Hi, Athol–I recently discovered your Married Man blog and have really been enjoying it. Even though I am single, I am always curious about “life on the other side” and things I can learn to keep my marriage strong when/if that day comes. It’s a nice complement to the PUA/Game blogs that are focused more on pure pick-up for flings rather than LTR. Anything that helps men and women understand more about each other’s(as well as their own) natures is a good thing.I recently read an article at Focus on the Family’s singles website, Boundless, where one of their regular bloggers answered a reader question. (Since you are a former evangelical Christian, I’m assuming you are familiar with FOTF and the general mindset of the evangelical community.) The reader stated that he had been dating an overweight woman who in all other ways was an exceptional person whom he got along with very well and really cared about. They recently broke up, however, when he couldn’t find a way to get over her weight. The blogger who answered the letter, Candice Watters, essentially took the reader to task for his desire for a thinner girlfriend/wife and lamented that she feared too many men were giving up good wives just because they didn’t have ideal bodies. While I do think that some men can be overly picky about looks (usually when they desire a woman whose Sex Value exceeds their own and refuse to settle for less), I’ve seen over and over in men’s blogs that a wife’s looks are a huge component of a man’s love and attraction; essentially, looks have a huge domino effect on the rest of the relationship. I would love to read your take on this young man’s situation and how he could have done things better/differently, and how a man might encourage a woman to improve her looks without insulting her.For reference, here is the article: http://www.boundless.org/2005/answers/a0002268.cfmThanks, and keep up the good work.-AH
Thanks for the kind words much appreciated, this is a great question.
Yes I am a former evangelical Christian so very much understand the perspective there. My move to atheism is kind of off the topic of this blog (if Hambydammit ever wants a quest post I’ll do it there) but I have done full time Christian work and was generally heading towards pastoral ministry before changing course. The fact that what I am doing on this blog is ironically pastoral in feel (albeit secular in tone) is not lost on me.
So here’s the thing… a woman’s physical appearance as what is regarded as beautiful, is extremely important in mate selection. It’s absolutely NOT superficial for men to focus on the physical health and body shape of the woman, in fact of all the factors making up a woman’s sex rank it is the one that is weighted the heaviest.
There is a huge body of evidence that suggests feminine physical beauty is a well agreed upon thing across cultures world wide. It all comes down to quite measurable things like waist to hip ratio, skin tone, health / length of hair, symmetry, good immune system, good teeth and so on. All these things are positive indicators of the ability of the woman to have a good pregnancy and give birth to a healthy baby and then manage to stay alive to raise it to adulthood. As I’ve said before, whatever is sexy is whatever is good for making and raising babies.
So when a male looks at a female his brain literally looks her over and sums up her baby making ability and then decides whether or not to inform the rest of his body that a healthy sexy female is in proximity to him. Men have literally no control over sexual attraction, it’s simply a response to stimuli. There’s no rational thought over looking at cleavage like “oh wow, I’m looking at cleavage, I should probably like that and get aroused”. You simply see the cleavage and drool. The rational part of your brain says stuff like “OMG I’m going to get called into Human Resources again if I don’t stop drooling at her tits”.
For a good Christian man… it’s supposedly a one woman lifetime commitment. So taking that at face value as something he saw as important and committed to, his choice of a wife is extremely serious. This is going to be the only woman he puts his sperm into. He absolutely cannot afford second best.
My hunch is that for the entire time of the relationship he very much enjoyed her personality and she brought a great deal of companionship to his life. He probably spent a huge amount of time trying to rationally convince himself that she was “good wife” material. He probably begged God in prayer to grant him proper sexual desire for her in an attempt of a spiritual solution. But his Body Agenda disagreed with his rational thought / spiritual hopes and simply declared her an “unfit female”. (If only not sexy enough for him to settle for.)
In terms of Christian men and women and Sex Rank, there’s a man shortage in the pews. It’s about a 2 guys to 3 gals ratio, and when you take away the minority of Christian gay men and the unfuckables it can seem more like a 1 to 2 ratio. (Don’t get me wrong, some of my favorite people are unfuckables, you just wouldn’t want to… well you know.) So any time you get to swim on the better end of a 1 to 2 ratio, your Sex Rank is going to go up and if you’re on the wrong end of it… you’re going to lose a little.
