Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Divorce sells

Everyone is familiar how sex is used to sell things to men, but they're probably not as cognizant of how divorce is used to sell things to women. Dalrock observes that these days, women's entertainment is drenched in advertisements for divorce:
I could go on at length, because entertainment aimed at women is drenched in this.  This isn’t just a secular problem either.  Every modern Christian’s favorite movie on marriage Fireproof is a story about a woman who has to decide if she should divorce her husband for the doctor she works with.  She doesn’t have a Cosmo quiz to help, but with the help of the Book of Oprah she is able to determine if she loves him or not, and if he loves her enough for them to stay married.  I won’t ruin the fun for those ladies who haven’t seen the movie yet, because figuring out if she should stay married or embark on an exciting path of divorce empowerment is the whole fun of the movie.
How do the pro-civilized fight that? Consciously and purposefully. Fortunately, we have the natural human desire for the pair-bond working in our favor, whereas no amount of Eat, Pray, Loves and Fireproofs can outweigh the observable evidence of the lonely cat ladies in our midst.

As for the women being sold divorce, Glenn Reynolds has the right advice: Ruminate less, try more.


Laguna Beach Fogey said...

The near-constant drumbeat of propaganda is everywhere if you finally tune into it. It becomes hard not to notice patterns. On a related note, I've noticed a greater number of televisual advertisements featuring single, older women.

Eowyn said...

Also, most chick-lit shows divorce as s fresh start, rarely with any baggage. It sends the message that you can start over clean and live the exciting life you always wanted [without your husband]. It's dangerous, especially if that's a theme that gets read over and over.

swiftfoxmark2 said...

The promotion of divorce is rooted in envy really. Divorced women are an unhappy bunch and so they seek to make other women unhappy.

Trust said...

A short story: I ran into a girl who was a hottie in high school. She was in her 40s, overweight, no longer attractive. I didn't recognize her. When she told me who she was, I was able to recognize some of her once attractive feature. Lo and behold, she looked more attractive to me due to memories.

The moral of the story: ladies, you're not going to be more attractive to a new man. He may fawn on you more... it's easier to give someone your unwaivering attention for an hour than it is for a husband to do so for 24 hours when he has responsibilities. But he won't see your beauty of years past.

Crowhill said...

This may not be an important distinction, but is it divorce that sells, or simply the idea of divorce?

People have lots of fantasies that they don't really want to happen. It's the fantasy that sells. Once you think about all the messy details it's not so fun any more.

(BTW, I'm *not* saying it's a good idea to dwell on things that you wouldn't really want to happen.)

deti said...


Good point. Consider your average late-30s, early 40s frivorced woman with 2 school age kids. She gets the usual settlement: She gets the kids, the house, a year of alimony, generous “child support”, and gives the kids to her ex-H every other weekend. She did return to work as a third grade teacher, though, and took over the mortgage payment on the house after ex-H quitclaimed it to her as part of the settlement.

Divorce fantasy: She enjoys her job teaching children. It’s a “rich and rewarding” experience. Her children are happier because life is so much more peaceful without the fighting. She has wonderful, supportive friends and a God who loves her just the way she is. As for dating, it’s “so many men, so little time”. She has a fabulous single life, going on dates every weekend with good looking, hunky men who compete with each other over her affections. She has multiple orgasmic sex with the most attractive ones. Then she finds The One – a man who understands her and loves her, and who just happens to have a $500,000 per year job as a high level investment banker, is built like Matthew McConaughey, and has vacation homes in the Wisconsin Dells and the south of France. She remarries to him in a glorious wedding after he proposes on bended knee with rose petals and a 2-carat rock.

