Don’t Be Broke

Warning: This post contains grossly offensive caricature about all women being potential gold diggers to make the point that there’s no getting around the need for men to have an income. Your mother probably wasn’t like this at all, and you probably aren’t like this. But you probably know someone just like this and dislike her…
Look there’s no way around this, if you’re a man, your income is a critical factor in your Sex Rank. I’m not saying you need to be a millionaire, but you can’t be broke. The only way you get women when you’re broke is by playing up the thug bastard card and getting it done on the basis of pure dominant physicality. Frankly that just doesn’t seem a viable option to what I imagine my default MMSL reader to be, so I don’t spend much time advising how to walk around like you’re an off-duty bouncer with a short fuse. Otherwise your option is luring women into your bed with cystral meth. (Though to be honest I find the cystral meth girls tiresomely clingy.) 
 So anyway… you need to earn an income. Ideally you have a disposable income.
I hate to sound like I’m shitting on the morals of women here, but every women has her price point differential where another guy can come in with a bigger wallet and take her from you. In fairness to the women, that price point differential is usually pretty sizable and as an awkward comfort… the practical reality of another guy meeting that price point and wanting her, is fairly small. Let me explain…
Assume Andrew and Anna are married. Andrew makes a fairly good income and pulls in $75,000 a year and Anna quite likes him. All is well.
Entering into the picture is Bob, who in most ways is pretty similar to Andrew, except he makes $125,000 a year. Bob makes a play for Anna, and while tempted, she declines his advances and stays with Andrew. The math being +$50,000 income a year being not enough for her to engage her hamster and find a way to rationalize dumping Andrew. Price point differential not met.
After that she meets Cory who is in most ways fairly similar to Andrew, except he makes $200,000 a year. At the +$125,000 differential, Cory is making nearly three times as much money as Andrew and over a period of four months Anna falls deeply in love with Cory and starts the affair that ultimately ends her marriage to Andrew. Pregnant to Cory, he proposes to her once the divorce to Andrew is finalized.
Now let’s imagine all that again with the same players, but with one critical difference… Andrew lost his job three years ago and never found another one. So his income is $0.
Anna has been totally disgusted with Andrew for at least the last two years and when Bob makes a play for her, his $125,000 income gets full credit as (+$125,000 differential) and he’s a knight in shining armor coming to her rescue. She doesn’t exactly immediately crush on him, but it does develop and grow quickly. There’s a lot to like about him.
Later she meets Cory who has +$75,000 income over Bob. Cory’s interest is very flattering to be sure, but she’s loyal to Bob who did after all save her from finanical ruin. +$75,000 wasn’t enough to swing her interest.
… if the ladies reading really are honest, some guy making triple what your husband makes offering you a permanent deal really is going to be pretty damn tempting, but it’s also not something that’s very likely to happen. That’s because you just aren’t good looking enough to have that happen. If you were hot enough for that sort of guy to try and poach you from your husband, you never would have married your husband in the first place, you would have held out for a richer guy from the get go. As ugly as all that reads, that’s how Sex Rank works.
In Sex Rank terms, Andrew and and Anna are 7’s. Bob is an 8 and Cory is a 9. When the 8 male tempts the 7 female, she stayed loyal “good wife”. But when the male 9 tempted the female 7, she totally flipped out and ditched the male 7 as one would expect…. Except in reality a male 9 would not try and poach a female 7 for a permanent relationship. In reality Anna might crush on Cory, and he might screw her on the side, but he’d be quite content to see Andrew and Anna stay married.
But if the husband is totally tanking on his income, suddenly nearly any guy making a decent income starts looking really good. If Andrew turns into a zero income Lord-of-XBOX, his Sex Rank drops into the 3-4 range after a couple years. Hell Anna at 7 might very happily switch Andrew out for any other male 7, let alone Bob (8) or Cory (9).
So guys, there are no shortcuts on this stuff. There is no Game that can overcome you being broke.
And yes, all this exact stuff applies to men as well. We all have a beauty point differential where the girl is just so hot our morals go out the window. But realistically there’s not much danger of us getting her in the sack because she’s out of our price range. Of course if our wife turns into an obese sexless shrew… well nearly any woman starts looking good.
See how that works?
The caveat being you can’t only bring an income to the table. It’s a big factor in male Sex Rank, but certainly not the only factor.


