A Primer on Male Autonomy

Author’s note: The following is a continuation of Why Men Can’t Say No. I strongly suggest reading it before attempting to digest this one. The last essay promised I would deliver possible solutions in a subsequent triad of essays. This is the beginning. Please note that the path to get there is not given in the fantasy ridden “Three easy steps to..” model. Neither is it so arcane that the average man cannot grasp it with some effort.

In my last writing, “Why Men Can’t Say No: A Historical Perspective,” I went to some length to describe three significant historical events that cemented the current cultural gynocentrism; the sacrificial mindset that now dominates the human male psyche, serving as the conscious and unconscious motivator of behavior and behavioral codes, particularly in regard to women.

To put it more succinctly, even brutally, we have become the unconscious physical and political service class for the human race. While ideologues moan and gnash teeth about a nonexistent patriarchy, an equally fictional rape culture and the fatuous notion of male-only domestic violence, society continues to produce men who will willingly labor at the most deadly professions, shielding women from such hardship. These are labors that diminish quality of life and lifespan itself, in order to service their immediate families and the culture at large. Underneath that veneer, of course, we find the mandates of reproductive biology in full swing.

All of this occurs in a social milieu dominated by the wholesale denigration of the attributes which predispose men to take on this role. In other words, we tell men what they must do to be men, which is sacrifice. Then we shame and derogate them for being male, for valuing the characteristics men must have in order to fulfill the demands we place on them.

Men, by and large, walk through this lifelong gauntlet without a scintilla of awareness. In fact, their psyches have been so completely molded by the gynocentric narrative that most actually believe that rewarding their selflessness with shame is a badge of masculine honor. Man up = take this pile of feces, eat it and don’t forget to say thank you.

Those that stray, even in the most trivial and innocuous of ways, are relegated to obsequious groveling for redemption because the cultural norm demands it. Note that scientist Matt Taylor likely feared for his job security after the public assassination of his character from feminist ideologues who turned the shirt he wore, a gift designed by his girlfriend, into an affront to all women and an act of hostility toward women who might otherwise be interested in STEM professions.

It is easy to target these malicious ideologues as the source of the problem. However, would Taylor have felt it necessary to break down in tearful, self-degrading mea culpas for the cameras had their not been pressure to do so by his superiors? Would it have gone down this way had it not been in keeping with the social appetite for coerced penitence from men?

I submit that if you missed the public self-flagellation of Martha Stewart, Leona Helmsley and Sharon Osbourne, there is a good reason for it. The reason being, of course, that it never happened.

Mattmeme

Gender fascists find easy success in their efforts to destroy men at will because we are all Matt Taylor. We are all Larry SummersTim HuntDominique Strauss-Kahn and Brian Banks. We are a society that rewards incompetent, ill-intentioned, even evil women and with equal mindlessness turns on the best and brightest of men with pitchforks and torches. All it takes in our minds is the imagery of a defenseless waif and a masculine villain. It is an archetypal duo as old as Odin. Those ideologues are just a mirror of our own mentality, not a deviation. They are us, whether we want to admit it or not, and not wanting to is laying waste to men.

The way out of this is not simple. There is no way to make sweeping, cultural change to the results of 3,000,000 years of psychobiology that pits men against each other in order to line up for the disposable use of the most sexually viable female. The great unconscious mass of men will always be lemmings.

There is, however a way for most men to effect personal change that steers them out of the path of self-devaluation, if they are conscious enough to desire it. Equally, if not more important, the same efforts can cast out a chorus of demons born in the mythologies and abuses of the family of origin and played out in the resultant imagoes from one relationship to the next. This includes our relationships with other men, with institutions, and, critically, with ourselves.

The goal is self-ownership and self-authorship outside of dysfunctional narratives, including gynocentrism.

Stage One: Nascent Cognition

This first step of three in what I propose to be a method of reversing unhealthy trends in your mind and your psychobiology are written exercises. The first one will be to address a particular event.

Note that I am not talking about trying to enhance awareness, no matter how acute, of the state of gender politics or of the men’s issues so frequently addressed in my writing. It is much more personal, more intimate than that. In fact, wavering off the personal and into the global is an act of sabotage that will undermine your efforts.

Let me start with an example, taken directly from the comments of another piece I wrote on An Ear for Men. This comes from Carl Timothy Smith, who gave me permission to use this in another writing.

Just writing the story of my marriage and divorce on the AVFM message board and then reading it about 50 times helped me. I was so wrapped up in trying to make things work it wasn’t until I could read my story as a third party that I realized I should have never tolerated the treatment I was getting. It was like putting down a burden followed by the best feeling of freedom I’ve ever known.”

I urge you to closely examine the wealth of information in every line of Carl’s comment. Some of it is easy to overlook. First, saying things aloud and sharing them with someone else has a tendency to make them real. It is not that those stories, or their life-wracking consequences, are confabulations. It is more accurate to say that speaking or writing them has a way of stripping elements of denial that so often plague our perception. Bargaining for a different reality, a typically normal and healthy part of grief within reason, fades with the open telling of truth. The more real it gets, the less you bargain and the less you remain mired in the pain.

Carl also shared his experience on an open forum. Having his experience heard also made it more real, with the same benefits. It is not that sharing on a forum was his only option — but it was a good one. The same can be accomplished with a trusted friend or family member, as long as they can indeed be dependable as a listener instead of an advisor or source of shame.

Note that Carl said his benefit came from reading what he had shared with others. He did not mention a word about other people’s reactions or advice or even sympathy. Sympathy is not the goal. Support is not the goal. Support is a common positive side-effect, but it is not the destination. It is not the healing force.

Carl’s writing and repetitive reading, “…followed by the best feeling of freedom I’ve ever known,” was entirely self-created. The more he read his story, the more detached and objective he became. Detachment and objectivity are the byproducts of emotions losing their power; the power to prevent healing; the power to harm the person in which they dwell by walling them off from their freedom and peace of mind.

Carl put himself in a position to see himself clearly. Not as a victim. Not as a perpetrator. Not an emotionally crushed, crippled version of himself. Just Carl in all his humanity, recognizing his role in what happened to him with accountability and integrity.

I have not spoken to him except to get his permission to use his comment, but I would bet everything I have that he is now far less vulnerable to being led by the wrong narrative into another relationship like that one. I will wager that Carl is not the same person he was when he wrote the account of his marriage and divorce.

How ironic this is in a feelings-centered world, particularly that of feelings-centered psychotherapy that forever has the client digging through and experiencing emotional angst, turmoil and grief in the pursuit of alleged catharsis.

There is even a larger lesson here. Imagine, if you will, applying the same principle to your entire life. Imagine the story of you, in all its bloody and often painful detail, losing its power to keep you from being objective and rational. Imagine the time when you can look at any event in your life dispassionately, with the power to learn about it in ways that your emotional reactions will not allow.

Here is an example of what I mean, using a hypothetical man. By hypothetical I mean a composite of many men I have spoken with in the past. His name is Joe. Joe was raised by a single, severely disturbed and personality disordered mother. One of her many needy, selfish acts was to have Joe sleep with her until after he was well into puberty. By age 7 even Joe began to feel uncomfortable with the arrangement. He felt the need to individuate, to sleep on his own, but his mother would not allow it. Even at that young age he became aware that her insistence that he sleep with her was not for his sake, but for hers. Unfortunately there was nothing he could do about it at the time but comply.

Ultimately this had a negative impact on Joe’s relationships with all women. He felt at once smothered, and bound to yield to their desires, even unhealthy ones. That led to shame and perpetual confusion. It (and other things she did) also led to resentment toward his mother that bordered on hatred.

The abuse he experienced at the hands of his mother became an emotional anchor around his neck. It disrupted his attempts at healthy bonding with women. Any need they had was perceived by him as exploitive. Any time he denied those needs (which was rare) he was filled with shame.

Traditional psychotherapists worked with Joe, trying to get him “in touch” with his anger; trying to help him find cathartic release that would help him move on. They were completely misguided. Joe hated his mother and he knew it. The last thing he needed was to immerse himself in more of what he had felt his entire life.

What he needed was detachment from the abuse, from his story. Like Carl, he needed to find the birds-eye view of those events and to maintain that view until he could see things objectively. Once that happened he was able to put some very important jigsaw pieces together in his life. The impact on his life, and his relationships with women was profound. While the aftereffects of his mother’s acts of emotional incest lingered, they also lessened. He came to recognize that while he was powerless at the time it happened, he was no longer a young boy at the mercy of his mother’s unhealthy whims.

He was free to rewrite his own version of who he was without the unhealthy maternal bond, and without the debilitating resentment toward his mother coloring the narrative. Most importantly, he would be free to attract women who were not the reincarnation of his sick mother.

A better place for men to start never existed.

Daddy’s Little Nightmare

I’ve had many, many conversations over the years with blue pill men about red pill ideas. Interestingly, most of the men I’ve talked to have been pretty open to what I was talking about. At least in general terms my observations about men, women and the behavior typical to both resonated with them. I’ve routinely found men nodding agreeably as I described some of their not-so-positive experiences with women in relationship life. They did so even as some of them instinctively glanced over their shoulder, as if to make sure no one was seeing them agree with me.

Plenty of them even quietly acceded to my calling them out on their tendency to tolerate abuse, to enable and play white knight in order to stay out of the dog house. A life spent in some measure of frustration, trying to placate an errant child, of jumping through hoops to keep an uneasy peace is common to a lot of men. Sure, some men don’t share this experience. And some men claim they don’t. You can hear them bragging about how they are in charge of relationships when the woman isn’t listening. But most men I have talked to in relationships identify with this to one degree or another.

