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A Machiavellian Guide to Dating Quality Women

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Prahasaurus
Prahasaurus Posts: 1,381 Member
From reading posts here for a few months, one thing seems clear: women will settle, whether they want to admit it or not. Because what they are looking for, above all else, is someone who truly loves them. Sure you have to be a nice guy, and reasonably decent looking (depends on the woman, obviously).

But the good news is that you can be a few steps down on the quality meter in comparison with the woman, but you're totally fine. So long as you are able to show the woman you care for her a lot, ideally relatively early in the relationship. She'll be reluctant at first to seriously date you. But she'll quickly come around, because she will see that you care for her, and that will trump everything else. At least that seems to be the theme of many of the women here:

* Women here who date total jerks who belittle them in public. The women don't know if they should break up with the guy, even though he's a total loser. Why stay? The guy does claim to like them very much, ergo, the women are hooked. Lesson learned: say you love the woman early - or at least show her some token affection - and she'll put up with a lot...

* Women who begin dating a guy even though he's not her type, not really planning to form a serious relationship. But soon we read how the man is "really into her," and lo and behold, she realizes that she might - just might! - be into him, too. A few more weeks of posts and they are a hot item. Quite a few examples of this. Lesson learned: show you really care early and she'll recalibrate her opinion of you.

* Women here are eager for the man to make the first move. Only by being aggressive will you put yourself in a position to date a woman you had previously assumed was out of your league. They key is getting that first date, and for that you must be aggressive! Only then can you show them you're really into them. This technique only woks when you are on a date - you can't claim to really care for a woman before you get that first date!

It's a bit tricky on the first couple of dates, as well, because you need to show her right away that you like her, but don't overdo it on date one. Just be nice, and ask to see her again. Your only goal on date one is to get to date two. Repeat on date two. By date three, you need to make your move: tell her you really care about her. At this point, you are in the driver's seat. She will already be recalibrating everything about you in light of your willingness to care for her.

To recap:

1 - Be aggressive with initial encounters. You think she's out of your league (and let's face it, she really is), but you just need to get that first date!

2 - Be nice on the first date, show her you care, but don't push it. Your primary goal is getting a second date.

3 - Same as point 2. Be nice, but get that third date! She's not yet committed, but you're almost there.

4 - On date three, you tell her how much you care for her. At this point, she has already been on three dates with you, so there is a good deal of cognitive dissonance ("I didn't think he was really my type, and yet I'm on the third date with him, hmmmm"). Plus, your show of real affection will start an elaborate chain reaction with her emotionally that ends in her convincing herself that she cares for you, too!

5 - After date three, she will be messaging her friends and/or posting here about how you have surprised her, how she didn't think you were her type, but you've won her over, etc., etc. Her friends will give lots of positive reinforcement, since they want her to be happy: "Sounds like a great guy, and he's so into you!" Mission accomplished.

So the main lesson learned from reading posts here is this: target women whom you had previously viewed as "out of your league" with confidence. They will resist at first, but your devotion to them will win them over.

--P
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Replies

  • castadiva
    castadiva Posts: 2,016 Member
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    Machiavellian it may be, but I don't think you're too far wrong in most cases. Speaking in broad generalisations, women are conditioned from birth to be modest about themselves and pleasing to others, which inevitably leads to the issues of self-esteem that make us suckers for a man who seems to 'care' for us.

    Bombarded with mostly-unattainable images of what we have to look like, wear, achieve, in order to be 'desirable' and 'pleasing' to men, and enjoined to believe our own appearance and achievements are only moderate, or achieved with significant help from others, rather than by dint primarily of our own talents and hard work, we are therefore in a prime position to be taken advantage of in the way you describe.

    Because we are taught to undervalue ourselves, it is, subconsciously at least, always surprising to us when a man who at least partially matches up to what we've been told we should want (nice, reasonable-looking, vaguely competent) 'cares' for us in a romantic sense - "He thinks I'm good enough?! Wow!".

