When To Reveal MMSL

It’s been an odd day. I got asked three different ways when was the right time to pull back the curtain and reveal to your wife that you’d been reading MMSL.

Anyway, it’s fairly simple. If her Sex Rank is higher than yours and you’re in Phase One of the MAP, I would completely zip it on the MMSL front and even actively seek to hide it from her. Just run the MAP and don’t talk about it. She already thinks somewhat poorly of you and revealing that you “need help with women”, just gives her hamster ammunition to frame you as a loser.

If your Sex Rank is higher than hers and you’re in Phase Three, then it’s basically up to you if you reveal or not. At this point it’s working for you and she might be mildly taken aback by the fact that you had outside help, but the fact that it actually is working will carry the day.

Somewhere between those two points it stops being a bad idea to tell her and starts being a mildly okay idea to do so.

However if she starts acting increasingly anxious and nervous because you’ve successfully become obviously more attractive than her, she may just be freaking out that you’re going to dump her, cheat on her, or already be cheating on her. In which case the reveal may in fact be a massive relief to her. “Look honey I’ve been following this plan, and the plan says to hold the moral high ground as you do it, and that’s what I’ve done.”

Essentially once you reveal MMSL and the MAP, you’ve pushed it to a de facto Phase Four. You’re stating your intentions fairly clearly that you want a proper sexual relationship in the marriage, or you are preparing to walk on her. So it is important to have your Sex Rank higher than hers when you do that. The golden rule being to never force an ultimatum on your wife when she’s hotter than you.

The only other reason to reveal MMSL is when you use it as a last ditch buying for time gambit. I.e. she’s about to punt you out of the house in the next five minutes because you are failing badly on the attraction front. This is where you can say, “Okay, okay I get it now. I’ve found this book, I’ve figured out what I have to do, I have this clear easy plan to follow, please just give me 3-6 months to prove that I can turn myself around. I’m not going to talk about doing this, I’m just going to do it.” If you’re at that point, you really have nothing else to lose, so maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t.

Jennifer:  I’ve often been asked if me knowing about Athol using Game makes it less effective. I don’t think it does.  I don’t see it as manipulation as much as I see it as motivation…it’s not a bad thing for me if he knows what makes me attracted to him and he does those things.  Sometimes he does something obvious and almost jokingly, and I just laugh at him (in an affectionate way, not in a derisive way!).  Sometimes I just tell him I need an Alpha Male for a moment lol. 


  1. Anonymous says:

    Funny, I’ve been wondering if I should tell my guy that I spent a few weeks reading this whole blog after I found him reading Athol’s book. ;)

    I almost feel like I’m cheating at the game because I know what he’s up to… But either way, we’ve never been happier.

  2. FlyingDutchman says:

    I still have mixed feelings on this question and its something I’ve thought a lot about as I’ve implemented the MAP over the past year. I shared MMSL with my SO from the beginning. I was acting way too beta and failing fitness test one after the other. Before MMSL I didn’t have the slightest clue as to why my marraige was in the dumps and MMSL was an experiment more than anything. I didn’t have anything else to try.

    So far it has worked well for my SO to be aware, but I have to point out that my sex rank was structuraly higher than hers, minus the fact that I was acting beta with her. So taking control of the relationship and adding Alpha turned things around pretty fast. If my SR was structuraly lower than hers then it might have been a bad move. Even now I wonder if I would have had better results by not telling her, but when I started I was too Beta to try Alpha on her without her “approval” of what I was doing. I know, in hind sight it’s rediculous, but that is how you think when you’ve been beta-ized. I need my wife’s permission to be Alpha. So lame.

  3. Joe Commenter says:

    I don’t think it’s a good idea to reveal the MMSL secret ever. Women think Men are (somehow) supposed to know about all things sex and relationships without reading a book about it. Instead, I co-opt all of Athol’s advice as something that I just “have come to know” thru experience over time.

    I helpfully explain to my wife, that I learn a lot from the women at work. They tell me all kinds of stuff.

  4. John Q Galt says:

    There are three sets of facts in any situation: what he saw, what she saw, and what really is. Addressing this to Jennifer – will most women recognize or admit her man is more sexually desirable than she is? How common is it for her to attempt to raise her market value by flirting/cheating with other men? If a man has been beta/suffering oneitis, will simply carrying out thr MAP be enough to snap her into reality, or is there another catalyst that needs to be used?

  5. I told my wife I was reading it, and she checked it out, and she loves it. And we just ordered the book for my friend. I figured everyone should know.

    I have another friend who just moved in with his girlfriend, and I told him to bookmark this site. He’s not a good enough friend for me to buy him a book. I’ve helped him get laid way more than he’s helped me.

  6. I have taken the stand of “Why show your hand?” I would say my rank in above my wife but and only in phase one. I was so betatized it was pathetic. I am trying to retrain myself for alpha behavior and have some really great results thus far. Along another line, I have a buddy who I am guessing is in my same predicament. I was going to offer this site and the primer. However it may seem a bit insulting. I look at it like giving a diet book to a slightly overweight someone for their birthday. His wife is close friends with mine. If he squeals, it could be bad for the both of us.

  7. pdwalker says:

    Sometimes I just tell him I need an Alpha Male for a moment lol.

    You mean like this?

  8. If things are going well, or you can improve the situation by implementing MMSL, I personally see no real benefit to the reveal. In fact, I would think it could have a negative reaction in that she would feel like this was all a show or she got gamed. I’ve read other books (NMMNG, Roosh V’s books, Strauss’s “The Game”, etc.) and I wouldn’t reveal the subject matter of those books either. While the MAP isn’t a magic trick and really is about improving yourself for many reasons (increased spousal attraction being one), I would think some spouses wouldn’t see it like that and wouldn’t like that she got “tricked” and throw up additional resistance. Anyways, my $0.02.

  9. anonymouse says:

    Hmmm… I shared this blog with a few ladies I know when we were talking about something along the lines of sex rank…. oh boy did they ever hate it ;)

    Ah well, I don’t really listen to them for marriage advice anyway :)

  10. anonymouse says:

    Anonymous, I did the same thing ;) I went through and read everything and figured out a whole bunch of stuff he was doing ;)

  11. I NEVER reveal my secrets of seduction to females.
    They love mystery – need it.
    They say they want The Secret, but in reality they don’t really ever know what they want – except “more”

  12. whats up with the sudden modding

    Not 100% sure. I’m fiddling with a number of plug-ins behind the scenes and suddenly everyone was going into moderation.

  13. Highlander says:

    No, never, ever….Women thrive on mystery and after being married to you for 20 years there’s damn little left of that. What’s worse is she’ll pop this fact into her little resentment mental scrapbook all women carry everywhere with them. She’ll use it against you later as manipulation or trying to “play psychological games with her. If you have to tell her anything, just say since you’ve been going the gym you been feeling great and more upbeat about things. Our wives already control just about everything, no sense giving it all away.

  14. This is a real delimma for me.

    On one hand, so far things are going great and the MAP is working like a charm. But I haven’t really started to implement anything other than getting into better shape, and some mild joking and “kid sister” type treatment. Morally I feel really crappy about going any further with that part of “game” because it just seems SO manipulative to me. And I know, many people keep asking my why manipulation is so bad IF it provides a good outcome to everyone. Well, to me the outcome doesn’t matter, it is the intent and the deception that I take issue with.

    On the other hand, there is a fair chance that telling my SO about all this will backfire in numerous ways. She could be OK with it, but the effectiveness of it all drops. She might take offense and get really upset. She may think any number of things. But, if she was OK with it then I would no longer feel like I was being deceptive (since she would have access to all the same info I do).

    For now I’m going to keep things as they are, and keep the MAP and MMSL under wraps. If/when I find myself wanting or God forbid having to deploy more deceptive game tactics, I’ll figure out which way to go. I don’t think telling her would backfire, but the potential for a lot of misunderstanding is there all the same. And, I didn’t start this because my relationship was in the dumps. I found MMSL after my divorce AND after I was already dating my current SO. I started the MAP not because we weren’t getting along, but because I realized just how lacking I was and how much of the blame for my divorce came to me, and I didn’t want to repeat those mistakes. So there has never been a moment of crises in my current relationship. And for all my SO knows, the improvements I’m making (other than working out and losing weight since it is obvious I’m intentionally doing that) are simply me developing and getting comfortable with our relationship. (which is about 2 years old now).

    To get a feel for exposing the truth, I did send a link to this blog to my ex-wife. (I bet at least a few reader’s eyes just bugged out! It is complicated, but we have children together and my ex and I really do our best to stay friendly. I liked her enough to marry, and she married me, so despite the fact that we sucked as a couple, we still like each other as friends. AND, she has a unique perspective of my past faults.) After spending a week or so reading here, she told me that overall she likes Athol’s ideas and she thinks that had I implemented them during our marriage, it very well could have made the difference. (No worries. We are both with other people now and there is NO chance of a reconciliation. I like her just fine, but I could never trust her again as a mate…) The one negative comment she made was that some of this seems rather primitive and “cave man like”. I took that to mean she was on board with all of it, but felt the need to defend herself by pointing out that it is chauvinistic. So in short, she gave it a thumbs up.

  15. My preference as a wife would have been for my husband to find MMSL, follow the map, and never let me know. Or maybe let me know years later after the marriage was doing great. I don’t think I would have felt manipulated, but instead would have appreciated how much he cared about me and the marriage to make the necessary changes. Not sure if this would be a common reaction with other wives.

