The Book of Oprah

Note:  This post contains Fireproof plot spoilers.

Previously I’ve written that most churches speak like Christ and act like Oprah when it comes to divorce.  The reality is even worse than that, because when it comes to marriage across the board nearly all Christians now speak like Oprah too.  The assumption is that while the Bible focuses on headship and submission and on shutting the door on the idea of divorce, there is something missing.  While it is all well and good to have marriages which are faithful to the biblical instruction on the topic, they tell us, the Bible forgot to include instructions on how to have a happy marriage.  As a result, we have the wholesale Christian adoption of the modern secular “relationship expert” school of thought, a school of thought not from the Bible but from a new book they have discovered, the Book of Oprah.

A little over a year ago Sheila Wray Gregoire commented on my blog to register her strong objection to me referring to the wife in Fireproof as acting “whorish”.  Later in the comment she also objected to my neglecting the issue of marital happiness (emphasis mine):

I find that you talk a lot on this blog about how people should never divorce (which I more or less agree with), and that women shouldn’t expect so much from their husbands (which I also agree with), and that women are asking their husbands to be both betas and alphas at the same time (which I also agree with), and that women leave their husbands too much (again, in agreement). But what I don’t find is you dealing honestly with genuine problems that couples have with communication, with distance, with betrayal of trust, with porn, etc. I agree with everything you’re saying, but I don’t think marriages can be fixed with a simple “suck it up and put on your big girl panties”. That might make someone STAY in the marriage, but it won’t make the marriage thrive, and what I’d like to see is couples who are genuinely attached and intimate. I’m not saying that if you aren’t intimate that’s grounds for divorce; not at all. But I’d like to see couples thrive. And that means that sometimes you actually have to work at problems, not just say “you’re expecting too much, get over it”. You have to learn how to communicate, and how to give, and how to understand the different ways that men and women approach sex, parenthood, life, etc.

Ironically while this is generally presented by Christians as becoming modern and learning from science, scientists know that the biblical view of marriage actually works (emphasis mine):

The study’s findings are consistent with other research demonstrating the powerful effects of marital commitment on marital happiness. A strong commitment to marriage as an institution, and a powerful reluctance to divorce, do not merely keep unhappily married people locked in misery together. They also help couples form happier bonds. To avoid divorce, many assume, marriages must become happier. But it is at least equally true that in order to get happier, unhappy couples or spouses must first avoid divorce. “In most cases, a strong commitment to staying married not only helps couples avoid divorce, it helps more couples achieve a happier marriage,” notes research team member Scott Stanley.

In the full study they point out that marriage counseling is seldom the solution (emphasis theirs):

Spouses who turned their marriages around seldom reported that counseling played a key role. When husbands behaved badly, value-neutral counseling was not reported by any spouse to be helpful.  Instead wives in these marriages appeared to seek outside help from others to pressure the husband to change his behavior. Men displayed a strong preference for religious counselors over secular counselors, in part because they believed these counselors would not encourage divorce.

A separate study also confirms that adopting a mental posture of unwillingness to divorce leads to greater marital happiness.

I reference the movie Fireproof so much because it isn’t just an example of how its creators think on the topic of Christian marriage;  that the movie is so universally and enthusiastically accepted by modern Christians offers a unique insight into how pervasive the new thinking on marriage truly is.  There simply is nothing else so universally accepted by modern Christians on the topic of marriage.  It isn’t just Protestants who adore the movie;  Catholics love it too.  It isn’t just the message embedded in the plot which is telling, but the way the movie is marketed.  As I mentioned recently, they have to be careful not to call it a movie on Christian marriage (since it isn’t).  However, given the many ways to finesse this their choice of wording when they are reaching out to churches is still very telling (emphasis mine):

Use this movie to help strengthen marriages and couples in your church and community. FIREPROOF is an unprecedented opportunity to communicate God’s design for relationships.

Note that the implication is that a couple which is neither married nor engaged is a “relationship” that a church should strengthen.  Marriage is just one kind of “relationship” churches should tend to in this frame of mind.  This is what the marketers of the movie believe churches want to hear, and I see no reason to believe they are incorrect.

A fundamental change in Christian thinking is the acceptance of the ever present threat of divorce should the wife become unhappy.  This isn’t a grudging acknowledgement of unfortunate legal reality, but a full fledged internalization of the secular world-view on divorce.  It is now unquestioningly accepted that a Christian husband’s first priority must be to prevent his wife from becoming unhappy and divorcing him.  This is after all the meaning of the Fireproof tag-line Never leave your partner behind.  In the movie it is the Christian husband’s responsibility to ensure that his wife loves him so she doesn’t leave him for another man.  We know Caleb finally “gets” what the movie is selling as Christian marriage in the triumphant fist-clenching scene where he confronts the man his wife is in the process of leaving him for:

I know what you’re doing. I have no intention of stepping aside as you try to steal my wife’s heart. I’ve made some mistakes, but l still love her. So just know I am going after her too.

And since l’m married to her, I’d say l’ve got a head start.

In practice the modern Christian approach to marital difficulties ends up being the same approach followed in the secular world;  the wife shares her feelings at great length and the husband must listen and do something about it.  This inverts the biblical relationship of the husband and his wife’s emotions.  In biblical marriage the husband is his wife’s emotional rock, and he lovingly anchors and shelters her when her emotions storm over her.  If he didn’t, she would become untethered.  In this new bastardized version of Christian marriage the wife’s emotions rule them both.

I’m not saying there isn’t any room for Christian marital counseling, or even retreats, books and movies which teach husbands and wives to communicate better and understand each other’s needs.  However these must come from an unwavering belief in biblical marriage, including the topics of divorce, headship & submission, and denial of sex.  It should also start with a clear understanding of the times we live in.  Part of it should be taking great care not to elevate the wife’s emotions to the point where they are now the driving force in the marriage, and to avoid cutting husbands off at the knees.  To the extent that this exists in the Christian “relationship counseling” industry, I’ve never come across it.  Such a perspective would certainly stand out like a sore thumb in all but a handful of modern day congregations.

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280 Responses to The Book of Oprah

  1. sunshinemary says:

    headship & submission, and denial of sex.

    Has anyone ever heard a pastor address denial of sex? I have never, ever heard one address that. Yet it’s an enormous problem; I didn’t quite realize how bad it was until lately. It seems like large numbers of Christian women are in sin in this area, yet it is completely swept under the rug.

    Also, in my opinion, marital counseling lead to divorce. Even Christian marital counseling. We tried it a number of years ago. The counselor was all over my husband’s sins; she never addressed the fact that I had begun withholding sex from him and was totally unsubmissive and disrespectful. It was worse than useless. We would have done better to stay home and read the Bible together.

  2. Jehu says:

    Sunshinemary,
    Yes, it’s been preached at my church that it is a grievous sin to deprive your husband of sex. But I wager you’ll never see such preaching in a church bigger than 150 or so, or on any church big enough to have a ‘head pastor’. Preaching the actual BIble rather than the Churchian subset isn’t good for advancement in denominational hierarchies.

  3. Q says:

    As it turns out, I find myself it that situation.

    What is a Christian man to do if his wife (young, both under 30; “thankfully” no kids yet) leaves him, from one day to the next? I know about Game, I know about acting strong, I know about preselection and whatnot. But what in the world are you supposed to do? Like in that movie (which we watched together some years ago), “I’ve made some mistakes, but l still love her”. She behaves in ways I would never have believed her capable of. However, ain’t I bound to the promise before God and men of sticking to her, even if she does not feel like it anymore? At least for some time (3 months now, and counting)? Hell, we were our first lovers, I don’t see how I could find another virgin in today’s dating market without first indulging in behavior that definitely isn’t Biblical.

    Any help appreciated.

  4. And since l’m married to her, I’d say l’ve got a head start.

    Ahahah!

    This is the best evidence that the evangelical men making this tripe are completely deluded by the idea of relational equity. No, Mr. Married Beta Chump, you’re at a disadvantage, because hypergamy doesn’t care about your selfless dedication to the feminine imperative.

  5. Falconer says:

    “I know what you’re doing. I have no intention of stepping aside as you try to steal my wife’s heart. I’ve made some mistakes, but l still love her. So just know I am going after her too.”

    I haven’t seen this piece of shit movie, but I’m not surprised that this is the avenue of action taken by the betrayed husband. Millions of beta Christian men will probably feel a swell of inspiration and a dash of hope at this pathetic dialogue. Here’s what he should be saying:

    “I know what you’re doing. You can have the bitch, she’s dead to me. She’s your problem now. I’ve made some mistakes, but now I’m going to go nail her younger sister and do whatever I want from here on out. So just know that this is the last time you and her will ever hear from me.”

    “And since l’m married to her, I’d say l’ve got a head start.”

    No, I’d say you’ve already lost.

  6. RICanuck says:

    @SunShineMary

    It’s an issue that men do not like to discuss with each other, except now we have the internet.

    It’s not just denial of sex. Tacomaster raised the issue of disinterested, non-intimate sex. Tacomaster has it better than I do. It has caused me a great deal of pain and anger. At present I am not much of a husband, so much so that my confessor suggested I consider divorce, but no remarriage.

    I have no wish to divorce as it is a sin. Continuing a sexual realtionship with my wife is also sinful, if every time I feel hurt and angry. Adultery and prostitution are also sins. Porn use is a sin but tempting if there is no other easily available source of ‘intimacy’. I’ve experimented, and I don’t feel hurt, angry, and degraded afterwards. I am just guilty of sin. To distance myself emotionally from my wife is also a sin against St. Paul’s injunction for husbands to love their wives.

    After a marriage has gone south, I see no way for a Christian husband to live without sinning against the marriage.

    Many commenters make it sound easy to just display more alpha, but after 30+ years, her dopamine rush is gone, so alpha works easier on those men who wish to game someone new.

  7. Cane Caldo says:

    @SSM
    Has anyone ever heard a pastor address denial of sex?

    A lot of pastors who would like to preach this subject run up against one of two problems; two problems that lead them to church vocation in the first place.

    1) They’re in relatively sexless marriages themselves, and cannot confront their own wives. These are usually the mama’s-boy pastors.

    2) They’re natural alphas who don’t understand what the problem is for their parishioners.

    Voddie Baucham is one pastor who has tons of videos and sermons on the web that are brimming with wisdom.

    @Dalrock
    In biblical marriage the husband is his wife’s emotional rock, and he lovingly anchors and shelters her when her emotions storm over her.

    Nailed it. Of course, it will turn out that the husband is just a barnacle who has made is his business to cling to the Rock of Christ; that he has thrown his own emotional storms (say, generated by his own sexual temptations, or his wife’s rebelliousness). Christs remains steadfast for the husband, in scripture and by the comforting of the Holy Spirit; who understands our groanings that are too deep for words.

    This is where Game’s Dark Triad scheme fails, and cannot maintain a marriage; which they know, and is why they reject it.

    While I’m on the subject: I made an overt statement favoring Game the other day on my blog. I didn’t even realize until just after I hit “post comment”. Dang.

  8. KristianKP says:

    The scientific justification for life long marriage is most clearly stated in this book, although it says nothing about marriage:

  9. Lori says:

      “the wife shares her feelings at great length and the husband must listen and do something about it”. This is SO right on. Where women struggle with their emotional nature, men struggle with their sexual nature but for some reason, society and the church, see the emotional nature as good and doing no harm and the sexual nature as evil.

  10. Brendan says:

    Counseling doesn’t generally work because, as SSM says, it is almost always the case that the counselor’s goal is to get the husband to change to suit what the wife wants. This is also the case with Christian counselors. The issue is that the training they go through to become LMFTs is pretty much all based in contemporary thinking about relationships, which itself is drenched in feminine and feminist thought — the primacy of emotion, and the verbal communication of emotion, and the validation of emotion. When that is the frame, it becomes all about placating the wife (what husband is actually going into counseling telling the counselor that his issue with the marriage is that emotions aren’t expressed well and clearly enough and that he doesn’t feel emotionally safe and validated and all of that talk — if there is one, he’s probably a closeted gay man). So the husband is called to accountability and change because this will validate the wife’s feelings, and make her feel emotionally safe in the marriage again. This is the frame. It’s not surprising that it doesn’t work, because in the end what it does, if the husband follows the recipe, is deeply empower the wife, and disempower the husband by the spectacle of him obeying a third party who is explicitly and quasi-publicly subordinating the man to his wife’s emotions. He now is the sub, and the wife is the dom, even if it is an emotional domination rather than a physical one. The husband is made expressly defective because he is not the effusive emotional communicator that the wife is, and therefore he needs to take a cue from his wife — she becomes the leader of the marriage, reformed as it is now around her emotions and feelings and their agenda. This basically kills attraction soon enough, as most people who read this and similar blogs know.

    In my own case, I had a slightly different experience because after a few sessions the counselor refused to counsel both of us due to the conflict we had (due to my ex’s goings-on at the time, which were revealed in their fullness after the counseling began), so most of my time with the counselor was only me, and not revolving around STBXW’s agenda, feelings, emotions and so on. So it was somewhat less harmful, but it didn’t keep the marriage together, either. I don’t think much could have by that point because STBXW at that point, looking back on it now, was clearly done, even if she didn’t want to admit that to herself (her actions spoke otherwise) and even if she was seeking validation from a counselor for her perspective and actions — a validation my counselor refused to give. She got her own counselor briefly, whom I think she saw alone three times before she dropped it altogether (this after insisting on counseling for months beforehand) — apparently the counselor wanted her to look at her *own* issues, which she had no interest in doing –> the point of the counseling for her wasn’t that, obviously, it was to make me conform to what she wanted. Because her solo counseling obviously wasn’t going to be about changing me — I wasn’t there, after all — she wasn’t interested. This was a very telling behavior, even at the time, and in retrospect it all fits in very well to the broader narrative, really.

  11. Dalrock says:

    @Cane Caldo

    Nailed it.

    Thank you.

    Of course, it will turn out that the husband is just a barnacle who has made is his business to cling to the Rock of Christ; that he has thrown his own emotional storms (say, generated by his own sexual temptations, or his wife’s rebelliousness). Christs remains steadfast for the husband, in scripture and by the comforting of the Holy Spirit; who understands our groanings that are too deep for words.

    Well put.

    This is where Game’s Dark Triad scheme fails, and cannot maintain a marriage; which they know, and is why they reject it.

    While I agree with this, I’m not aware of anyone making the case for using dark triad game. What I see instead is the suggestion that the husband’s game should be the foundation of the marriage. I disagree with that and have written several posts explaining why (example 1, example 2, example 3.

  12. Cane Caldo says:

    @RICanuck

    Continuing a sexual realtionship with my wife is also sinful, if every time I feel hurt and angry.

    Since when did your feelings become the litmus test of sin? Sin means to be outside, to be disobedient.

    Porn use is a sin but tempting if there is no other easily available source of ‘intimacy’. I’ve experimented, and I don’t feel hurt, angry, and degraded afterwards.

    That just means you are sick–and please do not take that as an insult. This is like a cutter saying it feels good. That doesn’t make self-mutilation an acceptable coping mechanism.

    To distance myself emotionally from my wife is also a sin against St. Paul’s injunction for husbands to love their wives.

    That’s not what Paul says; that’s what Oprah says. “If you love me”, Christ says, “feed my sheep”. It certainly makes feeding the sheep easier if you enjoy doing it, but that is not the measure of love.

  13. Cane Caldo says:

    @Dalrock

    I’m not aware of anyone making the case for using dark triad game.

    Anyone here, in these comments, you mean?

    More broadly, I was referring to any Game advice which starts from the principles of the man making himself and his needs his priority, and of using overt manipulation to trigger a woman’s insecurities. Her insecurities will do their part on their own.

  14. sunshinemary says:

    Cane Caldo wrote: “They’re natural alphas who don’t understand what the problem is for their parishioners.”

    Probably so, but surely they must notice that their parishioners keep getting divorced. If men were in this kind of rebellion to the degree that women are, wouldn’t something be said? Is it not fear and people-pleasing? The pastors are afraid of the women in the congregation. I’ve certainly heard porn usage and adultery mentioned more than once, so it’s not like the pastors are nervous about mentioning sex when the sin is the man’s preferred variety.

    The problem is greater than people realize, would you agree?

  15. Dalrock says:

    @Cane Caldo

    Anyone here, in these comments, you mean?

    I should have specified bloggers who are supporters of game in marriage. Although we may have different understandings of the term Dark Triad game, as you reference in the next quote, and as I touched on in my response above.

    More broadly, I was referring to any Game advice which starts from the principles of the man making himself and his needs his priority, and of using overt manipulation to trigger a woman’s insecurities. Her insecurities will do their part on their own.

    This certainly isn’t my style or my advice. As I mentioned this in a recent comment on your site regarding leading a wife on a walk this isn’t the right frame. This also gets back to the problem of making the husband’s game the foundation of the marriage. If industrial strength game is required, that isn’t really a marriage. The biblical answer is that the wife submit so she won’t need to be “tamed” in that way. Game can make it easier for her to fulfill her obligations as a wife, and in this context it is purely a loving thing.

  16. sunshinemary says:

    @ RIC
    As I recall, your wife is in serious rebellion not only against you but also against God, correct? Do you detect any desire on her part to be brought to repentance and obedience? I ask because in my case, my withholding was actually a cry for help from my husband. I was out of control and really needed him to love me by insisting that I repent of my sin and submit to him as unto the Lord.

  17. sunshinemary says:

    Dalrock wrote: “The biblical answer is that the wife submit so she won’t need to be “tamed” in that way.”
    Yes. This is almost the complete fix, but also the husband actually has to love his wife enough to insist that she submit. If he hates her, he isn’t going to go to the trouble of helping her come to obedience. He’s just going to let her keep spinning in her rebellion and misery.

  18. Dalrock says:

    @sunshinemary

    Dalrock wrote: “The biblical answer is that the wife submit so she won’t need to be “tamed” in that way.”
    Yes. This is almost the complete fix, but also the husband actually has to love his wife enough to insist that she submit. If he hates her, he isn’t going to go to the trouble of helping her come to obedience. He’s just going to let her keep spinning in her rebellion and misery.

    Excellent point, but I think far more often it is cowardice than hatred which prevents husbands from stepping up. What the Bible says on marriage is deeply unpopular amongst Christian men and women. Not being ashamed of the Bible regarding men, women, and marriage is the kind of thing which gets Christian husbands branded as woman haters and perverts by other Christians. So be it, but cowardice is still cowardice, and being ashamed of the Bible isn’t something they can rationalize away.

  19. ybm says:

    Speaking of Oprah and scams:

    http://www.theverge.com/2012/5/10/2984893/scamworld-get-rich-quick-schemes-mutate-into-an-online-monster

    Guess what? David DeAngelo is a member! All your PUA/Game gods are scamming you. Its all a pyramid scheme :)

    Game is a fraud, and you category C guys are cuckolds to the moneymakers at the top of the pyramid scheme :)

    [D: I thought you left in a huff. Was I wrong?]

  20. Rico says:

    Has anyone ever heard a pastor address denial of sex?

    Pastors, no. Though my wife went on a women’s retreat in the fall and mentioned that at one point the speaker said wives should never deny their husbands sex when they ask, so that’s something. I pushed her for more information – namely how the speaker couched the statement, if she implied that unenthusiastic, grudgingly given sex was an acceptable means of not denying, etc. – but it seemed like a bit of a throwaway comment from the way she described it.

    Still, it’s better than nothing, I suppose.

  21. Giraffe says:

    Has anyone ever heard a pastor address denial of sex?

    Yes. Unfortunately, he moved on.

  22. Elspeth says:

    I have a deep disdain for all thing Oprah so I read this even though it was quite long. Goo post.

    I have heard of pastors preaching against wives denying sex and I have also attended a marriage conference at my own church where the importance of wives being available to their husbands was emphasized. Not enough is mentioned about submission, I don’t think.

    I have a question though about a husband insisting his wife submit. What exactly does this look like?

  23. Cane Caldo says:

    @Dalrock

    We agree!

    @SSM

    Probably so, but surely they must notice that their parishioners keep getting divorced. If men were in this kind of rebellion to the degree that women are, wouldn’t something be said?

    Men are in rebellion, and it is said all the time. If they weren’t in rebellion then there wouldn’t be all the various versions of “man-up” floating around. They’re all right, but almost all of them are missing the context (present blog-host excepted, of course). Finding context takes a lot of work, and must be approached with faith.

    Is it not fear and people-pleasing? The pastors are afraid of the women in the congregation. I’ve certainly heard porn usage and adultery mentioned more than once, so it’s not like the pastors are nervous about mentioning sex when the sin is the man’s preferred variety.

    Now you’re making an argument for the Feminine Imperative–in the sense that I do NOT agree. Pastors talk about what they know. If they speak a lot on porn, lust, and adultery you can guess what they struggle with, and what they have yet to discern.

    The problem is greater than people realize, would you agree?

    In a sense, it’s greater than any of us realize. In another: it’s as ubiquitous as most sins, so nearly everyone has some knowledge of it. What to do, with the mentally enslaved people who wish to return to bondage? They (I) must die in the desert. But our seed will be redeemed, to grow in another land.

    @ybm

    you category C guys are cuckolds to the moneymakers at the top of the pyramid scheme

    A ways back, I made the assertion that “patriarchy IS“, and can be no other; that our society is not a matriarchy, but a patriarchal oligarchy of a few men using nearly all women and a tremendous glut of spiritual and mental eunuchs to oppress; through VAWA, Title IX, etc–but mostly through consumerism, ads, and media. They are systematically producing these eunuchs through this process.

    It was not well-received.

  24. Anonymous Reader says:

    Dalrock wrote: “The biblical answer is that the wife submit so she won’t need to be “tamed” in that way.”

    SSM
    Yes. This is almost the complete fix, but also the husband actually has to love his wife enough to insist that she submit. If he hates her, he isn’t going to go to the trouble of helping her come to obedience. He’s just going to let her keep spinning in her rebellion and misery.

    Not quite correct. If he truly hates her, then he regards her as an enemy and will desire that she come to some degree of harm, not necessarily physical, emotional harm will do. He’ll be interacting with her, just in an unpleasant manner, maybe via passive-aggressive games right back at her.

    It is indifference that is the opposite of love. A man who is so alienated from his wife or LTR S.O. that he basically no longer cares, that man will let her spin all she wants. Because her misery is without significance to him any more, it doesn’t bother him, nor does it offer a “teaching moment”. It just “is”, like a cloudy day. If she leaves, fine, if she stays, fine, it no longer matters what she does except for the possible implications for any third parties, such as children. I’ve seen marriages like this from the outside, when younger, and it made no sense to me that a “married” couple could essentially live separate lives in the same house – separate bedrooms with private bath, even an efficiency – style apartment that one lived in while the other lived in the house.

    This is not to say that allowing a woman to spin in her rebellion necessarily means the man is indifferent, and thus done with her. Sometimes, as with teenagers, the best way to let a woman come to realize her wrongheadedness is to just let her have her own way for a while, and in good time calmly point out both the mess, and how she got there. Then tell her what it will take to fix the situation; not suggest, tell. This cannot be undertaken casually, it must be part of a larger frame that can’t be shaken. Not every man will be able to do it without a fair amount of preparation.

  25. Abelard Lindsey says:

    I’ve been married 13 years and everything is fine. Two ingredients are necessary for stable marriage. One, the partners must respect each other. My mother was a divorce attorney for 30 years. She told me that the common flaw that existed in every single case she handled was that the husband and wife did not respect each other. She was of the belief that any marriage that lacks mutual respect is doomed to failure. The second ingredient necessary to marriage is that the partners actually like being with each other and have common interests. This also means that the partners simply be of agreeable personalities. It is my opinion, based on personal experience as well as the experience of others, that any marriage that lack either of these two ingredients cannot last.

  26. Robert in Arabia says:

    Dalrock,
    I admire your blog and believe that it contains much wisdom.
    It may be that Christianity is not dying, but it sure looks that way.
    When I visit your world, I see myriads of unhappy and poorly behaved children.
    Where I live, I see happy, well-behaved children.
    In twelve years, I have seen one mother speak harshly to a child. I have seen one fat, ten year oldish boy slap his small sister.
    Last week, I left my tablet computer in a coffee shop. Three days later, I got back from a business trip. The tablet was protected and returned to me.
    Twelve years ago, a man followed me for three blocks in over 100 degree heat to give me the lens cap that had fallen from my camera.
    Wherever I have worked in this area, I have encounted extremely poorly paid menial workers who share food with stray cats and even on occasion dogs.

  27. Solomon says:

    A glaring absence in that exchange between Caleb and the doctor is the observation of what the book of Proverbs says about adultresses and the fate of men who would lay with them. It mentions things like death, and hell, and disembowelment. Why didn’t Caleb mention those scriptures to the doctor?

    If the movie were going to make any biblical sense at all, Caleb would have been making it CLEAR to the doctor that the doctor’s death was imminent. Compete with some other dude for my own wife?? Give me a break. If I were Caleb right there, I’d have had that conversation whilst wearing a sidearm.

    The fact that the movie depicted him squaring off with the doctor in such a weak, milquetoast, beta schlub manner, underneath, suggests to the Christian man that being emasculated, and operating at all times in an emasculated fashion, is what God wants from us as men.

    It also suggests that this sort of beta behavior is what women want and what will please them.

    which is, of course, a lie.

    The problem isn’t just her acting like a whore, its him acting like a weak beta and still being depicted as victorious- though you could frame his retention of the unrepentant wife as victory or failure, depending on your outlook. In real life, Caleb would have experienced massive failure as a result of his “love dare”

    There’s a lot of guys here, including me, who know that first-hand.

    They also depict her lusting after a dude as acceptable revenge for him lusting through porn. He gets his reprisal, she never gets hers. Neither do two wrongs make a right, as any woman will tell you when it suits her. Why is she not rebuked for this?

    The bible talks about women staying holy even if their husband is not Christian at all, that she might win him over. This involves staying in subjection to him. Instead, the movie depicts her rebellion towards God and her husband, and adultery itself, as the proper route to get the result she thinks she wants.

    The film deviates so far from actual scriptural basis as to be laughable.

    The harm it does as it sells to the unwitting families- who are just trying to get it right- grieves me…. and it is incalculable and immense.

  28. I’m not saying there isn’t any room for Christian marital counseling, or even retreats, books and movies which teach husbands and wives to communicate better and understand each other’s needs.

    There is not room for these as they exist today. I no of no exceptions that do not follow the old saw about “listen, don’t fix”, which has been confused to the point it means, simply, men become female communicators.