Most of them can chuckle at themselves a little bit when they talk about how they put up with the childish demands and entitled attitudes of their female counterparts. Some of them, without compunction, even cast themselves metaphorically as powerless little schoolboys, fearful of being sent to the principle’s office, represented by the disapproval of their wives or girlfriends. They do this with no sense of embarrassment, as though they think all men live this way. And of course, there are plenty of men who do.

All this introspective honesty, this good-natured self-disclosure, takes a nosedive, however, when I’ve talked to men as fathers, vs just husbands or boyfriends. In that matter things become, shall we say, pricklier.

You see, it is pretty easy for a man to admit that petulant childishness is the default setting for a whole lot of women once they settle into a relationship. Most men will just nod their heads knowingly and shrug it off because in their minds, that’s just the way women are.

It’s quite another matter when you start to talk about the role of fathers in instilling said petulance and childishness; when you acknowledge that “Daddy’s little girl,” is highly prone to grow up (or just get older) and become “Daddy’s little bitch,” or much worse.

It’s quite ironic, listening to a man complain about how his wife has crazy unreal expectations. He bemoans the fact that she cannot be satisfied, no matter what he does. He claims that he pulls his hair out trying to figure out how to satisfy her endless demands only to be met with more disapproval and, of course, more demands. He wonders aloud how she ever learned to be such a bottomless pit, and such a bitch about it.

Then you go watch him interact with his four-year old daughter, whom he will endlessly coddle and for whom he will go to any measure to make sure she never lacks anything, no matter how trivial.

And it doesn’t stop when she turns five. Or fifteen, or twenty-five. When it comes to turning human females into paragons of pissy entitlement, the western father has few rivals.

I remember well former vice-president Joe Biden talking about being routinely physically abused by his older sister, informing the world that his parents would have “gone nuclear” if he had ever defended himself. That was the family rules, and they were not negotiable. The girl got to inflict physical pain on the other children with impunity. The boys got to take it. As Biden recounted, he “had the bruises to prove it.”

My clinical experience informs me that the Bidens weren’t by any means the only family who operated on the premise that assault was permissible by girls, and self-defense by boys was strictly verboten.

Often, the main enforcer of this lopsided affair is the alleged family patriarch. Along with the idea of bodily autonomy for the girl only is often a whole slew of double standards reflecting the fact that Daddy’s little girl has Daddy wrapped around her little finger.

After all, has anyone ever coined a phrase describing how a son has a parent wrapped around his little finger? Of course not, because it largely doesn’t happen. The closest thing you’ll ever hear to that is the term “Mama’s Boy” which is an entirely different story.

A “Mama’s Boy,” which implies blind service to the mother, is a pejorative pointing to the general weakness of the son and the power of the mother. Having Daddy wrapped around your little finger implies just the opposite. It is the raw sexual power of the female, and the powerlessness of the father, even with daughter in the state of childhood. She can just crawl into Daddy’s lap, wrap her little arms around his neck and get her way, every time. He just melts. I will spare us all an analysis of the Freudian implications of that little scenario. It’s too gross to go into. Suffice it to say that both family scenarios involve females with power and males without it.

Fathers, in this regard, generally don’t take well to a discussion of the subject. I’ve talked to several of them about enabling dads who treat their little girls like princesses, effectively turning them into cunts who are destined to make a succession of men completely miserable, and who will, in the end, be miserable themselves. Nobody can hold on to any kind of happiness when chronic, insanely unrealistic expectations are the expected path to get there. That’s the curse of modern womanhood. It’s why so many of them are miserable, and why they feel justified in making others miserable when their plans fall apart.

Now, at some point in the conversations with a handful of these fathers, they seemed to reach a snapping point. “Wait a minute,” they’d say, in a suddenly serious and demanding tone, “You’re not talking about me and my daughter, are you?” They weren’t kidding.

“Why not at all,” I lied, aware that we were getting into dangerous territory.

Here I was talking to guys who were so not enabling or over-protective of or unreasonable about their daughters that they looked to be willing to go fisticuffs with a 6’8” 280-pound man if he got too close to the truth.

Either that, or they were reacting chivalrously to an imagined slight against their little princess. I’ll let you decide.

There is a great deal that goes into creating a society of women who feel so entitled to unrealistic demands of men that they make themselves and everyone else suffer.

Certainly, as I mentioned earlier, feminism has played a huge role. So, have obsequious, spineless men. The kind who never met a woman they wouldn’t bend over backwards to please. There’s also basic biology. Men are driven to scatter seeds and the greatest majority of them want and need women’s permission and approval to do it. That alone has them urging women toward very unrealistic expectations in the long term. Very few men can maintain the lengths they go through to achieve sexual conquest. We hear women complain about that all the time.

Indeed, as we look at all this from the aerial view, we see that men in one form or another, are the main culprits. It’s entirely arguable that feminists are only demanding of men what they know men will ultimately give them, reasonable or not. So, in that light, the sole enablers of all this nonsense are men.

That includes fathers.

Fathers are the first arena where women learn their expectations of men. Fathers are the gateway to hypergamy and gynocentrism. They are women’s first lessons in all-take no-give relationships, and where they begin to learn the sheer awesomeness of their sexual power.

Consider that the next time you see a father walking hand in hand with a little girl wearing a tiara and a t-shirt with the word “Princess” written in glitter across the front. Think of it when you hear a teenage girl gush about all the things her Daddy buys for her, or when you hear a father boast that “nothing’s too good for my little girl,” when they would not dream of saying the same about their sons.

Think about it a little more when you see entire families enable abusive girls; when their relational and other forms of aggression are allowed to flourish at the expense of everyone else, particularly the boys.

And if you ever wonder why corrupt, disingenuous ideologies of privilege, like feminism, are so warmly received by a generation of females who think entitlement is the natural order of things, then take a deeper look at how they got there.

If you are looking clearly, you’ll see that chivalrous fathers are a big part of the problem. They shape the training ground for feminists and narcissists. And they will indeed get angry, possibly violent, when you call them out on it.

So, in most cases, it’s better to just let it be. There’s nothing to be gained by standing between Daddy and his Little Nightmare. Life will deliver its own consequences.

The New Archetypes: Servant, Slave and Scapegoat

“The modern hero, the modern individual who dares to heed the call and seek the mansion of that presence with whom it is our whole destiny to be atoned, cannot, indeed must not, wait for his community to cast off its slough of pride, fear, rationalized avarice, and sanctified misunderstanding. ‘Live,’ Nietzsche says, ‘as though the day were here.’ It is not society that is to guide and save the creative hero, but precisely the reverse. And so every one of us shares the supreme ordeal––carries the cross of the redeemer––not in the bright moments of his tribe’s great victories, but in the silences of his personal despair.”  Joseph Campbell ~ The Hero with a Thousand Faces

♦ ♦ ♦

Anyone suggesting that they have ideas that will actually help men, psychologically speaking, has an obligation to place their philosophy, their rationale, front and center for men to see. I also understand that most practitioners don’t really do that, especially in what I loosely define as the “mental health” industry.

Usually what you get is a short and sputtering list of platitudes about “wholeness,” finding your “inner this” or “inner that,” accompanied by an obscure definition of the practitioner’s approach. It is either that or you get nothing but the bill.

Sometimes, often actually, they will inform you that they subscribe to feminist theory, which is an admission of their philosophy, except to the extent that it should be viewed cautiously, regardless of your sex.

Perseus
Perseus

This writing is intended to explain exactly what An Ear for Men is about in regard to assisting men, specifically in their more modern struggle for identity and an understanding of where they fit in the world. This is particularly important as the lack of those things may well result in some serious problems. Among them are family dysfunction, substance abuse, suicide, violence, anxiety, depression, shame and a lack of self-respect that often crosses the line into self-hatred.

It is not that the current crisis of male identity is the sole cause of these problems. It certainly isn’t. For example, family dysfunction is a self-perpetuating malady passed down from parents to children. In and of itself it has little to do with modern masculinity. Alcoholism is not a “male problem,” nor is violence or other forms of abuse, though those practicing under a feminist shingle may send that very message.

When assessing problems, it can be very difficult to tell the difference between cause and symptom, between a problem and its source. Does family dysfunction cause substance abuse or is substance abuse the cause of the dysfunction? Is violence at the root of relationship problems or do relationship problems fuel and promote the violence? Do communication problems cause hostility or does hostility cause communication problems?

Are all these problems symbiotic, just a teeter-totter interaction of various pathologies feeding each other? If so, can we ameliorate one problem by successfully intervening on another?

I suggest that there may be some truth answering those last two questions in the affirmative. There are, however, workarounds, back doors if you will, to what may well form part of the root structure of an array of problems with no readily visible connection. The good news about that is that you don’t need to see the connection initially in order to do something about it.

The philosophy here is that solutions begin with a recognition that there is indeed a crisis in male identity and male self-respect. It affects all of us, gay or straight, black or white or other race, regardless of religion or socioeconomic status.

Fifty years of gender politics have thrust all men into a new paradigm of sexual politics with no rule book. We are now three generations of men who have been pummeled with messages of who we are, almost all of them wrong, and who we are supposed to be, almost all of them destructive in one way or another. Our mental health industry is one of the prime proponents of these misguided ideas. They are espoused, for profit, at the expense of our men and boys.

The Old School Archetypes

The classic, historical masculine archetypes of Hero, Villain, Ruler, Warrior, Creator, Sage, Rebel and Explorer, all of which either defined what men chose or what they were driven to be. They provided men a model of what they chose not to be as well. They gifted men with a sense of identity and purpose, a rudder for their navigation of life. To a great degree (with some downsides) they worked. Jungian analysts, in the days before the ideological corruption of the field of psychology would likely tell you that these archetypes are rooted in our biology.[1]

It is also important to note that all these archetypes are anthropomorphic projections of the human male experience. They took root in our earliest mythologies because they were already in play in human life. Strangely, “mythology” told the real story of our lives. Every epic battle, great journey, tragedy and triumph of mythical figures mirrored the internal and external experience of real human beings in some way or another.

