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A very vicious observation

The question I’m a 54-year-old woman, divorced for three years. My experience of men for this time has been pretty awful. I feel used and played. I want to ask you about the role mobile phones play in relationships, particularly how they can be used to maybe allow people to cheat. When I was in my 20s, they didn’t exist and communication between me and my then-husband was straightforward and I really did trust him. It’s only since divorce that I have come across such horrible behaviour. Is this something to do with my age group? It seems that men my age think it’s OK to treat women like sweets in a shop, not giving any care about feelings after initially pledging very convincingly that they do. The last one, who I thought was all right, lied about being supportive and used me to help him through some kind of breakdown, then feeling much better went away on a cycling holiday and slept with someone he met, telling me quite proudly about it and his plans to take that forward. What’s going on? What’s wrong with me and what do I need to learn please, as I feel lost with this? My foray into internet dating has been so dire that I’m reluctant to try again. Is there any hope for women around my age?

You’re 54, Honey. You are worth less in that dating market. No, not worthless, just worth less.

34 thoughts on “A very vicious observation”

  1. When my parents were alive, I overheard a conversation between them covering much the same treatment of a lady of a similar age in their social circle.

    Mother: Why are men such deceivers?

    Father: It’s because women are such bloody fools.

    I never realised, up to that point, that my father was so insightful.

  2. I thought women wanted men to tell them the truth and that they are strong characters who can pick and choose their sexual partners. Is that not the case?

  3. ’I want to ask you about the role mobile phones play in relationships, particularly how they can be used to maybe allow people to cheat.’

    People have cheated for centuries- mobile phone have little if anything to do with it.

  4. The last one, who I thought was all right, lied about being supportive

    Dating criteria “Be Supportive”, so man does the pretending to be supportive bit to meet the dating requirements.

    [He] went away on a cycling holiday and slept with someone he met, telling me quite proudly about it and his plans to take that forward.

    He met a female with a higher sexual market value than yourself or one that was simply prepared to “put out” with less effort and/or higher frequency.

    What’s going on? What’s wrong with me and what do I need to learn please, as I feel lost with this?

    You’ve passed your prime and your fertility is ended. You have failed to secure a mate for life when you had both the looks and the fertility. This is what happens to those that are left. There is nothing you can do other than adjust your expectations to reality.

  5. Feminism really has been a crock of shite for women hasn’t it? Indeed one has to wonder if it was created by a man (or men) for their own benefit, because it appears more men have benefited from it than women have. But as far as one can see this was an entirely female created own goal.

  6. There’s a subsection of men who value a past-fertile woman for being safely past-fertile. If she has any sense she should see that as her value and promote that as her value. Don’t yell, don’t swell, be grateful as hell.

  7. In fairness Jim, Feminism was designed to benefit upper middle class women and no-one else, they just needed to vast majority of women to support it to make it seem they were all united.

    As far as your average woman it has been a disaster, resulting in broken homes, broken marriages, overwork, stress and unhappiness that increases with every poll done on the subject.

    Whereas men have been released from the only duty they ever had, to marry and have a family. In the absence of that duty they can continue to live like teenagers for the rest of their lives.

    None of this is healthy for us as individuals or as a society.

  8. There’s a subsection of men who value a past-fertile woman for being safely past-fertile. If she has any sense she should see that as her value and promote that as her value. Don’t yell, don’t swell, be grateful as hell.

    Infrequent, dead-starfish sex does not compensate for having to put up with a menopausal woman.

  9. (from Much Ado About Nothing)

    Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more.
    Men were deceivers ever,
    One foot in sea, and one on shore,
    To one thing constant never.
    Then sigh not so, but let them go,
    And be you blithe and bonny,
    Converting all your sounds of woe
    Into hey nonny, nonny.

    Sing no more ditties, sing no more
    Of dumps so dull and heavy.
    The fraud of men was ever so
    Since summer first was leafy.
    Then sigh not so, but let them go,
    And be you blithe and bonny,
    Converting all your sounds of woe
    Into hey, nonny, nonny.

  10. It’s only a short step from tush to hey nonny nonny, and then I’m afraid I’ll have to call the police
    Edmond, Lord Blackadder

  11. “Feminism really has been a crock of shite for women hasn’t it? Indeed one has to wonder if it was created by a man (or men) for their own benefit, because it appears more men have benefited from it than women have. But as far as one can see this was an entirely female created own goal.”

    Feminism has only really fed women’s narcissistic urges. Same as how films with Manic Pixie Dream Girls feed men’s narcissistic urges. “I shouldn’t have to dress pretty have sex unless I really want it”=”I shouldn’t have to go to work to get Zooey Deschanel turning up at my door for sex”.

