The Lofty Aspirations of Millennial Women

April 18, 2013

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. 

  • 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.

  • 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.

    • 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.

  • 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.

  • “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.”

    • @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. 😉

    • @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.

    • @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.

    • 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!

    • @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.

    • “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.

    • “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.”

  • @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.

    • 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.”

  • 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.

    • @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.

  • 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.

    • 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 😛
    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.

  • @ 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.

  • @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”.

  • 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.

  • 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! 😯 (On a 30 dollar bill!)

  • 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.

    • 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.

    • 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! 😀
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bC07e7PReM

  • 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.

    • 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.

  • 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!

    • @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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

    • @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.

  • “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…””

    • @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

    • @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.

    • @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?

    • @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?

  • 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.

    • @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.

  • @ 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.

  • @ 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.

  • 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.

  • @ 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. :/

    • 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.

  • 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.

    • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

    • 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.

    • @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.

    • 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).

    • @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?

    • @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.

    • 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 😛 <<—— 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.

  • +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.

  • 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.

  • “ 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.

    • 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.

    • 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.

    • 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.

    • 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.

    • 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.

    • 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.

    • @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.

  • @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.).

    • @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.

  • I actually don’t think these women are being all th