    Instead I found MMSL, and told him about it. We have seen good results so far even with me knowing what he’s doing. It’s slow going for us as he was all Beta and really no Alpha.

  16. In my case, Mrs. Ironwood was vaguely aware that I was doing something, but since our marriage/relationship has been a constant experiment for the Sex Nerd she married, she’s used to that kind of thing and didn’t take it personally. When there were some definite changes she did take more notice (having a blog kinda tipped her off) but the simple fact is that she’s got too much other crap to deal with to obsess unhealthily about her husband’s secret plans of domination. The fact is, she doesn’t have enough time to read MY books and blogs, there would have to be a pretty cataclysmic shift in our interpersonal dynamic to put such a study higher in her priority list. But then our marriage also wasn’t headed for any icebergs — MMSL just gave us a well-needed tune-up. If it did become an issue, I have no doubt that she’d read MMSL and this blog and likely agree with many of the specific conclusions, but, in her very own words:

    “Fuck me, feed me, and I don’t really care what you read.”

    (Note to unmarried gentlemen: finding such a low-maintenance attitude in a woman should be seen as a definite DHV for proper wife selection, when coupled with other highly-desirable traits. A woman who wants to know everything you read, see, and hear so she can continuously analyze your relationship has the possibility of metamorphizing into either Batshit Crazy or Unhealthily Controlling after your nuptials. Fair warning.)

    For most everyone else, however, I’d advise for concealment. Secrecy is leverage in a relationship, and if you’re feeling at all desperate or doubtful, then keep it under your fedora. You don’t sit down to a high-stakes poker game and then show your hand to your opponent. When she’s no longer your opponent, but your partner, then share with her at your discretion.

  17. FlyingDutchman says:

    My SO likes all the MAP improvements I’ve made and she is aware of MMSL. But I do beleive it makes the fitness tests harder, because she wants to be sure its for real. Basically, it makes it easier for her to see right through me if I’m simply “gaming” her. Ultimately, I have to agree that it probably would be easier in the short term if she didn’t know about it, but in an LTR you can’t fool your SO for very long anyway, if the changes aren’t real, they will see through it.

    The reason I like my SO knowing, is because I want to feel like we are both working towards the same goal, which is a mutually satisfying relationship (emotionally and sexually). If she isn’t aware of what I’m doing then I feel like I am competing against her rather than working on the same team. However, by understanding that women to some extent need to be “gamed”, this is a catch 22 to be sure.

  18. I was contemplating this recently as well, but more of a last ditch effort to save my marriage. In all honestly, the MAP hasn’t worked for me, but that’s not saying anything about the philosophy. It says everything about my wife and our relationship. The MAP has given me a sense of self respect and a better self image. I needed this to crawl out of my beta shell. It’s helped me shed my insecurities and become a man that knows what he needs to be fulfilled in a relationship and now knows how to get it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work on your wife if she was never really into you in the first place. Sometimes they just don’t get clingy and in fact just dig in more and basically say “well, don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out. Oh, and I’ll be taking you to the cleaners.” Anyway, back to my main point. My wife has been confused about all the of the changes I’ve been making and I believe is aware that I have increased my sex rank and will continue to do so. She’s not clingy, but she’s wondering what’s up. I think her hamster is working on the ways to get what she can out of a divorce instead of trying to step up and try and make me happy. I was thinking that if I said “hey, I’m doing all of this for us. I don’t want to divorce or go get a girlfriend, I want you to start fucking me on a semi-daily basis because it will make me exceedingly happy and save our marriage.” In the end though, with the attitude she’s displayed this far, I think it will likely just be met with more anger and more digging in, so I’ll continue to run the MAP in secret and hope that eventually she’s decide that it’s better to actually start fucking me, than to continue to be stubborn and plan for a divorce.

  19. I want to amend what I previously said. The MAP HAS worked. The MAP doesn’t promise to save your marriage so in that sense I should say it hasn’t worked. It has worked exactly as designed. It’s just that I am approaching phase 4 I believe and she is choosing not to come along. It’s giving me the hard truth and nothing else.

  20. Changed Man says:

    When I had my red-pill moment, after reading the book, I told my wife that I hadn’t been the husband that she needed, there would be changes, and my actions would speak for themselves. When my execution of the MAP was producing results, most notably my dramatic weight loss, she asked and I told her, “I read a book” Since we share a Kindle account, she found MMSLP and read enough to get the picture. At first, she had a hard time accepting some of the concepts, but as she acknowledged her response to the MAP, she’s become a believer. She now reading the whole book, reads the blog and comments everyday, and we often discuss the topics in the evening.

    It has been my experience that my wife’s knowledge of the book and the blog has been a very positive influence in our marriage, but YMMV.

  21. Changed Man says:


    Yeah, my wife has often said, “I’m making our boys read this book when they getting older” or, “you need to give ‘so-and-so’ this book!” If that’s not an explicit approval and endorsement of MMSL and the MAP, then I don’t know what is.

  22. One thing to remember: women snoop. I didn’t hide my browsing history and my wife went through it in detail.

    Athol – does THIS help with the commenting issue?

  23. Ooh, I commented without having to be approved! Looks like my link was redundant.

  24. PocketAces says:

    There’s never any benefit to tipping your hand. Unless, like AK said, you have already lost and you are looking to buy some time. Loose lips sink ships. Keep your mouth shut and realize the painful fact that you can’t talk to your wife about everything.

    Now if only I could take my own advice… I fucked up big time 2 days ago (blue pill habits die hard) and I got nailed by the blow-back wife crap-storm yesterday. Today I’m planning on running some light dread to restore the balance. Her knowing I’m purposefully going out and having fun without her wouldn’t get the hamster spinning.

    I don’t want to debate the effectiveness of certain strategies with her, I want to test them for effectiveness. I want to be able to follow the scientific method it’s much harder to do that when your subject knows they are being studied. I can’t do a double-blind test, but you should at least do single-blind.

  25. OK guys, I’m a LADY here to say that game IS NOT manipulative.

    Is it manipulative to read a book on negotiating before you head to the used car lot?
    What about when you act confident even when you’re nervous and about to crap your pants?
    Or maybe you give a co-worker a compliment before you tell them all the bad things about their work?

    Game is about faking it until you make it. If you ACT alpha, in time you will actually BE alpha for real! It will come naturally, just like that fake confidence that soon becomes…real confidence. Game is all about improving your interactions with PEOPLE by improving yourself. Let’s face it, if you’re more alpha, other males will respond to that too. Think of how that impacts your work, friendships, family relationships, marriage…

    If you have skills and apply them, it’s not manipulative, it’s just using what you know. Knowing shit is good. Use the power to your advantage. The “I don’t know anything” fake-out only works for really hot women with big boobs. On men, it’s just pathetic and means you live in your mom’s basement, you virgin.

  26. I’ve known all along about my husband reading MMSL and applying MAP. I haven’t read through the book but I have read much of the blog. Knowing that my husband is proactive about wanting our marriage to be good has helped me be proactive. Seeing him improve himself has pushed me to improve myself. Would I have responded to him if I didn’t know where it was coming from? I don’t know the answer to that. I know he’s gaming me, and he’s having fun with it; I’m having fun with it also. I have to smile when I know what he’s doing because I appreciate it. I appreciate him. I’ve even taken some of the principles and use them on some females I know to reduce conflict and avoid being goaded. I admit I just don’t do it as well as my husband.

    I’d like to read through the book to learn more but right now my husband has given his copy to our adult son to read. My husband wants to read through the book again and is planning to get the 2012 Primer when it’s released. Since I’ve seen Athol mention that the new one will have added content including some about girl game I am waiting patiently for it to come out.

  27. Changed Man says:

    @Over It

    I agree. ‘Manipulation’ has a very negative connotation and there’s nothing negative about understanding how men & women are wired and using that knowledge to the mutual benefit of you and our spouse.

  28. alphaguy says:

    I was exactly that last paragraph. She was half moved out of the house, leaving me and the kids after I broke up her EA. I asked her to give me 6 months to get my shit together and she obliged and we have been together and fairly happy (and having more sex than ever) since I started running the MAP about 1.5 years ago. It can work at the last minute, but I don’t recommend it. I wish I had found Athol’s book (and others too) much earlier in the cycle it would’ve made a huge difference. I wish I could hand this book to every man that wants to have a better marriage before it’s too late!

  29. Game should all be about self improvement.

    The goal shouldn’t be more sex, the goal should be self improvement i.e., making yourself more attractive to your wife or partner; and the result should be more sex.

    When it’s framed in that way, there is no way a wife or girlfriend should have an issue with it. Nothing wrong with making yourself more attractive, and nothing wrong with that resulting in more sex.

  30. @Anonymous:

    Why wouldn’t you want to tell him? If nothing else, it gives you a common vocabulary so that you can tell him things like, “I’m having a crappy day, I need a little extra Beta support right now,” and have him understand exactly what you mean. I don’t see much of a down side to letting him know that you know what he knows.


    You’d know better than I would whether your S.O. would feel angry or manipulated if she found out about MMSL, but I don’t think there’s much of a risk that she’d be okay with it but it would stop working as well once she knows about it. Beyond a certain point, this stuff works because women WANT it to work and are actively cooperating with you to make it work.

