And the “lofty aspirations of the millennial women” are definitely things most men are better off without.

    Actually women have always brought value to marriage, it is just that most men dismiss it as real value because they are the ‘face’ of the couple to the outside.

    To the contrary, literature is full of men’s praises for their wives and celebrations of the things they did. The real devaluation of the female role did not come from men, but from women who wanted women to become like men.

    I find it funny that you’d advise other men to not get married, especially after bragging about how blessed your marriage is.

    Yes, but I’m smarter and luckier than most men. I think the chance that a young man today will have the quality of marriage that I enjoy is fairly small. The odds are especially small if he does not approach marriage with a great deal of skepticism and caution. My warnings are meant to balance the oblivious optimism towards marriage which many young people still possess, not to deter the idea completely.

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

    I am sure this has been covered on HUS before, but there has been an approximate 20% drop in American male testosterone levels observed at multiple age cohorts over just 20 years. Some researchers are really freaking out about this. The “Alpha 3p Template”—Protectors, Providers, and, yes, some Players—may all be in shorter and shorter supply.

    I have observed one major, common weakness among many Millennial college students and that is a lack of appreciation for trade-offs. The idea that a great trait in one context may be a negative in a different one is often rejected, which of course creates highly unrealistic expectations for
    relationships.

    The qualities that the girls seem to adore in their HEB-M archetype—the “Hot, Educated Badass with Money”—would require a male to devote
    almost all of his time to work, self-improvement projects, Strength & Conditioning, travel, attending to his wardrobe, killing people, etc. Thus, the trade-off to being with a HEB-M, assuming one of these rare creatures could be found, is that the woman wouldn’t see him very much. Yet fleeting glimpses of the HEB-M seem to poison the well for more relationship-friendly men sometimes.

  • mr. wavevector

    Obviously there is a lot of posturing on both parts, like married people enjoying their union telling other people how “awful” it is.

    You are missing the point.

    The married people enjoying their union aren’t telling other people how awful their union is. They may be saying how awful most of the potential mates are, based on observations of their behavior. They may be saying how awful the system for dissolving marriages is, based on the experiences of friends and family who have been through it.

    The fact that one personally has a good marriage does not make marriage a good institution, or a good bet for someone else.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Wave,

    I think this is where you fail to see the aspirations of women. They don’t want to be “like men”, they want to be individuals who are able to engage in the world without being seen as a mother, an uterus or a homemaker. Your vision is seeing only women as to what they can bring YOU. I want to see what I can bring MYSELF. It is just that some aspects of that self-realization were only available to Men so it makes it look like women are trying to mimic what men do but it is the wrong way to see it in my opinion. Even now, men are able to get to even more self-actualization thanks to less pressure to provide or even marry, so that progress wasn’t just made to the benefit of only women. What I’m saying is that men who achieved something were probably not thinking “I could be such a provider, a father but I really want to find what is behind that ocean.” It is that belief that brings men like Mr Wallace to say women produce nothing of worth. There is no respect for those who want to do so, only contempt, even when they admit that being a mother seems very nice. There is probably some “literature” of men praising their women, as long as they remained under the husband’s tutelage and authority so not interested in those “interested” praises.

    Can I say, I think it is awesome that you know how smart you are; most people have no idea.

  • Jackie

    @Mr wv

    “The married people enjoying their union aren’t telling other people how awful their union is. They may be saying how awful most of the potential mates are, based on observations of their behavior.”
    ===
    This sounds pleasant: Married people telling others “how awful most of the potential mates are” (the inference being, of course, that they themselves are superior) to single people.

    Isn’t that a bit condescending, seeing as there are plenty of awful married people as well? A marriage license may change your legal status, but it has no bearing on changing one’s character.

    Wait a minute.

    Mr wv, wasn’t one of your original claims to fame around here bragging about how you used a GF for sex — or was it NSA? Based on your own criteria, what do your previous actions say about *your* potentiality as a “good bet” for marriage? Maybe your wife took a chance on you! ;)

  • Anacaona

    The fact that one personally has a good marriage does not make marriage a good institution, or a good bet for someone else.
    That makes no sense to me either. This makes as much sense as a millionaire telling people “I got lucky” don’t try to be as wealthy as I am. Does.Not.Compute. :/

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

      The fact that one personally has a good marriage does not make marriage a good institution, or a good bet for someone else.

      That makes no sense to me either. This makes as much sense as a millionaire telling people “I got lucky” don’t try to be as wealthy as I am. Does.Not.Compute. :/

      I won’t speak for mr. wavevector but this admonishment is extremely common in the manosphere. “I’m happily married, but in view of the legal climate, I do not recommend that any man marry.”

  • mr. wavevector

    Women were raised and policed to always imagine and anticipate the needs of men but that men have to do the same seems like an herculean feat for some to the extent that they’d prefer to abstain from marriage.

    That’s a false equivalency. Just because women have done something is no reason to presume that men should do it too.

    And women don’t just “always imagine and anticipate the needs of men”, they do it for everyone in their immediate social circle: family, friends, neighbors, and even pets. It’s what women do. They’re all up in everybody’s business in their personal network.

    Men don’t act like this to the same extent. They cultivate less personal but more hierarchical networks, based on reciprocal exchanges, not emotional intimacy.

    Women have been demanding that men act like women for decades, and haven’t liked it when men complied – but you still keep trying.

  • J

    One note, as a medical specialist in the fertility field.

    I did not know this, Rev. I'm a former infertility patient (endo). I'd love to hear more about what you do.

  • J

    “You can home, husband and children, or you can have your “career.” You can’t have both.”

    Tomato: Absurd. I do. Many other women do too.

    J: Yeah, me too. Worked most of my adult life, been with DH close to 26 years, two kids, nice home, dog, the works. It’s quite doable.

  • mr. wavevector

    @Jackie,

    This sounds pleasant: Married people telling others “how awful most of the potential mates are” (the inference being, of course, that they themselves are superior) to single people.

    Isn’t that a bit condescending, seeing as there are plenty of awful married people as well? A marriage license may change your legal status, but it has no bearing on changing one’s character.

    The fact that there are plenty of awful married people (with awful marriages) is kind of my point. There are a lot of people, both male and female, with attitudes, expectations, and characters that make them unsuitable for marriage. A lot of them get married anyway. And when the marriage breaks down, they’re worse off than when they started.

  • Jackie

    @mr wv

    You may be very right re: awful people having awful marriages.

    Isn’t it possible, though, that they are the children who learned how to behave awfully by observing their own parents’ awfulness? What I mean to say is, breaking unhealthy behavior patterns, abuse, etc is *work*. Really hard work. Especially as in many cases, the negative behaviors are generational?

    I think those poor souls need all the help they can get. And the people who married well can be of more service by being a good example, rather than pointing out the awfulness and inferiority of others. Many of whom just had a really unlucky roll of the genetic dice.

  • J

    Civilization will not collapse, it will simply move on without them. I think that frightens them more.

    It does frighten them. I doubt civilization will collapse, but it ceratinly will continue to change. The situation that some of thses guys seem to think is “natural” is the 1950s Ward and June Cleaver model of marriage with dad respected for his role as sole provider. That really only existed for a brief window in time and was based on an economic boom that may never be seen again; its demise should not be so surprising. What will evolve from our present circunstances? Who knows, but I doubt it’ll be a return to the 50s.

    @Bob–re men and the invention of civilization

    I would call the birthday of civilization the first time someone successfully got a seed to grow. And I would assume the person who did that was some curious female gather. Women keeping gardens was the genesis of agriculture–which probably did not become a male pursuit until the invention of the plough.

  • Jesse

    That makes no sense to me either. This makes as much sense as a millionaire telling people “I got lucky” don’t try to be as wealthy as I am. Does.Not.Compute. :/

    If the millionaire spent half his salary on lottery tickets every year in order to strike it rich, then we’re probably getting closer to what Mr. Wavevector is saying.

    Having said that, I don’t see how any of this talk can dissuade me from ultimately desiring a serious relationship leading to marriage (which I would begin today, with the right girl, but I digress). People talk about avoiding ‘marriage,’ but with the laws as they are the ceremony itself is often superfluous legally. In many localities merely living with a woman for two years is enough to seal the deal. Where I’m from a law was recently passed to that effect, effective retroactively I may add. (Which struck me as outrageous, but alcohol causes me to digress once more).

    In short, a serious relationship of any meaningful duration is effectively marriage. And as many jokes as I make about trading in the wife every few years for a newer model, I really, really don’t want to have to live my life in a series of 1 year, 364 day relationships. So given what I want – an emotionally intimate relationship with one woman for life – there is no way I can avoid marriage, legally speaking. All there is to do is choose carefully.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    I don’t know if women wanted men to be more like women, probably that women wanted men to more “human” or complete. This is why we keep trying to learn what men do, and would like them to learn what we do. Maybe we’re all bad at these new skills, that’s beside the point. This is not an economic masterplan where we specialize in the extreme part of the production. Even these days we can see how extreme specialization is dangerous for the world economy when you have all your stuff or resources coming from the same place.

    What you’re telling me is that men don’t want to evolve unless they’re forced to. I’d say if we women had it so good why didn’t we fight to remain under patriarchy? Maybe men and women were too stupid to know how good they had it before, I don’t know. The fact is it is that emotional intimacy is what makes the difference between the gold diggers most men run from and the partner/ spouse. So you can’t really have it both ways in continuing your “noble” less personal goals to produce money and power and decry those who are attracted solely by these qualities.
    Marriage requires a lot from everybody; even moreso it requires physically from women who risk death during childbirth. But that’s all the labor of love, stuff you do even when studies show that married women have their health degrading while married men are healthier.

    Regarding marriage, it is a good thing to acknowledge that both female and male can be unsuitable for marriage. For a moment I thought ONLY women had ruined that business.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Anacaona,

    That makes no sense to me either. This makes as much sense as a millionaire telling people “I got lucky” don’t try to be as wealthy as I am. Does.Not.Compute. :/

    Consider if the millionaire got rich by playing Russian roulette, like in the movie “The Deer Hunter”. He got lucky and beat the odds. It isn’t an attractive career choice for anyone else, though.

    The reason why it doesn’t compute for you is because you are only looking at the winner. To understand the price of success, you need to look at the losers too.

    When I got married, I was optimistically ignorant. I had no idea of how common divorce was. I had no idea of how many marriages were chronically unhappy or sexless. I had no idea about how bad men get screwed in divorce court.

    If I knew then what I know now, would I still have gotten married? Maybe. But I would have thought about it a lot more than I did.

    I consider myself a winner in marriage so far. But I know some of the losers and it sucks to be them. So don’t just look at me. Look at the guy who lost 75% of his assets to his wife, barely sees his kids, and lives in a crappy apartment trying to scrape by. A few years ago, he was my neighbor. You could not have told us apart.

    And who knows, I may end up like him too.

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

      Look at the guy who lost 75% of his assets to his wife, barely sees his kids, and lives in a crappy apartment trying to scrape by.

      OK, let’s try and unpack this. I have a question, one that I have never seen addressed in four years of reading blogs.

      How do the stats break down? What percentage of divorced males lose 75% of his assets? What percentage barely see their kids?

      Conversely, what percentage pay zero effective child support? Seek no contact with their children? Had no assets to start with, so lost nothing?

      I’m not trying to get at the fault question – we cannot know that. I’m interested to know how large a group of men has been victimized by unfair laws?

  • J

    I am sure this has been covered on HUS before, but there has been an approximate 20% drop in American male testosterone levels observed at multiple age cohorts over just 20 years.

    I wonder how much of this is due to the decline of physical labor in the US.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Anacaona,

    That makes no sense to me either. This makes as much sense as a millionaire telling people “I got lucky” don’t try to be as wealthy as I am. Does.Not.Compute. :/

    Consider if the millionaire got rich by playing Russian roulette, like in the movie “The Deer Hunter”. He got lucky and beat the odds. It isn’t an attractive career choice for anyone else, though.

    The reason why it doesn’t compute for you is because you are only looking at the winner. To understand the price of success, you need to look at the losers too.

    When I got married, I was optimistically ignorant. I had no idea of how common divorce was. I had no idea of how many marriages were chronically unhappy or sexless. I had no idea about how bad men get screwed in divorce court.

    If I knew then what I know now, would I still have gotten married? Maybe. But I would have thought about it a lot more than I did.

    I consider myself a winner in marriage so far. But I know some of the losers and it sucks to be them. So don’t just look at me. Look at the guy who lost 75% of his assets to his wife, barely sees his kids, and lives in a crappy apartment trying to scrape by. A few years ago, he was my neighbor. You could not have told us apart.

    And who knows, I may end up like him too.

  • Jackie

    @mr wv

    “I consider myself a winner in marriage so far. But I know some of the losers and it sucks to be them. So don’t just look at me. Look at the guy who lost 75% of his assets to his wife, barely sees his kids, and lives in a crappy apartment trying to scrape by. A few years ago, he was my neighbor. You could not have told us apart.

    And who knows, I may end up like him too.”
    ===
    Holy cow, mr wv, have some hope! Just a while back, didn’t Susan feature a comment you wrote in praise of your wife and how good marriage was as a long-term investment?

    As much as I disagree with you in some areas, I would never want you (or anyone) to fall prey to this negative kind of thinking. Whatever you focus on, you get more of. Keep the focus back where it belongs: On your awesomely committed marriage and happy family.

    I tell ya, the ‘Sphere has a lot of poison and bile flowing through its veins. I used to have to take breaks from HUS since that would overflow in this direction. :(

    Keep fighting the good fight, mr wv.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    I would call the birthday of civilization the first time someone successfully got a seed to grow. And I would assume the person who did that was some curious female gather. Women keeping gardens was the genesis of agriculture–which probably did not become a male pursuit until the invention of the plough.

    Indeed. My work is in International development, mostly helping women enterprises and I see that all the time. Even when both parties are doing agricultural work, the women is always the one growing food, especially the food that family consumes: rice, veggies, chickens, rabbits and so on. They think about the family survival in the short term. The men often benefit from more help via their privileged networks to grow plants that will be processed and exported like Cocoa, Coffee, Gum tree and so on… These two different ways to work the land lead to disparities in income; men are paid cash, women only sell the excess of what they grow. We can all see that and dismiss their efforts because they’re are not being paid for it but that would be missing the point altogether.
    I know this is an american forum, far removed from the realities of the third word but this is where you can really observe the real dynamics between men and women in their participation in the economy of their household. I do have some relatives who still live by this model, one of the reasons I was interested in this area of work to begin with. So I get very agitated when I hear such rubbish coming from well fed entitled “westerners” that women don’t bring anything to the table.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jackie,

    Mr wv, wasn’t one of your original claims to fame around here bragging about how you used a GF for sex — or was it NSA? Based on your own criteria, what do your previous actions say about *your* potentiality as a “good bet” for marriage? Maybe your wife took a chance on you!

    Did I? Definitely not the NSA – that’s never been my style. I was guilty of prolonging a relationship with a girlfriend I should have broken up with because I was getting laid. Maybe it was that. At the end my only interest in her was the sex. But that was the end point, not how I started the relationship.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    That guy who lost all his stuff in his divorce certainly had it coming. I can see with my own father how some men (ok, people) are just reluctant to change and will only bulge when you threaten with divorce and separation so I have little sympathy for that type. Even Athol Kay has acknowledged that trait of behavior.

    I personally wouldn’t listen to people happily married giving advice on how marriage is awful and you should stay away from it if you can. Everything we do in life is a fucking gamble; if I had to look at what marriage is for women, I’ll probably never marry. Who wants to be torn apart to bring other humans on earth? Who wants to come home and still do housework? Who wants to be addressed in all things like Mrs Wavevector instead of that name you had all your life? What about all that bone mass you lose with multiple pregnancies to the point that you’re probably gonna end with delicious osteoporosis later in life?

    So yeah, there are a ton of stuff that structurally don’t make marriage appealing, but there is also all that good stuff that is worth compromising for. I’d prefer to hear motivating things like there are some great joys in marriage but you have to work at it, both, men and woman, instead of hearing that defeatist speak about how marriage is that awful trip that sometimes doesn’t kill you.

  • J

    @wave and ADBG

    Well, I guess I’ve a sample of two contradictory opinions now.

    This is an issue that never ceases to facscinate me, but one that I can never quite wrap my head around although I do really try. My own husband probably falls closer on the continuum to ADBG. Yeah, he wants the hot meal, clean house and good sex, but he wants it from someone who will discuss the staging of an opera or news with him and can crack a few jokes as well. While I don’t expect him to not want those things, I’d like to think that he’s fairly picky about whom he gets them from and that his relationship to me is important to him.

    OTOH, I know many really decent men who have confessed to me that what they really want and need is the hot meal, clean house and good sex; the relationship is something they tolerate to get those things and from whom they get those things isn’t really important. And, as a woman, I have to say this astounds me. Most women want–first and foremost–a relationship. They tend to want it with someone who will provide, but the relationship is still paramount. It’s an important difference between men and women and one, I think that people need to be cognizant of in choosing a spouse. It also goes a long way in explaining why women become “unhaaaaaaaappppppyyyyy” as the meme goes. The men that thinks as long as he’s getting food and sex things are terrific because that’s his barometer of the marriage. The woman in the meantime can be just dying inside while the man is completely unaware. Later, if she leaves, the guy is just shocked. If I were a guy, I’d want to understand that phenomenon.

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

      The men that thinks as long as he’s getting food and sex things are terrific because that’s his barometer of the marriage. The woman in the meantime can be just dying inside while the man is completely unaware. Later, if she leaves, the guy is just shocked.

      The only study I’ve seen of the reasons for divorce confirm this. Many more men than women said they had no idea what caused the divorce.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jackie,

    Holy cow, mr wv, have some hope! Just a while back, didn’t Susan feature a comment you wrote in praise of your wife and how good marriage was as a long-term investment?

    You know what, Jackie? I should go to bed. I’m in a gloomy mood. But this type of question is more emotional than reason anyway, so I’ll just go with it.

    Recently an number of couples I know have initiated divorce (or to be specific, the wives initiated the divorces). These weren’t close friends so I don’t really know what was going on, but from all appearances they seemed like model couples and model families. I’m shocked.

    Actually, what I am is frightened. It’s like a bomb going off in the neighborhood. It didn’t hit you, but what’s next? What’s safe?

    I don’t think my wife is a mad divorce bomber, but I see those other women blowing up their marriages and families – marriages and families that look so much like my own – and I have a moment of doubt. And sometimes when some annoyance or resentment my wife has about me comes bubbling to the surface, I wonder – how deep does that go?

    Sometimes my wife has nightmares featuring me as the villain. I’ve abandoned her, or run off with another woman, or being mean to her, or ignoring her. She wakes up and tells me “you were bad last night”. These dreams speak to her deepest fears of abandonment and betrayal.

    I don’t have nightmares about her. But sometimes in my waking hours I am afraid.

  • Jesse

    If I may ramble a bit more (sorry, for some reason I find myself sorting out my thoughts in public on this site. I’m really not such a proprietor of boring monologues in person.):

    Further from a personal perspective, part of me feels like a womanizer, and I believe I have the traits and skills to do well in that regard. It remains to be seen how much casual sex I will partake in, or whether I would even like it… I really don’t know.

    Having said that, I’m fairly sure I would drop all of those trifling things with nary a backward glance for a serious relationship (progressing toward marriage) with the right girl. I suppose my propensity to engage in casual sex depends on the availability of a satisfactory woman for a monogamous relationship. I frankly do not see why I should jump into a relationship with the first halfway-decent girl I see, just in order to toe the line and be a good little boy. (I really don’t respond well to societal pressure like that. Sometimes I will resist just to resist.)

    For me I think it’s essentially an absolute need to get married, if I survive that long. (And I think I’d need a good wife in order to have any chance of surviving into old age, at least happily).

    So… I can’t remember what the hell I’m trying to say anymore, but I suppose my marriage is basically a given, and its time is just dependent on factors such as the existence of a suitable woman, my ability to find her, and my ability to overcome whatever emotional issues may prevent me from developing an intimate relationship with her. So if I meet her tomorrow and stop being a cock I could possibly be married in a couple years. If she’s harder to find or I’m more maladjusted than I thought (or if I become an alcoholic, ha ha) then my marriage could be a good while coming.

  • mr. wavevector

    That guy who lost all his stuff in his divorce certainly had it coming.

    A man should not marry a woman who has that attitude.

  • J

    The flip side of this is as women’s ability to support themselves has gone up, the value they bring to marriage has gone down while the demands they make have gone up.

    That strikes me as rather a subjective statement–and one difficult to substantiate as well.

  • J

    Sometimes my wife has nightmares featuring me as the villain. I’ve abandoned her, or run off with another woman, or being mean to her, or ignoring her. She wakes up and tells me “you were bad last night”. These dreams speak to her deepest fears of abandonment and betrayal.

    Wow. Once, early in my marriage, I dreamt that my husband had had a previous marriage that he neglected to tell me about. It was so vivid, I hit him in my half-sleep. I have not had a dream remotely like that since. I have no fears about being betrayed or abandoned by him. That your wife has these fears after how many years of marriage is something that should be addressed.

    I don’t have nightmares about her. But sometimes in my waking hours I am afraid.

    That’s sad. It generally sounds like you and your wife are fairly happy, but there’s something going on that needs attention if you both are so fearful. It’s got to be hard on the both of you to feel this way.

  • mr. wavevector
    The flip side of this is as women’s ability to support themselves has gone up, the value they bring to marriage has gone down while the demands they make have gone up.

    That strikes me as rather a subjective statement–and one difficult to substantiate as well.

    The “demands” part has been quantified (to the extent things in social science are quantitative). Studies of the dynamics of couples in the U.S. have shown that wives are consistently more demanding than husbands. I also recall reading that women become more demanding of their spouse and less likely to share decision making as their earnings increase, while the same is not true of men.

    The “value” part is admittedly more subjective.

  • mr. wavevector

    That’s sad. It generally sounds like you and your wife are fairly happy, but there’s something going on that needs attention if you both are so fearful. It’s got to be hard on the both of you to feel this way.

    Some fear is good. Fear is a useful emotion. It helps us to avoid bad things. The bad thing I want to avoid is divorce.

    Think of what you just wrote:

    The men that thinks as long as he’s getting food and sex things are terrific because that’s his barometer of the marriage. The woman in the meantime can be just dying inside while the man is completely unaware. Later, if she leaves, the guy is just shocked. If I were a guy, I’d want to understand that phenomenon.

    That guy wasn’t afraid, so he wasn’t paying attention to the relationship.

    Because I am afraid of that happening to me, I am paying a lot of attention to my relationship.

    Between me and that guy, I’m in the better place.

  • Jesse

    OTOH, I know many really decent men who have confessed to me that what they really want and need is the hot meal, clean house and good sex; the relationship is something they tolerate to get those things and from whom they get those things isn’t really important.

    I don’t think I understand this attitude. I can probably get these things (and I’m learning to cook decently anyway) without having to get married. I thought the point of getting married is that all of those things are better when coming from someone special. Wouldn’t sex or a hot meal mean much more coming from someone you’re thoroughly smitten with?

    I could easily see myself wanting to tightly hug and shower my wife in kisses for doing things to help me (and us), like cleaning the house or working hard to help me in some way. Coming home to a hot dinner from someone who really cares about me would just be the loveliest thing, and I’d want to be so affectionate with her for doing that for me. I don’t see how it could be anything other than sensational to have a woman who cared that much, and was that devoted. Trusting me enough to please me sexually when I want, how I want would seem like an immensely precious thing.

    I guess I’m saying that I figure I can get sex (probably from more than one woman) and cleaning and cooking, if that were all I wanted. But I think the point of it is to have one special person whom you can share all those things with. It’s the affection of someone who cares about you, and the delight I would take in caring about and helping her, that seems to be the reason for the relationship. Food and sex and a clean house are just mechanical things, ticking boxes in a way – yes, they’re better within a marriage, but it’s all the surrounding emotions and attachment that are cherished.

    I’m trying to wax semi-poetic on something I know nothing about, but I seem to have some strong feelings about this. I don’t know, just the fact that she loves me and cares enough to do those things… seems like a huge deal to me.

  • Jackie

    @mr wv

    Aww, WaveVector! Please get some rest– when you’re overtired *everything* looks pretty gloomy. For real– turn off the computer and read the thread in the morning.
    ====
    Morning
    ====
    I’ve never been married, but I’ve observed enough marriages to know that *no one* knows what is going on from the outside. No matter how similar the exteriors look.

    For example, the strongest marriage of my own parents: At their wedding, the verdict was that it would end in either divorce or annulment, within six months! This is what people were talking about at their *reception*! All that talk was just that, only talk.

    I think that a lot of the blogs of the ‘Sphere would get even the heartiest person of good cheer feeling sad, depressed and even a bit paranoid. WaveVector, I implore you to drop the ones that are making you stress and worry and focus on the ones that promote happy marriages. (Heck, you and your wife can take on the Girl Game Challenge.)

    As to the nightmares, another interpretation could be that your marriage is so central to her well-being that her greatest fear is losing it. Also, many people tend to process things in dreams, as a way of releasing them. I don’t put tons of stock in dreams– I place my bets on what is happening in reality. In reality, in the light of day, these worries may evaporate just as a child’s monster hiding under the bed.

    Hang in there, wv, I have more to say but need to get some my rest myself! Seriously, things will look better in the morning. Peace–

  • mr. wavevector

    The other thing is, don’t read too much into what someone writes on someone else’s blog at 2am ;-)

    These are passing thoughts and snippets of emotions, not a life summary.

  • mr. wavevector

    As to the nightmares, another interpretation could be that your marriage is so central to her well-being that her greatest fear is losing it.

    That’s how I see it too.

  • Jesse

    J, I recall offering to help find something for you on the Internet a couple weeks ago, but I can’t recall what it was or where that discussion took place. I don’t want to renege on my offer in the event you wanted to take me up on it, so if you were hoping I’d find something let me know. It’s not a big deal; I just don’t want to walk away from an offer I’ve made.

  • Jesse

    Mr. Wavevector, I’ve no idea if it would be of any use in your marriage, but this seems like a potential way to try to strengthen emotional bonds with a woman who may have some attachment or emotional issues (or a man for that matter):

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cupids-poisoned-arrow/200909/the-lazy-way-stay-in-love

    I imagine that regular sincere talk and affectionate touch, along with an otherwise loving relationship, could really help a woman (or man) with some attachment issues to become more secure and content in the relationship, which would be a beautiful thing. It probably doesn’t work miracles, but it might help build a solid bridge for one to come out of worry and anxiety and into the warmth of the relationship. I’d probably do it a lot with the right woman, to try to coax her into comfort.

  • Anacaona

    The reason why it doesn’t compute for you is because you are only looking at the winner. To understand the price of success, you need to look at the losers too.
    Except that for this arguments to be true you have to assume that all single men are winners. Reading HUS you see that MANY single men are not happy they are mostly confused and lonely. To continue the wealthy man analogy you are telling this to people you don’t know their economical status. But I would guess that someone that is asking how to be rich is probably in need of money, YMMV.

    As to the nightmares, another interpretation could be that your marriage is so central to her well-being that her greatest fear is losing it.
    I used to have all sorts of nightmares when dating my now husband. I dreamed he had other women, actually two at the time a brunette and a redheaded that liked to wear Britney Spears Elvys suit and roller-blades…in bed (I know I used to watch too much porn). That he will beat me and torture me when the moment I set foot in the states and all sorts of nasty dreams with him hurting me in many ways. Is because I cared so much and I was so afraid.
    I still have nightmares once in a while although now they are about losing William (bitch subconscious I got) but if she is prone to nightmares maybe their origin is the same as your fears: the divorce epidemic. She might be feeling that she is not as attractive as she used to be so you might also leave her. The fact that she is dreaming about you is actually a sign that she is not interested in anyone else so you should at least be certain that her concern is yours. You need to clear out this with her and they will go away. At least that is how it worked with me.

    Wow. Once, early in my marriage, I dreamt that my husband had had a previous marriage that he neglected to tell me about. It was so vivid, I hit him in my half-sleep.
    When my subconscious got tired of making me dream my hubby as the villain and seeing that it didn’t made me break our engagement It made me dream that, my beloved father had revealed he had a secret family for all my life and finally my mother found out. I remember telling her in my dream “I’m not going to get married all men cheat, some are just smarter” That clever bitch attacked my other weak point to make me break the engagement, it was a hard dream but it was her last effort in many years.

  • Lokland

    Susans I hope everything is and turns out okay for you and yours.

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

      @Lokland

      Susans I hope everything is and turns out okay for you and yours.

      Thanks, it’s just surreal. I walked my dog at 6:30 and couldn’t figure out why not a single person was out. Then my husband texted me to say stay in the house. They’ve shut down everything.

      Boston is so small – one degree of separation. I’ve just learned that one of my focus group women has taught this kid in high school.

  • JP

    @Susan:

    “I believe this is true of many Millennials. In fact, I believe this generation may already be changing things – the percentage of women prioritizing family over career is rising, as is the number of women who have no desire to “have it all.” ”

    This type of generation always does this.

    I think it’s partially because the credit machine is in reverse. Meaning that we’ve tapped out borrowing from the future and the time has come where we sit down to our banquet of consequences.

    However, this only applies to the sector with money.

    I don’t know what happens to the people lower on the SES.

  • mr. wavevector

    The reason why it doesn’t compute for you is because you are only looking at the winner. To understand the price of success, you need to look at the losers too.
    Except that for this arguments to be true you have to assume that all single men are winners. Reading HUS you see that MANY single men are not happy they are mostly confused and lonely.

    That is a good point too.

    We all share certain cognitive biases that distort our view of reality. We tend towards “apex fallacy” thinking – looking at only the most successful people and overlooking the losers. But we also tend to overestimate certain dangers. For example, my wife was all worried about the safety of friends and family in the Boston area this morning. Statistically, they probably have a greater chance of getting hit by a bus this morning than encountering a Chechnyan terrorist.

    To you I’m a “wealthy man”. To me, I’m a guy afraid of bombers. Both those perspectives are distortions, despite having a basis in truth.

  • JP

    Re: Boston Bombings

    Chechens.

    We’ve been bombed by Chechens.

    I’m now waiting for Putin to make a formal statement basically saying “I told you so. ”

    We probably gave the bomber’s family asylum because they claimed were being prosecuted by Russians.

    And now Putin is going to tell us that this is why they are being prosecuted by Russians.

    Talk about a Pyrrhic act of terrorism.

    Wow.

  • JP

    “I’m not trying to get at the fault question – we cannot know that. I’m interested to know how large a group of men has been victimized by unfair laws?”

    My disability clients keep getting thrown into jail because they can’t pay child support because they are disabled.

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

      My disability clients keep getting thrown into jail because they can’t pay child support because they are disabled.

      How does that happen, that their disability is not taken into consideration?

  • Ramble

    But the reality is that men have been key allies in the Women’s Movement, and still largely enable feminism today.

    No, traditionally, it was a fairly small cohort of “betas” that moved along the womens movement.

    Supporting Elizabeth Cady Stanton in her hopes to own property, run a business or vote, that was, obviously, reasonable.

    Supporting the burning of bras and rape walks, it was, and continues to be, almost entirely beta territory.

    IOW, it is (as BB has alluded to) low-t males (i.e. females) “supporting” males.

    Oh, and it is nice to see you again.

    (Unfortunately, I can only stop by to drop comment-bombs every blue moon…keep up the great work).

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

      @Ramble

      Feminism has been and still is supported by male politicians – the most powerful men in the world. Do you consider Obama and Clinton beta?

  • Ramble

    Many more men than women said they had no idea what caused the divorce.

    This reflects badly on both men and women.

  • JP

    “How does that happen, that their disability is not taken into consideration?”

    It depends on the judge. Often, a letter keeps them out.

    Basically, it’s debtor’s prison in some counties. Won’t pay? Into jail you go.

    Normally they’re only in for a month or two, but it’s still annoying for the case when it happens.

  • Ion

    “I think people were put on this planet to want different things. Some want to reproduce and others don’t. With overpopulation become an increasing problem, that is a good thing too. ”

    That might not be entirely true http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mXfB97mcgE, at worst, another media myth. It IS true that people are starving because of mishandling of resources by the 2% elite and countries like America, but it’s also true that America is still benefitting from baby boomer population, the problem is the shortage of offspring to replace them.

    Liberal environmentalists obsessed with “overpopulation” are rife with feminist agenda, in general. When you find yourself agreeing with feminists on this issue, perhaps there’s a problem. Overpopulation myths from feminists who support liberal gals being on birth control throughout their entire youth, is possibly an example of this.

    David Foster

    “I CARE ABOUT THE PLANET and I shop at Giant.”

    I agree 100%, as usual.

  • Richard Aubrey

    I don’t know if we’re put here to reproduce. Possibly we’re the mechanisms by which genes reproduce themselves.

    The problem with having it all is that there’s a law of physics. Something like, “No object may occupy two separate spaces at the same time.” Heard that someplace. The inevitable result of this iron law of physics is considered by feminists to be an example of patriarchal oppression. There is no possibility of further discussion.

  • Ion

    “Supporting the burning of bras and rape walks, it was, and continues to be, almost entirely beta territory.”

    Or men like Hugh Hefner http://www.esquire.com/features/what-ive-learned/ESQ0602-JUN_WIL because alphas benefit from feminism more than betas do, and if I was an alpha man, I’d definitely support sexual liberation and birth control.

    Beta feminist men tend to be extremely rare, live in liberal in major cities, are young, and vegan (and the occasional “intellectual/pompous male in academics). Men seen at bra burning rallies are usually gay, just hard to tell from pictures.

  • Tomato

    @Susan: “I never made the connection, but perhaps this explains the strong anti-credentialism of some commenters here.”

    Can you please expand upon this?

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

      @Tomato

      If by this you mean, “because the credentialed people have done all this valuable work whereas the anti-credentialed are lazy,” then, no.

      I was joking mostly. Several males here have little use for credentials. They poo poo them as an appeal to authority. It struck me that perhaps “vagina” is the only relevant credential to them – undoubtedly very important!

  • Escoffier

    “I never made the connection, but perhaps this explains the strong anti-credentialism of some commenters here.”

    If by this you mean, “because the credentialed people have done all this valuable work whereas the anti-credentialed are lazy,” then, no.

    Further, you have to distinguish between two strands of opposition to credentialism, only one of which can fairly be called “anti-credential.” An example would be the way that many public school systems require HS (and lower) teachers to get useless graduate degrees in “education” that don’t teach any subject matter but that purport to teach “pedagogy” in a way that makes educating kids somehow more effective even if the teacher really doesn’t know all that much about the subject. What’s more valuable to a history teacher, a graduate degree in physics or a grad degree in “education”? The system says the latter. To the extent that I disagree, I am “anti-credential.”

    However, the more fundamental objection is simply to find credentials, in the end, irrelevant. They are at best a guide to help one sort through the great morass of voices to determine whom is worth the initial investment of time and whom is not. After that, one has to evaluate the arguments oneself. That becomes more true the more the subject veers away from natural science and toward the human sciences or “philosophy.”

    Relying on “but X has a these credentials and Y does not” is just an appeal to authority. Beyond which, the greatest (and most influential) minds in the history of the world had, between them, almost no formal credentials to speak of.

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

      An example would be the way that many public school systems require HS (and lower) teachers to get useless graduate degrees in “education” that don’t teach any subject matter but that purport to teach “pedagogy” in a way that makes educating kids somehow more effective even if the teacher really doesn’t know all that much about the subject.

      Agree 100%, you just touched on a pet peeve of mine. So that’s a case where the credential itself is 100% bogus and proved to be inferior.

      However, the more fundamental objection is simply to find credentials, in the end, irrelevant. They are at best a guide to help one sort through the great morass of voices to determine whom is worth the initial investment of time and whom is not

      That “at best” is worth an awful lot. Are you equally inclined to take investment advice from random people on the street vs. a respected professional? When deciding whom to take seriously, how do you account for mental instability, sociopathy, racism or other things that make someone an “unreliable narrator?”

      We can see how ridiculously this plays out when Michelle Langley is read and discussed far more in the manosphere than David Buss is. There are people filtering out valid material and promoting bogus material before you even get to hear it and judge for yourself.

      Do you really believe it is not essential to “consider the source?”

  • mr. wavevector

    I won’t speak for mr. wavevector but this admonishment is extremely common in the manosphere. “I’m happily married, but in view of the legal climate, I do not recommend that any man marry.”

    Yes. It’s very common among guys who never heard of the manosphere too.

    Let me continue my thoughts from last night. Sentiments such as this are motivated by fear. That may be expressed as anger and antipathy towards women. It may be disguised by ratiocination supported by studies and statistics. (And it may express all of the above – e.g. Dalrock.)

    It isn’t necessarily the direct fear of immediate danger. It could be amorphous fear, like that a bombing induces. Last night I used the analogy between a divorce in the community and a bombing.

    I’m not talking Boston here. I’m talking Baghdad. The bombs have gone off at the house next door, throughout the neighborhood I live in, where I work. Friends and family have been hurt.

    As a married man, I am like a business owner in Baghdad. Everything I’ve invested is here. I’m staying for the duration. I’ve done what I can – my house has been bomb-proofed, I am diligent and I take all reasonable precautions. But what advice do I give a young man thinking of moving to Baghdad?

    “Look at me. My life is good! 20 years of bombs going off around me and not a single scratch on me! Don’t worry, you’ll probably be fine.” After all, most people in Baghdad get by and do OK, despite the fear.

    Or:

    “Young man – consider your options wisely. See if you can make a happy life for yourself somewhere safer before you decide to move here with me.”

  • Lokland

    @Mr. Wavevector, Susan

    “I won’t speak for mr. wavevector but this admonishment is extremely common in the manosphere. “I’m happily married, but in view of the legal climate, I do not recommend that any man marry.”

    Yes. It’s very common among guys who never heard of the manosphere too.”

    +1 to this.
    Never had a guy over the age of 30 who was married not tell me to not get married.

    General reasons; lack of sex, she will become a bitch, lack of freedom, she will get fat, she will stop trying to be exciting/sexy etc. etc.

    And I literally mean all men I know who have been married for more than a few years.

    I lend out the sane advice.
    Don’t get married unless you have to and be 100% sure you are correct.

  • Lokland

    “Boston is so small – one degree of separation. I’ve just learned that one of my focus group women has taught this kid in high school.”

    Thats unbelievable.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “No! Nor am I being sarcastic (I hate sarcasm, and never use it.) I am teasing, though. I’m not really pouting. But I was surprised to learn that we disagree 90% of the time.”

    I’m surprised that your okay with being wrong 90% of the time :P <<—— notice the joking face

    I don't think we disagree 90% of the time I made the comment to illustrate a point. That point being that you were willing to (allow? can't recall if this is the correct word) dissent and disagreement as long as it was kept mostly civil.

    I'm too lazy to keep a score card on who I do and don't agree with 0ver any given detail.

  • JP

    “As a married man, I am like a business owner in Baghdad. Everything I’ve invested is here. I’m staying for the duration. I’ve done what I can – my house has been bomb-proofed, I am diligent and I take all reasonable precautions. But what advice do I give a young man thinking of moving to Baghdad?”

    Sunk cost fallacy.

  • JP

    If I ever got divorced, I would lay the blame where it belonged. That is, I would blame myself.

    Basically because it would have been my fault.

    I’ve noticed that I’m the one who causes most of my problems.

  • mr. wavevector

    Sunk cost fallacy.

    True. But I’m discussing emotional motivations, not rational ones.

    Most decisions are made on the basis of emotion and intuition. Reason is mostly used to make up a good story afterwards. Hence all the fallacies we are so fond of.

  • SayWhaat

    WV, I strongly suspect that the recent divorces are fueling your wife’s dreams. Perhaps you two should address it directly and openly reinforce your commitment to each other so that both you and your wife feel secure.

    And above all, don’t overreact. You’re in Boston, not Baghdad.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ SayWhaat

    WV, I strongly suspect that the recent divorces are fueling your wife’s dreams. Perhaps you two should address it directly and openly reinforce your commitment to each other so that both you and your wife feel secure.

    Yes, we do have this conversation periodically.

    Like I said, the fear isn’t an imminent one specific to my marriage. It’s an environmental one.

    And above all, don’t overreact. You’re in Boston, not Baghdad.

    No, if bombs = divorce, I’m definitely living in Baghdad. Bombs are common in Baghdad but extremely rare in Boston. If you live in Baghdad, you probably know a lot of people who have been killed or maimed by bombs. If you live here, you know a lot of people whose happiness and well being have been damaged by divorce.

  • SayWhaat

    Relying on “but X has a these credentials and Y does not” is just an appeal to authority. Beyond which, the greatest (and most influential) minds in the history of the world had, between them, almost no formal credentials to speak of.

    Can you elaborate on who these influential minds were?

  • SayWhaat

    Bombs are common in Baghdad but extremely rare in Boston.

    That was my point.

    The fact that these divorces took you by surprise means that they are rare.

    You are just feeling unsettled right now, and that is perfectly normal.

  • mr. wavevector

    The fact that these divorces took you by surprise means that they are rare.

    You are just feeling unsettled right now, and that is perfectly normal.

    I conclude the opposite. I was lulled into a false sense of security through the fallacy of small set statistics. The divorce rate in my small circle of acquaintances seemed much lower than the national average. I was hoping that I lived in a pocket of relative sanity. But it was just an artifact of the small sample size (in both number and time). The recent rash of divorces is just bringing us back to the national trend.

  • Escoffier

    Start with Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.

  • Gin Martini

    Good show, Mr. Wave, but you’re on borrowed time. You let wind of a mild insecurity… you’re toast, now.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Gin Martini,

    Good show, Mr. Wave, but you’re on borrowed time. You let wind of a mild insecurity… you’re toast, now.

    That’s why I get it out of my system here. Those alpha appearances must be maintained. The show must go on, you know!

  • JP

    “Start with Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.”

    Aristotle was taught in Plato’s Academy and was the head of a royal academy.

    So, there’s some credentialing there.

    And Plato could have been considered to have started a credential factory.

  • JP

    “I lived in a pocket of relative sanity. But it was just an artifact of the small sample size (in both number and time). The recent rash of divorces is just bringing us back to the national trend.”

    OK, let’s look at these as case studies.

    What happened? What went wrong?

    Details please.

  • SayWhaat

    Escoffier, I’m not going to pretend to know as much as you do on this subject. But didn’t Aristotle and Plato have to go through some amount of education in order to become the thinkers that they were? And I assume that Socrates became a teacher in a similar way. (After all, most people don’t just let other people teach them unless they think that they are saying something of worth.) And we do know that Aristotle was educated at Plato’s Academy, which basically gives him the Socrates + Plato Stamp of Approval! So wouldn’t that be equivalent to a credential, in that day and age?

    Unless you are making the argument that they didn’t need an Ivy League degree in order to become Famous Philosophers, in which case I don’t know where to begin with the ridiculousness of that statement (apples and oranges, for one).

  • JP

    And Putin is now sending out condolences.

    That didn’t take long at all.

  • Jackie

    You guys, come on.

    Susan’s city is under lockdown after an earlier bombing this week. It feels super crass to be talking about divorce as “bombs over Baghdad” when our hostess and fellow Bostonian peeps are actually having to deal with terror of an actual bomber.

    Maybe a dose of reality and little support to our fellow Bostonians right now instead?

    ((((((BOSTON))))))

  • SayWhaat

    I was hoping that I lived in a pocket of relative sanity. But it was just an artifact of the small sample size (in both number and time). The recent rash of divorces is just bringing us back to the national trend.

    Attentional bias.

  • tilikum

    good thread by sue, but the commenter hamster party is a riot.

    to quote chapelle “if pu**y was a stock it would be plummeting”.

    again: high value men will NOT commit to a woman who is entitled, bitchy, “special” (i.e.:by virtue of owning a vagina seeks special considerations) or in any way competitive (career, whatever).

    You cannot rationalize and blame away the effects of male/female biological polarity.

    Your attempts to do so means that the men you most want are getting laid like tile because through your fundamental lack of understanding in human relationships, women are bidding against themselves. YOur competitiveness with other women is killing you, and your attempts to increase attractiveness by transitioning into traditional male gender roles is amplifying it by 10.

    It’s like watching a slow motion decapitation.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    +1 to this.
    Never had a guy over the age of 30 who was married not tell me to not get married.

    General reasons; lack of sex, she will become a bitch, lack of freedom, she will get fat, she will stop trying to be exciting/sexy etc. etc.

    Don’t worry, you all sound horrible when I hear my married girlfriends talk. Complaining about a spouse is one of the perks of marriage it seems.

  • Escoffier

    gah, reply eaten by the system

  • J

    WV, I strongly suspect that the recent divorces are fueling your wife’s dreams.

    I don’t know Mrs. wave, so that might well be true. OTOH, I find it hard to understand a series of recurrent nightmares being the result of what is happening down the block in someone’s else’s home. Perhaps that’s just me, but I think the recurrent nature of these dreams is a cause for concern. We can only speculate as to what the problem is (the neighbors’ issues, ol stuff from childhood, whatever), but whatever is, recurrent dreams signal some real suffering to me.

    Perhaps you two should address it directly and openly reinforce your commitment to each other so that both you and your wife feel secure.

    Definitely.

    Wave, sorry for discussing you and your wife in the third person in your e-presence. It feels rude, and I don’t mean to be. I can intellectually understand being concerned about the marriages around you failing, but my gut feeling is that what happens at the Smith’s really has little impact at the Jones’ house, or at least it doesn’t have to. Perhaps it’s because DH and I are both INTx, but we both tend to feel that other people’ problems are just that–other people’s problems. I know that statistically that may not hold true, but if one has that sort of family structure, it’s nearly 100% true for one’s family.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Be safe, Susan and others in Boston. Thinking about you all.

  • J

    If I ever got divorced, I would lay the blame where it belonged. That is, I would blame myself. Basically because it would have been my fault.
    I’ve noticed that I’m the one who causes most of my problems.

    It’s never all one person’s fault, but it’s always good to start with one’s self. After all, the only person’s behavior you can really control is your own.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    “ As to the nightmares, another interpretation could be that your marriage is so central to her well-being that her greatest fear is losing it.”

    I’ve had nightmares like that about my husband as well, and that is definitely the reason. Recently I spoke to a woman at work who lost her husband to a hiking accident. I came home and told my husband that it would be my worst nightmare I’d something like that happened.

    But it is not good to live in fear and negativity. I have to consciously focus on love and positivity, although I do try to keep my eyes open as opposed to burying my head on the sand.

  • J

    ….when our hostess and fellow Bostonian peeps are actually having to deal with terror of an actual bomber.

    The mroning’s news sounds pretty crazy and chaotic, but it appears they got one of the guys, though at the cost of a policeman’s life. I hope everyone in Boston stays safe.

    I’m really quite confused by the politics of this. These guys are Chechens, and I would suppose angry over some nationalist/religious issue, but don’t terrorists generally take very public responsibility for their terrorism and then present a list of demands? What were these guys attempting to accomplish? I mean, other than to make people who previously had no idea where Chechnia is really hate Chechens?

  • JP

    “These guys are Chechens, and I would suppose angry over some nationalist/religious issue, but don’t terrorists generally take very public responsibility for their terrorism and then present a list of demands? What were these guys attempting to accomplish? I mean, other than to make people who previously had no idea where Chechnia is really hate Chechens?”

    They were mad.

    And since they were in the United States instead of Russia, they decided to bomb a major American race instead of an apartment complex in Moscow?

    They’re obviously not the sharpest tools in the shed.

  • Anacaona

    To you I’m a “wealthy man”. To me, I’m a guy afraid of bombers. Both those perspectives are distortions, despite having a basis in truth.
    We are both married so its more like we are talking about money in mixed company and you start to complain about the taxes while you drink champagne and book your next vacation to Paris.
    Also I’m still afraid of flying even though statistically speaking I’m safer in a plane than in a car. Fears =/= reality.

    Liberal environmentalists obsessed with “overpopulation” are rife with feminist agenda, in general. When you find yourself agreeing with feminists on this issue, perhaps there’s a problem. Overpopulation myths from feminists who support liberal gals being on birth control throughout their entire youth, is possibly an example of this.
    Cosign this. This is the new ‘I’m saving the planet” because I don’t plan to reproduce.
    I just wish next fad will have them traveling to poor countries for a few years. “I’m saving the planet because I volunteered in Haiti” I think it will do a lot of good to see how the real world looks like, YMMV.

    I was hoping that I lived in a pocket of relative sanity. But it was just an artifact of the small sample size (in both number and time). The recent rash of divorces is just bringing us back to the national trend.
    You need to assume the Schrödinger’s state. You can always live in both a low divorce situation and a high divorce situation. Hence you would be both prepared when it happens and happy when it doesn’t.

  • angelguy

    “I conclude the opposite. I was lulled into a false sense of security through the fallacy of small set statistics. The divorce rate in my small circle of acquaintances seemed much lower than the national average. I was hoping that I lived in a pocket of relative sanity.”

    I think anytime something like that happens within your circle of friends, one questions their own security. If it didn’t, you wouldn’t be concerned about divorce. You could say the same thing about people that develop a disease or die. It is a natural reaction to feel this way.
    But, one has to treat their own situation individually, and not use other peoples lifes as a measuring stick.

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

      I think anytime something like that happens within your circle of friends, one questions their own security. If it didn’t, you wouldn’t be concerned about divorce. You could say the same thing about people that develop a disease or die. It is a natural reaction to feel this way.

      A Civil Action

  • JP

    Don’t worry, though, the Chechen leader is busy blaming the United States for the bombings.

