Do "The Rules" have any validity whatsoever?
March 24, 2005 10:38 AM   Subscribe

Do The Rules, Why Men Love Bitches, and He's Not That Into You have any truth to them? There are so many out there now, and they all seem to have the same basic message - I'm wondering if anyone here actually has read them, thinks they are valid, or has other experiences/opinions? I'm especially curious as to what men think.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, The Rules started as a self help book for women suggesting a method to catch a mate, which is very much based on the idea that men are only truly interested in the chase and, therefore, women must be demanding and inaccessible to maintain their interest. This started a while back, and spawned a host of imitators, including the latest He's Not That Into You, which apparently is more or less the same thing, but with the gimmick of being written by a man. The only one I read was Why Men Love Bitches, and it wasn't completely worthless, (some of the self esteem stuff had a point) but I thought it was overall much too cut & dried & extremely condescending. All these books & their kin suggest that the path to relationship bliss is paved with what I would consider serious game playing - i.e., no sex until the third or fourth date, never make him dinner, do not accept an invitation less than 3 days before, don't ever call him, and so on. All this gives me the major creeps, but, on the other hand, I know women who swear by them and say they work, and maybe I'm missing something? Is there any truth to all this hype?

Personal disclaimer: yes, of course, I am single, am having a miserable "dating" existence, and am wondering if I should start playing games, bleaugh, since honesty seems to get me nowhere.
posted by mygothlaundry to Human Relations (52 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
I despise these kinds of publications with a firey hot passion. I'm single, and I would rather not be, but I'll be damned if I'm going to start pulling lameass bullshit games like that just to hook a man.

Sorry, that probably wasn't very helpful.
posted by cali at 10:46 AM on March 24, 2005


If someone makes me chase after them too hard, then once the chase is over I'm a lot more likely to get bored quickly and move on. Yes chasing after someone can be fun (for both sexes) but the fun is in playing the game, not in actually being into the person in question.
posted by aspo at 10:52 AM on March 24, 2005


these books are sold to emotional cripples with no sense of themselves. The thinking involved in these things is less of a turn-on than genital warts.
posted by dong_resin at 10:53 AM on March 24, 2005


Well, to give you a single male data point, with the exception of one early relationship where I didn't know any better, and one recent relationship where I was blinded by my own wishful thinking, whenever anybody seems the least bit inaccessible to me, I quickly write them off and move on to somebody else.

So, if you want to land me (and really, who wouldn't?), they might not be that helpful to you and would probably even hurt.

On the other hand, desperation is unattractive from anybody male or female, and it may be that the games help an otherwise desperate seeming person to appear to be less desperate.
posted by willnot at 10:54 AM on March 24, 2005


I haven't read "He's Not That Into You" but I've often said that very phrase while counseling female friends, so there's probably some validity to the premise if not the presentation. Plus, a little self-reflection tells me that's pretty much the reason I've have engaged in certain assholish behaviors (or maybe just ones that were perceived that way) over the years.
posted by Cyrano at 10:55 AM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


Any woman that tries to play those kind of games with me gets dumped immediately.

Be honest and get those who are not honest out of your life quickly, and everything will be fine.
posted by InfidelZombie at 10:55 AM on March 24, 2005


The vibe I get from what I've heard about these books is that they advise that you go to great lengths to avoid treating people like human beings.
posted by mcwetboy at 10:55 AM on March 24, 2005


I've read "He's just not that into you" and it has value--it does have hype but still makes insightful points. (I'm a single guy, by the way, the book is co-authored by a man and a woman and I'm familiar with The Rules but not the Bitches one.) 'He's just not that into you' is about raising the bar of expectation for the behavior of men and there are at least several women I know that have benefited from reading it. It's written in a straightforward, no nonsense manner and it doesn't pussyfoot around calling guys for the jerks they can be.

Is it a miracle that will change your dating situation? No, but it may help you recognize the difference between someone that is, well, just not into you and some that is truly interested. The books isn't about how to catch a man--it's more like a wake-up call for women that want a relationship so badly they are willing to be mistreated to have one.

(And after reading the book, I'll never, never, never tell a woman that I didn't call because 'I was busy.')
posted by sexymofo at 10:59 AM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


I think those types of books are the reason so many people are so fucked up when it comes to relationships. Same with shows like Sex and the City or movies like Swingers. They teach people to be something they're not and they convince them that everyone else is as fucked up as they are.

