Relationship Game – A Primer

I had a request from a comment thread to breakdown the function of Game within the confines of a marriage or LTR so at the risk of coming off as Athol on Married Man Sex I thought I’d elaborate a bit on maintaining a Game mindset into an LTR today.

Going Alpha

Before I dig in here I think it’s important to bear in mind that the principles of Game do not change in an LTR, only the context does. Every behavior set, every frame control tenet, every aspect of amused mastery and even PUAs skills like Cocky & Funny are all vitally necessary, if not more necessary in an LTR. One of the greatest failings married men begin their nuptials with is starting from a position of Betaness. I’ve encountered, and counseled, far too many men with the same story; they entered into their LTR or marriage from a default position of being the “supportive” submissive partner only to discover Game later in their relationship and then fight the very uphill battle of convincing their spouse that they’ve ‘genuinely’ experienced a radical shift in their outlook and personalities.

If all she’s ever known is the Beta you, convincing her you’ve gone Alpha is a tough road to hoe. An Alpha shift in an LTR is threatening to a woman who’s built a lifestyle around the predictability of the Beta guy she committed to. It stirs up the competition anxiety she’s been numbed to for a long time, and while that’s beneficial in prompting her genuine desire for you, it also upsets her sense of security. It’s for this reason that Beta men are reluctant to experiment with being more dominant; they carry over from their singlehood the same mistaken belief that women require comfort, familiarity and security in order to become intimate or “feel sexy”. They still fail to grasp, even in marriage, that sex by definition requires anxiety to be grounded in genuine desire. Sexual tension requires urgency.

So from the outset it’s important to acknowledge that going Alpha from a Beta default is going to require a measured, practiced effort. The ideal position is to begin an LTR from an incorrigible, irrationally self-confident, Alpha frame and encourage the belief in your partner that it was she who ‘mellowed’ you. It’s ingratiating and ego-flattering for a woman to believe that she has the capacity to charm the savage beast with her feminine wiles.

The Outline

If you are presently in an LTR, considering one or believe that you might be spinning a particular plate that may have that potential, I urge you to read through the Chateau’s 16 Commandments of Poon. This is one of Roissy’s seminal posts and should be required reading for every 18 year old young man upon graduating high school. This may seem like an odd place to begin relationship Game, but these tenets are not only the basis for good Game, but the foundations of a good, masculine primary LTR.

I’ll have been married for 16 years in July and in that time I can honestly say I’ve practiced every one of these tenets to varying degrees. However, I’ll focus on a few of the more contentious articles and explain the premises behind them:

II. Make her jealous
Flirt with other women in front of her.
Women don’t want a Man to cheat, but they love a Man who could cheat. Naturally you don’t want to appear to be seeking the flirtation – that would be OVERT – but rather playing along with it. I have encouraged or played along with casual flirtations with my wife present that leave her with the impression that other women find me desirable. When you’ve been together long enough and a strong emotional bond has formed, you will be surprised at how many shit tests and hypergamous evaluations you can avoid just by her perception of you being a commodity that other women are attracted to. Mrs. Tomassi has told me on at least a dozen occasions that she finds it flattering that other women would find me attractive. Always remember that your attractiveness to other women is an associative reflection on your spouse’s attractiveness to hold your sexual interest in the long term.

The trick to this is how you follow up after flirting. She has to be made to feel as though she’s still the one you choose to be with even though you have obvious, provable options. Women are always unconsciously evaluating the men they are with. Her self-worth is associated with his value. This is exactly why women in the stablest of relationships will still shit test. There are precious few ways for a Man in a long standing LTR to establish social proof and demonstrate higher value better than flirting, or reciprocating a flirt with other women. Nothing stimulates a tired LTR like suspicion and jealousy. Her Imagination is the most important tool in your DJ tool box. The hamster doesn’t stop spinning after marriage, but it’s incumbent upon you to make sure it keeps up the pace.

