Thursday, January 30, 2014

Stop Having Sex to Prove He Likes You

I've dated several women who knew that I'd lost interest in a relationship with them long before we stopped having sex. In fact, a couple of times they knew it even before I realized it myself. In retrospect, I see that these girls continued having sex with me for one reason and one reason only: to continue feeling my sexual desire.

Some girls might have done this because they mistakenly believed that male sexual desire is something important or hard to come by; but these girls were mostly old enough or smart enough to know better. They wanted to experience my sexual desire because they needed the minimal affirmation it offered in order to feel good about themselves - or at least, in order to avoid feeling bad about themselves after realizing that the end was in sight.

I would call this situation pitiable, but ultimately pity is a wasted emotion, because it doesn't give enough credit to the agency of its object. So if you are still sleeping with a man who isn't as serious about you as you want him to be, I am not going to pity you, and I am not going to blame him. You and only you have the ability to change the situation.

You will only change the situation by demanding more in your relationships, and you will only demand more in your relationships if you believe that you deserve more in your relationships. And by a convenient loophole in human psychology, you will actually start believing that you deserve more in your relationships if you start acting like you deserve more in your relationships. So suck up the rejection and walk away.


Related Posts
1. Self-Improvement Takes Time
2. You Are Responsible for Your Own Romantic Happiness
3. Why Rejection Is a Good Thing

139 comments:

  1. Andrew, hats off to you, this post goes like dynamite in a fish barrel.

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  2. I dated a guy in October and November. Things were going well and he asked to be exclusive. Then the first week of Dec he left on vacation and when he came back he told me that he met someone. I took it as that he made his choice and it was his loss. Now he is texting me again and asked to take me put. I asked if he was still talking to he and he said yes. Should I tell him to get lost or is he regretting his choice?

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    1. Don't even tell him to get lost, as that makes you look bitter and upset. Be polite but don't consider taking him back. He made his choice, now he has to live it with regardless of whether he regrets it not. If he was exclusive with you he had no right to meet someone else. If you take him back you will fatally undermine your value in his eyes and he will dump you again anyway.

      I personally have a rule of "one chance per person per lifetime" (in the dating stage anyway).

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    2. Thanks Thomas :) FYI I would never actually use the words "get lost" I was just saying ;) it's gonna be hard because I really dug him but I know that I truly deserve better.

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    3. Excellent, Andrew! Love it.

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    4. There are plenty of good reasons not to take a guy back even if he has good reasons for wanting you back; but this guy hasn't even given you any. In fact, (and I am assuming that by "put" you mean "out" rather than "back"), he hasn't even asked for you back, let alone justified it.

      So this guy is miles away from even hinting at a real change of heart. I'd tell him politely to go fuck himself, and to please stop contacting you unless he knows he's changed his mind - in which case you MIGHT consider dating again.

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    5. Getting into "relationships" in October/November/December is generally bad. I'm sure there are situations where it works, but for the most part people who get into relationships during that time are lonely, probably haven't gotten laid in a while and need their holiday hookup, and the standards of people generally seem lower. Loneliness, from what I've observed, is a recipe for bad dating decisions and it usually bites the person with the less self-respect in the ass.

      Two friends I know did this recently and their "relationships" are both over. They had holiday sex, but it's over. One is a very attractive girl, and aside from all of her pluses, men never stick around. I think it's because she gives up sex too easily. It's really easy for her to get good quality guys, but none of them last too long. The last guy was caught hitting on a woman at a fundraiser across town (the woman, as it turned out, was her friend). Another decided to officially date someone he wasn't that excited about, (he dated and dumped her before, and she was the random girl available to him for sex whenever he didn't have someone better). But she was always hanging around, trying to manipulate him into dating her. Their "relationship" ended, but she also turned out to be a psycho and tried to fuck up his relationships with his friends, work etc. Psycho at the core. Two of many examples I've seen.

      I don't always agree with Andrew, but the one thing I really value from this blog is that it's helped me to say no. I've said no to guys when everything in me wanted to say yes, and I know I'm a better person for it.

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    6. Sounds like he only wants you at his convenience. Why is he entitled to both you and this other woman? He's already proven to be an unreliable waste of space. I wouldn't even reply to a text. A much grander gesture should be required to get your attention, let alone a chance at continuing the relationship. I would never feed his ego again if I were you.

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  3. Btw I love this blog. I only discovered it 4 days ago. I wish it had been sooner

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  4. Dead-on as usual. Haha, I recognize the folly in this, because I did it once! I was in a relationship two years ago, and we had reached the point where I no longer respected him, he no longer loved me, and we were clearly using sex as a band-aid for the dying relationship (and for me to keep feeling like he wanted me). The trouble, of course, is that band-aids don't cure fatal wounds. This post reminds me of the lesson I learned from that experience. Thanks!

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  5. Pretty good advice here. One time I was seeing this guy for a couple months. We started having sex and then soon after, we mutually agreed to be exclusive because we both realized that we were already acting like a couple anyway. Once we did, we started having little spats about who was going to commute to see who. He suddenly started complaining about him not having much time or money to hang out and he wanted more effort from me, even though he already knew I didn't have a car or a job. Finally he said he thought we'd would just be better off as friends. I was bummed but I didn't put up a fuss about it.

    Three days later he calls me and asks, "Why haven't I heard from you?" I was like, "Um because we broke up." And then he was all, "Oh well I miss you." And told me he was coming to pick me up. We hung out and slept together again and it was just like before. I stupidly thought that this meant we were back together. But we did this another handful of times and he never initiated any talk about being exclusive again, but I didn't mind as long as we were still basically acting like a couple.

    Slowly but surely, our daytime communication dwindled down to nil and he was avoiding hanging out with me during the day, and he was only contacting me in the middle of the night when he wanted some. That's when I just stopped everything all together. I still miss our times together but I knew he just wasn't interested in a relationship like I was.

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    1. You made a good choice by ending this. When a relationship is over, it's over, meaning no more contact. When a relationship ends, so does the benefits of a relationship, such as sex. A man will only do as much as he has to in order to get laid. If his half-assed "efforts" are being rewarded with sex, why would he be motivated to do anything more?

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    2. Never allow a man to demote you from girlfriend to booty call.

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  6. Well said. Never provide a bottomless resource to a man who gives nothing in return. Support him in his nomadic lifestyle by making him go out and acquire sex the difficult way like the hunter-gatherer that he strives to be. Don't give him the best of both worlds by providing an easy settlement that he can always return to.

    Why would a woman gain validation from a man's sexual desire for her, anyway? That requires little more than a pulse. A woman will prove a lot more about herself by politely cutting him off and walking away with her dignity. Then she will at least gain considerable amusement from his frustration and respect from other men who notice the drama free breakup and her refusal to be used.

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    1. “Why would a woman gain validation from a man's sexual desire for her, anyway?"

      I’ve often wondered this myself. My personal observation has been that this scenario happens when a woman is dating that elusive hot guy who is attracted to her enough to have sex with her, but not enough to commit to her.

      These women would rather feel “it” (validation) with a hot guy who is not particularly bothered (consequentially treating her poorly), than “meh” with someone who respects her and treats her well.

      “A woman will prove a lot more about herself by politely cutting him off and walking away with her dignity”.

      Agreed. Every woman needs to remember this when a guy loses interest.

      “Then she will at least gain considerable amusement from his frustration”

      Hmmm. Depends on the guy. When a guy places a woman in that category he has already decided that she’s not worth serious effort therefore he shouldn’t really be that frustrated. Any frustration would be to a lack of other options at that time. If he has self-respect himself he will conceal his frustration, shrug his shoulders and just move on.

      “and respect from other men who notice the drama free breakup and her refusal to be used”

      Agreed. First and foremost women need to indicate that they’re high-value women. To achieve this they need to demand proper treatment and have to courage to cut him off if his behavior doesn’t meet the standard.

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    2. "Why would a woman gain validation from a man's sexual desire for her, anyway? That requires little more than a pulse."

      Because, as I pointed out in the post "5 Ways That Men Misunderstand Women", women don't experience sex the same way men do, and so they only judge a man's sexual desire by its ostensible magnitude (i.e. rather than by having felt how shallow it is). They see how much it motivates a man, and enjoy being the object of it, and conveniently pay less attention to how much it diminishes once orgasm is achieved - until, of course, a situation like this, where they want more depth than the man's sexual desire can provide.

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    3. Thank you for your feedback, Thomas.

      Seeking validation from a man above one's league will only leave an attention seeking woman feeling worse. I wouldn't touch a man better looking than myself with a ten foot ugly stick. I purposely discriminate against them. Who wants to be used as a sex toy by someone who knows they can do better?

      Regarding what you said about men acting frustrated after losing their sex source: This recently happened to me. He made it obvious that he was offended by my refusal to reply to his feeble text and my indifference to his presence in public---especially when it was in front of his buddies. He pulled kind of a "girlfriend demoted to booty call" attempt, so I guess he was either still considering me a dating potential, or had no other sex options. I'm very confident that he has never dated/slept with anyone more attractive than me, so maybe I was just a larger than average ego boost for him. In any case, two of his buddies have approached me since his fumble.

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    4. Good point, Andrew. It surprises me how motivated men can be by sex with someone they're merely "okay" with. I would think easy sex is frequently in supply by the plethora of women out there who have lowered their standards to accommodate these lazy men, therefore less in demand from a woman who presents any kind of obstacle. Maybe unattached sex is more elusive than I thought. An informative supply and demand post could clear up how motivated men really are for just any kind of sex. A better understanding of how often the average single man gets laid would explain a lot.

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    5. Thanks for your reply Bethany.
      “Who wants to be used as a sex toy by someone who knows they can do better?”

      I don’t get it either – but it’s surprisingly common.

      “He pulled kind of a “girlfriend demoted to booty call” attempt”

      If you were the most attractive person your guy was ever with then it’s a bit weird for him to try and demote you like that. But either way it looks like you had better “game” than he did and by letting his frustration at losing show, your victory was complete.

      I don’t think you will have many problems dating :)

      “two of his buddies have approached me since his fumble”

      Ouch – that’s gonna hurt him.

      “It surprises me how motivated men can be by sex with someone they’re merely “okay” with.”

      Not only that – but most guys I know have had sex with a few women they have NO attraction to at all. That pesky testosterone can quite frustrating at times. Imagine you haven’t eaten in four days, and then someone offers you stale bread? You will eat it out of desperation. I know this is a horrible analogy, although apt.

      “I would think easy sex is frequently in supply by the plethora of women out there who have lowered their standards to accommodate these lazy men”

      Well it is for guys over, say, 23 and 7 in looks. But for young, short or ugly guys it is surprisingly difficult to get laid with any regularity at all.