  29. Dalrock says:

    @Solomon

    A glaring absence in that exchange between Caleb and the doctor is the observation of what the book of Proverbs says about adultresses and the fate of men who would lay with them. It mentions things like death, and hell, and disembowelment. Why didn’t Caleb mention those scriptures to the doctor?

    That would ruin a perfectly good divorce empowerment movie.

  30. okrahead says:

    I heard preachers address the issue of denial of sex in marriage (primarily by women) back in the early 80s. I cannot recall having heard it since that time. Interestingly enough, I have heard many of these same preachers speak in more recent years, yet they no longer address the topic. I suppose I am going to start asking some of them point blank why they no longer preach the same sermons they once did.

  31. okrahead says:

    Dalrock…… Here is some actual Biblical teaching on the sinfulness of a wife denying her husband sex in marriage. I do NOT endorse everything on this website, but most of it is good, and in all of it the writer argues from Scripture rather than emotion…

    http://lavistachurchofchrist.org/LVanswers/2004/2004-09-11.htm

    http://lavistachurchofchrist.org/LVanswers/2004/2004-06-15.htm

    [D: Thanks!]

  32. Brendan says:

    There is not room for these as they exist today. I no of no exceptions that do not follow the old saw about “listen, don’t fix”, which has been confused to the point it means, simply, men become female communicators.

    I agree. As they work today, this is the frame — it reframes the marriage around the wife’s emotional needs and expression, and makes them the center of the marriage and the barometer of marital health. Of course, they could be reframed, but there needs to be a will to do that, and as I wrote above, the training received by LMFTs (even Christian ones) runs 100% contra to any such reframing.

  33. John says:

    As for that link from YBM, I wouldn’t put much stock into it. I once read an article on “Salty Droid” (not about a PUA site/service) and it was nothing but dumb/crass jokes and ad hominem attacks. I was actually trying to find specifics about something, but the articles basically said “they’re scammers because, well, we say they’e cammers!” It’s a little ironic Salty Droid is run by a lawyer… whom I generally trust even less than internet marketers.

  34. an observer says:

    In a quarter century of church attendance, i cannot recall any message about the husbands needs, or legitimate, biblical submission.

    Since the advent of rogerian therapy and the focus on managing feelings, the church seems to have adopted the same approach: happy clients = bigger takings.

    Takeaway observation:

    Wifes needs: valid.
    Husbands needs: invalid.

  35. “Rogering” therapy……has potential

  36. Frank says:

    The movie Fireproof could be condensed into one sentence: “Everything is the husband’s fault, and the onus is on him to fix it.”

  37. Frank says:

    Q: Too lazy to check and see if anyone answered you, but basically unless the grounds for divorce is adultery (fornication), you have to stick by her. The silver lining though is that if she’s lost interest in you it probably won’t be long before she does in fact go a-sloring around town.

    You should do what you can to save the marriage, without ceding your biblical authority as a husband that is, like weenie mcweenie betaball Caleb in the film Fireproof did.

  38. pb says:

    Sorry if this is slightly off-topic, but I am seeking some advice: I have a non-Christian friend who can be rather selfish in his attitudes and words, though in general his behavior is that of a “nice guy” at least with respect to family and friends. However, he has been having problems with his wife – arguments about money, her not pulling her fair share (he believes in a more egalitarian division of responsibilities), her attitudes and way of speaking, and so on. Do you think it would be wise to recommend something like Althol Kay’s blog and book to him, so that he can better deal with his wife? My concern is that he may misuse it for “selfish” ends, though I think it is more likely than not that he would treat her well if she did the same, according to his expectations, though I disagree with those expectations to a degree..

  39. Brendan says:

    What is a Christian man to do if his wife (young, both under 30; “thankfully” no kids yet) leaves him, from one day to the next? I know about Game, I know about acting strong, I know about preselection and whatnot. But what in the world are you supposed to do? Like in that movie (which we watched together some years ago), “I’ve made some mistakes, but l still love her”. She behaves in ways I would never have believed her capable of. However, ain’t I bound to the promise before God and men of sticking to her, even if she does not feel like it anymore? At least for some time (3 months now, and counting)? Hell, we were our first lovers, I don’t see how I could find another virgin in today’s dating market without first indulging in behavior that definitely isn’t Biblical.

    Any help appreciated.

    I think you haven’t gotten answers because your comment was probably stuck in moderation for a while as you are not a frequent commenter, and when it came up it was way up at the top of the thread, and ost people had already read that and do not expect a new comment to appear there.

    Can you give a bit more background as to why she left? What was the dynamic before then? What were the main issues before then? What is she doing now?

  40. Other John says:

    @ Solomon

    You nailed it right on the head and put my thoughts to the keyboard before I had the opportunity.

    I (we) watched that movie a couple of years back and it was all I could do to get through the damn thing. “Beta Boy” Kirk Cameron should have been “Left Behind” and in the process left behind his attention whore, special little snowflake “wife”, but on the way out taken Dr. Zhivago behind the woodshed and lit him up big time, and maybe for good.

    One thing I cannot stand is a damned amoral predator right out of Dr. Martha Stout’s “The Sociopath Next Door” who wears that mask of caring pleasantness while he moves in for the kill. They can spot weakness from a mile off and come like wolves on a blood scent. Toss on a smock ornamented with a stethoscope complimented with that required course in “Bedside Manner” and immerse that creature(s) inside an organization with a staff that is 90% hypergamic, competitive females (of which 80% are in perpetual emotional crisis) and it doesn’t take long for the panties to start coming off all those “good girls”.

    The Good Book is damn clear on what fate is to befall the adulterer and adulteress. Robert of Arabia is unfortunately close to spot-on when he points out that Muslim countries that follow the dictates in The Koran are socially far more healthy than the supposedly “Christian” countries that make up Satan’s established domain in the “West”. We have a choice between “man’s law” or “God’s Law”. Choosing the first has led us into the current disaster, thus the second shall lead us out. That “manning up” is the following of all of God’s Law, not picking through the parts you find agreeable or He will not be there to help us kick ass.

    Read it, learn it, do it!

  41. mojohn says:

    @Okrahead

    Several months ago I mentioned on this blog that Churches of Christ (the religious group of which I am a part and also serve as an elder in a local congregation) have a very low divorce rate – as best as can be determined in a group of totally autonomous congregations without a denominational headquarters. The links you posted that teach against denial of sexual intimacy are typical of what I have heard evangelists teach and preach in Churches of Christ (directly and second hand by friends who live elsewhere). In fact, I have been a regular teacher adult and teen Bible class teacher for 30 years and have said the same things myself. And, no women got up in arms (admittendly anectodal).

    [D: BTW, I think I found the paper with the stats you were referring to. It has some weaknesses, but overall it is still impressive.]

  42. Bee says:

    I have attended churches all my life. I have never heard a mention or sermon on the denial of sex in marriage.

    I second those cautioning about marriage counselors. Some “christian” marriage counselors will encourage and approve of divorce.

  43. JHJ says:

    @Q:
    As it turns out, I find myself it that situation.

    What is a Christian man to do if his wife (young, both under 30; “thankfully” no kids yet) leaves him, from one day to the next? I know about Game, I know about acting strong, I know about preselection and whatnot. But what in the world are you supposed to do? Like in that movie (which we watched together some years ago), “I’ve made some mistakes, but l still love her”. She behaves in ways I would never have believed her capable of. However, ain’t I bound to the promise before God and men of sticking to her, even if she does not feel like it anymore?

    It’s unclear to me what situation you refer to – denial of sex or that she left entirely. Obviously those would require different strategies. If its denial, perhaps head over to Athol Kay and read up. If the latter… well, you must be the judge. Personally, I can’t see that you would be held to any promises in the face of outright abandonment. But that’s my personal opinion. Only you can do your decision on that.

    More generally, I am ever more convinced that all these otherwise fine folks are deluding themselves as to the viability – and desirability – of modern marriage. Marriage today is a bargain in the shadow of the state that makes it a sham. Many Christians seem to think that marriage is somehow preferable to “living in sin”. But that would presuppose that marriage is actually on offer. Which I don’t really think it is. Given that any married man is entirely at the mercy of his wifes whims, lest the boys in blue come to serve him divorce rape, any married man, game or no game, has to be a supplicant. I don’t need to spell out how this isn’t really marriage in any reasonable sense of the word. Christianity does not affect this one iota. If it were me, I’d thank the lord you have no children and get out of Dodge.

    Marriage today is no different, I think, from college hookup culture, except insomuch that it is infinitely more expensive. Modern Christian marriage is no less a sin than casual sex. Oh, we can pretend. We can dress it up and sing. We can have all these nice retreats where pastors like Mark Driscoll explain just why the husbands are worthless and why the women should divorce for cash and prizes. We can even come together here and discuss it. But it doesn’t change the fact that any marriage in America is a sham, no more biblical than your average slut walk, just marginally less in your face about it.

    Get out, Sir. Count yourself lucky you got a warning.

  44. mojohn says:

    @Dalrock, got a “Page not Found” error when clicking on your link. The report I mentioned awhile back is located here, beginning on page 18. That may or may not be the report to which your link “links.”

    [D: Thanks. It looks like the right one. I’ve fixed my link above as well.]

  45. ray says:

    “I’m not saying there isn’t any room for Christian marital counseling, or even retreats, books and movies which teach husbands and wives to communicate better and understand each other’s needs.”

    you should be saying it

    theres no more biblical basis for the vast, iniquitous “Counseling” and “Therapy” and “Marriage Relationship” industries for followers of Christ, than there is for the secular equivalent

    it’s just more female-driven commercialism, solispsism, and indirect application of control and power (over boys, men, and culture)

    neither God, nor the bible directs folks to learn “better communication and understanding skills” as a way of addressing or solving ANYTHING . . . much less problems or issues within marriage, which is often difficult enough

    it is women and their matriarchal, antichristic cultures that constantly yap about how “commuincation” is the key to everything, including enduring and haaaappy marriages

    not reliance on God, not rekiance on the bible . . . but communication

    who controls the vast majority of “commuincation”? women and enablers . . . whatta concidence eh?

    these self-appointed, false-christian “teachers” and their moneygrubbing Marriage Conferences have no more God-given authority to advise or correct people than do roosh, rossy, or sheila gregoire

    the Relationship/Marriage Industry is just one sub-set of the philistinism that long ago over-ran modern “christianity” and the fakes that attend “churches,” almost always for social, economic, and psychological reasons . . . not to adore and praise God

    hopefully the “christian” bookstores, warehouses, knicknack shops, and retreat-villas be among the first to, ah, ascend, when the time comes, may it come soon

  46. ray says:

    ybm — Game is a fraud, and you category C guys are cuckolds to the moneymakers at the top of the pyramid scheme

    [D: I thought you left in a huff. Was I wrong?]

    that is not an adult, nor a christian, answer

    it is an attempt to redirect by accusation, and place focus on ybm’s “faults” (he’s a runner, he’s a coward)

    you guys cant defend Game, bc it is indefensible — but it’s Your Baby, Your Badge of Uniqueness, and now you cant let go, youd rather marginalize dissenters, or “moderate” comments that do not flatter

    youre better than that, dalrock — at least i thought so, once

  47. anonymous says:

    A lot of pastors who would like to preach this subject run up against one of two problems; two problems that lead them to church vocation in the first place.
    1) They’re in relatively sexless marriages themselves, and cannot confront their own wives. These are usually the mama’s-boy pastors.
    2) They’re natural alphas who don’t understand what the problem is for their parishioners.

    Nearily all pastors I’ve known, have either been natural alphas, or have become situational alphas due to their leadership position. Relationships, early marriage, and sex (including, for the spiritially weak ones, extramarital sex) all come easily to them with little effort on their part. Half the girls in church, it seems, want to be a pastor’s wife, and plenty more are willing to be a pastor’s lover.

    I’ve known righteous alpha pastors who have, of necessity, adopted EXTREME levels of accountability, eg, glass-walled counselling office in full view of secretary, other pastors, etc, to avoid even the slightest temptation. I’ve heard stories from such men of being offered (and turning down) blowjobs, etc., right in the church office. Pastors are chick magnets, even if they are rigtheous and don’t want to be.

    Anyway, for good or ill, most pastors are alphas. That’s why they just DO. NOT. GET. why it’s so damned hard —
    — for the majority of single men in their churches, to get married,
    — for many of the husbands in their churches, to stay married (despite their desire to do so),
    — for those who stay married, to convince their wives to have sex with anything remotely approaching a decent frequency.

    Some pastors are betas. The sure sign of a beta pastor, is a massively overweight wife…

  48. an observer says:

    Q,

    Sounds ominous. Like she’s just not into you, anymore.

  49. an observer says:

    Empath,

    Christian counselling = Rogering therapy.

    Sounds about right.

  50. Sharrukin says:

    ray says:

    you guys cant defend Game

    I can post a link of a pastor stealing money.

    Does that prove Christianity is wrong somehow?

    Even assuming some guy was a scammer who was supporting MRA, or Game, that doesn’t mean what you desperately want it to mean. Why would anyone treat that level of idiocy with anything but outright dismissal?

  51. Dalrock says:

    @Ray

    [D: I thought you left in a huff. Was I wrong?]

    that is not an adult, nor a christian, answer

    it is an attempt to redirect by accusation, and place focus on ybm’s “faults” (he’s a runner, he’s a coward)

    My comment wasn’t in response to what YBM wrote, but to his previous actions. In a recent thread YBM wrote:

    Your crime Zippy, was showing up at Branch Davidian and telling Koresh he’s not the messiah.

    Ironically WordPress had just sent me a report suggesting that I thank YBM for being one of the 5 most prolific commenters on this site in 2012. When I pointed this irony out on Zippy’s site, YBM replied:

    Ha, good timing! I’m not into personal flame wars on other people’s blogs, like some people, so this will be the only reply you will get:

    You really are a sensitive little thing aren’t you? Indeed when I was one of your brainless sycophants like the white nationalists, rape apologists, cuckold fetishists, or game cultists I indeed commented on your site. Few comments were made since mid year however, and much of the prior period can be more attributed to boredom than analysis.

    But don’t let that stop you, stamp your feet a little bit more about the bad man who says mean things. How very……beta. I’m sure if I had a publicly accessible blog you would write a lengthy screed inviting an invasion, just like you did to zippy, and alte before that, and Sheila before that, and Susan Walsh….. And on and on and on.

    The funny thing is while his first comment complained that I don’t brook dissent, his second comment complained that I let my commenters get away with too much when Susan and I disagreed on frivolous divorce. He may be right. One particular commenter was especially nasty to Susan, even though I had asked that commenters focus on the ideas and not the person:

    No, whats more of the same is the appeal to victimhood you and Team Woman spew when things go wrong. You are the perect example of someone who plays for “Team Woman” making excuses for behaviours you personally would “never” do on behalf of women. Then receeding into your little bubble because the big mean boys are being MEAN.

    Grow up. Your abuse canard doesn’t hold water around here.

    When Susan pointed out that commenters like the one above made it more work than fun to comment on my site, that same commenter replied:

    Poor you :( We all know how women feel about work! :(

    Maybe you can take a lesson from your sisterhood and get a man to post for you.

    Ten bucks if you can guess who the commenter was who wrote those things to Susan.

  52. Q,

    If all else in the marriage is the same then I have no suggestions. If something else has changed around the same time then that may be a clue. Women don’t just loose interest unless there is either a loss of her husbands status relative to her (like she just got a promotion or raise and is now making more than you or has a higher position) or she has a better offer from a higher status male. So my first bit of advice is to examine that area to see what’s going on. The second is to look at her friends as women are basically herd animals and if one of them has divorced they’ll be working on their friends to do the same. If that’s the case start trying to arrange to make it inconvenient for her to hang out with her.

    Given all that I’d say after three months she’s probably already stepping out on you so start getting ready to be hit with the divorce papers, at the least set up a separate account or put some cash aside. Google research this and put a good lawyer on retainer. Sorry but seen it enough times.

  53. TFH says:

    Game is very valuable in LTRs and marriages. Many serious men who are married (Dalrock, Deti, Hawaii Lib) say this, and since they are not selling a product, it is impossible that they are committing ‘fraud’. In fact, I always say it costs virtually no money to learn Game.

    That little paragraph alone causes certain nutjobs to writhe in agony. Mainly because they each spent money on a needless seminar, and then did not see a miracle happen.

    Dalrock’s Law : The more obvious fact one is in denial of, the more pathetic the counter-example they will use to delude themselves with.

    So true….

    David D’Angelo? Really? How does that, in any way, prove that a lot of serious, married men who are pro-Game, are all wrong (as decided by people who admit that they have low success with women)?

    And why did YBM bring up his anti-Game lunacy on this thread? Isn’t he the one claiming they always start it against innocent little him, and that they should ‘get off of his lawn’?

    The sheer projection present here is exceeded only by the vacuum of logic present in the anti-Game arguments. The paragraph above in italics is all one really needs to say to an anti-Game nut.

  54. CoffeeCrazed says:

    Lori said:
    Where women struggle with their emotional nature, men struggle with their sexual nature but for some reason, society and the church, see the emotional nature as good and doing no harm and the sexual nature as evil.

    I have talked about this before, I’ll try again. I don’t see temptation to sin occurring in a vacuum. Jesus was tempted with something innate, his birthright. I personally believe that Adam’s weakness was Eve, borne into him by God. So what good did Eve possess that made her susceptible to the serpent? I don’t think that anything is said before Gen 3, but it becomes clear that there is a desire for more, that is then twisted. Perhaps it is her subjection to Adam, who may not have been around to rein her in. Nonetheless, it is there. Created good, no doubt, but corruptible. Just like Adam’s weakness for his woman, which can be easily corrupted to be a weakness for any woman.

    Enter new psychology, feel good philosophies, the Church of Oprah, as it were. This capacity is elevated as some enlightened place. After all, men are boorish and they do such horrid things. But women – oh, many of whom are the target market due to growing influence – have wonderful sensibilities, and being a mother is the hardest job in the world, and… well, you might get the picture. The church, being what it is in these times, is destined to follow culture, albeit 30 years (and closing) behind the trend.

  55. DeNihilist says:

    {Ten bucks if you can guess who the commenter was who wrote those things to Susan.}

    errr, YBM?

    [D: I just sent you a virtual $10 bill.]

  56. David J. says:

    In defense of at least some Christian marriage counselors: the last of several that we had (a man) did (eventually) come right out and tell my (now ex-) wife that her ongoing sexual refusal and pervasive disrespect (including keeping “her” finances separate from “our” finances — i.e., my income) constituted grounds for divorce, but that my previous pornography use and her complaints about finances, child-rearing, etc. did not. Unfortunately, by that time the advice had zero impact initially and only a partial and very temporary impact thereafter, so that 6 months later she filed for divorce (for the second and final time). At the same time, I had a separate (male) counselor for myself, and he likewise had little patience for my wife’s behavior.

    By contrast, two female counselors prior to and since the divorce were worse than useless. My wife’s individual counselor greeted my wife’s announcement of her first divorce filing (with no more biblical basis than the second filing) by saying, “You’ve grown up!” Post-divorce, our special needs daughter was being counseled by a woman regarding school issues and divorce issues. From early on, she was more an apologist for my ex-wife’s behavior (refusing to communicate with me, even when the counselor recommended joint sessions, and rushing into dating and then remarriage to an objectively questionable candidate) than she ever was an advocate for my daughter’s best interests.

    So, based on my experience, it is possible to get some good Christian counseling, but it may be that you have to look for male counselors to find it. And ultimately she’s going to do what she wants to do.

    On my own, as well as at the recommendation of our various counselors who preceded the last set, I spent my time trying to keep my wife from being unhappy, as Dalrock describes. During periods when I just couldn’t make myself do it any more and instead withdrew from her, it was not strategic and explicit as I have since learned it should have been. So, in addition to my very real sins that gave her the excuse(s) she was looking for, I realize now that I hampered my own efforts to save the marriage by not realizing (and not communicating to her) that my withdrawal was in fact leadership.

    I certainly hope it goes better for Q.

  57. Anti-Scammer says:

    “I was actually trying to find specifics about something, but the articles basically said “they’re scammers because, well, we say they’e cammers!””

    The scammers are the reason why we all have massive amounts of penis enlargement spam in our inboxes. That conclusively proves they’re scammers.

    “I can post a link of a pastor stealing money.

    Does that prove Christianity is wrong somehow?”

    If Jesus and the apostles were stealing money, then that would prove Christianity is wrong. Mohammed having sex with a 9 year old girl pretty much proves Islam wrong.

    To bring this back to game, we’re talking about David DeAngelo (a.k.a. Eben Pagan and probably several other names). He is the founder of game, the “Jesus of game”, and he’s is a con artist working with other con artists. All game comes from David DeAngelo. Mystery, Neil Strauus, & Roissy have done nothing except repeat what David DeAngelo came up with. Since David DeAngelo is a con artist and no one else has come up with anything new, game is scam.

    “David D’Angelo? Really? How does that, in any way, prove that a lot of serious, married men who are pro-Game, are all wrong (as decided by people who admit that they have low success with women)?”

    There isn’t a lot of “serious married men who are pro-game”. There’s around 5 married gamers give or take. That does not constitute a lot. Why don’t we talk about the married men who tried game and still end up divorced? That’s the dirty secret you won’t admit. They may have left the manosphere, but their failures happened. Even with the married gamers that are left, not one of them can provide actual evidence that game has had any effect on their marriages. They will all end up divorced sooner or later.

    A married man can be the victim of one of David DeAngelo’s scams just as a single man can.

  58. David J. says:

    I don’t buy that pastors don’t preach against sexual refusal because they don’t experience it. I think sexual refusal is pandemic in the church (and in the culture — just think about the pervasiveness of jokes and other references to unsatisfied husbands and uninterested wives) and that no man is immune except the fortunate few whose wives have had a counter-cultural awakening to their biblical responsibilities and/or their own best interests. I don’t necessarily doubt that pastors encounter higher than average opportunities to stray, but that says nothing about whether their own wives are sexually available to them. Seems to me the most likely explanation for pastors failing to address the subject is that they’re just as lost in the feminization of marriage as (almost) everyone else is — most pastors have been taught (by the church and/or by their wives) the version of marriage Dalrock (rightly) decries above, so it doesn’t occur to them to stress the wives’ obligations, especially their sexual obligations.

    I don’t mean to sidetrack this thread, and this may be heresy here, but another point related to my above paragraph is that I have serious reservations about there being any significant difference between the sexual availability of women married to alphas or betas, at least in the church. Even assuming there is such a thing as a biblical alpha, my experience is that the determinative factor in the Christian couple’s sex life is the will of the wife. Whether the husband is alpha or beta may affect how they fight about it if she’s unavailable or rarely available, but it doesn’t change the availability unless and until she gets her head and heart right. I know it’s just an anecdote, but it’s mine: I’m an alpha, or at least a super-beta (to the extent I understand the definitions) — tall, attractive, smart, athletic, church leader, community leader, litigation attorney, etc. Perhaps more pertinent, my ex-wife would describe me as an alpha — by her description, I was way too domineering in our relationship, for example. Nevertheless, from early on in our marriage, she was sexually unavailable. After 29+ years of marriage and a lot of marriage counseling, my assessment is that the deck was stacked before the marriage ever began. Between her parents’ two divorces, her father’s extreme, legalistic fundamentalism, and her mother’s alcoholic promiscuity and multiple marriages, she was bent sexually before I ever got to her. Even once she was in a healthier home (mine), neither of us was hearing anything from the church that would trump her feelings. The passage of time and the accumulation of wrongs by me (actual and perceived) just provided additional reasons for her feelings to be entrenched. Ultimately, an unbiblical divorce by her.

    If the alpha/beta grid held true, I’d expect her to seek out another alpha — or a “better” alpha. Instead, she married down (and quickly): he’s shorter, less attractive, older, less intelligent, less accomplished, less articulate, lower income, less educated, and lives in a poor rural area that is much less desirable than any place she would ever have considered living with me. He’s also twice-divorced and of suspect theology — things that would have been dealbreakers previously. I do expect their marriage to end within a fairly short time, but that doesn’t explain her selection of him. (Note: this is not a case of her testing the market for a while and eventually despairing of landing anyone better at her age (52); she latched onto this guy within the first 2-3 weeks of online dating and never looked any further. Nor is it because she’s unattractive or destitute — she’s still pretty good-looking and she has (had) a decent job.)

    Am I missing something in applying the alpha/beta analysis to my story or to the church and the world in general?

  59. Sharrukin says:

    David J. says:

    Instead, she married down (and quickly): he’s shorter, less attractive, older, less intelligent, less accomplished, less articulate, lower income, less educated, and lives in a poor rural area that is much less desirable than any place she would ever have considered living with me.

    Some women marry men they can dominate. Given her history that may have been the sort of man she felt comfortable with despite her attraction (at first) to you. My sister-in-law and her entire family is this way and their mother was as well. They treated their husbands with contempt and they put up with it. Why, I don’t know. That have an instinct for finding that sort of man.

    With my S.I.L. everything was someone else’s fault regardless of how minor, or absurd the reasoning to arrive at that conclusion. If she got a traffic ticket driving her kid to a birthday party, it was her kids fault and she would want them to pay the fine.

    Your ex-wifes messed up life probably led her to seek out a situation that she could control, hence the downgrade. That may have been why it didn’t work out with you, since it would seem from what you say that she could not control you. Some women are so damaged that they aren’t going to be anyone’s wife, regardless of whether or not they wear a ring. Her sexual unavailability was her attempting to assert control, and when that ultimately failed, she bailed out. Not sure why it took so long, but perhaps something happened like the death of a parent, or a friends divorce to spark it?

  60. Solomon says:

    Most churches probably do not speak about withholding of sex, simply because they do not speak about sex or if ever then only very briefly and as if “oops I actually mentioned some sexual sins in a long list of many but everyone now must pretend they were yawning when I mentioned this and it flew past their ears”

    The reason is probably that people bring their children with them to church and the church tries to be this superficially family friendly place, like an U rated movie. Modern churchians have this mentality that since Jesus told “be like children” then there shouldn’t be any discussion so complex or concerning any topics that a child couldn’t understand. Most churches are stuck to Sunday School level of preaching, speaking as if people were children concerned with petty childish sins and topics concerning sexuality or any difficult theological questions are treated as something very complex that require a special time and place to be discussed, but that ime and place is never and nowhere. Churches are for singing, socializing, eating cookies after service and pastors performance that is full of jokes to keep the attentions but void of any challenging topic so that every churchian even the most dumbest could sit and nod his head in agreement to the truths he heard at Sunday school. Because the church is for everyone!

