Her Milkshake Brings All The Boys To The Yard

Just following on from yesterday when I made the point that the MAP principles work very well for women…
Anna:  Anna still has Oneitis, but has stopped being so nice. Hubby is now baffled as to why I’m suddenly “picking fights.” I wasn’t in terrible shape before, but I tried a class I absolutely love and informed hubby I was doing it and he could just make room in his schedule. 2 inches have come off my waist and I’m starting to get attention from his friends. A few weeks ago, I practically had to peel a 23 year old, fairly attractive, VERY ripped Marine off me. Said Marine, one of Hubby’s childhood best friends, also would not shut up to Hubby about how good I looked. Hubby is suddenly quite attentive and trying to plan mini-dates. He’s also hauled himself to the doctor after about a year of my nagging him, and discovered that he has low testosterone. He’s taking medication and we’re both hoping it perks him up and takes a few pounds off. I had to tell him pretty bluntly that last time he was in the pool with his friends, he compared very poorly. I think the (repeated) bluntness is starting to get through to him. I certainly don’t feel as taken for granted as I did. I really hope this keeps up. Figured you guys would appreciate the update.
Athol:  High five Anna. So happy you’re making progress! (She’s been reading a long time.)
Notice how nagging doesn’t work nearly as well as his friends hitting on her…  funny that.


  1. Why do I get the feeling she is going to like this attention too much? If I were the husband I would spend more time with the MAP and less time with my 23 year old Marine friends.

  2. Anna fan says:

    More of Anna's story, please! Seems she was in a similar situation to mine and I'd like to hear more about how she dealt with it. Girl game by Anna?

  3. I think Athol is showing that MMSL can empower and help both men and women.

    Why is it OK for a man to make himself physically more attractive and flirt with women, but if a woman does the same thing you are worried she is going to cheat? Why is she more likely to like the attention than a guy who is running Athol's MAP?

  4. Anonymous says:

    While the MAP could have similar effect for the ladies, a couple thing work against this.

    1) The fact some guy (possibly a beta or inebriated) seems willing to hookup with a woman doesn't equate to commitment. My wife even when out of shape could pull this off, because dudes are willing to swing below their SMV for a hookup.

    2) I have seen the studies (posted many times) on preselection. It applied only to photos of men with other women. No combination of positioning seemed to help or hurt women. They hypothesize this is due to men being primarily attracted to readily apparent visual cues while womens' cues being more subtle have to rely on other womens' opinions.

    The fact she is looking hotter is probably 90% of what is driving positive change in her relationship… Maybe that is "girl game".

  5. What we don't know for sure is if he suddenly now wants Anna, or he simply doesn't want other guys to have her.

    This works on both sexes. Women who have zero sexual interest in their husband may freak out and cling to him if he starts cheating. She doesn't want him, but she doesn't want anyone else to, either. (Lifestyle, money and aversion to change are probably the true reasons she stays).

    My concern is that he's going to have to stay on drugs for the rest of their marriage, and drugs always have side effects. I hope they are madly in love, because this is a big area to be mismatched. Didn't Anna notice the lack of interest before they got married?

  6. Anonymous says:


    That's something I've noticed from certain parts of the Manosphere – a sense that when men do something, it's fine. But if a woman does it, then every suspicion they have about women comes to the surface.

    I think there's a certain sense that the women are getting empowered by things like MMSL, and female empowerment is something they already resent.

  7. Jaz71,

    There's a few things in play here. We got married crazy, stupidly young. I was very, very inexperienced in dating. We were both virgins. We had intense chemistry. The lack of interest you refer to was not sexual; it was emotional, and yes, I was so naive I didn't know better. Sexual performance or frequency has never been an issue. The reason low testosterone is important is because we want children. The increased energy and and possible weight loss are just beneficial side effects that I hope will happen.

    To everyone else:
    The emotional neglect came because he had a dichotomy between "wife" and "girlfriend" that he only recently articulated to me. "Girlfriend" is fun and spontaneous, but also high maintenance and high drama. Trouble, in other words. "Wife" is a mom you can sleep with. Dependable, trustworthy, but not somebody you get excited about. My problem was maintaining "wife" status while provoking "girlfriend" feelings. Basically, I had to start causing him trouble.

