Category Archives: Relationships

Sharing Interests

Wintery Knight posted something from William Lane Craig along with his own advice. I’d suggest reading it, most of the advice given is good common-sense, but I do wonder about this:

I strongly urge those of you who are single to make having a shared interest in your field of study and ministry a top criterion in selecting a spouse. It doesn’t matter how beautiful she is or what a great cook she is if she has no interest in your field of study and so sees talking about things that you are passionate about as an annoyance.

Shared interests in marriage has always been one of those things that people seem to value highly that I don’t understand. I don’t see a need for a wife to share your interests, whatever they may be. I do understand that one or two shared activities, something like dancing, that you can do together on date nights is probably beneficial, but for something like philosophy: what use would there be in discussing philosophy with your wife? Why would that be even remotely necessary?

As you can probably tell by the hundreds of thousands of words I’ve written on my blog and the thousands of articles I’ve linked to in my Lightning Rounds, I have a strong interest in socio-political theory and have a moderate interest in philosophy, theology, economics, history, etc., but I would never expect my wife to have to have an interest in this or for her to become my regular politics discussion partner.

That’s what I have friends for.

Would it be nice to have a wife who liked socio-political theory? Sure. It would also be nice to have a wife who liked ultimate, board games, science fiction, video games, and anime (as for shooting, hunting, and martial arts, see here) but these can be nice little bonuses. These are not things a wife is needed for and I don’t see the point in making them requirements.

I think this shared interests thing comes from the modern phenomenon of making your wife your friend. A century ago, most men would have thought the idea of discussing politics, theology, or philosophy with your wife was absurd; those discussions were what you did with your friends at the pub. Your wife was the one who dragged you home when you were too sloshed too distinguish between monarchy and anarchy.

But the pubs are now co-ed, men’s clubs have been destroyed, and male friendship has been destroyed. Men no longer have easy ways to find someone to trade bullshit about politics and philosophy with.

At some point in the last century, male friendship began to die, so well-meaning people looking to fill the bleeding wound in their chest its absence caused confused the categories of wife and friend. A husband-wife relationship is not a friendship, it is a unique form of companionship centred around the creation and care of a home and family. Neither relationship is better, they are simply different.

A wife can not be your lover, your friend, your confidante, your parenting-partner, your home-building partner, your BS-ing partner, your debate opponent, your drinking buddy, your complaint outlet, and your dance partner all at once. That is simply too much load to put onto a single relationship. A man needs male friends to fulfill many of these needs.

I’m pretty sure that expecting too much from a single partner is one of the great contributors to the breakdown of modern marriage.

Build a home with your wife and make her your lover, save philosophical diatribes for your friends.

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Another, difference with WK I want to comment comes from this:

And it also allows you to lead a woman so that she can develop herself to be ready for marriage to you. I hope that she would already have done a lot of the work by herself, (chastity, STEM degree, debt-free, good job, apologetics, conservative politics), before she even meets you.

Earlier WK writes about the male’s role as provider, but here he he puts down a STEM degree and a good job as developing herself for marriage, but if the man is meant to be the provider of what use are the degree and the job in a potential wife? Is a career-oriented women the kind of woman at traditional Christian wants raising his children? I think there’s too much focus on what a women studies and works at in the Christian community.

That being said, a degree is a basic signalling mechanism of low time-preference, so if dating any woman without a degree, ensure it’s not because she has high time preference and verify a low time preference in another way. But other than signalling why does it particularly matter what kind of degree she has or if she has a job. I’d much prefer a woman who had spent that time developing her home-making abilities and volunteering at the church than studying and working.

I can understand not wanting a wife who wasted a decade doing nothing, but then the question becomes why would a traditional man consider marriage to a 30-year-old woman?

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We’ll look at the advice-seeker, named Wesley, who illustrates my point nicely.

I recently got married this past summer to an amazing woman I met at a one year bible college I attended a couple years ago and it has been great. But between transferring to a new (secular) school and being constantly busy with school and work I feel like my relationship with God is constantly on the backburner, as I am not getting into the word nearly as much as I used to and my prayer life is nearly nonexistent, and because of this my relationship with my wife is not where it should be either.