  61. Chris says:

    @ Q. In the end, her rejection is her problem. There is a structure that works for us humans, and that is the biblical model, and if you move away from this, looking for some kind of ‘freedom” or whatever it will hurt you.
    You have a few blessings.
    1. It is quiet. It is better to live in a corner of a roof than with a vexatious woman.
    2. She has… left.
    So, pray about it. Then deal with what you can do.
    1. Hit the word of God hard.
    2. Get fit.
    3. Sort out finances. Pay down debt. Sell things if you need to.
    4. Do the things you have to do… your job (yes) but practice the talents you have. Music, hunting, farming, art, whatever. Do these things not as some form of peacock display but because these things are worth doing.
    ——
    Do NOT attend marital counselling. Most counsellors are women: most cannot follow research protocols, and most have had too many women’s study courses. Unfortunately, Christain counsellors are nor reading the journals, and are over confident about things that those of us who do research in the area are unsure about.
    ——-
    On divorce, I cannot advise. Sometimes you have to pull the ticket, because she is draining your monies to feed her vices, because the kids need stability (only in a country like mine where you have a chance of doing this. live in NZ). But you have to accept that you could be single, and celibate for years.
    ——
    Speaking from experience, a divorce damanges you spiritally, and celibacy does not get easier with age.
    ___
    And this IS NOT ABOUT GAME. Game, which is simply understanding how we are as humans and living in that manner, works in relationships. A woman has to be happy as 2IC (second in command). Most are. Tonight on a home renovation programme (Australian, called “the Block”) one couple had to separate as the husband had to go to another state for a funeral, leaving wife in charge as renvation manager. She did it for one day… and at the end of it was exhausted, and quite openly said she missed him and wanted to be second in command. The women who know this, and and let their husbands lead are generally happier.
    ——
    But rebellion against God is equivelant to adultery. Rebellion against God lead to orgies of Ba al worship, the ritual child sacrifice of Molech, and the destruction against Isreal.

  62. @Q:
    As it turns out, I find myself it that situation.

    What is a Christian man to do if his wife (young, both under 30; “thankfully” no kids yet) leaves him, from one day to the next? I know about Game, I know about acting strong, I know about preselection and whatnot. But what in the world are you supposed to do? Like in that movie (which we watched together some years ago), “I’ve made some mistakes, but l still love her”. She behaves in ways I would never have believed her capable of. However, ain’t I bound to the promise before God and men of sticking to her, even if she does not feel like it anymore?

    She clearly loved you at one stage, hence why she married you. I haven’t been married, but from relationships I’ve been in, they started to go bad when I went beta. It’s important you up the alpha and apply more masculinity to your relationship. Hopefully she will respond to that, as the feminine should indeed respond to the masculine.

    As Rollo Tomassi has previously written, genuine desire cannot be negotiated. She has to WANT you, probably without understanding the reasons why. Furthermore, there’s a big difference between her feeling affection and attraction for you. I collated these and some other brilliant resources for easy access here: http://3rdmilleniummen.wordpress.com/2012/09/20/manosphere-become-a-better-man/

  63. taterearl says:

    In this day and age…I now get why St. Paul says it’s better for men to not marry.

    Every year I’ve been single my relationship with God has grown.

  64. Opus says:

    I am puzzled:

    At 14.36 on 3oth December 2012, at Rookh Kshtriya’s site Anglobitch someone going by the name of ybm writes ‘Are you the same Eric who got banned from Dalrock? I just joined that club.’ I naturally assumed that ybm had been banned here.

  65. Bee says:

    @ David J,

    I am glad to hear you found a good Christian marriage counselor. Sorry for your divorce.

    Just my opinion, but it sounds like your wife did not want to let go of her spirit of rebellion. I don’t think Game is powerful enough to fix that.

    I observe that many people lock in with the first marriage counselor they meet with and don’t even consider shopping around to find a counselor whom is a good values & needs match. What advice could you give me on how to shop around and find a good marriage counselor? What could you say to motivate others to consider not settling for the first counselor they meet with?

  66. John says:

    “I don’t buy that pastors don’t preach against sexual refusal because they don’t experience it. I think sexual refusal is pandemic in the church (and in the culture — just think about the pervasiveness of jokes and other references to unsatisfied husbands and uninterested wives)”

    I agree. This is one of many links (with a lot of comments) that supports this:

    http://strengtheningmarriage.com/blog/marriage/involuntary-celibacy

    My marital situaion is similar to DavidJ’s. I’ve had issues with porn–which I’m now battling via an internet accountability group. I take responsibility for this (it started before I was married) and it’s certainly a sin–though not = to physical adultery. Since having our last (and probably final) child, my wife and I have only had sex a few times. The last time was in May of last year. I’ve told her about my going cold turkey from porn (2+ months now) and the accountability group. She says it will take time for her trust to come back and our sex life to resume. That gives me some hope, but I’m not sure how long things will take for her to “heal.” Based on things I’ve read in the manosphere, you never know if a woman’s attraction and respect for you will return. Some have great success stories while others experience nothing but ongoing failures.

  67. taterearl says:

    “That gives me some hope, but I’m not sure how long things will take for her to “heal.” ”

    Based on the sexual refusal…probably when the next guy that comes along that gives her tingles.

  68. gunner451 says:

    John,

    You’re nuts to allow your wife to dictate the terms to you. How can you fight temptation against porn when you’re basically a starving man with no other outlet? The whole “I don’t trust you any more” routine is just that a routine that she’s using to keep you locked out of access to her.

  69. Cautiously Pessimistic says:

    Speaking of the Book of Oprah, I notice Lance Armstrong has gone to confession seeking repentance from and absolution of his sins. This culture is crazier than a football bat.

    @3mm: She clearly loved you at one stage, hence why she married you.

    I would be cautious about making that assumption. A lot of women (not the individual women brought up, necessarily) marry for the wedding tingles and because their life script had marriage scheduled when you happened to show up. Love does not necessarily have anything to do with it.

  70. Looking Glass says:

    @John:

    While working on the Porn issue is important, if she stopped having sex with you after the “last” child, I would recommend finding a good lawyer and making sure all of your ducks are in a row. That’s not a “Red flag” situation, that’s a “The Red Army is Marching” situation.

    There is hope, but realize she’s pretty much sticking around while you still have greater utility than another man. *Utility*. I pray things can be improved.

  71. Paul says:

    Speaking of the Oprah, I heard on the radio this morning that Lance Armstrong will be confessing to the Goddess that he did indeed use performance-enhancing drugs. Oh, the symbolism, it burns!

  72. Paul says:

    Whoops, beaten to it by CP!

  73. Cautiously Pessimistic says:

    @Paul
    I’m just that good. :)

  74. John says:

    I appreciate the comments, even the more brutal ones.

    I should say that I came into the marriage with the porn problem, and have had a few other considerable sins/failures (never adultery, however). Also, I haven’t pushed too hard for sex lately, because some of the yourbrainonporn.com types say it’s good to have at least 90 free of porn and orgasm (i.e,. masturbation or sex) to rewire your brain chemistry. However, I’ve initiated a few serious talks with my wife. I’ve also made some other improvements (more family devotions, doing better financially, etc.).

    It seems many of us are in the same uncomfortable boat. I can’t (and certainly won’t) force sex. I hate the idea of divorce, especially for the kids, and would have a very hard time replacing my wife. She has many good traits (very intelligent/organized, good homemaker, very attractive hot…which makes the sexless part really difficult). If we divorced, I don’t know where I’d find someone willing to take on a divorced husband and multiple kids and the baggage that goes with that.

  75. John says:

    * 90 should be “90 days+”

  76. sunshinemary says:

    John. I don’t know your situation fully, so I won’t give advice, but I will tell you this. If you are Christians, refusing sex is not a “choice” a wife gets to make. She is in sin. She is rebelling against you and against God. You are her husband and have promised before God to lead her (assuming you are Christians). Have you told her that? Have you shown her the passages in the Bible about husbands and wives not denying each other, about wives submitting to and respecting their husbands, and about husbands loving their wives? The Bible doesn’t say that she only has to submit to you if you are “good enough” in her judgment. She has to submit to you, despite past pr0n usage.

    Part of loving someone can be confronting their sin.

  77. Dalrock says:

    @David J.

    If the alpha/beta grid held true, I’d expect her to seek out another alpha — or a “better” alpha. Instead, she married down (and quickly): he’s shorter, less attractive, older, less intelligent, less accomplished, less articulate, lower income, less educated, and lives in a poor rural area that is much less desirable than any place she would ever have considered living with me. He’s also twice-divorced and of suspect theology — things that would have been dealbreakers previously. I do expect their marriage to end within a fairly short time, but that doesn’t explain her selection of him. (Note: this is not a case of her testing the market for a while and eventually despairing of landing anyone better at her age (52); she latched onto this guy within the first 2-3 weeks of online dating and never looked any further. Nor is it because she’s unattractive or destitute — she’s still pretty good-looking and she has (had) a decent job.)

    I think you are incorrectly assuming she could have done better. This is what 52 year old divorcées get for the most part. So while it is unusual that she figured this out more quickly than most, she isn’t out of the man’s league. The reason is that while all of the factors are in a young woman’s favor (youth/fertility, large pool of attractive older men who want her), these same factors all work against her later in life. When she was in her 20s the men 5-10 years older than her were all still very young and fit, but were also old enough to have professional success. She was part of a limited commodity, the small group of women nearly all men want to date (see this OK Cupid article if you haven’t already). Later in life this all works against her. The men her age want to and can date younger. This leaves her looking at older men, but because of the tendency for men to die off at slightly greater rates throughout the age spectrum, there aren’t that many men above her. Those men above her are also not young and fit, but getting older. Those few men are also far more likely to be married, because older women know better than to divorce. Making all of this worse, there are plenty of other foolish women like her who are competing for the same limited crop of available men. You see this all the time on Yahoo Answers.

  78. John

    if your porn accountability group is saying the things you would find here:

    http://www.mychainsaregone.com

    run away. You will be taught to not even allow arousal at the sight of your wifes naked body. If the wife is of the rejecting sort, she will glom onto that and you can forget ever having a mutual sex life again.

    Christian porn accountability is an unusual thing. It is good to stop using porn, no doubt, but the churchian answer to it is disproportionate and it is yet another tool in the box of the female controlled marriage. Your references to her organizational skills are a red flag in that regard as in betcha she sees to it that YOU are organized to her standards as well.

    One fact….you cannot ever supplicate back into her desirous zone…..period. “Rebuilding trust” is also misconstrued, and your allowing yourself some glimmer of hope is likely just enabling her.
    Her trust is to the Lord. Ive seen women have to learn that the hard way, and only a few are fortunate enough to even have the self awareness to figure that out while the church and therapy community tells her and you that it takes time and she must feel safe and blah blah blah.

    Sadly the porn use is a free ticket for women out of literally anything they want out of. The dragging out of the drama, by her, gets her something that she has a drive for that rivals your sex drive. Empathy. When you figure out that empathy is a basic drive for women like the sex drive, stand back and examine their behavior and see that much is to maximize the opportunity to express things to friends and family and receive empathy in return. Its addictive, and your porn use is a deep wellspring of it.

  79. Dalrock says:

    @Empath

    Christian porn accountability is an unusual thing. It is good to stop using porn, no doubt, but the churchian answer to it is disproportionate and it is yet another tool in the box of the female controlled marriage.

    Not to mention that it is the exact opposite of what the Bible says is the way to handle temptation for sexual sin.

  80. Dalrock says:

    I’ve edited the OP to add:

    A separate study also confirms that adopting a mental posture of unwillingness to divorce leads to greater marital happiness.

  81. Not to mention that it is the exact opposite of what the Bible says is the way to handle temptation for sexual sin.

    Right. Its not vague or nuanced, its plain spoken, and John says his group recommends 90 days without sexual release to deprogram the mind. What the hell does that even MEAN? Its a bunch of psychobabble that people repeat because it sounds good. Its like those stupid ads that say to balance women’s hormones. Think on that. What does it MEAN? Nothing. Nothing at all. It is full on Oprah-ish psychobabble. You cannot deprogram a man from his sex drive unless you use surgery and estrogen, perhaps a water board. And why would you even want to do that?

    I hate to admit, but Im unsure, I think I wrote about this some time ago, where a woman wrote in a blog or somewhere that the most meaningful thing her husband EVER did was a time when they had a date night, and he clearly had intentions, and when she seemed like it wasnt high on her to do list he “held her as she drifted to sleep” I remember….it was Barbary Rainey who said that.
    Now, there is nothing wrong with Dennis doing that. Its the frame of reference that’s screwed up. NOT having sex with his wife was the most meaningful thing he ever did? With that coming from a prominent national ministry is it any wonder that these quacks are teaching John to deprogram his urges?

  82. Manlyman says:

    Frank at 3:51 said “The movie Fireproof could be condensed into one sentence: Everything is the husband’s fault, and the onus is on him to fix it.”

    Kinda like Athol Kay’s Blog?

  83. lumberjack jones says:

    A lot of pastors who would like to preach this subject run up against one of two problems; two problems that lead them to church vocation in the first place.

    1) They’re in relatively sexless marriages themselves, and cannot confront their own wives. These are usually the mama’s-boy pastors.

    2) They’re natural alphas who don’t understand what the problem is for their parishioners.

    Point #2 there is really critical and something that is often overlooked by those who have taken the red pill.

    –Many Alpha men are unaware of what makes them alpha men.–

    I grew up as a “natural alpha” by virtue of being the big fish in a small pond. I did not know it at the time of course because I was bombarded with typical evangelical propaganda about the nature of men and women. In high school and college I attracted women by being a strong, confident, athletic, and wise-cracking guy who didn’t follow all the rules or even take them that seriously. At the time I thought I attracted women by being nice to them!

    I would tease girls, sure but I did a lot of thing society told me girls liked, flowers, notes, honor defending. These things worked but, at the time, I didn’t know they worked because these girls were already attracted to me! If I had been giving advice to young men at the time on “how to get a girl to like you” it would have been completely wrong and yet, I had no trouble attracting women at all. Sure I had a few relationships that ended when I turned up what I now know to be “the beta” but I had no idea that was the cause.

    I was awakened, of course, when after 9 years of a great marriage I lost my job and my wife lost some attraction to me. I ignorantly made the mistake of trying to go the “fireproof” route and supplicate to my wife’s every need so that she would love me again. As you all can guess this backfired and she lost more attraction to me. I stumbled on to game by googling “how to make your wife happy.” And BOOM! I saw everything so clearly. I used to be alpha!

    I now understood why I had lots of girls interested in me at my small town high school. I got why I had plenty of girls into me when I went to a small state college, I wasn’t the biggest man on campus but I was in the top 10%. Which also made clear why the highest caliber women on campus (the 9s and 10s and even some 8s with inflated self worth) did not notice me at college when they had in high school. I even understood why my wife married me and why we had sex all the time and why she was that into me anymore. My natural game that I did not even know existed had fallen to an all time low level.

    Fixed my game and fixed the problem. Wife loves me. Wife follows my lead. Wife responds sexually. Marriage and family happy.

    tl;dr
    If your pastor is an alpha he, likely, does not know you aren’t getting laid and if he did he would give you terrible advice on how to fix it

  84. taterearl says:

    It’s like telling a man who is starving for nutrition that ate nothing but fast food…to all of a sudden not eat at all as a way to clear out all the toxins their body got from eating fast food.

    Eating healthy food improves the body…having sex with your wife improves your sexual urges.

  85. Zippy says:

    John:
    it’s good to have at least 90 free of porn and orgasm (i.e,. masturbation or sex) to rewire your brain chemistry.

    Almost every man who is behaving morally will ultimately have to practice this for periods extending much longer than two months. I suggest a year or two rather than a month or two, not because sex is bad (quite the opposite) but because self-mastery is good. Once you know (because you have done it personally) that you can go for years without sinning in this manner you will be much more your own man.

    Of course this is best practiced before marriage, or during marriage when there is the inevitable long illness; though a few couples here and there will do it for penance, asceticism, or simply practice.

    It is my view that it should be practiced by everyone. Married men are not immune to this necessity unless they die young before their wives experience any extended convalescence. Everyone should be prepared for extended sexual abstinence; morally, spiritually, mentally, and physically. You never know when it will be your turn, it can happen at any time at all, and your turn is very likely to arrive at some point before you die.

    Asceticism can be overdone, but in our culture that is about as dangerous as dying of thirst in the Mississippi.

  86. Zippy says:

    Further:
    If you haven’t practiced this, when your turn arrives you will be like the fast-food-addicted man stuck in the jungle trying to live off of grubs. Be ready before your turn arrives. Plan for your future like a man, not a hedonistic boy brought up in the Oprah culture of self-indulgence.

  87. John says:

    Emp,

    Thanks for the response. The 90 days comes from yourbrainonporn.com (YBOP). For the record, the site isn’t Christian and they aren’t terribly strict about the 90 days (or anything else). They just suggest that based on past successes and neurological wiring. It’s a bit interesting because “porn science” is pretty much an underground field. Mainstream science doesn’t want to touch it or consider it an addiction along the lines of drugs, alcohol, etc. Anyway, YBOP is an interesting place. Watch the videoes or browse through the testimonials (mostly non-Christian) some time.

    The group I’m in is an offshoot of YBOP. It isn’t explicitly Christian, either. When I occasionally comment there, I interact with other Christian guys, though. (There are gays, atheists and all sorts of others there…including straights who got interested in gay stuff through hard-core porn…the porn addicted culture is a crazy, scary place.)

    So don’t worry–no whacky group will convince me not to enjoy my wife’s naked body. If I later join a Xian accountability group, I’d be very selective. I’m not sure if any would meet my criteria.

  88. Asceticism can be overdone

    And you have just described over doing it.

  89. Zippy you present a false dichotomy that could be vary handy if your goal was to build yourself up, edify yourself…..fluff. To not practice that is not to be hedonistic. I don’t care what the crystals are saying.

  90. Zippy says:

    empathologism:
    And you have just described over doing it.

    Let me know what you think after you’ve had your turn.

  91. Zippy says:

    Plenty of men live their whole lives without ever having a serious physical fight. But being prepared to engage in a physical fight should it become necessary is a basic element of manhood.

    In contrast, virtually every single man will face one or more extended periods of time where his choice is either to sin or abstain.

    Be prepared.

  92. taterearl says:

    Sexual sin is the easiest way to enslave a man…the opposite side is the best way for a man to become free is to not be ruled by sexual desire.

    Everytime in history when men became very liberal with sexuality…the government became more invasive and controlling. These are not coincidences.

  93. Assuming?

    Also, I find it surprising that you attempt the fighting analogy. It doesn’t work at all.

  94. Being ruled by sexual desire is not the opposite of celibacy.

  95. John says:

    SSM: Thanks for the reply. I have mentioned I Cor. 7 briefly, but plan to in more detail soon…unless things change.

  96. CL says:

    The ‘healing’ John’s wife seeks will not be found in repression and denial. Sex with one’s spouse is supposed to be redemptive. There is nothing wrong with periodic abstinence (but not for two years!) but it isn’t supposed to be this way, where one spouse determines at whim when it might happen again. This isn’t about trust, it’s about control, and right now she is controlling the sexuality of the marriage.

  97. CL says:

    @John

    You can try the Bible readings, certainly, but if she were submitted to Christ she would submit to you. You need to do this without the appeal to authority, IMO, even God’s. I know this sounds pitiful, but the visceral response to your supplication will triumph over your attempts to sway her logically and rationally. I’ve said before that submission to one’s husband is an outward sign of submission to Christ. You have the authority; you do not need to appeal to her to give you the authority.

  98. Zippy says:

    CL:
    There is nothing wrong with periodic abstinence (but not for two years!)

    To be clear, when discussing the time spent abstaining outside of marriage or when one’s spouse is sick and unable, I should have said “all of it”, not just two years.

    I think two years (or longer) is a reasonable expectation for the kind of timeframe that abstinence will be morally required, though. People get sick and some die; sometimes duty calls from another part of the world and long separation is unavoidable. In general the vagueries of life mean that almost every man will at one time or another face the choice of sinning or abstaining for quite long periods of time.

    I’m just advising them to be prepared.

  99. grey_whiskers says:

    @David J on January 15, 2013 at 12:49 am —

    You have touched on an important point. A woman’s response to sexuality / tingles / alpha, etc. is not (to borrow the language of Thermodynamics) a “state” function, as is temperature; it is dependent upon her life history, her past relationships, her history with you, vs. her state of mind, and the balance of hopes, fears, desires, wishes, and “tingles”, which can vary by time of month or the type of day she’s had. Game is very much “in the moment” as it is often described, but the maintenance of a living breathing relationship with a person who has their own self and history on board, is a lot trickier than learning how to press arousal triggers among women who are already in venues where the unspoken purpose is to meet (and presumably have a fling with) men.

  100. CL says:

    @Zippy

    Obviously if there is illness or death or deployment it’s a different situation. In a normal marriage, which is what is being discussed here, that is a ridiculous expectation. ‘Preparing’ for that kind of ‘what if’ is not necessary and bordering on absurd; should we also ‘prepare’ for sex in marriage by having sex outside marriage?

  101. Bee says:

    @Zippy,

    2 years is way to long for a fast. Jesus only fasted for 40 days.

    The sexual fasting of 1 Cor. 7 is by mutual consent, not by one partner dictating it to the other.

    I realize that illness and death can cause periods of celibacy of more than 40 days but training for that does not have to take as long as the possible event.

    There is a gift of celibacy but it is rare. If you are married, you and your partner do not have the gift of celibacy!

  102. Zippy says:

    @CL:
    if there is illness or death or deployment it’s a different situation.

    I think you must have meant “when”, not “if”.

  103. When there is deployment?

    No, I think she meant if…..its hair splitting.

  104. CL says:

    @Zippy

    Doesn’t change anything I said afterwards, and anyway, ‘if’ was the right word choice since not all will deal with any of those situations – yes, including death, since the one who dies first is not left to deal with it. Also, when one spouse dies, the marriage is over, so this is not a ‘when’ of marriage. Illness is not a certainty and neither is deployment; so nice try anyway.

    Assuming people aren’t completely incontinent and have practised short periods of abstinence, as well as have a good line of communication between them, this is a bridge that can be crossed when or IF we come to it.

  105. I’m thinking of asking my employer if I can take two years off to prepare myself for the time when I will be retired. I’m hopeful that my retirement lasts much longer, but if I have enough resolve, I can learn the skill of sloth sufficiently in two years off and not be tempted them to go back to work.

  106. sunshinemary says:

    ‘Preparing’ for that kind of ‘what if’ is not necessary and bordering on absurd

    Not only is it absurd, it is sinful. The Bible is clear that it is only to be for “a time” to devote oneself to prayer, and then the couple is to come together again.

  107. sunshinemary says:

    Very wise plan, empath, excellent idea. Perhaps I shall ask my husband if I can take several years off from preparing dinner in order to prepare him for a time in the future when there may be widespread famine. I mean, you never know, right?

  108. SSM, Im thinking of living underground for two years, the zombie apocalypse…..its coming, and I will need the night vision

  109. Zippy says:

    @CL:
    when one spouse dies, the marriage is over, so this is not a ‘when’ of marriage.

    It is certainly a “when” that abstinence is morally required though.

    It mildly interesting to see folks rage against preparation for the commonplace and even certain vicissitudes of life.

  110. sunshinemary says:

    I think two years (or longer) is a reasonable expectation for the kind of timeframe that abstinence will be morally required, though. People get sick and some die;

    This reminds me of that Monty Python skit where the two old ladies discuss burying the cat while it’s still alive in case it should happen to die while they are gone on holiday.

  111. sunshinemary says:

    It mildly interesting to see folks rage against preparation for the commonplace

    Personally, I’m not raging, I’m laughing. I’m able to do that (laugh) because I’m happy most of time because I’m not practicing totally pointless sexual abstinence.

  112. Looking Glass says:

    @John:

    I wouldn’t take the 90 days thing for much in the way of science, but I could see roughly a month. Minus the complete removal of porn from your life. That being the more important bit. High-lining your hormones like that (especially after regular release for years) is going to hit hard. If you want to talk about increasing temptation… yeah, that’ll do it real good.

    @Manlyman:

    Athol can defend himself, but he’s agnostic on who’s “fault” it is. Athol pushes “you can only control yourself”, which is just true from a realistic standpoint in the American legal environment. That’s pretty different from it being the guy’s “fault” and it’s only his mess to clean up. Cleaning up a mess doesn’t mean you caused it in the first place. Otherwise Janitors are the creators of all messes.

  113. CL says:

    @Zippy

    Who is raging? You seem to resort to extremes and absurdities rather too often. Normally, one is fairly old by the time a spouse dies, in which case abstinence will be easier. In the case the widow(er) is not old and still wants frequent sex, there is the possibility of remarriage. Why do you feel the need to defend the idea of up to two years of sexual abstinence within marriage without due cause?

    And again, John’s situation, which was what was under discussion regarding the need for abstinence, is not anything like what you describe and you are excusing his wife with bad reasoning. His wife is refusing him on a flimsy basis; this is not right, especially as he has (taking him at his word) given up porn, masturbation, and sex for the last two months. I don’t know how often he was using porn, but this is potentially a huge accomplishment and she is essentially using his sin as a means to control him, in spite of all his effort. This is not loving behaviour.

  114. Brendan says:

    It’s not the concept of preparation, it’s the notion that two years of abstinence is required preparation. I have never heard such a thing taught by any Catholic or Orthodox priest or other authority. Have you?

  115. 8oxer says:

    Dear Sunshine Mary:

    I hope you take this as it’s intended: with the best of intentions. You’re one of the few women who participates on the androsphere who is consistently reasonable and I admire your ability to answer criticism with good humor. A couple of things I’m gonna point out…

    I’m happy most of time because I’m not practicing totally pointless sexual abstinence.

    1. For men, this is not totally pointless. It’s an exercise in will development. This is an essential part of increasing one’s masculinity.

    2. Your response (bare fear, hidden by thinly veiled snark and attempted nonchalance) to such a challenge is exactly commensurate with every woman’s reaction when I have gone on such a fast before.

    While I think two years is far in excess of anything most men will find reasonable, there is a strong need for men to be able to control themselves, and a period of exercising such control (a month or two is fine, in my opinion) does a great deal to boost a man’s confidence in himself and his abilities to transcend the physical and delay gratification.

    While I respect the religious context of this blog, all the atheist brothers should try this too. Just a month or two months is all you need. If you slip and whack it once or twice in the month, don’t beat yourself up, just keep going as best you can. At the end of the month you’ll have a much stronger and more masculine frame, both internally and externally.

    Ferdinand Bardamu wrote about this from a secular perspective, when he was running the old In Mala Fide.

    Women’s universal horror at the thought of this has the added benefit of revealing their absolute need for men to remain in a constant state of sexual arousal, so as they might be more easily controlled by team woman.