  1. Anonymous says:

    I had an interview for a +18,000 raise in a new company yesterday. Got laid last night. I got the job today and got laid this afternoon.

    I have been trying everything on this site to gain some alpha mileage out of the beta hole I sank into and this was the best week in years. This is a timely pair of posts.

    Btw Athol, I am well on my way to being a genuine saved marriage from your help. I cannot thank you enough. I will write when I am more comfortable and sure we are comfortable in our new way. But for now I don't care how Athiest you are. My wedding anniversaries from now on will (secretly) be known as The Feast Day of Saint Athol

  2. Jean-Luc LeGame says:

    Sugar daddy + girl = sexy time.
    Sugar momma + guy = I'm tired, I have a headache, I'm not in the mood, Not now….

  3. Anonymous says:

    If you want to be happy for the rest of your life, never make a pretty woman your wife. An ugly woman cooks meals on time, she'll always give you peace of mind.

  4. Anonymous says:

    What happened to our son, guy with a BMW came along.

  5. pdwalker says:

    Cold. Hard. Truth.

  6. "Except in reality a male 9 would not try and poach a female 7 for a permanent relationship. In reality Anna might crush on Cory, and he might screw her on the side, but he'd be quite content to see Andrew and Anna stay married."

    Too many Annas' rationalization hamsters will deny this all the way to the public housing complex.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Athol, and everyone else, I am curious how this plays out when you have inherited money in addition to income. I will soon start to work as a lawyer and I will start at about $90-100,000 a year and over time go up to about $260,000 a year. My parents are very wealthy and will transfer most of my inheritage which is about $8-9 million soon and we have a great summer house and a cottage in the mountains. I am thinking the sex rank will somehow be influenced differently if money is inherited rather than made all by yourself. It should add a lot of value because it is a lot of money but would add less as I haven`t achieved anything to aquire it. But as I will be making a lot myself there will be a mix of value adding types of money. Also I guess there might be some sort of value adding old money class thing to this as well although I am guessing that would be slight as where I live people are rather blind to class unlike in countries such as England and France.

    There are some complicating factors in assesing the impacts of money as well. I know I could easily start going to the poshest clubs and get women that are looking for men with means but I dislike such women. The type of woman I am likely to meet and to like would be someone who just expects a guy with an education and a fairly good income. I am guessing the value contribution of the money goes down with such women although it will still be there.

    I actually dislike the fact that my inherited money will impact a womans initial attraction to me and so I have always kept it secret. It feels more ok that it adds to an already established attraction. This will be more difficult now because I am bying an awesome loft apartement that very few my age would be able to afford. Women also tend to ask if you have loans on your apartement to which I would have to answer no. So unlike before they will now start to figure out very early that I have parents with at least quite alot of money. Any comment on this by anyone will be highly appreciated.

    Another complicating SMV factor in my case is that I majored in something else, worked a little bit and then started law school which in my country can be started straight after high school. This puts me years behind others my age in terms of career advancement but I guess won`t matter as much because when I start working I will aready be a lawyer after two years of being an assistant lawyer while many who start out need years to get to do the work they want to be doing and a lawyer is still a lawyer (at least if he makes good money and works for a good company). Also I am dating women about 8-10 years younger than me right now and I will be ahead of them career wise anyway.

  8. Anonymous says:

    cash is cash, dont sweat it.

    and if a women asks you about your mortgage or lack thereof? you turn that around and amplify – its a shit test. instead of responding, ask her for a detailed statement on each of her accounts.

    its your business not hers.

    be more mysterious.

  9. "But if the husband is totally tanking on his income, suddenly nearly any guy making a decent income starts looking really good."

