Under what circumstances is a Meet Cute of crucial importance?
Readership: Christians; Men;
A Summary of the “Meet Cute” Discussion
Starting with Scott’s post, Probabilities (2020-2-24), there began a debate, largely between Scott and Derek, about the importance and value of the Meet Cute experience.
As I was following this discussion, I found that both sides had noteworthy points, and recognized that neither side was entirely right or wrong. Since then, I’ve been contemplating how this might be sorted out.
In a follow up study of Scott’s posts, Trajectories (2020-2-28), I made a comparison between two life trajectories, a legalistic path on the one hand, and a hedonistic path at the other end of the spectrum. It was presumed that if a man wishes to have a fulfilling marriage and family, he should shoot for a trajectory somewhere in between these two extremes.
But the next question was, what does this trajectory look like from the ground? A legalist is focused on remaining inside the confines of moral acceptability and on maintaining his own righteousness. A hedonist is focused on maximizing his own pleasure and expanding his life experiences. But what does a man aiming for an ideal trajectory focus on?
At first glance, we might think he should be focused on Christ, or his God-ordained purpose in life, or on preparing himself for marriage. But for a young, inexperienced person, these goals are almost just as nebulous.
To fill in this blank, I’ll offer a brief list of tasks a young man can focus on that should take him in the right direction.
- Building character.
- Developing charisma.
- Coming to terms with himself.
- Earning an education and preparing for a career.
- Developing an abundance mindset as opposed to a poverty mindset.
- Maintaining good nutrition and developing physical strength and health.
Although the above things can certainly help, they are woefully insufficient to get one into the elite Christian married club, as Jason has adamantly pointed out.
I believe the main difference between Scott’s and Derek’s stances is in the values and norms proscribed by the non-shared environmental socialization factors, including the perceived ideal, and this is combined with one’s individual locus of passion and purpose for living. Thus, all the argumentation is centered around the discussion of various elements of an underlying hierarchy of values and ideals. I will explain this in the remainder of this essay.
Biblical Courtship is not Perceivable to the Majority
Those of us who have been following Christian Red Pill sites for a while are well aware of how the church in the west is converged. That is to say, it has very few identifying characteristics which distinguish itself from the wider secular culture. This convergence extends to include the expected (but unspoken) norms for “dating” and romance.
Moreover, there are a plethora of influences pushing us into fornication, and setting us up to fail. These influences include gynocentric cultural norms, converged churchianity, well-meaning but ignorant friends, our own fleshly nature, and for some, their own family members too. To make matters worse, these influences are quick to shame us if we fail to either (1) have Meet Cute opportunities, or (2) take advantage of those opportunities. The only other option is to become a prudish legalistic hermit, which was essentially the outcome of the Purity Movement, and it has also been argued that this path might be even worse, because there is no opportunity to experience God’s grace and learn something from your choices.
This is why Bruce Batsche summed up the past discussion as,
“…current conditions incentivize men seeking a good marriage (good by male standards anyway) to fornicate. As Scott said (more or less) somewhere, the best way to ensure marriage to a woman who wants you forever is to choose one who wants to fornicate with you a lot over an extended “courtship” (my interpretation of what he said). Hard for a woman to fake genuine desire for an extended period of time. So a Christian is incentivized to sin to get a good marriage – twisted really.”
But I have to point out, this has only become necessary because it is the norm, and there are virtually no other options available to the average man, short of converting to be Amish (or its near cousin, Mennonite, such as brother Derek).
So for a man in this situation, Scott’s advice becomes highly relevant:
- Find a woman who is really crazy about you, a Meet Cute who is consistently displaying IOI’s.
- You need to be on the edge of losing your self-control, which is an indication that (1) you need to be married, and also that (2) you have the necessary degree of desire for her.
- You need to keep a clear head and vet her on many other checkpoints. Deep Strength has offered a large number of posts dedicated to the task of wife vetting.
- Be sensitive to the feedback you might receive from trusted friends, family members, and those in your faith community.
- Plan for a wedding and resist having sex before the big day.
Bruce and probably others have thought or said to look for a woman who wants to fornicate with you. This is not exactly right, and I think this is just a male view of the situation. If a woman is intentionally trying to fornicate with you, that should be taken as an orange flag. You don’t want a woman who rushes into a sexual relationship without any qualms. Such a woman is probably not inexperienced. The idea here is that the woman should have a spontaneous, genuine enthusiasm about showing natural physical affection to you, like she can’t keep her hands off of you, she wants to hold hands or kiss… Immature women might show their attachment by getting jealous, making petulant demands, or $h!t testing you.
