Male Captains Are A Sexual Turn On

So following from the last post, we are left with the question of why would it be bad to have a female Captain, or even an equal 50/50 relationship.
Alrighty, here we go…
Imagine for a moment that there are two groups each consisting of a man and a woman working together on a shared project for their job. In the first group, the man is the woman’s boss. In the second group, the woman is the man’s boss. The work takes several months’ effort in relative privacy.

Jennifer: Even knowing what the post was about, I was totally expecting Athol’s next line to be a question about which group had a better work performance… 

So… “In which group is the woman more likely to experience attraction to the man?”

Clue… Vaginas aren’t feminist.
The all too obvious answer is that in the first group with the male boss,  the woman is most likely to experience attraction for him. This is just the way the world is. Female nurses fall in love with male doctors far more often they fall in love with male nurses aides. Female teachers fall in love with male principals far more than they fall in love with male janitors. Female managers fall in love with male directors far more often than they fall in love with a male working the retail counter.
For most women, there is a natural dynamic creating attraction that starts kicking in when a man is in a postion of social dominance over her. The primary purpose of the Captain and First Officer model is to seek to use that natural dynamic, to advantage the eroticism of the marriage. The act of casting the husband in the leadership role, effectively casts him as the Alpha Male of the Group and that creates attraction for him just by doing that alone.
So just to say it one more time, (!!!!) there is absolutely nothing immoral, or inappropriate to having a 50/50 marriage or a female-led relationship. It doesn’t affect my happiness how you run your marriage. If it works for you, please continue it. Seriously… I. Don’t. Care. What. Works. For. You.
My only concern with female-led relationships is that by doing so, the woman unwittingly subverts her primary purpose in having the relationship in the first place. It is very common that wives that end up dominating their husbands, find their attraction for him diminishing over time. I get zero email from husbands who are leading their relationship saying they have a sexless relationship. I get an avalanche of email from husbands who have dominant wives saying they have a sexless relationship. It’s really that simple.
It’s a terrible irony that women who get married truly wanting an erotic relationship with their husband, can damage the eroticism by taking control of the relationship. Whereas if they let him lead, that would support the erotic potential of the relationship. This is a very subtle but cumulative effect at work and it can compound over several years before it really starts being felt in the marriage. The women very, very, very rarely are aware of this happening on a conscious level – usually they just struggle to understand why they fell out of love with their husband.
More frequently than not, women are appalled at the realization their sexuality actually works this way. You would think that the $74 trillion dollar romance novel market featuring dominant male leads would have tipped them off.
Jennifer plays the First Officer role not because she’s stupid, weak or incapable, but because she’s consciously aware that it adds to her sexual interest in me. Plus it allows her to feel more comfortable gaining enjoyment from moments of being supportive and submissive. It allows her to be her. Being First Officer is getting her what she wants from being married.
Being the Captain casts me as the Alpha Male of the Group, and creates attraction, but there’s also the equally important requirement that I continue my Beta Traits in the marriage as well, and seek to make Jennifer comfortable with our relationship. So all the Beta Traits related to comfort building are vital to have as well. Being the Captain is absolutely not about being a thug-husband.
I mean not for nothing, but probably 80-90% of my “orders” to Jennifer are simply to stop working so hard, rest, take a nap, go relax this is good enough. My #1 and #2 used items in my Captain’s toolbox are the words, “please” and “thank you.” I’m not forcing her to do anything.
Jennifer: I think what people are missing is that in terms of the quality of the decision, it’s wouldn’t be better or worse for either Athol or me making it. We talk the options out together, we just need someone to decide. I thought the question at the start of the post was going to be something about the team with the male boss being better than the female boss team. It’s not about that, it’s about attraction. 

Athol: And just to be clear on other possible misunderstandings…
This is not about all men being dominant over all women. This is not about what women can or cannot do in the workplace. This not about a religious dictate to do anything. This is not about a divine right simply for being male. This is about how to create and sustain an erotic long term relationship with one woman.
Alright I’m done, I’m starting to feel like I’m doing the roar on this issue…

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Comments

  1. DW says:

    Well said, Athol. If this doesn't clear up any possible confusion on the Captain and First Officer issue then I don't know what will.

  2. Anonymous says:

    So let me get this straight…

    What I hear you saying is that in order for a woman to take a man seriously, respect him and ultimately follow him, he has to be the leader (or boss based on the example in your opening)?

  3. Anonymous says:

    This is just another way to state the fundamental premise of Game which is the fundamental premise of evolutionary behavioral sexual psychology: male psycho-sexual dominance and female psycho-sexual surrender. This is the outgrowth of female vulnerability (especially during pregnancy) and *relative* weakness to male strength (notice I said relative). This is the way we are "wired"; ie the emotional pathways of the human animal. And of course this leads to female hypergamy which is what Athol was getting at in this post.

    Roissey has covered this too. When the woman is dominant in the relationship the potential for disaster increases dramatically. Human nature is not infinitely malleable despite the blank slate garbage we constantly get bombarded by.

    M.M.

  4. Anonymous says:

    It seems to ignore the glaring difference of leading as a result of innate leadership versus being "let" lead. If that makes sense. It's like winning on your own rather than winning because your opponent let you win.

