Kay Hymowitz, Round Two

“The liar’s punishment is not in the least that he is not believed but that he cannot believe anyone else.” – George Bernard Shaw

Yesterday I sliced and diced Kay Hymowitz and her “child-man” moral panic and got my single biggest day of readership to date (it got linked on Reddit, for one – party on). Heartfelt thanks to my loyal readers. A few items were just too juicy to leave on the cutting room floor.

THANK YOU MEN, MAY I HAVE ANOTHER

In a Wednesday blog post at wsj.com, Hymowitz tried to back away from 1,300 comments (and counting) blasting her sexist premise. She tries to argue she has unparalleled empathy for “lots of very angry young men.” Wait a minute – she never mentioned anger, I thought she said young men were living in a promised land of irresponsible bliss? She denies she is blaming men (who does she think she’s kidding?) and says the whole of the book is much more balanced, but sneers that said angry men should “drop the Darth Vader decor.”

This is old hat – she responded to Helen Smith’s criticism three years ago with similar crocodile tears for the “deep rage” of men, a rage she only discovered after she’d written her article in which she talked to no men.

It’s curious to note that this is the second time in a month (after Amy Chua’s Tiger Mother kerfuffle) that the Wall Street Journal has published a book excerpt to cacophonous criticism, only to backtrack and claim the quoted work is not representative of the book.

SCHEDULING NOTE: A glutton for punishment, Hymowitz will be participating in a WSJ online chat at 2pm ET Thursday, February 24. The stub notes that her article is one of the most commented on in the history of the website. The first comment on the chat room itself speaks well to the situation:

Travis wrote:

Why are women always in such a rush to “settle down”? Why can’t we just enjoy ourselves? Relax and have a beer on the couch with us ladies, and quit nagging. Or go find some wuss you can boss around. Good luck.

THE REAL LESSON OF KNOCKED UP

Aunt Kay made a really big deal of Seth Rogen’s character in the 2007 film “Knocked Up” as prototypical of today’s “child-man” epidemic. She’s giddy about contrasting the dope-smoking layabout with the upwardly-mobile young woman, but her analysis is so shallow and backwards I’m fairly certain she never actually saw the movie.

To review, cable anchor Alison (Katherine Heigl, a character actress who plays hot neurotic women) celebrates a promotion by getting hammered and bringing home Ben (Seth Rogen) for a good rogering. Living off an injury settlement as an illegal immigrant from Canada, Ben is a true omega –  working with his housemates to assemble a porn taxonomy website and crush many bongs of quality hash.

Sure enough, Alison turns up pregnant and regretfully contacts Ben. Contrary to what Hymowitz would have us believe, Ben accepts his responsibilities immediately; implementing those responsibilities is the source of comedy and drama throughout the film, but there’s never any question his heart is squarely in the right place. Thinking it’s the right thing to do, Ben attempts to forge a relationship with Alison, accompanies her on baby-shopping trips and ingratiates himself to her family. He goes so far as to propose to Alison and tell her nieces about it. Meanwhile, although Alison can be excused for being high-strung at the situation, her first concern is herself and her career and at one point she tries to drive the father of her child out of her life. She feigns the trappings of careerist independence (Hymowitz glowingly cites her “clean sheets and towels” – are her standards really that low?) but in fact lives in the poolhouse of her sister’s property and apparently earns her room on family goodwill and occasional nanny services.

In other words, Hymowitz has it completely reversed – Alison’s “got it together” appearance is illusory, and when faced with an existential life challenge Ben doesn’t question stepping up to the job.

The film is pockmarked with classic Apatovian bit characters, including a child-phobic female producer, a wacky on-call obstetrician, assorted stoners, a self-conscious club bouncer and Harold Ramis as Ben’s fancy-free father.

The key supporting characters are Debbie and Pete, Alison’s sister and brother-in-law. Pete is flummoxed and betatized by Debbie’s bitchy, humorless and controlling demeanor. He hoaxes work travel to get away from his wife, using the time to see Spiderman and attend his fantasy baseball draft. Debbie’s view of love is “you tell someone everything that’s wrong with them, and then later they thank you for it.” Pete has a more cynical opinion: “marriage is like that show Everybody Loves Raymond, except it’s not funny.” (In the interest of full disclosure, this portrayal of a dysfunctional marriage was one of the first things that got me really thinking about what’s wrong with today’s SMP.)

