Professor Mentu, still working toward tenure, makes the case that partner count doesn’t matter. I won’t explain what the good professor just did there, but in the piece he brings up a salient point:
Relationships don’t take work. Partnerships take work. If you’re her partner, you’re not the Alpha leader you claim to be. Having her in your life in relation to you is the sweet spot most men are too sackless to find, because today’s women are not submissive and a man must spend the rest of his life supplicating and sacrificing to keep her happy. How any man can say he has a “good wife” simply because she requires less supplication than most other women is something I’ll never understand.
My initial reaction, which is evident in my first comment at said UMan article, was to go pedantic and argue over Mentu’s terminology. Then I realized he’s hit on a nice distinction; a way of phrasing the approach we unplugged men take in our relationships.
Of course, in exchange for my restraint I encountered pedantry.
Do relationships take work? We could, apparently, argue about the definition of work, so I’m going to define it as effort undertaken toward a goal. And with my definition fresh in hand, I’m going to answer yes, a relationship takes work, even as I broadly agree with Mentu. (These pretzels are making me thirsty.)
Happiness is a byproduct, generally of productivity. Work is a form of productivity. One can focus on himself and, as a result, enjoy the happiness that comes from the satisfaction of a content, as opposed to unhaaapppyyy!, woman or he can focus on her happiness and hope for the best. The latter is the path of supplication. It too is work, it’s just not very productive. To put it another way, relationships take work because a meaningful life takes work. If you are working toward something meaningful, then she will naturally want to position herself in relation to you. If you are working on her, then naturally she will not.
Finally, the title, stolen from Mentu, has nothing to do with the content. It simply made me laugh and is intriguing enough to encourage hits. I will say one should avoid it. Pair bond early, repeat the exercise often; avoid swimming in the swim team’s ravine.