    Approval is a powerful aphrodisiac, and one that is all-too-often lacking in sufficient quantity in many women's lives. Even our positive aspects can be turned around on us in a disapproving way - the guilt/fear/dismissal subtext is inescapable, even in the most apparently positive comment: "Oh, you're smart/achieving great things in your career! (But you know that'll make you less attractive to most men, and when are you going to have babies, oh, and you really ought to make time to get to the gym more and maybe learn to cook macrobiotic food - so much better for you - and your house doesn't look like it belongs in a magazine spread...) or "You're beautiful (but you couldn't be taken seriously in any intellectual sphere or profession because of that, and you need to make sure you stay that way (have I given you the number of this great plastic surgeon?), and really, he only wants you because you look good on his arm, so what will you do when he wants the newer model, and...)". A man who appears to 'approve' of us enough to go out with us multiple times and show he 'cares' provides a buffer against all of that subtext, and I can quite see how that sort of buffer could be hard to let go of, ergo the 'settling' and recalibration of personal priorities and preferences.

    As for the aggression - another consequence of training women to be modest about themselves is that very few women can break out of that societally beaten-in message enough to say, and really believe, that "He'd be lucky to have me - I'll go talk to him, because I'm really pretty great, and I deserve to be with someone who makes me feel good about myself". The mental soundtrack is more likely to be "He's really good looking - I'd love him to come over and talk to me, but someone so cute is bound to be taken, and anyway, he wouldn't be interested in someone like me - my hips/upper arms/nose is too big, and I didn't do a great job on my hair tonight, and my friend is much prettier than I am, and I'm too outspoken anyway, and I'll mess it up, so it's best if he doesn't, and..." Then lo and behold, he's 'aggressive' - he comes over and talks to her - gives his 'approval' - and she can't believe it, and even if his nose is really crooked up close or his eyes are too close together, he's a bit dull to talk to or a little bit sleazy and he's not really her 'type', nine times out of ten, she'll bend over backward to keep that approval...

    Can you tell I've spent a LOT of time watching and analysing my friends' and colleagues' behaviour? Travel's good for that too - lots of fascinating people-watching to do when eating on one's own...
  • flimflamfloz
    flimflamfloz Posts: 1,980 Member
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    Machiavellian it may be, but I don't think you're too far wrong in most cases.
    stuff stuff stuff
    Travel's good for that too - lots of fascinating people-watching to do when eating on one's own...
    Yep, I would agree with you for the most part.

    The funny thing (though) is that your "women" mental soundtrack isn't too unfamiliar to me (and probably to many other men).

    As a man, when I see an interesting woman the mental soundtrack is likely to be "She's really good looking - I'd love her to come over and talk to me, but someone so cute is bound to be taken, and anyway, she wouldn't be interested in someone like me - my hips/upper arms/nose is too big, and I don't even wear my best clothes, and there are many sharp and bold guys around here, and I'm not too fun anyway, and I'll mess it up, so it's best if she doesn't, and...".

    Well. It's a bit more of a lie these days since my confidence is much better (thanks to practice and exposure, and realizing that other guys aren't all that great in the end and that they have their flaws too), although my confidence still has its cracks from time to time.
    But I guess I'm aware of what I can and cannot offer to a woman, and I know a lot of women would be interested in what I have to offer (with its imperfections), so I'm confident there are women out there for me.

    I think the ultimate answer with women for me was in my "I don't give a *kitten* attitude" which I often summarise by: Will I regret this on my deathbed? No? Then I should just go and do it.
    Also realising that every woman and relationship is unique so they are very important and completely unimportant at the same time. Important because they are unique, unimportant because everyone else is unique too.


    I wanted to add also about the contradiction that women want to appear independent and strong (and are asked to be like that by society), which is clearly counter productive in that it can indeed work against you if you have that aura of "I'm too good for you, sorry pal!" (my man "mental soundtrack" will start bugging me).
    There is this thing with PUAs where when you've worked so much on yourself that you keep sending women in auto rejection (you don't reject people, they reject themselves thinking they aren't good enough for you). There are ways to leverage this, and I've mentionned these methods a few times on these forums.
    I remember once reading a study concluding that educated women have less sex on average than their less educated counterparts. I'm sure that while there are tons of other reasons for this, the "intimdation/auto rejection" thing is part of it.
  • castadiva
    castadiva Posts: 2,016 Member
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    Machiavellian it may be, but I don't think you're too far wrong in most cases.
    stuff stuff stuff
    Travel's good for that too - lots of fascinating people-watching to do when eating on one's own...
    Yep, I would agree with you for the most part.

