Dollars and Sex

How economics influences sex and love

Policing Female Sexual Behaviour for the Sake of Marriage

The Austin Institutes video, titled the Economics of Sex, pretends to use market theory to explain why marriage rates have fallen over time. The sweetness of the video nearly disguises the bitter pill hidden in all the sugar—the underlying message is that only when women who engage in premarital sex are punished will relationships return to their previously healthy state Read More

Being an autonomous adult

-----"Collusion does work in some cases when there are enforcement mechanisms in place. The video attempts to depict how women previously policed women's interests which was the enforcement mechanism that held together a tacit collusive agreement…Without enforcement mechanism you are correct, collusive agreements fall apart quickly."

When women can pay their own freight in life with education, jobs and careers and are not dependent on other's for survival those "enforcement mechanisms" are, more likely than not, rendered impotent. Marriage might be seen as less necessary.

true Mary .....and

You can't put the cat back in the bag. In other words, women will not relinquish their sexual freedom just to get the average guy to commit to marriage. It just isn't worth it anymore.

That goes both ways --- as

That goes both ways --- as long as the "average " guy gets sex -- marriage isn't worth him time either.

After all, who wants to marry someone who has screwed everyone -- you'll never be able to trust her.

Marriage is a bad deal for men --- women keep telling themselves that they're the ones that don't want marriage ---- yet, that's not what I hear from all of the single women I know Aand the 1000's on dating sites looking for longterm commitments.

The fact is, as a single "average " man sex isn't that hard to get and frankly, I'm way too happy enjoying to waste my life locked up with any one woman.

So, please don't police eachother.

You obviously have such

You obviously have such issues, you might want to see an actual Psychologist yourself

Its obvious that YOU have the

Its obvious that YOU have the issues by your knee-jerk reaction to what he wrote.

Truth Hurts

Yes, Marriage is an extremely

Yes, Marriage is an extremely bad deal for men.

The only reason for a man to get married is to have his own children.

Good luck with that, every bimbo out there has some slobs spawn hanging on because she was too dumb to use birth control.

Wow, what a great deal! Give up all your freedom, raise some other guy's kid and then lose everything to divorce lawyers.

Enjoy the sex guys and don't fall into the marriage sewage pit.

true Mary .....and

You can't put the cat back in the bag. In other words, women will not relinquish their sexual freedom just to get the average guy to commit to marriage. It just isn't worth it anymore.

Sweet Jeezus, is this for real?

(This very long rant is not directed at you, Dr. Adshade)

So we women somehow had a stranglehold on sex, allowing us to control men into marriage and "maturity".
Our embrace of birth control has made the "price of sex" (CHORTLE) plunge, so men no longer have to enter relationships—which is forcing today's men into acting like manboys....

Wow.
First off, when did sex suddenly become a scarce "commodity"? I mean during the Civil War over 450 brothels existed in Washington DC—and that was when it was highly unusual for any man to not be married. Legal prostitution (always for men) in America was widespread well into the 20th Century—when men were supposedly "domesticated" because women had "control" over sex?
Illicit prostitution (overwhelmingly serving men) is alive and well in America; all but one of Nevada's legal brothels are for men. Sex for men has never been a scarce commodity.

And this group finds men "floundering" because they play video games? Dude, my 62-year old Mom, who's been happily married for 41 years, plays video games (and she kicks butt!). Men are getting dissed because they're not getting married & having kids? Uh, if decent jobs were more readily available, everybody would be able to afford to raise a family, not just men.

Birth control was only part of a much, much larger social change. Access to the professions & colleges, suffarage, the right to property & make contracts, the right to keep our own wages, yadda-yadda-yadda. It had nothing at all to do with sex, though it did have a lot to do with money & power.

Interestingly, it has only been through the feminist movement that women have really taken an engaged and active interest in sex. Information on female anatomy and orgasm led to the vibrator becoming a woman's "must-have" in the bedroom. Now that women knew how to "get off" we could enjoy sex as much as guys—and birth control meant we could enjoy it, consequence-free like guys always had.

I pity people who diss video games. They're anti-drug fun for all ages.

the law of relativiity

Sex may have been available in the 1930's via brothel and all ..but what the author is saying is that its 1000 times more available now than it was back then..These days millions of women have no qualms getting laid before marriage at the drop of a hat..so what incentive do men have to get married?

the same incentive they've always had

Among my younger friends it seemed the men wanted to marry to have a family. Women wanted to marry for the fairy tale. Men wanted to marry to have someone to take care of the house and to have the kids, make the meals, do the shopping, etc. Women wanted to marry to feel complete or just simply to not be single. Being single had and still has a stigma that drives a lot of normally sane people into marriage. And then they are very, very disappointed. Some adjust and can make it. Others can't sacrifice their life for an ideal like that.

Marriage is still sold in this country...pushed on us because it supposedly creates stability. Did you see that article on how much money the government spends on promoting marriage each year?

Sex isn't the only reason men get married although it plays a role. As long as we can stigmatize single women -- old maid, spinster -- women will continue to want to marry. Men, they still want families.

