Why Are We So Desperate for a Man’s Approval?

Yet another rebuttal piece to Tracy McMillan’s “Why You’re Not Married” article

My friend B. just forwarded me the link with the note “Go get her!!”

Here are a few of the quotes that made my head explode. (Read the full article here.)

We learned to let men treat us like crap.

No, see..we allowed them to treat us like crap. Therein lies the biggest problem that prevents people – male and female – from finding a healthy relationship if they so choose.: Lack of Accountability. Thriving off of being wounded.   Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, and I have horrible taste in men and need to re-evaluate.

Women of my generation are still the second-class citizens of fairy tales: only now, we don’t even have the chivalry or the ever-blooming roses to comfort us in our eternal boredom.

Oh, it’s chivalry we want? I thought it was to be treated as equals? It’s no wonder men haven’t a clue whether they should open a door or walk on the left side of the street…we don’t even know what we want. We want to be treated like equals in the office, and then like delicate little flowers on a date. Have you noticed that men don’t have such inconsistent requests? Men are expected to act the same way at all times. They don’t get to be vulnerable or demure. Lord knows that if a man were to write a woman some sacchariny sweet email  in response to her profile, or an apology for behaving badly, she’d run to the internet and post it for the world to see calling the guy a pussy.

Our conversation eventually — and inevitably — led us to the topic of why she never married, and to illustrate the point, she told me a story. “When I was younger,” she said, “I was dating a man who told me: ‘You’re extraordinarily smart, and you’re extraordinarily beautiful. You need a man who is either so strong that he can stand up to you, or so weak that you can walk all over him. I’m just a normal man. I’m not the man for you.’”

Allow me to translate. You’re difficult. Note how he phrased this..by complimenting her first so as to soften the blow. He appealed to her ego. He took the hit. He made this about his supposed weakness, when it had nothing to do with that. In other words…it was a lie. And it’s a lie that some women have been telling themselves for years to help them justify their own behavior.

As I was leaving, she said to me, with a great deal of kindness: “You’re pretty, and you’re smart. It’s a curse. You’ll have a lot of difficulty finding a man.”

Holy Jesus Christ on a Cracker. Yes, men hate pretty, smart women. They abhore them. They all want to find submissive, docile girls. Not true, not by a longshot. Many, MANY men are looking for an equal. A partner. Has any man ever been told the equivalent? Has any man ever heard such a condescending, offensive comment? “Oh Gee, Don, you’re good looking and successful. It’s going to be hard for you to find a gal.” And what makes this worse is that it’s one woman saying it to another woman. I swear, it’s a conspiracy to keep other women single. Plant seeds of doubt in their heads, psych them out, take them out of the race. Or tell them what they want to hear because that’s what they would want to hear, thereby perpetuating this type of nonsense.

For the first time in my life, someone openly acknowledged the dirty dark secret of my generation of women. And that is that all of the qualities we cultivate in ourselves from our first overachieving moments in elementary school to our graduation from the best universities in the nation — confidence in our physical appearance, the ability to support ourselves, our cultured and well-read minds, the sterling pedigree of our schooling, our taste for healthy debate with our peers (both men and women) — actually won’t help us to find an equal partner. What it will do is make an “equal” man feel insecure, and what he will do with that insecurity is label us as “crazy.”

Are you including me in this generation of women of which you speak? Because I’ve never bought in to that crap. Oh wait. I did. It was when I was in my late twenties and early thirties and got dropped like a hot rock at every turn. What the problem here is that some women are offended at the fact that men aren’t impressed by their pedigree. The other problem is how some women cling to these accomplishments and assume, because they’re so impressed with them, that other people should be, too.  The real hurdle is overcoming that huge chip that resides on so many women’s shoulders. Men aren’t impressed by words in the same way women aren’t. A guy can talk, talk, talk all day long about where he went to school and how much he knows. I don’t care. Don’t tell me how valuable you are. Show me. Show me what you bring to the table other than a bank account and a piece of paper on your wall. We’ve become far too impressed with qualities that do not matter, the flash, and forgotten about what really matters: substance.

I say to you, why aren’t you telling me that I should be going out to look for the men who wants a woman like me? (They do exist; some of them are my friends.)

Oh. Then why aren’t they either dating you or fixing you up with their friends? That’s what women who believe this should be asking themselves. If you have male friends who constantly tell you what a catch you are, but never seem to know of any single friends, there’s a reason for that. And it’s not that they don’t know any single men. Usually, at least.

Instead of being told I need to medicate my “craziness” to pander to a man’s itty-bitty oh-so-witty ego, I want a man who is every bit my match, and is not scared off by that. I want a man who is every bit my match, and is not scared off by that. I want a man who appreciates that I enjoy sex. I want a man who loves that I can fire back a sassy comment like Katharine Hepburn on one of her lazy days.

Great. You love The Cock. Who doesn’t? Do you really think men will hold against a woman for enjoying sex? REALLY? And as for this love of “sass”…this was something that came up in a recent workshop we held about writing an effective online dating profile. When the word “sass” was used in one woman’s profile, almost all of the men in the class kind of winced. Sass? Is not as fun as it sounds. Sass usually involves talking to or treating someone sarcastically or disrespectfully. Now, I don’t know about you…but I’m not too eager to date someone who’s always “sassing” me. If a man is turned off by a woman’s “sass” then it’s probably because she’s not being “sassy” she’s being obnoxious. As for the Katherine Hepburn comparison…Hepburn had what I call The Finesse. I am in awe of woman who possess this quality. It’s an ability to convey strength and vulnerability at the same time without ever coming across fragile. For a more recent example, watch The Good Wife on CBS. One of the lead characters, Diane Lockhart, is a 50 something partner in a law firm. Of all the female characters, she’s not only the most self-assured, she’s the most sexy. (Well, Khalinda is pretty smokin’, too.) Diane is portrayed as vibrant, sexual, and strong. She’s no-nonsense, confident of her abilities and she makes no apologies. She doesn’t broadcast or defend her sexual exploits (she’s the only female on the show who consistently has sex) , or feels a need to remind people she’s in charge. She commands respect with her demeanor, and she gets it.