      “A better understanding of how often the average single man gets laid would explain a lot”

      Well I can’t speak for the average single man (as I’m not average ha ha) but I believe the average single man rarely gets laid at all. The guys at the top of the pile get more sex than they can handle, the guys at the bottom get nothing and the guy in the middle gets the occasional one-night-stand/fling and nothing else in between relationships.

      Hence the popularity of porn and hookers :)

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    6. Yeah I basically agree with Thomas, a lot of guys don't get laid at all. I'd say the average guy gets laid occasionally by being drunk and lucky (hence the expression). There are 20% of men banging 80% of women. And the principle works the other way around too: 20% of women are capable of getting 80% of men to commit - for the reason you suggest.

      I've said before that most men are willing to play well below their league looks-wise in order to get laid. It's true. Most women don't understand this because most women aren't willing to do the same; but that is because men and women are different, even though we've been taught the opposite.

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    7. Yes, my guy friends have provided me with endless entertainment with their dubious choices in who to bring home. It never gets old.

      Thomas's "frequency of sex" explanation is hilarious. Thanks for clearing that up. And thanks for confirming, Andrew.

      "I don't think you will have many problems dating."

      I DO have problems with dating, and the problematic factors are ones that cannot be changed. I'm a divorcee that will be 31 next month and I have two small children. But I'm frequently mistaken to be around 26---by women. I don't take the insincere age estimates of eager men into account. I'm more fit than most women in their 20s. So I get the overwhelming honor of being targeted by younger guys who cannot land women their own age who look like me. And it's probably just for sex. So I have a lot to look forward to.

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    8. This has been an extremely informative exchange, thanks everyone.

      So if testosterone pushes a man to seek sex almost anywhere, what makes a man commit in those very few instances he is willing to? Is it that men only commit to women they perceive are in a higher league? Woman they have an emotional connection with? (Whatever that is to a man, I'm not sure - any thoughts on this?) Women they feel are a hard won prize? (Like that fancy sports car they covet or the million$ they strategize to earn - sorry to put it this way but men do objectify.)

      Thomas, your stale bread analogy explains a lot. From a female perspective I've always wondered why men are willing to use a woman. Analogy: hurricane blows thru town, causes a blackout and smashes storefronts. Most people wouldn't loot, admittedly a few would. But most men would use a woman for sex given the chance. Disappointing that that's the case, i.e. they know that using a woman for sex will likely cause the woman pain as a result but men will still do it. Corresponding analogy: I would never use a man for his money.

      Bethany, I'm in a similar circumstance. Don't worry about the kids - they in fact work to your benefit as a filter in favor of men who love children. In my experience, there are quite a few of the latter kind of men out there.

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    9. Thanks Juliet.

      That's definitely not the first time I've heard a man compare sex to food. My ex husband actually asked me for "breakup sex," saying that it would be like an inmate having his last meal. Fucking animal.

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    10. following Andrew's analogies, it makes sense to add another one

      since men play below their league to increase the chances of sex...women play at their league, or slightly below, to increase chances of commitment.

      there's a range of opinions on this, and most if not all bear some truth to this, but would be enlightening to hear from people who have / had successful committed relationships (10+ yrs) because as far as I can see, there aren't many.

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    11. Oh I 100% agree that women play below their league for more successful commitment rates. I've played below my league since high school and have had lots of long term boyfriends. But there's such a thing as playing too far below your league. You need to be at least somewhat challenged in a relationship or it won't be rewarding. A game that produced many long term boyfriends for me resulted in an unsuccessful, unbalanced marriage. It lasted six years.

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    12. “if testosterone pushes a man to seek sex almost anywhere, what makes a man commit in those very few instances he is willing to?”

      Ah the million dollar question – what makes a guy commit? All of the reasons you give are valid but here are a few more:

      Timing.
      After a certain age (say 35) the effort/yield ratio of looking for sex drops. I.e. the effort involved in finding sex exceeds the benefit gained, therefore it is in his interest to secure the best he can at that point and commit.

      Peer/societal pressure:
      All of his friends have settled so he’s the last man standing and has no-one left to go out with.

      Finance:
      If he wants to buy a house/accumulate assets etc. it is in his interest to lock in an additional income and commit.

      Career:
      It can be an advantage to have a wife in certain careers, such as politics, law, becoming a CEO etc.

      Family:
      If he wants a family then it is in his interest for his children to be raised in a secure, committed relationship.

      Fear of ageing/alone:
      Well this is self-explanatory. A secure commitment is the best way to reach old age with the knowledge someone has your back.

      And yes guys commit for love too :)

      This probably sounds fairly clinical but a guy’s (sexual) freedom is an immensely powerful force, therefore sacrificing this through commitment is a huge decision: he's gotta be sure he gets it right.

      “I’ve always wondered why men are willing to use a woman”

      I think your comparison between looting and casual sex is unfair, as looting is illegal whereas casual sex is not. Looting is committed without the consent of one party whereas casual sex requires consent from both. Apples and Oranges.

      This is how men rationalize it:
      - Woman like sex too, therefore she is using me as much as I’m using her.
      - She is an adult thus if I assume responsibility for her sexuality I am infantilizing her and condescending her.
      - You said: “Using a woman for sex will likely cause the woman pain as a result”. This is not necessarily true: many women can have casual sex without expectations or emotional repercussions (my guess is between 20% and 40% of women). Guys have no way of knowing which category women are in. However, women DO know what category they are in therefore it’s up to each woman to let men know in advance. If he still uses her for sex forearmed with that knowledge then yes he’s a douche.
      - Surprisingly some women use men for sex too and then dump them afterwards (it’s happened to me and many guys I know).
      - Conclusion: if you are liable to feel used after sex ensure you receive commitment first. It is an ineffective strategy to have sex and then blame the guy afterwards for disappearing.

      “Corresponding analogy: I would never use a man for his money”

      Well it is more common for women to ‘use’ men for emotional and logistical support rather than for his money, i.e. they friend zone him, whilst he hangs around hoping for a chance for more. Women use these guys to give her a lift/change her tire/fix things/go to the cinema with etc. whilst never contemplating having sex with him.

      Ultimately it is the responsibility of each individual to refuse to allow themselves be used, regardless of the morals, ethics, rights or wrongs. We can’t change the rest of the world therefore it is a more effective strategy for us to take responsibility for our own circumstances.

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    13. God, not the "friend zone" thing.

      A man that is a friend is not synonymous with a man that is being used. Are relationships with women so unrewarding and uninteresting that the only conceivable kind of relationship with one is carnal? This self entitled "all or nothing" attitude from men is very unattractive. It implies that friendship gestures like changing a tire or giving a girl a lift is a debt to be paid with sex, and if it isn't, then she victimized him by "friend zoning." He chose to "girlfriend zone" her. It is not the woman's fault that she doesn't reciprocate sexual interest. She owes him nothing.

      I really can't make myself view a woman accepting a man's friendship to be as potentially exploitative as a man accepting unattached sex and never speaking to the woman again. But as you pointed out, we are all adults and responsible for our own choices to put ourselves out there.

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    14. "But most men would use a woman for sex given the chance. Disappointing that that's the case, i.e. they know that using a woman for sex will likely cause the woman pain as a result but men will still do it."

      Projection facilitates this too: because of it, men more readily assume that women are - like them - OK with the idea of casual sex. And like Thomas said, some genuinely are OK with it. So they don't necessarily realize the they will cause the girl pain.

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    15. Bethany
      “Are relationships with women so unrewarding and uninteresting that the only conceivable kind of relationship with one is carnal?”

      I should have added a caveat that this scenario only applies when the guy fancies the woman, and hopes by hanging around her and doing things for her that she will eventually develop feelings for him.

      “This self entitled “all or nothing attitude” from men is very unattractive.”

      I can see how it is unattractive. But most guys were friendzoned by a woman they fancied when they were young only to then witness her sleep with some other hot guy (and rightly so, as that is her prerogative). This feels emasculating and in time sensible guys learn how to protect their own self-esteem by refusing to allow themselves be friendzoned.

      It is more about self protection than a “sleep with me or else” attitude.

      Btw I have many platonic female friends and find these relationships very rewarding and interesting. I would do anything for them without expecting any reciprocation.

      “It is not the woman’s fault that she doesn’t reciprocate sexual interest. She owes him nothing.”

      True. Just like it’s not the guy’s fault that he doesn’t reciprocate feelings. He owes her nothing - just because they had (non-committed) sex.

      I don’t mean to sound smart or selfish in these responses, rather illustrate how we rationalize our actions to ourselves.

      PS. You’re only 30 (like me), look like 26, and you understand dating pretty well so you have lots going for ya. Just try not hate guys for looking for sex – it’s just the way they are built. :)

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    16. Nah, I don't resent men for wanting sex.

      The problem with this openly embraced "friend zone" attitude that men have adopted is that it limits women like me who frequently date those who were friends first. Now that the friendship stage is being cut out, I have a very limited window of time to decide whether a man is trustworthy. Women fall more swiftly into the "girlfriend" or "booty call" zone before much interaction has occurred.

      I've been hanging out with a guy that I share mutual friends with. We've had a great time getting to know each other with other people around (I'm way more comfortable with this) but have hung out for a little while one on one after everyone else goes home. We've really hit it off. The most recent time, he kissed me, but I stopped him when he tried doing more.

      Instead of continuing the friendship, possibly leading to more one on one outings, he might have made the hyper vigilant "friend zone" assumption before anything else can take place. And at that point, it ends, I guess...

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    18. @ Bethany
      I’ll admit that things move quickly these days. Guys are often not prepared to invest sufficient time in women anyway to assess any possible compatibility. They do this because at some stage in his youth he was strung-along for a few months by an ambivalent girl only to then witness her sleep with the hot guy she really wanted after a few dates. Guys hate being the chump in this situation thus vow to not let it happen again. So yes you do have a short window in which to assess a guy’s character, convey your interest whilst simultaneously protecting your boundaries. This is where great dating skill for women is required.

      After much reflection I’ve concluded that both men and women are equally responsible for this current state of affairs – neither gender holds a monopoly on power in dating (even though it always feels like the other gender does).

      @ Juliet
      Thanks for your reply :)

      Ah don’t become distrustful of men – just understand us and then learn how to enjoy dating, then beat us at our own game - as dating is a game after all. The vast majority of guys are not out to screw you over – no pun intended – they are just driven by self-interest and an innate desire for sex.

      “He knows from pop-culture that many/most women feel great pain after a sexual relationship has ended”

      Hmmm. Guys these days probably spend more time watching porn culture rather than pop-culture, and in porn women act very differently than they do in rom-coms regarding sex. I’m only being semi-facetious here.

      “He could simply ask the woman beforehand”

      True. Just as the woman could state what she wants beforehand - they are equivalent.

