Take it Like a Man

 Doctor NerdLove understand that being shot down sucks. But you have two choices: bitch and moan, or deal with it like a man.*

If you go by a lot of the advice being handed out to guys about dating, you would think that getting dates and getting laid is simple: act as alpha as possible, remember that women are gold-digging, status-climbing whores who only want the highest status males (and will ignore, use and/or cheat on everyone else) and endeavor to give as few fucks as possible.

 

Of course, the unspoken problem is that for all of their protestations that they’re a guy who doesn’t care… they care a lot. And many of them are already feeling angry that they’re not getting the sex that they “deserve”, which makes them even more determined to score that 9 or 10 that they’ve been cut off from. So when that mix of that anxiety, pressure and entitlement issues starts to build, they have no way of dealing with being shot down. As a result, we get guys who respond to rejection or being Friend Zoned by freaking the fuck out at women.

The pattern is fairly simple:

Guy likes girl.
Guy works up nerve to ask out girl.
Girl says no.
Guy calls her a whore and a cocktease before going on to rant to his friends online and on Facebook about how women don’t appreciate a Nice Guy. For extra bonus points, they may include this in their OKCupid profiles.

Now admittedly, this is territory that I’ve covered before, but it’s been a subject that is fairly evergreen and recent tumblrs like Nice Guys of OKCupid and OKCupid Goldmine have sparked the conversation again over how hard guys have it in dating and it’s so unfair.

Now I will be the first to tell you: being shot down sucks. But you have two ways of dealing with it. You can bitch, moan and whine…

Or you can deal with it like a man1

♦◊♦

Fear Leads to Anger. Anger Leads to Hate. Hate Leads to Suffering.

Dating can be a maddening exercise in frustration, shredded egos and constant confusion and more than a little resentment; when you’re not socially gifted or are uncomfortable dealing with the people you’re attracted to, it can be even worse. It’s bad enough when you get anxiety attacks at the thought of approaching someone you’re interested in. It’s even worse when you manage to fight through the fear… only to get your heart torn out, stomped on and ground into the dirt. You can be absolutely convinced that you did everything right and still have no idea why you’re not getting a second (or even a first) date. It’s understandable that you’re going to feel frustrated, angry even. When you hold onto that frustration for too long, it begins to look for an outlet… and a target. It can feel only natural to want to lash out at the apparent cause of your misery – women.

 

“I JUST WANT TO BE LOVED, YOU BITCH!”

If you’ve bought into the ideas that women only crave status or material goods or that only “alpha” men get laid, that frustration is only going to confirm all of the most misogynist beliefs that these memes encourage. It’s so much more satisfying to put all the blame on women rather than to admit that perhaps you’re doing something wrong. By buying into the idea that women rule the social scene with an iron hand, queen bees lording it over the poor witless men who only want their due absolves guys of the responsibility for their own actions and own failures.

It also means that we don’t have to face up to how we really feel.

Men are still taught that expressing their emotions isn’t “manly” and that they’re supposed to keep things bottled up. And small wonder – trying to be honest about your emotions is conflicting, confusing and awkward and at times humiliating. It makes us vulnerable.

It’s human nature that we may try to avoid this feeling of vulnerability; we are afraid of how it makes us feel and we become afraid of that fear. Many of us—especially those who’ve been dealing with rejection and ostracism frequently have years of pent up frustration, and every rejection is just one more pebble into an already enormous pile of anger, recrimination and shame. We hate how that makes us feel and it can feel only natural at first to want to rail against the perceived cause of our pain.

Which is why I’m telling you to that you need to learn to embrace the suck.

Most, if not all of the frustration and anger that we feel at being rejected is misdirected; we aim it outwards because we feel as though it should be directed at ourselves, and that can be incredibly difficult to admit to. We’re pissed off at ourselves the most because… well, because we wanted to be perfect. We wanted to succeed. We have an ideal vision of ourselves and we failed to live up to it. Each rejection—or so we perceive it—is a judgement on us, and therefore a sign that there’s something inherently wrong with us as individuals.

Except that it’s OK to fuck up and to get rejected. Literally everybody does it. Everyone has gotten shot down by someone they were attracted to. Brad Pitt doesn’t go five for five when chasing after women. Neither does Ryan Gosling or Tom Hiddleston. Neither does Mystery or Style or Tyler Durden or any PUA you’d care to name. Neither did the various naturally gifted fellows I knew growing up who made it all look so damn easy, and whom I resented because for me it was so fucking hard.

It only seems like they have it easier because you’re comparing your unedited footage to their highlight reel. Behind every popular guy is a long line of women didn’t want to put up with their shit.

This is why you need to learn to be able to feel your feels, accept that you have them and then… forgive yourself for fucking up.

Learning to be willing to say “yes, this hurts and it sucks,” is an intrinsic part of learning how to get better with women because the follow up is “But it’s OK and I’ll recover and do better next time.”

Which leads us to the next part:

 

Take Rejection With Some Fucking Dignity

I’ve been rejected more times than I care to count. I’m willing to bet that I’ve been rejected more than most of you guys. I know every single impuse that springs up. You want to yell at her. You want to argue. You want to cry, beg or mope your way into changing the answer. You want to do anything other than accept that things just aren’t going to go the way you want. I have been there, done that and posted the angsty LiveJournal emo posts where I knew they would see it and printed the t-shirt.

Part of what changed things for me was learning that the best thing I could do was learn how to handle rejection with some grace and that the only truly acceptable response to being shot down is “Ok… well, thanks anyway.”

There’s almost literally nothing less attractive than someone who can’t take “no” for an answer. It’s a display of neediness and a lack of social intelligence that causes sex magically vanish into the ether alongside your dignity and self-respect.

(This, I might point out, is a key component of why guys get stuck in The Friend Zone. They don’t want to accept that they’ve been rejected and thus try to hang around—as “friends”—in hopes that if they hang in long enough and collect enough Friend Coupons, they can trade in that “No” for a “Yes”.)

Learning how to be able to take rejection without falling to pieces meant having to accept that there would be people that would not like me the way that I wanted them to, and there was nothing I could do to change that.

Paradoxically, this actually helped make me better at interacting with women. Y’see, a man who can take rejection with courtesy and a lack of drama is someone who is comfortable putting himself out there emotionally, and yet secure enough to know that a single rejection isn’t that big of a deal.

A guy who can take a rejection without letting it destroy him is someone who has confidence and self-assurance. It may not help him with that particular woman, but that attitude makes him much more attractive than the one who lashes out or stores away all of his resentment and bitterness only to unleash it later like a passive-aggressive squirrel storing hate nuts for the winter.

In it’s own way, accepting rejection without drama became remarkably liberating. Once I accepted that I couldn’t win everybody, I started to get over the fear of someone not liking me… and that in turn made me better able to recognize that my fear of rejection was part of a scarcity mindset. I was so hung up on getting this one person to like me that I made them the focus of my world and lost track of the fact that there would be other women out there—millions of them, in fact—and that if one didn’t like me, then there would be others who would. So why waste so much of my time and mental energy worrying about one “no” when I could get on with finding my next “yes”?

Incidentally, another aspect of learning to accept rejection with some dignity means understanding that while she is not required to give you the relationship you may want, neither are you limited to what she is willing to offer. It’s perfectly fine to walk away2 to a “Let’s Just Be Friends” response. If you don’t want to be friends, there’s no point to trying to force yourself to do so, especially if you’re the sort of person who can’t compartmentalize one’s emotions well. Some people will get angry at this: “So you just hung around because you wanted to date me?” It’s ok that the answer is “yes”… provided you were honest and up front about this rather than trying to be “friend” under false pretenses. Better to be straight forward.

Just understand that being friends isn’t the runner-up consolation prize for not getting the relationship; friends are fucking awesome, not the booby prize.

Get Away From The Internet Echo Chamber

There are days—-usually the ones that end in ‘y’—that I’m glad the majority of my formative years were spent pre-Internet. I grew up in the 80s and 90s, when the majority of computer network access one had were on the walled gardens of Compu$erve and Prodigy with occasional forays into the chaotic metropolis that was AOL and the wild west outposts of bulletin board systems. I didn’t have full internet access until I reached college, which meant my youthful idiocy was mostly fairly contained. But once I got to college, I had an ethernet connection and a WHOLE HOST of neurosis and insecurities that I was ready to unleash on the world!

This included an especially painful rant on being a Nice Guy caught in the Friend Zone on a personal website. It was full of the usual impotent fury, raging against how it just wasn’t RIGHT that the woman I was infatuated with stubbornly refused to fall in love with me (or, y’know, touch my penis. Whichever came3 first.) and this was a crime to cruel to be borne.

Fortunately for me, I had yet to discover Usenet and the web was in it’s infancy, which meant that unless you were added to Yahoo by hand, nobody would find you without a great deal of luck. So while I got the occasional ass-pat from my fellow travellers, my venting went mostly unnoticed.

At the time, it was frustrating, feeling like I was yelling into the void. My friends, much as they loved me, would only let me moan for so long before they’d tell me I was being an asshole. I would have loved to comisserate with my fellow prisoners about the fickleness of women. Now, with the harsh light of maturity, I’m incredibly greatful… because it means that I didn’t have my bullshit issues validated by what would have felt like the entire world. Not having the massive “I know that feel bro” circle-jerk It meant that I could vent… and then I had to move the fuck on

These days though… well, there’s any number of subReddits, Tumblrs and forums where I could go and find other guys just like me – angry and confused and frustrated – where I could scream about how unfair it all was and how the system was rigged against us and I would find hordes of responsive people who felt exactly the way I did. But while this can feel empowering, having nothing but people who agreed with me also meant that I wasn’t going to hear the unpleasant truth: that ultimately it was my own damn fault and I needed to put on my big-boy pants and deal with it. Instead, I would be surrounded by people who agreed—yes, that istotally unfair. And the more that we could agree that it’s unfair, the more we could shift the blame away from us and onto others. That echo and amplification—that it’s unfair and it’s all women’s fault—only makes it easier to buy into other hateful ideas about women because… well, these are all people who I agree with and who feel the way I do and I’m not exactly hearing any dissenting voices, so maybe there’s something to it.

