Ladder Theory For Men

One of the greatest memes of the medio-Internet era was the “Ladder Theory.” Documented in a hilarious website complete with colorful visual aids, the theory attempted to explain the frustrating mystery of why women sleep with certain men.

One could argue this theory  may have been one of the first primordial thought instances of the movement that blossomed into the Manosphere – having at its hear the red-pilling reality of female sexuality, free from the pretty lies of popular culture.

I’m not even going to try to summarize it all, but here is a representative nugget:

A common question men ask of women is “Tell me what you want in a man?”, which is like asking how many guys she’s slept with, an invitation to be lied to. Because she’ll almost invariably answer with some combination of

• sense of humor
• intelligence
• sensitivity
• emotional stability

As far as I can tell this is mostly rubbish.

Just go read it yourself. Yes, read the whole thing; it takes ten minutes. It covers (if not in those words) sex rank, factors of attraction, alpha and beta traits, and female mating strategies (i.e. tingle vs money, represented by the ubiquitous “biker vs rich guy”).

THE FEMALE LADDERS

The first female ladder (FL1) is reserved for men a particular woman would have sex with. The remainder are sentenced to FL2. This second ladder is easy for readers of this blog to understand – it’s the “friend zone,” the sexiled point of no return.

In effect, the space between the ladders is occupied by a woman’s conception of her SMP. Via hypergamy, men above her SMP are on FL1, men below it are on FL2 (as if!) None of this is a surprise to a manosphere regular.

THE MALE LADDERS

I am going to break with Mr. Lynn and disagree on his male ladder theory. He posits that men have a single ladder of all the women they want to have sex with (almost all women) graduated by hotness, degree of drunkeness required and how on-the-down-low the lay has to be kept to save his reputation.

It’s not that he’s wrong, it’s that he’s only considering sex itself, or in another manner of speaking, he’s conflating sex with relationships – which is understandable as he’s trying to explain female sexuality. To understand male sexuality, we need to make those two items independent degrees of freedom.

Men don’t have one ladder. They actually have three.

Male ladder 1 (ML1) is for women a man would consider seriously dating and/or marrying.

Male ladder 2 (ML2) is for women with whom a man desires sex but has no intention of committing his personal energy and resources to. For a typical man, ~70% of women are eligible for ML2 (subject to taste).

ML3 is for everybody else – unusually ugly women, seriously dysfunctional personalities, damaged goods, body types you don’t like, your best friend’s sister, etc.

In this respect, male sexuality is more complicated than its female counterpart.

SORTING ALGORITHMS OF MALE LADDER THEORY

In almost all cases, any ML1-eligible woman is also ML2-eligible (the reverse is not true), in other words one is a subset of the other. Another way of saying it is men don’t desire relationships with women they don’t want to have sex with. Women don’t either, but the pressures of age and marriage sometimes get women hitched to guys who only look good on paper.

A pedestalizer presumptively places all women on ML1 until proven otherwise. This kind of guy is prone to making serious misreads and errors of over-investment that waste his time in addition to pushing women away.

A whiteknight is a guy who puts every woman on ML1, and has such an intense cognitive bias that none of them ever get off. (He doesn’t usually get off either, if you get what I’m saying.)

A red-pill man, PUA or other Manosphere denizen is conscious of all the ladders and puts an attractive woman on ML2 to start. That she turns him on does not entitle her to his investment until she proves herself worthy. Through judicious use of game, he qualifies and tests her, subtly (and often backhandedly) inviting her to hop onto ML1. Many are called, few are chosen.

The latter is obviously the best strategy – a man who is open to quality women, but doesn’t need a relationship and who is certainly not going to get into one by hiring someone who’s unfit for the position.

THE SEX AND LOVE EQUATIONS

The upshot of all of this is two critical cause-and-effect equations. Contrary to the apex-fallacying of jilted female hooker-uppers, men do not lack the ability to bond through sex. It’s just that the system is only deployed under certain conditions.

A man who is interested in sex with a woman (an ML2 woman, by definition) is generally speaking not going to get emotionally bonded /fall in love with her by virtue of having sex with her.

However…

A man who is in love will want to have sex with the object of his affection, and he will deliver his best expression of that love, and will enhance his bond most effectively, through sex with that woman. As the brilliant Stephenie Rowling said, the male definition of romance has a lot fewer flowers and a lot more boners.

LADIES, WATCH FOR LADDER BUMPS!

Women absolutely need to understand that they can get bumped between ladders, and often silently. He might still pursue you – but you don’t know that he’s changed the rules of engagement and he’s now just looking to get in your pants, cash in some of his sunk cost and be done with it. On the other hand, a man moving you onto the relationship ladder might produce some strange and confusing behavior (especially if he develops oneitis with all of its attendant missteps).

As I said above, you have to be on Male Ladder 1 first before sex with your man will enhance his love. So don’t think you can make him love you by seducing him. This is one of the most damaging projections women can (and do) make. Don’t do it.

OK, so what can get you bumped? In fact the outspoken Roosh just discussed some canonical ladder-bump events today in his post “Warning Signs A Girl Isn’t Worth A Relationship.”

  • Changing your music without first asking for permission.
  • Giving you unsolicited advice.
  • Saying “you should.”
  • Not apologizing when she texts or takes a call in your presence.

To this I would add trying to make you jealous, cutting you down in public, facebook pictures of wild parties or with lots of strapping dudes she’s not related to, rearranging/tidying your living space, making plans for you on fall football Saturdays or Sundays, reading Cosmo, or demanding expensive dinners, gifts and/or vacations (a fitness test you should “pass” by getting out of the relationship). Half these items will blow a woman all the way to Ladder 3 in my book.

THE RANKED LIST AND THE PIZZA PIE

My final point has to do with male and female sexual standards.

As female sexuality seeks hypergamy (a higher status mate), male sexuality seeks variety to simultaneously maximize his progeny’s genetic diversity and to account for the fact that his sperm is cheap and you don’t get a woman pregnant every time you fire a bullet.

When the male desire for variety is brought up, there’s always some cynical woman who drops in on the discussion and says “so you’re saying men have lower standards than women?” Some women are truly flummoxed by the revelation that men really do find a lot of women attractive, far more women than women find men attractive.

“Lower standards” is a false paradigm, an erroneous way of looking at the situation.

Imagine female sexual preference as a ranked list of possible suitors (much like FL1). If a man becomes available who is ranked higher than the mate she has now, there’s a strong instinctual temptation to “trade up.”

On the other hand, the male sexual preference is more like a pizza pie, with different toppings on every slice. Depending on what’s available and the mood he’s in, he might prefer Hawaiian, meat lover’s, barbecue chicken, no sauce or some wacky pizza kink. Variety is like what they say about sex, even when it’s not that good, it’s still pretty good – which is why you sometimes see guys having affairs with women who are shirley not as hot as their wives.

If the pizzeria offered to make him a single flavor for the rest of his life, there’s no “perfect topping.” Any one of the choices could probably make a man happy in the long run.

So it’s not that his standards are “lower” than hers – he just has a wide palate that is accepting of a lot of flavors.

Now I’m not saying the hypergamous woman should trade up, or that the man should get his fingers greasy on multiple slices of pizza. I’m just telling you how the instincts work, and we need to understand the instincts so we can properly deal with them when they hijack our hormonal systems and try to bypass our cerebral cortex.

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116 Comments

Filed under beta guide, girl guide, original research, primary sources

116 responses to “Ladder Theory For Men

  1. Brendan

    That’s a good way of describing the pizza pie vs ranked list.

    I do think, though, that while it’s one thing to understand this mentally, it’s quite another to “get it” viscerally. To me, it’s like women see the sky as green and men see the sky as blue — you can describe that to each other, but you can’t really “understand” what it is like to see a green sky every day without actually experiencing the world in that body. From a woman’s visceral perspective, a man’s “larger net” *is* less discriminating, because it encompasses more people. She may intellectually understand the basis for men being more ecumenical in their taste and desire, but in her bones she perceives that as being less discerning, because it *is* less discerning than most women are. At the same time, men, I think, can intellectually understand hypergamy, but can we really relate to a situation where we walk into a party and only 10% or so of the women are attractive to us at all, and the rest are kind of “greyed out”? Can you imagine what that would be like? I really can’t.