Same thing happens in Alaska for women. If you’re a chick with all your teeth in Alaska you are the babe that everyone wants to meet. Alaskan boyfriends don’t get dumped, they just lose their turn.
So returning to the Christian guy in question… there’s no real Sex Rank issue forcing the issue on him. It’s like he’s a 8-9 and she’s a 5-6. (Outside of the church sphere they both might be a 7) All the pressure for him to be in a relationship with her is probably coming from his religious point of view that “she’s a really great Christian girl, smart, fun, companionable and has a wonderful spiritual connection to God and would be a great ministry partner”. But then again, if you’re a half decent unmarried male minister you pretty much have the pick of the litter of the single girls from your first church. It doesn’t get much sexier than being a religious leader for Alpha Male inducing gina tingle.
So what could have he done differently? My feeling is not a whole lot. As horrible as it sounds on an emotional level, he did the right thing by breaking it off with her. No doubt he’ll run into another good Christian woman that has all the same sort of personality, but comes in a better baby making body and they’ll have a bunch of happy healthy well adjusted little ankle biters together.
My experiences of men suggesting, or encouraging women to lose weight is that you quickly become the brunt of the most outrageous anger and resentment. Not to mention the vicious guilt tripping and shaming behavior. Believe me I’ve tried this sort of thing before and it has always gone very badly. Even with women who have bluntly stated that the primary problem in their marriage stemmed from the husbands lack of sexual interest over a 100 gained pounds by the wife, I’ve been thrown to the lions for suggesting that weight loss might be a practical solution to the issue. I just can’t be bothered dealing with such a self-evident problem with women who insist men should experience involuntary sexual interest completely contrary to their most obvious natures. I can’t imagine how badly a seminary student is going to be hammered with social scorn for suggesting a lack of attraction to a good Christian girlfriend because she is heavy. Oy.
If anything… and not that my wife is fat by any stretch of the imagination, when I work out more, she tends to work out more. That’s about as far as it goes in terms of practical tactics. Like I say, the problem is pretty self-evident. If they can’t be bothered to be self-motivated about dealing with a self-evident problem, I’m not sure this is someone to shackle yourself to for the rest of your life anyway. (That cuts both ways for men and women too btw – own and fix your shit gentlemen.) As I’ve said before, the purpose of marriage is not to save a woman, it’s to have a long, happy and productive life together.
So…. If there is a God… he’s obviously made men attracted to… attractive women. This would be his creation “working as intended”. It’s not a bug it’s a feature. Thank you for contacting tech support, have a blessed day!
As an aside… one of the things I found very disturbing and was a real factor in leading up to the time of my move to atheism was the way a few factors had a horrible effect together for my female friends. Too few males + directive to marry only within the faith + being told God had a special plan for all = a ticking bomb for angst for at least some of my friends. I was active in a youth group of about 40 girls and 25 boys, call me a cynic but I just looked around and did the math. If you’re a woman wanting marriage you can waste your youth and beauty in a church no less than you can in a bar. It has been heartbreaking to me to catch up to some of my old friends on Facebook recently and discover my cynical predictions from my early 20s have come horribly true.
Ok I give up. I’m not 100% happy with the background, but I really just have to stop obsessing and move on. So we have the red stage curtain for the time being and there we go. Enjoy it people, enjoy it. Maybe it’s a sign of things to come in my quest for world domination of marriage and sex.
I’ve also had to uninstall the Intense Debate comment widget thingy. For some bizarre reason it doesn’t view readers going to the post page to comment, and people just landing on the page… as being on the same page. So half of all the comments exist on alternate twin comment pages. Plus it breaks one of my other widgets. Why… why… why?
Unfortunately the last two posts of comments will have been eaten in the reversion to the standard Blogger comments. I do have all those comments in email form, and they will play a part in my upcoming post of Betaization.
Amazon.com… it’s not me, it’s you… goodbye Amazon links.
Thanks again for everyone putting up with the mess!
