When She Crosses The Line: Kick The Bitch Out?

Husband discovers 600 text messages to the same unknown number in a month on the wifes phone bill. Hold that in your head as you read…
Eventually in a marriage your wife is going to do something that crosses the line. That thing might be something major or something minor. It might be crossing the line on something you’ve discussed and agreed on, or something that was a non discussed unwritten rule. Perhaps you weren’t even aware of the rule floating in the back of your mind until she broke the rule and you got angry about it. She can cross the line on purpose or unintentionally. Eventually though, she is just bound to do something that really pisses you off.
The non-Alpha response when she crosses the line is simply to down play it, not respond and internalize the anger. You might express anger but it’s usually framed as a polite request. Or you quietly fume and act out your anger passively. It’s usually pretty ineffective as a strategy in that she’s not really been made to suffer any consequence for her actions. You’re acting less socially dominant than she is and just sucking up her shit like she’s your boss and you’re her employee.
The Alpha response is to go on the offensive and bump back on her behavior and make sure she understands that whatever it was isn’t shouldn’t happen again. There’s a balance between the seriousness of the offense and intention. There’s a world of difference between her having sex with another guy and a few random text messages to a guy about nothing in particular that she told you about. There’s a world of difference between her crashing the car into the closed garage door and tapping a trash can. There’s a world of difference between losing her job for tardiness and being five minutes late for a date. There’s a world of difference between shoplifting and overdue library books. Balance people, balance.
In short, whatever level of disagreement / expression of anger / punishment / sanction call it what you will, it needs to fit the crime.
Unfortunately I keep coming across cases where the husband or boyfriend simply nukes the relationship to instant death over an infraction believing that to be the Alpha response. Plus numerous cases where on reading of a husband that successfully manages a wifely infraction, I read comments calling for him to “kick the bitch out”. The problem is already fixed and commenters are so locked into nuking as a strategy that they can’t see the forest for the trees.
Nuking is really more about revenge than self-preservation. If you come home early and catch her in the act, then sure I can sympathize if you just start the divorce process rolling while she’s putting her clothes back on. Really, I get that. But if you’re doing the same over a few flirty text messages, or frequent Facebook messages, then you’re over reacting if you’re instantly calling for a moving truck. You find out what’s going on first and address what you find. If she continues with unacceptable behavior then you step it up a notch.
It’s like progressive discipline at work. Small warning, larger warning, final warning, thanks for playing.
What I suspect the real problem for a lot of men is that they have so much resentment built up inside them from all the times they allowed themselves be taken advantage of in the past, or genuinely got screwed over by a woman, that they have an element of built in rage that hasn’t been worked through. So when “one little thing” happens ALL the previous rage gets triggered and “kick the bitch out” becomes the battle cry. Then the response can be so dramatic that once your anger simmers way and the dust settles your woman may not have any comfort left in your relationship and she may not want to return anyway.
And lets be clear on this one too – revenge sex, property destruction and physical violence does not solve anything beyond a momentary checking up of her behavior and it causes potentially much larger and more serious problems for you.
And to be fair, your marriage hopefully lasts a very very long time. You’re bound to screw up along the way yourself. Pray her tactic isn’t nuking too. Family court isn’t your friend.
The 600 text messages were to the wifes brother discussing her marital crisis. The couple in question had some other issues going on, but cheating wasn’t one of them. Things are fragile, but improving for them. True story.

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Comments

  1. Wicked Shawn says:

    My husband would lose his mind if he tried to keep track of the guys I talked to on my cell phone repeatedly each month. Jealousy simply isn't an option in our relationship. Fortunately, he knows that the conversations I have with these guys are business, they are my dealer representatives and I must maintain good working relationships with them. It helps that I often call them or take calls from them while he and I are together, there is never any hint of secrecy. I can't imagine life in a relationship of this nature. Why does reading your blog always leave me a little sad?

  2. David Collard says:

    My wife is pretty good on the whole. She has never done anything really bad. But I also believe in reacting to minor problems, so as to prevent major problems developing, a concept I discuss here:

    http://davidcollard.wordpress.com/2010/11/23/the-broken-window-theory-of-crime-and-dealing-with-women-and-children/

    Many of the examples I use are made up. For example, my wife has never flirted.