  5. Athol Kay says:

    So let me get this straight…

    What I hear you saying is that in order for a woman to take a man seriously, respect him and ultimately follow him, he has to be the leader (or boss based on the example in your opening)?

    In terms of being his willing and eager sex partner, yes.

    (And not "all" women, but certainly "most" women. Something I have covered in the Primer and other posts)

  6. krysie says:

    Hmm… Interesting thoughts. I know I actively am attracted to him when he takes a lead in the bedroom. But I am not as interested in him being the final decision maker in every aspect of our life. I wonder if your perspective might be skewed by being married to a woman who actively enjoys a submissive role.

    For the record, I am not in, nor do I desire to be in, a female led relationship. I'm definitely not a dominant personality. But a man who assumes dominance (anyplace outside the bedroom), would inspire fear in me, not lust. It would not matter if he really was a nice guy with my best interest at heart. With the combination of my life history and personality, a man who was significantly dominant most of the time, even with the best of intentions, would overwhelm me and "I" would disappear.

    I am a people pleaser most of the time, and this really can be a problem – it can do a real number on my self esteem. I am with somebody who encourages me not to try to please others (not even him) and to maintain and awareness of what I want. This helps me thrive and flourish and feel joy, which certainly keeps me in the right frame of mind to enjoy good sex. My man is just right for me. He can be dominant when I need him to be, but he can also be an equal when that's what I need.

    It's not that he doesn't take leadership sometimes. After all, when he encourages me to be less of a people pleaser, that's a form of taking leadership. But there is most definitely no assumption that he will have the final word on every decision. (Which washer to buy, how to finance something, etc.)

  7. Athol Kay says:

    Krysie – all that is perfectly fine. You need to find what works best for the two of you. If what you have now is the best possible, then keep doing that. Don't try and please me by changing! ;-)

    However… most people pleasers are wired heavily for submission both inside and outside of the bedroom.

    If they get steamrollered in an early relationship or two though, their shields go up an awful lot. It sounds like your guy is acting like the Captain in a low key manner with you.

    And please take this as a compliment – you kinda sound like Jennifer.

  8. Anonymous says:

    "More frequently than not, women are appalled at the realization their sexuality actually works this way. You would think that the $74 trillion dollar romance novel market featuring dominant male leads would have tipped them off."

    Because they know it's fiction, and therefore think that it isn't real. No, seriously.

    Men enjoy Star Trek or w.h.y., but they realise that there aren't any warp drives, tricorders or phasers. They don't go around wondering whether the dilithium needs recrystallising or whatever.

    People actually do detach fiction from reality. Rightly or wrongly, it's what they do…

  9. Anonymous says:
  10. Anonymous says:
  11. Timitz says:

    Krysie- What makes me chuckle about what you said is that you sound like a lot of sailors when they talk about a "harder" Captain. You sound like my wife with the people pleasing.

    I think a lot of what people, especially women, get caught up with on this analogy is that they think there is only one type of Captain. With the Navy there are hundreds of ships each with its own Captain that has different styles of leadership. Some are more authoritarian, some are about consensus building, some are a mix. The common element, however, is that the Captain always has the final decision. In practice the Captain very rarely spends time making all the decisions. He has the XO (First Officer) and all the other officers of the ship doing that for him. Everyone has their tasks they are good at and take care of. If someone slacks off, or screws up they go up the chain of authority, which takes care of the problem, either by disciplining them or by teaching them what they did wrong. If something goes majorly wrong its the Captain's head because his job is to make sure everything runs smoothly. Very rarely does a colossal screw up fall on the head of the XO or any of the crew. With power comes responsibility.

    In a family it works a lot of the same way. I'm the Captain, my wife is the XO, and my kids are the crew. I delegate tasks such as: finances, and cooking to my wife, I take care of the outdoor chores and fixing things, cleaning is shared. As they get older the kids will have more responsibility and have tasks delegated to them as well, such as sweeping or lawn mowing. As XO my wife is just as free to delegate and be in charge of the kids as I am. Its especially important that she be a good XO because as soon as I walk out the door she is in charge. I go to sea with the Navy, so she has extended periods as acting Captain she HAS to be able to survive without me able to help her thus she can't be anything but a respected equal. As Captain I have a duty to make sure she can make it without me if that means showing her how the TV cables go in, buying a step-stool, or leaving her numbers for a good mechanic.
    Another critical thing that I think Athol left out, is that the Captain and XO NEVER undermine each other. I never contradict my wife in front of anyone and vice versa. Disagreements are in private, where we discuss them and reach consensus. For a Captain to be a good Captain he needs the support of a good First Officer.

    It seems a lot of the complaints I hear about this analogy is that the person doesn't like a particular style of Captain. The key to a good Captain is he respects his First Officer and crew, backs up the First Officer's decisions, and has command of the ship. The key to a good First Officer is they Respect the Captain and crew, support the Captain, and are willing to bring up unpleasant topics with the Captain. The key to a good crew is they respect authority and submit to higher orders. However, that gets done is up to the individuals involved.

  12. Ian Ironwood says:

    But people don't pursue fiction that doesn't confirm their pre-existing likes and dislikes. Romance novels, Twilight movies and soap-operas wouldn't be as popular as they are if they didn't tweak some sensitive spot in the feminine psyche. Just because it's fiction, doesn't mean that it doesn't have basis in reality.