    The funny thing (though) is that your "women" mental soundtrack isn't too unfamiliar to me (and probably to many other men).

    As a man, when I see an interesting woman the mental soundtrack is likely to be "She's really good looking - I'd love her to come over and talk to me, but someone so cute is bound to be taken, and anyway, she wouldn't be interested in someone like me - my hips/upper arms/nose is too big, and I don't even wear my best clothes, and there are many sharp and bold guys around here, and I'm not too fun anyway, and I'll mess it up, so it's best if she doesn't, and...".

    Well. It's a bit more of a lie these days since my confidence is much better (thanks to practice and exposure, and realizing that other guys aren't all that great in the end and that they have their flaws too), although my confidence still has its cracks from time to time.
    But I guess I'm aware of what I can and cannot offer to a woman, and I know a lot of women would be interested in what I have to offer (with its imperfections), so I'm confident there are women out there for me.

    I think the ultimate answer with women for me was in my "I don't give a *kitten* attitude" which I often summarise by: Will I regret this on my deathbed? No? Then I should just go and do it.
    Also realising that every woman and relationship is unique so they are very important and completely unimportant at the same time. Important because they are unique, unimportant because everyone else is unique too.


    I wanted to add also about the contradiction that women want to appear independent and strong (and are asked to be like that by society), which is clearly counter productive in that it can indeed work against you if you have that aura of "I'm too good for you, sorry pal!" (my man "mental soundtrack" will start bugging me).
    There is this thing with PUAs where when you've worked so much on yourself that you keep sending women in auto rejection (you don't reject people, they reject themselves thinking they aren't good enough for you). There are ways to leverage this, and I've mentionned these methods a few times on these forums.
    I remember once reading a study concluding that educated women have less sex on average than their less educated counterparts. I'm sure that while there are tons of other reasons for this, the "intimdation/auto rejection" thing is part of it.

    Stuff!!! I took nearly an hour writing that out! :laugh:

    Re. your contradiction - oh yes, the double standard is still in full operation as regards women and their choices. A woman is supposed to seem independent and strong, in charge of her own sexuality, physically in tip-top shape, BUT none of these things to excess in the eyes of the males around her, lest she intimidate them, and they therefore lose interest. Because in that regard, we're still supposed to be the weaker, submissive partner - the 'choice' is still yours, in the general view of society, and we are still the ones to 'blame' if none of you want us. Compare and contrast the treatment of single men over a certain age, and single women of comparable age, in the media and popular entertainment for copious evidence of this attitude.

    I'm not at all suprised by the study you mentioned, and I'd agree with you that the intimidation/auto-reject factor plays a part in it. I live that reality every day, and have done since puberty. I'd be very interested to see a study done of the relative IQs of a couples as well - my theory would be that even men in the highest percentiles typically go for women who score a minimum of 5-10% lower than them. It'd be interesting to measure at the start of a relationship and further in as well - while IQ itself would not change, confidence in one's mental abilities and that using them will have no negative effect might well impact on (I would expect) the score of the female partner.
  • denezy
    denezy Posts: 573 Member
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    You have just broken down my last 3 relationships. Wow. I'm a cliché.
  • jenbit
    jenbit Posts: 4,289 Member
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    From reading posts here for a few months, one thing seems clear: women will settle, whether they want to admit it or not. Because what they are looking for, above all else, is someone who truly loves them. Sure you have to be a nice guy, and reasonably decent looking (depends on the woman, obviously).

    But the good news is that you can be a few steps down on the quality meter in comparison with the woman, but you're totally fine. So long as you are able to show the woman you care for her a lot, ideally relatively early in the relationship. She'll be reluctant at first to seriously date you. But she'll quickly come around, because she will see that you care for her, and that will trump everything else. At least that seems to be the theme of many of the women here:

    * Women here who date total jerks who belittle them in public. The women don't know if they should break up with the guy, even though he's a total loser. Why stay? The guy does claim to like them very much, ergo, the women are hooked. Lesson learned: say you love the woman early - or at least show her some token affection - and she'll put up with a lot...

