One of the things that struck me while reading For Men Only was that it takes a very different perspective on the married life dynamic than much of what can be found on the topic elsewhere. It’s no secret that I read a lot of Vox Day, and he subscribes to the whole evolutionary psychology dynamic of male and female relationships. For Men Only takes a wholly different approach.
What Is Your Background?
However, this is but a microcosm of a bigger situation/problem. Anyone who is familiar with the Creation/Evolution debates will quickly understand that it’s not so much a matter of facts that are in dispute, but the interpretation of the facts. Each worldview starts with its set of ideals (whether it’s God did it or natural processes did it) and from there sets about to explain the facts presented to it—twisting where it’s difficult.
Once you’ve decided on a worldview, it tends to color everything you read and how you analyze everything. For example, I was reading an article just the other day in the New York Times where it was talking about the time period between childhood and adolescence and how it’s a “silent time” and yet it’s actually the time when the child’s mind awakens to figuring out who it is. It could have been an interesting article, except instead of sticking to the facts it was chocked full of evolutionary guesses about why kids may be what they are at certain phases.
When you begin with a certain starting point, it’s hard to see any other point or any other way to perceive things. From there, you just reinforce your bias and it can get to the place where you refuse to admit that your worldview has weaknesses and strengths—just like the other worldview.
How Does This Translate To Men and Women?
Many of the evolutionary psychologists refer to something called the “rationalization hamster”—the female brain doing something that the male brain cannot understand. They talk about destabilizing said hamster, or getting it “spinning” by attempting to get it to judge you as a higher “sex rank”, creating attraction and keeping the woman attracted to you.
Behind all of this is the evolutionary logic that a man’s sole purpose is to have as much sex as possible with as many women as possible to keep his genetic strain in check, and that women’s sole purpose is to mate with the most attractive male to have the babies with the best chance of survival, and then she’ll settle down with a provider. So, the logic goes, if you can convince the woman to be attracted to you and then provide for her, you have the best of both worlds.
However, after reading For Men Only, you see a different perspective on the whole situation. Part of what you find there is that women are always wondering if they are loved. It’s something that they constantly deal with. Couple that with the emotions that they have and that they multitask in such a way that things can come up to them that they cannot block out, you find that women are constantly wanting to know if this is love or just you saying that it is.
In what seems entirely logical when you think about it, a woman will often test the man that she loves in what seems like irrational ways. Jeff uses the example of the modern Parent Trap movie, where after the husband and wife make up the husband asks the wife why she left, and the woman responds by saying that she figured that he’d follow after her.
How is that logical? Because if the woman tells the man to follow, then she’s just blown the test.
Yes, evolutionary psychologists recognize the test, but they see it as a chance to show off how manly they are. They purposefully trade in the woman’s insecurities in order to show off their dominance.
To me, manipulation on either part is wrong if all you seek is what is best for you. Marriage is a partnership, not a constant attempt to one-up the other person.
So you see, you should not always be sucked into a particular mindset simply because it’s the first that you’ve read. While it may have valid points, the truth may lie elsewhere.