While the men go to Vegas to decompress from their respective life pressures, the women are refused entry to a nightclub due to age and pregnancy status by the apologetic doorman who laments he has been made the enforcer of racial quotas.

I laughed my ass off at this movie. I never felt “Knocked Up” was misandrist, sexist or in any other way unfair to its characters. It is a pretty typical coming-of-age type of plot with formulaic contrast against a seemingly-perfect but dysfunctional “normal lifestyle.” It does not speak any better of the power chick or her ball-busting sister than it does of the pothead (it does treat Pete as an innocent man). Hymowitz reads in her own “man bad, woman good” message – the movie is designed to show two people who are really not ready for a situation and how they get through it without winding up like the miserable couple in their midst. Her use of a movie as proof of a phenomenon is silly; by her rationale, the Twilight films are evidence of a plague of vampires infesting our forests.

JUDD APATOW’S HISTORY

As long as we’re on the topic, let’s review “Knocked Up” writer Judd Apatow, the most visible producer of the latter-day “bromance” genre.  Apatow’s first piece was the single-season high school dramedy series “Freaks and Geeks” whose subject matter should be self-explanatory. It captured the heart of anyone who listened to Rush, refused to wear designer clothing or expected their girlfriend to feed their mind as well as their libido.

After the successful “Anchorman,” Apatow broke into auteur status with 2005′s The 40-Year Old Virgin. Andy (Steve Carrell) bikes to his job at a consumer electronics store and seems content to live anonymously. It is revealed that he is in fact a virgin, whose few efforts to play his V-card have been rebuffed. He shares his working life with a compulsive philanderer, a schlubby pickup artist, a pathetic chronic-oneitis basket case and a nymphomaniac boss (Jane Lynch).

Andy is the only fully decent soul in the pack. What has been his reward? Three decades of utter failure with women to the point he has been turned into a non-combatant. Hymowitz would call him a child-man with his fondness for poker, Halo and painting miniatures, but he’s responding to society, not dictating to it. He IS “where all the good men have gone.”

GIVING FEMINISM ITS DUE

Any discussion of gender roles is going to involve feminism, but I do think there’s a place to give feminism a bit of a break as a scapegoat.

Feminism didn’t send American manufacturing jobs offshore, undercutting the blue-collar earning power of the average man. It didn’t (at least at first) co-opt the allegedly conservative churches into a pernicious man-shaming cult, with self-flagellating promise keeper types pledging that they’ll be better betas at home (though this scene is an ugly parallel to college campus DV activism).

Unless you believe Great Books for Men and his Bernankification Theory (lozl), feminism doesn’t control Federal Reserve decisions and trade policies which have a lot to say about which industries (and demographics) are going to be favored in the American economy.

Finally, though reflexively misandrist feminists have their special place in the fiery depths, it’s capitalism as much if not more than feminism that causes marketeers to run sitcoms and consumer ads portraying men as hopeless idiots.

THE COW AND THE MILK – OVERRATED

A considerable portion of responses to Hymowitz’s article are along the lines of “men were better when people didn’t have sex until they were married – why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?” This is a typical obligation-masculinity syllogism – “if only men had to WORK for it they’d be better men! We need women to hold out until men ‘commit’ and act the way we want!” It conveniently allows conservative commentators to call for a return to sexual puritanism.

The cow and the milk are a red herring. The issue is not sex per se. It’s sexual attention, and who women choose to give that attention to. The highest level of permissible sex could be caressing a woman’s ankle and we’d still have the conflict of dads versus cads.

That we live in a society that suborns unmarried sexual intercourse is incidental – the freedom of sexual choice, not of sex itself, is what has driven good men to the sidelines of the marketplace in favor of tingle-generating bad boys. So locking up the panties is pointless unless young women are going to change their preferences to men of good character; and if they did that, it wouldn’t matter when they consummated it.

While getting too sexual too early can kill a woman’s image in a man’s eyes, the practice of sexual restraint doesn’t change men’s behavior as much as it screens it, causing fast-lane players to leave the scene in favor of men who prefer sex in the relationship context.