    Yes, I know this sounds insane. But he was raised in a high drama household. All of his high school girlfriends were emotional leeches. None of them were anywhere near his SMV either, so he never had to lift a finger in the relationship. He and I are equal in every important aspect. However, due to my being practically invisible to guys my own age when I was younger, I was so flattered when he chose me that I was willing to do the heavy lifting in the marriage for several years. Of course, just as no man is a hero to his valet, no man is a hero to a wife who has been forced to mother him. We're both at fault for that. He was selfish and very immature, and I let myself get walked on because I thought it was the right thing, and then didn't try to do anything about it until it was way too late to easily change the dynamic.

  8. So what am I doing?
    1. Asserting myself whenever he does/says anything I don't like. Some women need to shut up; I needed to speak up. Conflict of any kind is very, very hard for me. We've been squabbling a lot lately over stupid stuff, but he responds well to me pushing back on him.

    2. Scheduling girly events for myself that take me out of the house. This reminds him that I have friends, too. He had gotten it in his head that I was unlikeable and a stick in the mud because for a long time, we'd only do things with his (all-male) friends. We share a car, so when I'm off having fun, he either has to have friends drive him or stay home. This gives him a chance to miss me.

    3. Learning to speak his language. He's an extreme concrete thinker, and I'm pretty far on the other side. It took way too long to dawn on me that hints don't work. Pretty language doesn't work. Saying almost the right thing that still conveys the idea doesn't work. He'll rabbit trail and focus on the one word I got wrong rather than take my point. Short, declarative sentences are the way to go. I had to sit him down and say something a lot like, "Look, I bring a lot to the table. You've hurt me a lot and I'm finding it hard to feel close to you because I'm wondering what you're offering me. I want to be crazy about you. So what are you going to do to win me?"

    4. Yup, work out. But not to keep him. He's made it very clear in the past that he finds doing anything to keep another person contemptible. I'm doing it because it's a habit I decided I wanted to have. I've been taking a thorough inventory of myself this year and this is one aspect of it. Toning up was a benefit, but I wasn't doing it for that reason.

    For the ladies, there is one quick fix that will take 10 pounds off your middle instantly, improve posture, and even help with back pain. If Athol will permit, I'd like to direct the other girls here to thinandcurvy.com for her bra fitting tips. (It doesn't matter if you're neither thin nor curvy.) Read every single post. It made a world of difference to both my back and my appearance. I guarantee your husbands will notice as well.

    Anyway, I wouldn't expect what worked for me to be the magic bullet for anyone else, and we have a long way to go with it. I'm just encouraged by the progress I've seen. On paper we're a terrible match. I'm an INTJ, he's an ESTP. However, in person, we're a great team and I'm working hard to make sure the next 50 years fly by.

  9. Good on you Anna, well done.

  10. Anna – something caught my eye in your post "testosterone is important bc we want childeren" did his urologist or endocrinologist discuss with you that about 80% of men who go on artificial testosterone have a ZERO sperm count after only 6 months?? Obviously I don't know your husband's total medical picture, but i think that info is something that docs gloss over (for the most part it is reversible, but not always) because they're trying to fix the current problem, but if you're TTC, you might want to keep up on his sperm count so you don't end up scratching your head wondering why you aren't pregnant down the line…

  11. Anna, well, be advised you can't change him. So if he's a prima donna that has always picked girls beneath his value (to ensure they worship him), then that won't change. He sounds like an irresponsible, lazy boy. I'm guessing his mommy waits on him hand and foot, and he expects you to do the same (since you are sooooo lucky to be in his presence).

    Keep working out, Ms. Anna, and try going to college to help with your resume. The MAP is great for boosting self-confidence and increasing your value. I suspect all you really need is to recognize that you can attract better men.

  12. Jane, the doctor didn't prescribe a testosterone gel for those reasons. My husband is taking a different medication. And as far as TTC, the picture before my husband finally went to the urologist was so bleak it would have taken a miracle.

  13. Well, it's too late now. But I'm trying to fix my 20 year old stupidity. I don't believe that our problems are insurmountable; I'm merely recognizing that we should have married 2 years ago instead of 7 and that if we want to be happy, we're going to have change gears to undo immaturity on both parts.

    Divorce is not an option, so the only way out of the mess is through it.

