In popular writing, modern men (and occasionally women) are occasionally accused of being ‘commitment phobic.’
The idea of phobia derives from the thought of Freud. Although there are theories about what physically causes the symptoms observed by psychiatrists, there are no objective tests for the existence of this syndrome (collection of symptoms). Further, most of the writers accusing various people of having ‘phobias’ are not clinically qualified to do so, and even if they were, they would not be able to legally diagnose it outside of a clinical setting.
Let’s ask ourselves: are men commitment phobic? Have the wicked men of this generation driven the good, hard-working feminist women into expensive fertility treatments, due to a lack of commitment-eager partners?
To even ask the question undermines the validity of the concept of ‘phobia,’ which medicalizes an inclination that may have rational roots.
Jillian, the author of the linked article, mistakes the salesman’s rapport-generating gambit for the truth, which is why people who think that they can spot sales techniques are often most persuaded by them. The doctor is a salesman for $4,500 a dose fertility treatments and egg storage subscription fees. Take away his doctor’s costume, and he could be selling vacuum cleaners or heroin.
There is nothing to fear about getting into a commitment when entering into a modern marriage, at least from the woman’s perspective, because she is not really making any commitments. In most situations, she can just seize the marital assets after cooking up some story or another about the evils of her bum husband with the help of lawyers and psychologists and all the other modern authorities.
The man commits to an unlimited liability that can be exercised as an option at any time, and gains few if any legal rights. Even rights to paternity in the form of visitation to children are conditional, at least as far as the man is concerned. It is up to the discretion of the judge, because paternity is more a question of law than it is one of biology, although the latter still matters.
Given that the woman commits to nothing other than the contract providing direct access to the man’s property, and the creation of a common family unit that can be looted later on, there is not really much commitment at all anywhere. A woman doesn’t even need a marriage to get child support payments from the biological father of her children. Parentage without paternal rights is just a parody of indenture, mixed with a confused genetic essentialism.
The other funny thing about the author’s personal essay is that she seems not to entirely notice that she gives away much more than she could ever expect to give away to a husband — like her youthful charms — to a succession of hook-ups which she calls relationships. Psychology sanctifies this behavior as ‘rational’ and ‘good’ while also noting that stable pair bonds have better life outcomes when measured in statistics. But the psychology of 50 years ago would have called it pathological behavior, because the language of mental illness is mostly concerned with medicalized metaphors for immoral behavior.
There has been no fundamental discovery in the way that the mind works since then — only changes in societal morality.
Despite all this, the faith that the moral system is not sick is as strong as the conformity towards lifelong monogamy once was. The belief is so strong that you can sell treatments that cost tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars to these women — money that could otherwise be going to her children are going towards the gambler’s hope of having late children. You can also make phenomenal money selling eggs to the women who have delayed too long for conventional treatments.
If these women were as committed to their careers as they say, they would be re-investing that money into their boss’ business (or their own) and sterilizing themselves. And if they were as committed to having healthy, happy children as they say, they would behave differently.
The human condition is one in which everyone is buffeted around by intense drives and desires, but no one has a fully adequate means of fulfilling those desires. The achievement of civilization is like that of turning a path through a frightening forest into that of a well-lit road. Without the road, few people would be able to navigate the path.
Revealed preference shows a desperate desire to reproduce, but inadequate methods by which to make that happen in a secure and successful way. When the old roads are demolished, and replaced by an invocation to navigate by the stars, ignorant navigators will walk around in circles until they perish. This is the tragicomic situation of the modern people.
Toddy Cat says
You just reviewed “Closing of the American Mind” so I’ll drop some Bloom into this discussion. Bloom once remarked that the feminist attitude towards marriage resembled the Communist attitude towards agriculture; a real, operative motive was destroyed for being too “right-wing”, and was replaced by a fake “idealistic” motive, and then the victims were blamed for not being motivated by the fake motive. Sounds pretty spot-on to me.
Saying men are “commitment-phobic” is like saying that 1930’s Soviet farmers were “agriculture – phobic”. When people have no possible reason for doing something, it’s not exactly surprising that they don’t do it…
The agriculture thing goes beyond just the Soviets. The other thing that would be said is that they were not embracing modernization with enough vigor, or that the farmers were sabotaging the collectivization intentionally.
