Thursday, June 7, 2012

And now for something completely different: The Rules are back!

Oh barf. You all remember The Rules, right*? Shitty dating advice from a couple of women who, to put it mildly, think men should be pursuers and women should passively wait to be courted. Well, Ellen Fein and Sherie Schnieder are back with more "advice" for this new fangled wireless digital age! (Not Your Mother’s Rules, how fucking precious.) Aren't you excited? (Warning: this piece is extremely hetero-normative. I have no idea if these "rules" apply to gay men &/or lesbians or if Fein and Schnieder even care about same-sex couples.)

From an interview with JDate (yeah, I know):
Avi: Have The Rules changed at all since the 90′s when the book first appeared?
E&S: No and yes. No, because women — despite equal pay for equal work — cannot chase a guy like they can chase a career without possibly getting hurt and dumped. Men have a type/look and love a challenge, so it is a waste of time and doesn’t work whether you are in 1950, 1990, or 2012.
Yes, new technology (such as texting, Facebook®, Skype™ and Twitter) has made it harder to be mysterious, so we had to rewrite the first book for the new generation. It’s called Not Your Mother’s Rules and it will be out in February of 2013.
Equal what for what now?  Did the pay gap disappear while I was sleeping or something?

So much for being yourself. Or having self esteem. Or knowing what you want. The trick is to be "mysterious". Keep him guessing, ladies! All men totes love not knowing what the hell is going on with you.

Trust his instincts, not yours. Your fluffy pink lady brainz can't handle the agony of picking a date that's right for you, you had better just let the menfolk make up your mind for you. 

Avi: In your book The Rules for Online Dating, you make it clear that under all circumstances, the man should contact the woman first. Are there any exceptions?
E&S: No exceptions. A woman cannot email, or even wink at a guy’s profile, without becoming the aggressor and possibly getting hurt down the line when the guy dumps her for the woman whose profile he really likes.
For fuck's sake. Listen up everyone: You are going to get dumped, no matter what you do. In fact, I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that if you're never fully truthful to your partner, you're going to annoy the shit out of them and you'll probably get dumped sooner.

Is anyone else totally creeped out by the language? Using the word "aggressor" makes dating into some sort of  predatory action, instead of a mutual relationship. It's the same creepy fucking language that's used when bro-dogs talk about The Game.

... I must be slow tonight. Of course Fein and Schnieder are using the same sort of PUA** language-- that shit wouldn't work unless women were convinced to hold up their end of the bargain. Herp a derp, Audley!
The only way to be sure that a guy is interested is to let him make the first move. If you have something exceptional in common, he has to notice that, and contact you first. 
Sorry, shy or insecure guys! If you're not the "aggressor", you're doin' it rong and you deserve to be lonely. (Beta males! More fucking PUA language.) Same goes for "unexceptional" women: if you can't stand out without saying a word, you don't deserve to date.

Also, is it assumed that single women are so desperate that they're going to jump on the first man who notices them? 'Cos that's pretty fucking insulting.
Avi: One of the more famous Rules says one should “Never call men and rarely return their calls.” I truly believe that men in under age 30 (because of instant gratification via technology) won’t call back if you neglect to return their calls. Do you agree or disagree?
E&S: Disagree. If you don’t call back, a guy will try again by calling, texting, emailing, or Instant Messaging you. In the beginning of the relationship, it is best not to call back as calling shows a lot of interest. You can text or email back that you got his message and are having a crazy, busy day so he knows you are interested. Guys are surprisingly resourceful and will call again or figure out another avenue of technology to reach you.
The takeaway of all of this is suppress yourself, suppress yourself, suppress yourself. We can't have the men seeing us all excited or happy or some shit, 'cos that would be losing... something.

This is pure horseshit. Women shouldn't feel like they have to be "mysterious" to be alluring and men shouldn't have to worry that they will have to decipher their partner's moods or actions. The way to have a healthy relationship, and to attract someone that will actually want to be with you, is to be open and truthful. For fuck's sake, if dating was as complex as these two douchebags make it out to be, no one would ever be in a relationship.

Here you go, I can give you way better dating advice that doesn't assume that you need to wedge yourself into some sort of weird gender role to be attractive and I won't even charge you for it!
  • Be honest with yourself and your (potential) partner. 
  • Respect yourself and your (potential) partner.
  • Remember that no one owes you anything.
That's it. Is it a guarantee that you will never be lonely or never get dumped?  Of course not, but if there was a method of attracting the perfect mate that was 100% fool-proof, we wouldn't need to agonize over bullshit like The Rules.

Post script: I think Fein and Schnieder should have poked around the An(n)als of Online Dating before they decided to dispense their stupid and ineffective online dating advice. Absolutely no one should settle for those creepy assholes, no matter what.

(via Jezebel)

*Thankfully, I was in high school at the time, so I missed out on most of that bullshit.
**Pick Up Artist. Here's a very bland, not at all balanced, uncited Wikipedia article to get you started 'cos I am not linking to those douche bags directly. Or just go check out Manboobz.

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