  14. Seriously, Jaz71?
    I didn't mention my education because it's irrelevant. Don't worry about me. I have a degree and a great job.

    Yes, my husband WAS an irresponsible, lazy boy with a huge ego. But we married when he was 19. It's not too late for anybody to change, and I believe he wants to. I'm hardly going to write off somebody I love dearly.

  15. Anna, getting a better job/education is part of the MAP, which is why I mentioned it.

    And you can't change him, only yourself, which is a HUGE part of Athol's philosophy. If your husband knows that you are completely against divorce, what do you think is going to motivate him to improve your marriage? Nothing. He doesn't have to change because you'll stand by no matter what he does/doesn't do.

    But good luck anyway, because self-improvement and standing up for yourself is always a positive.

  16. Anna, my reply post landed a few down the page…

  17. Have to second the importance of a good bra. If you haven't had a fitting in 2 years, you're probably due.

    Well done, Anna!

  18. Just want to say thanks for the thinancurvy.com recommendation! It's so hard to find good tips for bra fitting, and you're right, it does make a big difference in appearance.

  19. Anna – glad to hear the TTC is being delt with appropriately.

  20. Yes, but those are things that work for men. Getting a MA wouldn't impress my husband. He cares about my education/job only in that he wants me to be intelligent and able to hold down a job that I don't hate. That's the extent of it. However, if HE got a degree, I'd be very impressed because that would increase my chances of being able to reduce my hours to care for any children we may have when they're below school age.

    What my husband expected from a wife is a woman who is physically attractive, hospitable, a pleasant companion, a devout Christian from our particular denomination and not crazy. The problem came because the above list was what he knew he needed, but wasn't what he was used to. Therefore, when he encountered and married a girl with the proper resume, me, he didn't know what to do with me.

    I don't blame him for this. It's hard to deprogram from the hangups of one's upbringing. I have my own issues to deprogram from, and I'm actively working on those.

    I could blame his upbringing for his issues and make him defensive and unwilling to change, or I can change myself to become more of what he wants while remaining what he needs. This is what I take the MAP to mean: becoming the best possible you and hoping that when your spouse sees you're going places, they'll want to come along for the ride.

  21. "I could blame his upbringing for his issues and make him defensive and unwilling to change, or I can change myself to become more of what he wants while remaining what he needs."

    That. Sounds. Creepy. "Stepford Wives" (1975) Creepy.

    Just on my personal reflection, Anna, trying to square the circle is going to be a disappointing experiment. Marrying the first guy who asks you does not mean he's compatible or marriage material.

    I'm hoping you're not trying to have a baby to solve the problems in your marriage (this is VERY common). The truth is children will only make the issues worse.

  22. Anna fan says:

    Jaz71, seriously lay off Anna already!

    She's already acknowledged that she married for not so good reasons.
    She's trying to change herself for the better. She's trying to save her marriage instead of writing it off so quickly.
    She's trying to be nice to her husband while still kicking him in the ass as a wakeup call.

    Yes, maybe she and her husband are awfully incompatible. Or maybe they're just perfect for each other. Either way, Anna's trying to make her marriage as awesome as it can be, with a smile and a positive attitude. That deserves a round of applause, not the third degree.

    Please just shut up. You're really a pessimist.

  23. @Anna Fan: You are welcome to your opinion.

  24. Anonymous says:

    I applaud Anna for not taking the typical feminist route of burning the marriage down the instant she's not haapppy. If more women would take this rational approach (which is against their nature and takes a conscious effort) to life they'd find a lot more happiness in the long run.

    Jaz71 almost comes across as classic passive aggressive trolling. Enough already.

  25. I disagree that my attitude is creepy. I'll admit to being traditional and old fashioned. I'm a firm believer in doing what works. And it IS working. My husband is starting to respond with the romance and attention I've been craving. Our communication has never been better. And we're both still in our 20s. There's plenty of room for improvement as we continue to grow up together.

    You can't actively change another person anyway. The only person you have real power over is yourself. Therefore, I have the power to make us both miserable and drive him further away from me with my air of martyrdom. Or I can become a happier person and attract him with my positive attitude. The fact that his friends are noticing me just punctuates the changes I've been making.