    * Women who begin dating a guy even though he's not her type, not really planning to form a serious relationship. But soon we read how the man is "really into her," and lo and behold, she realizes that she might - just might! - be into him, too. A few more weeks of posts and they are a hot item. Quite a few examples of this. Lesson learned: show you really care early and she'll recalibrate her opinion of you.

    * Women here are eager for the man to make the first move. Only by being aggressive will you put yourself in a position to date a woman you had previously assumed was out of your league. They key is getting that first date, and for that you must be aggressive! Only then can you show them you're really into them. This technique only woks when you are on a date - you can't claim to really care for a woman before you get that first date!

    It's a bit tricky on the first couple of dates, as well, because you need to show her right away that you like her, but don't overdo it on date one. Just be nice, and ask to see her again. Your only goal on date one is to get to date two. Repeat on date two. By date three, you need to make your move: tell her you really care about her. At this point, you are in the driver's seat. She will already be recalibrating everything about you in light of your willingness to care for her.

    To recap:

    1 - Be aggressive with initial encounters. You think she's out of your league (and let's face it, she really is), but you just need to get that first date!

    2 - Be nice on the first date, show her you care, but don't push it. Your primary goal is getting a second date.

    3 - Same as point 2. Be nice, but get that third date! She's not yet committed, but you're almost there.

    4 - On date three, you tell her how much you care for her. At this point, she has already been on three dates with you, so there is a good deal of cognitive dissonance ("I didn't think he was really my type, and yet I'm on the third date with him, hmmmm"). Plus, your show of real affection will start an elaborate chain reaction with her emotionally that ends in her convincing herself that she cares for you, too!

    5 - After date three, she will be messaging her friends and/or posting here about how you have surprised her, how she didn't think you were her type, but you've won her over, etc., etc. Her friends will give lots of positive reinforcement, since they want her to be happy: "Sounds like a great guy, and he's so into you!" Mission accomplished.

    So the main lesson learned from reading posts here is this: target women whom you had previously viewed as "out of your league" with confidence. They will resist at first, but your devotion to them will win them over.

    --P


    THe whole time I was reading this I was giggling. It literally sounded like someone just re-capped Mr. Nice guy and my relationship. BTW we are still dating .Except for the jerk part her was never a jerk. But its very true. Beyond the basic things most women want in partners (i.e. likes the smae music,has the same values) one of the most attractive if not the most attractive thing about a guy is him displaying the fact that he likes us and has confidence in it .
  • DMZ_1
    DMZ_1 Posts: 2,889 Member
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    The confidence thing makes sense. Confident and funny will keep the attraction going.
  • yo_andi
    yo_andi Posts: 2,178 Member
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    I think your analysis is a bit overbearing and chauvinistic, actually. But I do agree with one piece of your post: "target women whom you had previously viewed as "out of your league" with confidence".

    Confidence is attractive.
  • Prahasaurus
    Prahasaurus Posts: 1,381 Member
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    I think your analysis is a bit overbearing and chauvinistic, actually.

    Yes, it was written in a tongue-in-cheek style, so I would agree with this. However, I was serious about my main point, which is that many (most? all?) women will settle, so long as the man convinces her (and hopefully he is sincere!) that he cares for her deeply.

    That is what women crave most: to be loved. By whom is important, but it is secondary.

    --P
  • TheKitsune6
    TheKitsune6 Posts: 5,798 Member
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    None of this rang true for me, and I was all ready to be like "NOPE, haha you're wrong!" until I saw that there are women who do agree... so maybe this isn't all that off base. It's not true for me personally, I've done the opposite. I try and convince myself to settle. This guy is so nice, he likes me, we like the same things and I end up just telling them it's not working and I'm sorry. I still have one of those guys texting me every now and then and it's a bit revolting and annoying to be honest. It makes me think that he's waiting for me to be JUST desperate enough to have sex with him.

    That being said, after some thinking based on what I've seen here... for some people it's not so bad. It's not a matter of settling or desperation it's just changing the mind of some preconceived notions. It's the compromise that maybe that rigid "NO GUYS UNDER 40" rule got changed for the one 35-year-old that pushed hard enough.