I have a pedigree like an Arabian thoroughbred — double Ivy League degrees in art history, the ability to speak in five languages, a resume full of prestigious jobs in the art world, a history of international travel that even Bruce Chatwin would gape at — and it’s come to the point that if a man doesn’t immediately identify me as crazy, I question if he’s even listening to me when I open my mouth.

He’s not not listening because he thinks a woman with such accomplishments is crazy. He’s not listening because she probably sounds pretentious. And kinda boring.

But it’s clearly not a biological fact that a woman needs to be in a relationship to have a child. A decade from now, I know that I’ll be making a more-than-decent living, and so, assuming I don’t ask a friend to knock me up (hey, best friends make the best lovers, right?), I’ll have plenty of money to pay for in vitro fertilization. I have many, many good friends, five siblings, relatively young parents, and over 20 aunts and uncles who would help me to raise that baby.

I’m not going to knock anyone for wanting to be a single parent. I believe we can do anything we set our mind to. So if someone wants to be a single parent and they have that desire and commitment to it, then they will succeed. What bothers me about this quote is this idea that her large extended family will be around to help. Umm…you do understand that you’d be the primary care giver, right? And that while most people will enjoy watching your child occasionally, they have lives and relationships and families of their own and can’t always make themselves available to you, right? I’m actually pretty shocked at how the author tosses off this comment, as if she’d be giving birth or adopting a dog that sleeps in the corner and requires only to be walked twice a day.

All that I’m trying to say, ladies, is stop trying to frighten me; make me feel empowered. Speak to me like I can make my own decisions, and don’t demean the difficulties I may be having finding a guy who I think is worth my time and energy. Marriage is a rapidly-changing institution. Let’s discuss how it can be molded to fit our rising status, rather than trying to jam ourselves into some outdated ideal.

Can someone please point me in the direction of the articles that have encouraged or suggested that women stay home and lock themselves in the kitchen whilst barefoot and pregnant? Because all I’ve been hearing about lately is how women are comprising more of the work force than men. And I don’t think it’s anybody’s job to make you feel empowered. That’s our own individual job.  But that’s what the real issue is today, isn’t it? That  so many women are seeking the approval, not the affection, of men? Not just men..other women, too.

We’ve become so focused on proving ourselves, proving our worth, showing everyone what we’ve got, defending our choices….talking talking talking…that we’ve become completely consumed with ourselves. We’ve forgotten that a relationship involves being able to think about someone else. I just said it in today’s earlier post and I’ll say it again….emotional availability. That’s what both men and women want in a partner and in a  relationship. They want someone to champion and to support, and who will give that in return.

All this time that women spend justifying their lifestyle choices could be put to more productive use if we just stopped needing the approval of faceless strangers and accepted – truly accepted – who we are and what we’re doing.

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68 Responses to “Why Are We So Desperate for a Man’s Approval?”

  1. AmyRose Says:

    Please please please submit this rebutal or some form of it to somewhere (frisky, jezebel?, cosmo?). Your voice in this really is relatable and needs to be heard!!!! If I could I would have given this posting a huge thumbs up!

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  2. Cackles Says:

    I forget who it was (DMN? Craig?), but I recall someone making a comment on a previous post noting a lot of women’s tendency to use what attracts women in an effort to attract men. Education, income, social status, etc. I see a whole boatload of it in the linked article. As well the eat your cake and have it too ideal of equality in the workplace but chivalry in dating, as you noted.

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  3. dimplz Says:

    When I read articles like this, it only reminds me of how intolerant people are when it comes to dating. It’s like, we could deal with imperfections in other areas of our lives – we can buy a piece of fruit that has a bruise, a used car for the right price, a house that needs fixing, or take a job where we make less money. But attribute those imperfections to humans, who are inherently imperfect, and the man/woman is suddenly seeking Mr./Mrs. Wonderful. I think the problem is the writer of this article expects men to accept her as she is, while being wholly unaware that it’s a two-way street. That’s the reason she can’t allow herself to be vulnerable, not because she’s pretty or what-have-you. Once I allowed myself to be open to a healthy relationship, it happened, and all of my degrees have never taught me that lesson.

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    • kinlah Says:

      I don’t think the author was asking for perfection just to be accepted as is without feeling ashamed of who she is. I don’t think that is a crime.

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      • Dimplz Says:

        That’s not what she’s saying. She’s saying that she’s cursed because she’s educated and beautiful.

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  4. Saj Says:

    I can’t even tell what this woman is asking for in a man. She wants an equal who speaks 5 languages, travels around the world, worked hard at his job and stands up to her. Yet she doesn’t want anyone to tell her want to do or to stifle her creative genius in any way shape or form. She also wants to be able to sass him but by seeing how incredibly defensive she is in her article I don’t think she could handle any sass in return.

    So say she finds this mythical man now what? They both seem really really busy and if they want a family who is going to sacrifice to make it happen? It sure isn’t going to be her but if it ends up being him then he is no longer her equal and someone who “challenges her”. She seems to find very creative ways to set herself up for failure because deep down she doesn’t have the ability to connect with a man in a meaningful way.

    This crap of I have 3 Pedigrees and can speak 5 languages so I’m allowed to be a bitch and no way I’ll take any meds to compensate for my manic workaholic so shut up and deal doesn’t seem too far off from the old stereotype of the man going I pay the bills and go to work so if I want to act like a jerk you should just accept it. This isn’t feminism this is just swapping who is the bully in the relationship.

    Because one guy made up some lie to turn her obviously manic friend down now it means all men want a docile woman? That’s quite a leap. From what I’ve seen of the many married couples I know many men WISH their wives had more ambition and could help bring in more income for their family.