“A soulmate is somebody with whom one has a feeling of deep and natural affinity, love, intimacy, sexuality, spirituality, and/or compatibility. A related concept is that of the twin flame or twin soul – which is thought to be the ultimate soulmate, the one and only other half of one’s soul, for which all souls are driven to find and join. However, not everyone who uses these terms intends them to carry such mystical connotations.”
Soulmate Card (Married Man Sex Life!)
“A tactic used by a straying spouse to trump any and all ethical responsibilities of action or honesty towards a legally married spouse. The cheat simply announces the Soulmate Card is in play and both the husband and wife are powerless to effect the relationship from that point. The Soulmate trumps all other cards in play and the marriage ends.”
There are two basic defenses to the Soulmate Card. The first is the other man/woman simply denying the Soulmate Card, by saying they don’t feel nearly so serious about the relationship and that this is only a fling WTF are you talking about. The other is by the cheat finding out that the other man/woman was in fact having sex with yet another unknown person the whole time of the affair. (I mean it’s one thing that he goes home to his wife and has sex with her, but finding out the bastard has ANOTHER girlfriend is a deal breaker.)
While Jennifer and I share a great deal of “affinity, love, intimacy, sexuality, spirituality, and/or compatibility”, I really don’t see her as my soulmate. She’s my wife. Which is a far more powerful and meaingful thing.
With a soulmate there is a sense of powerlessness that goes along with it. We just are soulmates, it just is magical, it’s so effortless together, we just know what the other is thinking, we just drawn to each other. It’s as if the relationship has a power of all it’s own and the couple involved are passengers in that relationship. Well kinda… it’s a neurochemical thing happening.
With a husband and wife, there is an active sense of empowerment that goes along with it. If there is magic we made that together, if we know what the other is thinking it is because we have listened to each other, if we have a special bond together it is because we have gone to each other and joined. We drive the relationship and direct it. It’s a rational neo-cortex thing happening here.
Being in a “soulmatey” experience is more typically at the start of a relationship and is a heady experience. Lets just call it what it is – it’s two people crushing on each other is all. It’s all hormones and biology. It’s totally awesome being in that experience and some people crave that like a drug… which… well is probably because it is a drug.
Being a husband or a wife is about creating a long term meaningful deep emotional pair bond. It’s less dramatic, less in your face, but it’s vitally important and smooth and deep in flavor.
Accept that crushes – for each other or even other people, are temporary and erratic. They can spring up from nothing, burst over you for a moment and then be gone. They can simmer quietly in the background for years. They can suddenly fizzle out. They can ebb and flow as mine does with Jennifer. Up and down and around and around. I still crush on her after all this time and then I don’t. And then I do. (Jennifer is the stable one in our relationship lol, I’m the more random one, true story.)
However, as long as you are being actively good to each other, the pair bond however will strengthen over time. Stronger and stronger. I can hardly remember life before Jennifer. It’s like she was always a part of me, like I halfway expect to go back to the photos of me before we met and still see her with me somehow.
One of the reasons I am so serious about couples having regular sex – even “below average” sex, is that sex is one of the most potent ways to strenghten and maintain the pair bond you have together. Half the reason long distance relationships fail is that you can’t have sex with each other and maintain the chemistry exchange program together.
If you keep the sex level up to a decent rate, and keep being good to each other, you will likely experience crushes on each other periodically. Crushes are a biochemical reaction happening up in your brain and are most likely simply a set of neurochemicals designed as a Mate Replacement Program holding over from The Time Before Writing.
Of course if your wife hasn’t just been eaten by beasties and she’s in fact holding down a job as a CPA or something, having a random crush on the girl that serves you coffee at Dunkin Donuts (her tits are frakking amazing btw) isn’t actually something that’s going to work to your long term advantage if you act on it.
So be very wary of announcements of not feeling in love, or soulmates, or the classic ILYBINILWY… I Love You But I’m Not In Love With You. These things can be very temporary and erratic. The same thing can happen with suddenly feeling your heart skip a beat over someone new you just met. This stuff happens, it’s normal. You’re designed this way. (Oh crap I mean evolved, evolved this way)
When all is said and done, the entire concept of a soulmate is just a mental rationalization to justify taking action that someones Body Agenda is suggesting.
