Married couples have a duty to remain the apple of the other’s eye.
Readership: Married couples;
Length: 3,000 words
Reading Time: 10 minutes
Attention is Womens’ Sexual Currency
“Women want attention. They absolutely crave it, like men crave the sexual act. If a woman has to have sex with a man to get and keep his attention (or money, or whatever else she wants from that man), she’ll do it even if she’s not sexually aroused. Of course if she’s around an attractive man who’s pushing the buttons, she will get aroused, but it’s not necessary for her to have sex.
This is a reason why more and more girls are turning to sugaring. They get attention. They get money. They can’t seem to get boyfriends to take them out and pay, so they turn to sugaring. They can’t seem to get men to bite the bullet and wife them up, at least not until she panics and he relents because he’s so hard up. So they turn to sugaring. They are prostitutes for all intents and purposes, but they really don’t care and don’t have any kind of moral problem with this at all.
It’s because women want attention, and they’ll get it any way they can. Just as men want sex, and they’ll get it any way they can.”
As NovaSeeker pointed out recently, ALL attention is sexual attention, and women’s drive for (sexual) attention is intense. Women have complex mechanisms to attract the attention that they need without giving the outward appearance of neediness. The next section will examine one such example.
Visual Shamelessness to the World
In a previous post, PW – When wanton treachery brings shame not honor (2020 October 14), I tackled the false claim that women’s bodies are something to be ashamed of. Mature women know inwardly (at some level) that men are visually oriented and are easily distracted by the feminine form, and that this causes men to focus on their fleshly desires and give the woman the attention she covets. (See Romans 8:5-8.) But some women make this claim that her body “is nothing to be ashamed of” or “I’m just being my sexy self”, so that they can be the centerpiece of (sexual) attention by showcasing their silhouettes of skin, while outwardly denying the fact that men are visually stimulated. It’s a self-defense measure — gaslighting in the form of Plausible Deniability. Womens’ underlying purpose of denying this reality is so that they can dress provocatively to attract mens’ attention and still avoid contingent responsibility for any unwanted consequences that might arise.
All this is just another take on how women hold predominant power and control over the mating market. But they run into a problem when they want to be taken seriously…
Women are Sexually Oriented
Looking at this from the other side of the aisle, women are enticed by a charismatic man who is good looking, and has power, status, athleticism, and money (PSALM). Just as men have a radar to detect the female form, women also have a sixth sense for scoping out men. Cameron did some introspection from this perspective.
“…I have some reservations about the Christian bodybuilding thing you see promoted on some Christian Manosphere sites. When I used to lift weights and got fairly big, women definitely noticed, including Christian women. One of [my] wife’s friends made an explicit remark [about my physique], and another Christian friend of hers told [my] wife how she wished her husband did the same thing.
This doesn’t seem charitable to other men to encourage their wives to look at you (I don’t mean to sound arrogant as if I was God’s gift to women. I am simply relating my experiences).
I understand not wanting to be a fat slob, and some of the young boys are really skinny and weak from doing nothing but playing video games. But I don’t think inciting attraction in other men’s wives is a very Christian thing to do. Women can and do lust too.“
Yes, women, especially younger women, are always on the lookout, sizing up men according to their socio-sexual rank, among other things. But very few men can elicit a sexual reaction from women like Cameron did. Those few men who are able do so are reaping the benefits of genetics and upbringing, so they really don’t need to try very hard. In contrast to women, men are not as acutely aware of the impact they have on women, nor are they so hungry for female attention in itself. Cameron was unaware of this until two women made explicit remarks. For men, coitus and especially insemination is necessary to obtain an ego payoff of comparable intensity.
The Shame of Illicit or Unintended IOIs
Contrary to what women might claim, there’s nothing shameful about the body itself. The shame arises when an individual presents his/her body as a vector of lecherous lust and illicit temptation outside of marriage.
Ed Hurst summed it up like this.
“There’s nothing shameful about the human body. What is shameful is exhibiting that body to people whom God says don’t have the proper privilege for seeing it. Outside of the covenant marriage bedroom, no one is authorized by God to see it. There’s a reason that, after the Fall, God gave Adam and Eve coverings that they didn’t need before the Fall. We are fallen; we need covering. Covering symbolizes a whole range of things.”
When Ed talks about “exhibiting the body”, he means the nude body, or the body in very revealing, provocative clothing, which in many cases, is casually labeled attention getting. But a woman doesn’t even need to show her skin suit to do this. Remember NovaSeeker’s axiom: To women, ALL attention is sexual attention! Depending on the socio-sexual rank of the man, sometimes this attention is wanted, and other times, it is not.