And so it went from epoch to epoch.

All that has been supplanted with a new and toxic narrative. To simplify it, we now live in a Zeitgeist where all male archetypes have been reduced to that of Villain, with the expectation that they will assume the role of Hero when needed…and directed.  The ongoing expectations of men to protect, provide, sacrifice and endure have not changed. The change in narrative, however, demands that recognition and honoring of those things ceases in favor of persistent demonization.

Hera
Hera

Similar changes have happened in the lives of women. The Manipulator, the Bitch, the Saboteur, the Queen and the Damsel in Distress have usurped the timeless archetypes of mother (Demeter), daughter (Persephone), lover (Aphrodite), civic life and learning (Athena), etc.. While all these and other female archetypes are on full social display, the spectrum of those archetypes has begun to degrade into a vacillation between two roles based on immediate perception. Women are universally seen as the Queen, unless they are in distress or claim to be in distress. Once the perception of female distress registers, social consciousness reverts them to being the original Damsel in Distress. It is as though they live in a perpetual state of flux between empowered and helpless, depending on which is more advantageous, just as we see play out today across the geopolitical landscape.

That, too, is ultimately heading for a crisis of identity in women, though for the purpose of this discussion we need not explore that further.

The denial of all this, and the assumption that it has not had a tremendous impact on the psyches of men, has left them in an emotional and social wasteland that produces more of the psychosocial problems already identified in this writing.

This leads to an inescapable conclusion. While men do need assistance with specific problems, they are also suffering in a famine of functional archetypes. Failing to recognize this, even if we seek in earnest to help them with problems symptomatic of that deficit, is putting a Band-Aid on potentially mortal wounds.

If we are to help men, it requires us to enable them to nurture a new narrative of themselves and their lives. They need new archetypes that foster a new sense of identity if they are going to thrive in a new age.

So what exactly is an archetype?

The Greek root words are archein, meaning “original or old,” and typos, meaning “Model or type.” Archetype: Original Model. Archetypes are the old, original models on which men, in the unconscious recesses of their biology, shape and mold their lives.

Perhaps in the days when there were payoffs, e.g. honor, appreciation, respect and status, men’s unconscious movement toward one archetype or another made more sense.

We do not live in those times any more, and we haven’t for most or all of your lifetime. What remains for most men in modern life is a world of expectation without reward, burden without honor and service without self.

Most men know on some level that this is true, but many have a very hard time facing it out of fear. Fear of the loss of social approval, the loss of love and the loss of what they imagine is the only space the world grants them.

Some of the fear is at least superficially warranted. Facing these issues means reaching a level of consciousness sufficient to make you a bad fit in the world of the walking blind. It means a new mythology with new archetypes born of a newer and more accurate picture of the world.

Medea
Medea

The daunting challenge is that men can no longer afford the luxury of allowing biology alone to write their story. Technology and ideology have rendered that too dangerous. The old model makes men far too easy to manipulate and far too willing to comply with the manipulation to their own detriment. You can find this same story throughout classic mythology so it is nothing new. Those, however, were cautionary tales, the moral lesson from which has been erased from the cultural consciousness. Most dare not speak honestly of Hera and Medea in the modern age.

The results of that resembles a modern genocide of the male soul.

Fortunately, that which has been forgotten can be learned again. And that which has been learned in error can be corrected. The fruits of that effort are the restoration and “wholeness” so easily promised and seldom delivered.

The risks of embracing this on a personal level is actually an illusion. Once you walk the newer path you will most probably find you don’t particularly want to return to the old one. The feigned approval of others loses its luster when the vision clears.

Despite appearances, all of this is really not so arcane. It is actually quite simple. You can start with most any problem in life; relationship and family issues are a good start. Map the mythology that got you there, that determined your actions and reactions. Were you playing the role of the Hero? The Warrior? Were you surrendering to the Siren’s Song? Was the Damsel in Distress a façade with something more sinister behind the surface impression?

Did a faulty narrative of your place and worth in this world lead you directly into a painful wall? And if that is true, do you have the fortitude to face it and change the story?

Imagine the consciously constructed mythology that would lead you to a better place with better people. Imagine the story of you being written by your own hand.

The solutions are not always easy, but they are made much more accessible when you make the decision to clear your own path; when you are at the helm, navigating your own way, when the stars in the sky are arranged according to your own dreams and desires.

How many miserable professional men out there can remember a time when they aspired to be artisans, writers or artists, only to watch those dreams buckle beneath the oppressive weight of a story that they did not write?

How many desperate men are clinging to the role of provider and protector, having become automatons in loveless, abusive marriages that have ground their self-respect into the dust?

How many men have stories that end with a bottle of scotch and a handgun because they cannot breathe and do not know where to find free air?

Men need an alternative to the new mythology’s archetypes of Servant, Slave and Scapegoat. The only thing preventing that from happening is being trapped in or clinging to a narrative they did not produce and which has never served them.

We have seen the results of men living in a world that is devoid of any honoring of men’s roles or even of men’s being. How can men cope in this sort of world?  How can therapists or anyone else facilitate a man moving from this restrictive, prison-like consciousness into a more truly masculine path that embraces his well-being, self-interest and happiness?

That is the objective; to create male space. Not just space for men to tell their stories, but to author and own them with support and encouragement from other men.

Paul Elam is the author of Men. Women. Relationships. – Surviving the Plague of Modern Masculinity. He also offers fee-for-service life coaching through his website.

[1]Andrew Samuels, Jung and the Post-Jungians ISBN 0415059046, Routledge (1986)

How We Kill Johnny

It was three weeks after I left the last residential treatment center for which I would ever work. A Saturday morning to be precise, and the phone rang- jarring me from the rare pleasure of a sleep in. It was Camille, so I knew it wasn’t good.

She wouldn’t call me if it were good

“You remember that boy Johnny you worked with, the one from Louisiana?” she asked.

“Yeah, why?”

“Dead,” she said. It was uttered in the tone of someone doing a poor job acting like they didn’t like delivering bad news.

“Drugs?” I asked.

“No,” she replied, “Suicide. Killed that little girl he was married to, as well. And shot some guy she was sleepin’ with, but he made it.”

I just lay there silent.

“Anyway, I knew you would want to know.”

I hung up without saying anything else. Knew I would want to know? Yeah, sure. Couldn’t wait to tell me was more like it. Camille was an ideological crusader. She made a career of telling the men we counseled what louts they were for being men, leaving me with the part time job of cleaning up her messes. We were the only two counselors in that program and the mix was volatile. I spent many days in the administrative offices fending off complaints about my “unusual style” in dealing with male clients. Unusual meant that I did not view masculinity as a mental health problem.

Johnny wasn’t the first tragedy in my years of doing that kind of work. Drug addicts very sadly have a way of dying young and I have never seen evidence that the negative messages I heard constantly at work about men were helping to change that.

I remembered Johnny’s story, and his pain. He was a twenty-two year old stock boy at an auto parts store in the hot and humid swamp lands of southern Louisiana. When he spoke, it was with rural earnestness, and a Cajun accent as thick as gators in bayou country.

Man, Paul, I doan know what to do ‘bout that girl o’ mine. I know she cheatin’. I know I doan make a dime what she don’t spend right away. Sometime she spend it on some other guy. But I can’t help it. Every time she call my name I got to come runnin’. Lord never made a bigger fool than me.”

Johnny was right. He was a fool, and couldn’t be talked out of his foolishness. Just like so many “real” men. His story isn’t reserved just for those who drink and drug themselves into oblivion because they have a woman they can’t live with, or without.

In this awful age of misandry, we live so many lies about men that we have lost all touch with the reality of what they are really like. And the cost of it is written in caskets and countless souls lost in a world with no memory of why they died.

You see, men love. They love with the most profound intensity and selflessness of which any creature on this earth is capable. And the steely bond between them and women is, unlike their hearts, unbreakable. When men die on the battlefield, they often fade away telling fellow soldiers “Tell my wife I love her.” Others cry out for their mothers as blood soaks the soil.

They are flattened by divorce, by the loss of love, even when that love is an illusion. Many will eat a gun rather than face life unloved.

They will lay down in traffic for the women they love and stand in the way of bullets to protect them. And they will strike down any many who dares offend them. They have been doing this for all of human history.

79% of all suicides are men. The death class. Yet all this has been rewritten with misandric ink. It has been revised by scholars who tell us men are bad, by psychologists whose main field of work seems to be targeting men as inadaquate women, instead of helping them on their own terms.

The religious establishment is of little help either. In most cases men are advised by clergy to “man up” and take full responsibility for whatever abuses they encounter in a relationship. The mentality behind all of this now drives our family law system, pushing men to despair and despondency with tragic frequency. That is not to even mention what it is doing to their children.

I hope, more than anything else, that at some point in our future that people wake up to this tragedy hidden in plain view. I hope that when we see the story on the evening news about a man who set himself ablaze outside a family court that we might stop and ask ourselves what kind of pain could drive someone to ease it with fire? When we read in the newspaper about the man who holed up in his house with a gun and his children, threatening to take them all out, can we at least wonder if this is just a crazy man, or a man driven to the brink by a pain so monstrous and devastating that even the unthinkable could become an option?

The normal 4 to 1 ration of male suicide more than doubles during divorce, without so much as causing a hiccup on the women’s numbers. Is this because men are inept at articulating feelings in a female mode? Or is it because we gleefully rip their lives to shreds during a divorce and then tell them they had it coming?