      “It’s to their advantage to keep the woman guessing about what’s next”

      As with all self-interested organisms it is true that men are motivated by what’s in it for them. But make no mistake – women are no philanthropists either. Women are motivated by their own desires and goals and be quite savvy in the way they obtain them. It is up to each individual to understand the motives of the other.

      “It feels unfair that men pretty much always get to marry above their league but women have to marry below theirs”.

      Well it depends how you look at it - dating is not a meritocracy. If life was fair we would all be married to George Clooney and Jennifer Aniston.

      We need to understand that women and men effectively have two leagues: a casual league and a married league. A woman will always be able to have non-committed sex with a guy approx two points higher than the guy who will marry her. Conversely a guy will have to drop down two points approx if he wants regular casual sex. I.e. women have to make a trade-off for commitment, and men have to make a trade-off for casual sex. People who don’t understand this concept conflate their leagues thus become disillusioned and bitter about dating.

      This is one of the reasons of why men are so distrustful of marrying a formerly promiscuous woman. Guys know that women can have non-committed sex with much hotter guys than him, therefore they worry that she will always be resentful of having to “settle” (for him) to secure commitment, and therefore is more likely to cheat.

      Note: I should add a disclaimer that most of my comments only apply to the top 20% of men – known as ‘alphas’ in blog parlance. The other guys will simply be relieved to have anyone at all.

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    19. @Bethany

      "I have a very limited window of time to decide whether a man is trustworthy"

      is this applicable to every man, or only to the average (typical) plain joe? or do you switch off the "hypergamy radar" and assign more time if you perceive the male value to be high?

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    20. @ Juliet

      "they are so good at hiding who they are in order to get sex"

      this is the biggest reason why men lie. simply put, all experienced men know for a FACT - that being honest equates to killing attraction. it's like castration via guillotine.

      as an exercise, ladies, check how your men behave before and after getting sex - once urges are satiated, the mask tends to drop.

      women often complain that we males have hidden agendas - for example, if we simply wanted sex and nothing more, why couldn't we just say it? ...because chances are, even if such an open minded and willing female were to agree to just itching our nerve endings on a non-committal basis, the quality of that attraction would be so low, that porn would almost be preferable.

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    21. A song dedication: http://youtu.be/fpQNLZRcNA4

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    22. @digra:

      You mean my "hypogamy radar"? It remains on at all times. I'm not going to waste my time chasing men above my value who won't make me the center of their attention.

      I evaluate all men within a similar time frame, unless I receive lots of good comments on his character from mutual friends.

      But I don't find men in lower leagues any less likely to pop smoke when a woman puts all her cards on the table too quickly. Especially since they'll endure the most daunting of obstacles in order to bed a girl who is hotter than their past sexual conquests. After they prematurely win their medal, then what? They're average joes who lack the social abilities and dating experience to move things forward. They stand there like a child actor awkwardly winning an academy award, then they bail and share the undeserved milestone with their buddies.

      Not exactly the highlight of an above average woman's life. The same "rules" should apply to men of every league. Because it sucks being humiliated by a man in a lower league. I've had plenty of average ones stick around regardless of my lazy dating strategies, but all it takes is one fall from the pedestal to redefine your value among other potential suitors, and how you view yourself.

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    23. @digra:

      I haven't really noticed men behaving differently right after sleeping with me. Even the most primitive moron I've ever dated held me all night and welcomed me to hang out well into the afternoon the following day, and we would grab breakfast, lunch, etc.

      Maybe I've just lucked out in that regard.

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    24. "Now that the friendship stage is being cut out, I have a very limited window of time to decide whether a man is trustworthy. "

      I suspect you feel like the window of time is limited because a lot of men give up or leave after not getting sex quickly enough. But these men wouldn't have stuck around anyway. Rest assured: the men who are genuinely interested in you will persist, without sex, for a long time; and sleeping with the ones who aren't genuinely interested isn't going to do anything to make them like you more.

      There are always cases like Juliet's, but they are exceptional, not the norm.

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    25. Thank you for clarifying that, Andrew.

      So in the case of my friend that I mentioned above, I'm not sure if he was just looking for sex, or if he's embarrassed by my saying "no" to him and throwing in the towel. I wonder this because he's made multiple comments indicating that he considers me out of his league.

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    26. @Bethany maybe your schpells worked lol.

      What I meant though is, different as in more honest - before the 1st time and afterwards?

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    27. "'I'm not sure if he was just looking for sex, or if he's embarrassed by my saying "no" to him and throwing in the towel."

      If one sexual rejection was enough to send him running, I promise you that he was not interested in the first place. There is no question in my mind about that. Men expect to be rejected for sex. It is disappointing, of course, but it is the norm, not the exception.

      He left because he realized it would be more work and require more manipulation than he was willing to put into it - not because he was offended or ashamed by the rejection.

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    28. @digra:

      Oddly enough, no. I've never noticed a "truth" emerge after the first time I've slept with a guy that was concealed before the act. If anything, their enthusiasm and good behavior increased. As if they know they've struck gold with a good sex source and wanted to keep it.

      The last guy I slept with, I really screwed up and slept with him way too soon---but he invited me on a vacation with his extended family that same week. It was way too early for either of these things to have taken place.

      I think I've just been lucky because I've heard way too many horror stories from other women that back up what y'all are saying about how a man behaves after the first sexual encounter.

      I'm the type that feels used even after I'm dumped months after a handful of sexual encounters, so I'm definitely taking this warning seriously. Thank you for sharing.

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    29. @Andrew:

      That makes perfect sense, thank you.

      He hasn't "avoided" me, but he has made no attempts to make things progress with me since then either. Which you would probably say is the same thing. Damn it. I really hoped to capture this one.

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    30. @ Bethany
      I agree with Andrew that he probably weighed up the effort/yield ratio in his mind and felt it a would be more efficient use of his resources (time, energy and money) to move onto another woman who would give it up quicker.

      "I think I've just been lucky because I've heard way too many horror stories from other women that back up what y'all are saying about how a man behaves after the first sexual encounter"

      It has nothing to do with luck - these horror stories only happen to hypergamous women. You said yourself that you are not hypergamous.

      Men only behave like that to women they perceive as beneath them. In his mind she needs to stop aiming too high or else she will be repeatedly humped and dumped.

      I feel sorry for hypergamous women as they really struggle in dating - they just can't seem to feel satisfied unless they're with a guy out of their league.

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    31. @Thomas. The causal league vs. married league sounds like it balances out in theory, but in practice some women, like myself, don’t want casual sex. It’s hollow. I’m not riding the carousel. I’m highly selective and I want sex in the context of a relationship. So that means my partner’s league will always be lower. The only solution I’ve found (besides raising my league significantly the last years) to get a man with the drive and character and athleticism that at least matches my league is to go 10+ years older than me. Which actually has worked great because the maturity gap in men puts us about even. However the age gap will eventually present its own problems down the line.

      And having settled once in marriage to someone at least 2 leagues lower than me (I did not realize it at the time) - it was the most miserable experience, I truly suffered - I am very very careful moving forward. I'm not looking for someone above my league but I know there is suffering that awaits any women bound to a man below her league.

      And while it may seem that power balance in dating is even between men and women, I don’t think it is. (1) Women may have more power in the beginning via getting to decide who she’ll accept to start in with, but men have more power in the long run, where it counts (where it counts to me), because they decide whether they’ll commit to a relationship. (2) A man can lie to get the sex he wants, but a woman can’t trick a man into getting the relationship she wants (and this woman certainly wouldn’t want to).

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    32. @ Andrew. Thanks for two things you said.
      “Rest assured: the men who are genuinely interested in you will persist, without sex, for a long time”
      “He left because he realized it would be more work and require more manipulation than he was willing to put into it.”

      Reflecting on this whole discussion has made me pretty sad. I’m a really kind person, objectively hot in face and body (when I walk into a room heads turn), and I guess I’m unusual in the modern world because despite looking like that I’ve chosen to be with very few men. Because I know what will make me happy. I’m really good to my man, physically and support-wise. I know how to chose a man I highly respect and admire so I trust him, I never feel like I need to nag or change. (Which is why I feel so betrayed from my last experience.) But I feel that all I face from men is a barrage of deceit that I have to wade through. That to men, women are interchangeable, they’ll take the next one that comes along when they’re ready. Andrew’s two comments at least give me some hope.

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    33. @Thomas & Andrew & Digra
      Speaking concretely from your own lives, if you ever had an instance of putting out that extra effort for months for a woman, what was it about the woman that made you feel she was worth so much effort?

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    34. Speaking concretely from your own lives, if you ever had an instance of putting out that extra effort for months for a woman, what was it about the woman that made you feel she was worth so much effort?”

      Good question. I’m a poor candidate to answer this question as I’m not a "boyfriend type" guy, thus rarely/if ever wait long, so I’m probably not representative of guys who are genuinely looking for a relationship. Any time I waited for any significant length of time was when I had a chance with an extremely attractive woman – i.e. someone far better looking than I would normally get.

      I will defer to our gracious host to deliver a more comprehensive response on this one.

      “Reflecting on this whole discussion has made me pretty sad. I’m a really kind person…I feel that all I face from men is a barrage of deceit that I have to wade through”

      I feel for you Juliet as you seem like a genuinely decent, kind and gentle woman and would make a great partner; hence I understand your frustration in dating.

      I suppose the root of all these dating difficulties simply lies in evolution: men and women just have conflicting innate desires and drives. It is in the nature of (most) men to want to sleep with countless hot women, and it is in the nature of (most) women to want to commit to one high quality guy. Something has to give. Unfortunately we can’t change this through education or legislation, therefore all we can do is understand it and work with it.

      I can sense your sadness and disappointment of how things are, but I would encourage you to try and not let it upset you, as men will sense that and you will then have poor dating outcomes. Hopefully through understanding men you will accept them as they are, and then in turn they will then want to change for you.

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    35. @ Juliet

      " (...) what was it about the woman that made you feel she was worth so much effort?"

      I don't feel exactly "qualified" to answer to this question, as timing has been off so far. however I wanted to invest the most of myself in the woman that I perceived to be as feminine as no other. all the key traits that come into being feminine (some that matter to me being natural beauty, posture, the way she talks, nurturing character, positive outlook on life) have already been well covered in this blog, although I will add another one that might have been overlooked - emotional connection.

      You see, in the same sense that men pursue physical connection towards a woman, make her feel physically safe, relaxed and willing to open her body to them - a real feminine woman, the likes of which men want to commit to, is so emotionally open and engaging (vulnerable in the way Andrew mentioned in one of his posts) that she can open up her man's emotions. in light of this topic - giving a man easy sex is NOT going to accomplish this, rather the opposite.

