Monday, April 30, 2012

Some Advice for the Young Non Neurotypical Woman

Earlier this month I wrote
part of an ongoing thread which has provoked quite a bit of useful discussion and which has hopefully been useful and encouraging to our readers.
One reasonably consistent theme here at the Chariot is, where possible, we try to offer encouragement, valuing it higher than the jeremiad, which we feel also has its place.  Call it a theory of comparative advantage of blogging---others can better carry other tones for which we are less suited.

This discussion, advice for the young non-neurotypical woman, is offered for both encouragement for those falling within or tangentially related to this particular demographic as well as for an aesthetic sense of completeness of this ongoing discussion.  It is certainly not added out of any sense or obligation of sexual equality, for we do not believe in such, believing that man and woman are complementary, not equal, in any real way other than in intrinsic value to their Creator.

First off, we're going to presume that you want marriage, family, and children.  If you don't, this will be of decidedly less practical usefulness to you.  If you're wondering why you should want such a thing, and your wondering is an actual request for information and not merely rhetorical, feel free to ask.  We're not inclined to attempt to convince you to do anything that is actually not in your best interests in the spirit of 'taking one for the team'.  Those who read here often will know that sort of appeal is distinctly out of character for the Chariot.  Any such exhortations can be best made believer to believer within the context of a personal relationship or through the action of the Holy Spirit.

Next, let me put several things to you straight:
As a woman, your position in the Marriage and Sexual Marketplaces (typically abbreviated MMP and SMP respectively) is determined almost entirely by your physical attractiveness as viewed by men.  You can do a few things beyond this to improve or worsen your position, but this is the major determiner of how the markets treat you.
As a woman, the men who you will generally be able to attract for long term relationships leading towards marriage will be of very similar percentiles in the MMP/SMP to you.  That is, if you're in, say, the 75th percentile of attractiveness, you're probably going to get men pretty close to the 75th percentile of status as measured by women interested in you in that way.
Note that as a woman, you'll ALSO get men above that level of status interested in you for short term relationships, 'pump and dump', and/or one night stands.  I strongly recommend that you exercise extreme caution with these men, even if you have no particular religious or ethical position barring you from such activity.  It is simply put, not in your best interests.  Your body is designed to emotionally bond to the men that you have sex with, in a way considerably more intense than is the case for men.  You've probably heard/been told that you always remember your first kiss.  This is true, but it is more true and more important as regards your other firsts.

Now, you might ask, WHAT IS STATUS?  Status is a nebulous thing for men---nebulous enough that an entire sphere of blogs has grown around the topic.  Status sweeps up such things as economic power (both present and imputed future power), height, perceived defensive and offensive physical capability, physical attractiveness, swagger, social ability and dominance, and much more.
Here's the easy answer though---being a non-neurotypical woman you're probably considerably less adept at such estimations than your neurotypical counterparts---a man who is, say, 80th percentile in status typically has a long term girlfriend or wife who is around the 80th percentile of attractiveness.  A woman's attractiveness is really easy to estimate for an honest observer.  If you really can't make such an estimate, just ask some of your male friends---they're likely to give you honest appraisals of OTHER women.  From there you can easily work backwards.
As a non-neurotypical woman, you are likely to have a lot more male friends than female ones.  This is because men are decidedly less offended by the fact that your gut doesn't respond in precisely the same way that theirs does than are women.  Even a really bad emulation is often more than enough.  You're not in the same boat that your non-neurotypical male counterparts are in this case.  You probably need to work on developing at least a few friends with more girly girls though.

I am not going to mislead you with happy talk, your position owing to your multidimensional hypergamy is a difficult one to satisfy.  This is because your gut almost certainly wants a man at least as smart as you are and with a status level comparable to your attractiveness level.  Funny how the guys who are your friends are often objectively perfect according to your lists, but just don't seem to 'do it for you', isn't it?  I'm not going to tell you to do sacred meditations to free you from the chains of your hypergamous instincts.  If you can actually do that, grand, but my experience is that very few people can and way more people think that they can than can actually do it at that.  So my advice here is on how to find those rare creatures that your gut will be happy with.