  26. Athol Kay says:

    You are doing just fine Anna and I'm proud of you.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Hello Anna,

    Late getting here but it sounds like you are a fiesty, talented, go-getter, with boundless energy! I can appreciate your position and the desire to make a go of your marriage. I have a concern with #4 of your above post. You said:

    "He's made it very clear in the past that he finds doing anything to keep another person contemptible."

    How did you find he holds this philosophy? How did you feel when you found this out? Does he think trying to "win" you in contemptable?
    I ask because I remember when I found this out about my own husband.

  28. Good luck, Anna.

    My skepticism is due to the fact that you have not mentioned even one positive thing about your husband, but have listed so many negative personality traits that most women would have run off screaming in the other direction, never mind going out on a second date with him.

    One Christian marriage book I'd reccommend is "Real Marriage: The Truth About Sex, Friendship, & Life Together" by Mark and Grace Driscoll. It is a religious version of MMSL, complete with his & hers chapters backed up with scripture. And it's not boring — half the book deals with sex. Amazon lets you preview a significant portion.

  29. Ha! Well, we don't come to places like this to talk about the positives. Those are the things that don't need fixing. Besides, don't all advice letters start with, "My SO is perfect, BUT (insert horrendous thing here)?"

    My husband and I are best friends, a great team, and have great chemistry, along with shared religion and values. Because we are so opposite, we compensate for each other's weaknesses splendidly. This effort is about learning to fulfill each others' needs on a deeper level. But first, I had to stop putting up with his immature shenanigans and stand up for myself, which made him pay attention, which made him want to change. You see how the chain reaction works.

  30. That means a lot coming from you, especially as I see a lot of my husband in you and myself in Jennifer. We're just 15 years behind you.

  31. Anonymous,

    Thanks for the compliments, but the truth is a lot closer to "dogged, patient to a fault, and fed up enough to wipe the slate clean and start in a new direction." I can put up with a lot, but when I get tired of something, I make things happen quickly.

    Reading MMSL has been quite empowering for me because I realized I could reverse engineer a lot of the advice to get what I wanted, too.

    To answer your question,

    When we were going through a particularly rough patch and I was really broken up about it, I made the mistake of saying something along the lines that I would do anything to keep him. That's when he told me that. I couldn't understand the attitude at first. It finally sank in that the worst thing I could have done in that situation was grovel because I was in the right. When my attitude shifted toward, "Screw you, I'll do what I'm doing because I want to," the change in his attitude was quick and positive.

    No, he doesn't think trying to win me is weak because I phrased it in terms of a challenge. I didn't take the attitude of an adversary who was expecting him to fail. If I can wax a bit metaphorical, the attitude I was trying to evoke was that of a princess who is actually collaborating with the dragon guarding her tower to weed out the unworthy. I let him know that I fully expected to see him running up the tower stairs victorious. It sounds cheesy, but he responded quite well to it. So again, going to go with what works.

  32. Anacaona says:

    Cosing Anna Fan
    Jaz just because you are divorced doesn't mean everyone has to.
    Don't listen to Jaz she is divorced and can't stand anyone trying to save a marriage unless is having lots of sex, because you know that is all a relationship is… You are doing a great job and evolving as a person and inviting your spouse along for the ride, many blessings including kids for you.

  33. Anonymous says:

    "Reading MMSL has been quite empowering for me because I realized I could reverse engineer a lot of the advice to get what I wanted, too."


    Congrats on the changes happening in your marriage. I think the reason why MMSL works for women also, is that human beings regardless of gender respond to certain behaviors and actions similarly.

    One of the themes I see running through most of issues brought up (by either men or women) is that one party has basically let the other get away with negative behavior without enacting consequences or boundaries.

  34. Anacaona,

    Jaz is reminding me of some of my liberal friends who pity me even though they're far more unhappy than I am.

    As to the sexual issue, I did say that was never a problem. :) What I am after is more attention and romance. If this is how I'm getting it, I fail to see a problem.

    Finally, I made vows before God. I will not leave my husband except for (physical) adultery, abuse, or abandonment. We're about 80% compatible, and that far outweighs the 20% we need to work on. Everyone has their issues. I don't see how it's in my best interest to scrap a marriage just because we started out way too young. I believe I married the right person for me, and right now is always the best time to start working on the old things we handled poorly.

    I appreciate you chiming in, Anacaona. I'll see you around, though this is the only place I post under this name. :)

  35. Anonymous says:

    AnnaMar 29, 2012 10:17 AM

    Your #3 is so spot on.