      Now that the genders are less polarized than in times gone by, it is easy to see why women are left frustrated - before they get the chance to attach emotionally, men are either long gone tired of waiting, or clam up emotionally when the woman allows early and easy sampling of the goods. Clearly, male sex drive is stronger than female's drive for commitment.

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    36. also, ladies: massage your man's ego. not every single time - throw a challenge here and there - but make him feel good to be with you. sex is not the only way to do this. use your natural femininity and intuition to channel his energies towards something good, praise & reward.

      proper conditions and boundaries being in place, most psychologically sound men would move mountains for such a woman. girls fall for the fable of the "ready-made" prince in shining armor - I tell you, go for the ones willing to BUILD something with you.

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    37. ^ This is terrific advice. I could work on this one.

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    38. Thought-provoking dialogue! ...what are your thoughts on holding off on sex until after marriage in order to weed out the men (and women) you really don't want (and who really don't want you)?

      Generally speaking, some of these problems seem attributable to the lack of love in relationships. People don't seem to fall in love anymore. They have sex, start calculating who is above or below their league, have enough sex, and maybe for some of the reasons Thomas mentions above (moreso than love), they feel obligated. Then they stay in relationships and rationalize themselves staying in those relationships when they are not happy. The relationship continues because it is familiar and then, I guess, without maybe knowing what falling in love really is, they figure, "I guess this is love." If it ends, it's difficult to get over, for both men and women.

      I think the more time you spend with someone, and the more invested you are in them emotionally, and you accept them for who they are (flaws and all), the better you can decide whether you want to be in a relationship w the person, or even spend the rest of your life with them.

      I took a hiatus from dating several years ago after I was in a relationship that was probably my first serious relationship and we broke up (for many reasons). Part of it had to do with him wanting me to move in with him and I didn't because I needed more time to be sure that he's someone I really wanted to marry. The relationship took a downward dive after that and we broke up but it was hard and it took maybe 2-3 years to get over him. At first every man I dated had to be better than him--and trust me, they were. I got caught up in mechanics that worked and got me great men, but I realized that I needed to get over him, and eventually I did. It's sad that it took so long, but SOME things take time.

      Now, rather than assess a guy I date based on his league, I really want someone who not only makes me happy, but someone I can make happy. There's subjectivity embedded in my definition of "happy" (I have short list), but most importantly, I want to get to know a guy and want him to get to know me, my friends, my family, my coworkers, how much I weigh etc. I'd also want to know his likes/dislikes, and really be a part of his life. To me, a keeper is a guy who, rather than criticize my flaws would help me improve them. Whether he's more or less attractive, or didn't go to harvard law school, or has different taste in food or music, or can't afford to buy expensive dinners shouldn't matter, but evidently for many people it does.

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    39. @Emily L.:

      Waiting until marriage for sex will weed out lots and lots of people, and if that's what you want, stick with it. The man for you will wait. He will just be more difficult to find.

      Good job not moving in with him. That buys lazy men extra time to decide whether they'll marry you. If you're already cooking him dinner and waiting for him at home every night, what will motivate him to save several of his paychecks to buy you a ring?

      This "league" thing that we follow can seem shallow, and yes, the things that should matter are being with someone you love spending time with who brings out the best in you. Ideally, these are the people we will wind up with by eliminating those who waste our time by paying attention to "leagues."

      "Leagues" are merely a defense mechanism. Just because you are evaluating a man for the "right" reasons does not mean that he is doing the same in regard to you. He is looking at you and thinking, "Is she hot enough to bring around my friends, or do I want to just sleep with her on the sly? Is she virtuous enough to be a long term relationship, or will my efforts end up making me look ridiculous?"

      If you don't categorize him first, don't worry---he will do it to you. It is up to you to determine the benefits versus risks concerning him before he starts calling all the shots, and possibly places you lower on the totem pole of priorities.

      Once you've eliminated guys who won't put forth the effort that you're worth, you can pursue something more serious with a less risky man.

      As far as money is concerned, some women have ridiculous expectations and perhaps push this issue beyond the individual value that men see in them. I'm sure a few relationships have been ruined over this. I'm not looking for someone rich---but bills and every day needs should never, ever be out of reach. Money will be managed properly.

      I've been flaunted as a trophy wife by a complete broke ass, NOT because of his income, but because of his money management. He told me that he felt more successful in front of his work friends because of me, yet did not provide even the essentials for me, let alone the "extras" of a trophy wife that he felt he possessed. I will never be paraded around by a man who cannot keep the lights on and food on the table, ever again. I go to the gym, dress sexy, remained faithful to him and didn't "let myself go" or get him into bad debt or restrict him from going out with his friends. I was a high quality wife. I deserved a reliable income at minimum. A man deserves only what he can provide for. I am not wrong in any way for making good income and smart money management a priority of mine when looking at men.

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    40. @ Emily.

      I had never heard the term ‘league’ until I read it on this website last June. To me, a man of ‘high league’ simply means a man of character. Men of character come from all walks of life. To men, I’m learning, a woman’s league has to do with her appearance. A woman who maximizes her appearance therefore has a larger pool of men to choose from, more men for me to find my man of character.

      I tend to distrust very good-looking men, and unlike many women I don’t care if he has hair or not (I know some very sexy bald men ... though will admit to being partial to a buzz-cut ;). But any man I’m going to give my precious self to better have the character to be driven enough to take care of his loved ones. I can’t love a man I don’t respect. Women who have been burned in this way know the deep pain this can cause in woman. I don’t care what degrees he has tattooed on his forehead, that just happens to be my current work environment so my only chance to meet men because I don’t go to bars. And I actually care more about whether he was an athlete, that says a lot to me about character.

      As for love, I’ve thought about this for a long time and I’m not sure men feel romantic love the same way we women do. I think they feel infatuation which deepens into commitment, and maaaaaybe over many years turns into love. I’ve read many times cases where if you ask a room full of women, would they rather (a) be loved but not respected or (b) respected but not loved. Most women will choose (a). If you ask a room full of men the same question, nearly 100% will choose (b).

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    41. I second the "I don't trust really good looking men" thing. They're not worth the risk.

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    42. @ Juliet

      "I can't love a man I don't respect" - this much has always been pretty clear to men about women. in fact, respect should be the basis of all interpersonal relationships, it facilitates love and commitment.

      But then women are known to stay in relationships with men who clearly don't respect them (hence this post, to an extent) so why doesn't this work the other way?

      Ah, the rose-tinted specs.

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    43. In my opinion, it’s because of the chemicals behind emotions that lead to women getting attached.

      I've never done drugs, but reading about others who have and then gone into withdrawal .. stopping the flow of those emotional attachment chemicals causes a great pain for women similar to what others describe as the pain of withdrawal from drug addiction. So she might continue it, knowing it’s bad to but has an instinctive fear that the pain of stopping is worse. Even for a short relationship, the pain can last up to 2 years. Many women on this site will confirm this. So it’s not enough for Andrew to say just suck it up. We may want to, but our body chemistry won’t let us. Wow, wish there was a morning after pill for THIS.

      Andrew's right, women should demand more from their relationships. But because of the way we are wired, women should do it at the very beginning. If you haven't done it by the time you've become intimate, it's too late from a pain standpoint.

      I guess men’s emotions don't work the same way as women's, so they don't experience this ... judging from your question and the musings in Andrew’s original post, I’m starting to think men have no idea of the level of pain women experience, through no fault of our own. Women are just wired that way.

      Also I think it’s because some women are naturally very giving beings, which in fact sometimes subverts our own best interests. We have to be that way to raise children. And I’m learning that men are very much driven by self-interest and little gets in the way of that.

      This discussion this weekend has been very cathartic. I think I’ve emerged a very different person with regard to how I view men and how they approach me. Sadder. But wiser.

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    44. @ Digra-you read my mind on the respect thing. When someone loves you, they respect you. I also think it's impossible in the context of a dating relationship for someone to say they love someone and simultaneously not respect them. That's not love. It might be convenient, free, and easy sex, but it sure as hell isn't love.

      I really like this post of Andrew's, and this entire discussion made me realize that while my dating approach can be unorthodox, it eliminates being in a relationship that I wouldn't want to. For example, before I had sex with my now ex, we were out one night. I was pretty sure I was going to have sex with him, but I wanted to be sure I wasn't going to make a mistake so I asked him (1) whether he was good in bed, and (2) if I had sex with him whether he was interested in dating me or just fucking me. I think he was shocked or impressed, or both, but I got the answers I wanted at the time and we ended up dating each other for a few years.

      Also, when deciding to date a guy my deciding factor is whether he is someone I would want to marry. If the answer is no, then, regardless of how attractive and desirable he is, I wouldn't do it. In fact, my approach is to tell a guy I'm dating that if he is ever unhappy in dating me or thinks he might want to end our relationship to tell me. Regardless of what the answer is, that's something I'd rather know than remain in a relationship and turn out to be played life a fool. People might feel one way getting in to a relationship, but when they get to a point where they realize they no longer want to be with that person, or that they made a mistake, it's perfectly fine to end it--probably very smart to end it.

      Too many women I know are in relationships marred by ambiguity and they keep wondering where it's going and yet they shy away from getting a direct answer from a guy by simply asking. It makes me wonder.

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    45. you're right, men generally experience and process emotions differently. it doesn't mean we don't feel pain - we just deal with it in other terms.

      and I may be VERY mistaken, or women wouldn't really want that "morning after pill" you mention - what good would it be? It doesn't solve the problem - in the same way that morphine is no cure. pain isn't ever desirable, but in some instances it serves purposes like self preservation, learning how to deal with it or avoid it altogether in the future.

      I think I know what you mean on your last paragraph. I'm not going to pretend to know everyone's reasons to come by this blog, I'm not that big-headed, but speaking for myself I definitely know some things where I recognize I've gone wrong, and now I'm figuring how / what I can do to get it right. It takes a bit of introspection. I suppose it is a good sign.

      thinking along the lines of "short term pain and effort, long term rewards".

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    46. @ Juliet, Bethany - It's disappointing that the league system exists, but I imagine it does as a consequence of dating selection, which suggests that people are interested in dating someone who makes them look good or better, which I guess there's nothing wrong with. In a way, perhaps, even the things we desire in a person are effectively a result of the league system, which I imagine everyone uses!

      I also admire the approach to dating with children in the sense that children are part of the equation.

      Also agree on the money issue. Kind of reminds me of guys I know who will say, "i should be dating a model" and they pine away for women who, unless deranged would date them. I'd be shocked to see what "model" would date some of them because they can be such jerks or douche bags, but I guess in this day and age, nothing is truly surprising lol The need for someone to show off is probably a reflection of their insecurity. And worse is that they value something they don't have, which in a way undermines them because they're not happy with themselves and are probably going to be comparing what they have versus what someone else does.