It’s incredibly seductive—after all, we do tend to like and respect those most like us—but it’s also limiting and, to a certain extent dangerous.

That cyber-balkanization—communities that self-select for specific viewpoints—would make it harder for me to get what I ultimately needed to hear because… well, I didn’t want to hear it. I just wanted people to validate my victimhood—even more than I wanted a solution to my problem.

It’s great to have a place where you can vent, where you can find people who understand you and have gone through similar experiences and who can offer you moral support. But it’s also important not to be seduced by the call of a uniform community that could prevent you from getting an alternate viewpoint that you may well need.

Quit Expecting Life To Be Fair

A key word that comes up over and over again is “fairness”. The idea that somehow things should be fair and equitable informs a great deal about how we relate to one another and how we perceive our interactions with people. A lot of guys, for example, will insist that because women supposedly have all the power in dating that it is somehow “unfair” for guys. The idea that men are “forced” to approach is somehow an injustice because in a truly just world, women would approach too.

Never mind that women are discouraged from being the aggressors for a multitude of reasons—it’s theperception that there’s an imbalance that places an unjust burden on men that matters.

The same goes to the supposedly disproportionate “risks” that men have to take by virtue of being the aggressors. It would only be fair for women to indicate their availability before we invest ourselves in trying to approach them, right? Right?

Let’s be honest: nine times out of ten, what we mean by fairness translates to “makes it easier for me to get what I want.”

Is it fair that men “have” to be the aggressors? No, not really… because “fair” never really comes into the question. “Fair” assumes that men and women are otherwise completely equal; it ignores that every interaction doesn’t occur in a vacuum and that interaction between men and women is informed by thousands of years of enforced gender roles, female subservience and views of male and female sexuality and interrelations that have only started to change in the last hundred years or so. The “risks” that men have to subject themselves to are frankly not equal to the ones that women face in return. To quote Margaret Atwood: “Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid men will kill them.”

Even if we ignore the subject of privilege4 , the things that guys so often complain about with dating as being “unfair” has less to do with “fairness” and more with “It would be nice if…”

Because yes, it would be nice if everybody – men and women alike – could tell in advance who was single and looking and who wasn’t. It would be nice if women felt as though they were more empowered to approach people they were interested in without fear of recrimination or even physical danger.

It would also be nice if I won the Powerball this weekend.

Instead of tying ourselves up with the idea of “fairness” and complaining about how things “aren’t fair”, it’s better to accept that no, things aren’t fair and deal with them as they exist in reality instead of through the lens of “but I really want it this way.” Because frankly it’s laughable to talk about how “unfair” it is that guys feel as though risking the sting of rejection is an injustice and how easy women have it when we’re still fighting over the idea of whether women are allowed to control if, when and how they have children.

So no. The world isn’t fair, and no amount of complaining is going to change the fact or make things any easier. You want things to be fair? Good. Start helping to build a world with true social and sexual equality.

Until then, you can complain about how “unfair” it all is like a child that isn’t getting ice cream.

Or you can man up.

 

Originally appeared at Paging Dr. NerdLove

  1. *Normally I try to avoid gendered phrases like this that carry the implication that acting like an adult is a masculine trait and that whining and complaining is a feminine one. But since I’m addressing guys in this case, it feels apt to use the gendered pronoun. It’s not about men vs. women, it’s the difference between acting like a boy or a grown-ass adult. []
  2. Well, not literally, that’s just rude… []
  3. fnar []
  4. Marvel at my restraint! []

 

Image courtesy of Flickr/xlordashx

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About Harris O'Malley

Harris O'Malley provides geek dating advice at his blog Paging Dr. NerdLove, as well as writing the occasional guest review for Spill.com and appearing on the podcast The League of Extremely Ordinary Gentlemen. He can be found dispensing snark and advice on Facebook and Twitter (@DrNerdLove.)

Dr. NerdLove is not really a doctor.

Comments

  1. And here we have yet another article telling men to “Man Up” or else.

    Frankly, Good Men Project, you’re starting to annoy me again. I thought this place assured avoidance of this kind of shaming.

    • did you see the * that was placed after the phrase “man up”? because it lead to this:

      *Normally I try to avoid gendered phrases like this that carry the implication that acting like an adult is a masculine trait and that whining and complaining is a feminine one. But since I’m addressing guys in this case, it feels apt to use the gendered pronoun. It’s not about men vs. women, it’s the difference between acting like a boy or a grown-ass adult.

  2. PursuitAce says:

    “Take it like a man”. That’s what it all boils down to again doesn’t it? As a man that’s the best advice you’re going to get from society. Just take whatever comes down the line and make lemonade out of it. The only difference from days gone by and today’s twisted culture is you do it now without any respect and often with a lot of derision. Respect has to be “earned” they say, whatever that means. But don’t worry. They’ll let you know when you get there, haha. So take it from a fellow brother who’s been there and done that. Get up everyday, work your backside off, always do the right thing, ignore the sea of critics, and walk that long lonely walk. And when you get out the other side with yourself and your scars intact you won’t have to wonder or ask yourself if your a good man.

  3. This is a lot of words you use to tell me, “your emotions are invalid.”

    Sure, maybe this is reality and we should take it as it is. Most men end up doing so. Most men – somewhere between the first time their crush starts dating a guy who’s fucked half the women in school and the time that woman in the bar actually ASKED for you to buy a drink and then just walked away – figure out that they’ll need to suffer the indignities of being rejected, crushed, humiliated, and feeling unloved in a qualitatively different way from women.

    But you know what? Maybe you should allow them their frustration. Instead of telling them YOU’RE RIGHT IT ISN’T FAIR, NOW GET OVER IT, maybe you should respect their pain. Maybe you should try to understand that “rejection” isn’t even the biggest problem for a lot of these men, it’s simply getting to the point where you’re socially confident enough TO get rejected.

    Because this “life sucks and then you die” attitude is what men grow up with. It’s the one attitude men understand, in fact – you’re not the first person to tell most readers here to man up.

    Maybe, instead, you should give them a chance to break out of that negative cycle of suffocating masculinity.

  4. Bay Area Guy says:

    You know, it’s funny.

    For a male feminist like NL who once denounced “gaslighting” when applied against women, his posts consistently gaslight men. He’s basically telling romantically unsuccessful guys that none of their grievances regarding the dating market/behavior of women could possibly be correct. It’s all in their heads, whether it’s because they’re a bunch of misogynists or whiners.

    Women are NEVER wrong, in his book. It’s always the guy’s fault.

    For someone who espouses feminist views, he often sounds like a Texas Republican (IIRC, NL is from Texas). Pull yourself up by your bootstraps, man up, take responsibility, don’t whine, etc.

  5. Bay Area Guy says:

    And then there’s this nonsense.

    Because yes, it would be nice if everybody – men and women alike – could tell in advance who was single and looking and who wasn’t. It would be nice if women felt as though they were more empowered to approach people they were interested in without fear of recrimination or even physical danger.
    It would also be nice if I won the Powerball this weekend.

    Yes, because clearly, being involuntarily celibate and being denied access to intimacy is clearly the same thing as not winning the Powerball.

    That he would even make such an absurd comparison in the first place betrays his lack of empathy for the struggles that so many guys go through with regard to dating. I don’t care how many times he invokes his past life where he was less successful with women.

    It gets worse…

    Instead of tying ourselves up with the idea of “fairness” and complaining about how things “aren’t fair”, it’s better to accept that no, things aren’t fair and deal with them as they exist in reality instead of through the lens of “but I really want it this way.” Because frankly it’s laughable to talk about how “unfair” it is that guys feel as though risking the sting of rejection is an injustice and how easy women have it when we’re still fighting over the idea of whether women are allowed to control if, when and how they have children.
    So no. The world isn’t fair, and no amount of complaining is going to change the fact or make things any easier. You want things to be fair? Good. Start helping to build a world with true social and sexual equality.
    Until then, you can complain about how “unfair” it all is like a child that isn’t getting ice cream.

    Typical cultural leftist tropes.

    First, since men are the privileged/oppressor class, then all hardships that they face are not important, or do not deserve any attention since women have it far worse. If you’re a shy guy who’s shunned by shallow women, or are unfairly labeled a creep, then suck it up and take it like a man, because you don’t have it nearly as hard as a woman who can’t get an abortion in a certain state.

    Second, as members of an oppressor class, all men are complicit (with the exception of enlightened male feminists like NL, of course) in gender oppression. Therefore, if they feel like certain aspects of life are unfair against men, then they have the responsibility to go out of their way to fight for feminist causes. Otherwise, they just need to STFU, check their privilege, and man up.

    Hence his whole line about “building a world with true sexual and social equality.”

    And him comparing the frustration of sexually starved, lonely guys, to a petulant child who’s whining because he didn’t get his ice cream is beyond insulting.

    I’ll leave it to more sophisticated and insightful voices such as Marcus and Danny to critique the rest of this nonsense of a post.

  6. I imagine this is what happens when Nerdlove talks to one of his friends about his theories.

    [Dr. Nerdlove enters the scene, a bar, and greets his friend with a forced smile.]

    Dr. Nerdlove: Hey, man!

    A Friend: Hey Dr. Nerdlove! Wow, you look tired.

    Dr. Nerdlove: Yeah, I know. It was a long day.

    A Friend: How so?

    Dr. Nerdlove: Did I tell you that I’m looking for a new job? I already wrote 40 applications. But so far only rejections. So I wrote another 20 today.

    A Friend: Man, that sucks. Another friend of mine wrote 120 applications until he finally found a job. It’s pretty hard right now. The economy and all that…

    Dr. Nerdlove: No, no, no. You have the totally wrong mindset. It’s not hard…

    A Friend: But you wrote 40 applications and you got rejected every single time.

    Dr. Nerdlove: No. I mean, yes. Let me finish, please. [insert long rambling about the scarcity mindset] Anyway, you should read my blog. I write about this stuff all the time.