    Where you went to school and how well read you are means NOTHING for two people relating to each other at the end of the day. All it should be is a means to the end of being able to relax and enjoy life with one another. What you do all day is just something to pay the bills with and you both aren’t exactly going to be speaking French to each other in an effort to show off how impressive you are. The author even admits that she’s gone after the trolls (aka bad boys) but doesn’t see any reason why this is her fault or a problem because it’s all the man’s fault.

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  5. Bill Says:

    If a girl met a guy like this he would be a total turn off. lol

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  6. Bill Says:

    Being picky especially being ultra picky only hurts one person that is yourself. No one gives a damn what kind of partner you end up with. Everyone just likes to talk to talk and no one cares.

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  7. andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    Ann :

    Jezebel would never publish this. Ever.

    Is that a good thing or a bad thing? :)

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  8. Aldonza Says:

    My personal favorite:

    I say to you, why aren’t you telling me that I should be going out to look for the men who wants a woman like me? (They do exist; some of them are my friends.)

    And they’re her friends and not life partners because…?

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    • Saj Says:

      Maybe because some women are more sexually driven then they would like to admit. Men go on and on about how they have to be sexually attracted to the girl and I believe many many girls are the same way. They just define sexually attracted based on more then just looks. Things like having an edge, drama, money, they can show him off like a prize pony and can’t compromise on that.

      However unlike men who just go “So what? It’s how we are wired”, the girls try to be all PC and say oh you are so great you’ll make some girl very happy just not me.

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      • Aldonza Says:

        I thought she was referring to her male friends who all want “women like her”…and they may. As friends.

        I think the problem with women like that is that they are very smart, driven, successful…and women like that tend to attract men who prefer having a woman in charge. This dynamic can work, if both are comfortable with it. But she wants someone as driven and demanding as she is, not seeing that it won’t work. There can’t be two drivers of one car all the time. So either she finds a man who likes that she’s bossy and in charge (and he isn’t), or she keeps reaching for the large and in charge guys (who really don’t want every little thing to be a battle of wills.)

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  9. Trouble Says:

    Why on earth would a man (or woman, for that matter) want to spend a single hour with someone so pretentious?

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  10. Dimplz Says:

    Just a thought. In the 19th century, women were taught different languages, played instruments, were well-read and also taught how to conduct themselves, all in order to attract a man. Compare this to her “pedigree” talk and you have a woman who’s not as unconventional as she thinks she is.

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    • Paula Says:

      Here’s the rub — when we look at the things that make a guy a “good catch,” on the list for many women is a good career, financial security, ambition, home ownership, and other things that indicate someone knows how to make money, save money and spend it wisely. It may not be a turn-on, per se, but it’s definitely something most women care about when examining whether someone would be a good partner.

      When the tables are turned, it’s something that a much smaller number of men are taking into account (although maybe that number should be higher, given the need for two-income households, the high divorce rate, and the way that credit ratings get intertwined when you’re married).

      I think that it’s not as much of an issue in cities, among those who aren’t wedded to traditional values, and with a younger generation more accustomed to women in the workplace. It’s another thing that is mostly a vestige of prior generations, but some still take it to heart way too much, and use it to excuse no shortage of other faults.

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      • Dimplz Says:

        Tbh, my bf has a good job and is responsible. He doesn’t own a home. He lives with his parents. I find him to be a catch because he’s a good Christian man who lives by those beliefs and that’s what I was looking for in a man. He’s with me for the same reasons. I don’t own properties. I’m just a mild-mannered, easygoing (his words), cheerful person who is happy with very little and doesn’t demand anything. I think what men seek more are low-maintenance women. I’m just as happy going to the shore with him for a day and eating pizza than I would be eating at a 5 star restaurant, and we’ve done both. A good man, or one that most of the women on this board want to find, will seek a low-maintenance woman. No need to sweat the rest of the population.

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      • Paula Says:

        Dimplz — you’re so right. One of the biggest compliments my last ex ever gave me was that I was the most low-maintenance woman he had ever dated, and was so easy to be with.

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  11. Vox Says:

    Boring and full of herself, that’s the real reason she’s alone. (I can’t imagine she has many female friends either, but I’m sure that isn’t her fault. Most likely, women can’t handle her greatness either.)

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  12. Paula Says:

    I think it is fair to say that some of the things that women were told they needed in the workplace in order to get ahead and have a successful career:

    don’t be emotional or show vulnerability;
    you will have to be smarter than everyone else to earn respect and be given the same shot at success;
    act more like a man and try to be one of the guys;
    put off your baby-making plans as long as possible if you want to advance, etc.,

    have not served the women who took those things to heart very well in the relationship department. The same qualities that may be necessary for a man to respect his female colleague may cut against her when it comes to wanting to date her, and the constant focus and drive it takes may not be so easy to turn off on evenings and weekends with a partner.

    And a study just released by the White House shows that married women 25-54 who work still spend more time on household tasks and child care than their husbands who work, which tells me there are still expectations that even career women will have skills like cooking, cleaning, and managing the household (even though they may have been raised to think that feminism and equality meant those things were less important than developing a career.) Plus, the men 25-54 will probably be the last generation to have been raised in large numbers by stay-at-home moms, who helped shape their views about what a wife should be.

    [http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/rss_viewer/Women_in_America.pdf]

    But…those same qualities, which may make you unattractive to some men who are threatened by them, are the very same qualities which may make you more attractive to other men (when not laden with defensive bitchiness). And guess which guys you’re more likely to have a successful relationship with? It’s not the ones who are uncomfortable with your accomplishments.

    Yet another reason to be a cougar.

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    • Vox Says:

      Men are not “threatened” by the qualities it takes for a woman to have a successful career. That notion is nothing more than a comfortable security blanket, a source of blame so one don’t have to examine the real for being alone after being rejected so often. The problem with career accomplishments is that they are marketable within a limited number of settings, and dating isn’t one of them. Men aren’t threatened by them, they just aren’t turned on by them.