  13. Ian Ironwood says:

    @krysie

    Not trying to pile on, but . . .

    "But I am not as interested in him being the final decision maker in every aspect of our life. I wonder if your perspective might be skewed by being married to a woman who actively enjoys a submissive role."

    I think you're missing the point. And I think this is what really gets under the skin of a lot of women when they think about being "subjected" to Game in their relationships: they want to feel that they have control of a situation when viscerally they prefer it when they do not have control of a situation (in a good way). It's unlikely that your man is going to unilaterally make any major decision without consulting you, nor is Athol (or anyone, really) advocating that men do so.

    What Athol is advising is that a man assume the position of policy-maker, with the understanding that this power (I can't believe I'm saying this) also comes with the greater responsibility to ensure the welfare of everyone in the family i.e. his wife and kids.

    One of my issues with feminism is that the ideology actively discouraged men from assuming this kind of leadership without the "permission" of their wives, and that pretty much steps all over the whole idea of adopting a dominant position. When men started having to ask permission to lead, that undermined the sexual dynamic to the point that hypergamy set in: wives lost confidence in their husbands, yet bridled at their husband's lackluster attempts at asserting themselves, much less leading, the relationship because that put them in the social position of "putting up with a man's crap". That's the feminine equivalent, socially speaking, of a man calling another man a vagina. Under feminist ideology, "putting up with a man's crap" (without said "crap" being well-defined) is the ultimate in gender-betrayal.

    "Final decision maker in every aspect of your life". That's the deepest pit of hell under feminist ideology. Yet that's not what Athol is suggesting. He's saying that SOMEONE has to be the one to make that final decision, and when it that SOMEONE is the man, then there is some psycho-sexual benefit from it: even if the man is wrong, he demonstrated decisiveness and determination, both DHVs that make panties wet even in the face of failure. Captain and FO disagree, Captain is wrong, but he wasn't unsure. Net gain to the relationship.

    When that SOMEONE is the woman, however, then the psycho-sexual equation goes in the other direction. If a woman makes a wrong decision, even if she's just as assured and determined as a man would be, then not only is she wrong but her determination and self-assuredness don't matter to the relationship, because men don't see those as real DHVs in women, as a rule. Instead, there's a festering resentment of the man for the woman who made the decision, especially if he was arguing for another course of action. Depending on the character of the woman in question, either she'll own up to the mistake, agree that it was the wrong one, and concede that the man was correct, or she'll let her Rationalization Hamster spin it into her not being wrong (which is what often happens).

    But you should know: whenever the Rationalization Hamster gets involved, then male resentment is bound to arise.

    Athol's right. Someone has to be Captain. And you can't have two co-Captains. Women have a sexual response to leadership, and consensus is the absence of leadership. So if you want to maintain your sexual attraction to your husband, then worrying about his "control" of you in the relationship and his ability to make decisions on your behalf is contra-intuitive.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Hi Athol…

    I have a question, not related to this post, but something I'd really like to get your input on…not sure what the procedure is here, but could really use your help…

    My wife sometimes touches other men while talking with them, and I really do not like this. My wife is warm and friendly and, if she is comfortable with a person, will touch them when talking. Lately, I've noticed this happening more often with one person…

    Here is the situation…
    There is a guy (male friend of mine) that we see often socially. I'll call him Joe. I think that Joe may have a crush on my wife, because he goes out of his way to talk to her everytime we meet. Joe is very social and talkative, usually the life of the party, and is much more outgoing than I am. My wife has told me that Joe is an "attractive man", that women like men like him, although she said "she is not attracted to him." (Joe is probably a 5 or 6, short, not physically in shape or attractive in my opinion…I am closer to 7 or 8, tall and in better shape than Joe, have been told I'm physically attractive…Joe has money though, very successful in his business…I am struggling in my business, and not wealthy like Joe)…

    Everytime we see Joe, he makes it a point to talk to me my wife (he is kind of flirty, smiling, laughing). My wife always responds warmly, and laughs at everything he says. She is very personable with him, and he obviously enjoys it…

    Often times, when talking to Joe, my wife will briefly touch him, usually putting her hand on his arm or shoulder. Yesterday, we saw Joe, and my wife talked and laughed with him briefly, and then touched his arm and gave him a quick squeeze.

    How should I respond to this? I have mentioned this to my wife in the past (touching Joe and other men while talking to them)…and my wife acted like she did not realize she was doing this. She seemed irritated with me, and acted like this was no big thing…

    I would like to talk to her again about this, but don't want to appear weak or worried. I want her to stop touching Joe. I think that he is getting turned on by this, and I also think that this is disrespectful to me and our marriage.

    Should I talk to her again about this? Or should I just ignore (but keep a close eye on Joe) and pretend that I am not bothered? (and continuing working on my MAP)…

    By the way, I have staring implementing many of your ideas, and our relationship is definately better (we have gone from low sex marriage to high sex marriage, so maybe I shouldn't be concerned about this)…

    Am concerned that if I say something about her touching Joe, this will seem too Beta. My wife needs for me to be more Alpha…

    Thanks Athol…

  15. Anonymous says:

    So are you saying that a man can (and should) simply decide he is charge, irrespective of his abilities, simply because he's a man?

    That's like saying you can lead a group of men on the simple grounds you're the tallest – someone shorter but more capable will kick you in the balls then stamp on your face so hard your grandchildren will feel it.