A couple weeks ago I toyed with the idea of writing the occassional post for the ladies seeking to work on seeking more sex from their husbands. I have no clue if this qualifies. It probably doesn’t, but in this little game you have to be the more active partner, so I guess I have to sell the women on this one.
It’s called “Egg Timer Sex”.
You will need an egg timer, lube, a vagina and a penis.
The method is quite simple. All you do is come up to your man stark naked, already lubed up in the slippery of your choice, drop to all fours and say “you’ve got three minutes” and flip the egg timer over. When the sand runs out, you say “times up” and start trying to crawl away and generally attempt to get up and walk out on him.
Well… if you can anyway. He might um… refuse to let you up. It might turn into a “playful tussle” or perhaps something more forceful. But then again you might like that.
Ladies… If you actually get away and look back at his face filled with anguish as he cums helplessly on the carpet, remember to disrespect him forever and see his brother and/or best friend on the side.
Gentlemen… DO NOT LET HER GET AWAY!
So much written in the Manosphere is anti-women and anti-marriage that I’m starting to feel a little worn down just reading it all. I do understand the risks in getting married, but the truth of the matter is that I am quite thankful for my marriage and most definitely thankful for Jennifer.
It becomes a very long day to mentally try and think of women as both the enemy and the prize. Trying to sustain that viewpoint in a LTR is just going to result in you becoming an asshat to your partner at some point. Women as Enemy / Prize is the modern variant of the Madonna / Whore complex. You have to try and not be made vulnerable to her to protect yourself, but vulnerability is a key to seduction. You’re meant to try and win her over, but repeating that win more than a couple of weeks makes you the loser. Confused? Ya me too.
Game puts pussy on a pedestal but advises to not put a woman on the pedestal. Funny… last time I checked they were attached. Now what…
My advice if you are in the middle of a ho-hum period in your marriage and sex life, is to ignore the Manosphere. It’s really not here to help you. Just concentrate on each other and figure things out together. The enemy cannot become each other, that way lies divorce and Ramen Noodles. You must become team mates. By all means you can lead the team, but you need to see winning or losing as something that happens to the team rather than I won she lost, or I lost and she won.
The prize is each other. The prize is “us”.
A great move for any team leader is to recognize when someone is contributing to the team. I really recommend paying active attention to your wife and thanking her for the times when she does do things that benefit you and your family. It’s an old tactic to deal with children to try and “catch them when they are good”. It’s no less effective on adults.
So when she does something good, especially something good for you, say thank you. She may be holding out on you sexually simply because she has started to resent your lack of appreciation for the good she has done. Shit tests thrive in the fertile ground of lack of appreciation.
I realize this doesn’t sound very Alpha Male and sounds very supplicating, but it actually is a somewhat dominant display. You are not asking for something / permission – that’s more Beta, but you are thanking for acts of service you have already received. So you need to reward the behavior you are looking for by at least acknowledging it occured. Failing to do so is actually a subtle punishment of good behavior and will result in it declining in frequency.
So if you punish good behavior… you are ultimately starting to force her into thinking about engaging in bad behavior in an attempt to get you to reward her. This is part of why she shit tests you.
Now if you are setting the stage to be shit tested, it really doesn’t matter whether or not you “pass the shit test”, you’re basically screwing her over either way. So her best option is to simply leave the relationship. Then you say something like “see I told you all women suck”.
So try saying thank you. Seriously. It’s not that hard.
By definition, half of all married sex is below average sex. Some nights are going to be crazy hot lustful poundings. Others… a little more sedate and relaxed.
Rather than fighting hard to make every single night a production, why not simply embrace the fact that not every night is going to risk fractures from curled toes or shredded bedding. If you’re only having sex 1-2 times a week and each attempt is “hardcore sexing you up baby”, she might be declining you another 1-2 nights a week because she isn’t in the mood for the full on experience.
But she may be willing for something more low key. Lubricant and a few minutes of her time may very well be more acceptable to her than another hour long attempt at studfucking or the thing with the Jumper Cables and the Butter.