I love my major and I love my wife, but they don’t seem to overlap very well, as my studies are normally more time intensive than hers and also she see’s my talking about it more as an annoyance than anything. I guess why I am writing you is because I am getting so spiritually burnt out and need advice on how to ignite/maintain my relationship with God and keep a healthy relationship with my wife and if having an aspiration of being an apologist is worth it. Not only does everyone else not see why I have picked the path I have because they see philosophy as impractical and I won’t be able to support a family with such an aspiration, but the path itself is difficult as I do not have many other fellow Christians in my classes and so I am being practically scorned in all directions. I often ask myself if it is worth it and if I should find some other path that would be more conducive to married life and family life that her and I hope to start in the foreseen future.

It’s very clear here, Wesley’s problem is not his wife. His problem is he doesn’t have virtuous friendships with male friends and is trying to use his wife to fill this hole in his life. But his is his wife, not his friend and she can’t fill this hole, and he shouldn’t be expecting her to.

So, Wesley, if by happenstance you come across this, your wife is not your friend, she is your wife. Don’t discuss philosophy her, take her dancing instead and lead her in Bible readings. Instead of trying to force her into a role in which she does not belong, find a good male friend or two who share your Christian values and discuss philosophy with them over a pint at the pub.

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I should make one last note, there’s a difference between a wife not sharing your interests and a wife deriding your interests. A wife not sharing your interests is fine; a wife who disdains your interests (and not in the harmless ‘men will be men‘ way), and by extension you, is not. Do not marry a women who contempt for those things you really like and enjoy.

I get the impression that Wesley’s problem was the first, but if it was the latter, then that is a something to be concerned about.

Also, values are not interests. Sharing values is important. Don’t marry a woman who doesn’t share your core values.

Repost: Pleasures of the Flesh

Given the recent spat between NRx and the manosphere, I thought reposting this from 2013 may be of interest. (You can also check out this on reaction and PUAs).  Hopefully this is my last repost for a while and I can go back to posting regularly.

I’ve been noting in my Lightning Rounds that a few experienced players have been reaching the end of their run on the hedonic treadmill and are finding the whole experience unfulfilling. Last week, I wrote of how neither hedonism nor meaningless LTR’s will leave a man fulfilled. Now it seems Frost is suffering from player burn-out as well.

Except for a few men, playerdom will never be fulfilling in the end. Shallow pleasure does not bring contentment, only momentary happiness. Meaningless sex is simply the same effect as drugs, except one step removed (or more accurately, drugs are simply artificial inducements of effects similar to that which meaningless sex will bring). As with drugs, it will not satisfy, but it will become increasingly consuming as it becomes increasingly less pleasurable.

You will have sex, feel pleasure, then have but feel slightly less pleasure, and each time you will require more sex, more kinkiness, hotter women, and yet still feel slightly less pleasure each time. Meanwhile, you never feel the contentment you seek. The hedonic treadmill continues to roll until you either die or get off.

So, why not just ride for a while and get off at the right time?

The treadmill takes its toll even after you get off. Just as a carousel rider suffers as an alpha widow, so to does the ex-player suffer from the player’s curse.

A man who limits himself to one sexual partner has, by definition, the best sexual partner of his life with whom he is having the best sex of his life. The player, not so much. Any long-term relationship he may try will always be haunted by the ghosts of better sex and more beautiful partners of time past. The more partners he had prior, the more likely and stronger the hauntings.

There is no purpose to be found in hedonism, only emptiness.

I bought male and female slaves, and had slaves who were born in my house. I had also great possessions of herds and flocks, more than any who had been before me in Jerusalem. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the treasure of kings and provinces. I got singers, both men and women, and many concubines, the delight of the sons of man.

So I became great and surpassed all who were before me in Jerusalem. Also my wisdom remained with me. And whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them. I kept my heart from no pleasure, for my heart found pleasure in all my toil, and this was my reward for all my toil. Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun. (Ecclesiastes 2:7-11, ESV)

Other men go make a different, but no less mistaken, extreme. Rather than pursuing meaningless sex from multiple women, they pursue meaning in a single woman. They find their identity and purpose in loving and serving another fallen person. This is as almost as empty as the meaningless sex, and will leave a man almost as hollow in the end. How is her value more than your own?

A man’s purpose of life can not be found in women or a singular woman.

If a man fathers a hundred children and lives many years, so that the days of his years are many, but his soul is not satisfied with life’s good things, and he also has no burial, I say that a stillborn child is better off than he. For it comes in vanity and goes in darkness, and in darkness its name is covered. Moreover, it has not seen the sun or known anything, yet it finds rest rather than he. Even though he should live a thousand years twice over, yet enjoy no good—do not all go to the one place? (Ecclesiastes 6:3-6, ESV)

So, where can purpose be in life be found?