    A Friend: Maybe. Let’s talk about something else. What did you do today besides writing applications.

    Dr. Nerdlove: Did you hear about the new Captain Awesome action figure? I waited in line 3 hours in front of the toy store to get one. It was released today. Limited edition. It comes with a little laser pistol. So awesome. Actually, I wanted to buy two, but they sold only one per person.

    A Friend: Wow. These action figures seem pretty sought after. I didn’t realize they are so rare.

    Dr. Nerdlove: NO, They are not! What did I just tell you. This is your scarcity mindset talking, again.

    A Friend: OK, I guess. [Gently claps a couple of times on Nerdlove's shoulder] Did you notice the brunette over there? She’s looking at you the whole time. You should go over and say hello. Besides, I’ve just finished my beer and I’ve to get up early tomorrow. It was nice seeing you. Bye.

    Dr. Nerdlove: Bye. And work on your mindset, man. Work on your mindset, it will totally change your life.

    [A friend leaves subtly shaking his head]

    • Yep. Rewarmed 1990’s BS like ‘think your way to success!’ and ‘self actualization’. It’s like they hired some washed-up self-help guru to write their advice articles.

      The first step toward actually trying to help people is learning to speak in a way that will be listened to. He had been told repeatedly that nobody is listening. He doesn’t change tactics. He either isn’t trying to help or he simply sucks at it.

      Or maybe men aren’t his real audience. The things he says sound suspiciously like the things the women on this site want to tell us. Maybe they’re the real audience, and he’s just pretending that we are.

      • Bay Area Guy says:

        Or maybe men aren’t his real audience. The things he says sound suspiciously like the things the women on this site want to tell us. Maybe they’re the real audience, and he’s just pretending that we are.

        I’ve long suspected this.

      • Or maybe men aren’t his real audience.

        By Jove, I think you’ve got it.

      • Nailed it, Soullite.

        Nerdlove’s routine is a display for the benefit of women, only nominally addressed to men. He reinforces the “your job is to serve and please women” model of masculinity–and they applaud him for it.

        It’s pure misandry, and not particularly well hidden.

    • LMAO!!!!

  7. Well, I’m just going to say what I’ve said before.

    People like the writer should learn they have no right to lecture men on what to do, how to think, how to feel, and how much they should express themselves.

    The more I think about it, the more Dr. Nerdlove is nothing more than Hugo Schwartzer the 2nd in his shaming of men.

    • Bay Area Guy says:

      The more I think about it, the more Dr. Nerdlove is nothing more than Hugo Schwartzer the 2nd in his shaming of men.

      Pretty much.

      I could never imagine a women’s website such as Jezebel ever featuring articles by pro-male women like Girl Writes What or Quiet Riot Girl.

      • @Bay Area Guy…

        Of course. I really challenge the editors of GMP to explain just what value he brings to the site.

        I have asked before and in typical leftist or feminist style, I get silence.

        This is one of the most glaring differences between discourse on the Right vs. the Left. On the Right, there is NO PC. There is true freedom of expression. No “moderation” which is nothing more than a code word for censorship (Old East European style).

        What are the editors fearful of? If most of the men here hold Dr NL in contempt, what is wrong with questioning his value to this site?

        I hope you have the courage to respond. But, I am sure it is going to be more radio silence.

        As ogwriter has noted on many occasions, pro feminist males and feminist women are rarely held accountable for any of their transgressions. Always there is silence!

        • If not active censorship.

        • PastorofMuppets says:

          @Jules
          “This is one of the most glaring differences between discourse on the Right vs. the Left. On the Right, there is NO PC. There is true freedom of expression. No “moderation” which is nothing more than a code word for censorship”

          (Though I’m sure I’ll regret furthering this political sidetrack ….)

          In the meantime, here in my home state of Illinois, members of the GOP are trying to oust the party’s state chairman after he said he personally has no problem with gay marriage.
          And let’s not forget the hissy fit many on the Right threw when Chris Christie had the gall to say nice things about Barack Obama’s handling of Sandy.
          Is that your definition of “true freedom of expression” from the Right?
          One would have to be truly naive to

    • wellokaythen says:

      “People like the writer should learn they have no right to lecture men on what to do, how to think, how to feel, and how much they should express themselves.”

      I share the sentiment expressed here, but it’s not actually true. Fortunately or unfortunately, on the internet everyone has the right to lecture anyone else on anything. No one is obliged to take his advice, but people who are totally wrong have the total right to be totally wrong.

  8. I don’t see why so much hate is getting directed at this guy.
    Sure some of his advice is fairly generic and watered-down, but he doesn’t seem to be hating or shaming men.
    All he’s saying here is that getting rejected sucks, but blaming everything on women or society will just lead to a vicious cycle and do anything but help you towards your goal (getting dates/hooking up).

    Admittedly the last section seems to derail into standard feminist tropes, but I don’t see any real shaming just urging men to act with a little more dignity and self-respect…

    And I’m someone who spent so much time living in the Friend Zone I was considering applying for citizenship.

    • Melenas: “All he’s saying here is that getting rejected sucks, but blaming everything on women or society will just lead to a vicious cycle and do anything but help you towards your goal (getting dates/hooking up).”

      The problem is that even men who don’t hate or blame women for the problems yet address their issues with rejection are labeled women haters and entitled whiners anyway. Dr. Nerdlove refuses to address this (or he’s likely labeled any form of expression as women hating for men unsuccessful in the dating market).

      Melanas: “Admittedly the last section seems to derail into standard feminist tropes, but I don’t see any real shaming just urging men to act with a little more dignity and self-respect.”

      Would you ask that of women as well? Or is it just the men who should act that way? You can’t have it one way.

      • Eagle35:
        I’m trying to give Dr. Nerdlove the benefit of the doubt here, but I think this article is only addressing guys who hold on to bitterness and resentment after being rejected, or turn it around and start blaming women. In other words, if you aren’t doing that then I don’t think he’s talking about you.
        Where has he accused all (unsuccessful in the dating market) men of hating women?

        And yes, I expect women to act with dignity and respect too.
        There are women who string along guys they know are attracted to them just for fun or to get free stuff, and women who can’t take rejection. I’ve met a few of them, and that sort of behavior sucks too. But since Dr. Nerdlove is writing to men, it wouldn’t serve much of a purpose to write about them in this article.

        • Melanas: “I’m trying to give Dr. Nerdlove the benefit of the doubt here, but I think this article is only addressing guys who hold on to bitterness and resentment after being rejected, or turn it around and start blaming women. In other words, if you aren’t doing that then I don’t think he’s talking about you.”

          I repeat, even men who don’t hold on to bitterness and resentment after being rejected, when they express their feelings about it they are STILL LABELED WOMEN HATERS! Don’t you get it? Men aren’t allowed to even have an opinion on their rejection and are told to man up or quit hating women (even getting tarred with the label “Nice Guy”).

          • Eagle35:
            Did you actually read the article or are you just projecting? He’s not calling every man who’s been rejected a woman hater, and he’s not saying your feelings don’t count. The only part that even comes close is the standard feminist “women have everything worse because patriarchy” disclaimer.
            He’s just saying that rejection sucks, but it’s better to learn from it and move on rather than wallowing in bitterness.
            And the article isn’t about the assholes who call every man who expresses his feelings a woman hater.

            • Melenas,

              I tend to agree with your take on this, as far as it goes. NL makes some good points regarding how to immediately handle a rejection, and it’s always best to keep a positive outlook and to go through life with a little grace. Even these messages are diminished, though, by his pandering tone.

              To clarify, I’m in a relationship and I’ve never had a ton of trouble finding one. I’m also older than many of the guys here, so my experience may be different than what it would be if I had been born a few decades later. Having said that, something that always confounds me from people who trumpet the fact that women are individuals (which I also trumpet) and that dating isn’t formulaic (I agree) is the idea that there’s something strategic to be learned from dating or approach failures.

              Wouldn’t it follow that if women are actually people with varied tastes and interests that all you learn from striking out with Jane is that your approach didn’t work with Jane? So I guess I’m poo pooing (naughty words) the idea there’s much to be learned from one effort that is likely to apply to the next, assuming your not behaving outrageously, since if you are then you’re not likely to learn so well anyway.

            • That’s just it though, as much as we’d like to think that we’re all unique special flowers the truth is biology, culture, and our personal social circles dominate our preferences. While Jane is an individual with her own specific tastes and interests, Jane also falls into one of many different tropes/buckets/types of people and shares her tastes and interests with the archetypal preferences of that group.

              There are some women that will flat out be uninterested you for whatever reason that you can’t control, maybe she only likes black men, very tall men, women, etc, but if you meet those qualifications, the rest of it is a fuzzy line of how you fit into the preferences that Jane has based on her “type’s” preferences, if you meet that “type’s” general preferences, then chances are you will be able to stick around and spark interest long enough to begin some sort of relationship with Jane. From there the individual characteristics take over and then the more nuanced approach of Jane’s specific ticks become part of whether or not Jane and John are compatible partners.

              So your approach didn’t work for Jane it may be because that approach is bad for girls “like Jane” or maybe it was “just Jane.” If your approach doesn’t work for 15 girls “like Jane” then something is definitely wrong from your approach and it’s not “just Jane.”

            • That makes sense, KC. I guess where I get a little fuzzy is on how far some men are encouraged to go in adapting their approach to fit the preferences of a “type” (I agree that we can be unique but still clump together in some ways). It could also be that some types may not be compatible with some men who themselves are a type, in which case the 15 rejections might be telling the guy that he at the very least is facing tougher odds approaching his preferred type. That’s good info too, allowing him to continue as is with the understanding that it isn’t “him” so much as it’s his desire to make an unlikely couple, or he could decide to look at other women as potential partners.

    • Dr Nerd Love is simply saying that there should be no acknowledgement of the fact that the dating scene is unfair and biased against men.

      Most of us men can accept that life is generally unfair and the dating scene is one of the aspects where men have it more difficult. We can accept that and move on.