    Maybe I just haven't found a "nice guy" that pushes in the right ways for me. I get bored when someone is so accommodating they literally change their response to a question after they've heard mine. Then on the flip side I don't tolerate jerks, in fact I have quite a lot of fun tearing them apart when they try the backhanded compliment ("You're not the ugliest girl here, why is no one buying you drinks?").

    In the end maybe this all stems from not ever, not once in my life have I felt like I -needed- to be in a relationship. So unless someone is up to par, I'm not going to bother.
    Re. your contradiction - oh yes, the double standard is still in full operation as regards women and their choices. A woman is supposed to seem independent and strong, in charge of her own sexuality, physically in tip-top shape, BUT none of these things to excess in the eyes of the males around her, lest she intimidate them, and they therefore lose interest. Because in that regard, we're still supposed to be the weaker, submissive partner - the 'choice' is still yours, in the general view of society, and we are still the ones to 'blame' if none of you want us.

    Even in so called intellectual circles this is true. I remember I struggled with it a lot on the speech and debate team. My coach clearly spelled out for the ladies that you don't want to come across as though you are "too right" or "too passionate" because then you will be written off as a b*tch and no one will listen to you. You can't be too submissive either because then you will also have no one listen to you. The key is to find the happy medium and that's different for each girl with each judge and you just hope that you get the right one each debate. It was very frustrating but at the same time it has also benefited me greatly in my (current) professional life. I know how to make my ideas appealing to bossman. There is a part of me that just thinks I should dress up like a man and go through life because it would be so much easier to be as straightforward and blunt as I am without getting written off.
  • pa_jorg
    pa_jorg Posts: 4,404 Member
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    However, I was serious about my main point, which is that many (most? all?) women will settle, so long as the man convinces her (and hopefully he is sincere!) that he cares for her deeply.

    :noway: So are you saying that many (most? all?) women are liars or just easily duped?
  • TheKitsune6
    TheKitsune6 Posts: 5,798 Member
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    However, I was serious about my main point, which is that many (most? all?) women will settle, so long as the man convinces her (and hopefully he is sincere!) that he cares for her deeply.

    :noway: So are you saying that many (most? all?) women are liars or just easily duped?

    I don't think it's about deceit at all, I think what he's talking about is having the persistence to show that you might not be such a bad pair, just because he's an inch shorter than you. It's about busting through the checklist and falling short but it doesn't matter because ultimately what a woman really wants are the basics - show her that you are honest and dedicated to HER and she will realize the other things don't matter so supermuch.
  • flimflamfloz
    flimflamfloz Posts: 1,980 Member
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    Re. your contradiction - oh yes, the double standard is still in full operation as regards women and their choices. A woman is supposed to seem independent and strong, in charge of her own sexuality, physically in tip-top shape, BUT none of these things to excess in the eyes of the males around her, lest she intimidate them, and they therefore lose interest.
    Because in that regard, we're still supposed to be the weaker, submissive partner - the 'choice' is still yours, in the general view of society, and we are still the ones to 'blame' if none of you want us. Compare and contrast the treatment of single men over a certain age, and single women of comparable age, in the media and popular entertainment for copious evidence of this attitude.
    I hope you realise that this also means (logically) that the male is supposed to be the stronger, dominating partner (concrete proofs of which are that they are expected to be the initiators, planners, entertainers, etc.).

    This also means that men are expected to never show a crack in their shell. While it would be nice ideally, every man knows his limits and if a woman comes across as "too strong" (while this is obviously not true in reality, this is the signal she is sending), it should be understandable that this can be off-putting for a man.
    You have doubts sometimes, men have doubts sometimes. This is the shocking truth.

    I think "strong women" are fully responsible for their failures, as much as "weak men" are.
    Men are mostly expected to approach (and thus be strong), they either comply or die. Women are mostly expected to be approached (and thus approachable), they either comply or die.
  • pa_jorg
    pa_jorg Posts: 4,404 Member
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    However, I was serious about my main point, which is that many (most? all?) women will settle, so long as the man convinces her (and hopefully he is sincere!) that he cares for her deeply.

    :noway: So are you saying that many (most? all?) women are liars or just easily duped?