    If you’re married or have a steady girlfriend, try one mere week where your affection toward her is non-physical and asexual. Give hugs and say “I love you” but no dirty talk, grabbing, petting, etc. Quietly refuse all her advances. You’ll see what happens. She’ll go completely berserk. LOL!

    Regards, Boxer

  116. Dalrock says:

    @John

    SSM: Thanks for the reply. I have mentioned I Cor. 7 briefly, but plan to in more detail soon…unless things change.

    If you haven’t already read it, Cane Caldo’s Tacomaster Desires Steadfast Love is an excellent fit for what you are going through. I also expanded on his thoughts a bit in the comments from a game perspective on leading the wife on a walk.

  117. If you slip and whack it once or twice in the month, don’t beat yourself up,

    Is there a contradiction in there?

    (I’m still raging)

  118. sunshinemary says:

    Hi Boxer,
    Thanks for your comment. Gosh, I’m sorry if I was snarky. I appreciate your pointing it out so I can apologize. I didn’t mean to be like that although I really was laughing and not raging.

    I can see what you are saying about self-mastery, but for Christians we must obey the Bible, and for married Christians that means having marital relations except for brief periods of time when we are devoted to prayer. So, once married, a Christian man shouldn’t be doing this self-mastery thing in the bedroom. However, a week of abstinence for prayer is surely moral and probably would, as you imply, whet her appetite.

  119. For men, this is not totally pointless

    Here I must ask, speak for your self. I disagree. And to attempt to them shame the man who disagrees by pointing out he may therefore be slave to his desires (which you have not yet done)
    is to argue like, well, like the average woman.

    This also differs significantly from Zippy’s MO because you are citing benefits, both personal growth AND ultimately sexual ones…hardly keeping with the altruistic tone Zippy has taken.

  120. Brendan says:

    Periodic abstinence is, of course, a very good practice spiritually. In the Orthodox tradition, the guideline (which is followed in its strictness by only very few couples, but which is also followed to some degree by almost all couples) is that couples fast from sex on the same days that we are called to fast from certain foods — i.e., wednesday and friday of every week, and during the four lenten periods of the church calendar. The most commonly observed of these is of course the great fast before easter. Taken together, this is a lot of abstinence from sex, even if couples only observe it during the great fast, and seems to provide the kind of spiritual strength and discipline that is beneficial. I’m not aware of any teaching that couples fasting from sex in excess of these guidelines is spiritually beneficial.

  121. Q says:

    Thank you for your replies. I do not want to hijack the thread, and I cannot go into very deep detail. She says she was unhappy for quite some time, and she says she told me so. The latter, however, is not true. In fact, via our conserved chat messages, it is quite obvious that all she communicated is how happy she is. She now says, she “never whats to talk about that again” (the question of whether she’s been fair). She’s moved out and I haven’t seen her since October (we talked on the phone a bit, but I am now trying to limit the contact, both to make it easier for me and to not give her emotional support). She used to be a Christian, now she “does not want to follow old, dusty books” and “in her heart she knows she’s doing what God wants” (or some version of that). She gets quite angry when I disagree, or when I tell her that my and her God are different entities in that case.

    All of that cast a rather bad light on her. She used to be quite a good wife for me. I did not have issues of denied sex, and the only problem we had (that I knew of) were her psychological issues (anxiety disorder, or something of the kind), where it was my job to calm her down. I wonder how she handles that now. (According to her mom, I was the source of those problems, though …)

    She gave all kinds of reasons for the separation (not being happy is one of them, not feeling excited enough, but I also “abused her”; by the latter she is talking about things that I thought were consensual. I am sure I made quite some mistakes there, however). I am not sure if too much beta was really our issue. Her complains also have a part of “you were too much of a Machismo”.

    The divorce process has started, but will take a while (in the central European country we’re living in, one has to be separated for one year in order to be divorced). I pray for our reconciliation. Whoever, I do not at all expect it. My friends say I should not take her back in any case, after what she did here. I am not yet at an emotional stage where I would follow their advice.

    I like to think of my behavior as being guided by moral principles, but I fear in the end my feelings will win over my stated believes, just like they did for my wife. Hookup culture, here I come …

  122. 8oxer says:

    Hi Sunshine Mary:

    One of the cool parts about religion is the fact that a lot of this is encoded in the traditions. There is Lent, and Ramadan. I don’t know whether or if the Hebrews ever had anything similar, but they might.

    I definitely agree that if a man is married, he shouldn’t be depriving his wife of sex for extended periods of time. I also don’t think abstaining for longer than a month is any more useful than abstaining for the month itself.

    Men gain confidence through self-control. It’s more than this, though. Fans of Epicurus (the Greek hedonist philosopher) will appreciate the “cheerful poverty” aspect of it. Sex, like other indulgences, is something that’s most enjoyable when it comes on special occasions. Having sex every day for years on end might seem enjoyable, but the people who indulge all the time take it for granted.

    I also find that most men need a break, for a week or so, every few months. Roissy wrote about this a couple of years ago. Even the most accomplished and oversexed gamer eventually gets to the point that he’s not having fun any longer. The antidote for this is to recentre oneself for a bit, and then reapproach the game after the fast is elapsed.

    Best, Boxer

  123. Solomon says:

    you know, I see a lot of folks here trying to advise the guy above who has been put on sexual hold with his wife.

    We point to scripture, and try to sort it out, arguing over what is reasonable and what isn’t, and tactics that the young man could potentially utilize to solve the problem. I’m going to throw out one thing that I think needs to be addressed:

    fear.

    “Never be afraid to lose her”, is one of the maxims of the MANdrosphere, and I think this is the key to the thing. If you are afraid to lose her, she will smell that fear like a bloodhound, and all your other posturing will be to no avail. In fear, you might pull punches, back off, and otherwise betray your own attempt at a strong frame. Are you afraid to lose her?

    Why?

    Freedom is just another word for “nothing left to lose” as Janis Joplin has noted. If you accept and grieve your losses, it liberates you from the fear of loss. Wife left you? Hey, I know it stings, but take it like a man. Men are designed to endure hardships. Call upon that inner strength you know you have, and endure.

    Afraid of losing your investment in your wife? Why? We’re all dirt anyway, man. The dirt looms, and soon will reclaim us all. For what is a man’s life, but a wisp of vapor, that appears for a moment, and then vanishes away? Have you attached too much importance to the events of this world? Are you not unshakable in the love of Christ? In the big picture, including your imminent death, problems like a fussy woman, or a wife who left, mean exactly jack shit. Agonizing over porn and masturbation seems like a poor way to spend my energy. I only give a damn about stuff that matters that I can actually do something about, and let me tell you, that’s a very short list.

    Meh, I don’t know. Just seems like a lot of navel-gazing. Fear has no place in a victorious person’s life. Stop being afraid of her. Stop being afraid of taking losses. Stop being afraid of every little sin, and demons under every doily. Rise up to a greatness that gives short shrift to bullshit issues and bullshit people. Handle YOUR business.

    Once your fears are dashed upon the mighty stones God gave you, only THEN you will be able to proceed without trepidation, and you will likely find the solutions quite naturally- and much of the problems will damn-near solve themselves, if you just get yourself squared away.

    Love your woman enough to set aside your own fears and rebuke her like she desperately needs you to. “Whom the Lord loves, He rebukes.”

    If you withhold necessary rebukes out of fear, then your leadership is poor, and she knows it.

    It’s not a matter of what sort of leadership she might like best. It’s a matter of what sort of leadership WORKS, and what sort of leadership do you require of yourself. Do that.

    damn the consequences.

  124. Zippy says:

    @Brendan:
    It’s not the concept of preparation, it’s the notion that two years of abstinence is required preparation. I have never heard such a thing taught by any Catholic or Orthodox priest or other authority. Have you?

    Unless one marries within two years of the start of puberty, two years or more is a given.

  125. Zippy says:

    @CL:
    you are excusing his wife with bad reasoning

    I’m not excusing anyone for anything.

  126. deti says:

    John:

    Not to put too fine a point on it, but extended abstinence from marital sexual relations in order to “detoxify” from porn use isn’t biblical. What IS biblical is for you and your wife to make yourselves available to each other sexually, because you’re not to deprive her, nor she you. ‘

    To me, it is no wonder there is such a porn epidemic in the US. Young men can’t get married to women their own age, because many of them don’t want to marry, don’t even want to consider marriage, for whatever reason. Then when they finally do marry, some wives completely cut their husbands off.

    John, six months without sex because of porn is too long. One month is too long. She’s depriving you of sex because it permits her to control the relationship. IMO, deprivation of sex is marital abandonment and grounds for divorce.

  127. Zippy says:

    @Solomon:
    Once your fears are dashed upon the mighty stones God gave you, only THEN you will be able to proceed without trepidation, and you will likely find the solutions quite naturally- and much of the problems will damn-near solve themselves, if you just get yourself squared away.

    Well said. Self-mastery comes first. (I’m not implying that you agree with my other comments. I’m just agreeing with your point here).

  128. Solomon says:

    Not only is it breach of contract to withhold sex, it is outright mutiny.

    A Captain who had a mutinous first-mate would not hesitate to shut that sailor down in full

    A captain who waffles deserves the mutiny.

  129. Zippy says:

    Sexual denial or sexual extortion by a wayward wife is horribly evil. Self-mastery makes a man impervious to it. The one point does not stand in conflict with the other.

    It is even possible that the call to self-mastery encounters resistance precisely because self mastery makes a man impervious to sexual extortion.

  130. CL says:

    @Zippy

    Your original comment on this was, in part:

    John:
    “it’s good to have at least 90 free of porn and orgasm (i.e,. masturbation or sex) to rewire your brain chemistry.”

    Almost every man who is behaving morally will ultimately have to practice this for periods extending much longer than two months. I suggest a year or two rather than a month or two

    John’s statement was based on iffy science to begin with, but then you go on to advocate that he go without sex for as much as two years while staying married. You give his wife a pass with this idea that it would be good practise for his own self-mastery; this is just nuts. Expecting a wife to put out is not unreasonable. Instead of acknowledging this, you tell him that he is being unreasonable to expect his wife to have sex with him, even though he is doing the work on his own improvement while she is using his previous sin to exert control over him with flimsy excuses about ‘trust’ and ‘healing’. He didn’t rape her; he watched porn.

    Why on earth are you defending this position? You are advocating avoiding/ignoring his wife rather than handling her. Your position promotes a man not claiming what belongs to him.

    See how powerful a man can be when he does not need his wife for sex and has self-mastery. Now she can control their sex life by refusing but he gets to laugh last because he doesn’t need sex from her. Also known as, na na na na na! Oh yeah, this sounds like a marriage made in heaven… NOT.

  131. 8oxer says:

    Hey Zippy:

    I have zero desire to enter the ongoing debate, but would like to ask a question of you and perhaps the other religious bros.

    Does the Christian tradition allow the man to deny his wife sex, if they are legally married?

    It seems Sunshine Mary has a good point about not denying the other partner. I’m wondering if men have absolute authority to deny, or whether it’s a game of give and take where neither are allowed to deny the other.

    Links to outside sources are fine if you got ‘em. I’ve already googled this and there’s a lot of stuff on Jews (apparently neither party is to deny the other), not so much on Protestants and Catholics, and what’s there is not at all unanimous.

    Best, Boxer

  132. Solomon says:

    Boxer- I’d speculate that while the man holds authority with the woman, he is also commanded by God, whose authority he is under, not to refuse her likewise.

    So, as far as the man’s right to deny her sex, nope. No good leader neglects his charges.

  133. Brendan says:

    Unless one marries within two years of the start of puberty, two years or more is a given.

    Zippy, why do you always move the goalposts in your discussions? Most of us were talking about abstaining during the course of a marriage, not abstaining from sex when one is not married — the latter is quite uncontroversial, of course., among Christians, whereas the former is quite controversial and novel.

  134. Zippy says:

    CL:
    but then you go on to advocate that he go without sex for as much as two years while staying married

    I see how you could have taken it that way, so allow me to clarify.

    I am not advocating any specific course of action whatsoever for John. He has to reach his own conclusions.

    What I am suggesting is that most men in fact, during their lifetimes, will face lengthy periods of time where the choice is between sin or abstinence.

    Men who have followed the natural and Divine law will have gotten this conditioning before marrying. Men who have not are at significant spiritual and other risk, and should develop a plan for how they will develop enough self-mastery so that they can honesty say to themselves “if I had to go two years with no sex at all, I could do so without sinning.”

    The idea that I am making excuses for John’s wife is ludicrous.

  135. Great, she ain’t givin but I ain’t wantin. Detente? Stalemate? MAD? Can they at least come out of the fox holes to play soccer on Christmas?

  136. I just do not see how an extended sexual fast as such prepares one for an unplanned sexual dearth some years later. Or is it recommended with some regularity?

  137. Zippy says:

    Boxer:
    Does the Christian tradition allow the man to deny his wife sex, if they are legally married?

    I can’t give you an authoritative answer, but I can give you my answer.

    Husband and wife should never deny each other without sufficient reason. All that really does is shift the burden to “sufficient reason” though.

    As a practical matter neither husband nor wife qua individual can have sufficient reason on their own. However, the physical and spiritual health of the marriage and the spouses are where legitimate sufficient reason can be found. The man is head of the marriage, and if he decides to introduce ascetic practices into the marriage for the health of the marriage and the spouses, mindful as a good leader should be of the limitations of both spouses and being careful not to lead either into sin, this is within his authority as Head.

  138. Please offer citation for said ascetic leading.

    And also, if I may ask, why zippy did you see this as a line of inquiry to embed in what was a tangent into one mans sexual denial experience?

  139. 8oxer says:

    Thanks Solomon and Zippy. Good stuff. I shall ponder it.

  140. ukfred says:

    Sorry I’ve come late to the party, but reading through a large number of the comments as well as the post, I have to say that there was one basic problem that stuck out like a sore thumb with Fireproof, and it seems that John’s wife has the same problem, and that is the attitude of treating marriage like a contract and not like a covenant. Basically, if one party fails to live up to their obligations under a covenant, the other party does not find their obligations proportionately relieved, as in a contract. In the film, Kathryn tells Caleb she will not compete with the porn he is watching, and Caleb responds by reminding her that she is witholding sex. While I can understand his need for sexual release, it is clear that Kathryn can’t. To be honest, the only part of the film I thought was Christian was the confrontation between Kathryn and the older lady when she pointed out that Kathryn’s behaviour (emotional affair?) with the Dr was wrong.

  141. hurting says:

    http://dalrock.wordpress.com/2013/01/14/the-book-of-oprah/#comment-67776

    Zippy,

    I’ll take issue with your recommendation that involuntary celibacy in marriage traceable to a wife’s unjust denial is a good time to practice for those times when relations are suspended for legitimate reasons. Such unjust denial is a serious threat to the marriage and needs to be dealt with, and not via forced ascetism.

    Regarding what consitutes sufficent reason, given that the requirements of marriage were not historically deemed by the Catholic Church to be beyond the grasp of teenagers of normal intelligence, I think it’s safe to say that sufficiency portends a fairly high bar (e.g., adultery, serious illness), and that for all intents and purposes, it meant that spouses are all but never to deny one another.

    On that note, and in response to SSM’s initial comment

    http://dalrock.wordpress.com/2013/01/14/the-book-of-oprah/#comment-67550

    I’d offer that:

    1. In my 40+ years as a practicing Catholic, I’ve never heard a single homily or other instruction on the issue of denial of sex, including my pre-Cana workshop. I asked a priest one time about it and he responded with a very esoteric explanation that skirted the issue and essentially tried to tell me that the concept of ‘marital debt’ does not exist, despite the clear teachings of the church.
    2. Ditto on submission regarding even a remotely conservative interpretation.
    3. Agree 100% on the inefficacy of marriage counseling. It does not work because it can not work; even putatively Christian (even Catholic) counselors would typically not agree as to the tenets of Christian marriage called for above (wifely submission and not denying one another sex). Even if they did believe it, they would, as I understand it, be forced to suppress it in the context of their professional code. If one of the parties in counselling professed not to believe in either tenet, even the Christian counselor would not impose his/her beliefs (or God forbid those of the other partner) on the non-believer. Moral relativism indeed.

  142. Here’s my understanding of the ‘detoxify from porn’ logic:

    When a man, especially an older or low-T man, has been using porn and masturbation for a long time, the extreme stimulus from it desensitizes him to the point where it’s hard for him to perform in real life. The problem is that our subconscious brain doesn’t make a solid distinction between what we experience in person and what we see and hear and imagine. If his favorite kink is watching groups of blonde college coeds spanking each other with yardsticks before getting a good rogering from the pizza delivery boy (in whose shoes he imagines himself), so he watches the yardstick spanking channel every evening before bed, he’s going to get to the point where that becomes his normal threshold for pleasurable sex, according to the more primitive parts of his brain. Then he may have a hard time getting properly excited by his solitary, non-blonde, non-coed, non-ruler-bearing wife — unless he closes his eyes and thinks of the coeds, which isn’t a good solution.

    So the idea is that he needs to re-sensitize himself to normal sex by going cold turkey on the porn and masturbation for a while, until the sight of a willing, naked woman is enough to get his motor charged all by itself, like it did when he was younger. (Heck, when most guys are 18, just thinking about a naked woman does the trick; she doesn’t even have to be doing anything naughty.)

    Obviously, if he’s single, he should do this anyway, to stop sinning. But even for the atheists, it’s a good idea because it sucks to be unable to properly appreciate sex. But for married guys, it’s tricky, as the comments here show. This guy’s past porn use and guilt over it has already put his wife in the driver’s seat, and abstinence now is only going to make that worse. She’s never going to want to give up that control. There’s a good chance that she’ll hold this over his head forever, pulling it out any time she wants to maintain or extend her dominance. They need to be having more sex, not less — while at the same time realizing that it may take him a while to get used to the normal levels of stimulation.

    A long period of abstinence could re-sensitize him to sex and make them great together in bed again — but their sex life might be dead and buried by the time that happens, so that’s really not a good solution.

  143. Joe says:

    @ Hurting –

    Christian teaching regarding sex is very confusing and has flip-flopped over the centuries. In particular, the Catholic Church’s ban on artifical birth control (as compared to natural family planning) basically conditions intercourse only when there is the possibility of conception, except of course when nature provides a safe period during the month. Additionally, sexual activity such as mutual masturbation in marriage is a sin. Therefore, the Catholic Church allows for sex in marriage only in a very narrow application. The protestants were not much better – John Calvin and Martin Luther both believed birth control was a sin, according to my internet research. It’s rather recent that the protestants have allowed birth control. I mention all of this because historicallyChristians have placed restrictions on sex ( that is, taken the fun out of it). We now have a mega church Christian pastor stating in his recent book that anal intercourse (aka sodomy) is permitted.

  144. Brendan says:

    We now have a mega church Christian pastor stating in his recent book that anal intercourse (aka sodomy) is permitted.

    That’s because he’s a heretic and a loon.

    Catholic/Orthodox teaching on these matters is sound. It’s restrictive if you want to avoid pregnancy, or if you just want to get off with your spouse in a way that doesn’t involve a procreative possibility. This is sound, because licit sex is procreative and unitive at the same time in each act, not hedonistic. Many protestant teachers about these kinds of things are simply committing moral heresy.

  145. UnicornHunter says:

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2013/01/13/maple-leaf-foods-ceo-spousal-support.html

    If the super wealthy can’t manage to get a prenup upheld, what hope anyone else, eh? I guess $7M and three houses just wasn’t enough.

  146. 7man says:

    @Joe
    In practice, Catholic sex is not that restrictive and there will be plenty of fun.

  147. Zippy says:

    @hurting:
    I’ll take issue with your recommendation that involuntary celibacy in marriage traceable to a wife’s unjust denial is a good time to practice for those times when relations are suspended for legitimate reasons.

    What I was responding to was the generic advice to the porn addicted, which I quoted. I was responding to what I actually quoted, not to all sorts of things I didn’t quote. That generic advice to the porn-addicted was

    some of the yourbrainonporn.com types say it’s good to have at least 90 free of porn and orgasm (i.e,. masturbation or sex) to rewire your brain chemistry.

    How that applies to different people in different circumstances is, as always, a matter of those circumstances. That people chose to interpret me as providing advice to John specifically is understandable, but (as I’ve already clarified) not what I intended. I would not presume to offer specific advice to a specific person based on one blog comment.

    If we consider a generic porn-addicted man, considering the porn addiction in itself, 90 days abstention is nothing. He should spend at least two years practicing abstinence before he even begins to consider himself suitable for marriage. If he is already married and his wife is not in rebellion, they should consider how they can work together to improve his self mastery, which will necessarily involve some abstention, but it is obviously a more complex situation. You don’t learn to control your appetites by indulging them.

    Being both porn addicted and having a wife in rebellion at the same time is obviously a harder problem still. If nothing else this illustrates that a man should attain self-mastery before marrying.

  148. Ras Al Ghul says:

    I try to tell people this all the time. If the law isn’t on your side in any other way, why would you think something like this would protect you?

    It won’t.

  149. Ras Al Ghul says:

    that last was for unicornhunter

  150. Zippy says:

    @Brendan:
    Many protestant teachers about these kinds of things are simply committing moral heresy.

    True; but in fairness to our separated brethren, I’ve seen Catholic authors advocate this kind of moral heresy too. I’ve also seen some Catholic-specific tomfoolery you’d never see in Protestantism, like encouragement of brothers to chart their sisters’ basal temperatures to get them all used to NFP for their future marriages.

    I only mention these things to acknowledge the ecumenical nature of crazy.

  151. 7man says:

    @Zippy
    There should be accountability groups for wives that withhold sex. (Of course women cannot hold each other accountable, so this is a farcical notion.) As she is recovering, she must not refuse. When a man and woman are bonded in marriage, they each have their corresponding sins. Yes, in many cases he may be using porn when she is sinning by refusing. So her abstention must be from refusal and if his abstention is from orgasm and intercourse, then when both must abstain from their respective sins, one will not have the opportunity to rewire their brain.

    You are chasing rabbits when you say your comment was not about the main topic of this thread.

    There is a much better way for recovering from porn. It involves seeing rightly rather than seeing wrongly. Fr. Thomas Loya explains this and you should be able to find some of his videos on YouTube.

  152. CL says:

    Therefore, the Catholic Church allows for sex in marriage only in a very narrow application.

    Enter through the narrow gate…. It depends what you mean by narrow. ‘Narrow’ has come to mean ‘negative’ which has come to mean ‘bad’, but this is all false. Language has been misused and misappropriated to cause further confusion. I suggest anyone who is interested think about this and look up these words for the true, original definitions.

    ‘Positive’ and ‘negative’ are simply new age glosses over good and evil, but positive does not imply good and negative does not imply bad – think of it in grammatical terms. “You should kill that guy” is positive statement; “I will not kill that guy” is a negative statement.

    Likewise narrow. Yes, it is a narrow application, through which, like the narrow gate, one may enter heaven.

  153. Zippy says:

    @7man:
    You are chasing rabbits when you say your comment was not about the main topic of this thread.

    Your opinion is noted. It is nonetheless true that what I was responding to was what I actually quoted in my first comment in the thread, not all the other things people presumed that I was responding to even though I hadn’t quoted them.

  154. The One says:

    Orgasm, not sex is the problem, porn for men, vibrators for women lead to divorce, break ups, etc

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cupids-poisoned-arrow/200908/orgasm-s-hidden-cycle

    Also read cupid’s poisoned arrow. Ignore the anti Christian slant and focus on the science.

  155. Random Angeleno says:

    @Zippy; that last sounds familiar: “I didn’t direct my advice at John” even though the commenters were discussion about John’s situation and the things that went with that situation. Just like you wrote about Dalrock before, then backtracked and said it wasn’t all about him. You seem to have a habit of saying things without the context to consider how they might be taken. Then when you get called on it, you then either clarify or reword. You should not assume your readership will do that for you. For example, if that abstinence advice wasn’t directed at John, how were we to know that without the clarification you had to issue much further in the thread?

    Regarding your abstinence advice, it’s not bad … for unmarried men. For a married man in the midst of a sexual draught due to his wife’s denial, it is the wrong advice because all it will do is confirm to the wife that abstinence is now the accepted default mode because the context of abstinence in this circumstance is one of his continued supplication to his wife. Which we know will not elicit desire in her. To paraphrase a poster above, the long term denial isn’t just a red flag that the marriage is in trouble, it’s a giant red firetruck screaming in and around the house. While John has much work to do on himself, there can be no denying that his wife is in sin, period. And needs to be led out of that. Cane Caldo’s post about Tacomaster would be a better start for John.

  156. 7man says:

    @Zippy,
    Just for you:

    It is possible for a man to rewire his brain and learn to see rightly without the abstinence of weeks, months or years.

  157. Zippy says:

    @Random Angelino:
    You seem to have a habit of saying things without the context to consider how they might be taken

    I don’t get to decide how people take things, and in my experience all sorts of people take things in all sorts of ways. When asked what I mean or when misunderstandings happen, I clarify. This is called “conversation”.

    I’ve clarified lots of times now that, bizarrely I know, I was responding to the words I actually quoted, and not to all sorts of other things that I didn’t quote. Folks can reject the (repeated, cordial) clarification if they want; but you are just kidding yourselves in doing so. Why would you want to do that?

  158. Brendan says:

    Fr. Thomas is a very highly reputable Eastern Catholic priest, and is also quite respected among Orthodox.

  159. 7man says:

    @Zippy
    Quidquid recipitur ad modum recipientis recipitur.
    Whatever is received is received according to the mode of the receiver.

    As a Catholic, surely you have heard this wisdom articulated by St. Thomas Aquinas.

  160. Zippy says:

    @7man:
    If nothing else I can see the irony in invoking Aquinas to ostensibly justify obstinate rejection of clarifying statements.

  161. 7man says:

    @Zippy

    Can you say that 3 times fast?

  162. Hurting says:

    http://dalrock.wordpress.com/2013/01/14/the-book-of-oprah/#comment-67874

    It is entirely unrealistic to expect that a ‘porn-addicted’ married man and his wife would eschew sexual relations for two years. Odds are the porn addiction was precipitated by his wife’s unjust refusal. You equate a man’s viewing of pornography and his desire for his wife as equally bad – hence your suggestion that he improve his mastery. This is a false analogy.

    Yes, viewing pornography is sinful and certainly harmful to all (the viewer, the subjects and the viewer’s spouse), but it does not rise to the level of adultery especially if there are mitigating circumstances involved, namely unjust spousal refusal.