So the solution does lie with women...

... but not in the way of policing women's sexual behaviour. Quite the contrary in fact: girls must stop being raised on false ideas about themselves and marriage. Girls should be taught to see themselves as complete on their own (for their entire life, not just until they turn old enough to get married or have kids), and to consider marriage as a possible contract to be entered into for specific goals NOT related to their own self-esteem.

Yes yes yes!!!!!

I think the marriage rate would actually plummet if women weren't raised on Cinderella and Snow White. Even Bella relies on a man. My unhappily married grandma pushed marriage on me from the time I was a teen because she thought a woman needed a man for financial security. When I bought my house and invited her over, she asked me if my mom and dad helped me buy it. I told her no, I'd bought it with my own money. She didn't ever bother me about getting married again.

So, I think that women not only marry to feel "fulfilled" they marry to satisfy older relatives who push marriage on them and make them feel bad about not being married -- and those relatives may simply be pushing it to make sure the woman is "taken care of."

I don't think peoples' motivations are bad -- they're just based on false narratives. As someone else pointed out in this discussion, the internet is changing a lot of things and I think when others post about marriage, it exposes the fairy tales for what they are...tales.

Good for your grandma!

She had your best interests at heart AND she was smart and humble enough to change tracks when she realised you'd found another way. Kudos!

"I don't think peoples' motivations are bad -- they're just based on false narratives."

Hmm, I'd say not so much "false" as "out of date". As I think we all agree on, there was indeed a time, not so long ago, when a woman needed a man to get anywhere in life. Now women can (more or less) get what they want on their own, so the narrative needs to be updated. But we're only human: it takes much longer for a millenia-long social narrative to change than just a few decades.

What incentive do women have, either?

Why should women get married?
If women no longer need men for security, what incentive do women have?

None

This is why the government is spending millions of our tax dollars every year promoting marriage. Men and women are losing their desire to marry. I think men still have the biggest incentive -- they actually need a woman for childbearing. But, as women become financially independent, they can go to the sperm bank, get impregnated and have a child, and not lose any of their freedom or independence....or money.

As we've seen on here, that is leaving a lot of people feeling very angry about their situation. If you're a man, you blame women, and if you're a woman you blame men.

The world would be a better place if we were socialized differently. Marriage needs to be seen for what it is -- a legal construct...not a situation where two people are supposed to serve each other for life. Sounds like prison/slavery to me.

A real legal contract?

I've seen suggestions that marriage be re-worked to meet the criteria of an actual legal contract - including most importantly the inclusion of an exact termination procedure. Sort of like an extended and compulsory prenup. I think it would be a good idea, both to avoid all the divorce battles, but also as a preventive measure: if people had to contemplate the whys and hows of divorce before marrying, maybe they wouldn't marry so easily.

Marriage is the leading cause of divorce

Yes, I think if people were more educated about all the legal ramifications of marriage and had to sign legal contracts that spelled out what each had to do and what each had the right to terminate over, etc. it'd make a few star-struck lovers think twice??? Hopefully, maybe???

We've made marriage easy and divorce hard. Should be the other way around, huh?

W've also sold marriage as a means to happiness. We've sold it to the point that even sane adults want to do it. We need to stop doing THAT.

I should have had a V8

I just had a V8 moment and slapped myself on the forehead when I read your subject line. It was funny and I enjoy reading your postings.

Agreed!

"W've also sold marriage as a means to happiness. We've sold it to the point that even sane adults want to do it. We need to stop doing THAT."

Oh yeah! Works with kids too. Any method to achieve happiness which depends on another human being behaving according to our own wishes is faulty by definition.

Yes!

Actually, Susan Pease Gadoua, who writes on this website, and I are writing "The New I Do: Reshaping Marriage for Romantics, Realists and Rebels" to address just that. The marital models get us out of the one-seize-fits-all model (which it doesn't, by the way) so couples can marry for success by how they define success. The book comes out this fall (Seal Press), but please follow us on Twitter and Facebook and check out our website at http://thenewidobook.com/

Another Bitter Pill

Marriage in the old days was not about love at all. Marriage was about the transfer of property and family alliances to the late 1700s Marrying for love only took off after property rights were secure in western countries. Don't believe me look at India now or a more concrete example the middle east except for Israel.

You're right

of course. Marriage for love was for the poor and low classes. They didn't live that long anyway and marrying for life had it's survival advantages. Marriages in the 40s and 50s lasted so long because women didn't have much choice. My grandmother had a 9th grade education and 3 children by age 21. How on earth was she going to divorce and get a job and support her family? She stayed married out of necessity. People weren't "better" back then.

I've worked with 2 couples from India and Pakistan who are in arranged marriages. They seem very fine with it. Happy. Compatible. We put it down in this country because we've simply been socialized differently. But, marrying based on lust has gotten us where, exactly? Oh, and by the way, my grandparents married because of lust...according to them, and according to my grandmother, if she'd had a choice she'd have divorced my grandfather after about 3 years! (they were married over 50 years)

Internet dating?