      It's disappointing to hear that good-looking men aren't to be trusted. I think the same holds true for unattractive men, and people in general. Seems like there may be two options: (1) be vulnerable and trusting from the outset, or (2) know someone well enough before trusting them. I'm a proponent of #2, regardless of who the person is because.

      IF you were to pick and experiment with some of Andrew's suggestions, I'd be curious to know which work and which are ineffective. Aside from slim pickings in the male population you're exposed to, whether it relates to trusting good-looking guys, or a guy being an ass, when you go on a date, is there a specific thing that happens that you dislike which makes things not go further? It may very well be that people aren't interested in real relationships, or that men feel they have lots of options and maybe it comes down to the league thing. Sadly, that may be the answer lol or maybe some people are waiting for something that isn't there.

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    47. ...have either of you read a book called act like a lady, think like a man (or something like that)? there's also a movie. It's not a great book/movie, but i learned some important things and began researching similar issues when i discovered andrew's blog. there are things i realized i was doing wrong and didn't even know.

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    48. @ Emily L

      You're right. damn, it sure as hell is unorthodox! not one to beat around the bush, whatever works for you hey :)

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    50. @ Emily L
      “My dating approach can be unorthodox, it eliminates being in a relationship that I wouldn’t want to”

      I actually applaud your direct communication style – it is being proactive (rather than reactive) and saves heartache and pain. Rather than be seen as unorthodox many women could learn from your approach.

      “I was pretty sure I was going to have sex with him, but I wanted to be sure I wasn’t going to make a mistake so I asked him (1) whether he was good in bed”

      I don’t know if any guy in the world would admit upfront that he was bad in bed! Lol.

      “and (2) if I had sex with him whether he was interested in dating me or just fucking me”.

      At the risk of losing an opportunity for sex it would be very difficult for any guy to admit he was just interested in f*cking you - even if it was true. The vast majority of guys (even guys who just want to f*ck you) don’t like lying so they would probably try and couch their response in ambiguous language such as “let’s see where it goes”.

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    53. lol...there's a fair amount of risk and vulnerability associated with my approach. nor is it foolproof, but right or wrong, i believe that some risks are worth taking. the last thing i'd want is to let a great guy walk out of my life and regret never saying anything. so balance the potential for true happiness with temporary disappointment, and to me, i'd take every such risk again without a doubt.

      ...some people don't get perfection from their relationships. some end painfully, and some take a while to get over. from my experiences, i learned a lot about myself, i learned a lot about people, and i learned a lot about love. i don't think i've ever been in love but when i see potential qualities in a guy that attract me, it's something i value.

      nevertheless, trusting some people can be difficult. there are personal and private things in peoples lives that every tom, dick, and harry doesn't need to know. and i'd err on the side of caution with those types of things and try to be understanding about it as well. but if a guy seems decent enough and is probably putting himself out there just as i am, i'd give him a chance and try to understand things that seem odd before writing him off because it takes balls to approach people sometimes.

      but the dating world is also filled with characters and while sad, it can be entertaining. i don't think anything ever prepares you for some of the things you encounter in the dating world. but some lessons i've decided to learn from and try not making some mistakes again. i'm also fine with making mistakes because absolute perfection is not the standard i hold myself to. i'm glad i dodged those bullets i've been fortunate enough to. i could probably take the view that i shouldn't trust people, but i believe in love and i know it'll find me.

      all of my babbling aside, we all have different experiences and are impacted by things differently so i can really only speak for myself. i believe in crying and i believe in being upset about hurtful things, but i also believe in taking time to heal and recover.

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    54. @Juliet-sorry you're having such a tough time!

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    55. @ Digra (And Thomas, Andrew)
      "you're right, men generally experience and process emotions differently. it doesn't mean we don't feel pain - we just deal with it in other terms."

      What are the "other terms"? How do men deal with the pain of a breakup? And how do men experience the pain of a breakup?

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    56. And for some more perspective on what it feels like to be a woman, perspective that really rings true, read the following. Especially powerful is the metaphor halfway down about a woman's sexiness as a shiny suit of armor.

      http://www.aphroditeastrology.com/2012/08/men-disappear-and-reappear-aftermath.html

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    57. @ Juliet

      [the "other terms" are MY terms, it shouldn't concern you, it is dealt with. as long as you deal with whatever issues YOU have, then we got an understanding]

      this is putting it very harshly but in short it's what we tend to do.

      you probably know that men aren't likely to discuss emotional pain or feelings, with ANYONE, because so often it can be used against us. questioning our own decisions, or holding them for someone else's judgement, is akin to weakness.

      we see what happens to other men who are open about their feelings to people who they entrusted - they will be regarded as lesser men. and that is the ruin of their confidence, that was so DAMN hard to build. best to bear the pain full on, put an outwardly steel mask to the world and lick his emotional wounds alone in the "man cave" than risk becoming a social outcast. exaggeration, but by no means negligible.

      I'm not saying 'men have it worse', i don't think it is or would ever be possible to quantify such things.

      it occurs to me, that denial is used by men and women in different ways - men deny their emotions when faced with pain, women deny the harshness of reality.

      rant over. Everyone don't worry, no persons or animals harmed in consequence of this comment.

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    59. @Digra-i don't see that as a sign of weakness, but it didn't occur to me in a meaningful way that that may be what makes men possibly seem emotionally detached (until very recently). i'm somewhat disappointed in myself for not recognizing some of this sooner!! ...what do you think is the solution? what do you think i could do as a woman to better deal with it to have it not be a problem in relationships?? Andrew, anyone, please chime in if you have a suggestion!

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    60. I think it depends what your goal is. In other words, solution to what? Do you mean how to get a man to be open with his emotions? How to deal with his emotional reclusiveness? How to communicate when he won't be open?

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    61. Andrew-all of the above because in some ways I don't view them as being distinguishable. On one hand it seems up to the guy to say what he wants, when he wants, or if he wants. But it's difficult to understand when he's saying something what he means, if anything.

      I think it may relate to the reasons that prevent men from not being open...so what facilitates that?

      I know that's very vague, but I'll give a generic example. In response to efforts to find out what's concerning a guy, I've gotten responses that he was fine or that he was okay and there was nothing bothering him when clearly there was. So I guess the direct approach doesn't always work, but then there's also the try-to-be-a-good-friend approach, and maybe if he wants to say something he will. That can work too, but doesn't always. And I guess I'm trying to find a solution to something that may not have a solution, but how do you figure out what he wants. Is it fair to conclude that he'll just figure it out on his own, or that he's content being upset while pretending he's not? I can't imagine either of those two are paths to him resolving whatever's concerning him. Then there's the option of giving him space. Unfortunately I've come to recognize that I'm a smotherer who tries to be a good friend. When I care about someone, I have a fixer-type mentality towards them. Sometimes it's appreciated, sometimes not. The other option I can think of is that the guy really doesn't want to talk about it, but it seems pretty unconscionable to know someone's in pain over something and the solution is to let him wallow in his pain. To me, that's stupid. Am I supposed to shelve my care/like for the person and pretend nothing's wrong? It's a difficult balance to achieve especially when then last thing you want to do is make the issue worse.

      Then I've, to a lesser extent, encounter the occasion where a guy says something so unexpected that my most immediate reaction is silence. It's partly because I prefer giving a thoughtful response. In an argumentative context, my tendency is not to argue with people. I do this a lot when I know I'm right because for someone to pick an argument about something when he knows with almost certainty that he's going to be proved wrong implies that there's something else bothering him.

      Maybe I'm not good at opening up about my emotions lol...but sticking to my original question, I guess the goal is to figure out how to communicate with him about his emotional reclusiveness which is a result of whatever makes him be open with his emotions. Does it all just depend on the guy then??

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    62. Let's try and hit two birds with one stone.

      @Juliet, @Emily L

      Romeo sounds like a real romantic, then. Interesting to know how you reacted.
      But I want to state that maybe I'm in a different book.

      being defensive - like I demonstrated above - is not the same as being detached - like "Romeo" did. we only detach from things that (we feel) don't matter to us. If it DOES matter, but in occasions that the subject is approached badly / bad timing, then we may get defensive.

      what I suggest ladies try, is be emotionally vulnerable - not grill a dude, or dismiss him - it ain't the same thing. vulnerability is what makes us *want* to emotionally connect to a woman as a human being.

      in crude terms (for a fulfilling relationship):

      man's job - act in such a way (masculine) so that woman willingly opens up physically
      woman's job -act in such a way (feminine) so that man willingly opens up emotionally

      key word in both cases - WILLINGLY.

      as a rule, follow your intuitions, don't rationalize them too often. just adding a couple of caveats:

      1) don't give the sweet stuff too soon, god help you if I have to explain why! 2) does not work for detached men - it's on you to know which is which, as to men's emotional availability

      "Does it all just depend on the guy then??" yeah, and you. I don't personally think stuff like this can be scripted.

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    63. Digra, can you email me? Therulesrevisited at gmail. Com

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    65. i was being a little sarcastic in regards to the comment "sometimes it's better not to have emotions at all". sorry, old habits die hard.

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    66. @digra-that sounds about right. i think encompassed in "willing" is "trust," and the more i think about it, seems like a lot of what's directed towards women should be considered by men too, ie not giving up the sweet stuff too soon, and a guy's emotional availability.

      Sweet stuff - while i cant speak for every woman, i don't admire a manwhore and there's really no excuse (raging testosterone or not) for a man fucking every hole in the ground. i can't readily think of any benefits to it. i admire and respect a man who can exercise reasonable restraint, even with his blowup doll! but that's just me.

      Guy's emotional availability - i've been in situations where i didn't feel like i was emotionally available or interested in a relationship at a given time and i've told men that. some have been fine with it and some had bizarro reactions. i once told a guy that i didn't feel like i was ready to get into anything serious, and that if he wanted to be friends i'd be cool with it. he asked me to marry him. there's nothing that amazes more than a guy saying he wants to marry me just to have sex with me. ...when a man shows up with a size 6 diamond ring then i'll believe it. i digress...but i've told men i don't feel like getting involved in relationships when i need to get over someone or something and i'd rather do that than not be emotionally committed to whatever relationship i was in. i'd want the same from a guy, and i'd respect and admire him for being honest about it. i don't know that the majority of men do that.

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  7. Good post, but I wish it had been posted earlier along with the "never say no to sex" advice you offer. I think it's important, especially for your younger readers, to be able to distinguish when a man is using them for meaningless sex.

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  8. This is by far the most mature and productive post discussion I have read on this site. Thanks Andrew, and thanks to all the contributing comments, reading them was just as useful as Andrew's post.

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    1. I agree. There have been a lot of good, well thought-out responses this time.