    “The Russian-installed leader of Chechnya criticised U.S. police on Friday for killing an ethnic Chechen suspected of carrying out the Boston Marathon bombing and blamed the violence on his upbringing in the United States.

    “The root of evil should be looked for in the United States,” Ramzan Kadyrov said in comments posted online after the police shot dead Tamerlan Tsarnaev and hunted for his brother Dzhokhar, his suspected accomplice.

    “They (the brothers) grew up and studied in the United States and their attitudes and beliefs were formed there,” Kadyrov said. “Any attempt to make a connection between Chechnya and the Tsarnaevs is in vain.””

    http://ca.sports.yahoo.com/news/pro-moscow-chechen-leader-blames-u-boston-bombing-155110025–finance.html

  • JP

    @J:

    The reason that you are confused by the politics of this situation is that they bombed the wrong country.

    Seriously.

    The last place that a Chechen would logically attack would be the United States.

    I’ve never seen a terrorist do something quite like this, so I’m concluding that they are cognitively challenged.

  • Anacaona

    Praying for the madness to stop soon for Susan and all Bostonians.

  • J

    SW asks, “How do the stats break down? What percentage of divorced males lose 75% of his assets? What percentage barely see their kids?
    Conversely, what percentage pay zero effective child support? Seek no contact with their children? Had no assets to start with, so lost nothing? ”

    These are very interesting questions. Reading in the ‘sphere, especially at The Spearhead, where Bill Price really does seem to have gotten screwed over by his ex and the courts, this would seem to be a typical experience. Yet, IRL, I know of many families in which the wife has been unable to collect court ordered child support, where the husband or baby daddy has no interest in the kids, etc.

    Most recently, a friend of mine and her kids faced freezing in their home because her soon-to-be-ex would not pay for having a broken furnace replaced and she had no money as he was behind in child support. He was willing to let his kids freeze because he was pissed off at her. In the meantime, he, his live-in girlfriend and her two kids live in a beach front mansion. Luckily, members of the community fronted her the money to call a repair man.

    The are two sides to this issue, but the net aggregates people and magnifies issues. It would be nice to see some hard numbers and just anecdata.

  • JP

    “I just wish next fad will have them traveling to poor countries for a few years. “I’m saving the planet because I volunteered in Haiti” I think it will do a lot of good to see how the real world looks like, YMMV.”

    Uh, isn’t Haiti somewhat unsafe?

    For example, I know one of the DeJoies who owns a ton of property there that he can’t do anything with in terms of reducing the povertyness of the island.

    And it’s beautiful property.

  • Lokland

    “But, one has to treat their own situation individually, and not use other peoples lifes as a measuring stick.”

    No, previously you mentioned disease testing and not measuring it against other peoples lives but thats exactly what is done to determine risk and then subsequently act to treat/prevent that disease from occurring.

    If you are in a group of individuals experiencing a high divorce rate well similar genetic set ups tend to group together so its not totally off the wall to suggest that if your group of acquaintances is divorcing a lot your risk might also be elevated. (Though I’m not suggesting there is any established linked just a hypothetical.)

  • Lokland

    “Don’t worry, you all sound horrible when I hear my married girlfriends talk. Complaining about a spouse is one of the perks of marriage it seems.”

    Agreed,
    The women I know who complain about their husbands do it like a full time job.

  • J

    They were mad. And since they were in the United States instead of Russia, they decided to bomb a major American race instead of an apartment complex in Moscow?

    Thanks, JP. That actually does help me to understand their lack of interest in following the standard terrorist operating procedure.

    This has been bugging me for days. The night before last, I turned to my husband and said that generally after something like this happens several organizations claim responsibility and start making demands. The challenge is to figure out who really did it and who is just riding the real perpertrators’ coat tails. This time, dead silence. It makes sense that there was no real organization, just two guys who were mad.

    I read an interview with their uncle. He said he was happy that the older brother got killed, that he 100% deserved it and that he was always a “loser.” He also said that he had rrepeatedly encouraged both boys not to worry about the future of Islam (which would take care of itself) and just to build themselves some decent lives in a free country. Of course, they wanted to wallow in Chechnian history instead. Crazy….

  • Lokland

    @Saywhaat

    “Unless you are making the argument that they didn’t need an Ivy League degree in order to become Famous Philosophers, in which case I don’t know where to begin with the ridiculousness of that statement (apples and oranges, for one).”

    This is the argument Susan was making (though a bit exaggerated) to a couple of the anti-credential types.
    Ie. Peer reviewed or bust.

    At the same time some of the guys were arguing taking the words of that smelly guy in front of the liquor store at equal value as anyone else’s.

    I prefer more of a balanced approach myself. Accept the words of the new with scrutiny but eventually you have to give a person a bit of faith based on past work.

    (I do this quite a bit with certain others labs in my field. Theres one I wouldn’t trust if they reproduced my work word-for-word. Another I will take at (mostly) face value even if they didn’t do everything fully up to standard–guys a lazy genius.)

    Or to put it into words;

    ‘Eh I don’t fully comprehend how they got this or that without doing Y but they typically do everything right so I will assume they actually did Y and didn’t bother to mention it.’

  • Lokland

    @J

    ” read an interview with their uncle. He said he was happy that the older brother got killed, that he 100% deserved it and that he was always a “loser.” He also said that he had rrepeatedly encouraged both boys not to worry about the future of Islam (which would take care of itself) and just to build themselves some decent lives in a free country.”

    I watched that interview live, I can’t imagine how scared he must be for his family atm.

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

      I watched that interview live, I can’t imagine how scared he must be for his family atm.

      I was very impressed with the uncle! He was impassioned in his communication. It sounds like the family was estranged from all their close relatives.

  • Anacaona

    Uh, isn’t Haiti somewhat unsafe?
    In general terms yes. For volunteers not so much.

    For example, I know one of the DeJoies who owns a ton of property there that he can’t do anything with in terms of reducing the povertyness of the island.
    That is a harsh truth of Haiti in general terms.

  • J

    Let me continue my thoughts from last night. Sentiments such as this are motivated by fear. That may be expressed as anger and antipathy towards women. It may be disguised by ratiocination supported by studies and statistics. (And it may express all of the above – e.g. Dalrock.)

    That goes a long way to explain the popularity of that site.

  • mr. wavevector

    If you are in a group of individuals experiencing a high divorce rate well similar genetic set ups tend to group together so its not totally off the wall to suggest that if your group of acquaintances is divorcing a lot your risk might also be elevated. (Though I’m not suggesting there is any established linked just a hypothetical.)

    Well, there is this idea that divorce is contagious.

    According to new research done by Fowler, along with professors Nicholas Christakis and Rose McDermott, being friends with someone who gets divorced makes someone 147 percent more likely to get divorced themselves. A person who has a sibling who gets divorced is 22 percent more likely to also split from his spouse, the researchers say.

  • J

    <.I watched that interview live, I can’t imagine how scared he must be for his family atm

    I just read a print version, but he has every right to be scared. There were two young, I guess based on their names, Arab men who had their pictures in a New York paper. When interviewed, one said that he would not leave his home until the real perps were arrested for fear of being killed in the streets. That’s a realistic view. People get bothered for a lot less. I know of a Jewish man, a college student back around 9/11 who was given “special treatment” by airport security because the TSA folks though the was an Arab terrorist.

    My older son is Mediterrean-swarthy. He looks a bit like the younger brother. If he were in Boston right now, I’d be a bit worried right now about his falling victim to hysteria and anger.

  • J

    According to new research done by Fowler, along with professors Nicholas Christakis and Rose McDermott, being friends with someone who gets divorced makes someone 147 percent more likely to get divorced themselves. A person who has a sibling who gets divorced is 22 percent more likely to also split from his spouse, the researchers say.

    I have seen this study. I wonder, in the case of friends, how much this really has to do with people in like circumstances hanging out together, ie. happily marrieds tend to hang with other happily marrieds, while unhappily married people tend to find a buddy to complain to. As to sibs, I’m not really surprised that people raised in the same enviornment would share a similarly liability to divorce.

    All that considerd though, I think the most important factor in determining whether an individual will be sucked into a vortex of crap that surrounds them or not is the individual’s locus of control. If you believe that things you do can affect outcomes in your life and then exercise whatever control is available to you, you are much less likely to be swept along.

    I’m reminded of a story my husband tells. I’ve detailed here before the sort of dysfunction he comes from, so I won’t belabor it here. I’ll just jump in. One day, while his mom and his dad and his mom’s live-in bf were having a shit hemmorhage over his teenage sister pregnant and her punk baby daddy, DH decided to take a long bike ride. Thirsty, he got himself a soda and sat on a cliff overlooking a lake. He recalls thinking that there were two paths open to him. He could follow the path set out for him and probably end up in jail or he could go his own way and do whatever was in his control to live a functional life. He decided the latter. He was 13 years old at that time, but he realized that any control he was ever going to have would be because he took it. So he did. He continued to live in the house with his mom and her entourage, emotionally divorced himself from the family, did what he could to find support from other adults, worked his butt off and escaped. But he was only able to do that because he did not see himself as a victim of the forces around him; he saw himself as being in control. My SIL, who still sees herself as victim of that childhood, fucks up everything she touches.

  • Abbot

    ““Abandon feminism before you reach 25.”

    Agenda-feminists angrily spend most of their time working on Feminism Defense to prevent exactly that

  • Russ in TX

    “Men generally love their partners less because loving itself commands less of his life. ”

    Well, that certain convinces me that the author’s got her finger on the pulse of male America.

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

      Well, that certain convinces me that the author’s got her finger on the pulse of male America.

      That’s from Andrew Hacker, author of Mismatch.

  • J

    Wave, did you see this list? It contains some good proactive steps for preventing divorce:

    http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/HealthyLiving/divorce-contagious/story?id=11198347&page=3

  • Passer_By

    @ana
    “That makes no sense to me either. This makes as much sense as a millionaire telling people “I got lucky” don’t try to be as wealthy as I am. Does.Not.Compute. :/”

    Or perhaps it’s more like a guy who got rich by day trading or blindly buying deep out of the money options acknowledging that he got lucky and wouldn’t necessarily advise others to try to get rich the same way he did.

    Or maybe it’s something in between? I’m going with that one.

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

      Here’s the thing about advising people on marriage.

      It’s OK to categorize the nature of the risk. It is not OK to quantify someone else’s personal risk, which depends largely on the individuals. Unless both parties are of good character, the risk of divorce will be higher.

      It’s not OK to tell someone whether they should accept any certain level of risk. Your personal risk tolerance is meaningless to any other individual.

  • JP

    “Or perhaps it’s more like a guy who got rich by day trading or blindly buying deep out of the money options acknowledging that he got lucky and wouldn’t necessarily advise others to try to get rich the same way he did.”

    I would think it depends on the quality of the marriage of the speaker more than “getting lucky”.

    I advise people (like my assistant) not to go to law school.

    That’s partially my recognition that I spent less on my degree and was launched into the dot-com boom allowing me to quickly pay down debt.

    And some of it’s a recognition that your career is often better at the beginning than at the end.

  • JP

    “Are you equally inclined to take investment advice from random people on the street vs. a respected professional?”

    That’s not a good example.

    Considering that I took a lot of “investment advice” from an amateur book writer when I was first investigating the markets.

    And the advice worked.

    In fact, I had to build by own investment models and had to play it by ear, knowing that most “investment professionals” don’t know what they are talking about.

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

      That’s not a good example.

      Considering that I took a lot of “investment advice” from an amateur book writer when I was first investigating the markets.

      And the advice worked.

      In fact, I had to build by own investment models and had to play it by ear, knowing that most “investment professionals” don’t know what they are talking about.

      There will always be exceptions to rules, but we do need guidelines. In general, it’s probably safe to say that you will get a more informed opinion from an industry professional than from a guy standing on the corner with a Solo cup of change. Your job is to identify an array of potentially reliable sources, then sift through the advice and make your best judgment. Team Professional beats Team Beggar every time.

  • Anacaona

    Or perhaps it’s more like a guy who got rich by day trading or blindly buying deep out of the money options acknowledging that he got lucky and wouldn’t necessarily advise others to try to get rich the same way he did.

    Then the advice should be “Don’t pick a wife the way I did” the don’t-ever-get-marry is an advice against all possible ways to enter the same circle he is in. Again someone unhappy with their marriage is justified somewhat into hating the marriage per se and advising against it.

    Or maybe it’s something in between? I’m going with that one.
    Let’s use another example.
    I’m a new mother as all of you know, if I came here saying that I love William and I’m so happy as a mother but turn around and said all the women here that they shouldn’t ever have babies because the work is too much and is not worth it. Would you think of it that I am that happy as a mother as I say I am?

  • mr. wavevector

    J,

    That looks like good advice – for women. Especially the first two points. The third and fourth are good. I wouldn’t know about the last one, having never been there.

    I know you will disagree with the following, because you are an exception to my model of female behavior.

    Most wives do not want to deal with all their husbands fears and insecurities. They want him to be there to deal with hers. If he starts spilling out all his fears and insecurities and asking for her support a part of her deep inside is going to be saying “Oh oh. He’s weak. He might be a liability. I better be prepared to take the kids and go on without him.”

    I’ve seen that look in my wife’s eyes when I’ve shown too much weakness.

    Because when push comes to shove, women’s instinct is to protect themselves and their kids and let the men fend for themselves.

    And that’s not a bad thing. Women are what they are for a reason (as are men). Women need to pick partners who are going to be an asset in the daunting job of raising human children to adulthood, not a liability.

    A fearful husband is to a woman as a sexless wife is to a man.

    Here are my red pill comments for men:

    Talk About It. Don’t hold your fears in. Talk to your spouse about your insecurity.

    Don’t let all your fears out either, nor show too much insecurity. Show enough of your fears so she understands your motivations but not so much you look ineffective. Your wife wants to feel safe, and she wants to believe you have what it takes to make her safe.

    Ask For Reassurance.. Simply and directly tell your partner you’re nervous and ask for his or her support.

    No! Be Reassuring. Regardless of how you feel your female partner wants to count on you for support.

    Seize the Opportunity and Evaluate. Instead of running from the threat you may feel at this moment, take stock of your relationship. What’s working well? What isn’t? What are your relationship’s strengths and weaknesses? Now is the time to take out whatever you’ve swept under the rug and take a good honest look .

    This is good advice. Taking the initiative in the relationship is something men don’t do often enough.

    Seize the Opportunity and Take Action. Talk to your partner about how the two of you might make the relationship work better. Perhaps the issue you’ve been neglecting is sex, or parenting as a team, or help with your in-laws. Use this shake-up as an opportunity to commit to strengthening your relationship by dealing with weak or conflicting areas that you’ve been shy to address.

    Have a plan and an objective before you start. Take the lead.

    Know When to Get Help. It may be that you have backed away from facing an issue because you’ve tried over and over again and gotten nowhere. That’s generally an indication that you need help. Don’t be shy about reaching out to a trained professional to unblock the channel of communication.

    Can’t help with this one.

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

      Most wives do not want to deal with all their husbands fears and insecurities. They want him to be there to deal with hers. If he starts spilling out all his fears and insecurities and asking for her support a part of her deep inside is going to be saying “Oh oh. He’s weak.

      I have felt this way. It was terrible. In my case, I never considered going on without him, but I did have a panicked feeling of “What if this isn’t just a crisis?”

      No! Be Reassuring. Regardless of how you feel your female partner wants to count on you for support.

      Disagree. I think I’d be angry if my husband needed my support and faked it instead. I don’t need to count on him for emotional support any more than he counts on me. He doesn’t ask for support directly, but I search for that need between the lines as he describes his day or a particular problem and I try to have his back.

  • Zach

    @Susan

    This is not surprising to me at all. It’s actually something I’ve been talk about with my friends not too infrequently. One thing I must say is that while in my socioeconomic cohort there is far less pressure on women today to be “domestic” (cooking, cleaning, etc), there is still every bit as much pressure on men to be the breadwinner and be ambitious and successful. Most men that I know still feel intense pressure to sacrifice their happiness and enjoyment to take the highest-paying job possible, even if it turns them into soulless shells of human beings (investment banking, PE, corporate lawyer). The expectation of the men I know is “you will make a lot of money doing a prestigious job”. That is almost non-existent for the women I know. No one uses the awkward “oh” when told that a female Penn graduate has dropped out of banking to do PR. Not in the same way it’s used about men who do similar things.

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

      @Zach

      I agree that there’s a lot of pressure on men that women still are not obligated to share. When I picture a female as primary breadwinner I imagine a woman who’s likely to be dissatisfied with her life, and her marriage.

      Most men that I know still feel intense pressure to sacrifice their happiness and enjoyment to take the highest-paying job possible

      That has not been my experience at all. The men I’ve known who have gravitated to Wall St. and consulting are intense Type A guys who want to be Masters of the Universe. (I’m talking here about guys currently in their mid-20s.) Their identity is so wrapped up in their jobs, they can’t wait to tell me that they left work as the morning donuts were being laid out, or that their baseline Tumi carryon does not quite cut it and will have to be upgraded. They complain at great length about their long hours. A few of them were let go in March when bonuses were announced. They were devastated and one complained bitterly that now that he’s lost his job in health care IB, he had to take a job at Merck. A corporate lackey job. Ugh!

  • mr. wavevector

    I’m a new mother as all of you know, if I came here saying that I love William and I’m so happy as a mother but turn around and said all the women here that they shouldn’t ever have babies because the work is too much and is not worth it. Would you think of it that I am that happy as a mother as I say I am?

    Not a good analogy. Little William is in no position to screw you over.

    If your friend’s kids starting stabbing their mother in the back and eating her heart out, and this behavior mysteriously started appearing in other children around the country and then the world, then you might very well advise women to hold off on having those kids. The risk might start to be prohibitive. That despite the fact that your William has always been a perfect little angel.

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @SW

    I’m interested to know how large a group of men has been victimized by unfair laws?

    Probably ~2% of all men in America, at any one time. Lower methinks than the actual % of women who’ve ever literally been raped (sober and unambiguously). Certainly a metaphor with little basis in reality: “divorce rape”, or “raping Mother Earth” for that matter. Some variation on Godwin’s Law seems appropriate…

  • JP

    “They complain at great length about their long hours. A few of them were let go in March when bonuses were announced. They were devastated and one complained bitterly that now that he’s lost his job in health care IB, he had to take a job at Merck. A corporate lackey job. Ugh!”

    I feel for that guy.

    I mean, his life essentially just ended.

    In his mid 20′s.

    Hard to recover from that.

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    “How do the stats break down? What percentage of divorced males lose 75% of his assets? What percentage barely see their kids?”

    I think these are extreme situations you describe. What would not be so extreme is 50% of the assets plus a heavy stipend (child support at high levels plus spousal support) plus limited (ever two weeks?) access to the kids. And, in terms of child access, it’s probably a function of how much of a bitch the ex is.

    I think you would also have to break it down by class. The cases that seem most eggregious tend to be precisely those where the guy always played by the long established rules (college educated middle or upper middle class beta, white collar job, sole provider, etc.).

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

      @Passer By

      I think these are extreme situations you describe. What would not be so extreme is 50% of the assets plus a heavy stipend (child support at high levels plus spousal support) plus limited (ever two weeks?) access to the kids.

      Just to be clear, that situation was put forth by mr. wavevector. It did seem extreme, which is why I wondered aloud how common it is.

      Why is 50% of joint assets unfair?

      I thought child support was derived by state formula. What is child support “at high levels?” I do think women should have to account for how the support money is spent.

      I support alimony reform.

      I support joint custody.

      But again, I don’t know just how common this unfair treatment is. Just as I still have no idea how common frivolous divorce is.

  • JP

    ” The cases that seem most egregious tend to be precisely those where the guy always played by the long established rules (college educated middle or upper middle class beta, white collar job, sole provider, etc.).”

    +1

    This is where the problems occur. In fact, the *only* guy I know who got shafted by his ex-wife was in this very situation.

  • mr. wavevector

    I have felt this way. It was terrible. In my case, I never considered going on without him, but I did have a panicked feeling of “What if this isn’t just a crisis?”

    I could see that panicked look on my wife and I knew that was exactly what she was thinking!

    I think I’d be angry if my husband needed my support and faked it instead.

    Good to know.

    He doesn’t ask for support directly, but I search for that need between the lines as he describes his day or a particular problem and I try to have his back.

    You are right. A man can ask for his wife’s support in a way that emphasizes the relationship and their teamwork. My wife likes being able to assist me in this way too.

    The original answer suggested to me a nervous guy always seeking reassurance. I still think that’s something to avoid.

  • J

    That looks like good advice – for women.

    Now how did I know you’d say that?

    Especially the first two points. The third and fourth are good. I wouldn’t know about the last one, having never been there.

    Actually I thought the first two could be easily by a man if he shifted the frame a bit.

    I know you will disagree with the following, because you are an exception to my model of female behavior.

    LOL. Queen of the Outliers!

    Most wives do not want to deal with all their husbands fears and insecurities. They want him to be there to deal with hers. If he starts spilling out all his fears and insecurities and asking for her support a part of her deep inside is going to be saying “Oh oh. He’s weak. He might be a liability. I better be prepared to take the kids and go on without him.”

    I’ve seen that look in my wife’s eyes when I’ve shown too much weakness.

    I believe you, but I think that #1 and 2 can be reframed as your concern for her.

    Here are my comments on some of your red pill comments for men:

    Talk About It. Don’t hold your fears in. Talk to your spouse about your insecurity.

    Don’t let all your fears out either, nor show too much insecurity. Show enough of your fears so she understands your motivations but not so much you look ineffective. Your wife wants to feel safe, and she wants to believe you have what it takes to make her safe.

    No try this: “Honey, I see you are having these recurrent nightmares. I’m getting a little worried about you. What’s on your mind?”

    Ask For Reassurance.. Simply and directly tell your partner you’re nervous and ask for his or her support.

    No! Be Reassuring. Regardless of how you feel your female partner wants to count on you for support.

    I do see your point here. However, if you can get to the bottom of why your wife is having these nightmares, you will in fact be reassured. Confronting her fears IS a roundabout way of finding out if she thinks the problem is you. You can get real reassurance wothout begging for it.

    Know When to Get Help. It may be that you have backed away from facing an issue because you’ve tried over and over again and gotten nowhere. That’s generally an indication that you need help. Don’t be shy about reaching out to a trained professional to unblock the channel of communication.

    Can’t help with this one.

    I can. Be careful about selecting a trained professional. A good one can work wonders, a bad one can wreck real havoc. I used to work in a mental hospital. Half of my co-workers were nuts.

  • J

    I have felt this way. It was terrible. In my case, I never considered going on without him, but I did have a panicked feeling of “What if this isn’t just a crisis?”

    I hear that. DH has balls of steel. If he’s scared, then there’s a real need to be.

  • mr. wavevector

    J,

    I believe you, but I think that #1 and 2 can be reframed as your concern for her.

    Good idea. I can imagine situations where that might work.

    But enough of my wife’s nightmares already. Neither she nor I think its some deep seated insecurity. She thinks they’re funny, actually. My wife worries about things. That’s who she is. She knows her worries aren’t always sensible or justified. And it comes out in her dreams. She has nightmares that her dog is lost, that our son was getting picked on, that she forgot a birthday. I’m not the only thing she has to worry about!

  • Anacaona

    Not a good analogy. Little William is in no position to screw you over.
    Out of his own will not but he can screw me over all the time. He will get sick, get fussy, sleepy or bored at the time he feels like it and there is nothing you can do about it but try to help him feel better to the best of your abilities.
    In the case of a marriage the fear you have is about YOU not having control over how your relationship will continue or stop. That is pretty much what happens when you have children.

  • Passer_By

    @wavevector
    “But enough of my wife’s nightmares already”

    If it makes you feel any better, I’ve known women who actually remain a little bit angry at and irritable with their husbands/boyfriends during the day after they have dreams like that – otherwise smart and educated women. At least your wife doesn’t do that.

  • J

    I’ve known women who actually remain a little bit angry at and irritable with their husbands/boyfriends during the day after they have dreams like that – otherwise smart and educated women.

    LOL. I have done this. I know it’s irrational, but it just takes a while to calm down. My dreams are so vivid, I sometimes have real difficult in waking up and seeing reality. I’ll generally just tell my husband that I’m having trouble settling myself because the dream feels so real. He leaves me alone until I am fully awake and have “come back to myself.”

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    “Why is 50% of joint assets unfair?”

    In theory, by itself for a long term marriage, it’s not. But there is a bit of a bait and switch here. The community property states were originally said to have that rule in lieu of alimony (the alimony states did not have community property notions – the husband who made the money owned the assets). Seemed fair enough. But then the community property states, with feminist agitating no doubt, added in spousal support (a different name for alimony) and child support (at high levels). And they did this as womens’ ability to enter the workforce was going up, not down. Also, we’ve been through this before, but 20% of pretax income (i.e., about 35 or 40% of after tax income) for one child, tax free to the mother, is often eggregiously high, especially when thrown in on top of an asset split and spousal support. Especially unfair when she is getting that tax free (after he paid tax), but she gets the credits on the income tax return.

    In addition, if the marriage is relatively short, the 50-50 split is unreasonable, if he brought way more assets in or earned a lot more (based on earning ability brough into the marriage).

    I’ve also read of instances where he has to keep making payments on the house (in which there was some equity) even though it wasn’t awarded to him. I mean, he signed for the loan, after all, right? I don’t how accurate that is or the specifics.

  • http://redpilltheory.wordpress.com Red Pill Theory

    I actually don’t think these women are being all that idiotic. Increases in prosperity leads to differentiation of desired life outcomes from subsistence and upward along the needs pyramid. They were socialized, like the rest of our generation, to expect that lucrative and fulfilling work would be available to more than just the elite. But that was before the Great Recession. Economic circumstances change more quickly than social expectations. Articles like these may seem fatuous when the non-college degree are struggling, but they’re an artifact of the gap between the world we live in and the world we were told existed.

  • Lokland

    @PB/Susan

    “In addition, if the marriage is relatively short, the 50-50 split is unreasonable, if he brought way more assets in or earned a lot more (based on earning ability brough into the marriage).”

    On another note;

    If alimony is based upon the amount the man makes then it is not equal across all women. Which is somewhat illogical if one considers that the duties of a SAHM are fairly universal.

    Nor do I understand the expectation that one should expect to maintain the same standard of living after divorce as pre-divorce (which I believe was the ‘goal’ of alimony).

    If one is producing 50% of the assets (non-menetarily) one should expect a 50% decrease in living quality afterwards, basic math really.
    (I realize that this is not what occurs but thats due to the cooperative gain in pooling resources. Ie. $100 will take 2 people much farther than 2 individuals with $50 each.)

    But thats irrelevant as alimony is on its way out.

    However ownership of 50% of the assets is not which is nuts for the modern working world. How anyone making 1/10th of their spouse can expect half the stuff when its over is humorous especially since men and women are equal.

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

      However ownership of 50% of the assets is not which is nuts for the modern working world. How anyone making 1/10th of their spouse can expect half the stuff when its over is humorous especially since men and women are equal.

      When they married they joined everything, including assets. It has nothing to do with equality or earning potential. If you don’t wish to do that, you can propose a pre-nup, though they are not always enforceable.

  • Anacaona

    Nor do I understand the expectation that one should expect to maintain the same standard of living after divorce as pre-divorce (which I believe was the ‘goal’ of alimony).
    If I remember right that the reasoning behind this was that many women supposedly stayed in abusive marriages because they couldn’t support their kids to the same standard if they were to leave so there is a reason behind keeping the same standard.
    How anyone making 1/10th of their spouse can expect half the stuff when its over is humorous especially since men and women are equal.
    Another missing reasoning is that the wife is keeping the husband from having to deal with domestic chores that will cut time from his work and development. If he were to come to cleaning duties, child care and other aspects of domestic life he wouldn’t had been able to produce the wealth he did.
    Of course now this had changed with take out food, child care and modern appliances. Still in the case of the working wife you don’t know how much is she making economically so she might be contributing half of the income as well or instead of doing domestic duties.

  • Lokland

    @Sue

    “I was very impressed with the uncle! He was impassioned in his communication. It sounds like the family was estranged from all their close relatives.”

    Yes. He said exactly what he needed to in exactly the right way.
    If he had been hesitant or forgiving someone would have seen his family as the enemy.

    Note: I am not suggesting he is not honest just that his nephews put him in a very precarious situation.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “they couldn’t support their kids to the same standard if they were to leave so there is a reason behind keeping the same standard.
    How anyone making 1″

    Modern world problem.
    If a parent makes X dollars and the other parent makes X/10 and men and women are equal (including in child care potential) the children would be better off with the X dollar person with the other person contributing minor amounts to child support.

    Regardless of sex.

    ——

    “Another missing reasoning is that the wife is keeping the husband from having to deal with domestic chores that will cut time from his work and development. ”

    My wife owns 50% of my business assets. Did about 3 months before marriage (living together 2 years prior–though that might be changing in the polar opposite.)

    She has never done anything more than secretary level work for me which I paid her for.

    We have a maid and no kids (yet).

    She still owns 50% of what I have made since after that 2 year mark.

    I’m not saying I won’t give it to her or that I think she will take it but to suggest she deserves it because she lived with me for 2 years straight is ludicrous.

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

    ((((Boston)))))

  • Anacaona

    @LL
    I’m just explaining the reasoning behind the origin of the laws. Clearly there is a need for updates.

  • Sai

    Wow.
    I’m glad I never thought like that. Everyone should remember it’s called going to WORK, not play. If there was a spell that would give me all the money I’d ever want, I would have cast it a long time ago. As it is, I work because there are things that I must do (eg. eat) and things I really want to do, and I can’t let anything get in the way of that. I don’t claim to be special or deserving, or loved by the whole world (I don’t even think of things like life’s purpose any more), I just want to be able to afford nice things.

    @ADBG
    “Chores, Food, and Sex are definitely essential, but just…more? Can’t we have a talk about something, even if it is just the relationship drama on Glee or whatever?”

    Yes please. Otherwise it’s like having a roommate that you sleep with.

    @mr. wavevector
    I’m with J and SayWhaat, I hope you and your wife talk things out and make sure you can keep enjoying life together.

    @J
    “What were these guys attempting to accomplish? I mean, other than to make people who previously had no idea where Chechnia is really hate Chechens?”

    That’s what I’ve been wondering. Instead of attacking Russia, with whom they’re unhappy, they’ve now made the US unhappy with them too. I’m glad the first guy’s dead, let the second die in custody ‘accidentally’ and let them keep their shite in their own country, we’ve got enough problems over here.
    I do like the uncle though. :)

    @Anacaona
    “Clearly there is a need for updates.”

    That’s the best way to summarize the alimony issue.

  • Anacaona

    That’s what I’ve been wondering. Instead of attacking Russia, with whom they’re unhappy, they’ve now made the US unhappy with them too. I’m glad the first guy’s dead, let the second die in custody ‘accidentally’ and let them keep their shite in their own country, we’ve got enough problems over here.
    I do like the uncle though.

    My husband mentioned some terrorists that were buried covered in pig skin to prevent then from going to heaven. Not that the government officially believes such a thing, neither any Muslim with proper knowledge of the Koran but maybe it will discourage some impressionable people from trying to ‘matter’ by killing other people and themselves in such despicable way.

  • Jesse

    Lokland (but to men generally),

    +1 to this.
    Never had a guy over the age of 30 who was married not tell me to not get married.

    General reasons; lack of sex, she will become a bitch, lack of freedom, she will get fat, she will stop trying to be exciting/sexy etc. etc.

    I don’t see why I should value these men’s opinions much at all. So they don’t like their marriages… maybe that’s because they’re bad at it.

    Barring real issues like having newborn triplets or significant health problems, if you aren’t getting much sex (because your wife doesn’t feel like it) or your wife gets fat, then you’re just at fault no matter how you slice it. Either you’re a chump or you made a terrible selection for a wife.

    Is this a reasonable position? I don’t see why I should listen to people’s advice on whether to undertake a project when they suck at it. I plan to do better.

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

      I don’t see why I should value these men’s opinions much at all. So they don’t like their marriages… maybe that’s because they’re bad at it.

      +1

      Is this a reasonable position? I don’t see why I should listen to people’s advice on whether to undertake a project when they suck at it.

      Yet another reason to appeal to authority.

  • Jesse

    There’s something I don’t understand. When married guys here advise against getting married, are they admitting stupidity in getting married themselves? Do they view it as a foolish mistake they’re now locked into, and they’re just hoping to ride that bomb out without it going kaboom?

    And again, I would really like someone to explain how exactly one goes about avoiding marriage. I’m not interested in trading in for a new woman every two years. How do I have a serious, lasting relationship with one woman without marrying her? By never moving in together?

    Also, did anybody consider going through a proper prenup procedure (not springing it on her ten minutes before the ceremony begins) to try to cover their asses?

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Jesse

    This is how you know the men advocating the “Do as I say, Don’t do what I do” have zero credibility. Sure it is great to talk about how marriage is horrible and women take everything from you. But no one comes to talk about that time they were sick and their wife hold their hand and made them soup and all the nice stuff being married brought in their lives. Marriage in it self like any human endeavour is likely to fail, like every thing we do. We should develop the necessary maturity to enter it instead of making the institution responsible for our personal shortcomings.

    I personally command you (for what its worth) for your positive and independent attitude. You sound like someone who will not let stuff “happen” to him and then blame it on the other party.

    I also think that anti-marriage speech comes mostly from the high anxiety guys. The fact is some people have limited attractive features; for some men it can be their willingness to commit, for some women their willingness to give free sexual favors. We can all see that those features in themselves are not sufficient to make a marriage work so it is imperative to develop other traits that will keep the couple/union going, otherwise you can just watch the whole thing die. I think once we realize that we might not have all those attractive traits we should make it our job to catch up with those.

    I reminded of a friend I “used to know” who would always complain of her BF, tell us in details all the bad things he’d do to her. However she’d never say about all the gifts and favors he’d do. So obviously we had a pretty poor image of him but in spite of our advice to dump him she’d stay. It has been after observing those dynamics and even my parents’ that I decided I didn’t care what other people were saying about marriage. If it was so horrible they’d leave; their inability/unwillingness to work together and find solutions is not my problem.

  • pvw

    I must say I like the uncle as well of the two suspects. I understand his reasoning, his emotionalism and his need as well to put distance between himself and them. Yet, I can understand the other perspective of the other family members as well, who are arguing “cover up,” they are circling the wagons.

    But I must say I can appreciate the uncle’s perspective more, because it seems so rare in today’s world, fewer elders willing to give ” swift kick” to the youngsters who are on the path to becoming royal screw-ups. In my view, if more youngsters today weren’t as coddled as much and disabused of their naivete, they would have a more realistic sense of themselves, life, and the world around them. They would become more resilient and capable.

    This ties in well to the themes relating to millennial women, as others have noted, and as the Yale student spoke of as well–they are given unrealistic views of life, are coddled into believing that they have limitless choices and opportunities, only to realize later on that they don’t, or that some choices don’t result in the best outcomes.

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “Is this a reasonable position? I don’t see why I should listen to people’s advice on whether to undertake a project when they suck at it. I plan to do better.”

    If you want to make God laugh just tell him your plans.

  • pvw

    typo alert: I like as well the uncle of the two suspects.

    Oh, and Susan, I’m glad to hear all is well with you and your family.

  • pvw

    I was reading this morning the alumni bulletin from my undergraduate college, and I was struck by something.

    It began as a women’s college, but admitted men at a later date; by the time I attended, men had been in the student body for a while.

    Reading the reports, I noticed a fair number of women who were successful in both female and male-dominated fields in the pre-feminist era. It was rather striking. They had successful careers and raised families, but with little fanfare, compared to the baby boomers, who seemed consumed by more angst.

    Were these women outliers, seen as anomalous in their time, when presumably, fewer wives worked? And so no one paid attention to them? Were they the type of alpha female who would have been successful anyway, regardless of the constraints of the time? Did they have to work and so didn’t have the luxury of staying at home? So with the emphasis on Betty Friedan’s “Feminine Mystique,” their stories were forgotten, or only came to play when some women criticized the burgeoning feminist movement as focusing on elite women?

    It makes for some interesting musings….

  • Richard Aubrey

    The Boston police commish told a reporter that none of the family came forward after the pix were released.
    And mom was convicted of shoplifting $1600 from Lord and Taylor.
    Great group. There’s them, who count, and everybody else, who don’t.

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “I don’t see why I should value these men’s opinions much at all. So they don’t like their marriages… maybe that’s because they’re bad at it.”

    You don’t have to but at least in my circle that means there are literally no men with an opinion worth valuing. (Not entirely a bad idea actually, all boomers or their immediate children which means their opinions on relationships are about as valuable as a pile of dirt.)

    “Barring real issues like having newborn triplets or significant health problems, if you aren’t getting much sex (because your wife doesn’t feel like it) or your wife gets fat, then you’re just at fault no matter how you slice it. Either you’re a chump or you made a terrible selection for a wife.”

    Here’s the problem.

    What is the solution to being a chump?
    Fat wife who won’t hit the gym- divorce.
    Lack of sex who just doesn’t want to- divorce.

    You can’t fix the problem without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

    “And again, I would really like someone to explain how exactly one goes about avoiding marriage. I’m not interested in trading in for a new woman every two years. How do I have a serious, lasting relationship with one woman without marrying her? By never moving in together?”

    No the two are intimately related. You cannot have a long term relationship with a women without giving her half your stuff when you break up.

    Its just the way the game works. The rules are currently highly unfair to one side of the equation but thats irrelevant to the fact that the other side has to play the game to win.

    (Btw, this can be called ‘locked in’ in biological terms meaning that the side in power has no reason to maximize the benefits for their partners because they no longer have a choice. Occurs quite a bit in nature.)

    So if you want a long term relationship you will potentially be giving away half your stuff someday.

    ——–

    I’m not arguing against marriage because like you I see most problems in marriage as the mans fault.

    I’m arguing for extreme caution and pickiness.

    Ex. tat–breakup, piercing—break up, fat mom–break up
    etc.

    Anything even the most minor detail is reason to end a relationship and that is based upon the risk-reward system.

    The reward of a marriage is either equal or lower to what it was previously but the risk is significantly higher.

    Just gamble carefully and stack the cards in your favour.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “When they married they joined everything, including assets. It has nothing to do with equality or earning potential. If you don’t wish to do that, you can propose a pre-nup, though they are not always enforceable.”

    I formed a partnership with a longtime friend. I put in 75%, I maintain 75% ownership even if we dissolve the business.

    Marriage is a financial union (notice that civil ceremonies can be separated from religious ones).

    Its an artifact(?) of a world that no longer exists and like alimony it will change also.

    On another note, I have no problem with the concept merely pointing out the injustice in it.

  • JP

    “Reading the reports, I noticed a fair number of women who were successful in both female and male-dominated fields in the pre-feminist era. It was rather striking. They had successful careers and raised families, but with little fanfare, compared to the baby boomers, who seemed consumed by more angst.

    Were these women outliers, seen as anomalous in their time, when presumably, fewer wives worked? And so no one paid attention to them?”

    All this has happened before.

    All this will happen again.

    History certain does st-st-st-stutter, doesn’t it?

  • JP

    Exciting New Study!

    High N definitely leads to increased risk of substance dependence.

    And it’s worse for women.

    “For both men and women, taking into account prior psychological disorders, the odds of developing substance dependence increased virtually linearly with the number of sex partners. The relationship was particularly pronounced, however, for women. People having a higher number of sex partners did not have higher rates of anxiety or depression; the mental health effects were limited to substance use.”

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/fulfillment-any-age/201304/the-lingering-psychological-effects-multiple-sex-partners

  • Anacaona

    Were these women outliers, seen as anomalous in their time, when presumably, fewer wives worked? And so no one paid attention to them? Were they the type of alpha female who would have been successful anyway, regardless of the constraints of the time? Did they have to work and so didn’t have the luxury of staying at home? So with the emphasis on Betty Friedan’s “Feminine Mystique,” their stories were forgotten, or only came to play when some women criticized the burgeoning feminist movement as focusing on elite women?
    Feminist are in the habit of forgetting or not mentioning the lot of women that did great things before they existed. I remember the very cool site Take back Halloween where they have costumes of great women but then I was appalled to read about Sor Juana Ines downplaying her religious vocation and implying she joined the church because it was the only way to get educated while also saying that the church was not a good place for women at the same time. Not how it happened at all. But then no one will research that and take it as face value. Like many other figures female figures of the past *lesigh*

    fat mom–break up
    My mom is fat I have my skinny dad body = your loss :p

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    It has been documented that women performed better when in all female schools and that their performance decreases in co-ed environment. From there, you start to have preference for more males to get in since they are now seen as highly achieving students. I went to an female middle school and we more competitive than when I later switched to an co-ed high school. The good thing is I had already learned how to stay in the top of the class no matter what.

    I have gone to catholic and same sex schools and I thank the parents for it so I will definitely repeat that for my kids; hopefully I’ll be able to afford it.

  • Escoffier

    “It has been documented that women performed better when in all female schools and that their performance decreases in co-ed environment.”

    Works both ways, right? Don’t boys do better in all-boys schools too?

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Esco

    Hopefully it does, I have no idea on that. Where I went to school there were a lot of same sex public schools and people were fighting to get their kids in. I even had to cut my hair for the whole middle school so as not to have any distraction (as in trying to attract male interest, total fail btw). Quite drastic. I’d have to look into that. I’d suggest that on the contrary men would see their performance increase as in co-ed environment, both gender start mimicking traditional patterns where men are supposedly dominant/smarter and women modest in everything (intelligence and dominance). Sad scheme indeed.

  • Jesse

    Lokland,

    If you want to make God laugh just tell him your plans.

    This is fine. Of course there’s a risk of failure. It’s just that I’ve given this more thought and spent more time learning than most other guys, I would bet. I have a picture in my mind of what I want my marriage to look like. It’s not an extremely detailed picture, but I’m reasonably confident of the overarching themes. I have a fair idea of what I want, and how to try to set the stage for it from the beginning.

    I already understand that certain behaviors are unacceptable. That puts me ahead of the game, because I know what can happen if I mess up and have a decent handle on how to prevent it from occurring. I need to pick the right woman and work to set the proper tone from the outset. So it’s 1) pick the right woman and 2) be worthy of what I want from her.

    I get the feeling that a lot of guys meet a girl, fall in love, and then they just wind up with her and it’s like, “Well, looks like I’m married now!” without any foresight or planning. And then it’s like, “Wow, I’m not getting much sex any more for some reason!” Like they’re just trapped passenger-victims on this theme park turned horror ride called marriage.

    I don’t want to just wind up married. I actually want to lead her down the aisle. I’m not going to be one of those reluctant guys dragged into it.

    To me, these are material differences between the swaths of men out there and myself. I know what I want. I just have to execute.

  • Jesse

    Lokland,

    Here’s the problem.

    What is the solution to being a chump?
    Fat wife who won’t hit the gym- divorce.
    Lack of sex who just doesn’t want to- divorce.

    You can’t fix the problem without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

    It sucks when you decide after you got married that you should stop being a chump. You’re obviously telling her that you will divorce her if she doesn’t shape up, and hoping she’d rather stay married. That’s why, you know… foresight and all.

    From where I stand, if I had to choose between being bossed around, disrespected and neglected, and losing half my assets – it’s easy to say this from here, but yes, I think I’d rather get divorced. I might be pretty battered but at least I’d have my manhood and some self-respect. If I remain in a marriage with a woman who doesn’t care enough to please me, then I might as well just hand in my penis and testicles and be done with it.

    No the two are intimately related. You cannot have a long term relationship with a women without giving her half your stuff when you break up.

    So if you want a long term relationship you will potentially be giving away half your stuff someday.

    I think this is the truth, which is why I find the generic man telling other men not to get married a bit baffling and aggravating. And bitching about how your wife sucks just seems pathetic.

    (Signing a prenup may help, which I may well find myself doing. This is a separate discussion, but my feeling is that a prenup can be a great way for the woman to lay down a marker that she really is in this for love and not for the money. If you play your hand right and you’re good enough to pull this off, I think a good woman absolutely in love would be very willing to sign a prenup, because it’s a chance for her to demonstrate her good nature. You might have to be a hell of a guy [and maybe already wealthy] to pull this off though.

    It’s not that I’m not extremely generous with the right woman. [Not in the sense of letting her run roughshod over my bank account to buy $5000 handbags, but in terms of time and energy and support, and things that make her happier.] It’s just that I want to reduce the risk of being played for a fool and it’s a chance for her to demonstrate that she’s not planning to do that. As an athlete planning on turning professional soon, I think I’d be an idiot to forget about this.)

    Novel-esque parentheticals aside, yes, I think that marriage is potentially dangerous, maybe even with a prenup, but for any man desiring monogamy there is no choice. Reduce your risks and go for it.

    —–

    As an aside, I think I have romantic and maybe even sexual reasons for wanting to get married. It’s probably just a personal preference, but long-term girlfriend covertly morphing into common-law wife is not thorough enough for me. It just seems casual and doesn’t put me in a position where I can lead us toward anything. Like we’re just drifting into being married… yuck.

  • Jesse

    High N definitely leads to increased risk of substance dependence.

    It is this layman’s opinion that having sex with a lot of people, just to have sex with a lot of people, is possibly indicative of emotional problems.

    The only reason I would pursue endless different women and avoid emotional intimacy is if I’m losing the battle mentally. It would mean I’m just wallowing in my pathology instead of trying to become emotionally healthier.

    It’s like me and alcohol. The only reason I would drink myself under the table is because I hate myself and I’m trying to beat my brain into submission. There’s no other reason to pound drink after drink, and there’s no other reason to hunt woman after woman after woman.

    So yeah, if I find myself doing that, it would be because I’m not in a very good place emotionally. It’s pathological behavior, at least for me. If you shove your head in the trough and eat until they have to take you to the hospital… yeah, there might be a problem.

  • Jesse

    Mireille, thank you for the kind words.

  • Jesse

    I think I’ve used up my word allotment for the next six months. Jesus.

  • RealityBites.com

    [Economist Sylvia Ann Hewlett] and her collaborators at the Center for Talent Innovation studied the motivations of men and women at work and found that while men’s primary incentives are relatively simple—money and power—women are motivated by seven discrete factors. “It’s not just time for family. Women want meaning and purpose in their work. They value great colleagues. They also like to give back to society in terms of the work they do, some healing of the planet, and they want flexibility, which is not the same as family stuff—it’s so that they can have a life,” said Hewlett. “Women have much more complex goals, but they also do want money and power. They recognize you’re likely to have much more control over your life if you have those.”

    What a load of crap! Women = good :: Men = bad. Women = complex :: Men. Seven discrete factors – not named in the article of course – just general concepts. How do you know that men do not want to heal the planet also? How do you know men do not value family time? Perhaps women just have more options then men? Women can chose between career and being a stay-at-home mom. How often do men get this option?

    I cannot believe that this kind of sexist rhetoric is tolerated on this blog or any other. If this is not just simple pigeon-holing of men and our beliefs, I do not know what is. Hasn’t American society got past this type of prejudice in 2013?

    Makes us men wonder…

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “I already understand that certain behaviors are unacceptable. That puts me ahead of the game”

    Yes you are.
    Try viewing it from the 45yo guy who was taught to be a doormat for women, what he was told is ‘right’ is dead wrong.

    “I think this is the truth, which is why I find the generic man telling other men not to get married a bit baffling and aggravating. And bitching about how your wife sucks just seems pathetic.”

    They don’t bitch about their wives. They hardly even mention them.
    They mention the problems with the marriage, I’d guess 75% are not even experiencing those problems themselves.

    Marriage has a bad rep and some group of women are the cause of that.

    ——-

    Ditto on your reasoning for a pre-nup.
    General advice,

    If a woman ever says ‘What, you don’t trust me!?!?’ in response to one of your planned actions you should not trust her wrt whatever that planned action was going to check on.

    Note: My wife signed a pre-nup but that was to protect my assets involved in partnerships with others only. I trust her with it all but theres no point adding undue risk to others.

    She was also okay with paternity tests so long as I do them privately (as she was worried about embarrassment because of lack of trust).

    Not a hint of ‘you don’t trust me’ just a willingness to make me comfortable entering a marriage so long as I took her emotions into account.

  • Lokland

    @Reality

    “Women = good :: Men = bad.”

    The problem is that you associated the words power/money with bad and the rest with good which is not inherently true and in some cases is likely the exact opposite.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    What a load of crap! Women = good :: Men = bad. Women = complex :: Men. Seven discrete factors – not named in the article of course – just general concepts. How do you know that men do not want to heal the planet also? How do you know men do not value family time? Perhaps women just have more options then men? Women can chose between career and being a stay-at-home mom. How often do men get this option?

    I cannot believe that this kind of sexist rhetoric is tolerated on this blog or any other. If this is not just simple pigeon-holing of men and our beliefs, I do not know what is. Hasn’t American society got past this type of prejudice in 2013?

    I too cannot believe that that’s what you understood from a segment that said that women like money and power too!!!!!!???? Lol seriously, It’s funny that you speak of prejudice when you’re the one applying prejudice to your reading of that essay. Men value “healing the planet” too but less than money and power. Women on the other hand value money and power, just less than men. So pretty similar but in different ranks. And nobody said that the men wanting what they want is bad. Actually it is a good thing that women want different things so that our world is well-rounded instead of being an eternal race for money and power.

    Please read stuff before bashing!