      But Dr Nerd Love doesnt want us to have that piece of mind even.

    • AnonymousDog says:

      “I don’t see why so much hate is getting directed at this guy.”

      It’s because of the condescension of his tone, and the way he frames his arguments. It’s that same condescension which characterizes all too many of the feminist writers who write on the same subject.

      • AnonymousDog says:

        And I should add, it’s not the advice that is so offensive, it’s the condescension that seems to inevitably accompany it.

  9. You only said two option for a man after a feeling of rejection and loneliness, bitching or moaning, and take it like a man. I don’t bitching and moaning and blaming women for my problem, but I certainly don’t take it like a man either. Because I’m really sad, and I cry alone every night because of my loneliness. But I don’t bitching and moaning and saying I’m a nice guy and saying women are whore. I don’t. I realized what my problem is, I’m shy, and thats my fault, not women or anybody’s fault, but I still don’t have a courage to approached women. I cant take it like a man, but I dont think I’m nice guy and deserving sex and love from women. Never.

    But you dont believe it right?

    Because based on your article, the only option for a man besides take it like a man is acting like a jerk. There is no grey area. Based on your article. there is no sad and lonely men who still really really really love women ( not physically) and never said women are bitch and whores and never said its women fault he is single. Based on your article, men cannot be sad without blaming others. Based on your article, single men only demand sex, not the connection and relationship with a girl he love. Based on your article, men is only capable of destructive emotions, anger, not sadness.

    And I typed this comment with tears in my eyes. But I dont blame anyone, except myself.

  10. I couldn’t even read half of this article. I had to stop after every few paragraphs from what I did read because it was so insulting. I should have stopped at the meme. I went through a rejection last June, and it still is painful. When I asked the girl out in May, I went through a fear of rejection after she was silent afterwards. It turns out that there was a chance she was leaving the area and not anything she saw wrong with me then. After we started seeing each other, she eventually did leave and came out and said she didn’t really like me anymore after she was gone, and granted she had valid reasons which I realize are my shortcomings, NOT hers. I went through a period of depression after that rejection. This article brought back some of my anxiety by reading the part of it that I did read. Telling men to ‘man up’ and that their venting and showing of emotion is anyhow unmanly prevents them from saying “I need help” and seeing a therapist if that pain becomes bad enough. It’s articles like this that make men feel worse if they have to see a therapist or counselor to get help because it suggests that they simply weren’t man enough. It sways men into suffering through the pain or to try to get over it themselves because it is how to ‘deal with it like a man.’ I personally abhor the phrase ‘man up’ because real mean realize that it is ok to have these feelings and express them, not ‘embrace the suck’ as Dr. NerdLove puts it. Of course men know that there is something wrong with them and it is not just the woman’s fault. If it was the woman’s fault, we men wouldn’t be rejected. We wouldn’t have felt nervous or shy when asking her out if we didn’t realize that there may be things we could work on. We definitely realize we have things to work on when we get rejected. I tried to take the high road in my situation, and I asked the girl what her reasoning was because I felt that it would help me understand and maybe I could try to work on these areas, but that did not make the pain any less severe. If Dr.NerdLove is not willing to be completely sympathetic to the male audience, rather than insult them and give half-hearted sympathy, then I doubt many men will ever consider his viewpoint. It was through posts on GMP that express that men should be allowed to express their emotions and it is ok for them to feel pain and cry on a shoulder if need be that helped me through my depression and helped me to become stronger and love myself more as a person. I currently see a counselor, and it was because of posts on GMP that encouraged me that it was ‘manly’ to say that you need help and admit when you are going through rough times. It is not manly to tell men that ‘It isn’t fair, now get over it.’ Real men realize that sometimes therapy is necessary to get help. I value that GMP posts articles with different opinions. I however have my own opinions on this article. Yes there are guys who are shy, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I am a very shy guy myself, but telling men to ‘man up’ instead of being themselves and finding their own ways to deal with rejection is something that will more than likely hurt them the next time they ask someone out. Men need to be themselves and not worry about what is ‘manly.’ Don’t women want men who are themselves? It is through that pain that men learn to change and work on themselves. It was through my pain and depression that I have learned to love myself more, and in turn have grown stronger in the very areas that the girl who rejected me saw as a turnoff. I don’t think Dr. NerdLove’s advice will allow men to work on those areas that may need some correction. Yes you may have better luck with some other girl by ‘manning up,’ but it is through the self-awareness that is associated with that pain where men realize that they may need to work on some things. ‘Manning up’ keeps men at the same level that they currently are at. Venting with men who have similar pain allows men to support each other and realize that there may need to be some changes to even get a better chance next time. Without change, there is not progress. These changes will not only help men with women, but it will make the man stronger and happier in himself. Sometimes you need pain and suffering to be stronger in the end, and sometimes there is ‘bitching and moaning’ associated with that pain, but it is the part of the grieving process that eventually leads to change. Telling men to ‘man up’ is not the answer.

    • Kevin gets right to the heart of the matter when he says:

      It is through that pain that men learn to change and work on themselves …

      Sometimes you need pain and suffering to be stronger in the end, and sometimes there is ‘bitching and moaning’ associated with that pain, but it is the part of the grieving process that eventually leads to change. Telling men to ‘man up’ is not the answer.

      Precisely. Well said. Thank you.

      • Joanna Schroeder says:

        I think you’re both right. And I don’t think Harris really wants you to stop feeling pain. He’s basically saying that yes, there is time to mourn and grieve and everything, but get out of the echo chamber, get out of the mindset that you’re being wronged and try to move forward. I don’t think he really wants you to not be sad, or frustrated, or hurt. I think he’s basically saying, “Yes, I get it, it sucks and I’ve been there, but you have to try to move past it and focus on what you want.”

        • Can’t that be said ( the last, quoted, sentence) without trivializing the pain men feel? When men repeatedly say that they feel their pain doesn’t count, in our everyday lives and unfortunately here as this piece illustrates, could there be some merit to that?

          On a site that at least acknowledges that men are expected to be unemotional robots and that we pay a price for showing our feelings, using language like “Take it like a man” is either extraordinarily stupid or purposely provocative. Please show me another way to look at it. Or should we also just “get over” the impact such language has?

          I see and acknowledge the value of several points NL made, but he often seems to need to couch advice in at least obliquely shaming terms. I mean, WTF is up with that?

          • Joanna Schroeder says:

            I think what I see here is that the title is really throwing people off, and I should’ve changed it. Because the content of the article, I don’t think, shames men or tells them not to feel “bad” feelings. I think it’s way more positive and personal than that. But the title has a lot of people hung up. Lesson learned.

            That being said, I stand by what Harris is saying here. Not just for men, but for women. I hear women ALL THE TIME going around: Guys suck. Guys just want to use women for sex. Guys will lie to get you in bed. Guys never want to be serious with me, I hate men. And on and on and on and I’d say the exact same thing to them (as would Harris, I assume, but per his footnote, this is directed at guys, since he’s a guy, so he used “man” in the title). And to both men and women, I’d say, “Get upset, then move on. If you can’t move on, see a therapist for help, because it’s not healthy to go out into the world with a “life’s not fair to me” attitude. That’s just going to make you less appealing to women, and make your experience of the world dark.

            Truth, is life’s not fair to anybody (or mostly anybody). You just don’t realize how hard it is for most people you see walking down the street. And that’s the truth. What good does it do to say “Women have it easier” – even if you COULD measure that, which you can’t – what is the point? No, seriously, what is the point of it? Where does it get you?

            Yes, your pain as individual matters. Everyone’s does. But the idea that you have it worse than anyone else changes nothing. It doesn’t make the world better, not for you, not for anybody. Women should initiate more, absolutely. But also understand that there is a very real fear within women of being slut-shamed or put into a dangerous situation. That doesn’t mean women have it worse, but we do have an experience that matters. As does yours.

            The competition of who has it worse is 100% pointless. It only makes your life worse.

            And he’s right – to both men and women – get out of the echo chamber! Men are not lying pigs! Women are not shallow, entitled brats. The Internet disguises this short of hate speech as “support” for those who’ve been jilted in love, but all it does is keep men and women down (as individuals) and prevent them from seeing the truth about the people they meet. Most are good. But if you go into it with a shitty attitude and expectations, the good ones (who won’t use you) are going to run *away* from you.

            That may require a MAJOR change of attitude for most jilted men and women, and therapy may be necessary (as the thoughtful guy above, and Rick Belden both note). But it’s worth it. Nothing that’s worth having comes easy. Good things in life take work, particularly the act of making ourselves happier.

            • …even if you COULD measure that, which you can’t –…

              Is it fair that men “have” to be the aggressors? No, not really… because “fair” never really comes into the question. “Fair” assumes that men and women are otherwise completely equal; it ignores that every interaction doesn’t occur in a vacuum and that interaction between men and women is informed by thousands of years of enforced gender roles, female subservience and views of male and female sexuality and interrelations that have only started to change in the last hundred years or so. The “risks” that men have to subject themselves to are frankly not equal to the ones that women face in return. To quote Margaret Atwood: “Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid men will kill them.”

              That looks like some pretty definitive measuring to me. That’s what I’m talking about. Things can’t be measured and are pointless to measure….until it actually suits one side to have their pains measured as being greater than the other. then all of a sudden it’s clear as day that one side suffers more than the other.

              Yes, your pain as individual matters. Everyone’s does. But the idea that you have it worse than anyone else changes nothing. It doesn’t make the world better, not for you, not for anybody. Women should initiate more, absolutely. But also understand that there is a very real fear within women of being slut-shamed or put into a dangerous situation. That doesn’t mean women have it worse, but we do have an experience that matters. As does yours.
              This I can agree with. Everyone has it hard in different ways and all those ways are valid….well according to our Dr. here they matter as long as you are on a certain side.

            • I think what I see here is that the title is really throwing people off, and I should’ve changed it.

              i dont think it is the title.
              doc even finishes his piece with this, ‘Until then, you can complain about how “unfair” it all is like a child that isn’t getting ice cream. Or you can man up.’