ADVICE FOR WOMEN: WHINING ABOUT COMMITMENT MEANS YOU ARE OVER-INVESTED

In Hymowitz’s debate with Tom Leykis (linked in yesterday’s post) she twice complains about young men’s “unwillingness to commit.” Whether “commitment” means monogamy, marriage, or Sunday brunches is not defined, but we can pretty safely assume she simply means “unwillingness to undertake whatever level of relationship the woman wants” (with the counterpoint that a man who wants more of a relationship than the woman is a controlling stalker).

She is going at the problem backwards.

First, if you are sleeping with a man without monogamy (the lowest level of “commitment”), you’re slutting it up. Period.

Secondly, if you are whining about “commitment,” it’s a sign you are too invested. You are expecting a deeper level of relationship than the man in question is comfortable with, and you are resenting him for it. That doesn’t make him “afraid of commitment,” it simply means he’s choosing to do other things with his time. You need to stop blaming him for a difference of opinion, and get out.

This is another huge contradiction in Hymowitz’s case – if women are unhappy with the quality of men in their dating pool, why are they so hung up on getting the men to “commit” to them? If they’re so miserable with these “child-men,” aren’t the men doing them a favor by giving them a pretext to get out? Sounds like her claim that women today don’t “need” men is empirically false.

QED.

I should have been a trial attorney.

A FALSE ECONOMY

The underlying premise of Hymowitz’s case is that if there were more “good men,” women would choose them. As any pickup artist can tell you, the problem is not the supply of the product – it’s that the product is not in demand. More supply would simply drive down the value of the good man even more.

There are cases where a woman dating a cad is operating from a subconscious program to “tame” a man, to make a feral alpha civilized. This plays on the cultural expectation, propagated by girls-first education and consumer advertising, for women to be “better” than the men they are with.

It doesn’t take a forensic psychologist to understand that it’s a fool’s errand, quite dangerous and deeply misinformed.

It is a pretty lie that “women civilize men.” The promises of patriarchal monogamy civilize men, promises of an equally-ranked sexual partner and the chance to be head of your own filial empire in exchange for enthusiastic contribution to the labor force. The promises are upheld by the approval, threat and shame of other men, not of women. The emasculation and removal of fathers from the home – first in black America, then across the board – has shown that women alone cannot raise boys into men.

People like Hymowitz and Hanna Rosin don’t care about men, they only care what men can do for women. So they cheer when women take the pole position in the workplace and earn more degrees. They don’t get worried about the status of men until incentives (there’s those pesky economics again) ensure that there aren’t enough good mates signing up to be with their pretty little sisters, and even then they only “care” about men’s needs for as long as they need to to get men to do what they want, and then they go back to their victimization or cheerleading (their money or their vast carelessness, to appropriate F. Scott Fitzgerald) depending on the scenario.

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27 Comments

Filed under junk culture, media, original research

27 responses to “Kay Hymowitz, Round Two

  1. While I could not suffer Darth Vader decor, I like Star Wars, as does my husband (who has fond memories of the movies release in the late 70′s), and my three older daughters. They have fond memories of going to the midnight showing of Episode 1 when they were little.

    Did I mention that my husband plays the occasional video game?

    What I don’t understand is the inherent derision aimed at the things some men enjoy as if they’re childish simply because they appeal to men. I haven’t read much complaining from men about the small fortune their wives spend on scrapbooking. Is this more mature in some way?

    I think a discussion of the state of things between the sexes is long overdue. But it can’t start with the assumption that acceptable masculinity can only be defined in ways that women approve of. Women wouldn’t allow that kind of thing to be done to them.

  2. Terry,

    Thanks for commenting, glad to see you here!

    “inherent derision aimed at the things some men enjoy as if they’re childish simply because they appeal to men.”

    Bingo. In their quest to denigrate men as childish and silly, humanities-educated feminism has this weird Luddite streak going. Who do they think designs their smartphones, and other tools that free us from homebound drudgery? A lot of guys who watched Star Wars in their youth, I’m sure. Not to mention the security technology (cars, guns, gates, locks) that is really what’s behind social equality between men and women.

    It really backs up Camille Paglia’s infamous statement that “if women ran history we’d still be living in well-decorated caves.”

  3. Brendan

    A good post, but I’m a bit confused about this part:

    The cow and the milk are a red herring. The issue is not sex per se. It’s sexual attention, and who women choose to give that attention to. The highest level of permissible sex could be caressing a woman’s ankle and we’d still have the conflict of dads versus cads.