Far too many guys are too fearful to even attempt this because they subscribe to a scarcity mentality (see Rule 16)

This then dovetails nicely into,…

VII. Always keep two in the kitty
Never allow yourself to be a “kept man”. A man with options is a man without need.

I understand this may be a very tall order for most men, particularly those with scarcity mentalities. However, I would interpret this less as spinning plates while in an LTR and instead replace it with keeping your options open. One reason to flirt in front of your LTR is to establish the suspicion that you have those options, and then allay those fears. Again this goes back to being a man who could cheat, but chooses not to. Men think that their dependability and steadfastness makes for a sexualized woman – it doesn’t.

Particular to relationship Game is this idea: Never allow yourself to be a “kept man.” Don’t make the mistake that I’m promoting infidelity by this, but rather think of it as maintaining an ambient, unspoken cognisance that, while she is a compliment to your life, she is not the focus of it.

I’ll be very clear, I’ve never cheated on Mrs. Tomassi, but I do know I could be balls deep in pussy if we ever did split. I know this because I experience the receptiveness of women to whom I do flirt with. I realize this sounds like conceit, but even if I were completely in error about that receptiveness I do know I’m in better shape, have more Game and possess higher status and value than 90% of the men in my peer group. So keeping two in the kitty for me is knowing that I CAN generate options if necessary. This may or may not be your particular reality, but it needs to be your mental state.

V. Adhere to the golden ratio
Give your woman 2/3 of everything she gives you.

This isn’t hard once you internalize it. Too many guys think Game is a waste of time because it means a constant memorization of scripts and gestures that they can never hope to master in every situation for every eventuality. And they’d be right – if all they did was try to commit everything to rote memorization. But as any good teacher will tell you, that’s not learning. Once the golden ratio becomes part of who you are it’s effortless and becomes your default response. Remember this is an outline. I don’t think aloud to myself “hmmm, well Mrs. Tomassi gave me 3 kisses this morning, I must remember to give her only 2 when I get home from work.” It’s an outline for a principle that you need to get the ‘feel’ for. The point isn’t trying to keep some scorecard of tit for tat exchanges. The effect you’re establishing is,..

it establishes your greater value by making her chase you, and it demonstrates that you have the self-restraint to avoid getting swept up in her personal dramas. Refraining from reciprocating everything she does for you in equal measure instills in her the proper attitude of belief in your higher status.

All the bleating sounds popularized by the post-Wall demographic of women about how there are precious few available men with the capacity to Man-Up and be the high status Men they’re entitled to find their root in this principle. For all the ramblings of the equalists they still betray their true desires in their own complaints – women DEMAND a man of higher status than themselves.

I add this at the end of this primer to address the criticism that will inevitably follow; “So, a wife should just be your doting slave then Rollo?” No, and neither should a man be his wife’s self-convinced slave. If you get anything from my blog it should be this – I am always focused on the Desire Dynamic. A slave might behave in ways that please you, but you cannot negotiate genuine desire, nor can you extort genuine desire. Freewill is an interesting topic, especially in terms of intergender relations, but understanding the dynamics that promote genuine, unobligated desire is paramount to a good relationship.


18 responses to “Relationship Game – A Primer

  • Marx

    Rollo, how should one handle sexual withdrawal in a LTR, especially one under cohabitation?

    Aloof indifference, jealousy ploys, and the pursuit of other interests all inject personal value and spin the hamster, however, their effects on moistening panties seem to erode as the relationship matures.

  • A.B. Dada

    Put her on time-out for a weekend and go stay with buddies to catch up with them.

    If you don’t have a place to exit for a few days, you’re trapped — and she inherently knows it.

    Women really appreciate a time-out on occasion, and, just like little kids, it keeps them wanting to “make papa proud.”

  • Hero

    Rollo, thanks for starting in on the LTR topic.

    I agree the 16 Commandments of Poon are pure gold. I have worked to apply them over the past year and a half and have seen many positive changes in my marriage. I would encourage any other married/LTR man to take a look at them and keep an open mind. Some men might think that “Always keep two in the kitty” means they need to cheat but it’s not the case. What is important is the resulting mindset.