            • Bay Area Guy says:

              Joanna, if Nerdlove were merely admonishing guys not to nourish bitter and resentful feelings, and move on for their own good, then he wouldn’t be provoking such hostile responses.

              However, he goes way beyond that.

              He’s basically telling guys that their feelings of frustration aren’t genuine, that they’re solely privileged whine, that women are never wrong, etc. In other words, it’s all in men’s heads.

              It’s one thing to suggest that you drop the anger for practical reasons, it’s another to suggest that those angry feelings can only stem from feelings of entitlement and misogyny.

              (if you can actually find a few articles of his that are actually critical of female behavior, then I’ll gladly eat my words)

            • To be clear, I’m good with individuals taking responsibility for things that have an impact on their lives. That is part of NLs message. And Joanna, you’re right that the title likely had me and others reading with a more critical eye, but that critical eye still found offspring of the title swimming around the article and mucking up the more useful message.

              Relationship stuff is tough for everyone. The suffering olympics hands out some pretty crappy medals. I don’t see the point in men or women trying to win any of them, or in men or women hanging onto the one’s they might have been awarded, for that matter.

            • Joanna

              On one hand you acknowledge that men have to be the aggressors but on the other you deny that men have it more difficult in this aspect of life.

              Why dont you accept that, all things equal, men have it more difficult? That the dating scene is unfair to men? Then we can just accept that and move on. If society continues to deny that there is something wrong with the rules/norms, then the blame of failure will fall totally on men which is even more unfair.

              Its like something is unfair and you dont even want to acknowledge that its unfair.

            • Why dont you accept that, all things equal, men have it more difficult?
              Actually this is probably the one thing that I whole heartedly agree with Joanna with on. There is no point in trying to find some conclusive answer to “who has it worse”

              I’d be fine with just acknowledging metrics where men have it difficult and what metrics where women have it difficult. That’s all that we need in order to work on fixing them.

            • Joanna

              On one hand you acknowledge that men have to be the aggressors and on the other you deny that men have it more difficult in this aspect of life.

            • I disagree, Joanna. Nerdlove’s message is “man up”–he even uses that specific phrase in this week’s article–and that is ALWAYS contemptuous and dismissive of men. ALWAYS.

            • wellokaythen says:

              His first footnote probably expresses it better than “act like a man.” I’d say “be a grown-ass adult” is the better way to put it.

            • No that were actually make sense and be reasonable. We can’t have that. Better to invoke shaming language and then try to cover your tracks with footnotes and disclaimers later.

        • If that’s the case, then he’s seriously undermining his message with his use of language like:

          “take it like a man”
          “deal with it like a man”
          “put on my big-boy pants”
          “man up”

          This is precisely the same invalidating, manipulative language that is regularly used to shame men and boys out of whatever feelings they may be having that someone else finds inconvenient or uncomfortable.

          Early in this post, he says:

          Now I will be the first to tell you: being shot down sucks. But you have two ways of dealing with it. You can bitch, moan and whine …

          Or you can deal with it like a man.

          If there’s an acknowledgment in there somewhere that men might have the need (and the right) for time to mourn and grieve what may be felt in some cases as a very deep loss, I’m not seeing it. The message I’m seeing is: “Get your feelings hurt? Tough shit. Shake it off, suck it up, and throw yourself back in the ring.” That’s the same dysfunctional macho bullshit boys and men have been fed for most of our lives, from men and women alike. We don’t need any more of it.

          Pain is best and most thoroughly resolved by moving through it, not past it. Trying to shame men out of feeling their pain by calling them whiners and comparing them to a “child that isn’t getting ice cream” helps no one: not men, not women, not anyone.

          • If there’s an acknowledgment in there somewhere that men might have the need (and the right) for time to mourn and grieve what may be felt in some cases as a very deep loss, I’m not seeing it.
            My only guess (more like leap of faith) is that he is somehow trying to say that the time to mourn and grieve is a part of the “deal with it like a man” process. Personally I think that’s a cop out but I it wouldn’t surprise me if that was the claim.

            I think one problem at work here is even those who are trying to help men out are truly not seeing the pitfalls you mention Rick. When it comes to helping men and boys one of the first obstacales is the fact that historically speaking men and boys were raised to pretend that for them pain does not exist. The way to “work through” something was more like pretending it didn’t happen/exist.

            As a result in this day and age where men/boys are more perceptive to pain and hurt the last thing we want to hear is any sort of message that encourages men/boys to pretend something didn’t happen or doesn’t exist.

            (Personally I think a part of this comes from trying to take all the material that is out there for women and girls, slap some stickers on it to relabel it as boys and men, and pass it off as THE way to heal men and boys. And when it doesn’t work instead of trying to rework the tools to respond to us we are told that we are wrong/faking/playing victim/etc… because we aren’t being helped by the same things that help girls/women.)

            Honestly I’m seeing more useful advice in the comment section than in the main article. I guess the original post was good for something after all (but considering we are saying things we already knew I’m not sure how much good).


        • He’s basically saying that yes, there is time to mourn and grieve and everything, but get out of the echo chamber, get out of the mindset that you’re being wronged and try to move forward.

          It seems more like he saying that men are not being wronged. Look at how he tries to say that the pains and harms that guys go through are really just this or really just that and uses the pains and harms that women go through as proof that men really don’t have it that bad.

          I agree that being stuck in the mindset of being wronged is good advice. But it’s not so great of an idea to claim that the mindset was entirely self created in the first place or that you should get out of the mindset because women have it worse.


          I think he’s basically saying, “Yes, I get it, it sucks and I’ve been there, but you have to try to move past it and focus on what you want.”

          That might be what he’s trying to say but that is now how it’s coming out. It’s sounding more like, “What you guys think its hard for you? Try being a woman!” Pretty much a gendered version of “You think it’s bad that you don’t have any shoes (aka being a man), try having no feet (aka being a woman).”

          But time and time again as usual all we get is a pat on the head, a bit of lip service, and told that we really are wrong and we should just get over ourselves.

          • But time and time again as usual all we get is a pat on the head, a bit of lip service, and told that we really are wrong and we should just get over ourselves.

            I think this is a great point. Many men are in pain. They don’t know where to go with it and they often don’t know how to express it productively. Their distress is only amplified by the fact that they’re being told the pain they feel is not only illegitimate, but evidence of their own innate deficiencies as men.

            Pain is information, and I don’t think we’re making very good use of the information men in pain are giving us. Dismissing them as whiners and complainers, assuring that them someone else has it worse, and telling them to get over it will never be a solution. Unaddressed psychic and emotional pain always expresses itself somehow, often in ways that serve no one, and it always tells us something, and not just about the person who’s experiencing it.

            • They don’t know where to go with it and they often don’t know how to express it productively. Their distress is only amplified by the fact that they’re being told the pain they feel is not only illegitimate, but evidence of their own innate deficiencies as men.
              Yes.

              While I am fully in agreement with keeping men from being consumed by their pain I do have a problem is denying the existence of said pain. And I have an even bigger problem with using someone else’s pain as evidence in that denial.

              Pain is information, and I don’t think we’re making very good use of the information men in pain are giving us. Dismissing them as whiners and complainers, assuring that them someone else has it worse, and telling them to get over it will never be a solution. Unaddressed psychic and emotional pain always expresses itself somehow, often in ways that serve no one, and it always tells us something, and not just about the person who’s experiencing it.
              This makes me think back to those “Psycho Bitch” posts that went down around here in the last few weeks.

              From what I can tell that article was trying to get men to recognize that beneath the “psycho bitch” mask was a woman in pain. A woman who had unaddressed psychic and emotional pain and that by just writing them off as “psycho bitches” we were not only denying that pain but also missing out on an opportunity to help those women heal, which in turn stunted our own emotional growth as men .

              So about all that sympathy and compassion that is being withheld from women on such a grand scale. Would it hurt to extend a bit of it over to men too or is there really a limited supply of it and since women “have it worse” they get first dibs and guys just have to suck it up?

              Until that gets figured out we continue to be plagued by a poisonous desire to deny others that which we have been denied (but called on to extend to others).

            • “Would it hurt to extend a bit of it over to men too”

              Of course it would, Danny. Only women’s problems matter.

              May I just say, I’m loving how this conversation is going. No matter how many articles try to sell us on the notion that men should just shut up and serve feminist goals, the men here aren’t standing for it. Bravo!

        • I think he’s basically saying, “Yes, I get it, it sucks and I’ve been there, but you have to try to move past it and focus on what you want.”

          Joanna, this empathetic guy you describe sounds like he might be a great resource for guys struggling with dating. I sure hope he finds a way to untie himself and wrest control of the keyboard back from this other guy who’s been writing articles under his byline.

          • Bay Area Guy says:

            LOL

          • Joanna Schroeder says:

            Yeah, maybe I read too much into it.

            • I have read Nerdlove’s articles many many times and either I’m blind as a bat to men’s pain and sensitivity or there is a hell of a lot of projection going on. Or both. Perhaps neither! Maybe Nerdlove is a magician and writes in such a way that genders see entirely different messaging thus leading to the fights online in a bid for maximum page views!!!

              I’d like Danny or Marcus to take an article, this one even, and break it down sentence by sentence for me and then allow me to rebut and ask questions and get clarification. I’m pretty sure that won’t happen, but it might be the only thing that would help me understand the vitriol aimed at him. Don’t read him if you don’t like him, don’t comment and give him pageviews if you have such distaste for him. Write your own advice columns if you have better things to offer.

              This is what is so confusing to me. There are a hell of a lot of feminist sites that don’t speak for me. I read them extremely rarely if at all, and I never comment. I don’t understand the fixation on yelling at someone who doesn’t seem to give a damn if you are yelling.

              I really doubt Nerdlove gives a damn. I’ve emailed him a few times to ask questions, never heard a thing.