    Look at it from the opposite side: when a woman dresses to the nines and does her makeup and hair just right to look good for you, she’s not “fooling” you. You’re not likely to think that she just woke up looking like that, that her shaved legs are naturally hairless or her lips are naturally that perfect shade of red or whatever. But if she does it right, you don’t care: it’s still effective. If anything, it’s even MORE effective because she’s signalling, “I find you so attractive that I am willing to put in that much extra effort to be attractive for you.”

  31. RedPillNewb says:

    I’m basically going to let my wife decide how much she wants to know. I told her I think I know where are problems are, and I’m happy to discuss solutions, but if she decides not to discuss them, I’m going to charge ahead with the solutions anyway and not pressure her to talk. I’d rather she knew, because I’ve been failing fitness tests like you wouldn’t believe since long before we were married, and starting to pass them now will mean (has meant!) anger and tears unless I can let her in on what’s up.

    She’s been demanding (verbally) that she be Captain and I be Crappy Crewman for a very long time, and promising rich rewards if I comply (which for the most part I have, minus the rewards). I think I have enough evidence from her behavior and known preferences to convince her that she’s asking for the wrong thing. It would be much, much easier on both of us to do that openly than for me to jump up suddenly and demand the Captain’s chair.

    And the worst (?) part for me is, I don’t really have any weight to lose. I’ve worked out (and pursued Alpha hobbies) since before we ever met. If you met me and heard about my life, you’d probably think I was Mr. Big Dog Alpha instead of the stupid cringing whipped puppy that I am. Her failure of attraction is caused almost exclusively by my obedient behavior, so it’s extra hard to turn around. Assuming I outrank her (and she’s a real cutie, although I may be a tiny bit biased), I’ve been letting her get away with this for a long time and I can’t leverage a physical change into an relationship one. Hence I want her to know if possible.

  32. @RedPillNewb

    It sounds like you are trying to get her permission to be more alpha in your attitude. That goes against the point of being more take charge. You don’t ask the officer, “can I be captain now?” You just assume the role. Athol has addressed this point before in the blog, but I can’t remember the post. Sometimes it’s difficult to assume the captain role at the start because it’s met with anger and tears. You have to stay calm and sometimes just walk away and let her mull over it. If she’s being unreasonable, or framing her reasonable point in an unreasonable manner, you just tell her that it’s unreasonable and walk away. Yes, it’s difficult and there will be backlash, but you have to push through that. I don’t think that getting her permission in this process is going to help it. From the sounds of it she will just come back with “don’t pull that alpha BS with me, just do what I told you to do”.

  33. I have not shared MMSL with my wife and probably would not do so unless I was planning a major change in my behavior based on what I read here, and even then I’m not so sure I would share it… MMSL has not significantly changed my behavior since I started coming here, but it has given me an amazing amount of illumination on exactly why the attitudes and behaviors I’ve exhibited over the years have worked well for my marriage. I’ve always been into self improvement. I’ve always had some pretty strong Alpha males in my life as role models (and heavy Betas as reverse role models). I’ve always been aware of the sweet spot in my marriage that exists when I exhibit just the right combination of Being A Prick and Massaging Her Feet. In terms of real change, the single best thing Athol has done for my marriage was to recommend the Supreme 90 Day fitness DVDs a few years ago. But aside from that, I get a ton of value from this site in the form of intellectually understanding these dynamics of my marriage, even if they aren’t areas that need a lot of work on my behalf.

    One of the reasons I wold not send my wife to this site is because aside from lifestyle sites like Art Of Manliness, she has a very low opinion of the man-o-sphere in general, and I don’t know that she would take the time to appreciate the points Athol makes that set him apart from the crowd. Another reason is that on the occasions where I DO pick up a technique from here and put it in use, I think it would take a bit of the piss out of it for her to know it came from a website. Sorry but I’m just not willing to give Athol the credit he deserves for introducing me to the concept of the 10 Second Kiss.

    And even if I had come to MMSL with a troubled marriage and was running MAP to improve myself, I don’t know that I’d share the goodies with my wife, ESPECIALLY if it seemed to be working. There is a reason magicians don’t reveal their secrets: because to do so would make them skilled mechanics instead of intriguing men of mystery.

  34. A reader says:

    When you think of it this way, it’s hard not to see women as fundamentally self-deceptive, if not a little insane or downright evil. If a wife came to her husband with, “I want to become more attractive to you and get our sex life back on track,” he’d bend over backward to help her and respond very predictably (unless he has a personality disorder like narcissism). If she had a “playbook,” even better — he could read it and be that much more helpful. There wouldn’t be even a hint of:

    – the feeling that “If I have to tell you how, or I know you’re doing it consciously, then that ruins it”
    – ongoing resistance/subversion to test that her improvements are “real” (shit tests)
    – the effect on him depending on her attracting other men and making him jealous/insecure
    – her devotion to him itself being a negative (one-itis)

  35. RedPillNewb says:

    It sounds like you are trying to get her permission to be more alpha in your attitude.

    I’m trying to get her buy-in, as a leader should, if possible. I’m going to do it either way, but if she’s aware of what’s going on I expect it to work better. I’m not really focused directly alpha in my “attitude” in the hopes she’ll get wet panties right now. I want to take control of the big stuff (finances, careers) first, and I figure the flirting and sex will follow on a more long-term basis.

    You can’t just turn around nearly two decades of snivling overnight without her going “WTF?” and freaking out. And I now she’s got a lot of simmering resentment hiding in there which she thinks is from me being insufficiently obedient, but which I now realize is from the opposite. I don’t need to break that dam open by demanding that she get her own &#*% glass of water and then listening to a 2 hour rant about whatever comes out (and I’m not leaving the kids alone there when she’s in rant mode). So, since I can’t tie the changes to “Check out how hard my pecs are now, honey!” I want to tie it to “I know you want this, and you know you want this, so just lie back and enjoy it while I plan out the kids’ college fund.”

  36. A reader says:

    “Game should all be about self-improvement”

    Really sick of this meme. In a monogamous society, like pre-Cultural Revolution USA, self-improvement meant being a good, productive, fatherly “beta.” Those are the truly valuable improvements that raise good kids, build infrastructure and trade, defend the borders, compose operas, put footprints on the moon, etc., and check the scope and power of the government. Yes, men individually can adapt to our current dystopia via some combo of Game/MAP and MGTOW, but our society/race are still doomed to extinction. We should be worried about passing calculus, not shit tests.

  37. RedPillNewb says:

    In a monogamous society, like pre-Cultural Revolution USA, self-improvement meant being a good, productive, fatherly “beta.”

    In those times, being a productive dad meant being the head of the household, i.e. Captain/Alpha, by default. Female chastity (no screwing around with “bad boys” in high school) and wifely submission were also expected. In such a world, a man could worry about passing calculus because fitness tests either didn’t happen or were swatted back automatically and with the full approval of society.

  38. Draggin says:


    Follow DB’s advice. You say “It would be much, much easier on both of us to do that”. Isn’t that what you have been doing all along? Taking the easy way out by being obedient to her? From your admission that is not working, so try something new. Start at the beginning, by not asking permission for how you want to run your life.

    It is the role of the man to take on the responsibility. Being Captain is not easy. It is not supposed to be easy. I was pissed off that everything had to be on my shoulders because “that’s not fair. Women are just as capable as men, get the same or better benefits, and therefore should shoulder half the burden”. After I truly accepted that life isn’t fair and that I was solely responsible for my life and that of my family, it became much easier. You may be having the same problems that I had, wishing life was easier and that I had a wife that was willing to take on some of the responsibilities without it affecting our relationship.

    Our grandfathers knew life was tough and they didn’t have our misconceptions that women would want the responsibility in those days. Those men knew their role and embraced it. That is why “Man Up” (take responsibility) from that type of man was actually helpful. Unfortunately, that role is one of the main points that is being lost in our feminized society. It is hard for men in this feminized society to understand that is still our role and it is why we feel need to ask permission on how to run OUR lives. I am worried for my boys and I am trying to raise them with age appropriate red pill knowledge. I have become aware these days that I get flack or uncomfortable glances from a lot of people when I tell them I am teaching my boys how to be masculine. It is evident, when you look for the signs, that masculinity is a bad thing in society these days. This is what I had internalized and needed to recognize so that I could fight it. Check yourself to see if that resonates with you.

    Remember, her tears and anger and backlash are all shit/fitness tests. There are many posts dealing with these. I will address your two hour rant fear though. Be both Alpha and Beta. At the first sign she is being unreasonable, gather up the kids and leave and then go spend some awesome dad time with them , like hitting an amusement park. Let her rant away to herself and later on subtly let her know what a great time she missed out on because of her childishness. Living the negative consequences of her actions will help her more than anything you say. If you are really worried about the safety of the kids with her then you have much larger issues to deal with than your sex life.

  39. I don’t think he was worried about their physical safety, but their mental safety from what I read. Either way, that’s not healthy I agree. Draggin is right on here. Being Alpha isn’t supposed to be easy. When you’ve been beta for 20 years (like me as well), it’s fucking scary as hell sometimes to be alpha. That’s part of it. This is going to be way out of your comfort zone obviously. Don’t try and go half way and make it more comfortable. T hat’s what you’ve been doing. So you pass a shit test and she throws a tantrum. What do you think the long term result of this is? Sure, the first few times are going to suck. What are the consequences though? She doesn’t talk to you for a few days? She withholds sex (isn’t it interesting how most of the wives in this don’t actually have this leverage anymore – mull on that for a while)? Big deal. You can deal with that. After a while she’s likely going to get on board and change her behaviour to be more respectful to you. That’s when the real progress can start. Don’t expect it to happen overnight or be easy. Also, there is no guarantees either as you can see from my story. That’s also part of the deal.