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    Note: My wife signed a pre-nup but that was to protect my assets involved in partnerships with others only. I trust her with it all but theres no point adding undue risk to others.

    She was also okay with paternity tests so long as I do them privately (as she was worried about embarrassment because of lack of trust).

    I’m just amazed that you were able to get married with all that hoop jumping you laid for your wife. Even more surprising is that you also find the “nerve” to doubt her interest in you sometimes. I have to say I’m intrigued. With all these demands I’d personally would have laughed and left, not because I was up to no good, but because I’d know that deep down my husband would never trust me or trust that I love him for real. I believe your recurrent comments on the topic translate those feelings. It’d be a waste but I guess it just wouldn’t be a good fit.

    Mind you, I’m not attacking you, I’m just quite puzzled by the whole thing actually, it gives me some insight into people’s lives. Interesting.

  • Abbot

    “Women on the other hand value money and power, just less than men”

    Then wouldn’t it behoove the agenda feminists to get men to value money less so they will be paid less and finally achieve the holy parity they so desperately seek?

  • JP

    “Sexual gluttony among women is more pervasive mainly because women have a much easier time accessing sex.”

    It’s time for today’s Historical Trivia!

    “Contrary to the modern stereotype that views males as more susceptible to sexual desire than females, during the Middle Ages women were often seen as much more lustful than men. General opinion held that men were more rational, active creatures and closer to the spiritual realm, while women were carnal by nature and thus more materialistic. In the Decameron there are many examples of lusty women with insatiable desires. The nuns in III.1 (“whereas a single cock is quite sufficient for ten hens, ten men are hard put to satisfy ten women,” 198), Alibech, who develops a taste for “putting the devil back in Hell” in III.10, and the wife of Calandrino (“this woman’s going to be the death of me… with her insatiable lust…” 661) in IX.3 are just a few examples.”

    http://www.brown.edu/Departments/Italian_Studies/dweb/society/sex/sexual-desire.php

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @Abbott,

    I don’t think feminists are interested in preventing men from achieving what they can achieve. The point is they don’t really care about men other than to make sure males don’t prevent women from achieving their own goals. They want the same as men. So if men make a lot, they want women to make as much. The point is elevating the individual, male and female, not just one in theory. Sure it looks like women are more encouraged but it is because globally there are way behind. At least that’s the type of feminism I agree with.

    Regarding sexual opportunity, I believe men usually project their own passions on women a lot. We can see with the Taliban veiling their women so they do not give them crazy desires. I think Susan posted once how men automatically thought that when they liked a woman, that woman must like them as well, hence the really cocky behavior.
    I think a lot of men just look at how much sex they would get if they had access like they believe women have, and therefore assume that women must be just jumping from orgies to orgies. They don’t factor that some women have sex just to please men, not because they actually like it. I personally wasn’t really sexual in what would be considered my prime where “opportunities” were abounding. Now at almost 30, I have more interest when albeit by some manosphere standards I’m almost “post wall”. Opportunity and execution are very different.

  • Abbot

    “So if men make a lot, they want women to make as much.”

    If men made less, then women would have “as much.”

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Abbott,

    Sure you can level by the bottom but men and women want to get more in general, not less. I think in the west, people believe in capitalism more than they believe in feminism. Plus feminists are feminists, not stupid. They understand competition between men and women, and between countries on a global economic level as well.

  • Abbot

    “They understand competition between men and women”

    Then women who want to earn the same or close to men need to have their own businesses. In a company there are only so many wage dollars to go around so raising female earnings means lowering mens or raising prices to customers. Feminists understand that. They just don’t want to ever address it.

  • JP

    @Mireille:

    “I think in the west, people believe in capitalism more than they believe in feminism. Plus feminists are feminists, not stupid. They understand competition between men and women, and between countries on a global economic level as well.”

    Economic growth is basically going to zero in the long term (per Jeremy Grantham), so we are going to have to level from the bottom.

    Stuart even made my comment it’s own post, when I pointed this out to him.

    The zero growth problem, that is.

    “Some information came out after the 4Q 2012 Letter or was missed by us and is worth mentioning. First, the Congressional Budget Office slashed its estimate of the U.S. long-term growth trend from 3.0% to 1.9%! Given the source and the magnitude of the adjustment, I think it is fair to say that their number is “close enough for government work” to our 1.5%. At least it is within negotiating distance. Next, a report from Chris Brightman of Research Affiliates actually came out a week before ours and concluded that long-term GDP was 1.0%, a number that really corresponds to our 1.5% because his report has no reference to our two special factors, resources and climate, which take our 1.5% to 0.9%.”

    http://www.gmo.com/websitecontent/GMO_QtlyLetter_4Q2012.pdf

  • Lokland

    “I’m just amazed that you were able to get married with all that hoop jumping you laid for your wife. I have to say I’m intrigued. With all these demands I’d personally would have laughed and left, not because I was up to no good, but because I’d know that deep down my husband would never trust me or trust that I love him for real.”

    Yes well, my wife is 24 married, pregnant and partner of a very wealthy union.
    Your near 30, single and childless.

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

      @Lokland

      Yes well, my wife is 24 married, pregnant and partner of a very wealthy union.

      Congrats on the pregnancy!

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @Abbott

    I don’t see how raising women’s earning equals lowering men’s. If wages lower, it means that all individuals, men and women see their earnings decrease. Nothing wrong with that if this is how the market works. Men don’t get special treatment in the market, women neither. Studies show women earn less because they don’t ask for raises as often, and sometimes consider the financial shape of business and don’t ask for raises; men don’t care about all that.
    Blame the market and capitalism; not feminism for how supply and demand works. There is no special law that says men must earn more than women. Everybody earns according to their talents and the demand for them. And that competition exists between men themselves within the country as well as outside of it. You can blame women, legal/illegal immigrants or foreign employees working in outsourced companies, there are many reasons explaining decreasing wages but it all comes down to Capitalism.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @JP

    Leveling by the bottom has already started indeed. I’m just not sure they will use the gender criteria to actively do so unlike what some would believe.

    @Lokland,

    Let’s not be childish. You said yourself you don’t consider yourself the best out there so I’ll trust you and say that I’m not missing out. And I’m not that stupid and competitive to envy another woman for a product I have no interest in. Your wife is obviously a hero and I commend her for putting up with all your conditions. My critique was oriented towards you, not her actually.

  • Abbot

    “I don’t see how raising women’s earning equals lowering men’s.”

    Then where will a particular company find the money to raise the earnings?

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @Ab,

    I’m not a business person but I believe cutting down staff and/or developing business opportunities/dividends is how you increase earnings in general. After all companies have for main goal to make money.

  • Anacaona

    @Lokland
    Question: If a woman agrees to a pre-nup but gets her own conditions what would you think of that. Just curious.
    Congratulations on your wife’s pregnancy. Many blessings for new HUS baby. :)

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

      Question: If a woman agrees to a pre-nup but gets her own conditions what would you think of that.

      Jumping in late after a weekend away from the blog.

      It occurs to me that more women requiring prenups and more men requesting spousal support is probably inevitable over the next generation or two.

  • Abbot

    “developing business opportunities/dividends is how you increase earnings in general”

    But for the increase in salaries, a company has to increase its expenses. Salary is an expense. Where will the money come from to pay this additional expense if not from mens current pay or the pay the company owners get?

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Abbott,

    I don’t see your point and why you try to frame it as a man problem. It is a worker problem, women and men. Businesses can only increase earnings if they make profits, not out of sheer generosity.

  • J

    Hey, pvw! Good to see you.

    Here are my recollections of the 50s and 60s:

    –Were these women outliers, seen as anomalous in their time, when presumably, fewer wives worked?

    Yes, I think they were. I had a friend whose mom was a lawyer, as was her dad. She was the first career woman I ment who was not a teacher or a nurse. The mom was seen as an anomaly in both positive and negative ways. She was admired for her brilliance–and she was probably brighter than today’s average lawyer–but she was also seen as an oddball.

    –Were they the type of alpha female who would have been successful anyway, regardless of the constraints of the time?

    Yes, they typically were the brightest of women.

    –Did they have to work and so didn’t have the luxury of staying at home?

    Sometimes. I knew a woman who ran a million dollar business. She started it because her husband and she had five kids to support.

  • J

    @Jesse

    I’m enjoying your comments.

    I don’t recall what it was you were going to find for me, so don’t sweat it.

  • Jesse

    I messed up this paragraph in 277:

    It’s like me and alcohol. The only reason I would drink myself under the table is because I hate myself and I’m trying to beat my brain into submission. There’s no other reason to pound drink after drink, and there’s no other reason to hunt woman after woman after woman.

    I didn’t mean to link self-loathing and promiscuity so tightly, as with binge-drinking. I just meant that both behaviors are a type of beating one’s head against the wall (or burying it in the sand) in order to dull the negative feelings instead of trying to step back and pull oneself out from the gutter.

    I meant it along the lines of, “I’m going to shut my brain off and go try get laid by as many women as possible so I don’t have to engage in introspection.”

    I think that’s how it is for me, anyway.

  • Jesse

    Thank you J.

    Lokland,

    Yes you are.
    Try viewing it from the 45yo guy who was taught to be a doormat for women, what he was told is ‘right’ is dead wrong.

    It’s probably partly the fault of his teachers and partly his fault for (likely) not paying close attention and asking himself what kind of behavior will elicit the desired response from women. I’m not going to attempt to allot percentages, but I’m a little uncomfortable laying all the blame at society’s feet.

    I’m a bit of a curious case myself because my upbringing has left me a pretty blank slate when it comes to women. I’ve led an extremely sheltered life when it comes to women and even to a large extent social interactions with peers and youth culture, none of which was by design. Anyway, this has both positive and negative facets.

    The negative facet is that I want to smash and break things because I never had a hot 16 year-old girlfriend to be my playmate. Not even close. It’s not that I was deemed undesirable. It’s that there were basically no girls around to look at, much less pursue or be rejected by.

    But there’s a positive aspect to that, because I haven’t really picked up any bad habits. So I’m looking at all this as a (young) adult with fresh eyes. When you couple that with 1) a decent take-charge disposition by nature, 2) a couple experiences being a wuss with two girls years ago that thoroughly disgusted me, and made me resolve to never put myself in such a powerless position again, and 3) having engaged in enough learning, reading and introspection to have an idea of what kind of person I am and want to be, it means that I have a chance to essentially start consciously crafting my vision right from the beginning.

    I’ll surely make mistakes along the way, but I can start without any negative programming and with something resembling a plan, so when I finally arrive on the scene I should be in the driver’s seat. This is a long way of saying that I have a chance to get good at this opposite-sex bullshit on a somewhat short learning curve. I plan to start taking dance lessons in a few weeks. I’m a professional athlete in training and not in school, yada yada, so I tend to be isolated and this will be a good opportunity to start meeting teh wimmenz.

    Anyway… yeah. I just barfed up my life story out of nowhere.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “Question: If a woman agrees to a pre-nup but gets her own conditions what would you think of that. Just curious.”

    Depends upon the conditions.
    My wife has some IP rights generating revenue. We agreed to leave each others stuff alone in the event of a divorce but split up the money brought into the marriage from them during the marriage (or we’ll split the cash but the assets remain firmly in the hands of the business owner).

    Our lawyer could probably do a better job explaining this.

    If it were something along the lines of ‘I get the house and 75% of the assets + alimony merely because I married you’ then no obviously not.

    “Congratulations on your wife’s pregnancy. Many blessings for new HUS baby. ”

    Thanks big surprise eh :P

  • Lokland

    Now that I think about it, an asset that generates revenue isn’t an asset or at least I don’t think thats the technical term.

    Hence the need for lawyers.

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “It’s probably partly the fault of his teachers and partly his fault for (likely) not paying close attention and asking himself what kind of behavior will elicit the desired response from women. I’m not going to attempt to allot percentages, but I’m a little uncomfortable laying all the blame at society’s feet.”

    The other problem that is discounted here is that most men are not successful with women.

    So telling a guy to watch the naturals is great if he even knows or encounters any naturals in his lifetime.

    I didn’t know anybody who did really well with women until my early 20s and by then I had discovered game on my own.

    So when women say ‘watch the naturals’ they assume they are everywhere because of the apex fallacy, most sons don’t get advice from a Dad who pulled women like mad but a father who had limited options and chose from what was available.

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

      @Lokland

      The other problem that is discounted here is that most men are not successful with women.

      So telling a guy to watch the naturals is great if he even knows or encounters any naturals in his lifetime.

      I didn’t know anybody who did really well with women until my early 20s and by then I had discovered game on my own.

      I think men have a problem with expectations. This must be why my argument pointing out how many men marry falls on deaf male ears. You guys don’t want a woman. You want to be womanizers. I don’t have any sympathy for that.

  • Lokland

    “You said yourself you don’t consider yourself the best out there so I’ll trust you and say that I’m not missing out. And I’m not that stupid and competitive to envy another woman for a product I have no interest in. Your wife is obviously a hero and I commend her for putting up with all your conditions. My critique was oriented towards you, not her actually.”

    Your 30 and single.
    My wife is 24 and married.
    Your opinion has no value in comparison to hers. I could stop after the ages and the meaning would remain the same.

  • Abbot

    “Businesses can only increase earnings if they make profits, not out of sheer generosity.”

    The profit belongs to the owner of the business. That is what the owner works for and why he is in business. The more he gives to workers in the form of salary expense, the less he will have for himself. If women are making less salary than men and the business owner is told he must change that, then he must take his money and give more of it to the women, aka non-negotiated generosity. That is a cryptic goal crafted to do away with negotiation as a salary determinant in order to compensate for women’s lower desire or ability to negotiate.

  • Emily

    >> “Your 30 and single.
    My wife is 24 and married.
    Your opinion has no value in comparison to hers. I could stop after the ages and the meaning would remain the same”

    This is silly. I would rather be single than married to somebody who’s totally wrong for me. I disagree very strongly with the idea that every married woman is automatically better off than every non-married woman. There are plenty of unhappy married people out there.

  • JP

    “My wife has some IP rights generating revenue. We agreed to leave each others stuff alone in the event of a divorce but split up the money brought into the marriage from them during the marriage (or we’ll split the cash but the assets remain firmly in the hands of the business owner).”

    With IP, there’s always the additional threat of “destroying the IP”.

    It’s kind of fun to try to destroy IP, to tell you the truth.

  • Abbot

    Do these lofty aspirations get smacked down in a few years time?

    “women in their 30s looking for husband give off ‘man repellent’”

    http://www.nj.com/mercer/index.ssf/2013/04/princeton_university_mom_susan.html

    .

  • Lokland

    @Emily

    Hence why I included the last line.

    Watch,

    Your 30.
    My wife is 24.
    Therefore your opinion means nothing in comparison.

    Meaning retained and put in a nice sanitized version.

  • Anacaona

    Depends upon the conditions
    Yes I guess. I was mostly thinking that if my hubby would had wanted to do a pre-nup I would probably had added something like a cheating clause (big surprise there :p) so I do wonder how that translate. Just out of mere curiosity since hubby wanted a traditional marriage but then I’m a traditional wife so different matters there.

    Thanks big surprise eh

    :D

  • http://Marellus.wordpress.com Marellus

    … the sophistry of depravity … the casuistry of history … now a glorious wake for noble words … with the sighs, of barbaric verbs …

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Now that I think about it, an asset that generates revenue isn’t an asset or at least I don’t think thats the technical term.

    Capital goods (or land) are the production factors here. They’re listed on company’s balance sheet under assets, though. But so is cash, intangibles, etc.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    The profit belongs to the owner of the business. That is what the owner works for and why he is in business. The more he gives to workers in the form of salary expense, the less he will have for himself. If women are making less salary than men and the business owner is told he must change that, then he must take his money and give more of it to the women, aka non-negotiated generosity. That is a cryptic goal crafted to do away with negotiation as a salary determinant in order to compensate for women’s lower desire or ability to negotiate.

    This doesn’t really make any sense Abbott. This is an employee/employer issue, not a man/woman issue. If any employee doesn’t perform, there are ways to solve that problems. Performance reviews are there for this. The issue of unequal pay arises when you have men and women performing the same way, with equal qualifications and women get less. There is obviously injustice. It is not about giving free money to women because of their gender, that’s pretty clear. Enough with the conspiracy theories LOL!

    @ LokLand,

    It is really laughable that you assume that your wife is automatically superior to me because she managed to marry young to some dude with glaring issues. She’s great for putting up with your lunatic tendencies, I give her that. She must really have treasures of patience and love you as evidence by her acceptance to sign whatever crap you gave her. I have no problem with her. I’m questioning your reasoning behind all that hoop jumping you put in front of her, especially when you have shared here that you still have doubts where you’re not sure she will stay/love you or whatever. I’m questioning you, not her.
    I can tell you’re trying to make me feel sad about my “old age” and childless status but I’m actually saddened by the weakness of the argument. So we’re going to say that I “win” and you take of yourself.

  • Lokland

    @MM

    “Capital goods (or land) are the production factors here. They’re listed on company’s balance sheet under assets, though. But so is cash, intangibles, etc.”

    I’ve decided to call my accountant and tell him all the reasons I love him…

    @Mir

    “I can tell you’re trying to make me feel sad about my “old age” and childless status but I’m actually saddened by the weakness of the argument. So we’re going to say that I “win” and you take of yourself.”

    No I’m stating a simple fact that the single biggest driver in male attraction is youth. More so than any other.

    And no you haven’t won a thing. You decided to insult me without reason.
    I decided to point out why you suck with reasons.

    @Ana

    Learned this. Pre-nups can’t declare something that would be illegal under normal law.

    So child custody can’t be apart of it nor can cheating be reason to change how much money is given to a spouse (personally I think making it illegal with jail time would suffice).

    We used it to mostly protect our individual capital producing assets (ty Mega) most of which is jointly shared with other business partners.

    Also, just as a memo a pre-nup can’t force a person to do certain acts ie. sex three times a week, must submit to paternity test, must mow the lawn once a week etc.

    As for the details, we told the lawyer what we wanted and he wrote it up. I just signed it (did give it a glance over :P).

  • Abbot

    “unequal pay arises when you have men and women performing the same way, with equal qualifications and women get less.”

    Unequal pay arises because some PEOPLE are better at looking out for themselves. Its only because most of those “people” are men, there are women who complain about the result rather than the cause.

    Men with the same qualifications and effort get less than other men in the same positions. That is because one man is better at convincing the boss to pay him more or other reason that the EMPLOYEE arranges for himself. Should we equalize pay between men too just to take make irrelevant this skill one man has over another?

  • http://Marellus.wordpress.com Marellus

    I’m still a romantic Lokland. I give all credit to God for that … coz He really is a bastard …

  • Jackie

    @lokland
    Hey LL,

    Congrats! I hope you and your wife have a happy, healthy and stress-free pregnancy. Despite disagreeing with you on, well, EVERYTHING, I do wish you both well. :)

    LL, the reason I disagree with you is I find nearly all your beliefs are rooted in entitlement (I like how you are terrified that the bonds of marriage/divorce could somehow take away “your” wealth, when the only reason you have it in the first place is because you were *born* into it), superficiality (“My wife’s job is to be pretty,” not allowing her to wear sweatpants, short men = a fate worse than death), and callous disregard for others (“subhumans,” people who don’t matter, as long as you get yours. And you say Mireille “doesn’t count” but you are still “subhuman” by your own standards until you have this child!).

    It’s interesting because, while you brag about “your” wealth, your consciousness is impoverished by lack and fear. Examine the conditions to which you subject your wife (who I think we all can agree is a saint):

    *1-way-semi-open relationship, allows you have to sex with other women, while expecting your wife to be a virgin until she meets you. (Sex is on YOUR timetable, of course)
    *Pre-nup, even though she will bringing you up from your “subhuman” status by giving you children, whom are beyond priceless.
    *Paternity testing (ibid)
    *Uprooting her home, country and culture to be with you. This is a huge sacrifice.
    *Control issues (her “job is to be pretty”, she must control her weight and not get fat, not allowed to wear sweats, etc)

    The sad thing is she is utterly devoted to you, but you still can’t trust her. Not because of her, not because of the “system.” But because you don’t trust yourself to be enough. And, as much as I dislike your beliefs for hurting others, I can see they are hurting you the most of all.

    Like I said, your beliefs cause a lot of pain in this world. They are the same beliefs that wounded you, caused you misery and instead of finding better ones, you still took them on as true. You are still imprisoned by the same mindset that hurt you as a child. Your wife’s devotion has not taught you anything.

    For all your talk about being smarter “than 99% of the population,” wealthier and somehow superior to most: Nothing has really changed, and that’s too bad.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    Unequal pay arises because some PEOPLE are better at looking out for themselves. Its only because most of those “people” are men, there are women who complain about the result rather than the cause.

    Men with the same qualifications and effort get less than other men in the same positions. That is because one man is better at convincing the boss to pay him more or other reason that the EMPLOYEE arranges for himself. Should we equalize pay between men too just to take make irrelevant this skill one man has over another?

    Lol where do you see that they should pay someone the same in spite of the skills he doesn’t have. Negotiation in itself is not a skills your pay should be based on, unless you’re a lawyer that is. I think we agree on the whole that increasing pay for all workers helps men and women. Sure there is some complaining but more recently there has been more awareness on the topic of wage fairness and equality so that women realize that they shouldn’t sell themselves short in negotiations so it is a two fold battle. People associate feminism and communism a lot but it is because they both talk about the rights of the minorities/deprived so we can definitely draw from that. You have to consider that thanks to the bias in the system, men raise the wages of other men when women demand to be paid more, it’s like the whole scale is review to keep women under. I think the capitalist system is ok with tolerating a certain amount of inequality, just not some ridiculous level the say we see it these days. Instead of having women make $0.75 for every dollar a man makes, something closer like 0.90 could be seen as a huge progress. Another problem is that even in that female wage breakdown, there are also disparities according to race as well as in White<Asian<Latina<Black so raising the bar will help solve all these disparities.

    @ Jackie,

    You are much more eloquent than I'll ever be. I think you pretty well summed up my thought, I realize that my shock might have come out pretty strong. Lokland sees my critique as an insult but it is actually a question (that he still hasn't answered to btw).
    It all ties back to that convo we had previously over a few pages about male criteria and how much is too much/far in the questioning of a woman's past. What it does is reinforcing me in my belief that we should indulge men who show a certain kind of insecurity; it is not helping them because truly humouring all those hoops doesn't really address the deep roots of that reasoning and it is just temporary mental band aids. The fear and anxiety will always remain no matter what I'd do to please and reassure. That really makes me sad and I wouldn't never want to be with someone who will never trust me.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    Ugh, should have read **we shouldn’t indulge men who show a certain kind of insecurity**

  • Lokland

    Okay, word press has defeated me.

    @Jackie

    Most of your facts are partially or completely wrong.

    “*1-way-semi-open relationship, allows you have to sex with other women, while expecting your wife to be a virgin until she meets you. (Sex is on YOUR timetable, of course)

    Stopped and I’ve never said a virgin was the only acceptable N. I am quite stringent on behaviours however as well as communicating that a lower N is better than a higher N. That rule holds even at low N values.

    *Pre-nup, even though she will bringing you up from your “subhuman” status by giving you children, whom are beyond priceless.
    *Paternity testing (ibid)

    You missed the memo. We both have assets protected in the pre-nup.
    Paternity testing
    Convo we had

    L- Babe I want to test to make sure the kids are mine.
    E- Why?
    L- I want to have the same certainty you do.
    E- Okay…but can you do it privately I don’t want people to think I cheated on you. Ohh and I want to test myself that way we can make sure there wasn’t a mix up at the hospital.
    L- Yeah of course babe. Thanks for not being upset, ILU.

    Probably differs from your vision of it.

    *Uprooting her home, country and culture to be with you. This is a huge sacrifice.

    I’m actually moving to Seoul to be with her family (note: My wife is Korean not Chinese, purposeful mis-direction on my part.) It certainly wasn’t on my list of life goals prior to meeting her.

    *Control issues (her “job is to be pretty”, she must control her weight and not get fat, not allowed to wear sweats, etc)

    Well my job is to be handsome so yeah, 5am at the gym 4 days a week woooh.

    She also expects me to shave daily, seriously da fuq!?!?!. I used to shave every couple days when I was single.

    And put my socks in the laundry basket, WTF!!!!! I just picked up random ones off the floor before.

    And what the hell is all this shit on my bathroom counter, ‘Extra virgin coconut olive oil butter facial rub-a-dub magic face cream’ /facepalm

    Can’t just wear a t-shirt and genes to the fanciest restaurant we like to go to either and lord help me if I ever forget about the napkin….

    Sweat pants- we both mutually agree that a person wearing sweat pants in public must have failed miserably at something important recently and they are doing it as a sign of mourning.

    And thats just the list of random stuff she asked me to change.

    ———-

    Its called compromise.
    Single people are very bad at it so they call it controlling.

    —————-

    “For all your talk about being smarter “than 99% of the population,” wealthier and somehow superior to most”

    I don’t think I ever put an actual number to my IQ. Perhaps I’m mistaken but I think I’ve purposefully avoided it, ditto for my wealth.

    ————–

    “They are the same beliefs that wounded you, caused you misery and instead of finding better ones, you still took them on as true.”

    Belief is not attached to reality. Reality hurt me.

  • Joe

    Lokland, the letter i in angled brackets (followed by slash-i, also in brackets) works to italicize text for me.

  • Lokland

    @Joe

    Ahh perfect thank you

    —–

    “Can’t just wear a t-shirt and genes”

    Ohh no.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Nothing wrong with taking pride in your appearance, even if you aren’t going anywhere. Right now the GF is in a nice little cocktail dress while she knits. This morning she was wearing lingerie while she was making an omelette and doing dishes.

    Very nice.

    But I cut up veggies for the week for her, too. So, I try to be nice.

  • Abbot

    “Negotiation in itself is not a skills your pay should be based on”

    When all else is just about EQUAL in terms of qualifications, then it comes down to the individual to negotiate. There are courses offered in negotiation. Perhaps women should take them. Of course, taxpayer funded in the name of equality.

    Jobs are in short supply. Men know that. They see women and other men competing for them. So a man is going to boast his extreme dedication, long face-time at the office and more. He will state that he is always available even when not at the office. He will not claim any “other” interests outside of work unless they are somehow connected to work and the profit of the company. He will say things that few women will say. That is part of his negotiation. That is the part of his job seeking process that women want or hope men stop engaging in. Maybe someone should kindly ask men to stop thus resulting in lower pay for them and whalla! feel-good equality!

    “it’s like the whole scale is review to keep women under”

    Yes, secretive groups of men meet each week to ensure just that. Yeah. Really, what is the point or reason for that, assuming that is going on?

    “women make $0.75 for every dollar a man makes”

    In what company or industry where women and men have nearly identical positions and are putting in nearly the same hours consistently for years is that happening?

    .

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Anyways, I cannot comment on the marriage of Lokland, but what Lok is saying is that, in exchange for dealing with Lok’s “insecurities,” the wife is pretty much set at the age of 24 with a decent life ahead of her…if perhaps a higher-risk one than what other people would accept.

    So, blah blah blah, we shouldn’t tolerate men’s insecurities, but for Lok’s wife it’s a good trade. Especially when so many 24 year old women are dating low quality men and are deep in debt, with no end in sight.

    Similarly, my girlfriend referred to me, somewhat jokingly, as high maintenance this weekend. And to be honest, that’s probably true. I’m pretty demanding. And have manifested and expressed “insecurity.”

    On the other hand, I put a strong value on the relationship, and am not one of those guys that thinks of it as something I have to endure for sex, food, and house cleaning. I’m also pretty considerate most of the time, too, and very perceptive of her needs…and she can get quite emotional sometime.

    So, from her perspective, I am probably the most demanding boyfriend she has ever had. But, I’m also the best. So it’s a good trade for her

  • Escoffier

    “But I cut up veggies for the week for her, too. So, I try to be nice.”

    Ok, sorry to be officious but, you really want to cut veg as close to when they are cooked as you can. The farther in advance you do it the more flavor they will lose and the more they will deteriorate.

  • J

    Lok, congrats to you and the missus on the pregnancy.

    I do have to say though that, event after two kids and over a quarter of a century together, DH and I have never had a conversation remotely resembling the paternity testing convo you and your wife had. I don’t many people who have, and I can’t say that I wish I would have had it either.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    When all else is just about EQUAL in terms of qualifications, then it comes down to the individual to negotiate. There are courses offered in negotiation. Perhaps women should take them. Of course, taxpayer funded in the name of equality

    Sure there are courses but that is not the point. And there is no need to use taxpayer’s money for that. My advisor at my graduate school career center briefed me on that perfectly; I technically paid for it through tuition; unless you’re negotiating mergers for a living, there is no need to take extensive courses on that. Knowing what your talent is worth, the capacity of the business to pay you and refusing to sell yourself short are the key to a satisfactory negotiation. Research and awareness is all you need, man and woman, no need for classes.

    Maybe someone should kindly ask men to stop thus resulting in lower pay for them and whalla! feel-good equality!

    Yet nobody does! I think you imagine a more extreme agenda than the feminists actually have for themselves. They don’t want men to make less or suppress their talents, they want women to develop theirs, big diff! Progress for everybody, this is how you get the country prosperous.

    In what company or industry where women and men have nearly identical positions and are putting in nearly the same hours consistently for years is that happening?

    This is happening across industries. You have sections where women make closer to men and others where disparities are alarming. The average makes it that women earn less than men if you consider wages globally between men and women.

    I actually read an article a few weeks ago that said that male CEOs saw their incomes increase after they had kids. Apparently it is not the only thing that changes for his employees as well according to that summary
    http://www.aei-ideas.org/2013/01/why-male-ceos-get-stingy-on-worker-pay-after-having-a-kid/

    It really goes to show that there are so many external factors that impact your pay that have nothing to do with performance, just bias regarding gender, race, the CEOs current personal life right now, the weather… It is ridiculous. I think people should be more appalled at worker abuse than trying to make it sound like women are trying to bring men down. The system brings people in general down.

  • J

    the wife is pretty much set at the age of 24 with a decent life ahead of her…if perhaps a higher-risk one than what other people would accept.

    So, blah blah blah, we shouldn’t tolerate men’s insecurities, but for Lok’s wife it’s a good trade. Especially when so many 24 year old women are dating low quality men and are deep in debt, with no end in sight.

    So basically you’re saying that Lok’s wife is trading off wealth for a lower-trust relationship. That’s interesting. No wonder she didn’t seem hurt by his suggestion. Most women would be.

    My husband had less than I did when I married him, so money wasn’t much of a motivator for me. I did expect a certain quality to the relationship though.

  • Gin Martini

    That 75 cents thing has been debunked so many times, it’s not even funny.

    A woman putting in the same time and hours as man in the same position makes nearly the same, and there are US laws for this. That’s equality, equal pay for equal work, and it’s the Right Thing.

    If you add up all the women make vs. all the money men make, then it is uneven. But that’s because women prefer different jobs than men, and put in less hours. It shouldn’t be equal. That’s equal pay for less work, which is another word for superiority.

  • Abbot

    “This is happening across industries.”

    Do feminists know that? If so, then they know the so-called “wage gap” doesn’t compare two similarly situated co-workers of different sexes, working in the same industry, performing the same work, for the same number of hours a day. It merely reflects the median earnings of all men and women classified as full-time workers.

    Then, it is not injustice or discrimination. That does not mean that women don’t want to earn more. But the knee-jerk approach and pointing fingers has gone nowhere and will to accomplish nothing.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Gin Martini

    You are right that it isn’t funny, especially in regard of the recent WalMart lawsuit. That figure is a reality, and actually masks some deeper disparities. Hell, I have seen in my previous job how being chummy with your boss can get you a significantly greater pay, in spite of having less degrees and experience over all. Discrimination is not a belief, that is data behind it. And it even exists between women so it isn’t only a gendered issue.

    @ Abbott,

    The disparity exist across industries but even for women at the top they usually make significantly less than men, and they are also quite rare, so much so that it becomes an event when the Marthas and the Sheryls of the world write books and stuff.

  • Jesse

    Lokland,

    The other problem that is discounted here is that most men are not successful with women.
    So telling a guy to watch the naturals is great if he even knows or encounters any naturals in his lifetime.

    I suppose, but this is probably less of a factor with the Internet now. (Not that I’ve studied PUA stuff – just can’t bring myself to for some reason.) I’ve never seen a natural but I’m expecting to be better than a total goof. Just having a mindset to learn and a willingness to go for it, I guess.

    I have experienced my father, who I think is good with women but he’s completely faithful to his wife, so I’ve never seen him pick up a woman. He’s a pretty charming guy when he’s out and about, so he can make a woman of damn near any age smile and laugh within a few seconds, provided she’s not ice cold. He’s ten times better at that stuff than I am, which he should be given the time he’s had to practice. Some of it would probably constitute flirting if he were trying to get anything out of them, but he’s really not. He’s just social and he’s told me that life is just easier and more pleasant when you get on well with people and can charm them a bit, which I believe.

    Furthermore when you reach a certain age you stop caring what people think and just enjoy yourself, so he’s pretty secure in himself. I think the age difference matters as well. There’s more awkwardness and sexual tension when I walk up to a cute cashier, because it’s implied that she and I could bump uglies whereas my father is just a pleasant older man, so the dynamic is more platonic with him.

    So in sum, I don’t know how much I’ve learned from him. I’ve been exposed to someone who is good with women in a platonic context, but I’ve never seen or been taught anything more.

    As for myself, at least a few times recently I have been out somewhere and met eyes with a girl and she would just look down immediately. They basically would not hold eye contact at all. I thought that was… interesting, so I think I’m either totally repulsive or devastatingly attractive. Ha.

    —–

    On this paternity testing business:

    In the abstract I have concerns about being cheated on, but I really do not want to try to allay them in an insecure fashion. I’d rather put in the hard yards so that my wife is totally devoted to me, because I’m given to understanding that a woman completely in love is nigh-on incapable of committing adultery.

    If I felt really good about our relationship I probably wouldn’t do a paternity test, because the way my wife looks at me and acts around me would be proof enough. I mean, I’m around her a lot, I’m fucking her regularly, and if she looks at me with devotion in her eyes I think I’ll be satisfied the baby is mine. Maybe I’m naïve, but if you damage the trust by demanding a paternity test that’s not a bell you can easily unring.

    I have this idea in my mind that a woman enthralled with her man will plainly state her devotion to him. So if he jokingly whispers in her ear not to talk to strange men when she goes out, she won’t take offense, and she won’t laugh at the joke, she’ll just look at him and sincerely state that she doesn’t want any other man; she only wants him.

    I don’t know if that sounds realistic, but the idea of a woman who is sort of in tune with those base male concerns and takes the opportunity to state her fidelity sounds good to me. Even if he’s secure and trusting, she’ll just want to tell him that she won’t run around with other men. That would be a sweet woman.

  • Anacaona

    Maybe I’m naïve, but if you damage the trust by demanding a paternity test that’s not a bell you can easily unring.
    I’m not sure the combo with Mrs LL can classify as demanding. In the context it seems that they were both talking about their ‘wants’ in a marriage and the paternity test was just one more thing.
    I personally wouldn’t had minded either but then hubby and I had a similar combo where I told him that if would hire a private eye to check it he was cheating on me (or planned to or had a secret family or whatever the voices said he was doing wrong that week) and all he said is that he will like to see the receipt so he would had the chance of making fun of me wasting money for as long as we shall live. Which is fair and sort of funny and I think we all have some things that only our partner will be okay to do for us or to tolerate from us that very few people would. Hence why they are our partners, YMMV.

  • Lokland

    @J

    “So basically you’re saying that Lok’s wife is trading off wealth for a lower-trust relationship. That’s interesting.”

    I’m not finished my game yet. The last card has yet to be played.

    “No wonder she didn’t seem hurt by his suggestion. Most women would be.”

    Most women would be horrible wives would you not agree?
    Ex. What percentage of the woman you know would make a suitable wife for your sons?

    “I don’t many people who have, and I can’t say that I wish I would have had it either.”

    Honest question, why?
    It costs the woman nothing.

  • Abbot

    ” for women at the top they usually make significantly less than men, and they are also quite rare”

    Then leave the employers alone and force men to take much more time off from work and do more at home.

    If nearly all women and men were suddenly entrepreneurs, the so-called “earnings gap” would still be there “across industries” and the only difference would be the cessation of whining to Daddy employer and Uncle government.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    I suspect this has to do with a foreign vs. domestic women thing.
    (Similar to BBs comment on his Brazilian students.)

    My wife seems to be under no delusion that it is her job to make me trust her and want to spend time with her.
    If I start ignoring her she takes it as a problem with her (comically so sometimes).

    Ditto for me wrt sexual attraction.
    If we ever go a day without sex that reflects badly on me.

    Most NA women want men to qualify themselves for relationships and sex.
    For us, I make her horny and she makes me love her, simple exchange.

    @Jesse

    “As for myself, at least a few times recently I have been out somewhere and met eyes with a girl and she would just look down immediately.”

    This will happen a lot under all circumstances and I am not certain what it means so I just skip over it unless she makes some kind of move afterwards.

  • Lokland

    “Nothing wrong with taking pride in your appearance, even if you aren’t going anywhere. Right now the GF is in a nice little cocktail dress while she knits. This morning she was wearing lingerie while she was making an omelette and doing dishes.”

    There are few things better than an omelette served by a women in heels with some lingerie (preferably the kind with the socks and the bit that connects em to the torso bit) on-ish.

  • Jesse

    Ana,

    I’m not sure the combo with Mrs LL can classify as demanding. In the context it seems that they were both talking about their ‘wants’ in a marriage and the paternity test was just one more thing.

    To be clear I was not commenting on Lokland’s own arrangement.

    Personally I’d rather find a good partner and forgo the paternity tests and private eyes. That’s the ideal. Each person takes the other at their word and that’s good enough.

    I’m don’t want any woman who needs my cell phone or e-mail passwords in order to snoop through my business. But there are probably other imperfections and neuroses that I can tolerate, or ideally try to help her overcome.

  • Anacaona

    I suspect this has to do with a foreign vs. domestic women thing.
    (Similar to BBs comment on his Brazilian students.)

    I don’t know I think it has do with with what kind of things you personally fear based in culture. Cheating my case is in as severe as abuse for marriage. So for me anyone that fears cheating and takes measures to counteract it is being reasonable. Not sure if you could do the same towards any other Latina, women though. Maybe I should ask around and let you know what my friends think.

    My wife seems to be under no delusion that it is her job to make me trust her and want to spend time with her.
    If I start ignoring her she takes it as a problem with her (comically so sometimes).

    I think we have this discussion before about what women bring to the table and what women though it was valuable ended up not being what men value in general terms. This is just probably another gender difference. But I don’t think you should consider it all NA it depends on how a woman sees it.
    I see the paternity testing as a general measure not a particular thing for me only. The same with my husband and the private eye he sees it “Ana is being paranoid as usual, not she thinks I’m a cheating scum of Earth”.’
    I also think that there is a line you probably haven’t crossed with your wife. I did over did the ‘you might cheat on me’ once and I backed out as soon as I saw it. Try to be aware that in the same way you found her joke about the new boyfriend distasteful one day you might do something completely innocent and she will fell hurt and upset. I think you probably won’t push it, but just wanted to mention it just in case.

  • Jesse

    Lokland,

    This will happen a lot under all circumstances and I am not certain what it means so I just skip over it unless she makes some kind of move afterwards.

    My untested hypothesis is that it might mean she’s attracted to you and willing to be persuaded.

    If you’re a decent-looking guy and you carry yourself well, and you look at a woman and she immediately looks down and stands there passively, it could be a submissive gesture. Looking down is generally a submissive gesture, as I understand it. (If she looked up over your head after meeting eyes with you, you’re probably dead in the water.)

    In light of the fact that women tend to be submissive and would probably rather be approached than have to approach, ideally, then it might mean she finds you appealing. I’m just imagining an appealing guy walking into a room full of women. What will happen? Will they march up to him and start flirting? Well, some might, but in general they might just feel butterflies. So what he would need to realize is that them looking down means they’re attracted and he just has to go over to one and start talking and she will be quite agreeable.

    Of course in different circumstances there are probably much more mundane explanations, so I wouldn’t say every woman who does this likes you. But in the right situation it could be. Long story short, skipping over a woman who does this could mean you’re missing an opportunity. (Not you, but the general ‘you.’)

    I’ll have to test this stuff for myself. When it happened to me it was strange and almost easy to take negatively, because it became very slightly socially awkward because they didn’t engage me normally. But it didn’t feel like contempt. I’m aware men tend to overestimate women’s interest quite easily but to me this is possibly true. (As far as I know the ‘men overestimate women’s interest’ thing occurs when women actually talk to men, and then the guy thinks ‘she’s flirting with me,’ which is a different situation from what I’m discussing.)

    Maybe some of the girls could comment on times they saw a guy who was attractive and carried himself well (not douche swag, just comfortable and confident), whom they immediately felt drawn to. If he looked at you, what did you do?

  • Jackie

    @Mireille (322)

    Thanks for the kind words, M! :)

    I think when we talk about things like destructive and poisonous beliefs, which appear to quite prevalent in the ‘sphere, it’s really hard to see it from the inside. People don’t want to drink poison on purpose; they don’t even see it as poison! Like any other drug, they are only taking it to cope with massive amounts of pain. :(

    I don’t think I will ever be eloquent enough to convince Lokland that being a short man isn’t a terrible thing, though!

  • Jackie

    @Jesse

    Hey Jesse!

    I find your comments really interesting and insightful. I hope you will stick around! :)

  • Emily

    For me, the immediately looking down thing was just me being shy. It’s one of those things that I had to train myself not to do, but it can be a good sign. At the very least, I wouldn’t consider it a bad sign.

  • Jackie

    @J

    “So basically you’re saying that Lok’s wife is trading off wealth for a lower-trust relationship. That’s interesting. No wonder she didn’t seem hurt by his suggestion. Most women would be.”
    ===
    J, I’d be interested in your opinion: When”trading wealth” is involved in relationships, where does the line blur into between this and sex work?

    I mean, when I see that ancient crustacean Hugh Hefner and those sad, exploited “playmates” I think it is purely a transactional, sex worker relationship. There is nothing like “love” involved on either side. They are swapping image/”sex” for publicity/cash.

    Where is the point of demarcation?

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Abbott,

    Then leave the employers alone and force men to take much more time off from work and do more at home.

    I’m pretty sure feminists started with that point on their agenda; this is how you now even have the paternity leave available in some countries when baby comes. However how do you negotiate and obtain that if you don’t talk with employers. Most employers in the US won’t keep your job open for you to come back after maternity leave. Men don’t want to risk losing their jobs and women will always be the one carrying the babies so you need government to show companies not to lose some of their best people and how to help their employees balance life and work. Making money and having (well raised) children are both beneficial to the prosperity of a country.

    If nearly all women and men were suddenly entrepreneurs, the so-called “earnings gap” would still be there “across industries” and the only difference would be the cessation of whining to Daddy employer and Uncle government.

    I agree but we live in such a specialised world now that making basic things for ourselves makes it super expensive and unfortunately not viable business wise. Globalization and all. Take my example, I started crocheting that winter bedcover, at $5 the yarn ball and for a queen bed, I’ll well around $150 to make it on my own when Walmart sells some similar made in China for way less. Sniff, no justice for the labor of love…

    @ LokLand,

    What it cost for women? Personally, dignity and trust, but I’d admit I have a huge sense of these two, probably due to growing up in a tough environment.
    Maybe it is because I’m black and the usual guests on the Mawry and Springer shows are black women doing paternity tests and that bothers me, I don’t know; What I think is that they seems very pathetic too me, living such a dissolute life they have no idea who could be the father of their kid. If the man I loved presented me with this request, I’d automatically understand that he considers me equally low class and pathetic, potentially unworthy of trust. I don’t necessary consider myself a smart person, got my own blind spots, but I do consider myself a serious, loyal and reliable person. I’ll walk away knowing that my bf/fiance actually in spite of all the time we spent together didn’t get a basic if not deep understanding of my values and ethics, in which case we have nothing to do marrying each other. I don’t care whether he remembers what color is my favorite but the necessary stuff to make life’s journey together? He has to get me clear or move on.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    Maybe some of the girls could comment on times they saw a guy who was attractive and carried himself well (not douche swag, just comfortable and confident), whom they immediately felt drawn to. If he looked at you, what did you do?

    Guilty! I think hold/maintaining eye contact is an invitation of some sort. When you do it, you can see people starting to wonder “Do I know him/her?” in their head. I’m personally too shy/paranoid to maintain eye contact in general. But I have done it sometimes when I was pro-actively “scanning” a place (do I sound like a cylon yet? lol). I don’t think it really means something. Us women are raised to dissuade any male interest, and then when it is reproduction time, now you have to encourage it. Hello Schizo!
    It seems the trick is to try and make eye contact with the same person several time in a short laps of time, so that they understand your interest and that it isn’t a coincidence.

  • JP

    @Jackie:

    “Where is the point of demarcation?”

    The question is the nature of the emotional bond between the two people.

    I don’t know what this specific bond is called, but it’s a distinct link between two people and if it’s there, it’s there.

    It’s a feature of human nature.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    You have a funny style of debate, as I remembered from a previous thread. IIRC, you said one of the functions or religion was “not to kill.” When I gave you examples of killing in the name of religion, you condescendingly said I should read more and my examples were “wrong” because of the reasons for killing.

    Reasons aside, these people were still killed, if even by their own hand, in accordance with their religion(s). How are they any less dead? Which is why I find it kind of strange that you are telling me my facts are, again, “wrong.”

    *Your 1-way polygamy is still TRUE. It happened. That is the point.

    You’ve apparently stopped sleeping with other women (that’s good to hear!) and apparently you were okay with “low N” as opposed expecting your wife to be a virgin. Congrats on being more open-minded that I thought.

    *Your wife signed a pre-nup. This is TRUE. What about this statement is incorrect?
    *You demanded paternity testing. This is, again, TRUE. I’m not particularly interested in your use of napkins. Congrats, again, but it’s beside the point.

    For someone who dismisses complexities in relationships as “bullshit,” you sure do like to add on information that is besides the point when the relationships in question are yours.

    Look, dude, I think stuff like this “1-way open relationship” sleeping with other women while your wife is faithful is *horsepucky*. Same with paternity testing in a wife that has only conveyed absolute devotion.

    Not even the wealth of Croesus would compensate for this, for people who have not been conditioned to exploitation. You’ve written of your wife’s father having 20+ mistresses. This is not coincidental with the behavior she has been conditioned to accept.

    You are teaching your daughters that all this behavior is okay, since actions speak a lot louder than words. When the chickens come to roost, you have said that you will lie, even as you’ve written about your own dad concealing his behavior from you.

    You are continuing generational patterns and behaviors that are pretty much guaranteeing your kids will repeat your same experience. You are repeating the same mindset. Beliefs are not reality; they are one interpretation of reality. You retain unquestioned beliefs that cause a lot of pain, in my observation.

    Obviously nothing I say will change anything, you will continue to do as you will. I should probably just skip your comments in the future and save us both the time. You can have the last word.

    Peace–

  • Abbot

    “paternity leave available in some countries when baby comes. However how do you negotiate and obtain that if you don’t talk with employers”

    This is NOT about employers. Its about men and if men don’t want to take time off for babies then they will not. Its the men that women have to negotiate with, NOT employers. Leave the employers alone as they have more important matters to deal with than personal baby problems.

    “we live in such a specialised world now that making basic things for ourselves makes it super expensive and unfortunately not viable business wise. Globalization and all.”

    No no no. Entrepreneurs are merely self employed people who open and manage their own businesses. There are many in the US. There needs to be more. Then the whiners will have only themselves to whine to.

    So again -

    If nearly all women and men were suddenly entrepreneurs, the so-called “earnings gap” would still be there “across industries” and the only difference would be the cessation of whining to Daddy employer and Uncle government.

    Pre 1970, few workers complained about working in corporations. Now you hear it often. They have been hijacked and turned to shit.

    And that is why women aspire to working for corporations. The daddy and uncle thing and of course the Human Resources police department to enforce the social engineering.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    *Your 1-way polygamy is still TRUE. It happened. That is the point.

    Yes, as is the same statement Men rape Women. Without qualification it is an inherently valueless set of words.

    As for my ‘napkins’ as you call them, the rest of the non-emotional world calls them reasons.

    apparently you were okay with “low N” as opposed expecting your wife to be a virgin. Congrats on being more open-minded that I thought.

    I’ve been fairly open about this from the very beginning. Adjustments over time caused by the intake of information has occurred obviously.

    I don’t think I have ever said that low N was acceptable. I do maintain that an N of 1 is worse than an N of 0 however. Ditto for every sexual action.

    As for congratulations. Nothing has altered or changed, you’ve merely caught up with the debate. It is neither required nor warranted under the given circumstances.

    *Your wife signed a pre-nup. This is TRUE. What about this statement is incorrect?

    See above for the explanation of why qualification of a statement is not only a useful but not a fallacious debate tactic.

    Whatever your reasoning is against pre-nups (which you have not provided) is equally applicable to my wife.

    I guess we are both horrid people, meant for each other in a manner of speaking.

    as I remembered from a previous thread. IIRC, you said one of the functions or religion was “not to kill.” When I gave you examples of killing in the name of religion, you condescendingly said I should read more and my examples were “wrong” because of the reasons for killing.

    Yes and I provided those nasty things called reasons demonstrate your misunderstanding of my point.

    That was not in any way condescending. I do it every day to help people gain a better understanding of this or that.