    I concur with Brendan that Catholic theology is spot on with respect to sexual relations. Most Catholics are ignorant of the bonds of the marital debt; this ignorance is largely the a function of the infestation of the Church with feminism. The concept of debt is integral to the equation, and the downplaying of it (which is most recognition it receives) is harmful in and of itself; sadly, however, it is routinely and heretically charcterized as not possessing the nature of a debt or obligation at all.

  163. deti says:

    Is fellatio (not to ejaculation) consistent with and permitted under Catholic/Orthodox teaching?

    Is cunnilingus consistent with and permitted under Catholic/Orthodox teaching?

  164. deti says:

    CL:

    Are these teachings on oral sex specifically taught to young Catholics, in confirmation or baptism? Are they taught to new Catholic converts? Are they addressed by a priest in premarital counseling for husband and wife?

  165. gunner451 says:

    Man, this is why most people run from Christian sites … it’s just too weird, especially Zippy. Here’s an idea, why not just cut your nuts off then you can abstain from sex for as long as you want to. Hell it was popular in the middle ages for a while, forget what dude the Catholic church made a saint for doing that but hey, if it worked once it should work again right?

    Sunshinemarry, I agree with you this does remind me of some Monty Python skit and it is funny as hell when you put it in that perspective, laughed my ass off (but not my nuts) when I read that.

    John, You’re getting some very bad advice from some people with no idea how the human brain works. Run from that crap while you can or your marriage is toast.

    Q, now that I see the full story all I can say is sorry but she’s with someone else and your friends are right (they probably don’t want to tell you to your face that she’s having sex with someone else but you can count on it that they know more than they’re telling you). She’s a whore and in no way should you take her back.

  166. Pingback: Lightning Round – 2013/01/16 « Free Northerner

  167. Cane Caldo says:

    Zippy said:

    It is my view that it should be practiced by everyone. Married men are not immune to this necessity unless they die young before their wives experience any extended convalescence. Everyone should be prepared for extended sexual abstinence; morally, spiritually, mentally, and physically. You never know when it will be your turn, it can happen at any time at all, and your turn is very likely to arrive at some point before you die.

    […and…]

    Further:

    If you haven’t practiced this, when your turn arrives you will be like the fast-food-addicted man stuck in the jungle trying to live off of grubs. Be ready before your turn arrives. Plan for your future like a man, not a hedonistic boy brought up in the Oprah culture of self-indulgence.

    Jesus said:

    25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

    34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

    [and]

    14 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” 15 And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. 16 No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. 17 Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”

    There will come times of all sorts of fasting, as Zippy said, and I can’t agree enough with the Oprah culture comment…

    However; holiness does not come from good practice of your own will, but is an outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon those who look to Him for our needs; be it food or sex. And you won’t successfully train to fight in case you have to fight, but to fight. You may start going to the dojo for “what-if” self defense, but if you stay and succeed it is because you desire to be a fighter. Merely not wanting to die won’t get you there.

    “Do not muzzle the ox as it treads out the grain.” Those who aren’t married, aren’t treading marital grain, and therefore should not expect to eat of it. Unmarried men are not in the same mill as married ones. The struggles of abstinence outside of marriage are apples to the oranges of endured abstinence within marriage, and will be fought with different mental weapons. Having gone through abstinence after children several times, the last was no easier than the first for my previous practice. That being said: I didn’t find the necessary abstinence hard at all; though I certainly looked forward to its end. (I experienced a peculiar grace in the natural sense of impropriety to the idea of sex with a physically impaired wife; whether through sickness, or post-partum.)

    Those men’s struggles with overcoming porn is enough for today, I think, without burdening them with thoughts of two years of married abstinence.

  168. Here’s a Garfunkel and Oates song that might as well be called “The Churchianity Song”

    Some NSFW language, but it pretty much has the phenomenon pegged to a tee.

  169. Actually, I should warn you, there’s LOTS of NSFW language, but if you don’t want to endure it, it’s basically a young Christian girl rationalizing sex with her boyfriend (by only letting him use the back door, which isn’t “real” sex, of course,) and her fear of losing him if she doesn’t give in. There’s a good line in there about her only cherry-picking the parts of the Bible she wants to follow and ignoring the rest (like most Churchians do today…)

  170. Martian Bachelor says:

    What’s there to overcome? Pornography and the I-Net are to men what the Pill and Roe vs. Wade are to women. Birth control liberated women, and the Supreme court said women have an absolute right over their bodies. Pornography liberates men from the sexual power of women. They don’t like men to have the freedom to choose how they spend their personal time or what they do with their bodies.

    Like Rebel once said, if women think porn is bad, I take it as proof positive that it’s the best way to go.

  171. Opus says:

    I was once, on a – I suppose – Greyhound bus in America with my then gf. The bus passed by a Sex-shop, going, I seem to recall, by the name of The Brown Paper Wrapper, and my gf (to me) began berating the men (who of course could not hear her) who were going into the and out of the sex shop, saying ‘how would you feel if your mother’s knew what you were doing’. I deduced that she was intimidated by the power of other women (ie the porn) and the sub-text to me was that should I ever stray from her in the direction of Porn, I, too, was to be shamed. I need hardly say that she later became, and probably already had been, seriously promiscuous – doubtless in an effort to validate her desirability – and of course I was well rid of her.

    I always think that the worse thing about Porn is that it is so boring – and the performers therein seem even more bored than their viewers. Sex, like so many other things, only seems to be desirable in inverse proportion to its availability.

  172. greyghost says:

    Very interesting take on the sex with holding wife here. best thing is to get some pussy on the side. As soon as she pulled the no sex thing you were divorced. Or just flat out cut her off. Don’t talk to her don’t look at her and get ready for her to divorce you and for the law to punish you when things get bad for you always remember you where dead the day you said “I do” that is just the way it is.
    No matter how you arrange the deck chairs on the Titanic she is still in charge if you marry her.

    Dalrock you have done more to show the futility of marriage in this insane world feminism has made than anybody else. There is and was never any hope for any man the last score of years to have a wife it was and is a lie. I’ll say it again you are the cultural leadership after the collapse or as TFH would say the misandry bubble burst. (It looks like this government attempt to disarm the peasents is going to make this not a bloodless bursting)

  173. Can you say that 3 times fast?

    qua

  174. Zippy says:

    @Hurting:
    Odds are the porn addiction was precipitated by his wife’s unjust refusal.

    Even if I had been giving advice to John, as opposed to responding to what I specifically quoted, you’d be off the rails here. John specifically stipulated that he was porn-addicted since before he got married.

  175. CL says:

    @everyone

    We don’t know that John was addicted to porn. I think this is an overstatement, personally, but I don’t know his situation well enough to say for sure except that ‘porn addiction’ seems to be a popular faux-diagnosis made on men by those who wish to control them.

    @Zippy

    Give it up already.

  176. Zippy says:

    @Caine:
    However; holiness does not come from good practice of your own will, but is an outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon those who look to Him for our needs; be it food or sex.

    It is both/and not either/or. The Holy Spirit provides us the means to prepare ourselves for the trial, and to face it when it comes. It is nevertheless still up to us to actually prepare and actually face.

  177. Zippy says:

    @CL:
    Give it up already.

    “Shut up,” he explained.

  178. CL says:

    @Zippy/Einstein

    I’ve already explained. Funny how you called me “he” and when you first came along here, I thought you were a woman. You certainly argue like one. Is Zippy your real name, or is it a nickname earned for your quick wit?

  179. Addicted to porn is a necessary assumption if we then wish to go into the whole wasteland of brain chemistry, which is a topic people love to prattle about over a vente red eye.

    Its an odd one, when we talk of addiction in today’s world it is usually to dismiss personal responsibility, yet when its porn the opposite is the often unspoken message. The porn addict is not met with feminine empathy nor compassion…at most there is a thin veneer of it while underneath there is a yuk factor and thoughts of hand sanitizer.

    Self described addicts to porn often are wholesale into the chemistry part of it. There is no doubt that “brain chemistry” is involved in just about everything we do, so do deny its in there with porn addiction is folly. But it is more folly to start talking about rewiring and adjusting it as if we are controlling rheology, or adjusting ph. Its a matter of time before the pharma industry has some endorphine, dopamine, seratonin booster type thing labeled with a sexual disorder and long TV ads that warn you may grow a rack of antlers if you take it.

  180. Zippy says:

    @CL:
    ‘”Shut up,” he explained’ is an old trope.

    My handle is explained (more or less) under “About” at my blog.

  181. Dalrock says:

    @empathologism

    Addicted to porn is a necessary assumption if we then wish to go into the whole wasteland of brain chemistry, which is a topic people love to prattle about over a vente red eye.

    I’m not caught up on all of the comments, but this caught my attention (along with the larger comment it is from). I share your hesitance to label everyone who views porn as an “addict”. I think this is a convenient way to marginalize men and develop tunnel vision on one type of sexual sin, while generally ignoring the implications of widespread divorce and delay of marriage in a sexually libertine culture. Forget all about that carousel and the normalization of the hookup culture, the problem is porn. I also think we are in agreement that 1 Cor 7 has been turned upside down in this regard, so that a passage which instructs spouses not to deny sex or it will create temptation for sexual sin is now interpreted as “do not deny sex unless there is temptation for sexual sin”. Orwell would be proud.

    With all of this said, even though the science is probably very shaky (I haven’t looked at it), it strikes me that there really is something serious here. The vast majority of wives feel that they have the right to use denial of sex to control their husbands, or at the very least only need to have sex when they personally are in the mood. Christians in general won’t really speak contrary to this, and when they claim they are doing so they come up with analogies like doling out the cheetos. On top of that, due to decisions driven by women (as a group) we now expect men to go from puberty to nearly 30 without marriage, and very often they end up divorced after that. In a nutshell, the protective benefits of marriage against temptation for sexual sin have been almost entirely demolished, while we have a version of sexual sin which is now privately available to nearly every man. It does strike me as likely that porn could be addictive, since it is rewarding the key pleasure centers in the brain. We know from other things which push these pleasure buttons hard and repeatedly that they can have a real long term effect. So while the science is probably shaky it doesn’t convince me that there isn’t a very real risk here. What frustrates me is that in general there is so little concern by Trad Cons about the mass female driven delay of marriage and rampant divorce, yet they explode with indignation about porn. One could be forgiven for wondering if they really care about sexual morality at all, or if there isn’t some other pattern to their concern.

  182. What frustrates me is that in general there is so little concern by Trad Cons about the mass female driven delay of marriage and rampant divorce, yet they explode with indignation about porn. One could be forgiven for wondering if they really care about sexual morality at all, or if there isn’t some other pattern to their concern.

    I more/less agree that there is something to the idea of addiction to porn. The distinction lies somewhere, analogously, in that made for those who find themselves hooked on pain killers. They allow a difference between dependence and addiction, with physical withdrawal being common between them, yet “the voices” called cravings somehow less compelling for the dependent vs the addicted. These distinctions absolutely do not fit perfectly at all with porn, I am simply allowing for the existence of a distinction for porn addiction that gets away from all the gobbledegook about brain chemistry rewiring. Pleasure in general, food, sloth for some, exercise for others, video games, extreme sports, whatever….these do something to brain chemicals, hence repeating the behavior and in that manner and at that level of nebulousness, fine, porn addiction. Habit? Maybe?

    Masturbation…is that not the operative thing where the porn is an experience enhancer? In an order of operations sense, does the man think “hey, I will go look at porn and then maybe get aroused and seek self pleasure”….or does he think “Id like some self pleasure and its better with porn” and head for the PC?

    You are dead on about the stupid churchian response and position on sex and porn. Between divorce, marriage age, and sex they own the idea of missing forests for potted plants.

  183. Zippy says:

    @Dalrock:
    What frustrates me is that in general there is so little concern by Trad Cons about the mass female driven delay of marriage and rampant divorce, yet they explode with indignation about porn.

    I agree with that, though it never really occurred to me in those terms before I started reading here. So part of it may just be a matter of exposure to the ideas in a way that doesn’t cause them to be filtered out as part of the relentless noise of everyday life.

    Another factor though is that from a moral standpoint, “not getting married” isn’t a sin. Masturbating to porn is a sin. So treating the two as actually equivalent will never result in rapprochement.

  184. Dalrock says:

    I shared this quote from Sheila’s I don’t have a headache book in a previous post, but it is worth quoting again here. Note how Sheila leaps from “uses porn” to comparing it with an alcoholic and claiming it is adultery:

    If your husband uses pornography, Marnie Ferre advocates refusing to have sex with him. Think of it like an alcoholic; you wouldn’t offer an alcoholic a drink, so you shouldn’t offer a pornography addict something that will feed his addiction, either. That may sound drastic, but he is committing adultery because he’s lusting after somebody else (see Matt. 5:28). And the more he has sex with pornography in his mind, the harder it becomes for him to change.

    As I pointed out in that post, denying a husband who is tempted by porn the healthy sex which is his due as your husband is better compared to denying someone clean water because they are so thirsty they are tempted to drink out of the sewer.

  185. Dalrock says:

    @Zippy

    I agree with that, though it never really occurred to me in those terms before I started reading here. So part of it may just be a matter of exposure to the ideas in a way that doesn’t cause them to be filtered out as part of the relentless noise of everyday life.

    I would agree if I couldn’t point to a long pattern of Trad Cons having emotional negative reactions when exposed to the ideas. Trad Cons hate hearing this, but none have ever been able to explain why I’m wrong. Instead, as you have seen they set about showing what an awful defective man I am, even though they somehow can’t locate the quote which would prove this. Emotional temper tantrums are a good sign that they aren’t really passive in their overlooking the profound changes which have occurred in our culture. Obviously not all Trad Cons are like that, but as I have pointed out to Empath in the past where then does the group of Trad Cons who aren’t like that meet (outside the manosphere)? However, I would love it if you could prove me wrong by presenting this to WWTW and show that all they really needed was to have it pointed out.

    Another factor though is that from a moral standpoint, “not getting married” isn’t a sin. Masturbating to porn is a sin. So treating the two as actually equivalent will never result in rapprochement.

    But you are ignoring the larger context that I pointed out. Widespread delay of marriage and frivolous divorce has been driven by women at the same time women drove the hookup culture.

  186. Art Deco says:

    As I pointed out in that post, denying a husband who is tempted by porn the healthy sex which is his due as your husband is better compared to denying someone clean water because they are so thirsty they are tempted to drink out of the sewer.

    One of the site referred to yesterday included a discussion board on this very subject. It was mostly men concerned with attempting to adjust to or remedy these sorts of situations but it also included a woman who insisted she had offered sex to her husband about 10x a month against her preferences but had ceased to do so because she concluded she had been ‘enabling’ him. This term began its life about 25 years ago to describe a certain behavior pattern among close family to alcoholics. She had been insisting her husband see a psychotherapist (he, being career military, thought this imprudent and a poor use of his time) and be more responsive to her emotional self. She was ‘enabling’ him by not enforcing a quid pro quo.

  187. Art Deco says:

    I would agree if I couldn’t point to a long pattern of Trad Cons having emotional negative reactions when exposed to the ideas. Trad Cons hate hearing this, but none have ever been able to explain why I’m wrong. Instead, as you have seen they set about showing what an awful defective man I am, even though they somehow can’t locate the quote which would prove this. Emotional temper tantrums are a good sign that they aren’t really passive in their overlooking the profound changes which have occurred in our culture.

    Zippy is a figure in the Catholic blogosphere. What you are referring to is seldom a topic of discussion in those precincts. Liturgy, corruption in the Church, implications of Catholic Social Teaching, agitation against abortion and euthanasia, and natural family planning are subjects of discussion. The people you refer to appear to be out of evangelical or generic protestant circles (for the most part).

  188. Dalrock says:

    @Art Deco

    Zippy is a figure in the Catholic blogosphere. What you are referring to is seldom a topic of discussion in those precincts. Liturgy, corruption in the Church, implications of Catholic Social Teaching, agitation against abortion and euthanasia, and natural family planning are subjects of discussion. The people you refer to appear to be out of evangelical or generic protestant circles (for the most part).

    I didn’t intend this to be a shot against Zippy. Zippy is taking some risk to his online reputation by even participating in the discussion here, just as he took some risk when he first brought the issue up on his blog. But that is the point. Much of what we discuss here should be common topics for traditional Catholic and Protestant sites. But they aren’t, and when Zippy brought it up on his own site the reaction was horror that someone could even think about these things.

  189. Feminist Hater says:

    I’m still waiting for all these perfect ‘Christian’ elders to advise sexually aware men of what to do between the years of 16 to 30 whilst they wait for their future wife to stop banging other men and want to finally get married. Porn should not be an issue at all, the issue is expecting every single Christian man to diminish his sexual urges for ALL of his growing life in order to wait for a woman who has spent her better years fishing in all the ponds she can find. Christian men are being driven to sin sexually because they cannot find any sanctuary that provides for their natural sexually urges.

    The problem lies with women and porn is the symptom, not the cause.

  190. Cautiously Pessimistic says:

    One could be forgiven for wondering if they really care about sexual morality at all, or if there isn’t some other pattern to their concern.

    Ding ding ding! We have a winner!

  191. UnicornHunter says:

    I would agree if I couldn’t point to a long pattern of Trad Cons having emotional negative reactions when exposed to the ideas. Trad Cons hate hearing this, but none have ever been able to explain why I’m wrong. Instead, as you have seen they set about showing what an awful defective man I am, even though they somehow can’t locate the quote which would prove this. Emotional temper tantrums are a good sign that they aren’t really passive in their overlooking the profound changes which have occurred in our culture.

    Several years ago I read a quote by a very social justice liberal preacher that struck me as having a lot of truth to it. He said, paraphrased, that we need to stop treating same sex eroticism as some kind of super sin. Perhaps things are different in other Christian faiths, but I was taught that in the eyes of God, sin is sin is sin the wages of which are death. Ergo, banging your girlfriend is no more sinful than any other and yet I don’t see people generally getting as worked up about other kinds of sin. I’m not trying to say let’s sin more so grace can abound, but seriously, even here there seems a subtle undercurrent that sexual sin is worse than other sin.

  192. UnicornHunter says:

    @FH BINGO!!!!

  193. Feminist Hater says:

    UH, do you think that God rates worshiping idols of other Gods as the same as other sins?

  194. 8oxer says:

    Dear Martian Bachelor:

    Like Rebel once said, if women think porn is bad, I take it as proof positive that it’s the best way to go.

    Women tend to think dipping Copenhagen snuff is bad too. They think so because they don’t much like kissing me after I’ve had a dip. I don’t dip very often because I agree with them. It is bad. I don’t give a shit whether they lock lips with me or not, but it’s certainly bad for one’s health.

    There’s a lot of evidence that pr0n desensitises a man to genuine human relationships.

    http://www.ivpress.com/title/ata/3700-t.pdf

    In the Marxist tradition, you could call it reification or commodification. Pr0n takes something that ought to be an authentic humanising experience, slaps a price tag on it, and sells it back to the person at a profit. (And even if you think it’s free, there are costs).

    One can (and should) argue that women do this anyway, with things like divorce theft, hypergamy and witholding sex after marriage. It’s an old saw that women find the richest men they can attract, and men find the hottest woman they can afford. Even so, it is worth talking about.

    And just as a disclaimer: I ain’t holier than thou. I probably look at twice the pr0n Martian Bachelor does. I just try and recognize the consequences (even the unintended ones).

    Regards, Boxer

  195. UnicornHunter says:

    @FH I’ve never heard anything to the contrary, but I don’t claim to be the most advanced student of the scriptures, and even if He does that doesn’t follow that sexual sin is more abhorrent than other sin.

  196. Feminist Hater says:

    Yea, I agree UH, but I do think there are differences to the consequences of sin here on Earth. I don’t know what happens when we die and how we are to be Judged. I just want to repent and be saved. However, on Earth, I claim that there are differences in the nature and damage of the types of sin and that is where my focus lies.

  197. Another factor though is that from a moral standpoint, “not getting married” isn’t a sin. Masturbating to porn is a sin. So treating the two as actually equivalent will never result in rapprochement.

    This misses the point by light years. There was never an assertion that not getting married is a sin. It is a factor in fostering temptation by devaluing the legitimate outlet, and, what is it that is happening to those women who delay marriage? Well, fornication. Correct me if I’m wrong about that being sin. Carousel, etc. etc. The entirety of the melange of sexual social issues as addressed by the church, including Catholics (notwithstanding whatever it is they talk about on blogs) is at the very least NOT geared to address the issues Dalrock suggests are not handled by Trad Cons.

    While Protestants may be distracted by a different set of pet causes they too over emphasize some at the expense of others. That a group of faux intellectuals may or may not address things is not the same as the church addressing things with the pedestrians anyway. For all the links to deep Catholic thinkers that one can post, a survey taken on the steps of the church after mass would render a vast ignorance of same, as a similar theological challenge would at the Baptist church.

  198. Feminist Hater says:

    Just one caveat to the above. When I mention the ‘consequences of sin here on Earth’ I don’t mean what happens when we are Judged. That’s something I cannot comment on. I’m specifically dealing with what happens in our lives, how that sin affects those around us and how it affects our spiritual growth towards God.

  199. Consequences of sin are interesting to ponder. Ive heard it said that the woman divorcing her husband, or refusing him sex, because of porn should not be really debated because those are that man’s consequences. Danger. These little rabbit trails of thinking and assigning Gods things to the wife are already at the bottom of the slippery slope.

  200. Zippy says:

    @Dalrock:
    However, I would love it if you could prove me wrong by presenting this to WWTW and show that all they really needed was to have it pointed out.

    I don’t blog there anymore, not for a few years now. I’ve defended the substance of your work at my own blog and will continue to do so, whenever I think you are right and to the extent I am blogging on the subject(s).

    But you are ignoring the larger context that I pointed out. Widespread delay of marriage and frivolous divorce has been driven by women at the same time women drove the hookup culture.

    How can I be ignoring it when I am agreeing with you?

    What I am doing is making an additional point: that Christianity is primarily focused on a person’s relationship with God; that personal acts are the main focus of moral theology; that porn use (while by no means equivalent to adultery in any way, shape, or form) is intrinsically immoral, whereas delaying or even foregoing marriage is not.

    It is up to you, but understanding the perspective of those you criticize is useful if only for the reasons given by Sun Tzu.

  201. Wibbins says:

    ok I’m starting to see what the problem is with Fireproof, it’s basically saying that the man needs to bend to his wife’s emotions and should be able to read her mind to see what her emotions are before she comes home or what have you; instead of being an emotional rock and telling her, with logic and reasoning, what to do about the thing that caused so much emotion e.g a parent or friend passed away the husband is the one whom that comforts her and tells her that no one is immortal but God Almighty.

    It seems to me that like another commenter said women have emotional temptation, it’s so easy to let out your emotions when everyone encourages you to demand the man to make you happy this reminds me of a child throwing a temper tantrum , whereas the man has sexual temptation which is much more difficult because everyone shames men for wanting sex with his wife especially when she “doesn’t feel like it” they love to equate this to rape.

    Perhaps my hypothesis awhile back is in-fact correct in that women feel close by having a man protect them and keep them from being emotionally unstable and like a child that has never been punished they don’t feel loved if they are allowed to get away with a lot, and men feel close by sexual intimacy because being a man in training my self I hate the idea of being rejected by someone I care about as deeply as I do my fiancee. Now if I could only forget about looking for a full time job to let God guide me to support her in a year and 4 months then I could help be her rock even more.

  202. deti says:

    Zippy: “Another factor though is that from a moral standpoint, “not getting married” isn’t a sin. Masturbating to porn is a sin. So treating the two as actually equivalent will never result in rapprochement.”

    Dalrock: “But you are ignoring the larger context that I pointed out. Widespread delay of marriage and frivolous divorce has been driven by women at the same time women drove the hookup culture.”

    Dalrock: “I didn’t intend this to be a shot against Zippy. Zippy is taking some risk to his online reputation by even participating in the discussion here, just as he took some risk when he first brought the issue up on his blog. But that is the point. Much of what we discuss here should be common topics for traditional Catholic and Protestant sites. But they aren’t, and when Zippy brought it up on his own site the reaction was horror that someone could even think about these things.”

    I would be willing to give Zippy more of the benefit of the doubt if he would be similarly inclined to conclude that at least some in the manosphere are communicating in good faith. His shots at me at Samson’s suggest to me that perhaps he is looking askance at us. I am willing to explain my positions. I only wish Zippy weren’t too squeamish or above my pay grade to explain his.

    Zippy, you don’t seem to understand what is going on in the culture. We have a sexual culture in which young women between 16 and 30 have a complete stranglehold on nearly all the power. Female hypergamy has been completely unleashed, with no stigma whatsoever on premarital sex and divorce, even among mainstream Christians, even among American Catholics. It’s been this way for about 30 years and counting now, ever since I entered high school in the early 1980s and was getting worse when I entered college in the mid 1980s. The only men with any real power in the SMP are the top men who monopolize nearly all the sexual action. The stigma against unwed motherhood is decreasing by the day. Half of all marriages end in divorce. More than a quarter of all Catholic marriages end in divorce. The divorce rate among all self-identified Christians is 38%. Divorce used to be scandalous and a cause for sadness and mourning; it is now as commonplace as getting lunch at a fast food joint.

    The mainstream churches do nothing — NOTHING — to teach men about intergender dynamics (“the flesh”, if you will). Good, upstanding young men are told to “be nice, and be yourself”, and are then thrown into the SMP war zone with pea shooters and BB guns. Most of this advice comes from mothers, pastors, teachers and Scout leaders who no doubt are well meaning but don’t have a clue what they are talking about and don’t know a thing about this SMP. The SMP those people came up in is gone and has been dead for at least 30 years.

    These young men have seen at least one man — their own father, an uncle, a close friend — pulled through the divorce meat grinder against his will. That man was shorn of his family, his property and most of his money, and is now shackled for at least a decade to a court order requiring him to pay, pay and continue paying while seeing his children a couple of times a month (if that),

    These men are living under the most draconian laws ever devised to free up female sexual conduct and constrain male sexual conduct. They attend school, or work in employment environments, in which the tiniest infraction or misstep can result in a sexual harassment accusation. Sex harassment law in the US is ridiculous. It essentially amounts to “sexual conduct by unattractive men” and “any conduct by anyone that even one woman doesn’t like”. The geek in accounting makes an awkward request for a date from the cute single girl in HR? Harassment! Some dude is readling a Playboy at his desk with his office door slightly open? Harassment! Bob accidentally brushes up against Sue’s derriere while squeezing past her? Harassment! Joe refuses to help Pam lift a heavy box but helps the other men? Hostile work environment! Joe is a sexist!

