Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Can a marriage be all about the woman?

I shook my head when I read this. A woman wrote the following letter to sex therapist Tracey Cox:
Do you believe you should have sex with your husband just because they want to? I’m going through a period where I’ve just gone off sex.

It’s only been six months and I’m sure I’ll come out of it soon but I resent my husband hassling me. I don’t think it’s right to have sex unless I really feel like it.

It's only been six months, she says. She clearly either doesn't know, or won't admit, just how crushing this must be to her husband and her marriage. She is almost entirely self-focused on the value of her own feelings and desires, rather than showing loving concern for her husband or having a realistic view of what might make a marriage work.

Tracey Cox wrote back the following sensible reply:

I totally disagree with you – and so do a fair majority of reputable sex therapists. Two people will never have the same desire or timing, even if their sex drives are reasonably matched. But when you said ‘I do’ you said ‘I do’ to sex as well. Sex is part of the bargain if you expect your partner to remain married to you and faithful to you. Six months is a long time without sex without a good reason not to do it.

Which brought upon her a feminist rebuke:

According to “sex therapist” Tracey Cox, the minute a woman gets that ring on her finger her rights to bodily autonomy go flying out the window.

...my response to the original letter writer would be:

“If your husband is hassling you for sex when you’ve made it quite clear that you don’t want it, he obviously has no respect whatsoever for your feelings. He does not have a right to expect sex from you, and no right to demand it of you against your own wishes and desires. And if he’s unable to wait until you’re ready for it, or to respect your rights as an individual to have sex on your own terms, then I’d question his suitability to be your life partner. Seriously, you deserve better than this”

The argument is that we should look at marriage in terms of the right to autonomy (rather than, say, in terms of love or stable family relationships). If it's all about my right to self-determine, then I should focus on acting from my own wants and desires rather than anyone else's. Other people are duty bound to respect this exercise of my autonomy.

It's an immensely ideological approach to intimate personal relationships. Reality gets lost along the way. Consider the following remark from one of the feminist commenters, Chloe:

the problem is the onus is ALL on the woman to do something she doesn’t want to, no one is even daring to suggest the man goes without to ‘save the relationship’. There’s no advice to the bloke going ‘maybe you could distract yourself by reading a book, or getting a new hobby...

In fact, it's the other way around. It's the wife who has shown an unwillingness to compromise. She's let the husband go without for six months. And there's an extraordinary level of cluelessness about men to suggest that the husband could solve the problem by "distracting" himself with a book or a new hobby. Realistically he's more likely to end up distracting himself with another woman.

Chloe goes on to add (apologies for her blunt language):

...is going without sex for 6 months or whatever really such a hideous thing? sex isn’t a RIGHT, even within a relationship, sure it’s great if you both want it but if you don’t no one has any grounds to demand it, it’s not an entitlement, which is what this ‘advice’ is implying.

That whole ‘without a good reason’, thus implying that a woman’s desires and consent aren’t ‘a good reason’ which is quite frankly terrifying and horrendously insulting.

I’d much rather have a life of celibacy than end up in a relationship with someone who assumes they have a right over MY body and pays no heed to my feelings.

‘Duty shag’ what about a ‘duty stop moaning and just have a wank for gods sake, you’re not entitled to anything and if you have to go without for a bit then boo hoo it’s hardly the end of the world is it?

Just remember this whenever you read one of those articles about how sex in feminist relationships is better. According to Chloe, her right to self-determine is what matters and is what has to be respected; she therefore is focused on this right rather than on understanding what might make a relationship work and what might matter to men in a relationship, and she's stated clearly that men are not entitled to a physical relationship within marriage.

Nor are women who take the liberal modern idea seriously likely to want to compromise much. At the heart of liberalism is the idea that autonomy is the primary, overriding good. As Senator George Brandis, the leader of the so-called liberal "moderates," put it:

the sovereign idea which inspires our side of politics has always been the same: our belief that the paramount public value is the freedom of the individual ...

the most important single thing we must do is renew our commitment to the freedom of the individual, and restore that commitment to the very centre of our political value system: not one among several competing values, but the core value, from which our world view ultimately derives...

Liberalism ... has such a central guiding principle - respect for the freedom of the individual, his dignity and his autonomy; his right ... to be the architect of his own life...

Every one of those reforms extended the bounds of human freedom, gave individual men and women greater autonomy ...

Liberals believe there to be a "sovereign idea," a "paramount public value," a "core value" (rather than competing values) - and this is the "freedom of the individual to be autonomous," i.e. the freedom to self-determine.

If you really believed this - if you thought that the paramount value is the right to self-determine - then you would want to decide on your own terms what you would do. Compromise would mean violating this sovereign idea, as it would mean no longer deciding entirely on your own terms.

So feminists who take the liberal idea seriously aren't going to be good at compromising. They look at a woman's wishes and desires as fundamental, so much so that the husband is simply duty bound to respect them. There's little interest in how this might realistically play out in a marriage, as they see it as a question of basic rights. If it makes life difficult for the husband, then too bad. The husband simply has to acquiesce or he is, in terms of the theory, a bad person.

Women who aren't as ideologically committed to liberal modernism, and who think in terms of other goods, such as the value of their marriage, are much more likely to accept the compromises which make a marriage work.

161 comments:

  1. I guess the man should avail himself of his right to autonomy and go get sex from someone else. She could hardly complain, since he could retort, "you must respect my right as an individual to have sex on my own terms."

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  2. I'm pretty sure if a women doesn't want to have sex, she bloody well doesn't have to.

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  3. It's hard to reconcile autonomy with marriage at all. It is more or less a contract in which one agrees to give up autonomy, isn't it? I liken it to buying a house in a deed-restricted community; once you've done that you can't do just anything you want to your house or yard.

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  4. Or he could use her view as a model for how he treats money.

    Of course, she is not "entitled" to his money and going without for 6 months is no big deal, if he doesn't feel like sharing. She should just distract herself by reading a book.

    If men informed women that he will use the same criteria regarding money as she does regarding sex, there might be a few more women that get it.

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  5. You are clearly on to something with this "autonomy" meme, but there is more to Liberalism (and I mean Left-Liberalism) than this, it seems to me. What about the moral aspect? It seems to me that Leftists believe that morally we should give ourselves no more due than anybody or anyone else in the universe. If Liberalism for you is all about autonomy, what do you call this? From it flows such concepts as feminism, racism, speceism, and environmentalism, and I see its effects much more than I see this desire for autonomy you constantly speak about.

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  6. Sorry, the 12:16AM anonymous was I.

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  7. "Of course, she is not "entitled" to his money and going without for 6 months is no big deal, if he doesn't feel like sharing. She should just distract herself by reading a book."

    Very good point. Unfortunately, the feminists already covered this angle. That's "financial abuse",a form of domestic violence, so is not having sex with her when SHE wants it,for that matter.

    That's the thing that gets me about chloe and all these other feminists, how immensely pigheaded and hypocritical they all are.

    My suggestion is basically the same as #1's suggestion. If you can't f*ck 'em, then f*ck 'em.

    If my girlfriend or wife ever pulled this on me, my answer would be "Fine, I respect your right to not have sex if you don't want it. And I hope you'll respect mine to bring in an independent contractor to fulfill your marital vows or girlfriend responsibilities.After all, if YOU won't do it, someone else certainly will.".

    Don't argue with them AT ALL. That only reinforces their belief that THEIR sex is worth a lot of fuss.Which it isn't. Monetarily, no woman is worth more than $10 because they are more expensive (in more ways than one) than the service they provide. How much do you think your time, all the time she spends nagging you, all the little chores she makes you do, the hurdles she makes you leap for the "privilege" of being with her is worth, in dollars and cents?

    Is having sex once every six months WORTH dying from a stress-induced heart attack? Not to me.

    A woman who is married has no business complaining about having sex.She signed a contract wherein she agreed to do so.

    If you can't get it without any fuss,kick 'em to the curb, you'll get another opportunity,trust me.

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  8. If a mans wife has been out of business for six months without reason I don't know many men who would condemn the husband if he went elsewhere especially if there are no kids involved.

    TBH I don't know that many women who would be all that hard on the man either.

    The feminists seem to be living on a different planet to the one I currently inhabit, it is like these folks have never seen anything outside the Zone 1 on Melbourne's train line.

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  9. What sort of marriage is this? Does he not love her? Does she not want him to love her? Does she not love him? Is sex only a casual transaction for them?

    Six months without sex may or may not be a long time, but six months in which neither can enter that space marked by the Book of Common Prayer by the vow "...with my body I thee worship..." sounds like an everlasting misery.

    Not a marriage but a hook-up that went on too long.

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  10. The very idea of individual autonomy precludes the notion of marriage since marriage is about interdependency.
    Ergo, if a woman chooses to get married, she cannot logically be a feminist. Therefore, any feminist arguments she makes within a marriage are hypocritical and should be dismissed.

    On a related note, a woman's orgasm is like a male nipple, an evolutionary artifact. Ergo, why should a husband pay any attention to whether a wife has the hots for him or not? It would be like a baby suckling at male teats rather than female teats, waiting for milk.

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  11. "I'm pretty sure if a women doesn't want to have sex, she bloody well doesn't have to."

    And a man doesn't have to clean up after himself. Or have a job. Or show any respect. Or come home at all. But people do these things because of compromise.

    The problem is that feminists and the media have now devised a cultural meme where female selfish behavior is seen a autonomy while male selfish behavior is viewed as abuse.

    When you marry, you put yourself in this no-win situation.

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  12. What if Hubby doesn't take out the garbage for six months because he doesn't feel like it? What if he doesn't do home repairs or maintenance for six months because he's not 'in' to it? What if he doesn't do his husbandly duties for six months because he doesn't feel like it?

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  13. What if Hubby doesn't take out the garbage for six months because he doesn't feel like it? What if he doesn't do home repairs or maintenance for six months because he's not 'in' to it? What if he doesn't do his husbandly duties for six months because he doesn't feel like it?

    That would be abusive.

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  14. Days of Broken Arrows said,

    "The problem is that feminists and the media have now devised a cultural meme where female selfish behavior is seen a autonomy while male selfish behavior is viewed as abuse."

    This is a very good point. Also on the earlier point about male cheating this seems to be the inevitable end state of an individual autonomy focus. As was said I mean what's the problem, I'm exercising my autonomy here. Personally I'm not sure sex should be an unpleasant duty and I would like to think I could turn my partner on, nonetheless, if its not happening, with all the sense of a lack of attraction that this implies, the relationship is on rocky ground.

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  15. Marriage used to be a contract where a man traded his surplus labor for a woman's reproductive ability. It was seen as a wife's duty to pleasure her husband, just as it was seen as the husband's duty to provide for and protect his family.

    What's she's saying, is that she doesn't want to fulfill her end of the contract. I could understand if her husband was making unrealistic requests, like some weird fetish, but to starve him for 6 months like this is cruel. How would she feel, if her husband decides to quit his job and tell her he no longer wants to be a beast of burden?

    Of course, she's just one step away from rationalizing an affair, and subsequent divorce, all under the excuse that she has found her "soul mate". I hope the young men out there are seeing this; do not marry, because your wife will be encouraged to use sex as a means to control you.

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  16. The worst part is that she might be hoping he will cheat, because at least in the US and some states while divorce will be granted for no reason at all, fault might very well determine how much he pays her or if he gets to see the kidlet. If he cheats , she better not catch him.

    What I'd do is make lots of preparations *in secret* for divorce and then give her an ultimatum. By the way, I'm assuming I had tried everything I could think of from game, to talking with her first.

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  17. From this thread, I conclude:

    Whatever she does that he hates = a woman exercising her sacred autonomy.

    Whatever he does that she hates = a man abusing a helpless woman.

    Got it. And da wimminz wonder why men don't want to sign up for that?

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  18. Jesse wrote,

    "Personally I'm not sure sex should be an unpleasant duty and I would like to think I could turn my partner on, nonetheless, if its not happening, with all the sense of a lack of attraction that this implies, the relationship is on rocky ground."

    Right, Jesse. Doesn't this woman like her husband? Doesn't she want to make him happy, see him smile?

    If not, then, no I guess she wouldn't want to have sex with him. But then, I'm not sure why she'd want to keep living with him/stay married to him either.

    As for the feminists, might they be troubled to offer their future husbands, say, an estimate of how many times weekly they'd be willing to put out? I mean, if we're going to reduce marriage to an autonomous transaction, then hey, they could at least tell us what we're getting before we buy.

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  19. I wonder what a western court would do in the aftermath of Fatima doing this to Walid. They'd better figure it out because there's gonna be a lot more Fatimas and Walids to deal with in the not-too-distant future.

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  20. This is a lot more common in marriage than is reported. Friend of mine went without for two years.

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  21. "Do you believe you should have sex with your husband just because they want to? I’m going through a period where I’ve just gone off sex."

    I have no patience with self centred and dumb entitlement Princessess.

    Of course she should have sex with her husband. She is breaking her wedding vows if she does not!

    Why marry for heavens sake?

    What about her poor husband, what must he be going through?

    Beggars belief!

    Poor diddums is going through a period where she has gone off sex.. Awww..

    "It’s only been six months and I’m sure I’ll come out of it soon but I resent my husband hassling me. I don’t think it’s right to have sex unless I really feel like it."

    This woman needs some help. SIX MONTHS! SIX MONTHS! I'm shaking my head here..She certainly can't love him otherwise she would make an effort. Heck would it kill her to lay there???.. Pure selfish indulgence..

    If she is a practicing Christian then she is committing a serious sin..