  2. Good point, Brendan. Men will never really grok “I love you but I’m not in love with you,” and women will never grok, say, the Chilean miner who said he loved his wife AND his mistress.

  3. Brendan

    Exactly.

  4. This is interesting and sounds pretty much right. Funny how different we are in that way. I think the hypergamy thing is a bit over stated though. Speaking from my experience, if I really love someone, I am not looking to “trade up”, whatever that might mean (more money, more tingles). It can really get to a point where pretty well everyone else is “greyed out” as far as any real possibility goes. I can still see “that guy is good looking”, but my interest in him as a potential partner is just not really there if I’m already happy with what I’ve got, warts and all. Are most women not really like that? Most I’ve known seem to be.

    It’s hard to understand why a lot of women make things so difficult. I saw it with my parents (damn my mom could be a PITA), I hear it from my brother, my bf is thankful that I’m pretty easy going compared to most women… It’s not hard to keep a man happy. A woman on the other hand…. I wonder why you guys bother with us sometimes!

    Anyway, interesting post!

  5. Brendan

    It can really get to a point where pretty well everyone else is “greyed out” as far as any real possibility goes. I can still see “that guy is good looking”, but my interest in him as a potential partner is just not really there if I’m already happy with what I’ve got, warts and all. Are most women not really like that? Most I’ve known seem to be.

    I think that highlights one of the differences: the likelihood for a woman to find another man attractive for mating (or partnering) is directly related to how happy she is with her current mate/partner.

    Not so for men. We may be very happy with our current mate, but still find other women as attractive as we did before we met her. The two things are not related in us at all – two independent things.

  6. whiteboykrispy

    Excellent post, Badger. You have a way of cutting to the core and explaining everything that needs to be said. The 3 ladder conception of male attraction is a particularly accurate conception.

    His pie chart about female attraction is off in my opinion. I think the author should read a bit more on Game, as us practitioners know money is only one of the many factors that are part of a man’s overall status, and his status is almost entirely what the woman is measuring when she is placing him on the ladder.

  7. We may be very happy with our current mate, but still find other women as attractive as we did before we met her.

    This is something that most women find difficult to comprehend and often that translated to finding it hurtful. I’ve fallen into that one myself but I’m getting better at understanding it’s just the way men are and it’s no reflection on me.

  8. *translates , I meant

  9. Tim

    I’m starting to get it the older I become. A woman’s fate is to become pregnant and give birth. Her body and life is completely disrupted, so in this sense I get hypergamy. If I were put out to pasture for nine months and my life were to be completely disrupted, I too would want nothing but the best. I would look at the highly educated, and ‘grey out’ the lesser educated. Or I would look at the tallest men, and ‘grey out’ the shorter men. So far so good.

    The only problem I have with this formula is in most instances, the woman values herself higher than her *actual value*. There is no way a woman of average means, say, a graduate of a state school, deserves Cary Grant. She doesn’t. What she really deserves is someone with character who will work hard, but that’s it. That’s all there is. There is nothing more. When ordinary women begin to believe they are Special…this is when hypergamy has gone cancerous.

  10. Brendan

    This is something that most women find difficult to comprehend and often that translated to finding it hurtful. I’ve fallen into that one myself but I’m getting better at understanding it’s just the way men are and it’s no reflection on me.

    Yes, that’s understandable. I think it stems from many women not understanding male attraction as well as they might think, and instead projecting their own “messaging” onto it. In other words, thinking that if a man is attracted to another woman, that means he’s assessing her value relative to yours and finding you lacking or that he is otherwise dissatisfied with you –> kind of projecting the female experience of hypergamy and extra-relationship attraction onto men, when it doesn’t work that way. When a man finds another woman attractive, it’s not that she’s “more attractive” than his partner (she may be so, or she may be less so), but that she is “also” attractive. It’s another slice of pizza, rather than a higher rung on the ladder, if that makes sense.

    I think this is often reflected in what women sometimes blurt upon learning of a man’s affair: “he cheated on his wife with *that* woman? That doesn’t make any sense” (typically said when the other woman is not as beautiful as the wife). This is projecting hypergamy onto men. Again, it’s understandable, because that’s how women experience attraction and so on, but it’s really just projection .

  11. The Truth

    Thag, some of us have stopped bothering with your gender.

  12. SayWhaat

    “…men do not lack the ability to bond through sex. It’s just that the system is only deployed under certain conditions.”

    Much like the female orgasm, then? :P

  13. SayWhaat

    “He might still pursue you – but you don’t know that he’s changed the rules of engagement and he’s now just looking to get in your pants, cash in some of his sunk cost and be done with it. On the other hand, a man moving you onto the relationship ladder might produce some strange and confusing behavior (especially if he develops oneitis with all of its attendant missteps).”

    More on this, please. How do we know whether or not our exes are genuinely interested in getting back with us, or just want a P&D? And what kind of confusing behavior would accompany a move to the relationship ladder?

  14. Passer_By

    @saywhaat

    “How do we know whether or not our exes are genuinely interested in getting back with us, or just want a P&D? ”

    If, when they approach you about getting back together, they come across as confident, desirable, sexy and having their shit together, then they probably just want a pump n dump. If they come across as needy, desperate, undesirable and basically just a wreck, then they are probably serious and really miss you. :)

  15. SayWhaat

    @ Passer_By:

    Hah…so it’s a no-win either way.

  16. Butterfly Flower

    A red-pill man, PUA or other Manosphere denizen is conscious of all the ladders and puts an attractive woman on ML2 to start. That she turns him on does not entitle her to his investment until she proves herself worthy. Through judicious use of game, he qualifies and tests her, subtly (and often backhandedly) inviting her to hop onto ML1. Many are called, few are chosen.

    …but that’s just it. Are men incapable of differentiating between good girls and whores?

    Do men look at a good girl and think: “Evil conniving slut!”?

    ….Isn’t that the same as a girl looking at a nice guy and thinking “Evil creepy rapist!”?

  17. Blues

    @Butterfly Flower

    …but that’s just it. Are men incapable of differentiating between good girls and whores?

    Actually it’s easier than most women think

    Do men look at a good girl and think: “Evil conniving slut!”?

    You’re thinking bitter men, not good men, both can overlap, but one doesn’t imply the other.

    ….Isn’t that the same as a girl looking at a nice guy and thinking “Evil creepy rapist!”?

    More like “total worthless chump” but yeah, basically

  18. In other words, thinking that if a man is attracted to another woman, that means he’s assessing her value relative to yours and finding you lacking or that he is otherwise dissatisfied with you

    This is exactly what it is.

  19. It seems as though men understand women but women don’t understand men kind of like conservatives understand liberals but liberals don’t understand conservatives.

  20. Stephenie Rowling

    “As the brilliant Stephenie Rowling said, the male definition of romance has a lot fewer flowers and a lot more boners.”

    Thank you for the compliment but that was brilliant Aldonza insight, give Caesar what belongs to Caesar.;)

    I like this article this explain the rare phenomenon of the sexual selective male that I had only seen three times on my life. I was wondering how that worked given what I knew. But indeed some men get totally turned off by certain type of women to the point of not wanting not even sex with them…yeah I know I was shocked too. :)

  21. Stephenie Rowling

    In my defense I don’t understand cheating on either gender. Is a concept I don’t accept, don’t find romantic and justifiably and really I just can’t get at all, my brain doesn’t wrap about it. I mean maybe on 10th century where people couldn’t get a divorce, but nowadays, there is a lot of options from open marriages to no fault divorce so really if you are a woman tempted by a superior man or a man tempted by a different woman to a point that cheating seems acceptable why no just split and let the other person find someone that at the very least can feel attracted to other people but never try to pursue that attraction or at least allow him to choose whether to improve the marriage so the temptation can be overcome, to walk away or to accept it, I mean is not unheard of, some people are okay with their partners having sex with someone else or/and adopt an open lifestyle. IMO is frankly selfish fulfilling one’s desire with the minimum risk, cake eating at his worst.
    Is a matter of keeping one’s word in spite of the desire and not hurting a man or woman you claim to “love”, YMMV.