    This is condescending;

    Your an idiot for not being able to comprehend why you are wrong even after being provided with reasons as to why.

    ” How are they any less dead? Which is why I find it kind of strange that you are telling me my facts are, again, “wrong.””

    They are not but you have mis-represented my argument to support your own purposes.

    My argument was that successful cultures (typically centred around religion) were those that survived unlike those that did kill.

    and hence the genetic pre-disposition leading to these societal traits was propagated over those genes that favoured killing.

    Which brought us to my final point, that religions (as we see them today) are centred around ‘Thou Shalt Not Kill’ not because of any rules from God but innate advantages the earliest members of those religions contained as opposed to others (which are no longer with us).

  • pvw

    @J April 21, 2013 at 1:02 am

    Hey, pvw! Good to see you.

    Here are my recollections of the 50s and 60s:

    –Were these women outliers, seen as anomalous in their time, when presumably, fewer wives worked?

    Yes, I think they were….but she also seen as an oddball.

    –Were they the type of alpha female who would have been successful anyway, regardless of the constraints of the time?

    Yes, they typically were the brightest of women.

    –Did they have to work and so didn’t have the luxury of staying at home?

    Sometimes.

    Me: Thanks for the greetings, J! When I was growing up, most of the working mothers I knew were in the traditional female fields, while today, I know more women who are in the nontraditional ones. I suppose they could have done the traditional female field, if they had the inclination, but they seemed to like pursuing the nontraditional, whether from their parents, or not, to pursue the more lucrative fields.

    The ones in the more demanding fields, the more likely they were eventually to opt out and work from home or switch fields altogether. Some examples, the former corporate lawyer who does the occasional drafting of a will or probating an estate, or the one who moved on to law school teaching, or the engineer who does free lance projects from home.

    No feminist angst, though….

  • Lokland

    “Where is the point of demarcation?”

    Finally the insinuation that my wife is a whore no matter how indirect was completely inappropriate.

    Your meaning was quite obvious and very un-Christian.

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “My untested hypothesis is that it might mean she’s attracted to you and willing to be persuaded.”

    Yes of course but think about it you could probably say the same for any number of actions.

    What Mireille said is probably the best which is not to expect sustained eye contact but multiple quick bursts.

    @Jesse

    “I think we have this discussion before about what women bring to the table and what women though it was valuable ended up not being what men value in general terms. This is just probably another gender difference. But I don’t think you should consider it all NA it depends on how a woman sees it.
    I see the paternity testing as a general measure not a particular thing for me only. The same with my husband and the private eye he sees it “Ana is being paranoid as usual, not she thinks I’m a cheating scum of Earth”.’”

    Ditto this.
    Obviously NAWALT as always.

    Thats how me and my wife viewed it. Just another thing on the checklists to be done before marriage nothing particularly special or meaningful about it.

    She did say she was happy she could provide me with as much certainty as she had however.

    She really did consider it a way to make me trust her more not a statement of lack of trust.

  • Lokland

    Ohh one thing.

    Jackie,

    It was 1-way open not 1-way polygamy.

    Polygamy (in humans) is defined as marriage to multiple partners (polyamory being the word when its both partners).

    I had one relationship with women on the side whom I only ever saw once not even a pre-tense of a relationship.
    Perhaps someone knows the technical term.

  • Anacaona

    Perhaps someone knows the technical term.
    Cheating :p

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Lokland,

    To Jackie’s defense, you’re the one who talked about how your wife married young and wealthy to make me look bad.

    I don’t think anybody is calling your wife names. Productivity is an incentive to marry for sure. Just don’t use it to prop yourself as superior to others. That’s were I take issue because that’s contemptuous.

    @ Abbott,

    What does that say when men don’t want to raise their own children? Is that feminists’s faults as well? Employers are the one hiring and letting go, it is with them you negotiate. Plus employers are also men, so in the end you have to negotiate with the men/employers/husbands. Your argument is circular and doesn’t hold then. I know you don’t speak for all men when you say they don’t want to raise their own kids.

  • Abbot

    “I know you don’t speak for all men when you say they don’t want to raise their own kids”

    Precisely because that has never been stated. Men in the US are working full time and raising their kids and they are also not taking paternity leave even if its available. That has being going on for decades. The ONLY people who have a problem with the current situation in a big way are women. Its women who injected this concept of paternity leave, not men. Men have few gripes.

    Very few women aspire to being entrepreneurs. No daddy to lean on.

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

      Very few women aspire to being entrepreneurs.

      Wrong. This is a rapidly growing sector of the economy.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    Precisely because that has never been stated. Men in the US are working full time and raising their kids and they are also not taking paternity leave even if its available. That has being going on for decades. The ONLY people who have a problem with the current situation in a big way are women. Its women who injected this concept of paternity leave, not men. Men have few gripes.

    Very few women aspire to being entrepreneurs. No daddy to lean on.

    Wrong! Think about it. If cannot be raising their own children in practice that much if they spend all their time at work. It is already clear that women who work as much as their husband don’t spend that much with their kids as well. Women are still the one doing most of childcare. My own father worked full time, traveling and such and NEVER sat to teach me math. My mom did and she worked full time as well. It is this unfairness that prompted the suggestion for paternity leave. The fact if we make sure you get a percentage of your pay or are able to work part time for men and women, more parents in general will be involved in raising their kids. Men have few gripes, because they get the easier end of the stick lol.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    Regarding entrepreneurship, plenty of women start business out of their houses in domestic stuff like catering, decorations, graphic design, event planning, and so on. That’s the only way they can manage the childrearing pressure and still maintain an income and a career. I was reading a decoration blog from which the author said that what she has started as a hobby had gradually given her more income so she gave up her outside job. Then in the recession her husband lost his job so she’s the breadwinner now. Women want the same that men, they just don’t want to sacrifice meaning or family for that. It’s hard to reconcile these two but such is life.

  • Abbot

    “If cannot be raising their own children in practice that much if they spend all their time at work”

    Paternity leave is for infants. Is it now for 18 years?

    “if we make sure you get a percentage of your pay or are able to work part time for men and women, more parents in general will be involved in raising their kids”

    That is not paternity leave. Its some type of protracted feminist social-engineering fantasy. If men were on board with that, it would have been done already. Clearly, men don’t want it. With all the available motherly types of women now flooding into the US, men will marry them before putting up with women with such demands.

  • Abbot

    “they just don’t want to sacrifice meaning or family for that”

    But have no problem projecting that worldview on employers and men in general with laws if need be. Nice.

  • Lokland

    @Mir

    “To Jackie’s defense, you’re the one who talked about how your wife married young and wealthy to make me look bad.”

    In my own defence you offered a harsh and unprovoked critique of me (285) in response to a comment I made to someone else.

    I in turn offered my critique of you which is still the same and happened to serve as my own defence at the time.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ LokLand,

    The problem is you didn’t answer the critique in a constructive manner. You proceeded to try and insult/shame me in a catty manner to say the least. Especially when I never made a comment against your wife, but was questioning your reasoning for demanding so many things. I tried the civilized talk, you preferred insults because you felt attacked, that’s your choice. It seems to me you don’t like people questioning you and try to shut them down, poorly on top of it. Critiquing is not a negative thing, it can bring more clarity to a statement and a position, this is how you get a convo going; not by bullying people and calling them old or childless because they “dared” asking why.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    That is not paternity leave. Its some type of protracted feminist social-engineering fantasy. If men were on board with that, it would have been done already. Clearly, men don’t want it. With all the available motherly types of women now flooding into the US, men will marry them before putting up with women with such demands.

    Paternity leave =/= Flex work
    PL: 3 to 6 months depending on countries.
    FL: depending on industry and employer.

    Women project their views on society because they live in it; just like men/religious people/employers/employees etc… do. Everybody can demand what they want from the society they live in, it isn’t an entity separate. You yourself as a white(?) have your own personal view you want the wold to adopt; why you and not others as well.

  • Lokland

    Comment 285 contains no question mark.
    I tried again looking for poor grammar, still no hint of a question.

    You offered your opinion on why I was unsuitable and so I offered the same for you.
    I then used an appeal to authority, the opinion of the 24yo>30yo.

    Theres nothing catty about acknowledging a real phenomena which is that young women have more value than old women and thus their choices will reflect male value better than the choices of older women.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ LL

    So you’re basically telling me that you have no valid explanation to give for yourself but that surely the fact that a woman of a younger age accepted your conditions makes them? Gotcha!

    For the record, I didn’t say you were unsuitable, you stated that yourself. Now it turns out you’re not so much since you’re “wealthy”. I simply wondered how you could still harbour doubts about your own suitability and your partner when she displayed so much loyalty already. I guess I’m not getting an answer to that question.
    Also I’m pretty sure no 24 yo has any authority to speak over me, married or not. Just like tall men don’t have any over short ones. I hope you get that.

  • Abbot

    “You yourself as a white(?) have your own personal view you want the wold to adopt; why you and not others as well.”

    Only a tiny minority of “groups” want others to live by their personal views. They are classified as fanatics. Feminists included. The other fanatics have no overarching interest in sharing a home life with the people they want to change. But the difference with feminists is they want men – the people who they desire to live with – to embrace their world view. They attempt to convince men its in their best interest to get employers to change. But men aint buying it and that really grates on feminists. In essence, feminists are trying to mold men to their liking for use as husbands and fathers. They manage to get their way with men while single and getting all “empowered” but clench their fists in frustration when they realize thats about the only control they have.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    @ Esc

    Ok, sorry to be officious but, you really want to cut veg as close to when they are cooked as you can. The farther in advance you do it the more flavor they will lose and the more they will deteriorate.

    Absolutely true! No disagreement and as always I appreciate the cooking advice. The only issue is that she often has a tough schedule and won’t always do it herself, and I haven’t noticed them getting to the point of non-edible, so I am okay with doing this thing for her.

    Am I wrong here? Honest question. Me not expert chef, that’s my bro-in-law.

    @J

    So basically you’re saying that Lok’s wife is trading off wealth for a lower-trust relationship. That’s interesting. No wonder she didn’t seem hurt by his suggestion. Most women would be.

    Wealth? No. A stable relationship, life, and all the benefits of those.
    As for what would hurt her or not hurt her: varies across individuals and cultures.

  • J

    I’m not finished my game yet. The last card has yet to be played.

    I suppose not, but there are people who manage to have good marriages without strategizing the relationship like a card game.

    Most women would be horrible wives would you not agree?</i.

    No, not really.

    Ex. What percentage of the woman you know would make a suitable wife for your sons?

    Percentage of women in general? I don’t know. There are girls in our circle who I believe will grow up to be suitable wives for boys like my sons. I’m sure there are girls in other circles who will grow up to be suitable wives for boys like themselves.

    Honest question, why? It costs the woman nothing.

    Because it says, “I distrust you.” Had DH every asked me to do it, I would have–but I’d also have trhrown it up in every argument he had thereafter.

    In your case, your level of concern that your wife may have cheated or her concern that the hospital could give you the wrong child seems way overblown to me. After our first glances at either of my boys, neither DH nor I would have ever mistaken another baby for them. Your child, who will no doubt have a characteristic look due to less usual combination of ethnicities, will be an even more identifiable. Per Dalrock, cuckoldry is relatively rare (2-3%) among men who believe themselves to be the father. Even among men who have doubts, two-thirds are wrong about their doubts. Hospital mix-ups are far more rare. I have to wonder what the two of you are so worried about.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    FTR, I support state-mandated paternity tests of all children.

    Don’t see the issue with it, if it is mandated for everyone.

  • J

    @ADBG

    Wealth? No. A stable relationship, life, and all the benefits of those.

    A woman can get all that without all the distrust.

    As for what would hurt her or not hurt her: varies across individuals and cultures.

    I think many women would be hurt.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ ADBG,

    Flash steam and freeze the veggies and you’re good to go.

  • J

    @Jackie

    J, I’d be interested in your opinion: When”trading wealth” is involved in relationships, where does the line blur into between this and sex work?

    I’m going to risk Lok thinking that I’m calling his wife names and answer this because I think it’s an interesting question. Lok, this is academic and NOT about you.

    I mean, when I see that ancient crustacean Hugh Hefner and those sad, exploited “playmates” I think it is purely a transactional, sex worker relationship. There is nothing like “love” involved on either side. They are swapping image/”sex” for publicity/cash.

    I basically agree with the above though I’m not sure all the girls are exploited. Some don’t seem to be the sharpest knives in the drawer and probably are exploited. Others seem to me know just what the deal is and are still willing to make that deal. Obviously, one or both parties are being used. (Did you ever see Kendra Whatshername’s autobiography? There’s a description of group sex with a Viagra-assisted Hef that made me want to vomit.)

    Where is the point of demarcation?

    Here is where things get slippery. We all want the best mate we can get. For men, that generally involves looks. For women, the ability to provide. I doubt my husband would love me if he didn’t find me beautiful; I doubt I would have married him if I thought he was going to turn out to be a poor provider–my kids need things. But the issue, as JP points out is the rest of the relationship. There are many things I love about DH other than his ability to earn a living. He is a decent, honest, intelligent, handsome and funny guy who is damn formidible to boot. After all is time, he still makes me laugh. He’s more than just a paycheck to me, and I was always been willing to do my share of the providing when we needed me to work .

    And I’m sure I’m more than just a set of boobs to him too. He’s been there in sickness and in health for me–through infertility issues, miscarriages, c-section, breast cancer scares, etc. He sat by my hospital bed for days on end last year as I turned a lovely shade of green. His happiest moment was when I looked at myself in the mirror, turned towards him, and weakly hummed the witches theme music from the Wizard of Oz because he knew if I could joke that I’d be fine.

    So I guess what I’m saying is that looks and money are obviously going to be factors, but, when they are the only factors, there’s use.

  • J

    @Mireille

    What it cost for women? Personally, dignity and trust, but I’d admit I have a huge sense of these two, probably due to growing up in a tough environment.

    Yeah, I would find it hard to be in a relationship without that.

    Maybe it is because I’m black and the usual guests on the Mawry and Springer shows are black women doing paternity tests and that bothers me, I don’t know;

    Meh, both shows feature some lovely white trash women as well. I often wonder if the folks at Stormfront every watch those shows; that could really shake one’s sense of superiority, ya know?

    BTW, lest all this BS get you down, the opportunity to meet a great guy with whom one can have a stable life doesn’t end at 24. I was over 30 when I meet my husband. The birth of my sons bracketed my 40th b’day. And I didn’t have to jump through hoops to get that. Once I found the right guy, it all came pretty easily.

  • Jackie

    @J

    Hey J!
    Thanks for getting back to me– I appreciate it. (And, seeing as I called his wife a saint earlier, it’s too bad that Lokland was unable to see the question for what it was. He has taken the same posture towards Sassy and Susan, earlier, for perceived slights as well. It’s really too bad, since that is no one’s intention towards him.)

    Two thoughts, in response:
    1) My “line” is one of subtraction: When you take away the sex/looks and the money/provision, what’s left? In the case of “Hef” and his consorts, I’d guess the answer is, Zilch.

    2)Re: the exploitation of the women like the Playboy consorts and Hef is somewhat analogous to professional athletes and team owners. People will say, look at how much the athletes making, but I’m thinking, look at how at how much they’re making– FOR the owners in comparison. Their careers –if they even get that far– are extremely truncated and never without serious side effects/damage. To me, there’s no contest.

    I haven’t read that awful-sounding book by the PB Kendra. (Imagine that poor ghostwriter who did the heavy lifting, since you know K. didn’t even attempt to write anything herself.)

    I do think I remember hearing the detail that in exchange for basically selling their lives 24/7 to Hef (they couldn’t really leave unless it was in a group, had curfews and that’s not even including the geriatric group sex), they got room and board and around $1000/week. And, IIRC, it was paid to them in a very demeaning manner– like they had to go and beg for it, or something similar. :(

    In addition, these girls usually come from unstable backgrounds– lots of daddy issues and abuse. I’m not saying always but 21-yr-olds don’t end up having octagenarian group sex, poly relationships (what would be the correct term for “one of multiple girlfriends”?) and 8pm curfews without *some* kind of “issues” in their backgrounds.

  • Jackie

    @Mireille (363)

    Thanks for speaking in my defense, M!

    I let Lokland have the last word, and am skipping his replies, but he really has given me great insights into understanding things in my own past.

    The same kind of dichotomy of “younger = better” was practiced by my grandmother with “thinner = better” (ie if you weighed in the triple-digits you were too much). There is an arbitrary belief that has the tiniest granule of truth. But they are unable to justify it or extrapolate it outside of their own experience and demean and diminish any evidence to the contrary.

    Additionally, it led me to this great article on the effects of toxic shaming, for all the talk of “subhumans” around here:
    http://therawness.com/raw-concepts-the-superhumansubhuman-dichotomy-of-shame/

    Meanwhile, these interactions helps me understand the mindset of people like my grandmother in much greater detail. Essentially, many people (and as much as I intensely dislike my grandmother, she is an abuse survivor) continue to view power/control dynamics from an abusive dichotomy. It is “control others or be controlled.” There is no choice that exists beyond that mindset.

    I hope to someday develop compassion for my grandmother. Seeing as much suffering and exploitation as she caused– it’s not like her controlling behavior ever brought her closer to happiness. Or anything more than temporary relief to some gnawing worry within that could never be truly soothed or sated.

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

    From this site and written over ten years ago :

    My comments are directed at the men of this country, who over the past decades:

    Sit back in their easy chair reading Newsweek or spend their time bare chested at a football game, well filled with suds to maintain those obscene beer bellies, while they have put their wives and children at risk. This nation is being invaded wholesale with illegal aliens who come into this country and kidnap, rape and murder our women and children. Some are caught, most are not. Why do the men turn a blind eye in pursuit of good times?

    Today the men in this country sit around watching mindless trash like Survivor or Friends on the boob tube, instead of shouting down the roof against state and federal systems that are utterly and completely rotten beyond redemption. Systems and agencies that are putting their women and children into a state of involuntary servitude for all their lives. Instead they sit back with nary a whisper while state and federal judges to uphold this carnage against the people. Why is this?

    Black robed judges continue to hand out welfare and benefits to illegal aliens who are legally entitled to nothing but deportation. Instead of holding their elected public servants accountable for this insanity, men just get up in the morning, go to work at the company store, then return home in the evening to their false sense of security. Why is this? Back in 1776, this breed of men would be called cowards.

    While the IRS bleeds a family dry, forcing the woman into the workplace and leaving the children to be raised by strangers, many of whom are pedophiles, the man of the house spends his free time doing the “guy thing” at a NASCAR speedway. Why is this? Why won’t these men stand up to this rogue agency called the IRS?

    Over the past 40 years, the men of this country have sat back and allowed themselves to be brow beaten into submission and castrated by so-called “feminists” like Rosie O’Donnell and Hillary Clinton (although I defy anyone to show me one single feminine attribute of those females) instead of stand up and saying, “Hell No!”

    Hard core feminists aren’t out there for equal pay, they’re out there to destroy the male and the family unit. How it must gall them that the only way lesbians can “impregnate” their female lovers is artificial insemination by a male sperm.

    PC is a cancer on this nation that has turned a Godly nation into a moral sewer. These men have put their children in harms way via mandatory social indoctrination in the anti-God public school system. Why is this?

    The men of this country will go to extraordinary lengths to find the right fishing hole, but they refuse to lift a finger to ensure that their women and children will not be forced into global citizenship under the UN. Why is this?

    Women in this country spend hundreds of millions of dollars every year on “romance books” whose pages are filled with knights in shining armor and genuine heroes coming to rescue the damsel in distress. Why do you suppose that is?

    Why do you suppose the men are allowing their women and children to be put at risk in all the ways described above?

    Why are the women the ones out there on the front lines battling this government tooth and nail for our children – ready and willing to die if necessary to protect our own?

    Because America has lost it’s manhood.

    I don’t know what to make of this.

  • Annie

    Well I’m not American, not based in any city and I’m a Gen Xer and a Christian, so that effects my views.

    We xers were told as young women to consider any career we wanted to and not to worry about marriage or kids, because there was plenty of time for that. Of my peers at school and college, roughly only half the women are married and/or with children (in my group it’s usually both). I saw the results of a survey recently that suggested that between 20-45% of graduates say they met “the love of their lifes” in college (they weren’t necessarily married or even dating this person interestingly). Just as years ago when people would meet in high school or during college and then get married young, human biology doesn’t “evolve” that quickly. The period between 16-22 is a prime time to meet a mate and we do everyone, male and female, a huge disservice by telling them that this stuff can be put off until they have all their ducks in a row and an executive job, apartment in the city and a holiday home in the country. I think Millennial women have seen the mistakes we Xers have made and many are going to make sure they don’t make the same ones.

  • Annie

    Should add the percentage varied with major and college. All or nearly all female or male cohorts have a lower percentage than more mixed groups. Comp Sci was listed as a subject where you were highly unlikely to meet a match for example.

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Jackie

    Re: the exploitation of the women like the Playboy consorts and Hef is somewhat analogous to professional athletes and team owners.

    The girls are certainly in it for the glamour, which is fleeting (Playboy has it’s own age 30 expiration); the material comfort, with all of Hef’s weird strings attached; and career advancement, essentially B movies and non-reality TV.

    That all makes perfect sense. Hef, though, seems like a textbook study on psychological complexes and dysfunction. He’s passed all of his eccentricities off as “business” or “philosophy” over the decades, but what little I’ve read about his private life, he’s got the hyper-dominance and sexual entitlement mentality of 1,000 players…

  • mr. wavevector

    There’s something I don’t understand. When married guys here advise against getting married, are they admitting stupidity in getting married themselves? Do they view it as a foolish mistake they’re now locked into, and they’re just hoping to ride that bomb out without it going kaboom?

    I’ve been thinking about the “against getting married” discussion I started in this thread in this thread in the wee hours of Friday morning.

    On Generalizations:

    It is interesting to observe the way people respond to generalizations like the one I made about the undesirability of marriage. I saw three types of responses: those who think the generalization is about them; those who think it’s about the speaker; and those who treat it like an abstraction that’s neither about them or the speaker.

    A number of people here responded negatively to my suggestions that a young man should be skeptical about marriage because they took it personally – about their marriage or opportunities for marriage. I can understand that this might be threatening to those who believe in marriage. Even women who declare they don’t want to be married might find it threatening because they want the freedom to choose. If that choice is removed because no men are willing to marry, rather than their own decision to stay single, they lose the power of self determination.

    The second observation is taking a generalization to be about the speaker (me in this case). Everyone (except Susan) who responded to my comments thought my comments were about me and my marriage. I’ve noticed that women are particularly prone to interpreting generalizations this way, although many men do too as illustrated by Jesse’s comment above.

    Several of the commentators such as J, Jackie, SayWhaat, and Sai, were very sympathetic and concerned about what they interpreted as distress in my marriage. (Thank you for your concern and kind wishes, ladies!).

    Others, like Jesse and Mereille reacted negatively in a sort of “shoot the messenger” manner. They cast aspersions on my character, integrity and the quality of my marriage.

    But you know, my comments were never about me or my marriage, for good or bad. They were about what I see around me, the second hand experiences of friends, and things I read on shared parenting advocacy sites like Fathers and Families. Despite having a marriage that I would be hard pressed to find fault with, I don’t think the modern legal institution of marriage is just, nor the conduct of many married people commendable.

    The one person who interpreted my comments in the manner I intended was Susan. She quite correctly questioned how representative the worst case divorce scenario I presented was, and was wondering if statistics are available for these negative divorce outcomes. Susan, I would like to see those statistics too. If I find any useful information I will share it here. Anecdotally and speculatively, it seems that cases of obvious injustice (from the male perspective) happen often enough so most middle age men are acquainted with someone who has experienced it. It’s a first-degree of separation problem, suggesting that at least a few percent of the male population is affected by negative divorce outcomes bad enough to engender negative attitudes towards marriage in the male population. 95% of divorce settlements could be perfectly fair, but the remaining 5% that aren’t might be enough to poison the well.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      at least a few percent of the male population is affected by negative divorce outcomes bad enough to engender negative attitudes towards marriage in the male population. 95% of divorce settlements could be perfectly fair, but the remaining 5% that aren’t might be enough to poison the well.

      I suspect you’re right, and that’s fine. I just think that we should be aware that it’s 5% – I believe a very large number of impressionable young men would guess a much higher percentage. It’s another case of Pluralistic Ignorance. Men should understand the real risk, as reflected in the numbers. Of course they are free to set their risk tolerance anywhere they like, i.e. if it happens to one man, I’m not getting married.

  • Anacaona

    @Wavevector
    Where do I fit in your interpretation of the comments? Just curious.

  • Jesse

    mr. wavevector,

    Others, like Jesse… reacted negatively in a sort of “shoot the messenger” manner. They cast aspersions on my character, integrity and the quality of my marriage.

    Evidence please.

  • mr. wavevector

    More thoughts on the discussions from last Friday, this time on the issue of fear and anxiety. I mentioned that both my wife and I experience occasional anxiety or fear about our marriage – my wife in her dreams, and I in my waking reflections.

    Many of you thought this was symptomatic of a problem in the relationship or a personal problem for either my wife or me. And certainly fear or anxiety can be a problem if it intense enough or chronic enough to be debilitating.

    But I don’t think that’s what my wife and I experience. I think the level of anxiety we feel is normal and positive. It’s a recognition that what we have is highly valuable to us, but it’s something that we can lose if we’re not careful. Some fear of loss is needed to motivate us to protect what we hold dear. Complacency is the enemy of relationships, as the stories of men totally surprised by their wife filing for divorce show.

    The “red pill wisdom” makes that clear. Men and women who don’t maintain their SMV risk losing the desire and interest of their partner.

    My wife’s anxiety is probably related to our SMV differential. My SMV as an educated, fit, successful and accomplished middle aged male is probably higher then her SMV as a post-menopausal SAHM wife. It is a recognition that I might be a good target for a mate poaching female. And that’s a good thing for me. It keeps her interested in maintaining herself physically and being responsive sexually.

    On the other hand, I have anxiety about divorce. Regardless of her SMV, my wife is empowered by the legal system to divorce me without suffering a large loss in material security or comfort. If I don’t continue to manifest higher value in other ways than economic provision, I may become redundant. And this is a good thing for her. It keeps me motivated to take our relationship seriously and to be emotionally engaged with her.

    Finally, my marriage is not the only thing where some anxiety motivates me to higher performance. I worry that my children are coming of age in a time of reduced opportunities. That motivates me to do what I can to help them succeed. And I worry about what would happen to my family if I lost my job. That motivates me to work hard at my job.

    As a final thought – can one be their best in a relationship that is free of anxiety? Would an anxiety free relationship even be worth having?

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Anacaona

    Shoot the messenger!

  • Anacaona

    Shoot the messenger!
    Did I called in question your my character, integrity and the quality of your marriage?

  • Lokland

    @Mir

    So you’re basically telling me that you have no valid explanation to give for yourself but that surely the fact that a woman of a younger age accepted your conditions makes them? Gotcha!

    Two things;
    1. I don’t need to explain myself or provide reasons for why I do the things I do so long as they work. The world is what it is regardless of how anyone feels about it.
    2. You haven’t asked anything so I’m not entirely sure on what you would like explained. I could provide insight into how and why what I am doing works but other than that there is nothing to say.

    I just discredited your opinion in the easiest way possible.

    On another note; if you’d like to avoid such a confrontation in the future
    in this culture its very rude to walk up to someone and randomly tell them that you would never date them/their unattractive or anything along those lines actually. Especially if the opinion is unasked for.

    Your comment from 285:
    With all these demands I’d personally would have laughed and left

    Your entitled to whatever opinion you want but learn to act like someone past the age of four.

    Also I’m pretty sure no 24 yo has any authority to speak over me, married or not. Just like tall men don’t have any over short ones. I hope you get that.

    Your an idiot if you think this is true.

  • Jesse

    Hey Jesse!

    I find your comments really interesting and insightful. I hope you will stick around!

    Hello Jackie,

    Thank you. You’re very kind.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @WV

    I think I made a conscious effort not to comment on your marriage in any way. You can probably go back and check my comments and see for yourself. However I definitely questioned the motivations behind such statements. I couldn’t possibly shoot the messenger on that one since what you reported was really nothing I hadn’t already heard about; that marriages fail? That there is anxiety and fear in our everyday lives? Nothing to be upset about.
    What I shot down was the “I’m smarter and luckier than most people; take it from me when I say to young men that they shouldn’t marry. Marriage is too difficult for most people, but not me (I’m so exceptional!)”. There is bringing awareness and there is spreading fear. Given your comments, I could see you were mixing up both and sending crossed signals. This is what bothered me. I welcome knowledge in all things however, I really refuse to be frightened and/or discouraged especially by some who admitedly have it all. It looked to me those don’t have my best interests at heart.
    I personally don’t care what the 5% of “robbed” husbands do, just like what the 20% of decried promiscuous do. We are on different planes. I don’t want their bad rap to be applied to me when they represent a tiny fraction of the population. I don’t want happy married people to tell me not to get into because it’s so hard and their nightmares are riddle with fear. It’d be like a duke telling me “Don’t get rich and fancy and live in a castle; peasants are always at the gates; it’s horrible!”. Meanwhile, they still sleep in and won’t leave.

    So while I’m sure you meant well, this is how you ended up sounding, quite defeatist for yourself, and others. I also think it is interesting that you broke down the reaction of the audience since it seemed that only Jesse and I really addressed the core of your message, the fear of failure, not its consequences or how it manifests (nightmares).

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Lokland

    I give up, I can’t take you seriously with all that “your” bad grammar.

    Your self-limiting belief is that married women are better than single ones, and have authority on them. Suits you in your teletubbie world. You think I’m an idiot and rude. I think you’re weak and insecure. We’re in love apparently.

    I wish the best to your wife, take care of her.

  • Anacaona

    It occurs to me that more women requiring prenups and more men requesting spousal support is probably inevitable over the next generation or two.
    Yeah that is my guess too. I was just wondering about details. I also mentioned that we need to have different types of marriage for the new generation to supply the demand for different legal arrangements. Which I think is happening already is just that society doesn’t regulate them..yet.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “I think men have a problem with expectations. This must be why my argument pointing out how many men marry falls on deaf male ears. You guys don’t want a woman. You want to be womanizers. I don’t have any sympathy for that.”

    I think women have a problem with expectations. This must be why my argument pointing out how many women marry deltas falls on deaf female ears. You gals don’t want a normal man. You want to be with the best. I don’t have any sympathy for that.

    My argument still holds, professing alpha-beta (low alpha-high beta-beta) requirement for men in relationships is similar to men wanting to be womanizers.

    Most women get a delta.
    ——————

    @Susan, Ana, J

    I forgot this.

    Thanks. We’re very excited.

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

      @Lokland

      This must be why my argument pointing out how many women marry deltas falls on deaf female ears. You gals don’t want a normal man. You want to be with the best. I don’t have any sympathy for that.

      I’m not following you. My final comment on that debate was that if most women marry deltas, then most women must like deltas.

      In my view, the apex fallacy has been disproved. What is true is that a small handful of men, I’d say 1-3%, can get as many women as they want.

  • Lokland

    “Your self-limiting belief is that married women are better than single ones, and have authority on them.”

    It actually does’t impose any limitations on me. It might in five years but at the moment a 24yo happens to be the ideal age for me.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    As an add on to my previous comment.

    Depends upon what level of success we are talking about.

    In certain groups (not the one you concern yourself with) theres OOW birthrates up in the 30-40% range.

    No Dad to offer guidance.

    Ditto situations like mine, I know my parents were virgins when they met so my Dad had a sterling score of 1 to offer me advice with (which he didn’t anyway).
    Kind of useless in the modern world.

  • Jesse

    Lokland,

    Yes of course but think about it you could probably say the same for any number of actions.

    Sure, but you’re married. (Congratulations on the baby by the way – hope she stays healthy. Also the move to Korea.)

    I’m single, and have a history of sometimes being very charming but other times being somewhat dysfunctional, especially with young women. I do well with older women and adults, maybe because I speak like an adult. (I’m terrible at teen talk with the “like” and the “so” and the discussion of popular singers I would rather avoid.) So I devote some thought to this. I don’t want to miss a great girl because I’m too awkward to just start talking to her. I’m starting to think I’d prefer the kind of woman who doesn’t flirt too boldly, so it takes on added importance.

  • Joe

    @Lokland

    The other problem that is discounted here is that most men are not successful with women.

    (Susan’s emphasis)

    @Susan

    You guys don’t want a woman. You want to be womanizers. I don’t have any sympathy for that.

    You must think I only comment to contradict you, Susan. Not my intent. But this one just doesn’t ring true from the guy’s perspective. I sort of understand why it might appear that way, though.

    The guy’s experience is one of failure. (btw, that’s not contradicted, but supported, but the observation that the best of the gamers and PUAs are demonstrably successful only a small fraction of the time.) Lokland mentions having some success, but only after he reached his 20s, and yet you bring up the problem of high expectations. I don’t know about his experience, but it’s common that a teenage guy develops a crush, idealizes the girl, then crashes and burns quickly. His only expectation is to not crash and burn every time.

    But by the time this average kid gets to his mid twenties, it may very well be that he has failed to have anything close to a significant relationship every single time. It’s not right to categorize his hopes of have one meaning relationship as “high expectations.”

    I guess I’ve read comments here that indicate someone aspires to be a true womanizer (which, to me, implies a Tony Soprano type of character). But it’s rare, isn’t it? I suspect there’s more guys here who thinks it’s an unnecessary strategy too.

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

      @Joe

      Re womanizers, I’ve long been baffled by something here. Males insist that women find most men unattractive. Yet a very high percentage of these very men marry. Therefore, it seems to me, at least one woman found each one of them very attractive. This observation never serves to mollify, but instead brings up objections that getting one mate is not “being good with women.” IOW, it’s insufficient.

      I’m not talking about men in general, btw – just a prevailing attitude here.

  • Gin Martini

    [[I think men have a problem with expectations. This must be why my argument pointing out how many men marry falls on deaf male ears. You guys don’t want a woman. You want to be womanizers. I don’t have any sympathy]]

    Is your husband a womanizer?

    There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be as successful as him, with a high N – not for the sake of N, but more the ability to parlay those options into a high-quality relationship. Your comment makes it sound like everyone wants to be like, say, Jason or Han. Which isn’t so bad, either, either, given the admiration they get.

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

      Is Gin Martini PJ?

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Anacaona

    Shoot the messenger!

    Did I called in question your my character, integrity and the quality of your marriage?

    No, not that I remember.

    Anyway, I don’t blame anyone for responding with negative emotions to a a negative emotional statement, which I admitted it was at the time.

  • Passer_By

    @susan
    “I’m not following you. My final comment on that debate was that if most women marry deltas, then most women must like deltas. ”

    Or they settled and are inherently dissatisfied with their delta husband.

    “In my view, the apex fallacy has been disproved. ”

    The apex fallacy has been disproved? How. Perhaps you mean the 80-20 rule, rather than the apex fallacy. Because I don’t think the apex fallacy has been disproved (namely, that when women on the whole, particularly feminists and pundits, assess how good men have it compared to women, they are incorrectly assuming that men in general have it better because the very top men have it better than any women do).

    “What is true is that a small handful of men, I’d say 1-3%, can get as many women as they want.”

    Yeah, I think that’s right, though probably about 10-15% can go through a number of women if they are into that (which is not the same as saying they can get as many as they want).

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

      Because I don’t think the apex fallacy has been disproved (namely, that when women on the whole, particularly feminists and pundits, assess how good men have it compared to women, they are incorrectly assuming that men in general have it better because the very top men have it better than any women do).

      Sorry, you’re right. I was referring to the 80/20 rule, often referred to as the apex fallacy in these parts.

  • Anacaona

    Anyway, I don’t blame anyone for responding with negative emotions to a a negative emotional statement, which I admitted it was at the time.
    I told you that your comment made no sense. It was not emotional response but the fact that someone can be happy with a choice and advice against it makes no logical sense. Let me broad it a bit.
    Donald Trump advising against becoming rich.
    Stephen King advising against being a writer.
    Charlize Theron advising against becoming a model.
    Halle Berry advising against winning an Oscar.
    The Pope advising against becoming a priest.
    Does any of this scenarios make sense to you? Same principle. I just don’t get it. Capisce.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Susan,

    I just think that we should be aware that it’s 5% – I believe a very large number of impressionable young men would guess a much higher percentage. It’s another case of Pluralistic Ignorance. Men should understand the real risk, as reflected in the numbers. Of course they are free to set their risk tolerance anywhere they like, i.e. if it happens to one man, I’m not getting married.

    It is indeed a case of Pluralistic Ignorance. Unfortunately our limbic system is geared towards worst case analysis rather than sophisticated statistical interpretations.

    I was thinking about the risk factor. Suppose the hypothetical risk of a very negative divorce outcome for a college educated man is 5% of a lifetime divorce probability of 20%. That’s only 1%. It’s fairly small.

    On the other hand, that’s a large risk compared to most others that UMC Americans face. It’s larger than the risk of being killed or severely debilitated in a car crash, a medical procedure gone wrong, or an act of violence. And those are all things we UMC people take great care to minimize our exposure to.

    I think there are two elements in a negative response to this risk. First is the personal – what are my chances? The second is the political – the system is unjust and I don’t want to participate in it.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      First is the personal – what are my chances? The second is the political – the system is unjust and I don’t want to participate in it.

      This relates to a comment I made earlier, which got no response.

      Re the first – the personal: You are exactly right – if every man has accurate information he can judge his risk for himself. Setting the bar at not accepting more risk than the likelihood of very rare occurrences is rather extreme, given the very real benefits, physical and emotional, conferred by marriage. The truth is, most of that 5% risk of a bad outcome can be eliminated simply by choosing wisely. In any case, I don’t think very many men would be unwilling to assume a 1% risk. When we marry, we know that there are a wide variety of bad things that can happen: serious illness, accidents, having a chronically ill child, loss of employment, mental health crises, etc. Most people readily assume those risks because the potential rewards of marriage are great.

      What’s really going on is that the PI effect is such that there are some young men who post here who clearly believe their risk of getting raped in divorce court is close to 100% if they marry. Many others with less extreme views would say 50% at least. The extreme scenario you painted is extremely rare, yet you positioned it as typical. That’s precisely the kind of misinformation that serves young men very poorly.

      Your second element – the political – is where my objection lies. If you are married, and enjoying the benefits of marriage, it strikes me as hypocritical to warn men to avoid marriage on political grounds. You took your chance, and in fact have not experienced any lack of justice. You have a great marriage, excellent sex life, healthy children, etc. Yet you would ask young men to take a stand that would prevent them from enjoying those same benefits.

      Which brings me back to the point I made earlier. It is fair to accurately point out the risks of marriage so that each man can judge for himself according to his own tolerance for risk. It is not appropriate for you to admonish men to do something for political reasons that represents a real sacrifice that you yourself have not made. It is not your decision to judge what is too risky for another individual.

  • mr. wavevector

    Donald Trump advising against becoming rich.
    Stephen King advising against being a writer.
    Charlize Theron advising against becoming a model.
    Halle Berry advising against winning an Oscar.
    The Pope advising against becoming a priest.

    And mr. wavevector advising against getting married.

    Damn, I’m in good company. ;-)

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Lokland,

    I’m not talking about age as a self-limiting belief, you’re the one who talks about it. I’m talking about that inferiority complex you’re having. That’s a real thing.

  • Anacaona

    And mr. wavevector advising against getting married.

    Damn, I’m in good company.
    Except they don’t do that. Mr King’s book about writing gives you tips to write for example. Mr wavevector is not following the same pattern.

  • Passer_By

    One interesting thing about this thread is that, between Jesse and Ana, we have ruled out the opinions of all married men on the advisability of men getting married. Jesse says men who are unhappy in marriage should be disregarded since they clearly suck at marriage (and many seem to agree). Ana says that men who are happy in their particular marriage have no standing to advise young men against marriage, since it’s like a rich guy advising others to stay poor, and many seem to agree with her.

    So, presto, no married man can advise against marriage. Of course, neither can never married men since they can’t possibly have sufficient knowledge of what it is like to be married. Neither, of course, can divorced men since (like unhappily married men), they are clearly bitter losers who suck at marriage.

    So, it appears no man has any standing to hold such an opinion.

    P.S. This is not intended as, and should not be construed as, advice regarding (or even an opinion relating to) the advisability of any man getting married.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Jackie, I agree with you about the pains that we often inflict on ourselves. Alas, that is one of the lessons we have to learn in this world.

    On another note, I am pretty lucky to have escaped unscathed from a car that went in my lane without looking and basically ran me off the road last week. My heart was pounding but I reacted quickly, braked and recovered. After I honked like mad at the person and flipped the bird which I never do… but I was rather pissed. :p

    Then I was like ok, all is good. Weekend time.

  • Anacaona

    Neither, of course, can divorced men since (like unhappily married men), they are clearly bitter losers who suck at marriage.
    Actually this makes more sense to me.
    Also if you remember all my posts I fell the same way regardless of gender. Women advising against being sexually restricted for example get similar treatment.

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    I think there are two elements in a negative response to this risk. First is the personal – what are my chances? The second is the political – the system is unjust and I don’t want to participate in it.

    You know what? These are great questions are rarely ask myself. While I like to think I’m a political person, I also know I’m dealing with humans, so it all gets relative very fast. I try to engage things and people with a positive outlook in general even when it requires a lot of effort (I have my misanthropic moments too) just because I have received a lot of positivity myself, and that in spite of the tough moments I had, I had to face the fact that I may not be as screwed up as I thought I was, and that I will probably get what I want. Just not on other people schedules.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Mr.wavevector, how would we middle class folks minimize our chances of being in a car accident? Seeing how most of the time it’s not our own fault but someone else driving like a maniac, or drunk, or high, poor what have you. Or say, cancer, which strikes a lot of people, and I know many who have been personally affected. Shall we advise people to avoid leaving their house and never form intimate bonds?

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @ Passer By

    I’d definitely listen to someone who talks about the positive things he derives from his marriage, it shows something to thrive for. This is why I like this blog with all the tips and recipes; some I like more than others obviously, but it is all a character thing. I’m pretty sure I have agreed with WV on some stuff about how he felt inside his marriage, seems to me it works wonderfully over there. I just disagreed with his advice for other men to not get a chance at that bliss, that is all. I felt it was instilling fear in men when actually women want strong men (and even men want to feel strong), totally counter-productive. Bowing out of the race doesn’t mean you win the race. It just mean you never pushed yourself enough for fear of failing. But in the end same results.

    I’m more interested in advice on how to make it work, not on how to avoid it altogether. There is a lot of happiness in marriage and I understand it is not free. People who do not want to pay the price, whatever that is, are to be advised to stay out but in general they don’t really hang out on blogs encouraging dating and relationships.

  • http://neutrino78x.angelfire.com neutrino78x

    I’m probably not getting married because no one has ever reciprocated my feelings, and probably no one ever will. I’m an involuntary celibate: I’m 35 and I’ve never kissed a girl or seen a fully naked woman in real life. I’ve felt like I’ve loved five women in my life, but in the case of four of them, their discovering that I had feelings was a negative experience for me, and the other was neutral. It’s somewhat depressing if I think of it too much but it’s my life.

    However, even if marriage was offered to me, I wouldn’t be interested. I think in the 21st Century marriage is indeed obsolete, with the exception of those who wish to raise children. I can see how it would be desirable to get married if you want children, as it provides various legal advantages.

    If you have a good long term relationship, you don’t need a piece of paper to be together forever, and all it really does is ruin your life in case you break up (and 50% of marriages end in divorce).

    So no, I definitely don’t need or want marriage, but I wish someone would love me back and want to be with me forever. I don’t “hope” for it though, because I know it’s never going to happen. It is a part of the human experience that will never be available to me. Just a wish.

    –Brian

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    how would we middle class folks minimize our chances of being in a car accident? Seeing how most of the time it’s not our own fault but someone else driving like a maniac, or drunk, or high, poor what have you. Or say, cancer, which strikes a lot of people, and I know many who have been personally affected. Shall we advise people to avoid leaving their house and never form intimate bonds?

    We can’t let fear rule our lives. Everything we do is bound to fail, yet most of the time we succeed. Lol I feel like a motivational speaker right now.

    We can do it!! Wooohoooot!!!!!

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Hope,

    Mr.wavevector, how would we middle class folks minimize our chances of being in a car accident? Seeing how most of the time it’s not our own fault but someone else driving like a maniac, or drunk, or high, poor what have you.

    Drive a minivan with 24 airbags. You may not avoid the crash but you can reduce your chance of injury.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Anacaona,

    If you unable to separate the message from the messenger, there’s nothing I can say that will convince you.

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @SW

    This must be why my argument pointing out how many men marry falls on deaf male ears. You guys don’t want a woman. You want to be womanizers.

    Bingo. This goes back to MC’s cherry pie strategy. It’s a bit incongruent to argue 1) that men collectively should be successful with women (plural), but also 2) that men individually should take as big a slice of the pie for themselves as possible. Simple math shows that there aren’t anywhere near enough LTR or marriage-worthy women to go around if most men eschewed monogamy. It’s a bit like draining the pool at the same time telling the guys behind to keep diving in. Can one be part of the solution and part of the problem at the same time?

    My final comment on that debate was that if most women marry deltas, then most women must like deltas.

    Some have argued that female preferences are scarcity-driven: they like the men they marry (and don’t divorce) only because such men are the only kind (i.e. those without options) willing to marry. If true, that does presuppose women have no real choice in which kinds of men they ultimately marry.

  • Joe

    @Susan

    Males insist that women find most men unattractive. Yet a very high percentage of these very men marry. Therefore, it seems to me, at least one woman found each one of them very attractive.

    Seems to me that this particular well was poisoned as soon as the term “settling” entered into the lexicon.

    It’s about world-view, I think. There’s a lot of cynicism out there, about people settling for mates and settling for jobs. With the high divorce rate and bad economy, can you blame them? It takes a special kind of maturity at the age of 25 to understand that the bad stuff is always temporary, that not everyone is going to treat you badly and cynicism isn’t the only way to view the world.

    It takes even longer to understand that most people (from whom a potential spouse is chosen) are mostly good most of the time, and that the world actually is getting a bit better every day. Until that kind of perspective is reached, the fact that one person settled for them one time is not a persuasive argument that things are hunky-dory with the universe.

    Make sense?

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

      @Joe

      I confess I cannot relate to the cynicism, as prevalent as it is. I’m relentlessly optimistic, I don’t think I’m capable of cynicism. That doesn’t make me right, or wise, it’s just the way I tend to look at the world. No doubt I’m unrealistic at times.

      I wonder if cynicism is increasing.

  • Anacaona

    If you unable to separate the message from the messenger, there’s nothing I can say that will convince you.
    The messenger can have an agenda so trusting it blindly is also problematic. That is the basis of propaganda you make people believe in you ONLY and everything you say becomes the truth, easy to exploit and to mislead. A real truth-seeker should be able to fact check.
    Is the same principle behind brand speak person, having Britney Spears drinking Pepsi and have all her fans buy it. It works but it doesn’t mean that if someone said “There is Dr Pepper and Coke I think I will try those before I decide Pepsi is the best” means that she is unable to separate the message from the messenger more like she remembers that message is more complex than just about the speaker. The speaker can have a personal bias, agenda, lack information…
    But if you are unable to separate the messenger, from the message, from reality, from personal bias, from environment…Then there is nothing I can say to tell you that you make no sense whatsoever. But you don’t make sense, not at all. Not even a little. No comprende, YMMV.

  • Lokland

    @Jesse

    “I don’t want to miss a great girl because I’m too awkward to just start talking to her. I’m starting to think I’d prefer the kind of woman who doesn’t flirt too boldly, so it takes on added importance.”

    Thinking about it will only get you so far.
    Practice is infinitely more valuable.

    Personally, I picked up reading my first game blog at 17ish.
    Didn’t actually speak to a woman until I was 19.

    Practice is more important.

    —-

    Thank you.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “I’m not following you. My final comment on that debate was that if most women marry deltas, then most women must like deltas.”

    I disagree with this. Similar to PB, choosing from whats available does not mean one has to like it (nor does it imply liking it is an impossibility).

    “In my view, the apex fallacy has been disproved. What is true is that a small handful of men, I’d say 1-3%, can get as many women as they want.”

    Yes but almost any woman can get any man she wants…for a limited amount of time.

    Toss in that most divorces are initiated by women and there is already a very large power differential.

    Which leads to a simple question;

    Who out of two men is more likely to end up raising another guys kid and/or divorced; the womanizer with a plethora of options or the guy who had one option and took it?

    The answer is self evident.
    The women who ACTUALLY nails down a player would be a fool to cheat and or leave him (assuming he didn’t become a bum) whereas the same as not true for the guy with limited options who chose from what is available.

    So as a guy, being a womanizer offers an immediate defensive barrier against many negative things well leaving the option open to abandon ones wife for a better option later on.

    The reverse is true for the guy with limited options.

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

      @Lokland

      Yes but almost any woman can get any man she wants…for a limited amount of time.

      That’s a red herring. The vast majority of women do not want a man for casual sex. The fact that men want that is irrelevant. We do not value it.

      Toss in that most divorces are initiated by women and there is already a very large power differential.

      I believe it’s 2/3. I wonder what percentage of these occur to men who are blindsided and do not want divorce. As opposed to men behaving badly or men who are equally interested in divorce.

      Who out of two men is more likely to end up raising another guys kid and/or divorced; the womanizer with a plethora of options or the guy who had one option and took it?