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  9. This post came alone just in time. Been theoretcially on and off with a guy for 2 years, he is 12 years older (23 + 35). First started casually before he dumped me for to 'grow up and find someone his own age'. Before re contacting me 7 months later for sexting purposes (yes, he is still with his gf). He blows hot at cold, switches between intense desire and ignoring me. So I finished with him yesterday. Torn between wanting to move on and missing him already.
    Always got the feeling age was a deal breaker for him, but he equally wont let me go. I grant you, I have been to easy to get back, not this time.

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  10. Thank you for this Andrew, it affirms that I made the right decision in not getting physical with the last guy I was talking to. I almost did, in an effort to get him to stop being so hot and cold, hoping he would like the taste of the 'candy' and then stay, but my gut told me not to. And he eventually fell of the face of the mad anyways. That was a big lesson learned. I'm so glad I didn't make a idiot out of myself and I can apply that lesson to future relationships. Stick to your guns ladies, don't let him make the rules and act like a true catch you are.

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  11. @Thomas:

    Thanks for that feedback. I guess if he assumes I'd be a lot of work and still a possible no, I shouldn't feel insulted. Although I always feel underestimated when being pursued only for sex.

    @Juliet:

    It sounds like you're doing a lot of things right. Maybe you're just letting men get away with a little too much. You can be the prettiest woman in the world and still present your value as less if you're willing to accept bad behavior. My gorgeous younger sister is the queen of that. She could land top notch men if she wanted to but accepts B.S. from losers and it truly sickens me.

    Where are you finding desirable older men? The ones I encounter have all let themselves go, just like my swaggering, boasting pig of an ex husband who flaunted me like an accessory. If these men expect me to propel their image by staying fit, they could at least resist being a total slob. But they feel entitled to the double standard. So I've just been trying my luck with the younger ones, which presents plenty of problems as well.

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    1. @Juliet:

      Wow, we're a lot alike. I too was a little more awkward in my younger years and a bit of a "late bloomer." I was still above average as a kid, but I'm considerably above average now and have a better body, sense of style and confidence.

      It sounds like you've encountered some real winners. I've had married men proposition me as well, and afterward, I am so dismissive with them, and treat them with such a lack of respect that they have a tendency to tiptoe around me out of fear that I'll tell their wives. I don't know why these losers think that I would end my own marriage just to crawl underneath THEM. Men have hilariously inflated egos.

      I've never had a sloppy younger one hit on me. Fit younger ones grovel for the chance to try me out. If that isn't demeaning enough, I would totally lose it on a younger slob that acted entitled to sex with me. God, how much worse can it get?

      I wouldn't be interested in the ultra successful CEO types. Too many women throwing themselves at these guys.

      I'm aiming for a blue collar guy with a good trade. These guys have steadier work right now than many college graduates. Electricians, welders, mechanics, pipe fitters, plumbers and guys in the oil field make good money and are frequently overlooked by inexperienced women who try to sex their way into the sights of millionaires with model looks who will never remain faithful to one woman.

      Many skilled working men do not even realize their own worth because they're told by post 1970s society that they're losers for not going to college, and they're frequently passed up by money chasing floozies who don't know what they're missing. Generally, trades require these men to be reasonably fit, too.

      Most of these guys wind up with chubby rural women who don't do much with their looks beyond bleaching their hair blond and wearing tons of flashy western jewelry. So I'm pretty certain that I can snag one if they think the benefit of having a more attractive than average girlfriend/wife outweighs my age and my kids.

      But apparently this plan didn't work out with the guy I'm currently interested in. I'm really not taking this news well.

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  13. @digra:

    I agree that in the time it would take to make an "appropriate" emotional connection, many men will have given up on waiting.

    Even if I were comfortable with "opening up" sooner emotionally, it's been my impression that this chases men off.

    I've never been very comfortable with emotions, anyway. Premature emotions have always meant manipulation to me. I've consistently rejected unnatural or poetic sounding emotional persuasion from men. Especially when it happens early in the relationship. It just has to be fake. Men don't really think like that.

    I'm one of those who is sincerely offended and turned off by Valentine's Day. Gifts or excessively romantic gestures that happen out of obligation make me extremely uncomfortable. The overly emotional cards and unrealistic romance movies just make me cringe and run. I've actually asked men in my past to skip Valentine's Day. Maybe that makes me too easy to please. Maybe I don't act feminine enough.

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    1. "Even if I were comfortable with "opening up" sooner emotionally, it's been my impression that this chases men off"

      Only the ones who aren't interested in committing to you.
      But of course, too much too early is a common mistake. Escalate. Men escalate towards physical intimacy, women escalate towards emotional intimacy. Same way a decent, commitment-minded woman wouldn't be impressed her man can't keep his hands to himself early on in the dating stages, a decent man won't like to be "probed" emotionally in such way - it smells to him like he's being friend zoned, or woman seeks validation only.

      As for you being easy to please - since I don't know you personally, there is no way I or anyone else here could say - you and you alone know. dating basically is (once you got to know yourself and are comfortable with being who you are, your aspirations, potential, limitations) figuring out what works for you on a personal level when interacting with a man that you consider as a potential mate.

      "Maybe I don't act feminine enough"

      You don't need to be Marilyn Monroe or Audrey Hepburn. Relax, real men don't dream with Hollywood. you simply need to be yourself - and the best natural self that you can be. I have a motto (on my online dating profile lol) "I'm not looking for perfect, I'm looking for natural :) " Take from that, what you will. Challenge yourself frequently and banish your self doubts - it does wonders for your self esteem, and your value at the eyes of others.

      I'm not saying that you should keep trying to do something on a "do or die" basis. What I say is, take a few risks, and try new ways of doing things at least a few times. Didn't work? Try something else, until you find what suits you personally. Most important thing - be authentically you.

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    2. ^ Thank you for clarifying.

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  15. Great post and great timing. After much thought, I decided to take Andrew's advice and suck it up and move on from a 6-month relationship, that while initially promising, just wasn't living up. I started to notice the disconnect about 2 months ago, now I wish I had done it then. But it feels good to take my power back rather than to limp along and ride it to the bottom. This post and others have shown me I won't find what I *am* looking for if I waste time hanging onto less. Thanks Andrew!

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  16. I've been meaning to ask about this thing Emily L. brought up a few days ago about just "flat out asking" and trying to get to the bottom of a man's intentions right away.

    I've had bad luck with this approach. The last guy that I dated had a couple of moments where he seemed hesitant/anxious about "where we were headed." I never initiated that conversation or put pressure on him, so I'm not sure why.

    So I very nicely asked him if he just wanted to end things during his moment of hesitance. I gave him more than one really easy opportunity to back out, amicably. But he insisted both times that he didn't want to end things. He initiated a conversation about where we were taking things, and said he wanted to talk to me about what each of us wants in life, etc to figure everything out next time we were face-to-face. Then POOF. He disappeared on me that following week.

    Why pull the disappearing act after I gave him an easy out on more than one occasion?

    This is the same guy who showed his ass when I didn't run after him post-split.

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    1. Bethany-not to respond but just to clarify. I generally wait to get to know whether I like a guy enough (before I ask).

      The guy I asked about whether he was good in bed. I knew him for about 5 months. Another guy I asked whether he wanted to date me (because I was confused by the mixed messages), I knew him for maybe a year, but we weren't close and would run into each other maybe 4 times a year. When we started hanging out more, I asked him. Guy #1 actually said he wasn't great in bed, which actually intrigued me, but I liked him a lot and regardless of his answer I was going to have sex with him anyway. Guy #2, asking him was by far the most difficult thing I've ever done in my entire life. When I asked whether he'd go out on a date with me, his response was, "what kind of date?" I forgot what I said but to make a long story short, he said he was thinking of getting back together with his ex. They didn;t, but I understood what he was going through because I went through something similar, so I told him I was fine being his friend and ultimately amended it by saying that if he got over her and ever wanted to date me, I would. My heart was broken and i fell for someone I wasn't even dating, but I liked him that much.

      I ask questions and don't expect a particular answer, but to me, knowing is better than not. I guess what I've learned is that it's all part of the process, and understanding that everyone makes mistakes--I certainly have--it's important to learn from them.

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    2. @ Emily L

      IMHO your "unorthodox approach" is a reflection of the current 'dating market'. at the same time I appreciate and respect your boldness, directedness and the drive to go after what you want "regardless of his answer I was going to have sex with him anyway"- (please note: this is not a personal slant on you by any means) somehow it feels unnatural.

      So I take it, many issues on this matter are due to the (apparent) shift of human sexual polarity in western civilization. personally, i blame the internet and its infinite power to change perceptions in a bizarre social landscaping thing - and we are all part of it. Really ironic how, through this hive mentality, we can easily affect the world around us in some way but not so easily ourselves.

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    3. @ Bethany

      I reckon these guys you mention aren't electricians - I know because I'm one. We sparks never get wires crossed ;)

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    4. @Digra-I agree that it's unnatural. I also find it to be a more effective approach as opposed to wallowing in ambiguity, or waiting for him to get me drunk so he can muster up the courage to put the moves on me (cost saving), or having to play a damsel in distress, or dumb myself down, or sit around batting my eyes, or playing mind games, or laughing at jokes I don't like, waiting for godot. I save men money and time--I'm good for the economy :)

      And I'm not an impatient person, nor am I as aggressive as I may appear. I like a lot of the suggestions Andrew has made about being more feminine. You've echoed some of that as well. I've been deliberate in experimenting with some of his suggestions, and they really do work: lace, draped necklace, heels, hair down...men really like feminine women, and I enjoy it too.

      ...I also don't believe in online dating, so my experience is solely based on interpersonal interactions. Online dating in some ways is more unnatural. It can eliminate the need for my method bc the men I meet are not with the sole purpose of dating. It works for zillions of people so I'm sure it's awesome and great, I just don't do it.

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    5. @ Emily L

      now this gets interesting. let us speculate: "more effective approach" - how do you define effective here? in what time span? to what end goal?

      "good for the economy" - most men love that idea as you put it. minimum of effort, time and resources spent, maximum immediate results - but isn't spending and investing, having the foresight to commit time and energy into worthy projects and plans, what drives an "economy" forward?