But the thing that everyone seems to miss is that it is possible to love someone, and to be “in love” with someone, without having sex. It is possible for a woman to be in love and not be focused on the sexual. But we are inundated with the half-baked argument that love is a justifiable reason for having sex, and this blurred understanding has blinded the eyes of many once-innocent souls.
For instance, the verbs “date” and “marry” are too often used as euphemisms for sexual relations. It would be much more honest if people really said what they mean in this regard. As a result of this misnomenclature, “I love you” is commonly interpreted to mean, “I wanna shag you!” But this debases the glory of loving others and being loved.
Problems with the Meet Cute experience
If we reconsider the SMP from both the male and female perspectives, and from both the high and low SMV male perspectives, we discover the inherent errors of the cultural norm.
Consider this. If a young man of average SMV falls in love with a girl, then that is usually seen as an embarrassing inconvenience. But if a girl gets her panties soaked for a man, then we invariably see what Scott described in a recent comment: $h!ts and giggles from friends setting them up to be alone, followed by playful touching, then sneaking off, kissing underneath the bleachers, and so on. And all this inevitably leads to sexual adventures — riding high in the back of the truck under the moonlight, escapades on magic blankets in beautiful secluded spots, etc.
Of course, the Meet Cute experience only happens to high SMV men.
The reason I find this interesting is because if a man is really bonkers about the girl, then we have the potential for a marriage commitment from him, which is labeled “good” by Christians. But when the girl’s feelings take center stage, then we have the makings of delicious, illicit (to coin a new word: illicious) sex, which is portentously labeled “evil” by Christians. So why then do we see practically everyone, Christians included, encouraging Meet Cute’s when they happen? Are they hoping that the man will get hooked on the sex and pursue marriage with her? But if he isn’t eager to marry the ho, then that renders him as a bad boy? But if he does choose to stay with her, or even marry her, and she loses the Tingles later on, then it must be because he’s selfish and incompetent and so deserves to be thrown aside? These are the opinions we are used to hearing, even within the church. But obviously, we’re stuck in first gear with this rhetoric because no one is thinking that far ahead.
We’re still only talking about high SMV men. Low SMV men are invisible to women.
Derek’s stance hereby becomes evident – that the present cultural emphasis on (her) feelings of sexual attraction is faulty.
Ultimately, a Meet Cute is a high SMV man’s challenge to find Christ.
In conclusion, the Biblical conscription of marriage is d@mn near impossible to attain through an independent discovery.
A Hierarchy of Ideals
So what makes Derek or Ed so special, that they could attain an “ideal” Biblical marriage?
For Derek, I would have to conclude that it was an absence of the negative influences described above, and the presence of positive influences that gave Derek a trajectory that is close to the ideal. Namely, having a Christian community that offers real opportunities for viable pairings at an early age, and which offers the correlating teaching and guidance to move towards marriage, are absolutely necessary to enter into a fulfilling Christ-centered marriage.
For Ed, he summed up his approach in terms of finding a helper for his divinely ordained purpose in life.
“The thing that Scott’s article brings to mind for me is that very few men in our society are trained to think in terms of having a mission in life that would outlive you. More to the point, they have no idea what it looks like in a woman, so they can’t identify a prospective wife who will be supportive of that mission far, far down the road. How I learned it as a young man, I’m not sure I can explain, but it was a major criteria when I decided to marry.”
I suppose it is possible for a man to make it on Christ alone, but not probable, given the average level of maturity.
Thus, those who are without a strong internal sense of Christian purpose, and those who are lacking the constant, caring support of a network of wise believers, the choices for men default to the following,
- Hunt the world over for a submissive, obedient virgin to wife up, who is also willing to marry you and have your babies.
- Meet Cute and explore in the hope that you’ll wind up there eventually. The usual pitfalls can be expected – jealousy, STD’s, out of wedlock births, divorce, etc.
- Withdrawal, isolation, masturbation.
Red Pilled Dad (R.P. McMurphy) describes Why deregulation of SMP makes pairing up hard. (2020 March 31)
Note 1: In the western MMP, the outcome of option 1 is likely to be the same as option 3.