      Men with a history of promiscuity divorce at twice the rate of other men.

      The women who ACTUALLY nails down a player would be a fool to cheat and or leave him (assuming he didn’t become a bum) whereas the same as not true for the guy with limited options who chose from what is available.

      I dispute the notion that most women want to nail down a player. When it does happen, the woman has a high likelihood of being cheated on, so she will either tolerate that or leave.

      There’s also a lot of evidence that players are men with personality traits that make “positive things happening” unlikely – disagreeableness, high novelty seeking and high narcissism.

  • Lokland

    “Therefore, it seems to me, at least one woman found each one of them very attractive. This observation never serves to mollify, but instead brings up objections that getting one mate is not “being good with women.” IOW, it’s insufficient.”

    See above but it depends upon what ‘being good with women’ entails.
    From a reproductive standpoint the two are probably equal in potential numbers except the guys with less options as a group will be beat out over time due to divorce/cuckoldry.

    Hmm given a choice which camp would I join?

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Susan,

    I’m not going to exert myself arguing for a position that started with comments I made in a bad mood (totally not related to my marriage btw!) early Friday morning, and one I’m not really committed to. But I’m going to argue against some of your statements just because I disagree with them, independent of my opinions of marriage.

    If you are married, and enjoying the benefits of marriage, it strikes me as hypocritical to warn men to avoid marriage on political grounds. You took your chance, and in fact have not experienced any lack of justice.

    True, but I had no idea about the risks and consequences of divorce before I got married. The accusation of hypocrisy would hold only if I was warning against that which I had done with a full and correct understanding of my actions. It is not hypocrisy if I subsequently discover that the information I based my decision on was wrong, and I wish to warn others who have the same false beliefs.

    There is more than one type of pluralistic ignorance here. The pluralistic ignorance of overestimating the risk of divorce may be outweighed by the more common pluralistic ignorance that assumes that divorce court is fair and just and that the rights and protections that we learn about in civics class apply there as they do in criminal court. They don’t, and that’s something relatively few people know.

    It is not appropriate for you to admonish men to do something for political reasons that represents a real sacrifice that you yourself have not made.

    I’m not sure I agree with this on an ethical basis, and I’m sure I don’t on a political one. Political issues that affect a minority of people don’t get any attention unless their significance is enlarged in the public mind. And that’s why the ethical question is complicated – if an injustice is permitted to stand because of ethical concerns over political tactics, over the long term more people may suffer. The opposite argument could be made against your position – it is not appropriate for you to encourage young men to participate in a system which is unjust to them but of considerable potential benefit to you and your target audience.

    But like I said, this is not an axe I feel like grinding – or having the last word on.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      I understand that you don’t want to be antagonized in the comment thread for something you said while feeling grumpy. I have had that same experience many times! So I won’t treat you as someone who is opposed to marriage.

      However

      It is not hypocrisy if I subsequently discover that the information I based my decision on was wrong, and I wish to warn others who have the same false beliefs.

      I think it’s OK to warn others by providing them facts and information. What I object to is your dictating someone else’s willingness to tolerate risk. I’ve seen this a lot in the sphere, as I mentioned earlier; happily married men stating they cannot recommend marriage in light of the legal climate. That doesn’t make sense to me. If you’d been through the wringer and wanted to tell young men about it, that would be different. But even then it wouldn’t be appropriate for you to tell them what’s right for them. You can only inform them what the potential worst case scenario might be. Because no matter what the legal environment, or your personal experience, you cannot know what is right for someone else.

  • Anacaona

    Who out of two men is more likely to end up raising another guys kid and/or divorced; the womanizer with a plethora of options or the guy who had one option and took it?
    Didn’t we showed you proof that womanizers get together with similar women that cheat on them with other womanizers? Why are we arguing this again?

  • Lokland

    “My final comment on that debate was that if most women marry deltas, then most women must like deltas.”

    Final thought;

    Yes but I highly doubt you will recommend a woman go for the delta as opposed to the beta, no?

    I’m not suggesting you should but merely that in proposing women date Vox Beta’s you are excluding more than 50% of men (and consequently women) from your site.

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

      @Lokland

      Yes but I highly doubt you will recommend a woman go for the delta as opposed to the beta, no?

      I’m not suggesting you should but merely that in proposing women date Vox Beta’s you are excluding more than 50% of men (and consequently women) from your site.

      I do not mean to recommend Vox betas while excluding gammas and deltas. My interest is in recommending that women avoid alphas.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “Didn’t we showed you proof that womanizers get together with similar women that cheat on them with other womanizers? Why are we arguing this again?”

    Good point.
    Now imagine having the ability without the inherent idiot tendencies that causes a man choose one of the worst long term options.

    Risk likely reduced to fractions of a %.

  • Lokland

    @Mir

    “I’m not talking about age as a self-limiting belief, you’re the one who talks about it. I’m talking about that inferiority complex you’re having. That’s a real thing.”

    I take my advice from people who have already achieved the things I want.

    I don’t take financial advice from a bum, I don’t listen to a virgin on how to get laid and I don’t listen to women who aren’t in a relationship on what qualifies a man for a relationship.

    Feel free to keep any more of your opinions on me to yourself (double that for the unasked for ones) they will not be incorporated into my thought process.

  • Anacaona

    Good point.
    Now imagine having the ability without the inherent idiot tendencies that causes a man choose one of the worst long term options.

    Remember the data. Unrestricted people have personality traits directly opposite of caution and they are bored to tears of the homely restricted girls idea of fun, thus he can only try to make it work with the lesser unrestricted girl he has access to and then make sure he can keep his Alpha up to the notch for the rest of their reproductive life, not an easy feat. Thus those chances are even lower. Feel free to find Data that disprove this.

  • Jesse

    mr. wavevector,

    Evidence please.

    Are you ignoring me? Provide evidence for your claims or retract your statement.

    None of what you quoted in 384 has your name on it. Even if it did, none of those words comment on your character and integrity. It should also be noted that they are questions, and so do not assert anything.

    I never considered the quality of your marriage except when you mentioned your wife’s dreams, at which time I offered help, useless as it may have been. In fact, the amalgamation of your comments here at HUS that I’ve read has given me the impression that you have a good marriage.

    When a married man says marriage should be avoided, either A) he says this because he does not enjoy his marriage, in which case I question the value of his advice, or B) his marriage is good but statistically he doesn’t believe it is a wise move. This is also advice I cannot incorporate because I am not a statistic.

    I didn’t believe the advice you gave me reflected A), because you’ve given an impression of a good marriage.

    Even if I were to consider your advice B), it is aggravating when a married man advises to avoid marriage but does not explain how. I have still not heard an explanation how.

  • http://neutrino78x.angelfire.com neutrino78x

    susan walsh wrote

    [quote]This observation never serves to mollify, but instead brings up objections that getting one mate is not “being good with women.” IOW, it’s insufficient. [/quote]

    Well, having more than one woman who was interested in you in your lifetime hardly constitutes being a womanizer.

    And if I make it to 35 without anyone having been interested, and those I was interested in being uncomfortable with my interest, or, in some cases, even my friendship, yes, it is a depressing situation. Even though I have no intention of marriage or children, I would ideally like a long term relationship, so, yes, a complete absence of romantic companionship is not ideal.

    –Brian

  • Jesse

    Lokland,

    Thinking about it will only get you so far.
    Practice is infinitely more valuable.

    Personally, I picked up reading my first game blog at 17ish.
    Didn’t actually speak to a woman until I was 19.

    Practice is more important.

    In the last few years I have read a few things that I consider to have been quite important in awakening certain things within me and helping me to form my worldview. They have helped me learn who I am and decide what I want to be like. So I’m grateful for that, because beginning to understand who you are and what you want from this called Women is an important process.

    Practice works better when you’ve formulated a goal. But yes, it is absolutely indispensable and it will begin in earnest shortly. It has already begun.

  • Jesse

    Passery_By (414),

    I think you’ve parsed this incorrectly.

  • Jesse

    That’s two typos.

    442 should read “this thing called Women”.

    443 should read “Passer_By”.

    Sorry for messing up your handle mate.

  • Jackie

    @Hope (415)

    EEK! :shock:

    Hope, I am so glad you are okay! Stay safe!
    ((((Hope))))

    I really think people drive like they are in a video game– no concept of there being actual human bodies inside these speeding cars. And if there is a problem, just re-set the game and NBD. (No Big Deal). :(
    SMH (Shaking My Head)

    You can join me driving in the grandpa lane (RH slowpoke lane). :) Since my “death-cheater” car experience a couple of months, I have found that it’s the favorite place to be. :)

  • Anacaona

    For the Austen fans at HUS: Lizzie Bennet diaries! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KisuGP2lcPs&feature=player_embedded

  • http://www.gravatar.com/avatar/6139615b1025fddd287fc36f95cdb4c5.png Mireille

    @Lokland,

    Anybody can get in a relationship; quality is what matter; your wife did marry you after all. I certainly wouldn’t listen to someone with crazy demands on what is of value for men, especially younger men I have no interest in dating and who are riddled with complexes. Good day to you.

    @ Neutrino

    So since you’re not interested in marrying, and that most women can have all the relationships they want (according to commentators here), why would they pick you when you are not offering even less than the regular guy?

    You have to offer something they want and is rare like commitment. Not just “a” relationship.
    Plus try and keep your head up, you’re only 35 and can still find someone and have a family but you have to really want and work at it. Good luck.

  • Jackie

    @mr wv

    “As a final thought – can one be their best in a relationship that is free of anxiety? Would an anxiety free relationship even be worth having?”
    ===
    There’s something about this question that makes me really sad. :( I’ve been in anxiety-ridden relationships before and they are SO painful. In my observation, marriages are supposed to be a respite and a safe haven from our anxiety-ridden world. Not a source of more of it!

    I think it’s worth the time to clearly identify the source of one’s anxiety and to question if this anxiety is rooted in reality or something else. I said this earlier, mr wv, but there is this toxic stew of paranoia, anger, control freakery and misogyny brewing in the ‘sphere that will poison your soul if you continue to drink deeply of it.

    In some ways I was much happier before I found any of this. People in the ‘sphere would mock my parents marriage, since the selfless devotion was 2-way and not 1-way. And yet

    The zero-sum mentality is ever-present so that everything becomes a game of brinkmanship, or else, oneupsmanship. How does happiness, contentment, fulfilment proceed from that, I wonder?
    ===
    My wife’s anxiety is probably related to our SMV differential. My SMV as an educated, fit, successful and accomplished middle aged male is probably higher then her SMV as a post-menopausal SAHM wife. It is a recognition that I might be a good target for a mate poaching female. And that’s a good thing for me.
    ===
    mr wv, this is the zero-sum mentality I was talking about. What is so wrong with building each other up and giving in love, for the sake of love? Do people’s marriage vows mean *nothing*?

    For me, I would rather have the guy leave if he was more concerned with the “poachability” factors being a “good thing for me [him].” Because that sounds like a fear-based mentality based in manipulation. And I wouldn’t want to hold anything over his head either to hold him hostage to me. I would NEVER want to do that– to anyone.

    I believe in love and not fear.

  • Jackie

    oops, something this got cut off

    “and yet they were so happy together”

  • Jackie

    @Neutrino

    Hi Neutrino,

    Don’t get down on yourself or feel like your wish is an impossible one. It’s not– all kind of people can find love and relationships. And don’t sweat the age thing, there are all kinds of late bloomers out there, they just never get any ink. ;)

    Can you identify what’s been holding you back? Shyness? Stay in, not leave the house much? Small town/rural community without a lot of girls around? Low self-esteem?

    Can you identify, specifically, what you want in a relationship?

    I hope you stick around, Brian. There are some friendly folks here who do want to help. You are totally welcome to join our Girl Game Challenge as well. It’s not just for chicks– it’s for everybody who wants to up their social skills. ;)

    Anyway, please stick around and let us know how we can help you. GL (Good Luck) :)

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jesse,

    I am guilty of the same thing I was criticizing – taking a generalization personally.

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jackie,

    I think you have a different understanding of “anxiety” than I do. I am not by nature very anxious or fearful. So for me a certain amount of these emotions are necessary components of motivation. I need to have an emotional awareness of the possibility of failure to focus my mind, lest I become too self content and complacent.

    Perhaps your experience of anxiety is much more intense and hurtful than I experience it. It seems like your motivation is all carrots, no sticks! But I need some of both.

    I do not view my portrayal as a zero sum mentality. Rather, I think that both my wife and I highly value our relationship. We do not take it for granted and are not complacent. We work hard at it, both for our selves and for each other. And part of what motivates us to work hard is the idea that we have something to lose if we don’t.

  • Jackie

    @mr wv

    wv, I appreciate the response; you have given me something to think about. I think that temperament and formative experiences really affect what we mean when the word “anxiety” is thrown around.

    For me, the word has such negative connotations and I’m so high-strung to begin with that, I have to actively work on managing the anxiety that life presents naturally. :( More than one person has suggested that I be tested for HSP (Highly Sensitive Person) as it comprises 20% of the population. Dr. Elaine Aron has done some really interesting research about this.

  • mr. wavevector

    Even if I were to consider your advice B), it is aggravating when a married man advises to avoid marriage but does not explain how. I have still not heard an explanation how.

    Some men live happily as confirmed bachelors. Others stay in long term monogamous relationships but don’t marry or have kids.

    Those options may not be right for you.

    I want you to know as accurately as you can both the benefits and risks of marriage before you commit. I was ignorant of the risks when I married, although I probably would have made the same decision had I known.

    I feel like a guest at a resort whom no one told that the lake he was swimming in is inhabited by crocodiles. Is it inappropriate for him to warn others?

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    How to avoid marriage:
    Don’t get married

  • mr. wavevector

    Jackie,

    For me, the word has such negative connotations and I’m so high-strung to begin with that, I have to actively work on managing the anxiety that life presents naturally.

    That makes sense. I’m sort of opposite – towards the “low arousal” end of the spectrum. I often have to generate stimulus for myself. Anxiety is one type of stimulus, although not the best nor most pleasant one!

  • Anacaona

    I feel like a guest at a resort whom no one told that the lake he was swimming in is inhabited by crocodiles. Is it inappropriate for him to warn others?
    Of course it is. But you are saying that you love the resort and are really happy in it, so your warning makes no sense.
    Had you ever seen a 5 stars review that says: don’t buy this wonderful product that I love?

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    I wonder if you also think that homeowners also think that they should not be advising 25 year olds not to go deep into debt to buy a household that may lose half its value in 3 years.

  • mr. wavevector

    My review of the marriage resort:

    My swim in the beautiful lake at the resort was so refreshing! Too bad about the guy who lost his leg.

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

      My review of the marriage resort:

      My swim in the beautiful lake at the resort was so refreshing! Too bad about the guy who lost his leg.

      But you are not in a lake filled with crocodiles. You are with one woman who is not a crocodile. Men are not would-be victims innocently splashing around. They actually choose their crocs, and can easily avoid the man eaters.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “Of course it is. But you are saying that you love the resort and are really happy in it, so your warning makes no sense.”

    Mmm–mmm that steak was in delicious, what was it?
    People meat.

    WTF!?! *Spit out and rub down tongue with iron wool*
    ——–

    The advent of new information can make something that seemed good appear bad.

    I disagree with WV that its enough to warrant advising against marriage.
    I do however think that one should be aware of all the negative possibilities that can occur.

    Personally, if a guy is in an LTR and there is no reason to push for marriage on their her desire for it I would advise him not to.

    LTR- all the benefits of marriage minus the inherent risk
    (He could even do the ceremony minus the paper signing.)

    Note: Recent court case (past 6 months) ruled against a woman who had been with a guy for 7 years. Billionaire is why it made the news, she got nothing.
    Had three kids as well.

  • Lokland

    Ohh that note, it was common law not marriage.

  • ExNewYorker

    “Had you ever seen a 5 stars review that says: don’t buy this wonderful product that I love?”

    How about this?

    “Be careful when buying this wonderful product that I love because a lot of scammers out there are selling fake versions of it, or it’s been discontinued in some areas, so the scammers are peddling highly used up versions as new.”

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

      “Be careful when buying this wonderful product that I love because a lot of scammers out there are selling fake versions of it, or it’s been discontinued in some areas, so the scammers are peddling highly used up versions as new.”

      That’s totally valid. But I don’t understand why men marry scammers. Surely a period of dating and engagement totaling three years should be plenty sufficient to suss out character.

  • Anacaona

    I wonder if you also think that homeowners also think that they should not be advising 25 year olds not to go deep into debt to buy a household that may lose half its value in 3 years.
    Actually in our circle of friends we had two who had houseowning issues one of them had to leave the house because he couldn’t pay for it the other is buried in debt. We still bought our house after researching and consulting enough people, including the ones that had house issues, that it was the right choice. It might be my circle of friends, but still no one consider owning a house the problem but what sort of house, in what neighborhood, at what price and so on needing to be considered before sealing the deal.

    My swim in the beautiful lake at the resort was so refreshing! Too bad about the guy who lost his leg.
    “And I will be swimming in it everyday. But don’t come yourself”

    Mmm–mmm that steak was in delicious, what was it?
    People meat.
    WTF!?! *Spit out and rub down tongue with iron wool*

    First: People’s flesh looks and taste like pork so you should had used pork chops as example (I actually don’t eat pork I just read it in a book and never forgot about it… stupid brain)
    Second:
    “Would you serve me another one, please?” would be more akin to what the ‘happily married’ kind are doing

    LTR- all the benefits of marriage minus the inherent risk
    (He could even do the ceremony minus the paper signing.)

    It could be a religious thing and family pressure thing no to mention that for some people they need the paperwork. For example my husband and I would have had to get married no matter what because I wouldn’t had gotten the Visa otherwise.

    “Be careful when buying this wonderful product that I love because a lot of scammers out there are selling fake versions of it, or it’s been discontinued in some areas, so the scammers are peddling highly used up versions as new.”
    That sounds sensible and I would cosign 100%. Is not what WV is doing though.

  • mr. wavevector

    “And I will be swimming in it everyday. But don’t come yourself”

    No way. I’m in the middle of the lake now. I have no choice – it’s swim, sink, or be eaten by crocs. But I’m never booking at this resort again.

    If I am divorced or widowed I do not intend to remarry.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      I have no choice – it’s swim, sink, or be eaten by crocs. But I’m never booking at this resort again.

      If you had to do it again, would you opt not to marry your wife. If so, does she know this?

  • Passer_By

    @hope
    “After I honked like mad at the person and flipped the bird . . .”

    So that was YOU!

  • ExNewYorker

    “If you had to do it again, would you opt not to marry your wife. If so, does she know this?”

    Come now Susan, isn’t the more charitable and optimistic (and simpler) explanation that he doesn’t think he could luck out again with someone as good as his wife? I though you weren’t cynical? :-)

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

      @ENY

      Come now Susan, isn’t the more charitable and optimistic (and simpler) explanation that he doesn’t think he could luck out again with someone as good as his wife? I though you weren’t cynical?

      That’s a good explanation for why he wouldn’t marry again. But not a very good explanation for why a happily married man is advising other men not to marry. I’m curious to know if he would make the same decision again, knowing what he knows now, given that he’s telling other men not to make it.

      No doubt Mr. Wavevector believes his wife is one in a million, but she’s far from the only marriage-worthy woman. The data demonstrates very clearly that a high percentage of men rate themselves as satisfied or extremely satisfied with their marriages, including their sex lives.

      I wonder if happily married men figure other guys are unlikely to get as lucky as they did, or choose as wisely as they did, as per Bastiat Blogger:

      a) men who feel that their own wives are unique specimens and that I would have little chance of finding a similar partner, as such women are nearing extinction

      Sounds like another massive case of Pluralistic Ignorance to me.

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

    Just an anecdote: for whatever reason, the male friends who are the most eager to advise me against marriage are not the players or even the bitterly divorced guys, but the “happily married” men. They tend to come in three categories: a) men who feel that their own wives are unique specimens and that I would have little chance of finding a similar partner, as such women are nearing extinction; b) men who say that today’s socio-legal climate makes involving the state in a relationship very unwise; c) men who say that they have made peace with marriage (usually described as a type of captivity) but would not recommend it to single men unless said single men could not find sex and romantic companionship without it.

    The guys in the last category tend not to say any of this when their wives are present. The guys in the other two will happily raise this topic with their wives there, and the wives will sometimes support them and even take things to another level.

    Let me hasten to add that few of these happily married guys are recommending that I just have casual sex endlessly; they believe in LTRs, they just seem to feel that marriage and co-hab are increasingly problematic because both genders are losing the ability to compromise and “grow
    together” rather than apart.

    If my experience is typical (it may not be), then this is definitely something that women who are concerned about societal SMP/MMP deterioration probably do need to be aware of. The intuition might be that men who are in pleasant marriages would provide positive role model mentoring/cheerleading on the subject of marriage for unmarried men and encourage them to get hitched, but I am not sure that this is what is actually happening at this stage of the game.

  • Anacaona

    If my experience is typical (it may not be), then this is definitely something that women who are concerned about societal SMP/MMP deterioration probably do need to be aware of. The intuition might be that men who are in pleasant marriages would provide positive role model mentoring/cheerleading on the subject of marriage for unmarried men and encourage them to get hitched, but I am not sure that this is what is actually happening at this stage of the game.
    I do wonder if this is a gender difference.
    Women seem to lean that things will get better while men seem to lean towards thing will get worse. And this is something I had seen on my country where the legal marriage is only paid lip service and a guy can and will forfeit any payments to the mother of their kids and be free to do as he pleases, and don’t lose any societal support or attractiveness to other idiots…I mean women. The ladies still thing they will be “the exception” and their men will stay or at least support their kids in the event of divorce. And I will say very few are right. Still many of them will enter to the Lion’s den.

  • mr. wavevector

    If you had to do it again, would you opt not to marry your wife. If so, does she know this?

    That’s not a question I can meaningfully address. If I had been uninterested in marriage I would not have formed a relationship with my wife, and the question would be moot.

    What I can address is whether I would be interested in a second marriage now, should I find myself single. The answer is not likely. I can’t predict all eventualities, but the usual scenarios are not appealing.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      What I can address is whether I would be interested in a second marriage now, should I find myself single. The answer is not likely. I can’t predict all eventualities, but the usual scenarios are not appealing.

      FWIW, I would have no desire to marry again for any reason. I can’t recommend marriage highly enough, but I don’t believe I need or want either another great love, or companionship as I age. I’m going to go out like Miss Marple. :)

      I agree, although I doubt that anyone takes my recommendation as a dictate. Not even my dog takes me that seriously!

      Haha fair enough! I appreciate your good humor throughout.

  • mr. wavevector

    What I object to is your dictating someone else’s willingness to tolerate risk.

    I agree, although I doubt that anyone takes my recommendation as a dictate. Not even my dog takes me that seriously!

  • szopen

    @Bob Wallace

    Men created civilization, science and technology. Women did not, and cannot.

    That something did not happened in the past is not a definite argument that it is important. There are many reasons why women had not been thinkers, inventors and so on thousand years ago, you just need to realise how much work was needed in the past to create a home. Moreover, it’s not “men”. It’s “some men”, those with very high IQ – top percent of the population creating progress, while top 1/3 with high IQ is needed to understand the inventions and find a use for them. Male’s IQ distribution have much more variance than females (as with other traits) meaning that in the top 1% of the very high IQ’s there will be far more males than females (just as at the bottom 1%). Saying that “we, men, did that” when it’s less than 1% of males, sounds a bit amusing to me.

    @Ashley
    If you cre about world and you decide to not reproduce, then the future people will be descended from the guys who do not care about the world. Since caring about the world requires longterm thinking and some other traits which are highly heritable, your choice only ensures that in future there will be no people caring about the world.

    Go here and read for yourself.

    http://jaymans.wordpress.com/2013/04/18/another-reminder/

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Bastiat Blogger,

    They tend to come in three categories: a) men who feel that their own wives are unique specimens and that I would have little chance of finding a similar partner, as such women are nearing extinction; b) men who say that today’s socio-legal climate makes involving the state in a relationship very unwise; c) men who say that they have made peace with marriage (usually described as a type of captivity) but would not recommend it to single men unless said single men could not find sex and romantic companionship without it.

    Good analysis. I am in categories b and a. The socio-legal environment is my primary concern, but I also believe women such as my wife are increasingly rare.

  • szopen

    The last place that a Chechen would logically attack would be the United States.

    There were Chechens, but most of all, they were radical muslims. And, contrary, to what Anacaona says, it’s easy to find quotes from Koran which made a war against infidels mandatory (infidels, e.g. me, Anacaona, Susan Walsh etc). It’s not like it’s some isolated act of terrorism. It’s just when Breivik shoots people, it gots media attention, but when muslim radical shoots Jewish kids, it’s somehow not that important.

    I do not say all muslims are like that, and I know that you can find a lot of nice quotes from Bible too. But I am surprised that you don’t know about the reasons those people acted the way they did.

  • szopen

    At comment 478, it should read That something did not happened in the past is not a definite argument that it is impossible.

    @Mireille
    OK, so I decided to check you 75c per $. I went to the wikipedia:

    In 2010 the median income of FTYR workers was $42,800 for men, compared to $34,700 for women. The female-to-male earnings ratio was 0.81

    (FTYR is full-time, year round)
    So even before checking whether they work in the same industry, the same number of hours etc, you have 81c per $.

    Note that wikipedia shows in USA, gender wage gap is different in different industries and there are few (very few) in which females actually earn more (probably due to discrimination against males?).

    Moreover, the wage gap increases with age, with only ~92c per $ with 20-25 y/o, so this may be explained precisely as cumulative effect of bargaining power.

    Further, the studies done earlier indicated that only etween 12 to 8% of gender gap is still unexplained explained by the experience, longer working hours etc. (Still referring wikipedia).

    If this is true, then the true gender gap is about 2c.

    Finally, there are no reliable indicators about how much skill does one have. Employer cannot stand behind everyone and monitor every activity. He follows hints given by employees, and the ability to “sell” your own accomplishments will inevitably result in wage gaps.

    Yes, this sucks – justice would be nice, but it is impossible to achieve.

    Finally, if employers could hire females to do the same work as males for much less pay, then surely that would give companies competetive edge. They could offer the same product at much lesser price. So females should be sought after, they should be given preferences, and companies who would employ more females should outcompete the competitors. Why this does not happen?

  • szopen

    Ah, forgot to add something to Bob Wallace:

    The impression that females in companies do less than males may be solely just that – the impression. I can suggest you a paper analysing the effect of the gender on the perception of the suggestions, work done etc. In short, often females opinions are not noticed.

    In addition, I can counter your anecdotes with my own. My own wife works as computer specialist and is highly valued in her company. She has also a collegue and every other day I have to hear her complaining that her collegue again came to work late, that she had to correct his mistakes, that he spents work commenting some blogs (oops) etc. But still she has only barely more bonuses than him, and first time users prefer to work with him, instead of with her (until they learn).

    And another thing is that females seems to boast less about their work.
    I have also a female collegue here at the university, who is regularly ruthlessly exploited by our professor. She is working hard, but even she does not seem to notice this. When we worked together on a project and I suggested that she should get 2/3 of the project budget, she refused (and I, being the weak man I am, have not pushed enough).

  • Lokland

    @Bastiat

    Most of the guys I know fall into category c.
    As a further distinction between the groups, all of the groups congratulated me when I got married.

    Now, groups A/B tend to ask me how married life is in a neutral format.
    Group C types tend to ask me if the sex has dried up yet or when I answer (their neutral question) that its great so far they tell me it won’t stay that way.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “That’s totally valid. But I don’t understand why men marry scammers. Surely a period of dating and engagement totaling three years should be plenty sufficient to suss out character.”

    Switch the topic from marriage to sex and scammer to alpha and you have your blog :P

    “Men with a history of promiscuity divorce at twice the rate of other men.”

    Yes that is true but what about those nice beta boys you mentioned who had options fall into their laps occasionally?

    Is there a higher or lower likelihood of them being divorced and/or cheated on than the average man?

    “I dispute the notion that most women want to nail down a player. When it does happen, the woman has a high likelihood of being cheated on, so she will either tolerate that or leave.”

    Yes but that has nothing to do with his risk of raising another mans kid.
    It might be bad for the women but it certainly is not for him which was the point of my argument.

    “I believe it’s 2/3. I wonder what percentage of these occur to men who are blindsided and do not want divorce. As opposed to men behaving badly or men who are equally interested in divorce.”

    Depends upon how you define men behaving badly.

    A drunkard who loses his job, yeah zero pity.
    A guy who was simply not hot enough from the get go but the wife lacked options and now resents him for it, much pity.

    Also, just to check. I said ‘most’, I believe 2/3 would qualify as most or do Americans use most to mean something different than a majority?

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

      @Lokland

      Yes that is true but what about those nice beta boys you mentioned who had options fall into their laps occasionally?

      Is there a higher or lower likelihood of them being divorced and/or cheated on than the average man?

      Boy, I wish there were divorce stats relating to the sociosexual hierarchy! That would be fascinating. We do have stats that high T, dominant, promiscuous men divorce at a high rate, because they are wired for STRs, not LTRs.

      Also, just to check. I said ‘most’, I believe 2/3 would qualify as most or do Americans use most to mean something different than a majority?

      Good question, I had to look it up. The definition says: the majority of; nearly all of.

      2/3 is definitely a majority, but not close to “nearly all.”

      *shrugs*

      I retract my nitpicking.

  • mr. wavevector

    You are with one woman who is not a crocodile.

    Wives aren’t the crocodiles. The crocodiles are the divorce courts, divorce lawyers, and a society that glamorizes divorce for women.

    Wives are just people with a worrisome tendency to feed their husbands to the crocodiles ;-)

    Fortunately for me my wife is not fond of crocodiles.

  • mr. wavevector

    at the serene lake

    a man dives into water

    the crocodile waits

  • JP

    “There were Chechens, but most of all, they were radical muslims. And, contrary, to what Anacaona says, it’s easy to find quotes from Koran which made a war against infidels mandatory (infidels, e.g. me, Anacaona, Susan Walsh etc).”

    That’s not my point.

    These are Chechens.

    The natural Infidel target for Chechen Islamists are the Russian Orthodox Infidels.

    The only thing these nimrods did was give Putin a massive political gift because they made the U.S. mad at Chechnya, too.

    Seriously, this is the most moronic act of terrorism that I’ve ever seen.

    “The revelation that the two brothers suspected to be behind the Boston Marathon attack are ethnic Chechens has led the US establishment to perform a rapid volte-face towards the previously sympathetically-viewed region and cause.

    Through the two separatist wars fought by Chechen militants in the 1990s, the standard US portrayal of the restive region focused on the David and Goliath scale of the adversaries, the ‘denial’ to Chechens of their right to self-determination, and the abuse of human rights.”

    http://rt.com/news/boston-bombers-chechen-identity-125/

  • JP

    ” There are many reasons why women had not been thinkers, inventors and so on thousand years ago, you just need to realise how much work was needed in the past to create a home.”

    1000 years ago, Matilda was desperately trying to rule England.

    Nobody ever talks about Matilda.

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

  • JP

    Also, 1000 years ago, the pornocracy was in full swing.

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

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Also, just to check. I said ‘most’, I believe 2/3 would qualify as most or do Americans use most to mean something different than a majority?

    Technically, women unilaterally file divorce about 1/2 of the time in America. Also, I’m not sure any discussion of divorce risk is meaningful without acknowledging that baby boomers (those currently aged 49-67) were and still are responsible for the lion’s share of the D-boom. Divorce rates are significantly lower for everybody younger and older than that generation.

  • Escoffier

    “Technically, women unilaterally file divorce about 1/2 of the time in America.”

    Really? Whatever one thinks of Langley, this was one instance where IIRC she was not speculating, she tabulated the findings and found that 65% were filed by women. Then she added her own layer of interpretation and said that “between 15-20%” of the male-filed were in fact the woman’s fault. Not so easy to check that claim, to be sure.

    Also, not so sure about your second claim. Again, IIRC, the divorce rate peaked around 1980-82, famously breaking the 50% line. Since then it has declined a little but the more important trend is the class division. Nearly all of the decline has happened within the UMC. Rates in the lower classes have held steady or even risen. Plus, the marriage rate itself has declined. Formal divorce rates don’t capture the frequent couplings and de-couplings of people who never get married. But those are sort of “mini divorces”. And, crucially, the illegitimacy rate is far higher today than when the divorce rate peaked, which reflects in part the lower marriage rate.

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

      @Escoffier

      Then she added her own layer of interpretation and said that “between 15-20%” of the male-filed were in fact the woman’s fault. Not so easy to check that claim, to be sure.

      Can you explain more about this? What is her “own layer of interpretation?” I find it surprising because men are far less likely to file for infidelity.

      Formal divorce rates don’t capture the frequent couplings and de-couplings of people who never get married. But those are sort of “mini divorces”.

      I disagree. Many of those decouplings are between people who never even had a relationship. The OOW births are largely from couplings without commitment of any kind.

      I’ve also read that cohab ends within 5 years 75% of the time. That’s a bit more complicated, but even then, a large share of those are more like “roommates with sex” arrangements than long-term commitments.

      We can’t call them mini-divorces if at no point did the two individuals commit to one another.

  • JP

    Do you realize how annoying it is to *be* a divorce lawyer?

    It’s not like it’s fun and games.

  • JP

    “But not a very good explanation for why a happily married man is advising other men not to marry. I’m curious to know if he would make the same decision again, knowing what he knows now, given that he’s telling other men not to make it.”

    It’s one of those experiences issues.

    You only understand the choice after you’ve lived the choice.

  • Escoffier

    So, as someone else who (knock wood) “won” the marriage lottery, what I’ve subsequently learned is that the game is a lot more dangerous than I ever supposed. Therefore, if someone close to me were to ask, don’t I have an obligation to be honest?

    I don’t quite understand why Susan thinks that married men telling unmarried men to be careful, and specifically WHAT to be careful of, is so bad.

    The fact that it’s worked out for me (so far) is hardly a great reason for someone else to make the leap.

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

      @Escoffier

      what I’ve subsequently learned is that the game is a lot more dangerous than I ever supposed.

      How so? Can you put some numbers to this? For example, mr. wavevector hypothesizes that the risk of a bad divorce outcome may be as low as 1%. Personally, I think even that is high, but let’s go with it. How much less danger did you suppose?

      I’d love to see data. Wait for it…..

      I suspect the claim of frivolous divorce and men getting reamed in divorce court is overblown in the manosphere.

      Certainly Munson thought so, and argued this vociferously. I miss Munson.

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

      @Escoffier

      I don’t quite understand why Susan thinks that married men telling unmarried men to be careful, and specifically WHAT to be careful of, is so bad.

      I don’t think so. I’ve already said that making men aware of real risk is a good thing. More information is always a good thing when weighing decisions.

      What is not a good thing is your deciding whether men should assume that risk once you’ve communicated it. By all means tell men what to be careful of – I do that here on a regular basis. Then let them make their own choices. How could you possibly object to this? Why the need to dictate another person’s life path?

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

    Escof., yes, exactly, the discouragement tends to be subtle. If I said that I was seeing someone seriously and thinking about proposing, the happily-marrieds would probably not scream, “Oh no, you fool, marriage sucks!”. It would be more like, “Really? Are you sure? Have you considered risk factors x, y, and z? Do you realize what you will be giving up, and how hard it is?”.

    They also have an appetite for good stories from the hookup scene. In the next breath, they will talk about how they love their wives.

    Of course, men tend to think with ideas organized into bulkheads and compartments, while women tend to think globally, so the idea that a happily-married man could discourage other men from marriage and point out the risks and flaws with the institution may reflect a man who removes his own particular situation from the scenario and instead tries to view things from an objective, emotionless, macro perspective.

    Clearly divorced dads are probably going to be somewhat cautious in terms of recommending that their sons get married. I’m not talking about those more straightforward situations. I think the more counter-intuitive and interesting question concerns happily-married men who are either lukewarm or discouraging when it comes to providing crucial personal testimonials of marital bliss for other men.

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

      “Really? Are you sure? Have you considered risk factors x, y, and z? Do you realize what you will be giving up, and how hard it is?”.

      They also have an appetite for good stories from the hookup scene. In the next breath, they will talk about how they love their wives.

      Sound like a grass is greener thing. Do they enjoy your stories vicariously and do indeed love their wives? Or do they wish they were you?

      Clearly divorced dads are probably going to be somewhat cautious in terms of recommending that their sons get married.

      Both promiscuity and disinterest in marriage are predicted by parental divorce, for both sexes. The lesson has been imparted, no need for dad to issue warnings.

  • Escoffier

    “Can you explain more about this?”

    Her point was that if a wife witholds sex, becomes a shrew, and/or just generally makes hubby’s life miserable but won’t take the formal step of filing for divorce, she’s still the reason for the divorce even if he files the papers. She interviewed several women who admitted that they did exactly this, that they wanted out but they wanted HIM to take the formal step. This somehow gave them psychological cover.

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

      She interviewed several women

      Seriously, Escoffier? You reject credentialism, preferring to vet the ideas yourself to determine what is true. Yet you swallow whole the claims of a woman who does not even pretend to have conducted a rigorous study of her topic. Who were these women? How did she identify them? How large was her sample, and what percentage told a different story?

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “What is not a good thing is your deciding whether men should assume that risk once you’ve communicated it. By all means tell men what to be careful of – I do that here on a regular basis. Then let them make their own choices. How could you possibly object to this? Why the need to dictate another person’s life path?”

    This is a great idea but almost always when giving advice to a person they will ask ‘What would you do if you were me?’

    In most fields that require this (at least in Canada) the presumption is non-directive. Provide them with the information and let them decide.

    There is no such standard when advising men on marriage nor do I think it is inappropriate to provide such an answer.

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

      This is a great idea but almost always when giving advice to a person they will ask ‘What would you do if you were me?’

      If a person asks that, then obviously you are correct to advise them. They trust your judgment and want to know how you would proceed.

      That’s not what happened here. Here we have men issuing this as unasked for advice on the internet to anyone who may be lurking.

  • Escoffier

    “The OOW births are largely from couplings without commitment of any kind.”

    Not my understanding. The rate is now very close to 50% and well over in some communities. Many of these babies are born to “couples” who are “together”–for now at any rate–not ONSs.

    Beyond this I would question what “committment” really means in this context. E.g.,:

    “I’ve also read that cohab ends within 5 years 75% of the time.”

    5yrs sounds something like a “committment,” no? But then there were no promises and it did end, so I guess not. The word, it seems, has become fairly elastic. In case, I would say that 5ys, then splits, counts as a mini-divorce, especially if there were kids involved.

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

      The rate is now very close to 50% and well over in some communities. Many of these babies are born to “couples” who are “together”–for now at any rate–not ONSs.

      I don’t have data on OOW births as they correspond to relationships. I do know that among teens in low SES groups the norm is for the father to be MIA well before the baby is born. If it was a relationship, it was more of the high school “month or two” variety.

      The young woman I know who did TFA in Phila taught 9th grade algebra and had 9 pregnant students over two years. Not a single one was seeing the father by the time the pregnancy was announced. Several refused to identify him. These women have children as independent actors, relying on their own single mothers for support. BTW, in that environment, pregnancy elevated these girls immediately to “most popular.”

  • Lokland

    @Mega

    “lso, I’m not sure any discussion of divorce risk is meaningful without acknowledging that baby boomers (those currently aged 49-67) were and still are responsible for the lion’s share of the D-boom. ”

    Makes sense, don’t suppose you’d have the data by age group?
    Also thanks for actually defining the boundaries of the boomers I never actually knew them.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Boy, I wish there were divorce stats relating to the sociosexual hierarchy! That would be fascinating. We do have stats that high T, dominant, promiscuous men divorce at a high rate, because they are wired for STRs, not LTRs.”

    I’ve searched exhaustively for stats measuring the association between SMV and divorce but have been unable to find even a hint at actual numbers. Books full of suppositions but very little data behind them.

  • mr. wavevector

    I’m curious to know if he would make the same decision again, knowing what he knows now, given that he’s telling other men not to make it.

    I think I would have. I wanted children. Marriage, despite its drawbacks, is still the best way to raise a family.

    If I had known then what I know now, I wouldn’t have the same sense of having been led down the garden path that I have today. Part of my antipathy to the legal system of marriage is motivated by a sense of being misled for the purpose of exploitation – not by my wife but by a system that would be all too happy to take away my children and garnish my wages. I had the impression I was worth something as a person and a parent, not just as an economic resource to be exploited.

    If you were in Saudi Arabia on a business assignment and you fell in love with a Saudi man, would you be willing to become his wife under the Saudi matrimonial system, given the way they treat women? I imagine you might balk at the prospect. If so, would your hesitation be because of the system or the person? I am not saying our matrimony is quite like Saudi Arabia for men, but my complaints are with our system, not my wife or marriage.

    I don’t believe I need or want either another great love, or companionship as I age

    That’s certainly part of it for me too. Been there, done that, got the kids to show for it!

  • Escoffier

    You are apparently not reading carefully. I introducd the topic by questioning Langley’s reliability precisely on that issue that you now seem to think I am passing along uncritically.

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

      @Escoffier

      Perhaps I misunderstood.

      Whatever one thinks of Langley, this was one instance where IIRC she was not speculating, she tabulated the findings and found that 65% were filed by women. Then she added her own layer of interpretation and said that “between 15-20%” of the male-filed were in fact the woman’s fault.Not so easy to check that claim, to be sure.

      I figured that since you were citing her you found her evidence credible, though not verifiable. I would dispute that.

      Also, I wonder about the accuracy of the phrase “won the marriage lottery,” when two-thirds of married men describe themselves as satisfied or very satisfied. Is this a dollar scratch ticket sort of analogy?

  • Escoffier

    re: Friv Div, I don’t have any stats that you haven’t seen. My point was that, say, five years ago, I had close to zero idea about how bad the courts were, about the divorce industry, about the way men are treated, or any of that. To say nothing of hypergamy, base female nature, and women at their worst. So, now I know, or know more. The rate is important and I would like to know what it is, though apparantly we don’t know at this time. However, we don’t need to know the rate to see that there is a danger.

    Guys have every right to know the danger and make their own calculation based on that.

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

      My point was that, say, five years ago, I had close to zero idea about how bad the courts were, about the divorce industry, about the way men are treated, or any of that.

      And how do you know now? What reliable information have you found? I ask because I have researched this question at some length, though not exhaustively. There is little information to corroborate manopshere claims. Where there is data, it is usually of the “one guy in Florida” variety. Of course injustice occurs in divorce as in many other legal disputes.

      Guys have every right to know the danger and make their own calculation based on that.

      Agreed, but assessing danger or risk requires an understanding of the odds. If my odds of being harmed are 66% vs. 30% vs. 3%, that’s going to play a very important part in my decision making. It’s not useful to be warned of risks without any sense of how likely they are to occur, obviously. Quantifying risk is key.

  • mr. wavevector

    I’m not sure any discussion of divorce risk is meaningful without acknowledging that baby boomers (those currently aged 49-67) were and still are responsible for the lion’s share of the D-boom.

    I don’t think this is true. The stats I’ve seen show that the divorce rate declines fairly strongly with age. The rate for those 50-60 are a fraction of those half that age.

    What is true is that baby boomers are divorcing at a much higher rate than their parents did at the same age. But they are divorcing at a lower rate than 25-30 year olds are today.

  • Escoffier

    Her evidence on FILINGS is credible since it involves mere counting. Either she counted correctly or not. If not, it would be easy to disprove. It has not been, so far as I know, but is even accepted by critics of Langley.

    The rest is speculative but, again, just about all we have on the topic since no one “better” apparently wants to research it.

    RE: the lottery, most divorced men also report that they “had no idea” why it happened. So they might be happy and very satisified right up to the moment that she says “I quit.”

    I would be stunned if my wife asked for a divorce. I would have seen literally zero signs of this coming and million signs to be at peace and at ease. But if it did happen, a non trivial proportion of women would say “Oh, deep down you know what caused it. Nobody is that blind. Or, if you didn’t, that’s just a sign of how bad a husband you were because only a truly terrible husband could have been that oblivious.”

    Why are you getting so testy? Take all the shots at me you want but sniping at my wife seems kind of lame.

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

      Her evidence on FILINGS is credible since it involves mere counting. Either she counted correctly or not. If not, it would be easy to disprove. It has not been, so far as I know, but is even accepted by critics of Langley.

      I believe the 66% number comes from the Brinig study (http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/01/10/hookinguprealities/the-eat-pray-love-divorce-trend/), which tracked the filings in just four states where no fault divorce was not yet in place. AFAIK, this data is not available as a general rule under no fault. The number has been extrapolated as representative of all 50 states as the norm.

      The rest is speculative but, again, just about all we have on the topic since no one “better” apparently wants to research it.

      No, the data is not there. Langley is just making stuff up or providing stats everyone already has.

      RE: the lottery, most divorced men also report that they “had no idea” why it happened. So they might be happy and very satisified right up to the moment that she says “I quit.”

      I have only been able to find one study that looks at reasons for divorce. I wrote about it here:

      http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/01/10/hookinguprealities/the-eat-pray-love-divorce-trend/

      Study is here:

      http://www.psychology.uiowa.edu/faculty/harvey/People's%20Reasons%20for%20Divorcing.pdf

      Consistent with expectations, women in this study were more likely to report problematic behavior on the part of their former husbands (infidelity, substance use, mental and physical abuse), and men were more likely to report that they did not know what caused the divorce. These gender differences replicate findings from several prior studies (Bloom et al., 1985; Cleek & Pearson, 1985; Kitson,1992; Levinger, 1966).

      Contrary to expectations, however, men were no more likely than women to refer to external causes, and men were more
      likely than women to report problems with communication. The latter finding appears to clash with the assumption that women are more relationship centered than men (Thompson & Walker, 1991) and that wives are more sensitive than husbands to marital problems involving emotions and communication (Cleek & Pearson, 1985). Nevertheless, this result is consistent with a study showing that communication problems (such as avoiding problem-solving discussions) predict marital unhappiness more strongly among husbands than wives (Roberts, 2000).

      Although it is possible that men are becoming more sensitive to relationship dynamics in marriage, we suspect that some men used general references to poor communication and other relationship problems to avoid admitting that their own misbehavior undermined the marriage.

      Why are you getting so testy? Take all the shots at me you want but sniping at my wife seems kind of lame.

      I don’t mean to take shots at you personally, and certainly not at your wife. Nor do I feel testy. I’m trying to nip a massive misinformation problem in the bud here. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask for evidence to support the claims about how hostile marriage is to men. I truly want to understand this, and despite reading literally hundreds of blog posts in the sphere and spending at least dozens of hours attempting to research this myself, I find myself with no clear idea of the reality.

      Even Dalrock, who lives for this stuff, has very, very little data to support his claims. During Dalrockgate, the only data he provided was an AARP study looking at elderly divorce – he claimed that old women are frivolous in leaving their husbands after 40 years of marriage.

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    “I’m curious to know if he would make the same decision again, knowing what he knows now, given that he’s telling other men not to make it. ”

    To me that’s not really the relevant question, since “what he knows now” includes how his marriage will go over a long period of time, and he certainly knows more about his wife now than he did then. What I would like to know is, knowing the general legal climate and society-wide facts on the ground, and knowing his wife only to the degree that he did when he proposed, would he do it again?

    “I suspect the claim of frivolous divorce and men getting reamed in divorce court is overblown in the manosphere. ”

    Depends on your definition of frivolous and reamed, I guess. If you define frivolous as the wife developing very negative feelings towards the husband (probably as a result of losing attraction for him), and reamed as him paying her an unfair amount of money (considering the circumstances of the divorce) and/or getting little access to the kids, my anecdotal observation among people I’ve known (I live in California) is (i) nearly 100% frivolous and (ii) generally much less on the reaming, unless the husband was working a lot to support the family and making substantially more than she was, in which case he is rewarded for his sacrificed by being asked to move out but continue working a lot, pay spousal and child support and rarely see his kids. I do have one very long time friend who divorced recently after a long marriage with one child, in which the wife didn’t work, but the child had already reached 18. I haven’t spoken to him since then, but owe him a call. I’m curious as to what happened there. She remarried REALLY quickly, so there may have been something going on, but if she remarried, and the kid was grown, he probably did ok other than the asset split. She had also let herself get REALLY fat over the years, and she talked nonsense so fast it would give you a headache. Not in a hostile way – just kinda ditzy, even though she came from a family of smart people. So maybe he just couldn’t stand it anymore. I think I’ll find out.

    On the other hand, among women my wife has known through the kids current school, there seems to be more instances of husbands leaving and/or fooling around, but a lot of those people were spoiled rich types. Not exactly salt of the earth. One of the moms she knew (who has since left the school) was one of the hottest looking actresses of the last 20 years (IMO) or so, with a perfect body, who made all the money for the family for the most part, but her husband just kept banging other women – probably using the mega-preselection advantage she gave him. Big, well built, good looking guy. But, still.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Also, I wonder about the accuracy of the phrase “won the marriage lottery,” when two-thirds of married men describe themselves as satisfied or very satisfied. Is this a dollar scratch ticket sort of analogy?”

    No despite the insistence on the number of stories of people who have better relationships after divorce its very obvious that getting divorced makes it less likely the person will enter another relationship and if they do it will be more likely to end in divorce.

    Also, if we include cash as part of a mans SMV he takes a huge SMV hit if he gives some of it to the ex every month.

    So, in conclusion, for some portion of men…there is only one shot at marriage as he will either be unlikely to attain a new one or the physical quality of the women he can pull afterwards will be lower.