            • This is what is so confusing to me. There are a hell of a lot of feminist sites that don’t speak for me. I read them extremely rarely if at all, and I never comment. I don’t understand the fixation on yelling at someone who doesn’t seem to give a damn if you are yelling.
              The point isn’t to get through to Nerdlove, at least for me it’s not. The point to try to reach out to the folks in the comments. Those that agree and those that disagree.

              There is no shortage of people that have tweeted Nerdlove’s posts chirping about how it’s so spot on and how it’s such awesome advice and how it’s so great (and apparently perfect).

              It’s not an attempt at trying to make the guy stop writing columns and posts. It’s an attempt to show that sometimes, just sometimes, there’s more to it than that.

            • Quite honestly, that’s not what I wind up seeing. If you ever want to email your detailed breakdown of an article, I’ll read it.

            • So just what do you end up seeing?

              It’s not like this is the first time that someone has expressed that they disagreed with something posted here at GMP and tried to engage with others in the comments.

              …don’t comment and give him pageviews if you have such distaste for him
              If it were that simple I would. But with the good size fan following behind these posts staying away may not be the way.

              This is what is so confusing to me. There are a hell of a lot of feminist sites that don’t speak for me. I read them extremely rarely if at all, and I never comment. I don’t understand the fixation on yelling at someone who doesn’t seem to give a damn if you are yelling.
              Again I’m not talking to Nerdlove. I’m talking to the other commentors. I’m doing so because even for all that I disagree with, there’s actually a good bit that I do agree with. Enough that I agree with that I think it’s worth engaging. If I were just yelling at people (and I really don’t think I’ve done any of that here) then of course everyone would just shut down and no one would have a civil shot at at least trying to get their point across.

            • Julie, everyone have a right to disagree and post their disagreement. Like any women never disagree with Tom Matlack post ” Men’s right have nothing to do with feminism” and never post their disagreement? lol, you clearly very very biased towards women and feminism Julie. Its very confusing reading your comment about being confused why so many men post their disagreement. lol, like all of women who post their disagreement suddenly sending their OWN ARTICLE LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

            • YOU ARE SO FUNNY!!! WOW!!!!

            • no I’m disagree with you, I’m not funny. Do I need to email my own article because I’m disagreeing and posting my disagreement? WOW!!

            • I agree Nerdlove doesn’t give a damn about the reception he gets at GMP. I don’t believe GMP gives a damn because it’s content they can count on and he draws steady pageviews, even if a lot of those are to give him hell for being so ill-suited to the presumed target demographic of the site. Whoever he may think he’s writing to and for, I think it would take some willful blindness not to notice that his biggest (only?) cheerleaders at GMP are staunch feminists – mostly women but a few men – who rather than learning anything new from his advice, give variations of “You go, feminist man!”

              His several posts have already been picked to the bone with quotes and reasons, so I don’t believe going sentence by sentence on this or any other will clarify anything you don’t already see. Let me try an analogy…

              Imagine if instead of Nerdlove’s advice being saturated in feminist blogosphere philosophy, it came saturated in Evangelical Christianity. Instead of telling men to check their privilege and take things like a man, he talked about the worldly temptation of lust and how sinners who don’t accept Christ as their personal savior can never live in grace or find true love, because they are too stuck in the flesh and always will be without the Lord. Well, if you’re not already his kind of Born Again, most of that would probably sound like garbage, and a lot of it would be very insulting because of all the judgment and shame built into the message. Even so, he might still occasionally give sound practical advice; the saying about blind squirrels and nuts comes to mind. All that judgmental philosophy that came with it, though, would probably grate on you, especially if the column was re-printed at The Good Agnostic Project where you were a regular. On the other hand, if you were his kind of Born Again, then most of what he’d say would sound agreeable and sensible to you, and perfectly kind and helpful to his “target audience” since after all, what really matters in the end is that everyone is saved, right?

              Julie, I think you see projection instead of justified hard feelings because you are Nerdlove’s kind of Born Again.

              The frequent complaint by even his harshest critics here (and yes, I include myself among them) is that his advice, with that tone, is a terrible fit for what the site claims to be and often is. I don’t think anyone would begrudge it running at Feministe, for example, because it would fit right in there without screwing with the ambience here. However, I think the main thing he has going in his defense – which is easy to overlook because most of us read his columns here – is that he does not write them for GMP. It’s a column he already wrote, and someone at GMP found it and picked it up. I don’t know who, but it doesn’t matter. I don’t know how many places it runs, but GMP isn’t the only place, and some of those other venues are probably perfect for his voice. He had that voice established and an audience built up for it, so that’s who he caters to, and as a writer, I’ve got no beef at all with that. As a reader, it feels like he’s pissing in the community pool and I’m being asked why I don’t appreciate the added warmth, or give up the pool if it bugs me. Given his lack of any follow-up here (that I’ve seen), I presume the GMP audience is a complete afterthought, so at least if he’s consistently missing the mark here, it’s not like he’s aiming and just that incompetent when it comes to showing the love to the nerds of GMP. (Again, I include myself among them.)

            • “Julie, I think you see projection instead of justified hard feelings because you are Nerdlove’s kind of Born Again.”

              You really seem to have it in for me, Marcus. I don’t agree with everything Nerdlove says. In fact, I’m not all that fond of some of his work, and find the agitation he produces on this site, less than useful. What I meant by pick apart phrases, was exactly that. Like, I could imagine you and I (or at least I could at one point) getting on skype and having a freaking conversation about sentences and what the words sound like to you, or to me because I believe you, Marcus. I believe Danny.

              I don’t always “hear” what you hear and I’d like to understand better. Because I don’t “hear it” doesn’t mean I think you are being a fool or something or that I’m some kind of born again cult member to a dude who won’t respond to my emails about a number of things including things going on in Austin, when we both live in AUSTIN.

              He seems rude to me, or dismissive. And that I can’t hear the particular whistles you hear doesn’t mean I believe in him, and it also doesn’t mean that there isn’t projection and real anger and deep bitterness in the comments. I get that there is pain. Clearly. It’s extremely visible and palpable and I get that pablum advice doesn’t salve it or help heal it.

              I’ve also, in several of his posts, commented that I think his posts sound “easy” but give the false impression that the work he’s suggesting is easy to do, when in actuality it involves very hard self work. So, it’s not like I’m a huge fan of making hard work seem easy, Marcus.

              Since the articles seem so hurtful to so many here, and since the reaction to the hurtful articles is on constant repeat with no real resolution (the articles still pop up, he doesn’t respond, the editors don’t respond), my apparently stupid advice (since I”m some kind of True Believer and don’t give a shit?) is to go places where you get good advice, get real support, and make the kind of change you want to see in the world either on GMP or elsewhere.

              That’s clearly dumb of me. So I’ll take my own advice, Marcus.

              Also? I hate the phrase man up. I think it’s bullshit.

            • I really doubt Nerdlove gives a damn. I’ve emailed him a few times to ask questions, never heard a thing.

              I’m positive he reads the comments. He’s just not man enough to discuss his writing with his critics here.

  11. i felt the doc’s buttonpushing was abit too obvious in this article

    • Agreed James. Maybe we should all just boycott the comments section when he gives his stellar “advice”. Read once (or better yet don’t read his articles at all), close the page. Let his articles die a quick death from lack of reading.

      • Yes that sounds like a good idea. The idea being that we should stay silent over this and that it will go away.

        The problem is there is already a strong following of this type of “advice”. Bear in mind that Nerdlove’s material didn’t start here. He already has his own well established shop and someone here at GMP thought it would be a good idea to bring his material over here.

        Staying silent is part of how it’s gotten this bad as it is. In fact Nerdlove and his fans actively hope that we will stay silent. I say be civil and speak up.

      • where the hell is my comment

      • well doc’s last two or three articles didnt generate much comment, so i reckon he decided to go all in and include the kitchen sink, with ribbons on, on this one. lol
        that said, im disturbed by attempts to encourage gmmp not to publish doc’s articles.
        what fun, or insight, is there in group think. contrary voices are necessary for active and stimulating debate. commentors are free to rebut in the comment section if they disagree.
        i wouldnt want gmmp to turn into an ec.ho chamber, something that is seen on so many femmminist blogs

  12. Bay Area Guy says:

    Another thing.

    NL and other feminists like to claim that sexism and traditional gender roles are why women don’t approach men or initiate things. Absent these sexist constraints, women would jump at the opportunity to approach and hit on guys.

    Unfortunately, the evidence doesn’t support such an assertion.

    http://gawker.com/5686664/american-women-suck-at-flirting

    Even in more macho, patriarchal countries such as Colombia, Mexico, Italy, etc, women are more likely to flirt with and initiate courtship with men.

    So the so-called “patriarchy” can’t be blamed for American women’s unwillingness to initiate with men. There’s another factor at work, but I won’t mention it, since moderation will probably delete my comment as a result.

    • Bay Area Guy

      It is a B.S lie we are told that the reason women dont generally approach and pursue men is the elusive ‘cultural expectations’

      Women pursue desirable men all the time. Any really attractive man will have tales to tell you of women pursuing him. Women just dont consider the majority of men worthy enough to be pursued. You can say they are more selective.

      I’d like to know the ‘other factor’ youve referred to.

      • Bay Area Guy says:

        Well, yes, the “other factor” is that American women have become extremely picky and selective.

        I didn’t mention that at first because I was afraid of being moderated.

  13. I’m of the same mind as the commenters – I’ve seen this same script recycled dozens of times: I, the special snowflake, am “discouraged” by society, the patriarchy, the misogyny, the binary, the beauty industry, the video games, the Reddit, the Madonna/whore complex, from reaching my full dating/flirting potential. My heart break and feelings of rejection are put upon me by the big “P” – you and your shite, well you suck, so just suck it up because it’s all your doing. Fix your mess!!

    If you’re going to have a bootstrap type philosophy, you can’t marry it with a special snowflake addendum and think you are being clever and insightful.

  14. “Take it like a man” is my proverbial “Nails on the chalkboard”.
    “Take it like a man” tells me “Be stoic and unemotional, marginalize and ridicule those we see as weak or deficient”.