    Add to this that women are going to college, delaying marriage, and getting jobs the young beta men would otherwise be getting. Meanwhile, many of these young women are choosing to have premarital sex with the most attractive man or men they can get into bed. Some of these women are just having fun; some are enjoying the alcohol and alpha party train. Some are hoping to parlay their hookups into a relationship, and most fail.

    (This includes self-professing Christian women, Zippy. Most Christian women I’ve known have standards for men which are positively stratospheric. There isn’t a man alive who could possibly measure up to what they want. They truly do have mile-long checklists for their “perfect man”. Any man who does not meet every single one of her requirements is immediately jettisoned because “he must not be The One.”

    Beneath all this mess squats the nice Christian man, trying to make his way in the world and hopefully find a wife and have children. The women younger than he are too young. the women his age either (1) have an N too high for his liking; (2) aren’t attracted to him; or most likely (3) don’t even see him and won’t give him the time of day. So, he is expected to wait until these women are done with college, and jobs, and having sex with the attractive men. These good Christian men must wait until these women figure out that those sexy alpha men will have sex with them until the cows come home but will never ever marry them. Bear in mind, Zippy: these men have not been told to master their lives or themselves or get educations or improve themselves. No, they have been told to supplicate: Do whatever she wants, give her whatever she wants, be nice to her, show her your emotions. This is what girls find attractive, young Christian man! Now go forth, be nice, and the nice Christian girls will fall at your feet and beg you to put a ring on it!

    What does he find?

    “Let’s just be friends.”

    “I’m just not attracted to you.”

    “I don’t think so.”

    “ME? Go on a date with YOU? Whatever possessed you to think I would ever, EVER go out with you?!!??! Get away from me, you disgusting piece of trash! Someone call the police! This man is HARASSING me!”

    What, Zippy, can you offer these men? What is your solution? What is the church, however you define it, doing to remedy this problem?

  203. Deti, the response from zippy to your post is already made.

    He claims these teachings exist but are “filtered by noise of everyday life”.
    In other words, more cow bell.

  204. Cautiously Pessimistic says:

    Preach it, Deti!

  205. deti says:

    Empath:

    I didn’t read Zippy that way. I read his comment as saying he didn’t really understand the connection between men’s delaying marriage and rampant porn use, and women being unavailable as wives and sex partners. I hope Zippy corrects me if I’m wrong. He seems to have already judged me as “having a thing” about oral sex (which I don’t, it was part of a larger, irrelevant point that many women in general don’t seem to be attracted to their husbands and withhold sex on that basis.)

  206. gdgm+ says:

    Sadly, the Trad Cons don’t appear to HAVE any direct solutions for the problems that both Feminist Hater and deti have raised in this thread. And the indirect solutions stated with one can summarize as “practice more and/or better faith”, don’t seem to have consistent interpretations / application. Another reason that Trad Cons are in a different universe than the realities current men face.

  207. gdgm+ says:

    “… stated *which* one can summarize as…” That annoying ‘auto-correct’!

  208. Zippy says:

    deti:
    I read his comment as saying he didn’t really understand the connection between men’s delaying marriage and rampant porn use, and women being unavailable as wives and sex partners.

    I do understand it. I also agree with it. What I am trying to explain is the further perspective – the moral theology perspective – that you guys don’t get. Cultural and other conditions often (and not just uniquely at this point in history) make doing what is right harder, but that doesn’t justify doing wrong. Porn use is morally wrong. Fornication is morally wrong. That cultural conditions make it harder to do what is right doesn’t turn wrong into right. “Not marrying young” is not – in itself – morally wrong.

    I agree with the comment that homosex is overemphasized vs heterosexual misbehavior. I’ve written about this before: when a fellow tradcon describes gay marriage as the camel’s nose in the tent, my stock retort is that it is more like the camel’s ass.

    As an aside, deti, I accept your clarification on the Fellatio Sexbot Thread. But, apropos to the current topic, you might consider how a thread like that is going to appear to a tradcon: like just so much additional moral sewage getting pumped out of the culture. It will be dismissed as noise. Tradcons are used to being opposed to the culture in all sorts of ways, so the response to the antifeminism in an antifeminist thread on sexbots and fellatio will (in my view somewhat understandably) be, to coin a phrase, “whoop-de-doo”.

    I’ve got a thick skin and tall waders, my interest is in the substantive discussion not the noise, and as a natural omega/sigma (in your guys terms) I don’t much care who thinks what about me personally except inasmuch as it is instrumental to my purposes and interests. But I’m definitely not the rule. Any broader rapprochement between camps would require a bit more ecumenism on your part. You fellas think that orthosphere tradcons are just excusers of female misbehavior under a skin-deep layer of Churchianism. You couldn’t be more wrong.

  209. Art Deco says:

    But they aren’t, and when Zippy brought it up on his own site the reaction was horror that someone could even think about these things.

    That is really a sample of one. I have had discussions on ecumenical boards on aspects of the topics under discussion and have encountered a good deal of cluelessness, but never horror.

    As for what people should be discussing, I think one should be cautious about being prescriptive. People form discussion groups to vent, to hash out matters of dispute, to seek out the like-minded. On an orthodox Catholic board, the indissolubility of marriage is just assumed. Liberal Catholics who troll orthodox sites do not pick fights on this issue. One thing you might see discussed is the degree to which the annullment mill is a scandal. There is not much discussion because there is not much dispute.

    Other problems tangential to matters under discussion here are topics, such as the degree to which the social dynamic of parishes and the sensibility of worship is governed by the pastor’s inclination to be pleasing to late-middle-aged women. You are not running a crusade against the music of Marty Haugen here, however.

  210. deti says:

    I was in college in the mid to late 1980s. The Catholic girls were the most sexually active, the easiest to push sexually and the most responsive to sexual escalation, And most of them were on hormonal birth control or started using it as soon as they started getting sexually active. Back then, the fear was less about STDs than unplanned pregnancy. These girls did NOT want to get knocked up and the best way to control that was The Pill.

  211. Art Deco says:

    You fellas think that orthosphere tradcons are just excusers of female misbehavior under a skin-deep layer of Churchianism. You couldn’t be more wrong.

    The excusers do exist, amidst a larger pool of people who are neglecting any serious thought on these questions.

  212. Zippy says:

    @Art Deco:
    The excusers do exist, amidst a larger pool of people who are neglecting any serious thought on these questions.

    Agreed. I don’t know if it is possible for the dynamic of the engagement to change for the better. But I expect it will change, for better or worse.

  213. Art Deco says:

    What, Zippy, can you offer these men? What is your solution? What is the church, however you define it, doing to remedy this problem?

    There is no solution, except to create the well-being you can in mundane life. Various figures (David Blankenhorn, David Popenoe, Anthony Esolen, Bradford Wilcox) have written of the purposes of fathers and the special features that the education of young men should have (channeling competitiveness, aggression, and libido toward worthy and worthwhile ends). An analogous program for the education of daughters ought to be discussed and promoted, most particularly one which emphasizes what women often grasp all too poorly in coming of age: their own agency and personal responsibility. You do that in your own home, best you can, pumping out as much of the kultursmog as you can imagine. In the larger world, some radical changes in penal law, matrimonial law, and court administration are in order. Fathers & Families discusses some of these issues.

    The thing is, though, a certain number of us lose out in spite of our efforts. Coping skills are something no one can learn for you. In matters of discussion, it is necessary to combat the tendency to make the world’s 23 year old men and the world’s 35 year old men scapegoats for a general social malaise.

  214. Art Deco says:

    correction: “as much of the kultursmog as you can manage”

  215. Art Deco says:

    One small thing you can do is to be politely contrary: fisk characters like this

    http://www.claremont.org/publications/crb/id.1192/article_detail.asp

    and like this

    to within an inch of their lives.

  216. Martian Bachelor says:

    @Boxer

    If porn “desensitizes” men to women, then why isn’t anyone instructing the latter to up their game? As opposed to, say, nagging and/or going into a big sulk.

    And why is there so little concern extant over all the very lavicously and expensively produced female porn which runs 24/7/365 in the popular culture? “Desensitization” of men to women is somehow bad, while the converse is just business as usual and can we have some more, please? (rhetorical questions)

    They need us a lot more than we need them. If Briffault’s Law is correct, the female behavior is much more fundamental.

    To use the cow/milk analogy, if powdered milk is outselling cows w/fresh milk then you must have some really mangy and rotten cows.

  217. deti says:

    @ Zippy:

    “I do understand it. I also agree with it. What I am trying to explain is the further perspective – the moral theology perspective – that you guys don’t get.”

    I don’t know who you mean by “you guys”. Speaking for myself, I actually do understand the moral theology perspective. What I was trying to get at on the Samson thread was to delve into what your objections to oral sex were. I gave you an opportunity to further explain the moral theology perspective, but you then got all squeamish and wouldn’t answer it. CL was kind enough to direct me to a website that does talk about it.

    I asked in good faith a question on that thread, and you instead accused me of “having a thing” for oral sex and suggested I am a pervert. If you respond to good faith with accusation, what am I to think of your own professions of good faith toward commenters on this site? If you’re given an opportunity to explain the moral theology in response to a good faith inquiry, then explain it.

    “Cultural and other conditions often (and not just uniquely at this point in history) make doing what is right harder, but that doesn’t justify doing wrong. Porn use is morally wrong. Fornication is morally wrong. That cultural conditions make it harder to do what is right doesn’t turn wrong into right. “Not marrying young” is not – in itself – morally wrong.”

    Agreed. I never said porn or fornication are right, or that they are not morally wrong. Perhaps the orthosphere should ask WHY porn and fornication are rampant (because men have no morally sanctioned sexual outlet and are being forced to wait a decade or more before finding wives and they burn and they cannot contain).

    Perhaps the orthosphere and the tradosphere should ask WHY the beta men among their ranks can’t find wives and why they can’t keep the ones they have (because the churches are giving men terrible advice on how to meet and court and date women and what is attractive and what is not, and to expect and demand respect from women, and are well into raising a second generation of limp-spined men who don’t know how to be attractive, don’t know how to stand up for themselves, and don’t know how to lead themselves, much less a woman, much less a family).

    Perhaps the orthosphere/tradosphere could ask WHY their young women are fornicating with men who will never, ever marry them (because they can and because there are no constraints on it, because birth control is widely available, and because they WANT IT THIS WAY). Perhaps the orthosphere should examine the American Christian church’s role in all this: Primarily its negligence in accommodating and furthering feminism, and in some cases allowing feminism to coopt them. But I don’t see that, at least not among the Church (at least the Prots and the fundies; the RC church and Orthodox traditions might be better about it). I see the Prots and the fundies doubling down on stupid.

    “you might consider how a thread like that is going to appear to a tradcon: like just so much additional moral sewage getting pumped out of the culture. It will be dismissed as noise.”

    Fair enough, Zippy. I can accept criticism as well as the next man. I can accept my discussion of the matter at SSM’s was unrefined. As a response, you might consider how your declining to answer a straightforward question about the RC church’s stance on fellatio causes one to question the tradosphere’s good faith in interacting with the manosphere. We can all stand to be a little more ecumenical.

  218. Brendan says:

    Lots of comments to catch up on here …

    Are these teachings on oral sex specifically taught to young Catholics, in confirmation or baptism? Are they taught to new Catholic converts? Are they addressed by a priest in premarital counseling for husband and wife?

    I don’t recall hearing about them in Pre-Cana, no, but as I was raised Catholic I was certainly aware of them. The basic rule is that a man cannot morally ejaculate other than inside his wife’s vagina. Oral sex (both fellatio and cunnilingus) is fine as foreplay — although this is not addressed typically, it’s morally dubious as to whether performing cunnilingus to orgasm without being part of a sexual encounter which includes PinV sex to ejaculation is moral. Most people don’t slice it that fine, but it makes sense, because morally licit sexual encounters between husband and wife are supposed to be both procreative and unitive, rather than just one. Anal sex is sodomy and is immoral. Otherwise, you’re pretty good to go.

    =====

    The excusers do exist, amidst a larger pool of people who are neglecting any serious thought on these questions.

    Agreed. I don’t know if it is possible for the dynamic of the engagement to change for the better. But I expect it will change, for better or worse.

    I think that the main divide is that the tradcons/orthospherians are interested in more global issues, whereas the manosphere is interested in more granular issues. Specifically, the latter is not a unified ideological front — it just isn’t. It contains a hodge-podge of different opinions, ideologies and approaches in it. In that respect it is more like a clearing-house of options for men who are trying to live in this severely messed up male/female relationship culture we have today. Orthospherians, by contrast, are more about the “big ideas”, and this is what unifies them — when they look at the manosphere, they see some things they may agree with, and a lot of things they hate (which is normal, because it’s a clearinghouse) and cannot reconcile with their own ideological vision. And because the orthosphere is concerned with global, 30k foot cultural issues, it sees the kinds of problems discussed in the manosphere, which are more granular (i.e., “How can I attract a woman?”, “How can I prevent my wife from divorcing me?”, “What are the legal rules about male/female relationships and what are the risks?” and so on) as a part of what it sees as a broader problem and a manifestation of this broader problem, but is uncomfortable with approaching these issues apart from addressing what it sees as the broader problem. Therein lies the conflict. The orthosphere sees this as a manifestation of a large, systemic problem in the culture, and is aimed at trying to fix that, rather than tinker with the existing arrangements under what it sees as a failed culture to make life more bearable for men in the meantime. The manosphere, by contrast, is agnostic in ideology and not focused at all on the 30k cross-culture issues that the orthosphere is, but instead is focused on granular, pragmatic stuff that impacts the lives of men in their actual daily lives in this culture. Thus, the manosphere sees the orthosphere as being relatively useless (offering nothing much of pragmatic value to help men deal with this culture, and often getting in the way of this), while the orthosphere sees the manosphere, with its relatively non-ideological position, as being a stooge and prop of the current cultural paradigm, and therefore potentially very harmful.

    This is a true conflict, not a fake one.

    Because the manosphere is a clearing-house, there will be strands in it that are more traditionalist in orientation — this blog is one of the ones that leans more in that direction, but not nearly as far as the orthospherians do themselves, of course. Some of these strands will have greater affinity with some of the currents in the orthosphere. But there will always be many other strands in the manosphere that do not mesh at all with traditionalism, because the manosphere is more of a clearing-house than an ideological movement.

  219. I didn’t read Zippy that way. I read his comment as saying he didn’t really understand the connection between men’s delaying marriage and rampant porn use, and women being unavailable as wives and sex partners.

    I read his comment, which had two parts the way you did too, AND the way I paraphrased. They were two separate things.

    Other misc.

    I have no opinion about the orthosphere whatsoever.

    As much irony as is buried in this, I was married to a Catholic girl, married in the Catholic church, she was my college GF for 4 years, and wife for 3…..no kids no assets etc etc….I rarely mention that but it is a sad reality from my past, I’m married 23 years and 4 kids now, a Baptist girl….anyway, marrying a Catholic girl who is/was Italian and from generations of Italians in New Jersey (where she was from and where we married in her family church) and attending pre Cana and being steeped in the experience as much as one can be under the circumstances, I have to say that while theologically Im at a huge disadvantage, I kinda lived it for a number of years. This was from 1981 to 1988 or so, the GF and wife part combined. Looking back on all that the excusers existed even then, and inasmuch as I have contacts from those times, they still do. Its a huge mistake to extrapolate the Catholic divorce rate into something saying Catholics have the right religious prescription for manosphere issues, or even have ANY prescription because that presupposes they even realize there is an issue. Add the blissfully ignorant to the excusers to the outright apologists for the misandry, and you have an accurate random sampling…..a sample from the orthosphere tells us nothing but whats within its borders, or we could take a sample from the manosphere and suggest that, see, the Protestants have these things sorted out.

  220. deti says:

    “You fellas think that orthosphere tradcons are just excusers of female misbehavior under a skin-deep layer of Churchianism. You couldn’t be more wrong.”

    Show and tell. Show me how that view is wrong. Show me what is being done to correct the young women who are fornicating with men, using birth control, and eschewing marriage until their late 20s or early 30s. Tell me what is being done to instruct young men on living their lives as strong, Godly, good, honorable men. Tell me what is being done to encourage young men to stick it out through their 20s, to encourage them through their dating failures, and to lift them up. Tell me what is being done to instruct young men on how to expect respect from the women in their lives, to refuse to tolerate disrespect, to refuse to supplicate, to refuse to invest in a woman who is not interested in them, and to walk away from a bad deal. Tell me what is being done to direct young women toward marriage and away from fornication with alpha men who will never marry them. Tell me what is being done to discourage young women from sinful behavior and to constrain their conduct.

  221. Art Deco says:

    Its a huge mistake to extrapolate the Catholic divorce rate into something saying Catholics have the right religious prescription for manosphere issues, or even have ANY prescription because that presupposes they even realize there is an issue.

    The standards and practices of the population of nominal Catholics considered in aggregate reveal a train wreck. I was referring to discussion circles among the modest minority of regularly observant and fairly orthodox Catholics. And, no, orthodox Catholics do not have much of a prescription for the most topical questions. It is not much discussed.

  222. Zippy says:

    deti:
    As a response, you might consider how your declining to answer a straightforward question about the RC church’s stance on fellatio causes one to question the tradosphere’s good faith in interacting with the manosphere.

    With all due respect to Brendan, I consider discussing the subject of what specific sexual acts are and are not licit in graphic detail in a public forum – one ultimately accessible to every eight year old with an iPod Touch – to be wildly inappropriate. I probably don’t heed my own inner counsel on the subject of appropriate public speech enough myself.

  223. John says:

    Dalrock, thanks for the link to the Cane Caldo post. That was helpful and encouraging.

    As far as the brain chemistry goes, I think there’s something there, but I don’t go overboard with it. It seems like a lot of people here are just speculating about it. I’d suggest you go here to read more and watch the videos:

    http://yourbrainonporn.com/

    One of the more interesting concepts is the “Coolidge Effect.” This explains why you can’t just look at the same pic or video and get aroused the same way–you want to see new and novel things constantly. I always went for the soft-core/nudity stuff, so fortunately I didn’t get into the many weird and downright scary fetishes. Many men do, however.

    As for the addiction part, I think it’s true in many cases. That doesn’t take away the need for personal responsibility/self-control or the sin aspect for Christians, though. Some guys like to write it off as “I just stumbled into porn and it’s all in my brain…it’s not my fault.” That’s definitely not my stance.

    Mainstream/academic science has had little to say about the issue. That doesn’t mean it’s not real. However, it’s a politically-incorrect problem. As sex has satiated our culture (starting with Playboy in the 1950s and more explicit material in TV/movies/music/etc. since that time), we’ve been told we can just “turn it off” and that it’s no problem for adults. If porn became recognized as an addiction along the lines of alcohol, drugs, tobacco, there would be fierce resistance in the entertainment and secular psychology worlds. For the record, I’m not advocating that our Federal government get involved in a massive “war on porn” (like the failed wars on drugs, terror, tobacco, etc.). I’m just saying there’s a double-standard when it comes to addictions and vices. One brave academic even said high-speed internet porn could be more addictive than crack cocaine a few years ago, but her research got very little attention.

    If you want to see how porn can mess up lives–or how people can improve by abstaining from porn/masturbation, read some of the journals on sites like this:

    http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/index.php#c3

    There are other similar sites, including thousands of “no fap challenge” guys on Reddit.

    Finally, I have to take issue with Martin’s comments. Porn has not brought liberty to men. To the contrary, it’s caused many men to shell up and become shame-laden introverts. It’s also wasted tens of thousands of hours and dollars that could be used for much more productive purposes. A feminist-run society is aided when so few men are engaged in the real world but are instead lost in virtual worlds of porn, video games, fantasy sports, TV, mindless internet surfing/texting,etc.

  224. One brave academic even said high-speed internet porn could be more addictive than crack cocaine a few years ago, but her research got very little attention.

    Nonsense, thats why it received little attention. There are myriad reasons it is nonsense, but one to mention is very simple, there is no way to objectively measure such a thing, to study a variable and make such bold cut and dry pronouncements there would truly have to be more than

    How many try to quite and fail
    How hard is it to abstain from crack/porn…on a scale from 1-10

    and those types of things.

    One introduces a foreign chemical into the body, the other cause surges in internal chemical(s)

    On and on

    They play way too lose with the language of research, and of science in general. Sadly a great deal of pharma efficacy over the past few decades has been based on subjectivity, anti depressants and the like, versus real statistical data that say, cured/not cured based on presence of a measurable thing…viral load, bacteria, blood count, whatever.

    There may be a double standard to addictions and vices, porn vs crack is not one of them.

  225. John says:

    It may not be more addictive overall, but in certain ways it could be. Once again, it’s better to actually deal with the issues than speculate.

    http://www.wired.com/science/discoveries/news/2004/11/65772

    The argument is that porn images aren’t eliminated from the brain the way drugs can be from the body. Also, as I understand it, dopamine plays a similar role whether released due to a foreign substance or from an internal process.

    Now if you ask me, I’d rather be dealing with a downhlll battle with porn than crack at this point. But high-speed internet porn is a phenomenon that we never dealt with in the past. I wouldn’t underestimate it. At no time in history could someone view millions of images from the convenience of a PC or smart phone with 24/7 access.

  226. Brendan says:

    It’s new, that’s clear. And it isn’t something we evolved to deal with, which makes it more problematic. High-Speed Internet porn on an HD cell phone is universes away from the proverbial stack of playboys, or cave drawings, really — just way more novelty, way more availability, way more privacy. It’s like the perfect storm for problematic behaviors to develop around sexual stimuli. I’m not sure it’s really like crack, physiologically speaking, but certainly it appears quite problematic.

  227. Several years ago I read a quote by a very social justice liberal preacher that struck me as having a lot of truth to it. He said, paraphrased, that we need to stop treating same sex eroticism as some kind of super sin.

    Well, for Catholics at least, it is one of the big four, what we call “sins crying out to Heaven for vengeance.” The complete list:

    Willful murder
    The sin of Sodom
    Oppression of the poor
    Defrauding laborers of their wages

    I don’t see fornication on that list. That doesn’t mean it can’t be a mortal sin and very grave, of course; the list of sins that qualify for that is very long. But those four weren’t picked out randomly. Of course, if you go to your average modernist parish and catch a liberal sermon today, there’s a good chance you’ll hear about the third one and maybe the fourth. It’s not likely you’ll hear about the first, since it’s not really a problem for most people. If you ever hear about the second at all, there’s a good chance you’ll get some dancing about how it doesn’t really mean what we used to think it means. It does.

  228. CL says:

    @Cail Corishev

    It’s not likely you’ll hear about the first, since it’s not really a problem for most people.

    Except for all those abortions…

  229. I’m pretty certain that it’s possible to be “addicted” to porn, if we’re using the word in the sense of, “drawn to use something even though one knows it’s harmful.” I don’t know whether we’ll ever find the same kind of straightforward chemical mechanism that exists with something like cocaine, but when someone says to himself, “I know this is ruining my life….but just this once more,” I think it’s reasonable to call that addiction, whether the thing in question is alcohol, drugs, junk food, gambling, or porn. So if a guy’s wife is looking good and wearing lingerie and begging him to come lay some pipe, and he can’t get it up for her, but later he goes and wanks to some porn, then he might have a real problem.

    But I get the feeling some of these people are defining it down the point where any man with any porn in his browser cache at any given time is an addict in need of an intervention, and that’s certainly not the case. Porn is always sinful, but that doesn’t mean it’s always an addiction. Plenty of people can have a couple glasses of wine every evening without becoming alcoholics, or bet in football pools without developing a gambling problem, so I assume the same thing could be said of porn (I’m not saying drinking and gambling in moderation are sinful; I’m only saying there’s a difference between dabbling and deep involvement). A woman who finds porn on her husband’s computer should want him to quit because it’s wrong, but shouldn’t jump to treating him like he’s some sort of twisted freak who needs to be sent off for rehab.

    Neither should she assume she’s doing something wrong, although she might want to consider whether she’s been letting him down in that department. If she hasn’t, and he still seems plenty interested in sex with her, then he’s probably just succumbing to the male desire for variety. Again, he needs to stop, but how should she encourage that? If his vice were eating too many jellybeans and getting fat, she might start making healthy snacks for him. So if his vice is watching other naked women, she might try….

  230. 8oxer says:

    Dear Martian Bachelor:

    If porn “desensitizes” men to women, then why isn’t anyone instructing the latter to up their game? As opposed to, say, nagging and/or going into a big sulk.

    I think, for the most part, women are still in the stage of denial and shaming, partly because this is what used to work in the past, and partly because their elders and betters are doubling down on the same, and they generally don’t lead, they follow.

    You can analogize the behavior of many women to the poor duped guy who just found out his wife has left him and moved in with the mailman. Such people can (and usually do) spend a period of time shouting at the other party, or begging them to come back. These are tricks that worked well in the past, but they don’t work now that the genie is out of the bottle.

    Now, in general women aren’t upping their game, but I would bet there are examples of small groups of women who are going out of their way to be more feminine to snag one of these men with options, even if his only option is pr0n. The “hooking up smart” web page may be an artifact of this.

    To use the cow/milk analogy, if powdered milk is outselling cows w/fresh milk then you must have some really mangy and rotten cows.

    For the most part, I don’t disagree with you. Someone on here analogized pr0n to be toilet water that a desperate dude drinks, as he’s stuck in the condemned building of feminism and can’t get any fresh. I think that’s a perfectly apt analogy. If the average dude finds whacking it to some bimbo less trouble than scoring a night with the real thing, it says something not only about him and society, but about women in particular.

    Best, Boxer

  231. Anonymous Reader says:

    Cail C.
    Well, for Catholics at least, it is one of the big four, what we call “sins crying out to Heaven for vengeance.” The complete list:
    Willful murder

    Pfft. Color me unimpressed. Every time I have engaged any traditional conservative, especially a Catholic, on the issue of how they see women, I have brought up two women:

    1. Mary Winkler
    2. Andrea Yates

    Do a search. See who I’m referring to. Then come back.

    It is possible, given enough interactions, to get a trad-con to wrote something about them. For example, after 3 to 5 inquiries, I got Escoffier to state “they are evil”. So I’ll declare 3 inquiries of the “do you have something to say about these women?” type to be the minimum. I do not know what the maximum is, perhaps it is infinite. Apparently, traditional, conservatives, including Catholics, find it extremely difficult to just come out and criticize women who commit willful murder.

    I recall two groups of defenders that Andrea Yates had online, including in comments on the Houston paper – feminists and traditional conservatives. Both argued that what she did was clearly all the fault of Mr. Yates, in some form or another. The argumentation got a bit convoluted and self contradictory at times, but I didn’t know then what I know now. I didn’t know about women’s in-group preferences, or about traditional conservative men’s apparent compulsion to defend a woman no matter what she’s done – White Knights, on steroids.