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      • Paula Says:

        I don’t know where you grew up, Vox, but I grew up in the rural Midwest, where a lot of people spend their lives without ever really leaving, even to travel. It’s a pretty conservative, religious area, with “traditional” values.

        Some men want women they can take care of, be the provider for, and whose primary goal in life is to be a wife and mother, rather than to have a career. I’m from an area where that is even still possible, where a family can live on one income.

        So yes, there are men who are threatened by women who want to have a career and who are more educated than they are. That’s not to say that certain people don’t use it as an excuse, especially if they’re in an environment where it’s not so prevalent (like most urban areas) but to make a blanket statement like “Men are not “threatened” by the qualities it takes for a woman to have a successful career” is simply not true.

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  13. Frensin Says:

    Chivalry is not dead! It just depends on the guys you meet, and if a guy opens the door for me, I dont think it makes me inferior like some feminists seem to believe. xD

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  14. kinlah Says:

    So what is being said period. Women are confussed…I get that!!! But what is it that we as women are sooooo confussed about? We don’t have the finesse, style and proper mannerism as far as dating, looking and communicating with potential mates? Are we so focussed on our needs, wants and desires that we ultimately are just looking for someone to fulfill our delusional needs? and in doing so we have totally eliminated the needs, desires and wants from the men? Am I getting this right? Or am I still clueless as to what this article is really about.

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  15. Vox Says:

    Paula :
    I don’t know where you grew up, Vox, but I grew up in the rural Midwest, where a lot of people spend their lives without ever really leaving, even to travel. It’s a pretty conservative, religious area, with “traditional” values.
    Some men want women they can take care of, be the provider for, and whose primary goal in life is to be a wife and mother, rather than to have a career. I’m from an area where that is even still possible, where a family can live on one income.

    So yes, there are men who are threatened by women who want to have a career and who are more educated than they are. That’s not to say that certain people don’t use it as an excuse, especially if they’re in an environment where it’s not so prevalent (like most urban areas) but to make a blanket statement like “Men are not “threatened” by the qualities it takes for a woman to have a successful career” is simply not true.

    I grew up in a smaller town in Oklahoma, yet I still the think the notion that men are “threatened” by career women is ridiculous. You (and others) think they are threatened by you because it boosts your ego. It’s handy reason to explain why the men aren’t interested in you, when the reality is, you aren’t showing them anything that they find attractive. The reason is, instead of showing them who you really are, you are talking about your accomplishments. You seem to forget that you aren’t your career and you aren’t your degrees. That isn’t what men want to learn about you. They aren’t threatened, they are bored! I say, put that stuff away and just be yourself. You can dole out your interesting accomplishments a little at a time in the future. After all, everyone hates a braggart.

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    • kinlah Says:

      Um…Vox some of us have careers that are more than jobs we enjoy. Those careers are part of our identity and who we are because it is our passion (for those of us who do really love what we do.)
      I don’t think men are neccessarily bored by your education, accomplishments or degree. It just depends how you present it and what your intentions are. But if a man is truely interested in you what you do does interest them aswell.

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      • Saj Says:

        I think it only matters to men that you like your job and it brings you happiness.

        I adore my job but it really isn’t who I am it’s just stuff I enjoy. I would even bore myself talking about what I do all day but the good thing about it is that we both have an artistic sense just in different ways and there are aspects of it that we can share together.

        It’s good for a conversation starter I guess but waving it as a flag for why you should like me seems weird. If you are a nurse then it means you probably are caring and men care about the caring part not the nursing part. If you are an artist then he may appreciate how you can see the beauty of simple things rather then whatever layout you made that day.

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      • Vox Says:

        I have a great career, I make more money than I should, I have a great resume and I travel a lot… who cares. I would bore my friends and family to tears if I answered “how are you, how have you been” with work stories around the dinner table. I am not my job, they are asking about ME not my paycheck. Men don’t want to date your job, they want to date YOU! When yougo on and on about work on a date, they never want to see you again because you are boring! They have buddies to talk shop with, that’s not what they want in a date. Too many women can’t admit how boring they are – probably being delusional- so they claim men are intimidated. (These same gals think that other women are jealous of them, thats the flipside.)

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    • Paula Says:

      I’m not doing any of these things, Vox, so I don’t know what you’re talking about. The last thing anyone would call me is a braggart when it comes to my career — there are people in my life who don’t even really know what I do. But I did leave where I grew up to move to a city where what I do is much more valued and mainstream, and there are many more people (men and women) like me.

      I don’t know what everyone else hates, but I hate people who make blanket statements without any qualifications, like everyone else inhabits their narrow, nasty little reality.

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      • Dimplz Says:

        Vox wasn’t addressing you, just using the collective you. I think you ladies had this problem before.

        Anyway, I do agree with Vox. If all you have to bring to the table is what you do and not who you are, it’s boring. The other day, my girlfriend had a great evaluation (she’s a teacher). I was happy for her because she works hard and was nervous about it. Then she went into detail about the whole day and her lesson and what he said. I listened and was polite, but frankly, I really could give a shit. Give me the short version – please. I’m sure what people do may be exciting to them because it’s what they choose, but we as your audience are not as fascinated and enthusiastic as you may be about it.

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      • Paula Says:

        Dimplz — if Vox was using the collective you, then she wouldn’t have needed to say “you (and others).” “You” would have given sufficient wiggle room, even though it’s right after my quote (which is how she did it previously). It’s rather a passive-aggressive way of doing things, but so be it.

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  16. nan447@yahoo.com Says:

    dimplz….maybe your just not into her….the magic of a relationship…is watching the screen before you…not just listneing to the words….if ur gal goes on and on tell her….she can talk endless with a gal friend…if u don’t love her …leave…let her find a man who want to listen to her every word…

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    • Dimplz Says:

      I’m not a lesbian, dear. I’m talking about a friendship. I don’t want to hear people “talk shop” after I’ve already left work. I don’t mind it occasionally, but she and I are gym buddies, so I hear this kind of talk several times a week and I get bored with it.