  15. wellokaythen says:

    I try to glean whatever wisdom I can from every article, even if it’s hard to find, even if it’s wisdom about how not to write an article.

    My summary of his main point: There’s a difference between experiencing rejection and wallowing in it. There’s a difference between recognizing that you’ve been wronged and defining yourself by your being wronged. There are constructive responses to grief, anger, and loneliness, and there are destructive responses to these feelings. If a major goal for you is “dating and mating,” then the destructive ones are going to be counterproductive and may even trap you in a downward cycle.

    I would have liked to see advice that was a little more “proactive,” for lack of a better word. Something more outside the box, instead of just telling people to accept the fact that dating is awful. A dating scene is created by the people involved in it. It will change if enough people work to change it. There are all sorts of people out there working to make their own dating scenes. I’d like to see more advice telling men to find ways to influence the rules instead of just accepting the rules.

  16. I don’t see anything wrong with telling someone to “Man up.” I wish we said it more often, and I wish we said it to both women and men. I dislike that we keep telling everyone how “special and unique” they are. You only get somewhere in life by “manning up” and dealing with rejection, negative, criticism, bad experiences, and failure.

    A girl rejected you? Man up. Get over it. Do something about it so the next time you meet a girl your chances of rejection are decreased.
    You didn’t get the job you wanted? Man up. Get over it. Do something about it so you can get it next time.
    You got fired? Man up. Get over it. Do something about it so it doesn’t happen in the future.
    Your business failed? Man up. Get over it. Pay your debts and try again.
    Someone doesn’t like you “great idea?” Man up. Get over it. Either re-asses your idea or find someone else who does.
    Some asshole called you a “slut?” Man up. Get over it. Some people are just assholes.
    A guy used you for sex? Man up. Get over it. Be smarter about your sexual choices next time.

    That’s not to say that you shouldn’t talk about how to fix a problem, pursue legal action if someone has harmed you or violated your rights. “Manning up” in my mind means: Here are the cards you have been dealt, now figure out how to make them work.

    If someone hurts you, get whatever help you need to get past what happened to you, and then move on and man up. You can’t change what happened to you; it’s in the past. You’re right, it may never completely leave you, and that is why you need to learn how to grit your teeth and push past the pain. Do not sit there and whither away as a “victim” for the rest of your life, instead channel your pain into something great.

    • I get the feeling that what you say here might be what Nerdlove is trying to say but instead of what you are say here he instead says:


      A girl rejected you?

      So what, why don’t you think about how that girl feels when she gets rejected.

      You didn’t get the job you wanted?
      Oh poor you. How about you be considerate and think what that employer is going through by not having that position filled.

      You got fired?
      Oh poor you. How about you be considerate and think what that employer is going through by not having that position filled.

      Your business failed?
      The real problem is that there are people who may not be getting the service your failed business would have provided.

      Someone doesn’t like you “great idea?”
      Oh no! That means that someone is still out there searching for a great idea!

      Some asshole called you a “slut?”
      That’s not an issue. The issue is that so many women are called sluts for daring to own their sexuality.

      A guy used you for sex?
      That ugly is a manipulative dick that doesn’t have any respect for women.

      In short according to his advice the pain is not real and you are doing a disservice to those who are in pain by pretending that it is.

      Honestly KC Krupp I think you give much better advice in few words than the OP just did.

      “Your pain is real, must be acknowledged, and must be worked through.” Not, “Your pain isn’t real because someone else has it worse so get over yourself”.

      Impressive KC!!!

      • Danny,

        Thank you for the compliment. Just to clarify, my comment was in response to the reactionary outcry against the phrase “Man up.” In regards to NL and his tone, I completely agree with you: His tone is snotty, rough, and while valid advice it seems written in such a way that he’s trying to make it sting as much as possible in the process; it’s the same for all of the articles he writes

        I get it, he’s supposed to be the ‘bro for the nerds’ (Hey, you mad, bro?) and instead of playing the role of the guy who sits down, puts his arm around someone and says “Hey, I know it hurts, now let’s move on and learn from this,” he plays the nerd who grew four inches, put on some muscle, started playing basketball over the summer and is now stuffing the guys who used to be his friends into their lockers because it helps them “build their character.” (‘I’m just looking out for their best interests.’)

        My favorite dating advice has always been Scott McKay’s X&Y Communications. While I personally think he’s too hetronormative if you dig into the root of what he’s talking about what he says less about being a “man” and more about being a strong, capable, and confident adult.

  17. Icelander says:

    “they’re not getting the sex that they “deserve”,”

    Meanwhile MSM and female blogs are writing endless articles and blog posts about the husbands and boyfriends women DESERVE but somehow aren`t finding. How about covering THAT entitlement mentality in your writing.

    • HA, I was going to comment on this very phrase. The whole idea of men thinking they deserve sex is absolute garbage that feminists use to insulate themselves. It’s not a coincidence that the men they accuse of “deserving” sex are often shy men who might not know how to maximize their physical attributes (unfashionable), who aren’t hard charging, take over a room types.

      Men are sad, angry, and upset not that women they are interested in won’t “give” them sex, they’re upset the are rejected from emotional love, connection, companionship, and someone to share the ups and downs of life with.

      Nerdlove is the one who seems angry, angry that men dare to be upset with his perfect, never wrong women. Possibly the worst Nerdlove I’ve read on this site.

    • Yeah, while I wouldn’t deny that some men think they “deserve” an exceptionally attractive woman, what I find equally common are women who think they “deserve” men of a certain status. Nerdlove himself dismisses this fact offhand in the first paragraph by implying that this is just PUA nonsense so he can spend the rest of the article bashing male entitlement while acting like the female brand doesn’t exist. And while some men may think they “deserve” sex, we hear less about the women who think they “deserve” gifts and expensive diners from men because this is considered traditional courtship. Never mind the attitude I’ve frequently seen women take when they try to initiate sex themselves and are rejected.

      People in both genders have these sort of attitudes, but its only men that people like Nerdlove are ever critical of. More generally I feel too often that any sort of honest feelings of frustration from men are dismissed as “privileged entitlement”, while women are met with understanding and compassion.

      • Bay Area Guy says:

        I nominate Jack for comment of the day.

      • Compassionate measures are necessary for women. They will die without them.

      • People in both genders have these sort of attitudes, but its only men that people like Nerdlove are ever critical of.
        Actually if it were just a matter of only being critical of men I’d be okay with it. Being critical one side doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t other other.

        That said however I think there is an issue with just how he criticizes men. In one breath it’s pointless to argue over who has it worse but in the next its decided that women have it worse. In one breath everyone’s pain is valid but in the next when it comes to dating guys are just bitter an whining.

        More generally I feel too often that any sort of honest feelings of frustration from men are dismissed as “privileged entitlement”, while women are met with understanding and compassion.
        Exactly. On one hand we need to extend compassion to the “psycho bitches” (and that’s a direct reference to recent “psycho bitch” posts) but on the other bitter men need to quit pretending that they are in pain?

  18. Icelander says:

    Why don`t TGMP stop publishing this guys articles. They are both full of shaming of men and attempts to invalidate the problems men phase and the only good advice they ever contain is stuff he has learned from PUAs and which they teach better than he does. It is pretty clear the commentators here aren`t very pleased with him. I would have thought that at a site that supposedly concerns itself with mens problems in society there would be dating advice that is not just feminist shaming and invalidation of mens issues. The tone in this article is horrible.

    • I have asked the Editors on several occasions just what value does he bring to the site.

      Clearly, most men are very hostile to Nerdlove for good reasons.

      He seems to be a PUA guy dressed up as an male who is empathetic to women.

  19. I’m also confused as to why the Good Men Project publishes articles by Nerdlove.

    NerdLove is not a good man. The advice NerdLove gives does not encourage other men to be good men. How does this have a place here?

    • Drew I think it’s a bit more nuanced than that.

      I wouldn’t go as far as to say Nerdlove isn’t a good man or even that he doesn’t have any good points.

      Truthfully I agree with the sentiment of not getting stuck in a spiral of despair. I just have a problem with the way he trivializes men’s experiences and does so by invoking the experiences of women to do so.

      • I remember a while back there was some controversy over things Bill Cosby said. Cosby was hypercritical of other blacks, and racist whites latched on to his criticisms and heralded him for “speaking the truth”. It was pretty clear they were just glad that the anti-black sentiment was coming from someone “safe” – it must be true that black people today are ignorant and lazy, because a black man is saying it! He can’t be racist!

        I, like other commenters, am getting that same feeling with NerdLove: it appears he’s here because the ‘feminist’ editors like what he has to say. He posts articles from the assumption of “you’re all a bunch of losers so let me teach you how to be awesome like me because I got some girls to let me touch their boobs!”. He accuses any man of being upset at being sexless of “sexual entitlement”. He first calls men out for not expressing their feelings, then attempts to shame and gaslight those same men if those men DO express those feelings – you’re like a child who is throwing a tantrum over ice cream! Man the fuck up! He perpetuates harmful gender policing.

        Yet he’s here to stay because the feminists like hearing a guy “get tough” with other men. Because this stuff must be true, since a man is saying it.

        • “I, like other commenters, am getting that same feeling with NerdLove: it appears he’s here because the ‘feminist’ editors like what he has to say.”

          LOL, SPOT ON

  20. Nice guys are very real and so is the friendzone. These are women who think that men can be used. They have one guy who they fuck total jerk hurts their feelings and then she has the other guy he truly cares but she just uses him as a shoulder to cry on and cares little for how he feels. When guy b exerts his individualtiy and distances himself from the friendzone the woman pulls out all the stops to keep him there. From “I don’t want you hanging arround that girl” to “how can you do this to me I would never not be there for you!” despite the fact she merely used guy b when guy didn’t want anything more than a fuck.

    • Most guys want more than just a f*uk, though. Especially the guys who are there for the person they hope to win over, who offer emotional support, etc. Saying “guy b didn’t want anything more than a f*ck” is part of the problem – misandrist reasoning such as “That guy just wants to f*ck me” is exactly how some women rationalize taking advantage of men.