    That we live in a society that suborns unmarried sexual intercourse is incidental – the freedom of sexual choice, not of sex itself, is what has driven good men to the sidelines of the marketplace in favor of tingle-generating bad boys. So locking up the panties is pointless unless young women are going to change their preferences to men of good character; and if they did that, it wouldn’t matter when they consummated it.

    In the 1950s, women also chose their mates. The difference was that the “best” men were “taken” due to marriage. Women didn’t have the option of riding the carousel (even if the carousel only involved ankle touching) because a good number of the men at the top of the hap in hypergamic terms were taken.

    I think multiple factors are involved in forging the market we see today. One big one is the economic independence of women, which has shifted their hypergamy in more visceral directions — meaning that the men that they are finding attractive is based more on pure, raw attraction now, which is more like the jungle and more extremely hypergamous. However, a related factor is also the lack of any pressure to marry, which is also a follow-on of the sexual revolution. If the men, even the currently hypergamously popular ones, were forced to marry to have sex, they would be off the market, which would depress the ability of the rest of the women to give these men sexual attention. That seems true, it seems to me, whether it’s sex or ankle rubbing — the idea is that marriage takes these guys or a certain portion of them out of the market which has the practical effect of tamping down some of the more extreme hypergamous impulses. No doubt it worked that way in the 50s and before as well.

    I doubt, however, that a good number of women would be much happier under such a system. The current system is bad for women who either don’t want to put out sexually early in relationships or who are below the radar screen in terms of attraction. However, for the average woman and above the current system works for quite a few years, because it gives women their “shot” at Mr. Big much more than a system which emphasizes courtship and marriage does. The time at which the current system becomes problematic for these women is when the clock starts ticking and/or they have an epiphany that these Mr. Bigs are not in the cards for them in terms of a LTR or a partner or what have you. So for women who are willing to have casual sex fairly often, the troubling aspects of the current system are a timing issue — which is why overwhelmingly the women who complain about the system are over 30. The women under 30 are either opting out or are still holding out for Mr. Big and like the fact that the current system, by providing access to Mr. Big, gives them a “shot” at landing him.

  4. “Her use of a movie as proof of a phenomenon is silly; by her rationale, the Twilight films are evidence of a plague of vampires infesting our forests.”

    We have a really bad vampire problem here in the UK Badger.

    Personally, I blame Robert Pattinson’s ancestor’s:

    http://blogs.ancestry.com/uk/2010/06/24/twilight-star-robert-pattinson-is-related-to-dracula/

  5. slwerner

    ”Ben. Contrary to what Hymowitz would have us believe, Ben accepts his responsibilities immediately; implementing those responsibilities is the source of comedy and drama throughout the film, but there’s never any question his heart is squarely in the right place.”

    Badger,

    Your perspective on this is refreshing.

    My own response to the film had been rather negative, WRT Ben’s “efforts”. I had though that it mocked young men, as his efforts seemed rather feeble to me (suggesting to me the message that men aren’t able to “step-up” very well, whereas woman are. Maybe it’s just the MRA in me looking too hard for anti-male messages?).

    While I still do not hold the portrayal of his efforts in high regard, I believe that you are correct in that his heart was in the right place.

    But, still better, I really like that you point out that ” Hymowitz has it completely reversed – Alison’s “got it together” appearance is illusory”

    I had failed to consider that aspect. It does put that whole film in a new perspective for me.

    But, getting back to the new Hymowitz piece (of crap), I’d note you’ve hit it dead-on -”THE COW AND THE MILK – OVERRATED”, “WHINING ABOUT COMMITMENT MEANS YOU ARE OVER-INVESTED”, “A FALSE ECONOMY” – all good stuff.

  6. AM

    1) you are consistently one of the most well-spoken and lucid posters, whether it’s on this blog or in comments on other blogs

    2) you always manage to say just how I feel but have trouble putting down in words

    perhaps there is some bias tying together the correlation between those 2, but regardless great post badger

  7. slwerner

    Brendan – “A good post, but I’m a bit confused about this part:”

    What I thought he was saying is that, even if it were somehow possible, today, to restrict sexual activity to ankle caressing, woman would still want “alphas” to be the ones doing that caressing -the “hypergamy thing” – so that even if it were possible to “lock up the panties”, it wouldn’t make a difference in how women would now perceive/rank men.