Could Internet dating sites be considered as a kind of arranged marriage providers? People fill out profiles and look for compatible partners, instead of just relying on lust.

Of course, the problem is that too many people on these sites don't actually play by the rules: they are not actually looking for a long-term, mutually benifitting relationship (a "marriage" of sorts), but just for sexual conquests :/

Seeking Arrangement

SeekingArrangement.com is an Internet dating site where sugar babies (sb) look for sugar daddies (sd). I've tried it and found it actually far better than Match.com. Why? Because it cuts through the bullshit. Some girls were straight up prostitutes, but most just wanted a man who would treat her kindly, take her out on the town and help with the bills, and a few (to my astonishment) were looking for a relationship. It led me to do a little experiment where I changed the "What I am Seeking" part of my profile, which was long, to this:

"I'm not opposed to a traditional sb/sd arrangement, but what I’m really looking for is a traditional relationship where we both understand that if I as a man take care of your most basic primal need, that being financial security, then you as a woman will take care of my most basic primal need, that being sexual fulfillment."

My inbox had about 30 messages over the next week, all were her contacting me first, and all of them commented on how much they liked that statement, and how much they admired my direct, no bullshit approach. I decided to try this on Match.com, and it worked, but to a lesser extent.

I found a girl in the real world, so I haven't been on SeekingArrangement.com for a while, but it did open my eyes to the primal nature that is still very much alive in all of us. On our first date I told her I made 6 figures, as we were sipping The Macallan 25 year old scotch at $68 per glass. Now, mind you she did not ask nor imply that she wanted to know how much I made, and was a little overwhelmed with the quality of date.

Most importantly she was offended that I had told her. I could see it in the scowl that came over her face, as if to say, “I’m not a prostitute.” But, then I said, “What’s wrong with being honest with each other? I want you because you’re beautiful, fun, smart (super nerd, which I LOVE!!!) and, although we haven’t even kissed yet, I suspect sex with you would be amazing!” Her scowl turned to a devilish grin, as if to say, “Damn right I’m amazing!”

“I want you. You want me. Why beat around the bush about it. I want a beautiful woman on my arm that will fuck me senseless. You want a man is fun, and has the means to treat you like I have tonight, and who will fuck you into a coma.”

Her eyes looked at mine then at the glass she was holding with a large single ice cube displacing the dark caramel colored liquid. She didn’t say anything. She took another sip. Being a scotch lover, the taste of The Macallan 25 was overwhelming. You could see the blood in her cheeks rise to the surface, but writing this now, perhaps it was my words.

Her eyes looked back at mine. We smiled. I leaned over to kiss her. She pulled back, with an even bigger smile. I stayed leaned in. She giggled. Sitting right next to each other in a booth I reached across my body and gripped her arm closest to me and pulled gently, but firmly. She resisted, the giggle was a full on laugh by now. I felt the force against my hand soften, then she leaned in and my lips met hers.

Damn! I should write erotica! There was no nudity in that excerpt and I’m already turned on! Long story short we’re dating, and in subsequent conversations she has said how she loves how direct I am, but always respectful.

So, after that novel, the simple answer to your question is, yes. Internet dating sites are arranged marriage providers. But, we must also understand that all marriages, and relationships for that matter, are arranged. Whether it be by your parents, or the two individuals involved. It is a social and legal contract by which two people come together for mutually beneficial reasons. We can try to lie to ourselves that marriage and intimate relationships are about the fairytale, but in essence they are about basic primal survival, and replication.

If she can't or won't police

If she can't or won't police her own behavior. Then I just don't want her and will find someone that wants to and will.

I bring that to the table and will expect nothing less from it. If it doesn't happen that's ok too. I'm happy just the way it is.

You're happy just the way what is?

You aren't very clear about what it is you're referring to. Could you please elaborate?

"You"

You are posting as anonymous and asking me to elaborate? How dare you! I don't even know you yet. Couldn't you at least try to be my friend first?

Uh....huh?

Hey, I just asked if you go into some more depth on what you said. And very politely at that, too.
Why do you need me to be your friend, just to ask an unoffensive question?

(and why the hell am I still talking to you?)

Yep

You see it all depends on how one feels about a question that makes the question offensive or not.

I feel that answering your question will cause me to feel shame.
I don't want that!

I feel like you are prying into my personal feelings with an agenda to discount or disprove or invalidate my feelings.

I have these feelings about you because you are posting anonymously. By posting anonymously, you have the ability to avoid being shamed, therefore giving you the upper hand in a game of one up man ship.

If you were to be my friend then I would have the trust to answer your question.

Well at least I'm honest about being "Anonymous"!

Your handle says "Neil", but you could be a 20 year old coed for all I know.

I have no idea why you would feel shame in regards to this conversation. You are, of course, entitled to feel however you do. But don't think for a moment that just putting a name up means you're disclosing yourself. Because you're not.

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Marina Adshade, Ph.D., teaches at the Vancouver School of Economics at the University of British Columbia.

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