Saturday, October 08, 2011

Wife shopping

Juliet Jeske has written another interesting column on the difficulties of dating in New York as a woman over the age of 35.

It's a cautionary tale for those women deliberately leaving family formation until their 30s. Jeske herself married in her 20s, but left childbearing quite late and then found out her husband was homosexual.

So she found herself having to start over. What problems has that involved? Well, she definitely wants kids:

I always thought I would have kids. My husband and I planned to eventually start a family, but at the age of 36 I discovered my husband was a closeted homosexual. My marriage immediately ended and I entered the dating pool past my prime reproductive years. I knew it would eventually take time to have a healthy relationship again, and I definitely felt like my biological clock wasn't just ticking but banging loudly like Quasimodo's bells throughout my entire body.

The men she has met whilst dating fall into four categories:

in my age range I tend to find hook-up artists who never want to settle down, men messed up from a break-up or divorce, extremely socially awkward men with no dating experience and the men I refer to as wife shoppers.

The "wife shoppers" are men who want to start a family:

A wife shopper is usually the following:

•Over 40
•Never Married - No children
•At the peak of their professional career
•About to buy property or has just bought property

Wife shoppers are men searching for the future mother of their children.

So why can't she get together with a "wife shopper"? First, these men understandably are looking for a woman who is likely to be fertile:

They make no bones about wanting to start a family, and many won't consider women over the age of 35. Women do lose reproductive capacity after 35, and in health terms pregnancies in older mothers are deemed higher risk.

...One of the habits I have noticed is something I call baby momma math. My date will look at me, ask me my age again, and then I watch them adding up how long we would have to date before trying to start a family, and they aren't exactly subtle about it.

Second, she finds the "wife shopper" men bluntly methodical:

Maybe it's something about the personality traits of any man who waits until they are at the peak of their career before getting married and having kids. In their mind they have a checklist and once they have done everything else they want to accomplish in life they move on to starting a family.

Third, she is worried (and understandably so) about rushing into a relationship in order to have children, without having time to make sure of a firm connection with the man:

Having my marriage end the way it did has given me major trust issues to begin with, so the idea of running down the aisle with a man hell-bent on becoming a father is terrifying. Divorce is hell on earth and the thought of having another divorce -- only the second time with children -- is especially nightmarish. Rushing into a situation in order to have children with a partner I barely know seems like a recipe for another divorce.

Keeping a healthy marriage together, especially one with children, is extremely difficult. The union between the two adult partners should be the most important thing -- communication, lifestyles, goals, and temperaments must work in harmony before the added stress and pressures of children are added to the mix.

Juliet Jeske complained about the last column I wrote on her (she identifies strongly as a liberal), seeing it as a personal attack. It wasn't meant as such and nor is this one. I think she has clearly and intelligently identified some of the difficulties of family formation for a woman of her age. It helps to confirm for me the wisdom of bringing back marriage and motherhood where it belongs - in a woman's 20s.


  1. She writes: "I am resigned to my fate of probably never being to have my own biological child, or never being married again."

    She seems more rational than most women.

  2. Problem for her is if she were to tell her sisters to marry in their 20's, they'd ridicule and mock her.

    She should take comfort in that my mother was 43 when I was born. I'm 40 now and get this, while my 3 older brothers all have bad eyesight and other issues, my eyesight is 20/10 and I'm healthy and mobile. My next oldest brother is 10 year older than me and my oldest is 15 BTW. Something to think about.

  3. This is white western womens punishment for betraying their society. I have no pity for them.

  4. The West is rotting corpse.

  5. Its unfortunate that so many of these articles are put forward from the "my" perspective. "I" just found this thing out about relationships and child rearing, this is now relevant to "me". Does nobody think outside of themselves? Its not rocket science here guys and there are reasons why historically women were encouraged to have kids early. Do we have to reinvent the wheel for every generation? Can no knowledge be passed on?

    I also hate to say it but the kind of compartmentalisation that involves you dating someone based almost solely on their fertility prospects is pretty untidy. Historically, however, marriages were primarily matters of money and fertility so I suppose that's not without precedent.