    And this:
    " there's a festering resentment of the man for the woman who made the decision, especially if he was arguing for another course of action" You make it sound like one sex has a monopoly on a low regard for mistakes! I think spending your life reviewing porno has blinded you to the real world, chum.

  16. Anonymous says:

    The thing to remember is that in a council of two, ONE of you must own the tie-breaking vote. Have you settled who has it, or is it a constant fight over who does?

    C/FO as described here is only one of many ways to settle the issue.

  17. Anonymous says:

    That's an odd question, especially since the title at the top of the page answers it directly. The idea is that a man should ultimately take charge because "male captains are a sexual turn-on."

  18. Anonymous says:

    You don't get it, do you? Simply having a cock and balls and saying that therefore he's in charge won't turn anyone on.

  19. Anonymous says:

    So at the outset, the man says "In this relationship, I'm the man, therefore I always get the last word", and this turns women on?

    I hear there's a good line of logic on the internet that the moon really IS made of green cheese, too.

  20. R. says:

    Looks like the anonymous above are unwilling to understand what is being said. Over and over, Athol and others are patiently trying to explain this concept. You people keep assuming stuff that haven't been said, or say things that go directly against what has just been explained.

    Sometimes, one feels that there is no point in arguing with people like these. Get offended by one or two words, and enter in "ignorance mode"…

  21. Doug1 says:

    Athol–

    My only concern with female-led relationships is that by doing so, the woman unwittingly subverts her primary purpose in having the relationship in the first place. It is very common that wives that end up dominating their husbands, find their attraction for him diminishing over time. I get zero email from husbands who are leading their relationship saying they have a sexless relationship. I get an avalanche of email from husbands who have dominant wives saying they have a sexless relationship. It's really that simple.

    Yuup.

    Heartiste/Roissy has a recent post on a study looking into the characteristics of women who cheat. Number one was:

    1) Women who wear the pants in the relationship are more likely to cheat:

    The imbalance of power in the primary relationship has been associated with infidelity. Edwards and Booth (1976) found that wives who reported that they “get their way” more often during disagreements were also more likely to have extramarital sexual involvements.

    http://www.bakadesuyo.com/5-things-you-didnt-know-about-infidelity

  22. Doug1 says:

    Feminist ideology is and has been since second wave feminism arose amid the New Left of the 60’s terrible both for family stability and relations between the sexes within and outside of marriage.

    Alpha males rare do more than pay lip service to it, if that.

  23. Doug1 says:

    Anonymous—

    What I hear you saying is that in order for a woman to take a man seriously, respect him and ultimately follow him, he has to be the leader (or boss based on the example in your opening)?

    I’m quite sure that’s what Athol is saying, and I know it’s what I’d tell you. I’ve thought this since I ever thought about these things, say at around 12 if not before, and have NEVER ever even a little bought the feminist line to the contrary.

    I also think male bosses tend to be much better at it than female ones, and that females are over promoted a good lot for PC window dressing purposes. There are exceptions of course of great female managers and lousy male ones.

  24. Ponyboy says:

    Don't want to delve too far here, but to me this is a major challenge in having a successful marriage in the realities of today's world.

    On the one hand, what woman is going to respect a man who is a pushover and can't make a decision for himself? You hear a lot of women saying they feel like their husband is another child to look after in those cases.

    But then men who want to be decision makers in their family and take responsibility for those decisions and outcomes get labeled by people like this Anonymous poster above as "sexist" or someone who is disrespectful of women.

    As a man today, sometimes you just can't win.

  25. Doug1 says:

    Krysie—

    I'm definitely not a dominant personality. But a man who assumes dominance (anyplace outside the bedroom), would inspire fear in me, not lust. It would not matter if he really was a nice guy with my best interest at heart. With the combination of my life history and personality, a man who was significantly dominant most of the time, even with the best of intentions, would overwhelm me and "I" would disappear. I'm definitely not a dominant personality. But a man who assumes dominance (anyplace outside the bedroom), would inspire fear in me, not lust. It would not matter if he really was a nice guy with my best interest at heart. With the combination of my life history and personality, a man who was significantly dominant most of the time, even with the best of intentions, would overwhelm me and "I" would disappear. I'm definitely not a dominant personality. But a man who assumes dominance (anyplace outside the bedroom), would inspire fear in me, not lust. It would not matter if he really was a nice guy with my best interest at heart. With the combination of my life history and personality, a man who was significantly dominant most of the time, even with the best of intentions, would overwhelm me and "I" would disappear. I'm definitely not a dominant personality. But a man who assumes dominance (anyplace outside the bedroom), would inspire fear in me, not lust. It would not matter if he really was a nice guy with my best interest at heart. With the combination of my life history and personality, a man who was significantly dominant most of the time, even with the best of intentions, would overwhelm me and "I" would disappear.

    It’s a fundamental tenant of most good teachers of game including most certainly Heartiste/Roissy and I think Athol as well, that in areas of sexual attraction and emotional reaction, men should pay far more attention to what women do, than what they say.

    I seriously doubt that you would react as you’re predicting you would to a man who was quite dominant in a leader sort of way, if he also really listened to what you want, feels you, comforts you, and deeply cares about you. “You” would NOT disappear. That’s just feminist dogma that you’ve absorbed from the general entertainment culture, etc. In fact you'd blossom. That's been my experience.