    I didn’t get that he was looking at the situation retrospectively, back to a time when sexual activity was actually more restricted than today, and ranking/mate selection was quite different.

  8. JM

    “I doubt, however, that a good number of women would be much happier under such a system.”

    Out of curiosity, can you imagine *any* sort of system under which a good number of women would indeed be much happier? Or is the carrot of desire inherently bound to be forever out of reach for most?

  9. Keoni Galt

    Another excellent piece, Badger…one small correction though:

    Unless you believe Great Books for Men and his Bernankification Theory (lozl), feminism doesn’t control Federal Reserve decisions and trade policies which have a lot to say about which industries (and demographics) are going to be favored in the American economy.

    The theory (aka the “conspiracy theory” lolzlzol) is that the owners of the Federal Reserve are the same folks who funded and propagated feminism.

    Finally, though reflexively misandrist feminists have their special place in the fiery depths, it’s capitalism as much if not more than feminism that causes marketeers to run sitcoms and consumer ads portraying men as hopeless idiots.

    While there is certainly truth to this…you cannot discount that the college students who went on to become the producers, writers, marketers and such to make such fem-positive media were indoctrinated with the tenets of feminism in their school curriculumsn, and it’s not really a matter of some grand directive mastermind in Hollywood demanding that writers produce such fare. Like Global Warming, many of these people are true believers who promote the ideology of their own accord.
    The Rockefeller/Rothschild international bankers who founded and own the Federal reserve also funded women’s studies programs and other feminist initiatives. The Rockefeller foundation also funded Albert Kinsey’s research and disseminated his reports that were so instrumental in kick starting the sexual revolution, as well as being one of the major funders of the development of birth control.

  10. Keoni Galt

    Ok, that last comment got mixed up when I tried to cut and paste sentences to rearrange it…it was supposed to read like this:

    The theory (aka the “conspiracy theory” lolzlzol) is that the owners of the Federal Reserve are the same folks who funded and propagated feminism.

    The Rockefeller/Rothschild international bankers who founded and own the Federal reserve also funded women’s studies programs and other feminist initiatives. The Rockefeller foundation also funded Albert Kinsey’s research and disseminated his reports that were so instrumental in kick starting the sexual revolution, as well as being one of the major funders of the development of birth control.

  11. am i crazy lzozllzlz or did the fed really fund feminism & the desturction of the family lzolzlzzl

    hows comes barrack obama and groege bush never come out or came out agianst divocre? zlzozlzllzlzozlzozlzlzllzlzllzlzlzlzlzl ms. nancy levant writes:

    http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/view/18889

    http://www.rense.com/general80/sexsl.htm

    In the Preface to “Brave New World,” (1932) Aldous Huxley wrote:

    “As political and economic freedom diminishes, sexual freedom tends correspondingly to increase. And the dictator will do well to encourage that freedom…it will help to reconcile his subjects to the servitude which is their fate.”

    There is an inverse relation between sexual “freedom” and personal and political freedom. The sexual “liberation” of the past 50 years is part of the Illuminati bankers’ long-term plan to enslave humanity and make us love our slavery. Whether Sabbatean, Frankist or Communist, these Satan-loving Illuminati bankers always have promoted the sexual promiscuity which is now widely accepted.

    lozlzlzllzlzlzl!! –http://www.rense.com/general80/sexsl.htm

    http://www.infowars.com/articles/nwo/rockefeller_admitted_elite_goal_microchipped_population.htm

    Rockefeller Admitted Elite Goal Of Microchipped Population
    Hollywood director Russo goes in-depth for first time on the astounding admissions of Nick Rockefeller, including his prediction of 9/11 and the war on terror hoax, the Rockefeller’s creation of women’s lib, and the elite’s ultimate plan for world population reduction and a microchipped society

    lozlzlzlzlzlz!

    say it ain’t so!!!

    lzozlzlzlzlzllzzllzz

    gimme some rtialinadderollandi’ll be ten foot tall ozlzlzlzlzlzlzlz

    [It is an honor beyond magnitude to get a visit from GBFM. lozl on, my friend.]

  12. CSPB

    Badger, taking the red pill and reading your blog leads me a bit deeper down the rabbit hole.