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  17. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    “We learned to let men treat us like crap.”

    This line irks me. Moxie didn’t include the whole quote but the author claims women “learn” by listening to their mothers and other people who tell them how people act. That’s not learning, that’s just following.

    Who cares what people tell you. Real learning is based on experience. When you experience the consequences of your choices, you learn what works and what doesn’t. If women were LEARNING they would stop chasing so-called “bad” guys pretty quickly because, after one or two times, they would figure out that it was not resulting in a positive outcome for them. That would be learning.

    What the author is describing is not “learning” but clinging to beliefs in spite of what reality is teaching you. In my view, that is the fundamental difficulty that women like this are having.

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    • Dimplz Says:

      “What the author is describing is not “learning” but clinging to beliefs in spite of what reality is teaching you. In my view, that is the fundamental difficulty that women like this are having.”

      Yes DMN. This right here

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  18. DowntownAngel Says:

    I seriously don’t get what the author’s problem is. If she wants a career guy who’s her equal, or perhaps a bit more than her equal, she should go and date those guys, period. If she finds that she can’t attract any of those guys she has an option of staying single or becoming a single mother. Or, alternatively, finding a doormat-sperm-donor-stay-at-home-dad for a husband.

    Being in the same boat,I understand perfectly clear that it is slim pickings out there for a woman who is highly successful and wants a guy who’s even more successful. It’s just math, compounded by the fact that men generally have more options. What irks me though, is how quickly she’s labeled “pretensious”, “boring”, “bitch” and all other things – all in search for a “true” reason she’s not married. C’mon, give me a break. Women who are total bitches get married all the time. When was it ever a problem for a mean, bitchy, catty womam to get married? Never. It’s not her (or anybody else’s) character, it’s the “price” she sets for herself on the dating market. Compare it to real estate: a crappy 1br that needs renovation and priced to sell can be sold in a few months. Super-expensive penthouses can stay on the market forever. She’s that penthouse. That’s all.

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  19. Vox Says:

    Paula :
    Dimplz — if Vox was using the collective you, then she wouldn’t have needed to say “you (and others).” “You” would have given sufficient wiggle room, even though it’s right after my quote (which is how she did it previously). It’s rather a passive-aggressive way of doing things, but so be it.

    You are in fact correct: I meant you specifically, as well as all other women who promote such “men are intimidated by me and my success” nonsense. I don’t do passive aggressive, because I have the guts to say exactly what I mean. What I wrote is what I meant; I left myself no wiggle room because I don’t need it.

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    • DrivingMeNutes Says:

      I (and others like me) are refreshed by your honesty.

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    • kinlah Says:

      Well just DAMN!!!! When did all this become so freaking personal. Anyway, I think if the woman is just talking about her job/career to prove superiority to her date…then it’s just tacky on her part or ignorance. That’s exactly why I stated it dpends on the persons intent. But if she is excited or passionate about what she does then it shouldn’t be a problem if she brings it up every once in a while.
      When it comes down to it I think people have a hard time communicating because we either cannot relate to one another or just too damn defensive… or we need to take a valium and just chill. It’s human relations we are talking about here… it really shouldn’t be that hard.

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    • Paula Says:

      I didn’t say that men are intimidated by me and my success, and I don’t promote the men are intimidated by me and my success nonsense. If you’re going to make your attacks personal, Vox, at least demonstrate that you’ve read what my posts actually say.

      What I said was that there are men out there who are intimidated by successful women. There are men who are not, and in fact, find it to be attractive. There are women who use this as an excuse when there are other factors, like their difficult personalities, that account for their situation. There are all kinds of people in this world, and you just can’t categorically say that “men are this way” or “women are this way” without being wrong, because there’s always going to be someone out there who is the exception to the rule.

      When I lived in a place where a higher percentage of men (or boys, depending on your definition) appeared to be threatened by the kind of career I intended to pursue, I moved to another location where what I do is so commonplace that men who are threatened by it would have to exclude a fairly large percentage of the female dating population. I haven’t met a guy in the entire 5 1/2 years I’ve lived in my current location who is intimidated by what I do, and so that’s not part of my personal mantra of dating failure. For once, I’m surrounded by men and women who have equally impressive career accomplishments, if not more so, and it’s one of the reasons I love living where I do.

      However, if I lived in the region where I grew up, where most are highly religious, don’t have more than a high school education, and haven’t ever visited a big city, much less lived in them for most of their adult life, I know I would encounter a completely different situation, as I have experienced during class reunions and family visits. And, having been married to someone with whom there was a significant educational, ambition and income mismatch, I know to be true that some men are threatened by it.

      If you’re surrounded by men who are threatened by your career, you have two options: 1) move or find a different bunch of men; or 2) realize that that might not be the problem. But saying that such men don’t exist is hiding your head in the sand just as much as saying that every man feels that way.

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      • Vox Says:

        If you’re going to make your attacks personal, Vox, at least demonstrate that you’ve read what my posts actually say.

        My posts here are not a personal attack on you because I don’t know you whatsoever. I enjoy typing out my opinion based on what I read here, and I enjoy reading the opinions of others, whether I agree with them or not.

        It so happens that you and I don’t see eye to eye on much, at least not when it comes to what we post. So be it, that’s what makes life interesting! That you choose to view the opinions I express here as personal attack against you is your prerogative. It really isn’t my problem.

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  20. Paula Says:

    Vox :
    My posts here are not a personal attack on you because I don’t know you whatsoever.

    You are in fact correct: I meant you specifically, as well as all other women who promote such “men are intimidated by me and my success” nonsense.

    Your words speak for themselves, Vox.