    This would apply in any situation where the husband is "tanking" on. Or the wife for that matter. This is exactly how affairs start.

    For me, I have a very hard time thinking any man with any amount of money would be an enticement to cheat let alone leave my husband over. Money and material matter very little next to a man you like as well as love. And you're right, a guy that loaded wouldn't be looking at me anyway. Maybe if I was a girl to attract their attention I'd also be a girl who was impressed with money and would be influenced by his money.

  10. Athol Kay says:

    Ouch. That must have been horrible to watch.

  11. Athol Kay says:

    That can happen too.

  12. Athol Kay says:

    Let answer that in a post tonight. It's a good guestion.

  13. Athol Kay says:

    Agree that any area a guy tanks on is going to be a trouble spot.

    You sound just like Jennifer and I've heard her say the same sort of thing many many times… however I've also seen Jennifer react quite unconsciously related to money a tiny handful of times.

    So do take that as a compliment, but it really is humbling how insidious your own feelings can be sometimes.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Along these lines, how does managing the income factor in? For example, I don't make a ton, but I handle it wisely. We have emergency savings, a lot stashed away in IRAs and 401Ks, and (assuming the economy doesn't completely crumble) should be in a position to retire very comfortably.

    Compare that to my wife's sister's husband, who makes far more than I do, but is deeply in debt due to being generally irresponsible (quitting his job and taking a six month trip in 2008 right as the economy was collapsing, heavy gambler, very expensive tastes, etc.)

    Who "wins" in that situation?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Women have always complained about the double standard around sex between men and women; that men who get around are studs while women doing the same are sluts. But I don't hear nearly as much complaining about the double standard around money between men and women; men are *always* expected to pay and provide while women get to stay at home or sit on their income from their jobs. There's a reason joblessness in men strains marriages, often past the breaking point, far more than joblessness among women. Her respect for him takes a nose dive and it takes an extraordinarily strong frame on the man's part to counteract that. Which most jobless men are not capable of.

    So if a date ever asks me what I think of the sexual double standard, I'd ask her if she's paying.

    Random Angeleno

  16. I agree, Red. I do understand the feeling of security in regards to money.

    I did not marry my honey for his money. We were dirt poor. We are much better off now. Through both of our hard work. I also supported him during his career change that enabled him to make this amount of money.

    I really don't want to go back to no money, but I would. As long as there is food on the table, a roof over our heads, we have our health and are all together nothing else matter.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Anon 9:00a.m., depends how frugal you are with money. You have plenty saved, but are you buying generic toothpaste?

    If you do not spend money on yourself, she will conclude that you will not spend money on her.


  18. Anonymous says:

    Anon 4:07am, "The type of woman I am likely to meet and to like would be someone who just expects a guy with an education and a fairly good income."

    Here's the deal. If you go for an educated woman, just make sure she's in a decent career job with money to comfortably support herself. As a lawyer, you will be working about 70-80 hours a week, and your main concern should be that she has plenty to keep herself busy.

    If you marry a hot waitress, make sure you have a prenup. With no future, and you working tons of hours, she'll be looking to "retire" early to find someone who will pay attention to her.


  19. Anonymous says:

    "men are *always* expected to pay and provide while women get to stay at home or sit on their income from their jobs."

    Well, L.A., this is going to keep happening so long as men "allow" women to stay at home. These men, IMO, are desperately in need of being able to boss someone around, and view their wives as pet poodles, expected to greet them at the door with tails wagging.

    If you make all the money, you get to make all the decisions, like where you'll live, what cars you'll drive, where to vacation, etc. You might not respect her, but you'll have control.


  20. Anonymous says:

    Money can't buy you love. But it CAN buy you a better class of sex!

  21. Anonymous says:

    "Men are looking for the most attractive woman they can afford. Women are looking for the richest man they can attract."

    However, we cannot help who we fall in love with. If I'm in love with someone who only makes $50k, I will not be lured away by someone who makes more. Lost your job? I will keep you provided that you do not turn into a class A jerk. I cannot love a jerk.