    The guy must be a saint to put up with this nonsense. And, if I were him I'd take her into the bedroom and give her one! My gosh, he sure as hell is entitled to it. Hey if it was good enough for Rhett Butler... (Gone With The Wind) ;)

    Failing that, I'd kick her to the curb..

    That's not a marriage..That's a prison sentence.

    No man deserves that kind of treatment..

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  22. I feel for this guy. His relationship is over: it's just a dead walking shell.

    His wife has her head so far up her nether regions that there's not much he can do. The only approach is to start hiding assets and tap some on the side while he plots his escape. I just hope for his sake that he doesn't have children from this relationship.

    Sooner or later the misandry bubble will pop... but in the meantime married guys that lose frame in their relationships are screwed.

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  23. And so, seeing how common such attitudes have become amongst women today, can anyone blame men who decide not to bother getting married?

    Oh, right; of course: certain trad-cons who still insist that men "man up" and "do their duty", blah blah blah fishcakes - and criticize those of us who say, "Duty to what?" / "What's in it for me?" / "What stake, have I, in such a society as the West has degraded to, today?"

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  24. "And so, seeing how common such attitudes have become amongst women today, can anyone blame men who decide not to bother getting married?"

    What, that it's okay about married women not putting out, Will?

    Sheesh, this woman is obviously abnormal.As is anon's friend's wife who wouldn't have sex with her husband for two years!

    Either that, or they do not really love and care for their husbands..

    What normal woman in love would not want to have sex with her husband?

    Sure beats the hell outta shopping imo ;)

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  25. Well, Kathy, I'm inclined to view you as a likeable, cheerful, personable outlier. I wish more women were like you, and less were like them. But I'm afraid your kind is getting rarer.

    You hit the nail on the head, though, about them obviously not loving their husbands, because that is clearly so; and as such, is clearly the difference between you and them.

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  26. Here's a comment from the feminist discussion thread that I missed. Polly doesn't think men's need for sex is all that serious:

    But there doesn’t ‘need’ to be accommodation of anyone’s ‘needs’. Since I’ve never heard of anyone dying from lack of an orgasm.

    Unless her partner is in mortal danger she just doesn't care.

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  27. "What normal woman in love would not want to have sex with her husband?"

    These women aren't normal in their worldview and thinking. To them it's okay to have various short-term sexual partners and sex buddies but it's an offense to wait until marriage, have a long-term relationship or have sex with your husband. It's completely upside down.

    "Unless her partner is in mortal danger she just doesn't care."

    Welcome to the fruits of equality, autonomy, progress and the entire liberal philosophy.

    Just look at the woman writer who gloats posted at the ThinkingHousewife and I quote "Since many top women writers gloat over their damaged marriages and homes, investing this destruction with drama in order to make money and careers, the competition for any award for the worst wife or mother among them would be quite stiff.)"

    Women shouldn't invested 100% into their careers and work full-time. They should either work part-time or stay at home.

    "If Liberalism for you is all about autonomy, what do you call this?"

    Anonymous liberalism isn't all about autonomy. Right-liberalism. libertarianism and neoconservatis is about autonomy, democracy, capitalism and freedom. Left-liberalism is more about state-control, equality, progress and multiculturalism.

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  28. Davout said...

    ""The very idea of individual autonomy precludes the notion of marriage since marriage is about interdependency.""

    Bingo.

    CrazyfeministquotedbyMark said...

    ""But there doesn’t ‘need’ to be accommodation of anyone’s ‘needs’. Since I’ve never heard of anyone dying from lack of an orgasm.""

    Then of course women should no longer complain if a man decides not to bother making them orgasm during sex?

    After all, they are not going to DIIIEEEEE! What's the big deal?

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  29. I remember the liberal "conjugation game" from my childhood:

    * I have rights
    * You have needs
    * He has wants

    Feminazism boiled down to three lines.

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  30. @Kathy.

    Sheesh, this woman is obviously abnormal.As is anon's friend's wife who wouldn't have sex with her husband for two years!

    Uhmmm, she's not that abnormal. Bettina Arndt's book The Sex Diaries, could be better described as The No Sex Diaries. I think about 90 couples wrote about their sex lives in a diary and Bettina went through them afterwards. She was shocked by the lack of sex in relationships and the frustrations men had. I'm not sure if you remember all the controversy she generated when she told women to "just do it" in order to make their husbands happy. There are A LOT of guys who don't get any action for years. (Why they stay is a mystery to me.)

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  31. Feminists enter marriage as Houellebecq's elementary particles. They are capable of affection but not of love.

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  32. Thanks for the many excellent comments.

    To the guys who see this post as evidence of "don't marry" can I just say that if a marriage develops in the right way, a woman tends to develop a wifely persona in which she is oriented to pleasing her husband.

    It's a good situation to be in. But, obviously, you're unlikely to get there if you marry a woman who is committed to the idea that her own immediate desires are sacrosanct.

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  33. "But there doesn’t ‘need’ to be accommodation of anyone’s ‘needs’. Since I’ve never heard of anyone dying from lack of an orgasm."

    No.. But how unfeeling is she? How lacking in human emotion. Not to mention the rewarding experience of bonding and deep connection with a man that she loves?

    I could not think of anything worse (on this earth) than not being able to engage in fulfilling sexual relations with my husband.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVcxAdYVYqA

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  34. "There are A LOT of guys who don't get any action for years. (Why they stay is a mystery to me."

    As it is to me too. S.P.

    I'll be honest, I just could not stay in a marriage without sex..

    For me it is an expression of deep and abiding love as well as mutual pleasure..

    The more you connect physically the deeper the bond grows ..

    No sex = no marriage.

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  35. "Unless her partner is in mortal danger she just doesn't care."

    Welcome to the moral universe of rights, equality, autonomy, progress and the entire liberal worldview.

    "If Liberalism for you is all about autonomy, what do you call this?"

    Right-liberalism is generally more about freedom, autonomy, republic and civil rights. Left-liberalism is generally more about equality, democracy, progress, human rights and multiculturalism.

    "I'm pretty sure if a women doesn't want to have sex, she bloody well doesn't have to."

    Yes and no but it's also that these women usually either have short-term relationships, sex buddies, sex with boyfriends and open relationships but when it's long-term monogamous relationships or sex with a husband they don't do it. It's like a moral inversion really where you have sex with a boyfriend but not with a husband and rebe against authority or see bad as good and good as evil. It's basically one of the examples of liberal philosophy and psychology.

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  36. No sex = no marriage.

    This needs to be hammered into the heads of every teenage boy in the country.

    Make that the expectation, let everyone know it is, and watch the divorce rate dive. The marriage rate might also drop marginally, but if it means the marriages we do have are more stable, who cares?

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  37. You can see the display of this libertarian/liberal female author here at ThinkingHousewife --- http://www.thinkinghousewife.com/wp/2011/03/another-woman-writer-gloats/

    All on career and herself but little into family. Women should really either do part-time careers or stay at home and not do these kind of things.

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  38. Elizabeth Smith said...

    ""these women usually either have short-term relationships, sex buddies, sex with boyfriends and open relationships but when it's long-term monogamous relationships or sex with a husband they don't do it.""

    Could this be because the women feel less need to keep the man around if he has a ring on his finger?

    All the more reason for a man to put his foot down, what woman can respect a man without spine?

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  39. "If Liberalism for you is all about autonomy, what do you call this?"

    "Right-liberalism is generally more about freedom, autonomy, republic and civil rights. Left-liberalism is generally more about equality, democracy, progress, human rights and multiculturalism."

    But don't you see that, that means that Liberalism is being projected onto something else? It is this "something else" that I'm asking about, mainly because in the U.S., this something else is what WE call Liberalism. Right Liberalism is an oxymoron for us.

    Mark talks a lot about Liberalism as meant outside the U.S., but never discusses Liberalism in the U.S. sense.

    My opinion is that its (Leftism's) defining characteristic is universalism.

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  40. "To the guys who see this post as evidence of "don't marry" can I just say that if a marriage develops in the right way, a woman tends to develop a wifely persona in which she is oriented to pleasing her husband."

    Sorry, but the costs to the man are too great to risk 'marriage' as it is practiced in this day and age.
    Western Women have proven themselves to be excellent and unrepenetant liars -- along with being too greedy, too selfish, too devious, too dishonest, too dishonorable, and too morally corrupt to trust.
    The 'legal' system has also proven itself to be corrupt, untrustworthy, and unfriendly to men. Anyone with the eyes to see and the mind to think knows that "no-fault" actually means "HIS fault".
    It's not for nothing that marriage is what women want, because they have nothing to lose by marrying. The man, OTOH, has EVERYTHING to lose -- with more than a 60% chance of losing, and for the most ridiculous reasons.

    Take a chance marrying, and hope that it "develops in the right way"? NOT ME! It doesn't matter that 'Not All Women Are Like That' -- the cost is too great, the risk is too high, and failure is practically assured.
    For men, marriage and women deserve to be shunned -- they both are bad investments.

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  41. "But don't you see that, that means that Liberalism is being projected onto something else? It is this "something else" that I'm asking about, mainly because in the U.S., this something else is what WE call Liberalism. Right Liberalism is an oxymoron for us."

    Yes ''right-liberalism'' IS an oxymoron but unfortunately since liberals disguised as conservatives have infected the right we need this term. When I say "right-liberalism" I mean libertarianism or neoconservatism for example (aka fiscal conservative/social liberal) whereas the true right or true conservatism are traditional conservatives and reactionaries.

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  42. "For men, marriage and women deserve to be shunned -- they both are bad investments."

    The liberal definition of marriage should be shunned I agree. We should create separate communities with traditional conservative forms of marriage installed (a philosophy separated from the liberal state and government) and people who are against the current modern form of marriage marrying each other and investing in a more traditional conservative worldview of marriage.

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  43. lol. I told you I linked to you and didn't realize the blog was set to private.

    Anyway... I think that people tend to take an extreme view on this matter...thinking that the womans sexual desires are the only thing that matters or are completely unimportant. I proposed a compromise.

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  44. Pagieu said,

    "thinking that the woman’s sexual desires are the only thing that matters or are completely unimportant. I proposed a compromise."

    Generally in my relations with girlfriends I've seen women willing to compromise. Its not impossible as was stated that things might change when you get married. Why the women should be able to set all the terms however is a mystery to me.

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  45. I guess now we know why the birthrates are so low.

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  46. Anyone with the eyes to see and the mind to think knows that "no-fault" actually means "HIS fault".

    Well said. We should popularise this term you've coined: "his-fault divorce".

    the cost is too great, the risk is too high, and failure is practically assured.

    That's overstated. The risk is much higher than it should be, but it's not true that failure is practically assured.

    That's particularly the case if you're a well-educated man with a good job who marries over the age of 21. Your risk of divorce falls to something less than 20%.

    I was thinking the other day about how all my cousins have fared when it comes to marriage. There are 12 of us and 10 have married.

    There have been two divorces and one break up of a de facto marriage. If you include the de facto break up that's a risk of 30%.

    But the statistic is misleading. Of the 6 middle-class cousins there have been no divorces at all. The three break-ups have come from my four cousins from struggling backgrounds.

    The two marriages which broke up did so quite predictably. My rough as guts cousin decided to marry a woman who I thought when I first met her was a lesbian. Sure enough, he eventually caught her in bed with a woman. Marriage over.

    The other marriage was opposed by my uncle and aunt on the grounds that my cousin chose to wed someone with an interest in hard drugs. This marriage lasted longer but also broke up violently.

    And what of the fourth marriage from this side of the family - the one that survived? This cousin was determined to escape her childhood poverty. She chose a very quiet, loyal "beta" type male, stuck by him when he was retrenched, saw him through some long-term professional training and is still happily married after 25 years.

    I'm not suggesting that there is no risk to middle-class marriages. Obviously there is and that is helping to fuel the male discontent with marriage.

    The point I'm making is that you can't just look at the overall statistic to judge the real level of risk that applies to your own marriage.

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  47. "To the guys who see this post as evidence of "don't marry" can I just say that if a marriage develops in the right way, a woman tends to develop a wifely persona in which she is oriented to pleasing her husband."

    This would require the woman to be raised to be hard working, unselfish, and caring. She will also have to be relatively chaste, so she can build the emotional bond needed to make a healthy relationship. Instead, women are raised to put their needs over even her children, are indoctrinated in school to hate and fear men, and the chances of finding a woman with a partner count of under 10 decrease with every passing year.

    Let's look at marriage 2.0 another way. Marriage 2.0 is like signing a legally binding contract, where the other person isn't contractually obligated to hold up their end of the bargain. You still are, of course, and if, or when, they decide to opt out, fault will be placed on you. It wasn't a very good example, but it should suffice.

    No sane person would agree to this, yet here you are saying men should still consider marriage an option. And before you can say it, while it's true not all women are like that, most are. Good women are a dying breed in this society, and frankly it's not worth it trying to find them.

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  48. People consent to high risk situations all the time if the reward seems worth the risk.

    No one denies the risk. Mark is just saying certain demographic factors influence the risk.

    ReplyDelete
  49. "Marriage 2.0 is like signing a legally binding contract, where the other person isn't contractually obligated to hold up their end of the bargain."

    That's a perfect analogy.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Demographic factors do impact the risk, that's true, but the magnitude of the downside isn't mitigated that much in those situations -- that is, if you end up in the 20% who gets divorced as a guy, you're in for a screwing by the courts.

    Having said that, I wouldn't say that all men should avoid marriage -- too many men want to be married for that to be realistic, I think. However, I do think that even if you are in the golden demographic when it comes to marriage (me and my ex were), shit can still happen, things can still go wrong, and you're stuck with the same rules that apply to "other side of the tracks" marriages.

    There is no silver bullet.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Novaseeker said,

    "There is no silver bullet."