Indeed, there is a great deal we have to ask. The only problem is that all the wrong people are asking all the wrong questions. Former President Obama used to mark Father’s Day by shaming men for not being better Dads. We have psychotherapists spread the destructive illusion that women are a victim class and that men are a perpetrator class. Of course, they treat those men and women accordingly. And we have a system of higher education that is so ideologically corrupt that it is nearly impossible to get honest scholarship on the problems.

All this in a culture that still raises men to put women first in all matters without even pausing to think. In fact, when men attempt to reject that form of programming the people around them can become hateful in a hurry.

That may well have been what was needed on the African Savanna three million years ago, but today we need to start having the difficult, even scary conversation about teaching boys as much or more about taking care of themselves than taking care of women. It is not narcissism but survival skills and perhaps a prescription for less social violence.

Perhaps if Johnny were raised not to “come running” so quickly he would have learned enough to prevent two deaths.

Perhaps President Obama, in his own erroneous way,  was right.  We do need better Dads. We need Dads to teach their sons, not “how to treat a woman,” but how to hold their own with them.  We don’t need to teach them to “take care of their woman,” but to value their own worth enough to have standards that they will hold women to other than their appearance.

And we need to teach them how rare that is in modern life. The social picture I have painted here is also an artifact of the last 50 years of radical feminism’s toxic effect on sexual politics. Men and women do need to talk to each other, but differently than we seem capable of today. We need honesty between the sexes in a dishonest world. And we need compassion for men in a society that hates them.

I know, it’s obligatory. I can’t write a piece like this and not include some resources for men to call in in times of crisis, such as those paltry resources are. So I will include something here.  But I would still like to think, that somewhere, at some point in time, we can quit offering Band-aids for men to put on tumors and start helping them with their real problems.

National Suicide Prevention Hotline

Paul Elam is the author of Men. Women. Relationships. – Surviving the Plague of Modern Masculinity. He also offers fee-for-service life coaching through his website.

On Men, Women and Victims

There is a part of me that sparks a gag reflex when I think about writing dating advice claptrap. And while I am still not going to sink into such pablum, some responses to a meme I recently made reminded me of a theme I have seen echoed through parts of what some would call the manosphere for years.

The best explanation would be to show you the meme I placed on facebook, highlighting one of the early comments to it:

intimate underwear

And now the comment:

Too bad women have the uncanny ability to completely fake everything about them until they are married. But I like your point.

Like · Reply · 14 ·

I have heard and seen this sentiment many, many times before. It is, with all respect to the man commenting, what I consider to be a copout on personal accountability.

Before anyone rages, I get it. Women (and men) tend to enter relationships careful to always have their best foot forward. In the honeymoon phase of a new relationship, what you see is almost never what you really get.

I know too that many personality disordered women have especially honed skills at “fooling” their target into thinking they are something they are not. They have refined expertise in figuring out what makes you tick and indeed an uncanny ability to project precisely what they know you want to see and hear.

They are the master of the Love Bomb and will pile on adulation and admiration from the earliest moments in the relationship, almost smothering you in unconditional approval.

So, it is easy to nod my head in agreement with the well-meaning commenter who apparently feels like he is at the mercy of women with ill-intents because he has no way of knowing better.

It is also even easier to not nod my head in agreement because I pretty much think all this is bullshit. It is a copout designed for men to absolve themselves of their responsibilities when choosing women with which they will be vulnerable.

With some rare exceptions, men can screen out high-conflict, high-maintenance, high-frustration and high-danger women with a relatively small amount of consciousness and the willingness to accept responsibility for their own choices.

For some men that means taking a rather bitter dose of medicine in the form of the truth.

One, if you are sucked in by anyone in life saying all the right things at all the right times, you are what carnies call a “mark.” That is the carnival crowd’s term of endearment for a sucker who is just begging to part with his money.

On the heels of that is the reality that what people say is generally meaningless in assessing them as a human being. Sure, some crazies out there can’t talk for more than 30 seconds without revealing a bunting of crimson flags on full display.

Most women who turn out to be bad choices are somewhat more subtle, at least till you have an opportunity to see how they operate when stressed or disappointed.

And there’s the rub. People almost never show you who they are with words. They do it with actions. If you are like so, so many men and you are just listening for the right words and getting all tingly when you hear them, then you are the one with the problem.

I have long suggested that men pick a point early in a relationship to issue a firm NO to something relatively inconsequential that she wants, and then to watch her reaction like it was the most important psychodrama in your life. That is not a stretch because it actually could be. Add a few more years, a few more noes and a lawyer and you have 100% assurance of being in a living hell.

If her reaction is an immature level of disappointment; if she becomes cold and aloof, withholds sex and affection; if she responds with that ubiquitous female “fine” in a tone that promises retribution for not getting her way, then she is showing you everything you need to know.

One step further toward her after a demonstration like that and you have just elected to become the architect of your own misery. Telling yourself you had no way of knowing is a bit of self-delusion most men cannot afford in the long run, though there are millions of men every day who do just that – writing checks with their desire for love and sex which their bodies ultimately cannot cash.

You don’t even need to create a test scenario to find out. Modifying behavior completely, even in the do-good early days of relationship infatuation, is nearly impossible. There are tells in your line of vision at all times.

Does she shower you with buckets of, “You’re the most remarkable man I have ever met,” on the third date? That is not a sign that you have stumbled on Ms. Right. That is a sign that you are walking into a minefield and you need to quickly backtrack out of it.

Is she putting you up as some sort of savior for her physical or emotional life, before she knows how you take your coffee or how you like your eggs cooked? If that is the case, and you are buying it, you might want to consider that the only thing in you gullible enough to fall for it is your ego.

Healthy men don’t just not need a pedestal to stand on, they avoid standing on pedestals like the plague. And they cast a very, very wary eye at anyone who tries to elevate them to that level after spending a collective 8 hours or so getting to know them.

Here’s the deal, guys. Crazy women are NOT that skilled at hiding their crazy. Anyone actually looking for it can see it. In almost all cases it is only hidden from men who refuse to quit wearing blinders. That is the real, and I wager only problem here.

You may point out, and quite correctly, that it is easier to suck in a man who has very damaging and unresolved family of origin issues. It is indeed easier with men who have those problems. They were trained to seek abuse, and they are good at it. Crazy women, the destructive, high-conflict variety, have a great deal of cold empathy and have an expansive set of tools with which to manipulate and control their mark. If the mark has family issues, it paints a bigger target on his back.

The answer to it is just the same as it is for anyone else. Stay out of relationships until you are conscious of how you are manipulated and controlled. Family of origin issues can be very tough and time consuming to fully process, but it does not stop you from taking appropriate action when it is called for. As they say, “Fake it till you make it,” and, “If you bring your mind, your ass will follow.”

Feminism has brought us 50 years of women digging a chasm between themselves and men. Their path is one of mistrust, distance and separatism (except from men’s wallets and the occasional desire for proxy violence). It is an ideology not of healthy bonding between men and women, but rather it is a poisoning of the ground.

Men who believe they are hapless victims of evil women, but who make no effort to screen them out based on character or values, are following right into the feminist mindset of a hostile-dependent relationship with the enemy.

It is the worst model for male-female relations in human history and it thrives because it only demands a victim mentality, fertilized with a lack of agency and accountability.

Is this an endorsement for marriage to “the right woman”? No. Refusing to participate in marriage is wise because it reduces the chances that the state will wind up governing your life, and it removes the temptation for women to play that trump card, no matter how carefully screened, should the opportunity arise.

It still remains that human beings are a pair-bonding species. Marriage or not, most people choose not to fly solo. With that in mind, every human individual has a choice about who they are with. In short, there are no victims, only volunteers.

The more men that understand that, the fewer men will end up searching pathetically for help that is most likely not there.

Paul Elam is the author of Men. Women. Relationships. – Surviving the Plague of Modern Masculinity. He also offers fee-for-service life coaching through his website.

Why men can’t say no. A historical perspective

A note to readers: These are opinion pieces. While there may be empirical support for elements of what I am saying, it won’t be presented here. It’s not an academic paper, just a take it or leave it bit of my opinion. PE

Men are only as mentally and emotionally healthy as their ability to say no to a woman. Actually, that bears repeating. Men are only as mentally and emotionally healthy as their ability to say no to a woman.

Obviously, this does not apply in some areas. Mental health problems won’t be solved by simply finding a woman and uttering the word “no.” Gay men may have a somewhat different perspective about this but they are raised with the same life expectations as straight men so there is no real pass for them either. Quite the contrary.

Still, I will hold to this proposition and do my best to explain it. I can tell a great deal about a man, his boundaries, his values and ultimately his integrity and character with a simple measurement of his obsequiousness with and deference to women.

courtly_love_5

To understand all this requires a bit of a history lesson, dating back to the twelfth century and the cultural movement driven by Romantic Chivalry.

At precisely that moment in history the warrior code was harnessed to the emerging culture of courtly love, an aristocratic invention that saw the military principles of honor, gallantry and service placed in the service of a new Commanders in Chief – courtly ladies.

As historian Jennifer G. Wollock summarizes, “The idea that love is ennobling and necessary for the education of a knight comes out of the lyrics of this period but also in the romances of knighthood. Here the truest lovers are now the best knights.”[1]

While there is arguable evidence that protection of women and children is a basic male instinct, tied to reproductive access, this is likely the first known time in history where that mandate was codified.

Over a period of a few hundred years, Romantic Chivalry spread to all the principle courts of Europe and found its way more broadly to lives of everyday men and women who coveted the lifestyle of the upper class. It also fostered a great deal of female privilege and the inescapable neoteny that came with it.