  22. Thag Jones,

    “I think the hypergamy thing is a bit over stated though. Speaking from my experience, if I really love someone, I am not looking to “trade up”, whatever that might mean (more money, more tingles). It can really get to a point where pretty well everyone else is “greyed out” as far as any real possibility goes. I can still see “that guy is good looking”, but my interest in him as a potential partner is just not really there if I’m already happy with what I’ve got, warts and all. Are most women not really like that? Most I’ve known seem to be.”

    Brendan covered this well, but generally speaking women don’t look for another man as long as the first one is blowing their minds out with dopamine. In enymatic chemistry it’s called “competitive inhibition” – the enzyme binds to one molecule and thus can’t bind to another. One guy is in your “relationship” bin and he has to be moved out for another to have an opportunity. When a woman cues up “ILYBINILWY” she’s switching what’s in the bin.

    “Not so for men. We may be very happy with our current mate, but still find other women as attractive as we did before we met her. The two things are not related in us at all – two independent things.”

    The key here in Brendan’s explanation is that while a man might find other women attractive, he’s usually not going to expend effort to court them if he’s happy at home. (The opportunity falling in his lap is another story.) We’re guys – our bodies want us to F other women. It doesn’t mean we _intend_ to F other women. But we don’t “only have eyes for you.” It’s just not the way we work.

    Brendan,

    “I think this is often reflected in what women sometimes blurt upon learning of a man’s affair: “he cheated on his wife with *that* woman? That doesn’t make any sense” (typically said when the other woman is not as beautiful as the wife).”

    There are strategic reasons for a coupled man to cheat with a lower-SMV woman. By hypergamy it’s easier to keep her happy (and thus quiet), and it gives him plausible deniability as people won’t suspect he’s banging the homely housekeeper who is two or more points below his hot wife. But enough about Arnold.

    I tell you though, hell hath no fury like a woman dumped only to see her ex date a woman she thinks is less hot. I think part of the pain comes from the realization that maybe she IS as hot as the new woman, and is thus not as hot as she thought.

    Thag,

    “I wonder why you guys bother with us sometimes!”

    A small group of men are starting to answer this question in the negative, and a lot of women are not happy about it.

    “It seems as though men understand women but women don’t understand men kind of like conservatives understand liberals but liberals don’t understand conservatives.”

    I’m not sure I’d go this far. Lots of men still don’t understand women. Not that the culture helps. That’s part of what I’m trying to solve by blogging ;)

  23. Stephenie,

    “In my defense I don’t understand cheating on either gender.”

    On a biological level, infidelity is part of our matrix of mating strategies for both men (make more progeny) and women (secure genes from men who won’t provide while using provider’s resources).

    Attraction is not a choice – but character is (as is avoiding situations where our attractions might get trigger-happy).

    “but nowadays, there is a lot of options from open marriages to no fault divorce so really if you are a woman tempted by a superior man or a man tempted by a different woman to a point that cheating seems acceptable why no just split”

    This is my response to young-adult infidelity I hear about – if you want to sleep with someone else, just break up. Unfortunately, for many who cheat, the illicit aspect of the sex seems itself to be a motivating/arousing factor so breaking up to sleep with a new partner is too “boring.”

  24. SayWhaat,

    “More on this, please. How do we know whether or not our exes are genuinely interested in getting back with us, or just want a P&D?

    A couple things to think about: have you fixed any issues that hurt the relationship? If not, ask yourself why he thinks you’re worth another crack at it. The answer may be he just misses you and misses the sex without really wanting to get back into the thick of an LTR with you.

    Also, ask if HE has fixed any of his flaws that hurt the relationship. If he has, that’s a HUGE sign of investment and seriousness on his part. Again, if he hasn’t addressed faults of the ex-relationship, what faith do you or he have it will work out a second time around?

    It can happen. One of my closest friends married a woman he broke up with in college, they were apart for three years, reconnected and it just worked out. They have a cute kid now, life’s great for them.

    “And what kind of confusing behavior would accompany a move to the relationship ladder?”

    This differs depending on whether there is an extant sexual relationship (hooking up/FWB) or not. If so, the man will start doing more “beta” stuff: dinners, cuddling, smooching on the nose, massages, movies, going to family events, spending non-sexual time with you, staying up late to help you study, etc. (On that note, a lot of FWBs Susan gets comments about are really LTRs in all but name.)

    If there is no sexual relationship, you’ll probably see classic awkward beta pedestalization moves: his confident personality will evaporate, he’ll subtly cling to your attention and approval, he may invite you to a formalized “date.” Sad isn’t it. If you get even a whiff of this, and you are interested in dating him, call like in poker and lay the cards out or you’ll be subjected to a betariffic meltdown that will dry out your tingle like that don’t-eat packet in the beef jerky bags.

  25. Stephenie Rowling

    “This is my response to young-adult infidelity I hear about – if you want to sleep with someone else, just break up. Unfortunately, for many who cheat, the illicit aspect of the sex seems itself to be a motivating/arousing factor so breaking up to sleep with a new partner is too “boring.””

    This is my guess as well, like I mentioned my female friend was very mad at her husband lack of sexual interest and a lot of the cheating has anger on it, in the case of my male friends I think they genuinely enjoy playing cat and mouse with their main partner. Also the ones that sleep with marry woman seen to feel superior by having another man’s woman. Really if I wasn’t naturally monogamic knowing the twisted mechanism behind cheating will be enough to turn me into one out of pure disgust of how low a person can go for a lay, YMMV.

  26. Butterfly Flower

    If there is no sexual relationship, you’ll probably see classic awkward beta pedestalization moves: his confident personality will evaporate, he’ll subtly cling to your attention and approval, he may invite you to a formalized “date.” Sad isn’t it. If you get even a whiff of this, and you are interested in dating him, call like in poker and lay the cards out or you’ll be subjected to a betariffic meltdown that will dry out your tingle like that don’t-eat packet in the beef jerky bags.

    I think this is one of the first times I’ve ever actually agreed with you.

    You see, I sort-of recently started making out with a Beta-ish guy in my social circle [He's really cute so it's fun to kiss him...] Apparently when I kissed him I led him on and now he’s head over heels in love with me.

    He was always so quiet and stuck up…but now he’s mush. I think his mushiness is adorable, but I can see how girls that are attracted to his cold calm “I’m so awesome” facade would be completely repelled by his Betaness.

    I wish I’d known beforehand that he would take the “let’s kiss!” thing so seriously. I would have started slower. I had no idea he even liked me.

    …I wonder how many other guys and girls in my life I’ve accidentally led on?

    *grabs some markers* I should make a ladder chart now.

  27. Brendan

    But we don’t “only have eyes for you.” It’s just not the way we work.

    Which is one of the nastier red pill truths for women to swallow about men.

    Regardless of what a guy tells you, even if he is swearing up and down on the Bible, his mother’s grave, or what have you, the above statement by Badger remains correct and applies to that guy as as well. If he is insistent that it doesn’t, he’s lying. Of course, it’s quite unfair to press a guy on such things, because you’re basically placing him between a rock and a hard place — a classic shit test, really, but a nasty one, in this case, because most guys will just lie their asses off on this one, because they know that the red pill truth on this is very ugly for women to hear (even if they don’t understand that the reason why it is so ugly for women to hear is because women “hear” that as being a relative rejection of themselves, rather than simply being the way men are … all men, by the way, including gay men, it’s just that with gay men it works vis-a-vis other men, etc.).

  28. NMH

    ILYBINILWY = NH3-Ile-Leu-Tyr-???-Ile-Asn-Ile-Leu-Trp-Tyr-COO-

    Ha ha.

  29. Kathy

    “Not so for men. We may be very happy with our current mate, but still find other women as attractive as we did before we met her. The two things are not related in us at all – two independent things.”