  40. Just to reiterate something I’d said in the comments to a previous post, there can be a middle ground between “she has read the MMSL primer, reads the blog, and is active in the comments section” super-involvement and “she stumbles around in blissful ignorance of why she is suddenly powerless to resist her attraction to my overwhelming masculinity” total non-involvement.

    I told my lady right from the beginning that I was going to make a conscious effort to improve our sex life. I said that I was going to try different things and seek advice from a lot of different places and see what worked. I didn’t tell her about MMSL because I hadn’t even heard of MMSL yet. I had only just come to terms with the fact that the fact that I didn’t “just know” what to do wasn’t a personal failing and that it was okay to look elsewhere for advice.

    As I’ve been running the MAP and trying to up my Alpha and my Sex Rank, she hasn’t asked where these ideas are coming from because a lot of them are things she’s tried to tell me in the past, just with different words. She doesn’t want me to be “dominant” or “Alpha” but she likes it when I’m “confident” and “assertive” and “take the initiative.” The words “Sex Rank” would be gobbledegook to her, but she knows that she likes it when I work out enough to get all muscly around the arms. So Athol’s advice hasn’t been something foreign or alien to us, just the stuff I should have been doing all along, phrased in a way that’s easier for me to understand and implement.

    I haven’t shown her the MMSL Primer because she hasn’t asked and I don’t know that it would accomplish much: the parts of it she would agree with she already agrees with because I’m doing them and she likes it, and the parts she’d have a problem with (mostly the chapter on behavior modification) would just piss her off. Not at me, it’s important to point out, but at Athol for putting it in such bald terms. She knows in a general sense that some of the stuff I read would piss her right off: she avoids it because (smart woman that she is) she doesn’t particularly like feeling pissed off and she trusts me to decide which parts of what I’m reading I should implement and to do it in a way that’s good for us.

    Of course, that works because the trust and respect was never a problem for us: it was the sheer physical panty-moistening attraction that was starting to need a boost. But it’s not hard to imagine a situation where you might have to tell your wife / S.O., “Yes I’m getting outside advice, and no you can’t see where I’m getting it from any more than I get to listen in when you ask your mother or sister for relationship advice. There are boundaries and this is one of them. If I’m doing something you have a problem with, you talk to me and we’ll work it out. I’m the one who decided to do it, I’m the one you’re married to, I’m the one you deal with. Where I got the idea is irrelevant.”

  41. RedPillNewb says:

    Remember, her tears and anger and backlash are all shit/fitness tests

    Right, about that. I can believe that’s true sometimes. But sometimes you can really screw up and say/do someting hurtful or stupid, and you really do need (ahem) “man up” and apologize for being a douchebag. At least, sometimes I do something stupid that calls for an apology.

    And in a world of small children and pretty much non-stop exhaustion for both of us, not every seemingly lame request is a test. Sometimes she really is tired and I really should let her sit with the baby while I get her a glass of water, seeing as how I’m already moving around the kitchen doing something else anyway. And yes, sometimes my personal choices impose costs on her that I can’t ignore without being an asshole.

    Baby steps. I get ahold of the big stuff first, then the medium stuff (house/yard/car maintenance) and I worry about the little “hold my drink” stuff later. Or maybe I ignore the little stuff altogether and let it be my bit of Beta relationship comfort. If I can get the big stuff smoothly and without fuss, it will be easier to work my way down the line.

    Or maybe not. So far I’ve gotten both some angry pushback and some extra attention. So I’m not totally clear on where this is going.

    (I don’t worry about the kids’ safety. I worry about her badmouthing me to them, which she has done in the past despite stern rebukes. Maybe your way is worth a try, but it’s a non-trivial thing to pull off.)

  42. Draggin says:

    I agree with Athol’s advice on informing your wife that you are running the MAP, and I have a few reasons why your wife would agree with him:

    Recognize that most women prefer mystery. They want a guy that is naturally good with women so they can brag to their girlfriends that they got the best man. Remember, women want to be swept off their feet and are typically not encouraging of men that are “awkward but trying hard”. If your wife was single, and you were attempting to seduce her, would she prefer you as the guy that was able to seduce her naturally or as the guy that was standing there with a manual in his hand? Err on the side of being the guy that sweeps her off her feet.

    Just in case this brings on the NAWALTs, I have tried to set up a simplistic test to help you determine which method your wife would actually prefer if she were given the choice of knowing you are running the MAP or not:

    If your wife prefers her Christmas presents unwrapped or feels gift cards are the best present you can give her, go ahead and tell her and hand her Athol’s book since she leans to the practical/rational or strongly self-aware end of the spectrum.

    If she prefers her Christmas presents wrapped, wants little hints and likes surprises, then she likes romance and to be intrigued and enjoys anticipation of something new. In this case, don’t tell her. The turnaround will be faster and the sex rank climb will be steeper as she tries to figure out what is going on. She will enjoy this even if she is pissed off at the same time. Why take her enjoyment of her curiosity in your changes away from her?

  43. PocketAces says:


    “You can’t just turn around nearly two decades of snivling overnight without her going “WTF?” and freaking out. ”

    Start non-verbally. Lift weight. **Stand up straight.** Take up room when you walk and when you sit. Make sure you sit at the head of the table. Move her out of the way gently but firmly if she is in your way. Learn to look people in the eye without flinching. Add things slowly. Then start leaving the house. Go to a coffee shop by yourself. Start feeling better about yourself. You are a badass, act like it.

    She’s going to freak out at some point. It’s going to happen. You are upsetting the apple cart. Don’t be afraid of it.

    Part of the MAP is getting ready for Plan B. Accepting that Plan B is an option should help you get over your oneiteis. Being congruent in your head about having the ability to pursue other options is key.

  44. @RedPillNewb

    I understand your points. It’s difficult to get it right when you’ve been all beta for so long. Sometimes you will take it too far and then you are the one being unreasonable. All you have to do is ask yourself two questions everything time she asks for something “is what she’s asking reasonable” and “is what she’s asking framed in a reasonable manner?” If the answer to either of those is no, then it’s a shit test and you have to start passing them and accept the consequences. Part of the process is learning what is a real shit test and part of it is learning the best way to handle each one. If she’s busy with the children and tired and asks politely for a drink of water, that is reasonable and there’s not reason not to help her out there. If she’s busy with the children and demands a drink of water, that’s an unreasonable way to frame a reasonable request and is a shit test. You can say “well, if you ask properly I might” or you can just ignore the request. Either way the response might be unpleasant, but that’s the deal. I’ll give you an example of asking something reasonable in an unreasonable manner from my marriage. My wife will often say something like “you can either do x or you can do y”. That’s a shit test. Even if x or y are reasonable requests that I would happily help her out with, I have to call her on her tone and not comply. I don’t allow demands in any form (unless in the bedroom, but that never happens). An example of an unreasonable request is if we are at a gathering of family and just hanging around and she says “oh, can you go grab the stuff from the car” while I’m relaxing and having a conversation with someone. If she’s not exceedingly busy with something I’ll just ignore the request or say something like “is there something wrong with your arms that you can’t carry stuff?” I’m not her errand boy and do not wish to be treated as such. She won’t respect me and I won’t respect myself if I comply with these unreasonable requests. I think that ‘honey, go fetch the x, y, and z when she’s just sitting around’ is one of the most common shit tests around. I see this all the time.

  45. Draggin says:


    I see your point about going halfway i.e. telling your wife you are making improvements but not giving her full access to the sources. What I don’t understand is why? How did it help? From what you have related it seems that all of your benefit is coming from what you are doing, not what you are saying. Wouldn’t you have seen the same results if you had just implemented your initiatives without her knowing what or why you were doing?

    “Yes I’m getting outside advice, and no you can’t see where I’m getting it from any more than I get to listen in when you ask your mother or sister for relationship advice. There are boundaries and this is one of them. If I’m doing something you have a problem with, you talk to me and we’ll work it out. I’m the one who decided to do it, I’m the one you’re married to, I’m the one you deal with. Where I got the idea is irrelevant.”

    This is a good attitude to have but it could just be addressed later on in the MAP if/when she expressed a concern by saying “I was talking to some guys and they suggested I try such and such to improve our relationship”.

  46. ironchefoklahoma says:

    @A Reader (12:33pm):

    You’re at the spot where the Red Pill truly gets bitter. Keep swallowing, it’ll get better.

    You’ve identified the disconnect, if a wife came to her husband with then the husband could respond. You, and me, and a million other Beta men simply didn’t fathom that a woman wouldn’t conduct herself in a rational way.

    The foundation of MMSL, and of the Game and HBD theories that contribute to it, is that women and men are fundamentally different. Sure, we’ve heard this all our lives, but all too many of us didn’t realize the implications.

    So when she:
    * asks you if her ass looks fat in those pants
    * wonders why you don’t make more money
    * unleashes any of the fitness tests MMSL has detailed

    then she is, in fact, asking to get our sex life back on track. She’s just doing it in the way she’s been programmed to. Not because she’s evil, but because that’s how her brain is wired. The hardest thing I’ve found about the Red Pill is stopping treating her fitness tests like they came from the mind of a man, but instead interpreting them from what I know of her hypergamous motivations.