It is for this reason that men always have to be careful whenever they are interacting with a woman in a formal setting. If a man does anything that might be interpreted by her as an Indicator of Interest (e.g., a smile, extended eye contact, frequent interaction, or simply failing to break off a conversation in a curt and decisive manner), a woman will interpret this as a sexual advance, whether it is intended to be or not!
Women’s propensity to interpret everything through a sexualized lens is all very taxing on men, especially to those men who can’t measure up to the hypergamic expectations of the female’s imaginations. This phenomenon is greatly exacerbated because of the centrality of sex in Western culture.
Visual Gatekeeping in Marriage
What I have described so far is just one side of the coin. The other side is how wives (and some husbands) fail, or even refuse to show off their bodies to their spouses. This is surprising, seeing how women crave attention like men crave sex, as Deti described above. So we have to ask ourselves why this is.
In some cases with people who have a hot body and a heady libido, this takes the form of hard gatekeeping, i.e. refusing visual or sexual access to one’s body, sometimes called “closing the door” (in the physical sense) or “putting up a wall” (in the emotional sense). In other cases with people who have a weaker sex appeal or who have an insufficient determination to preserve sexual inclinations after marriage, they simply stop making any effort. This is colloquially called “letting themselves go”.
Imagine a husband who comes home after a long, unnerving day at work, and he wants some genuine affection from his wife — a titty show or a lap dance — to set himself in the proper mood to share the evening with his family. After all, “women’s bodies are nothing to be ashamed of”, right? But this is not the response that many husbands get from their wives upon coming home. Suddenly and for no apparent reason, the wife is “ashamed” of her body, and proceeds to hamsterize a different kind of Plausible Deniability, all done in an effort to close the door on him.
- “I’m too tired.”
- “I have a headache.”
- “I need to take a bath first.”
- “I need to do X, Y, Z… right now. Maybe later…”
- “The kids are in the next room. They might hear us.”
Isn’t it funny (in a cynical way), how women are quite eager to show off their bodies to everyone and his handsome cousin, except the man God intended them to show their bodies to? They want to be sexually objectified by the world, but at the same time, they want to be taken seriously by their husbands. It should be the other way around.
If we compare women’s need for attention to mens’ need for sex, then a woman who forfeits mens’ sexual attentions by “letting herself go” is like a man clipping his own balls off! Going into decline must be suffocating to a woman’s desire for attention! And yet we see not just a few, but lots of women taking this path! (We also see lots of women going to extensive lengths to maintain a youthful image too, all in an effort to preserve her sexual currency assets in garnering that precious attention.)
The only motivations I can come up with as to why a woman would do this to her husband (i.e. intentionally deny him regular visual access to her body), is just sheer hatred for the man in the case of “closing the door”, and hatred for herself in the case of “letting herself go”. (This might explain men’s visceral disgust for blimps.) She might also simply hate the fact that she’s no longer free to swing from one tree stand to another in the open market.
This dynamic works the other way too, with a few variations in the respective sexual currencies. Just as a woman who covers up or blows up after marriage is defrauding her husband out of some measure of joy, a man who quits his job, and chugs his way towards having a beer belly is doing an injustice to his wife.
Given the centrality of sex in Western culture, for a man (or woman) married to such a person, it is easy to understand how temptation and/or shame (for both men and women) is always no farther away than the adjacent office cubicle or a few clicks on a mating website (e.g. Ashley M@dison, Bumble, OnlyFans, Tinder, Tumblr, etc.).
Food can stay fresh past the expiration date with proper care
In the title of this post, I stated that sexual competition continues after marriage. By this, I don’t mean competition for sexual intercourse (as in swinging), but rather competition for sexual market position. Married individuals have a responsibility to stay crisp and fresh, and remain the primary object of their spouse’s desire. In our grandparents’ day, this wasn’t always so important, but in the current oversexualized cultural climate, it has become essential in avoiding a decline in social capital (i.e. protecting one’s bank account and reputation), maintaining authority in a relationship, and preventing an affair.
People should know that they need to conform to our God ordained, “traditional” gender roles if they ever hope to be married. But after getting married, they need to continue the same habits that got them into marriage. Wife Goggles alone can work wonders, but it’s unwise for a wife to put all her eggs in that basket, so to speak.
The same applies for men too, maybe even more so, this day and age. It’s a losing strategy to allow yourself to grow lazy and complacent, and drop the ball after marriage.
Some readers may object to this by arguing that many wives want their husbands to dress down, and they don’t object when he develops a dad bod. Be ye herewith informed that there are several ominous reasons for this.
- It’s much easier to take a casual approach.
- They don’t want to feel pressured to maintain themselves.
- They don’t want to feel jealous.
- They don’t want to deal with the envy of their friends.
