The Preselection Effect is when one woman becomes more interested in a man, simply because other women are interested in him. The rationale being that if he pulled all their interest, he must be something special.
So when other women start expressing interest in you, your wife tends to sit up and take notice. Not merely for the imagined threat of you sleeping with them or dumping her for one of them, but simply because other women are interested in you.
So part of the reason I advise men to self-improve and become more attractive, is not to just directly pull their wife’s interest better, but to also pull the interest of other women. Thus creating a preselection effect.
The key though, it that it’s preselection when another woman is interested in you, as opposed to you hitting on another woman.
Upon occasion it’s a delicate balance.


  1. alphapersona says:

    How would light flirting fit into this?

    Regardless of my relationship status, if a woman overtly flirts with me, I'll flirt back. I feel, if I don't actually bang said new girl (take it too far), the flirtyness adds a bit of a jealousy plot line to the relationship and amps up the preselection a bit.

    (because I'm shameless: How preselection works)

  2. Athol Kay says:

    Being generically flirty is fine, but if you appear to be actively trying to "get" a woman to engage with you, the less positive it is. The more it's playing back her interest in you, the better it is.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Do you think the sex rank of the other women make a difference? I think the neighbor down the street is hot for my hubby, but she's like a 1, so clearly, his 4 is appealing to her.

  4. alphapersona says:

    "Do you think the sex rank of the other women make a difference?"

    Yes. If your wife is an 8, and you flirt with Moby Dick, I'm pretty sure your wife isn't going to be worried – though she might be a bit confused.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Wondering if the reason the woman is flirting with a husband makes a difference. Women can read other women's motives.If she is flirting with him because she sees him as hot it put a wife on guard. She might up the attention to her husband in that case.

    If she is flirting with him based on his wallet or other forms of security and he is blind to that and thinks it is because he is so hot most women will unfortunately try to correct their husband's impression. If he then doesn't care and does know why the woman is flirting or trying to seduce him then there will be trouble coming up as he likes it for his own reasons and not as a hopeful stimulus to the wife.

    I still think this is a risky plan for provocation and rather a pitiful attempt to increase his value to himself more than to his wife. Seems to me women have been criticized on here for doing the same thing you are suggesting men might do.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Completely unrelated — you should answer this! You can probably give some good answer to these dumb questions!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Anon: I much prefer when he ups his Displays of Higher Value over engaging the flirtatious woman. Then again, i'm in that loyalty camp. I get serious gina tingle when he shows off some sort of testosteroney skill.

  8. The Woman Formerly Known as Beautiful says:

    Preselection. Yes. Now what's the term for a man carrying a baby around like woman catnip?? We see a man who is obviously a dedicated, devoted, nurturing husband/father and we want to steal him for our own. Which, if we wee successful, would make him into a douche canoe. Thoughts?

  9. First, let me just say… "genetically flirty" is an awesome phrase. I don't know if you came up with that one or not, but you should stick with it.

    Next, I experienced some of this a few years back when I did a wardrobe/hairstyle/physical fitness overhaul. I was doing those things mainly for business related reasons, and the increased feminine attention was both unexpected and seductively appealing. I found that I had to work quite hard to keep myself from flirting back. Though I didn't understand the term at the time, one thing I found that worked well at shutting down flirtatious women was to to talk about my wife while also 'beta'-ing it up quite a bit. I would talk to them about a date I had taken my wife on, about some domestic chore I had done recently, about some random aspect of my wife's relationship with her mother. And that light in their eyes would go from bright to dim to dead in about 3 minutes. It was kind of like the bizarro version of my single/dating days, and after awhile it became sort of a fun game to play.

    That's an interesting question in relation to Athol's post: When your 'genetic flirtation' ability goes up, if you change your social behavior to make yourself less appealing to flirty women, does that negate the marital benefit of the preselection effect?

    When I increased my sex rank, my wife and I did have a bump up in sexual frequency (otherwise our relationship stayed about the same, but it was pretty good to start with), but I always attributed that to being in better physical shape, which just makes sex more phenomenal.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Eric, I love this approach! In fact, I have to employ this one myself. Total turn off to guys. Except my husband, who will occasionally overhear me talking him up. What an awesome pounding I get on those nights!!

  11. Anonymous says:

    "And that light in their eyes would go from bright to dim to dead in about 3 minutes."

    You were becoming their own husbands/boyfriends right in front of their very eyes. This will kill female interest much like talking about marriage & babies kills male interest. (Lady) Boner killers all!

  12. After raising my sex rank I got the women who flirted with me in front of my wife as well. I'd talk to them as if I was oblivious to what was going on. I'd continue to joke, laugh and be funny as my wife watched the interaction with interest. When I got back to my wife, she said "that girl was so flirting with you". My response was, you're crazy no she wasn't. This seemed to make it a positive experience with her because she saw other women finding value in me, while at the same time I didn't respond to it and cause her not to feel special.