  • Passer_By

    @susan
    “I wonder about the accuracy of the phrase “won the marriage lottery,” when two-thirds of married men describe themselves as satisfied or very satisfied.”

    Well, that stat inherently excludes all the men who were blindsided by divorce and reamed in court, since they are no longer “married men”. ;)

  • mr. wavevector

    Susan,

    My point was that, say, five years ago, I had close to zero idea about how bad the courts were, about the divorce industry, about the way men are treated, or any of that.

    And how do you know now? What reliable information have you found?

    In the absence of good statistics anecdotal evidence can be useful. It can show you that the way the system works is qualitatively very different than you expected. It can show you the existence of risks that you never anticipated and outcomes that you never would have imagined. You need to know what the problem looks like before you can quantify it.

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

      @mr. wavevector

      In the absence of good statistics anecdotal evidence can be useful. It can show you that the way the system works is qualitatively very different than you expected. It can show you the existence of risks that you never anticipated and outcomes that you never would have imagined. You need to know what the problem looks like before you can quantify it.

      Yes, it can, I agree. You mentioned you know several couples divorcing right now – I would also be watching closely to see the settlements, which of course will reflect your state laws.

      I find anonymous online anecdotal evidence considerably less convincing.

  • Escoffier

    Susan, I agree that we don’t have reliable data on the instance of Friv Div. So we agree there. Shall I repeat that again?

    But to fall back on “one guy in Florida” is lame, and a trope. You well know it’s more than that. You yourself often complain that the sphere is filled with legions of men bitter about being shafted by women. If it’s so vanishingly rare, then where did those legions come from?

    So, again, you and I don’t know the rate. You are convinced it’s low and I don’t know whether it’s low medium or high. I do believe, based on the prevelence of anecdotal evidence, that it’s higher than shark-attack or struck-by-lightning low, and that therefore it’s reasonable for a man to take the risk into consideration.

    Plus, whatever the rate it is, the SYSTEM is clearly rigged. Any woman who wants to can do pretty much whatever she wants to her husband. My wife could call our local PD today and say that I have abused her. By state and local law they would be REQUIRED to come to the house and investigate and arrest me based on her complaint, even if she recanted. But supposing she were truly evil. She could just lie, say I abused her, they would arrest me, even if the system couldn’t make that specific claim stick, she could still get them to forbid me from returning to my home and kicking the whole rotten machinery into gear. The system, in other words, acts as an enticement to those women who want to ruin their husband’s lives.

    And supposing she is not that evil but she just wants to be rid of me without falsely accusing me of a crime, she can do that too and the system will fully support her while sticking it to me.

    Whatever the rate, that at least is worth knowing and factoring into one’s decision.

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

      @Escoffier

      But to fall back on “one guy in Florida” is lame, and a trope. You well know it’s more than that.

      That was a real debate here between Doug1 and Munson. It was literally one guy in Florida who was ordered to pay child support after he learned his kid was not biologically his. Turns out that case is the go-to example in the sphere for outrageous court decisions. What Munson did was explain the legal judgment, which in his view could not have gone any other way, given the facts, and the child’s interest always taking priority.

      My wife could call our local PD today and say that I have abused her. By state and local law they would be REQUIRED to come to the house and investigate and arrest me based on her complaint, even if she recanted.

      Is VAWA not in effect if the couple is unmarried? What does this have to do with marriage? Let’s not move the goal posts to make this an MRA free for all, please.

      Whatever the rate, that at least is worth knowing and factoring into one’s decision.

      All relevant information is worth knowing. The decision will be only as good as the information it is based on. Each individual must do their own risk assessment and decide according to their own tolerance for risk.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “Agreed, but assessing danger or risk requires an understanding of the odds. If my odds of being harmed are 66% vs. 30% vs. 3%, that’s going to play a very important part in my decision making. It’s not useful to be warned of risks without any sense of how likely they are to occur, obviously. Quantifying risk is key.”

    Are you suggesting we tell young men that marriage is perfect without any danger until we are able to accurately quantify the risk?

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

      Are you suggesting we tell young men that marriage is perfect without any danger until we are able to accurately quantify the risk?

      No, I’m suggesting that your exhortations will have little meaning if you cannot quantify the risk. Telling young men not to marry – a life altering decision – should probably not be done without some kind of risk assessment.

      Lokland: Don’t marry, it’s really risky!

      Young man in love: Really? How risky?

      Lokland: I have no idea, but don’t do it!

      Not effective.

  • Californio

    The discussion about married men warning other men off marriage overlooks a key point: the married men are also using their position of relative invisibility to observe and report on the actions of the women they observe, married and single. While now divorced, it was a shock for me to hear (after informing other married men of my impending divorce) “yeah, she did not treat you very well.” Women are either oblivious to how disrespectful they can casually be to their husbands in public or…..the implication is very very bad. And think of what happens to men – hear that the wife has not intiated sex for 10 years – “eh, he must be bad at it..” hear a husband does not take his wife out on dates…”what a jerk he is..”. Casual cruelty by wives is tolerated to an extent that is NOT tolerated when done by men. Imagine – Husband calls out to wife at social gathering :”Debbie, put that cupcake down!” (then, sotto voce to the other men so the wives hear too ) – “She’s a great mom, but wow – has she tanked up! She’s no Jessica Biel, let me tell ya!” ( and for the analogy to hold- the other wives don’t give any support to Debbie, they remain silent or tell her their spouses think they’re fat too.)

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    From your quoted paragraph:

    “Although it is possible that men are becoming more sensitive to relationship dynamics in marriage, we suspect that some men used general references to poor communication and other relationship problems to avoid admitting that their own misbehavior undermined the marriage.”

    Interesting that they are so willing to make such speculations about men, but apparently unwilling to speculate about what might have really been happening with the women (typically bad behavior in the marriage, which can take many forms, after she starts to find him unattractive). Can’t go there.

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

      @Passer By

      Can’t go there.

      That’s too pat. Lead researcher Paul Amato is the President of the National Council on Family Relations, and has won many awards for his research on virtually every aspect of divorce, including its effect on fathers. CV here:

      http://www.pop.psu.edu/directory/pxa6/curriculumvitae.pdf

  • Passer_By

    Also, just to clarify my comment above (though it was probably already clear). I didn’t mean to suggest that 100% of the marriages I’ve seen end in frivolous divorce. I mean that, of the marriages among people I knew fairly well that ended in divorce, it seems nearly 100% are of the sort where the wife can simply no longer stand the husband, even though he is the same guy she married pretty much. Feminists (and society) will often say “Yeah, women no longer feel they have to put up with these assholes”, but that wasn’t what was going on from my perspective.

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

      it seems nearly 100% are of the sort where the wife can simply no longer stand the husband, even though he is the same guy she married pretty much.

      I don’t think anyone can say that from the outside. I’ve heard stories of what was going on behind closed doors that really set me back on my heels. Obviously, I point out in the post that women expect more from marriage than is reasonable. OTOH, I’m sure many men would say putting bread on the table is enough. For most women, it isn’t. It certainly would not be for me. The question is, did women marry men who said this from the start? Or did they grow apart over time, but he doesn’t care as long as he gets his three squares?

  • Jackie

    @Susan

    Maybe I’m missing something here, but why does a blog that is ostensibly for women seeking a good marriage tend to get hijacked by married men talking about divorce?

    I ask because time, cognition and energy are all limited in humans.

    My dad always used to ask me, Are you part of the problem or part of the solution? I am trying to see how these men’s convo about frivolous divorce etc is part of the solution to HUS’s mission and goals.

    Thanks in advance :)

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

      @Jackie

      Maybe I’m missing something here, but why does a blog that is ostensibly for women seeking a good marriage tend to get hijacked by married men talking about divorce?

      Because I lack the self-discipline to cut these convos off at the knees. Although I’m trying with this latest round.

  • Passer_By

    @jackie

    In fairness, looking back through the thread, the divorce discussion was started by a woman here, who was using susan’s article and the links in it to explain why it’s justifiable that women are dumping their husbands at such high rates. Wavevector responded to that, and it was off to the races.

  • Jackie

    @Uncle Passerby

    Good eye, Passerby! It just feels like

    divorce = gasoline
    ‘sphere = lit match
    blog= kindling

    Put them all together and you have incendiary in every sense of the word! ;)

  • J

    @szopen and JP re Chechens

    I had an interesting conversation with a neighbor who emigrated from the FSU about 20 years ago. I shared my observation with him that it was odd that the brothers neither claimed responsibility nor made demands. He shrugged and said, “They are Chechens.” I answered, “Yes, they are,but that doesn’t explain anything.” He replied, “They are Chechens; they are doing what Chechens do.” Apparently, the Chechens have quite a reputation in the FSU for sensilessly wrecking havoc. Weird, huh?

  • JP

    @J

    “He replied, “They are Chechens; they are doing what Chechens do.” Apparently, the Chechens have quite a reputation in the FSU for sensilessly wrecking havoc. Weird, huh?”

    He’s right.

    The fact that they are Chechens really does explain everything.

  • J

    FWIW, I would have no desire to marry again for any reason. I can’t recommend marriage highly enough, but I don’t believe I need or want either another great love, or companionship as I age. I’m going to go out like Miss Marple.

    You know, every time I see another woman become a widow I wonder what I’d do in that situation. I really don’t know. Sometimes, I think that negotiating my way through another relationship would be just too much. Other times, I remember how much I like going through life on the buddy system. It’s a hard call.

  • J

    @JP

    I have to admit that Chechens have not been a big blip on my radar screen. I was vaguely aware of a Chechen nationalist movement, but it sort of blurred with all the other ethnic and national struggles that emerged in the disintegration of the FSU. Now, of course, we’ll all know who the Chechens are.

  • JP

    Here’s more examples of high-quality Chechen terrorist work.

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

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

    Stalin somehow caused and contributed to this mess, but I’m too lazy to research it.

    However, I am comfortable with blaming, in part, Stalin.

  • JP

    Stalin was Georgian, by the way.

    That’s the country to the south of the Chechens.

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3f/Chechnya_and_Caucasus.png

    One of my hobbies is international politics.

    I used to spend a lot more time on it than I have recently.

  • Anacaona

    How so? Can you put some numbers to this? For example, mr. wavevector hypothesizes that the risk of a bad divorce outcome may be as low as 1%. Personally, I think even that is high, but let’s go with it. How much less danger did you suppose?
    We will need Data for how happy single men are too, and what are the outcomes of long bachelorhood. The problem with this “marriage suck no matter what” is that we really don’t know who has it worst.
    The guy married and worried about divorce or the lonely guy thinking suicidal thoughts because no one ever loved him. Something men here had testified feels like to be single.
    ” Of a sage, who roamed dejected,
    Poor, and wretched, it is said,
    That one day, his wants being fed
    By the herbs which he collected,
    “Is there one” -he thus reflected-
    “Poorer than I am today?”
    Turning round him to survey,
    He his answer got, detecting
    A still poorer sage collecting
    Even the leaves he threw away.”

    Of course, men tend to think with ideas organized into bulkheads and compartments, while women tend to think globally, so the idea that a happily-married man could discourage other men from marriage and point out the risks and flaws with the institution may reflect a man who removes his own particular situation from the scenario and instead tries to view things from an objective, emotionless, macro perspective.
    Nah in my country a lot of men upon being found out cheated on their wives they tell their wives that they were happy to be found out and that they hated marriage and she was not hot enough anyway and that they will have legions of good women now…. Upon being single for 6 months they go back begging forgiveness and promising to change.
    Men can be blind to how good they have it too, you know?
    Specially when they think single life is a sexual variety paradise and forget about the crazy, the emptiness, the lack of companionship…
    You surely, remember this young man that upon satisfying his need of sexual release with a loving girlfriend, started to wonder about what was out there. I think a lot of men fall into this mental traps. The variety impulse I think we called it.
    Men remarry at higher rates than women after all, so if they hated marriage so much they wouldn’t be signing massively for a second turn, IMO.

    But to fall back on “one guy in Florida” is lame, and a trope. You well know it’s more than that. You yourself often complain that the sphere is filled with legions of men bitter about being shafted by women. If it’s so vanishingly rare, then where did those legions come from?
    One in a million rule. Even if one in a million guys were raped in divorce court there would be 7,000 of them and thanks to the Internet they can find each other.
    We actually discovered that we have a high number of N’s in HUS in spite that in the regular population they are minority. Likes find likes. That is why randomization is needed for accurate Data.

    Again I’m not saying the marriage system doesn’t need changes and reforms it does. Or that men that had been harmed by it should get justice and are justified on their anger. But forsaking marriage forever is akin to abolishing all laws because some people still commit crimes. Not logical or functional at all, YMMV.

  • Escoffier

    “I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask for evidence to support the claims about how hostile marriage is to men.”

    Like I said, there are two kinds of evidence here. Or really three. First, is the nature of the system. This we know. We know that it’s biased in favor of women and against men and we know how. You largely agree with this from what I have read.

    Second would be the rate of “frivorce.” This we don’t know. It would be good to know because, per the Faber College motto, “knowledge is good.” But we don’t know and I don’t know when or if we will know.

    Also, to know the rate would require that we come up with a definition of frivolous. What counts? I suspect we will have a hard time agreeing here. E.g., would you accept “I don’t love you any more” as legit grounds for divorce? The law certainly allows that and the culture honors it. But simply for the purposes of counting, would you classify that as “frivolous”? Until we can agree on a definition, we can’t even start counting.

    And then there is the third issue, where I know we disagree. That is the way in which base female nature or behavior plays a role. And just to be absolutely clear, to attempt to close off in advance any charge of “misogyny,” I believe that “modernity” broadly speaking has unleashed a range of base passions in both sexes and among all peoples. I’m not singling out girls here, just pointing out that certain of those things unleashed are characteristic of women and impact directly on divorce.

    So, returning to our matter, it is perfectly reasonable to warn men based on nos. 1 & 3 even if we don’t have the answer to 2. Look at it this way. Suppose you were about to get on an amusement park ride. Certain risks were evident. You might lose a limb, break bones, etc. Very dire consequences, potentially. Also, after years of having a good record of hiring capable ride operators, lately the operators had gotten much more flakey and unreliable. Moreover, in certain respects the system had been changed to directly incentivize them to act badly. This makes you wonder.

    So you stop and ask the carnie and he confirms all this. But he can’t tell you the rate at which people actually get hurt. They just don’t collect that info, sorry. So it might be 1% or even less, or it might be a lot more.

    All you know are the potential consequences, which are very bad. You can’t be certain of the particular person into whose hands you are placing your fate. She might be OK, but she might not. But you can know that she’s incentivized by the system to act badly or at least recklessly and there are no external checks so any good behavior has to come from within.

    It’s up to you whether you want to get on the ride. You have to make your own calculation whether the reward is worth the risk. Knowing the rate of crashes might help but for a lot of people it’s not going to be the deciding factor.

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

      @EScoffier

      I believe that “modernity” broadly speaking has unleashed a range of base passions in both sexes and among all peoples. I’m not singling out girls here, just pointing out that certain of those things unleashed are characteristic of women and impact directly on divorce.

      I agree with you. That means that base male behavior is also more prevalent. We’ve seen justifications here at HUS for sexual gluttony and a man’s “need” for sexual variety. As male N counts rise before marriage, the quality of marriages will suffer, just as with women. Promiscuity on the part of both sexes is rendering them unfit for relationships. That’s why I emphasize selecting a mate carefully. Good men and women of proven character don’t often go off the rails and become monsters. Sometimes, shit happens and marriages don’t survive that. I’ve shared that I know three couples personally who divorced when the husbands came out as gay, and one where the wife did.

      It’s up to you whether you want to get on the ride. You have to make your own calculation whether the reward is worth the risk. Knowing the rate of crashes might help but for a lot of people it’s not going to be the deciding factor.

      That’s really all I’ve been saying. The carnie doesn’t get to tell you whether to ride or not. You decide.

      The National Marriage Project has identified divorce risk as one of the key 10 reasons men are delaying marriage. There is also evidence that male Millennials are more interested in marriage than their female counterparts.

      It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

      The problem with discouraging marriage is that it points everyone in the direction of feral self-interest. If you’re worried about civilization, that’s the last thing you should be doing.

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

    Russia basically flattened the Chechnya capital, Grozny, back in the 1990s when they rebelled. There was a big screw-up early in the rebellion where the Russians tried to apply cold-war blitzkrieg tactics and storm the city. They ended up being massacred, losing like a hundred tanks, because the Chechens fired rockets into the tanks from the roof-tops. Then the Russians came back and obliterated the capital block-by-block with artillery and carpet bombing. Needless to say, the Russians don’t worry as much about civilian casualties in their wars as does the USA.

    As always, the war was about fossil fuels.

  • Emily

    I agree with Jackie.

    Also, here’s my opinion on the frivolous divorce discussion:

  • Richard Aubrey

    Ref Chechens:
    The older guy married an “all American girl” who went hijab and whatnot. Dropped out of school. Ann Coulter wondered if she’d had the FGM.
    I wonder if the dominant male type was less common in the Cambridge area than elsewhere, such that an asshole Chechen with DV issues was the hottest guy around.
    Either she had a problem, needing such a butthead, or she had a problem needing a man and he was the only one in her world.
    Lesson there? First one is on her, second on on the rest of us, or on women, depending on how you look at this issue.

  • JP

    “Either she had a problem, needing such a butthead, or she had a problem needing a man and he was the only one in her world.”

    Based on my anecdotal experience with this sort of thing, there were some daddy issues here in some form.

  • mr. wavevector

    Maybe I’m missing something here, but why does a blog that is ostensibly for women seeking a good marriage tend to get hijacked by married men talking about divorce?

    That’s easy. Those who think the system is unjust are trying to undermine it. Those who benefit from the status quo are deploying a variety of defensive and diversionary tactics.

    Hungry, the crocs lurk

    Landlady must rent her rooms

    She speaks not of crocs

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

      Landlady must rent her rooms

      She speaks not of crocs

      Wow, that’s some mixed metaphor.

      Am I supposed to be the landlady? If so, let me clarify something. I have no interest in convincing any man to marry, or even any man to commit to a relationship. I strongly believe that those who don’t want those things are extremely unlikely to be successful at them. Whether they’re wired for STRs or just too tainted by cynicism, they don’t pass the fitness test. One of the things I do is try and help women identify those men who do not share their values. Obviously, a woman in her 20s who wants to marry should not waste precious time on a man who doesn’t want marriage.

      My goal here is to aid the vast majority of human beings who want relationship in their lives, who want a life partner, and perhaps children. That’s the Human Imperative.

      I have no interest in the political aspects of the discussion. We are all free to make our own choices, and I don’t see the need or value in questioning someone else’s choice.

  • J

    The older guy married an “all American girl” who went hijab and whatnot. Dropped out of school. Ann Coulter wondered if she’d had the FGM. I wonder if the dominant male type was less common in the Cambridge area than elsewhere, such that an asshole Chechen with DV issues was the hottest guy around.

    Yeah, I’m astouded by this. I’d have been very upset if she were my daughter. Her life is in ruins because of this guy. I hope she moves in with her parents and goes back to school, so she doesn’t have to work an 80 hour week at a low paying job to support her daughter.

    Do European/West Asian Moslems do FMG? Not emigres from places like Somalia or Egypt but indigenous Moslems like Chechens, Turks, etc.

  • J

    @Emily #540

    Indeed.

  • Passer_By

    I don’t feel the least bit sorry for his wife. I feel sorry for western women who were duped into marrying muslim men back in the 1980s or even 1990s before the likely outcome was obvious to everyone. But any western woman who would do it now deserves whatever she gets.

  • Escoffier

    So, the problem is not the problem, it’s that men are talking about the problem and, more specifically, that certain men are talking the problem which is the true problem.

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

      certain men are talking the problem which is the true problem.

      It’s a question of where. Take it to Dalrock.

  • SayWhaat

    Painting a broad brush about all Muslim men now, are we?

  • http://lifetheroughdraft.com/blog Rone

    I’ve got to agree with article on the different purposes for getting married. I married fresh out of college, because I knew my career could take me all over, and I wanted my lady by my side throughout. It was more about retaining what I had and building from there, with comfort at home and the ability for my “castle” to be a retreat from the rough outside world. It doesn’t take much for me to be content, but my wife goes through more changes and seems to want more, more often than I do.

  • Abbot

    “Slut shaming doesn’t exist for men. When speaking in terms of equality, it shouldn’t exist for anyone.”

    Now THAT is a lofty aspiration for women.

    http://www.policymic.com/articles/37047/barstoolu-takes-slut-shaming-to-a-new-level-with-10-sluttiest-colleges-in-america-list#comment-anchor

    .

  • Jackie

    @Esco

    “So, the problem is not the problem, it’s that men are talking about the problem and, more specifically, that certain men are talking the problem which is the true problem.”
    ===
    Esco, c’mon.

    If the married guys here were “Y’know, I knew my wife was THE ONE when X, Y & Z. The reason we have such a great marriage today is because A, B and C. Listen up, girls, here’s what makes a great marriage!”

    I think we would all welcome those comments with open arms because they are supporting the goals, aims and *intended audience* of this blog. The hallowed halls of HUS would ring with cries of joy over the esteemed Esco!

    But talking crap on marriage and “frivorce” is not the goal here, as far as I understand it. Why not talk crap at KC Lardo’s place? That *is* in alignment with that blog’s goals.

    Whatever you focus on, you get more of. I value my goal– it is so important that I don’t have time and energy to waste. If I’m at the wrong blog, that’s totally cool and I can bounce. Peace–

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

      Whatever you focus on, you get more of. I value my goal– it is so important that I don’t have time and energy to waste. If I’m at the wrong blog, that’s totally cool and I can bounce.

      NONONONONONONONO!

      Men in the sphere like to claim that women here can’t take the heat when men tell the truth. Really, that’s not it. It’s that they’re not the least bit interested in what Mr. HUS is going to tell his 20-something son about U.S. family law. Zzzzzzzzzzzz. Also, this thread has been very civil, but in the past some male commenters have been extremely rude, angry and crass. One bad apple…

  • Gin Martini

    Jackie [[sphere = lit match]]

    You might want to observe who specifically throw lit matches into the conversation here, and how often. Maybe we could do a study fo sho!

  • Anacaona

    So, the problem is not the problem, it’s that men are talking about the problem and, more specifically, that certain men are talking the problem which is the true problem.
    Advocating for marriage reform and selecting for a suitable mate =/= to MARRIAGE IS THE DEVIL! RUN, RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN WHILE I KEEP HAVING A LOVING WIFE, BUT YOU WON’T GET THAT GOOD EVER RUN I TELL YOU DON’T QUESTION ME RUN RUUUUUUUUN!!!!!

  • Escoffier

    Susan, as noted, you are focusing on the inabilty to quantify the risk to the exclusion of all other considerations.

    So, we can’t put a number on it. We get that.

    But I think it nonetheless would be useful for young men to know the following:

    “You know, Steve, if she gets tired of you for any reason, she has the power to kick you out of your home and your kids’ lives, to take half you assets, and to make you pay in various ways for decades, potentially beyond your means with the threat of jail looming in the background if you don’t pay what she and the court thinks you ought to pay–even if you lose your job and have no income.

    “In addition, if she wants to get really nasty about it, she can charge you domestic violence or even child abuse. You might be, and likely would be, cleared of any criminal charges if indeed you are totally innocent. But in family court, the accusations are enough to ruin your case totally and even to have you barred from your home with no notice or explanation.

    “All she has to do is change her mind about you and, poof!, you are gone not just from her life but also from yours–at least the one that you have come to know. No reason or explanation required.”

    So, what’s the number you put on that? 1% chance? 5% chance? Higher?

    How much, in the final analysis, would knowing the precise number impact an individual man’s decision? For most, probably not much. The severity of the downside is more relevant. For some, it might help. But as you note, at the moment we don’t know the numbers. We do however know the nature of the system. And that knowledge can be conveyed.

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

      @Escoffier

      Now we’re getting somewhere. I ask these questions in good faith.

      she has the power to kick you out of your home and your kids’ lives, to take half you assets, and to make you pay in various ways for decades, potentially beyond your means

      Does a woman seeking divorce have a legal right to evict her husband from the family home? If so, does a man seeking divorce have the same right?

      Does a woman seeking divorce have a legal right to prevent visitation with the father? How many men try for joint custody and get zero? How many men seek joint custody?

      Does a man whose wife makes more than him, obviously more and more common, get to take half her assets if they divorce? Let’s say she put the down payment down on the family home. Is he entitled to half of that if they divorce?

      Is there any way for a man with considerable assets to protect them before marrying? Is there a process by which either party can make a contract going in that sets aside some assets, outside joint ownership? (Note: I do know the answer to this one.)

      Do wives with primary custody “make” their ex husbands pay child support? Or does the state provide that the non-custodial spouse will contribute to their support using a formula based on income that applies equally to women and men?

      What percentage of divorced fathers pay child support when it is well within their means? When fathers fail to pay, is it a simple matter for the mother to seek redress?

      What are the facts in cases where men were thrown in jail for not paying child support? Was there a hearing in front of a judge who made a ruling? Or do the police go arrest men on a woman’s claim that he hasn’t paid? Is the man’s history of compliance taken into account? His efforts to find employment? How are these cases evaluated?

  • Jackie

    @Gin Martini

    Plain Jane, is that you? ;)

    There is a really helpful article at “The Rawness” that discusses this:

    http://therawness.com/psychology-trolling/

    For many bloggers/participants in the ‘sphere, there is also the spectre of toxic shame, covering every interaction:
    http://therawness.com/raw-concepts-the-superhumansubhuman-dichotomy-of-shame/

    (I actually posted this earlier in the thread, but it explains the mentality of so many SO well, that it is a must-read, in my opine.)

  • Anacaona

    @JP
    Thanks for the history lesson. Love to read about the royals and their wacky hijinks. :)
    @Emily
    Heh funny video

  • Jackie

    @Susan

    Susan, you work really hard to make this a “virtual salon” that is all-access to everyone. You are open-minded and generous and want to invite people in and that is a beautiful thing, in my opinion.

    Where it breaks down is when people (unknowingly perhaps) break the social contract. Online tone is *such* a tricky thing– I’ve messed up on this many a time. It’s hard to tell if something is a really fun and interesting digression, or a deliberate hijack of purpose. You give people the benefit of the doubt, which is generous. I’m meaner. :)

  • Jackie

    @Ana (555)
    Ha ha ha!
    ;-P

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Risk? Young men? Are young men really risk averse?

    I think the reason for decline in marriage is not so much due to risk factors as the old adage of why buy the cow when the milk is free.

    The men who are marrying types, they go right back to marriage after divorce. They don’t get online and complain about that. I see it a lot among acquaintances. Two recent births among my social circle have been to remarried men.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    The woman who dropped out of college and married the Boston bomber is a classic example of a woman who is not to be envied for being married young and with child at 24…

    I feel bad because I was once that foolish young woman who thought I was so mature. I am glad to not be with the awful man I was with for so many years. In my case I was from a divorced family and didn’t have a father. I wonder what it is with her, since her parents are still together.

    Another similarity was that the ex also had a domestic disturbance arrest, and I still took him back. Even got out expunged from his record. He had his own crazy conspiratorial ideas and wanted to lead some militia revolt against the government.

    I was 24 almost 25 when I got out, and I had started living with him when I was 18. He would get angry and yell, alienated his former friends, and later turned to threatening to kill me, etc. But he would say he loved me and couldn’t live without me, and apologize and swear he would be better. Finally I decided that I had to leave.

    Sometimes young people make stupid decisions. I certainly did. I lucked out and didn’t have kids with the ex though. This woman is going to have a hard time. She has been trapped by a very dark and negative force for a long time, worse than I was, and she never woke up herself. External forces yanked her out from under his influence. I pity her because there will be people who hate her for being associated with the bomber. But she needs to see with clear eyes now more than ever.

  • Jesse

    mr. wavevector,

    Some men live happily as confirmed bachelors.

    Yes, but this is useless advice or those of us interested in long-term monogamy.

    Others stay in long term monogamous relationships but don’t marry or have kids.

    Yes, but did you know that in certain jurisdictions after two years of living with a woman you are legally married to her whether you like it or not?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/03/18/bc-family-law-act-common-law-married-couples_n_2901068.html

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common-law_marriage_in_the_United_States

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

    I want you to know as accurately as you can both the benefits and risks of marriage before you commit. I was ignorant of the risks when I married, although I probably would have made the same decision had I known.
    I feel like a guest at a resort whom no one told that the lake he was swimming in is inhabited by crocodiles. Is it inappropriate for him to warn others?

    No, but give useful advice. “Don’t get married” is not useful advice.

    I would listen to someone who said, “Jesse:

    1) These are the kind of benefits you can expect from a good marriage.
    2) These are the risks you run in a poor, difficult or dissolved marriage.
    3) This is how you can maximize the benefits and minimize the risks.
    4) Finally, in order to make a decision you have to consider your preferences, desires and skills. How much would you enjoy long-term monogamy? How much would you enjoy being single and free to enjoy different women? How much do you desire children? Do you have the capacity and desire to develop the skills to create and maintain a happy marriage for several decades?”

    That’s something I would listen to.

    I may sound sharp here, but I’m not pissed off. We’ve already dealt with our issue, so I apologize if the tone of this message appears antagonizing.

    As for you, since you’re already locked into your marriage, you’re probably better off using whatever energy you expend worrying to reduce the probability of divorce, i.e. making your marriage as good as possible. But I’m not really the guy to listen to for marriage advice.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Another thing that puzzles me is why would the bomber claim to hate Americans and then marry an all-American woman? So often lately the mass murderers have been single men without family. This case is just so wtf to me.

  • Passer_By

    @sw
    “Painting a broad brush about all Muslim men now, are we?”

    I guess – though I suppose it’s more like assessing the risk/reward equation. If I’m painting [with] a broad brush, it’s more about Islam itself. So sue me.

  • Jesse

    How to avoid marriage:
    Don’t get married

    Mind = blown.

  • Anacaona

    Another thing that puzzles me is why would the bomber claim to hate Americans and then marry an all-American woman? So often lately the mass murderers have been single men without family. This case is just so wtf to me.
    Many possibilities: Cover so no one will suspect them, self hate punishing them with themselves by mixing with the filth or he simply didn’t wanted to leave a real widow for all we know he never loved her and cared little for her so carrying with his ‘mission’ was easier than if he had a legitimate wife in his mind.
    Just speculation for this particular guy and not this is not all Muslims, neither all Muslims that marry white women.
    We Christians have our share of violence and I wouldn’t appreciate being herded with the same group, I’m sure neither would they, YMMV.

  • SayWhaat

    I guess – though I suppose it’s more like assessing the risk/reward equation. If I’m painting [with] a broad brush, it’s more about Islam itself. So sue me.

    Religious Muslim extremists do not speak for all Muslims, any more than Radical Misogynists speak for all men.

  • Passer_By

    @jesse

    I don’t think not getting married is a very good option for MC or UMC men who want children and want to be a stable presence in their lives and have daily interactions with them.

    My advice: Be attractive. Don’t be unattractive (or too beta). Be benignly dominant. Don’t be unemployed or make considerably less than she does (unless she makes a ton of money and is totally addicted to your dick like it’s a crack pipe). Make her laugh at least once a day.

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Makes sense, don’t suppose you’d have the data by age group? Also thanks for actually defining the boundaries of the boomers I never actually knew them.

    Working on it. Mr. Solo and I had a great back-and-forth on the issue some time ago, and I forgot to bookmark it. The right honourable mr. wavevector isn’t correct, WRT to the U.S. anyway. That chart he linked to is from the U.K.

  • Abbot

    Oh, those feminists try. But they just can’t seem to change that male point of view.

    http://d1o2xrel38nv1n.cloudfront.net/files/2013/04/amherst.jpg

    .

  • J

    Another thing that puzzles me is why would the bomber claim to hate Americans and then marry an all-American woman?

    What Ana said or perceived himself as taking something away from infidel America by marrying a high SMV Christian from a more or less elite family (doctor dad went to Yale) and converting her to Islam.

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

    Jesse,

    I think myself and Han Solo have agreed in the past that David Deida’s “The Way of the Superior Man” was a good treatise on ‘light-side’ game. The basic premise is, find your purpose in life and follow it. Don’t worry about the woman aspect too much, if you have your purpose and follow your passion, women will be attracted to you.

    I think it’s generally safe to advise one to not live with a women who you wouldn’t marry. I believe the data Susan has posted in the past shows formal marriage is a safer bet then common law (correlation versus causation caveat applies of course). A quality man shouldn’t be in a hurry to move in with his girlfriend anyway. My personal philosophy is that marriage is an institution to provide a stable environment to raise children in. That didn’t work out well in my childhood, but it’s the way it should be. No plans for children? Then don’t get married, IMHO.

    I suspect that as you mature as man, what you expect and desire from a relationship will evolve.

  • Passer_By

    “Religious Muslim extremists do not speak for all Muslims, any more than Radical Misogynists speak for all men.”

    We’re getting off topic here, but it really doesn’t matter whether they do or don’t. They control the narrative regarding Islamic issues, for the part, just like radical feminists tend to control the narrative on women’s issues. “Radical misogynists” (which in many cases apparently includes guys who simply reject current organized feminist thought), don’t seem to control the narrative for men on the whole.

    But all that’s irrelevant, anyway. As it all relates to western women converting and marrying middle eastern muslim men, it’s just a risk/reward issue. Obviously, the odds of ending up with a radical terrorist are almost nil, but I’d be curious as to how many of those guys end up being good long term husbands to western women. I doubt there’s any data on it, for obvious reasons.

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

    Not sure if this is useful for the discussion at hand, but I have asked female students this question: “You make $85k per year. Assume you are ambivalent about your job. How much would your husband need to make for you to feel that SAHM was a reasonable option?”

    The typical answer is “at least $150,000 per year”. If women do in fact want the SAHM option and if some of the surveys are correct in suggesting that they may resent a man who is not able to give it to them, then it seems as if we have a lot of provider type males who simply won’t be making enough
    money to provide proper single-income source security for their wives. So the wives will keep working, but will they be angry at their husbands
    because they have to?

    Could this economic dynamic be contributing to the perception among many married men that lower-quality marital experiences loom
    ahead for the single guys? Is there also a perception that high-SMV bachelors “have it made” in the SMP and should enjoy their special privileges while they are available?

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

      @Bastiat

      That’s a very interesting point about women’s expectations for staying home. I can attest that I have several friends who have spoken in a disparaging way about husbands who did not make enough to afford this opportunity. Not most of the time, mind you, but when things get pissy, that’s their go-to complaint.

      The other thing, of course, is that a lot of guys marry figuring their wives will do pretty well, and we see female income rising in importance as a qualifier for marriage. Even if they can afford it – say they make 150K – they may still wish their wives would also kick in 150K, enabling a posh lifestyle free from financial stress.

  • Escoffier

    OK, you accuse me of changing the subject but you did it here. The topic was Frivorce, not false paternity. And, for the record, that goes well beyond “one guy in Florida.” The NYT mag did a very long piece on this about a year ago, maybe longer, and found many exanples and outlined the extent of the problem, which while small is far larger than “one guy.”

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

      OK, you accuse me of changing the subject but you did it here. The topic was Frivorce, not false paternity.

      You’re right, I did. Sorry about that.

  • Escoffier

    RE: the prosecutorial #575, I am damned either way here. If I answer all 10,000 questions, I am taking your blog OT. If I don’t, I am dodging.

    So, the short answer is, yes, she has the POWER to do all of that. All it takes is some well placed lying and machinery of the state kicks into gear. I could go home from work tonight and find the locks changed on my house and a cop there with a restraining order barring me from the premises. All my wife has to do make a DV complaint and the cops are OBLIGATED to do that if she wants it. Presumably any criminal charges will not stand but in family court that doesn’t matter it will all be used against me to great effect. And that’s after I spend all that dough clearing my name and have to live with a crim trial on my record. The process IS the punishment, even if I am not formally punished. And, of course, I will be, just not on the crim charge (at least that’s not so likely), but it’s a near certainty that I will be punished and how in family court.

    And, yes, courts all over the US routinely rule on what a man SHOULD be able to pay, in the court’s estimation (which means really in the estimation of the wife and her lawyer) and if the guy can’t pay it for whatever reason, the court can send him to jail. That includes being broke and out of work. It’s not unlike Dickens era debtors prision in that regard.

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

      @Esco

      All my wife has to do make a DV complaint and the cops are OBLIGATED to do that if she wants it. Presumably any criminal charges will not stand but in family court that doesn’t matter it will all be used against me to great effect. And that’s after I spend all that dough clearing my name and have to live with a crim trial on my record. The process IS the punishment, even if I am not formally punished. And, of course, I will be, just not on the crim charge (at least that’s not so likely), but it’s a near certainty that I will be punished and how in family court.

      I get VAWA, but again, what does that have to do with marriage? Will you also counsel men not to live with anyone, but to remain lone wolves for their entire lives? What’s the cost benefit tradeoff here?

      Obviously, the solution for the individual is not to marry a woman who would invent a DV claim and sick the system on you.

      Interestingly, a woman last week (Jennifer Grossman I think?) published an article about the lack of due process on campus for males, thanks to Title IX. She identified as a feminist, then shared how she’d seen this unfair law affect her son. I was astounded to see that the manosphere response was one of great anger. Paul Elam of Voice for Men told her to go fuck herself. I get it, they don’t like that she didn’t speak up until her son experienced it. But to me that seems like shooting oneself in the foot. Here they have a potential ally – a woman clearly distancing herself from feminist dogma, and they shun her. I don’t think that’s a very good strategy. Defectors can be tireless in their energy for an adopted cause.

      And, yes, courts all over the US routinely rule on what a man SHOULD be able to pay, in the court’s estimation (which means really in the estimation of the wife and her lawyer) and if the guy can’t pay it for whatever reason, the court can send him to jail.

      That sounds like alimony, which is disappearing. I wonder if men will feel as strongly about divorce settlements when they are more frequently on the receiving end.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Saywhaaat.

    Painting a broad brush about all Muslim men now, are we?

    Actually, if you read carefully, I was referring to one Muslim man, which means the plural is inappropriate. Also, one does not paint a single person with a broad brush. Again, if you read carefully, I was suggesting the woman’s issue might be—painting with a broad brush—Cambridge non-Muslim men.
    Perhaps none of the Cambridge non-Muslim men felt comfortable being assertive about the restaurant. Or whatever the metaphor of the restaurant refers to.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Following a speculative theme:
    Poking around ref Afghanistan, I came across this high-T face.
    He’s dead.

    http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=%22pat+tillman%22&ei=UTF-8&fr=w3i&type=W3i_DS,136,0_0,Search,20111147,0,0,0,0

  • Escoffier

    Re: shacking up: I am against it for a variety of reasons, not least moral. But that aside, I would definitely advise any man not to live with a woman to whom he is not married on purely practical grounds. Courts and legislatures keep expanding the definition of “common law marriage” in ways that disfavor men. I doubt it will be long before a relatively short shack up puts men on the hook in a serious way, mostly without them even knowing about it.

    Your obvious solution is obvious, but how to know that in advance? How to be certain? Remember, some high % of men don’t know why their divorce happened. I suppose they all chose badly, by definition. But we have a system that places all the risk on men and all the moral hazard elsewhere. So long as that system is in place, I think you can expect men to adjust their behavior. Talking about it is just one way.

    and, no, I’m talking about the combination of alimony AND C.S. The idea here is, take me as an example. Suppose my wife frivorces me and wants cash. The court will say, Mr. E, based on your earnings over the past X years, you owe her X. But I say, “fuck this corp drone life, I want to be a line cook at 1/10th the pay.” The court can say, “No, we know what you are capable of earning and you must pay that or we punish you.” It’s to keep me on the wheel. What’s truly unfair is that the court can do this even in the case of layoffs or other financial hardship. It can decide what I OUGHT to pay and then can punish me even if I cannot.

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

      @Escoffier

      I do understand what you are saying, and why. But if you warn men off marriage and cohabitation, and at the same time shame low or base nature, what kind of life are you expecting these men to lead? What is the best thing for civilization here? And what of personal happiness?

      Legal reform is what should happen, but in its absence I don’t see how a boycott of society’s most important institution produces any good result. No easy answers here.

  • Escoffier

    oh and re Elam, I’ve read very little of him and have not been to the site in ages and what I saw I did not find useful, either practically or theoretically.

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

    Susan, excellent point. The guys in this demo are increasingly marrying with female edu/economic potential in mind, rather than looking to be providers. They’ve grown up with feminist indoctrination that says that women want this, and of course some percentage probably does. The collision course will occur if the high-income woman decides that she wants out of that life, and the man either a) cannot support this decision because he married her in part because he was attracted to her training/career and his associated dual-income assumptions; or b) the man supports the decision but can’t afford to maintain their lifestyle unilaterally, so the wife presumably either keeps working and is miserable or stops working, suffers a serious quality of life hit, and is miserable.

    I suppose that the couples that do well must feature a male provider who is both very affluent and very accommodating. Of course, while we are at it we should go ahead and make sure that he is also an uberhot badass with a monogamous sexual orientation, lots of discretionary free time to spend on grand romantic gestures, washboard abs, SAS-level combat training, enthusiasm for changing diapers, stylish dresser, etc, etc, etc.

    I have great sympathy for the young women involved in our grand social experiment because they are being placed in a classic schizophrenic double-
    bind, wherein guilt and disappointment may logically follow from either path that they choose. It seems like a system a sophisticated misogynist would come up with to try to maximize female psychological stress.

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

      I suppose that the couples that do well must feature a male provider who is both very affluent and very accommodating. Of course, while we are at it we should go ahead and make sure that he is also an uberhot badass with a monogamous sexual orientation, lots of discretionary free time to spend on grand romantic gestures, washboard abs, SAS-level combat training, enthusiasm for changing diapers, stylish dresser, etc, etc, etc.

      Has one of these ever actually been spotted?

  • Richard Aubrey

    Susan,

    Wrt Judith Grossman and her son:
    The issue is not that she will be some kind of an ally once she figures it out.
    This was SUPPPOSED to happen to other people’s sons. She’s not so stupid to have overlooked that.
    As one of the Anointed, she’s supposed to be immune from that which she knowingly inflicts on the lower orders.
    This will not change her attitude about the issue. Not a bit.
    Hence the anger.

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

      @Richard

      I really got the sense that Grossman had gotten a wakeup call re the misandry of the law. She did a great service in publicizing it – I have tried to explain that very point many times and have seen it fall on deaf ears.

      When a feminist says “you were right,” it’s worth saying thank you and giving that all the publicity you can muster. You’re not chipping away at radfems here, you’re going after the 2/3 of women who don’t consider themselves feminist, but don’t realize how toxic feminist laws are.

  • Passer_By

    @susan
    “Obviously, the solution for the individual is not to marry a woman who would invent a DV claim and sick the system on you. ”

    And a good solution for individual women is not to marry wife beaters, but if it turns out that she did, the courts don’t send the cops to hold her down while he beats her. ;)

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

      And a good solution for individual women is not to marry wife beaters, but if it turns out that she did, the courts don’t send the cops to hold her down while he beats her.

      Good point.

  • Joe

    @Susan

    We’ve seen justifications here at HUS for sexual gluttony and a man’s “need” for sexual variety.

    Funny timing. Not five minutes ago I read this from the WSJ on-line>.

    Remember the scene in “Annie Hall” where Woody Allen’s and Diane Keaton’s characters each answer their therapists’ questions about how often they have sex? Mr. Allen’s Alvy Singer laments, “Hardly ever. Maybe three times a week.” Annie Hall’s complaint? “Constantly. I’d say three times a week.” Sure, it’s funny. Just maybe a little less so if you’re a man.

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

    Susan…

    1) “I have several friends who have spoken in a disparaging way about husbands who did not make enough to afford this opportunity. Not most of the time, mind you, but when things get pissy, that’s their go-to complaint.”

    If the husbands DID make enough to afford that opportunity…but at the price of constant 12-hour days and 6 1/2 day weeks—how many of these women would then speak in a disparaging way about their husbands as “workaholics?”

    2)”The other thing, of course, is that a lot of guys marry figuring their wives will do pretty well, and we see female income rising in importance as a qualifier for marriage. Even if they can afford it – say they make 150K – they may still wish their wives would also kick in 150K, enabling a posh lifestyle free from financial stress.”

    Especially if (a) the wife comes with a lot of student-loan debt, and/or (b) the wife had advertised herself, pre-marriage, as someone with very strong career ambitions.

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

      @david foster

      If the husbands DID make enough to afford that opportunity…but at the price of constant 12-hour days and 6 1/2 day weeks—how many of these women would then speak in a disparaging way about their husbands as “workaholics?”

      Actually, these men are workaholics, just not in very lucrative fields. They’re doing important work they’re passionate about, but the pay is not great. So these women are doubly annoyed – a few of them raised the kids virtually alone while working full time.

      Especially if (a) the wife comes with a lot of student-loan debt, and/or (b) the wife had advertised herself, pre-marriage, as someone with very strong career ambitions.

      I have long harbored guilt for (b). Just by virtue of the fact that my husband met me in b-school, he would certainly have assumed we’d be a double income couple. Indeed, I made more than he did for the first few years.

      He claims not to feel resentful about this at all, because we decided together in response to a crisis. But it’s come up during arguments before, so I know it’s an issue. I think what he really would have liked was my getting a sweet, lucrative gig instead of writing this blog. They weren’t handing them out last time I checked, though.

  • Passer_By

    @susan

    By the way, don’t let my sometimes snarky comments in this thread suggest that I didn’t think your original post here was good – I think it was. I just felt the authors you quoted were working too hard to attribute womens’ differing priorities to some sort of superior or more evolved value set, rather than simply on differing demands on the two sexes.

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

      @Passer By

      By the way, don’t let my sometimes snarky comments in this thread suggest that I didn’t think your original post here was good – I think it was. I just felt the authors you quoted were working too hard to attribute womens’ differing priorities to some sort of superior or more evolved value set, rather than simply on differing demands on the two sexes.

      I understand. FWIW, I think any notion of women being more evolved is ridiculous. There is no virtue in evolution. The Dark Triad male mates successfully, as does the hot psycho bimbo. While the sexes are at cross purposes in mating to some extent – not re the goal, but in how to get there – I say vive la difference. Without sexual tension, without friction, it would all be a huge bore.

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

    I am very happy that you created this site. You need to write a book and then do the talk show guest circuit, Susan!

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

      @Bastiat

      Thanks, you just made my day! I was on a panel at Simmons College last week. There was an event with film clips about body image stuff. GIRLS was heavily featured. The panel was myself, a radfem professor, a radfem filmmaker, and two students who had starred in The Vagina Monologues. It was great practice for The Today Show. :)

      The professor wrote and thanked me, she’d especially liked the research I quoted (I’m such a data junkie, and it was the only way I knew how to debunk the silly claims that were being made). This was an all women’s college in Boston, but honestly, I suspect I’d be viewed as a modern day Phyllis Schlafly in media circles.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Susan,

    Then Grossman must be particularly dim, thick, slow, and uninterested in thinking. Only way she could not have figured out where this was going. Do you think she expected this sort of thing to happen, or was she too slow to figure it out? She’s supposed to be a lawyer. They think through things like this; figure out what the upshot will be. Take it to the reduction ad absurdum sometimes. The utterly predictable result either didn’t cross her mind–in which case she’s dumb as a bag of doorknobs–or it did and the result was just and and finedy for her.
    It has happened to other guys. Didn’t bother her.
    IMO, the issue is that the Anointed are supposed to be immune. What happens to others is either well-deserved or doesn’t matter–eggs and omelets–and not to the Right Sort of People.
    I suppose we’ll see if she makes any effort to fix what she did.
    My guess is it’s the furthest thing from her mind.

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

      It has happened to other guys. Didn’t bother her.

      I think it’s fair to say that people mostly get invested in agitating for change only after they’ve been personally affected in a negative way. That’s just human nature. A mother defends her son, who she knows did not rape anyone, when he was accused of having raped his ex years prior.

      Also, FWIW, I do not think the reality of Title IX is well known or understood. Obama’s administration effected this latest change, and it was barely mentioned in the media.

      I suppose we’ll see if she makes any effort to fix what she did.
      My guess is it’s the furthest thing from her mind.

      I don’t understand. What did she do, exactly?

  • Richard Aubrey

    Susan
    What she “did” was work for Title IX and other provisions–can’t recall if she mentioned VAWA–threatening men.
    She is an attorney. Not just a regular chump who can claim ignorance while trying to keep a straight face.
    There is no excuse, and no way for her to claim she did not see this as a guaranteed result of the work she did and the work other feminists did.
    It’s one thing to not know much about this or that until it bites you.
    It’s another to be involved in putting something together and then claiming to be shocked when it works the way you expected it to work. With one teeny exception, of course.
    She, of course, is the latter. That’s why she’s getting crap that would not be coming down on a mother who was, say, a customer service rep in an insurance agency and who had no feminist connections. Men would sympathize in that case.

  • Anacaona

    Legal reform is what should happen, but in its absence I don’t see how a boycott of society’s most important institution produces any good result. No easy answers here.
    I think that is akin to people that abstain from voting because they don’t believe in democracy or the bipartisan system. Yet their abstinence only serves to have celebrities do their social work by featuring “Vote!” adds. Inaction is not that effective, IMO.

    I am very happy that you created this site. You need to write a book and then do the talk show guest circuit, Susan!
    COSIGN THIS! :D
    I’m sure the day you take Mr Hus to a nice dinner with the money you made in a book/movie deal, you would feel better about this investment. :)

  • Jesse

    Passer_By,

    Thank you for the advice.