    Then again I've never had a relationship with a feminist ideologue, and never would.

  26. Mike says:

    Totally concur.

    My wife left me for her boss. We're all much happier now.

    She has balls bigger than most guys, so she needed a no-neck kind of guy to take care of her.

  27. Dreadpiratk says:

    It's kinda of sad how feminism has poisoned our society to the point where the very idea that men and women are in any way different, or need or want different things is heresy. One has only to look at the lives of successful women. They DO NOT marry down. Angelina Jolie marries Brad Pitt, not the key grip from her last movie. You NEVER see a highly successful woman that is happily married unless her husband is more successful than she is. You do see successful men with non-famous, lower earning wives. It's just how we are wired.

    How do we get from C/FO to 'controlling every aspect of her life' ?? Does the CEO of you company control every aspect of your job? Of course not, not if you're company is at all functional. Nor will any micro-managing captain last long in that role. Remember, marriage is voluntary. The Captain can only be captain as long as the crew stays with him.

  28. Doug1 says:

    Ian—

    One of my issues with feminism is that the ideology actively discouraged men from assuming this kind of leadership without the "permission" of their wives, and that pretty much steps all over the whole idea of adopting a dominant position. When men started having to ask permission to lead, that undermined the sexual dynamic to the point that hypergamy set in: wives lost confidence in their husbands, yet bridled at their husband's lackluster attempts at asserting themselves, much less leading, the relationship because that put them in the social position of "putting up with a man's crap". That's the feminine equivalent, socially speaking, of a man calling another man a vagina. Under feminist ideology, "putting up with a man's crap" (without said "crap" being well-defined) is the ultimate in gender-betrayal.

    Spot on.

  29. Doug1 says:

    AnonymousJan 16, 2012 12:28 PM

    You don't get it, do you? Simply having a cock and balls and saying that therefore he's in charge won't turn anyone on.

    No it’s you that doesn’t get it.

    Women should pair up with men they can look up to. By far most women have an hypergamous instinct to do so. They’re most turned on when they do. Of course not every many can or should be a leader over every woman. Some women need or will only be happy with a very high status and dominant/good at game man. Most women would be happier if they could land a man with a good lot of both at least. There are also some women who’s combination of (lack of) looks and high personal need for dominance, especially as exacerbated by all the feminist messages in American culture, aren’t likely to be happy with any man who’ll be willing to marry her. Our feminism has most definitely greatly increase the percentage of women in the last category.

  30. Doug1 says:

    AnonymousJan 16, 2012 12:28 PM

    You don't get it, do you? Simply having a cock and balls and saying that therefore he's in charge won't turn anyone on.

    No it’s you that doesn’t get it.

    Women should pair up with men they can look up to. By far most women have an hypergamous instinct to do so. They’re most turned on when they do. Of course not every many can or should be a leader over every woman. Some women need or will only be happy with a very high status and dominant/good at game man. Most women would be happier if they could land a man with a good lot of both at least. There are also some women who’s combination of (lack of) looks and high personal need for dominance, especially as exacerbated by all the feminist messages in American culture, aren’t likely to be happy with any man who’ll be willing to marry her. Our feminism has most definitely greatly increase the percentage of women in the last category.

  31. Dreadpiratk says:

    "So are you saying that a man can (and should) simply decide he is charge, irrespective of his abilities, simply because he's a man?"

    Um, yes. Why would any woman marry a man they don't feel has greater ability to lead then they do? Any woman who does dooms herself to a very unhappy, and likely short marriage.

  32. Doug1 says:

    Ponyboy—


    But then men who want to be decision makers in their family and take responsibility for those decisions and outcomes get labeled by people like this Anonymous poster above as "sexist" or someone who is disrespectful of women.

    As a man today, sometimes you just can't win.

    The way I “win” that one is by saying straight up that I’m anti-feminist. Oh it’s fine that women can work at all levels of the workforce according to their individual abilities, drives and priorities, but much of the rest of it is bs blank state radical equalist = men and women are the same and gender is only a social construct, propaganda. Supported by lots of academic lying and cherry picking again and again and again.

    So to charges that you’re sexist, agree, if what is meant by sexist is that I think the sexes are notably different psychologically, and that the natural thing in relationships is for men to be more dominant and lead their mates, though with lots of respect for what she knows and what she wants.

    If you’re noticing that game is incompatible with feminist propaganda and teachings, welcome to the club.

  33. Ian Ironwood says:

    If a man doesn't decide to take charge, just because he's a man, then he shouldn't be getting married in the first place.

    Or should he wait for his wife to give him permission to be in charge?

  34. Ian Ironwood says:

    No, the man says "This is how it is going to be. You may agree with me, you may disagree with me, but this is how I run things. You may come with me on this path, or you can go your own way, but I'm going this way."

    THAT'S what turns women on. Subtle distinction.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Orange here. To Anonymous with the touching Joe issue…I thought of a way that you can address this without looking insecure. I'm a chick here, so here goes my hamster :-)

    I would actually pose it as you are your friend Joe's protector, looking out for him and his poor heart. Something along the lines of "I know you are just being friendly and I love that about you, but Joe, and men in general, can often think that light touches mean much more. Of course that isn't your intention, but I know you hate the thought of making someone uncomfortable, so I'm bringing it to your attention".