    That said, the worst thing she does is becoming really a bit crazy sometimes, and I find what works is a bit of "bump back" to explain that some of her anger is not logical or fair; and then I stop responding. This calms everything down and prevents any physical danger.

    Incidentally, despite what people think today, I suspect a lot of wives drove their husbands nuts years and years ago. For example, I haven't got any hard evidence, but there are a lot of hints that JRR Tolkien's wife was not an easy woman to live with, and that they had a difficult marriage. Examples could be multiplied. These days, at least husbands can share their stories, and what works for them. I suspect a lot of husbands in earlier times just had to suffer in silence.

  3. David Collard says:

    "Why does reading your blog always leave me a little sad?"

    That sounds passive aggressive. Textbook.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Good observation. I think this ignore-nuke thing occurs in male-male relationships as well. If one person in a relationship is lower status than the other, they infrequently call out the higher status persons bad behavior because the higher status person always bumps back whether they are in the right or not. I believe the college word for this is conflict avoidance. If you are on shaky ground, your going to get a lot of blowback, but facing that is better than the alternative. Some people will subconsciously train you to take their shit. It takes a huge infraction to get a response at which point the floodgates open.

  5. Athol Kay says:

    Wicked Shaun – then clearly you being in contact with these guys the way you are isn't crossing the line. But perhaps emailing them a photo of your naked boobs would be. That's for you and your husband to decide.

    Actually I agree that my blog is a little sad. I struggle with that a good deal and try to keep it light as possible. But I'm covering serious issues, like endless sexual rejection, cheating, failure of commitment, break ups and being hauled into family court. So sometimes the subject matter just ends up setting the tone.

  6. Mencken says:

    I, too, find this blog mildly depressing, but often insightful. I applaud you, Mr Kay, for trying to address an important, if overlooked, niche in the MRA-related blogosphere.

    It's clear that Western marriage has been in trouble a long time and a lot of our men have been suffering in (semi)silence for a century, re: Tolkien. Now the whole institution has hit the skids, which is probably unavoidable and, after it all shakes out, possibly an improvement. Certainly it's difficult tosee how the institution today (AKA Marriage 2.0) can really get worse for men.

    As to this post, I don't know many men who push the Little Lady too far over trivialities; surely such dim-bulb pseudo-alphas exist, but I see the opposite problem far too frequently: men who put up with female BS for years, and then she leaves anyway.

    I was a variant of that guy – the evil bitch up and left, taking the kids (this was, of course, all "legal") anyway, once I actually began to stand up for myself – so I have some insight.

    Might I suggest that if you afraid of taking on your wife over legitimate issues, you, Mr Post-Modern American Husband, are merely acting rationally. If you take her on, let's say with hard evidence of her infidelity in hand, she will … up and leave your ass and ruin your life. Same reaction as if your evidence is silly and proves nothing.

    Think about it … and weep, if that's your thing.

  7. Anonymous says:

    The manosphere in general can be depressing at times. I think AK is pretty optimistic by comparison.

  8. Athol Kay says:

    Mencken – they don't always leave when you have evidence. They may or they may not. There is a huge element of fantasy involved in affairs where the cheater (male or female) simply hopes to get away with it and denies potential negative consequences for their actions. There's quite an addictive hormonal thing going on as well. Once reined in and the dopamine rush subsides the cheater can be quite appalled by their own behavior.

    Cheating does not usually start with instant sex acts. Usually there's a progression towards that. If you can catch things early enough, damage can be avoided.

    With the very obvious rise in female infidelity, males have to do some form of mate guarding behavior or just suffer the consequences.

    There are no perfect solutions however. Not everything works either. But for some men what I'm saying saves them from bad outcomes and leads to happier lives.

  9. Julia says:

    Many of the manosphere sites are constantly reinforcing the message that all women are whores, cheaters, crazy, stupid, etc. Men that are unable to discern the gold from the dross (your advice is mostly golden, of course!) are going to find themselves locked and loaded for bear at all times. This does not lend itself to a happy relationship – think the worst and you will eventually get just that, or your partner will have enough of your bullshit and leave the craziness.