    I'm inclined to agree with that. Lets say you're a conservative who believes in the importance of upholding male standards, this can put you squarely against the general social idea that chauvinism is bad and virtually grounds for divorce on its own account. In such a circumstance you're left hoping that the woman won't pull the divorce trigger on you.

    Alternatively you're a man who believes in the importance of male strength which might be attractive, at least superficially, to a woman. Should the woman overtake you she will see you as weak. Should some problem that affects you come up again you're seen as weak. All of this will take place against a social background that generally doesn't encourage or support male strength. Weakness in such a circumstance can also be grounds for divorce.

    Its quite an unsatisfactory situation. Its one thing to change divorce laws so that they don't benefit women, or at least undeserving women, so easily. The real answer must be society not seeing "maleness" as a threat in itself.

    ReplyDelete
  52. I credit my wife for thinking of this: I wonder of the woman seeking advice is on the pill. Artificially depressed libido, leading to a lack of exposure to male hormones (from deep kissing and sexual activity) seems like it could, in a certain number of cases, lead to a (sexual) death spiral like this. Cudos to Ms. Cox for the sensible, if tepid, "contractual" sort of, reply.

    ReplyDelete
  53. I think sex is a barometer for the relationship. If either party is "off sex" for 6 months there's probably a deeper reason. Unless every other area is actually clicking along, then hubby wouldn't notice because he'd generally be happy and could take the matter in hand, yes, even for 6 months. I think the lack of desire for sex has to be related to a relationship malfunction. If you're happy, you're happy to have sex. If you're not, it's the first thing to go.

    ReplyDelete
  54. Mark Richardson, have you ever played Russian Roulette? Would you ever? Assuming that your 20% chance of divorce is correct, which is questionable, you are saying that every man should take a revolver with 5 chambers in the cylinder, load one chamber with a powerful cartridge that is sure to kill him, spin the cylinder so he cannot know where the cartridge is ... and then press the muzzle of the gun to his ear & pull the trigger.

    Would you do that? Would you willingly take a 1 in 5 chance at permanent brain damage or more likely instant death? Because that is what you are urging young men to do. Although in reality, the odds of divorce (and fiscal ruin, emotional damage, possible prison term due to false accusations of crime, and so forth) are likely higher than that, more on the order of 1 in 3.

    Because the culture is so toxic towards men, with emotional pornography urging women to "Eat, Betray, Love" all the time, the default for women in the Anglosphere is to betray the man foolish enough to marry them. That's the norm. It is abnormal for a woman to be loyal.

    Marriage is indeed a one sided contract. Would you buy a motor car on a 5 year loan contract, if you knew that at any time the dealership could decide that you just didn't take good enough care of the car, and therefore one fine day they'd just come and drive it away...but you get to keep on making the payments even as you are prohibited, upon pain of arrest, from even touching the automobile, let alone driving it.

    Your "I'm all right, Jack" routine is getting old, by the way.

    ReplyDelete
  55. AP

    @Would you do that? Would you willingly take a 1 in 5 chance at permanent brain damage or more likely instant death?

    Because the price of true love is worth it.

    ReplyDelete
  56. Assuming that your 20% chance of divorce is correct, which is questionable, you are saying that every man should take a revolver with 5 chambers in the cylinder, load one chamber with a powerful cartridge that is sure to kill him

    Anon, divorce does great harm but it doesn't kill.

    Let's say the worst case scenario happened. My wife unilaterally decided to divorce me on flaky grounds ("I've just grown tired of things") and I was left paying alimoney and child support and was limited to fortnightly contact with my children.

    Obviously I would be mad as hell with this outcome. I'd be mad that my wife would destroy our relationship, that my children would be left without the daily presence of a father, that we'd most likely have to sell the house etc.

    But would all that kill me? I don't see it that way now I'm in my early 40s. I'm fit and healthy, I have a good job and I've grown self-confident in my dealings with women. I would repartner and start a new family.

    I've observed other men do the same thing, while the wives who divorced them have floundered. One man is a short, balding Sicilian with an ordinary job. His new wife is a tall, leggy, gorgeous blond. He sends her out to work to pay off the child support he owes to his ex.

    I've seen this kind of thing time and again. Middle-class women who divorce often stay unpartnered. Some cope OK and think of the new arrangement as their family. Others suffer mental health issues and when their sons reach the difficult teen years they stop coping entirely.

    In the meantime, the husbands continue to advance in their careers, remarry and start a new family. Sometimes the teenage sons get sent over to dad when mum stops coping.

    I guess I have lost my personal fear of divorce. This doesn't mean that I accept the current conditions in which marriage has become too unstable and the legal system is biased against men. That's both unjust to men and damaging to society and needs to be reformed.

    ReplyDelete
  57. In addition, and while this is happening society has persisted for another generation. Imagine if the people in the past had said that our society was too sinful to be reformed and hit the self destruct button, we wouldn't be here today. Society must go on, inside that guideline you can reform or change to your hearts content.

    ReplyDelete
  58. Mark said,

    "I've seen this kind of thing time and again. Middle-class women who divorce often stay unpartnered."

    If women are told that they can or should "have it all" and that the way to do that is through divorce, only to then go on to have unhappy lives, then they have been sold a total bill of goods.

    ReplyDelete
  59. It should be "alimony" not "alimoney" in my previous comment.

    ReplyDelete
  60. "But would all that kill me? I don't see it that way now I'm in my early 40s. I'm fit and healthy, I have a good job and I've grown self-confident in my dealings with women. I would repartner and start a new family."

    Yours is an interesting and positive perspective, Mark.

    Too much bile has been spewed in the manosphere towards women.. Many of these men have never even been married, and are just waitng for the (supposed) misandry bubble to burst.

    I mean, if a man eventually marries with the fear of divorce(at some stage) hanging over his head, then perhaps it may become a self-fulfilling prophecy.


    More of a balanced view from confident and bold men such as yourself is needed, Mark.

    It does seem to me that many in the MRA have just rolled over like a dead dog and thrown in the towel.

    Pessimism, abounds, and instead, they just wallow in bitterness and foment further hatred towards women, which is just as insidious and damaging as the feminism they so despise, has been.

    I feel so very sorry for the young men who deep down would really love to marry and have a family one day..

    Yes indeed, I will say it again.. More men like you are needed,Mark.

    At the very least it may give some of the younger blokes some hope for the future.

    ReplyDelete
  61. Kathy said,

    "More of a balanced view from confident and bold men such as yourself is needed, Mark."

    I'm inclined to agree with that. Careful optimism can be a self fulfilling prophesy too.

    ReplyDelete
  62. ""Pessimism, abounds, and instead, they just wallow in bitterness and foment further hatred towards women, which is just as insidious and damaging as the feminism they so despise, has been.""

    Standing bloody applause Kathy!

    ReplyDelete
  63. Kathy, why should any man listen to a divorced woman like you about marriage? It sounds like you want to divorce your current husband, your second husband, but are worried about finding a third.

    Any man with an IQ of at least 12 is figuring out marriage is dangerous for men. Instead of telling men that their marriages failed because they weren't optimistic enough why not fix the problems like divorce courts instead? I have no choice but to conclude that you trads have no problem with the current divorce system otherwise you would try to do something about it instead of spending decades attacking men for not being idiots.

    ReplyDelete
  64. Anonymous said,

    "Instead of telling men that their marriages failed because they weren't optimistic enough why not fix the problems like divorce courts instead?"

    Of course we want to do that so you're raising a false argument.

    ReplyDelete
  65. why not fix the problems like divorce courts instead?"


    Anon, you make it sound as if we trads have a magic wand we can choose to wave at any time to make all the problems go away.

    That's not how the political situation stands. The current divorce laws aren't there by accident. They reflect certain foundational political beliefs held within the political class.

    That's why you yourself are in no stronger a position to change the laws right now than we are. What has to happen first is a challenge to the political orthodoxy.

    ReplyDelete
  66. "Kathy, why should any man listen to a divorced woman like you about marriage? It sounds like you want to divorce your current husband, your second husband, but are worried about finding a third."

    Lol! That you PMAFT?

    I love it how some people twist the facts to malign another persons character.

    I married at age 19(as a virgin) to a man who I found out shortly afterwards, was a chronic gambler.. I loved him and believed marriage was forever (I was Catholic he was not)so leaving was not an option anyway..

    He wanted a child. We therefore used no form
    of contraception when we married..

    However after months of trying to fall pregnant it was discovered through tests that he was infertile.

    This really pushed him over the edge, he began drinking.. He told me often to leave him and find someone who could give me children.. Nothing I could say or do would console him, such was the pain and torment he was going through.

    I wouldn't leave him.. In the end he forced me to leave by being unfaithfull.


    My marriage was subsequently annulled by the Catholic Church.

    By the grace of God, a year later I met my second husband. A year after our first meeting I married again in the Church to this wonderful Catholic bloke (whom I love very deeply), and fell pregnant on our honeymoon.

    We have been married for 15 years and have two children.

    Now... what was it you were saying about a third husband, anonymous? ;)

    ReplyDelete
  67. Now... what was it you were saying about a third husband, anonymous? ;)

    I was wondering the same thing, Ma'am...

    ReplyDelete
  68. Of course we want to do that so you're raising a false argument.

    If you really want to do that, then why don't you trads actually start doing that? Your "wanting" and $5.00 will get you an overpriced cup of coffee at Starbucks.

    Anon, you make it sound as if we trads have a magic wand we can choose to wave at any time to make all the problems go away.

    I make no such assumption. I and many other men have noted trads complete lack of action in this area. The only thing trads have done is attack men who are not stupid enough to get married in this day and age. I don't need success as proof, but you trads haven't even attempted to do anything.

    What has to happen first is a challenge to the political orthodoxy.

    Your "challenge to the political orthodoxy" is moving at a snails pace if it's moving at all. You have no right to tell men to get married since you're doing little to noting to fix the situation wrt marriage. Your strategy might work by the year 5000 AD but I will have been dead for thousands of years by then.

    That you PMAFT?

    What's a pmaft? Is this some trad insult I have never heard of?

    I love it how some people twist the facts to malign another persons character.

    When you tell men to get married despite knowing full well the problems with modern marriage, your personal motivation for doing so will be analyzed. Wanting a chump to get married to is a common motivation for women to pretend the problems with modern marriage don't exist.

    I have heard plenty of sob stories from women before. Most of them were only half true at best. I don't believe in the Catholic Church so their annulment system is divorce court without legal power. The Catholic Church is as feminist as everything else so it's meaningless as an arbiter of morality.

    Trads, listen up. If you want men to get married, you're going to have to do something to fix modern marriage. Men aren't interested in your excuses anymore to why you haven't even started yet. No one is blaming you for your lack of success. You are being blamed for not even trying. Without some actual work towards the end of fixing marriage, men are forced to assume that trads are just right wing feminists.

    ReplyDelete
  69. "When you tell men to get married despite knowing full well the problems with modern marriage, your personal motivation for doing so will be analyzed."

    Umm, no, never told men to get married at all.

    What I did say is that I sympathize with the young guys out there who DO want to get married and have a family..And I have come across quite a few on various blogs.

    Many of these men WILL marry one day, too.


    "Trads, listen up. If you want men to get married, you're going to have to do something to fix modern marriage."

    No, you have it all wrong, anon. If YOU and your ilk want to stop men from marrying (marriage 2.0)then you need to offer them much more than just "talk"

    Men and women will always marry.. In spite of what you or I say..

    Because, reproducing is a biological imperative and marriage with a loving father and a mother is still seen as the best situation for child rearing.

    Telling men not to get married, because all women are no good and will fleece them in the divorce courts becomes rather a ho-hum argument after a time.

    An argument that in "real life" is having little effect on the general population. Where I live there is no marriage strike.

    People are still MARRYING! i have two young male relatives (in their twenties) who will be getting married this year...

    The marriage rate is on the rise here, as is the birth rate..

    I am pleasantly surprised to see more families at Church, and babies everywhere.

    The blogosphere, is not real life remember..

    You may kid yourself that there is some sort of a misandry bubble that is about to burst.

    Well, sorry to burst your bubble..but this is just not the case.

    Rather than trot out the same old platitudes, your time would be better spent helping men to agitate for change to the unfair divorce laws, and to help these young men to better understand women so that they can deal with them, and dominate them.(which is what women really want-their man to dominate

    You should bear in mind that there are still approximately 60 million married couples in America...

    Like I said, there WILL always be marriages.

    Do you really HAVE any sympathy for men who want to find a woman and have a family?

    Or, do you have an axe to grind?

    Older men who have been there done that(have had their kids and usually have a reduced sex drive by that stage) and who are now cautioning the younger guys, not to marry, wil, in the long run have little effect.

    When a young bloke meets a girl to whom he is instantly attracted all that negative advice will be ignored, and the hormones will take over.

    It is as nature intended..

    Man needs a mate.

    Man needs to reproduce

    ReplyDelete
  70. "Anon, you make it sound as if we trads have a magic wand we can choose to wave at any time to make all the problems go away."

    Mark Richardson many "MRA's" believe that traditional conservatives either have power, have caused the current events or are influencing it.

    "That's not how the political situation stands. The current divorce laws aren't there by accident. They reflect certain foundational political beliefs held within the political class."

    Spot on.

    "That's why you yourself are in no stronger a position to change the laws right now than we are. What has to happen first is a challenge to the political orthodoxy."

    Challenge the worldview of liberalism first agreed but many of them don't do it. Some of them even agree with the assumptions of liberalism.