  21. wellokaythen says:

    What I see a lot in commentary, and I’m guilty of this myself sometimes, is the argument that if an article does not mention something then that means the author is ignoring it or dismissing it. Or, if an author fails to blame some people in the article he is therefore giving those people a free pass.

    So, if an article talks about men’s attitudes and behavior and does not mention women’s attitudes and behavior, therefore the author does not think women have any responsibility or should be held accountable at all.

    Possibly an accurate conclusion, but it’s pretty faulty reasoning. It’s the easiest thing in the world to mention all the things that an article does not talk about. Perhaps there’s an assumption that blaming one person for something means that no one else is to blame.

    No matter what an article actually says, it’s really simple to blast it for what’s missing. And, no matter what’s included it faces criticism:

    If an article on GMP only focuses on men, then the author is accused of blaming men for everything.

    If an article talks about men and women, then the author is accused of invading men’s issues with women’s issues, and why can’t men have a space of their own?

    If an article only talks about women, then the author is accused of being a feminist with an agenda who wants men to think like women.

    Perhaps the articles should talk about both men and women and each and neither?

    • You seem to be missing everything, the article is completely about debunking nice men’s plight.

      • wellokaythen says:

        What I hear you saying is that when I wrote a message about what commenters often do, I failed to explain what the article’s author was doing. I restricted my message to talking about a tendency I see within a particular group of people, which makes my message wrong because I did not talk about another person, so therefore I must have missed the point of this other person. Which means, presumably, that my comment is being criticized because it failed to mention something that my message was not intended to cover anyway.

        So, the argument seems to be that because I did not mention something, therefore I must have missed it. This is precisely the type of argument that I was saying was all too common in the comments section.

        So, is your response a satire of my earlier message, a bit of irony, or proof of what I was saying? I can’t tell if your reply supports my argument on purpose or by accident. Either way, thank you for the illustration. : – )

    • I think one of my problems with NerdLove in general is that when it comes to certain common female behaviors, (refusing to approach, creep shaming, going exclusively after high status males, etc) theres a level of understanding that he rarely affords to men if at all. He’ll talk about how social pressures and conventions lead to these behaviors or find a way to rationalize them, but when it comes to men hes far less empathetic. At times he seems to dismiss male frustrations all together putting the onus for all their problems squarely on them and their supposed sense of entitlement. He’ll draw the worse possible conclusions from common male behaviors while almost always portraying women in a more positive light.

      • Bay Area Guy says:

        @ Jack

        Couldn’t have said it better myself.

        What’s worse is that he frequently claims to be refuting “myths,” but doesn’t actually refute the so-called myths, but rather rationalizes them.

        For example, he claimed that the belief that men have to do all the work in approaching and initiating is bullsh*t. But he never actually proved that such a belief is wrong. To do so, he would have had to provide significant evidence that women do in fact approach and initiate things.

        Rather, he provided some elaborate explanation about societal pressures. In other words, he rationalized the so-called “myth.”

        Frankly, Nerdlove is simply disingenuous. Despite the fact that the specific tactics he advocates come straight from PUA, he inundates readers with feminist ideology, which creates quite a bit of cognitive dissonance. That, and despite claiming to be writing to and for men, women are his real audience.

      • This is my impression as well. Nerdlove strikes me as a typical white knight. That’s his shtick.

      • wellokaythen says:

        I have a similar impression from reading the larger body of his work. I’m not trying to let Nerdlove off the hook. What I most dislike is that the approach appears to imply that men have no influence over the dating scene. In his advice, a man has some control over how he reacts to his experiences in the dating world, and the individual man can control his reaction to learning the rules, but there’s no suggestion that men could ever influence the dating scene in any meaningful way.

        The dating world appears in his writing as this given thing with immutable laws. Therefore, a man just has to be resigned to the way that it works. Complaining about how you appear to be mistreated and exploited is the same as complaining about Earth’s gravity. No one is to blame, pay no attention to the (wo)man behind the curtain, move along, nothing to see here. Get back on the horse right away, instead of inventing a better saddle for yourself.

        • Therefore, a man just has to be resigned to the way that it works. Complaining about how you appear to be mistreated and exploited is the same as complaining about Earth’s gravity. No one is to blame, pay no attention to the (wo)man behind the curtain, move along, nothing to see here. Get back on the horse right away, instead of inventing a better saddle for yourself.
          I’m not sure that’s how I interpret his work.

          To borrow your example it seems that he is saying that despite falling out trees, getting pushed of cliffs, and coming down when jumping there is no gravity. There is not force that brings you back down it’s all in our heads.

          Now I’ll agree that it’s self defeating to do nothing than to complain about gravity. However it’s pretty dishonest and ignorant to try to prove that gravity does not exist.

    • Perhaps the articles should talk about both men and women and each and neither?

      That idea is so great it’s terrible. I think it should be implemented immediately starting a month or two from now, and both men and women would do well to give serious consideration to how it’s not worth a second thought by either gender. ;)

      • wellokaythen says:

        What, is no one going to call me on my apparent prejudice in suggesting there are only two genders? I would have expected some correction on that by this point.

        • Well, I tried to work that in at first, but it kept coming out not sounding as funny. It was easier and safer to just continue riffing on the amusing contradictions that you started. :)

  22. I’ll just throw in my vote, for what it’s worth, that this venue is not the most appropriate venue for NerdLove’s columns. A metric that pageviews alone do not capture.

    I had a problem with this part of the article: “It’s so much more satisfying to put all the blame on women rather than to admit that perhaps you’re doing something wrong.”
    Nowhere in this article (and I’m thinking back now to others of his I’ve read) does the author allow the possibility – nay, reality – that you can do everything right and still fail. In dating, in sports, on the job, as a parent, any place where you have responsibilities and expectations to live up to, you can do every last thing expected of you and still not arrive at the goal.

    Talk about ‘life’s not fair.’

    Someone above shared a story of a woman he asked out who didn’t give him an answer right away because she was going to be leaving the area soon. That’s exactly the kind of situation I’m talking about. There are circumstances that play into the dating thing that are outside of your control.

    Maybe NerdLove doesn’t want to dwell on this because, from a certain perspective (and maybe his own perspective), it sounds like an excuse, a justification, a reason to not do the self-work he advocates. “Hey, it’s OK, man, you were rejected due to something you can’t control, it’s not your fault, you don’t have to change or question yourself, just go try again.” If NerdLove’s primary objective is not so much to give dating advice, but rather to get men to self-examine their habits and attitudes, then allowing this possibility provides those men an escape hatch from the work he wants them to do. So from that perspective, it makes sense that he doesn’t include this in his writing. The problem is, that leaves just two options, it’s her fault or its yours, and that doesn’t represent reality.

  23. @Julia: I tried to do as you asked, but found I didn’t have the endurance. Generally what I hate about Dr. NerdLove is that he dismisses the possibility that there could exist gender norms that are harmful to men.

    “By buying into the idea that women rule the social scene with an iron hand, queen bees lording it over the poor witless men who only want their due absolves guys of the responsibility for their own actions and own failures.”

    Could you imagine the reaction if a piece was posted on a feminist website saying that talking about the pay gap is just an excuse not to think of what you could do to get a better paying job?

    • And by “Julia” I of course mean “Julie”.

    • wellokaythen says:

      “Could you imagine the reaction if a piece was posted on a feminist website saying that talking about the pay gap is just an excuse not to think of what you could do to get a better paying job?”

      Ooh. Good point. And, a la Nerdlove, tell those women that they need to examine their own behavior, which may explain why they are not making as much money. And besides, life isn’t fair, so there’s no reason to expect pay equality. Be a grown-up and move on with your life. Stop blaming men for all the times men have gotten paid more than you. Look inward for the explanation.

  24. Herschele says:

    And many of the guys are already feeling angry that they’re not getting the sex that they “deserve”, which makes them even more determined to score that 9 or 10 that they’ve been cut off from

    Most guys struggle to attract ordinary looking women who are their equals, not just the 9’s and 10’s.
    Why is NerdLove gaslighting men?

    It just goes on to show his contempt for men who struggle at attracting women and are frustrated as a result.

  25. @JULIE

    “There are a hell of a lot of feminist sites that don’t speak for me. I read them extremely rarely if at all, and I never comment.”

    From my perspective there aren’t any other platforms that deal with men’s issues in specific which don’t just shit all over my ”feministy” sensibilities. There are a multitude of feminist spaces, so probably it wouldn’t be difficult for you to find a few places where you feel comfortable (from my perspective). So if there was a feminist website where a particular writer just carelessly kept using the word ‘slut’ or something, maybe you would protest the first few times. If no change occurred you would move on. Ignore the website or maybe just the particular writer. But you would be able to do that only if there were other prominent platforms where slut shaming was heavily criticised.
    But
    Not if the said site was the only one (or one of the very few ones) where you felt comfortable. The others were critical of slut shaming, but were so gloriously anti-masculist (say) that the general public (and you) didn’t take them seriously at all..
    I am not sure if it sense or not, but anyways….

    Let me also add that I really value your opinion and I don’t think you are clueless about men’s issues at all (the opposite in fact). You are easily one of my favourites here. Even when I disagree with your stance, I can still see that you are listening to opposing views actively,(actively being the key word) which I really appreciate.

  26. Dan Flowers says:

    You will never hear most ex-military guys having any kind of angst like this. As a young infantryman I went trolling with all of my buds who would mercilessly gut you with hooting derision everytime you struck out. You were sure to return the favor. The end result was that you learned not to take yourself too seriously and to laugh at yourself before everyone else could. When you get to where your ego is not tied to your success, (sort of a give-a-shit attitude) that confidence will result in more success than you can imagine.

  27. A lot of people say “Truth hurts”, but this is by far the most truthful and helpful article I’ve read on the topic of rejection and as I read it found myself several times chuckle and think “Yeah that’s true…” Thank you for writing this. I only wish I could’ve read it sooner.

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