So went the first known institutionalization of pressuring men into a tradition of male servitude – or obsequiousness – toward women that continues unchecked today.  Yet it was only the first of three foundational events that would become the prevailing model of gender relations; one that negatively impacts men’s lives and mental health.

Industrial Factory Depression

The next developmental watershed in men’s deference to women was the Industrial Revolution. While thrusting humanity into modern civilization, it was the next giant step toward normalizing a standard of mental illness in men where it concerned their relationships with women.

Prior to the Industrial Revolution, men largely worked in or near their homes. They worked as artisans, farmers, producers of livestock, tradesman or some other profession that they passed down to their sons through apprenticeship and mentoring. While still driven by the force of Romantic Chivalry, they were as involved in the raising of children as mothers were. Those mothers, by the way, also had laborious duties that were a regular part of their role in the family. With the combined work of both parents and participation of the children, families operated more like business concerns than what you most commonly see today.

Both discipline and nurturing from both parents were immediately present; both male and female influence in the lives of children.

The Industrial Revolution, combined with Romantic Chivalry, accelerated the problem. The mass migration to cities began. Fathers were removed from the home (and the daily lives of their children) to go into factories and work. And of course one of the first products of that revolution was advanced technology in the home, making the lives of women much safer and less arduous. It also created a lot more free time for women, arguably time for them to become fixated on their emotional needs.

The impact of that on family dynamics hit like a tsunami. Women were left to the increasingly softening work of home and children alone, and left in want of adult company. Husbands returning from long, grueling days of labor returned home to be fed and to rest, without the luxury of making up time they had missed with their families.

In this familial void, women quickly turned to their children, particularly male children, to fill their emotional needs. And fathers, consumed by work and duty, largely just enforced the wishes of the mother on the children. This triggered the second wave of privilege and psychological neoteny in western women and where men, due to resentment over their absence, began to be demonized.

All of this greatly increased the likelihood that mothers would form inappropriate bonds with their male children in order to fill the holes in their lives. In other words, we took a step toward a society of emotional incest.

This is difficult to overstate. What I am defining here is a culture of emotionally incestuous bonding between mothers and sons. The implications of that are tremendous, and in fact they seem to have been verified by the following 150 years of technological advancement and cultural malaise.

Perhaps it is not coincidental that the onset of the industrial revolution also saw the first formations of what were known to be “Henpecked Husbands” clubs; groups of men who gathered to use peer pressure to induce each other into tolerating more demands and abuse from their wives.

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The Industrial Revolution gave birth to a new age in civilization. It also ultimately resulted in the breakdown of the family unit as it was once known. The late nineteenth century rang in the Tender Years Doctrine, and with it the first legal presumption that younger children were better off in the care of mothers than fathers. The steamroller did not stop from there, it accelerated. The same glut of time and resources that spawned women to create an emotionally incestuous culture also produced gender feminism, the last and final of a monumentally powerful triad of events that left the majority of men in seemingly helpless servitude to women.

Barely one and a half centuries from the first American factory being built and our culture is all but dominated by a woman-first mentality. So rote and mindless have men become that they allow single mothers to effortlessly continue the spread of emotional incest and other forms of child abuse.

Our boys enter an education system completely dominated by female teachers, all of whom are a product of the same forces that created the new paradigm.

Society, especially the female dominated realms of home and early education, produces males that are highly, often terminally dependent on female approval. By the time boys get more substantial exposure to males, the pattern is set. Not to mention the fact that the males they are exposed to are as dependent on female approval as those who might otherwise provide mentoring. They too, as beta enforcers, put pressure on boys to participate in the incestuous bond as expressed in the schools.

This puts us squarely in an age of crippled masculine identity and the consequential impotence. We have legions of men who have stood by silently while their families have been destroyed in corrupt courts, where our young men are being driven out of education and into fields of combat and where men are more likely to support and enable these travesties than to object to them.

Their silence is the mental health issue of our time and you can see it reflected most clearly in men’s interpersonal relationships with women.

When I co wrote “Say Goodbye to Crazy,” a book aimed at women who were dealing with the devastation wrought in their relationships by mentally unstable and abusive ex-wives, a substantial part of the focus was directed at husbands who lacked the ability to stand up to their former partners.

That problem is not contained to the second marriages of a handful of men. It is a sweeping societal problem that affects all men.

Perseus (1)

If you read my last article about male space, you will know that when I gave men in a treatment setting the task of focusing on themselves vs focusing on the women in that community, the immediate reaction was fear. That fear was proven justified when the men and women, both staff and clients of that facility, reacted in anger to the men putting themselves first for a single weekend.

What was also proven was the dire need for men to overcome overwhelming programming and pressure.

With a catastrophic gender suicide gap and a plethora of other problems affecting men, at the root of it is men’s programming to sacrifice their interests, well-being and their boundaries in order to take care of and please women.

They have lost the ability to say no. Indeed they have never had it. They are terrified of the loss implied by the very thought of it. The fact that we have done away with all of our rituals to transition boys into manhood does not help but that will be a topic for a future essay.

Correcting this, reversing the trend, is easier said than done. In fact, it is damned hard work for most, and simply undoable for the many who lack the strength to face and walk through fear on such a primal level. It can, however, be accomplished in stages for the dedicated.

The first stage is Simple Awareness and is by far the easiest. It is just education and can be had as easily as grasping the contents of this writing. When men understand the forces that compel them to please women at any cost, they create the opportunity and motivation to imagine it can be corrected. With that, they can rewrite their future, largely by rewriting their history. More to come on that as well.

The second stage is brutal. There is no other way to put it. It requires men to face the fear of ripping the emotionally incestuous bond; the foundational fear of all men, the fear that most resembles the fear of death. It means putting themselves in the jaws of the beast from which they have to scratch and claw their way out.

Once they have emerged they reach the final and unending stage of walking in the footsteps that were determined by a newly shaped history, sans the Romantic Chivalry, sans the emotional incest and sans the gynocentrism.

I realize that the definitions of these stages are cursory and incomplete. There is much more to them. A more thorough examination is next in this series of essays intended to help men free themselves and their sons from the clutches of a path that was chosen for them in favor of a path that they carve out for themselves.

[1] Jennifer G. Wollock, Rethinking Chivalry and Courtly Love, (Published by Praeger, 2011)

Why Romantic Love is a Farce

A lot of the material I present here is geared toward a values-centered approach with women. In other words, instead of letting your dick or your heart make any decisions about women, slow down and let your values speak, particularly your self-respect. And let that self-respect have the final word.

And by self-respect I mean self-respect on a level that you would, without batting an eye, let Penelope Cruz hit the road before you would tolerate an ounce of her bullshit.

The point here is that between your values, your heart, and your dick, your values are the only thing that will cover your ass. Strangely enough, your values, especially self-respect, happens to be the biggest obstacle to getting approval and acceptance from most modern women.

I reckon that makes it worth some conversation.

I’ve seen a lot of good commentary and feedback on that very subject. Some of it provides material that is perfect for penning my own responses. I got one such comment recently on the YouTube channel. This particular gent had the following to say about sticking to your values with women:

The message is simple. Stay away from long term relationships with women unless you want to jump through hoops and walk on eggshells every single day and for what?

If you follow Paul’s advice and be assertive she’ll dump you and find someone who’ll grovel and submit, and there is plenty of emasculated idiots out there who’ll do everything that you won’t do for her.

MGTOW is the only way you don’t lose.

Fair enough. Every man is entitled to his opinion. I know guys personally who think this way. And it makes sense for them.

I know a lot more guys who hell or high water will seek long-term relationships. This includes men who identify as red pill. Like me, they won’t get married, and they won’t do anything else that puts them at risk of state control and abuse when it comes to a relationship, but they still seek to pair bond.

So, with all respect to the cocoon that some men can tolerate where it concerns females, I am going to interpret the comment with the much larger, pair-bonding population in mind. Let’s start at the beginning.

“The message is simple,” he says, “Stay away from long-term relationships…”

So far so good. I agree, he is putting things simply. No LTRs means avoiding the complications that come with them. I wouldn’t argue with that at all.

My message is also simple, doing the bitch-ditch as soon as you see serious red flags it is another valid approach, even when seeking a long term relationship. After all, red pill men are not stupid. They are more on top of things like female privilege, entitlement whores and personality disorders than the average hombre.

While the commenter and I are not in lockstep there is not really a significant difference between us, so far. Well, maybe there is. Let’s finish that last sentence.

Stay away from long term relationships with women unless you want to jump through hoops and walk on eggshells every single day and for what?

What…the…ever…loving…? Now just hold on a minute here. Bear with me, because I think that line reveals more than the writer intended.

So, men in long-term relationships have to jump through hoops? They must walk on eggshells? What? They don’t have a choice? Their free will is gone?

What I see in this statement is clear. He is reflecting the often unspoken beliefs of most blue pill men. That is, you have to jump through hoops and walk on eggshells if you are afraid she will leave you.

And he confirms that in the very next statement.

If you follow Paul’s advice and be assertive she’ll dump you and find someone who’ll grovel and submit, and there is plenty of emasculated idiots out there who’ll do everything that you won’t do for her.

So, what we have here is not a guy making a MGTOW argument against the legal and social dangers of marriage, or even long term relationships.

What we have is just a man who has raised a white flag and accepted that his values don’t stand a chance around a woman. He is saying that he isn’t emotionally equipped to let go of a woman who doesn’t respect him.

Now, I’m well aware of the fact that there are enough women who expect you to jump through hoops to elect Hillary Clinton ten times over. Entitled, arrogant women are the gold standard for the western world, and exceptions are just that, exceptions. But remember, these are not legal issues. We are not even talking about marriage, common law or otherwise. We are not talking about legal vulnerabilities.  The comment I am responding to is about emotional vulnerability and nothing else.

