I do, but not with you.
In the comments on men’s PUA sites occasionally someone says something that’s useful for women. In this case, Mike posted about the difference between the “bitch shield” and the “prude shield”.
You’ve probably read hundreds of dating and marriage experts say that mistrust is very unattractive. Yet the same people say that it’s a bad idea for a girl to seem too easy because there are so many cads out there. It’s difficult to parse what exactly it is that they’re saying.It’s confusing because there’s a conflict between the modern trend of more liberal attitudes about sex and gender roles, and the actual biological, psychological, and social needs of humans.
The old system was just as bad as far as feasability. If women aren’t allowed to work or to vote then they’re doubly vulnerable than men who will suffer greatly under the yoke of political and economic oppression. As they say, sh*t rolls downhill.
So although having freedom is a good thing, having a brain is as well. However, if someone doesn’t know that they have an option, they won’t know to use it. This is where the “bitch shield” comes in.
Women are wired to filter out losers. No matter what has ever been fashionable or traditional, no woman is happy about being trapped with a wuss of a man. Though some women are more tolerant of guys with lower incomes, the vast majority also don’t want to get involved with a guy who doesn’t have the resources to sustain or improve the lifestyle she is accustomed to. We’re being real here. Very few women would be willing to be primary wage earners if they have to work outside the home to do it. Very few men aside of farmers and working artists could truly pull off active home based fatherhood without feeling that they are losing their masculinity, at least in the west.
Add this to the current widespread belief that if you don’t have sex with a guy before a commitment, he will value you less, and go find someone who will. We’re made to feel insecure about our looks, told that our value as women rests in our looks, and therefore if we’re not “perfect” then we should be “more approachable” (read easier) to improve our chances of getting and keeping a man.
So the general strategy has become looking and behaving as if one is available and open to non committal sex, but blocking out perceived losers with hostility. The slut act and placing one’s self in meat market venues is the wide net that draws in everybody who’s remotely physically attracted to you, and then you have to sort and throw back the fish you don’t really want.
Using these kinds of tactics often leads to situations in which you actually have to explain to a guy that you’re not interested in having casual sex with him.
Let that thought soak in for a minute.
Why would a rational person think that you would be interested in casual sex with them? It’s because you dress and behave in a way that gives them the impression that you would be interested in casual sex with people, and they’re trying for their turn in the line.
I just don't.
If, on the other hand, you dress and behave in a way that says that you probably or certainly don’t do casual sex, you don’t need a bitch shield. You have a prude shield. Guys around you will understand that the default answer is no until you’re married or seriously committed. Some may have a wishful thinking problem, but it will be easy to point out to them that they’re behaving irrationally without any smarmy, “Let’s just be friends…” speeches.
The thing is, to pull this off, you can’t screw guys outside of committed relationships. It can’t be that sometimes you do, and sometimes you don’t. You just don’t. If you have in the past, you should chalk it up as experience, and stop. Do your best to recover whatever you’ve lost from that. You may need the help of a therapist or minister for awhile.
You also have to start dressing like someone who isn’t trying to pick up. This does not mean uglifying yourself, or letting yourself go. It also doesn’t mean acting as if you think sex is yucky. It means not advertising your sexuality as if it were a product you’re selling.
Technically, once you do this, you’re selling your chastity, but at least this way you get to control who’s in your pool of buyers. You are like an exclusive club for members only. The default answer that should go through a guy’s mind who finds you attractive, to the question of whether or not he’s likely to get in, should be no. Men should know in advance and on sight that they have no chance of getting pre commitment sex from you consensually, even if they are the king of wherever. It’s just not going to happen.
This means that the guys who are looking for an easy lay will pass you over, or not put much effort into you once they understand the situation. Good riddance.
This will be difficult for those of you who are used to getting a lot of male attention. Attention is what passes for validation for many people nowadays, but it’s not the same thing. It’s the type of attention that matters most. Sometimes the lack of attention is the validation, and proof of your actual value as opposed to your usefulness.
If you’re not putting out, and not looking like you will, then being passed over by guys looking for an easy lay usually means they respect you too much to waste your time. You may not be of much use to them at the moment, but you are still valuable. The reason this is usually the case and not just sometimes, is because most guys ultimately want a committed relationship. It’s just that when they’re young, they feel like they should be sowing their wild oats. Yeah, they’ve been lied to the same way we have.
Hollywood waves the prospect of an endless parade of 10’s in front of them. It’s like the Tyler Durden speech where he says that they were all told they were going to be rock stars and millionaires, but that didn’t happen, so they’re angry. When they do come back down to earth, they are very put off by the bitch shield. For years, they’ve had cleavage and butt crack dangling in front of their noses, but jerked away as soon as they’ve reached out to touch it, more often than not.