  6. If more men had higher standards in women just like those wife shoppers and wouldn't settle for damaged goods, there would be less divorce and may be women would consider their decisions more carefully. There would be less slut parades and hook ups. Also while attraction is important for marriage, it's only prudent to have pragmatic considerations as well, for both men and women. Marriage is not only about feelings, it's about creating a stable family unit.

  7. WRT wife shopping, why are men shopping for DAMAGED goods (i.e. Western women)?

  8. Modern dating:

    Hi, I'm so and so. I'm 40 and I consider myself a good guy. Say, any women looking to talk and see what happens?

    The response from women:

    Oh you're 40 and never married? You must have issues.

    Oh you're 40 and looking?
    You must be desperate.

    Oh you're 40 and you don't have kids?
    You must not have wanted them.

    Oh you're 40 and you're the first honest guy I've run across in a long time?
    Must be a player.

    Good gawd someone put me out of my misery.

  9. Historically, however, marriages were primarily matters of money and fertility so I suppose that's not without precedent.

    Agreed. Don't forget courtship and arranged marriages.

    Marriage is not only about feelings, it's about creating a stable family unit.

    Liberal response: "Waaaaaa! How dare you! It's love! We're so totally liberated and modern! You regressive, religious bigot! Marriage is about equality, rights and autonomy! A family can be anything! Don't you dare discriminate against single parents, homosexuals and polygamists! Oh I forgot that marriage is soooo oppressive and sooooo outdated! Who cares about marriage! Waaaaaaa! *Insert projection, changing the subject, twisting and blaming*"

  10. "It helps to confirm for me the wisdom of bringing back marriage and motherhood were it belongs - in a woman's 20s."

    You should have said "early 20s."

  11. This woman is rich.

    In one column she complains about men only wanting sluts. Here she complains about men screening women for their value as a wife.

    Perhaps these men lack a little charm in their search for a wife, but... The reality is: Jeske is complaining that she has to obey any sort of obligations, expectations or standards.

    I come from a world of Orthodox Jews. The most religious ones go on dates strictly to find a wife, and you can be *sure* that these are the sorts of questions broached in the first and second dates. And they are in their twenties, or even late teens, if their respective matchmakers haven't answered them already. Dating explicitly for marriage requires a different approach to yield success.

  12. Anonymous 3:02 said,

    "Good gawd someone put me out of my misery"

    I know its kind of ridiculous. The only thing consistent in these women's approach is their impatient desire, v high expectations and ready frustrations. I'm frustrated because of x, I'm frustrated because of y, so clearly this or that is unfair. It also doesn’t help that when these people get frustrated rather than turning their hands to practical ways to improve their situation turn to short term escapes like partying. I saw an article in The Australian from a similar type of woman saying that women in this kind of second marriage position must settle, have some discipline, and not have ridiculous standards. What a revelation ... hardly. Women of our generations are notorious for their ill discipline, aggressive promotion of their desires and changeable attitudes.

    How to change this? For women to have some control what must happen? What happened to sweet natured women? Is it that they need some external structure to submit to? Is it that they are unprepared personally/emotionally for the modern world and so lash out at everyone with their frustrations? Is it that they need to stop having their selfish impulses promoted as their right and justice? This can quite easily not be a female thing but a male thing too. I've seen plenty of guys act notoriously selfishly and think that standards of decent behavior or politeness are merely rules imposed to limit them or should only apply to lesser people.

    I think this could quite easily be a generational thing and not a female thing. When its done by women though it can be particularly difficult as they have fewer relevant historical standards limiting their behavior. If guys acts notoriously you can at least call them out on it. Is it perhaps due to the fact that the dominant views of people are rights/entitlement for the individual, combined with a secular I want a heaven on earth now situation, then enhanced by people’s almost retarded social skills or social concern? It’s a huge issue for our society. If people’s attitudes are “I will only work for a million dollars” and “I will only marry if they’re totally amazing” we’re obviously in strife.

  13. Let me get this straight...

    She wants a family and kids, but wants to get to know the guy "better". But the last time she got to know him better turned out to be gay after 15 years? dont think your fertility is up for popping one out at 50 Jesse.