    Orange

  36. Stargate Girl says:

    "In terms of being his willing and eager sex partner, yes."

    Shouldn't the guy be as eager and willing?

  37. Z says:

    "I know I actively am attracted to him when he takes a lead in the bedroom. But I am not as interested in him being the final decision maker in every aspect of our life. "

    As I said in an earlier comment, "every aspect of our life" does **not** work. My ex had a near tantrum when I refused to blindly follow orders in an "emergency", when I refused to look for a missing pinata stick where he wanted me to look first. There's a name for Captains who do things like this: Bligh.

    A good Captain doesn't care where the pinata stick is, or if it's the exact stick he wants to use, as long as the birthday kid has fun at the party. An incompetent Captain focuses on trivial decisions as proof of dominance.

    On the other hand, allowing either spouse to unilaterally make the decision on which city to live in, with no input from the other, is bad Captaining as well. In this case, the Captain/FO analogy fails … the C does not have sealed orders s/he has to keep secret from the FO. This should be a joint decision, meaning each spouse has their full say, and the chance to feel their input is fully respected. Hopefully a consensus decision is reached, but if one can't one spouse has to tak the lead. Regardless of gender, that spouse is Captain.

    In between, there are tons of little/moderate decisions: where do we go on date night, two refrigerators look good, which do we buy, do we offer to hose the Superbowl party this year … in these cases, deferring to the Captain for the final decision works well, as long as both parties are respected.

    Captain/First Officer should **never** be confused with Captain Kirk / Yeoman Rand.

    Z

  38. SweetSue says:

    Exactly! It sounds like your style of leadership recognizes that respect has to be earned and actions speak louder than words. If an individual walks the talk and owns the decisions from start to finish i.e. it happened on my watch so I will handle the aftermath even the unintended outcomes and makes good decisions that are in the interest of all parties – leadership is more than mere word.

    As a woman I am seeking a Captain because in my day to day life I take full responsibility for making decisions and owning the outcomes both professionally and off duty. In my personal life to keep it simple and enjoy able if the above attributes are true taking my chevrons off and following a competent leader is a relief.

  39. GC says:

    It's hard for any woman who grew up in the feminist era to think this way. It just goes against a lifetime of conditioning; I know it does for me. My thought for those women is this – if you are entirely happy in your marriage, then just continue on. But, if you are not as attracted to your husband as you once were, or aren't happy with your sex life, or feel vaguely dissatisfied, try an experiment. If you know that you are controlling a lot of things in your marriage, pull back a little bit. Ask your husband's advice/opinion. Ask him to decide something you would normally decide. Let him know that you are interested in him being a little more Alpha in the bedroom. Just try a couple of things that allow him to be a bit more of a man and you a bit more of a woman. If you like it, if it increases your attraction to him, continue it and try something else too. Just see what happens. You aren't giving up any of your rights or competencies as a person, you're just trying something a little bit different in your relationship. If it doesn't work, then fine, you really haven't lost anything. If it works, you may end up with a better sex life and a better marriage.

  40. Athol Kay says:

    GC +1

  41. GC says:

    I've moved just slightly beyond "fascinated and appalled"….

  42. Athol Kay says:

    I hear you. It took me a while to believe it as well.

    It's very strange at first isn't it. It's "totally wrong" in theory but "awkwardly right" in practice.

    Small steps. There's no rush.

  43. krysie says:

    Athol, you are right that he does in a very low key way take leadership, but he doesn't give orders. I follow sometimes, and sometimes I don't. He can be a leader in many ways which is one thing that attracts me to him. He can be a leader in sexual and in emotional areas too. He's strong for me so I can be emotionally vulnerable.

    But the assumption is not that he will give orders about difficult things. I can communicate when I need him to be strong and he takes charge then. I take charge plenty of times too, and it doesn't reduce our sex life. For example, I made the decision to have an emergency savings fund for both of us. I was the one who thought of it, and it was a great idea. There was no expectation that I would bring the subject to him and he would give the order… that would be artificial. (Not for others, necessarily. But, for me, yes.)

    My point is, he knows when to turn it off. Because, for me (and possibly for a few other women), without being able to turn it off, there is absolutely no beta. Not a bit. I suppose I'm just trying to explain why some women react negatively to the idea of the man being in charge always, even if he's loving and kind. If he's *always* in charge then I have my guard up, and I cannot relax. I need to trust him to pull back when I need it, and that he understands that I am the best judge of when I need leadership. I need to know that my word on when I am and am not able to submit is final and will always be respected. Without that trust, most alpha is just a threat.

  44. Anonymous says:

    I'm a husband and was in a marraige that gradually deteriated over 10 years. After getting an I'm not in love with you from my wife, I started looking for answers. When I first stumbled across Athols blog I did not agree with C/FO at all and I was sure my wife wouldn't agree with it. To make a long story short, some simple experimenting proved that it could not be discounted. And after a period of several months, our marraige has done a complete 180 both emotionally and in the bedroom. My wife is totally on board with this and it was a hard sell for me (as the husband) to believe it, but the results in our marraige have been undeniable and dramatic. And for what its worth, my wife is not a submissive person at all and is completely capable and competent. We are not doing C/FO because I (the husband) am any better. We are doing it because it works!!