    Athol, wives leave their husbands for other men for only 2 reasons, and they don't involve money:

    1.) She's lonely and feeling ignored, neglected, and unloved. These men are the ones who book 80 hour work weeks or military guys who spend the better part of the year deployed.

    2.) You cheated on her, so now she's going to get revenge by cheating on you. She will cheat up, not down.

    So if you're receiving a lot of mail from guys whose wives cheated or divorced them, focus on these two things first.


  22. "Well, L.A., this is going to keep happening so long as men "allow" women to stay at home. These men, IMO, are desperately in need of being able to boss someone around, and view their wives as pet poodles, expected to greet them at the door with tails wagging."

    Do you know anyone like this? I have known very few and my husband has never been like this. The only guys I have known to be overly controlling with a sahwife were low educated & low self concepts.

    I think you are working on a stereotype.

  23. You win anon 9a.m. Women like security it is the reason that money turns our heads (if it does).

  24. Anonymous says:

    Lainey, I work in a very male dominated field where we all bring in over 6 figures. About half of the guys have SAH wives, and they brag about how they call the shots. They also brag about how they can regularly cheat because their wives are not in any financial position to object. To hear these guys "lay down the law" when on the phone is heartbreaking.


  25. Jaz71,

    That is gross. It is likely that she is doing things he doesn't know about as well.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Those of us XX chromosome holders who are indifferent to Mr. Moneybags, shiny trinkets (diamonds! OMG! "squeal") and MacMansions, may be in the minority, but we do exist. Never, ever marry for money or "things." A woman should never expect or demand that a man brings more cash to the table than she can bring; not in the 21st Century!

    If your wife dumps you for a guy with more cash, you married a glorified hooker. Sorry 'bout dat.

  27. Anonymous says:

    My wife is great and rarely shows interest in another man. However, we have friends of which the husband is the president of his company and good looking. I could see a little twinkle in her eye. Time to step up my game!

  28. Anonymous says:

    Lainey, the SAH wives are definitely doing things he doesn't know about: they are secretly hoarding money. On average, two guys are served divorce papers a year in my department. Most wives save and stick it out until the last kid turns 18.

    Most of my coworkers got married young and poor (low sex rank Husband marries low sex rank Wife). The bitterness comes when 10 years later, his rank increases but he's still married to a 6, and a frigid one at that. Being stuck with her when he can now afford a model just makes him angry at his situation.


  29. Anonymous says:

    I think this is true for marriage. But for short term dating? If money were all that mattered for sex rank the PUAs would never get laid and they do. Game wouldn't matter b/c all that would matter is making money. But there are plenty of examples of the wiseass 25 year old living in his mother's basement juggling 10 girlfriends. And there are 35 year old versions of that, only they have decent jobs.

    I'm not disagreeing. I'm just raising the thought that money is but one factor.


  30. Anonymous says:


    I get your points. However, the law here makes all money made before the marriage and all money inherited during the marriage and all money that has acumulated as interest of that money or profits from it being invested, yours to keep in case of divorce. You would have to make a prenup that specifically gave her rights to some of that money if she is to get her hands on any of it. I am also legally bound by my parents will to make a prenup with regards to the money just in case so no woman could argue for me to make such a prenup. The money she could get part of would be income made during the marriage and for that I am getting a prenup.

    I don`t live in the states and work hours are more lax here, even in law. 50-70 hours is more standard here with the most intense being the first two years and many being closer to 50 than 70. There certainly are companies that push you to work 70-80 hours and I choose to work in one which pay less than those over the long term in order not to work that much.

  31. Anonymous says:

    In the olden days, he promised his resources in exchange for her fidelity. His fidelity was not the issue, it was his ability to support her and their children. In exchange, her resources were not the issue, it was her promise that the children she bore were actually his.

    This is why even men who cheat themselves go crazy when their women cheat on them, it's because of the possibility that he's being cuckolded, duped into giving his resources to children that aren't his.