    And you think fertility starts to drop at 35? guess again. It started dropping almost a decade ago, 27 by some studies and as low as 24 in others.

    And finally. You, as a woman, dont like that a successful man has a CHECKLIST that you have to meet? Are you upset that its a man, or that you cant pass it? Just curious there.

    And as anonymous 3:04 above stated. If shes rejecting all the other 40 year olds for whatever reason and only going on dates with the wife hunters, shes going to fail that checklist every time.

  14. "Are you upset that its a man, or that you cant pass it?"

    Its quite clearly the latter.

  15. If a man has a child with a women, even after only a one night stand, he has to support that child and it becomes like an enforced marriage with the woman. If women could find a way to require or force men they like to marry them that would make their life easier.

  16. Sold a bill of goods I'm learning. Very large cohort of women like this. So much misery in the coming years.

    Sad watching a youtube of J's standup routine trying to be edgy, sophisticated or funny. A jibe about a Catholic upbringing as if for liberal cred. broke my heart. It was the tradition she should have cleaved to. The liberal tradition 'autonomously' chosen instead has been a thief. Husband too. (v.important demonstration of its hideous corrosion sorry if repetitive )

    May God bless Juliet.

  17. I think the best comedy comes out of a positive and not negative spirit. A lot of lefties are shockingly negative.

  18. She's got problems with a man with a checklist?

    Maybe she will begin to understand why Western women can be so exasperating...

  19. 25 years ago I was approached by a wife shopper at the time I was 26 and married. He was fun, exciting and living in Hollywood, CA. I had an OK marriage, my husband was out to sea, so I had some free time on my hands and took a chance. He like the fact that I was a ATW (already trained wife) had no kids and no family to hold me back. Will 25 years later we are still married, no kids, and have had a great life. He is 80 now and has me as his wife, nurse, maid, and cook. He still supplies the dough. Life happens while your making plans.

  20. Julian Felsenburgh said...

    "You should have said "early 20s.""

    Quite frankly even if society could move the ideal towards women having kids in their late 20s rather than mid 30s I suspect it would create a massive cultural change.

    Any movement in that direction would increase the amount of families in a society, probably increase the amount of children being had and would focus society more towards the family, rather than the current focus on the whims of single upper middle class professional women.

    The more families in a society the more traditionalist the focus of that society tends to be.

  21. Anonymous 4:19,

    You ditched one husband to hook up with another even though you admit you had an ok marriage? Aside from the rights and wrongs, its wrong btw, how would you feel if you second husband ditched you for someone else? What you mentioned is not something that I'd be bragging about.

  22. You ditched one husband to hook up with another even though you admit you had an ok marriage? Aside from the rights and wrongs, its wrong btw, how would you feel if you second husband ditched you for someone else? What you mentioned is not something that I'd be bragging about.

    Agreed. The only positive thing about her ugly scenario is how she never had children and none of them were hurt in the process.

  23. I cam empathize with her up to a point, but she's making it harder for herself than she has to. She comes across as so liberal that she's going to alienate a lot of guys who aren't in that category.

    But what's even more of a problem is that she doesn't seem to realize that she comes across as someone who won't respect a guy's privacy. Why tell the world about her former husband. It's none of anyone's business if her former husband was a homosexual. Some people might know him, and not know of his sexual preference until they've read the article.

    So why would any self respecting guy run the risk of dating her knowing that if there's a relationship and something goes sour, there's a good chance all the details, from her viewpoint, are going to be posted on Huffington Post?

  24. AYY respecting people's privacy doesn't really seem to be a priority in today's world.

  25. After reading your first article I hope this creature never breeds.

  26. I love the last paragraph of your article, and wholeheartedly agree.

    Ever since we abandoned the true purpose of marriage in favor of feminism, we've entered into a place of postponing life-long marriage for college and career. Then, suddenly, warped women with warped views of reality..selfish, me-centered, wish to marry as something on their to-do list.

    Marriage is a sound contract, and it's a real shame we have abandon that thinking in favor of delayed marriage, and child-bearing. Guess that's why so many babies are created (and destroyed) via IVF..because you just can't "order up" life because you stomp your foot.