    On the 2/3 rule, something that I read said that women should be the doting, affectionate ones. Let them handle that part. Not to say that a man doesn’t want to touch his woman or that it doesn’t give him pleasure to do so but I have noticed that my wife seems very happy reaching out and hanging on to me while I take the stance of the rugged male (in social settings for instance).

    One of the effects the 2/3 rule has is to place much more value on the attention/affection you do give.

  • Hero

    “Be excellent and be gone”.

    The biggest lever a woman has in a relationship is sex. We all know this, right? What a lot of men don’t know is that the relationship, the investment of time is a man’s biggest lever. Be critical about what you want and what you are receiving. If you want sex and you want it with her and she refuses take your investment of time elsewhere.

    Don’t mope or whine about not getting sex. If you feel like you are not getting what you want then go do something without her that really fires you up. This will do two things. It will make you feel good about doing something you enjoy and it will make her miss you.

    She’ll miss you even more when you are enjoying yourself and feeling good than when you are moping and whining.

  • a simpler place in time

    The “kept man” and “golden ratio” rules work well within the context of intermittent rewards. Allowing her expectations to get out of hand means you’re in for some serious trouble. When you do reward her it should not always be expected.

  • Rollo Tomassi

    Hold that thought, the post is coming next week.

  • Good Luck Chuck

    Maybe I’ve just been lucky but I have never been in a relationship where my chick withheld sex. If it comes to that there is something seriously wrong.

    Come to think of it there was one relationship where the sex fell off and when it got to the point where it was a problem for me I addressed it. She was the least attractive chick I have ever been with and although she was good company I wasn’t really attracted to her so I told her it was over and we parted as friends. I was with her for over a year but had literally zero remorse or negative feelings.

    Aside from that I have no idea what it’s like to be denied sex. Even when the relationships were on the rocks I was still satisfied with the amount of frequency and enthusiasm.

    Talking to other people it seems so common but I have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea. Anyone who accepts that from a woman needs a testicle check.

  • A.B. Dada

    Anyone who accepts that from a woman needs a testicle check.

    You may have no idea how right you are.

    When I became fat (and I mean, gaining 50# over 3 years fat), my testosterone plummeted, along with my sex drive entirely. Sex was withheld regularly and I didn’t even notice it.

    Now, I’m athletic-fit and have a high T, and my dames never turn down sex and often times initiate in some fashion. If you’re having sex, it’s easy to keep having sex, but if the man slows down his sex drive even a tough, expect the woman to double-down.

  • Scott

    Rollo, good job taking these Game concepts to the next level and explaining them in more detail and saying how they fit into relationships. Game is required in a LTR or marriage, even more so than just pick-up, because the man and woman are around each other more often. It’s sort of funny that much of the mainstream relationship advice over at least the last 20 years has said to “communicate better and have each say their feelings to the other,” “be each others best friend (ha),” “have a date night once a week,” “do more things for her,” and more of those kind of things. It was never said what Rollo is saying here about being a masculine man and apply Game concepts to keep the desire going in the relationship.

  • mac

    Mr. Tomassi, yo write a lot of good sense, but judging from your posts you have never been in a relationship where the women saw you as beta from the outset. I have.

    IMO, this changes everything. It is virtually impossible to change her mind once she has decided you are “settling down” material. By all means, game her. However, you must be aware that the consequences might be that she calls your bluff. In other words, if you start gaming your wife, you must be ready to walk. If this is not clear in your mind, she will get the better of you.

    I am throwing no stones at women here : if I was one, I suppose I would act exactly like them. They act in their own interest. At one point in their lives, they want fun and excitement. The smarter ones avoid having children from multiple fathers. Smart or stupid, they avoid betas. Later on, they start wanting security and comfort. This, for a woman, does not rime with desire. And this is where you come in, Mr. Beta. You are in love.

    At first, it will seem as if she has the hots for you. In fact, she will firmly believe this herself. This illusion will last for both of you until she instinctively feels that she has “got you”. A few months, in most cases. Then, things start to go downhill. She herself will wonder what is happening. Why is she not interested in you any more ? Let me give you a clue : it’s you. You have changed my friend. Do you bring her flowers any more ? Nope. Do you whisper sweet nothings in her ear ? Nope. Do you wine and dine her in the finest restaurants of Pottawattamie ? Nope.