But remember, these are not legal issues. We are not even talking about marriage, common law or otherwise. We are not talking about legal vulnerabilities.  The comment I am responding to is about emotional vulnerability and nothing else.

With all respect to the commenter I have to say that in the realm of emotions men have choices. Building a wall around yourself is perfectly acceptable one if that is what a man wants to do, but I don’t advise projecting that fear-based decision as sound advice for every man around you.

“Oh my God, she’ll leave you if you don’t kiss her ass,” doesn’t exactly reek of a confident man.

For pity’s sake, let her leave. It may cause some grief, but unless you have a ton of serious issues, it won’t destroy you. There are many men who can enjoy relationships, even long term ones, and survive the emotional fallout if the woman turns out to be a loser deep into the game. There is no reason you can’t be one of them.

For any man who chooses, who is leading with his values, hoops and eggshells can be the deal breakers that show up early on. They can be instant rule outs for the conscious, non-gynocentric man. And they can be an opportunity to determine if she is teachable.

No doubt that good values will send a lot of women packing. If your self-respect is genuine, that is a lot more like letting yourself flick a booger out of the car window than being torn apart by loss.

Seriously speaking, what is it that men are afraid of losing? A hypergamy-addled, manipulative and controlling bitch? Getting rid of that is losing? How did so many men get to the totally insane and powerless point that eighty-sixing a loser with a vagina is anyone’s loss but hers?

I don’t have a red pill handbook but if I wrote one that scenario would be in the chapter on how you win. Getting a loserectomy whenever it’s indicated is only a loss when you have an attachment to losers or an attachment to women that is so bloody gynocentric that it will have you gobbling a shit sandwich and asking for some chips to go with it.

You can do better than that.

When I wheel my trash to the curb for pickup I don’t take Kleenex with me to wipe tears away. When something in my house breaks and I replace it, I feel good about the replacement. I don’t have a sense of nostalgia or grief about the defective part. It just goes in the can with the rest of the trash.

There is only one force on earth that can make someone see cutting a female tumor out as that big of a loss. Gynocentrism. Not just gynocentrism but the equally anti-male institution of romantic love.

We have covered this before in Chasing the Dragon, what I consider to be the most important article on this website. It gives you the lowdown.

Romantic love isn’t even a basic human instinct. It is a social construct put together by a couple of high falutin’ women in the aristocracy 900 years ago. It spread like herpes in a whorehouse because men are so easily manipulated by attractive damsels.

Well, most men. That is what created the need for the red pill. But just my opinion, part of the red pill is disabusing you of the notion that you are at the mercy of any of this. You do have free will, and you have choices to make about what you won’t put up with. You also have the responsibility for making those choices.

One of those choices that may be better for most men than life as a monk is to refuse to follow the psychotic path of infatuation and to refuse to confuse it with anything that might be called love.

That is a big deal. Men sometimes kill themselves over relationship losses. They submerge in booze and drugs and other forms of slow death and destructive behavior, too. Their depression in the midst of loss can be crippling.

A lot of that is because they invest the wrong things emotionally and psychologically in women and because they lack a counter-narrative to the romantic model – one that gets them through loss and lessens its intensity.

The message here is that the path to surviving loss is simple, and admittedly difficult, but doable.

Lead with your values. Finish with them too. Realize that infatuation is insanity. Seek to cure it, not follow it. Romantic love and chivalry destroy your honor, your values and leave you vulnerable to great pain and abuse. There is one place that has every answer you ever needed to remain whole and healthy with women and with anyone else.

It is called a mirror. Use it often and with courage.

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Male space is an inside job

Spanning throughout the network of modern men’s media you will find a substantial amount of perspective on the concept of “male space.”  You’ll see a lot of harsh commentary from men who feel male space has been encroached upon by gender ideologues who believe that male occupied space is inherently dangerous to women.

This certainly would appear to be the case when you consider many traditionally male institutions that have been forced through legal channels or bad publicity to relent and include women in whatever they are doing. This even includes what some might consider privacy violations, such as female reporters being allowed into the locker rooms of professional athletes while they are in various stages of undress.

Some men point, and rightfully so, to the hypocrisy of this happening in a society which has had an explosion in women’s organizations that routinely exclude men. Needless to say, male reporters won’t be finding their way into the dressing rooms of female athletes unless they want to be arrested.

Sadly, this is usually where the conversation stops. There is little explanation to be found of what male space actually is, or why it is so important. With all respect to those writing on this subject, it too often falls short and lends itself to victim mentality. It’s understandable. The hypocrisy is real, as is the dearth of male space. Still, I want to attempt to take a deeper look at what is happening. As always, you will stand as judge and jury on this particular take.

In the mid-1990s I worked at a residential treatment facility for men, women and young adults with alcohol and substance abuse problems. The campus was nestled in a locally iconic pre-midcentury residential area surrounded by sprawling oaks that were planted when the homes were built.

In addition to a nursing station and an administration building there were three homes, two for men and women respectively and one for young adults.

The men’s home had a covered back porch with ample seating. During good weather (and sometimes bad) the men occupied that area, working on written assignments, reading or just talking with each other.

It was probably no coincidence that they chose this particular area to congregate. Just outside the porch railing was an outside stairway that led up to where the women were quartered, on the second story of the house next door. Every woman coming or going from there had to pass by within just a few feet of the men’s porch. That often resulted in the women stopping to chat with the men. Sometimes briefly, sometimes longer.

I spent time observing their interactions. When women were not present, the men remained focused on what they were doing. They were generally loose and comfortable. Most importantly, they appeared comfortable in each other’s company.

When female clients came by, particular the attractive ones, everything changed. Reading and writing ceased. The men’s posture immediately improved. Occasionally chests puffed out, and some men stood upright, as if to take a more visible position among their peers.

What was really remarkable is that in most cases the men who were sitting and talking with each other disengaged and put their focus on the woman in their proximity. In more fundamental terms, when the women showed up, the men stopped whatever they were doing and focused their attention on them.

The competition was evident.

The more sexually attractive the woman was, the more the impact on the group of men; the more competition. Those occasions were sometimes marked by conflict and arguing among the men.

This was not an invasion of male space. The men were, instinctively perhaps, competing with each other, even undermining each other and betraying friendships in order to take the lead in drawing those women into that space.

It happened over and over again.

I decided to use this as an opportunity for an experiential exercise for the men, starting in the weekly men’s group I facilitated. In that group I recited some of my observations to the men about what I saw.  The anxiety level in the room immediately went up. Clients fidgeted, shifted their weight around in their chairs and stared at the floor.

We were already in uncharted territory for most in the group.

I gave them an assignment to carry out until the following week’s group. I told them that when on the porch the objective was to remain focused on whatever they were doing and not interact with the women who came by; to be polite but explain to the women that they were busy at the moment and did not have time to socialize, and then to go back with whatever they were doing.

The anxiety level in the group spiked again.

I inquired about that and the responses I got were mostly an acknowledgment that the men feared their actions would be interpreted as rude and the women would be angry. I interpreted this, and still do, as meaning what the men actually feared was being rejected; that it was not about offending the women so much as losing their attention and approval. That fear is a topic for another article, by the way, in due course.

I sent the men off, some of them looking sheepish, to tackle this assignment. I was not convinced that they could or would go through with it.

I came to work the following Monday and the first thing I was greeted with was another staff member telling me that the women were complaining that the men had been rude to them over the weekend. I regarded that with some suspicion. That suspicion was later confirmed by talking to the men in the community. To a man they maintained that everyone had been polite but had followed through with the assignment.

They also confirmed that the women had become angry. In fact, a couple of them had tested the limits by dressing suggestively and lingering near the men’s porch. Interestingly, and to my surprise, the men reacted to this by firming their resolve. Eventually they moved back into the house, where the women were not allowed.

The exercise yielded some interesting results. One, I did not anticipate the women’s anger, though in hindsight I probably should have. The other is that not only did the men follow the instructions, they became determined not to be defeated. They grew closer to each other and for at least that weekend the arguments and conflict that typically happen between men in those settings dropped to near zero. They had congealed as a group and were working together, arguably on the problems that brought them to treatment to begin with.

Young man focusing on playing snooker

Instead of surrendering their space, they created it, and built a fence around it as brothers.

Another interesting effect was the one this experiment had on the clinical and administrative staff. Some of the women who worked there were offended. They thought that the exercise I gave the men had nothing to do with their treatment for addiction and that it was hurtful to female clients. As I recall the word “abusive” even came up. Some of the male staff felt the same way, though male and female staff alike were unable to articulate any form of reasoning about it that made sense.

Their inability to do that was understandable. They were trying to express emotionally driven objections; an irrational rationale. The attitude was the same brand of obtuse that we find in people who think it was women’s oppression that kept female reporters out of men’s locker rooms and that men banding together, focusing on their own needs and the needs of their male peers was harmful to women.

Frankly, at that point, the staff was lagging behind the male clients on emotional health and insight alike. The men, with few exceptions, gained from it. Several of them described the experience as “empowering,” an interesting word from the mouths of men.

I could see it in their demeanor as well. I found it intriguing that it expressed itself in some of the same ways that I saw in the men when they were posturing to draw feminine attention. Their posture was better. They walked more upright with an air of confidence atypical to men in that setting. They exchanged knowing glances and smiles with me for quite some time.

They felt better about themselves, something pretty important for people who have wrecked their self-respect with alcohol and drugs. They learned about themselves and about men.