  45. Anonymous says:

    Being browbeaten? Not subtle.

  46. Anonymous says:

    "academic lying and cherry picking again and again and again. "

    You mean like the universal hypergamous instinct? LOL!

  47. Anonymous says:

    this is jen

    Athol, please do not give up on this topic…its a very important one, it is also the one that takes the longest to "get".

    reading it repeatedly and reading it worded in different ways ( along with time to absorb it) really helps.

    thanks for your effort on this one.

  48. Anonymous says:

    Sometimes my husband makes a decision but decides to change that decision in favor of what I wanted. He makes it clear he is only doing this out of love for me,or consideration for other concerns of mine. It doesn't seem like he is buckling to me it seems like the king granting me a favor.

  49. Jane says:

    Funny reading these comments! I'm a 50+ yo woman. I grew up as a feminist, and work in a professional career. I would have totally dismissed this whole idea 20 years ago, but have in the past few years (before finding Athol's blog) come to accept that being the submissive partner in our relationship is what makes it "work" for me sexually.

    So, Athol, keep spreading the word!

  50. Anonymous says:

    As a very non-dominant female, I believed like you. I wound up with a *very* dominant male, much to my dismay, after trying to land what I thought was a sweet man. Lost my identity and self esteem. Discovered he had a personality disorder and somehow worked up the courage to leave him.

    My husband (now) is dominant in the relationship. He makes the final call. He's extremely shy about it, but it's clearly there. He also cares for me and nurtures me. He knows me inside and out. I don't care if he's right or wrong, I know that he has carefully considered my needs and feelings.

    Being Captain takes the right relationship. Being Captain is still in context of your relationship. I fought my previous husband's leadership, and that should have been the first clue. I didn't trust him. This time, it was no question. It wasn't even anything I had to "give up." We just assumed the roles because the trust was there. We are on the same page on so many things that it's more like checking a box than fighting a fight.

    I definitely feel safe and secure in the C/FO arrangement. I feel so much stronger as a person. Encouraged to grow and make decisions as FO. He trusts me to make those decisions because we have set up a framework based on shared values

  51. Anonymous says:

    YES!!!

  52. Anonymous says:

    Oh, geez I replied to Doug1's response to you. Backing.up Athol, i'm an example of being burned in a previous relationship. Sounds like I missed the part that you two are making it work, and you're not losing you. Awesome!

  53. Anonymous says:

    Being browbeaten is being abusive. There is nothing abusive about this statement. You're reading in things that aren't there.

  54. Doug1 says:

    +1

    The second wave and subsequent feminist era that began in the late sixties has been terrible for family stability, for children, and for relationships. Most of the propaganda is not only wrong and built heavily on lies, literally, but is also destructive of healthy, happy male female hetero relationships. It's been good for lesbians though, wooo hoo.

  55. Anonymous says:

    I suggest getting over it. Acting threatened by Joe will make you look like a lesser man. Touching people that you are comfortable the way that you described is perfectly natural and if she does it with everyone then does she really need to stop?

  56. Anonymous says:

    I would pay attention to Joe. Your wife is courteous enough that she hasn't told you directly that she is attracted to him. However, she says that he is attractive and women in general find him attractive. And then she throws out IOIs that may or may not be conscious.

    I will say that it's better to be seen as beta or unreasonable in order to cut a potential rival out of your life than it is to err on the side of caution and find yourself trying to pick up the pieces of your wife's affair.

    But if you don't want to nuke Joe out of your life yet, I think you need to dedicate yourself to cock blocking him at every opportunity. He should never have a private conversation with your wife. If the two of them are separated from the group, either bring your wife back to the group, or go stand in between them. I assume Joe is single. So, you and your wife should start playing match maker with the single gals and Joe. Do whatever you need to do to get your wife out of his sights.

    Good luck.

  57. Anonymous says:

    Agree with the second commenter. Cockblock Joe at all costs. Athol will have some sort of asshole comment that will be very effective. I'm a wife, so I don't have one, but I can tell yoi to be worried. Even if it's not a conscious attraction now, if you don't claim her hard, it will be.

  58. Anonymous says:

    And she says no, means it and refuses to back down? What then?

    Starve her?

    Beat her?

    Throw her into the street?

  59. Athol Kay says:

    Joe is possibly her backup plan if your business goes south. His primary + over you is money, so attend to your business as the structural issue to fix.

    Cockblock him every time you see them together. Just wander over and take up space. Crushing painful handshake, big smile and searing eye contact.

    At this point your wife hasn't done anything particularly wrong – being attracted to him isn't a reaction she has control over. But if she starts seeking Joe out, that's a major red flag. Monitor the situation. If something more marked occurs say something about it.

  60. Standup Guy says:

    Anon 9:33PM.

    I have had similar good results. We did not start with a situation as bad as yours, but my wife and I had good results when I just started *being* more of a leader.

    What many ojbectioners do not understand about captain/first officer is that they are just roles that you are playing. There is nothing inherently good or bad about being capt. or F/O. They are just roles.