Note 2: If a young man actually goes abroad in his search for a wife, the outcome of option 1 is the same as option 2.
“I heard pollution in the world is way down because everybody is staying inside masturbating right now. Which got me thinking… hear me out here, but I’m pretty sure I’m right about this. I think… I think coronavirus was created and released by Greta Thunberg in an attempt to combat climate change. You heard it hear first.“
Derek argued that the overall marital satisfaction is not necessarily dependent on the intensity and frequency of sexual passion. Derek summed up his position as,
”So precisely, my personal stance is that the Meet Cute approach can be beneficial or detrimental, but that—in comparison—respecting one’s vows is more important. Jason’s stance is, as far as I can tell from witnessing dozens or hundreds of marriages, is the most important component of a successful marriage.”
Jason’s stance is cited as follows.
“One of the most plain truths I got from the bible was “have your yes mean yes and your no mean no” […] My parents knew each other six months and married. My mom always said “your father and I never kept a match or score on each other.” My dad always said “Your mother and I just took our wedding vows seriously. It was a promise before family, friends and god. It was just understood, and especially after your older brother… we only had each other… we had to make it work.”
The difficulties with Derek’s argument includes the following.
- It requires a community of mature believers offering constant instruction and guidance to a pool of young people large enough to allow assortative pair selection – something 95+% of men these days don’t have, and never will have.
- The approach of unwavering commitment and devotion relies heavily on vows and willpower, which are insufficient without the help of the Holy Spirit. In other words, this method would be a hard grind for unbelievers, and unlikely to attract their longitudinal adherence.
There is one point of overarching importance: Commitment may be significantly less challenging if a man seriously considers his God-ordained mission in life, and considers the suitability of a particular, potential wife with respect to her ability to play the role of a helper and companion to him in that mission.
For those men who cannot achieve Derek’s approach, presumably because of the lack of maturity and a supporting network of believers, Scott’s approach towards marriage becomes the next best option.
Scott’s main position is that a wife’s (sexual) enthusiasm has to be present from the onset, and if it is not, it is highly unlikely to suddenly materialize eight years down the road. Scott also argued that one major benefit of the Meet Cute path is that the sex is likely to be regular and rather satisfying. The marriage covenant is better maintained through regular sexual intercourse, and if the woman has a high level of enthusiasm for having sex with her husband, then this contributes to the stability and satisfaction of the marriage.
The problem with Scott’s position is that it relies heavily upon emotional bonding, and while this can be quite strong, it is not consistent over time as it tends to wane. At some point, commitment through thick or thin will need to emerge among the top shared values, and the difficulty of making this transition may prove to be the fatal hiccup for the union.
One positive aspect of Scott’s position is that it allows a man to gain an added appreciation of the grace of God.
The cultural norm, including the Meet Cute phenomenon, all seems easily understandable to us, maybe even inspirational. Many readers may relate to Scott’s testimony because they have fond memories of past experiences. But we should be aware that we might find it easy to accept this as fact, merely because we are familiar with it. But in fact, this process is not God’s ideal. It has a high likelihood of failure, as Scott has attested, and it is fraught with heartache and frustration, mainly because it does not place Christ first.
Remember, a Meet Cute is a special case scenario which is glorified as the romantic norm.
Of note, the inherent power structure of both paths conform to the God-honoring Respect Model of courtship.
Another key problem with both paths is that the longitudinal outcome of the marriage goes back to what Sharkly said under “Probabilities”:
“Relationships are not usually controlled by what you do as a man and a leader, the relationship is always controlled by the least emotionally mature partner. The relationship cannot grow above the point that the least mature partner will not sustain. So, if the man is the weak link, he can improve things, by getting his act together. But, in our generation, most of the time, the entitled victim spoiled feminist goddess (daughter of the King) is the more emotionally stunted one. So, almost all progress in the marriage is dependent on her maturing in Christ. You as a husband can do cartwheels, send smoke signals, hire a psychologist, call a prayer meeting, drop hints, but until your wife chooses to grow up, or has an epiphany, you’re stuck having the level of development in your marriage dictated by that rebellious immature girl’s selfish choices.”
Given that the adolescent libido peaks long before emotional maturity is achieved, most young people are like a child playing with a loaded weapon. All the pressures, all the responsibilities, and they don’t know what they’re doing.