Maybe I'm just a freak of nature who has been lucky but I don't see what's so hard about relationships. Be yourself, don't play head games, be honest, have some trust in your partner, compromise sometimes, and if he/she is acting like a nutjob or can't be trusted, dump their ass and find someone with a clue. It's really quite simple.

If you try to force something it's gonna break.
posted by bondcliff at 11:01 AM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


Frankly I'm not sure why any man would have much anything positive to say about a sort of system that openly tells women that they have to play games in order to "catch" a man, or one that treats men more or less like cattle -- because if you think that this will work you forcibly have to think that men can be led and controlled more or less like a herd of oxen, each having the same needs and wants as the other.

Those things are pretty much the "female equivalent" of those shady fly-by-night websites that promise to sell a guy a book of tricks on how to "score". I have a pretty low opinion of people who take either of those things terribly seriously. Sure, the "tricks" may work, but then you'll quickly find that you ended up with someone not worth being with in the first place.
posted by clevershark at 11:01 AM on March 24, 2005


Well, I'm shy and fairly nervous around women I don't know, so if a woman who actually liked me started playing this hard to get, I would immediatly assume that she had absolutely no interest in me, and write her off as impossible. I suppose these techniques could work on the men they're supposed to work on, but far from every man is like that. Actually, I really don't know very many men who are like this, and the few that I do are assholes who women are better off avoiding. So, yes, if you want an asshole, feel free to use the methods described in this book!
posted by JZig at 11:02 AM on March 24, 2005 [2 favorites]


I believe that this industry exists so that people who don't really like each other will be afforded a rich range of options for simulating a mature relationship with fascinating twists and turns.

Thus they convince themselves and their friends that they are enjoying mature relationships like everyone else. God forbid they fail to fall in love with anyone and come off like impotent or undesirable losers.
posted by inksyndicate at 11:03 AM on March 24, 2005


What InfidelZombie said. I despise anyone who tries to pull this sort of childish game-playing nonsense. If anyone ever tried the "hard to get" bullshit with me I wouldn't have known, because my reaction was "Oh. Not interested. OK then. Bye."
posted by Decani at 11:10 AM on March 24, 2005


The main problem is that there's a difference between the way men are and the way women wish men would be..

So, you either have women who are expecting something unrealistic, or you have men who are behaving uncharacteristically. Neither is a recipe for success.

The ideal (and we all know about ideals) is for women to be themselves and men to be themselves. But we have all of this bullshit in the way.. Feminism, metrosexualism, political correct-ism, etc.

If women would enjoy being women and men would enjoy being men, everything would be easier, I think.
posted by eas98 at 11:10 AM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


I think it's pretty true that the person who holds the power in any relationsip is the one who likes the other one less. Extrapolate from that as much as you like...many have written books (see top) with this basic premise.

So, I get that the games work, but are you in it for the chase or for the man?
posted by sdrawkcab at 11:26 AM on March 24, 2005 [2 favorites]


As documented above, the 'bad boys' are going to write you off, and the nice guys will be too afraid to venture into the game. The only man who would fall for The Rules is an egotist who won't take no for an answer.
posted by mischief at 11:26 AM on March 24, 2005


"He's Just Not That Into You" is a little different from "The Rules" in that it doesn't outline specific games you're supposed to play, but just tells women to stop chasing after jerks who are clearly not interested. It really doesn't require a book, but I think some of it is pretty accurate based on my one experience with such a guy. I'm not sure what "enjoy being women" means. Does it have something to do with not expecting men to treat you decently?
posted by transona5 at 11:28 AM on March 24, 2005


I'm totally with bondcliff. It's only a clusterfuck if you make it one by trying to force things (men, women, yourself, the other person, relationships, ...) to be something they're not, based on expectations, whether individual or societal or neurotic. I would never, never put up with someone who pulled that "wait three days before calling," etc. bullshit - be yourself, call if you want to call, don't it you don't. It's OK to admit to other people that you are interested; if they are jackasses about it, well, then you didn't want them in your life anyway.
So I hate those books - I think they perpetuate gender stereotypes and internalized misogyny, and don't put nearly enough emphasis on people's humanness.
Please, please don't read them, or don't buy into them if you do. Do you really want to be with someone who would respond to mind games but wouldn't respond to you just being who you are? No one's such a catch that he's worth pretending to be someone you're not.
(I vastly prefer the idea of the quirkyalone, though I still wish people could just be what they are without having a name and a book. But if it helps to know that you're not the only person who'd rather be happy alone than miserable and coupled, this is a good resource.)
posted by librarina at 11:33 AM on March 24, 2005


The problem is that common sense is lost on a lot of people, providing a market for writers to devise a "formula" of games that might make you seem like you have self-esteem and manners.