Men change when you bring a woman into the picture. They change in very drastic ways. You can have a group of happily married, committed men in a group; men with no intention at all of infidelity, and when you introduce an attractive woman in the picture they change. They lose focus on whatever they are doing. They compete. It is instinctive, it is nature. And it affects all men. At least one of the men in that particular group was gay and he reported the same benefit as the others, plus he felt more included as a fellow man than he had before.

Is this a suggestion that men should avoid women? Hardly. Human beings pair bond. It is not nearly always for life but they still overwhelmingly tend not to fly solo in life. Their healthy, normal needs include intimate connection.

For men, just as it does for women, it also means a time and place for space of their own.

We may not be able to control whether women are allowed entrance to a men’s country club, or into men’s locker rooms or any number of other places. Each man and each group of men can, however, take the space they need to connect to themselves and to each other. Those who are offended by that are just those who want irrational, exploitive control.

That is what the majority of staff at a treatment facility found offensive. Men turning inward and doing the very work they were there to do; connecting to each other supportively in the process. They were concerned that men doing this was an affront to women. For them, the men’s actions on that porch was a problem to be fixed rather than what it was, men in trouble supporting each other and restoring some of their dignity. They were isolated, disaffected men finding connection and a sense of community.

Men’s challenge is not to defend male space, but to create it. Male space, the kind that matters, is not on golf courses or locker rooms. It is within the sanctity of their own minds and hearts. It is in the ability to tend to their own needs rather than blindly surrender to reproductive instinct, laying waste to their dignity and leaving their brothers under the bus along the way.

It cannot be taken. It cannot be encroached upon. It can only be surrendered.

Bemoaning the lack of male space is not an act of dissent. It is not activism. It is simply an acknowledgment of personal and collective failure.

When men value themselves and brotherhood more than an approving smile from a pretty face, they will have all the space they need.

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What Men Fear the Most

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We make heroes of men who conspicuously face and overcome fear for a good cause. But there is one fear that we not only want men to run from; we punish them if they show any bravery at all.

There is one fear, above all others, that unites men in what we have come to regard as modern masculinity. It’s a fear that affects almost all men, whether they are meek and timid by nature or the kind men who walk into burning buildings to save people’s lives.

It includes professional boxers, commercial fishermen, inner city police officers, government whistleblowers and law enforcement agents who infiltrate organized crime.

It is not a fear of death that cripples them, nor of torture or personal ruin. But it is a fear so great their refusal to face it has driven them at worst to kill themselves and others, at best to trade in personal dignity and self-respect for life as a servant and court jester.

The set up for this is both complicated and almost indescribably powerful. There is a solution to it for many men that requires an understanding of how we get set up for this fatal weakness. That understanding itself requires courage to face. So much so that most men never will.

That fear is the fear of losing a woman’s love and approval. It is a fear so deep and so pernicious that men will go to insane lengths to preserve it, even when being bitch slapped with the fact that the love and approval aren’t there and never were.

Let’s look at some anecdotes that form a rather uncomfortable picture.

Why it is that so many soldiers who lay dying on the field of battle call for their mothers, or whose last words when fallen are “tell my wife I love her?” Why do so many men work so hard on salvaging relationships with women who are beyond salvage; women who have proven not only that they don’t love those men but in many cases that they feel deep hatred for them?

Why do so many men never develop the skills to defend themselves from abusive women, men who volunteer to become financial marks, throwing their hard earned cash away to impress women who could not be less interested in them? Why do men continue to volunteer labor and personal resources to women, even after they have been wiped out by them in a divorce? Speaking of divorce, why is the tendency toward suicide so overwhelmingly dominated by men during a divorce or breakup?

Why do men seem so incapable of change when it comes to how they approach getting involved with women? In short, most men’s criteria for taking an emotionally, psychologically and financially invested leap with a woman hinges solely on whether she returns his physical attraction.

Why don’t we, as a rule, ever talk to our son’s about this? Why do we conspire, men and women together, to keep them in the dark and to keep them so vulnerable to women?

We are pummeled with the answers to these questions every day of our lives. They slap us in the face and scream in our ears. They grab us by the lapels and shake us violently, trying to get our attention, and yet most men, nearly all of them, invest everything they have in not seeing, not hearing and not feeling any of it. That too goes back to the fear of loss.

I talked to a young man once who came to me for advice. He had saved up to buy his girlfriend a birthday present. It wasn’t something expensive. He was 21 and just starting out in work life. His girlfriend scoffed at the present and told him she had hoped for something a little nicer.

My advice, of course, was to get a better girlfriend or to do without till he learned to land one who was a bit less of a whore, but he was unable to hear any of that. He just kept circling back to his dilemma that he wanted to please her but could not afford to do so. He even asked questions about career paths, with the inference being that he did not ever want to feel so inadequate again.

When I tried to pin him down on what terrified him so about her rejection, he opted to seek advice elsewhere. He exited the conversation in a bit of a huff, telling me that he wasn’t, by God, afraid of anything.

It is easy to write this off to the naivety of youth, but it is now about 15 years later and from what I hear he still lives the same way, in an endless cycle of trying and failing to make a woman happy enough to keep him around. Even though he is now married and with a child, he still allows her to keep him running on the performance treadmill, constantly sweating and pushing for crumbs of occasional, transient approval.

I am pretty sure he has no idea what is about to come, now that there is a child, and he has pretty much maxed out on his income potential. When the other shoe drops, and it will, he will be devastated. When and if he recovers, he will set about finding a woman much in the same way he found his wife, by overextending his means and offering it up on a silver platter to anything pretty, hoping for another crumb of approval.

How did this level of irrational, destructive fear ever become the default setting for men? Well, I think my theory on it has some weight.

The critical, formative years of every child’s existence is dominated by the female presence and the female will, which is often self-serving, unhealthy and for boys, emotionally incestuous. Fathers, whether absent or present, contribute to the problem.

Where there is no male influence, the mother often runs amok. She teaches her boys that they better please her or she will punish them with rejection, physical pain and often psychological humiliation. For boys that have already lost one parent, this is a soul-killing, developmental nightmare and you can bet that their minds adjust with compliance.

Where the father is still present, he is often the enforcer of the same sick agenda. The term “you just wait till your father gets home,” is the young male child’s first experience with proxy violence, instigated by the woman who will shape his view of all women for life, enforced by the man will shape his view of himself and all men.

At some point, he enters the female dominated primary education system, where his coercion into satisfying the will of women is institutionalized. By the time he reaches middle school, his preparation for how to handle his budding attraction to girls is fixed in cement.

And there is yet another key factor that puts the icing on this misandric cake. Romantic chivalry.

For every man’s entire life he is inundated with the message of sacrificial, unconditional male love and dedication in exchange for the appearance of approval. In fact, his willingness to place himself on the altar of female acceptance is tied directly to his ability to feel worthy as a man.

As we know, an unworthy man is just about the lowest thing you can be in this culture.

The mantras of “Happy wife, happy life,” and “When mamma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy,” or their sentimental equivalents have been drilled into his consciousness from the time he is old enough to understand what “big boys don’t cry” means.

Once you sweep away all the false pieties of “good man” and “a man who knows how to treat a woman,” what you have left is the groveling servant produced by romantic chivalry.

You see, and it is very important to get this, Chivalry was once a military ethic. It was a code that demanded sacrifice for the unprotected. It was an honorable warrior’s code. It was embraced as a romantic model in the 12th century by the aristocracy, then later emulated by the masses.

The mindless, servile action of men with women was just a social trend that stuck around for a long time. Men weren’t born fools and puppets; it was social pressure that caused it. The human being’s innate tendency for gynocentrism made it all the easier.  And it continues to this day.

I recall another event from decades ago, but it will be something very familiar to you, right now. I lived in a duplex. The man who lived above me was a huge sports fan, especially baseball. I could often hear the games through the thin floor of the building. One day his girlfriend was there. They were arguing because he was, according to her, watching too much baseball. I heard her clearly say, “You care more about baseball than me!”

The next thing I heard was the door slamming and her footsteps going down the stairs. A few seconds later he was coming down the stairs, screaming “Stephanie! Please wait!”

At that moment, his baseball game was still coming through the TV in his living room, unwatched. He was on the street at this point. I could see him through the window, pleading with her to stay. Just a few moments later they left together — after he went back into his flat and turned off the game.

And that is how they get you, guys. Doesn’t everyone know that her threat to abandon him was her ace in the hole? Don’t most or all women know this? Don’t they play that card like a boss?

Stephanie’s threatening to leave wasn’t just a minor manipulation. She was triggering every ingrained fear he ever had, from the time he was old enough to talk. Her rejection was his mother’s rejection, his teacher’s disapproval and somewhere in his mind there unconsciously lurked a proxy agent to punish him for his failure at romantic chivalry.

Of course, he wasn’t consciously aware of any of this. All he knew is the thought of her abandoning him left a hole in his gut big enough to swallow him up.

She may not have been totally conscious of her actions, but you can bet she knew enough to know that in walking away she was ripping him to pieces.

When she left, she was taking his manhood with him. Just as the young woman who sneered at a less expensive present from a lovelorn young man had turned his masculinity into a cruel punchline. The only way either of these men could redeem themselves was to lose themselves. Their only path to love was self-hatred.

And that is the moral lesson of today’s talk. Romantic chivalry isn’t love. Often, it is the opposite. It makes narcissists and children of women, and hapless pawns of men, who on close inspection do not resemble anything of what we have ever really honored about men.

In my way of thinking, the only way men can overcome this is by walking into the heart of their fears and rebuilding their self-image on their values instead of on their willingness to sacrifice them. In a way, it requires rewriting the narrative of your life. It is harder to do that for most men than to face a hail of bullets or to walk into a burning building when everyone else is walking out.

The good news is that you can start doing this anytime you make the choice.

The Real History of MGTOW

Fedora tip to Peter Wright of gynocentrism.com.