  47. Oh one thing about my last example about being the errand boy. One reason you might comply with a request to fetch something, is if that something is very heavy. That’s a reasonable request and should still be asked politely I think. In that case you should of course comply and get the added benefit of looking like the strong man. Making your wife carry something heavy and then watching her struggle with it just makes you a douchebag.

  48. Draggin says:

    “(I don’t worry about the kids’ safety. I worry about her badmouthing me to them, which she has done in the past despite stern rebukes. Maybe your way is worth a try, but it’s a non-trivial thing to pull off.)”

    This need to be stopped in it’s tracks, even if she needs counselling to do it. Most of the damage is being done to the kids when she does that. You need to point out to her that the kids internalize anything bad she says about you. They subconsciously identify as being a part of you and with awareness can see which traits you have in common. Ultimately, this means that they internalize the badmouthing as her attacking THEM. It affects their self-esteem and interferes with her relationship with them. There are many cases of extreme parental alienation where the long-term fallout is that the parent who does all the bad-mouthing has no more relationship with the kids, once the kids get to the point where they have that choice.

  49. @Draggin:

    The benefit is twofold: first, as Athol said above, it lets her know that these changes are for US, not because I’m preparing to kick her to the curb and trade in for a younger model. And second, because letting her know that these are conscious changes that I am implementing is a stronger, more Alpha frame than sneaking around and doing it behind her back like it’s something I’m ashamed of.

    You’re right that I’d probably be seeing much the same benefits if I were just doing this stuff without telling her anything at all, but as a general principle, I prefer being open and honest to closed and deceptive unless there’s a strong, pressing reason to be deceptive. Which is why I’d be hesitant about telling her I got some ideas “from the guys” if I actually got them from a blog or a book. I’m not prepared to say that there’s NO circumstance in which lying to your woman wouldn’t be the least of all possible evils, but I tend to think it’s something that should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

    I don’t think there’s anything at all wrong with just running the MAP and letting her draw her own conclusions until/unless she decides to bring it up herself, but if (like Ted) you have moral concerns about being deceptive or manipulative, I think a middle ground might let you breathe a little easier without totally exposing your hand.

  50. I let my wife know right away what I was doing because I didn’t really have a choice. She saw me reading the book. I actually read the book before I ever visited the blog. My wife asked me about it and I told her that the book claimed that it would give me instructions on how to get her to have sex with me more often. I said since our marriage is already perfect in every way, except that we’re not making love often enough, I figured I would give it a shot. She laughed and smiled, and said she was surprised that I was reading a book like that. I’ll admit, I am not much of a reader, I was always more into sports, etc. Anyhow, I was already in decent shape, made good money, and generally guided the family’s financial decisions, but i hit the gym and got a little more tone and I started gaming her more, flirty texts, taking her new places I decided etc, and her vagina moistened up right away. Things were going great unitl one day I walked past her without a shirt on and she didn’t look up from her book. I knew something was up, so I thought it over, and got her a pregnancy test. Sure enough I was right, she is two months along and we have a little peanut with a heartbeat on ultrasound. I never would have guessed I would be able to predict her being pregnant with so much certainty before reading this book….

  51. RedPillNewb says:

    Lift weight. **Stand up straight.** Take up room when you walk and when you sit. Make sure you sit at the head of the table. Move her out of the way gently but firmly if she is in your way. Learn to look people in the eye without flinching.

    I’ve lifted for years. I do stand up straight. I don’t know if I take up room when I walk, but I was once told I “walk like a wrestler” and I’ve been mistaken for both a soldier and a cop (I plan on adding “firefigher” to that list by doing more hose-pulling :) I do look people in the eye, and on occassion I’ve done it while telling them to do something they didn’t want and backed it up with force. All of that has been true for years. So I’ve managed to dig my beta-hole on the strength of personality alone.

    I’m not trying to say I’m the worlds manlinest man, but there isn’t a ton of room for improvement on the physical side with a reasonable investment of time or energy. Instead I get to spring “say please and thank you” on her out of nowhere and wow, that’s going to suck.

  52. anonymous says:

    I had a frank discussion with my wife about what I wanted and what I was doing. Fortunately, our marriage is very good – I just wasn’t getting enough sex, and we were becoming friendly roommates.

    I made sure not to do any beta-type permission-seeking – I just flatly stated I wasn’t satisfied with this particular aspect of our relationship and I was planning to work to change it. I gave her some background info on the MAP and reassurance that I wasn’t going to muck about with the elements of our marriage that worked.

    We’ve enjoyed a great deal of success in a short time, and as far as I can tell, her knowing hasn’t had any effect. I can understand the need for non-disclosure in some situations, but if your marriage needs a tune-up instead of an over-haul, honesty is probably better.

  53. Draggin – “If she prefers her Christmas presents wrapped, wants little hints and likes surprises, then she likes romance and to be intrigued and enjoys anticipation of something new. In this case, don’t tell her”

    Damn. My SO is completely nuts over present giving and getting. I’m the complete opposite.

    Well at least I have my answer. :P

  54. @Reader 12:33
    A fitness-testing wife is no more evil than a kid testing their parents limitations for discipline. MOST of the time it’s not really a conscious, “Let me see how far I can push this!” thought.

    By the way, I DID tell my husband years ago that I was trying to improve our sex life. I tried various silly and random things (mostly learned from women’s sites and magazines) that in the end did NOT work. And no, my husband did not try to bend over backwards trying to help me. That was before I understood that I needed to be First Officer and not co-Captain.
    Prior to this, my husband wasn’t really beta-ized as much as he was a shut-down Alpha. My occasional bossiness/instruction-giving was such a turn-off to him, he would just isolate himself and ignore me.
    I’ve been running female MAP for 2 months with GREAT success. My husband knows I read a blog about marriage and sex that is “mostly for men” but I can’t get him interested. I think after all those years of me trying to “give him instructions” on how to do everything, the last thing he needs from me is more instructions on our sex life! Maybe he’ll read it someday….
    So far he has easily slipped into the Alpha (with good Beta balance) role that he tried to have since the beginning.

    IF it were reversed, would I want to know he was running MAP? Probably not. I like the mystery, I think.
    If I accidentally found out, would I be miffed? Definitely not. I would see it as goal-setting and self improvement, both positives.

  55. @Draggin:

    On further reflection, there’s another benefit to my lady knowing some (not all) of what I’m up to: it gives her the opportunity to get fully on board with it and give me feedback on what’s working and what’s not. She knows that I’m trying lots of different things and that I’m not expecting all of them to be rousing successes, which gives her the freedom to let me know which ones are and aren’t without having to be afraid of injuring my pride. (-:

    This might not be too helpful for men whose wives are still actively fighting them, but for me it’s a big help. Athol says to pay attention to what she does, not what she says, and that’s all well and good. I’m definitely doing that too; when what she does doesn’t jibe with what she says, what she does gets priority. But when you change a lot of things all at once and suddenly get results, it can be hard to tell which specific changes are the most effective, and that’s where her feedback can help. For example, as part of my wardrobe update, I picked up a pair of silk boxers. After the first time I wore them to bed, she mentioned to me, “I appreciate the effort, but honestly I could take or leave them. I get more out of a plain white sleeveless undershirt that shows off your arms than anything you’re wearing below the waist.”

    Considering that I can buy a 10-pack of plain white undershirts for the price of one set of silk boxers, it was more helpful to have her in the mindset of, “Oh, this must be one of those things he said he was going to try to spice up our sex life. Guess I’ll let him know to direct his efforts elsewhere,” than, “That’s weird. He’s never worn anything like that before. Oh well.”

  56. omg, those plain white t’s are SOOOO hot!

  57. PocketAces says:


    “I’m not trying to say I’m the worlds manlinest man, but there isn’t a ton of room for improvement on the physical side with a reasonable investment of time or energy. Instead I get to spring “say please and thank you” on her out of nowhere and wow, that’s going to suck.”

    Well, then, how does your wife compare to your sex rank? If you are higher, then you do just have to bump back on her.

    Pick something particularly egregious and push back on that first. For me, it was when I was bent over doing laundry, and she came over and gave me shit about something. I straightened up and told her that messing with me while I’m bent over doing laundry is NOT a winning strategy for getting what you want. She got a deer in the headlights look, recovered, pressed more, I pushed back, and she went away.

    That sucks about badmouthing you to the kids. That sounds like she is seriously lacking maturity. Is she in her early 20s? My wife would never, ever bad-mouth me to our daughter. You just don’t do that. I won’t even say my wife is wrong about something in front of the kiddo.

    Sounds like she has some growing up to do, and some learning that she might not always have the whip hand. Why do you think she has the whip hand? Did you give it to her?

    Yeah, the talk sucked, but she values the relationship so she puts up with me. :) I set new ground rules and told her that “I’m prepared to die on this hill.” I got a lot of push-back and testing the first month, the second month was more accepting, and the third month no pushback and she seems more happy with the new regime.

    Once you set the wheels in motion, don’t turn back.

  58. RedPillNewb says:

    Well, then, how does your wife compare to your sex rank?

    I don’t know. I have trouble being objective because I like her body. She says I’m way above her and just to clueless to recognize all the women eyeing me, which might be true. She also says I flirt with anything that moves, even right in front of her, which might also be true. But as you might have guessed from my posts, I’m not Mr. Ladies Man, so if I’m flirting with girls in front of her, it’s not on purpose and I don’t even know I’m doing it (she apparently doesn’t object to me doing this, BTW, because she never complains and only pointed it out to me after years of supposedly watching it). But whatever our objective ranks, they’ve been where they are for years, so destabilization is hard.