    Yes, but do YOU want to sleep with them.?

    I find other men attractive, but I do not want to sleep with them.. Never have since I met my husband.

    Attraction and lusting after someone are two different things, I think..

  30. Brendan

    Yes, but do YOU want to sleep with them.?

    I find other men attractive, but I do not want to sleep with them.. Never have since I met my husband.

    Attraction and lusting after someone are two different things, I think..

    I think that’s a sex difference. I don’t think men “lust after” other women, in the sense you seem to mean, but most wouldn’t mind sleeping with other attractive women. They don’t do it for reasons of commitment, or reasons of morality, or reasons of lack of access, but not lack of desire.

  31. Kathy

    I’m not quite sure what you mean there Brendan.
    Men and women can still find others attractive without wanting to sleep with them.
    I find your answer rather vague.

  32. Brendan

    Sorry if I was vague.

    For men, “attraction” = “would sleep with, all other things being equal”, with such other things being commitment, morals, access and so on.

    For women “attraction” means “nice, but not interested in sleeping with unless dissatisfied with partner”, which can, even in that case, be “trumped” by things like commitment, morals, and so on, just as in the case for men.

  33. Kathy

    And, isn’t “most (men) wouldn’t mind sleeping with other attractive women” a lust thing?

    To me it is quite simple.
    I find a man attractive (I’m not dead yet).. lol.) but I don’t want to have sex with him.
    You said that men still find other women attractive even though they may be happy with their current mate.

    What does this entail then? Does this mean that he harbours thoughts of getting it on with her..? Does this mean that if she gave him the come on he would be succumbe.? What? ;)

  34. Kathy

    Sorry cross posting there Brendan. Thanks for the clarification.

  35. Brendan

    What does this entail then? Does this mean that he harbours thoughts of getting it on with her..? Does this mean that if she gave him the come on he would be succumbe.? What?

    This depends on the “all other things being equal”. Most adult men don’t actively fantasize about having sex with attractive women they meet — it’s something that males learn to supress when they are teens or at the latest young men because it isn’t productive and is quite distracting. If a woman makes a pass at a man who finds her attractive, what will happen will depend on the man’s morals and, in the case of secular people, “ethics”. A secular man who does not have another commitment will in almost all cases sleep with the woman. A secular man who is in a commitment will either act ethically and not sleep with her, or act unethically and sleep with her. A religious man will avoid sleeping with her if he is not married to her, or he will sin and sleep with her. In all cases the decision has to do with ethics and morals, *not* desire.

    I don’t think women relate to this in the same way, really, especially if they are happily mated/partnered. A happily mated/partnered woman would typically not feel the desire to sleep with another man, even if she finds him attractive, so it doesn’t get to the ethical level, it stops at the desire level. Of course, what happens depends on how happy/unhappy she may be in her current relationship, and there are millions of women who are to some degree unhappy with their current relationship, so … you can see where that goes.

  36. Brendan

    Reposting with corrected formatting. Badger, you can delete the one all in italics, thanks.

    What does this entail then? Does this mean that he harbours thoughts of getting it on with her..? Does this mean that if she gave him the come on he would be succumbe.? What?

    This depends on the “all other things being equal”. Most adult men don’t actively fantasize about having sex with attractive women they meet — it’s something that males learn to supress when they are teens or at the latest young men because it isn’t productive and is quite distracting. If a woman makes a pass at a man who finds her attractive, what will happen will depend on the man’s morals and, in the case of secular people, “ethics”. A secular man who does not have another commitment will in almost all cases sleep with the woman. A secular man who is in a commitment will either act ethically and not sleep with her, or act unethically and sleep with her. A religious man will avoid sleeping with her if he is not married to her, or he will sin and sleep with her. In all cases the decision has to do with ethics and morals, *not* desire.

    I don’t think women relate to this in the same way, really, especially if they are happily mated/partnered. A happily mated/partnered woman would typically not feel the desire to sleep with another man, even if she finds him attractive, so it doesn’t get to the ethical level, it stops at the desire level. Of course, what happens depends on how happy/unhappy she may be in her current relationship, and there are millions of women who are to some degree unhappy with their current relationship, so … you can see where that goes.

  37. “It seems as though men understand women but women don’t understand men kind of like conservatives understand liberals but liberals don’t understand conservatives.”

    I’m not sure I’d go this far. Lots of men still don’t understand women. Not that the culture helps. That’s part of what I’m trying to solve by blogging

    Maybe that was a bit far, lol.

    “I wonder why you guys bother with us sometimes!”

    A small group of men are starting to answer this question in the negative, and a lot of women are not happy about it.

    Doesn’t bother me – how can I blame them when I see how a lot of women behave? If I had sons I don’t know what I’d tell them, but since I have daughters I will do my best not to raise entitled princesses.

    But we don’t “only have eyes for you.” It’s just not the way we work.

    As long as it’s only the eyes that wander… ;)

    Of course, what happens depends on how happy/unhappy she may be in her current relationship, and there are millions of women who are to some degree unhappy with their current relationship, so … you can see where that goes.

    This is where the morals/ethics of the woman in question come in.

  38. I see you already said the same thing as my last point, Brendan. Didn’t see that comment before posting.

  39. Kathy

    It’s interesting though,

    My husband literally blew me away a couple of years ago… We were sitting outside on a balmy Summer’s evening having a few drinks…. I was just looking at him intently. Then I said, “You know, that in all the years we have been married that I have never ever thought of sleeping with another man..(which was true. Finding a man sexy and attractive is one thing..hey I’m not dead yet as I said..) But wanting to sleep with him is quite something else)

    He looked me directly in the eye with those beautiful blue eyes and replied..”And I have never wanted to sleep with any other woman either.”

    He just floored me! Seriously! I never expected him to say such a thing.. I knew it was the truth, too. He has never lied to me. Very straight down the line kind of guy.. In any case there would have been no point in lying . It’s not like he has to do anything much to get me to come across. I have never knocked him back. Not once.

    My heart skipped a beat when he said that to me..And I felt like I was dancing on air for the rest of the night.

    I was under the impression that all men still thought of getting it on with other women from time to time, even if they were married.. Obviously not …NAMALT. ;)

  40. My bf told me last year that sometimes he just wants to screw every last woman he sees. I didn’t get upset over it – it was nice he felt he could be that honest with me, especially since he hasn’t always been honest with me. I mean, he was telling me it like it kind of got to be like torture after a point, not so much giggity giggity.

    At this point, however, he says although he sees attractive women (sometimes he’ll tell me about it – and I know he and his buddies when they’re driving around go “3 o’clock!” etc. to point out specimens worth looking at and I don’t care about that) he doesn’t so much want them like he used to and mostly it just makes him think of me. I didn’t ask for or prompt this, he just said it. He’s gone a bit mushy lately, lol.

    I think I posted this bit of conversation from last summer over at Susan’s:

    Me: I saw you looking at that girl’s [very large] boobs.
    Him: You wouldn’t want me any different.

    He’s right. I do not want to keep his balls in my purse. I see “men” like that a lot in my city with those hard driving kind of women and I cringe.

  41. OffTheCuff

    Kathy, reread Brendan’s comment. He has a highly developed ethical/repression system. But he’s still a functioning man.

    His comment was a reply to yours, and “not wanting to sleep with” can easily be a description of his rational brain and ethical system, not what his body wants to do.

    He’s not magic. If a stripper gave him a lap dance, he would get a boner. His words mean that he avoids that situations, but it’s a rational decision, not an autonomic one.

    A good guy, as Brendan says, can and will restrain those impulses, but they are still there. Has her even come up with a line like that out of the blue?

  42. Bb

    @Brendan says “I think that highlights one of the differences: the likelihood for a woman to find another man attractive for mating (or partnering) is directly related to how happy she is with her current mate/partner. Not so for men. We may be very happy with our current mate, but still find other women as attractive as we did before we met her. The two things are not related in us at all – two independent things.”

    In the “Prime Directive post” Badger says “Men are not women…when a man is satisfied and happy, he rests, he doesn’t get bored and go looking for the next thrill.”

