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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » The Rules of what? Marriage, confusion, and fright...

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Author Topic: The Rules of what? Marriage, confusion, and fright...
lemming
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 33

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just things that have been going through my mind lately, and what my dearest and I have been discussing...

~opinion post, by the way~

There's a book that's been out a few years now called 'The Rules', and it's supposed to tell you "how to catch a man" (yes, that's a direct quote). I picked it up the other day at the library because it sounded so outrageous as to be humorous...but I started reading it and it really shocked me to think there are still women who think this way.

Basically, the gist of the book is that all you want is to find a man and catch him, trap him into marrying you and to make yourself 'pleasant to be around', no matter what your true personality is. You're supposed to deny your true self, hide it from the man you're trying to 'get,' and manipulate him into marrying the woman you've made yourself out to be through trickery. The book concludes by saying that in a 'Rules' marriage you will live happily ever after.

Am I the only one in the whole world who finds this whole idea horribly horribly wrong? How can you expect to have a decent relationship with anyone at all when you meet them and woo them through trickery and dishonesty?!?!?

So, my love and I were talking about this the other day *he had found the book and started reading it*, and he was as shocked as I by the ideas in it. (Our relationship is pretty much based on total honesty and full disclosure of everything from "Did you eat today?" to "Do you like when I do that to you? How does that feel?", and I think this is the only way I can get really close to anyone).

We started discussing the idea of marriage as it's seen in this society sometimes, as an end. After you get married, it seems like most people think that's it, that you won't have to work at it at all, that your relationship with your partner will just take care of itself. We don't want to end up like that, taking each other for granted!

We have talked about marriage between the two of us as well, and he's already told me that the reason he's wary of it is because he doesn't want us to become like some couples he knows, whose relationships changed right after they were married.

Is there any hope for us? If we work hard enough at this, could we make marriage what we naive idealists think it ought to be, a celebration of commitment, more than a piece of paper, or sending in legal fees?

It's just so confusing...Any thoughts for me?

~lemming

------------------
"Two little girls, growing out of their training bras/This little girl breaks furniture, this little girl breaks laws/Two girls together, each a little less alone..." ~Ani DiFranco, "Two Little Girls"


Posts: 3156 | From: Austin, Texas | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
HotGrrl99
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Member # 105

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That "rules" book is just a load of crap and a rip off. My friends who have tried it got totally dumped by any guys that they tried it on! It's just a scam by the authors to make money, by selling that junk to unsuspecting and desperate women!
Posts: 384 | From: Malibu, California, USA | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
morganlh85
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Member # 785

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Ive heard about that stupid book; stay away from it! they actually did a whole show on it on 20/20...they tested it on actual guys. They asked them if things like ignoring them, not returning phone calls, and other dating tactics would attract them. the answer was a big fat NO! in fact, read this book and do the exact opposite of everything they say. marriage and dating isnt about "trapping" a guy...its about finding someone you love.

------------------
"Write your questions on the back of a $20 bill and send it to me."
"Kids in the backseat cause accidents; accidents in the backseat cause kids."
"Only users lose drugs."
"You don't need a parachute to skydive; you only need a parachute to skydive twice."
"Everything rhymes with RIUNITE!"
"If practice makes perfect and nobody's perfect then why practice?"
"It gives me more compost when I need it!"


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Etch
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Member # 182

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My mom has both the books in the series. (yes there are actually 2 of them!!!!) In one of them there is actually a section for teenage girls. My mom told me to read it. Thank god I forgot it all. Basically the book tells you to play hard to get. By not seeming interested then guys will just want you more. Too bad that isnt true!!! The rest of the book tells you to be the perfect little angel. I couldnt act that nice and sweet to the queen of England. Sorry, its too fake for me. But i think that the stuff in there does work on some guys, unfortunately. My mom got remarried using all those rules. She seems totally fake around him though. And she tries to make my brother and I act the same way around him like he is going to leave her just because her kids arent perfect.

Lemming, your marriage will be what you make it out to be. Not what society or some stupid book says it should be. It is you and your boyfriends job to keep your relationship exciting and alive after you sign those papers. It may take a lot or a little work to keep your marriage that way. But you will never know untill it happens.

And it sounds like you and your boyfriend have a very strong relationship right now. Thats wonderful. I am happy for you.


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Sympathys_Sin
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Yeah, but dont you guys think that it's SAD that it doesnt work??

I mean, dont get me wrong, being someone you're not is dumb, but i'm talking about this hard to get stuff. I dont think you should "play" hard to get.

But I've seen WAY too many girls throw themselves at guys... and yeah, sometimes they are both pretty good with each other. But sometimes you're giving the girl or guy way too much control!

My best friend calls her boyfriend EVERY night. And I know this guy, he's got caller ID and if he doesnt want to talk to her, he doesnt pick up the phone, and if he's BORED, he does. He never calls her, because he doesnt feel a need to. Every day she'll ask him if he wants to do anything. She keeps her schedule completely free for him. You know what this means? Whenever he wants to do something, whenever he wants to talk to her, whenever he wants to be lovey dovey, they are. He's got all the control. He's taking her for granted.

But he's not like this with everybody, only her.

This hard to get isnt a game. It isnt a form of flirting. And you should never just ignore someone you're trying to have a relationship with. But NOBODY should ever be reduced to a back-up plan because they can't manage some self control and decide that it's time for somebody else to try.


Posts: 49 | From: MA | Registered: Aug 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Hanne
Sexpert
Member # 100

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It strikes me that having a good sense of your own worth, and simply having a *life* in which your happiness is not 100% dependent on the presence of a partner or lover, will go a heck of a long way toward letting you have balanced, healthy, self-respecting (and other-people-respecting) relationships.

Any time you're basing the majority of your actions on what someone else might think or do as a result, that's called dependency.
Just like drug dependency or alcohol dependency, it means you're making your decisions because of some external thing over which you have no real control, and giving control of a large chunk of your life to someone or something else.

How smart is that?

"The Rules" is nothing more than a textbook on how to be a good old-fashioned sexist manipulator. Live your own life, set your own standards, and do what is good for you and for the people you love.

------------------
Hanne Blank
Associate Editor, Scarleteen

"Be Excellent To Each Other" -- Bill and Ted


Posts: 1538 | From: boston, ma, USA | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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