    As for Winkler, I think her interview with Oprah is probably on the web some place…funny thing, I can’t find a single church that seems to have taken a critical stance towards her. Seems to me that pastors at least might want to discourage the murder of other preachers? I dunno.

    And forget about drawing any sort of conclusion, such as “women should be held to the same legal standards as men” or “women should not get a pass from murder” or “women who murder their husbands should not get custody of their children”, etc. That’s just too difficult. It’s not possible for tradcons to extrapolate from two extreme cases to a general notion that women should not get a total free pass on any behavior.

    Maybe Catholics are opposed to willful murder in some cases, such as, oh, when committed by men. But my evidence tells me that Catholics may intellectually deplore a woman who shoots her husband in the back with a shotgun, across The Marriage Bed, leaving him bleeding out – and unplugging the phone on her the way out of the room to ensure he can’t call for help – but that doesn’t mean they will actually call her a bad woman. Or suggest that she should have been really punished, starting with the permanent loss of her children.

    Based on the interactions I’ve had over the last few years, you can color me skeptical that y’all really believe murder is a Big Sin, when it’s done by a woman. Traditional conservative men are always ready to be the big White Knight, and tradcon women are women – they play for Team Woman.

    Show me the evidence. I have not seen it.

  232. Anonymous Reader says:

    Art Deco
    I was referring to discussion circles among the modest minority of regularly observant and fairly orthodox Catholics. And, no, orthodox Catholics do not have much of a prescription for the most topical questions. It is not much discussed.

    That does not stop such people from surfacing into the androsphere from time to time, rather like the Underminer at the end of “The Incredibles”. It’s generally the same story – someone shows up shrieking about the evils of PUA’s, who is all but blind to the divorce industry, VAWA, anti-family court, etc. The shaming language typically is straight out of the feminist playbook. As I pointed out to Escoffier, it’s like someone strolling around through a town that has been burned out in a civil way complaining that the front yards are trashed and the picket fences unpainted. There’s bigger issues, but it seems to be all but impossible to get beyond the horrible fact that some men are taking advantage of women (who themselves luv being taken).

    From the point of view of a man who has been divorced, or seen other men chewed to bits by the divorce industry, from the point of view of a man who has seen yet another suicide by a divorced man, from the point of view of the righteously angry men who have thought, and argued, and reasoned, and tested hypotheses, and come to conclusions – all of this looks a whole lot like someone who is looking for a fight.

    No problem.

    Then, as a rule, some version of Don’t Hit Me I’m A Girl happens. Having basically picked a fight, the trad / ortho /con suddenly doesn’t like the result, and “Can’t We All Just Get Along” follows. This goes on in various parts of the androsphere on a semi regular basis.

    I’m not aware of the reverse occurring. Maybe there’s PUA’s and MRA’s routinely trolling trad-con sites for flames. I have not seen it, but it could be going on. But I have not seen it.

    So at least some in orthosphere apparently feel the privilege to poke a stick into the androsphere from time to time, and then pull their dress over their head in a shrieking fit when the righteously angry men don’t much care for yet another shaming screed from yet another self-righteous ignoramus. There’s a few ways to solve this. One would be for the orthosphere to mind its own business. Well,that won’t happen. Another would be for othro/ tradcons to actually learn something. Well, ok, forget that, too – it doesn’t appear to be possible, except in a few cases.

    I guess that Underminers will continue to surface. And angry men will put on their masks…

  233. Anonymous Reader says:

    And the reason that examples such as Mary Winkler and Andrea Yates matter should be obvious. They represent extreme examples of bad actions by women. So if a group of people have a difficult time coming to grips with such evil, if a group of people cannot bring themselves to say anything nearly as critical or vituperative about women who murder family members as they routinely dole out to men who just want to be left alone – then there’s no real point in trying to engage that group of people on any other issue.

    Traditional conservatives who can’t bring themselves to utter a yap about Mary Winkler are not going to have much of a problem with more mundane bad behavior such as divorce theft.
    Traditional conservatives who strut and preen their ProLife status who can’t bring themselves to utter a condemnation of Andrea Yates actions are not likely to have any real complaint with women who include an abortion in their divorce package (paid for by the soon to be ex husband) or who “only” kidnap the children and to their best to keep them from the biological father for a decade or so.

    Winkler and Yates are thus useful tests.Someone who is too much of White Knight or Team Woman Rah Rah to say more than “tut-tut-tut” over those two, is clearly unable to actually engage the reality men live in. Therefore, it will be a waste of time and energy to actually attempt to teach them anything.

    It’s my “whack a mole” test, in short. If murder of husband and/or children doesn’t really bother you, then what are you?

  234. Anonymous Reader says:

    ZippyCatholic
    You fellas think that orthosphere tradcons are just excusers of female misbehavior under a skin-deep layer of Churchianism.

    That is pretty much what the evidence tells me. That’s why I find reference to Winkler and Yates to be useful litmus tests. So far, every single tradcon, every single socon, every single ortho has failed the test.

    Every. Single. One.

    You couldn’t be more wrong.

    Show me. I do not see it, ever. Start with yourself. Opine on Mary Winkler and Andrea Yates.

    I’ll wait.

  235. John says:

    Way back in the thread someone mentioned David DeAngelo. He may be an internet marketer, but from what little I’ve heard from his “Deep Inner Game” stuff, he has some of the best material on Youtube. I’d much rather listen to him and his geeky psychologist sidekick than most of the PUA guys. It’s focused on identifying/correcting root causes rather than pickup lines or quick fixes. As a Christian, you have to filter it through a Biblical worldview. Of course, the same is true of Athol, other gamers or the yourbrainonporn stuff.

  236. Anonymous Reader says:

    ZippyCatholic
    Masturbating to porn is a sin.

    Men masturbating to porn is a sin.

    Fixed that for you, at no charge.

    (Was at B&N the other day, walking through the rom-fic shelves on the way to magazines. It occurred to me they should just sell battery powered devices, in discrete wrapping, on a shelf in the middle of the “romance novel” area. Emotional porn and “electric toothbrushes” with extra batteries – one she-bop-shopping.)

  237. Art Deco says:

    Traditional conservatives who can’t bring themselves to utter a yap about Mary Winkler are not going to have much of a problem with more mundane bad behavior such as divorce theft.
    Traditional conservatives who strut and preen their ProLife status who can’t bring themselves to utter a condemnation of Andrea Yates actions are not likely to have any real complaint with women who include an abortion in their divorce package (paid for by the soon to be ex husband) or who “only” kidnap the children and to their best to keep them from the biological father for a decade or so.

    Anonymous Reader,
    Your complaint concerning Winkler and Yates should be directed at Team Mary in the former case (including and especially the five idiot jurors who would not countenance any serious punishment of her) and creatures like Kathleen Parker and Parke Dietz in the latter, who scapegoated (respectively) Russell Yates and an evangelical minister neither Mr. nor Mrs. Yates had seen in years (lest Dr. Dietz have to hold responsible the fellow shrink prescribing psychotropic medications to Mrs. Yates). There is no point in tearing into miscellaneous persons for attending to and commenting on other things in the mass of media static you see every day.

  238. Anonymous Reader says:

    Art Deco, the androsphere has had Kay “Man UP” Hymowitz’s number since she published her screed in the Wall Street Journal. One ray of hope was the number of hostile comments the WSJ article received. In general, on any “news” site nowadays, feminist claptrap like Hymowitz gets roasted pretty good in the comments section. Sometimes the comboxes get locked, or cleared. Doesn’t matter, the words were there and will be back.

    I regard Clarmount as part of the social / traditional conservative side of the street, more scholarly than National Review or American Spectator. More in the direction of City Journal, perhaps. It’s just another one of the tradcon/socon press that pretty much ignores the very existence of Marriage 2.0 and all that goes with it, but can be counted on to demand men ManUP from time to time.

    You might search all those conservative sites using variations of VAWA as search terms, and see what they had to say about the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act. Opposition, to the best of my knowledge, was couched purely in utilitarian terms – the inclusion of illegal immigrants and Native American reservations, for example. So far as I can tell, conservatives don’t have any objections to the idea pro se hearings, Star Chamber proceedings, as a normal course of justice, so long as it’s wrapped up with a bow labeled “Protecting Women”. So there’s no principled objections. Ergo, there are no principles, either…

  239. TFH says:

    deti,

    Show and tell. Show me how that view is wrong. Show me what is being done to correct the young women who are fornicating with men, using birth control, and eschewing marriage until their late 20s or early 30s.

    Indeed. Sunday Morning Nightclub would not be possible without church being full of eager sluts. I have gone there to pick up women, and I am not even a Christian.

    This is why the pickup artist is more moral than the Social Conservative. The PUA shields beta males from the predatory sluts who reside in church, while giving the sluts short-term pleasure as well.

  240. Art Deco says:

    Um, no.

    The Claremont Institute and the Manhattan Institute are starboard outfits and neither are hostile to social conservatives, but social conservatism is not their particular shtick. Again, the Manhattan Institute might be described as an auxilliary of the Giuliani Administration in New York City. The Claremont Institute’s animating idea is that the last word in political theory is The Federalist papers.

    The Manhattan Institute’s credibility as a research center is compromised by the presence of Kay Hymowitz on the payroll. She simply has no research chops and should be dismissed. I have had hideous discussions online with a fellow of Claremont and that woman would certainly be flayed alive here. The thing is, it was an odd departure for her. Her usual discourse concerns James Madison &c., a subject rather remote from local crime stories (whether or not you scapegoat post-adolescent men the way she did). There is a problem with these outfits, but it is not a systematic problem and really not the fault of EWTN or the Ethics and Public Policy Center.

  241. Anonymous Reader says:

    Art Deco
    Anonymous Reader,
    Your complaint concerning Winkler and Yates should be directed at Team Mary in the former case (including and especially the five idiot jurors who would not countenance any serious punishment of her) and creatures like Kathleen Parker and Parke Dietz in the latter, who scapegoated (respectively) Russell Yates and an evangelical minister neither Mr. nor Mrs. Yates had seen in years (lest Dr. Dietz have to hold responsible the fellow shrink prescribing psychotropic medications to Mrs. Yates). There is no point in tearing into miscellaneous persons for attending to and commenting on other things in the mass of media static you see every day.

    You totally miss the point. The point is not “who got Mary Winkler off”, the point is “why can’t anti-murder conservatives bring themselves to ever admit she’s a bad woman?”.

    The point is this: ordinary conservative people (trad/so/ortho) can’t bring themselves to criticize the actions of Winkler / Yates. A few will blurt out something like “they are evil” but that’s it. Most won’t even go that far. It should be easy for people who claim to be opposed to murder to stand up and say something opposing murderers even when they are women. What conclusion should I draw about this reluctance of the conservatives to even murmur the slightest reproof of the likes of Winkler?

    It looks a lot like, “She’s a woman, so give her a pass”, to me.

    If a group of people can’t stand up and say “This is WRONG” to murder committed by a woman, then they won’t be able to say anything about lesser crimes committed by women, and wrongs that are legal but horrible committed by women. And we see this verified regularly, when soc/trad/orthocons screech about PUA’s but remain silent about divorce theft; rage about men and visual porn, while remaining silent about women and their emotional “50 shades” porn, trot out feminist shaming language while insisting to be “antifeminist” and a host of other, similar, hypocritical hogwash.

    That’s the point, that trad/soc/orthocons actions and inactions contradict their fine words.

    What conclusion should be drawn from this? You tell me.

    PS: What is your opinion of Mary Winkler and Andrea Yates?

  242. TFH says:

    Zippy is unaware that CL is a woman. If he knew this, he would be extremely confused about how best to grovel given that CL is against misandry.

    CL,

    Telling other men about misandry (and shaming mangina ‘men’), is THE best thing you can do. It is THE most effective use of your time. Keep up the good work.

  243. Anonymous Reader says:

    Art Deco
    The Claremont Institute and the Manhattan Institute are starboard outfits and neither are hostile to social conservatives, but social conservatism is not their particular shtick. Again, the Manhattan Institute might be described as an auxilliary of the Giuliani Administration in New York City. The Claremont Institute’s animating idea is that the last word in political theory is The Federalist papers.

    All right, I will accept that as I just read the sites from time to time, I do not expend effort on either the back story / political inside-baseball, or the funding sources. I will point out that whenever I read anything remotely related to marriage issues on these sites, it is so far away from the reality of the divorced welder I know, the divorced HVAC tech I know, the divorced college temp instructor down the block as to be irrelevant. Not to mention the men I know of who have blown their brains out rather than further endure the unending torture, humiliation and despair induced by the divorce grinder. I have never, ever, seen any conservative publication address the simple, and horrible, fact that men who are going through a divorce are multiples (4x at least ) more likely to kill themselves than men in similar age/income/education brackets, and vastly more likely to do so than women . In fact, there is some tentative evidence that divorce does not affect women’s likelihood of suicide or accident or other ill health event at all. Where is this addressed in conservative-land? Which “defender of marriage” finds that to be a fact worthy of addressing? I believe the answers are “nowhere” and “none”. And I’m supposed to take these people, and their proscriptions for the life of men, seriously?

    Why? Because they are my social betters? Because they have multiple degrees?

    Perhaps it is the fact that the writers all tend to be from the same colleges, in the same income bracket, etc. and they are just groupthink victims. I don’t know. It baffles me that people can pride themselves on their intelligence and research abilities on the one hand, and display astounding ignorance of easily verified facts on the other hand. VAWA is not hard to find, it is tedious to read, but apparently only activists and angry men ever do so. For one example.

    The Manhattan Institute’s credibility as a research center is compromised by the presence of Kay Hymowitz on the payroll. She simply has no research chops and should be dismissed.

    I would go further and suggest that she isn’t competent in informal logic, at the undergraduate level. This speaks volumes about MI’s policies for “research” writers.

    I have had hideous discussions online with a fellow of Claremont and that woman would certainly be flayed alive here. The thing is, it was an odd departure for her. Her usual discourse concerns James Madison &c., a subject rather remote from local crime stories (whether or not you scapegoat post-adolescent men the way she did). There is a problem with these outfits, but it is not a systematic problem and really not the fault of EWTN or the Ethics and Public Policy Center.

    Sorry, I’m just a simple minded knuckle-dragging Peter Pan “lost boy” with a small penis who can’t get a woman to pay attention to me, who’s just angry about living in his mother’s basement playing videogames all the time. So my opinion is obviously of no interest or importance to any Deep Thinking tenured conservative.

    But I do know when someone is ignorant of the real world. And where marriage, divorce, VAWA, etc. is concerned, the entire right wing, social conservative, traditional conservative, National Review conservative, random conservative, think tank conservative, etc. world of writers is utterly irrelevant.

    Those people don’t know anything. And they don’t know they don’t know. So they can’t write anything intelligent on the topic. Therefore, nearly everything they write is just crap, sometimes extremely angering crap.

    Kay Hymowitz and Bill Bennett are the poster girl and boy, respectively, for the smug, ignorant, arrogant, self-righteous, finger-wagging, conservative know-nothing pseudo-intellectual. But I’m sure with some time and research I could come up with more examples.

  244. Opus says:

    It appears to me that far too many people on this thread are beating themsleves up and unneccesarily over sex. Almost all divorces are issued by women and nearly always because they are unhaaaaaaaaaaaapy (that is to say because they think they can do better elsewhere ie hypergamy) and not because of any adultery by the husband. The small percentage of divorces where a wife divorces by reason of her husbands adultery only occur because the man has gone off with a younger, fitter, female, and that, rather than his behaviour, is what hurts her (affects her perception of her desirability as a woman) – and not because of the adultery per se, which otherwise is comparatively rare and unlikely in any even to be known of by the wife: in short I regard the adultery/porn angle as a straw-man argument. Men never divorce for lack of sex, and regard withdrawal of sex, not as an excuse to force themselves on their wives, but at best, as permission to seek women elsewhere, if they can! and if not, then to consume porn, which in any event is merely advertising for the real thing. If they are looking at porn, the wife, in those circumstances will hardly be likely to care (else she would have divorced him long ago).

    Sorry if this thought is a bit late to the thread but thoughts will only come when they will.

  245. Art Deco says:

    You totally miss the point. The point is not “who got Mary Winkler off”, the point is “why can’t anti-murder conservatives bring themselves to ever admit she’s a bad woman?”..

    Please tell me who asked Deal Hudson or Amy Welborn or Anthony Esolen or Richard Santorum or Mike Huckabee what their opinion was of either. The Winkler case and the Yates case were local crime stories. They received some national coverage because of their peculiarities. You are writing as if politicians and academics and journalists were obliged to troll masses of news reports and issue statements on the stories that pique your interest. They are not. There are horrors a plenty every day in the newspapers for these people to discuss. Silence on any one of them is not an indication of assent, but of the limits of time and attention which attend to every human being.

    That aside, it should be one’s default assumption about another person that they disapprove of shooting a man in his sleep and then ripping out the telephone so he cannot call for an ambulance before he bleeds to death; it should be one’s assumption that someone who drowns her children in the bathtub is responsible for that, not her patient and amiable husband at work. The five stupid broads on the Winkler jury and Kathleen Parker are deviants. You should not assume that of anyone else.

    I am not exactly sure why William Bennett, who has a history of scholarly work (though not a recent history) got on your list of pseudo-intellectuals or on your list of persons properly subject to abuse. There are hundreds of thousands of academics in this country and you can usually find a small next working on particular problems (e.g. Bradford Wilcox in this case). That aside, working politicians and opinion journalists neglect all sorts of issues. You seem to have trouble differentiating people who are antagonistic to what you want from people who have allocated their limited time and attention to other things. For better or worse, Wm. J. Bennett has tended to allocate his attention to federal issues; correcting the abuses of family court systems is a state issue. He is not a state legislator, among other things.

  246. Every time I have engaged any traditional conservative, especially a Catholic, on the issue of how they see women, I have brought up two women:

    1. Mary Winkler
    2. Andrea Yates

    Do a search. See who I’m referring to. Then come back.

    If by “traditional conservative” you mean what people usually mean — decidedly non-traditional people who nevertheless claim the conservative mantle for themselves because they oppose some modernist ideas — then I’m not surprised. In the Catholic world, the real term for these people is neo-Catholic, while the real traditionalists aren’t even on the map because we’re too few in number and the majority treats us like schismatics. Since you’re suggesting litmus tests, here’s one: ask a Catholic who his favorite Pope is. If he mentions John Paul II, or at any point calls him “John Paul the Great” or “Saint John Paul” (he hasn’t been canonized), then he’s a neo-Catholic and not a ‘trad’ of any sort.

    But on to your test: I assume you realize that if everyone out there is on the side of these women, it will be impossible to find unbiased information about them, right? Everything is bound to be slanted in their favor. But even Winkler’s Wikipedia page looks pretty straightforward to me: she got “tired” (her word) of living with her husband, feared his reaction to her losing a bunch of money to an online scam, and shot him. Murder. She claims not to remember the actual shooting, which is quite possible — people do “disassociate” in major traumas sometimes — but irrelevant. Even she herself says her sentence was too light.

    I remember the Yates case, so I’m surprised you bring that one up. I thought everyone was against her; I remember even women I worked with at the time thought she should get the chair. You mean there are people defending her on some sort of male-versus-female basis? She got off on an insanity plea, but that would seem to be an indictment of that loophole, not a problem with women blaming men for their own sins. I don’t see anyone blaming him for anything except being too optimistic about his wife’s mental health; it seems clear that she murdered their children. Maybe I’m missing something on this one, because I’m not sure how it even fits your test.

    Do I pass?

  247. Art Deco says:

    Point of personal privilege: the clergy of the Society of St. Pius the X are schismatics, even if they have valid holy orders. See also James Hitchcock’s critique of the writings on political economy in The Wanderer. Some of the vociferous characters in the Latin-rite traditionalist subculture (whether schismatic or not) have an affinity for the crankish and the twee in matters secular. They can also be dismayingly sectarian (erstwhile collaborators Thomas Woods and Christopher Ferrara now slicing each other to pieces in print). We could do without that sort of ‘tradition’.

  248. Art Deco says:

    Re Yates: Kathleen Parker penned repeated columns trashing Russell Yates and blaming him for the disaster. I do not think Parker was alone. Remember Susan Smith, the woman who drowned her young children in South Carolina back around 1993 (and who, unlike Andrea Yates, was not insane in any measure, just evil)? At the time she was convicted in 1995, a columnist for Time magazine penned a commentary redistributing the blame to her estranged husband and an erstwhile boyfriend. The author was Barbara Ehrenreich, an inveterate peddler of nonsense who had and maintained a mainstream-of-the-mainstream gig even as she slid into making arguments frankly obscene. These people are out there, and newspaper and magazine editors consider them reasonable and legitimate participants in the policy debate.

  249. Anonymous Reader says:

    Me
    You totally miss the point. The point is not “who got Mary Winkler off”, the point is “why can’t anti-murder conservatives bring themselves to ever admit she’s a bad woman?”..

    Art Deco
    Please tell me who asked Deal Hudson or Amy Welborn or Anthony Esolen or Richard Santorum or Mike Huckabee what their opinion was of either.

    I cannot say. Someone should have asked them. I expect the next time some woman plays the pussy pass to get out of being punished for murder, there will be righteously angry men who will ask. Right now, for example, I’ve asked you for your opinion, and so far you have refused to give it…interesting, that silence.

    But again, you are missing the point. Nowhere have I referenced any national pundit. I have explained to you that I use these despicable murderesses as a means to test the beliefs of individuals that I encounter. Perhaps I did not make that clear? I shall offer an example of how this works:

    When someone who claims to oppose murder pops up on an androsphere web site, demanding in a shaming way to know why men are so horrid towards women, or why MRA’s won’t just “ManUP” and marry (leaving aside the large number of married MRA’s), or some other standard tradcon/socon concern-troll-for-flames, I ask that individual “What do you think of Mary Winkler or Andrea Yates”. Typically, that person refuses to answer the question. Sometimes, after asking the question multiple times, I get some kind of response. That’s how the Winkler – Yates test works. It dispenses with the airy handwaving about “can’t we all get along?” and puts a person and their beliefs to a more concrete test: is murder wrong, even when a woman does it?

    It takes the nice, noble words, and puts them to the test. The track record of ***cons on this test is abysmal. It is all but impossible for a tradcon, or socon, or now an orthocon, to actually rebuke real world bad behavior by a woman. And this fits in nicely with the observed White Knight tendencies of ***cons. No matter how bad the behavior of a woman, or of women in general, , there is some tradcon who will defend it. The Winkler – Yates test demonstrates this consistently. It crystallizes what tradcons, socons, and orthocons realy believe about women out of their words, and down to reality.

    Now, is that more clear? I really want you to understand what I am testing, and what my results have been, and why I consider this test and teste results to be of significance.

    What do you say about Winkler and Yates, Art Deco? Can you find anything wrong in their behavior? Anything at all that they may have done wrong?

    The Winkler case and the Yates case were local crime stories. They received some national coverage because of their peculiarities.

    And the national coverage that I saw all could be boiled down to this: “The man made her do it. He must have done something horrid, to force her to that extreme”. Do you see any thing wrong with the idea that it’s Pastor Winkler’s fault his wife murdered him? Is blaming the victim a wrong idea in all cases, or only when it’s a woman who is the victim?

    You are writing as if politicians and academics and journalists were obliged to troll masses of news reports and issue statements on the stories that pique your interest. They are not. There are horrors a plenty every day in the newspapers for these people to discuss. Silence on any one of them is not an indication of assent, but of the limits of time and attention which attend to every human being.

    Strawman. I have clearly stated that I use the Winkler and the Yates cases as a test to determine if tradcon/socon/whatevercons actually believe what they say. I use them to test individual people, in discussions like this one. And with few exceptions, such people fail the test.

    That aside, it should be one’s default assumption about another person that they disapprove of shooting a man in his sleep and then ripping out the telephone so he cannot call for an ambulance before he bleeds to death;

    I used to assume that. Then I discovered an odd thing: there are people who can not bring themselves to issue the mildest of disapproving statements regarding that murder. So now I just ask. And guess what? I can generally not find any conservatives who will stand up and say, in plain English, that murder is wrong even when women do it.

    it should be one’s assumption that someone who drowns her children in the bathtub is responsible for that, not her patient and amiable husband at work.

    That was my assumption before I read ordinary feminists, and ordinary churchgoing, conservative women, blaming Mr. Yates for Andrea Yates crime, in the comments and letters section of the Houston newspapers. As I believe I made clear earlier; ordinary women, claiming to be non-feminist, joined in the chorus of blaming Mr. Yates, or their pastor, or the shrink, for her crimes. Got that? Team Woman circled the wagons around Andrea Yates, and desperately scrambled for some man – any man – to blame, in order to deflect, and blame shift. And guess what? None of you he-manly patriarchs on the right took those wome to task for their disgusting idiocy. Not in public, anyway.

    So I don’t assume such things anymore. That’s why I ask. And the silence of the tradcon/socon always speaks volumes, to me. Your silence…is noted.

    The five stupid broads on the Winkler jury and Kathleen Parker are deviants. You should not assume that of anyone else.

    The women on the jury in the Winkler case and the women who blame shifted from Andrea Yates to the nearest man are women. They did their part for Team Woman, as women tend to do, thanks to their much higher in-group preference. They are not deviants, they are normal women, exercising their female imperative to protect another woman from the consequences of her action. You don’t understand that, it appears, because you don’t understand the truth about women.

    And that’s the core of the issue. Protection of women from the consequences of their action, no matter what is a key element of the female imperative. And tradcons, socons, and other cons are always ready to serve. Therefore, the White Knights are always ready to ride, even to the defense of murderesses. That is why I choose those women as examples, because as I have stated multiple times, if some conservative cannot bring himself or herself to take a strong opposition to such crimes, they certainly are not likely to have a problem with false rape reports, or false DV reports, or frivorce, or divorce theft, or other actions by women that are objectively bad. And my own experience bears this out; time after time, I find that conservatives simply won’t murmur even the most demure of crtiiques of any bad action by women. Many will leap to defend – as the Winkler / Yates cases show – the most heinous of actions by women. Therefore, such people are playing for Team Woman, just like the feminists.

    It’s not hard to understand, provided one has stopped pedestalizing women. And that’s the problem; the neo-Victorians who call themselves “traditional” are by and large seriously into pedestalization of women, and so they literally can’t think of any action by a woman as ever being “bad”. This makes them very useful allies of feminists, by the way.

    (Thanks for ordering me how to think. It is very typical of tradcons, socons, orthcons when presented wtfh unpleasant facts; “I don’t like that thought! You stop thinking it, now!”. Please be aware that I tend to respond rather poorly to being ordered to think in lies. Even pretty lies. )

    I am not exactly sure why William Bennett, who has a history of scholarly work (though not a recent history) got on your list of pseudo-intellectuals or on your list of persons properly subject to abuse.