For this, we can turn to Genesis:

And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

This is the first commandment; this is for what God made man.

Man’s purpose is to be found in filling and subduing the earth. Work was what man was created and/or evolved for. Man is meant to tame the land and to build from that which he needs and desires and to fill his tamed land with his own.

Man’s purpose is in building something greater than himself and then to create future generations to enjoy it.

Yet, there is a problem:

“Because you have listened to the voice of your wife
and have eaten of the tree
of which I commanded you,
‘You shall not eat of it,’
cursed is the ground because of you;
in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life;
thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you;
and you shall eat the plants of the field.
By the sweat of your face
you shall eat bread,
till you return to the ground,
for out of it you were taken;
for you are dust,
and to dust you shall return.” (Genesis 3:17-19, ESV)

I have read this verse many times in my life, but only recently did I realize the full measure of agony contained within these words.

It is only in his work that man can find meaning, yet rather than something pleasurable, work is something difficult, bitter, and wearying.

How bitter this cup, that man’s purpose is to toil, yet his toil is naught but pain to him. To his even greater agony, when his toil is through and he surveys the work gained by through the sweat of his brow, he always knows that from dust it came and to dust it will return.

To find purpose, a man must always be working, always in bitter toil, yet know that all his work will eventually crumble in ruin.

I hated all my toil in which I toil under the sun, seeing that I must leave it to the man who will come after me, and who knows whether he will be wise or a fool? Yet he will be master of all for which I toiled and used my wisdom under the sun. This also is vanity. So I turned about and gave my heart up to despair over all the toil of my labors under the sun, because sometimes a person who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave everything to be enjoyed by someone who did not toil for it. This also is vanity and a great evil. What has a man from all the toil and striving of heart with which he toils beneath the sun? For all his days are full of sorrow, and his work is a vexation. Even in the night his heart does not rest. This also is vanity. (Ecclesiastes 2:18-23, ESV)

What is a man to do when all is vanity? How can man continue on, when all about his is rust and decay

Here is all for man to do:

Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart, for God has already approved what you do.

Let your garments be always white. Let not oil be lacking on your head.

Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, all the days of your vain life that he has given you under the sun, because that is your portion in life and in your toil at which you toil under the sun. Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going. (Ecclesiastes 9:7-10, ESV)

A man accepts that life is vanity; he accepts that life is toil, but he continues. He finds what joy he can, knowing joy is illusionary, while working to build, knowing that his works will fade and decay.

A man’s purpose is to continue to build and enjoy the fruits of his labour even when he can not find meaning in the building or its fruits.

If a Man talks to You…

The Christian RP circle is talking of how traditional young women can signal availability to RP guys in the church. I’ve written advice on this topic a couple of times before, but I’ll write on it again.

There are 3 main steps to landing a man: signal availability, reciprocate attention, and say yes. I’ll go over them.

The first step is to make it easy for men to approach you and to signal availability. I’ve already written a some tips:

Be out in the world. Men can’t approach if they don’t see you.

Get in environments where approaching is easy. A casual, social environment is best.

Smile: A kind smile lowers the expected cost and raises the perceived odds of success, increasing the chances of being approached.

Signal availability: Look pretty, have an open demeanor, put yourself in a physical space where approaching is possible (ie. stand around other people, not on the other side of the room by yourself), walk casually instead of bee-lining: make it easy for a man to approach and it will be more likely.

Don’t signal unavailability: Don’t wear earphones, don’t wear a ring on your ring finger if you aren’t married, don’t stare at the ground, don’t walk around staring at your iPhone, etc., these will all discourage most men (players aside) from approaching. Most men don’t want to intrude on you when you are doing something. By doing this you are self-selecting for the kind of guy who interrupts busy people.

Signal something unique: Signal something that makes you stand out, particularly for the kind of man you are looking for. If you are looking for an physically active man, wear something that indicates you participate in a sport. If you are looking for a bookish man, carry a book. If you are looking for a traditional man, look traditional. If you are looking for a family man, coo over your friend’s baby. If you are looking for a player, show your cleavage. If a man sees you share something in common, something particular that interests hims, or that gives him an easy in to open, he will be more likely to approach you.

Do the opposite of all this if you want to be approached less.