    How do I reconcile these two statements wrt male desire?

    In terms of Brendan’s feedback, What stops a man from acting on desire is only his moral compass. A woman’s attempts to please a man, making sure he’s happy, don’t matter.

    In Badger’s feedback, pleasing a man brings positive results ie security and stability. Actions + moral compass increase the bond.

    Woman also need to know if an investment in a relationship is worthwhile. Which statement is most accurate?

  43. Tim

    Let’s be a little more blunt, so the women understand. Men don’t need to respect a woman as a prerequisite to fucking them. We don’t even need to like them. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t inspect the shape of each woman that I see. It’s automatic. If I walked into a department store into the woman’s section, and suddenly an attractive woman approached me and asked me to fuck her in the change room, if she met the boner test then yes, I would fuck her in the change room. No questions asked. No plot, no context, no drama, no “connection”, no feelings, no tenderness, no relationship. Just a bangin body, end of.

    Every man would agree with this, I think. The situation pivots upon whether or not she meets the boner test.

  44. Tim, every man may agree as far as finding other women attractive, but men with a functioning moral compass would likely not bang her in the changing room. I take it your hypothetical situation assumes there is no possibility of disease or other mitigating circumstances. Even so, some men’s morals would prevent them from acting.

  45. Tim

    Ok, I was assuming we were discussing single men. Looks like I was projecting, because I’m single. But yes, single and disease free.

  46. Yeah, there probably aren’t many single guys who would refuse that. :P

  47. VI

    Considering the state of marriage laws, a man should have higher standards than a woman when it comes to choosing a marriage partner.

    @Kathy
    You can believe him, or you can take the red pill. Either way, he still loves you the same.

    …but that’s just it. Are men incapable of differentiating between good girls and whores?

    Do men look at a good girl and think: “Evil conniving slut!”?

    A man who understands female psychology should assume she’s a conniving slut until she proves otherwise. We are perfectly capable of differentiating between good girls and whores once we interact with and observe them.

  48. whiteboykrispy wrote:

    “His pie chart about female attraction is off in my opinion. I think the author should read a bit more on Game, as us practitioners know money is only one of the many factors that are part of a man’s overall status, and his status is almost entirely what the woman is measuring when she is placing him on the ladder.”

    Indeed. I discovered “ladder theory” prior to Roissy and I found the pie charts more interesting than the ladders, and yes, he got the female pie chart wrong.

  49. dannyfrom504

    the va-jay-jay’s like pizza, even if it’s bad……it’s still pretty good.

    money thread again hermano. wish i could peruse your site at work, but alas it comes up as “adult” on the gov’t proxy server. puro pedo, but what can i do? stay up.

  50. Bb

    “You can believe him, or you can take the red pill. Either way, he still loves you the same.”

    @VI Not that it makes much difference. As Badger pointed out, a man can just as easily love a mistress as much as his wife. Without a moral compass, love doesn’t factor into fidelity.

  51. Brendan

    How do I reconcile these two statements wrt male desire?

    In terms of Brendan’s feedback, What stops a man from acting on desire is only his moral compass. A woman’s attempts to please a man, making sure he’s happy, don’t matter.

    In Badger’s feedback, pleasing a man brings positive results ie security and stability. Actions + moral compass increase the bond.

    Woman also need to know if an investment in a relationship is worthwhile. Which statement is most accurate?

    It’s both/and.

    Here’s how it works. A man without a moral compass is probably going to screw around on you if he has opportunity — regardless of whether you are pleasing to him. Men with high opportunity and low/no moral/ethical compass are bad bets, full stop. A man with a moral/ethical compass will always be tempted, but if he is happy and secure in the relationship that will help him resist the temptation, whereas if he is unhappy, insecure and dissatisfied, this will increase the likelihood that he may succumb to the temptation and violate his own moral/ethical compass.

    So it’s both/and. The way you reduce the risk of a man straying is both by selecting for moral character AND keeping him secure and happy. This is similar to how men should behave with respect to women as well, so it has a nice symmetry to it. The difference, of course, is that unless dissatisfied women with a good moral/ethical compass are *generally* not very tempted to stray, whereas even a man with a good moral/ethical compass and in a happy situation will be tempted to stray at times (regardless of what he tells his wife) but his overall contentedness in the relationship will help him overcome that temptation and more effectively resist it.

  52. Bb

    “The difference, of course, is that unless dissatisfied women with a good moral/ethical compass are *generally* not very tempted to stray, whereas even a man with a good moral/ethical compass and in a happy situation will be tempted to stray at times (regardless of what he tells his wife) but his overall contentedness in the relationship will help him overcome that temptation and more effectively resist it.”

    Thanks Brendan. That makes sense. A chilling red pill, indeed.

    So I guess the corollary to @VI’s “A man who understands female psychology should assume she’s a conniving slut until she proves otherwise” is “a woman who understands male psychology should assume he’ll stray unless he proves otherwise.”

  53. Julie

    What do you all think of this? A married male friend of mine has said that he is only attracted to very beautiful, model-beautiful women. That’s rather atypical for his gender, isn’t it? There have been some rumors that his sexual orientation may not be hetero–as an evangelical Christian, maybe he managed to get married but could only do it with a stunningly beautiful woman?

  54. Brendan

    “a woman who understands male psychology should assume he’ll stray unless he proves otherwise.”

    I’m not suggesting it isn’t in this day and age. You need to select for character, full stop.

  55. Stephenie Rowling

    “You need to select for character, full stop.”

    I think this is another factor why males ladder was read as having no selection process. In the past women did select for character to have relationships and with no hook up culture relationship and sex were one at the same, so in comparison it looked like the man having sex with any women willingly regardless of her character was seeing as less than a woman looking for a better man, that back also meant good character.

    Now, with hook up culture, were women are selecting men that are confident but have no character things look more clearer and the female selecting process doesn’t look as “noble” as it looked on the good old days, YMMV.

  56. Brendan

    What do you all think of this? A married male friend of mine has said that he is only attracted to very beautiful, model-beautiful women. That’s rather atypical for his gender, isn’t it? There have been some rumors that his sexual orientation may not be hetero–as an evangelical Christian, maybe he managed to get married but could only do it with a stunningly beautiful woman?

    He’s fibbing. All men are most attracted to 10s, but it’s also true that all men (straight ones) are attracted to other women, too, even if they, themselves, are in the high attraction/SMV category.

  57. Brendan

    Now, with hook up culture, were women are selecting men that are confident but have no character things look more clearer and the female selecting process doesn’t look as “noble” as it looked on the good old days, YMMV.

    Yes, the proverbial cat is out of the bag.

    But it also appears that quite a few women, perhaps most in NA/Europe/Anglosphere, also do not understand male attractional patterns (especially attraction outside an established relationship) very well.

  58. Bb

    No, I didn’t understand male attractional patterns as a teenager / young adult. Not as explicitly as stated here (vis a vis ladder theory) which is: every male evaluates a woman, sees if she passes his boner test, and if she does, she’s an option for fucking. And then: if he doesn’t want to fuck her, then he doesn’t want / need her as a friend.

    It explains a lot, looking back. I guess I can safely assume that every guy that engaged in a relationship with me that took any time, would have been amenable to fucking me.

    I guess that’s what my dad meant when he would say, rather darkly, “Boys just want one thing.”

  59. I guess that’s what my dad meant when he would say, rather darkly, “Boys just want one thing.”

    More advice than I ever got growing up! Think yourself lucky!

  60. “I guess that’s what my dad meant when he would say, rather darkly, “Boys just want one thing.””

    ..but they don’t, that’s why women need to understand the ladders. If you’re on Ladder 2, he wants to F you. If you’re on Ladder 1, he wants to F you, buy you a house and make you the mother of his children.

    I think the challenge for women isn’t understanding that all men want sex, it’s understanding how to figure out which ones want more than sex. Women in the hookup culture test this by having sex and seeing what happens, a very poor strategy given females’ propensity to bond with sexual partners.