    The female media is stuffed full of these women. Look into who they are, how they end up. Most of them are colossal fuck ups. They spend years dishing out advice to women, but end up in the Cat of the Month club. “Here’s what men should do for women”. It’s never “here’s what you should do for men”. And yes, women have the right to not do steak and a blowjob but that’s like not turning up to work is a right. Your employer is not going to keep you around for long. Same as why guys who write games rarely have girlfriends, because it pays badly.

  12. Is it possible that the behaviour men will put up with for the favours of a 25-year-old with big tits does not match that for a 54-y-o with the southbound kind? Not to mention hot flushes and constant moaning.

  13. Is it possible that the behaviour men will put up with for the favours of a 25-year-old with big tits does not match that for a 54-y-o with the southbound kind? Not to mention hot flushes and constant moaning.

    Basically, yes.

    All the female flannel is just to cover up the obvious. Feminism has freed men to the extent that they can trade-up the old banger for a newer one as long as they have the time, money, fitness and aesthetics to put one in the bag.

    See Leonardo DiCaprio who always seems to trade in his girlfriend for a newer model when she hits 25.

    Obviously, not all men can achieve this. For those who can’t blokey singledom with periodic shagging of nightclub leftovers is still better than being tied to some menopausal harpy whose only purpose in life is to drain you of all remaining happiness.

    Been there. Done that. Blokey singledom is preferable by a country mile.

  14. Julia – mobile internet has had a profound effect on the dating scene, much like the B-29 Superfortress had a profound effect on Nagasaki.

    Human nature hasn’t changed, but suddenly having always-on access to a massively expanded marketplace of cocks and fannnies via the computer in your pocket has brought out the worst in people. Relationships seem a lot more transactional than they used to. Idk if there’s really a ‘dating’ scene anymore, from what Millennials tell me it’s more a succession of sterile hookups and loveless shags. Great fun for young men (for a while), less so for the girls trying to understand why they feel like crying all the time.

    Leaving the husband or wife or common law spouse or long term whatever is usually a bad decision, unless they’re literally and seriously abusive. Even Johnny Depp, one of the richest and most famous people alive, suffered badly after he decided to dump the mother of his children for a younger, hotter, less continent lady.

    So, a fatwa on the internet. Miss Elizabeth Bennett and her crazy Mum did nothing wrong.

  15. I really don’t understand women. Or at least Brit women of a certain type.
    I suppose I’m the complimentary opposite of them. Current totty’s less than half my age & a distinct headturner. Also great fun. And the latest in a string, although most of the predecessors are still live to some extent. I have absolutely no illusions what they see in me, although it’s not all about money. And I’ve regarded all of them as passing ships despite that most of them seemed to have at least temporarily dropped anchor nearby. Make one a permanency? In effect one is. The one I call my sister. Although she’s a different colour from a different continent with a different language. We’ve had a friendship based on absolute confidence for the best part of 7 years. We abandoned the exclusive girlfriend/boyfriend thing in the first. Don’t think I’ve ever been closer to someone including my ex-wife. We have something all our own. Wouldn’t mind the current one hanging around. She has the seal of approval. They both come from the same place. And the cooking’s to die for. We’ll see. I don’t go looking for these women. They’re just passing by & some of them seem interesting enough to bear investigation. Having a wide circle of friends produces them. I’d never set out to find one. Heaven knows what I’d get lumbered with
    Works fine for me because I think I understand what’s going on in other people’s heads. Or at least I don’t often get it wrong. But that’s done by never projecting what I’m wanting into theirs. And you need a fair bit of time to do this. Current incumbent’s not passed the ‘”on approval” stage yet. Might take a year or two. No hurry. Why can’t these women do this? They’ve been around long enough. They must have learned something along the way. Have a circle of friends or do they destroy them as fast as they make them? Although I don’t think women are good at this sort of thing. Most women see themselves as the centre of their own world. They see everything from their own perspective. Especially the middle-class supposed to be educated write the sort of articles Tim’s post features. It’s understanding this makes them much easier to deal with. Manipulate, if you like. Most of the women I know are much cleverer & tougher prospects, though. All very independent & worldly wise. Sharp enough to cut your fingers on. Wouldn’t bother with them if they weren’t. Don’t want a pet on a lead. The rows can be epic. Part of the fun.

  16. having always-on access to a massively expanded marketplace of cocks and fannnies via the computer in your pocket has brought out the worst in people.
    No. It’s brought access to the worst people. Every tosser & munter on the planet. (And all the grifters) People worth knowing don’t go on dating sites. They don’t have any trouble in finding partners amongst the people they meet. People go on dating sites don’t do this because they’re not worth knowing. They don’t fit into a circle of people would produce someone for them to meet.
    One thing you can say. They deserve each other. Mostly they’re unsuccessful because they’re meeting people like themselves.