For a woman in your demographic, college is your BEST opportunity to find a suitable husband by far.  This is especially true if you were prudent enough to select your college with a strong eye towards having a large pool to select from of men that have the attributes that you want.  At the low end, a lot of state flagship institutions have honors programs with honors dormitories wherein pretty much everyone contained within is at minimum 2 sigma, with tons of three sigmas and a few four sigmas as well.  This is a positively EXCELLENT place for a woman of your nature to shop, because one key component of your hypergamy requirements is easy to satisfy.  Your mission in dating is to find a man who could be interested in marrying you who your gut likes enough to want to marry, and to close the deal with him.

So how do you find a man who is suitable.  The first part is to be attractive.  Because of the relatively recent wave of obesity, you can put yourself into an excellent position here with a fairly tractable amount of effort.  This is because on the order of half of your competitors are significantly overweight.

So get thee to your campus gym.  Take some of your male friends with you.  Having a partner for such things makes it easier for you to commit to your regimen and actually get it done.  Also, I'm going to let you in on another secret aid you can use.  Most universities have actual classes you can take, usually S/U, in things like tennis, weight training, martial arts, etc.  Taking a few of these will allow you to use your academic discipline (if you're like most non-neurotypicals, you've got NO shortage of such discipline relative to your peers) instead of your general or physical reserves of discipline.  Taking one of your male friends with you will also in many cases give him the advantages of apparent preselection in the eyes of other women, if you're not interested in him in that way (read, he doesn't measure up to your gut's standards).  One other thing:  going to the gym with a man over the period of months, which is long enough to reap most of the 'newbie gains', will inform your gut of some of the big reasons why you would want a husband in the first place.  You will be truly shocked as to how strong even that tall, thin geek has apparently become---reality has that effect often times.  There is a large constellation of potential futures wherein you REALLY want to bind the loyalty of such a creature, just a word to the wise.
If you do this, you can nearly assure yourself of around the 75th percentile of attractiveness, and guys WILL be attracted to you, even if you're seriously geeky with exceptionally bad neurotypical emulation.
At this level, it is pretty feasible for you to manuever them into asking you out while making them think that it is their own idea.  If your sights are set on another non-neurotypical though, you will probably have to be more blatant---their emulation probably isn't good enough to properly interpret your signals (things like playing with your hair, touching him unnecessarily on the arm, pointing your legs at him, invading his personal space with plausible deniability, and the like).  For such guys I suggest actually talking to them directly about the subject.

If you want to give yourself a few more percentiles, there are other things you can do.  First, find an OLD home economics textbook.  I recall one I saw back in the early 1980s.  That textbook will tell you how to properly match clothing and the like to your skin tone, hair color, and eyes.  This is a much better guide for you than what is presently fashionable and for a lot less effort expended (I knew a lot of girls that studied fashion magazines more dilligently than I studied Calculus back in the day).  Keep your hair reasonably long, at least shoulder length.  Shoot for hair that screams touchable.  Upwards of 90% of guys really like that.  Don't be afraid to wear skirts and dresses, in fact I suggest doing so regularly without any particular occasion.  Doing so reminds men that you are a woman.  You are likely to notice a distinct difference in the way men treat you when you're dressed up a bit.  I suggest reveling in it and acting appreciative.

Now, for the guys on your radar, I suggest looking at them through the eyes of charity as Christians would understand it.  Look at both their present selves AND their likely future selves if they had you as a girlfriend or wife.  What you really don't want to do, at least not terribly often, is to get a man who, by the mere act of being his first real romantic relationship, is suddenly promoted in the eyes of the other girls of the world into being way out of your league.  So moderate your fixer-upper tendencies here---I had a friend in college who had this as a regular syndrome with her boyfriends.  Aim at one that you believe you can reasonably keep.  One sneaky way to do this would be to make him your gym partner and to do some of your basic remedial work on him while he's firmly in your 'friend zone', but to keep open the prospect of promoting him should your gut wake up one morning and decide that he makes the grade.  You can also, through the power of preselection, help your male friends obtain their first girlfriends.  You don't have to talk them up or even matchmake to make this happen, just be attractive and seem to like him and be seen with him.  That's all it takes, this is the most effective propaganda technique going and neurotypicals are totally vulnerable to it.  You are likely resistant to it, but make no mistake, you're probably NOT immune to it.  You'll probably find that when that geeky friend of yours gets a girlfriend via your plausibly deniable assistance, that your gut suddenly finds him more attractive than it did before for some reason.