    I don’t like the badmouthing and that’s the one thing I’ve gotten stern about in the past. Her problem is that she is completely ruled by moment-to-moment emotion. You can take the most ridiculous thing you can think of to control emotionally–say, reactor core temperatures on a nuclear submarine–and she’d try to run it based on how she felt about it “Oooohh, that seems kinda hot to me, it’s making me nervous, I think I’ll turn it down.” It’s totally bizarre to me because she is actually highly intelligent woman with excellent analytical skills that she deploys at work only, to everyone’s bedazzlement. People love her analytical work, and frankly her finished work product is superior to mine because she’s damn good at it. She just doesn’t use her skills anywhere else. So anyway, when she gets mad, it feels right to say bad things about me, and if the kids are there rather than someone else, she says what she feels. She’s gotten pusback from them, amusingly enough.

    Why do you think she has the whip hand? Did you give it to her?

    Yep. Partly I’m a natural beta family man rather than a hard-charging alpha, always have been. Partly I had some professional setbacks early in our marriage that called my Captain-y decisionmaking into doubt (both to her and, more importantly, to me). And partly I just get tired of everything being a bunch of whining and emoting about whether she feels that this ETF or 401(k) option or contractor’s bid is a good choice or not. My “pushback” was: “Look, I’m sick of you constantly whining about by decisions. Either STFU or take over the decisionmaking yourself.” She picked the latter, and then when she came to me for advice, I shut her out: I don’t want to deal with you emoting at me about retirement plans, and I don’t want you to ask my opinion when I know full well the first thing you’ll do if I give it is tell me I’m wrong. You said you wanted to decide, so decide. We wound up with her controlling literally everything just as she had said she wanted, and still unhappy.

    Time for change, though.

  59. My husband is naturally a very good alpha/beta mix. I read here to remind myself of the things I need to do (and not do) to keep up with him. I told him I was reading here and showed him the blog and was met with a resounding “meh.” A part of me wishes he would read just for fine-tuning purposes and the perfection of things he already does well.

  60. Beeping Slooty says:

    I am coming from the other end of the equation. I am a woman. In the last few years I went through a brutal breakup – my new husband dumped me for a much-younger, very attractive girl. I am a very-attractive-for-my-age late 30s woman, I am fit, I am smart and funny and I have a good job and I love to cook and I am allergic to drama. I’m a catch, right? Well, apparently my ex didn’t think so, and he split.
    The breakup made me re-assess myself in a lot of really fundamental ways. I had to make some serious adjustments – I had to up my “girl game” as Athol puts it. It was an adjustment for me to present myself as more feminine, soft and flirty. Instead of sweats and a ratty ponytail, I wear skirts. I get pedicures. I’ve grown my hair out longer. I recently remarried, and my husband knows all about my manuals and e-books on improving my feminine appeal. I don’t think that for him, it makes any kind of negative difference knowing that I am following advice from books instead of coming up with the ideas on my own. Maybe it is different because I am a woman. All I know is that he appreciates my efforts, and it doesn’t bother him that I am “cheating” by reading books about it.

  61. John Q Galt says:

    Still trying to figure out how objective vs. Subjective sex rank works. Like Red Newb, I failed by failing a couple of BIG shit tests. Might or might not be salvagable….but there is another woman out there…

  62. Version3.0 says:

    I ran the MAP in Crisis Mode after discovering her EA. Things got better, but essentially I had lost the battle a few years ago and there was no recovering. I could, as I put it, insinuate myself into her life using MMSL principles, but she didn’t really invite me in. She started advocating open marriage, and of course I wasn’t going there, so we separated three or four months ago.

    Now it’s interesting because I get to use MMSL in my dating life, and there’s no question that I’m not going to advertise why I am like I am. I like the fact that I can use Game in every relationship, and especially with an eye toward who might be a good GF, and they have no idea.

  63. RedPillNewb says:

    I not only failed big tests–really, the biggest I think you could manage short of “I’m going to sleep with your best friend, m’kay?”–I openly refused to retake the Captain role on many issues when she came and asked me to (not that I knew that’s what she was doing, but I can see it now).

    Hoo-boy, I have a serious hole to get out of here. But recently she threw some open disrespect my way, then corrected herself without me saying anything. So let’s call that progress for now and keep hoping for the best.

  64. RPN – “Hoo-boy, I have a serious hole to get out of here. But recently she threw some open disrespect my way, then corrected herself without me saying anything. So let’s call that progress for now and keep hoping for the best.”

    Listen, if she is still there with you, there is probably a shot. And look at it this way, if you’ve gone so far over to betatude that you couldn’t sink any lower, everything and anything is an improvement! And at the very absolute worst, now that you know, you are in a better position that most guys. Run the MAP regardless of how she reacts. In fact, I’d say run it DESPITE how she acts. That in and of itself is an alpha move (aloofness and lack of concern for her attitude) and let her figure out how to respond. I would say in this case, her confusion is your friend.

  65. PocketAces says:


    You will start figuring all they ways you are screwing up before you figure out how to fix it. It will come though. In the meantime, it stings a bit.

    The first step of getting out of a hole is to stop digging. Sounds like you are on your way there.

    You said she’s an emotional rollercoaster. Just to hazard a guess, I’d say you are probably rewarding this behavior because she’s not doing it at work. So…

    **Don’t be affected by her emotions.** In Game they talk about “outcome independence”, but that’s IMHO a strange way of talking. Don’t be affected, stated simply is “Be Happy”. Stuff doesn’t go your way? Guess what, you just learned something, try something else next time. Grin, pick yourself up and move on. If you wait for external factors to make you happy, you will be waiting a long time. You have to make a choice, every day, multiple times a day, to be happy in the face of utter and total crap. It’s hard, it takes quite a bit of effort, and I still have my bad days, but they are getting fewer.

    Can’t think of a good way on the fly to bump back on a shit test or her “emoting” at you? Laugh with authority (controlled yet loud) and say nothing. Hehe.

  66. RedPillNewb says:

    Of course I’m rewarding it. Many of my blue-pill days were spent keeping her emotions under control. Most of my relinquishing of the Captain role was because I didn’t want to deal with her emotional reaction to my decisions, so I refused to make decisions. No decision = no whining that it’s the wrong decision (or so I thought; there was still plenty of whining). I did explicitly offer to make decisions if she would agree not to kvetch about then, but she couldn’t hold up her end of that deal.

    The fine line to walk here is between demanding respect and treating her disrespectfully. I can tell my children to quit whining and start saying “please” no problem. But she’s not a child, and I don’t want to treat her like one even assuming she would tolerate it. I don’t want to be married to a child. So I need to put the message across somehow in an adult fashion. I’m working on that with a little bit of success so far, but this isn’t as simple as being patronizing to some bimbo in a bar.

    It’s so funny, I can finally see with perfectly clarity how desperately she wants to be dominated (in the Athol C&FO way, not something weird or abusive), and how she’s been trying to get that need met for so long in her nonsensical female way (mostly by acting domineering and bossy and, one presumes, hoping for pushback), and how I’ve been letting her down flat by doing what she asks. Now I just need to make her see it.

  67. RPN – “But she’s not a child, and I don’t want to treat her like one even assuming she would tolerate it. I don’t want to be married to a child. So I need to put the message across somehow in an adult fashion.”

    I’ve always complained that many ‘sphere sites paint women as immature child-like people. But in this case, she is acting like a child, so some child-like treatment might be in order. Of course you are correct that you have to be careful, but the bottom line is you DO NOT have to take her crappy treatment towards you. Don’t fight, don’t yell, don’t escalate. When she acts up, calmly tell her that her attitude sucks, that you have no intention of tolerating it, and walk away. If she continues, tell her that you cannot improve the situation if she is not willing to act like a mature adult. Surely that will send her into a tizzy, at which point clearly let her know that THIS is exactly what you are talking about by her immature behavior.

    She has been relying on you to “contain” her emotions for a long time. I imagine she will have a VERY hard time learning to deal with them herself, but a mature adult does NOT depend on others to “keep them in check”. And, if you start treating her like an adult by NOT enabling her to be an emotional mess, she will have to step up and take care of her own issues. and then you will NOT be married to a child.

    I have to say, if the story you are telling here is true, you have a rough road ahead of you. But, if you actually believe she wants to have a C&FO, then there is light at the end of your tunnel. Once she no longer feels like all the responsibility for the family is hers, she may start to ease up on the emotional roller coaster. Frankly some people just don’t handle stress well.

  68. FlyingDutchman says:

    @RPN and @Ted

    Good comments from both of you. In my experience, when your SO gets going emotionally, you must have have no reaction to the emotions themselves. This is the test! You can correct her bad behavior, but do not try and correct her emotions ever, ever, ever. It can’t bother you that she’s pissed. If it does, she will sense it, and you have failed the fitness test. She will stay pissed for as long as it bothers you that she is.

    You can only react to this with 2 things: one, playful dominance like you could care less that she is upset, or, 2 complete dis-interest. You cannot put any energy into trying to stop her from being emotional. You cannot correct her for the emotions, you gotta let her have those. Just playfully ignore the emotions, but do correct bad behavior if you have to. Her behavior and her emotions are not the same at all. Beta guys get upset that she is upset. You can’t do this.