  17. “My experience of men for this time has been pretty awful. I feel used and played…”

    The way of life before the fifties was a family, responsibilities, and a job for life. Many people now think it’s all about themselves, it’s the governments job to provide, and whatever series of jobs you can scare up.

    And with the wonders of the modern world men have woken up as well, they too feel used and played.

  18. Dennis, Your Guide To True Love

    What’s wrong with me and what do I need to learn please, as I feel lost with this?

    Well, first thing I’d suggest is not trying to find TRUE LOVE via internet generated hookups.

    My foray into internet dating has been so dire that I’m reluctant to try again.

    Take the hint, Missy.

    Is there any hope for women around my age?

    Several problems arise.
    First, most of the single guys your age who are single are single for very specific, unpleasant reasons. Kind of like why most of the women your age who are single end up single.
    Second, given that you’re going to have to dip your toes into a pool filled with maladjusted losers, internet dating simply allows the maladjusted losers a place to congregate. Why would you think easy access to the maladjusted losers you want to avoid is a GOOD THING?
    Third, instead of gathering thoughts, advice and support from friends and loved ones, you’re writing letters to some bimbo who works for the Guardian. A bimbo with no expertise and who knows nothing about you other than what you’ve written in that single letter. How you think that’s going to work out?

    Finding the right person at your age is going to be difficult. It is going to require a degree of thoughtfulness, common sense and even hard work. You haven’t done any of the three.

  19. BiS – wee bit harsh. A lot of the irl social infrastructure we probably took for granted in the late 20th century no longer exists. A lot of people no longer even know who their neighbours are, but it’s not obvious that’s their fault.

    The rise of technology-mediated parasocial networks is a crappy substitute, but it’s not like most kids these days know any better. How could they?

    They didn’t start the Tinder.

    I thought this was an uncharacteristically decent observation from the Guardian:

    And this is the main problem with internet dating or a blind dates – these dates start without the foundation of shared experience. There isn’t much to bond over when your experience with them is just having a coffee, or even just having sex. But when you work alongside people, or belong to the same group, then such a relationship might have a more solid foundation than only having loneliness in common.

    Same goes for any kind of relationship, not just sexual ones. Ever wonder if the reason so many people now identify as being on the spectrum is because they were never properly socialised? We’re up to our balls in chronological adults who literally can’t even.

  20. “Finding the right person at your age is going to be difficult. It is going to require a degree of thoughtfulness, common sense and even hard work. You haven’t done any of the three.”
    It really isn’t Dennis. Start by being someone people want to know. Then you’ll build up the network of acquaintances will eventually produce the person you want to meet. Because they’re likeable enough to part of the network.
    The trouble with most of these people is they’re deeply unlikeable.

  21. This behaviour is not restricted to any particular demographic. Women behave just as badly and it happens to all age groups. Online dating seems to have amplified it somewhat.

  22. Dennis, Credentialled Mental Health Amateur

    The trouble with most of these people is they’re deeply unlikeable.

    Hence the part about “hard work”.

  23. I’m a dog lover/owner.
    Our current pet was rescued from the dogs home and one of the most pressing issues is that he needs to be socialised.
    He simply doesn’t know how to behave around other dogs in a normal situation and spazzes out.
    I think a many people in today’s society are a lot like that.
    The ubiquity of mobile phones has had the converse effect of atomising society, and some people have difficulty in interacting with others face to face in a non-weird way.
    For example, at work you used to be able to socialise with your co-workers at the pub, but that sort of thing tends to be frowned upon nowadays.
    A lot of that is probably down to people being a lot more touchy – the snowflake effect as it were.
    Say one word out of place, and thats it, the career’s up the Swanee.
    The fact that the internet keeps a record of everything that you say and do, simply magnifies the effect.

  24. ” A lot of the irl social infrastructure we probably took for granted in the late 20th century no longer exists. A lot of people no longer even know who their neighbours are, but it’s not obvious that’s their fault. ”
    Of course it’s their fault, Steve. If the social infrastructure’s gone it’s because they weren’t willing to invest what was needed to preserve it. They’d rather sit in their houses watching Strictly or plastering Farcebook with stuff no-one else looks at. They don’t know who their neighbours are because they resent them. They don’t have friends because they’re not the sort of people anyone would want as friends.

