Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Is This the Worst Relationship Advice Ever?

A couple of weeks ago, our favorite "Game Master" challenged his readers, "Are You The Player Or Are You Getting Played?"

There are only two roles that can exist in any male-female relationship:

  • The player
  • The person who gets played  

(This post seems deliciously ironic in light of the fact that it was quickly followed by the writer and his co-conspirator Tuthmosis "playing" the entire Roosh V and Return of Kings readership, as though to drive home the point in the most humiliating manner that this "zero-sum game" is not confined to sexual relationships.)

The man who is "a winner" gets to establish all terms, chief among them "the frequency and depravity of sex," the opportunity to "degrade her in bed to your satisfaction." 

Wow. Let's just get past this unfortunate choice of words -- this is Roosh, after all --  and concede (for the 100th time) that this is a person who not only hates women, but really hates the sexual act itself.  For how can one person "degrade" another without degrading himself?  How morally bankrupt and perverse is a person who perceives the act of sex as an opportunity to "degrade" another human being?

"There is no other role that you can fill. There is no 50/50."

In fact, I have seen (though thankfully few) relationships in which the individuals involved DID take turns exploiting and humiliating each other tit for tat.  But I didn't get the impression either party was enjoying himself/herself much.

A relationship in which one party pulls all the strings all the time is going to get tedious even for (indeed, especially for) the one in charge.  That's why it strikes me that doms have a much harder "job" than subs do.  That's why there is always a bigger market for "tops" than "bottoms."

"Remember that time when you started off as the player, but then you got played in the end? I know why that happened. It’s because you stopped giving her the game that got her in bed in the first place."

Now here Roosh actually touches on something that I can recognize as a kind of truth:  To keep the other's interest, especially in the early stages of a relationship, one must remain a little at bay.  It is human nature that we don't value what is too easily obtained.  Courtship is a series of small tests; it is a dance in which one partner steps forward, the other back (and reverse).  And even later, if and when commitment and trust are established, the roles of "giver" vs. "receiver" tend to fluctuate. Among many contented couples I have seen, one partner is always more "in love" than the other, and that works well too -- so long as the power balance is not too lop-sided.  50/50?  Probably not realistic.  20/80?  Not uncommon at all.

I also think Roosh has a point when he claims women dislike "needy" men who force them to run the show.  My impression is that passivity and "instant attachment" are, indeed, huge turn-offs to most (although not all) women.  Whether this reflects an intrinsic quality in women's natures, I don't know, but I'm willing to entertain the possibility.  My personal observation is that, while it is true that "neediness" in a man is more of a turn-off to women than the other way 'round, it doesn't follow that most men are looking for a "sex-bot" in the flesh, either.

To keep the spark alive, both parties must be stimulated by a sense that they do not possess "all" of their partner.  And whether male, female, or other, people in a coupled relationship need to work to maintain their individuality and "personhood" for a number of reasons.  One of these reasons is pragmatic.  Relationships never last forever.  Unless both parties perish simultaneously in a fiery crash, one is likely to predecease the other.  If the survivor has completely given himself away, built his or her life entirely around another, what will be left to sustain him?  Another reason is that a relationship without any tension or conflict whatsoever is about as exciting and as "sexy" as a tepid bath.  Predictability is the death of romance, and what could be more numbingly predictable than a relationship in which one person calls all the shots all the time?

What frustrates me about someone like Roosh giving relationship advice to young men is that he is someone who has never been in an intimate relationship himself (sorry, one night stands just don't count).  It's even worse than celibate priests acting as marriage counselors, because Roosh actually hates women.  (And while the Catholic Church as an institution treats women badly, I don't assume its individual clergy do.)  It's like taking financial advice from a person who (looks like he) lives in a trailer park.

And if there's one thing I'm pretty sure about after examining the readership of these self-appointed authorities is that most of them really do want relationships.  Of course, if you're a lonely, horny 17 year old, a casual "bang" (or even a series of them) sounds great, but I expect their dreams are a little bigger and better than that: They want beautiful girlfriends who understand them and want to have sex with them because they love them for who they are.

Isn't that what everyone wants?

I really hate to see impressionable minds prematurely embittered by cynical advice like this because their dreams are not impossible or permanently out of reach -- although following "game" theory is the worst way to achieve them.

1 comment:

  1. It's obvious from his blog Roosh desperately wants to be loved for himself. However he doesn't so much shoot himself in the foot as frenziedly stab himself repeatedly with a bayonet.


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