    As usual, the nutjobs have the mike and they are making the most noise; no one is served well by this.

  10. Miles Anderson says:

    People often come to the MRA world (the term "Manosphere" is so vague and sounds so nerdy) through some sort of relationship failure. It isn't surprising that a lot of them have a "nuke it" type of response. They are projecting what they wish they had done earlier.

    One thing to remember is that being reactive isn't very Alpha. Be non-reactive and decisive. When something appears to be going bad (like the text messages) keep a cool head, do the investigation that is warranted, and then decide what an appropriate response should be. Do this at all levels. Sometimes the appropriate response is aggression (bumping her back). Sometimes it is discussion (her little craziness). Sometimes is support (text messages to a friend over something rational or even you). Be the rock to her emotional storm.

  11. Marcus says:

    I've never had better relationships with girlfriends than when I've demonstrated a willingness to walk. Flash the nuke option and they cut the shit, become sweet as pie, and get a huge boost of attraction. Win-win, really :)

    Now, how to scale this to the wife scenario…

  12. David Collard says:

    Miles is basically correct. I call it "fire and ice". Show her that you have the fire to tell her off and set her straight – once. Don't repeat yourself. Just tell her your side of the argument once. She won't listen at the time, but she will mull it over eventually and concede any valid points, at least in her own mind.

    Ice, because the best thing to do is just to ignore a woman who is being more than usually unreasonable. Let her rant. Don't rant back. It is dangerous on many levels. She will eventually cool and come looking to make up.

    My wife lost her temper with me yesterday, chucked some of my shirts in a bin, and went on a sulk. I just ignored her. Eventually she got them out of the bin and ironed them.

    The point I was making with Tolkien is that I strongly suspect many husbands had a shit time with their wives even fifty or a hundred or two hundred years ago. But men don't complain much, and they don't have a whole industry of feminist historiography writing to complain about their past lot.

    Now we have the Internet, and men can compare notes. Most women are pretty nuts quite a lot of the time. A man has to learn how to handle this safely.

    On Tolkien, he is an interesting case. I think he married a bit too young, and a bit unrealistically. He couldn't leave his marriage because he was a good Catholic, and attitudes were different then. But consider, they slept in different rooms, he spoke of "fuss" (a stiff-upper-lip Englishman's term for what was probably her throwing tantrums); and Warnie Lewis, CS Lewis' brother, in his diaries, writes that there were major problems in the Tolkien household, worse even than those in the Lewis household. Reading between the lines, I think the Tolkien marriage may not have been a very easy one.

  13. Marcus says:

    “If we could survive without a wife, citizens of Rome, all of us would do without that nuisance.” – Roman general, statesman, and censor Quintus Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus, 131 B.C.

  14. David Collard says:

    My wife was cute when young, and still looks OK for her age. She has been dutiful, has borne our children, and still gives me the sex I want. And she can be a good companion.

    BUT, she is high maintenance, like ALL women. And there is an art to being a good husband, which you will not read about in magazines. (The truth would never get past an editor.) It takes years to learn, and all the "game for an LTR" advice does is give you some useful tips so that you don't have to "reinvent the wheel".

    You have to really want to have a woman, one woman, to be bothered with marriage. It is not a light undertaking, and not for the fainthearted.

  15. The Outsider says:

    Flying off the handle is a terribly beta thing to do.

  16. Höllenhund says:

    It's not that the MRA sites or this blog are depressing, it's that the MSM and the pop culture paints a rosy picture of marriage and relationships, and the indoctrinated ignorant masses therefore march to their fate like lemmings, with men signing up for marriage 2.0, women wanting a "soulmate" in their marriage etc. Compared to THEM, the MRA sites APPEAR to be depressing, but in fact they are just realistic.

    Höllenhund

  17. Louie says:

    In his book "No More Mr. Nice Guy", Robert Glover said that some guys who are recovering from their nice guy syndrome have so much pent up rage that they suddenly become kamikaze boundary setters and start bumping back about every stupid thing. Its like they go from non-confrontational to hyper-confrontational.