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    6. @Digra - the precursor to all of that is that a guy has to meet my basic minimum requirements. it's a short list of indicators that demonstrate that if i were to date him chivalry (respect, mutual like, etc) and mind-blowing sex wouldn't be in shortage, among other things. after i have some level of certainty that i like him or would want to date him, things can either go in a positive or negative direction from there (depending on his interest). the positive/negative is more of a "phase 2" kind of thing that i've previously described. if phase 2 goes well and we decide to date each other, then ideally i'll get my mind-blowing sex etc (this is phase 3). i'm NOT usually so mechanical about these things, but i guess for purposes of answering you re timing, describing it in terms of "phases" is easier.

      i will underscore that getting to phase 2 w me is rare. and i don't mind making things easy for a guy i already know i like during that time. so it's not as though i meet a guy, barely know him and then i interrogate him about the size of his dick or anything like that. phase 1 can take some time, and id also hope that the guy shows interest in me enough to want to get to know me. men i've dated generally like me because i'm straightforward and i generally don't do crazy female drama psycho things that i see a lot of women do. in a way i empathize with men who have to deal with that. ...i enjoy making things easy and interesting and fun for a guy i date, so yes, in the end, a guy who is in phase 2 with potential to transition to phase 3 has me in the palm of his hand. i don;t view it as underscoring my value (it's not worth that much thought). if i like a guy, i like him, no ambiguity needed. maybe i'm too rational for my own good lol

      also, i'm not an economist, but while short-term spending can stimulate the economy, its long-term effects can create a deficit. it may not be a simple as spending versus not; cost-of-living may have something to do with it, among other things. (See http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052748703481004574646551469288292). While i'm not entirely disagreeing with you, once a project is believed to be worthy (late part of phase 2, and perhaps even early phase 3), does it really matter whether such investments are made in phase 1? I'm not saying i don't believe in the investments--i do :) i still think i'm good for the economy because of the net savings :)

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    7. @ Emily L

      I don't think you got the point of what I'm saying here.

      This elaborate dissection of your unorthodox/effective approach, as far as I can gather, is about the dynamics of attraction "i like him-spend time together-make a move/gauge chemistry-stick thermometer in reaction vessel" (other fucking euphemisms available) as per female pov, correct?

      You come across as an analytical and logical woman, this for me is one piece of the puzzle. since i don't know you personally, I may be wide off the mark - still for some reason, it does not seem purely coincidental that you haven't touched upon commitment on your replies. your "piece of the jigsaw" fits in with *chosen man* own piece, as dictated by biology and personality traits - what about your take on the bigger scheme of things? the other pieces to this jigsaw that require time, energy and investment from all parties involved, to complete the picture?

      you've already answered this, in a way "I'm good for the economy"

      So, if investment isn't required, what incentive is there to progress?

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    8. Digra-You're right. I'm only referring to the initial stages that help determine whether to date someone. Investments are important once dating someone in order for progress to occur.

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  17. @digra: Ha---the primary subject of my complaints is not an electrician. But his buddies work for an electric/water company. So I guess they're willing to cross wires. :)

    @Emily L.: I just wanted a straight answer from this guy. If it's over, it's over, and the other party has a right to know. Why beat around the bush? I thought it was every man's dream to just end it and get it over with.

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    1. Bethany--notwithstanding all of the lace and stilettos we have to wear, there's that unmistakeable population of men we will eventually encounter called The Douchebags. I'm not sure whether they originate in the north or south, but I believe that's what you encountered. No mature explanation could satisfy that behavior.

      As the urban dictionary elaborates:

      douchebag: someone who has surpassed the levels of jerk and asshole, however not yet reached fucker or motherfucker. Not to be confuzed with douche.

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    2. @Emily L.: I guess a crudely crafted social stigma from urban dictionary will work in lieu of a psychiatric disorder. Yeah---he's not worth much more evaluation than that. And hopefully the necessity of a label indicates rare behavior that doesn't fit the norm.

      Here I thought he was just another lazy, self entitled cry baby with tragically low self esteem, pitiful social skills, and lacking even an ounce of creativity or thoughtfulness toward the courting of a generation of women who assume he is the best they can do. Whew! Glad I misjudged that one.

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    3. Bethany-lol...can't argue with that! I like that you made a good-faith effort though. I really like that. ...Maybe one takeaway is that there may not be anything that's normal especially when people (both men and women) apparently deal with their emotions/fears differently (some in more pathological ways than others)??

      Andrew-I HEART your blog.

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    4. @ Bethany

      twisting the meaning of my words into innuendo? wow, smart play. I'll take that as a back-handed compliment and let this one slide. wouldn't want to get into hot water, would you? ;)




      "The test of a superior intellect is the ability to hold two conflicting ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function."

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    5. @digra:

      I humbly thank you for your pardon.

      But now I'm curious about the consequences of any future offenses. ;)

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    1. I commented earlier on the Valentine's post regarding the only type of man who I believe appreciates Valentine's Day:

      Men with ZERO game, who lack creativity and thoughtfulness, and are generally unappealing every other day of the year can cash in on a woman's desperate need for validation on this day in order to get laid.

      And Romeo here merely sent you a message. He didn't participate in any of the aggravating extras that men hate such as flowers, candy and cards. Anyone can send a message. No effort was exerted here. He hoped to take advantage of the emotional opportunity offered with Valentine's Day, and didn't even do so with effort. What a jerk.

      Since his inexcusable, cowardly departure through the comfort and safety of electronic communications, you deserve a much grander gesture than the petty attempts he has used to recapture your attention. A man who behaves in such a morally repugnant way had better have a terrific explanation for doing so, and be willing to risk making a fool of himself in order to express his sorrow for his regrettable behavior and fix things with you. This guy is delusional---why does he think that he deserves to have you back with such pitifully minimal effort after the heinous offense he committed? I will hear none of it. This man should be history.

      I can say so, because the same thing just happened to me. A passive aggressive text, then POOF---gone with no explanation. He later attempted to safely re-enter my life, with no risk whatsoever to his fragile ego. With a cowardly text. Nope. I didn't respond. After the way he humiliated me, I deserve a much grander gesture than some half-assed text.

      While the "physical, not legal" separation is acceptable to many people, you deserved to know the truth. If he didn't feel that his position was wrong, why didn't he just come out with it? They had been not residing together long enough to file and immediately finalize the divorce in most states. So what was keeping him? The fact that they were waiting for divorce until after their kid is out if high school reminds me of what my best friend's Neanderthal husband once said:

      "I don't want to be with you, but can't divorce you until after our youngest is 18. I don't want to be sued for child support."

      What a winner. Wonder if that's what motivated the Prince Charming in this scenario?

      Don't give this man another thought.

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    2. @ Juliet

      he sent you a message. big deal. it doesn't matter if it is vagina day. may as well be any other day out of the remaining 364. hell, make it April 1st.

      text messages, emails - scrap that. that's kids stuff. used solely for practicality and convenience, as in to set up the next booty call. come on people- like the post says, if you don't demand more, you can't expect any better than sub-par treatment.

      a man worth his salt will talk (phone call) or face to face (remember when people actually used to do that?) and if he is for real, his words will line with his actions.

      @ Bethany

      only a stupid man would spend any time or money to cajole a slightly interested woman into having sex with him "'coz it's valentines day". zero game? nah, couple late beers at the nearest hook up bar, sorted and keep the change.

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  19. I deleted my question because this discussion is counterproductive. I simply wanted to know what he was thinking. Men do not think the same way as women. I'm probably the last person who needs to be lectured on boundaries or demanding high standards from men.

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    1. @Juliet---Didn't mean to lecture. His actions just disgusted me and paralleled my recent experience. I think we've already established that you're too smart for his crap.

      @digra---so your tactic is to target the lonely women at the bar on Valentine's Day? LOL, you deceitful little bottom feeder. That isn't good game!

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    2. @ Bethany

      that is not what I said.

      twisting my words for your purposes again then go completely out of context?
      I'm too dense to figure out what I say reading between the lines.

      I see this is how you get your kicks. good luck to you. I'm not interested in your manipulation games, so as far as I'm concerned, this thread ends here.

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    3. No manipulation intended. Just a simple joke.

      I have no "purposes" that would be affected by comments on an anonymous forum. I would think that no one here does.

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    4. Women don't deserve anything in return for sex.

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    5. Andrew, Bethany, Digra, all, question for you. A friend of mine is worried about being single. He's a popular guy with lots of friends. He's thinking of trying online dating which I advised him against (partly because I don't believe in online dating and he can get women without online dating and just needs to try). My primary reason for advising him against it is because I asked him whether he would introduce someone he met online to people he knows as someone he met online. His response was, "no, I'd make something up." I also know people who have met people they date online and then lie about it. I can guess/imagine the answer to this, but why would people do something they're ashamed of?

      He's thinking trying some awful-sounding non-mainstream online dating options that involve facebook as well as the mainstream sites, and maybe he'll find someone to date doing that, but why fib?

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    6. @ Emily L

      you could ask him this question yourself, can't you?

      While I can't answer this for someone else, I share your opinions in regards to online dating - it is IME not "organic" nor really conducive to serious relationship / commitment, I'm sure there are people out there for whom it has worked a treat, but I'd say they're exceptions, not the norm.

      And introducing someone that you've met online to your friends - you just don't mention the online bit. It's a new kind of social taboo. Most people think, online = hookup / casual, hence the cover up story to make it seem believable. Does this ring a bell to you?

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    7. @Digra, you have some interesting thoughts, so wanted some other perspectives. I was curious since I have a very different view of online dating. Plus I came across a study that reported about 23% of online daters end up in relationships, so maybe thats attributable to some of what you mention, perhaps among other things.

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    8. Emily, I agree with you. If he thinks poorly enough of online dating that he'd actually make up a cover story, then he wouldn't stay with a girl he meets online. He'll think less of her for being online looking for dates, and more importantly, he'll think less of himself, and have this notion in the back of his head that he "could get someone better."

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    9. @ Emily L

      Thank you, I have an interesting brain :)



      "Peer pressure and social norms are powerful influences on behaviour - and they are classic excuses."

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    10. @Emily L.:

      That's really interesting. I haven't heard many men worry about being single. They usually worry about getting into a relationship LOL.

      I wouldn't date online either. You made an excellent point by asking if he would be comfortable explaining the online circumstance of his new relationship.

      For men, the internet is probably a brilliant hookup tool if used correctly (I would be clueless). I can imagine many men quietly using this method to recruit new lays and not telling their "real life" friends.

      I've never met women who have admitted to online dating, but a couple of divorced guys who I graduated with in high school were having a very candid discussion about it the other day on FB.

      The more recent divorcee posted, "Guess I'll give online dating a shot" and the more seasoned divorcee commented with some pointers. They spoke in the context of dating, but are the kind of guys who probably wouldn't care if others thought they were just hooking up.

      All of the comments on this post were very encouraging to the guy in question---one guy even chimed in that he met his wife online---but he didn't seem like a very desirable guy.

      I don't think the comments on that post would have been as positive if it was a woman thinking about online dating. Like promiscuous sex, women take more risks with online dating (like the Craigslist killer scenario, etc).

      I have to wonder how much a man would truly value a woman he met online, especially if he has his own reservations about it.

