One of the complaints of married men is that their sweetheart quickly transformed after marriage. Their slim, high-libido, rational, and frugal girlfriend turned into a fat, frigid, manic, and wasteful wife. Of course, I am exaggerating a little bit. Still, they claim that they did not see it coming. However, it is quite possible to evaluate a woman’s character in a short amount of time. Of course, the problem for men is two-fold: they are lovestruck and therefore simply ignore various red flags, or downplay them as insignificant. Additionally, they may think that their girlfriend will change for the better.
Some women “love-bomb” you at the beginning of the relationship and pretend to be someone they are not. In fact, almost all women who will want to win you over for a relationship will put up a facade. For inexperienced men, love-bombing is the much bigger risk as it is a devious manipulation tactic. The woman deliberately showers you in affection and the inexperienced male who has never encountered this, just like the sexually experienced male who only met relatively normal women, will believe that this budding sexual relationship is special.
No matter the circumstances, nobody can pretend to be someone they are not for long stretches of time. Thus, the best defense is to not do anything stupid, like letting some woman move in with you after a week or so. On a related note, this is not a distinctly male stupidity; women have offered me a key to their apartment after what I only intended to be a one-night stand. Thus, keep some distance, which is also important to evaluate the other person.
A cynic would say that women who want to reel you into a relationship play a “long con”. They work on lowering your defenses until you sign on the dotted line. In strictly financial terms, she is going to benefit infinitely more from marriage and, in states with “palimony” laws, than you will. Consequently, she will put on an act for at least until you commit to her. We can therefore indeed view her actions in terms of strategy, whereas most men operate in terms of tactics, i.e. short term actions for short-term benefits. Most guys have the goal of bedding the women they meet, whereas a woman who is looking for a boyfriend is thinking well beyond that.
Interacting with a woman over time gives you the chance to explore her personality. True, she will not tell you that money exists to be spent or that she cares little for your health or spare time, but if you project a non-judging personality, you can encourage her to give you a glimpse at her bad sides. An excellent litmus test for frugality is letting her make a choice with regard to your money. Part of my standard procedure for assessing the personality of a woman for a relationship was the following: we would meet up and go to a coffee shop. I would order something healthy and reasonably well-priced, like a cup of green tea. My standard line was, “I’ll get myself a cup of green tea. What do you want? It’s on me.” You can probably guess where this is going.
If you know about pricing theory, you are aware of the anchoring effect, i.e. if you establish a very high price point for part of your product range, you can charge more for your other products. Concretely, customers are more inclined to accept a price of $60,000 for your entry-level car if the top-of-the-line product has a base price of $120,000. This is due to those prices being evaluated in relation to each other. If the higher price was not available, the cheaper one would have to be evaluated on its own. I think this is the reason why there are some ludicrously expensive beverages on the menu in most cafes. They simply want to condition you to pay $5 for a cup of plain black coffee, which would look outrageous if it was the only option on the menu, by shoving in your face that there are (non-alcoholic) beverages on the menu that cost three times as much.
As you can guess, a woman who is allergic to saving money, when faced with the opportunity to spend money she did not even earn, may go all out. Unlike you, she won’t get a cup of black coffee or a cup of green tea but instead go for something much fancier, maybe something she “always wanted to try.” Most amusing are women who think they have now earned the right to spend your money and either ask if they can have a piece of cake on top or — a real favorite of mine! — go ahead and just order a piece of cake as well. Don’t worry, the little money you will spend this way is nothing compared to what a woman like that would cost you in a long-term relationship, so this is money well spent.
What I found most interesting about the aforementioned test was how women who were eager to please would act: they would order the exact same drink as I did. There may have been cultural implications I was not aware of. In any case, Western women rarely if ever did that, while it was quite common among non-Western ones. In contrast, there is even some antagonism in some Western women. The occasional woman will tell you disapprovingly that she can pay for her own coffee, which is obviously also a great way to disqualify herself for a relationship.
An interesting variation is suggesting to go to a restaurant. Ask her to pick one. The most disrespectful women will go for a very expensive option, while a frugal one with housewife-qualities may even tell you that she’d rather cook a meal for you at home. If the prospect of spending a few hundred bucks only to find out that she views you as a walking wallet does not sound great to you, don’t despair: nobody said anything about actually going to that restaurant. You just ask her where she’d like to go. You are very welcome to chuckle and ghost her if she thinks that only a Michelin-star restaurant is good enough for her, possibly without being aware of the fact that you may have to book weeks or months in advance.
Life, and relationships, are not just about money. Time is another important resource, so pay attention to how much of your time she wants to claim. Some women whom you’ve banged a few times believe that they now have a personal chauffeur. Others think that you should do some home-renovation at their place. Some women will even ask you to do favors for their friends or members of their family. You can probably think of better things to do on your weekends than help one of her girlfriends move — of course, it is highly likely that today’s “bestie” will be her arch-enemy in a few months’ time, but that is another time.
The sense of entitlement you encounter is sometimes absolutely ridiculous. It is great if you detect this early because otherwise, you may one day wake up and wonder why your girlfriend believes she is entitled to you paying down her mortgage, taking her dog to the vet, and tutoring her cousin in maths.
On a final note, I could as well have written this article based on how she treats you, but the problem is that so many men are used to getting treated like shit by basically everyone that their expectations are too low and they don’t even pick up on those cues. On the other hand, time and money can be quantified objectively.
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