  13. Ryan, that's brilliant. Also she probably assumed that women must be hitting on you *all the time* if you didn't even notice. That's what I would figure, at least subconsciously.

  14. Recently, CL and I were out and having a nice dinner in a small bar. The tattooed waitress was a fun, open, competent woman. I engaged her in a conversation mentioning how the previous night a different waitress had gotten uncomfortable about a sexual innuendo benign comment I had made. It highlighted CL and there was a bit of banter back and forth with the tattooed waitress. I was not Gaming the waitress, but I did demonstrate social proof by being able to engage another woman in conversation. There was nothing overt or intentional; it was just a natural thing. It did enhance CL’s desire for me but that was not my motivation. I only recognize this after the fact, but my skills to have such interactions with others is a component in keeping my woman attracted to me. There was no threat to CL in this interaction and she observed the whole thing and even participated. It was just innocent, fun, non- purposeful semi-flirting.

  15. Can anyone give me a better comeback than this.
    I just came home from the gym and my wife comes out with her usual catty comments.
    I suppose you got an eyeful of all the glamerous office girls in the gym before they go to work.
    I said there were none there I'm a bit disappointed actually,
    She told me to F off and slammed the door,She was a little hostile after this saying she is fed up,but she did start talking to me again

  16. Ian Ironwood says:

    G: My response would have been, "I guess if you'd been there, you would have seen for yourself."

    or, conversely,

    "No, but the gay guys were all over me. It's actually quite flattering. They say it's a shame that I'm married." (add meaningful look)

    Or even

    "I don't go to look at women. I can do that anywhere. I go to make myself more appealing to women. Important distinction."

    All depends on just how much you want to rattle her cage, and in which direction.

    One way I deal with the innocent flirtation issue is to fall back into the Southern Gentleman mode. One advantage of living in a culture with traditional social mannerisms is that it provides a context and clear boundaries of acceptable behavior and conversation. One can flirt outrageously in a socially acceptable way if you can master the art. In fact, Mrs. Ironwood will frequently use me as arm candy at professional events and ask that I chat up a particular female colleague to her benefit. Since she works in an industry full of unmarried and divorced highly anal-retentive workoholics who lack husbands, boyfriends, and (frequently) basic social skills, practicing a little harmless Game on these women — purely within the bounds of propriety as a Southern Gentleman — not only boosts their egos but also increases her status among them for having such an attractive, confident mate.

    Conversely, when I'm out at an affair stag, the problem has been keeping the womenfolk at bay. Some are quite willing to go beyond harmless flirtation, and a few are even aggressive about it. Right after I got married it was a real problem. It seemed like every female in every office I worked in smelled blood in the water and felt like they could make an attack run on my virtue. Or at least enough of them, and a few so aggressively as to make me uncomfortable. So I quit wearing my wedding ring (which I never liked anyway) and a lot of the hassles went away. With the wedding ring, I got a +2 Preselection bonus. Without it, I was just another unmarried schlob who could deter their interest with a few outrageous suggestions and a fart joke.

    I mean, turning women off is easy — I have years of practice. Just ask them, in a very serious tone of voice, whether or not they think Han shot first or if Greedo shot first, and their panties go as dry as the Gobi.

  17. G,
    "The girls that kept their distance were fine but the three that kept touching me, rubbing their tits on me and giggling were a distraction during my workout"

    Your wife used a catty shit test and the best way to handle it is by "Agree & Amplify." She will laugh and tell you that you are full of shit, but this also implies your social proof, which should have a positive effect on her.

    Instead you accepted her frame and your answer was somewhat defensive, but affirmed that you want to look at other women and that your wife was right about your nature.

  18. Thanks guys I can see how my comments may affirm her fears,I feel it is better than my past when I would have gotten defensive about there being women there or argued with her or even tried to diffuce it.
    I can never think of good answers in the heat of the moment..
    Another one last night was a joop perfume ad came on so she gives accuses me of fancying the woman on tv,which I ignore then another ad comes in with a guy she fancies,as she pauses it.
    I say he's so hot I would do him ..
    Then when the joop ad came back on I said she is the one at the gym that rubes her nipples on me..
    She got all angry again telling me to F off..
    Maybe as this is new to me and I am not congruent to my words??

  19. G,
    Keep in mind that you led her in those emotions. You had the frame and she reacted to you. As long as you maintain your composure, she can do whatever. You made an absurd statement which was obvious. Creating emotions in women (even the negative emotions) creates excitement and usually leads to things being more calm. This is a paradox but you have to playfully continue to reap the benefits.

    When the man does this, there is less need for the woman to create drama. As she is walking away you can say something like, "Do you know your nipples get pokies when you get pissy?" This way you keep the frame and show you won't be swayed by her reaction. After a couple of times doing this she should realize that you are no longer dancing to her tune.

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