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  21. Paula Says:

    –”You’re a boring braggart talking about your career all the time and blaming men for not being impressed.”

    –”In case there was any confusion, yes, I mean you personally, not the collective you.”

    –”Oh, you’re taking false and insulting things that I made sure everyone knows are directed at *you* personally? I couldn’t possibly imagine why.”

    –”Well, that’s your problem as those things weren’t about you, just an opinion.”

    –”Yes, an opinion about someone I don’t know whatsoever.”

    That’s not passive aggressive at all…really demonstrates lots of guts. But that’s OK, if that’s what makes your life interesting.

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    • Vox Says:

      I’m not all that gutsy and I’m not all that passive aggressive. I’m just a gal who sometimes gets things right, and sometimes gets things wrong. I’m not so perfectly awesome that I intimidate men by my greatness and genius the way that you do, but that’s my own cross to bear.

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  22. joe Says:

    I was at a wedding last night for a college friend. All of us have great degrees and successful jobs. To my left are two couples and to my right are four single girls. Why are some successful, beautiful women who speak multiple languages in happy relationships whereas others are not? It comes down to how you treat your man.

    The two in the relationships were supportive, acknowledging their men have faults but they love them nevertheless. The four single girls to my right would show why they are superior, why they are so successful, why they are so interesting and why they need to debate to show their intelligence. Yes, they are intelligent and successful but there are many intelligent and successful people in NYC. Don’t be a pretentious bitch and use your oversized ego to hit us over the head with it. You don’t have to prove why the man is wrong and you are right. It is not attractive.

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    • dimplz Says:

      joe :
      Don’t be a pretentious bitch and use your oversized ego to hit us over the head with it. You don’t have to prove why the man is wrong and you are right. It is not attractive.

      I have met men and women like this. It’s an absolute turn-off. Once in a while, a healthy debate is fun, but I’ve had conversations where the other person has nitpicked at every word or phrase I utter, and I am a person who likes to joke around, so it’s just a mood-killer. Those people need to learn to lighten up.

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  23. DowntownAngel Says:

    joe : You don’t have to prove why the man is wrong and you are right. It is not attractive.

    This is hilarious. So, a woman who’s pointing out that a man is wrong and supports it with arguments is a … well, not to put words in your mouth, “pretentious bitch”.

    I get it, I really do. Men don’t like being proved wrong by a woman. What I don’t get is how it is different from “being intimidated” by a woman? In my book it is exactly the same. And the reaction to this is quite telling, too. She’s arguing with me – she’s a bitch. Oh well.

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    • Vox Says:

      How often do you, as a woman, like to be proven wrong by a man? How often do you like them to argue with you about how you are wrong about the way you are living your life? If someone lists your shortcomings on a date, how positively do you respond? Does constructive criticism turn you on?

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      • DowntownAngel Says:

        Funny you should say this. Most of the times in my life when I was called “argumentative” (and I guess considered a “bitch”) was when a guy tried to tell me how my ways were wrong and I wouldn’t agree.

        I believe that the way we live our lives is not something that should be up for a debate in the first place. Other things like which turn to take on the way to the restaurant, do carrots have more surgar in them than apples and whether sunblock ireally works – can be discussed.

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  24. andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    DowntownAngel :

    joe : You don’t have to prove why the man is wrong and you are right. It is not attractive.

    This is hilarious. So, a woman who’s pointing out that a man is wrong and supports it with arguments is a … well, not to put words in your mouth, “pretentious bitch”.

    I get it, I really do. Men don’t like being proved wrong by a woman. What I don’t get is how it is different from “being intimidated” by a woman? In my book it is exactly the same. And the reaction to this is quite telling, too. She’s arguing with me – she’s a bitch. Oh well.

    It’s a wedding, not a debate. A woman or a man who has to prove that someone is wrong is obnoxious. I don’t care what the setting is. How serious could the conversation have gotten for one of these women to feel as though she *had* to be right? That’s what is obnoxious, and that’s what Joe is talking about. It has nothing to do with being intimidated. Nobody wants to be involved with someone who always has to be right. It’s exhausting. Sometimes you just have suck it up and let the other person win. That’s what relationships are about.

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  25. marci Says:

    if your emotional intelligence is low, it will be difficult to relate to other human beings sucessfully, dispate the fact that you might be succesful otherwise.regardless whether you are a man or a woman.

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  26. JoyC Says:

    “Great. You love The Cock. Who doesn’t? Do you really think men will hold against a woman for enjoying sex? REALLY?”

    You have GOT to be kidding me with this. I am not sure how many of the posts you read in response to the “Plight of the Single Woman”…but I am SURE that at least 90% of the men who posted labeled that woman as a slut…and kicker is, she didn’t even say she slept with all the men she talked about dating at the beginning of the article! Maybe men don’t come out and say this…but when they are ‘anonymous’ and can spew honestly…they will tell you that they do NOT respect a woman who enjoys sex. Unless, they are her ‘first’. haha!

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  27. patyspat Says:

    I can’t beleive all the comments that I am reading in this blog. The majority of females here need some therapy to work with their self esteem issues. I would recommend a book by Arianna Huffington called “On becoming fearless”. Instead of putting value amongst women, you degrade us for expecting anything less than to have a man appreciate or be chivalrous to us. Bull…you were born alone and ur gonna die alone. A women doesn’t need a man to feel loved, cherised (family and friends) have an orgasm (masturbation with sex toys, etc) or have kids (in vitro). Your lives are so empty that all you can focus on is what a man wants and needs. I’m embarressed to be a part of your gender. No matter how ugly or pretty a woman is she’s only as valuable as the worth she gives herself.

    If a woman wants to settle with any cockroach that comes her way, than “amen to her” but I know I won’t.

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    • dimplz Says:

      I haven’t read any comments that advocate being with a man who doesn’t treat us well. As far as single parenthood goes, I often hear statements that praise it as if it’s so wonderful. Usually, these people grew up with both a mother and father and have no clue what it’s like to only have one parent around.