Divorce Reality: Her job teaching kids sucks. Evenings are spent grading homework and preparing for the next day’s lessons when she’s not dealing with pissed off parents about Johnny’s D on the multiplication tables quiz. Her children are a mess: Her son is acting out and disobedient; her daughter is cutting herself. They’ll be on SSRI antidepressants within the year. Her friends aren’t saying “you go grrrl” anymore. Now it’s “it’s a shame how you’re having to work so hard. My husband can help if you’d like.” Dating? What the hell is that? Most weekends are spent watching “Under the Tuscan Sun” with a six pack of Miller 64 or a quart of Haagen-Dazs. Most men who ask her out are either (1) penniless divorced men; (2) confirmed bachelors looking for a quick bang; or (3) younger 20-something men from the bar scene looking to cut their sexual teeth on her. Best case scenario is she remarries to another divorced man with extensive financial obligations of his own and to whom she’s not terribly attracted; but they’ll make the best of it.

VD said...

You make Option 2 sound so hot, Deti! How can you blame women who pursue the dream?

James said...


There is a bible verse than talks about remembering the wife of your youth. And I remember back when earl used to post a lot at heartiste and dal rock, he posed the idea that one-itis is a feature not a bug in human males. If we stay with one woman for a majority of our lives, then even as she grows old we have to have some sort of attachment to them. Because she is going to get old and wrinkly and maybe a bit of fat, but if the husband enjoyed her in her youth, then he will enjoy her with the so called marriage goggles one-itis gives. In other words one-itis had a viable function before in times when monogamy was the rule, but in the age where monogamy and life long marriage is the exception rather than the norm, it screws over men.

tweell said...

Mark 10.9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Says it all.

Anonymous said...

The promotion of divorce is rooted in envy really. Divorced women are an unhappy bunch and so they seek to make other women unhappy.


Best case scenario is she remarries to another divorced man with extensive financial obligations of his own and to whom she’s not terribly attracted; but they’ll make the best of it.

Now, what can a poor divorcee do to increase the supply of divorced men? What could she possibly do? There must be something....

Trust said...

I remember a pastor who actually called feminism what it is, and discussed how there is a divorce industry, a marriage counseling industry (that elevates everything to an issue for "professionals"), an entertainment industry, etc., that works overtime to.undermine families.

And, he said, "a lot of money is being made. Shame on them!"

He should have added "a lot of votes are being cast (bought)."

deti said...

@ Vox:

“You make Option 2 sound so hot, Deti!”

Here in the Midwest, just about every middle aged divorced woman I’ve known follows Option 2, mostly because they’re forced into it. They think the line of men willing to date and remarry them will be lengthy; they suffer from the delusion that they still have the same SMV they had when they married. Not so; not with 2 kids, 20 extra pounds, mounting debt and head-of-household responsibilities they took on themselves when they jettisoned their ex-husbands.

What's more, they HAVE to work. They probably had jobs while married to their first husbands/fathers of their kids; but they REALLY have to work now. Their jobs are the only thing keeping them and their children from total financial ruin. They are under relentless financial pressure all the time. The reality is these women are stressed out nervous wrecks.

The best they can hope to do is to parlay what’s left of their looks into a second marriage to a lower value SMV man willing to marry them. Most such second husbands are themselves divorced and have their own financial problems.

Most of these women do remarry; but they don’t remarry to men who are high SMV. Most of the second husbands I see are comparable or a little lower in SMV to the husbands they frivorced.

Trust said...

@de ti

True. And most these women confuse an attractive man's willingness to mount her with her being of comparable value. The old saying, a bird in hand is worth two in bush, applies. An okay looking divorcee whose a sure thing right this minute may beat a hot 21 year old with several alphas to chose from, but she'll never compare to the actual hottie.

Bob Loblaw said...

Also, most chick-lit shows divorce as s fresh start, rarely with any baggage. It sends the message that you can start over clean and live the exciting life you always wanted [without your husband]...

But with his money.

I think a lot of middle aged married women don't understand the interest they get from men. She sees that men are interested in her and assumes if she weren't married that interest might turn into a serious relationship that could lead to marriage, which was a reasonable thing to think when she was 25 and single. It's not until after she's back on the market she realizes these guys were hitting on her not because they're interested in her, but because they wanted sex without having the bother of a relationship. Let the husband do all the valentines stuff - he just wants to meet for sex when the mood strikes.

hank.jim said...

You can only sell what people are willing to buy. The market already exists.

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