Neoreactive (@Neoreact1ve) says
Good article, a couple of minor points of correction:
Visitation isn’t up to the discretion of a judge, it’s the discretion of the mother, because in all western countries judges decisions are not enforced on mothers (enforced that is, like say Child Support is on men, under the threat of punitive measures).
The “father” doesn’t have to be the biological father either, he just has to be seen to be a father, or just have the mother point at him and say “he’s the one”, and furthermore there are plenty of cases of enforcement against some innocent third party too, and the law provides no way to rectify that (nor does it compensate incorrectly identified men).
I have to say that most of the criticisms of feminism are not going to make any sense to people who have not either lived through a contentious divorce, seen it happen to others, or had it happen to their parents.
They’re Kangaroo courts of red justice. Since fewer men are signing up to put themselves at the mercy of these courts, women are trying to innovate new ways to subject men to similar procedures without the marriage contract or children being involved. We even see this occasionally happening with gay men, also, in especially progressive areas.
Neoreactive (@Neoreact1ve) says
Indeed. A good author for this stuff is Stephen Baskerville. He’s written on this topic for about 30 years now, he’s traditional, Catholic and very NRx (before it was cool). And yet, he remains largely unknown to his natural target audience, the manosphere.
Well worth looking at his books, in particular The Case for Father Custody:
“By far the most serious consequences involve children, who have become the principal weapons of the divorce machinery. Invariably the first action of a divorce court, once a divorce is filed, is to separate the children from one of their parents, usually the father. Until this happens, no one in the machinery acquires any power or earnings. The first principle and first action of divorce court therefore: Remove the father. This happens even if the father is innocent of any legal wrongdoing and is simply sitting in his own home minding his own business. The state seizes control of his children with no burden of proof to justify why. The burden of proof (and the financial burden) falls on the father to demonstrate why they should be returned.”
Read more: http://www.touchstonemag.com/archives/article.php?id=22-01-019-f#ixzz3QmhBMhWq“
Neoreactive (@Neoreact1ve) says
My apologies, Case for Father Custody was someone else, still a good read though, Baskerville’s book was Taken in to Custody:
Yes, my thought on reading “A woman doesn’t even need a marriage to get child support payments from the biological father of her children.” was “A woman doesn’t even need a marriage to get child support payments from the imputed father of her children.” Family courts have decided that “In the best interests of the child” means “In the best interest of the mother”.
The red pill spreads! Those who take it and make serious application in their lives aren’t left in the “forest” without a guide for the rapacious feral wildlife. Unrestrained hypergamous behavior is truly destructive. And the young boys are watching. They see what happens. They understand that men don’t have a level chance in a family. So, the smart ones pass. You know, the ones who actually matter. Some seek fertile fields afar, and some become MGTOW. Feral women don’t care or understand that men won’t protect them anymore. The only way this sick situation will be cured is thru a hard reset. You know, major civil war, Islamic war, something of that nature. Men will decide who to protect.
Butch Leghorn says
“there are no objective tests for the existence of this”
And what do we call a ‘science’ that does not use ‘objective tests’ aka ’empirical data’? We call that pseudoscience.
All of this psychologizing and psychopathologizing is based on a pseudoscience that has no more validity than Astrology.
The use of psychological pseudoscience that is now common should be called out clearly whenever possible for the low-grade mysticism that it is. Might as well be saying ‘Are Men Possessed by Anti-Commitment Demons’?.
Foolish Pride says
“In most situations, she can just seize the marital assets after cooking up some story or another about the evils of her bum husband with the help of lawyers and psychologists and all the other modern authorities.”
Actually women tend to fare poorly in divorce, ending up worse off. Remember, women are still responsible for raising children. Pardon the link dumping:
This is a Manosphere myth that just won’t die.
They seize the assets, do badly afterwards, and wind up doing what they can to get more. That’s not a myth, and it’s what I said in the post.
Omega Man says
Sorry, not buying it.
I know too many men who were taken for everything. Perhaps the ladies did not make out as well as they thought they should, well boo f’n hoo, then they shouldn’t have blown up their marriages in the first place.
And don’t give me this nonsense about abuse. Women will lie about abuse just to ensure that their ex never ever sees his children again.