So once you've got your boyfriend, your task is to determine if he's suitable for you for the long term.  If he's not, you don't want to date him too long, because he's preventing you from finding the man who IS.  There's also the consideration that, if he IS suitable, you need to make the sale.  Given your circumstances, you want to aim at getting married even younger than I customarily recommend (for neurotypical women, I think 23 is a good age to shoot at being married by, you should use the peak of your attractiveness to men to get your husband).  Because this is unusual, the sale is harder.  You're asking him to essentially forever forswear the possibility of any other women in the SMP/MMP for you.  He's probably also a very smart guy---I mean, if he wasn't, you'd probably not be interested in him, right?  So the offer you make him has to be an attractive one indeed if you want him to take it.  So here's what I suggest:

1.  Be attractive.  It's hard to overestimate the power of this.
2.  Be respectful.  Never talk down your boyfriend to other women, or for that matter, don't talk down your ex-boyfriend(s) who weren't suitable to be promoted to husband.  If anything, help them find partners more appropriate to them.  Never talk down men as a gender.  Convey that you like men in general---you do right?  If not, why is it that most of your friends are men?  Praise them occasionally, they need that like plants need sunlight, and they're likely to appreciate it also.  Get them to do you favors every so often also, and be grateful and appreciative when they come through for you.  This will make them like you better, especially if they're mostly neurotypical men.
3.  Work on winning over their friends, especially their really close ones.  If his best friend talks you up, he'll update his priors in a way favorable to you.  Even if you're not into the sorts of games or whatever they play, there's no reason you can't occasionally bake and bring a batch of cookies or brownies.  Baked goods are powerful, and they pierce most emotional or psychological defenses, and they're not that hard to learn to make.
4.  Display the capability to be a good wife.  If he knows that you're fully capable in the tasks that are the usual division of labor in  a marriage, he's more likely to seriously consider you in that way.
5.  Be trustworthy with him.  If you've got any collateral indicators of your likely trustworthiness in a marriage (like parents and grandparents that have no history of divorce, actual religious devotion, or the like), make sure he has ample opportunity to infer such. 
6.  If you've got a good family, make sure that he gets a chance to understand that fairly early on.  A smart man knows that when he marries a woman, he also marries her family. So if your family is a good one to marry into, make absolutely certain he knows that.
7.  Be affectionate with him but I strongly recommend you retain your important firsts until marriage.  Make certain he knows how you feel about marriage and that you have ZERO intention of holding him in painful celibacy (or what Paul would call 'burning with passion')  for a prolonged period of time.  Make it clear that your husband will not be refused or disrespected.  You'll find that if men know that you're a virgin, that they will treat you differently.  In such cases the belief that you're saving yourself for your future husband (which might be the man in question himself) is credible relative to the alternate belief that 'she doesn't want to sleep with me because she's not really into me as much as the guy(s) she slept with previously.  Understand this, a man WILL infer something from the fact that a previous boyfriend got further with you than he has, and it's not an inference you want him to make.  Consider very very carefully the favors you grant.
8.  Be straight with him about marriage and the risks of such.  Indicate a willingness to go for a covenant marriage if such is an option given your faith background (several states in the US have them, they're essentially an imperfect approximation of marriage 1.0).  Also indicate a willingness to lay down a prenuptial agreement that is fair to both parties and to any children of your prospective union.
9.  Be straight with him about your desire for children and your timetable for such.  If your plan is to work outside the home until the designated time to start having children and to thereafter be a stay at home homeschool mom, make sure he's on board with that.  If you've done the first 8 things, getting buy-in here shouldn't be that hard.
10.  Be straight with him about your expectations as regards division of labor and the way of living for man and wife.  Be very wary of any significant cultural or religious distance between you and your future husband.  It matters, a lot.

Do this and you've a good chance of escaping the fate of the bare branches we've discussed in previous posts and you're likely to have children and grandchildren to brighten your old and middle ages.  Your position is substantially more difficult than it is for most women, but fortunately for you, they have as a class made enough unforced errors that you can turn the situation around to your advantage.