    "No, you have it all wrong, anon. If YOU and your ilk want to stop men from marrying (marriage 2.0)then you need to offer them much more than just "talk". Men and women will always marry.. In spite of what you or I say.. Telling men not to get married, because all women are no good and will fleece them in the divorce courts becomes rather a ho-hum argument after a time. An argument that in "real life" is having little effect on the general population. Where I live there is no marriage strike. The marriage rate is on the rise here, as is the birth rate.. I am pleasantly surprised to see more families at Church, and babies everywhere."

    Good observation Kathy Farrelly. Instead of "MRA's" doing this they should:

    #1 - Attack liberalism as a worldview.
    #2 - Political action against liberalism.
    #3 - Political action for conservatism.
    #4 - Conservative influence on many, various spheres and professions.
    #5 - Changed lives (their lives reflect traditional conservative worldview).
    #6 - Create traditional conservative segregated communities where these values are celebrated and done.
    #7 - More knowledge (thought), talk and action.

    "You may kid yourself that there is some sort of a misandry bubble that is about to burst."

    He has a point that something is going to burst but it ain't the misandry bubble. It's the debt bubble. In my opinion the only major thing that is happening or is going to happen is the really bad economic situation in USA, UK and other Western countries where they will sooner or later default (perhaps an economic collapse in the future).

    ReplyDelete
  71. "Anon, you make it sound as if we trads have a magic wand we can choose to wave at any time to make all the problems go away."

    Mark Richardson many "MRA's" believe that traditional conservatives either have power, have caused the current events or are influencing it.

    "That's not how the political situation stands. The current divorce laws aren't there by accident. They reflect certain foundational political beliefs held within the political class."

    Spot on.

    "That's why you yourself are in no stronger a position to change the laws right now than we are. What has to happen first is a challenge to the political orthodoxy."

    Challenge the worldview of liberalism first agreed but many of them don't do it. Some of them even agree with the assumptions of liberalism.

    "No, you have it all wrong, anon. If YOU and your ilk want to stop men from marrying (marriage 2.0)then you need to offer them much more than just "talk". Men and women will always marry.. In spite of what you or I say.. Telling men not to get married, because all women are no good and will fleece them in the divorce courts becomes rather a ho-hum argument after a time. An argument that in "real life" is having little effect on the general population. Where I live there is no marriage strike. The marriage rate is on the rise here, as is the birth rate.. I am pleasantly surprised to see more families at Church, and babies everywhere."

    Good observation Kathy Farrelly. Instead of "MRA's" doing this they should:

    #1 - Attack liberalism as a worldview.
    #2 - Political action against liberalism.
    #3 - Political action for conservatism.
    #4 - Conservative influence on many, various spheres and professions.
    #5 - Changed lives (their lives reflect traditional conservative worldview).
    #6 - Create traditional conservative segregated communities where these values are celebrated and done.
    #7 - More knowledge (thought), talk and action.

    "You may kid yourself that there is some sort of a misandry bubble that is about to burst."

    He has a point that something is going to burst but it ain't the misandry bubble. It's the debt bubble. In my opinion the only major thing that is happening or is going to happen is the really bad economic situation in USA, UK and other Western countries where they will sooner or later default (perhaps an economic collapse in the future).

    ReplyDelete
  72. "In my opinion the only major thing that is happening or is going to happen is the really bad economic situation in USA, UK and other Western countries where they will sooner or later default (perhaps an economic collapse in the future)."

    Indeed Elizabeth, I certainly agree.

    ReplyDelete
  73. I am pleasantly surprised to see more families at Church, and babies everywhere.

    Same thing happening in my workplace. Engagements, weddings, babies. There's a joke going round about something being in the water.

    your time would be better spent helping men to agitate for change to the unfair divorce laws, and to help these young men to better understand women so that they can deal with them

    Kathy, that's well put.

    I was going to ask anon exactly what he had done to change the divorce laws. But you made me realise that in his mind telling men not to marry is his political response.

    Anon, as one person alone there's not anything I can do to effectively change the legal structures. The last Attorney General here in Victoria, Rob Hulls, was a very strong believer in feminist patriarchy theory who wanted to shut down men's clubs and who believed that all men were responsible for rape.

    Do you really think that a single letter from me would have suddenly changed his mind on divorce laws?

    The divorce laws will change when it's not just one individual writing letters but a movement which effectively challenges the existing ideas within the political class about what is moral or just.

    Yes, that will take some years to achieve. But it's better to start now rather than have yet another generation put it off.

    ReplyDelete
  74. your time would be better spent helping men to agitate for change to the unfair divorce laws

    Government exists to serve women. Until women want divorce law to change (and why would they), it won't.

    ReplyDelete
  75. Government doesn't exist to serve women. Women are just one interested group who have pushed hard for influence.

    ReplyDelete
  76. Mark said,

    "Yes, that will take some years to achieve. But it's better to start now rather than have yet another generation put it off."

    This is an important point, we have all been complicit to some degree in allowing this situation to develop. Now its time to reverse it rather than throw our hands up.

    ReplyDelete
  77. What I did say is that I sympathize with the young guys out there who DO want to get married and have a family..And I have come across quite a few on various blogs.

    Many of these men WILL marry one day, too.


    Sure they will get married...to ex-sluts and other women that will divorce them. Why should they end up unmarried the hard way?

    No, you have it all wrong, anon. If YOU and your ilk want to stop men from marrying (marriage 2.0)then you need to offer them much more than just "talk"

    I offer them a life free of STDs, divorce, paternity fraud, child support, and alimony.

    I don't why you people think any marriage is a good marriage. Most women are not suitable for marriage. Just because a slut puts on a white dress doesn't change the fact that she's a slut.

    i have two young male relatives (in their twenties) who will be getting married this year...

    Ten years from now you will have 2 young male relatives getting divorced. I'm sure you will blame them for it because you trads think women are sinless.

    Men and women will always marry

    The American ghetto proves this isn't the case.

    The marriage rate is on the rise here, as is the birth rate..

    And those babies have names like Mohammed.

    You may kid yourself that there is some sort of a misandry bubble that is about to burst.

    Well, sorry to burst your bubble..but this is just not the case.


    Don't you want misandry to end? I guess not. Just more proof that trads are right wing feminists.

    Rather than trot out the same old platitudes, your time would be better spent helping men to agitate for change to the unfair divorce laws

    And when we do this you trads are always against us. We expect that from the feminists but as soon as an attempt at real action takes places you trads are always against it.

    Do you really HAVE any sympathy for men who want to find a woman and have a family?

    Yes, that's why I'm saddened by the fact that there are so few women suitable for marriage. You trads may want to pretend most unmarried women are virgins but that isn't true.

    When a young bloke meets a girl to whom he is instantly attracted all that negative advice will be ignored, and the hormones will take over.

    Sex isn't marriage.

    Man needs to reproduce

    Historically, 60% of men have never reproduced.

    ReplyDelete
  78. #1 - Attack liberalism as a worldview.

    This is a meaningless platitude.

    #2 - Political action against liberalism.
    #3 - Political action for conservatism.


    When MRAs try to change some laws, trads always oppose us.

    #4 - Conservative influence on many, various spheres and professions.

    This is a meaningless platitude.

    #5 - Changed lives (their lives reflect traditional conservative worldview).

    When MRAs do this by refusing to marry women who are not suitable for marriage (most women), for example, trads are against this.

    #6 - Create traditional conservative segregated communities where these values are celebrated and done.

    The Men Going Their Own Way is the close to this but trads oppose this as well.

    #7 - More knowledge (thought), talk and action.

    Action is something I have not seen from trads. You guys have had 4 decades to start something. Anything. Even if it wasn't successful we would know where you stand. Your lack of action shows us where your real hearts lie and that's with pedestalizing women.

    ReplyDelete
  79. I was going to ask anon exactly what he had done to change the divorce laws. But you made me realise that in his mind telling men not to marry is his political response.

    That is my response because there are no other options left. MRAs have tried to get conservative and trad groups to help with fixing divorce laws and not one group of conservatives or trads was interested. You trads can't even organize one protest against the current divorce laws. Would it change anything? Not immediately, but it would show us that you believed in this cause. You trads have had 4 decades and you couldn't even organize one protest.

    Men are forced to conclude that trads are not really concerned about divorce laws nor the fact that most women are unsuitable for marriage. If you were concerned about either of these facts, you wouldn't spend any time attacking men for not getting married. Given these facts and the worldview you claim to have men should be refusing to marry. You should be encouraging men to not marry until these things are fixed. The fact that you're not means that you're about pedestalizing women and right wing feminism.

    ReplyDelete
  80. ""When MRAs try to change some laws, trads always oppose us.""

    Probably because you are trying to change the wrong laws.

    Seriously mate, this is Australia, the "trads" don't stop anything here.

    Some MRA advocates are beginning to pick up persecution fantasies, they so want to be a part of the liberal worldview that they are beginning to attack liberalisms traditional enemies.

    What is good for men is a stable society with a common sense of community and strong family lives where the place of the father is respected.

    The difference between MRA's and traditionalists [as defined by this blog] is that MRA's think in terms of what is best for men, where Trads see things in terms of what is good for scoiety as a whole.

    It is a testement to how badly men are treated that these goals often overlap.

    Stop pretending that your friends who disagree with you are your enemies.

    And have the politeness to give yourself a name when posting.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Liz said...

    ""#1 - Attack liberalism as a worldview.
    #2 - Political action against liberalism.
    #3 - Political action for conservatism.
    #4 - Conservative influence on many, various spheres and professions.
    #5 - Changed lives (their lives reflect traditional conservative worldview).
    #6 - Create traditional conservative segregated communities where these values are celebrated and done.
    #7 - More knowledge (thought), talk and action.""

    Good list Liz.

    The best is seven, it is amazing how much sympathy there is in the general community towards the idea of men being men and women being women.

    I have talked to gays and straights, left and right, male and female old and young, tradie to office worker.

    All see the sense in the argument except the most ideological of the left, educated almost to a person [with one exception out of about a dozen] in humanities departments across the nation.

    Find a way to reach out to regular people on their level and this message has legs.

    The message that men should never marry is unattractive to most men, the idea that men should only ever marry carefully is practically gospel amongst both my male and female working class mates.

    ReplyDelete
  82. "Sex isn't marriage."

    ROFL..

    You're a funny guy, anon..

    Why do you suppose that 60 million American men got married..

    Nah, wouldn't have anything to do with sex would it?

    "I offer them a life free of STDs, divorce, paternity fraud, child support, and alimony."

    No, you offer them nothing, just words, and negativity... You obviously have no idea how they feel, either.

    I know quite a few young blokes who are looking forward to having kids, hoping to meet a lifetime partner one day.. That's normal.

    How can you expect a young man to suppress normal human desires? Be realistic.

    Men are going to marry anyway, no matter what you say. (Hmmm..why do I have this feeling of Déjà vu here?)

    You deflect this by stating the ridiculous "The American ghetto proves this isn't the case."

    Meaningless, in the context of what we are talking about..People commenting here, do not live in a ghetto.. along with millions of others in the world who DO marry.


    So in other words you do not offer a satisfying alterntive, nor any hope for young men.. Only more of the same old same old.

    "Historically, 60% of men have never reproduced."

    This is another nonsense.. You do not take into account desire to reproduce(which is a biological imperative) or lack of opportunity(unable to find a suitable partner.

    It sure ain't for lack of trying.

    Humans are not asexual beings. Nor can they turn their emotions and feelings off like some tap, because someone tells them that they may get an STD, or be subjected to paternity fraud.. (rolls eyes)

    I won't even bother to respond to such ridiculous assertions as these, anon:

    "Ten years from now you will have 2 young male relatives getting divorced. I'm sure you will blame them for it because you trads think women are sinless."

    Or this little ignorant gem:

    "And those babies have names like Mohammed." Lol!

    ReplyDelete
  83. Anonymous,

    Sounds like you want a hot virgin, who will do everything you say and never complain, and also probably let you stray outside the marriage from time to time, after all a bit of variety is nice. Sounds good. And what do you bring to the table again?

    ReplyDelete
  84. What is good for men is a stable society with a common sense of community and strong family lives where the place of the father is respected.

    Jesse, well put.

    How can you expect a young man to suppress normal human desires?

    Well, I couldn't. I went through the relationships churner in my mid-20s, went MGTOW by my late twenties before the concept had been acronymised, but suffered a deepening sense that my life was on hold. I don't regret marrying and I find it difficult to recommend to other men that they should deny themselves the fulfilments of being a husband and father.

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  85. Mark,

    Thanks but that was James. I certainly also agree with it.

    Kathy Sun 6 March 9:54 am said,

    "We have been married for 15 years and have two children."

    That's a good story Kathy :). I also hope your ex husband also turned out ok.

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  86. "That's a good story Kathy :). I also hope your ex husband also turned out ok."

    Thanks for your interest Jesse.

    He is okay now.

    Funnily enough, I resolved never to see my ex again.. (too much hurt and pain..you know.. )However when his father passed away two years ago, I decided to go to his funeral. He was a lovely man and we always got on very well.. I talked it over with my husband who agreed that I should go and pay my respects..

    I am so deeply grateful for my husband's support and encouragement because without it I may well not have attended the funeral.. Not enough courage...

    When I saw my ex I went straight up to him and gave him a hug. I told him how sorry I was.. That his Dad was a wonderful man.. I asked after him. How he was coping...

    I could see that he was pleased that I came.. So were his family who roundly welcomed me..

    It wasn't as hard as I thought that it would be..I felt only care and compassion for my ex now.(as you would a friend)

    His mother touched my heart when she said. " I am so happy to see you, F (my ex father in law) always spoke fondly of you, he would be so happy that you came to say Goodbye.."

    So was I..