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For Christians in particular:

When out of a church setting, it can often be difficult for a Christian man to tell if a woman is Christian or not, and if she isn’t he likely won’t be motivated to hit on her; hitting on a non-Christian would be a waste of time and effort. By displaying something obviously Christian, a Christian woman can give him that much more of a reason to talk to her, increasing her odds of meeting someone.

For Christian women, if you want more Christian men to hit on you, bring along something with you when you go out that makes it obvious you are Christian. Carry your Bible or a CS Lewis book or something else obvious; wear a Jesus fish necklace or a Bible camp t-shirt. (This is probably what the WWJD bracelets used to be for).

I know this from experience; there have been at least two cute girls I’ve cold approached because I overheard they were Christian, where if I hadn’t overheard them I probably would not have.

Another step is to get onto a dating site. Find a Christian one if you can. That opens up a lot of potential men you might otherwise meet. Hit up your social network as well; I’m sure there’s a few middle-aged women in your family and at church who would love to meddle in your affairs and introduce you to young men they know.

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Once you have signaled availability, the next step is to reciprocate. Always give positive feedback to any interest a man* shows you. Most men hate approaching; showing interest invites them and helps them get over their dislike of approaching, not showing interest drives them away.

So how do you know a man is showing interest: he pays attention to you.

It’s that simple. If a man is looking at you (and you do not have an large obvious deformity or ketchup smeared across your face) he is interested. If a man is talking you forfor something not related to practical matters or a social obligation, he is interested. Any man who is spending attention on you when he is not socially obligated to is at some level interested. Always assume any single man talking to you is interested in you; you will be right at least 90% of the time. It may be only a vague interest or a small one, but it is interest, and reciprocation will grow that interest, a lack thereof will kill it.

If you see a man looking at you, smile back. Look inviting. If you’re too shy to hold a smile: smile quickly, quickly look down, then slowly look back up while smiling.

If a man comes up and talks engage. Talk with him back. Answer his questions and ask questions in return. If a man is talking with you but is awkward, try to help him out by asking questions or just by bearing the brunt of conversation until he becomes comfortable with talking with you.

If you’re shy, just stutter out something, anything. Don’t worry about embarrassing yourself, just try to show interest. There’s many guys who find shyness or social awkwardness, even to the point of self-embarrassment, cute or attractive and it is rare than any man finds it actively repulsive. For a woman, it is always better to come off awkward or silly than cold in the dating game.

Finally, part of reciprocating is giving a man opportunities on which to act. If you have some interest in a guy, make it easy for him to ask you out. Mention that play or movie you want to see, that new restaurant you want to go to, that place in town you want to visit, etc. Give him opportunities to invite you out and be obvious about it.

If you’re on a dating site, respond to (thoughtful) messages ASAP, write longer responses, and ask questions in return.

Personal example of what not to do:

My mother has been pressing me for a while to go after a  girl I’ve briefly mentioned here before. She recently returned to my church after a year abroad. She’s plain but not unattractive. I’ve never pursued her because she’s done nothing to attract me to her, but its possible something could develop. A few months back we happened to end up near each other at a church function. I was not pursuing her, but I was not closed to the idea either, so I decided to see if something could develop.

I turned to her and asked her a question of some sort. A one sentence answer. So I talked a bit then asked another question. Another one sentence answer. So I forced out a bit more talk, then threw out a third question. Another one sentence answer. She gave no questions in return and no unforced way to continue, so I stopped. I haven’t talked to her since and have no interest in doing so. I don’t know what she thinks of me at all, but I know I don’t feel like spending any more effort.

Now I was not interested per se, but had she reciprocated a conversation could have developed, and from that attraction may have developed, but she’s not pretty enough for attraction to develop on its own and the possibility of developing attraction was killed. I have no idea whether she has any interest in me or not, but it is possible a small bit of reciprocation could have led to something, but now its unlikely anything will happen unless she makes a large first move.

****

Finally, the third thing is to say yes. Unless he is obviously scummy or degenerate, if a man asks you out, just say yes.

Now when I say ask out, I mean anything. Any time a single man invites a single woman (who have not friendzoned each other) to something, he is asking that woman out. If a man wants to “hang-out” or something that’s not specifically a “date”, it’s still an invitation, he’s interested. It doesn’t even have to be alone time. If a man asks you specifically to a group event, he’s still interested. The exception is if he invites the whole group and you just happen to be a part of the established group (but even then, if he takes a special interest in your attendance).