  69. @RedPillNewb:

    The thing about how we treat children (assuming we know Thing 1 about how to treat children, that is) is that we do it to teach them how to be adults. So maybe treating her a little like a child isn’t the worst thing in the world. If she gives you crap about it, your answer is simple: “When you act like an adult, I’ll treat you like an adult. If you want to act like a child, that’s how you’ll be treated.” She may take offense, but it also puts the message you’re trying to get across into unmistakable terms.

    Anyway, it sounds like you have the right attitude about all this. Good luck to you.

  70. RedPillNewb says:

    She may take offense…

    I hear the Red Army took offense at the boorish behavior of some German tourists, too. Here’s hoping the casualties will be lower for me.

  71. Ha! Fair enough. Well, even if it’s a shitstorm, some shitstorms need to be weathered. So man up– oops, I mean, “Take heart, good sir, for I have faith in your testicular fortitude!”– and do what needs to be done. (-:

  72. Joe Commenter says:

    @PocketAces: **Don’t be affected by her emotions.** In Game they talk about “outcome independence”, but that’s IMHO a strange way of talking. Don’t be affected, stated simply is “Be Happy”. Stuff doesn’t go your way? Guess what, you just learned something, try something else next time. Grin, pick yourself up and move on.

    Well done. I’m going to steal this and act like I made it up.

  73. holdingallthecards says:

    I don’t see the point of revealing MMSL to your spouse any more than a salesman should tell you his secrets to con you into purchasing something you were hesitant about or simply did not need. Not everything in MMSL will work for everyone, and some of it is not necessary or relevant to every relationship. Once you are getting laid 2-3 times a week (or whatever number contents you), you have solved your problem. Most people do not like being laughed at behind their backs at how they’re being manipulated, because it makes them look like idiots.

  74. PocketAces says:

    Joe Commenter:

    Heh. Have at it.

    It’s one thing to say, another to do it, and something far different for someone else to actually believe you.

    I’m the only one I know that doesn’t want to be plugged into the matrix. I wouldn’t even consider saying any of this in public. Acknowledging any of this would contradict everyone’s finely crafted facebook facade. Though I do admit, when it all comes crashing down, they provide plenty of good case studies for me to force feed the hamster that, no, everyone is not doing better, happier, etc.

    You hear people talk about how when everyone knows Game, the competition will become more fierce, etc. I just don’t ever see that happening. Game is a big slice of humble pie after a crap sandwich. Most can’t stomach it.

  75. Changed Man says:


    From your description, sounds like you and your wife may have some codependency issues if you feel like you have to control her mood swings. You may want to explore this, in addition to executing the MAP. I would suggest checking out ‘Codependent No More’, by Melody Beattie. Good luck!

  76. RedPillNewb says:

    I don’t know whether I’m really giving an accurate picture here. I don’t meant to suggest I have to “control my wife’s emotions” or like she’s wildly out of control on some kind of insane tangent all the time. It’s just that 1) her decisionmaking is entirely “feelings” based (as in “I feel like doing this now,” where “this” could be anything from having pizza for dinner to investing in a particular mutual fund), and 2) I have been trying to minimize the whining/complaining/anger in my life because I don’t want to deal with it. So you put those together and you see that if I make a decision that contradicts her “feelings” (regardless of whether it is obviously the correct decision from a rational standpoint), I have to deal with a bunch of “butbutbut I don’t feel that’s a good idea.” That sort of nonsense just makes me throw up my hands, so I have mostly abandoned decisionmaking, which isn’t good for anyone or for our relationship.

    You have no idea how aggravating it is to see her making well-thought-out, rational decisions at work and writing up detailed, persuasive analyses that other people read or listen to and think “Wow, that’s a great way to think of it! Let’s do it that way!” Her scholarly writing has been very well recieved as well. And then she comes home and wants to tell me how she “feels” about retirement or education savings, but when I ask her to examine what we have vs. what we need, she can’t ever be bothered. I have finally realized why: she wants a Captain. She wants me to make the money decisions and tell her everything is OK, so she doesn’t have to bother her pretty head about it. Which sounds absurdly sexist, except that she’s been begging me to do it for years. I fully expect that if I step up to the plate, the complaining will go down, not up.

    Clearly, I need to get back on track. But I don’t think this is a “seek mental health counseling” kind of situation so much as a “learn to do your damn job as a husband and father” situation.

  77. RedPillNewb says:

    Also, when I worry about anger/fights, I’m less worried about the actual important decisionmaking and more worried about the little things like basically being polite and not making the constant absurd-but-small “hold my drink” requests. I actually expect more volatility and anger from demanding a “please” at the end of request than from the serious issues like when to buy a new car or what to do about the 401(k). I’ve let her think I’m her personal servant and breaking out of that without going overboard in the opposite direction is going to be tricky. Even now I’m analyzing everthing for “test vs. resonable request” and it’s tricky to tell them apart, at least to me.

    Plus, I like indulging her. After all, she’s my sweetheart.

  78. @RPN:

    I don’t think there’s anything sexist about suggesting that, after a long day at work making analytical decisions, she might want to come home and turn that part of her brain off and let somebody else deal with it. She might not be going about it in a reasonable way, but there’s nothing unreasonable about the desire. You’re not saying she’s not CAPABLE (which could conceivably be sexist), just that she doesn’t want to (not sexist).

  79. Changed Man says:

    I’m sorry if you took my comment as implying there’s a ‘mental health’ element to your marriage, I wasn’t.

    Many relationships have some small amount of codependent behaviors, and some are ratcheted up to the OMG level. If you allow another individual’s behavior to dictate yours and you cope by giving away your ‘power’ to them, that’s codependency. I believe many blue-pilled, betaized men are hopelessly mired in codependent relationships and, without using the terminology, the essence of MMSL and the red-pill is to break the cycle of codependent behaviors (ie, using the ‘prisoner’s dilemma’ model instead of endlessly rewarding bad behavior), take your power back, and have a healthy, happy and satisfying relationship with your spouse.

  80. RedPillNewb says:

    Game is a big slice of humble pie after a crap sandwich. Most can’t stomach it.

    I don’t know about the harder-edged belt-notching Game, but Athol’s version is liberating for me. Suddenly instead of looking at my wife and my female friends wondering all the time Why would anyone do something so INSANE? I can actually see the rational sense behind it. It’s “chick rational” but still rational.

    Now if only society would stop lying to our children.

  81. @RPN:

    At first I didn’t get what you meant about “Be Happy”, because that was how I had always done my decision making. Then I re-read it and got it where you clarified it as “You have to make a choice, every day, multiple times a day, to be happy in the face of utter and total crap”, which works a lot better for me. I agree with what you are saying, but I think you have skipped a step for those of us that need help working through this. I think this step is where “outcome independence” fits in.

    I need “Outcome Independence” in there. My personal issue with “Be Happy” is that I typically think ahead about the consequences of my actions and unfortunately I am one of FlyingDutchman’s recovering “Beta guys get upset that she is upset”. With my ex, my good and happy outcome was strongly dependent on HER happiness with the outcome. As someone who was brought up to sacrifice for others, my happiness was most times subordinate to hers. Therefore many of my decisions, rather than being made on the merits of the information at the front end of the decision making process, were actually based on my best guess of her likely happiness that she had trained me to expect. Which is what got me here…..

    “Outcome Independence” reminds me that fear of negative outcome and other people’s reactions does not belong in the decision making process. It keeps my focus on making my best decision based on the input of facts and long-term needs of C&FO and away from trying to manage any negative outcomes from someone else. This frame forces me to avoid some of my outcome fearfulness and, more importantly, gives me the confidence to make my decisions and let the chips fall where they may.

    Once the decision is made and acted on, then the outcome becomes evident, good or bad. This is where I use “You have to make a choice, every day, multiple times a day, to be happy in the face of utter and total crap” to get me through any shitstorms that ensue. Some people can jump right to this step. I couldn’t because I was too much of a “Nice Guy” and worried too much about managing and controlling other people’s happiness.

  82. Last comment should have been addressed to PocketAces

  83. RedPillNewb says:

    Therefore many of my decisions, rather than being made on the merits of the information at the front end of the decision making process, were actually based on my best guess of her likely happiness that she had trained me to expect. Which is what got me here…

    Yeah, bingo. Except that after a negative outcome, I would eventually throw up my hands and say “You don’t like my decisions? Fine, you make the decisions from now on.” She always resisted (which made no sense to me at the time), and then begrudgingly took over when I refused to participate. Which did not result in a reduction in unhappiness, as it turns out.

  84. PocketAces says:


    I don’t require “please” much, but I do require “thank you.” I also won’t budge unless it is requested in a pleasant tone. “Thank you” is less as a polite gesture than making sure she knows how much weird/repair/not normal stuff I get done around the house, etc. Many manosphere voices talk about not taking out the trash and expecting your wife to drop to her knees and polish your knob, and that’s true, but scores are informally kept, you should make sure there’s plenty of marks in your column. A few weeks ago a twitchy dying bird was in front of our doorstep. I wasn’t going to put on my executioner hood and decapitate the bird with a rusty shovel without her asking and me getting a thank you. :)

    Oh, the “crap sandwich” is blue pill life, and “humble pie” is taking the red pill and realizing it’s your fault. Most people aren’t up for that. Most would rather believe it’s the fault of “that bitch”. Personally, I adopted the NLP view of “why be yourself when you could be somebody awesome” so I can deal with acknowledging I have been screwing up. Still stings sometimes though.