    As I walked out of the cemetery, this big gust of wind came up behind me.. It was autumn, and a huge wall of leaves were caught up in this kind of a huge wave of leaves about a metre behind me in a straight line..

    The thought occured to me, then, that it was F waving goodbye. :)

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  87. "Nor can [humans] turn their emotions and feelings off like some tap, because someone tells them that they may get an STD, or be subjected to paternity fraud.. (rolls eyes)"

    Uh, yes they can and they do.

    Marriage is reaching an all time low in the US, and it will continue to drop as long as it's a bad deal for men.

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  88. I believe contraception is evil and so it may be that for *very* serious reasons a couple might need to abstain from sex to avoid a pregnancy. In such a case it would be extremely hard on the husband, but he would be duty bound to put his wife's health first.

    OTOH, a wife really should put her husband's sexual desires before her own, fairly variable emotions. It is possible, with training, to get into the right mind-set for this. Really, neither spouse should deny the other sexual pleasure, except in grave circumstances. "I don't feel like it" is not a grave circumstance.

    However, it's a bit rough if a husband doesn't care also for his wife's emotional needs. If he ignores her all day long except to criticise her, or demand things, and only pays attention when he wants sex, then he really needs to lift his game, too.

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  89. I would repartner and start a new family.

    Mark, that is a terrible thing to say. Think about what marriage is. It has little to do with the quality of the relationship and more to do with the needs of the children. Ultimately, since it was God's invention, it is more about God and His kingdom. Think of how much worse it would be for the children of your first (real) marriage. I can't believe you would even entertain the notion of "repartnering." It's not traditional and it's not conservative. The proper thing to do would be to fight for your marriage. It can be done.

    I'd be very disturbed if my husband had thoughts like this.

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  90. If my girlfriend or wife ever pulled this on me, my answer would be "Fine, I respect your right to not have sex if you don't want it. And I hope you'll respect mine to bring in an independent contractor to fulfill your marital vows or girlfriend responsibilities.After all, if YOU won't do it, someone else certainly will."

    Barbaric. No man has any kind of a right to sex from his girlfriend. He does have a right to sex from his wife.

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  91. The only approach is to start hiding assets and tap some on the side while he plots his escape.

    Disgusting and barbaric. I have no idea why Mark's excellent prose can produce such foul sentiments. Not one of you has the vaguest idea in the world what marriage really is.

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  92. And I really hate it when my co-religionists talk about their annulments. Please do us all a favour and be quiet. Annulments are a shameful thing and ought to be kept private. Really.

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  93. Louise,

    I wasn't arguing that I would suddenly bail out and repartner if I was displeased with the quality of my marriage.

    I agree with you that a man needs to have a mentality that he will fight for his marriage.

    But the laws state that my wife can unilaterally divorce me and most likely get the house, the children and a portion of my income.

    Should I be so paralysed by this worst case scenario that I refuse to marry at all?

    I was merely pointing out that even if this worst case scenario were to eventuate that the prospects for remarrying were good.

    What else am I supposed to say? What if I were only 30 and my wife divorced me and went to live with another man? Am I supposed to continue then to fight for my marriage? Live alone for the rest of my life?

    I would take a break and then remarry.

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  94. "And I really hate it when my co-religionists talk about their annulments. Please do us all a favour and be quiet. Annulments are a shameful thing and ought to be kept private"

    Lol!

    You have a self righteous Catholic Troll, that has deigned to grace you with her presence, Mark.

    No need to justify what you have said. I and I am sure others understood what you were saying..

    I have only this to say to Louise..

    "Hypocrite, first take the beam out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly how to remove the splinter from your brother's eye"

    Matthew 7:5 >>

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  95. Kathy, I don't see it that Louise was attempting to troll.

    I think she wants to set a very orthodox Catholic tone. And there are some advantages in doing this.

    But the disadvantage is that you don't connect as well with the mainstream. I'm willing to sacrifice a bit of tone (not principle) to work at the coalface.

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  96. BTW, Kathy, I thought it perfectly reasonable for you to mention the circumstances of your annulment, given that another commenter had tried to present you as some kind of lifestyle divorcee. It was best for you to respond.

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  97. I wasn't arguing that I would suddenly bail out and repartner if I was displeased with the quality of my marriage.

    I do understand that, Mark, but a vow is a vow - think about it. We say "for better or for worse." These words do mean something. The vow stands regardless of how your wife treats you. Think of Christ.

    I agree with you that a man needs to have a mentality that he will fight for his marriage.

    But the laws state that my wife can unilaterally divorce me and most likely get the house, the children and a portion of my income.


    No question that the laws are evil and possibly the worst evil ever enacted in this land with the exception of the widespread practice of abortion (whether legal or not). These laws must be fought against. We must turn the situation around or society will collapse. And when it does, there will be bloodshed, because, by definition, civilisation is the only things which protects us from barbarism.

    Should I be so paralysed by this worst case scenario that I refuse to marry at all?

    Certainly not. At some point, we all have to learn to trust in God. At a practical level, I think pre-nuptial agreements might help restore some sanity into the marriage arena.

    I was merely pointing out that even if this worst case scenario were to eventuate that the prospects for remarrying were good.

    Not if you're a Catholic and cannot get an annulment. Why does the Church make it harder for Her children to "remarry"? Because vows must mean something and children - the primary reason for marriage - must be protected.

    Marriage is not necessarily meant to make us "happy." Naturally, it is meant for the upbringing of children and the cohesion of society. Spiritually, it is really meant to make us holy. That's much harder when the state says that one spouse may unilaterally end the marriage, which is why we must end these evil laws.

    What else am I supposed to say? What if I were only 30 and my wife divorced me and went to live with another man? Am I supposed to continue then to fight for my marriage?

    Yes. As a Christian, you must.
    See here (a Protestant website):

    http://rejoiceministries.org/

    Christians must stand for their marriages, knowing that God will intervene. He will bring the prodigal to her senses. It is not God's will that we give up on our marriages, or that we just roll over and let the World destroy marriage.

    Live alone for the rest of my life?

    If necessary. Yes.

    I would take a break and then remarry.

    Then you would be putting your own "happiness" (which is odd, b/c marriage doesn't always make us happy) ahead of your children's well-being. Even when they are grown up, they need their parents to live together. Fathers typically do not see their adult children as much as they would if they were still living with their wife. That is why the deserted Christian spouse must take a stand for their marriage.

    I have written this to you as one Christian to another. I understand that as a natural good, marriage needs to be generally upheld and you are trying to appeal to a broader base and that's a good thing. Therefore, you do not speak of spiritual things, but speak about the natural good. That's quite valid. But Christians must lead the way in defending marriage as an institution.

    You rightly decry individualism and autonomy theory, but that is exactly what you buy into with talk of remarriage. Even just from a traditional point of view, it is inconsistent to speak of remarriage. There is nothing traditional about remarrying.

    You need to rethink your position, merely from a logical POV.

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  98. Mark, I'm inclined to think that it's very very very late in the day. But even I didn't realise just how late until I started to discuss marriage with other Catholics. And when I saw devout, practicing Catholics act as apologists for divorce, well... I doubt we can turn things around at all. "Progressives" will think this is marvellous until their sick society becomes yet more barbaric and their own children and loved ones start to suffer. Already, ordinary secular Mums are saying "enough's enough" when it comes to the sexualisation of children. Read the history books - clearly, far worse is still to come. Unless, of course, traditionalists start to truly defend marriage. Then there might be some hope.

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  99. Kathy, if you don't want people to comment on either your divorce or your annulment, then don't mention them. Really, we'd all be a lot happier that way.

    And when my co-religionists start to call me "self-righteous," I know I've hit a nerve. Probably with the truth.

    But this is the last comment I'll address to you on this topic. I don't debate with divorcees b/c It's All About Them. Every time.

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  100. "But this is the last comment I'll address to you on this topic. I don't debate with divorcees b/c It's All About Them. Every time."

    Ah, Loiuse what a good, non judgemental and humble person that you are.

    Tis a damn shame that I will, in all likelihood never (being a divorcee and all) attain such saintly status, as your good self.

    Oh well.. Think I'll go and eat worms.. :)

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  101. Assuming that your 20% chance of divorce is correct, which is questionable, you are saying that every man should take a revolver with 5 chambers in the cylinder, load one chamber with a powerful cartridge that is sure to kill him

    Mark Richardson
    Anon, divorce does great harm but it doesn't kill.

    Are you aware of the increased risk of suicide among men in the first 2 years after divorce? It is the case in the US that men are more prone to die from all causes in that time, although I do not have a link to hand. So feel free to dismiss my observation if you prefer.

    Let's say the worst case scenario happened. My wife unilaterally decided to divorce me on flaky grounds ("I've just grown tired of things") and I was left paying alimoney and child support and was limited to fortnightly contact with my children.

    You left out a few things. You left out the very likely fact that in the US you'd be served with a Restraining Order barring you from coming within 300 meters of your house, upon pain of arrest. This would be granted pro forma upon application by your wife or her attorney, and such RO's are common as dirt in US divorces. They are often accompanied by false charges of Domestic Violence that will put you in jail for a while, until you agree to attend a year's worth of weekend "anger management" seminars, in which you will learn to submit to women's whims, among other things. I'm not making this up. I'm writing from the experiences of men I know, some I've known for years.

    Also you left out the likelihood that your fortnightly child visits would be more on the order of bimonthly, because it is still common for women to prevent the children from seeing their father for various reasons after divorce -- and no, don't bother petitioning a court for enforcement of visitation, you're a man and therefore not worthy of a judge's attention, let alone assent.

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  102. Obviously I would be mad as hell with this outcome. I'd be mad that my wife would destroy our relationship, that my children would be left without the daily presence of a father, that we'd most likely have to sell the house etc.

    And any display of anger would be taken as DV.

    But would all that kill me? I don't see it that way now I'm in my early 40s. I'm fit and healthy, I have a good job and I've grown self-confident in my dealings with women. I would repartner and start a new family.

    Good for you. I guess only losers would become depressed and maybe even get sick and die after their entire home is yanked out from under them, right? So no need to worry about those men who suicide, eh, they were unfit for life anyway, right?

    I've observed other men do the same thing, while the wives who divorced them have floundered. One man is a short, balding Sicilian with an ordinary job. His new wife is a tall, leggy, gorgeous blond. He sends her out to work to pay off the child support he owes to his ex.

    That's one response that I can see working.

    I've seen this kind of thing time and again. Middle-class women who divorce often stay unpartnered. Some cope OK and think of the new arrangement as their family. Others suffer mental health issues and when their sons reach the difficult teen years they stop coping entirely.

    Well, then, they should just reach out to their feminist friends for help...

    In the meantime, the husbands continue to advance in their careers, remarry and start a new family. Sometimes the teenage sons get sent over to dad when mum stops coping.

    Some do, some don't. Maybe your set of divorces is narrower than mine. Or maybe I'm just too familiar with losers...

    I guess I have lost my personal fear of divorce.

    I certainly have, no thanks to traditionalism to be sure. Thanks to Game, and studying the reality of divorce, I have no fear of it, in part because I know that I would find another woman.


    This doesn't mean that I accept the current conditions in which marriage has become too unstable and the legal system is biased against men. That's both unjust to men and damaging to society and needs to be reformed.

    Well, we agree on that much. But I still see more devastation on men, and children, from divorce than you evidently do. And I will urge those young men I counsel to be extremely particular about any woman they cohabit with, married or not, because of the very real dangers.

    It really is Russian Roulette.

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  103. James
    The difference between MRA's and traditionalists [as defined by this blog] is that MRA's think in terms of what is best for men, where Trads see things in terms of what is good for scoiety as a whole.

    Not quite correct. MRA's think in lots of ways. Some think in terms of themselves. Some think in terms of their families. Some don't think at all. Some think cosmically, others comically. Some, like Slwerner, are married and worry about their sons. Others, like zed, have seen so many divorces that they won't marry save at the point of a gun.

    There's no Pope telling MRA's what to think and when to think it. So your attempt to pin the righteously angry men down into some cartoon caricature doesn't work.

    On the other hand, what I see among the trad cons is not so much a concern for what is best for society, as a concern for what is best for trad-con women. Men have value to trad-cons only so far as they are useful to women; as husbands, as fathers, as breadwinners. A man living a sober, careful life, paying his own way, giving to charities, supporting his community, but not married is apparently regarded by trad-cons as a worthless wastrel, the same as if he lived in his mother's basement playing videogames and looking at porn all day.

    Traditionalists do not seem to value the worth and dignity of the individual. Men are of value only insofar as they serve women.

    I submit this is a gynocentric view that is abstractly no different from the female supremecism of feminism.

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  104. But I still see more devastation on men, and children, from divorce than you evidently do.

    I think you'll find that the devastation is also for those women who have been deserted by their husbands. Sure, they get the kids in most cases, but they also get the bulk of the parenting and household workload.

    Divorce is bad for men, women, and above all, children. It's bad for society and we really can't afford to go on like this.

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  105. On the other hand, what I see among the trad cons is not so much a concern for what is best for society, as a concern for what is best for trad-con women. Men have value to trad-cons only so far as they are useful to women; as husbands, as fathers, as breadwinners. A man living a sober, careful life, paying his own way, giving to charities, supporting his community, but not married is apparently regarded by trad-cons as a worthless wastrel, the same as if he lived in his mother's basement playing videogames and looking at porn all day.

    That may the case for worldly trad-cons, but it ought not be true for Catholics, for whom marriage is a Sacrament, but not the only valid lifestyle.

    Having said that, most people are meant to marry and have children and the family is the basic unit of society. That doesn't mean responsible, single men and women aren't important, it means that they would never have been responsible men and women in the first place, if they had not had a good upbringing in a loving family. That is why we privelege marriage (or used to).