Personal example: A couple years ago, there was a cute blonde from out of town who was going to a local university. We talked a couple times. I was interested in getting to know her better and thought I could help her make some friends, so I invited her to a group event I was going to. She declined because she was visiting other people at the church. A couple weeks later I invited her to another event. She declined so she could study. After that I talked to her once or twice more, but my interest faded; the group event invitation was a sign of interest on my part and I took her rejection of my invitations as a sign of her rejecting me. A couple months later she stopped attending our church.

There is almost zero cost to going out with a man when he asks you out. So say yes even if you aren’t immediately attracted. At worst you’ll get a free coffee/movie/meal and waste a few hours in awkward conversation,  then decline the second date, so why not say yes? What is there to lose? (If its an online date or with someone you don’t know, stay in a public space).

On the other hand, the upside is huge. The guy is already interested in you, maybe on the date he’ll surprise you and you’ll fall for him.

So, when asked just say yes.

Exception: he is a long-term friend you know with certainty you are not interested in. In that case shut that down immediately and very clearly.

If you must decline a particular invitation because you are busy, immediately counter-offer with another time/date so he knows you are still saying yes. The “I’m busy” response is a common brush-off, so even if you’re reasons are valid and you are interested in him, he’ll probably take it as a rejection. Make sure he doesn’t misinterpret.

The same goes with if you want to decline a particular type of date where you are interested in the person but not the activity. Ex.: If he invites you to his place for a movie but you don’t know him well enough, counter-offer with coffee or a movie at the theatre.

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To summarize: signal availability, reciprocate, say yes. Do all this, and you’ll greatly increase your chances.

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*Standard boilerplate: When I say a man or any man throughout this piece, I am not referring to obvious degenerates or cads. Ignore them and drive them away. I am referring to decent men.

Utopia Doesn’t Exist

Victor Mandrake brought up a criticism on Twitter on my recent post on recourse in marriage. It seems like his Twitter is private, so what of

I answered the immediate question on Twitter:

But I want to make a larger point here.

Of course there’s a potential someone will lie and I’m sure there will be people who get hurt in any system or scheme proposed here on the blog, but pointing out that a system could not stop every possible corruption is not a good criticism. Every system will have a failure point and every system will have corruption. Humans are fallen creatures tempted to all varieties of sins and any and every political, economic, and legal system will be prone tovarying degrees and forms of corruption.

Utopia does not exist because people are people and prone to corruption. Attempts at utopia always lead to unimaginable heights of brutality because there is no way to create a perfect system for imperfect beings, and trying to force them into the system will destroy them and the system. I am not attempting to create a perfect system. No reactionary is trying to create a perfect system that is free from corruption.

One of the most basic foundations of reactionary thought is: humans are corrupt and any system with humans in it will be corrupted. Utopia is impossible. Everything is broken.

What I am trying to do is outline workable systems built for humans that will limit the excesses of natural human corruption. Systems that are stable and will provide people with a sense of place and try to lure out their better natures. Our modern system is cold, inhuman, and bureaucratic. We do not need a perfect system, we need a human system.

Traditional Recourse in Marriage

I’m going to return to my previous discussions of the marital cross. In a decent traditional Christian society, there are be no grounds for divorce except for adultery or abandonment, because divorce is degenerate and harmful to society, but this does not mean there would be no recourse for the married but suffering.

For a woman (who is physically weaker) being abused,* the best traditional recourse is family. Having her father/brothers/cousins/etc. ‘pay a visit’ to an abusive husband and ‘demonstrate the error of his ways’ to him should be the most immediate course of action. If a visit or two doesn’t work, then the ‘he needed killing’ defence should be applicable. The widow is then free to remarry.

For the man being physically abused, the traditional recourse is to be a man and not let your weaker wife beat on you. There should be no need for more recourse in cases of physical abuse. Obviously, defending yourself from physical abuse is not abuse itself and should not be punishable by law.

In cases where family is not available/impractical to the woman or the man is being abused emotionally or through sexual withdrawal or restraint is not an option, the church has a traditional process of recourse given in Matthew: Bring it to your spouse, if that fails, bring it before a few brothers, if that fails bring it before the church, if that fails, then the abusive spouse should be expelled from the church. The marriage continues and the believing spouse should continue to love their spouse, but the expelled partner is no longer a believer and no longer a part of the church. If the now-unbelieving spouse, having been through the process of church discipline decides to the leave the beliving spouse, that is marital abandonment and is allowable grounds for divorce.