    Once I started to study this stuff; Game, economics, markets, social issues, behavior, marriage, divorce, advertising, and politics – it all came together. I could explain it but it would take a lot of words. I chuckled at Captain Capitalism’s latest post. http://captaincapitalism.blogspot.com/ He concludes as I do that he doesn’t have the energy to explain the inevitability of the economic decline, the reasons and the causality of the demonization of men to the masses that would ignore it or are incapable of understanding. They will be experiencing it soon enough.

    The best bloggers in the manosphere tie all these things together. Ideas flow from one to the other organically and are further developed. The unconscious collaborations are an amazing thing to watch.

    Incidentally it is looking like the tide has turned in the stock market and the impact will be severely felt this year. Should be a nice pop for moving to cash on early next week and a last hurrah move to SPX 1320ish. http://yfrog.com/f/h4579jp/

  13. “Once I started to study this stuff; Game, economics, markets, social issues, behavior, marriage, divorce, advertising, and politics – it all came together.”

    I agree. It’s really hard to discuss any of these issues without bringing the rest into play. Maybe Roissy is right that the SMP simply underlies every other exchange we humans broker between each other.

  14. Pingback: Linkage is Good for You: Last of the Old Edition

  15. collegeslacker

    First time visitor, and all I can say is that you killed it. Shredded her argument to pieces. Good stuff.

    [Thanks - please come back often!]

  16. Pingback: Michelle Langley and “Women’s Infidelity” on the Tom Leykis Show | The Badger Hut

  17. Jennifer

    “The underlying premise of Hymowitz’s case is that if there were more “good men,” women would choose them. As any pickup artist can tell you, the problem is not the supply of the product – it’s that the product is not in demand. More supply would simply drive down the value of the good man even more”

    This really does show that immoral women mess things up for Christian women, who do want good men. For Christian men who know who they are, it’s not that hard; they already have a balance between being a promise-keeper and not being a pushover, which women respect. Seems it’s the non-Christians who most often have a problem.

  18. Jennifer

    “The promises are upheld by the approval, threat and shame of other men, not of women. The emasculation and removal of fathers from the home – first in black America, then across the board – has shown that women alone cannot raise boys into men”

    Very true, but i disagree that women can’t civilize men, or be a big part of it.

  19. detinennui32

    Jennifer said: “This really does show that immoral women mess things up for Christian women, who do want good men.”

    When I was single I would have loved to have met the Christian women you’re talking about. Where are these Christian women who want good men? All the “Christian women” I knew were closet feminists who were just as hypergamous as their secular counterparts. They want their 21st century lifestyle with a little Jesus sprinkled on top and only on Sunday morning. They are only slightly less materialistic, crass and promiscuous than nonChristian women. The ones I’ve met are just as quick to send a beta away as their secular sisters, and just as quick to pine away for the alphas they can’t have.

    I say again: Where are these “Christian women who want good men “you’re going on about? I’ve never seen or met one. Pray tell, Jennifer.

  20. Jennifer

    Every one I know, Detin. I find the terms “alpha” and “beta” often very limiting; to be sure, no woman, NO woman, is attracted to a pushover, so a guy showing that type of “niceness” would not attract a Christian woman no matter how kind. But it’s clear you’re speaking of all-around unChristian women, and it’s very sad to see; certainly, we’ve messed up society. If you look at certain writers like Elisabeth Elliot, Beth Moore, Liz Curtis Higgs, Jennie Chancey, Jennifer Rothschild, Kelly Crawford and Debi Pearl, you’ll find excellent examples of women who uphold loyalty to truly good men. There will always be ungrateful women who consistently trade-up, even if they have or could have men who are plenty strong and assertive without being uber-alphas; such women rarely learn their lesson until too late. My former associate pastor, a brilliant scholar, was a good and charismatic leader without being an uber-alpha. He was a decent guy in college, and he told us once that his mother used to console him if girls brushed him off, saying, “Don’t worry honey, they’ll come around.” In relating this story, he said, “I didn’t know she meant after their second divorce!” He is, happily, now married to a strong person himself; I’m glad HE didn’t have to settle for a hypergamous female only claiming faith.

