Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Women crave boundaries

This is an interesting experiment which demonstrated one aspect of Game, namely, the foolishness of thinking that being agreeable will make women more pleasant:
As part of an unusual experiment, the husband was instructed to “agree with his wife’s every opinion and request without complaint,” and to continue doing so “even if he believed the female participant was wrong,” according to a report on the research that was published Tuesday by the British Medical Journal.

The husband and wife were helping a trio of doctors test their theory that pride and stubbornness get in the way of good mental health. In their own medical practices in New Zealand, they had observed patients leading “unnecessarily stressful lives by wanting to be right rather than happy.” If these patients could just let go of the need to prove to others that they were right, would greater happiness be the result?

Enter the intrepid husband. Based on the assumption that men would rather be happy than be right, he was told to agree with his wife in all cases. However, based on the assumption that women would rather be right than be happy, the doctors decided not to tell the wife why her husband was suddenly so agreeable.

Both spouses were asked to rate their quality of life on a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being the happiest) at the start of the experiment and again on Day 6. It’s not clear how long the experiment was intended to last, but it came to an abrupt halt on Day 12.

“By then the male participant found the female participant to be increasingly critical of everything he did,” the researchers reported. The husband couldn’t take it anymore, so he made his wife a cup of tea and told her what had been going on.

That led the researchers to terminate the study.

Over the 12 days of the experiment, the husband’s quality of life plummeted from a baseline score of 7 all the way down to 3. The wife started out at 8 and rose to 8.5 by Day 6. She had no desire to share her quality of life with the researchers on Day 12, according to the report.
My bet is that the wife's quality of life plummeted as well. That's why she was getting increasingly critical. In most male-female relationships, the woman will push until she is metaphorically slapped down. Whether they actually need them in the way children do or not, the observable fact is that women crave boundaries. Men who don't provide those boundaries, consciously or unconsciously, will tend to incite contempt and infuriate them.

28 comments:

Matamoros said...

Well, there is the old dictum, "don't argue with your wife, dick'er". In light of the above, she would probably have been much happier if he had stood his ground and refused to agree.

If a guy learns to simply tell her to shut up in a commanding voice, that she will typically obey. Sometimes one needs "I don't care!", or "I don't want to hear it" to reinforce the command.

Women gripe because they love to gripe. Men gripe because there is an actual problem they are coming to terms with.

Scott6584 said...

I can absolutely verify this "study." In 20 years of marriage, I tried multiple ways to get my wife to act properly - including letting her have her way unconditionally. By far (it's not even close), being relentlessly agreeable was the single most destructive decision I could have made. Her narcissism went off the charts, and even our children at one point asked me why I allowed her to treat me so badly.

Also, the best she ever treated me was when I stopped caring what she thought, and decided to be an a$$hole. That was when she bent over backward to try to win my affection back.

Ultimately, I didn't like being an a$$hole, and tried (counter to Game) to be the nice guy.

Result: Affair with her a$$hole married boss during our 18th year of marriage. Divorce; Temporary Poverty; Loss of daily access to my daughters.

Trust me when I say that being the nice guy is definitely a recipe for relationship failure.

Since then, I dated a foreign lady from Romania who I treated like crap. She couldn't get enough of me. And although I broke it off almost 3 years ago (didn't want to deal with her 5-yr old brat), she still contacts me via Social Media every few months. She still wants more even after I rejected her and her kid. LOL

alphaisassumed said...

This plays out in the aggregate, too. Notice how we didn't have millions of women needing psychotropic drugs, nor virulent harpies marching in fury over the tiniest slight until we deemed female empowerment to be one of our society's grandest goals.

Martel

mina smith said...

"This plays out in the aggregate, too" - Feminism is a shit test on a massive scale.
http://thequestfor50.com/the-great-american-shit-test/

Aquinas Dad said...

Wait, why is this a surprise to anyone anytime about anybody?
Raise 5 sons with a high IQ and above-average size and strength - *EVERYONE( wants and needs boundaries!
Yes, you, too.
Do you let your male friends treat you badly or talk smack? What is your opinion of a guy that lets you treat him badly?
The key to raising (mentally) strong, (emotionally) healthy kids is setting good, solid boundaries. Same with a marriage. This 'women would rather be right than happy' BS is a perfect example of 'I have a PhD because I know fuckall about the real world'.

8to12 said...

This was the lead on the Rush Limbaugh show (although me mostly tried to apply this to politics); he spent the first full hour talking about it.

Politics aside (and I don't want to get into a I hate or love Rush side debate), he does have a huge audience--most listened to radio show period. You know at least some guys listening thought "WTF, scientists say agreeing with my wife doesn't work? What should I be doing?" And will try to figure out what to do.

Interestingly, he said a female reporter (I believe he said nationally known info-babe; didn't give the name) had texted him and asked if the study was done by a team of all male scientists. He actually shot it down, saying it shouldn't make any difference.

I've found Rush to be a typical blue-pill guy (proof that conservative and red-pill are not synonymous). The fact that he is giving this study so much play is just one more piece of evidence that red-pill is creeping into the mainstream (or at least away from the fringe).

paul a'barge said...