    Because his latest dyspeptic rumblings have been of the “ManUP” variety, that’s why. Perhaps you missed it, but both on his radio show and in his newspaper column, he’s come out on the Hymowitz “ManUP” trail. Women are whining they can’t find good men, Bennett springs into action to blame men for not “manningUP’. He’s clearly ignorant of divorce law, of Domestic Violence law, of VAWA, of family court, of the current sexual marketplace, etc. All he knows is if there is an unhappy woman, a man must be to blame.

    So frankly I don’t care what else he’s written. He’s signed up with Team Woman. He’s an anti-abortion feminist, like so many other tradcon/socon fools, and a tacit ally of the divorce industry, the false-rape industry, the false-DV industry. He’s chosen his side: for Team Woman, against marriage, against men, against children, and therefore against civilization. He doesn’t see it that way, I’m sure. His delusions are not my problem; I can’t guess what is inside his head, but I can see whose side he’s chosen. Actions speak louder than words. Make a note of that.

  250. Art Deco says:

    I cannot say. Someone should have asked them. I expect the next time some woman plays the pussy pass to get out of being punished for murder, there will be righteously angry men who will ask. Right now, for example, I’ve asked you for your opinion, and so far you have refused to give it…interesting, that silence

    When you were producing all that verbiage, you seem not to have comprehended the implications of this paragraph in my comment above.

    That aside, it should be one’s default assumption about another person that they disapprove of shooting a man in his sleep and then ripping out the telephone so he cannot call for an ambulance before he bleeds to death; it should be one’s assumption that someone who drowns her children in the bathtub is responsible for that, not her patient and amiable husband at work. The five stupid broads on the Winkler jury and Kathleen Parker are deviants. You should not assume that of anyone else.

    I was aghast by the whole affaire Winkler. Every aspect of it was appalling. Winkler belongs in prison, 25 to life min. Her children belong with their paternal relations. The mistreatment of Russell Yates in the newspapers was also disgusting. What sentence was due his wife is murkier because there was a prima facie case for an insanity defense. I can conceive of granular details that would make a firing squad, prison, or an asylum appropriate resolutions; the only inappropriate one would be for her ever to be at large again.

    I do not know why everyone should have to spell everything out for you in the crudest, most detailed, and explicit terms. You seem to have a great deal of difficulty understanding what people mean and making plausible inferences about their motives. That’s too bad. Not my problem, or Deal Hudson’s or William J. Bennett’s.

  251. Anonymous Reader says:

    I wrote:
    I cannot say. Someone should have asked them. I expect the next time some woman plays the pussy pass to get out of being punished for murder, there will be righteously angry men who will ask. Right now, for example, I’ve asked you for your opinion, and so far you have refused to give it…interesting, that silence

    Art Deco:
    When you were producing all that verbiage, you seem not to have comprehended the implications of this paragraph in my comment above.

    That aside, it should be one’s default assumption about another person that they disapprove of shooting a man in his sleep and then ripping out the telephone so he cannot call for an ambulance before he bleeds to death; it should be one’s assumption that someone who drowns her children in the bathtub is responsible for that, not her patient and amiable husband at work. The five stupid broads on the Winkler jury and Kathleen Parker are deviants. You should not assume that of anyone else.

    I understand it. You obviously did not bother to actually read my reply. You are asking me to assume good intentions where I have repeatedly seen bad action. You are asking me to assume that a group of humans with a demonstrated track record of shifting blame from women to men, defending women no matter what they do should get the benefit of the doubt no matter how many times they clearly show they bigoted against men.

    You are demanding that I take at face value the words of people I have caught lying.

    I was aghast by the whole affaire Winkler. Every aspect of it was appalling. Winkler belongs in prison, 25 to life min. Her children belong with their paternal relations. The mistreatment of Russell Yates in the newspapers was also disgusting. What sentence was due his wife is murkier because there was a prima facie case for an insanity defense. I can conceive of granular details that would make a firing squad, prison, or an asylum appropriate resolutions; the only inappropriate one would be for her ever to be at large again.

    Thank you for that clarification. You are now one of three (3) ***cons who, to my knowledge, have actually written anything even mildly critical of those two women. Therefore, it is easier for me to assume some degree of common civilizational overlap between the two of us.

    I do not know why everyone should have to spell everything out for you in the crudest, most detailed, and explicit terms.

    Obviously I am not asking that every single person on the face of the planet, or every single US citizen, or every single member of any group, has to spell out anything to me. So your exaggeration falls a bit flat.

    Seems to me you should be asking yourself why a growing number of men have the idea that conservatives are just errand boys for women, feminists and otherwise, who can be counted on to defend the interests of women no matter what. White Knights who will sally forth to defend ye fair damsel by blame-shifting from her to the nearest man, even when she’s a slut who has created her own troubles. Gosh, where would someone get that idea?

    Maybe from observing traditional conservatives, social conservatives, and others in the real world?

    You seem to have a great deal of difficulty understanding what people mean and making plausible inferences about their motives. That’s too bad. Not my problem, or Deal Hudson’s or William J. Bennett’s.

    Sorry, I’m too stupid to jump to hasty conclusions, and I’m no good at mindreading. So I’ll just have to blunder along, with only my lying eyes and fundamental logic to guide me, rather than closing my eyes to the world around me and pretending that all would be well if men would just marry the sluts.

    Perhaps it would assist you to consider me just another rube from Missouri. Too unsophisticated and stupid to just blindly accept the burlap sack full of gold coins, insisting that you Show Me what’s in the bag.

  252. Anonymous Reader says:

    Cail Corishev:
    If by “traditional conservative” you mean what people usually mean — decidedly non-traditional people who nevertheless claim the conservative mantle for themselves because they oppose some modernist ideas — then I’m not surprised. In the Catholic world, the real term for these people is neo-Catholic, while the real traditionalists aren’t even on the map because we’re too few in number and the majority treats us like schismatics.

    I don’t do mindreading, and I don’t play No True Scotsman, I just take people as they describe themselves. So if someone claims to be a “traditional conservative”, I am not going to burn time to determine which of the many various categories they fit. I want to solve problems and improve certain aspects of the world in the tiny slice under my control, and help other men to do the same, not fret about whether someone is an ortho-trado-social conservative, or a trado-social-neo-ortho conservative.

    (Parenthetically, when RC’s deride the Prots in terms of “200 denominations! Hah!”, I sometimes point out that within the Church of Rome I can still find Marxists who practice Liberation Theology, Goddess-worshippers who have ordained their own priestesses, let-it-all-hang-out guitar-mass congregations dedicated to Theraputic Deism, and a whole bunch of other variations that often has a counterpart in the 200 denominations of Protestantism. And many of them there modernists regard Latin Mass at the very least as a “danger to Christian unity”. I understand, in a tiny way, what you are saying. Only in a tiny way, as I have not lived it.)

    Since you’re suggesting litmus tests, here’s one: ask a Catholic who his favorite Pope is. If he mentions John Paul II, or at any point calls him “John Paul the Great” or “Saint John Paul” (he hasn’t been canonized), then he’s a neo-Catholic and not a ‘trad’ of any sort.

    As entertaining as that might be, from a pot-stirring point of view, I am woefully underequipped to appreciate the typical responses I would get. So I’ll file that observation away for now.

    But on to your test: I assume you realize that if everyone out there is on the side of these women, it will be impossible to find unbiased information about them, right?

    No, that doesn’t necessarily follow. First of all, “everyone” includes not just traditional / social /ortho conservatives and feminists, it includes a lot of other people as well, such as forensic investigators, crime junkies, sensationalist journalists, and so forth. But the accuracy of the information isn’t relevant. When I ask people about these two murderesses, I am trying to determine the attitude towards bad behavior by women in the abstract.

    Everything is bound to be slanted in their favor. But even Winkler’s Wikipedia page looks pretty straightforward to me: she got “tired” (her word) of living with her husband, feared his reaction to her losing a bunch of money to an online scam, and shot him. Murder. She claims not to remember the actual shooting, which is quite possible — people do “disassociate” in major traumas sometimes — but irrelevant. Even she herself says her sentence was too light.

    True. So? I’m not alleging any conspiracy. I’m typically attempting to tease out attitudes and beliefs, and using the two murderesses as a means to that end. People who can’t find anything wrong in Mary Winkler’s actions are generally not going to be very concerned about the divorce industry, for example.

    I remember the Yates case, so I’m surprised you bring that one up. I thought everyone was against her; I remember even women I worked with at the time thought she should get the chair. You mean there are people defending her on some sort of male-versus-female basis?

    There were people, mostly women, who insisted that her actions were all the fault of her husband. Those people, mostly women, can be grouped thusly: feminists, and self-described “conservative women”. I’m sorry I did not get to meet the women you worked with at the time, there are some other women I would have very much liked to introduce them to…

    She got off on an insanity plea, but that would seem to be an indictment of that loophole, not a problem with women blaming men for their own sins. I don’t see anyone blaming him for anything except being too optimistic about his wife’s mental health; it seems clear that she murdered their children. Maybe I’m missing something on this one, because I’m not sure how it even fits your test.

    She murdered her children, and Team Woman circled the wagons to shift blame off of her and onto anyone else – her husband, a pastor, a shrink, any man handy. So is she responsible for her actions, or not? A whole lot of people were willing to go to bat for her, and shift blame to her husband or some other man, despite the fact that she seems to have known what she was doing.

    Do I pass?

    Hmm. I can’t say. I still don’t know your opinion of the women in question. Guilty of a crime, or victims of mean, bad, men? I’m on “guilty of a crime, should be locked up” side myself, just to make that clear.

    However, based on previous postings here and other places, I’m pretty sure you are not one to place women upon a pedestal, or seek to defend their bad actions at all costs. So you really aren’t the sort of man I’d ask these questions of, anyway.

  253. I thought I made it clear that they both looked guilty of murder. I’m also a “traditional conservative” — my words, not a label someone else stuck on me. You said you’ve never been able to find a “trad-con” or Catholic (again, two very different categories, unfortunately) who will speak ill of them, because “traditional conservative men are always ready to be the big White Knight.”

    Well, now you’ve found one. So now I’m suddenly “not the sort of man [you’d] ask these questions of”? Are you actually saying you’ve been stacking the deck by only asking the kind of guys you know will White Knight and prove your thesis?

    Look, I know my “people” are way too easy on women. I still have to bash my own White Knighting tendencies into submission now and then (although I can say my learning about traditional Catholic teaching helps with that — real tradition does not hold that women are purer or more innocent than men). My knee just jerks when everyone from James Dobson to the Pius X folks gets lumped together as “trad-cons,” because then the terms no longer have any meaning at all. When you meet real traditionalists, you’ll find people who do have an understanding of female foibles and limitations, and the proper roles of men and women in marriage — at least your odds will be better there than most other places, churches or otherwise.

  254. Anonymous Reader says:

    Cail Corishev
    I thought I made it clear that they both looked guilty of murder.

    Ok. Agreed.

    I’m also a “traditional conservative” — my words, not a label someone else stuck on me. You said you’ve never been able to find a “trad-con” or Catholic (again, two very different categories, unfortunately) who will speak ill of them, because “traditional conservative men are always ready to be the big White Knight.”

    Yes. It is unfortunate, to be sure.

    Well, now you’ve found one. So now I’m suddenly “not the sort of man [you’d] ask these questions of”? Are you actually saying you’ve been stacking the deck by only asking the kind of guys you know will White Knight and prove your thesis?

    No, I ask questions to learn things as a rule. This test is to determine if someone can even conceive of the notion that women are capable of wrong doing, even evil. Given what you have posted in various fora, I already believe beyond a reasonable doubt that you are a man who is fully aware of the nature of women; you are not one of those who deny the capability for bad and even evil behavior in women.

    I already know the answer, in your case, so there is no need to ask the question, that’s all.

  255. Anonymous Reader says:

    Art Deco, here is the Bennett “Man Up” piece. It’s shorter than Hannah Rosin’s.
    The last quote might as well be “Man UP And Marry Those Sluts!”, by the way.

    http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/04/opinion/bennett-men-in-trouble/index.html?hpt=hp_c1

    This article reminds me of some general in the British or Russian Army around 1915, ordering all the young men into just one more bayonet charge against fortified machineguns…from the safety of his deep bunker, far from the front lines, with an adequate supply of food and wine, of course.

  256. Dalrock says:

    Anon Reader,

    If you haven’t already I would check out WF Price’s piece on Game Theory and Divorce. One thing which struck me is how the vast majority of Trad Cons are on the side of making sure Y plays the game in the way which allows X to fleece him the most. They aren’t objecting to the rigged game, and instead are actively engaged in “holding him down” part of the “while I rob him” equation.

  257. Anonymous Reader says:

    Dalrock, thanks. Freeman Dyson is a hero of mine, and once again he’s being an inspiration.
    Game Theory (not Game) is a rather abstract area to be noodling around in at the age of 89.

    I would urge everyone to read that link.

  258. Art Deco says:

    One thing which struck me is how the vast majority of Trad Cons are on the side of making sure Y plays the game in the way which allows X to fleece him the most. They aren’t objecting to the rigged game, and instead are actively engaged in “holding him down” part of the “while I rob him” equation.

    Having been a consumer of this literature for 23 years and a participant on Catholic and ecumenical boards for 10 years, I think I have to object. There certainly is dismay at the fragility of family relations. There are certainly figures who one can identify who think in these terms. There are many more who have not thought things through. However, the issues under discussion in these fora they way you frame them are not under discussion in those fora. People are talking about different topics and thinking about different topics. One problem I suspect you may encounter is that the men writing in these loci tend either to be celibates or to have (with the usual rough edges and with the usual cautions about drawing conclusions about people you do not know) marriages which are way above the median in terms of solidity (and perhaps agreeableness as well). The discussions do not quite touch the viscera. (David Alexander is the only Catholic blogger I can recall who has admitted to having been through a divorce proceeding).

  259. Brendan says:

    One problem I suspect you may encounter is that the men writing in these loci tend either to be celibates or to have (with the usual rough edges and with the usual cautions about drawing conclusions about people you do not know) marriages which are way above the median in terms of solidity (and perhaps agreeableness as well). The discussions do not quite touch the viscera. (David Alexander is the only Catholic blogger I can recall who has admitted to having been through a divorce proceeding).

    Likely because of the “taint”. The problem is then it never gets discussed in concrete as opposed to abstract ways.

  260. Gabriella says:

    I have some questions/thoughts regarding young marriage.

    I am hesitant to encourage young marriage (<25) because of a few things

    -A young persons "picker" is often faulty..focused more on who excites them than on who is good marriage material.

    -Submission is very very difficult and requires enormous self-control and self-discipline. It requires subjecting all your desires to the one above you and quite a lot of emotional detachment towards the outcomes.

    The kind of detachment from desire that is required of a young wife is the same thing that takes Buddhist monks decades of meditation to master. Most young women just are not that "zen". The statistics show that women who marry before 25 have the highest divorce rate. I think this is because they are simply not mature enough for the institution.

    There may be some women for whom marriage comes naturally very easy to them even at a young age, but I doubt it is the majority. Even if they are taught by the wider culture to be submissive (which they are not), there is that whole "human nature" bit that gets in the way..the burning desire to see, do, and feel a bit of what life has to offer. Marriage is the place where a woman GIVES IT ALL UP and devotes her life to her duties. Is it reasonable to expect that of someone who just graduated high school?

    I am inclined to think that early adulthood (25 and younger) is when young people spend a little bit of time satiating some of their desires (like education, travel, adventures) and learning to control other desires (sex, vanity, and various vices)..so that when they do marry they are better prepared for a life of selflessness. They are also more likely to choose a spouse based on rational decision making rather than following their tingles into a marriage to the most "exciting" guy, rather than one who is a good mixture of attractive and responsible.

    How can we value marriage as a sacred and indissoluble institution while simultaneously trying to push it on our youth? We don't even rent cars to people who are under 25.

  261. Dalrock says:

    @Gabriella

    I have some questions/thoughts regarding young marriage.

    I am hesitant to encourage young marriage (<25) because of a few things

    -A young persons "picker" is often faulty..focused more on who excites them than on who is good marriage material.

    -Submission is very very difficult and requires enormous self-control and self-discipline. It requires subjecting all your desires to the one above you and quite a lot of emotional detachment towards the outcomes.

    Women get more picky as they age, not the other way around. This is especially true regarding a taste for alpha traits, which is exactly where she is likely to go wrong. Young innocent women have a much easier time than active or passive carousel riders do falling head over heels in love with a stable beta. Also, remember that the reason feminists chafe so much at young marriage is the woman doesn’t get the chance to build up enough feminist moxie first. They fear her naturally submitting, especially if her husband is a few years older than she is.

  262. Gabriella says:

    Okay. So you are saying that if things happen as they should then the submission will be instinctual.

    That isn’t fitting with my experience but it wouldn’t be the first time my experience has diverted from the norm.

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  265. Anonymous Reader says:

    Art Deco
    Having been a consumer of this literature for 23 years and a participant on Catholic and ecumenical boards for 10 years, I think I have to object. There certainly is dismay at the fragility of family relations. There are certainly figures who one can identify who think in these terms. There are many more who have not thought things through.

    Dismay at the fragility of family relations in what sense, though? Church going people seem to regard that fragility in one of two different ways: as some sort of event like a tornado, or an earthquake, that “just happens” (leaving the issue of theodicy aside), or as something that is a result of the actions or inactions of men.

    The first mode is basically handwringing, and while useless it’s more or less harmless as well.
    The second mode obtains from the underlying premise that “women are naturally or inherently monogamous”. This mistaken idea is commonplace, it’s been around for centuries, and it is a premise that underlies many bad laws.

    Test this for yourself. Post on any of the fora that you wish the proposition that women are naturally monogamous, or inherently so. See if anyone questions or challenges, I doubt that will happen. Now, taking that premise, what can we expect people to say about divorce? Why, if men would only do right, divorce would soon dwindle. What can we expect people to say when they hear a man is divorcing his wife? Oh, he must have some wicked reason for that. What can we expect people to say in the more common situation where a wife is divorcing her husband?

    He must have done something to drive her to that, or some variation of this statement. Thus divorce is always the fault of the husband, one way or another.

    From this thinking, we find traditional conservative support in the 1970’s for Family Court – tradcons may or may not have energetically opposed no-fault divorce, but they certainly were in favor of special courts to hear divorce cases, because the womenandchildren must be cared for. Yes, that’s one word, at least the way I’ve heard it pronounced for years. Womenandchildren.

    From this premise, the “deadbeat dad” beatings are justified. If a divorce happens, it’s the man’s fault one way or another. Therefore it’s perfectly fine for Family Court to demand the motherandherchildren be kept in the style they deserve, and if that requires imputation of income at the highest possible level, then so be it. And if the badman can’t pay, then he’s just a deadbeat dad who won’t uphold his responsibilities. And so what could be wrong with threatening such a bad man with jail time? What could be wrong with continuing to add to the debt he can’t pay, while he’s in prison? What could be wrong with threatening to take away any professional certifications, and even his permit to drive, if that is the stick that must be used to make him “do right”? So we see the traditional conservative support for the 1986 Bradley amendment.

    Ditto for VAWA. I recall the debate over the 1994 “Crime” bill, and while most of my attention was focused on the “gun control” issue, I recall plenty of tradcon support for the “anti violence” part. Who, after all, supports “violence against women”, eh? And so who bothers to read the fine print?

    The premise that women are inherently monogamous also underlies the notion of “men bad, women good”. One can see this in traditional conservative discourse as well, to the point of tedium.

    Traditional conservative people are not likely to examine their own premises. Even when it is pointed out that they share premises with feminists, whom they claim to totally oppose, this re-examination seems to just not happen. All well and good, until they decide to opine on public policy…

    However, the issues under discussion in these fora they way you frame them are not under discussion in those fora. People are talking about different topics and thinking about different topics. One problem I suspect you may encounter is that the men writing in these loci tend either to be celibates or to have (with the usual rough edges and with the usual cautions about drawing conclusions about people you do not know) marriages which are way above the median in terms of solidity (and perhaps agreeableness as well). The discussions do not quite touch the viscera. (David Alexander is the only Catholic blogger I can recall who has admitted to having been through a divorce proceeding).

    The problem arises when men and women from those cultural enclaves, who do have generallly a rather insular mindset, decide to opine on the state of marriage, or the state of relations between the sexes. Then, proceeding from the premises of “women are naturally monogamous” and “men bad, women good”, they offer up a variety of fallacies and frankly utter nonsense. When they opine to the righteously angry men, the response is shocking to them.

    Turn the coin over, though. From the perspective of the righteously angry men, traditional conservatives are just the right-hand claw of a nutcracker squeezing men into dust, with feminism being the left hand claw. Feminists posting their misandry are bad enough. Traditional conservatives, who all too often are also reciting feminist propaganda, with a nice chemise drapery framing it and a lace doily underneath, are in a way even worse, because their feminism comes cross-dressing as “He-Man Patriachy”, complete with false beard.

    Traditional conservatives are kind of like catacomb dwellers who surface from time to time, blinking in the sunlight, apparently utterly clueless of what the world above ground ls like. The problem arises when they start issuing diktats and order and ultimatums to the righteously angry men. Those men do not recognize the traditional conservative as having any authority to make such demands, and what’s more, they tend to regard traditional conservatives as traitors who sold out men years ago, and who just want to finish off the deal today by totally enslaving men to women, by force if necessary.

    From your perspective, traditional conservatives are mild-mannered ordinary people who just want to get along and help preserve marriage. From the point of view of the men who just want to be left alone, tradcons chose sides long ago – 30 or more years back, they sided with feminists against men, in the control of men, the demonization of men and the enslavement of men. Therefore, they are to be presumed enemies until proven otherwise.

  266. Anonymous Reader says:

    Coda:

    One logical extension of “women are naturally monogamous” is that a promiscuous woman must be “that way” because some man made her so. Therefore, there is no justification for ever shaming any slut. It would be blaming the victim. Female promiscuity is all the fault of some man or men. They are to blame, and she is blameless.

    So any promiscuous woman, even a single mother with multiple children by multiple fathers not one of whom she ever married, must be welcomed. Welcomed into a church, welcomed into a community, welcomed into any women’s group. All she has to do is quiver her lip a bit, and talk about how all those bad men have used and abused her, and she is so sorry and doesn’t want to live that way, and she must be taken in – no questions asked.

    So the same people who are aghast at the hookup culture are always ready to reward a carousel riding hookuper in all sorts of ways. And they then wonder why there are so many more of said hookupers…

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  268. rileylahey says:

    Not really on subject, but I just had to post this video, since it’s one more part of the important information the men of today should be educating themselves with. This guy is telling women to put their numbers in his phone – as a joke – but they comply eagerly. A few of them even admit they have boyfriends or are going on dates later but do it any ways. And that’s just the ones saying that; I imagine all of them have 2-3 other men on the go.

    I have never seen today’s women as anything desirable, not even in a sexual way since I’m apprehensive of diseases and don’t think bedding a women that 20 other guys have had is an accomplished, but I’ve always thought that it was my own unfounded phobias and general anxiety not to be hurt by them; in short, my own prejudiced craziness. Thank you Manosphere, for not making me feel like a crazy person any more. More and more men are getting educated about today’s modern women. I don’t know the solution but I certainly know what the problem is.

    Keep on rockin’ Dalrock.

  269. Robert Yates says:

    http://www.oneplace.com/ministries/insight-for-living/player/a-marriage-oiled-by-grace-part-2-320966.html

    when you get time Please listen to marriage “advice” from Pastor Chuck Swindoll.
    No wonder we are in trouble.

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  273. Lish says:

    I have been married for 19 years. I have submitted to my husband and forgiven him the 7X70 for emotionally and spiritually abandoning me and our three children (including, but not limited to his addiction to porn…carry-over from childhood…blamed on me)…I forgive him now…and want good for him, but I will never have sex with him again (don’t trust him/know what else he’s into and won’t risk my health…want to be around for grandchildren, have something to offer in the way of leadership)…grew up close to my father…witnessed a truly loving man who you couldn’t help but want to love and serve…he talked to me as an equal, encouraged my indepenence…we talked about God, faith, and the Bible…he was accessible and generous with his love , counsel, and friendship…I didn’t know the self-consumed man that is my husband even existed…COMPLETELY blind-sided…don’t understand “gaming” in marriage for men or women…came into this wanting to love and serve and be a reflection of God’s love…though I value my mind and independence, never could relate to anger and hostility of feminist movement…now I understand where the hostility is just an extension of hurt and broken trust…I still can’t be hostile because I witnessed selfless love in my father…but I also cannot be a doormat for a man who insists I submit to my Biblical duty whilst he does whatever un-Biblical thing his entitled heart desires…Men: don’t focus on her submission! (reveals self-seeking)…focus on loving her…she won’t be able to resist you…she wants to give to you…she’s creative, lovely, inventive, adventuresome, and she longs to be a blessing and generous with EVERY part of her being…LOVE her selflessly, and she WILL be a blessing to you!

  274. Joe says:

    There is a church down the street from me named Faith Community, it is in Covina, CA USA. And yes Oprah herself has spoken there. You are most definitely on to how American Christian churches cater exclusively to women’s vanity, selfishness and need to manipulate men. The core church philosophy is all about emotional manipulation and guilt manipulation. This is easy to verify by going to the church book store.

    From my point of view the Christian meme or oral tradition has evolved into a different religion. I think most women have always had whoring tendencies and one very consistent Christian theme is hypocrisy. This I do not have a problem with as it seems natural. As a guy, if I agree to “being a Christian” I am subject to go along with things I very strongly disagree with and is often self destructive.

  275. Opus says:

    Acording to Freud, Men suffer Fear of Castration and I would suggest that Feminism only increases that fear. But what about Women? Again, according to Freud they suffer fom Penis envy. Is it not the case also, that Feminism in asserting the lack of a need by Women for Men, far from ‘liberating’ women merely increases that sense of envy – an envy which is ultimately entirely unassuagable? Women are never (in the main) going to want to take the male role, and are not going to ‘score’ as men seek to do, without turning themsleves into playthings – the game would be just too easy and pointless (note the desparate rationalising of such behaviour with concommitent attempts to lower the N number, especially at sites like HUS). That our Governments pursue policies to achieve just that suggests to me that either they do not care about Women or are the ultimate Mysogynists.

  276. Pingback: A Fathers Day call to repentance. | Dalrock

  277. Pingback: Christians Excitement over Trivialities | The Reinvention of Man

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