So while it is counter-initutive, try… “so would you like some below average sex tonight?” as a line once in a while. Remember to smile like a kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar attempting to use cute as a defusing tactic.
Follow up line… “you know you almost want it.”
Ya never know. She just might like the pump and dump once in a while… well minus the dump part I guess. But you know what I mean. Sometimes women get off on the emotional closeness from sex in and of itself. The quest for her to have three orgasms and squirt might be more about your fantasy needs of being a pro stick than her actual desires on any given day.
Also this goes further towards making having sex the default setting. And getting more semen inside her vagina is going to result in a mildly increasing sex drive from the testosterone in the semen being absorbed through the vaginal walls. Yeah… really. I shit you not. Plan ahead boys, plan ahead.
I’ve been thinking about what I want for celebrating my upcoming 40th birthday and it better be good because I can feel a freaky very out of character drama queen event coming if it isn’t. I just don’t know what it is I want. So I’m pretty much bound to react badly to anything that happens. Give me this, and I’ll have wanted that. Give me that and I would have wanted this. I can feel it coming. Seriously I have no clue what I want. Oh it could be one of half a dozen things, but I can’t decide.
Holy crap, I’m shit testing myself.
Anyway the whole day has been seeing that phrase “What Do You Want?” in various forms. I’ve seen it crop up in emails, in private messages, on other blogs, and it’s been repeating all day.
Here’s a private message from LIL via Talk About Marriage…
(From Me to Him but Quoted Back at Me) “Figure out what it is that you want.”
(From LIL) “I think this is good advice Athol. It’s also sort of fortune cookie nebulous, but it’s good advice nevertheless. Have you figured out what you want yet?”
Ugh, I love it when people quote my own crap back to me when I want it least. That being said LIL didn’t even know about the whole 40th birthday thing, and was asking about something completely different. That one I’ve figured out what I want and despite it being painfully complicated I’m making progress on it. (I really can’t talk much more about this as it work related and I’m on my real name here.)
So no, haven’t figured out what I want for a party, or non-party, or thing that I want for my birthday LIL. No clue.
“Asking my wife directly what she wants just ends up starting a spiral of self-pity about how she doesn’t know either, and why do I expect her to know.”
So my general advice to that is, don’t worry about what someone else wants if they can’t decide what they want. Trying to make those people happy is like building sand castles below the high tide mark. Pretty shortly all your efforts get washed away and it’s all for naught.
You’re much better off figuring out what it is that you want and just plowing ahead and getting what you want. That way at least you will be happy. They aren’t likely to be happy no matter what you do, but they might end up happy if you’re happy because you got something you wanted. If they are angry that you are happy and they are not, just say “I asked what you wanted and you didn’t know, so I’m not wasting my efforts trying to make you happy when you don’t even know what makes you happy”. Then you ignore their tears.
Of course if what makes you happy is them being happy, you get caught in a relationship gridlock where everything circles around in a cycle of decreasing happiness until ultimately you cross the event horizon of the black hole that is forming and either blink out of existence or get served with a restraining order and divorce papers. The black hole visits joint checking accounts first by the way.
Oh hang on… I must have told LIL that exact same stuff in my earlier message to him, and he quoted it back to me.
Oh frak! The timeline is looping! If only I can get a message back to me somehow in the past, maybe all this can be avoided. I just have to let me in the past know what it is that I want and all this can be avoided….
… holy crap I still don’t know what I want for my 40th…. A strip club? A surprise party? The thing with the jumper cables and the butter?
So what do you want?
So many thoughts on this one.
Firstly… Sandra Bullock has absolute gina tingle over bad boy Jesse James… when surprise! He’s actually a bad boy. Never saw that one coming…
Secondly… OMG Dude WTF are you thinking??!?!
Thirdly… Sit back and laugh hysterically as a panel of three women worry that the cheating scum bucket might get to walk away from a possible divorce with half Sandra Bullock’s stuff. Jesse James might do more for Men’s Rights than all the MRA blogs put together. Just really piss all women off about divorce law…
Fourthy… big up to Fox News getting a blonde, a brunette and a redhead on the same panel. I guess that’s fair and balanced reporting…