On day 12, the husband turned to the wife and said: "Make me a sandwich!", and all was well.

4ab2dda0-3c27-11e3-9ef4-000f20980440 said...

Women are much more relativistic and emotional in their thinking, so it makes sense that they need someone to draw the gridlines on the map.

8to12 said...

There has to be a "12 Days of Christmas" parody in her somewhere.

On the first day of yes-dear, my husband said to me: you are right wife I agree.

fc6cedc2-d6a8-11e2-b860-000bcdcb471e said...

This plays out in the aggregate, too. Notice how we didn't have millions of women needing psychotropic drugs, nor virulent harpies marching in fury over the tiniest slight until we deemed female empowerment to be one of our society's grandest goals.

Martel


I suspect that was an idle hand's sort of thing. Not a lack of male boundaries. The reason you don't see women in the 3rd world carrying on like this is they are too concerned with survival.

Some Guy said...

Women's default mode is solipsism. It is a simple matter of reason that someone needs to remind them that other people exist in the world too. The more easily you can do this, the greater her tingle for you. The greater her tingle, the less resistant she will be to ANYTHING you do.

Gentlemen, you need to learn one word to fix all your relationship problems - no. The spine necessary to back it up is all on you.

alphaisassumed said...

@ tc6: That's true but doesn't detract from the overall thesis. "Boundaries" need not be man-made, and in a dirt poor country there are still plenty of boundaries, even if it's not individual men imposing them.

I suppose what might maximize happiness would be a first-worlder's ability to not have to focus on mere survival combined with a strong male presence to distract from too much of a feeling of "freedom".

Martel

4ab2dda0-3c27-11e3-9ef4-000f20980440 said...

On the twelfth day of "yes dear" my true love gave to me:

12 flying vases
11 final warnings
10
9
8
7
6
5
4
3
2 eyeballs rolling
1


herenvardo said...

A lonely woman of my aquaintance is one of these frantically busy types, always rushing off on some new adventure (there's the problem and its explanation in one). She once told me that her life's work writing poetry, promoting artists, pro-life work and so on felt like 'lighting a fire in the desert'. She craved boundaries, she wanted a man to build a house around her. In another time she'd have been married off years ago; but living the feminist dream (only without the carousel, as far as I can tell) has left her in a convent/hostel environment, with no hope of the family she dreamed of.

Some Guy said...

"I suppose what might maximize happiness would be a first-worlder's ability to not have to focus on mere survival combined with a strong male presence to distract from too much of a feeling of "freedom"."

Or make all women live in a Ghetto.

swiftfoxmark2 said...

My father-in-law is a man who did what his wife told him for the 40+ years of their marriage. He isn't happy. She despises him.

And all because he couldn't stand up for himself.

8to12 said...

@alphaisassumed,

There has got to be some commonality between this study and your "Smell the Glove" post.

In both cases, there is some inner part of women that rebels against having to assume the masculine role in life: always making the decisions; always being right; always being in control--which ultimately entail always taking complete responsibility.

alphaisassumed said...

@ 8to12: I'll need to put some thought into that, but both posts seem related to this one at RoK.


Martel

Test said...

Women want a guy with principles and a guy who is willing to stand up to them. My principle: online dating sucks:

http://itriedmatchdotcomexperience.blogspot.com/2013/12/my-experience-with-match.html

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

Women require authority and a firm hand.

Doom said...

True! Women say they HATE being in a box, being forced to perform, judged and cajoled into action. But I have found I end up with a clean home, a lot of sex, and whatever else I want, up to their capacity, and some of my effort (best to be a little lazy, in some things, it helps and they just... take that over too, on women's work stuff anyway). Women want a king, even if mostly just to hate. They eventually clean up really well and just become mostly docile until... they hit a little spell, or their period, or one of their neurosis or neuroses or other. Then they try to buck and renegotiate. Sometimes a little give is good, sometimes not. She isn't delicate, she won't break, and she prefers to be well saddled and ridden hard. All true.

Of course, I am delusional, so... Shut up.

J said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
J said...

Everybody breathe, read the original article, and realize that it's a JOKE...

Doom said...

J,

A joke, but on the author, if he or she thought it wasn't true. Play with fire, write the opposite of what you believe to be true, but if you live in a false world... you might just be writing the truth. Or... if you are going to snark? Be right, and smart. If this was a joke, it was truly on the author.

Krul said...

Based on the assumption that men would rather be happy than be right, he was told to agree with his wife in all cases. However, based on the assumption that women would rather be right than be happy, the doctors decided not to tell the wife why her husband was suddenly so agreeable.

Are they really THAT stupid? Really?

First, that's a false dichotomy between being "happy" and being "right". Second, if that were a real choice then any honest person would rather be right. Third, there's a pretty big difference between having someone agree with you and actually being right. Fourth, does anyone honestly believe that MEN would rather be happy and WOMEN would rather be right?

women crave boundaries. Men who don't provide those boundaries, consciously or unconsciously, will tend to incite contempt and infuriate them.

Yeah, but it's important not to forget the possible effect of deceit in this study. It may be that the woman sensed that she was being lied to and resented it. Nobody likes a phony.

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