      I’m sure many women/men manage to be wonderful single parents, as my mother (a widow) did, but I know for a fact it’s much easier to do it with a loving supportive partner. There’s a reason it takes two. If that makes my life empty, oh well.

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    • JoyC Says:

      The amount of woman bashing is just so over the top. And I think the spin on most of the articles doesn’t help. I feel like I am in the “fox news’ channel of dating, where the slant is so pro-men. That being said, I think that BOTH sexes need to appreciate how the other is wired – a la ‘Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus’. I know it’s an old book, but the premise generally holds true. I work with an older man who has been married for 40+ years and he ALWAYS says to me – “the secret of my marriage bliss is always knowing that my wife I will always think according to how we are programmed as a man and woman.”

      If we want to get really down to the basic instincts each sex has, then the man’s inherent instinct is to spread his seed, and women to give birth and nurture. Whether a person wants to look at it as progress/downhill trend/just change, the fact is that things are different and both sexes are having a hard time finding a balance. I think women have adjusted MUCH better. Whether you are a gung-ho career woman or just work for fun/extra income, we STILL give birth and nurture! And we still want to! What do men do differently??? Give up “free-agent penis” status – give me a break. I can go find the latest stats on male infidelity versus their female counterparts and I am SURE it’s nothing they can be proud of.

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  28. marci Says:

    I think both authors had some good points- its impossible to claim that the female emancipation hasnt influenced men and perhaps even made them insecure. And its also impossible not to agree with the fact that women have been taught for centuries that they are second class citizens. Thats all true. But its also true that women are responsible for themselves and that some traits like being angry, having issues, being immature or insecure will make it very difficult for a woman to find a long term partner.
    I believe its both correct in a way, but a woman or a man can only try and control and change his/her own behavior, and the situation with the female liberation etc is beyond control. So, I think that dealing and takinf a good look at yourself is always a good advice.
    The writer of this blog is very angry at times, I must add.

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  29. JoyC Says:

    This was written by a man…

    Difference Between Male and Female Infidelity

    In Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Angel Clare confesses to his new wife, Tess, on their wedding night, that he had sown his wild oats before marriage. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, she thinks; it’s time to come clean. So she tells him about her affair with Alec D’Urberville.

    “Forgive me as you are forgiven! I forgive you, Angel.”
    “You—yes you do.”
    “But do you not forgive me?”
    “O Tess, forgiveness does not apply to the case! You were one person; now you are another. My God—how can forgiveness meet such a grotesque—prestidigitation as that!

    Clare left her that night.

    The main argument here is this. Even if a man forgives the infidelity of his woman, it is humanly impossible for them to stay together in a romantic pair bond. Here is why.

    When a man cheats, a woman experiences a plethora of intense emotions. She hurts. Her female pride hurts the most. The betrayal hurts too. The identity of the other woman may add gas to the fire. There are many other female factors at play but there is one thing we know to be true. In general, the last thing on the betrayed woman’s mind is the physical act of fucking itself.

    Can a woman forgive the infidelity of her man? Yes.

    Can they ever be together again? Yes.

    Women are socially and emotionally much more intelligent than men. That is a fact. Therefore, if the man is worth having, some woman will realize that the real enemy in this case is not her man; it is the other woman, and she will be damned before she lets the other woman win that war and take her man. The other woman knew that the man belonged to another; therefore, it is clear who did the seduction. After all, the woman, not the man, is the one who always makes the decision to have sex. Moreover, once a woman forgives her man’s infidelity, she owns him for life. More importantly, the woman will make it possible for them to renew their relationship, even the sex will be better than ever.

    Can a man forgive the infidelity of his woman? Yes.

    Can they ever be together again? No.

    In order to capture the correct psychological male profile, the language here is appropriately very colorful. When a woman cheats on her man, the words “cheat,” “affair,” “sleep with,” do not enter a man’s head. She “fucked” another guy is the only word he thinks. That is it. His entire waking hours since the moment he finds out that his woman fucked some other guy are one continuous, painfully agonizing, intensely pornographic day dream—a combination of gratuitous sexual auditory and visual hallucinations. He could be at work, talking to a friend, or even talking to his woman and this is all he sees and hears. He sees his woman kissing the other guy and sucking his cock. He sees his woman’s mouth full of the other guy’s cum. He sees the other guy’s cum all over her face and hair. He sees his woman’s legs wide open for the other guy. He sees and hears the guy pounding his woman. He hears her saying, “harder, harder, fuck me baby, fuck me hard.” Men are visual; betrayed men are superiorly imaginative.

    The point is this. The betrayed man will suffer from this mind-numbing daydream for a long, long time, especially every time he sees the woman who betrayed him. It is simply unhealthy for a man to stay with a woman who betrayed him.

    If you cheated on your man a long time ago but you managed to stay together, know this. If you ever catch him staring at you, he sees cum all over your face. Smile.

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    • D Says:

      This is garbage. I’ve had a woman cheat on me and forgave her. She actually left me for the guy, then we got back together again a couple years later. We dated for another year or so before breaking up, but the infidelity had nothing to do with it.

      I’m naturally a very trusting person. Some people may say that’s naive, but I can’t really change my instincts.

      Other people are naturally paranoid. If I had to choose one, I’d pick overly trusting because constantly doubting what you see before your eyes is depressing IMO.

      As far as I know that’s the only woman who’s cheated on me, but maybe I’m wrong.

      PS I, like Dan Savage, personally love sluts who own their slutdom. I’m probably out of the ordinary.

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  30. JoyC Says:

    My reason for posting the above article is in addendum to my other post in response to:

    “Great. You love The Cock. Who doesn’t? Do you really think men will hold against a woman for enjoying sex? REALLY?”