  21. detinennui32

    Jen: The modern evangelical Protestant churches are full of Christian feminists. The modern Roman Catholic churches in the US are full of cafeteria Catholics who routinely use artificial birth control so they can sleep with their boyfriends before marriage.

    The point is this: Society, churches, religious authorities, and Christian women say it in unison, repeatedly. We hear it on Oprah, on TBN, on Dr. Phil, on every show everywhere. Women “JUST WANT NICE GUYS WHO WILL TREAT THEM RIGHT.”

    We were nice guys. And we found out the hard way, over and over and over again, that they did not want us. We weren’t pushovers. We were considerate, chivalrous, and kind. We picked up the checks, paid for the dinners and the drinks and the movies. We held the doors open and walked them home from the libraries late at night.

    And we heard “let’s just be friends.” We heard “I’m just not that into you.” We heard “I’m really not interested.” And these were from CHRISTIAN WOMEN, Jen. Choir members. Pastor’s daughters. Deacons’ daughters. Elders’ daughters. Divorcees who were really trying to “turn it around and do it right this time”.

    So what is a “nice guy” or a “good man” to a woman, Jen? Not a pushover, okay. But does kindness kill it for you? Excessive chattiness? Excessive deference to her wishes? Too much smiling? Calling in two days after the date instead of three? I really want to know. I have a son I’ll be sending out to try to find a little happiness and success in dating. I’d like for him not to get caught in a marriage to what I’ve seen from “Christian women” who don’t appear to be any better or more ladylike than their secular counterparts.

    I’d like for someone to tell him what is really meant by “I just want a nice guy who will treat me right”. I thought I had it figured out — that today’s woman does not want a nice guy at all; she wants a confident guy. I think I’m hearing from you that there are indeed Christian women who do want “truly good men”. Where are they, and WHAT DO THEY WANT?

  22. Jennifer

    Even if you’re chivalrous and kind, if there’s a lack in assertiveness, about your own interests and your own thoughts, there could be a negative tilt in the attraction you put out, but I don’t know all the details of your experiences. Some women are foolish, and some think they deserve the highest status they can get; with women like that, it’s a losing game anyway because they could trade you “up” even if it’s later rather than sooner. Then of course there’s the fact that, in the old days, the men who opened doors and paid for dinners were also the sole providers and family leaders; many didn’t have to prove that they were leaders, they just were by default. So today, with the tables more evened out, men don’t need to present themselves as sole providers and caretakers; many gamers said it well when they stated, “Don’t place standards on her that you don’t have for yourself”, or “Treat her like a person, not what belongs on a pedestal.” In the days when men were sole providers, they did indeed pedestalize women, and the most traditional of Christian women still want chivalry (I could give you a couple of links to sites with women like that). I think, however, that you’ve basically got it right, Detin; your overall view of game seems accurate as to what women want; interestingly enough, it’s greatly something of an equalizer while still practicing traditional attractive masculinity.

    When it comes to the initial meeting and attraction, game works pretty much universally in the charisma that draws women. It’s after the intial meeting, when the birth of a potential relatonship comes about, that the individual factors come into play; it’s here that women prove different. If your son begins any sort of relationship with a Christian woman, he’ll need to know her basic beliefs: what she thinks about sex roles in the house or if they’re even that different, whether a wife can work outside home or how much, whether birth control can be practiced in a marriage, how much time a child needs with their parents, etc. A woman’s beliefs about sex roles is a strong indicator of how she’ll prefer a man to act towards her.

    As for me? I’ve fallen for many kind guys, and they’ve all been verbal about their own interests and strong in their beliefs, while kind towards others. If a man seemed to just live for me, always agreeing with me or even just not that interested in his own life apart from me, if I didn’t see clear signs of an identity without me, I’d be concerned and not naturally receptive. I’m sorry I can’t tell you everything to avoid, because women are different; sometimes it just doesn’t work out, but I think with your knowledge of game and what it means to be yourself, your son will do fine.

    “that today’s woman does not want a nice guy at all; she wants a confident guy”

    A confident guy who is nice to her. Remember everyone: “nice” and “good” are NOT always the same. A good man means he’ll love her and not dump her, not that he’ll open doors and never stand up for himself.

  23. Jennifer

    Although, by the same token, there’s certainly nothing wrong with a guy opening doors. As long as he doesn’t scurry in front of the woman to beat her to the door just so he can open it.

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