    —–

    Mr. Nervous Toes,

    The basic premise is, find your purpose in life and follow it. Don’t worry about the woman aspect too much, if you have your purpose and follow your passion, women will be attracted to you.

    This sounds good, though I think the add-on I’ve read Ms. Walsh (Mrs. Walsh?) mention is that your passion should hopefully lead to high status in the eyes of other men. That’s supposed to be the kicker.

    I think my chosen pursuits will work well in that regard, though. As long as I get good at them.

    I think it’s generally safe to advise one to not live with a women who you wouldn’t marry.

    Yes. Now that I think about it, I might say that I shouldn’t live with a woman I don’t plan to marry.

    Actually, sometimes I wonder if I should not live with a woman until we are married. I don’t know if that’s being too stiff, though. I understand there are potential pitfalls to marrying someone you’ve never lived with, so I won’t hold on to that one too firmly.

    I suspect that as you mature as man, what you expect and desire from a relationship will evolve.

    Oh yes, there are many things I do not know.

    —–

    A belated thank you to Emily and Mireille for replying to my post speculating about attraction.

  • Passer_By

    @susan
    “I don’t understand. What did she do, exactly?”

    I haven’t been following this much, but I’ll weigh in.

    She says: “I am a feminist. I have marched at the barricades, subscribed to Ms. Magazine, and knocked on many a door in support of progressive candidates committed to women’s rights”

    She obviously didn’t bring these rules about all on her own, but she did far more to contribute than most women. You can bet that she was one of the first c@nts to say something like “oooh, teh poor menz” when the plethora of examples of this sort of thing (not to mention the plummeting numbers of male college students generally) ever came up in conversation. Prominant feminists have openly stated that wrongful convictions are fine and dandy if that’s what it takes to end rape, and many openly state that the burden of proof on consent should be reversed – not just at university discipline hearings, but in the criminal law. As an attorney, and a strident and active feminist, she was undoubtedly aware of all this. BUT IT DIDN’T MATTER!! If you’re going to make a cake, you have to break a few eggs. It only mattered to her – it was only really believable – after it happened to her son. They say FUCK YOU, because if it hadn’t happened to her son, she would have continued to dismiss and/or mock the men who fall victim to this stuff, and the other people who are outraged by these things, as a bunch of misogynist pigs. It’s that arrogance and intellectual closed mindedness that they are reacting to. Am I assuming things about her? Sure. But we’ve all dealt with enough women who fit her self description to make some fairly good assumptions.

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

      OK, I understand the objections to Ms. Grossman. I guess I’m an opportunist – her belated and perhaps selfish epiphany is still potentially useful to MRAs. Yet because she is the enemy, and because women are suspect anyway, they responded very angrily. I see it as a missed opportunity, from a strategic standpoint.

      I’ve been watching MRA types flub opportunities for years now, I don’t know why I’m surprised. I guess righteous anger is more enjoyable than progress.

  • Jesse

    SayWhaat,

    I’m not really following this discussion, but I want to try my hand at this.

    Religious Muslim extremists do not speak for all Muslims, any more than Radical Misogynists speak for all men.

    Muslims are a group united by a belief system handed down from God. The same cannot be said for the group called “men.”

    In other words, all Muslims are Muslims, but not all men are radical misogynists.

    I’m not saying that to suggest that all Muslims are terrorists, if that’s even what you guys were talking about. But I think it alludes to something that confuses me about religion.

    Anyway, this is off-topic. I just saw a little logical game and wanted to play. Cheers.

  • SayWhaat

    @ Richard:

    My comment was addressing Passer_By, not you.

    @ Jesse:

    Muslims are a group united by a belief system handed down from God. The same cannot be said for the group called “men.”

    In other words, all Muslims are Muslims, but not all men are radical misogynists.

    Sorry, I should have clarified my thinking better. I personally don’t believe that extremists of any religion are qualified to call themselves as members of said religion. They are Extremists, plain and simple. I don’t consider them to be true Muslims, Christians, whatever. They are fanatics that use religion as a weapon instead of as a guide.

    That’s where I’m coming from. I understand others do not view it that way, but I do, hence my original statement.

  • SayWhaat

    I understand there are potential pitfalls to marrying someone you’ve never lived with, so I won’t hold on to that one too firmly.

    What are the potential pitfalls of not cohabiting until marriage? After dating for a period of time, what could my SO possibly know about me that he wouldn’t have known without living with me, and vice versa?

  • SayWhaat

    I am very happy that you created this site. You need to write a book and then do the talk show guest circuit, Susan!
    COSIGN THIS!

    Co-signed as well. :)

  • http://neutrino78x.angelfire.com neutrino78x

    As far as Islam, most Muslims do not support terrorists, especially not Americans who happen to be Muslims. One must not forget that we have had Americans who happen to be Muslims since the 1800s. Muslims fought against the British in the war of 1812, and have fought for the USA in all of our major wars since then. There are currently Muslims serving in the United States Army in Afghanistan, protecting their fellow Americans with deadly force used against extremist fundamentalists.

    For example, US Army Captain Humayun Khan, who happened to be a Muslim, died in 2004, performing combat duty for the United States of America, when a suicide bomber attacked his base.
    http://arlingtoncemetery.net/hsmkhan.htm

    Americans who happen to be Muslims pray five times a day in the chapel in the Pentagon (the Chapel is non-denominational; anybody of any religion can practice their religion there, including Muslims).
    http://www.factcheck.org/2010/08/no-pentagon-mosque/

    I recently read a book which I highly recommend, The Muslim Next Door. It is an autobiography by a woman who happens to be a Muslim and was born and raised in the United States of America. She doesn’t wear a hijab, and her family is against terrorism. They’re just as patriotic as other Americans, they just happen to believe in a minority religion.

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Muslim-Next-Door-Quran/dp/0974524565/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1366774795&sr=8-1&keywords=the+muslim+next+door

    She explains in the book that a hijab is basically the Muslim equivalent of having a cross around your neck, and doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a fundamentalist. I see Muslims here in downtown San Jose all the time, probably San Jose State University students, who are dressed as Westerners in every other respect, but also are wearing a hijab. (I actually think it looks cute, lol.)

    Having said that, I would be concerned with a woman changing her religion to ANY fundamentalist religious belief. The woman we’re talking about didn’t just convert to Islam, she converted to an extremist interpretation of it. I would be equally concerned if she converted to extremist Christianity. Any kind of fundamentalist interpretation of an organized religion restricts people’s freedom greatly…so if someone is going from a Western Secularist view of religion, that is to say, “Christmas and Easter Christian”, to an extremist religious belief, that’s a concern for her and, in this case, for her child as well.

  • Jesse

    SayWhaat, you don’t feel any possible inkling of trepidation at the idea of committing the rest of your life to someone you haven’t shared space with for an extended period of time? Quirks, habits, the way they leave their stuff lying around, cleanliness, doors open or closed, how much personal space they need…

    I understand that you will have seen a lot of those things from time spent in each other’s homes, or weekends together or what-not, but it seems like a big step to me.

    But I don’t even know why I’m arguing this, since I was considering taking your position. It just doesn’t seem like something I should over-think at this stage, or feel too strongly about.

  • SayWhaat

    SayWhaat, you don’t feel any possible inkling of trepidation at the idea of committing the rest of your life to someone you haven’t shared space with for an extended period of time? Quirks, habits, the way they leave their stuff lying around, cleanliness, doors open or closed, how much personal space they need…

    I dunno. Not really? I had a pretty good sense of all of that after dating my ex for over a year. One week I really did live with my him and there was nothing during that time that really took me by surprise (well, besides his moodiness, but if we’re being honest that flag had been there for a while).

    At any rate, I probably wouldn’t live with someone unless we were engaged at the very *least*. I know people consider that to be “stiff”, like you said, but I just think that the most important thing is to be on the same page re: values, finances, etc. and that information is readily available without cohabitation. I’m still willing to hear a persuasive argument for it, though.

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

      @SayWhaat

      At any rate, I probably wouldn’t live with someone unless we were engaged at the very *least*.

      That’s my recommendation as well. No moving in unless it’s with your life partner, whether before or after the wedding.

      I’ve seen some pretty awkward and inconvenient breakups where couples living together have to break leases, find a friend’s couch to sleep on, fight over who gets the dog, etc.

  • http://neutrino78x.angelfire.com neutrino78x

    Wow, my comment about Islam was a lot longer than I intended so if Susan Walsh wants to delete it I am not offended, I will try to write a shorter one.

    Mireille wrote:
    [quote]
    So since you’re not interested in marrying, and that most women can have all the relationships they want (according to commentators here), why would they pick you when you are not offering even less than the regular guy?
    [/quote]

    Well, presumably for the same reason I would want to pick them; me because I love them, they because they love me. I don’t offer anything except myself, take it or leave it.

    btw you do not need a piece of paper to be committed to someone. Time determines that. Friendship first, then romantic relationship, and if you’re still together 20 years later, that’s the same as marriage. Especially since I have no intention of having children.

  • Jesse

    SayWhaat,

    I’m still willing to hear a persuasive argument for it, though.

    Well, don’t look to me for that. I think the most important thing is to avoid simply sliding into cohabitation as a matter of convenience.

    I don’t know anything about your relationship with your ex, but conceivably his moodiness could be something tolerable (or not overly concerning) when you were dating, but if you had begun living together it would become too much. That type of thing sounds plausible in the abstract.

    As I said I don’t want to blow this out of proportion, but living together for a week is not quite the same as living together for the rest of your lives, and I’ve read about how people have little habits or quirks that are so adorable when you’re in love but after about three years they make you want to strangle the other person.

    I feel like a broken record now, but all I’m saying is that I have these old-fashioned inclinations to not live together until marriage, but I’m willing to hear evidence that that is unduly inflexible and risky.

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks

    Makes sense, don’t suppose you’d have the data by age group?

    Tracked down one such discussion, anyway:
    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2013/02/01/relationshipstrategies/how-the-ascendancy-of-the-alpha-female-will-impact-marriage/comment-page-5/

    Here’s the skinny (from #655):
    Census Bureau, Household Economic Studies (Table 6, Page 16):
    http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p70-125.pdf

    I broke out age cohort, % of men ever married once, and % of men ever divorced. This is a good illustration of how different generations have skewed that 39% crude divorce rate:

    From 2009
    15-19: 2% ever married once, 15% ever divorced
    20-29: 26% ever married once, 11% ever divorced
    30-39: 63% ever married once, 23% ever divorced
    40-49: 66% ever married once, 43% ever divorced
    50-59: 63% ever married once, 56% ever divorced
    60-69: 65% ever married once, 56% ever divorced
    70+: 72% ever married once, 32% ever divorced

    Also, on the “grey” divorce phenomenon here:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203753704577255230471480276.html
    And here:
    http://www.cnn.com/2012/06/24/living/baby-boomer-divorce/

    Considering the divorce rate for baby boomers (a clearly identified demographic group) appears to have *doubled* in the last 20 years, and coupled with the fact that the overall divorce rate has remained relatively stable over the same period, it stands to reason that the divorce rate for other age groups has gone down, possibly by a great deal.

    I’d like our resident happily married pessimists, Messrs. Escoffier & wavevector, to comment on these facts in some detail, as well as square them with their opinions on divorce risk…

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

      @Megaman

      Considering the divorce rate for baby boomers (a clearly identified demographic group) appears to have *doubled* in the last 20 years,

      It’s not surprising that Baby Boomers are divorcing in greater numbers, because we were raised during a tumultuous time (the 70s) when divorce was actively promoted. Many of us saw parents divorce and not just for reasons of unhaaaaaaapiness. Key parties, swinging, etc. were all sordid aspects of divorce during that time.

      The article on gray divorce also points out that gray divorce rates are highest among people who have already divorced once. In other words, boomers are the (hopefully) final act of the divorce push. Gens X and Y, but particularly Gen Y – show signs of not following that pattern. Or perhaps those most likely to divorce will be those who do not marry in this generation.

  • Jesse

    At any rate, I probably wouldn’t live with someone unless we were engaged at the very *least*. I know people consider that to be “stiff”, like you said, but I just think that the most important thing is to be on the same page re: values, finances, etc. and that information is readily available without cohabitation. I’m still willing to hear a persuasive argument for it, though.

    As I read this more closely… you say that you are somewhat ‘stiff’ but you don’t really provide a justification for being so inclined. You say, “the most important thing is ABC” and that that is ascertainable without cohabitation. Well, fine, but none of that is an argument against cohabitation.

    Now, you don’t have to provide any justification to me at all, but it just struck me belatedly that you haven’t given any reason to avoid cohabitaiton.

  • http://neutrino78x.angelfire.com neutrino78x

    Jackie wrote:

    (I don’t know why the standard BB Code quoting doesn’t work. How are people getting the indented quote effect?)

    [quote]
    Can you identify what’s been holding you back? Shyness? Stay in, not leave the house much? Small town/rural community without a lot of girls around? Low self-esteem? [/quote]

    Well, since there have been five girls so far whom I felt like I loved, I feel like it isn’t a case of not finding people. It is the other people who are not finding me.

    The only problem I can identify is that I want a relationship (and I count friends with benefits as a relationship, because I would never have truly casual sex) to arise from a friendship. In other words, I don’t want to date people I don’t know. I want to know someone from a platonic context, and as I gradually develop feelings for them, I want them to do the same until we are a couple. But, so far that has never happened. Usually what happens is I have feelings, and when they find out, either they just want to be friends (which makes me sad, but isn’t as bad as the other possibility), or they feel uncomfortable and don’t want any contact with me at all anymore. They are many long stories involved in that, maybe I will get into it in another post, but that’s the bottom line.

    As a result of one of those long stories, I’m actually a subject in an experiment at Stanford University to determine the best treatment for social anxiety disorder (that is to say, shyness). I’m mainly doing it because a social mistake related to the latest long story resulted in people overreacting, and it strained the friendships, and I’m hoping that doing this will make them feel better about me, since they suggested it. We’ll see.

  • Jackie

    “I am very happy that you created this site. You need to write a book and then do the talk show guest circuit, Susan!
    COSIGN THIS!

    Co-signed as well. ”

    Fourthed!!!!
    :mrgreen:

    Bastiat, do you have enough funding to have Susan and Mr HUS guest-lecture at your university? C’mon, HEB-M Bastiat, MAKE IT HAPPEN!!!

  • Jackie

    Re: Cohabitation

    “I just think that the most important thing is to be on the same page re: values, finances, etc. and that information is readily available without cohabitation. I’m still willing to hear a persuasive argument for it, though.”
    ===
    Some people are really happy cohab, and it has worked out fine for them. Due to my religious beliefs, it’s not an option for me. Am I nervous about it? A BIT!

    Yes, it would be nice to have a “preview” and also feel like there is an escape hatch! But I think of the “hidden costs” that are not readily apparent:

    1) Real estate: Are you sharing a house? An apartment? A rental? A condo? This can get SUPAH sticky– imagine buying a house together and then breaking up. :(

    2) Co-mingling finances: This is similar to 1 above. The furniture, big things you buy together, any potential debt— how will that resolve that if things don’t work out?

    3) Emotional investment: A lot of girls tend to see moving in together = next step to marriage. But grasshopper, this is not always so.

    Many guys will be psyched to have sex, cooking, cleaning (which MANY times is left to the chick) without having to really commit beyond signing a lease together.

    This is a TON of investment for the girl, in my observation. Many times, when it doesn’t work out, they are out the time, devotion and emotional attachment. Those are pretty huge opportunity costs that are beyond price (ie can’t pop around to Target and get 2 years of your life back).

    To me, that’s too big of a risk for so little investment on the guy’s part.

    4) Lastly, I feel that cohabitating vs marriage send very different public statements. To me, I’m taking this so seriously that living together for a trial run isn’t congruent with my beliefs. The example of my parents’ marriage is my template: It’s all or nothing or nothing at all. Go big or go home!

    That’s just me, though. Many people feel differently and find what works for them. :)

  • Jackie

    @Esco

    “Remember, some high % of men don’t know why their divorce happened. I suppose they all chose badly, by definition. ”
    ===
    Esco, I was thinking about this earlier tonight. Part of the answer, it seems to me, is that many people believe in the “halo effect”– that somehow hotness = goodness. Grasshopper, this is not so. (Sorry, I have been saying this ALL NIGHT! yolo 8-) )

    I remember once when Han Solo was quantifying something, numerically, about women. And I was thinking that what he was talking about should have been graphed, because there were two axises that were implied (and not discussed): Hotness and Goodness (or Character).

    I see a LOT of guys conflating the two, or focusing on Teh HOTT and giving it way more weight than any consideration of character. I think a lot of guys will put up with enormous amounts of horsepucky if the chick is superhot (and super easy) and they can show her off to their friends (and enemies).

    They are not looking at character, beyond likeability, easy-to-be-with and superficial traits. No one has ever complimented me on my strong moral fiber :( (actually, only after breakups! :( ).

    Character traits are just kind of left twisting in the wind, after being totally trumped by appearance. I think this does both guys and girls a disservice. Just my 0.02.

  • Jackie

    @Susan

    “Men in the sphere like to claim that women here can’t take the heat when men tell the truth. Really, that’s not it. It’s that they’re not the least bit interested in what Mr. HUS is going to tell his 20-something son about U.S. family law.”
    ==
    I didn’t mean to flounce– I should have said that better. :oops: I meant, bounce from the thread. not the blog.

    It’s just like you said. Plus, aren’t the implications rather insulting– that most women are just SO AWFUL, so terrible, so ebul, that we are going to make life a living hell by marrying men?! :(

    I guess I just don’t ride that bus. I’d rather accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative, don’t mess with Mr. In Between. ;)

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @Loks
    O.K. pal, I had to dig deep for this, but it was worth it. The other side of the coin: incidence of frivolous divorce (of which Susan’s inquired as to facts concerning). Full circle back to my last post:

    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/07/19/politics-and-feminism/who-is-responsible-for-the-single-motherhood-epidemic/comment-page-14/
    #2055
    CDC/Census: 20% of men have ever been divorced
    Assumption: 2/3 of those divorces filed by women (13% of men affected, at most)
    Subtract: Men divorced for “good” reasons (abandonment, alcohol/drug problems, domestic violence, infidelity, loss of affection, mental illness, money problems, etc.) ~ 5% or less of men affected by FD.
    Speculation: Frivolous divorce is probably less common than these more acute causes of marital discord. But younger “unattractive beta” husbands aren’t necessarily the ones hit by the EPL phenomenon the most. Where the divorce rate is currently rising is amongst the oldest baby-boomers who are in their 50s and 60s (see “gray” divorce).

    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/10/04/relationshipstrategies/pre-wedding-jitters-are-common-but-not-benign/comment-page-2/
    #232
    Maggie Gallagher, a conservative writer and commentator, very pro-marriage, wrote a book in 1996 called “The Abolition of Marriage” which criticized no-fault divorce and its effects on American family life… While confirming that wives tended to FILE for divorce 65% of the time, she also found that:

    “About 80% of U.S. divorces today result from the unilateral decision of one spouse, rather than the joint decision of both (Gallagher, 1996), with the spouse who files for divorce first often having an advantage.”

    If the 65/35 (female/male) ratio holds for one-sided divorces, then this suggests that women initiate divorce unilaterally 52% of the time, men 28% of the time, and both parties together bilaterally 20% of the time.

    That was the game-changer for me on the issue. My back-of-the-envelope estimate of 5% or less now drops to 2-3% or less for frivolous divorce. Certainly much lower than the 22% of women (either married or not) who’ve been the victim of domestic violence at some point. Using the same logic being espoused in this discussion vis-à-vis divorce risk for men, we should be advising young women to avoid men period, considering the high risk of bodily harm involved.

    Again, I’d love to get M. Esc. & WV’s detailed perspectives on all this stuff… :wink:

  • HanSolo

    @Megaman (and Lokland) #622

    http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p70-125.pdf

    From p. 16, table 6

    Dividing married once-and-only-once by ever-divorced is not correct. The ever-divorced group will include people who were married once, twice, thrice and more so it’s not an apples to apples comparison.

    You want to capture if someone has ever been divorced, which you do, and divide by whether they’ve ever been married, which you don’t. If they’ve ever been married then marrying another time will not change their ever-married status. The way you did it excluded from the denominator men who have married more than once.

    So, the divorce rates you provide are too high.

    Dividing ever divorced (only have to divorce once) by ever married (one or more times married) you get:

    Age Of those males married at least once, divorced at least once
    35-39…23%
    40-49…34%
    50-59…40%
    60-69…38%
    70+……24%

    Of course, the 40-49 y/o cohort still has time to up their rate since some of them just haven’t gotten divorced yet.

    So, for the 50-69 y/o cohort from 2009, it does look like about 39% divorce though that could go a little higher if more of them divorce as time goes on.

  • HanSolo

    @Megaman 629

    Looking at your first analysis:

    I’m assuming you’re getting the 20% from the 20.5% in Table 6 of p. 16 of this report: http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p70-125.pdf

    But fine, let’s say 20%. You multiply by 65% to get 13% of men have been divorced where the wife initiated.

    Then you say that 8/13 or more of these divorces were due to bad behavior by the husband, leave 5/13 or less due to bad wife behavior and from that you get the <5% of men have been frivolously divorced.

    I'm curious where you get the 5/13 ratio from. What study do you have to justify this?

    Plus, you are ignoring that some of the husband-initiated divorces could be due to bad wife behavior. Why don't you account for this?

    Then in your next step you go from 65% initiated by women to 52% by women, or 0.8x as much. I don't follow how you go from 5% or less to 2-3% or less. If you multiply 5% by 0.8 then you get 4% so you should have said 4% or less instead of 2-3% or less. Once again you have assumed that none of the male initiated or bilateral divorces were due to bad wife behavior. Why is this?

    There are some further issues that I'll address in my next comment.

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

      Plus, you are ignoring that some of the husband-initiated divorces could be due to bad wife behavior. Why don’t you account for this?

      That cuts both ways.

  • HanSolo

    Why are you using 20.5% (or 20%) when that includes a lot of teenage males (15+ y/o), about 98% of which have never married? That will of course make the number of ever-divorced lower than if you were to focus on males in, say, the 30+ y/o category.

    But even taking your age group of males 15 and older, focusing on the 20% ever divorced isn’t the interesting number to look at because it hides the fact that 1/3 have never been married, so of course they could never have been divorced–yet! Time will tell.

    Really, you should look at the ratio of ever divorced to ever married. Even including these teenagers, you get 20.5%/67% = 30.6% of males 15+ y/o that have ever been married have ever been divorced.

    So, when we look at only those who have ever been married, instead of including those who have NEVER been married, we up the number by 50%. So taking your other assumptions as given, that would up your 5% to 7.5% and your 4% to 6%.

  • HanSolo

    @Megaman

    Now, let’s look at what happens if we alter some of your other assumptions:

    Let’s not include the teenagers or 20-39 y/o cohort since so many of these have not even married yet, let alone divorced (though by anecdote we know that some have).

    I’m also going to exclude the 70+ y/o cohort since they came from a different time where divorce wasn’t as common, as can be seen by their 24% divorce rate I showed above instead of the 40% and 38% rate of the 50-59 and 60-69 cohorts, respectively.

    Let’s look at the 40-69 y/o cohort:

    40-49…34%
    50-59…40%
    60-69…38%

    Averaging these together gives 37.33%, though that is an approximation assuming that their populations are of equal size. But good enough for our purposes.

    If we assume 65% of these divorces were female initiated then you get 24.3%. If we take your 5/13 number due to bad wife behavior then we get 9.3% or less of the 40-69 y/o male cohort who were ever married were divorced by the wife’s initiation and due to her bad behavior.

    If we assume 52% then you get 19.4% and multiply by 5/13 to get 7.5% or less.

  • HanSolo

    Finally, let’s not assume that only 5/13 of wife-initiated divorces is due to bad behavior and that none of the husband- or bilaterally-initiated ones are.

    The 5/13 was arbitrary, and I realize it was chosen to show that less than 5% of men could be frivolously divorced. We already saw that this was misleading though because 1/3 were never married, including a lot of teenagers.

    To make clear, I have no idea what the right number is and I don’t think anyone does.

    Since you chose numbers to try and show a low rate, let’s do the intellectual exercise of seeing what happens if we choose a higher rate of bad wife behavior and also include some of the bilateral and husband-initiated divorces as being due to bad-wife behavior.

    Let’s flip your number and assume that 8/13 or more of the wife-initiated divorces are due to her bad behavior and focus on the 40-69 y/o cohort in the 65:35 split of who initiates:

    37.3% * 0.65* 8/13 = 15%

    or using the 52:20:28 split:

    37.3% * 0.52 * 8/13 = 12%

    Now, let’s add some bad wife behavior to the husband-initiated divorces. Let’s arbitrarily assume that 1/3 is due to bad wife behavior. That would add another

    37.3%*0.35*0.333=4.3% (for the 65:35 split) or

    37.3%*0.28*0.333=3.5% (for the 52:20:28 split, assuming no bad wife behavior in the 20% bilateral)

    Adding 4.3% onto 15% takes us up to 19.3% of ever-married 40-69 y/o men having been divorced due to bad wife behavior in the 65/35 split with the 8/13 and 1/3 assumptions.

    Or in the 52/20/28 split, adding 3.5% onto 12% takes us up to 15.5%.

    As I’ve stated, these assumptions of how much bad behavior was due to wife, husband or nobody are arbitrary.

    However, I’ve shown that you should only look at people who have ever been married and not include teenagers. When we do this we see the rate is higher than your estimates. Also, by focusing on the young married we underestimate the amount that will eventually divorce and that’s why I chose the 40-69 y/o cohort, to get a sense of how much divorce will eventually happen.

  • HanSolo

    Bottom line, frivolous or bad-behavior divorce could be only a few percent or it could be as high as 20% of ever-married men. This would, of course, require defining what is frivolous or bad behavior and really figuring out what portion of women are engaging in that (or men, if you wanted to know that side of the equation. For example, was Ted’s divorce frivolous or not by his wife? She fell out of love with him but he was never an abuser.

    I don’t think Megaman has proven that a negligible portion of divorces are frivolous nor that a negligible portion of ever-married men have been frivolously divorced. The question is still wide open and I have shown how with more inclusive numbers that the % of ever-married men that have been frivolously divorced could be in the high teens and that the portion of divorces due to bad behavior could be quite high…it’s all supposition at this point.

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

      @Han Solo

      What constitutes bad wife behavior?

      From the WSJ article on gray divorce, here’s an example that Dalrock and co would definitely consider frivolous:

      “I had gone back to school to advance my career as a paralegal, and his work had dwindled, so he was just basically hanging out with his buddies,” she says. “We had nothing to talk about, and when we did, it was bickering.”

      They had stayed together all those years because of the kids, but now nothing was left. “He was so uncompassionate, and I had turned to my religion, and he would never go to church with me,” she says. “I realized that I was alone in the marriage and would be better off with someone whose values and interests were more like mine.” She seized the moment and left, filing for divorce.

      I’m curious to know the argument for why these two should stay together. The kids are grown, they have completely different values, and it’s clear that neither one likes the other. Are we supposed to believe this man was devastated by the end of this marriage? Sure, maybe he would have been happy to bicker until death provided she got in his favorite brew and washed his boxers, but what is he giving?

  • HanSolo

    Above, I have talked about bad wife behavior. However, a more accurate way to talk about it would be the absence of bad husband behavior. This would include cases where the husband wasn’t bad and the wife was and because of this the divorce occurred and cases where neither the husband nor the wife was bad but the wife decided to divorce.

    I suppose we could further divide the no-bad husband behavior divorces into two categories: 1) frivolous where no bad wife behavior was present, such as cheating, but she just wants a divorce; 2) bad behavior by the wife divorces that could be initiated by either party.

    In my analysis above I was referring to cases where there was no bad husband behavior, and there may or may not be bad wife behavior.

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

      Ah, so bad wife behavior is cheating? We know the stats on that.

  • HanSolo

    @Megaman

    If you are only focusing on frivolous divorce then I can see why you might only focus on the wife-initiated ones in the 65/35 split since she will initiate it usually. However, you could imagine cases where she has decided she wants a divorce but for whatever reason wants him to initiate it or to do it together and just makes life unpleasant for him until he decides to file or tells him to file or to do it together. Or cases where the husband starts to feel her pull away and so he decides to act preemptively but it was really her that caused the emotional separation to begin with.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “What Munson did was explain the legal judgment, which in his view could not have gone any other way, given the facts, and the child’s interest always taking priority.”

    I realize that but you must realize that it became some random guys legal obligation to pay for for another mans kid.

    Thats like court ordering a woman to carry someones child.

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

      I realize that but you must realize that it became some random guys legal obligation to pay for for another mans kid.

      Thats like court ordering a woman to carry someones child.

      Yes, and I realize how wrong that is. All options are undesirable. I read of one case where a nurse stole sperm from a hospital patient and impregnated herself! Then he was ordered to pay child support. Terrible.

      The question is, do these rare cases suggest that the average man shouldn’t have children? You’ve decided to ask for a paternity test to be sure. My husband never found that necessary, and his paternity is plainly obvious when he looks at our kids. People can do whatever they need to do – I happen to believe that swearing off women is a rather extreme solution to the problem. But that’s a personal decision, to each his own.

  • Lokland

    “Does a woman seeking divorce have a legal right to evict her husband from the family home?”

    No which is why the advice when she tries to kick you out is to have her go to the hotel instead.

    “If so, does a man seeking divorce have the same right?”

    No but for some reason whoever leaves usually loses.

    “Does a woman seeking divorce have a legal right to prevent visitation with the father?”

    No. A Guy is legally allowed to see his children whoever he wants.

    “How many men try for joint custody and get zero? How many men seek joint custody?”

    Not sure.

  • Lokland

    @Saywhaat

    “They are Extremists, plain and simple. I don’t consider them to be true Muslims, Christians, whatever. They are fanatics that use religion as a weapon instead of as a guide.”

    This.
    Though I would quibble on what qualifies as the ‘true’ form of a religion.
    Gets back to the Catholic vs. Christian vs. Protestant debate which is entirely pointless.

  • Lokland

    @SW

    “What are the potential pitfalls of not cohabiting until marriage? After dating for a period of time, what could my SO possibly know about me that he wouldn’t have known without living with me, and vice versa?”

    Increased chance of divorce after marriage

    and (possibly depending on state/provincial law)

    After X years (two here) of cohabiting the two are considered common law and she has rights to half the assets (regardless of her input).

    —-

    As for what may or may not be known about someone after a few years.
    Ask Hope about her former 6 year relationship.

  • Lokland

    @SW

    Sorry, I missed the ‘not’ in there entirely.
    Feel free to use my reasoning as further support of your point.

  • Maggie

    @ ” you do not need a piece of paper to be committed to someone. Time determines that. Friendship first, then romantic relationship, and if you’re still together 20 years later, that’s the same as marriage.”

    That argument reminds me of this: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/24/fashion/missing-the-love-boat-the-case-for-marriage-modern-love.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  • Maggie

    @Susan
    ” I suspect I’d be viewed as a modern day Phyllis Schlafly in media circles.”

    Maybe in the Jezebel circle but perhaps not in the MSM. Schlafly came across as smug, humorless and hypocritical and you’re not like that at all. I don’t mean to be presumptuous but I get the feeling that perhaps you’re ready for a change or the next step. I think an HUS book would be great.

  • szopen

    Oh, SayWhat, how I feel inspired by your optimism and how much I would love to see more people thinking like you…

    Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya [poll tax] with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

    And about “extremism”, see here:
    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2011/02/culture-differences-matter-even-within-islam/#.UXfEycwZJkN

  • Emily

    >> “Maybe in the Jezebel circle but perhaps not in the MSM. Schlafly came across as smug, humorless and hypocritical and you’re not like that at all. I don’t mean to be presumptuous but I get the feeling that perhaps you’re ready for a change or the next step. I think an HUS book would be great.”

    Cosign! It’s time for Susan’s message to go mainstream. :D

  • Escoffier

    Susan, I am not advising any man not to marry. I am advising every man to make an effort to understand what the situation today is. I had no idea what it was when I got married (back in the last millenium). Despite my ignorance, it’s worked out well for me (so far). That’s part luck, I suppose, but more because I chose well.

    However, if what you are suggesting is that men ought not be told, lest it disincline them to marry, then I can’t agree. You can be darned sure I will tell my son what the situation is. I am not going to preserve his ignorance and watch him feed himself into the wood-chipper. I hope that, in knowing the truth, he will be extra super careful in his choice of spouse, assuming he chooses to marry. But that choice will be up to him. And if he chooses not to, in part based on this information, I am not going to kick myself for having “dissuaded” him by helping him learn the truth. A lifelong informed bachelor son is, to me, a superior outcome to an ignorant son who marries a hypergamous flake who proceeds to feed him into the jaws of divorce industrial complex.

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

      @Escoffier

      Susan, I am not advising any man not to marry. I am advising every man to make an effort to understand what the situation today is.

      I’m happy to cosign that.

  • Escoffier

    I’m not sure what mega is asking me to comment on but he seems to prefer that his challeges be acknowledged, so I am doing that.

  • Escoffier

    Susan, re: the above example, it’s nothing more than “I don’t want you any more.” He’s not abusive, not cheating, not a drunk or druggie. She just doesn’t like him any more, if she ever did.

    If you want to set that as a standard, at least be clear on what the consequences and implications are. You often use the word “committment” as if to you it really means something. But if the above divorce is A-OK, then I don’t see how it possibly could. Your endorsement of that divorce means, really, that to you marriages are just LTRs with a legal veneer. There is nothing else that truly distinguishes them.

    Hey, I like to go to elaborate restaurants and my wife doesn’t. So I go with other people (not female dates, if you’re wondering). Can I divorce her for that, or would it be frivilous. I suppose we don’t bicker much, but we do sometimes. How much is enough to earn me a “get out of marriage guilt free” card? Also, I am all the while working to improve myself through reading and working out whereas she’s gone kind of slack in these areas, can I leave her? Maybe not now, but when the kids are gone?

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

      @Escoffier

      Susan, re: the above example, it’s nothing more than “I don’t want you any more.” He’s not abusive, not cheating, not a drunk or druggie. She just doesn’t like him any more, if she ever did.

      True, but does he play no role in that? If my husband stopped spending time with me, used his unemployed time to socialize with the guys, and never spoke to me except to disagree and bicker, I might wonder just why I should live out this “life sentence.”

      I haven’t said she is justified – as you say we don’t know the whole story. I’m really interested to know how people feel in general about what constitutes frivolous divorce. If a spouse is a bunch of things other than the grievous sins you mentioned: unpleasant, contemptuous, unclean, lazy, emotionally checked out, living an entirely separate life except when wanting to be cared for, etc. – what is the other person’s obligation?

      I’m not talking about self-actualization here, just basic quality of life.

      If a man doesn’t speak to his wife for ten years, wants nothing from her but meals and housework, is she morally obligated to remain with him?

      If a woman berates a man day and night, calling him a loser and disrespecting him because he never struck it rich, is he morally obligated to stay married to her until he dies – perhaps another 30 or 40 years?

      These are not easy questions. But whatever you call these situations, the word “frivolous” does not capture it.

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    @HS

    If you are only focusing on frivolous divorce then I can see why you might only focus on the wife-initiated ones in the 65/35 split…

    That’s all I was doing, just trying to quantify the risk with the best available facts. “Divorced out of the blue, for flimsy reasons, never saw it coming.” I’m not aware of any large-scale studies that measure who divorced how often and for what reasons (i.e. fault vs. no fault). I just made some educated assumptions, no intent to minimize anything.

    Women will always file for divorce more often than men IMO for a couple of prime reasons: men beat, cheat, go to jail, and possibly abandon a spouse more often than women do. Those other reasons for divorce, I didn’t pull them out of thin air. They come straight out of divorce case law. Unfortunately, they happen and they’re legitimate. Who am I to judge them otherwise?

    Look, I can respond to your technical points in some detail later today, but we’ve been over the same data multiple times. I consider it a settled issue. A few % of men in the entire population get hit by FD. That doesn’t appear to have changed much since 1980. If that’s considered high, then the risk women incur WRT domestic violence and infidelity is extremely high, married or not.

    When you and I last had this discussion, I thought we concluded by agreeing that the baby boomers have skewed the overall divorce rate. Now it sounds like you think their divorce % is overstated. Really? This is the same information from the Census Bureau as before:

    % ever divorced (meaning once) divided by % ever married once (only)

    I’m not mathematically inclined, but that should negate the effect of those who marry multiple times. Even then, the baby boomers show a crude divorce rate in excess of 50%. How is that the wrong way to look at this picture?

  • Escoffier

    Once again, how can we even begin to calculate the rate of frivorce when we have not even attempted to DEFINE frivorce?

    Susan, above, thinks a woman who simlpy wants to move on is entirely justified, even though A) Susan has only heard the woman’s side of the story and B) what the woman describes is not that bad, certainly far short of cheating, beating or substance abuse.

    I suspect we are never going to agree because the women, by and large, are going to be far more sympathetic than the men to the general claim (from women) that “my emotional needs just aren’t being met.” I wonder how many would be similarly sympathetic to the male claim that “my sexual needs just aren’t being met.” The typical response to that is, “Look in the mirror, bub, and realize what’s wrong with you and fix it.”

  • http://en.gravatar.com/jimbocollins Megaman

    I am advising every man to make an effort to understand what the situation today is.

    Considering this is a female-oriented relationship blog, it would be completely within Ms. Walsh’s perogative to beat the drum incessantly WRT young women’s risks of domestic violence, infidelity, and STD-infection by men. In fact, she’d have to do so about 4 or 5 times as often as frivolous divorce is brought up, for the sake of proportionality and incidence IRL.

    She hasn’t done so to my knowledge, perhaps because she’s focused mostly on the college-educated demographic. Something to be learned there, considering the divorce rate for that crowd is something like 15%…

  • Escoffier

    Mega, your flip rejoinder fails both as logic and as analogy.

    Susan’s mission is to encourage women to get into relationships, leading to marriage, and to explain to them tactics and strategies that will make that happen. So, taking your strict interpretation of her mission at face value, then Susan ought to be giving such advice in complete indifference to the outcomes for the men. However, she does not do that (except perhaps occasionally inadvertently).

    Beyond this, since she wants to encourage and not discourage relationships, it would be only natural for her to avoid and downplay any information that might scare girls away from them. Which would explain her avoidance of those topics, to the extent that she does avoid them.

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

      Beyond this, since she wants to encourage and not discourage relationships, it would be only natural for her to avoid and downplay any information that might scare girls away from them. Which would explain her avoidance of those topics, to the extent that she does avoid them.

      I focus very heavily on advising women how to choose men with high relationship fitness. I have never found the need to warn women to stay away from violent men. I have always felt it goes without saying. I have identified “anger management” issues as a red flag, but other than that, it seems unnecessary.

      If a young woman told me she’d been slapped, even once, or been forced to have sex, I would advise her to exit the relationship immediately.

      I can’t imagine withholding real information to dupe women into forming relationships with unworthy men. The goal is healthy relationships, not bad ones.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Susan,
    WRT Grossman again. The likelihood that she will become an ally is approximately zero. She will not change her ways. She knew this would happen, to other men than her son. She thought that was a good idea. She thought it was a bad idea that it happened to her son. That she will start to think it a bad idea that it happens to other men is extremely unlikely. She had a chance, years’ worth of chances, to see the reality and eschew it. She did this with her eyes wide open and fully aware.
    As I say, if this had happened to the son of a woman who’d had no opportunity to see this from the inside–as an active feminist and an attorney would–or who didn’t even know these kangaroo courts were in place, men would be considerably more sympathetic.
    The crime here is that it affected her. There is nothing more to it.
    I will apologize if she begins to work against it.

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

      WRT Grossman again. The likelihood that she will become an ally is approximately zero

      I’m not suggesting Grossman deserves any further consideration. Only that her article is powerful proof that feminists got it wrong, very wrong. It seems to me that is very useful advertising from the radfem’s mouth.

      I’ve quoted many feminists here who were uncomfortable with my endorsement – I once did a post on feminist quotes about how terrible hookup culture is. I don’t seek feedback from them, I’m using them as Exhibit A for the readers whose minds I desire to influence.

  • Escoffier

    RE: Grossman, I used to know her slightly (no contact in around 15 years) and she is perhaps the most hypergamous woman I have ever come across. Though back then I did not know the term. We had another term.

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

      RE: Grossman, I used to know her slightly (no contact in around 15 years) and she is perhaps the most hypergamous woman I have ever come across. Though back then I did not know the term. We had another term.

      LOL, ironic!

  • HanSolo

    @Megaman

    Yes, I would like you to address the points I raised.

    Specifically:

    1) Why you think that including teenagers and the never married is useful. I realize it lowers the total rate to 20.5% instead of about 30% if you only use ever-married 15+ y/o, or even higher if you also exclude the 15-19 y/o or 15-29 y/o. I used the 40-69 y/o cohort to get an idea of what the divorce rate might be once you give people enough time to actually ever marry and then get divorced. Roughly 37% of these have ever married and ever divorced. That seems like a more realistic number than the 20% you used that includes teenagers and 20-something males that mostly haven’t yet had the chance to marry and divorce.

    2) Where the 8/13 of wife-initiated divorces due to bad husband behavior such as cheating and abuse came from. This seemed totally arbitrary though it might be right, in the sense that any number less than 100% and greater than 0% is more highly probable since we know that not all men do those things but some do.

    3) Not so important since this relates to a different comment than that focusing on friv. div., but why you divided ever divorced by married-once, since the ever divorced includes married only once plus married more than once males (apples and oranges) while married-once would just be apples.

    If you want to know the divorce rate of people who have only been married once then you could take the difference btw married-once and married-once-and-still-married, subtract some small estimate off due to widowers–this gives the % of married-once that divorced once–and divide that by the married-once %.

    But that isn’t the right question to ask if you want to know the overall percentage of people who have ever married and who have divorced at least once. For that you simply take the ever divorced and divide by the ever married since both of those numbers include all who have done each at least once, and those numbers don’t increase if people marry or divorce a 2nd, 3rd or 4th time–counted once, they can’t be counted again in the “ever” category.

    Let me know if you have any questions on why this is the correct way to calculate the divorce rate for these age cohorts in Table 6 and I will attempt to explain more clearly.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “and his paternity is plainly obvious when he looks at our kids.”

    Perhaps I’m the only one to realize this but if a woman is going to cheat and try to make hubby raise a better guys kid they might as well at least be similar enough to make it believable.

    Ex of what not to do.

    Cheat on hubby.
    Have twins.
    One white, one half black. (Released two eggs that got hit by two different guys sperm. I think she should get a medal for bad luck.)

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

      Perhaps I’m the only one to realize this but if a woman is going to cheat and try to make hubby raise a better guys kid they might as well at least be similar enough to make it believable.

      Wow, I wasn’t thinking of that as a cuckolding strategy. Just saying it’s pretty obvious they’re his, not some blonde, blue-eyed guy’s.

  • Lokland

    @Esc, Susan

    “Despite my ignorance, it’s worked out well for me (so far). That’s part luck, I suppose, but more because I chose well.”

    Susan, this is the key part but as you said, some of those guys only managed to make it work once.

    They are not womanizers.

    Hence the option to be a womanizer is a good thing because it gives one a plethora of options, some good some bad.

    If a guy has one option and its bad, say 50% of the kids are his, should he or should he not take it?

    Should he be held responsible for poor behaviour simply because he could not do better?

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

      @Lokland

      Hence the option to be a womanizer is a good thing because it gives one a plethora of options, some good some bad.

      I agree, it’s always better to have options. It’s not always better to exercise them.

      If a guy has one option and its bad, say 50% of the kids are his, should he or should he not take it?

      I wouldn’t if I were him, but lots of men marry women who already have children (they are not deceived). Obviously a personal decision.

      Should he be held responsible for poor behaviour simply because he could not do better?

      Of course not.

  • Lokland

    @Sue

    “Wow, I wasn’t thinking of that as a cuckolding strategy. Just saying it’s pretty obvious they’re his, not some blonde, blue-eyed guy’s.”

    I realize that but since I’m the one that ran some of these tests back in my youth the number of times a guy walks in carrying a kid that is obviously not his are non-existent.

    Although I’ll admit I had to laugh at the scenario mentioned above because it was just that ridiculous.

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

      @Lokland

      I realize that but since I’m the one that ran some of these tests back in my youth the number of times a guy walks in carrying a kid that is obviously not his are non-existent.

      I shared before that our BFF is a bone marrow transplant surgeon. Obviously, he has to do a lot of genetic testing to find donor matches. He has several times discovered that one or more siblings in a family did not share the father’s DNA, in situations where it seemed very unlikely that the father knew.

      There was also a House episode where he figured this out based on eye color, as I recall.

  • HanSolo

    @Susan 655

    “What constitutes bad wife behavior?”

    Different people would give different answers for bad behavior in general (both wife and husband). But I think that most people would agree with things like cheating, abuse, abandonment. Then moving to less stark things, I think that persistent and frequent bickering and disrespect could be agreed upon by a large majority. Refusal to have sex more than 2 or 3 times a year when the other partner wants it more could probably reasonably be seen as “bad” behavior in most cases.

    Beyond bad behavior, there could be another group of reasons that make divorce justified, such as just not being able to stand the other person, even though that person isn’t doing anything bad, as hypothetically defined above or in some other fashion.

    As to that specific example, I’m not going to argue that they should necessarily stay together but perhaps an attempt to improve things should be made before divorcing.

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

      Then moving to less stark things, I think that persistent and frequent bickering and disrespect could be agreed upon by a large majority.

      I suspect that this is characteristic of most divorces. Say Whaat sent me an interesting study on contempt, and how destructive it is to marriages. I’ve been meaning to post on that.

      perhaps an attempt to improve things should be made before divorcing.

      Agreed, and if there are children, it’s a must.

      I’ve read that a lot of gray divorce is due to infidelity years earlier, but the wife stayed “for the children.” Once they leave home, she’s free to go. I can’t recall the source right now.

  • Anacaona

    Perhaps I’m the only one to realize this but if a woman is going to cheat and try to make hubby raise a better guys kid they might as well at least be similar enough to make it believable.
    Doesn’t that defeat the whole concept that cuckoldry is to get Alpha genes to be raised by Betas? If the guy looks like her husband then she is not getting any genetically advantages by cheating.
    You need to take in account that some women are just whores and sleeping around is about the novelty seeking/risk taking part of their personality and not some unconscious desire to get better genes than their mate, YMMV.

  • HanSolo

    @Megaman

    When you and I last had this discussion, I thought we concluded by agreeing that the baby boomers have skewed the overall divorce rate. Now it sounds like you think their divorce % is overstated. Really? This is the same information from the Census Bureau as before:

    Yes, you have overstated the divorce rate of the various age cohorts by only dividing by the married-once number instead of the ever-married number.

    You should welcome this since you like to show that society isn’t as bad off as some say.

    It is the same info but I didn’t closely check your work before and this time I decided to look at the paper itself and found the various flaws I reported above.

    So, no, it is not settled, since you offered up erroneous math.

    You gave these numbers (only focusing on the 40-69 cohort though the other ages were wrong as well):

    40-49: 66% ever married once, 43% ever divorced
    50-59: 63% ever married once, 56% ever divorced
    60-69: 65% ever married once, 56% ever divorced

    But these are overstated and should be what I reported, dividing ever divorced by ever married:

    40-49…34%
    50-59…40%
    60-69…38%

    You do understand that once someone has married or divorced once that they get included in the “ever” category and it is irrelevant to being in the “ever” category whether they ever marry or divorce again, right? Thus to get the true rate of how many people have married at least once and divorced at least once you have to use the ever married and ever divorced categories.

    For example, someone who has married, then divorced once, and then married a 2nd time would be excluded from the way you calculated things (Ted D would be an example of such a thing) but they should very much be included in the rate of how many people have married and divorced.

  • Jason773

    Susan,

    Also, I wonder about the accuracy of the phrase “won the marriage lottery,” when two-thirds of married men describe themselves as satisfied or very satisfied. Is this a dollar scratch ticket sort of analogy?

    Backwards rationalization? It’s a very real phenomenon, and we all do it. The biggest choices in life tend to be education/career, marriage, kids and where to live. People will overwhelmingly justify their decisions because their foundations as a human being are based on them; plus, most people are terrible at serious introspection.

    Just playing devil’s advocate.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Susan.
    Grossman’s angst could be heard by two groups of people:
    Others like her who won’t budge an inch.
    The rest of us who know better already.

    Thus, no difference in the situation follows.

  • HanSolo

    @Anacaona

    Doesn’t that defeat the whole concept that cuckoldry is to get Alpha genes to be raised by Betas? If the guy looks like her husband then she is not getting any genetically advantages by cheating.

    Good looks are not synonymous with alpha genes, though they could be a part of it. Other aspects such as dominance, intelligence, charisma, etc. should be included.

    So, basically, by finding a man that looks close enough to the husband but is better at charisma, dominance, intelligence the woman can get better genes for her baby but have the baby look similar enough to the husband to not raise alarms.

    And he could even be better looking, similar to how, switching gender but you could imagine it happening with males, Rachel Dawes was played by a more attractive woman in Batman Begins–Katie Holmes–but a less attractive yet somewhat similar looking actress in Dark Knight–Maggie Gyllenhaal.