    I don't think it's about deceit at all, I think what he's talking about is having the persistence to show that you might not be such a bad pair, just because he's an inch shorter than you. It's about busting through the checklist and falling short but it doesn't matter because ultimately what a woman really wants are the basics - show her that you are honest and dedicated to HER and she will realize the other things don't matter so supermuch.

    Kit- I agree with how you re-framed this, so fair enough. Then again, I think I'm pretty open minded about who I'll talk to or go on at least an initial date with.
  • JanieJack
    JanieJack Posts: 3,831 Member
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    However, I was serious about my main point, which is that many (most? all?) women will settle, so long as the man convinces her (and hopefully he is sincere!) that he cares for her deeply.

    :noway: So are you saying that many (most? all?) women are liars or just easily duped?

    If we get down to the heart of it… why are so many “great guys” losing out to the jerks? Well, they often don’t take action… or when they do, it’s out of character or manipulative. I’m reminded of a friend who tried to make an aggressive move on me (knowing I like confident men who take action) but his behavior to that point had been more of the wishy-washy “I don’t care… what do YOU want to do/eat/go/etc.”

    The jerks give the illusion of caring by doing all the “romantic, tug heartstrings” kind of stuff in private. They take action whether or not it might possibly make them look bad because they are confident enough that it’s a numbers game and if this girl doesn’t work out the next one will.

    And we, as women, abhor using logic and intellect when it comes to relationships so most of us DO get easily duped. I can’t count how many times I was told to stop thinking so much and just “go with it.” But story upon story of jerk who was texting me while taking out another, or lied to me about cancelling plans to chase some tail convinced me to hold back my emotions so I wouldn’t:

    1) Lie to myself about how amazing he is (often filling in the blanks with my own fantasies), or
    2) Be duped by a man telling me what I want to hear in private (though his public behavior indicates otherwise)

    But I’m having a great time in my new relationship, and I wouldn’t have BEEN able to relax and just enjoy him without the couple months of being reserved to make sure he wasn’t just pulling the wool over my eyes. Granted, a couple months might be a bit too long, lol, but most ladies don’t even give a guy a couple WEEKS to show his true colors. We invite him home the first date and then expect declarations of everlasting love by the 2nd week.
  • jenbit
    jenbit Posts: 4,289 Member
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    However, I was serious about my main point, which is that many (most? all?) women will settle, so long as the man convinces her (and hopefully he is sincere!) that he cares for her deeply.

    :noway: So are you saying that many (most? all?) women are liars or just easily duped?

    No I dont think so. With Mr NG and myself it was a simple matter of I dont know if this guy can handle me. I didnt "settle" He just proved that he could handle all my crazy zany parts.Hes not calling women liars or saying were being duped he's telling guys if your into the girl the most important thing is to get the first date and let her know your into her that you like her. I never lied to myself about him. their were certian things that werent in my normal dating perameters(him being a little shorter then me ) and I had to see if our chemistry and such changed my mind. It did :bigsmile:
  • JanieJack
    JanieJack Posts: 3,831 Member
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    Reposted on the "Intimidation" thread:
    women want to appear independent and strong (and are asked to be like that by society), which is clearly counter productive in that it can indeed work against you if you have that aura of "I'm too good for you, sorry pal!" (my man "mental soundtrack" will start bugging me).

    This is a very real issue. Guys want a smart woman (won't embarrass me at work events), but not too smart (otherwise she wouldn't put up with my jerkiness). A woman who's independent (i.e. not clingy) but not too independent (doesn't need me).
  • castadiva
    castadiva Posts: 2,016 Member
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    Re. your contradiction - oh yes, the double standard is still in full operation as regards women and their choices. A woman is supposed to seem independent and strong, in charge of her own sexuality, physically in tip-top shape, BUT none of these things to excess in the eyes of the males around her, lest she intimidate them, and they therefore lose interest. Because in that regard, we're still supposed to be the weaker, submissive partner - the 'choice' is still yours, in the general view of society, and we are still the ones to 'blame' if none of you want us.

    Even in so called intellectual circles this is true. I remember I struggled with it a lot on the speech and debate team. My coach clearly spelled out for the ladies that you don't want to come across as though you are "too right" or "too passionate" because then you will be written off as a b*tch and no one will listen to you. You can't be too submissive either because then you will also have no one listen to you. The key is to find the happy medium and that's different for each girl with each judge and you just hope that you get the right one each debate. It was very frustrating but at the same time it has also benefited me greatly in my (current) professional life. I know how to make my ideas appealing to bossman. There is a part of me that just thinks I should dress up like a man and go through life because it would be so much easier to be as straightforward and blunt as I am without getting written off.