    As to Ladder 3, we don’t always just ignore them. Men and women can be friends if they are both on each other’s “don’t” ladders, and their personal styles fit with opposite-sex friends.

  61. Bb

    @Thag

    Ha! It wasn’t of much value, lol.

    I’m sitting here trying to figure out what I would have done differently had I known all this. I’m thinking I would have worried less about comparing my physical qualities to other girls…after all, I only had to pass a boner test, and my physical qualities in comparison to other girls did not matter as guys could like us all equally (slices of pizza). That’s actually a little freeing.

    I also would have been *way* more wary of guys in general—especially those who were trying to hide their true motives via the friend zone…I’ve got to think of more things.

  62. Bb

    @Badger oh, sorry, I was referring to the original 1- ladder theory from your link. Not to your 3 ladder system. I’ve got to think about that a bit more.

  63. “after all, I only had to pass a boner test”

    This is a key insight.

    When a man looks for a relationship, he needs a woman attractive enough to have sex with, and then he moves on to the compatibility and long-term planning traits he needs to optimize on. Therefore, a woman makes herself a better marital candidate not by being hotter but by having better traits for long-term investment – demeanor, attitude, positive contribution to his life, support of his aims, etc.

    Really the opposite of what most men need to do, which is make themselves more attractive instead of buffing up their beta traits (most guys I know have adequate beta traits).

    Thanks for the inspiration, I will be covering this and other wrinkles in a follow-up.

  64. Brendan

    And then: if he doesn’t want to fuck her, then he doesn’t want / need her as a friend.

    Not quite that. Men can have purely platonic relationships with women to whom they are not attracted, but they tend to treat the woman as they would a guy friend. A “solicitous” guy friend, who treats you differently than he treats his guy friends, wants you.

  65. Bb

    “..but they don’t, that’s why women need to understand the ladders. If you’re on Ladder 2, he wants to F you. If you’re on Ladder 1, he wants to F you, buy you a house and make you the mother of his children.”

    Okay, on your 3 ladders, it’s *still* binary. F or no F. L1 just comes with security. My challenge, as a young lady, was that I didn’t understand the pivot always concerned the F

    “I think the challenge for women isn’t understanding that all men want sex, it’s understanding how to figure out which ones want more than sex. Women in the hookup culture test this by having sex and seeing what happens, a very poor strategy given females’ propensity to bond with sexual partners.”

    Hookup is indeed a poor strategy. Seems pretty obvious to me.

    “As to Ladder 3, we don’t always just ignore them. Men and women can be friends if they are both on each other’s “don’t” ladders, and their personal styles fit with opposite-sex friends.”

    This is possible, but not probable. I don’t see a typical guy finding it worthwhile to invest time in a relationship that’s platonic, especially if it takes time away from L1 and L2.

  66. Tim

    Okay, on your 3 ladders, it’s *still* binary.

    As opposed to what, hybridity and fluidity?

  67. Kathy

    “whereas even a man with a good moral/ethical compass and in a happy situation will be tempted to stray at times (regardless of what he tells his wife) ”
    Love that veiled reference to my comment about my husband saying he had no thoughts of sleeping with any other woman since we have been married.

    I was floored as I said at the time. I just thought that yeah, all men are like that.. I never expected him to say what he did, there was no need.

    He is indeed no liar.. There was no need for him to lie.. To say anything really. In fact I didn’t expect him to say anything… It was just an expression of love on my part.. I already knew that he loved me.. I am not a high maintenance woman like some…Don’t care for jewellery, expensive gifts.etc.
    To be blunt. Good sex Good company(his) Good food and Good wine, that about does it for me..
    I don’t need him to tell me he loves me every day. He shows it in what he does. So, when he made that comment, I knew it was the truth. He is just not a bullshitter. He never ever says things lightly, or on a whim, even over a glass of wine. He is methodical and a deep thinker. (Unlike me.. ha!)

    He didn’t say it to get sex, he was already getting that and would have gotten it that night again anyway.

    Which brings me to another point(and I only mention it to explain his comment)
    We have frequent sex, mostly daily, sometimes twice daily. On the weekends when kids are away, we’ll stay in bed all afternoon.

    The frequent sex coupled with the love and deep bond that we share, I believe has made the difference.. We are just so in sync…

    Of course we sometimes have disagreements, but they are soon over.. He is an intense man who is heavily involved in his work.. He is a man on a mission with a plan.. Lol. He is a doer not a dreamer… Besides in his work he comes into contact with mainly men. He is just so intent on getting the job done well, and overcoming the problems and hurdles that he often encounters daily, and improving on his designs (he designs and builds patios and decks)

  68. Pingback: Linkage is Good for You: Unfathomable Pain Edition

  69. Looking Glass

    Wanted to respond to a few things. Brendan has definitely done a lot of good work here, there’s a HUGE amount of information to be gleaned and I think Badger might have just cemented himself a career as a dating Guru with this comment: http://badgerhut.wordpress.com/2011/06/03/ladder-theory-for-men/#comment-1529 The rest of the back & forth has been excellent. Badger really needs to point this thread out to a few more people, as the comments encapsulate nearly everything we’re seeing in the relationship environment right now & how to deal with it. And great questions from Kathy. Amazing what honest Male/Female discussion of these issues can lead to!

    I actually want to defend Kathy’s husband a little, I don’t believe he was lying, but there’s a very subtle distinction that I think is being lost. Some of it in over generalization of some aspects to attractions & lust.

    First, if you haven’t seen http://www.marriedmansexlife.com/ Kathy (not sure if I’ve seen you comment there or not), Athol would say you married a guy with wonderful Alpha & Beta traits. And you F his brains out. That’s actually part of the “pair-bonding” trick with guys. Testosterone is pretty much the “I want to F something” hormone. The more sex you have with a “committed” woman, the lower your Testosterone actually stays. However, it spikes during sexual arousal. So if a man is getting *a lot* of sex from his wife, his desire to screw another woman is way, way, way down, then when he gets into bed with you, his desire to have sex skyrockets. This creates a scenario where his highest Testosterone times are spent on you. It’s the bio-chemistry explanation for why what you’re doing works, along with likely high moral character for both of you. (By your own account, you chose really, really well. Good job!)

    Now the distinction about attraction & wanting to F a woman is subtle and could be argued it’s more of a continuum rather than a hard break. When you see people, you make snap, visual judgments about them. Everyone does this instinctively, as it’s better known as “survival instincts”. When a man sees a woman, he makes a quick visual judgment about how she looks. This is where the relationship state & moral character start kicking in. The judgments are generally, at first glance, extremely basic. You notice, firstly, the features that fit your tastes. If he’s a Boobs guy, he’ll notice those first, generally. That type of thing.

    Then we run into the character/relationship state issue. If the man is “kept”, he’ll just stop there. Like viewing visual art, we appreciate the good things, then move on, as we generally have better things to do. If you have enough time to sit and stare and fantasize about a woman, you’re generally being lazy and not terribly Alpha, actually. This is how Kathy’s husband can say, without lying, that he hasn’t thought about having sex with another woman. He hasn’t taken that next step from observing to desiring to actually thinking about it. Now, if he’d said he had never “checked out” another woman, then he’s bald-faced lying. :) Checking a woman out *is completely & utterly instinctive* that no amount of self-control can contain. So, the difference is a tad subtle and is an escalation issue. Some men, due to circumstances, personality & moral character, can avoid escalating past the initial phases, but a lot of them can’t. The problem becomes if he does this often, then there’s issues that need to be addressed (if the guy is in a LTR).