Anyone else had to point out to a co-worker or acquaintance that expecting brunch with the parents and a Tiffany engagement ring is not necessarily appropriate third-date behavior?

Or that if you like the guy and want to see him again, you needn't necessarily need sleep with him on the first date? (I'm not, mind you, condemning sleeping with someone on the first date. Just condemning preconceived expectation of such on either side as a means of proving attraction.)

It's kind of like diet books. "Restrict your caloric intake and lay off the potato chips" isn't nearly as compelling as a special scientific formula of certain foods...that serves to restrict your caloric intake and keep you away from the potato chips.
posted by desuetude at 11:33 AM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


As a guy, many of The Rules, if applied without my knowledge, would most likely result in me concluding I was being deliberately jerked around, which is The End. If applied with my knowledge, I would have difficulty respecting the person's choice (which likewise does not bode well), as the concept is not only distasteful and inherently deceiving, but the person obviously thinks their own judgement and insight is so lacking that they submit to an inflexible rulebook. I'm not interested in people that are not honest or themselves (among other things :) and I'm not interested in the chase.

You can have your own rules - your own standards of conduct, but they should be the product of your experience and judgement, not the ones in someone else's book, so if someone asks why you choose not to meet them even though you're free, you always have a real and truthful reason that is inherently part of you, because you made that decision, not someone else.
posted by -harlequin- at 11:46 AM on March 24, 2005


"He's Not That Into You" sounds like relatively good common-sense advice compared to "The Rules", and in fact if read by men (as "She's Not That Into You"), wouldn't it tell them that any woman who was playing hard-to-get wasn't really emotionally involved enough to be worth their time?

Of course, all this is based on the book's title; for all I know the later chapters are all about how to manipulate the men who really are into you. Wouldn't surprise me at this point; these books are the death of romance.
posted by nicwolff at 11:47 AM on March 24, 2005


I've read a couple (only a couple, I swear it) of these dating advice books, and I find that they usually have at least a few valuable concepts in them.

I've read The Rules, for example. It's a mix of very good and really terrible advice. The writers tell you to take responsibility for your own happiness. If you want flowers, don't sulk because he doesn't happen to think of giving you some - buy them for yourself. Make the most of yourself - not only in terms of your appearance, but in terms of your other relationships, your education, your career. They tell you to be a the centre of your own life, to choose men instead of waiting to be chosen, and to believe in the abundance of the universe. If one guy doesn't want you, someone else will. All excellent advice, and perhaps it sounds obvious to you, but there are many people out there who need to hear these things or have them reinforced. I know it did me good to read this in my early twenties.

The bad stuff is truly bad - don't spend more than five minutes on the phone with the guy. Never call him. Don't accept a date for the coming weekend any later than Wednesday. Don't carry a pencil - make him go borrow a pencil to write down your number. There are guys who only want what seems to be out of reach, but do you really want that type of guy? Honestly, a man who continues to call you when you never call him and won't spend time on the phone with him is a stalker. And if you're a woman you SHOULD take his number rather than giving him yours for reasons of personal safety - get to know him a little before giving him your number.

I'm not sorry I read The Rules, because I did learn some good things. But I also had a friend who acted like it was some kind of bible. She bypassed all the sound advice and went straight for the manipulative bullshit. She's now married to a sociopathic man who rapes and beats her.

I think that in dating, as in any endeavour, you have to develop good judgement and exercise it. If you don't have that, no amount of great advice is going to help you. So, don't be afraid to read or skim these books and think them over. Try reversals as a test for fairness (i.e., "How would I like it/what would I do if someone treated me this way?") You'll probably learn something, even if what you learn is that you depise a certain approach to dating.
posted by orange swan at 11:51 AM on March 24, 2005 [3 favorites]


I sat down in a store and read through most of "He's not that into you" and to me it seems like kind of the opposite of the rules. It's got a lot of good advice about not waiting around for men that aren't worth it, and not thinking that they mean one thing when they say something else. It's actually the opposite of game playing. It helped me look back on situations in the past and understand a bit more about why guys had maybe done the things they did. It's still a silly dating book but basically I think it was rather pro-woman and not manipulative.
posted by matildaben at 12:06 PM on March 24, 2005


I second what Transona (and on preview, others) said. Having worked in a bookstore and despised The Rules, when everybody and their mother swarmed us asking for He's Really Not That Into You, I leaned up against the counter and gave it a look through.