    At the same time that I was learning about NG and how to get out of it, I was also studying Zen to deal with work stress. It helped me to keep the whole thing in perspective. I confront my wife about stuff, but it is usually pretty low key. Calmly telling her that I do not like her tone of voice is usually enough to give her a good dose of alpha. I don't need to explode. Being calm is the ultimate alpha trait in my book. Calm in the face of her anger. Calm in the face of a threat. Calm in the midst of a problem. Always calm. Always in control.

  18. David Collard says:

    Calm is good but avoid robotic. I am naturally pretty cool, if not cold. So sometimes a bit of frank anger can remind the woman that you are not dead.

    A low toned telling off can be good, but some women (e.g. my wife) are fairly resilient, and I find that she almost never minds quite a sharp and angry tone from me. It hardly seems to bother her. I think she almost expects it. Of course, if she is already at "code red" as the lecturer in a course I did on human behaviour said last week, then she will not be conducive to any kind of input, and the best thing to do is just leave her alone, to let her fizz, flounce, emote, rant and, eventually, quieten down of her own accord.

    I should say I am not talking about anything really bad. I don't know what I would have done if she had "cheated" on me, as Americans say. Probably never forgiven her.

  19. Athol Kay says:

    Well lets put it this way.

    It's not like the red pill tastes like candy.

  20. Miles Anderson says:

    Mentioning "red" pills…

    Homo Sapiens have been around, what, 1/4 to 1/2 million years. We think of modern humans (prehistory) starting about 10000 years ago (~8000 BCE). While it appears there were forms of monogamy fairly early in our history our current marriage form really only starts with Moses 3500 years ago (~1500 BCE). That is anywhere from 50% to less then 1% of our history as a race. The concept of marriage without consequences (no fault divorce) has existed less then 1% (really 2 generations is a better way to think about it) of any way of thinking about our culture. Personally I think the red pill is that monogamy is not our natural state. Marriage is a sham from an evolutionary standpoint. I don't think you have to talk about its current incarnation to get to that. One way to look at the current incarnation is as the dying gasp of a 3500 year experiment.

    And guys, their month goes ovulation, PMS, bloody mess, week off. Do you think they are going to treat the world as you do? I find the craziness refreshing at moments and when it gets too nutty I disappear into the wild until I build up the ability to be amused a bit longer.

  21. David Collard says:

    Yes, my wife told me yesterday, by way of apology, that she thought she was coming into her period. I pointed out that she had been on her period only a couple of weeks ago. Oh, well, she vouchsafed, she is getting close to menopause, that must be it …

    I think women can fake being sane at work for a few hours, but they save their weirdest moments for their menfolk.

    And almost no women will admit their sex. Oh, no, they are always as calm and rational as any man!

    BTW, Laura at Full of Grace, Seasoned with Salt, has a relevant post up right now on this kind of issue.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Manosphere is indeed corny as hell but I don't what else to call it. When I think MRA, I think of bloggers focused primarily on law and politics and the game blogs are not. OTOH this is probably just semantic hair splitting and MRA could be perfectly good term.

  23. Julia says:

    David,

    With all due respect, your wife is totally bonkers, although I suspect you enjoy the drama and wouldn't have it any other way.

  24. Miles Anderson says:

    I'm dead certain that when a women says she is rational she means that she rationalizes better then other women when it comes to relationship matters. Men hear something totally different and set the expectation bar for the wrong things.

  25. David Collard says:

    Julia

    My wife is kind of fascinating, but I don't actually think she is any more bonkers than the average female. Perhaps you (I assume you are a woman from your screen name) are very level-headed.

    When she is behaving herself, she is excellent.

    It is also just possible that I am a bit annoying.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Hey Athol
    How do I handle something like this
    My wife comes into the room and I'm watching television having breakfast and there is Nicola Scherzinger singing,she is all dressed in leather.
    My wife gives me a look as though I'm a 10 year old and I should really turn it over (it's not inappropriate it's breakfast chat show)
    She says that something nice for you too watch first thing in the morning.
    I reply it sure is I don't see you dressed like that.
    She stomps out slamming the door.Should I apologise??How do I regain control from her moodiness that will last all day

  27. David Collard says:

    My advice, Anonymous. Don't apologise. Why would you apologise? Never censor your views to please a woman. Also, ignore her until her moodiness passes. Which it will.