    I do want to capstone this idea with a small critique of the ladders: there’s not necessarily a 4th ladder, but there is a “trump” list. This might be better known as the “Facebook F’d up my Marriage” point. While many guys would screw any woman on the top 20 of those “hottest women in the world” lists, a properly “kept” man, if he’s honest & of solid moral character, will admit he’d think about it then turn it down. This wholly comes down to the fact that guys do actually value loyalty and their relationship. I wouldn’t necessarily suggest anyone attempt this test, as your results WILL VARY! But the big problem is those old relationships. Especially during the middle school to college days, most guys do develop these really weird crushes. The more Beta they are, the more they do this. These are completely one-sided, but they do sit in memory. For guys, these are the women that, if they pushed hard on the guy, would screw up most of their life to have sex with them. There wouldn’t be *any* logical reason they would do it, but it’s definitely real. Not terribly long ago, after reading some of Athol’s stuff, I realized I have one of those Kryptonite women in my own past. She’s a nice girl and her husband is a great guy, but there’s a chunk of me that would cuckold him in a heart-beat. Was quite ashamed of myself when I realized this, as the thought is really repugnant to me (I’m really big on honesty & being loyal to your word, so cheating is good topic to make me really angry), but it was also one of those realizations that I do have a biological agenda and it can make me do really, really stupid things, if given the chance.

    This is basically the “old high school flame” issue, but Facebook makes this very easy to happen now. It’s something that should be brought up when entering a LTR. There is always the possibility someone could swoop in and destroy a relationship, yet no one actually realizes there is an Achilles’ heel sitting there, vulnerable.

    Had one point on the “ML3″/wouldn’t screw for anything list. Realize, there are gradients on that list as well. You can put women there that normally would be on ML2. These are generally relatives that married in. Like my sister-in-law is nice enough, but even bringing up the thought of sex with her nearly just made me puke. That’s a BIG part of way guys manage that list. When the thought of sexual relations with that woman instantly turns to the gag reflex, they are well established on ML3. We can also call this the “Kathy Bates rule” for attraction, where the test is: Sex with Kathy Bates OR painful death, and you generally would choose Death in this scenario. (Kathy is a fine actress, but she’s the least-pretty celebrity female I can think of that generally people would know)

    One last thought, since it responds to something you hear a lot. The “guys only want sex” line isn’t true. It should read “guys should have more than just sex on their mind to get with you, if they don’t, RUN”. Which is the truth. I’d say sex is a “plurality” of reasons for having a relationship, but it’s not as dominant or why guys go through the trouble of find a woman for ML1 as people make it out to be. Especially in this day and age. You’re not in the business of having an LTR if it’s mostly about sex, that’s just a necessary condition of the LTR.

  70. VI

    I suspect Kathy is a troll. If not, my allah is her hamster on overdrive.

  71. Kathy

    Lol VI, I ‘m a troll? Why, because I have a good relationship with my husband?
    I have been commenting on various blogs for some years now.. People have seen me around..

  72. Dammit, I am so mad at myself for missing this post when it first went up. I seriously need to start managing my time better.

    This is pure gold, excellent work Badger. I find that posts explaining the differences between the sexes, who thinks what, and why – are the most popular. Men and women still know so little about one another.

  73. udolipixie

    I thought everyone had downgraders where a guy/girl does something and you downgrade them for others uses- monetary, transportation, etc.

  74. Brendan

    Kathy is not a troll — she has a great marriage, that’s all.

  75. VI

    Lol VI, I ‘m a troll? Why, because I have a good relationship with my husband?

    From what you’ve written, I believe you have a great relationship with your husband. I’d also be willing to bet a large sum of money that your husband has indeed thought about sex with another woman during the time you’ve been married.

  76. Bb

    If the man is “kept”, he’ll just stop there. Like viewing visual art, we appreciate the good things, then move on, as we generally have better things to do. If you have enough time to sit and stare and fantasize about a woman, you’re generally being lazy and not terribly Alpha, actually. This is how Kathy’s husband can say, without lying, that he hasn’t thought about having sex with another woman. He hasn’t taken that next step from observing to desiring to actually thinking about it. Now, if he’d said he had never “checked out” another woman, then he’s bald-faced lying. Checking a woman out *is completely & utterly instinctive* that no amount of self-control can contain. So, the difference is a tad subtle and is an escalation issue. Some men, due to circumstances, personality & moral character, can avoid escalating past the initial phases, but a lot of them can’t.

    @Looking Glass, This sounds right on the money to me. Thanks for bringing back the complexity. Kathy has selected well for character.

  77. Kathy/Bb/whoever’s husband had no interest in other women:

    Despite Brendan speaking for the general tendencies of men, this is not unheard of. When I’ve been in a deep oneitis, I’ve really not looked at other women for the most part. I wouldn’t take him as a liar.

    The key is to get with a woman who also has oneitis for you, so you have what Athol calls mutual oneitis, and life’s great.

  78. But the big problem is those old relationships. Especially during the middle school to college days, most guys do develop these really weird crushes. The more Beta they are, the more they do this. These are completely one-sided, but they do sit in memory.

    This is basically the “old high school flame” issue, but Facebook makes this very easy to happen now.

    What if those people are both single? Kryptonite girl and crushing beta I mean? I think I might be that Kryptonite girl for current bf (who found me on FB – we met in high school). We seem to have a bad case of mutual oneitis, either way. It’s a little unnerving for a relationship-phobe with a crushing fear of intimacy!

    And I can vouch for the fact that Kathy is not a troll. Looking Glass’s subtle distinction rings true to me.

  79. Looking Glass

    @ Thag:

    I honestly don’t know. I really don’t. I guess it depends on how long you’ve been together. If that Kryptonite aspect is still there after, say, a year, then just use it as a basis for good Alpha/Beta mix from both of you and keep going on together. My guess is the Kryptonite aspect can work to enhance the bonding & moral character of the one that has it. It’s not sufficient to hold a relationship together, but it’d really help?

    That’s about the only real thoughts I can give on that one, as I’ve never been in the position to actually see what’d happen, lol.

  80. Jasmine

    Cool, Badger, I like this. Although I’m sure every man has a different idea of what bumps a woman. So my question is.. For you and every other male reading this– What bumps a girl from Ml2 to Ml1?
    Just curious!

  81. Looking Glass

    Trust bumps a girl from ML2 to ML1. There’s a lot of different trust building ways, but it’s pretty much the trust, especially at this point. You have to be able to trust her with: your kids, your money, your property and your time. You want to know you can put the effort into it. Guys do like putting an effort in, so you want to make sure that effort is worth it.

  82. Kathy

    ” If the man is “kept”, he’ll just stop there. Like viewing visual art, we appreciate the good things, then move on, as we generally have better things to do. If you have enough time to sit and stare and fantasize about a woman, you’re generally being lazy and not terribly Alpha, actually. This is how Kathy’s husband can say, without lying, that he hasn’t thought about having sex with another woman. He hasn’t taken that next step from observing to desiring to actually thinking about it. Now, if he’d said he had never “checked out” another woman, then he’s bald-faced lying. ”

    Wow, Looking Glass. You have summed it up my situation very well .

    Sorry for not replying earlier to your comment.., but, kids were away for the weekend and I had other fish to fry. :D

  83. Looking Glass

    Well, you had something to use the “F” on, but “fry” is not what I suspect that you were doing. :)

    That wasn’t really an original insight, I just thought about what I do when I see a woman and just listed it out. The “kept” part is well understood else where, I just applied it to the thought process. Thinking about sex actually takes work, lol, as strange as it sounds.

  84. Mike C

    Which is one of the nastier red pill truths for women to swallow about men.

    Regardless of what a guy tells you, even if he is swearing up and down on the Bible, his mother’s grave, or what have you, the above statement by Badger remains correct and applies to that guy as as well. If he is insistent that it doesn’t, he’s lying. Of course, it’s quite unfair to press a guy on such things, because you’re basically placing him between a rock and a hard place — a classic shit test, really, but a nasty one, in this case, because most guys will just lie their asses off on this one, because they know that the red pill truth on this is very ugly for women to hear
    .
    Yup. Reminds me of an exchange with Susan at HUS where I said we guys basically eye-fuck women we see we think are hot. IIRC, she was genuinely surprised, maybe even shocked.
    .
    It is a shit test if your GF or wife presses you on it, and frankly I think the right move is to be straight up honest. I’ve had this situation with my GF, and I’ve told her “yeah, I think she is hot, but I LOVE YOU”.

  85. Mike C

    To me it is quite simple.
    I find a man attractive (I’m not dead yet).. lol.) but I don’t want to have sex with him.
    You said that men still find other women attractive even though they may be happy with their current mate.