I feel the most applicable use of that book is to keep women from dumping complex emotional rationales on men's behavior, and instead just saying to let them go wander off in their men's land of fickle if they truly lack the impetus to care about you.

But again, it's pretty much just summed up by the title.
posted by redsparkler at 12:14 PM on March 24, 2005


A lot of the outrage about the books comes from people who reject their premises, not their conclusions. The premises are (1) you want to settle down sometime soon, (2) you want an alpha male, and (3) you don't believe in fairy tales.

If you reject the premises, more power too you. The world is full of phobic indie boys with serious mommy issues and a prohibitive unlikelihood of being able to pay your mortgage.

However, if you accept the premises, there are definitely some valid insights there.

Among them:

* Desirable men decide quickly about women, and act assertively and unambiguosly once they've decided.

* Desirable men want women who are almost unattainable -- so the worst thing you can do is to make yourself too available.

* The desirable men who drop you the instant they lose interest are the better ones -- plenty of desirable men are cads, who'll string you along for ages as long as you're convenient, pleading commitment issues all along, but will dump you and mysteriously lose all their inhibition about marriage and children the moment the real thing comes along.

None of this is to dispute the point, well-made above, almost all of the Rules' specific pieces of strategy to leverits insights into the "Ring" are completely, farcically bad.)
posted by MattD at 12:18 PM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


[Swingers teaches] people to be something they're not and convinces them that everyone else is as fucked up as they are.

Actually, that's a complete 180 of what Swingers "teaches". The guy who is true to himself gets the girl; the poser ends up single and looking like a buffoon.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 12:23 PM on March 24, 2005


If these books were renamed to express their true contents they would be called:
"How To Act So a Man Will Pay Attention To You"
"How To Make a Man Act the Way You Want Him To"

Crap like this is why everyone is so messed up in relationships. Be yourself, do what comes naturally and the rest will work itself out. If you're following a set of bullshit rules and acting the way a book tells you to, it's not going to happen. At some point you're both going to realize you're in a relationship that formed between two people who weren't being honest with each other.
posted by suchatreat at 12:27 PM on March 24, 2005


Amazing, jonmc hasn't dropped in to tell us all what all men are like.

I could make up some shit if you want. :)

I've only browsed these books a bit, but speaking as a guy, I've never enjoyed "the chase," one bit. It's nerve-wracking and fraught with the potential for rejection and humiliation. So that premise is untrue in my experience, except for hypercompetitive types.

I also find that game-playing and being "rule" bound is an anathema to romance, mainly because it's fundamentally dishonest. I'd prefer to know where I stand rather than go thru some intricate scorpion dance.

All this stuff makes me very thankful that I'm out of the dating pool.
posted by jonmc at 12:28 PM on March 24, 2005


does it really matter if the books have any truth? If you would only 'land' this guy by being something you're not, is that really the guy want to end up with?

I will say, though, that the 'no sex until 3rd date' thing no longer seems like a weird rule to me. I thought it was arbitrary when I was in college/just after college, but I realize now that was because all the people I 'dated' then were people I had known socially for a while before we hooked up. In the last few years I have been on actual "dates", ie, with people I had never met before, and I cannot imagine having sex with them after one dinner together, unless it was definitely just for fun & emotionally meaningless. How could we have a meaningfully intimate connection after two hours of small talk? But again, that wouldn't be something I'd do to come across a certain way or whatever, and if there were an exception, if it felt 'right', I certainly wouldn't be worrying about rules.

I think you simply have to be the way you are. Know thyself, and all that. If someone would have loved me if only I'd xyz, then I don't really think it ever would have been love anyway, y'know?
posted by mdn at 12:33 PM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


Thank you You Should See the Other Guy, I was thinking the same thing since that's one of my favorite movies. Whoever said that obviously didn't even watch the film.
posted by rooftop secrets at 12:33 PM on March 24, 2005


does it really matter if the books have any truth? If you would only 'land' this guy by being something you're not, is that really the guy want to end up with?

I'd argue that sometimes reading self-help books can lead to genuine personal growth. Perhaps you will honestly and permanently change an attitude. But the salient point is that it must be genuine, not an act.
posted by orange swan at 12:42 PM on March 24, 2005


Have good self-estem, respect yourself, have your own life, but otherwise, if you want a real relationship with a real guy, ignore all these idiotic books for shallow Barbies and Kens who live in a plastic world of games.
posted by Shane at 12:42 PM on March 24, 2005


Skip the word "otherwise" in the above statement, as it's potentially confusing. Respect yourself AND ignore these asinine books.
posted by Shane at 12:44 PM on March 24, 2005


I read a chunk of The Rules when it came back (lent by a friend, who had been lent it by a friend of hers), and like others, found it to be a perfect recipe for women who would want to avoid a relationship with me.