    Your missus is going to be pissed with you a lot of the time. Get used to it.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Thanks maybe I should have replied to her in a more witty way,but whats done is done

  29. David Collard says:

    Oh, up the ante. I regularly say outrageous things to my wife to tease her. The worse, the more she seems to like it.

    Comparing her with another woman probably wasn't the smartest move. You could have said something like "I'd like to see you dressed like that" (I don't know this TV broad of whom you speak, but I imagine she is attractive.)

    You have to prick the bubble of their feminine self-importance. It is basic "game". Perhaps a better and more tactful approach is to make your wife feel that you see her sexually.

    I have managed to tease her into doing silly things like lifting her skirt to show me what colour panties she is wearing. "Game" her into doing things like that, which you will both enjoy.

    Comparing her with an unattainable woman on TV is probably only going to upset her. But women sort of exist to get upset – it is what they do best. My sister says that unless you are making your children cry every hour or so, you are a bad parent. I would say that unless you are annoying your wife at least once a day, you are not doing it right as a husband.

    One of the main reasons wives get bored and frustrated in modern marriages is that they are never really challenged. Wives expect their husbands to behave badly sometimes. Don't be a goody-goody. Women don't really like it, not deep down.

  30. Firelord says:

    @Anonymous

    I don't know about pissed a lot of the time certainly more emotional and prone to moodiness, Ive had about 7 long term partners over the years ranging from "as stable and logical as a man" to "get me out of here"

    My wife is currently pregnant and non fathers are not even going to begin to understand the level's things go up to, if there was a dial it would be into the red.

    I call it the "teenager" tantrum,
    1) The first outburst is ignored.

    2) The second I bump back on usually with "come back when your ready to talk like a adult"

    If I get shaming language, I point it out and veto the conversation see point 2

    Other variants of ad-hominem, stawman, or other emotional based attacks get treated the same way, if she starts a list "you know when they start listing unrelated things that (in her view) need doing and you have not done" I don't even response to those.

    When she is done with all that and none of it has got a reaction I tend to tell her if she is done with the "teenager" tantrum hugs are on offer.

    5 minutes later I get a far more rational wife and we can talk about what is "Really" bothering her, none or this was a argument really just a large scale of I have seen most of the woman I have dated go though,

    To a certain extent I don't blame them for it, they are emotional creatures and I would not have them any other way, but they have been conditioned/trained certainly in western culture that emotional outbursts and squawking loudly get you what you want.

    And it's up to you to show then A that no longer works post age 13 and B there are better ways of handling the situation.

    Firelord

  31. Tony Ryan says:

    I think there is a paradoxical approach guys need to take with dealing with bullshit their wives/gf's throw at them…

    On one end, I totally agree with you Athol, if a woman crosses a boundary you need to let her know about it in the appropriate manner so it doesn't happen again. It's important to maintain being that strong, alpha male that has clear boundaries on what is and isn't permissible behavior with those around him.

    However, on the other end, guys need to expand their boundaries and stop being so friggin' uptight about stuff. Her being 20 minutes late for dinner is not a big deal and getting worked up over it does more harm than good. Although you want to be a strong men, it shouldn't be in the expense of getting upset over every little thing.

  32. Athol Kay says:

    Sometimes you can catch things from brewing into large issues when they are just smaller issues.

    I had a girlfriend that admitted after we broke up that she was purposely 15-20 minutes to everything with me to "see what I would do". Unfortunately I didn't do anything and she behaved worse and I ended up just exploding at her and ended the relationship.

    If I'd just said "you keep turning up late and I'm finding that rude" things might have turned out quite differently.

    I'm 100% serious on this one, she said it was purposeful. My game at age 19 was awful lol.

    Little issue, little bump. Big issue, big bump.

  33. David Collard says:

    Oh yes, about the list of things to do thing. Women need literally NO excuse to go off. Her big complaint on the weekend was that I had not put a few pairs of old pants away. I should tidy up. I refused to jump to attention; and she was off.

    It's just a pretext.

    When we were going out, she once told me she had done something to annoy me, just to see what I was like when I was angry.