    #3. "Learning to speak his language. It took way too long to dawn on me that hints don't work. Pretty language doesn't work. Short, declarative sentences are the way to go. I had to sit him down and say something a lot like, "Look, I bring a lot to the table. You've hurt me a lot and I'm finding it hard to feel close to you because I'm wondering what you're offering me. I want to be crazy about you. So what are you going to do to win me?"

    Can you please come teach every single female in my life this trick? Seriously. I am a man not a psychic. What is so hard about speaking in english?

    Instead of saying "what are you doing tonight? Are you hungry? Gee I am so bored w/ the food I have been eating lately". Say this: "i want to go out for dinner tonite".

    Practice this ladies: "I want to xxxxx" "I want you to xxxxx."

    What is so hard about that?

  36. Athol Kay says:

    Jaz71… stop egging Anna on to find a reason to leave her husband. Final warning.

  37. Love your analogy. It reminds me of a piece of relationship advice that has served me well-if you want a man to do something, make him think it was his idea.

    Another book recommendation: Mating in Captivity by Esther Perel. She talks very frankly about the change in attraction that comes as you become closer in the relationship, similar to the different definitions for girlfriend and wife that you brought up.

  38. Anonymous,

    I wish I could tell you what's so hard about being direct. I have no trouble being direct with other women. But when it comes to my husband, I choke. This is one area it's going to take me a long time to be comfortable with. I'm forcing myself to keep trying because I see that it works better.

    I can guess at a few reasons, but it's going to be me-specific. You'll have to poll the women in your life as well.

    Speaking plainly:
    -feels adversarial
    -feels demanding
    -feels unfeminine
    -conflicts with introverted/low self-esteem issues that make it hard to believe my opinions and desires are as valid as anyone's.
    -brings up issues from childhood when my wants were irrelevant to my parents. They were never, ever malicious or neglectful. They were constrained by heavy job demands similar to those experienced by military families – the sort of thing where what you do dictates your whole conduct and lifestyle. And then, when I was 11, my father became severely disabled because of a stroke, so what I wanted didn't even remotely factor in after that. My parents would be very grieved if they knew that the cumulative effect of their careers and the handling of my dad's illness taught me that speaking up for what I wanted was useless. Voicing it would give me false hope that it would happen. If I never articulated a desire, I never had to be disappointed.

    But those are my hangups. If you can get answers from your more introspective female acquaintances, some will be the similar and some will be wildly different. Good luck in figuring it out. :)

  39. I saw a study on TV a while back on how well women read emotions vs.men. It was insane how well women could pick up on non verbal communication in their tests. To me it's basically a super power. The researchers showed the following brain differences.

    Men get:
    1)ability to tell North
    2)ability to focus on one thing

    Women get:
    1)mind reading (what I call it)
    2)ability to notice and recall details

    The problem is that people assume everyone sees things the way they do. My wife assumes I can read minds as easily as she does and believes me to be lazy/inattentive/not paying attention to her since I can't do it. I then ask her which way is north. :)

    She is equally impressed at how I can tune out children to follow a TV show.

  40. Anacaona says:

    But Athol Jaz only wants to help. I mean divorce statistics will plummet without nitpicking a good man and trying to find the perfect relationship and then were we will be? :p

    I'm glad you know exactly what kind of person you are dealing with. Nothing makes a woman more catty and bitchy than seeing a woman making different choices and being happy with them. That really kills them. Good luck with everything and thank you for spelling my name right ;)

  41. Women don't read people's minds well. They read women's minds well. If you want to get inside a man's head, don't ask a woman about him, ask another man.

  42. Anonymous says:

    "Can you please come teach every single female in my life this trick? Seriously. I am a man not a psychic. What is so hard about speaking in english? "

    What's so hard about teaching this to them yourself? Or are you walking around resentful because they aren't doing what you want—when you aren't communicating what you need?

  43. Anna,

    Having faced similar issues, I would HIGHLY recommend the Bob Grant ebooks on marriage. I think its sort of the red pill for women there…real techniques that fit with how a man’s mind actually works. I adore Athol as well, but it really is targeted to men, with some girl game mixed in. I keep rereading the books to stay on track. I hope that helps!

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