I also skimmed a book called The Game, which was the masculine riposte--essentially telling the reader "here's how to seem like you're following The Rules and still get all the nookie you want."

The two books make excellent counterparts--any woman who places any stock in The Rules deserves to end up with a guy following The Game, and vice-versa. To put it another way, these books (and the ideas behind them) have self-selecting audiences, and reinforce the attitudes of those audiences. If you're a guy who would be interested a Rules Girl, she would have been a Rules Girl even before the book came out, and you still would have dated her. If your a girl who reads The Rules and thinks "this doesn't sound right," you don't belong with a guy who wants a Rules Girl.
posted by adamrice at 12:53 PM on March 24, 2005


"Rules Girl?" Does that mean the guy who reads The Game is a "Game Boy?"
posted by jonmc at 12:56 PM on March 24, 2005 [2 favorites]


I'm with jonmc - the chase was the part of my dating life that sucked the most. It was horrible to be a geekish guy who was (or so I was told) attractive enough to cross into the "popular" set, but utterly lacking the social skills to pull it off. Repeated, soul-destroying agony because I couldnt comprehend the rules.

It got better when I got to college, but not much. I am quite fortunate to have found, by accident, a woman who was pretty straightforward and had a very low "scorpion dance" quotient. Thank heavens I don't have to deal with this kind of wrangling anymore.

To wrap this up - be yourself. Have a life of your own. Date similar guys. Unless you're trying to set yourself up with a nice cushy alimony payment somewhere down the line, don't pay any attention to all those vile books.
posted by Irontom at 1:01 PM on March 24, 2005 [1 favorite]


Read "Sex Tips for Girls" by Cynthia Heimel. Despite the title, it's really a book about dating and relationships. It's extremely funny, and achingly honest.
posted by luneray at 1:09 PM on March 24, 2005


I'm a guy and I've read large chunks of "He's just not that into you," and for some people, I think the advice is right on. It doesn't seem like a Rules style set of guidelines to follow, so much as a nudge on how to tell when a guy does or doesn't truly care for year. IMHO, a person reading "He's just not that into you" is far more likely to end up in a better relationship than someone who follows the rules.
posted by drezdn at 1:10 PM on March 24, 2005


Without reading any of the other responses first, I wanted to add that I've read The Rules, thought it was trite and simple-minded at least, mildly offensive at most. Not worth the time it took to read at all. (this was for a class, in which we pretty much laughed at it for the duration of our study)
posted by odinsdream at 1:13 PM on March 24, 2005


Here's an old AskMeFi discussion of He's Just Not That Into You, if you didn't see it already. =)
I have not read Why Men Love Bitches, but here's another old AskMeFi discussion on the question "Why do boys like to date bitchy, bossy girls?" that you might enjoy.
How I feel about The Rules, orange swan already said, pretty much.
posted by Melinika at 1:52 PM on March 24, 2005


Love is what you create over time.
Infatuation/lust is what happens in a day.
One can follow from the other, but only if you don't play games. If either party is dishonest to the other the relation suffers. The more dishonesty, the more suffering.
This said from a fellow that met his future wife and married within 5 months, 12 years ago.
posted by edgeways at 2:02 PM on March 24, 2005


willnot hit it right on the head early in the thread -- these books exist simply to help desperate people not come off as being desperate. Guys can smell desperation from a mile away, and the types attracted to it are invariably the "use and leave quickly" type or the "I can get away with whatever I want because she NEEDS me" type. So, the books teach people to cover that up, in the hopes that some guy will be fooled long enough to take the bait.