  • Tomato

    “I suspect we are never going to agree because the women, by and large, are going to be far more sympathetic than the men to the general claim (from women) that “my emotional needs just aren’t being met.” I wonder how many would be similarly sympathetic to the male claim that “my sexual needs just aren’t being met.” The typical response to that is, “Look in the mirror, bub, and realize what’s wrong with you and fix it.””

    My response to both scenarios is “Work with your mate to try and fix the problem. If the mate refuses to change, you have every right to leave them.” Women and men should not be forced to stay in loveless/sexless marriages.

  • Escoffier

    “Women and men should not be forced to stay in loveless/sexless marriages.”

    Then what is the real status of the vows? Why NOT change them to “As long as we both shall love”?

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

      “Women and men should not be forced to stay in loveless/sexless marriages.”

      Then what is the real status of the vows? Why NOT change them to “As long as we both shall love”?

      I think the key here is whether one person stops trying to make the marriage work. If either party basically checks out entirely on the emotional end, how much should the other person be expected to do to preserve the marriage? There’s an active leaving called divorce or separation, but there’s also a passive leaving, and I think that happens frequently. Not talking about either sex here specifically. It might be that women are more likely to initiate divorce when a mate “checks out” than men are. For the very reason some here have mentioned – men may be happy getting physical needs met. But women won’t be – we don’t even like having sex that’s purely physical. I can’t imagine having sex with a husband who barely communicated with me except to demand sex, food, etc.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    :I wouldn’t if I were him, but lots of men marry women who already have children (they are not deceived). Obviously a personal decision.”

    A caveat;

    Lots of guys who already have kids grown or with them marry women with kids.
    Number of guys who don’t have kids marrying woman with kids=none in my social circle.

  • Lokland

    “Obviously, he has to do a lot of genetic testing to find donor matches. He has several times discovered that one or more siblings in a family did not share the father’s DNA, in situations where it seemed very unlikely that the father knew.”

    Ditto. Though I’m not a bone marrow transplant surgeon though that sounds like fun.

    Also, male BBF?

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

      @Lokland

      BFF couple, she’s been my best friend since our daughters met in day care at the age of 2. (They’re still close too.) The families have been very close for 20 years. She’s also a doc, heads up Student Health Services at Tufts University.

  • Tomato

    Vows are neither standardized nor legally binding. People can vow whatever they wish.

    What do you think people should do who are in loveless, apathetic marriages?

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “You need to take in account that some women are just whores and sleeping around is about the novelty seeking/risk taking part of their personality and not some unconscious desire to get better genes than their mate, YMMV.”

    Cause and effect (or effect due to cause in your scenario).

  • Escoffier

    “Vows are neither standardized nor legally binding. People can vow whatever they wish.”

    Well there you have it. So, do you have any reason or basis other than conventional usage to differentiate “marraiges” from LTRs?

  • Passer_By

    @susan
    “Has one of these ever actually been spotted?”

    I hear they make frequent appearances in romance novels.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    As for the alpha part.
    Word for word what Han said.

  • Passer_By

    @Susan
    “It might be that women are more likely to initiate divorce when a mate “checks out” than men are. For the very reason some here have mentioned – men may be happy getting physical needs met. But women won’t be – we don’t even like having sex that’s purely physical.”

    You’re assuming there is sex in such a relationship – that’s very unlikely. I I think it’s more likely that men stay in that situation because society, their family and the law all brand them an “abandoner” when they don’t, and they pay through the nose for it. Wherease women leave because they can, sometimes with applause, and perhaps because they have a lower tolerance for long term unhappiness.

  • Lokland

    “If either party basically checks out entirely on the emotional end,”

    Oh really?
    Just the emotional end.

    Either you are (caught it) intending to shame guys from leaving sexless marriages or you are so caught up in societies bias that the other does not occur.

    In either case, regardless of who the actor is to end the relationship its the man that loses the kids, house etc.

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

      @Lokland

      In either case, regardless of who the actor is to end the relationship its the man that loses the kids, house etc.

      So you’re saying the issue is financial, which is a very different motive for remaining married. Let’s at least be honest about that.

      Also, I don’t think your generalization is accurate, as reflected in this thread. I believe very few men “lose their kids” against their wishes. And a very low percentage of divorces even go to court. Increasingly, they’re handled by mediators and not even contested. When do you plan to start bitching about deadbeat dads?

      I am on record as saying that withholding sex from your partner is grounds for divorce. Why shouldn’t withholding affection be?

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “I agree, it’s always better to have options. It’s not always better to exercise them.”

    Yes but you think it is a man to be a womanizer.
    Simple question whats worse, too few or too many options?
    For men which has the poorer outcome?

    Probably explains the male drive to spread the seed.
    If being a SAHD was as effective as being a womanizer men would want to be a SAHD.

  • Tomato

    “Well there you have it. So, do you have any reason or basis other than conventional usage to differentiate “marraiges” from LTRs?”

    I suppose one could argue that marriages have a higher expectation of commitment than LTRs. I don’t know how well that argument holds ground considering the high rates of infidelity and divorce. In this day and age, a marriage certificate is merely a piece of paper. Commitment and success are completely dependent on the people in the relationship, regardless of whether they are in a LTR or marriage.

    Are you going to answer my question above?

  • Anacaona

    Good looks are not synonymous with alpha genes, though they could be a part of it. Other aspects such as dominance, intelligence, charisma, etc. should be included.

    So, basically, by finding a man that looks close enough to the husband but is better at charisma, dominance, intelligence the woman can get better genes for her baby but have the baby look similar enough to the husband to not raise alarms.

    And he could even be better looking, similar to how, switching gender but you could imagine it happening with males, Rachel Dawes was played by a more attractive woman in Batman Begins–Katie Holmes–but a less attractive yet somewhat similar looking actress in Dark Knight–Maggie Gyllenhaal.
    Good points. I stand corrected. I’m going to claim that my restricted nature doesn’t let me see how cuckoldry is advantageous. I mean if you find a good man to raise your children you should want more men like him in the world not less, YMMV.

    I suspect that this is characteristic of most divorces. Say Whaat sent me an interesting study on contempt, and how destructive it is to marriages. I’ve been meaning to post on that.
    I think this is one of the concepts that the Gottman Institute mentions as a divorce risk factor. Also lack of ‘reparations during fights. http://www.gottman.com/

  • HanSolo

    @Anacaona

    I just learned that Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal are siblings. lol

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jackie 551:

    If the married guys here were “Y’know, I knew my wife was THE ONE when X, Y & Z. The reason we have such a great marriage today is because A, B and C. Listen up, girls, here’s what makes a great marriage!”

    Also, @ Jesse 571:

    No, but give useful advice. “Don’t get married” is not useful advice.

    I would listen to someone who said, “Jesse:

    1) These are the kind of benefits you can expect from a good marriage.
    2) These are the risks you run in a poor, difficult or dissolved marriage.
    3) This is how you can maximize the benefits and minimize the risks.
    4) Finally, in order to make a decision you have to consider your preferences, desires and skills. How much would you enjoy long-term monogamy? How much would you enjoy being single and free to enjoy different women? How much do you desire children? Do you have the capacity and desire to develop the skills to create and maintain a happy marriage for several decades?”

    That’s something I would listen to.

    OK, I’m going to make amends for driving this thread into the divorce ditch by answering some of these questions. Jackie first:

    The top things that made me sure my wife was the woman I wanted to marry were her personality and character. She is emotionally stable (more so than me – I’m the moodier one), kind, fair, and pleasant. She is reasonable in resolving disagreements and doesn’t hold grudges or seek revenge. She is comfortable with who she is and has a strong but quiet sense of self worth. She has a paradoxical yielding strength that strikes me as uniquely feminine – her cheerfully submissive role in the relationship belies considerable inner strength; she absolutely can not be pushed around. She is like the yielding reed that tenaciously holds its ground and cannot be uprooted. “Grounded” is a word I often use for her. She is funny and can both poke fun at others and laugh at herself. She is nurturing and kind and wanted to be a mother. She loved my cat to pieces when I first met her, which was a very good sign! (For both men and women – never date a guy like Roissy who kicks your cat). She is trustworthy and diligent.

    I could go on, but you get the idea. All the above was much more important to me than her looks. (Seriously, I don’t get the intense emphasis on women’s appearance in the ‘spere.) Or than her intelligence (although that was important too), education, family background, etc. However, all of those things were a very good match.

    I already knew my wife well before we started dating (we were in a rather incestuous social group with a lot of inter-group dating) so I had good character references from both male and female friends.

    I was not as cynical or scared about the risks as marriage as I am now, but even with that I would have married her again. If I can’t trust someone like her I don’t know who I can.

    The reasons why we have such a great marriage today?

    - We both take it seriously and invest heavily in it (emotionally) and make our marriage a top priority.

    - We started with egalitarian gender roles and eventually reverted to traditional gender roles. Both can work but I think that the complementary anti-symmetry of the traditional gender roles is better at maintaining sexual attraction. She values the masculine things I do, I value the feminine things she does, and that makes us want to have sex together!

    - We know that the real equality isn’t in who does what, it’s how you treat each other. We both respect each other as we do ourselves, put equal time and effort into the relationship, and are equally committed to it.

    - We’ve got a good division of labor. This is advantageous in a couple of ways: we don’t fight over who does what, and we each contribute things the other person values and appreciates.

    - We haven’t over-committed on time, so we have time for each other. Many couples are so busy with work, chores, kids activities, etc. that they don’t spend time on the marriage. The fact that I earn enough money that she can be a SAHM helps enormously in that.

    - We can talk reasonably about our problems when they occur. We both are willing to take steps to address those problems.

    - For my part, my performance as a husband has improved as my understanding of gender has changed. I started off as an egalitarian quasi-feminist, and ended up believing complementary roles work best. As part of that I came to some conclusions about what I could do for my wife that she wasn’t necessarily aware that she wanted. The top three are: 1) Be a man she can look up to. This entails continual self improvement on my part, and not relaxing and letting myself go physically, mentally, or emotionally. I make hypergamy work for me! 2) Make her feel desired. I maintain an element of romance, flirtation, and sexual aggressiveness in our relationship. 3) Make her feel safe. This entails not only providing a secure and comfortable environment for her and the children, but perhaps more importantly the sense of commitment and emotional investment that reassures that I will be there for her.

    - I’m not sure if my wife has a mental model of “what men like”, but she does a great job of doing the complements to the “three things women want” that I do for her. She makes me feel admired and valued as man – I am motivated by the sense of status that gives me. She is always sexually receptive to me. A woman who says “yes” to sex is a key marker of success for me, as it is for most men. (A woman who says “yes please!” is even better!) And she makes me feel needed. Even without all the red-pill fears of divorce, most men know on some level that the male is somewhat peripheral to the female reproductive imperative. When my wife lets me know I’m needed, both practically and emotionally, it gives me the security I need.

    OK, now for Jesse’s questions. This has gotten very long so I’ll continue in another post.

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

      @Mr. wavevector

      Fantastic comment! I love knowing what makes your marriage great. You’ve shared some of that before, but it really was wonderful to read. Thank you for sharing it.

      Your priorities (character over looks, even though you’re happy with both) served you well, and both sexes can take a page from your book.

  • HanSolo

    Great post wr. wavevector. And I agree that most men need or want to feel needed. That is one of the biggest long-term “girl game” things women can learn when it comes to a good man that loves her (not a disinterested cad!).

  • Anacaona

    I just learned that Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal are siblings. lol
    LOL!

  • Richard Aubrey

    Han Solo
    WRT men needing to feel needed: There’s a detailed discussion of that, among other things, in Crabb’s “Men, Women, Enjoying the Difference” Much of the rest of it will make your teeth hurt, even if you can’t figure out what, besides being different, is actually wrong with it.
    Dr. Laura, in her “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands” goes into the same thing.
    Forty-five years ago, I was in a lengthy field project in a dicey area. My immediate partner was a good-looking woman with an IQ of about 400, and a level-headed view of things–except for the clown she married. When I said we needed to do something or not do something, or whatever, wrt security, she never argued, never said boo, always cooperated immediately.
    That meant, looking back, that she trusted me with her life. Implicitly, she needed me, at least to get through the thing. Many years later, I figured that was why I felt ten feet tall and bullet proof, while the previous expedition–so to speak–had been pretty blah.
    So there’s a corroborating anecdote.

  • Escoffier

    “In this day and age, a marriage certificate is merely a piece of paper.”

    And you ladies wonder why an increasing number of men are questioning the value of marriage and doubting whether they should subject themselves to its risks?

  • ExNewYorker

    @Esco

    It’s kinda ironically funny seeing how those who see us as “discouraging marriage” (we’re not, we’re just suggesting extreme caution to men) come around and give examples that are much scarier than any of our “discouragement”.

    Gotta love the “As long as we both shall love”. Heck, even the cads could get on the marriage bandwagon if that’s the new “vow”…

    In this “brave new world”…why get married then, and not just stick with an LTR? If there’s no commitment to the commitment, why bother?

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

      Regardless of what the legal marriage contract is, the vows that individuals choose to share are morally binding. The key is to select a mate whose bond means something.

      If someone says “as long as we both shall love,” they consider this their first marriage, not their only marriage. When David DeAngelo said, “this marriage will not include any blame” he put his wife on notice that anything goes.

      The vows should be said with the utmost sincerity and conviction, and if you don’t like the vows, you shouldn’t be marrying.

      I don’t really understand all the emphasis on the legal aspect. Either sex can divorce. Either sex can abandon children. With a divorce rate in the 16% range (for everyone on this blog) I continue to feel that this is out of proportion. I’m not at all sure that men fare worse than women in divorce.

      Sharing marriage vows is obviously very different from hanging out and having sex in an LTR. Marriage compels people to hang in there longer – cohabitating couples break up much sooner and more frequently.

  • J

    Wow, I wasn’t thinking of that as a cuckolding strategy. Just saying it’s pretty obvious they’re his, not some blonde, blue-eyed guy’s

    Often times, the similarities go beyond looks. My younger son not only looks like a young DH, but he has the same walk, the same facial expressions, the same body language, the same way of turning a phrase, the same sense of humor, the same faults, and the same virtues.

    There should be mandatory maternity testing. Some days, I’m not sure he’s mine. ;-)

  • Anacaona

    There should be mandatory maternity testing. Some days, I’m not sure he’s mine.
    Tell me about it! :D

  • Tomato

    “In this “brave new world”…why get married then, and not just stick with an LTR? If there’s no commitment to the commitment, why bother?”

    Even most of the men here think that it’s better to have kids in a marriage instead of a LTR. Don’t want to have kids? Don’t get married then. Go nuts. Unlike some of the other posters here, I couldn’t care less if some men renounce marriage.

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

      I couldn’t care less if some men renounce marriage.

      I feel the same way. In which case I want to say, “You made a wrong turn and wound up at the wrong party. See ya!”

      Why would anyone want a reluctant husband? There’s no shortage of men who do wish to marry for women who know how to win them. :)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    My father initiated divorce and didn’t care enough to see me more than a handful of times as I was growing up. He was also a cheater and wife beater. That didn’t make me bitter against all men and swear odd marriage forever.

    He still never met his first grandson btw, not has he ever met my husband. He basically is not in my life. Last time I saw him was probably almost a decade ago. Marriage is not for every type of man. A guy like him should not get married or have kids.

    Yeah that means I wouldn’t have been born, but I was the little kid considering suicide before first grade, so…

  • Escoffier

    Any man who does not prioritize character over looks is basically an idiot.

  • Escoffier

    Tomato:

    The world continues to trend in your direction.

  • Escoffier

    Ack, cut off.

    Anyway, why wouldn’t some men conclude “Yes, I do want children, but considering how effed up marriage is, I don’t think I am willing to risk it, and since I won’t have kids without being married, that means I will never be a father.”

    Would you have any sympathy for a man in that situation?

    If not, do you see any negative issues arising for civilization if this calculation becomes prevalent?

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Jesse 571,

    No, but give useful advice. “Don’t get married” is not useful advice.

    I would listen to someone who said, “Jesse:

    1) These are the kind of benefits you can expect from a good marriage.
    2) These are the risks you run in a poor, difficult or dissolved marriage.
    3) This is how you can maximize the benefits and minimize the risks.
    4) Finally, in order to make a decision you have to consider your preferences, desires and skills. How much would you enjoy long-term monogamy? How much would you enjoy being single and free to enjoy different women? How much do you desire children? Do you have the capacity and desire to develop the skills to create and maintain a happy marriage for several decades?”

    That’s something I would listen to.

    OK, part 2.

    1) The benefits of a good marriage: Someone you love and are always happy to see. Someone who feels the same about you. Someone you can trust. Someone who you can share things with, who does nice things for you, who makes your life easier. Someone you can return the favor to. Someone who needs you and wants you and make sure you know that. A partner who shares the daily burdens of life, who brings skills and abilities and insights and opinions that complement your own. A mother for your children, that you can raise a family with. Someone who remembers the things you did together that you are starting to forget. A lover who still really wants you to fuck her, even after all these years, because you are still the man she admires. A lover that your really want fuck, even after all these years, because she is still the woman who turns you on every time despite the sags and wrinkles. When you see her naked, you don’t just see a middle aged woman, you see the lover you have held tightly and felt so close to and made love to and orgasmed inside of so many thousands of times, and little bit of each of those moments are with you now and they make you want her more vitally and deeply than you did when you both were young.

    2) The risks of a poor, difficult, or dissolved marriage: The opposite of the above. Having to live with someone you don’t like, who doesn’t like you, who makes your life difficult and unpleasant, who won’t have sex with you, or even worse, someone you don’t want to have sex with, who will screw you over in divorce court and alienate you from your children.

    3) This is how you can maximize the benefits and minimize the risks: I went over some of this in the previous post to Jackie. Equality of respect, commitment, emotional investment, and time and labor in the relationship are key. Gender roles and dominance / submission roles are negotiable according to the couples personalities and preferences. The ability to negotiate fairly and reasonably and in good faith when problems arise is important, as is the willingness to follow through on the agreements you reach together. Some level of emotional stability is needed in both partners, and in a good partnership each will help stabilize the other, rather than destabilize them.

    From the masculine perspective, I’ve found the notion of benevolent dominance to be very useful to me. Most women (there are exceptions) have an instinctive attraction to men who are higher status, more powerful and more dominant than themselves. Such a man can be of great value to her, especially if she has children. However, the man must also be kind, caring, and highly concerned with her welfare, hence the benevolent part. All that status, strength and dominance isn’t worth a pile of beans to her and is potentially dangerous if it isn’t going to be used to her benefit. Women are also highly sensitive to the degree of emotional investment of their husband in her, because that is the leverage she uses to get him to act on her behalf. They want a strong man they can influence emotionally.

    The lesson from this for a husband is to maintain your masculine attractiveness. Work on improving your body, your mind, and your emotional control and stability. Keep an assertive frame and don’t fall into the trap of becoming subordinate to your wife. Somewhat ironically, you are actually more useful to her if you keep the mindset of a boss rather than a servant, because a large part of the value you provide is a sense psychological security that can only be delivered from a position of strength.

    Finally, remaining emotionally engaged and open to her is essential. I find that just being willing to listen and talk with her is the biggest part of that. Honestly, there are often times where I would rather sit and read the paper or the computer and I have to make an effort to put it down and listen. But I remind myself that this is a big part of my job. Sometimes I put out emotionally even when I don’t feel like it because I know how important it is to my wife. I also initiate romantically – bring home flowers occasionally, plan and take her on dates, perform small gestures that indicate I was thinking of her, etc. These things reassure her that I am still responsive to her emotionally. Emotional responsiveness is to a woman is what a sexual receptiveness is to a man, and it is why a woman will flee a relationship if she perceives that it has gone dead emotionally.

    On some level, women are rather pragmatic and selfish in their relationships with men. All the things I’ve just been discussing are really about your utility to her. For a woman, a useful man is a high status, powerful or capable man that she can exercise some degree of emotional control over. A man fails to meet this standard either by being too weak or incapable, or by not providing the emotional access she needs to feel some measure of control. And this is not a bad thing – most men what to be useful and needed by a woman.

    In summary, you can maximize the benefits and minimize the risks through maintaining equality where it counts, communicating and problem solving fairly and reasonably, and using an understanding of female psychology to maintain your attraction and utility.

    4) Finally, in order to make a decision you have to consider your preferences, desires and skills: Well, to get married, you better damn well be happy with monogamy and be willing to give up sexual variety. And the motivation for marriage is much more compelling if you want children. Raising children is a huge commitment, and it takes parents who can make and maintain commitments.

    I want to say something the difficulty of parsing a woman’s true desires and preferences. Today’s women have been so inculcated with ideals of personal ambition, autonomy and careerism that they are often totally clueless about what they really want. Even women who came of age in the 1970′s and 80′s suffered this problem and ended up totally reversing their course, as Susan has admitted in this thread and elsewhere. My wife was the same way – her career was an important part of her identity, and this careerist identity was heavily reinforced by society. It is hard for a woman with strong maternal and domestic instincts to find herself in these circumstances. So you risk expecting an egalitarian life with a professional woman only to have her quit her job when the first baby comes. You also risk her saying she wants an egalitarian relationship but still expecting you to be the breadwinner and resenting you if you aren’t, because her conscious values are discordant with her limbic instincts. There were some posts about this upthread.

    I don’t have any well thought out general advice on this, but I can relate what I did. I tried to stay flexible and to accommodate her career vs. motherhood decisions. I was willing to accommodate a more egalitarian sharing of responsibilities, and early in our marriage I did so. But I knew I wanted a woman who was maternally oriented, so that’s what I married. And her maternal instincts trumped her careerism before too long. And to tell you the truth, I was happy. As a child I envied the calm, warm maternal environment that the housewife mothers of some of my friends provided and that my driven, intense and often irritable professional mother didn’t. I’m glad my kids have that now.

  • J

    She explains in the book that a hijab is basically the Muslim equivalent of having a cross around your neck, and doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a fundamentalist.

    I’d beg to differ with that. I see it as more like Orthodox Jews covering their heads or the Amish wearing their particular garments. It signals a desire to not be of the world and/or to not assimilate into mainstream American culture. I fully support the right of people to live and dress in whatever way they please, but to equate hijab, which is very visible and sends a definite signal, with wearing a necklace that most people may not even notice really is not realistic.

  • J

    What Munson did was explain the legal judgment, which in his view could not have gone any other way, given the facts, and the child’s interest always taking priority.

    If I recall that case was also lost on a tecnicality. Didn’t the man who was fighting having to pay miss a filing deadline or something? Either way, I do agree that the judgment was unfair.

  • HanSolo

    @mr. wavevector 715

    Another great comment and set of ideas.

  • Lokland

    @J

    “Often times, the similarities go beyond looks.”

    True, I’m a clone of my father. Same voice and phrases as well.

    “There should be mandatory maternity testing. Some days, I’m not sure he’s mine. ”

    You jest but this did happen once.
    We assumed the kids got switched at the hospital but honestly have no idea.
    They were not related to either parent despite many protestations otherwise.

  • J

    What are the potential pitfalls of not cohabiting until marriage? After dating for a period of time, what could my SO possibly know about me that he wouldn’t have known without living with me, and vice versa?

    FWIW, I really don’t think couples truly know one another until the first few years of marriage are done and the dopamine rush has worn off. Then everyone is off their best behavior, and you get to see the real person. I think that’s why so many marriages break up at the four year mark as Helen Fischer would predict.

  • Lokland

    @Susan

    “So you’re saying the issue is financial, which is a very different motive for remaining married. Let’s at least be honest about that.”

    True. I don’t even think I would care about custody that much. Visitation of course but actually raising them solo sounds like hell.

    Of course, in this system, the guys that are getting shafted happen to look a lot like me.

    “I am on record as saying that withholding sex from your partner is grounds for divorce. Why shouldn’t withholding affection be?”

    I don’t disagree however much like a sexless marriage is usually considered the mans fault I place the blame of an emotionless marriage at the woman’s.

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

      I don’t disagree however much like a sexless marriage is usually considered the mans fault I place the blame of an emotionless marriage at the woman’s.

      Is it? I usually assume that sexless marriages have a lot of “Not tonight, I have a headache” moments.

  • Lokland

    That should be kid not kids in 721.

  • Anacaona

    @mr. wavevector
    You see that was good advice and very good observations. I cosign your comment and urge to to share it with every young man you know. We don’t want men to be punished by an unfair system but we don’t want men missing out from the great joys of life out of fear of the unfair system, YMMV

  • mr. wavevector

    @ Susan,

    I love knowing what makes your marriage great. You’ve shared some of that before, but it really was wonderful to read. Thank you for sharing it.

    You’re welcome. And I’m over my obsession with crocodiles – at least for a while ;-)

    Although one of the things I wrote in response to Jackie did give me an insight into the motivations for that obsession:

    When my wife lets me know I’m needed, both practically and emotionally, it gives me the security I need.

    I’ve often written about women’s need for security, (they tend to make it obvious), but I think men’s need for security is just as strong.

    Those crocodiles (i.e. divorce culture) threaten my security. They may not be in my back yard, but those things give me the willies. Just the thought that they’re out there scares the shit out of me. And there are hundreds of posts above that show I’m not the only one!

    Does your “girl game” has something that addresses the male need for security?

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

      @mr. wavevector

      When my wife lets me know I’m needed, both practically and emotionally, it gives me the security I need.

      I’ve often written about women’s need for security, (they tend to make it obvious), but I think men’s need for security is just as strong.

      Those crocodiles (i.e. divorce culture) threaten my security. They may not be in my back yard, but those things give me the willies. Just the thought that they’re out there scares the shit out of me. And there are hundreds of posts above that show I’m not the only one!

      Does your “girl game” has something that addresses the male need for security?

      No, but I love this idea! You’re the first man to mention it in those terms, I believe. So, how about it? How can women provide that to their men? I mean, they can obviously express it in words, but are there ways in which your wife makes you feel secure? Do you share what gives you the willies? If the guys here can give me some guidance, I’ll write a post.

  • J

    You jest but this did happen once.

    I realize this does very occasionally happen. About 30 years, I read of a case where two girls were switched at birth. When it was discovered somehow, one set of parents wanted to switch back. The other set wanted both girls. A tremendous legal battle ensued. IIRC, both couples got joint custody of both girls, who went back and forth between families.

  • Lokland

    “When David DeAngelo said, “this marriage will not include any blame” he put his wife on notice that anything goes.”

    Ohh come on please don’t hold anyone against that sham.
    I couldn’t even finish the video.

    That was fully intended for the purpose of gaining more..uhmm..readers or something. That or he was resigning which is too bad because Double Your Dating was massively effective.

    @J

    “and the child’s interest always taking priority.”

    I realize that but I don’t think men should be held accountable for anything that is no theirs.

    As Susan mentioned with the nurse-patient case above, thats extreme but the kid was still related to him.

    So no, I don’t think men should be fully responsible for everything thats their either (not saying child support is a bad idea when warranted).

    As an analogy, I’d be mortified to live in a country where every once in a while some guy/woman walking around pointed at someone and said ‘your turn’ and you were fined for 18 years.

  • Lokland

    “When it was discovered somehow, one set of parents wanted to switch back. The other set wanted both girls. A tremendous legal battle ensued. IIRC, both couples got joint custody of both girls, who went back and forth between families.”

    Omg thats horrendous.
    In this case she was fully grown (older than I am now actually) so going back to find the difference didn’t seem worthwhile (or even possible). Least that would be my guess I was a lowly grad student.

    On a better note, no chance of catching the family disease for her.

  • Tomato

    mr wv, I’ve enjoyed your recent 2 posts, thanks much.

    Escoffier: “Anyway, why wouldn’t some men conclude “Yes, I do want children, but considering how effed up marriage is, I don’t think I am willing to risk it, and since I won’t have kids without being married, that means I will never be a father.”

    Would you have any sympathy for a man in that situation?”

    Every major life decision we make has potential risks (bad marriage, divorce) and rewards (fantastic marriage, better environment for children). We all have to weigh what we consider acceptable risk for reward. There are things that men and women can do to reduce the risk, but the risk is never nullified. Some marriages have many rewards with few risks, others have many risks with few rewards. If a man views a woman as having too much risk, then he should not marry her. If a man views the system as having too much risk, then he should not get married. But by avoiding the risk, he also avoids the reward. That is his choice.

    “If not, do you see any negative issues arising for civilization if this calculation becomes prevalent?”

    Perhaps, but it won’t become prevalent.

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

      Every major life decision we make has potential risks (bad marriage, divorce) and rewards (fantastic marriage, better environment for children). We all have to weigh what we consider acceptable risk for reward. There are things that men and women can do to reduce the risk, but the risk is never nullified. Some marriages have many rewards with few risks, others have many risks with few rewards. If a man views a woman as having too much risk, then he should not marry her. If a man views the system as having too much risk, then he should not get married. But by avoiding the risk, he also avoids the reward. That is his choice.

      Well said. I share this view. I was thinking about this while cooking tonight. What if my son was in love with a woman whose character I did not wholly approve of? If I warned him of the risks of marriage, I’m certain it would have no effect. If I warned him that his beloved might turn on him at some point, I’d likely become estranged from my son.

      I don’t think one can really convey risk to someone else unless they share your assessment and have the same priorities. If they do, well then, they probably wouldn’t have required the warning in the first place. Sure, you can make them aware of the risks – my son is certainly aware of MA family law – and he couldn’t care less.

  • J

    From the masculine perspective, I’ve found the notion of benevolent dominance to be very useful to me. Most women (there are exceptions) have an instinctive attraction to men who are higher status, more powerful and more dominant than themselves. Such a man can be of great value to her, especially if she has children. However, the man must also be kind, caring, and highly concerned with her welfare, hence the benevolent part. All that status, strength and dominance isn’t worth a pile of beans to her and is potentially dangerous if it isn’t going to be used to her benefit.

    This sort of mirrors something I said here a few years ago:

    http://dalrock.wordpress.com/2010/07/24/this-is-what-a-beta-looks-like/#comment-215

    A while back, Susan said some interesting things about prestige vs. dominance. Prestige translates into family survival. I’m not so sure that women are looking to be dominated as much as they are looking for a man who can dominate the enviornment in such a way as to bring resources into the enviornment.

    I’ve enjoyed your last few posts, BTW.

  • Jackie

    @mr wavevector (700)

    BRAVO, MR WV!!!!!
    :mrgreen:
    Encore, encore!!!!
    :D

    This is what I’m talking about– sharing wisdom with examples in a positive way. WTG, WV!!! (Way To Go, Wave Vector!)

    Esco, you next! 8-)

  • Jackie

    @mr wv

    “Does your “girl game” has something that addresses the male need for security?”
    ===
    Dude, I think it would be great if a guy could address this. Last time a chick brought up male insecurity around here, it was not exactly a love feast! (It actually turned trainwrecky pretty quick.)

    Please favor us with your opinion!

  • J

    “and the child’s interest always taking priority.”

    I realize that but I don’t think men should be held accountable for anything that is no theirs.

    Me too. I was quoting, but my italics tag failed.

    Anyway, I’m not sure “best interests of the child” even played into the famous Florida case. The guy missed a filling deadline, and the court refused to even look at the paternity issue IIRC. He got screwed on a technicality.

    I’m pretty big on “best interests of the child,” but even my reaction was “WTF!”

  • Escoffier

    Susan, I’m not singling out the legal aspects. They are part of an entire package which has denigrated the nature of marriage and cheapened the concept of the vows. Viz, we have two women in this thread, one of whom claims to be (and I believe genuinely understands herself to be) pro-marriage, both saying that “I don’t love you any more” is enough to abrogate the vow.

    Well, then, in what sense was that “vow” really a “vow”? In what sense was the “marriage” really a “marriage”? Or the “commitment” a “commitment”? Etc.

  • Escoffier

    Tomato, the point is, the risk for men has risen, whereas it has declined for women. Moreover, the entire system and culture incentivizes in various ways women who divorce while they punish men. And it piles up the rewards for women while reducing them for men.

    I gather that you think this is A-OK. Your conclusion that men will go along with it en masse forever remains to be seen.

  • Jackie

    @J
    “What Munson did was explain the legal judgment, which in his view could not have gone any other way, given the facts, and the child’s interest always taking priority.”
    ===
    J, I have been doing a thought experiment on this: What if I found out that, somehow, my dad was not my bio dad? What, if anything, would change? What exactly makes him a father?

    I mean, what if the child had been adopted, or the guy was infertile and they needed to take extraordinary measures? And then divorced?

    To me, no matter what, my dad is my real dad. Any one else would be a “sperm donor.” Love and devotion makes a parent, to me.

    I am also thinking that the kid in this scenario is really getting a double whammy: 1) Finding out your bio dad is someone else and 2) Finding out the man who raised you no longer wants to support you. I think that would be *devastating*.

    I was taught that Christian ethics = focus on the most vulnerable person in the scenario, ie the child. On the other hand, if the guy’s first priority is keeping his money for himself and not giving a dime to an innocent child who was born behind the 8-ball…

    Personally, I’d gladly sign away the money in exchange for having him out of the child’s life forever. Some things just aren’t worth the cash.

  • J

    Omg thats horrendous.

    It sure was. Can you imagine what it was like for those two little girls? The chaos…

    I wonder what happened to them. I don’t recall names so I can’t google. I would bet the original news stories never mentioned names anyway.

  • Jackie

    @J

    PS, There are no winners in the whole scenario. This whole thing sounds like something off Maury. Poor kid would stand a better chance by being adopted.
    :(

  • Jackie

    @Esco

    Esco, in reading your comments (which, BTW, should include a response to my request @ #732! 8-) ), the phrase that keeps popping into my head is:

    You can’t legislate morality.

    I remember there was such a kerfluffle on “abstinence only” sex education. I see their intentions are in alignment with my personal beliefs but I would never ever ever support this. Because the kind of moral foundation that this requires –just like what you need in a marriage partner– can’t be taught in public education nor legislated.

    The solution isn’t to tinker with a broken system; it is to sidestep the system and to rise above the system. To find someone who would, even in their darkest hour, never even consider exploitation (of a person, system, cash, etc).

    To me, that is where the focus should be: Finding someone of such impeccable character that you cannot help but admire them and wish to live up to their morality. I just feel like all this kvetching at the system is wasted energy (to my viewpoint).

    I’d rather focus on how we can instill the kind of ethos that makes this discussion moot. My 0.02.

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “What if I found out that, somehow, my dad was not my bio dad? What, if anything, would change? What exactly makes him a father?

    I mean, what if the child had been adopted, or the guy was infertile and they needed to take extraordinary measures? And then divorced?

    To me, no matter what, my dad is my real dad. Any one else would be a “sperm donor.” Love and devotion makes a parent, to me.”

    You’ll be happy to know then that this is the logic being used to take money away from a man to pay for a child that is not his.

    Keep in mind that any future wife he has, who actually loves him enough is also getting shafted because they likely won’t be able to afford to have their own children.

    I would say he also probably doesn’t get to have his own kids but I doubt that would alter your opinion.

  • Lokland

    @J

    “It sure was. Can you imagine what it was like for those two little girls? The chaos…”

    Yes exactly my thought, feeling unwanted and confused on identity. How old were they?
    A bad situation that turned what I assuming were normal parents into horrible people.

    Adding that into my mental list of definitions for why parental (mater and pater) should be done from an ethical (not cost) POV.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    LL, if you saw my previous post on Christian ethics, they require you to focus on the most vulnerable person in the situation. The innocent child born into this Maury-esque situation trumps this guy’s wallet.

    I also said that if I were (God forbid!) the mom, I would GLADLY renounce any child support to have this man out of both our lives.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    Why are you so fixated on this, seeing as your wife is cool with your paternity testing requirement?

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “I also said that if I were (God forbid!) the mom, I would GLADLY renounce any child support to have this man out of both our lives.”

    In that situation you have already been a cheating whore.
    Guess you would be lucky that your god is forgiving.

  • Escoffier

    “You can’t legislate morality.”

    A popular phrase from the 1980s reaction against the Moral Majority.

    In point of fact, however, we legislate almost nothing BUT morality. All law is an expression of the moral sense of a particular people.

    “To me, that is where the focus should be: Finding someone of such impeccable character that you cannot help but admire them and wish to live up to their morality”

    This is fine advice for an individual but breaks down when we try to extrapolate it to an entire society.

  • Lokland

    A multitude of reasons. No individual one.
    But I need no other than the system as it is is unjust and must be changed for that reason. (note: In times past it was not unjust but with the advent of new technology updates of the moral code are required.)

    I do not hold individuals responsible for the care of others children–that is the job of society at large (assuming those parents are unwilling or unable).

    As for your curiosity. I am actively involved in the ethical debates surrounding quite a few genetic tests and their larger effect on society and of course their morality.

    I come down in the affirmative of their use (almost) universally.

  • Lokland

    “In point of fact, however, we legislate almost nothing BUT morality. All law is an expression of the moral sense of a particular people.”

    Ditto this, I failed to explain this already though.
    Good luck.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    “In that situation you have already been a cheating whore.
    Guess you would be lucky that your god is forgiving.”
    ===
    Yeah, Lokland, that’s why I said God forbid! And, also, why my morals, beliefs and standards do not permit this. I think that God may be forgiving, but I do NOT believe that people are required to. You may want to read up on Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Cheap Grace, which discusses this very well.

    Can you explain the “whore” part? As far as I can tell, prostitution is very overt and upfront: Sex for cash.

    Finally: If one of your extra-relationship, 1-way-open sex partners has had a baby, would you be a whore to your current relationship? What would be the correct term for a man who has done this– sex with other people on the side?

  • Jackie

    @Esco

    Esco, I guess I am most concerned with effecting change.

    I don’t see the law as paramount to changing this as you do: In my observation, people will just try to break the law– unless you tax them, jail them or kill them!

    Just like the abstinence-only sex ed didn’t decrease STIs or teen pregnancy and spread incorrect information. Morality is something that needs support to grow– it’s like a sapling that needs a huge amount of stability and reinforcement in the beginning, but can stand on its own triumphantly for ages once it has reached maturity.

    The laws don’t really make any difference in my life, but being an agent of change in an individual’s life DOES. Very much.

    Esco, I don’t see myself as being your enemy. Our personal ethics sound like they may be quite similar? Why not then focus on what good we can bring about together, each in our own way?

  • JutR

    Jackie, by focusing on the victim and rewarding their best interests, you are rewarding behavior that undermines society. Grabbing cash and prizes from the nearest male using the excuse, ‘But it’s for the children!’ is going to end up in some serious conflicts in family creation and sustainment.

    Perhaps it would be best to shame women into only having a child with a husband, and perhaps the only way to do this is to leave some societal reminders of the importance of this familial bond. I.e., the woman toughs it out (She’s empowered!) without a paycheck from a nonpaternal dad. It’s outrageous to fool a child and a husband about their relationship, and even if the mand is aware of the childs paternity, it’s unwise to force it if the man (non-spermdoner) is unwilling.

    But, cat’s out of the bag at this point. The rallying cry of ‘For the children’ has empowered single moms galore in this country.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    Dude, I shouldn’t have asked about your 1-way-open sex partners possibilities of pregnancy. I am sorry, Lokland. It’s none of my business and in God’s eyes, NEITHER of us are whores!

    This concerns me, though:
    “I do not hold individuals responsible for the care of others children–that is the job of society at large (assuming those parents are unwilling or unable).”

    LL, how many people do you know who have been raised in foster care? “Society are large” does a CRAP job of raising children. I would not wish this on my worst enemy (if I had one) and really think we need a humane solution for those poor kids. :(

  • Jackie

    JutR

    Just Under the Radar, you have given me much to think about.

    Allow me to return the favor: I believe that our personal ethics are similar in that NEITHER of us would end up in this situation due to our morals that go against the grain in this society. We have both had to pay a price for our ethics — we both have more in common than not, I believe.

    That said, the idea of shaming women into only having children in marriage will lead to more abortion, which I cannot support. I am pro-life whenever possible. (Though I believe that, this too, is impossible to be legalized.)

    If I could wave a magic wand and make every child have two loving parents in a stable marriage, I would do it. In a heartbeat! But this is not that fairytale world and until then, the care of the child is paramount.

    My faith tells me we will be judged on how we treat the most vulnerable, the “least among us”: The abandoned child, the neglected, those on the margins. The elderly, the friendless, the poor.

    People who “grab cash and prizes” are to be pitied. Exploitation is WRONG. But children don’t get to pick which families they are born into. How can we do right by the most vulnerable, is my question?

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “Can you explain the “whore” part? As far as I can tell, prostitution is very overt and upfront: Sex for cash.”

    I have about as much respect for women who cheat as I piles of dog shit. Ditto that for men who cheat.

    ” If one of your extra-relationship, 1-way-open sex partners has had a baby, would you be a whore to your current relationship?”

    Under the technical definition (prostitution), no.
    Under my definition, no as I did not cheat.

    “What would be the correct term for a man who has done this– sex with other people on the side?”

    Depends how he goes about it.
    A man who lies is pathetic under all circumstances because lying is inherently based on fear of loss.

    I did not lie. I did so with her knowledge (and actual permission), not entirely unsurprising as we had been apart for 6 months at the time with well over another 8 months to go.

    As for your curiosity, it started with a peck on the lips from a girl on the club at a friends birthday.

    I left immediately and felt ashamed and told my wife. She knew I was struggling…a lot…due to the lack of sex so she offered me a temporary solution.

    And temporary it was ending immediately after our reunion (technically a month or so prior).

    I’m not asking for you to accept nor like it nor am I suggesting that women in an LDR should offer the same merely that given the circumstances it was a workable solution.

  • Lokland

    “Is it? I usually assume that sexless marriages have a lot of “Not tonight, I have a headache” moments.”

    Mans fault fot not being hot enough.

  • Escoffier

    Like I said, S, the risk has risen exponentially for men and declined dramatically for women. And women have the potential to GAIN from divorce in a way that only the very rarest men (househusbands for the likes of S. Sandberg) ever possibly could.

    So, yes, judge the risk and act accordingly.

    But should it be surprising that men who do that will increasingly opt out? Should it also be surprising that those of us not facing such a decision who nonetheless look at the risk dispassionately concluded that, indeed, such men who do so are acting are rationally?

    Tomato’s “let them eat cake” attitude is not heartening in this respect.

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

      Tomato’s “let them eat cake” attitude is not heartening in this respect.

      I do not think this is an accurate representation of Tomato’s attitude. She’s simply saying that people should do what they’re comfortable with.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Haven’t commented in a few days. Random thought on this, but Susan touched on it:

    What if my son was in love with a woman whose character I did not wholly approve of? If I warned him of the risks of marriage, I’m certain it would have no effect. If I warned him that his beloved might turn on him at some point, I’d likely become estranged from my son.

    When my sister moved in with my (now) brother-in-law, my sister was taken aside and explained how dangerous marriage was, how it was a serious life commitment with major consequences. It is not something easily changed or undone, like when she changed her major from veterniary medicine to pharmacy.
    She was also advised to break up with him when they were still working in the same business, with her as the superior. My parents also told her, before she went on a vacation to Vegas with him, that she was to introduce him to the family, because we still didn’t even know the game.

    My brother received a similar talk when he moved in with his (now) wife.

    On the other hand, I have received no talks. Actually, more the opposite, but my parents have known my GF for a while and quite like her.

    So the character of the SO in question certainly matters, and I do think parents make an effort to try to explain the risks, if they see the SO as an “unsavory” type.

    Regarding sex and the like…

    You know, I was reading about HIV the other day. Apparently it started out as a primate disease, that often jumped to humans. However, the primate version was very weak in humans and always got fought off.

    With colonization and widespread prostitution, though, the primate virus was able to spread quickly to many humans, and transform as it treated humans like living pitri dishes.

    It is a controversial hypothesis and not conclusively proven, but goes to show how diseases can spread and manifest and how dangerous unrestricted sexual contact is.

    Of course, today, we have widespread HPV infections, though most are asymptomatic. I don’t know anywhere near enough about disease mutations to suggest whether or not HPV could ever mutate en masse like HIV has, or how this could or could not become pandemic, but seeing how the disease literally tears entire African societies apart is depressing.

    And, like “frivorce,” I do not know how to quantify the risk. Nor do I know how to quantify the risk of global warming, nor the risk of nuclear war, nor of hyper-inflation.

    BUT

    I do know that the tail end of the risk is huge.

    And I do know that casual sex really doesn’t yield anyone any major benefits.

    So what the hell is the goddam point to supporting this giant health risk?

  • HanSolo

    @Susan 754

    No, but I love this idea! You’re the first man to mention it in those terms, I believe. So, how about it? How can women provide that to their men? I mean, they can obviously express it in words, but are there ways in which your wife makes you feel secure? Do you share what gives you the willies? If the guys here can give me some guidance, I’ll write a post.

    I think that women can make a man feel more secure by:

    1) Understanding the issues that men face (e.g. supposedly we have privilege yet collectively we’re going to college at a much lower rate than women; e.g. boys being discriminated against in grade school).

    2) Feeling and conveying empathy about general concerns to men and personal ones that the individual guy might have; by having done number 1 it will put the woman in a better position to bring up the topic and then demonstrate verbally and emotionally that she understands; since men don’t want to show weakness or seem like wimpy complainers we may not bring these things up a lot

    3) Act in ways to allay any legitimate “crocodile” concerns the man might have. Don’t flirt with other men. Don’t be entitled. Don’t emasculate him in front of others (or alone for that matter lol).

    An example of 2) happened last night as I was talking with a woman I might begin to have an LTR with and she asked me what one of my worries might be in dating her. She has a strong personality and so I told her that I was concerned she might become bossy at some point in the future. Now, it is true she does have a strong personality and we’ve had a few arguments but she has really calmed it down over the last 6 weeks or so (demonstrating point 3) and last night told me that she would never be bossy with me, that she would look to me to be the captain, so to speak (and I’m not some tyrannical dictator either, usually my dealings with women are quite egalitarian for better or worse and I’ve worked on being more dominant).

    So her asking, having developed the trust for me to open up, and then not telling my concern was a pile of shit, and saying that she would not be bossy and argumentative helped allay my concerns a lot. Combined with how she has been quite pleasant over the last 6 weeks or so has served to give me more confidence that she means it.

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

      @HanSolo

      That’s great information, thanks. And I’m excited you have an LTR prospect! I know you’ve been on the lookout. As a woman who has a tendency to be bossy (my parents compared me to Lucy on Peanuts), I can honestly say that my husband’s quiet confidence has “corralled” that aspect of my personality. I think strong women want to be led as much as anyone, we just have a harder time finding a man up to the task. :)

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

      Thanks to HanSolo, Lokland and mr. wavevector for sharing their ideas on how women can make men feel secure. There’s great stuff there. Any other guys who would like to chime in?

  • Anacaona

    I left immediately and felt ashamed and told my wife. She knew I was struggling…a lot…due to the lack of sex so she offered me a temporary solution.
    Did you tried cybersex or it was not enough for you?
    Also tip for anyone in a LDR don’t go to clubs or “sexual zones” while your SO is away ‘unnecessary exposure to temptation’,YMMV.

  • Lokland

    @Ana

    “Did you tried cybersex or it was not enough for you?”

    Yes-no.

    TMI-don’t look- you’ve been warned

    I think I was masturbate 10-11 times a day by that point, had constant migraines and felt like a wolf in a sheep pen. I think I may have salivated occasionally when seeing a hot woman.
    By far the worst I have ever felt in my life.

    “Also tip for anyone in a LDR don’t go to clubs or “sexual zones” while your SO is away ‘unnecessary exposure to temptation’,YMMV.”

    Yeah, have never been to a club without my wife since that night.
    Kinda of a duh statement after you figure it out.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    LL, why didn’t you use your wealth to buy a plane ticket for your wife to visit you? Or to visit her? Meet somewhere in the middle?

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Also tip for anyone in a LDR don’t go to clubs or “sexual zones” while your SO is away ‘unnecessary exposure to temptation’,YMMV.

    ‘Tis probably a good idea.

    Everywhere is a sexual zone for me, though, and I like going outside sometimes. ;)

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “LL, why didn’t you use your wealth to buy a plane ticket for your wife to visit you? Or to visit her? Meet somewhere in the middle?”

    We did for two weeks over Christmas at the 8 month mark.
    Our schedules just made it impossible but we knew there was an end point to that when she would return so we decided together to stick it out.

    If there hadn’t been a known end point it never would have worked.

  • Jackie

    @Lokland

    Also, did your sex partners have any ethical issues with you being engaged? And how did you discuss pregnancy and HPV (still can be contacted even with a condom)?

  • Jackie

    @Lokland
    LL, thank you for your honesty in responding.

    What would have been your solution if your wife was having the same sexual issues as you re: LDR?

  • Lokland

    @Jackie

    “LL, how many people do you know who have been raised in foster care? “Society are large” does a CRAP job of raising children. I would not wish this on my worst enemy (if I had one) and really think we need a humane solution for those poor kids. ”

    That is really irrelevant.
    What your suggesting is thrusting the responsibility of a child onto the person in the closest proximity to them.

    Regardless of relation which is not how our society is designed, we do not force individuals to take on tasks they do not want unless those things are universally imposed (taxes).

    A better way to go about it would be to randomly lottery the kid off to a two person family as they would be as equally related as the ‘father’.

    So regardless of how bad it is for the kid it is not societies role to select an UNWILLING caretaker for the child unless that child is biologically related to the parent (and even that should not technically be enough–extreme cases like Susan mentioned prior).

    Hence the societal system specifically designed to deal with such cases. It acts to spread the cost out over all the beta males (and alphas and women) in a society and not royally screw an individual innocent person.

    You could argue that this is not a high enough standard but it is the responsibility of