    When women go crazy about men who cheat on them, it often isn't just the infidelity that may be at issue, it's also the possibility that he's giving resources to the other woman that she thinks belong to her. That female competition again, competing for male attention and the resources that come with it.

    So Athol's point being that a broke guy suffers a huge hit to his rank and is much more likely to have his wife cheat or leave stands well in this context: she's seeing the loss of resources, consequently her adherence to her vows is at risk.

  32. Anonymous says:

    Anon, forget about the inheritence. Just look for a pretty girl with a career she enjoys, friends, and hobbies.

    You have not really convinced me that you even want to get married, so why not just enjoy bachelorhood?

    If you fall in love, consider marriage then. No need to be "shopping".


  33. Anonymous says:

    I am dead certain money has a hugely differing impact on different women in terms of attraction. I have female friends who show little or no increase in interest in men they know make a lot or has inherited a lot. Some even become uncomfortable with the fact that the man has a lot of money and have little interest in a luxurious lifestyle.

    I have also seen a lot of women responding very strongly to wealth. And having grown up in a wealthy area I have been able to observe closely how wealthy men do with women. I would say that beyond an increase in about one and a half points in sex rank, maybe two, the sex rank increase goes from a real increase in sexual desire to pragmatism. The guys who look like a 6 and are a 6 on the alpha spectrum but has a lot of money and marries a 9 do NOT have enough genuine attraction from his wife. That is mainly pragmatism on behalf of the woman. Sure the money has increased the attraction but not that much. A male that looks a 6 would have to have alpha traits in addition to money to get genuine strong attraction from a female 9. If his game ups him to an 8 then getting the 9 with money is okey. If he has at least a little game to drive up his value and he has so much drive and ambition and intelligence and knowledge and style the sum total of that becomes an 8 as well, then it is ok if money helps him land the 9. A 9 is so used to men with a lot of game and or looks a 6 without much game and too little other attractive personality traits is always going to feel too weak to her in the moment. Even if he is extremely wealthy that will be the case. He will GET the 9 or 10. But she won`t fuck him much and will cheat or divorce.

    As long as she is attracted to a man quite a lot to begin with I believe knowledge of him being very well of can be felt like a real value increase making her genuinly more horny without quite knowing why or she knows but it is still felt as real horniness. But if he does not attract her as a person at all or just a little bit she is gold digging to some extent or at least being primarily pragmatic in her choice.

    This is part of the reason I want to keep women unaware of just how wealthy I am untill I know strong attraction is secured anyway. For example by not taking her to my place untill I feel like I am certain she will be down to fuck anyway or at least seem so attracted she would have on the next date.

  34. Anonymous says:


    Not shoping just thinking ahead.

  35. I've never really had good experiences with men who are well off. The handful I've dealt with all acted like the fact they had money somehow made them more attractive and like I was supposed to be all impressed. Arrogant, conceited, often times rude…there is no amount of money that makes those things acceptable. I know women who live with a lot of junk because it's all about the money. Those women aren't my friends either.

    As long as the husband is actively looking for work, doing what he can to help, isn't too proud to do what he has to do in order to help…I would stand behind that man for sure. Any woman who cut and run because he lost his job, or who stood by and watched the ship sink without helping isn't worth much.

    In my opinion, nothing will push a woman towards another man quicker than neglect and disinterest. I think there are plenty of women engaged in emotional affairs with men who listen and pay attention, men who remember and are interested. I would imagine there are men who don't care about an emotional affair as long as she isn't having sex with some other guy. I have a hard time understanding that. If my husband were to be unfaithful I'd much rather deal with a one night stand or cheating for sex instead of an emotional affair. Once you're there, making the affair physical isn't far behind.

    I know women who stay at home and fill their days with hair and nail salons, shopping, lunch out. These women usually also have cleaning ladies and closets of clothes and more shoes than she can wear. But some of us make it our job. All the cleaning, cooking, shopping, errands, appointments, and yard work. We take on everything at home because we don't have a "real" job. We make it possible for our husbands to concentrate on working. We are both part of the team and do our part to make it work.

