“The fishermen know that the sea is dangerous and the storm terrible, but they have never found these dangers sufficient reason for remaining ashore…”
The Sexual Market Place
The SMP (Sexual Market Place) is the nebulous environment in which a multitude of social, cultural, socioeconomic and sociopolitical factors influence the dating environment. These are the same powerful factors that are shaping our society and in fact the SMP is a reflection of those. Ultimately upon studying the SMP, one can come to the realization that the current dating environment is essentially a commodity market… where raw or primarily products are exchanged and the harsh realities of it are no different. Markets vary in form, scale, geographic and types of participants as well as goods and services being offered and sought from…with both macro and micro environments, but in this case we also have the differing biological sexual market values (SMV) trajectories of men and women, which will play an enormous role in ones timeline within the SMP.
The SMP is being shaped by hundreds of factors, but four major cultural drivers are shaping the macro-SMP and they are giving rise to delayed age of first marriages, rising divorce rates, decrease fertility and hookup culture;
Readily available contraception (condoms, the pill and abortions): In the past there were extreme consequences for women should they become pregnant out-of-wedlock. Contraception liberated women from these life altering situations and resulted in a permissive environment in which women were free to explore their sexuality without fear and gave fuel to their hypergamy, women’s natural biological attraction triggers and drive to sexually select men who differentiated themselves via physical, social and status dimorphisms, which are most often at odds with monogamous partnering and parenting traits. Sex has always held incredible exchange value, now with readily available contraception women were free to yield it without having to suffer the dire consequences of an unwanted pregnancy.
Changes to Family Law (‘No fault’ divorce, asset division, and alimony): In the past, a divorce was only granted upon misconduct of a partner, with a dramatic decrease in quality of life due to a woman’s inability to be independent and self-supporting. Now the law and society has changed so that a partner needs no stated reason to abandon these life vows and is yet still entitled to child custody, property asset division and alimony, even though most women these days are capable of being self-supporting and independent. These incentivize the destruction of marriage and cause untolled emotional and financial destruction upon men, who lose their family, access to their children and typically are forced to support these endowments, at no fault of their own, just because she became “unhappy”.
Advancement of Feminism: The social movement of advancing equal political, economical and social rights for women has gone through a series of progressive waves of movement; 1st wave was to remove the 2nd class status from women and provided basic civil rights. The 2nd wave advanced a wide range of women’s issues from family law, workplace rights and reproductive rights, that we currently recognize as ‘women’s rights’. The 3rd wave has more diverse strains of feminist activity and can be viewed as developing a sense of empowerment for women from their given stereotypes, as being assertive, powerful and in control of their own sexuality, but with these new expressions has led to criticism that feminism often promotes misandry (hatred of men) and the elevation of women’s interests above men’s. Overall culture and society goes to lengths to shield, protect and liberate women from the consequences of their actions and to confer the rights of privilege status upon women. With time this has grown to become a deep trough of self-derived sense of entitlement for women, removed from any reality of actual achievement, merit or award.
Rise of the Post-Industrial Knowledge Economy: We don’t live in the Post-Industrial Age anymore…we reside at the footsteps of the Information Age and with it have come a dramatic shift in our social and cultural construct and expectations. The economic shift of globalization, the digital revolution and a massive shift away from manufacturing to knowledge and service base economy has been a tremendous advantage to women, which has rushed to fill and expand it, as this new market place is indifferent to men’s advantages of both size and strength and plays more to women’s strengths of emotional intelligence, such as consensus and team building, relationship skills and relationship development and aesthetic awareness and design. Women have not only expanded the original economy, but have created new markets where they hold sway. This is made more striking when one realizes that the growth in both college and graduate degrees came almost entirely from the female half of the population. Currently young women are now earning 117% of what their male peers do, even though men dominate the science, technology, engineering and math professions that are typically are higher paying fields. Even with these clearly defined demographics, society still further highly promotes, safeguards and rewards for women in the work place, through a number of incentives, programs and regulations. Women today have the same choice to be independent and self-sufficient as men, but make other calculated choices, then cry foul at the outcomes.
While the social attitudes and work place opportunities regarding women may have undergone a revolution, the rules of sex appeal have not and the Darwinian realities are not pretty for women in the long-term and a very rough ride for men in the short-term.
Sexual Value Trajectories of men and women are vastly different.