If the church fails do deal with physical abuse or the abuse is particularly heinous then the law should be employed. There is nothing more evil than a someone who abuses someone under their authority and the law should punish such abuse appropriately. The punishment** for a man who physically abuses his wife and/or children (or a woman who abuses her children and the husband is unable to restrain) should be a private whipping (not public so that he is not shamed before those under him); if a man has been whipped a few times and is still abusive or if his first offence is particularly heinous, then he should be executed as the criminal he is. The grieving widow is then free to remarry.

Sadly, we do not live in a decent traditional Christian society, so instead of a civilized response to abuse, we encourage more abuse through the dissolution of the family. Obviously, this is not all practical advice given our current degenerate laws, but  this is how a traditional society should handle domestic abuse: family, masculine leadership, church discipline, and, if necessary, corporal/capital punishment.

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* When I am speaking of abuse throughout this piece, I am not speaking of such things as the bitter, even mutually violent, arguments of a dysfunctional marriage or isolated incidences (unless the incident is unusually heinous). I am talking of a sustained pattern of cruel abuse. Isolated incidences and mutual dysfunction should be dealt with privately through forgiveness and love.

** Obviously, when I say punishment, I mean after a fair trial.

Jenny

I am shown a picture. It is of my youth group at a ski trip. In the picture is a pretty blonde, I’ve seen her around before. I must know her name. “Who is that, I don’t recognize her?”

“Jenny.”

****

I sit in church, she’s sitting with her family. 14-year-old perfection in a blue shirt. I do not hear the sermon, I stare. I notice I’m staring and look away. I try to pay attention to the pastor and his message of God, but my eyes drift inexorably towards His earthly angel. I need to talk to her after the service.

I don’t.

****

I have been roped into greeting people coming to church. I stand near the door, shaking hands and saying ‘hi’. A few people ask me how I’m doing, I answer as I always do, “fine.” My eye wanders expectantly towards the entrance as I hand out bulletins. Finally, I am rewarded. She comes into view. Her top is cut just right; it is modest and wholesome, yet the smallest bit of breast can be seen. My heart skips a beat, literally; it misses one pump, it hurts so good. How can just a square inch of milky-white flesh do this to me?

Never before have I had that strong a reaction to anyone; I did not know at the time, but I never would again.

This vision of perfection walks towards me. I can’t meet those green eyes, I look down. I shake her hand, say something, say anything. Out squeaks a “hi”, she says “hi” back. Say more, just speak, one sentence, that’s all, but my mouth refuses to open. She goes to sit down. My body is still roiling.

There will be other chances to talk with her.

****

At youth group, she’s there. A card game starts, I join, she joins. I’m good at games, this is my chance. Impress her, talk to her. She speaks, another replies. I stare intently at my cards. My gaze wanders to the face I think of every day, I pull it quickly back to my cards. Over and over again. The turns pass, I continue to draw and play saying nothing. Some conversation is engaged in by the others, but mostly it is silence. The game ends, I win, yet I know I lost.

****

I am at the mall with my mother. She asks about my life. She asks about girls. I tell her of Jenny, she tells me that’s cute. I say, but she’s 3 years younger than me. My mother says three years doesn’t matter. I hope, but am not sure if I believe her.

****

I am at youth group. A group is talking. I enter the group and stand beside her. Speak! But what do I say? Anything, just speak. What if I say something stupid? Just say something, I can’t. You must. I turn my head towards her, my mouth opens, and nothing comes out. My mind curses me.

****

I am newly 18, now a youth leader. We are at a corn maze, I see her and her sister enter. I follow behind. I catch up. We talk. An actual conversation, our first. It turns out the younger girl is her niece, not her sister. We walk through the maze, conversation flowing, awkwardly, but flowing.

“I’m cold.” “You can borrow my jacket.” “No thanks.”

Conversation continues.

“We should ditch my niece and go off by ourselves.” “That doesn’t seem very nice.”

We continue talking and talking through the maze. We get through after an hour and end up at the camp fire.

She sits elsewhere, I stare into the fire, poking it with a stick as I daydream of us. I have a natural high for the next month.

****

A few weeks later, at youth group. She walks up to me. She’s wearing a Corona jersey that drapes most wonderfully over her perfect breasts. The white highlights her pale skin. She smiles her perfect smile, and says “hi”. Her beauty transcends words.