    So, like the rational creature you are, you try to do all of these things again. And what is the result ? Nothing. Nada. So, what is the problem now ? The situation. She is tired. Stressed out. Depressed. You get the picture. There is no solution. You get angry. You complain. You avoid her. You negotiate. When it gets really bad, you may even plead. None of this will have any long-term effect, and this for a very good reason : she cannot force herself (and to be honest, would you want her to ?). If she forces herself against her profound instincts, I can tell you what will happen : her super-ego will revolt and make her ill. She may have serial cystitis. Sex will be painful. Or whatever else you can imagine.

    So what can you hope for by gaming a woman in these conditions ? 1) Make her angry, because you are humiliating her by flirting with other women, becoming suddenly unpredictable when you used to be Mr. dependable etc. 2) Make her worried for the same reasons. Do you think this is going to give her the hots for you ? Dream on, brother.

    No, if you are going to start gaming, admit it to yourself : you want to leave her. That is the bottom line, if she saw you as a beta from the outset.

  • Doc

    All excellent advice. I learned long ago about flirting in front of the women I’m with. It tends to make them work a lot harder when they know that they have to keep your interest, and that you have options. More than a few times, I tend to like places I frequent and know a lot of the people. This has two benefits, it’s my home turf and most of the people know me, and I know most of the women and regularly flirt with them. When a woman gets upset, I switch to the – “I’ve know them a lot longer than I’ve known you, and I will not give up my friends.” Shuts them up and really, they are auditioning for a part – it’s up to them to sell it – not for me. I have choices, and making them aware of that fact is the goal early when dating – it has a lot of benefits.

  • Peregrine John

    The opening section, Going Alpha, is vitally important, and (contrary to the fears of some commenters) absolutely doable. Do not, do not, do NOT underestimate the 2nd graf in that part. It’s not easy, but it is crucially important. And really, how often are those descriptions separate from each other, hm?

  • Ted D

    This is good stuff Rollo. I’ve been a fan of Athol’s for some time now, but I have to say that on a regular basis I just feel like something is “off” with much of his advice. I think for me it often comes across as parlor tricks instead of real advice, but I realize he is dealing with men that are already in shitty marriages and he is trying to throw them some ideas to get the ball rolling.

    But, the stuff you discuss here seems to be more about “inner game” for lack of a better term. That is where I want to focus, because frankly I’m not picking up random chics in the bar at night. I’m also not currently buried by years of betatude with my current mate, although we met and started dating prior to taking the red pill, so I AM very much interested in figuring out how to get and keep my frame right this time after a failed marriage of 13 years.

    Looking forward to more info for the married/attached guys. ;)

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  • Alphaman1

    Exactly my thoughts on Athol. The problem is he is heavily influenced by women. They run his blog site, review his books, and tell him what to say. Try to mention Dread Game on MMSL and you get banned IME.

  • Bluepillprofessor

    2nd or 3rd the Athol comments. The MMSL blog is totally dominated by strong, occasionally angry and bitter women who ride commenters and newbies without mercy and criticize without end if the man dares show any weakness. That would be enough to avoid the blog but then they make a habit of reporting any commenter who dares criticize another woman on the blog! No thanks.

    In my experience, TRP Reddit is the only place on the web where men can actually discuss these issues without women dominating the discussion, and deriding anything the men do that does not attract their wives, while hamstering anything a woman does- including divorcing and leaving her man if he is not giving her enough sex. Whoa to the man who complains he is not getting enough sex on MMSL and is ready to leave the marriage- it is HIS fault don’t you know! He needs to change and work his ass off to get his wife attracted to him again. If the script is flipped and the woman is not getting enough sex, well, then the husband is not doing his job and she should get ready to leave him. Got it. Again, no thanks. Will stick with TRP and the rationale male.

  • Prov Erbs

    I found this post 2 years too late….*sigh* Thanks, I know my next steps now.

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