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  106. I think you'll find that the devastation is also for those women who have been deserted by their husbands. Sure, they get the kids in most cases, but they also get the bulk of the parenting and household workload.

    They get that workload because they want it, and the tax-free child support payments that go with it. Women endlessly complain about the burden, yet fight tooth and nail to keep it. If it's so bad give the kids to dad. Hypocrites.

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  107. They get that workload because they want it, and the tax-free child support payments that go with it. Women endlessly complain about the burden, yet fight tooth and nail to keep it. If it's so bad give the kids to dad. Hypocrites.

    I assume, randian, that you are a fan of Ayn Rand. If so, I don't expect much reason to come from your quarter, but we'll give it a shot.

    Now, it seems from your remarks that only women are selfish. This strikes me as just as stupid and wrong-headed as the notion that only men are selfish.

    "Women endlessly complain about the burden, yet fight tooth and nail to keep it."

    Well, of course, because they love their children and don't wish to be separated from them for too long. This was not what they signed up for when they married and had babies. What a deserted wife actually wanted was an intact family. If her husband has behaved very badly after his desertion (it happens) then she may find it too hard to forgive him and seek a reconciliation. Or she might have just resigned herself to the idea that he is not coming back. If she believes her marriage really is over (she doesn't have to believe this, b/c she can win her husband back, but most people don't know this) and she doesn't wish to forego the company of her children, then she must resign herself to doing the hard work largely on her own. But he is the one who has wronged her by leaving in the first place. But as I say, I don't expect a Randian to be able to reason.

    I mean, basically you're just saying that deserted husbands have the right to complain, but deserted wives don't. I expect that from bitter and twisted secularists who are just as silly as the Feminists.

    You're all just Looking Out For Number One. That's okay, but don't be surprised if you discover that no-one cares about you.

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  108. To put it more succinctly: a worldview which says "All Women Are Bad" is just as toxic as a worldview which says "All Men Are Bad."

    It's your choice, if you want to take that view, but it's toxic.

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  109. But I still see more devastation on men, and children, from divorce than you evidently do.

    I think you'll find that the devastation is also for those women who have been deserted by their husbands. Sure, they get the kids in most cases, but they also get the bulk of the parenting and household workload.

    MDTT, thanks for the cliche.

    Divorce is bad for men, women, and above all, children. It's bad for society and we really can't afford to go on like this.

    But we will, because in the US "man's-fault" divorce has been so deeply embedded into the legal system, it would take a revolution to uproot it.

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  110. Anonymous said,

    "Men have value to trad-cons only so far as they are useful to women; as husbands, as fathers, as breadwinners. A man living a sober, careful life, paying his own way, giving to charities, supporting his community, but not married is apparently regarded by trad-cons as a worthless wastrel … Traditionalists do not seem to value the worth and dignity of the individual. Men are of value only insofar as they serve women.”

    Trads don't support women being endlessly single either, so does that follow that trads support women being the servants of men?

    Louise said,

    "You're all just Looking Out For Number One. That's okay, but don't be surprised if you discover that no-one cares about you"

    Oh ouch.

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  111. BTW, Jesse, when I said:

    You're all just Looking Out For Number One. That's okay, but don't be surprised if you discover that no-one cares about you

    I was referring to all those who subscribe to Randian's stupid views on women. So I hope you didn't think I meant all the commenters here, although most seem to fall into that category.

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  112. To put it more succinctly: a worldview which says "All Women Are Bad" is just as toxic as a worldview which says "All Men Are Bad."

    It didn't say all women are bad, I said women are hypocrites when it comes to child custody.

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  113. MDTT, thanks for the cliche.

    What is MDTT?

    in the US "man's-fault" divorce has been so deeply embedded into the legal system, it would take a revolution to uproot it.

    Well, people like you sitting around carping about "how you bin done wrong" aren't going to fix it, obviously. If you want to live your life hating one half of the human race on principle then knock yourself out. It won't matter to me and the bitterness will really hurt you the most. Your loved ones will have to suffer too, unfortunately, particularly if you have daughters. I hope you don't.

    Meanwhile, people like me, who really care about marriage as an institution and positive good for society will fight to have just divorce laws enacted, which will immediately help to restore some equilibrium.

    Actual divorcees will probably be too self-absorbed and bitter to help, but their children can thank us later.

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  114. It didn't say all women are bad, I said women are hypocrites when it comes to child custody.

    And I explained to you why they are not. Address that.

    I cannot see how you think women (which seems to mean "all separated mothers") are hypocrites when it comes to child custody unless you hold that "All Women Are Bad" (in the same style as Feminists who believe that "All Men Are Bad.")

    I do think that pointing out that women could share custody of the children with the father to lessen their workload is reasonable. But mothers, in general, do not wish to be regularly separated from their children in this way. Also, the bouncing back and forth from Mum to Dad can hardly be good for the kids. Contact with both parents is (normally) good, but the bouncing is just another reason to abhor the whole divorce culture.

    You are only adding to the problem with your attitudes, not helping.

    This is true for the majority of commenters here. Jesse is a notable exception and there may be others.

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  115. It seems to me, Mark, that it is well past time to get some real action happening.

    If we just want to sit around bitching and moaning about how "we bin done wrong" or sit around lamenting a sick society, then people can just keep on keeping on.

    But if we wanted to actually change the situation we need to get serious. The first thing would be to find out which groups, if any, are already working to tackle the evil no-fault divorce laws. Family Voice and Aus Christian Lobby might already be doing something, but if not, I know they would support such a movement.

    We need to find as many like-minded people as possible, but I'd recommend caution when dealing with divorcees. In my experience, they are incapable of reason with this issue. It's understandable, but not helpful.

    We need to see just how many people in the general community are fed up with the situation (and there are many).

    And we need to see just how many politicians agree and when was the last time anyone (I think it was Tony Abbott) flagged a change to the laws and what exactly the response was.

    And then we need to pretend we are "progressives," and say our desired outcome is "inevitable" and then persist until we get our own way.

    Somewhere along the way we will have to work out how much it will cost in time and money and then raise the money and find the workers.

    Simple.

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  116. "Actual divorcees will probably be too self-absorbed and bitter to help, but their children can thank us later"

    Yes, well, I'll most certainly be too busy.. Have just had my hair coloured (scarlet to match my indiscreet character) Think I'll go get my nails done now..

    Yes much too busy. Plus, don't forget, I'm on the lookout for husband number three.. Just ask anon.

    Hmmm ...Yes, Jesse does seem rather appealing, I agree.

    Hey Jesse, whaddya doing Saturday night?

    BBBBBWWWWHHHHHHAAAAAAAAAAA!!!

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  118. Ok thanks Kathy, I'll keep my head down or open myself to a storm of abuse.

    Louise,

    That's alright I know what you meant, I just thought it was a particularly cutting comment.

    "It seems to me, Mark, that it is well past time to get some real action happening."

    I do agree with this, I did intend to join a father's/men's group by now but instead got roped into more activities with the NSW Liberal election and Church. I think personally the best mechanism is through the father's rights or men's groups as they are directed squarely at that issue. If primarily divorcees end up being required to carry this that’s not fair.

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  119. Wow, Louise. Come down to life at ground level once in a while and get a bit of empathy for actual humans. You might find it easier then to remove that pickle that's so tightly wedged in your ass.

    Of all the people to pick on, you want to rag on Kathy for being a divorcee? LOL I guess it's just as well you don't know anything about my life because compared to Kathy I'm Satan himself. Luckily, I don't care what sanctimonius people on the Internet think of me.

    BTW Louise, with that attitude you're going to do a good job of putting people off Catholics. The people who need it most are the wosrt sinners, not saints like you who are already perfect. Have you read about any of the saints? Take St Augustine, read about his life before his conversion and see if you still want to be so uncharitable toward the failings of others. There's this thing called forgiveness, charity, reconcilliation.

    Seriously, take a look in the mirror.

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  121. I have no problem with divorcees, except when they start to speak and behave as though divorce is no big deal, when it's a very big deal, or that their feelings are more important than than the feelings of the children of divorce, or deserted spouses etc.

    If you think that means I have "no compassion for human beings blah blah blah" then fine. I have a great deal of compassion for people who are deserted by their spouse and for children of divorce/separation. Correspondingly, I have little left for those who are apologists for divorce.

    So, let me get this straight. It's not okay for me to hate the attitudes of some people here (notably divorcees and other embittered people), but's okay for people to hate my attitudes. Did I get that right?

    One of the reasons we cannot discuss divorce properly in or society is b/c people's emotions have run so high that we must spend all our time placating their hurt feelings instead of addressing the issues.

    And if you dare mention what might be wrong with divorce, because you hate what it does to (actual human) children and society as a whole, then just wait for all the accusations of "you're so mean" "you will make people hate the Church" blah blah blah.

    I will readily admit that I am hard-arsed on this issue, but since it's destroying families and society, I don't see anything wrong with that.

    Just read the comments here from the men and women who hate the entire opposite sex b/c of this issue.

    And then come back to me and start a rational discussion.

    Louise

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  122. Anonymous said,

    "Men have value to trad-cons only so far as they are useful to women; as husbands, as fathers, as breadwinners. A man living a sober, careful life, paying his own way, giving to charities, supporting his community, but not married is apparently regarded by trad-cons as a worthless wastrel … Traditionalists do not seem to value the worth and dignity of the individual. Men are of value only insofar as they serve women.”

    Jesse_7
    Trads don't support women being endlessly single either, so does that follow that trads support women being the servants of men?

    Non sequitur.

    Both trads and feminists agree that women should be free to choose to work for money or not as they prefer. Both trads and feminists agree that men should be willing to work to support women, no matter what choices those women make.

    You traditionalists seem to take a purely utilitarian view of men. Just like feminists, a man's value to you is purely in terms of what he can do for women.

    I guess that you don't think much of that guy Paul, who wrote parts of the Bible -- he never married, so he had no utility to women.

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  123. Louise said,

    "Just read the comments here from the men and women who hate the entire opposite sex b/c of this issue."

    Not a bad argument.

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  125. Thag, you seem to be under the misaprehension that I have not sinned greatly, or that I think I have not sinned. I have no idea why you would think this, except that I have taken a pretty hard line with divorcees and apologists for divorce, in general. Why that means I think I'm "better" than others, I don't know, but perhaps you should take a look at the much harsher words other people here have spoken (against women, for example).

    Louise

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  126. Me:
    MDTT, thanks for the cliche.

    Louise:
    What is MDTT?

    "Men Do That Too", typically a diversionary tactic to move focus away from wrongs done by women to men. Because after all, men are bad...

    Me
    in the US "man's-fault" divorce has been so deeply embedded into the legal system, it would take a revolution to uproot it.

    Louise:
    Well, people like you sitting around carping about "how you bin done wrong" aren't going to fix it, obviously.

    Charge of Defeatism (Code Maroon)

    If you want to live your life hating one half of the human race on principle then knock yourself out.

    Charge of Irascibility (Code Red)

    It won't matter to me and the bitterness will really hurt you the most. Your loved ones will have to suffer too, unfortunately, particularly if you have daughters. I hope you don't.

    Charge of Misogyny (Code Black)

    Meanwhile, people like me, who really care about marriage as an institution and positive good for society will fight to have just divorce laws enacted, which will immediately help to restore some equilibrium.

    Really. Ok, tell me exactly where you are fighting to have just divorce laws enacted. If you are in Australia, or the US, tell me the State that you are actively working in, and the legislative number of your pending bill. Show me your web site URL where I can find out about your efforts.

    Details, please. I'm more than tired of trad-cons who talk big and do nothing.

    Actual divorcees will probably be too self-absorbed and bitter to help, but their children can thank us later.

    Ah, more feminist shaming language. I wonder why it is that whenever I just lightly scratch a "traditionalist", the result is a torrent of feminist shaming language?

    Why do so many "traditionalists" argue just like feminists, i wonder? Gosh, it just doesn't make any sense, since trad-cons are so different from feminists...

    The codes above, and other feminist shaming tactics are here:

    http://exposingfeminism.wordpress.com/shaming-tactics/

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  127. Louise said,

    "Just read the comments here from the men and women who hate the entire opposite sex b/c of this issue."

    Not a bad argument.

    It isn't an argument at all. It's a logical fallacy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man

    I don't know why traditionalists are so fond of this fallacy, but it seems no discussion is complete without at least one deployment of it. The sweeping generalization is popular as well.

    Why don't trad-cons "man up" and quit using fallacies & feminist shaming tropes?

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  128. Anonymous reader said,

    "Just like feminists, a man's value to you is purely in terms of what he can do for women."

    I don't know what you're talking about, this is an invention. Trads hold society as the highest good not women. This is not merely lip service and both men and women have responsibilities.

    I have argued that both men and women should be free to work but this is not an orthodox trad position, which sees the primary responsibility of women to be to the family, expressed by their commitment at home. Men such as Paul, and certain women, will be single and strongly contribute to society, but if we all did that we would have no society and Paul would agree to that.

    We do believe that a man, or a woman's life, shouldn't be solely directed towards themselves. If you take from that the idea that the genders exist primarily to be directed towards their opposite sex, as in this case that men should exist solely to serve women, that’s a misconception. A direction towards the opposite gender is not a primary, but incidental outcome of a focus on what is good for society.

    If women in practice are served by men, and the government, and also themselves, and in many instances they are, my solution is for them to take up their responsibilities again, rather than say that everyone should do their own thing. What if they don’t want to? Well then they will have no children, we don’t support men agreeing to submit to any behavior, and our society will then go through a period of potential confusion until the generation passes.