    Whether you give her a short, sharp lecture; or a quiet talking to (risky, because she may simply laugh it off); or simply "ice the bitch" (ignore her for a while); depends on the nature of the woman and her offense. I tend to do the first and the last. But what a man should not do is get into a heated argument. There is a risk of it degenerating into the physical; and also it reduces you (putting it bluntly) to her level. You should treat her as a traditional wife. And a traditional wife should not be arguing with you in a heated tone.

    That is why if you want a woman to do something, ask her politely, firmly and confidently. Once. Don't plead or nag. That is feminine. Nine times out of ten she will (eventually) comply. And when she doesn't, just ignore it.

  34. Anonymous says:

    It's not that your game at 19 was awful, it's that that girl was awful.

    I don't know where you guys are finding these women (not you Athol, the ones saying all women are pretty irrational and secretly want to be annoyed all the time), but bloody hell, that is not typical. There are enough women out there that you can find a rational one – if most of the women you've dated have been nuts, well, there's only one common denominator there.

  35. Athol Kay says:

    Huh, I've never actually thought of her as awful. Maybe. I was utterly smitten and was my first serious gf, so I have so little perspective on her to be honest.

    I have one gf that I did start to think of as crazy though. When she said "I hate men" I pretty much went… "oh" and it all came apart quickly with me framed as the evil one.

  36. David Collard says:

    Anonymous, the problem with telling men that women are actully mostly rational is a) it is almost certainly not true and b) it makes men feel that their wife is uniquely awful. It is better to be honest.

    As for rational, why do you think that husbands fear PMT (PMS). Women are NOT rational a lot of the time, and pretending that they are only sets couples up for failure.

  37. Jack_Amok says:

    FWIW Athol, I don't find the blog depressing. On the contrary, I find it quite uplifting. It's like someone finally dropped off the users manual for my wife. Suddenly a whole bunch of stuff makes more sense.

    But then my wife is a basically decent person, and I'm not a terminal beta, so having a better framework for understanding what makes her happy means my life is suddenly a whole lot better.

    If she was a rotten, uncivilized witch, or if I was born without an alpha bone in my body (ummm…) I could see it being depressing. All the game in the world won't turn a bitch into a good woman, and all the information in the world doesn't help if you can't put it into action.

    But I think most men have at least some capacity for Alpha. Not sure what the percentage of civilized women is these days, maybe I just got really lucky, or maybe I had enough natural game to make it on autopilot until is found MMSL.

    Dunno, but either way, I look forward to reading. Even the stories about busted marriages usually have a silver linning – if the guy had caught things sooner he maybe could've saved it. I think I caught it in time.

    So keep up the good work.

  38. David Collard says:

    Jack Amok

    Absolutely. You have to pick a good woman. But even the good women can make it hard sometimes.

  39. Anonymous says:

    @Anon

    I think it would be more fair to say "all the women out of the cros-selection you associate with"

    We all pre select who we find attractive and who we choose to associate with, we are not looking at a fair and equal spread of the population because of this pre selection, so your mileage may very. And yes some of us take longer to learn to pick the better ones, if you got it right first time, good for you :-)

    FL

    quoted (as ive forgotten how to do quotes on here) "I don't know where you guys are finding these women (not you Athol, the ones saying all women are pretty irrational and secretly want to be annoyed all the time), but bloody hell, that is not typical."

  40. Anonymous says:

    I bumped back pretty hard today and I think it was justified. I saw a new article on a restaurant in a vacation spot that we have visited twice before and will visit again. I thought I'd like to try the restaurant. I showed her the pictures. Later I read her some of the menu. One line from the end, she cuts me off with, "I don't care. I'm trying to read my facebook and I don't care." I shut up.

    About 5 minutes later, she says, "So and So sent me this email."
    I replied. "I don't care."
    She started again, "It's so funny, you should read.."
    I cut her off, "I don't care."
    Fury and Hamster.
    She said, "LOOK (dripping venom), I was just like… when… then you…. FINE."
    I didn't say a thing.
    *slam* *slam* *peel out*
    Comes back in house. "I forgot my something or other."
    Me happily, "have a good one"
    Leaves more peaceably.

    Her fury. Her mood. Let her own it. She can't treat me like a child and not expect a bump back.

    TM

  41. Anonymous says:

    AWESOME, Athol.

    Jennifer 6

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