Then, of course, the guy often finds himself married to someone clingy who is completely dependant on him for their entire sense of self-worth... whether he metaphorically chews his own leg off to escape the trap once he figures out he's in it depends on the guy, I suppose.
posted by Pufferish at 2:04 PM on March 24, 2005


I swear I'm going to write a dating book entitled There's No Right Way and It's Not Easy For Anybody. Actually, that's pretty much my entire life's philosophy spelled out in one sentence. Comparing yourself to arbitrary standards and imagining that other people have it figured out and that you're the only one who doesn't know the rules are great ways to make yourself suffer.
Given the bewildering complexity of every single person I've ever met, it's astonishing that anyone ever gets together with anyone else. There are so many variables that by comparison, the process of refueling a space shuttle in flight seems positively tame. If it's not working for you at the moment, that doesn't mean there's anything wrong with you.
Really, the only relationship advice worth taking is: be true to yourself and get out there. "Getting out there" can mean many different things; for a shy person like me, it meant online personal ads. For a former roommate of mine, it meant getting physically out of the house and going to clubs, dance nights, and bars she liked on a regular basis. For some people, it's a writing workshop or a cooking class or church or some sort of rally. Anything that exposes you to other people (and them to you) will do; they can't dig what they don't know about, and neither can you.
posted by willpie at 2:45 PM on March 24, 2005 [2 favorites]


Books that tell you to play games with men all seem to assume your IQ is about 50 and so is his. When I started dating my (now) husband seriously, I told him the following:
1) I don't play games. If you play games, I will find out and I will drop you like a hot rock. I do not have time for that bullshit. We all have better things to do, even if it's clip our fingernails.
2) If we're dating, we're dating. I think of enough of you that I'm not going to see other people. If you can't give me the same respect, lemme know, because this isn't going to work any other way.

And then I proceeded to be myself, and he proceeded to himself. Lo and behold, when I'd reached the absolute edge of being able to deal with men's crap, and finally told someone, "THIS is exactly what I expect," I got what I wanted, he got what he wanted. We are still absolutely, stupidly happy. So yeah. The only good advice is to respect yourself, demand and give respect in return.
posted by Medieval Maven at 3:24 PM on March 24, 2005


Damn, luneray... I'd forgotton all about "Sex Tips for Girls". My ex-wife had that book and I remember being pleasantly surprised by how funny it was.
posted by Decani at 6:50 AM on March 25, 2005


I object to any book which tells women they should never make the first move. The only accurate way of phrasing this advice is, "Never make the first move if your goal in life is to date a guy who can't handle self-confident women."

But maybe I'm biased. About 12 years ago, there was this girl who made the first move and asked me out on a date. I said "yes." We've now been married for seven years, and her independence, intelligence, and spirit are among the many things I love about her.

I am sure there are guys who don't like women who think for themselves, and no doubt those guys would never have said yes to a girl who asked them out. Those guys have no idea what they're missing.
posted by yankeefog at 6:55 AM on March 25, 2005 [1 favorite]


just in the hope that it will encourage it to happen more often i want to echo yankeefog's sentiments. being asked out is great. on the other hand, i guess i'm not one of mattd's alpha males, whose whole post made me shudder.
posted by andrew cooke at 7:45 AM on March 25, 2005


yep, it was pretty shudder-worthy.

I think that's useful, in telling you that if you go by "The Rules", that is the kind of guy you're likely to attract. If that's what you're looking for, then in most cases you will probably already be inclined to play the role "the rules" prescribes, or if not, at least when you read it, you think, aha, yes, that makes sense. If instead, you think, ugh, is that really how guys want me to be? Then the answer is, no, not the sort of guy you'll be happy with.

Basically, those books are written to preach to the choir, and if they don't intuitively make sense to you, then they are not really applicable to you.
posted by mdn at 9:33 AM on March 25, 2005 [1 favorite]


andrew: don't fret about mattd's dimwit alpha males. The great thing about those guys is they only succeed with dimwitted women. And who wants one of those? Oh yeah... dimwit alpha males. It's a nice, self-adjusting system.
posted by Decani at 10:10 AM on March 25, 2005


thanks (although i should add that i was hoping other people would be asked out, since i am spoken for and have been for many years now, and so no longer have to worry about being alpha or otherwise ;o)
posted by andrew cooke at 1:39 PM on March 25, 2005


Along the same lines as mdn: The Rules, from anecdotal evidence, work with certain types of guys. Immature ones. (MeFi guys who declare they want no part of it, pat yourselves on the back.) I think the important part is what happens after you get The Ring: you're stuck with someone who not only falls for stupid games, but also doesn't really know you and how you react to things on your own. The Rules might be good advice to help you snare a man, but it seems like you're just headed for divorce once you have to deal with each other honestly.

As for He's Just Not That Into You, some people need to hear that from an objective source.
posted by chickenmagazine at 2:10 PM on March 25, 2005


they're all ridiculous. every relationship is different and you can't put stupid rules that apply to all of them.
posted by playtragic at 3:13 PM on March 28, 2005


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