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  129. Oh, dear Louise. In your eagerness to take pot shots at me you have only shown yourself to be intolerant, uncharitable and insensitive.

    If you had properly read my own posts on this thread (instead of jumping in at the last minute and being so judgemental) you would indeed see that I value marriage very much.. It was my first husband who eventually wanted out, due to his infertility..

    It was he who pushed me out.. Told me to find a man who could give me children. He was hurting very badly. Thought less of himself beacause he could not father a child..

    Not me, I would still have been with him today if it had been MY choice. (There is no way you can force a man to stay with you under such circumstances)

    However God had other plans.

    I obtained my annulment through the Catholic Church. In the eyes of the Church(and really you should know this Louise)I am not a divorcee because the marriage was not a valid marriage to begin with.

    Divorces, as you know, are not permitted within the Catholic Church, because valid marriages are considered to be indissoluble. Church canon law 1055 states that any marriage that takes place is legally presumed to be a valid sacrament, and is thus permanent.

    However, if sufficient convincing evidence can be shown which indicates that it was not a valid marriage, then a Declaration of Nullity may be given.

    This is, in effect, saying that the marriage never existed; it was not an ecclesial reality.

    Only after an annulment is granted may the couple be free to marry other people.

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  130. "Just like feminists, a man's value to you is purely in terms of what he can do for women."

    Jesse_7
    I don't know what you're talking about, this is an invention. Trads hold society as the highest good not women. This is not merely lip service and both men and women have responsibilities.

    So far as I can tell, only men have responsibilities / duties. Women have choices. List off some of the duties of women, for me, please. Bear in mind that a duty is something that one cannot shirk. So for men, for example, working for money is a duty, for women it is a choice, to both you traditionalists and to feminists.

    Feminists demand that all men work, in order to pay taxes, so that single mothers can be supported by taxpayers. Traditionalists demand that all men work, so that individual women will be supported, said women having the choice to work for money, or stay home, or gather flowers by the creek, as they prefer.

    Men -> duties
    Women -> choices

    "Society" seems to be a code word for "women", both to feminists and traditionalists.

    I have argued that both men and women should be free to work but this is not an orthodox trad position, which sees the primary responsibility of women to be to the family, expressed by their commitment at home.

    Excuse me, men are not "free" to work, men are required to work for money. It seems to me that a true traditionalist would insist that women must become pregnant, and stay home with the child, as early in a marriage as possible. But I don't see that. Not here, not anywhere.

    Men such as Paul, and certain women, will be single and strongly contribute to society, but if we all did that we would have no society and Paul would agree to that.

    Ah, but wait, there's a long running tradition if you will in the comments section of this site and others of strong condemnation of men who go their own way, and thus do not marry.

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  131. And of course, in the broader real world, where I live at least, there are plenty of children born to people that are not married. The majority of black children in the US, for example. Traditionalists just sort of glide by that fact, looking the other way...perhaps because men who pay taxes support those children?

    Jesse_7
    We do believe that a man, or a woman's life, shouldn't be solely directed towards themselves.

    I see plenty of comments and postings asserting that men should not be free to take care of themselves, that they must instead take care of women. I don't see similar postings about women.

    Why is that?

    If you take from that the idea that the genders exist primarily to be directed towards their opposite sex, as in this case that men should exist solely to serve women, that’s a misconception. A direction towards the opposite gender is not a primary, but incidental outcome of a focus on what is good for society.

    All I know is what I read, and what I don't read. It's trivial to find criticism of feminism at this site, and to find all sorts of man-bashing as well, so long as it's those eeeevil MRA's of course. But what seems to be lacking is any clear criticism of women for shirking their roles, or even any definition of their roles beyond "being supported by men". I'm aware of Mark Richardson's personal arrangements within his family so far as he's informed us, but that's strictly his family, no general rules are visible.

    So we are back to men having duties, and women having choices. Just like feminism.

    If women in practice are served by men, and the government, and also themselves, and in many instances they are, my solution is for them to take up their responsibilities again, rather than say that everyone should do their own thing.

    What are these responsibilities, and how do you propose to cause women to take them up again?

    What if they don’t want to? Well then they will have no children,

    Er, no, that's not correct, they will go to sperm banks, become impregnated, and become single mothers. Or they will find some willing man, most likely a thug of some kind, become pregnant, and become single mothers. That's reality, it can already be seen in not just the US but in Europe as well.

    we don’t support men agreeing to submit to any behavior, and our society will then go through a period of potential confusion until the generation passes.

    Excuse me, men have no choice but to submit to just about any behavior that a woman chooses to dump upon them. Anything else would be "ungentlemanly", right? Plus it would be illegal, under Domestic Violence statutes.

    You have not convinced me, I'm sorry.

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  132. I know what annulments are and I know what marriages, both natural and sacramental are and I know what divorce is.

    I know you are a Catholic in good standing in the Church and I never said otherwise.

    However, I lament that you are incapable (like most divorcees) of understanding what I am actually saying and what I'm not saying.

    I wish you and all divorcees, especially Catholics, who really should know better, would remain as quiet and discreet as possible about your divorces and annulments, out of respect for the natural good of marriage and the welfare of children whose feelings are just as important as yours, if not more so. (In saying this, I am not suggesting that you had children from your first whatever-it-was).

    Please try to understand that the more we have to consider your precious feelings, the more we have to remain quiet about about the gross injustices of divorce, especially on children. Please try to understand the point of my posts.

    Also, I should - as a Catholic - be able to lament the ease with which many Catholics can now obtain annulments, due to the scandalous relaxing of the code of canon law on this issue in more recent years.

    Please try to realise that I cannot possibly say such a thing without offending you and others in your situation, but it needs to be said all the same. If I can't say it without offending you, and if your feelings are more important than the possible truth of the matter, then I am not free to say what needs to be said. Do you see? If your feelings are the most important thing going (as most/all divorcees seem to think when it comes to this issue) then *clearly* I may not speak of my grave concerns regarding this issue.

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  133. BTW Louise, with that attitude you're going to do a good job of putting people off Catholics.

    And this was classic. Did it never occur to you, Thag, that you are looking at this through the eyes of apologists for divorce? Did it never occur to you that there might be young men and women out there who have divorced parents, but have never once heard anyone say "Divorce is bad. It hurts kids. You have every reason to feel sad and angry."

    Did it never occur to you that when they hear someone say that for the first time, they'll be grateful? And did it never occur to you that since the Church does still officially teach that marriage can not be dissolved, they might be attracted to the Catholic Church?

    And if it never occurred to you - why not?

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  134. Louise, I do understand what you're saying, it's just that you are not coming across as very charitable. Furthermore, where there is a divorce or annulment and there were no children involved, the argument sort of loses its urgency.

    Nevertheless, I agree with you that divorce is a bad thing, but the root problem is that so many people these days aren't fit for marriage to begin with and so we have this problem with a high divorce rate.

    This has nothing to do with feelings (mine or Kathy's or any other divorcee) but, at least I can speak for myself, with the reality of life on the ground. It's a mess. Theology is good and I'm not disagreeing or saying it should be watered down to appease feelings (those who know me probably know I'm hardly one to be concerned with feelings in that sense), just that you are making grand assumptions here, such as that it never occurred to me that someone might need to hear the unvarnished truth about something. Again, it all comes across as a bit sanctimonious. Of course these things occurred to me - there's plenty of things just such as this that attracted ME to the Catholic church, so yeah, I get that.

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  135. Well, well, well.

    It appears that comments I am making, that appear here at the time of posting, are now disappearing. It appears that posting disagreement here results in postings being deleted.

    Mark Richardson, are you doing that?

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  136. Anonymous Reader,

    Having posted here a few times you should know that there are problems with blogger and some posts are automatically sent to the spam bin after posting. Mark will put them back up when he gets on.

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  137. I am sorry Louise, Thag is right it's not about my feelings or anyone else's.

    If someone asks me a question I will answer it honestly. If someone accuses me of something that is untrue I will set the record straight.. Simple as that.

    I do not believe in divorce it is wrong..I have said as much.I believe in the sanctity of marriage. It is obvious that you did NOT read(or maybe understand) what I said.

    I will not however shy away from the fact that my marriage was annulled and for a very good reason, not as you imply, because the rules have become lax.

    I am not going to skulk away quietly in shame.. I have done nothing wrong..

    "And I really hate it when my co-religionists talk about their annulments. Please do us all a favour and be quiet. Annulments are a shameful thing and ought to be kept private. Really."


    Nonsense. People will think that I have something to hide. Which is why I have always been open about my situation. Annulments (genuine ones) are not shameful, they are a sad and unfortunate occurance.

    As one poster on Catholic forum said.


    An annulment can not be shameful any more that an orange is shameful. An annulment is an objective evaluation of the validity of vows taken by both sides in a marriage covenant. If one entered the marriage fraudulently or was not a Catholic and did not understand the indissoluable nature of Catholic marriage but the other entered the marriage in good faith, it is still null and void. There is no shame in this for the spouse who entered this contract in good faith.

    I did indeed enter my marriage in good faith..

    It's not about feelings here, as I said earlier.. It's about truth.. and it's about you twisting the facts to suit your own agenda..

    You need to get off your high horse, Louise, because you DO come across as rather sanctimonious, and people will just switch off to your message.

    In any event you are preaching to the choir, here.

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  138. it's just that you are not coming across as very charitable.

    And? It makes little difference to the argument, which nobody has really addressed. And when I am less polemical in tone on other blogs with this issue, I still get the same responses, so it makes no real difference.

    Furthermore, where there is a divorce or annulment and there were no children involved, the argument sort of loses its urgency.

    Nonsense. If we were really just a pack of individuals, then yes, it wouldn't matter, but we're not. Every divorce sets a bad example to everyone else and therefore, the cumulative effect hurts other people's kids.

    I agree with you that divorce is a bad thing, but the root problem is that so many people these days aren't fit for marriage to begin with and so we have this problem with a high divorce rate.

    That may well be the case, but the critical factor in the dramatic increase with divorce was the no-fault divorce law. It is possible that with a change to these laws, coupled with some judicious privileging of marriage-based families by the State, there could be a restoration of marriage. Consider that many children of divorce hate it so much and might therefore work harder in their own marriages, with the right support to help them and a more just system.

    This has nothing to do with feelings (mine or Kathy's or any other divorcee) but, at least I can speak for myself, with the reality of life on the ground.

    Just for clarification - are you suggesting that I am not in touch with the reality of life on the ground? I'm not sure I understand what you mean.

    Theology is good and I'm not disagreeing or saying it should be watered down to appease feelings

    Except that, no matter how "nicely" I behave, when it comes to this or any other moral issue whatever, I am accused of being judgmental. Not that I care about others' opinions of me, but charges of judgementalism are often merely another way of stifling debate. I have no time for it any more.

    just that you are making grand assumptions here, such as that it never occurred to me that someone might need to hear the unvarnished truth about something.

    I was asking whether it never occurred to you to look at things from the perspective of someone other than a divorcee, b/c I was challenging the assumptions you seemed to have made. I mean, I can see how a divorcee wouldn't care for my tone or argument, but a child of divorce might be positively delighted.

    Again, it all comes across as a bit sanctimonious.

    I really don't care any more. It makes no difference how carefully I phrase anything - people will always take things badly and respond accordingly.

    Sometimes I am combative, sometimes I'm not.

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  139. Kathy, I'm going to say this only once, "you're mean" is not an argument.

    You finally get around to dealing with the objection I initially raised (that I wish Catholics would stop talking about their annulments), after how long?

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  140. "You finally get around to dealing with the objection I initially raised (that I wish Catholics would stop talking about their annulments), "

    It matters not, what YOU wish Louise. Seems to me it's all about how YOU feel..

    You are not an official representitive of the Catholic Church,here.

    And, it is from the church (my spiritual adviser- priest) that I take my counsel, not you..

    Nor are you the blog owner for goodness sake.. Lol!

    You are entitled to your opinions, however, as I am mine.

    When you offer up tripe such as all annulments are shameful, then I am compelled to point that this is only in your opinion and it is NOT the OFFICIAL stance taken by the Catholic Church.

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  141. My point was that this is a combox, Kathy, either deal with the issues that are raised, or leave them alone. I don't mind which you choose, but most of your posts have only served to illustrate exactly those things I've been talking about and why I should have stuck to my guns and not engaged with divorcees (or persons with annulments) on this topic.

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  142. Mark, I'm addressing this to you, because my original remarks were about the very concerning attitude which otherwise traditionally minded Catholics now have towards divorce and remarriage.

    As I said, "remarriage" (much less "re-partnering") just should not be on the agenda for committed Catholics. Anyone can see why this ought to be the case - because it weakens an already very weak institution.

    If your wife left you and you decided not to take a stand and remain faithful to her, but decided you wanted to do the very untraditional thing of "remarrying," then as a Catholic, you would not be able to do that in the Church without an annulment.

    Until recent decades, annulments were - rightly - extremely difficult to get and were given rarely.

    The Church has relaxed the criteria alarmingly to the point where they now seem to be given out willy-nilly.

    From a juridical perspective, we can certainly consider the persons with annulments to be Catholics in good standing, but morally, there is reason to be disturbed. It is much like a judge in a civil court handing a sentence which is much too lax. We can lament the decision, without questioning the authority.

    I put it to you that morally speaking, you really do need to think of your marriage as absolutely permanent, even if your wife ever left you (one hopes she would do no such thing).

    It is the bishops who must ultimately take the blame for these morally doubtful annulments -they are a scandal and facilitate a disturbing acceptance of divorce amongst Catholics.

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  143. Dale Ahlquist on Chesterton on Divorce:

    http://www.chesterton.org/wordpress/?page_id=1432

    "The Superstition of Divorce."