Anonymous said...

Actually, smart women are very well posistioned to date men as smart as them. I don't reember if the cutoff was 3 or 4 sigma, but male genuises outnumber female genuises 9:1. If we assume that people can only meaninfuly communicate with people within 2SD (and would prefer 1SD) then the marraige pool of genuis men is a very small slice of women.

I think the big question, if a woman does make it through college without marrying what should she do. What I'm going to suggest is DON'T become a corporate cog. It pays more, but ideally hubby will be providing most of the income anyway one day. Any job you take if your +3 sigma is going to pay median or greater salary which is more then enough to live on.

Being a corporate cog, in addition to being a terrible lifestyle, will make you an incredibly unattractive person. You will become bitter, tired, masculine, and an all around bitch.

Do something fun that will help you grow, the man will come in and provide the mortgage and private school tuition when the time comes.

Jehu said...

The numbers ratios aren't bad in the population as a whole for women:men in those ranges. But nevertheless the women in this category seem to have a devil of a time finding husbands and having children. This is likely because people above 3 sigmas are, by definition, pretty rare and it's hard to have a large set of them to pick from unless you are in a specifically filtered environment. For most women, that means college.
There are more 4 sigma guys by far than women, but you've got to meet them. That's the rub.

Jehu said...

Also, women generally want the husband to be as smart as (preferably smarter than) them, in addition to having status levels equivalent to their physical attractiveness.
Men generally go for the woman with the most of what they want that they can find at the attractiveness level that their status dictates. That's an easier problem most of the time.

AC said...

I question whether a young woman's interests happen to be so perfectly aligned with that of (traditional non-neurotypical) men as you assert. Many women demonstrate a preference for careerism and competitive dating - the cultural pressures are especially strong at elite colleges. And the idea of them boosting their nerdy friend's prospects just so she can be self-deceived into being attracted to them seems more like a fantasy...certainly I haven't felt the urge to drag my female friends to the malls and salons so that I could feel attracted to them.

Jehu said...

The alignment of the non-neurotypical woman's interests, assuming that marriage and family are high priorities of hers with her counterpart male isn't really very bad at all.
As to boosting their friend's prospects, remember, you're a guy, that option isn't really available to you based on how the market works. For a woman it happens regardless of her actual intent. In college, for instance, when I was out with one of my female non-romantic friends, I got a LOT more indications of interest than otherwise.
Realistically, if a female non-neurotypical manages marriage, it's almost certainly going to be one of her long term friends. The danger though is the one I mentioned in this and previous posts---the act of her dating them can in many cases push him out of her league. THerefore it is probably prudent for her to gently push her set of male friends to upgrade themselves to at least the low-hanging fruit level and let some other girl take the reverse new-car effect (significant appreciation immediately instead of depreciation).

Alrenous said...

Keep your hair reasonably long, at least shoulder length. Shoot for hair that screams touchable. Upwards of 90% of guys really like that.

That, and cutting hair for the exception is a lot faster than growing it out.

Anonymous said...

Jehu, would you mind touching on the ethnoreligious question that young non-neurotypical women face, especially if they're going after 3 or 4 sigma men at an elite college? For me personally they are unacceptable, but you may see things differently.

Jehu said...

It is generally not a good idea to have a marriage across a significant religious boundary. For the non-neurotypical woman, the most likely exclusive classes are:
Christian, Mormon, Jewish, or Atheist of the high or low church variety. These divisions are a lot more important for married people than for casual daters and the cultural expectations bundled with the religion are as important or moreso than the theological differences.
On the ethnic side, it is unwise to marry across a significant gulf as well. I know quite a few such couples, but none who have an easy time of it. Some examples include black-white, Indian-Syrian, Moroccan-EuroAmerican, and the numerous White-East Asian. Yes, it's possible your particular potential spouse and you may be an exception, but that's not the way to bet.
A non-neurotypical woman is likely at a state university's honors program, possibly at a place like Georgia Tech, MIT, or Caltech, but is pretty unlikely to be at a place like Harvard/Yale/Princeton. Do bear in mind that any advice I give here is aimed pretty much entirely at the probability of success of the ensuing marriage. There are other reasons to oppose or espouse such unions that are beyond the scope of this particular post.