      I'm not sure about your friend's motivations, but at least he's not as "at risk" as a woman would be in this scenario, so I would just let him do his thing and not worry about it.

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    11. He's in his early 30s and his family is pressuring him to get married etc. I think it's a bit much, and I think he's taking the "it'll happen when it happens" approach, but he's also trying to make an effort to please his parents. I think their concern also put a bit of a damper on his spirits tho because i think it kind of made him wonder why he hasn't met someone yet, but i think he'll be fine.

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    12. Thanks for the two cents all! @Bethany-sounds accurate! I don't expect people to agree with my views against it, but I'm convinced.

      (1) As a chris rock once put it, when you meet a person for the first time it's not them but their "representative" that you're meeting. There's a lot of truth to that, and with online dating, people have an opportunity to create a 2-D impression that they contemplate over and think of ways to attract others based on what they say about themselves. I'm not saying it;s all lies, but even in 2014 the process seems very unnatural.

      (2) It also seems like an option for people who can't attract people on their own, or are trying to date people out of their league, or are too lazy to make the effort, or have a compelling reason. I also love those who claim (rationalize) that they're too busy with work so online dating is a great way to meet people. No, that's synonymous for "i'm an asshole," "i'm unattractive," "i'm really a psycho," "i have emotional issues," "i have an awful personality," "i'm in denial about my faults and too blind to improve them"...etc. They probably get dates, but i imagine it MAY also a good way for trying to get people out of one's league. Odd enough, some of them probably overlook great qualities they have that make them desirable because they emulate unattainable qualities.

      I know a woman of a particular race who likes men of a particular race. She's not attractive, but the men she's attracted to are way way out of her league. Instead of getting a personality overhaul and hitting the gym, she goes online to find men. Really?? The last guy she met met her physical demands and I was shocked--shocked. It made me think, wow, maybe I was wrong, but I was happy for her. TURNS OUT, he was "separated" from his wife...had 2 children...and he turned out to be psycho-possessive and was still sleeping w his wife. She didn't tell me those details initially. I didn't intend to be mean to her, but my comments were that she need to step back at assess what the relationship says about her. She hates me now, but there's no point to sugar-coating shit like that.

      (3) I don't usually think about online dating, and i wouldn't have thought of it as a hook-up option, but the more I think about it, it makes 100% sense. I knew someone who is not just attractive, but hot, she has a great job, she's done every form of online dating, she meets guys, but they never work out. She fucks them all, is happy briefly, then she's single and at it again. Seems like a great opportunity to get some STDs and maximize your health insurance benefits.

      My soapbox isn't judgmentally-based either. I think if people take steps to improve or enhance their flaws, they can attract people. Even the physical ones like Andrew highlights that are fixable can have benefits. Maybe it's an issue of peoples mindset. They emulate something--probably something they're not--then it's difficult to become what the emulate, so it creates a problem for them and it's a constant struggle that will have an unhappy ending (crappy relationships, divorce, etc.). Stream of consciousness rant over.

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    13. @ Emily L right on.

      Once people are able to see past the sugar-coating, it's easy to get to the root of the issues that need to be addressed.

      Online dating doesn't really work long-term because (imo):
      -it caters to male's higher sex drive / desire for variety
      -it caters to female's hypergamy.

      get these factors together, ain't very surprising to see the result.

      that is to say - skipping those steps of knowing people "organically" as I put it, might be an easier/quicker way into some sort of connection (however fallible) but will present its own problems at some point.

      about your point 1) I think that is applicable only in circumstances where it can be easily assumed people are "looking for something" i.e. online dating or bars / nightclubs.
      .

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    14. @Emily L.:

      Couldn't agree more with the concept of people putting their best image into an online profile. You'd think it'd be kind of a no-brainer that these people aren't going to be as wonderful as their well thought out and carefully edited profile presents. People put the "my life is awesome" facade out all the time on Facebook to actual acquaintances, so think of how much one can stretch the details of who they are to a network of strangers.

      "Think of what this relationship says about you."

      ^ That is hysterical. As far as friends are concerned, you sound like a keeper. It's too bad the friend in this story didn't recognize that. You find out who your true friends are when they're not always telling you what you want to hear. The two women you described sound like they could benefit from some safety advice. What sad, self destructive behavior.

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    15. @Bethany - I try to be a good friend to people, and sometimes it's appreciated. I hope my friends who read Andrew's blog are taking major notes (and deciding what bottles of wine to get me)!

      But I can tell you stories of craziness i've seen women i know do. That one in particular has some sort of passive/aggressive craziness going on and she pretends to be nice but really isn't. Fortunately I don't know them well enough for them share their STD secrets with me. Fortunately.

      @Digra - i think that it doesn't work in the long run is interesting. And I can totally see how this ties back to Andrew's post here. I can see the hook-up aspect resulting in women having sex with men to try solidifying a relationship, especially when the women are below the guy's league. I can also imagine that women doing online dating know they have to compete with their other online competitors so sex is probably just a method they use to distinguish themselves from the competition, except many of them are probably giving up sex to trap a guy. Those women have no self-respect, and the guys as well, but a guy who knowingly does it just to get laid isn't as much to blame because the women (I think) are probably too desperate to see beyond that. It's difficult to imagine it the other way around--a guy giving up sex to trap a woman.

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  21. I have read a fair few of these blog posts tonight for the first time, and Oh. Dear. Goddess someone please push the red button now (and I am a mediator, how horrific must they BE?). Ridiculous hetero-normative cultural discourse and imperatives reek from *advice* such as this. All it does is reinforce the illusion that a woman's worth is only based on her attractiveness and willingness to submit to men. I love men- I have all their albums- but I am not about to kow-tow to them either. Perhaps a blog post informing men how they can put their big girl panties on and take joy in a woman they can actually take some pride in might better serve our progress as equally productive beings- in the cause of the betterment of humanity. In most cases in our society, most men look but do not see because they were never taught how. Beauty has been arbitrarily and socially engineered by civilisations since the dawn of time and still is today. Perhaps your advice could be turned toward helping men understand that the way they think of women is, at the end of the day, nothing but a social construct? Then perhaps an intelligent woman reading this- as undesirable as they are- wouldn't think you are trying to keep us in our corsets (metaphorically speaking). I do understand however, that it is mass-appeal pop psych for the insecure that pays the bills.

    I do also realise that this will probably be met with some sort of anti-feminist attitude. Because blow-jobs. And bewbs. And manliness. Thank goodness men understand whats really important otherwise I would be out of a career.

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    1. If you'd like to discuss this, email me.

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    2. @Isis:

      Every role in every society is a social construct from the moment we are born. Gender roles will never go away, although the behavior expectations of each role will evolve very slowly.

      The average American family is an ever changing system that responds to political and economical changes, and by extension redefines gender roles. In the 1950s-1960s, our economy was great and afforded mostly "nuclear families" where the woman could stay home. Now dual income parents and working single parents are more prevalent, and shifts like this make subtle changes within gender roles at the time, but will result in a more profound change later on after decades of small changes have added up.

      It is true that there are many regrettable expectations associated with the current Western female gender role. I like to think of this blog as a list of battle tactics written by an unofficial sociologist to arm women against the most extreme examples of masculine gender role players within current society.

      As I said earlier, the expectations of gender roles evolve. But they do so very slowly. Those who try to quickly alter gender behaviors face social consequences. Underlying some of these behaviors is also biology at play---how can that be changed?

      I think more important changes can be made than unofficial information within social media. How about our piss poor economy? My personal "feminine struggle" is being a single mom in a country where our government cannot pass a budget, let alone redefine our measurement of the poverty threshold, which has not been touched with a ten foot ugly stick by any politician since the 1960s. Could this result in some women staying at the bottom because we cannot identify who the "deserving" and "undeserving" poor are, for example? I find economic struggles to have more "reinforcement of role" potential than social attitudes.

      I don't think this blog defines gender roles. It just acknowledges our current ones (that are a result of current politics) and since that is always changing, social advice like this would need to be rewritten in ten years anyway.

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  22. @digra, @Andrew: You speak about being emotianally vulnerable but I am still confused what this really means in practice. Could you please provide some examples? Thanks

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  23. @ Andrew

    After a browse by HUS, thought I'd leave this for the ladies visiting the blog, if I may.

    Here's the link
    http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2012/11/19/hookinguprealities/men-want-sex-with-girlfriends-not-randoms/

    (...) "There is a widespread belief that guys just want to have sex and don’t care about relationships. In other words, “Men are dogs.”…Many Americans believe that boys and young men – especially those between about 15 and 25 years old – are primarily, if not exclusively, interested only in [hooking up]. We think this is normal. When we act as though this is normal, we may very well be creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    This stereotype tells us that guys are primarily interested in sex, not relationships. This contributes to the notion that guys are emotional clods who are incapable of connecting with their partners because, hey, they’re just guys, and guys are only interested in sex. " (...)

    the funny, or sad thing (depending how you see it) ...a man was the one who raised the "emotional connection" issue here. Only came across the article at HUS minutes ago, and I'm slightly lost for words.

    Ladies....what do you have to say?

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    1. @Digra-seems like it's a product of culture and peer pressure. Seems like the problem is well-defined. I'd be curious about the number of people in his study (but not enough to look). I think the problem with the hook-up culture is that guys may want to get laid, and because of the widespread availability of women they don't have to do very much to get laid. Getting laid doesn't involve developing an emotional connection and taking time to know someone before deciding whether to develop a relationship with them. So even though there's a regular stream of available sex that results in a temporary orgasmic euphoria, the euphoria might not be enough when it loses its excitement. I bet there are times a guy will have an orgasm and he might be looking for some amazing feeling but it becomes a sad situation because he recognizes the inevitable cycle of forging a relationship based on a feeling that's misplaced. Then I can also see it extending into scenarios when men become confused about what love is, and they can also get married for all of the wrong reasons then end up living a life is misery.

      I've often heard men say marriage is not something they want, or that marriage is a death sentence. I think they feel that way because the women they've been with are wrong, and perhaps even that they've never had a sustainable emotional connection w a woman worth holding on to, hence no need for marriage.

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    2. definitely. ain't it funny, how the peer pressure that shamed women for being "loose" back in the day, is the same that has women getting drunk and prowling bars and nightclubs in cities throughout western civilization. and don't blame men for this - good or bad, this was a result of women's agency.

      "Getting laid doesn't involve developing an emotional connection"

      And I firmly believe, even thought it may take more time and effort to get it, no man can deny that sex with a woman with who he's emotionally invested, is way better on a whole new level than random fucks with many different women that he doesn't give a damn about.

      Furthermore, men NEED that emotional connection to be willing to pursue commitment.

      About marriage, societal/divorce laws is what deters most men from it. under the current system, what a man gains from marriage, doesn't compare to what he can lose with divorce.

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