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  144. Louise,

    Thanks for explaining further. I have to admit I'm torn on this. I do view marriage as a sacrament and therefore understand the logic of the position taken by the Church.

    However, I struggle with the idea that a young man who married in good faith but is betrayed by his wife must then simply live celibately for the rest of his life, without the opportunity to be a father.

    It would not be such a looming issue in a culture that was informed by Catholic principles and in which few men would find themselves in such a position.

    But we do not live in such a culture.

    It's a dilemma I can't see an adequate resolution to, not without a change in culture that may not happen for some time.

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  145. "why I should have stuck to my guns and not engaged with divorcees (or persons with annulments) on this topic."

    This is precisely why your opinion should be disregarded, Louise. Annulments are not shameful.. Yet you in your superior pride.. deem it to be otherwise.... It is just your opinion.. nothing else!


    My marriage was legitimately annuled by the Church.. Something that you in your obtuseness and obstinacy refuse to accept or acknowledge..

    It seems to me that you do not respect the laws of the Church.

    You are not the official mouthpiece of the Catholic Church.

    You are free to go elsewhere if you cannot adhere to the tenets of the Catholic faith.

    In the meantime please do not muddy the waters.. with your prideful indulgent sanctimonious claptrap.

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  146. "It is the bishops who must ultimately take the blame for these morally doubtful annulments -"


    You would do well to remember Louise, that you are not an arbiter of the Catholic faith..

    Yours is just a personal opinion, nothing more.

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  147. Anonymous Reader,

    You generally do good credit to your position, however, I'm not convinced by your argument either.

    You say that the trads support women having choices but not duties, the traditional duty of a woman has always been to have children, and then to raise them correctly. This was never really historically optional but expected. When birth control arrived the trads didn't say "oh goody now we don't have to have kids", instead it was quite the contrary.

    Women also had the duty to do the best they could to get on with their mate, and to look to get married. A long term single women until relatively recently was usually seen by society as an object of pity, rather than as a liberated example. So trads have always had strong expectations of women.

    In the situation raised where a married woman might work, this would generally be discussed by the couple prior to childbirth, and generally decided together or else raised clearly prior to marriage. It wasn’t a situation where the women would just decide on her own and the man was expected to go along with it.

    So how do trads encourage women to take up their responsibilities again? Well we can certainly make a strong push by not holding up individual and personal short term happiness as the highest good, and not see the meaning of life as how much fun and personal life experience you can accumulate.

    It will ultimately be decided, as Kathy says, by what’s likely to make individual people personally happy and fulfilled, and there's plenty of evidence to show that men and women want to partner up.

    Alternatively, should we assume that many women don't want to partner up, or else set their standards at unreasonable levels, and begin to widely use of sperm clinics, the people who take this option will still experience declining fertility rates. This is because such women would be unlikely to have several children that way. If you raise a child as a single parent you have to do all the chores yourself, and in this instance there's no alimony, (whatever govt welfare is available I imagine must be less). One kid per fraction of the available feminist fertile women won’t be enough to maintain their numbers. Also there’s also being no guarantee that their kids will want to replicate that style of life. Additionally if you're the kind of person who can't or won't get on with a man you're also probably the type whose likely to be put off by the many practical encumbrances child raising involves.

    At the same time as many women will be doing this, men will not race to the women’s rescue, because they’ll not want to take up with harridans, and contrary to your view neither would trads encourage them to. There are other desirable traditional social outcomes apart from the mere conception of children, such as leadership by men. The stronger the man is the less he'll feel required to accept any behavior that comes his way from women, and trads support men being strong, not kowtowing to shocking behavior. If men say no, feminist women will have to realistically change their ways to some degree if they want families.

    Consequently what we’ll see is that some women will change, others will use nonsense arguments such as they're not having children to help the environment, or out of a desire to not raise a child "in such a world". These women will generally lose credibility and other women will increasingly look to family centered attitudes.

    You also mentioned the black underclass and their single mother rates. With the numerous problems in that community its usually cited as a cautionary example, rather than as a something to be replicated.

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  148. Another blogger bin issue Mark. Thanks.

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  149. I have to admit I'm torn on this. I do view marriage as a sacrament and therefore understand the logic of the position taken by the Church.

    I understand why you would feel torn.

    However, I struggle with the idea that a young man who married in good faith but is betrayed by his wife must then simply live celibately for the rest of his life, without the opportunity to be a father.

    Well, the sad thing is that although a serious Christian would be obliged to live thus (a very hard cross to carry, no doubt), most men would not even try, but would place their souls in jeopardy by taking up a mistress, in effect.

    However, this assumes that God cannot change her heart and help the husband forgive his wife, if he would just take a stand for his marriage and trust in God. This is not so. God is faithful, and He does bring prodigals home.

    I realise this is not much use for those who are irreligious and will therefore not be helpful for you to write about on a blog which is geared to a much broader group (a good thing), but if you could accept it for yourself and your fellow Catholics - I know it's hard - you would simply not write posts like this one.

    Perhaps a better approach for a post which says "take courage, your life is not over if your wife leaves you" is to state the truth that a man's life is not over, even if his faithless wife leaves him and takes the children. He can still contribute. His life can still have meaning and purpose.

    It would not be such a looming issue in a culture that was informed by Catholic principles and in which few men would find themselves in such a position. But we do not live in such a culture.

    I know, I know. It's horrendous. But the horrible truth is that this will only deteriorate further, as practicing Catholics continue to compromise on this issue. Catholics and all Christians (but Protestant theology and practice is inherently dodgy on divorce anyway) need to take a firm stand on this issue, or really, the collapse will come soon and be very nasty.

    It's a dilemma I can't see an adequate resolution to, not without a change in culture that may not happen for some time.

    This is where I get my Ghandi on: "Be the change you want to see."

    At the absolute minimum, we need to push for a change to the divorce laws. If you would promote that course of action, you might do much good.

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  150. Actually, in the meantime, you could encourage people (men, in particular) to have a pre-nuptial agreement prior to marriage. This could be the beginnings of a real solution, while the laws exist as they currently do.

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  151. Ah, but Louise, doesn't a pre-nup suppose that the marriage might not be permanent, meaning the couple isn't entering marriage in good faith, thereby invalidating it from a Catholic point of view? How come that doesn't count as watering down the sacrament but Kathy should be ashamed of her annulment? If you're going to take a hard line, it's got to be across the board, no?

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  152. Ah, but Louise, doesn't a pre-nup suppose that the marriage might not be permanent, meaning the couple isn't entering marriage in good faith, thereby invalidating it from a Catholic point of view? How come that doesn't count as watering down the sacrament but Kathy should be ashamed of her annulment? If you're going to take a hard line, it's got to be across the board, no?

    Excellent question, Thag, and one which I will have to think about further.

    I don't really have the expertise to address this properly and would probably need to discuss it with moral theologians, lawyers and canon lawyers to do the question justice. And I don't know any!

    Intuitively, I think you may be right, so perhaps I will withdraw my suggestion for now.

    But I was merely thinking of it as legal protection, the existence of which might help avoid such a calamity.

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  153. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  154. "...#6 - Create traditional conservative segregated communities where these values are celebrated and done...."

    There's only one so far: Orania
    http://www.orania.co.za/english/

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  155. Tracey Cox seems to have some double standards going by what she advises women whose partners don’t want sex.

    #1 According to Cox don't let a lack of sex destroy a relationship if a they hasn't had sex for 12 years because of the dude but a woman can’t expect him to do the same.


    MY husband has been ill for a very long time and I have not had sex for 12 years.

    We’re both in our 50s and he doesn’t think I should settle for life without sex.

    We don’t want to split because we love each other dearly but need a sexual companion for me.

    He’s heard there are websites set up for this. Would you recommend using them?

    Both of us have talked through the emotional complications and feel it’s worth at least trying.

    TRACEY SAYS: Be aware that what sounds good in theory often doesn’t work in practice.

    You’ve both made this decision in a very logical fashion and it might be the right one for you.

    But hearts and parts aren’t logical and I suspect your husband may still find he feels hurt, jealous, insecure and intimidated if you follow through.

    And you may feel like you’re betraying him, even with his permission. You don’t say how ill he is but if you think outside the square, there are lots of creative ways he could satisfy you.

    If that doesn’t work for you and you still want to proceed, I do agree choosing a stranger over a website to have sex with is a lot less hazardous than roping in a friend.

    Sex is a lot of things but be careful you don’t let lack of it destroy what seems like a lovely, albeit challenged, relationship.

    #2 According to Cox it’s ‘normal’ to go without sex for weeks if the dude prefers to have a wank, but a woman can’t expect him to do the same.


    Q. WHY is it after 12 years of marriage my husband still denies masturbating?
    I came home from work last week and found him in the office doing it. I crept back out again, so he has no idea I know.

    WE GO WEEKS WITHOUT SEX. Is there something wrong with me that he prefers to do this in secret?

    TRACEY SAYS: We’re much more open about masturbation now than we ever were, but some people still see it as something dirty to be ashamed of.

    So it could be your husband’s too embarrassed to ‘fess up. Or he may deny it because he worries you’d get upset – which you have!

    First up, it’s normal to go weeks without sex when you’ve been together 12 years. It’s also normal to masturbate in between. It doesn’t mean he’s not getting enough sex or that it’s unsatisfactory.
    http://www.newsoftheworld.co.uk/lifestyle/good_sex_guru/482762/Tracey-Cox-Sex.html

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  156. So if women think they have the right to say no out of lacking desire and their consent/desire is a good enough reason to respect the no that means marriage is all about women?

    It is telling that when it comes to marital sex possibilities such as don't seem to be considered-
    $1 leave
    divorce
    #2 counsel
    they may find out what problems in the marriage have led to the couple growing apart in other ways than sexually, which may make them want to be more sexually intimate
    #3 communicate
    the husband finding out how his own behavior is putting his wife off sex with him

    To many the only possible solution is the wife putting up and shutting up without the husband having to examine his own behavior one bit.

    Then again the solution doesn't really offer communication. As why she doesn't want sex is irrelevant as it's not a good reason to say no to him.

    I think a man having the mindset of 'don't deny without a good reason' is being almost entirely self-focused on the value of your own feelings and desires rather than showing loving concern for your wife by demanding sex regardless of your partner's feelings, desire, or consent.

    An unrealistic view of what might make a marraige work may be expecting your desire for sex to be accommodated but don't accommodate your wife's lack of desire for sex. As well as if accommodating the wife's lack consent and desires aren't a good reason.

    It's being focused on your right for sex rather than on understanding what might a relationship work and what might matter to women in a relationship.

    It's not being any good at compromising by looking at his wishes and desires as funadmental calling so much so that the wife is simply duty bound to respect them as its a need and her wifely duty.

    It seems more like rather than having sex with your wife it's about having sex with you wife's body. As whether she as her feelings, desires, and possibly consent don't matter. What matters is that she does her wifely duty.

    For some it may be sex with a female body if there's the threat of 'if I don't get it from you'.

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  157. No, I don't buy that last comment.

    Chances are the husband has been trying everything under the sun to repair the situation.

    If things drag on for so long, a wife ought to do what she can to lovingly engage in a sexual relationship, even if she isn't in the mood at the outset.

    We're talking about six months here. You can't run a system of monogamous marriage and justify a woman denying her husband without a pretty special reason for such a long period of time.

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  158. By last comment do you mean mine?

    Seems you don't buy it because you're unwilling to accept the possibility that there may be a husband out there who doesn't try everything under the sun to repair the situation.

    Seems you have a view of men being faultless or nearly faultless in this regard.

    Both genders make mistakes in marriages.

    Many guys try everything under the sun he thinks will work not what she thinks will work as he doesn't ask her.

    'If things drag on for so long, a wife ought to do what she can to lovingly engage in a sexual relationship, even if she isn't in the mood at the outset.'

    Does 'do what she can' translate to:
    #1 she has sex when she doesn't want to have sex with him and lovingly engages by not showing her lack of desire
    #2 communicate why she's not in the mood, they work together to fix it, and once fixed they have sex if it cannot be fixed they part ways

    If #1 how would she lovingly engage if the husband is why she's not in the mood?

    If #1 why is lovingly engage important if her desire is irrelevant why isn't her show of desire irrelevant? Suggests to me that whether she genuinely wants sex doesn't matter only that she doesn't show it during.

    My main issue with #1 is how would the husband know there's a situation that needs repairing if the woman just puts out and shuts up or lovingly engages.

    Seems like it'd turn into a problem never being fixed because it's not made aware to be important to both parties:
    1. Wife has sex with her husband despite not wanting to have sex with him because of X.

    2. Husband doesn't know of her not wanting sex with him because she has sex with him.

    3. Husband likely doesn't know of X.
    OR
    Husband knows of X but considers it trivial as it wasn't serious enough to put a clog in their sexual relationship.
    OR
    Husband knows of X as she repeatedly tells him so he takes it as nagging. Unimportant nagging as it hadn't put a clog in their sexual relationship.

    The likely result to me is divorce as she'll get tired of a husband she doesn't want to have sex with, resentful of having sex with a guy she doesn't want, and X.

    'We're talking about six months here. You can't run a system of monogamous marriage and justify a woman denying her husband without a pretty special reason for such a long period of time.'

    I justify denying sex if one doesn't want it otherwise to me that would be condoning rape.

    That pretty special reason is most likely she doesn't want to have sex with him.

    By 'can't justify denying him without a pretty special reason' are you implying that the husband is entitled to have sex with his wife regardless of her consent or wish? That rather than they work out why she doesn't want to have sex with him she ought to stop denying him and have sex?

    To me it's probably best suited to find out why your partner doesn't want to have sex with you.

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