    What does this entail then? Does this mean that he harbours thoughts of getting it on with her..? Does this mean that if she gave him the come on he would be succumbe.? What? ;)

    Kathy, let me be just as simple, yes, if a guy finds a woman “attractive” it means he wants to have sex with her as in feels a desire/instinct to do so.
    .
    If what you say is true, and I actually do believe you that you can find a man attractive yet not want to have sex with him there is a very interesting implication of that, which is that maintaining sexual fidelity/loyalty for a man is actually a much greater challenge and achievement because we are actively having to fight off/refrain a powerful drive if the opportunity is there whereas you (women) don’t even have much of desire to have to fight off.

  86. OffTheCuff

    What does this entail then? Does this mean that he harbours thoughts of getting it on with her?

    Maybe, maybe not, But probably maybe.

    Does this mean that if she gave him the come on he would be succumbe.? What?

    It means if she gave him the come on, he would get a boner. Boners don’t lie.That’s the body saying YES.

    Whether he actually would succumb to a come-on is a function of his ethical/moral system and self-control. Fortunately, this isn’t an issue for most men, since we usually are not directly pursued. Faithful guys intentionally keep themselves situations where it’s likely to arise.

  87. OffTheCuff

    And I just noticed that was a really good, unintentional pun. Damn, it’s in my blood.

  88. “And I just noticed that was a really good, unintentional pun. Damn, it’s in my blood.”

    You, sir, have talent.

  89. Mike C

    How do I reconcile these two statements wrt male desire?

    In terms of Brendan’s feedback, What stops a man from acting on desire is only his moral compass. A woman’s attempts to please a man, making sure he’s happy, don’t matter.

    In Badger’s feedback, pleasing a man brings positive results ie security and stability. Actions + moral compass increase the bond.

    Woman also need to know if an investment in a relationship is worthwhile. Which statement is most accurate?
    .
    I think you are conflating two different things and looking for a “reconciliation” where none is needed. A guy who is happy in his relationship isn’t going to be looking for another relationship. In terms of outside sexual activity, yes, the guy has to have some moral/ethical compass to restrain himself. Plus, if he is with a really good woman who pleases him and keeps him happy, he’ll have yet another voice that pops up that says “I better not fuck that up” just to satisfy a base urge.
    .
    Beyond that, unlike being a woman, opportunities for lots of outside sex don’t really exist. You have to really go looking, and that circles back to the happy, content guy not going out looking.

  90. Mike C

    @Kathy
    You can believe him, or you can take the red pill. Either way, he still loves you the same.

    .
    Yes, I made the point over at HUS that I could see a girl so hot I want to f*** the daylights out of here (but would not) yet at the same time love my girlfriend so much I’d take a bullet for her. There is no contradiction, and it would behoove women to not confuse exclusive sexual desire (even falsely proclaimed one) with deep love and loyalty. Just my opinion, but I don’t see the benefit in pretty lies, but everyone is free to believe whatever they want.

  91. Mike C

    Here’s how it works. A man without a moral compass is probably going to screw around on you if he has opportunity — regardless of whether you are pleasing to him. Men with high opportunity and low/no moral/ethical compass are bad bets, full stop. A man with a moral/ethical compass will always be tempted, but if he is happy and secure in the relationship that will help him resist the temptation, whereas if he is unhappy, insecure and dissatisfied, this will increase the likelihood that he may succumb to the temptation and violate his own moral/ethical compass.

    So it’s both/and. The way you reduce the risk of a man straying is both by selecting for moral character AND keeping him secure and happy.

    Yes to all of it. This is exactly what I was trying to say, but couldn’t articulate 1/10 as well. The part about being happy and secure helping to resist temptation while unhappiness and dissatisfaction increasing the possibility of succumbing to temptation cannot be emphasized enough because it is SO TRUE.

  92. Brendan

    maintaining sexual fidelity/loyalty for a man is actually a much greater challenge and achievement because we are actively having to fight off/refrain a powerful drive if the opportunity is there whereas you (women) don’t even have much of desire to have to fight off.

    Exactly. I had the same thought when we were having this discussion a few days ago, but the conversation seemed to have run its course.

    It’s *harder* for men because the nature of male attraction is different and less contextual. That’s not an excuse for male cheating, but it is a criticism of some of the assumptions that go on around male cheating, and how underappreciated that *lack* of cheating is for a man who has opportunities falling in his lap (not most men, but for some men, sure). Yet generally male cheating is much more heavily critiqued than female cheating, precisely because female cheating is based on a broader dissatisfaction (and so it is easier to blame the husband for the cheating, at least in a table-setting way). It’s unfair, really. The sexes are just different. I wish our culture would get past this tired meme to the effect that the sexes are more or less the same — it’s quite harmful for the relationships of many.

  93. All the misunderstanding and hurt that could be avoided if only we were told early on that there are some fundamental differences between men and women…. I hate how we’ve kind of become enemies because of the lies. It sucks!

  94. Looking Glass

    I do want to carve out a little bit of a distinction from what MikeC is saying. If a man is “kept” and has a bit less Testosterone (actually, it’s more likely the substrates to T than the natural level), which is lowered inside a marriage (i.e. regular sex), then he won’t proceed to Eye-F level. Also, some of us just have less interest in women, really. So there’s definitely a pre-selection aspect to this. Some guys are more likely, by physical nature, to cheat; others are more likely, by moral character, to cheat. There’s overlap but they aren’t necessarily one in the same. But character *can* trump physical nature, you just don’t want to strain it to the end and need to make sure the options are as limited as possible.

    Which is a backdoor way of saying Kathy chose really well. :)

  95. Looking Glass

    @ Thag Jones:

    Yeah, it really does suck. Lots of people have gone through Divorce and broken families because of the lies.

  96. Höllenhund

    “All the misunderstanding and hurt that could be avoided if only we were told early on that there are some fundamental differences between men and women…. I hate how we’ve kind of become enemies because of the lies.”

    This is unavoidable, because gender relations don’t exist in a vacuum. The state will always try to regulate them, and such regulations either favor women or men. The state and the church or any organized religion will manipulate gender relations in order to further its own goals, therefore they will always be willing to spread lies about the opposite genders because it’s in their interests.

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  100. Scipio Africanus

    The whole “men have lower standards thing” strikes me as gynonormativity whenever I hear it from women. It says “this is bad because this is not how women think. The way women think is best precisely because it’s the way women think.”

  101. “The whole “men have lower standards thing” strikes me as gynonormativity whenever I hear it from women. It says “this is bad because this is not how women think. The way women think is best precisely because it’s the way women think.””

    This is a brilliant distillation of the semantic wordcraft at play.

    So how did it feel to beat Hannibal?

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  114. Ladder Topology is already complete. Men have one ladder because “looks” is so much more important in attraction than character for men and they don’t have a friends ladder (need for female companionship to fulfill the niceties that a bad person doesn’t fill). You are missing a big point of Ladder Theory. Women have two ladders, one for the psychopaths they screw and one for the nice guys they use to get relationship benefits. F3 is actually abyss. F2 is really the low area on the F1 ladder. A girl can be the nicest girl in the world but if she doesn’t have the F factor, she is fucked. An F2 girl can’t get bumped (really moved up higher on the man’s one ladder) when competition for women has increased leaving quality women in short supply.

    Please don’t try to outdo or amend Ladder Theory. It is genius as-is. It is not intended for the fringes such as men with low testosterone, men who have been beaten down into massive settling, and men whose experience is from dating other men (tom boy women).

    The key of ladder theory is that women have two ladders and if you want to be on the good ladder you need status (money, looks, confidence, psychopathy, etc). I’m sure rich and novel guys who are too nice get dumped all the time.

    Men are attracted to what they can get. Men can’t get much these days. What we want is a beautiful, sweet, kind and loyal woman who will do what we say and let us screw other similar women. Yeah, not going to happen. This is explained by original Ladder Theory topology.

    [I cannot figure out what you are trying to say.]

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