    I realize that the article is about enjoying sex in an extramarital affairs, my point is that men think very differently about women having sex versus them having sex. In general if they sleep around, they are sowing their wild oats, if women do it they are “whores who f*ck”.

    (Apologies for the author’s crude language in the article…it might offend some, it certainly puts me off.)

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  31. andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    JoyC :

    “Great. You love The Cock. Who doesn’t? Do you really think men will hold against a woman for enjoying sex? REALLY?”

    You have GOT to be kidding me with this. I am not sure how many of the posts you read in response to the “Plight of the Single Woman”…but I am SURE that at least 90% of the men who posted labeled that woman as a slut…and kicker is, she didn’t even say she slept with all the men she talked about dating at the beginning of the article! Maybe men don’t come out and say this…but when they are ‘anonymous’ and can spew honestly…they will tell you that they do NOT respect a woman who enjoys sex. Unless, they are her ‘first’. haha!

    JoyC :

    “Great. You love The Cock. Who doesn’t? Do you really think men will hold against a woman for enjoying sex? REALLY?”

    You have GOT to be kidding me with this. I am not sure how many of the posts you read in response to the “Plight of the Single Woman”…but I am SURE that at least 90% of the men who posted labeled that woman as a slut…and kicker is, she didn’t even say she slept with all the men she talked about dating at the beginning of the article! Maybe men don’t come out and say this…but when they are ‘anonymous’ and can spew honestly…they will tell you that they do NOT respect a woman who enjoys sex. Unless, they are her ‘first’. haha!

    Right. Because if it’s said on the internet, it must be true. And the most confident and secure of men are the ones sitting at their computers typing away hateful comments. If you’re going to base your opinion of men on anonymous comments on the internet, I feel sorry for you.

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    • patsypat Says:

      It’s the same way u sit on your computer typing away hateful comments about woman. I REALLY feel sorry for u!!! What’s good for the geese is good for the gander!!!

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    • JoyC Says:

      COME ON…you’re a blogger! And in the age of everything happening on the internet, yes I would say a good gauge of attitudes could be found on the internet. Especially when you can post without anyone knowing who you are. That seemingly normal, progressive person sitting in the next cubicle from you can be posting hateful and neanderthal-ish comments.

      If you still don’t buy it, then I guess you have to extend the pity to everyone who posts on your blog. Regardless of where the viewpoint is posted, it’s a viewpoint, and they are still part of the dating pool out there. At best, they are a minority. I’m just saying that men are a lot more conservative about sex than many of them would even have us believe. When it comes down to it, SO many of them prefer it if you’ve parked in as few garages as possible. Take a survey of your male posters, seriously. There’s a nice collection of neanderthal viewpoints right here.

      You should post some articles on studies done on male/female nature. I think they would be really interesting reads.

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    • Paula Says:

      Well, it’s not exactly an anonymous comment on the Internet — it’s a blogger named Thoth. Not much different than a blogger named Moxie, although probably not as well known.

      Which is probably a good time to point out that if you’re going to post entire articles, JoyC, it’s best to cite that person, and provide a link back to his or her article. Cutting and pasting an entire article without acknowledgment or permission is not only a violation of copyright law, it’s denying the original author credit for his or her work. You’ll notice when Moxie posts an article, she only posts pieces of it, comments on those pieces, and links back to the original.

      I can appreciate Thoth’s perspective, if not his crudeness. But I don’t think he speaks for or represents all men, just as I don’t think Moxie, or Tracy McMillan or Brienne Walsh, for that matter, speak for or represent all single women.

      Infidelity is a horrible devastating thing to those who have to experience it, and it wouldn’t surprise me that men experience it differently than women. But I think the number of men who realistically expect their romantic partners to be virgins or sexually inexperienced is thankfully dwindling, so the intensity of the feelings he describes are hopefully relatively rarely experienced by men outside the context of infidelity.

      Because if they’re not — there’s a huge double standard there, and it’s not going to be placated by women spontaneously reverting to chastity. That horse is out of the barn, and has been since the 60s. Better guys who feel that way about their partner’s sexual past either focus their search among the religious communities that expect it or the even smaller amount of non-religious women who choose to wait until marriage, or even better, just get over their hypocrisy.

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      • JoyC Says:

        Thanks for that lesson on copyright law.

        My point was that it was a man’s opinion, and yes, Thoth deserves recognition, so you will notice that the next article I pasted credited the site it came from.

        I don’t know if you have this problem, but I can’t ever seem to paste links when I post on this site, hence the pasting.

        “Infidelity is a horrible devastating thing to those who have to experience it, and it wouldn’t surprise me that men experience it differently than women.”

        Yes men experience infidelity differently, but why is that? The point the author is making is that men think about their women differently (when it comes to sex) than women think about men. THAT was my point all along. And I hold to it. A LOT of men want women who have not slept around. Maybe not virgins, necessarily, but they view a woman who has slept around a lot as not being marriage material. Double standard? You betcha…but that double standard has been discussed ad infinitum. And why is that? Because it exists!

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      • Paula Says:

        JoyC :
        Thanks for that lesson on copyright law.

        Not sure if you’re sarcastic or sincere about that, JoyC, but either way, it’s something that can get bloggers in trouble. Moxie isn’t a heavy-duty comment moderator, so in exchange for being able to post immediately and not have posts killed by her left and right, I think it’s fair to take some responsibility for not posting things that can get her in trouble.

        In terms of pasting links, you can either cut and paste the URL, which doesn’t make it a live link but people can cut and paste it into a browser for reference, or you can use basic HTML code to create the link (which is pretty easy to Google and figure out).

        Everyone else can do what they want. I’m going to call out the double standard, realizing that many double standards have gone away or been drastically diminished in my lifetime (for example, the hypocrisy around same-sex marriage coming from those who have been divorced or unfaithful). And even if it doesn’t move the needle that much collectively, dating and mating is a profoundly individual concept — it just takes one person who feels the same way I do.

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