    After a negative outcome, it generally helps to take charge. Maybe she wants to know you aren’t asleep at the wheel. Maybe something like “Hey, I played the odds on this one (calculated risk), where was your crystal ball when we needed it?” Or “You didn’t object when I made the decision, and silence is agreement around here.” Or maybe “Yep, I screwed the pooch on that one, I’ll fix it.” I have been amazed how far I have gotten sometimes just by admitting fault and taking responsibility to resolve the problem.

    “I couldn’t because I was too much of a “Nice Guy” and worried too much about managing and controlling other people’s happiness.”

    Well, for me, it became apparent that I can’t manage other people’s internal state when I figured out how damn hard it was just to control my own. It’s also easier to notice and point out when people are making a decision to react badly, etc. “Well, sounds like you are making a decision to get all wound up about that, if you want to have a bad day you can do that by yourself.” IMHO, when you put real effort into being happy, not just around the wife, but in general, you start to really notice how other people often aren’t in control and how often they try to control/manipulate you. But hey, if what you have works, go with it!

  85. this is Jen says:

    Ben you got it dead on

    indulging her. After all, she’s my sweetheart.

    Ben says:

    June 29, 2012 at 11:47 am


    I don’t think there’s anything sexist about suggesting that, after a long day at work making analytical decisions, she might want to come home and turn that part of her brain off and let somebody else deal with it. She might not be going about it in a reasonable way, but there’s nothing unreasonable about the desire. You’re not saying she’s not CAPABLE (which could conceivably be sexist), just that she doesn’t want to (not sexist).

    I was one of those women managing everyone and everything at work, who needed to NOT do the same at home. But I think we both assumed since I was so good at it at work I should do it at home, too. It was truly the death of my marriage.

  86. “I was one of those women managing everyone and everything at work, who needed to NOT do the same at home. But I think we both assumed since I was so good at it at work I should do it at home, too. It was truly the death of my marriage.”

    And what if both the husband and wife have soul sucking “careers” and just want to come home and relax? This thinking is exactly what got me into the beta mess my marriage was. I didn’t want to come home and be the “Captain” because I had to do it all day at work, and frankly I wanted a break. I got it, and it led to a permanent break by divorce.

    When a typical day’s work meant manual labor on the farm or perhaps in the mill, guys coming home would be physically tired but perhaps not so mentally drained. Me? Some days I come home and honestly wonder if I left my brain on my desk when I turned the light off. Some days it literally pisses me off to have to ‘take charge’ five minutes after i walk in the door from work because the house is in chaos and/or my SO is in a tizzy because the kids did/didn’t do XYZ. I get that women generally want to follow in a relationship, but I still can’t help getting my panties in a bunch when I see a woman complain about having to “make all the decisions”, because honestly it is EXACTLY what they are expecting their husbands to do. And even that wouldn’t be so bad, but those same woman want to tell their girlfriends how “egalitarian” their marriages are. So, they want their husbands to “lead” in the office, “lead” at home, but then they want partial credit for the “egalitarian” marriage THEY work so hard at…

  87. RedPillNewb says:

    Ted, first thing, you need to stop wearing panties. That should help a lot of things :)

    More seriously, I feel the same way as you–draining at work then draining at home. But I can live with leading at home as long as my leadership is respected. I hate being asked to not only make decisions but to put up with second-guessing and emotion-based, non-rational objections when I actually make them. That’s how I got betaized. Amusingly, she recently said to me that she WANTS me making decisions–there’s some progress right there! So I demanded an end to the whining, which took her aback a little but I think I’ll get it in the end. No, I’m not asking to be a dictator. I’m just asking that any input into decisions is logical, factual, and reasonable. In return I promise to consider it, but not necessarily agree with it or follow it.

    Also, I try very hard to have a 5-minute rule when I get home–I get 5 minutes to get out of work clothes, use the toilet, and grab a glass of ice water before anyone starts to hassle me about anything. After that I can easily juggle all the kids for a hour while dinner is being made.

  88. @Ted, @RPN:

    I’d suggest that one possible way to deal with the problem you describe (neither person particularly wants to take charge on analytical issues after coming home from a long day of dealing with same at work) is a general approach of “lead, but delegate.”

    So, for example, if you have a difficult decision to make about something like a personal investment or health care, instead of either A.) sucking it up and doing it yourself (which will make you exhausted and pissed off, especially if your wife is likely to give you crap if you make a decision she doesn’t agree with) or B.) throwing your hands up in the air and saying, “Well, YOU handle it then!” (doesn’t work for reasons already gone into at length), you might take a third option.

    Go to her and say, “Honey, I’ve got this important decision to make. I’d like you to do some research on what our options are and come to me with your top few recommendations for ways we could go with it and a pro and con list for each. That would really help me make the right decision.”

    This way, you’re A.) offloading some of the work onto her so you don’t drive yourself nuts, B.) prompting her to approach the problem rationally instead of emotionally, C.) taking the ultimate responsibility on yourself, so you’re still getting the Alpha points for taking charge and being involved, and D.) keeping both of you involved– REALLY involved, not just for show– so she can still brag to her friends about how “egalitarian” her marriage is.

    To use Athol’s Captain/FO metaphor, the Captain doesn’t have to be an expert on every part of the ship. Trying to navigate while also keeping the engine working and the deck swabbed and the larder fully stocked would drive him insane. But he does have to know enough about each of these things to make sure that everyone else is doing their job. If the FO can’t take the helm while the Captain is dealing with a problem in engineering– or deal with the engineering problem so that the Captain can deal with the helmsman– then they’re not an FO, they’re just a passenger. Captain taking on the responsibilities of command while the FO and crew support him works; Captain trying to run the whole ship himself while the passenger lounges on deck, not so much.

  89. “I hate being asked to not only make decisions but to put up with second-guessing and emotion-based, non-rational objections when I actually make them. That’s how I got betaized. Amusingly, she recently said to me that she WANTS me making decisions–there’s some progress right there! So I demanded an end to the whining, which took her aback a little but I think I’ll get it in the end. No, I’m not asking to be a dictator. I’m just asking that any input into decisions is logical, factual, and reasonable. In return I promise to consider it, but not necessarily agree with it or follow it.”

    I think this sounds like you really get the whole captain role. This sounds very reasonable to me. So if you make a decision and encounter “emotion-based, non-rational objections ” then you can always say: I made my decision, it’s done.” and not indulge it any further. Like others have mentioned, people (wife, kids, others) may still have an emotional reaction to your decision, you just don’t have to indulge it or react to it, but you can’t act from a place to try to prevent the emotional reaction either. (I think this is what people mean by “outcome independent”)

    With my kids, I obviously run into this emotional stuff quite often, and I agree that it is a royal pain in the neck to deal with it. Obviously, I’ve had my moments where I gave my husband a bit more of an emotional reaction that it was called for. I think with a wife, hopefully it starts to sink in faster. The more you stand your ground and ignore the emotional reaction, the less it will happen.

  90. RPN- but my panties are really cute…

    You hit on my point exactly. Leading is fine provided there isn’t a lot of pushback. I’m perfectly fine with leading, but I don’t expect to have my leadership questioned, or at least not questioned disrespectfully. And I think this is often something women don’t understand. I’m perfectly fine with taking constructive critisism form anyone. But, questioning my choices in the “heat of the moment” or whining/bitching/nagging is NOT constructive. And I’m more than happy to take everyone’s wants/needs into consideration when making decisions, but I can’t always please everyone. And nothing sets me off like complaining about a decision I made because it doesn’t go the way YOU wanted it to go. To me, if she already knows how she wants things to go, asking ME to decide is wasting my time, her time, and trying my patience. It’s all fine and well to want to be led ladies, but then you have to actually FOLLOW his lead. Complaining about lack of leadership and then complaining when we lead just frustrates us.

    Ad to be clear, I’m not saying I’m dealing with this in my current relationship. But I dealt with it on and off for years in my marriage. Like RPN said, this is what ultimately pushed me into betadom. I got tired of being told I was making the wrong decisions all the time, so I quit deciding completely. I also stopped loading the dish washer and doing laundry for the same reasons. I figured if I never got it right, there was no sense even trying.

  91. this is Jen says:

    You explained it very well, RPN. Too bad some men ( my ex) could never “get it”. It was too late when he realized what he had lost. I never ever thougth I’d be “one of those divorced women” ….shudder…. Oh well, I feel lucky that I went on the find the right kind of man ( for me). It has made all the difference. :)

  92. If it would inspire my husband to lose those forty pounds and quit zoning out in front of USA Network with fro-yo, he could have gotten the motivation to do so out of Mein Kampf, for all I care.

    there’s some real conversation for your asp.

  93. Never. Never doing it. Many comments, reader stories and things that you’ve said have struck nerves with me. I figure if I get to the point where she’s angry or threatening to leave, she’s going to leave no matter what I tell her. I really feel that she’s had an exit plan for years and has been waiting for the opportunity (i.e.; finds a wealthier nice guy she can drip feed sex). Plus, she’s really smart. She sees through just about everything I’ve ever done to try and be more intimate. She says things like “I don’t like you treating me like a piece of meat” (which I don’t) and “marriage isn’t all about sex”. I’m with you Athol. Yes it is. Otherwise, we are just roommates. If changing my behavior slightly and getting into shape gets her to be more attracted to me and love me more I’ll never tell her I google searched and found your blog. Never. If I did, she would see it as me just trying to get into her pants again. N-E-V-E-R.


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