Monday, June 6, 2011

The Old Bad Rules For Landing A Mate

I recently stumbled across references to The Rules, a system that claims to apply "time tested" truths about what men want to helping women get Mr. Right. I won't directly address the book because I have not read it except to say that, on the surface, it seems to promote harmfull ideas that are both old and widely held. Thus, even if The Rules is as bad as it seems it isn't the real problem.

The ideas I object to seem to center around the belief that aloof and manipulative is a more desirable state of being than direct, honest and engaged in one's own life...if you are a woman. Take "playing hard to get" for example. It specifically calls for not communicatimg your feelings and intentions and sometimes contradicting them. It makes sense if one expects their perspective partner to value them more as a conquest than as someone they know and trust intimately. Otherwise it wastes precious time you could be spending together getting to know each other. It may also take some explaining afterward. "I know I didn't say what I meant before but now I want you to take me at my word."

It is my opinion that all of the things we ask of women that push them toward indirectness and manipulation are harmful in multiple ways. This notion, that "playing hard to get" is more attractive than expressing honest interest, may be one of the worst. Not only does it teach everyone to not take women at their word, it also teaches women that there is something wrong with them. If they want to attract a desireable mate they must feign disinterest. They must pretend to be other than they really are because the truth about them, as a person, is not what a desirable mate would want.

I don't want my daughters to feel that way and i'm glad that isn't how my marriage works.

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