  25. The social infrastructure has gone not just because they couldn’t be bothered to invest in it, but because they actively destroyed it. Time was the Church Social, interfering aunts, well-meaning cousins would beat a young man into an adult acceptable to have around young women, and steer the two parties towards each other. “Nice to see you home from college, so you remember Mrs Boughton’s Suzie from school, why don’t you phone her?” Modern generations have destroyed this essential infrastructure in the name rejecting interfering control from old fogies who Dont Understand Me! put have put no replacement in place.

  26. Not just that, but time was that to progress in your job-for-life you had to be married, because it was expected.

    “Sorry, Bill. That job as shift supervisor has gone to Harry. He’s married now and got a kid on the way. You know how it is”. Similarly, those who weren’t married by their mid-20’s were treated with suspicion of being gay or otherwise “sexually deviant”.

    It was these informal social controls that enforced conformity as much as anything else.

  27. I’ve had enough experiences with women to not feel any sympathy when they get played. They can be just as insecure and clueless as us menfolk. Best advice I could give is to get up to date with how to distinguish between the real deals and the douchebags.

    After I divorced my wife, I made a point of telling myself not to hate all women. I also got started as soon as possible with figuring out what I was doing wrong. Even if you’re doing everything right, you also have to realize that part of personal growth is developing threat detection and avoiding people who might not have done the same work on themselves.

    From the limited testimony from this woman, I imagine she has trouble with assertiveness. Her first instinct is to act like a confused and lost victim. She would benefit from learning to set expectations and boundaries with the men she meets. That might even mean making them wait longer for sex, to make sure they’re serious. And don’t invest in someone until they show that they’ll invest in you. Seems like she probably doesn’t have any hobbies either. There are men who get rejected even with all of those things going for them.

    Maybe dating apps aren’t the best medium for someone in their 50s. Go to singles mixers or go on some group trips, and make sure to do at least one shot beforehand to make yourself the least bit interesting.

    And if I have to hear one more desperate lady talk about how a guy isn’t confident enough for her, I’ll pay for her book club membership myself.

  28. Go to singles mixers or go on some group trips, and make sure to do at least one shot beforehand to make yourself the least bit interesting.

    The problem with the singles mixers is that they are table after table of menopausal women waiting for men who will never show because they are simply not interested.

    That is as depressing as it is informative to be honest.

  29. Sorry jgh, but I just don’t recognise what you’re talking about. What century were you born in? The previous but one? I date to the middle of the last & we met people in whatever peer group we moved in. Much way as kids do today. But our parents also moved in their own peer groups & somewhere between ours & theirs the two overlapped. Yeah, the well meaning have been trying to destroy the kid’s peer groups for decades. With little result. The older generations destroyed their own because so many walked away from them. As the younger generations will do in due course unless something serious changes. Mostly it was media addiction. People living their lives through the idiot box.

  30. BIS,

    “Of course it’s their fault, Steve. If the social infrastructure’s gone it’s because they weren’t willing to invest what was needed to preserve it. They’d rather sit in their houses watching Strictly or plastering Farcebook with stuff no-one else looks at. They don’t know who their neighbours are because they resent them. They don’t have friends because they’re not the sort of people anyone would want as friends.”

    I barely knew my neighbours, went to a boy’s school and my parents somehow decided to move to somewhere miles from many kids of a similar age to me. Oh, and I’m a massive nerd. And I still had a handful of girlfriends in my youth before meeting Mrs BoM4.

    Mostly that was because I played in a wind band. About 90% of the woodwind section are female, brass is mostly male. So, you meet some girls. But, you also go and do festivals and competitions, meet people in other orchestras. Meet friends of people at parties etc etc. 60 people in the group becomes 500+ and you’re going to hit it off with someone in the 250.

    The problem with most men who complain is that they don’t do this sort of thing. They play lots of online gaming, they go to craft ale pubs, they go to the footie. Are there women in these places? No. So, you’re not going to get the numbers. Go and join a choir, a gym, do Ceroc, help a charity or social group you’re interested in.

  31. It’th a Mythtery – as Toyah, the lass with the lithp used to sing.

    And I suspect half the lady’s problem stems from the distaff side, competition from the juniors. I’m a reasonably senior senior citizen (80+) who has taken up a retirement career as a life model (basically stripping for money). It never ceases to amaze me when, having seen my saggy bits and all, a 20 year-old can say “handsome man” – and not an isolated, or age-limited, event. Were I still playing the field, of course I’m not sure just how far that might go but past experience suggests that it might not be an impossible dream (though short-lived).

    So, my advice to the 54 yr-old is, look at the competition from your own sex. Sort out what you have to offer (from, hopefully, a greater and varied experience) and use your wiles to take advantage of it. In-person social interaction is the key, not digital encounters.

  32. Find a man with no problems of his own who is keen to listen to yours. In three months you’ll be moaning about that too.

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