    As you can probably tell, this is an issue for me too. I went to an all-girls school, where the idea that girls could do and be anything they chose was pushed pretty hard (ironically, except for being "on the stage", which was unladylike and exhibitionist...not something 'nice', strong, passionate, educated women should do!). In actual fact, I'm not sure they didn't do us a disservice by allowing us to assume that our apparently-good choices - to be strong, opinionated, outspoken, passionate adults - would be welcomed by the outside world, or rather, by failing to tell us that the price for being these things, as a woman, is pretty high.

    Intellectual circles or not (and actually, they can be the worst!), pitching your outspoken-ness/passion/factual content to keep the person 'judging' happy is one of the most difficult things to do. Frankly, I think it's shameful that women are still under so much pressure to do so in a theoretically gender-equal society, but it is unavoidable that it is so. One needs only to look at the female political leaders of the last thirty years - Thatcher, Clinton, Rice, Albright, Gillard - and their treatment to see how uncomfortable the world at large is with outspoken, passionate women. As a female, if you know what you're talking about, and say it with passion and commitment, without apologising, you are almost guaranteed to be vilified. Not for being wrong, but for being a 'b£$%^' or a 'cow'. Your appearance will be attacked, because that MUST be your weak spot, and of course your appearance, as a woman, is of far greater importance than your mind. That is the level of discomfort we are talking about. And it is infuriating.

    My apologies for derailing somewhat, but it is societal attitudes, not individual women, who have made women so vulnerable to the sort of strategy Prahasaurus talks about. In the 21st century, it's embarrassing that western societies are still covertly embracing attitudes towards the mental capabilities of half the species that have never been true - a fact that should be increasingly evident as women are becoming more and more highly-educated, and taking on more and more senior roles in many industries - not just the 'traditional' female preserves of nursing and teaching. That societal attitudes really haven't shifted to match this evolution is self-evident in the number of highly-competent, capable, confident women who do not find their match. We are still expected to apologise for being successful, for having brains, for expecting to be treated as equals, and to diminish our own accomplishments and achievements because they might make a man feel uncomfortable. Well whoop-di-doo, we're back to the 1950s (or the 1850's at that) and decades of effort has really been for nothing but the trimming on the tree.
  • Carl01
    Carl01 Posts: 9,370 Member
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    While I am not going to dismiss it as not having a lot of truths in it I find it unsettling in that to me it seems to encourage guys to be phonies and do "pick up" things instead of being themselves.
    It also seems to suggest that since it impossible for ladies to make wise choices instead of ones based on emotions alone (I have often cautioned against the latter as well) they should just accept that as being good when more often then not the result is a disaster.
  • castadiva
    castadiva Posts: 2,016 Member
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    Re. your contradiction - oh yes, the double standard is still in full operation as regards women and their choices. A woman is supposed to seem independent and strong, in charge of her own sexuality, physically in tip-top shape, BUT none of these things to excess in the eyes of the males around her, lest she intimidate them, and they therefore lose interest.
    Because in that regard, we're still supposed to be the weaker, submissive partner - the 'choice' is still yours, in the general view of society, and we are still the ones to 'blame' if none of you want us. Compare and contrast the treatment of single men over a certain age, and single women of comparable age, in the media and popular entertainment for copious evidence of this attitude.
    I hope you realise that this also means (logically) that the male is supposed to be the stronger, dominating partner (concrete proofs of which are that they are expected to be the initiators, planners, entertainers, etc.).

    I certainly do realise. 'Supposed' being the critical word - in the eyes of the world at large
    This also means that men are expected to never show a crack in their shell.