- It reduces the chances that you might ever receive advances or invitations from other women.
- They don’t want to worry about you ever having an affair.
- It cuts down your ability to employ Dread Game, which is one of the most effective tools of wife management.
- It reduces your authority over her body and her sexual desire, thus giving her a false sense of comfort and control.
- It reduces the opportunities that you have to advance yourself in life.
In sum, it assuages her ego needs and gives her greater leverage of control over her husband’s life.
Men, don’t fall for this!
It goes the other way too. I’ll offer my own story on this.
Case Study 1 — Teaching my wife to be presentably attractive
My wife has a very voluptuous body. When I met her, she had a habit of dressing in baggy raggy, ripped-up cottons. I asked her why she always dressed down. She said it was less time consuming, more convenient, more comfortable, and it averted a lot of unwanted attention from men. I told her, “No, I am a Christian and a professor. As long as you’re with me, you’re going to dress and act like a lady.” I took her shopping and bought her some elegant clothing. This made her feel loved, and it also renewed her self-esteem. Then whenever she acted in a manner that was unbecoming of a lady, I pointed it out and took her to task. Sometimes I had to instruct her about the particulars. In the early years of our marriage, this made her angry. She said I was too demanding and too controlling, but I did not admit her argument. Over time, she eventually realized that being a lady had its own set of benefits, and that I was dead serious about this expectation, and then she started to shape up.
Focus on your own marriage first
The last four memes shown in this post compare how a woman carries herself when she is in a relationship with a man to how she presents herself when she is not formally attached. We think these memes are funny because they are true, but actually, it is sad. When a woman is single, she’s fishing for (sexual) attention and so she presents herself as sexually vivacious. When a woman is in a relationship, she doesn’t need to do the work of playing the honey and displaying her sex appeal to her man in order to get attention from him, although she should if they are married. She also feels ashamed of herself for doing the same things to attract attention as she did before. Women who show this kind of change between being single and taken are quite self-centered at heart. It should be the other way around. She should be working to attract and keep her man’s attention while being respectable in public. But we know very few women are actually this way.
It works the opposite way for men. When men are in a relationship, they have a venue in which their ego needs can be fulfilled, and they can therefore grow and shine. In addition, Preselection draws more interest from other women. So the challenge for married men is to stay focused on the woman they’re with.
Case Study 2 — Cameron
I want to go back to Cameron’s comment earlier in this post. He is aware of the effects of his sexual presence, and this is a good quality for a man to have. However, I think he may have been focused on the wrong things. His first priority should be to consider the overall impact that his physique has on his wife. But instead, he was thinking about how his appearance thrilled other women, and then he felt self-conscious. His wife’s friends may have felt envious, but provided that his marriage is solid, his wife probably felt thankful to be married to him — and blessed! Cameron’s manly physique is undoubtedly a vector of his wife’s attraction to him. Moreover, it is his scepter of his sexual authority over her desire. (Sorry, I don’t mean to strafe Cameron by pointing this out. I just want to provide an alternate viewpoint for the sake of discussion.)
Think about this from a man’s perspective. Would you want your wife to get fat and dress like a hag, just to prevent other men from looking at her? Is this the right way to avoid introducing temptation? No, you would want your wife to look her best at all times. Her cleanliness, hair, physical appearance, and style of dress are a representative social expression of her righteousness, her SMV, her authority over her husband’s body (i.e. his sexual value and desire), and the sum total contributes to the glory of God! The same goes for men too.
Food can stay fresh in the proper container
Instead of taking the easy route, both husbands and wives should do what they can to maintain their SMV after marriage, because one of the top priorities of marriage is to keep your spouse titillated with the sensual pleasures of your body. The best way to avoid an affair is to hold your spouse’s sexual attention with regular visual and sexual treats. If any person wants to throw their marriage to the rats and encourage the other to have an affair, the easiest and fastest way to do this is to become slavishly lazy and out of shape such that all sexual desire is obliterated. Add on top of this a little bit of carelessness and disrespect, and this will surely do the trick.
When a husband and wife get fit, dress up, and look their best, they are expressing their identities as a sanctified married couple and children of God. They are also putting competitive pressure on all those around you to step up their game and increase their own social value. As Christians, we should not shy away from this challenge by holding the lazy thought that by doing so, we are merely increasing temptation or giving a sin a foothold. Do not focus on sin and the flesh, but instead, focus on emanating the power and the glory of God. I like to think that the Holy Spirit would make this clear to the believer, however it seems that wives need to be continually reminded of the importance of looking attractive, yet modest.
In short, all this is to say, be someone that other people want to be around — especially your spouse.
And also, keep her on her toes, gentlemen!