They’d rather be with someone who isn’t playing those childish games. If you have substantially above average looks, you’ll need to suit up in order to not be seen as mere eye candy or a tease or mercenary. If you have average or below average looks, you will need to suit up in order to not be viewed as easy and disposable. The fact is that pretty, popular girls, whatever that means, can get away with more and still be generally valued. The kinds of guys who don’t lose their testicles just because of a girl being pretty though, have very high standards of character and grooming, which is part of the evidence of character.
Now to the benefits of the prude shield…
You don’t have to wear makeup beyond the work and event standard. Most men are not fooled by makeup anyway. Some fetishists and television raised porn addicts prefer a woman to wear makeup, but even they are not actually fooled into thinking a woman is more pretty than she actually is. For some men, makeup takes away more than it gives to a woman’s appearance. So you can set your pores free, and you won’t get premature eye wrinkling…a big bonus for the long term.
You can be feminine without it being misinterpreted as easy. Write those silly poems, and stare into his eyes. Tell him how it makes you feel when he doesn’t call at least every couple of days, and don’t pretend that it doesn’t bother you. Let the tears well up, and your voice shake if he starts evading or talking trash. This is not a battle for supremacy. It’s a relationship. If he bails out, you will feel the loss, and you will be disappointed even though you will survive.
There is no chance of rapo gaming
. You’re old fashioned in the way that you don’t have a romantic relationship until the guy has both explicitly defined it as such to you, and is publically calling you his girlfriend, fiance, or wife. You’re not seeing other people, or pressuring him, but you’re not counting your chickens before they’re hatched. You also don’t like misunderstandings, or to waste others’ time or your own, and you prefer a mature and decisive partner. You’ve made it clear that indecision is a pet peeve of yours, and at the point his indecisiveness starts to annoy you, you simply no longer respond to any of his vague flirtations.
You trigger a decent man’s protective urges, rather than his defensiveness. If you’ve established yourself as the woman in the relationship from the beginning, you can be a bit flexible about some of the superficial gender roles without it being interpreted as a power play. You can be a civil engineer or a receptionist, and either way you’re still a woman to him. There is no dating like a man if you’re not a man, so masculinizing your style just gets you perceived as slutty, bitter, and/or domineering. With the bitch shield, you’d be saying you don’t want to have sex with him because he’s not good enough. A prude shield says you’re not having sex with him because he’s not yours, regardless of why. That’s not about power. It’s about protection.
What about the dangers of the prude shield?
The big one is that it could be interpreted as sexual manipulation in the bad way. A guy could believe that you are witholding sex in order to pressure him to commit.
To counter this perception, you will have to first lose your delusions of grandeur. If you won’t have sex with him, someone else out there will. You can’t prevent a man from having sex in general. All you can decide is what you will and won’t consent to. So you have to make it clear that you are not interested in manipulating him because you understand that just leads to frustration and dishonesty. You just don’t want sex from someone who isn’t committed to you because of your own standards. He is welcome to opt out if this is too much pressure for him.
…which brings us to another danger. Well, it’s not really a danger so much as it is collateral damage due to circumstances you could not anticipate. That is the fact that it is a widespread social trend for men to be wusses these days. There also seems to be a rise in uncareful promiscuity. Since they figured out that the withdrawal method is passable birth control, many guys aren’t using condoms from start to finish every time.
So a guy may not feel that he should have to be in a committed relationship to have sex, but will pursue you in the hopes that you will change your mind. He may think you were just kidding. When he finds out you’re not, he’ll start distancing himself. Let him go.
Another danger is that there are guys out there who are desperate enough to mock commitment up to the point that it doesn’t really cost them anything substantial. It is very important that you not fall for professions of love and promises of the moon and stars. Give it enough time to get confirmation from other sources that his word actually means something. A wuss is never that way in just one area of his life. If guys don’t trust him, girls shouldn’t either.
Then finally, there is the chance that you may be alone a very very long time. In the day, they had a word for this, “spinster”. Now, they’re called cat ladies. If you keep your legs closed and behave honorably, like most honorable people, you may pay a high price for that. This is why they call it honor.
On the other hand, part of being honorable is being true to yourself. If you sincerely feel that you would rather end up a cat lady than a cougar, if it comes down to being romantically alone in your older age, then the prude shield will do you well. You’ll have less needless drama in your life, and in your age, you will be looked on as a nurturing mentor. Hey, some nice man may be secretly lusting after you, but waiting for his wife to die
If, on the other hand, you need some action, and would be more miserable as a cat lady than a cougar, perhaps relative prudishness is not for you. Hey, if you’re going to be a slut, then be an ethical one. Might I interest you though, in a middle ground?
If you find yourself getting up there in age, and due to lack of luck, you haven’t found Mr. Right, consider life as a sassy broad. Whatever you do, do it with discretion. Hey, it’s a thought.