I say “hello” back. She stands there, looking at me. Say something! what? Anything. Anything? Ask her about her week. How? I don’t know, just do it.

Time passes. She talks to someone else nearby.

****

I am talking with my mother and sisters. Relationships come up. I mention Jenny, both my sisters go “awwww”.

****

After church, she stands alone, leaning against a wall. Her lips are redder than usual, her hair in a ponytail. She’s wearing black leather boots and a leather jacket. She looks classy, cute, and sexy, all at once. I need to talk to her. I go lean against the wall nearby. I should speak. I say nothing. We both stand and lean for minutes.

I hate myself, but there will be other chances.

****

I am on the bus. I daydream of Jenny, as I do every day. I dream of holding her in my arms. I dream of coming home to her smile each day. I dream of the little blonde children we will have. The dreams are wonderful, yet painful and lonely. It tears at me.

I daydream of something less painful, of killing myself, of peace.

****

At church, she’s leaning against the wall again. So very pretty, I should talk to her. I will… After I help put away the chairs.

The chairs are put away, she’s still there, go talk to her. I will… but first I have to think of something to say.

You’ve though of something, talk to her. I will!

I walk towards her.

I can’t. I turn.

I walk home, raging at myself.

I get home, I cry.

****

I am 20, it is Christmas Eve. It has been a half-year since I have seen her. Months of daydreams, yet each month thinking of her less. I think about her only a few times a week. I vaguely wish to see her again.

I get my wish. I see her walk in. Her golden hair wreathes her angelic face. She looks the season in her classy crimson top. So very pretty.

I sit in the back, I can barely take my eyes off her the entire service. What should I say to her.

The service ends.

I walk out and stand in the hallway. She’s just inside the auditorium, I can talk to her. I can’t. I rage at myself. My friend notices me and asks why I am out here by myself, pacing. I tell him. Go talk to her.

I enter back into the main room. She’s leaning against the same wall as before. I stand in the back instead. I muster courage for 10 minutes. While I muster, she leaves with her family.

On the way home, my mother asks me what’s wrong. I don’t tell her.

****

The day after Valentine’s Day. My mother tells me she saw Jenny, she was at a Valentine’s supper at my church with someone else.

She goes back upstairs. I cry on my bed.

****

In my mid-late 20′s, reading my facebook feed. Her niece’s profile comes up as a friend of a friend. I haven’t really thought of Jenny in years, but I wonder. I go into her friend’s list. Search “Jennifer”. There’s a Jennifer,  but the last name’s different. I click the profile picture; the girl in the dress matches my vague memories of Jenny’s face. She’s with a man in a suit. More pictures, pictures of children, pictures of her smiling with her children.

She’s aged, no longer the 14-year-old angel of my dreams. She’s now chubby, the perfect curve of youthful hip and breast hidden under a small layer of fat.

And yet, she’s still beautiful. Her smile still glistens and her flaxen hair still glows. I feel a dull ache.

I close the browser, trying not to think.

****

A couple years later, apropos of nothing, I think of her. I wonder.

What if I had the social abilities then that I do now? What if I had been able to summon my courage then, as I can do now?

Would I have been able to win her heart? Would those children be mine?

What if, instead of an empty house, I came home each day to my beautiful, chubby, blonde hausfraus and our adorable little kinder? If those children were mine?

How would my life be different, how would I be different, if I had been a better man?

I write my memories down.

While writing, I’m curious once again, I search for her profile for the second time. She’s aged, she’s still vaguely pretty, but not beautiful. She has changed, or have I?

Would I still find her beautiful had I been a better man?

She recently celebrated her sixth anniversary. They seem happy in the few pictures of them, but most of the pictures are of children.

There is no dull ache, just a slight wistfulness.

I don’t know what to think, so instead, I share my thoughts with thousands of people I have never met. Hopefully my writing will help a younger version of me; maybe it will only confuse him more. Either way, I feel this needs to be written.

Guest Post: Minimizing Sex Starvation

***I’ve been busy lately, so here’s a guest post from Bee.  There’s a decent chance this post was submitted to me to advertise a particular site (Edit: From the comments it seems not. My apologies to Bee.) but the post is readable and on topic and cleaning and routines is something I struggle with (or, more accurately almost completely ignore in my bachelor home) so some encouragement to keep on top of things is helpful.

