love as a game – lurking in manosphere

The closer you follow the letter of these commandments, the easier you will find and keep real, true unconditional love and happiness in your life. (The Sixteen Commandments Of Poon)

These ‘commandments’ are designed to help romantically unsuccessful, heterosexual men improve their chances of finding sexual partners and/or love. They include helpful hints such as “be irrationally self-confident”, “ignore her beauty” and “make her jealous”.

They come from the Manosphere.

For anyone unfamiliar with the term ‘manosphere’, Wikipedia tells us it is “a loose and informal network of blogs, websites, and internet commentators that focus on issues relating to men and masculinity, often in opposition to feminism or as a male counterpart to it.” If you care to delve into this curious subculture, you’ll find it riddled with bitter and often furious men, discussing methods of manipulating women, and using a bespoke set of linguistic tools to describe their understanding of life, requiring its own glossary. Here are a couple of examples:

Average frustrated chump (AFC): An average frustrated chump is a beta, incel, nice guy, or any other male who should be getting sex but isn’t, because feminists has destroyed females.

Blue pill: A blue pill is a person who hasn’t woken up to the fact that society discriminates against males, not females; to blue pill is to do the same. The term is a reference to The Matrix, in which taking the blue pill means remaining part of the sheeple and believing nothing is wrong, while taking the red pill means waking up.

On the few occasions when I’ve gone lurking into manosphere, I’ve not stayed long, finding the posts and comments rather tedious and unintelligent. But there is something about some of the strategies or techniques suggested that I find interesting. Because there is sometimes a surprising, although misleading, element of truth.

Whether it’s because of our cultural programming about love, or our animal instincts to breed, or indeed a combination of the two, I can imagine that some of the advice given could generate a certain kind of ‘success’ for guys who have been unfortunate enough to suffer years of rejection and disappointment in love.

But the question is whether the form of success this kind of game-playing brings is likely to make anyone’s life better. And I suspect the answer is no.

Any relationships built on the ’16 commandments’ in the post linked to above are based on cynical play-acting, manipulation and the exploitation of insecurity. I don’t believe there’s any such thing as ‘true unconditional love and happiness’, but there are basic positive and loving relationships to aim for, built on genuine attraction, mutual trust and respect. I shudder to think how awful it must be to be in a relationship formed on the basis of jealousy, insecurity and manipulation. Or is any sex better than no sex?

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