  36. Anonymous says:

    I don't know that I agree with this.
    I make 35k and would love to make more.
    My wife is loyal to the end though.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I completely get the point Athol is making but his example for sex rank WRT income feels a bit simplistic for present day society. Does this sex rank quandary play out any differently when both are professionals, but the wife makes about twice what the husband does, as opposed to the SAH wife example?. For example, I'm an Elect Engineer at a govt research facility (~80k/yr), which pays less than private sector but has awesome benefits and flexibility in hours, she's in IT project management (~150k/yr).


  38. Jaz71 sez:
    1.) She's lonely and feeling ignored, neglected, and unloved. These men are the ones who book 80 hour work weeks or military guys who spend the better part of the year deployed.

    This is called the female rationalization hamster. Women don't fell lonely, neglected and unloved if they are married to hot, wealthy men. If they think they have a better option THEN they feel neglected.

    Jaz71 sez:
    2.) You cheated on her, so now she's going to get revenge by cheating on you. She will cheat up, not down.

    Women cheat because they can. They cheat because they think that they have a better option. It's the same reason that men cheat. It's all about relative sex rank.

    Your "fall in wove and get mawwied" theory sounds very blue pill. *Everyone* needs to choose their partner carefully and *maintain* themselves and their relationship.


  39. Anonymous says:

    Do you know what a gold digger looks like?

    1.) The hot girl working a job in sales.
    2.) The single mom
    3.) Any chick who drops her life to follow yours
    4.) The waitress/bartender who is not putting themselves through college.
    5.) The girl who puts up with any shit you may give her

    In short, it's any woman who has no career (not to be confused with a job), no education, big baggage, and smacks of desperation. These women have no way of increasing their income except by marrying or inheriting.


  40. Anonymous says:

    446, I disagree with your theory that women cheat just because they can (I know women who've cheated, and it's always for the same reason). Maybe the women just aren't being honest with you.

    Though I can certainly understand men believing this, as it removes blame and responsibility on their part.

    I do agree with you that people should be selective about their partner and not get lazy after they marry. For women, this means being present and paying attention to her. For men, this means having sex.


  41. MarkyMark says:

    Women are whores who sell their twats to the highest bidder; who would've thought?

  42. Anonymous says:

    Oh oh…someone left the door to the lab open again!

    Marky's on the loose!

  43. Ping Jockey says:

    As painful was it undoubtedly was, I just hope he wasn't living with/married to her, so she could have taken him for everything that he owns, plus alimony, etc., all nice and legal.

    Even though it is a painful lesson and is bad as it is (I know), it was a necessary one for him to learn about female hypergamy.

    May he have learned wisely, and be a better MAN for it.

  44. A real golddigger is only interested in the guy's money. I knew one in college, and knew I had no chance to replace him. (If I'd known how to get by the cockblocker, I'd have been her lover, however.)

  45. Anonymous says:

    You forgot 1 other reason why women leave the men. It's the I love you but I'm not in love with you syndrome. The guy dotes all over the wife. Tends to her every whim. She hates this fawning over her. He's too submissive. This is WAY more common than a woman leaving because of neglect.

    Standup Guy

  46. Anonymous says:

    This is exactly the reason why our forefathers banned divorce (at least in my country). This way a woman cannot exit the marriage when the guy with the BMW enters the picture. This way a man can work peacefully without having to worry about a wealthy guy meeting her wife.

    The ancient were wise. We thought we could do better. We could do without the wisdom accumulated for millennia. Now, we are knowing better.


  47. Anonymous says:

    Standup Guy: I have never met a woman who cheated on or divorced a man who doted on his wife.

    The ILYBINILWY speech is definintely used by women to decline sex, though, or to get him to stop yelling, arguing, or fighting.


  48. Athol Kay says:

    Jaz71 – spend some time on the Talk About Marriage boards. ILYBINILWY typically means she's already actively in love with someone else and is either acting on it, or about to act on it.

    Women will never say they cheated or left a good husband, they will always find a way to spin themselves as justified to do so.

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