    Not necessarily - never is a long time. Most women will tell you that a strong man who allows himself to appear emotionally vulnerable on occasion is pretty irresistible. To say that there must never be a crack in the shell is rather to imply that women should never show any strength at all - not what most guys seem to want. They'd just prefer that strength was intermittent (and probably not greater than their own)
    While it would be nice ideally, every man knows his limits and if a woman comes across as "too strong" (while this is obviously not true in reality, this is the signal she is sending), it should be understandable that this can be off-putting for a man.
    You have doubts sometimes, men have doubts sometimes. This is the shocking truth.
    Not shocking at all. To doubt is human. My issue is with the idea that a woman can be "too" strong, and that strength should make her unappealing to the majority of men. I've said it before, but I will say it again - strength of character, ambition, a sense of honour, courage - these are surely all attractive and positive qualities in both genders? The problem is that, too often, these positive attributes are still held up against women as weapons - good things, that conversely make them less desirable. A man who is described as kind, gentle, caring - traditionally feminine attributes - is today, by contrast, on the receiving end of an encomium.
    I think "strong women" are fully responsible for their failures, as much as "weak men" are.
    Men are mostly expected to approach (and thus be strong), they either comply or die. Women are mostly expected to be approached (and thus approachable), they either comply or die.

    Do you not see how wrong that is? Any society that defines strength as a failing is on the path to its' own destruction. If a "strong" man cannot find the guts to approach a "strong" woman, or rather, the courage to acknowledge his own desire for an equal, rather than a subordinate, then he is not truly strong. I do, in this situation, believe that it is up to the male half of society to catch up. The wider female consciousness has shifted - many of us are no longer content to be weak and submissive, to be valued less for our character than for our appearance. Many are no longer truly willing to apologise for being intelligent, capable, successful - you need only look to the divorce statistics for the over-50s to see this borne out. Some of us will play the game, in order to comply with standards we are trained to accept, rather than those we believe in, or to satisfy maternal instincts, or because male companionship truly is a great pleasure. Nonetheless, the number of "strong" women who are not procreating is alarming. While some do not want children, many do not continue their genetic legacy because they cannot find men who can handle being part of a partnership, rather than the undisputed head of a household. The wider male mind must adjust to reality as it is, rather than as it would wish it to be, or we, as a species, are in a whole world of trouble.
  • TheKitsune6
    TheKitsune6 Posts: 5,798 Member
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    Re. your contradiction - oh yes, the double standard is still in full operation as regards women and their choices. A woman is supposed to seem independent and strong, in charge of her own sexuality, physically in tip-top shape, BUT none of these things to excess in the eyes of the males around her, lest she intimidate them, and they therefore lose interest. Because in that regard, we're still supposed to be the weaker, submissive partner - the 'choice' is still yours, in the general view of society, and we are still the ones to 'blame' if none of you want us.

    Even in so called intellectual circles this is true.
    blah blah blah
    it would be so much easier to be as straightforward and blunt as I am without getting written off.

    As you can probably tell, this is an issue for me too.
    ....
    Well whoop-di-doo, we're back to the 1950s (or the 1850's at that) and decades of effort has really been for nothing but the trimming on the tree.

    Shortened because the quote tree might get out of hand ;)

    I agree that there is definitely still a lot of the mentality about strong independent women, but in the meantime I think there is still a definite influx in the amount of people that don't see women this way. The reason I am the way I am is because of my father (I believe I mentioned several times I have the best dad ever and I judge every potential mate based on how they measure up to him). He told me constantly growing up that he wanted me to be a strong, smart, educated woman because he never wanted me to dependent on another human being for my survival. That if anything ever went wrong I had something to fall back on no matter what. He took my sister and I into work with him so that we could meet his female boss, and told us that it's okay for women to have power in the workplace and that we can be respected for it.

    So while yeah, I was disappointed to learn that women do have these prejudices against them, and it was frustrating to deal with, for every judge that wrote "I like your ideas, but the delivery put me off" there was a judge that said "I love your passion, you made me listen and I liked what you had to say". I think that there is a lot of progress and that we should gravitate toward that. People will always be attacked for whatever reason and ultimately it's how we handle ourselves when that does happen that truly reflects on most of the populace regardless of gender/race/age/etc.

    I guess ultimately what it comes down to is that no matter what we need to keep being strong, smart and assertive HUMANS and encourage others to be the same if they so choose. It's certainly not the 50s and from here on out we can keep making things better. Eventually those that still have that horrible mindset will die off and good f*cking riddance, am I right?