As well, the idea of scheduling sex is interesting and not something I’ve thought of. On one hand, it seems like it could be a good to get it regularly, but maybe it’s a bit of a forced buzzkill. What do y’all think?

I do accept and post guest posts that may give my readers some value or information related to the topics of this blog, so if you have something worthwhile feel free to submit it. Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of people submitting near illegible spam. So for those people sending me spam, this post represents the bare minimum of quality I will accept for future guest posts, so if you can’t reach this, don’t send anything. ***

In this world, risk can never be eliminated or fully controlled; it can only be reduced and managed. My two suggestions can minimize the possibility of ending up in a sexless marriage. My two suggestions can not guarantee you will not end up in sexless marriage.

This post is for single, Christian men. Because Christian men can only find sexual release in marriage with their wife this makes avoiding a sex starved marriage very important.

We see from Genesis 2 that the wife was brought into Adam’s existing life. Before Eve was created, Adam was an adult and was working a job given him by God.

Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it. The Lord God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.”

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.” 19 Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name. 20 The man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him. (Genesis 2:15 – 20 NASB)

For most Christian men their God given job is:

  • to worship and give thanks to God.
  • to grow the church by having more than 2 children.
  • to disciple their wife and children to grow in Christ.

Eve was brought to Adam to be his helper in his already existing work and life. Eve needed to fit into Adam’s existing life and world.

I believe that one important part of being a helpmeet is to meet her husbands’ sexual needs.

In the pioneer days of North America mothers taught their daughters a weekly routine that organized and prioritized their work as married home helpmeets. Monday was washday, Tuesday was ironing, Wednesday was mending, etc. This weekly routine focused their energies and helped prevent discouragement or depression. Mrs. Bee has told me that looking at her weekly schedule helps her when she forgets or loses track of what she should be doing.

As a single man you want to be able to practice what you preach about schedule and routine. While single, begin to incorporate the power of routine into your life. Start going to bed at the same time each night. Designate one evening a week for cleaning your apartment or home. Incorporate exercise, grocery shopping, Bible study, fasting into your week. The FlyLady is a good source for help with cleaning and routines.

My solution to minimize the chances of a sex starved marriage is based on two foundations.

Choose a woman who believes in personal submission to her husband. A sexually available wife is also a submissive wife.

Make sex a regularly scheduled event. Begin with a 20 or 30 minute session three times a week. Most married men will be fine with that but if you need sex more frequently, then change the schedule after awhile. For the Christian man who married because he “burns’, sex is too important to let happen only when his wife is emotionally in the mood.

Like Adam, you have job and a regular schedule before getting married. As a Christian man, you are not scheduling sex in your routine before marriage. But, as soon as you are married, you adjust your existing bed time 3 or more nights a week to accommodate your sexual release, your wife’s sexual release, fleshly uniting with your wife, and your procreation duties.

Jesus told two short parables illustrating that major decisions should be considered carefully before commitments are made.

For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? 29 Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ 31 Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and consider whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to encounter the one coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends [o]a delegation and asks for terms of peace. Luke 14:28 – 32 NASB

These parables means you should inform a women of what your schedule after marriage will be like and allow her to decide, without pressure or coercion, if she is willing to enter into this kind of relationship with you. Be wise, don’t bring this up on the first 3 dates, but do bring it up shortly before you are ready to propose. It would be natural for most women to experience some trepidation at the thought of performing sexually three times a week, or more. Trepidation alone should not be a deal breaker. Try to discern if willingness is present with any trepidation.

Your convictions regarding birth control and sex during menstruation (Leviticus 15:19) may be factors in adjusting your schedule with your wife. Those details are best left up to each couple to work out.

If your wife gives you regular sex make a special effort to reward her. An occasional longer time with more romance for her can be a reward. Helping her with house chores so she can get to bed on time is also something I have done that has not hurt my sex life. I have not done chores to get more sex, I have done chores because my wife was freely giving me plenty of sex.

I hope these ideas help single, Christian men avoid a sex-starved marriage.

About myself; I met my wife at church in North America. My N was zero. Her N was greater than zero but she has not had a problem bonding to me. We have been happily married for 21 years. My wife has never sexually refused me even though I did not know these principles before I got married. I was fortunate that my wife believed in being submissive and in serving me sexually – I was not wise enough to look for those qualities when I was looking for a wife. In the last 9 months we have been scheduling sex 4 times a week. I am very happy.