    Example: at work, my boss is just doing his job by delegating work to me and others under him. He operates at a higher level of detail than me. Nothing inherently good or bad about that. I also delegate to others. My boss is not necessarily smarter or better than me. He is just doing his job/playing the role of boss. I am not as bright as some people that work under me. That's OK. I am in charge of my people because I am good at visioning and leading. But I could not be successful without my team. We all have important roles to play. Both capt and F.O. are critical to the success of the marriage team. Boss and worker are critical to the success of an organization.

    So if both capt and FO are needed, why not put the man in the captain role? Man in capt. position has been shown over thousands of years and in modern times to be the one that is most successful in a positive functioning household.

  61. Standup Guy says:

    Captain/F.O. is not an adversarial relationship.

    Captain does not equal dictator/jerk.
    F/O does does not equal peasant/supplicant.

    Captain and F/O are supposed to be on the same team working towards the same goals.

  62. Anonymous says:

    Standup Guy >I posted anon 9:33pm

    Your example of a boss who has people working from him that are brighter than he is one of the best ways yet to help people understand C/FO. Women get so worried that this will somehow undermind them, but the exact opposite happens. My wife feels more empowered now that we are in C/FO than ever before. Nobody likes working for a boss who doesn't lead them.

  63. Anonymous says:

    Exactly!! My husband compliments me all the time for being smarter than he is. But he sure as heck is smart enough to listen to me a lot!

  64. Anonymous says:

    Then you have no relationship to begin with. If she refuses to even *discuss* it, she's being the dictator. If it's bad for the husband to be a dictator, then it's bad for her to be a dictator, too. (Keep fighting the urge to type DICKtator.)

    Talking is a good place to start. If this kind of stalemate occurs, your relationship has much bigger problems than simply donning a Captain Kirk costume.

  65. Anonymous says:

    Whatever people can or can't accept about the C/FO relationship model, I have yet to hear a single woman post anything about being sexually attracted to her husband while their relationship is reversed. Where are those comments?

  66. Anonymous says:

    Jane, of all the comments here, I found yours to be very inspiring to me. Thanks for your insight.

  67. elhaf says:

    It is not browbeating for the man to have boundaries. If a man draws a line in the sand and says "I will not be dominated by my wife" then he will be happier, simple as that. If a woman says, "I'm going to dominate you" and the man walks away, that is not browbeating, at least not by the man. It is the correct response to a toxic person.

  68. elhaf says:

    I'm sexist. What of it?

  69. elhaf says:

    Most likely entirely true, too. She doesn't mean it sexually or realize it is, be he damn sure takes it that way, as any guy does. Then he starts paying more attention, and soon a green-eyed monster is created.

  70. Christy says:

    +1000. Proof.

  71. Anonymous says:

    Those kinds of women aren't here, reading and commenting? Absence of evidence isn't evidence of absence.

  72. Anonymous says:

    He isn't saying "I will not be dominated by my wife". What he's saying is "YOU will submit to me, without question, on every matter, come what may, no matter what". She says "Go take a flying fuck at a rolling donut".

  73. Anonymous says:

    As well she should. But that's not what we're talking about here. Abuse is not the same as boundary enforcement. Please re-read elhaf's comment.

  74. Anonymous says:

    Wow, just discovered this website basically and it is totally hot.
    I am married, 30 years old, married to a man a few years older who makes a lot more money than I do.
    Everything I have read that Athol says about male dominance/female submission rings true for me. Dominant guys turn me on.
    My husband is definitely the one who "wears the pants" in our house, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I wish he was more dominant actually… maybe I will "accidentally" leave this website up on the computer :)

  75. Jonathan says:

    I know this is an old post. But in all that has been said in three days worth of this subject, only two people seemed to even touch on what men really need to be able to do as leaders.

    As an aside, it seemed some dissenters here may have had backgrounds that taught them to mistrust men.

    Anyway, the key is, not only that the man makes decisions, but that he – as a true leader – accepts responsibility (blames himself) if there’s a screwup. “I shouldn’t have given you a responsibility you weren’t prepared to handle. Would you like some training? Or do you want someone else to handle this?” Or “What tools do I need to give you so that you can accomplish this effectively without my help next time?”

    It takes time to teach those under your leadership that if they mess up making decisions that you delegated to them, that there will not be retaliation. It helps them to have the courage to make decisions knowing that their superior “has their back.”

    Of course, just like an employer/employee relationship, hire (marry) and delegate wisely. Just don’t be a whiny, finger-pointing omega – you may as well save yourself the time and literally shoot yourself in the foot.

    In a climate like this, it is easier for a subordinate to accept another person’s leadership.

    So in short, it’s not so much “I’m the man, so I make the decisions around here,” as it is”I accept the responsibility for how things go down when you accept my (considerate, informed) leadership.”

    Here’s an interesting scenario:

    The husband tells his wife, “If ever you think I’ve had too much to drink in public, and you take me home, I will not be upset with you.” His wife, pulls him from a party (his boss is throwing) early, reminding him that he told her to do this.

    This results in his being passed over for a promotion, since his absence offended his employer.

    The next morning he realizes what went down.

    Now, I ask you, should he in any way blame her? Should he even let her know that he missed a promotion based on her decision? I believe a true leader would stay quiet and commend her. If she happened to ask why it seems he dropped the subject of his promotion, and she’s really insistent, he would explain, but accept the responsibility for the disappointment himself and again reassuringly commend her.

    Any comments? Can this be moved forward to a more current date?

    Thanks.

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