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What society expects of men today

Most criticism of the dating habits and lifestyle of single men is drivel. (e.g., this, and this) But the article Child-Man in the Promised Land is actually intelligent, well-written, and occasionally insightful. Which is what makes it all the more worthy of a response.

[Now, Love Systems is not in any way a "men's movement" but many of the same people who are unhappy about single men today are also upset with Love Systems. Not that long ago, I did a radio interview on how to turn friends into friends with benefits, which really upset one of the commentators. She said that sharing Love Systems knowledge was just going to make it harder for people to get into committed relationships.]

These criticisms fail the “so what?” test.

The man-child article does a great job of showing the changes to how young men live today vs 50 years ago. Today they get married later. They have more sexual partners. They have more freedom. They do things that many young men like to do, like watch sports, play games, meet women, and drink. Many don’t slave away at jobs they hate, at least until later in life, because they don’t need all of the money they otherwise would to pay the mortgage on a family-sized house and so on. Sometimes, they burp and fart and leave pizza boxes everywhere.

[But, so what? Why is this bad, or any different from a rant about how some young women are gossipy, manipulative, vain, and obsessed with pointless activities like fashion or celebrity trivia? What elevates this to a societal problem? There's a very telling passage in the article that shows the authors limitations and biases here -- she makes the point that young men are regressing by comparing their juvenile hobbies (beer and video games) with the more "adult" interests of young women ("shopping" and "dining out with friends"). Is shopping really better than video games? Is eating and drinking wine with friends at a restaurant really better than eating and drinking beer with friends at home? I don't know, and it's unfortunate the question never seemed to even occur to the author before she drew conclusions from it.]

I could go on and on through the article, but let’s cut to the chase. Here’s what’s actually going on:

Society has changed. Women have more power over their own life, and there is less pressure to conform to expectations from family, religion, society at large, etc. So now with more choice on how to life their lives, many women are deciding to do something with their lives other than be the traditional housewife of 50 years ago. It sucks to be a guy today who wants the housewife of 50 years ago, since there are less of them, but people have more choice on how to live their lives now, and that’s a good thing.

Many women fought hard for this. Some would even call it “feminism”.

But guess what? Men also have more power over their own life, and there is less pressure to conform to expectations from family, religion, society at large, etc. So now with more choice on how to life their lives, many men are deciding to do something with their lives other than be the traditional husband of 50 years ago. It sucks to be a women today who wants the husband of 50 years ago, since there are less of them, but people have more choice on how to live their lives now, and that’s a good thing.

And many women hate this.(*)

-NS

(*) Yes, yes, many men have poured scorn on women’s desire for autonomy and what they’ve done with that autonomy for years. Being on the other end of a little bit of hypocrisy isn’t really all that bad…as long as it stays firmly in the “hypocrisy” bucket and doesn’t jump into the box marked “conventional wisdom”

Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    That article is offensively sexist.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I must confess I am one of these "Peter Pan" types… And enjoying every minute of it.

    - Mortgage? No thanks.
    - Marriage? No thanks.
    - Kids? I'll also pass on this one.

  3. Anonymous says:

    in the ultra-urban, secular and superficial metropolitan city in which i live in, it is still very difficult for me to find women who don't want to have children.

    meaning, no matter what happened to us through modernization of mind, modernization of cultures — our primal instincts (survival, procreation) have been numbed a bit, but THEY ARE STILL THERE, BABY.

    also, i believe that even 50, 100, 200 years ago, men did not want to have kids much more that today's men the only difference is men at those times did not have a lot more to do back then. it's like when there's baby-booms nine months after big blackouts, or wars.

  4. Wow. Well said, sir.

  5. Financial independence at 26 in 50s and 60s? My ass, inflation’s gonna bite ya on the backside. Get in your fucking pension queue.

    Cubicle job? Gah.Indie songs? Gah.

    Gotta say the education system has ruined and is continuing to ruin generations of the modern day. The big issue is promising so much and delivering very little i.e. world changing and future leadership (the promise)to cubicles and monotony (the delivery/reality). What happens is people (male and female) are stuck somewhere in between. Many are angry at the world who lied to them. After all, they hadn’t yet acquired the knowledge to think for themselves yet. These turn out to be bitter people who remain stuck in this “early 20′s loop” until the hormones kick in. And you say divorces are rising? 20 is too young to commit for potentially 60+ years. Freedom of choice is also too good for this.

    Speaking with people of the Second and Third World, society is much like ours was 50-60 years ago. Early marriage, early children, work the same job forever after university, have big house, be looked after by children who live with you and inherit the house, yada yada yada.

    Times have changed and getting all butthurt for times gone past isn’t the answer. Nor is fear for the future, which is why political debates among citizens are so pointless. Nor is conforming to be like everyone else. Nor is what I do, which is to live in the present, enjoying my life while continuing to grow and extending this out to others, leading by example. It’s what I do, and you gotta do your own thing and quit bitchin’.

  6. Moved from a country at the age of 13 where people started getting married once they finished high school at 18, to London, i definately see the differences.
    In comparison finish high school, join in family business/farming or getting job and starting family early in such old tredition is much easier than the life of young adult in modern era ie. London. easier life but with less reward, from experience and adventure i seek in life.
    LIving in London, 24, graduated and pursuing dream career, and dated many, and many since teenage years. I can say life in this modern era society is given me more experience, intelligence and wisdom that I wouldhave never acquired if I have stayed back in my old country (south east asia) and im not going to give it up that easily.
    With what I can offer and how much i know i deserve (that i know i can get) I have extremely expectation in women. This definately make it more difficult for women, tbh, not my problem. If the girl has worked hard as much as i had in the past and still do, she would have no problem. And my amazing girlfriend is a living proof of that.
    So you may ask how much I expect from women?
    Actually the quality I seek isnt much at all: good physical body and face (indicating good health, genetic for offsprings), physical appearance skill, great social skill and intelligence. and common interests of course.
    That isnt much at all, so whats the high espectation?
    Well…I have extremely low tolarency for women who will certainly waste my time. the list can go for miles. for example: low iq, low social skills, bad mannered, unhealthy physical weight, ignorant, lazy…..anything you can think of, but all are basic.
    So why the fustration from women? Its only from those who cannot keep up because they want everything to be handed to them with nothing from them in return.
    Sorry ladies, just because you’re pretty, and lovely, doesnt mean you’re deserve everything. Unless you’re able to learn, understand and practice to be with the opporsite sex as much and good as we have, you’re not good enough.

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