Women in their early 20’s hold an extremely strong hand in the SMP, especially with men roughly their own age. Their sexual market value (SMV) is high, spans multiple age groups, creating an abundance of excellent prospects and many women are able to leverage this situation and effectively hit above their weight class sexually (have access to men they normally wouldn’t if it were not for their sex exchange value) for a decade or more. By 35 women’s sexual and fertility values within the sexual market place greatly diminishes and so too does the pool of interested and eligible men, at the same time they expect to settle down, find a man and start that family… Men on the other hand have a much lower SMV at the beginning of their lives, which spans relatively within their age peer group initially, but increases with age and their SMV doesn’t start to decline until well into their 50’s. As with any fish bowl it is the dominate fish that command the food supply.
As a women move from their 30’s to their 40’s they remain less enticing to men of their age than women who are ‘younger, firmer, tighter and free’, as the refrain goes. Just as a woman’s sexual market value (SMV) is in steep decline a man’s is typically continuing in an opposite trajectory and are leveraging that value for relationships with younger women, who are less used up sexually, are free of the immense emotional and physical baggage from previous marriages and the accompanying children and responsibilities that come with those children.
Sexual Biological Prerogatives of men and women differ immensely. Women control sex, men commitment…
Evolutionary psychologists continue to prove that women exhibit mate-selective preferences for spouses/mates that hold greater physical attractiveness, educational level, job status, social standing and capital accumulation which is defined by the term Hypergamy. In colloquial terms it’s simply defined as ‘marrying up’. In practice, women delay marriage until their careers have been established (ramification of the knowledge economy), enjoy a parade of alpha cock during their roaring 20’s & 30’s ( thanks to the pill & feminism), thus rewarding the players over the commitment minded men, which gives rise to douchebaggery culture. Not only are women getting the types of men they deserve, but the men they select.
Males on the other hand primarily seek sex from a variety of women, with the dominate trait of physical attractiveness , youthful vibrancy and femininity being the overwhelming characteristics for selection. Men playing the field are exercising their biological prerogatives within the frame-work women, feminism, culture and society have enabled.
In the past dating was a means to an end- with the goal of marriage and ultimately parenthood… no more. The social and sexual freedom the last decades have brought has created a realm of sexual anarchy to the SMP. No one knows what is expected. Both men and women have escaped historical dating ritual, rules and gender roles by being financially and sexually independent exercising their rights and freedoms. They are free to do whatever they want and the opportunities for pursuing happiness on their own terms are like none before in human history.
Evolving Relationship Structures:
Serial Monogamy- the practice of having a number of long-term romantic or sexual partners in succession, which has given increase rise to disposable of relationships and the people in them. Serial monogamy gives people some kind of certainty and security by providing some sense of stability and exclusivity, that enable them to devote their resources to other issues…but for a limited time… It currently is the most prevailing form of romantic relationship, even though the sought-after ideal is still that of long-lasting monogamy. Fear of commitment and perfectionism play a large part in the serial monogamist’s thinking… they are often unable to cope and with the pressures of a relationship and incapable of sustaining a relationship over common hardships for long periods of time and eventually seek novelty and their independence once again or escape from a troubled relationship. Often the patterns of behavior are so established that the individual can predict and anticipate the time period in which a break up will occur well in advance.
Hookup culture– an intentionally vague term that can vary from person to person, event to event that spans from light sexual contact to an intense sexual interlude and everything in-between, with no connotation for a relationship and is expressly designed to avoid commitment and to liberate the parties to pursue separate agendas. It is quickly replacing traditional dating in the general population and has become the norm on most college campuses.
Relationships are no sanctuary from the forces that influence and make up the sexual market place, but what is surprising about the current dating environment is that both males and females tend to grow out of it and take the leap of faith into marriage with disastrous results. Marriage in its current form is a social mechanism designed to exchange sex for a modern form of indentured servitude. The easiest way to prevent divorce and its ugly fallout for men, is to NOT get married. Over 50% fail, with a +70% chance your wife will initiate it, and if a recent AARP poll is correct 25% of the divorced men state they never saw the divorce coming, compared to 14% of the women.
Relationships and especially marriage hold dangers for the man who enters into them foolishly. A relationship isn’t a panacea for the emotional, psychological and sexual needs that you haven’t resolved on your own. When you take on a relationship with the intent of being monogamous, you take on a tremendous series of obstacles, problems and issues, that needs to be negotiated with another individual… going into one without preparation, knowledge and appropriate skill set isn’t just foolish, it’s downright stupid.