Recently, Brad Wilcox of PragerU did a video trying to sell the idea that a man is better off yoked to a woman he has to take care of versus life as a bachelor pursuing his own interests and leisure activities.

The reaction from the group of men who identify as Men Going Their Own Way, or MGTOW, was swift, critical and on point.

Now, you might think that the divide between MGTOW and pro-marriage advocates is a relatively new one, born in the internet by a collection of men who made a choice to rebel against the institution of marriage and opened a real-time, public dialogue about it.

In modern times we can trace the kerfuffle back to the early 2000’s, when a group of Men’s Rights Activists created the first internet forum dedicated to men going their own way. An archived conversation with one of the founders was recorded by Rocking Mr. E.

Part of the problem those men encountered was also, in their minds, the solution. Men of this type were fiercely independent. Or, more bluntly put, MGTOW tend not to play well with others. Rather than cooperate with each other, they often went their own way.

That is not a criticism. Quite the contrary, it was MGTOW steadfastness and out-of-the-box thinking that led them to re-popularize the idea of men checking out and taking care of themselves.

Their ideas were subject to quick evolution. For instance, early in the first known internet version of a MGTOW manifesto, they claim to hold the objective of, and I quote, “instilling masculinity in men,” a clear “man up” mandate that would most likely be scoffed at by contemporary men going their own way.

Thus, as far as we know, is when the modern use of the term emerged. Many have assumed that this is a first for western culture, and have even struggled to claim ownership over what “going your own way” means.

There has been a fair amount of infighting over that, from which I have not been exempt. Yet, if we look at history we find that the bickering is like two fleas arguing over who owns the dog. The idea of men going their own way is bigger and older than anyone talking about it today.

Going one’s own sweet way and other variants have been in popular discourse for centuries – including but not limited to men’s freedoms and the right to a bachelor life.

There is a record of men avoiding marriage — the dictates of gynocentrism, and the attempts by those who would shame men from that path that stretches back nearly into antiquity.

One good source to gather more information on this is The Age of the Bachelor: Creating an American Subculture by Howard P. Chudacoff, a 1999 book that chronicles a good bit of the history of misogamy and debunks completely the idea that it is a new phenomenon.

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Looking back as recently as 1950 we have evidence of the shaming backlash against men who reject marriage and gynocentrism in the form of a book, “Why Are You Single?” a collection of essays compiled by Hilda Holland.

The thrust of the text throws a shadow on the mental and emotional fitness of confirmed bachelors, raising doubt about the quality of their parents, suggesting unresolved Oedipal issues, a lack of maturity and insufficient moral bearing. Such characteristics echo what later came to be referred to as Peter Pan Syndrome.

One of the contributors, Dr. Bernard Glueck, wrote that bachelorhood represented “primitive and infantile thinking.”

He also characterized bachelors as “impulse ridden,” “excessively narcissistic” and even “sadistic.”

It’s the mid-twentieth century version of Brad Wilcox, only with less finesse and undoubtedly less backlash from a population of men more tolerant of being shamed.

Reaching back a bit further in time, to 1896, Ernest Belfort Bax neatly summarized the obvious driving force behind the resistance. In his essay titled “The Matrimonial Privileges of Women,” Bax outlines 12 key areas that put men at unjust, egregious disadvantage, vulnerable to fraud, deception, violence and incarceration at the hands of wives.

Also, in the same year, according to Peter Wright of gynocentrism.com, “Mrs. Charlotte Smith, feminist activist and President of the Women’s Rescue League, spearheaded an anti-bachelor campaign based on her concerns about the increasing numbers of women who could not find husbands — a surprising development considering men outnumbered women in the United States then by 1.5 million. Her solution to the “problem” was to denigrate, malign, and ultimately punish bachelors in order to pressure them into marrying any women unlucky enough to remain unwed.

Part of her remedy was to have bachelors excluded from employment in prominent public sector positions. Her second punishment proposed a universal bachelor tax of $10 per year be applied, amounting to between 1-4 weeks of the average wage, with the proceeds to provide living standards for ‘unmarried maidens’ orphans and the poor.”

It seems Mr. Wilcox is standing on a lot of shoulders, and it does not stop there.

In 1707 a conversation about a bachelor tax between two young women was published. Eliza kicks off her conversation with Mariana with the following:

Amongst all the female grievances we have hitherto debated there still remains one we have not yet touch’d upon. There are an abundance of bachelors who, thro’ a cowardly apprehension of the cares and troubles of the marry’d state, are so fearful of entering into it, that they would rather run the hazard of damning their souls with the repeated sin of fornication, than they will honestly engage in Wedlock to procreate within those reasonable bounds which the united laws of both God and man have both religiously appointed: Therefore methinks it would well become the care of a Parliament to redress this grievance, so very hurtful to the Kingdom in general, as well as to our sex in particular, by some compulsory law that should enforce Marriage upon all single sinners who otherwise will never keep a cow of their own whilst a quart of milk is to be brought for a penny.”

The full conversation goes on to ensure that even celibate men are granted no reprieve. The two women imagine all sorts of evils befalling society from the minority of men who eschew married life as well as sexual relations.

In this we get a glimpse of the true source of hostility toward gay men. The hatred is not a fear of them, but a resentment of their freedom and their lack of utility to women.

To Eliza and Mariana, as it is to the Bradford Wilcox’s of today, men must marry, and they must do so within the confines of the law and the church. If they refuse, they are inferior, defective threats to society. They are to be punished and burdened for their refusal to indulge gynocentric culture.

Yet still, men resisted.

In 1898, two years after Charlotte Smith started advocacy to shame and punish men who refused to marry, a group was formed by the name, “Anti-Bardell Bachelor Band.” Their mandate was clear.

As was reported in the New York World, then one of New York City’s two top newspapers, ‘The motto of the club is Solomon’s proverb: “It is better to live in a corner of the housetop than with a brawling woman in a wide house.” The objects of the club are to oppose matrimony, to fight for the liberty of man, to encourage the manufacture of all such devices as bachelor buttons and to check the movement inaugurated by Mrs. Charlotte Smith “and other disgruntled females” to require bachelors to wed.’

In one declaration, it is a statement supportive of both men’s rights and men going their own way.

Eventually, of course, these voices of dissent on behalf of men would be pushed out of the mainstream media and shunned, as the media became more and more feminized. We can see the eventual result of that now plastered across the pages of most mainstream publications and places like PragerU, mocking and demonizing MGTOW and the MHRM, generally speaking.

The point of this is to make clear that misogamy, which covers the lion’s share of MGTOW, isn’t new. And MGTOW itself, has risen and fallen throughout the ages under many different names.

Even literal reference to the subject predates all of us with a feminist writing about and somewhat encouraging men to go their own way in 1897.

The Copper Country Evening News, October 09, 1897.
The Copper Country Evening News, October 09, 1897.

The difference now, and actually the only difference, is the internet. With the new technology, silencing men who reject the slavish dictates of legally sanctioned marriage is no longer possible. As an instrument of support and education, the World Wide Web now affords the opportunity to reject marriage, and to reject the inevitable shaming by feminists and gynocentrists like Brad Wilcox.

Marching to your own drum still comes with a price, but the internet has made it affordable. That isn’t good for marriage as it stands. Since white feathers and the empty allegation of being less than manly no longer work, the only solution left will be what has heretofore been unspeakable.

If society wants to encourage young men to marry, it will require an overhaul of the law and an overhaul of the female psyche. Biased laws have to go. The outrageous privilege and entitlement of women have to go.

It is hard to tell which will be harder. The legal change or the social change. Both are daunting. Most MGTOW won’t care to worry about it, though. They will be too busy living their lives. They have already gotten the message, even if most don’t know how old that message is.

We have already explored the roots of romantic love and chivalry that led us to life under the branches of this twisted old gynocentric tree.

We’ve taken it back 900 years to the work of Eleanor of Aquitaine and her daughter Marie de Champagne, who commissioned many a troubadour to spread propaganda glorifying male sacrifice for the sake of women.

But even then there was a chink in the armor. In their seminal commissioned work, The Art of Courtly Love, by Andreas Capellanus, he makes a surprise conclusion after penning chapters on the noble dictates of romantic chivalry.

He says, and I quote: “Therefore if you will examine carefully all the things that go to make up love, you will see clearly that there are conclusive reasons why a man is bound to avoid it with all his might and to trample under foot all its rules.”

One has to wonder if the courtly Marie ever read the whole work, and Capellanus may count himself lucky if she did not read the above addenda to the work – she might have had him beheaded.

Incidentally, the tendency to claim absolute ownership of the meaning of bachelorhood is also nothing new. Over a hundred years ago, in The Bachelor Book, a magazine dedicated to confirmed bachelors, we read the following:

Bachelorhood

Bachelorhood is surely one of the fine arts. No man becomes a bachelor other than by selection. A mere failure to connect on the matrimonial timetable does not constitute a bachelor! By no means. As well you might call a man a Frenchman who missed his steamer, thereby finding himself in France.”

Today, many MGTOW will tell you that they had it backwards, that all it takes to be MGTOW, or a “real” bachelor if you will, is to miss that steamer. Perhaps there would even be a war of words between Bachelor Book subscribers and some modern MGTOW.

If there were, though, it would hardly matter. With time, and with embracing an understanding of our shared history, a larger revolution is unavoidable.

What constitutes a real bachelor or a real MGTOW? I am not going to pretend to know. I am just thankful that the age of shame is over for any man who chooses, and that the advocates of male subservience to hypergamy and gynocentrism no longer have the pulpit to themselves.

They can kiss those days goodbye, forever. We know this as we see them on the receiving end of some of the shame they are dishing out.