EMSK why the "Red Pill" will kill you inside (self.everymanshouldknow)
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Foreword: I realize that this isn't your typical EMSK entry, but I view it as essential advice to any man who wants to be happy in a heterosexual relationship. Nothing against men who want to be in a non-hetero relationship either; this is just addressing those who may be getting pulled in by the "Red Pill" philosophy.
For the uninitiated, "Red Pill" is a term co-opted by the types of people who frequent /r/TheRedPill (enter at your own risk, lots of lady-hate in there). It's a reference to The Matrix, in which Morpheus offers Neo a choice of one of two pills... a blue pill, which will make him forget and allow him to contentedly go back to a life of brainwashed mediocrity, or a red pill, which will wake him up to an unpleasant truth but grant him great power.
The idea of the "Red Pill" as is commonly used now, is that men are constantly losing a war of what /r/TheRedPill users refer to as "Sexual strategy." Essentially the premise is that women have what we want (sex), and they can make us bend over backwards to get it. They have us wrapped around their little fingers. Those who "take the Red Pill" awaken to their true male potential and learn to get what they want without having to submit and forfeit their masculinity.
The subreddit is rife with success stories from men who claim they've gotten what they want out of their relationship. One guy claims (and I'm paraphrasing), "She does my laundry and dishes, we have sex whenever I want, and she knows that I don't belong to her, and if she ever slips up or takes me for granted, she’s gone."
It's not that I doubt what he's saying. I believe it. The problem is, what he's describing is emotional abuse. What the Red Pill advocates is taking advantage of common weak points in the typical female psyche (most of which are present in your typical male psyche as well; everyone has weak points, and most of them are common to all humans, though some are more pronounced in one sex or another) to put pressure on women and bend them to your will. Users advise doing things like keeping her guessing, changing what you want and then berating her for not keeping up with your whims. Several advise that you never show affection for her unless she’s done something to please you. You break them like you'd break an animal.
And it's damned effective in some cases. It'll get you what you want if you do it right.
But you shouldn't want that, and here's why.
The Red Pill subreddit is also full of "Blue Pill Stories," in which guys get emotionally abused by their girlfriends. They lament being used for their money, their homes, their emotional support, what have you, and then being left when they weren't "Alpha" enough to keep their girlfriends around. It's a shame, it really is. Nobody deserves that kind of abuse.
"Nobody" includes women, though. What the Red Pill strategy does is flip that power dynamic on its head. When it works, now it's the man who is in power and the woman who is suffering. The man gets the sex without having to commit any real effort to the relationship, aside from making sure that his SO's emotions are brutally crushed on a regular basis. You haven't fixed anything, you've only made sure it's your SO who's suffering and not you. And the reason she stays is the same reason Blue Pill guys stay in their relationships: They don't want to be alone.
And as long as you keep that power dynamic active, you will never know what love is. Because love means that you feel what your lover feels. If she hurts, you hurt. If you hurt her, you feel all of her pain and all of the shame for knowing that you're the one that caused it. If you really love someone, you'll never want to hurt them. And make no mistake, that's what the Red Pill is: cold, calculated, systematic emotional torture meant to produce a desired response. Methods like keeping your prisoner guessing, changing what you want, keeping them off balance, those are all interrogation techniques meant to break your prisoner down on a mental and emotional level and produce a compliant charge.
Put quite simply, someone couldn't ever do such a thing to someone they truly loved.
There is one thing that Red Pill has right. Sexual strategy sucks. But the solution isn't getting better at it than your SO is. The solution is agreeing with one another that you're not going to play the game. If a game is going to always suck for one player, and both players care about one another, they're going to find a better game to play.
You want a healthy, stable relationship that is going to be rewarding? Here's the secret. Remember that your SO is just as complex, intelligent and vulnerable a human being as you are. She has needs just like you do. While she might place different values on her various needs, while she might express them differently, they're every bit as important to her as yours are to you. Life is a war. But if you want to win it, you and your SO need to be on the same side.
You don't need to break your girlfriend or wife. You need to talk to them. If they're doing something that hurts you, you need to tell them. And not "I wish you would quit that." Tell them "This hurts me when you do that." If they care about you, they'll take action to prevent causing you pain. To position and strategize to get what you want out of your marriage is to deny your most potent asset: An intelligent human being who cares about you and wants to see you happy above all else, and who wants to be happy alongside you.
And if you don't have that in your SO, you either need to get to that point or get out. There are many, many worse things than being single. One of them is being in an abusive or emotionally vacant relationship (on either side, abuser or victim). Don't view your time as being single as a sexless desert. View it as a time to grow and realize who you are. You need to be able to define yourself as an individual before you’re ready for a relationship.
Human beings are as diverse as life on this planet. For every type, there is a countertype. There is someone out there for just about everyone. However, none of your relationships will work out in a healthy manner until you realize that women are people too, not animals to be broken. You don't need to be an Alpha. You're not a damned dog. You're a human being. Human beings can communicate complex concepts, rebel against their base instincts to find better ways of doing things, and above all, reflect on their actions and empathize. You don't need to establish dominance, you just need to find somebody that's willing to actively pursue your happiness alongside their own; and you need to be willing to do the same for them. If you're not ready to do that, you're not ready to have a healthy relationship.
But there's good news... Something else human beings are good at is changing. You want someone to be willing to change for you, you have to make sure you're willing to change yourself a bit. Everything's a two-way street. Just make sure you're changing for the better. Being willing to change doesn't mean flopping over and doing whatever is asked of you. Here, change is a bad word for this. Be willing to improve yourself. Nobody's perfect. Spot those places that need work (I assure you, they're there, and if you can't spot them, I guarantee the people around you can), and start improving on those things.
In order to have a healthy relationship, you have to be a healthy human being first. A healthy human being doesn't use sexual strategy. You'll only ever have a healthy relationship if both parties refuse to play that game.
I mentioned earlier that Morpheus's "Red Pill" was originally symbolism for awakening, both to truth and to power, while the "Blue Pill" was a metaphor for staying asleep and maintaining the status quo.
In truth, the Red Pill as they represent it isn't a true awakening at all. It's a capitulation to a false dichotomy. A true awakening is realizing that the people around you are more than just faces, that they all have their own stories, their own thoughts, hopes and dreams, and that they are just as complex as you are. A true awakening is realizing that you don't have to win the fight (and thereby habitually hurt someone you ostensibly care about), or lose it. That you can take your ball and go home.
The Morpheus of sexual strategy is offering you two pills: Red and blue. Win sexual strategy, or lose it.
Punch him in the face and tell him you're not playing his bullshit game.
Edit: /u/TheCrash84 pointed out that I had not used the proper subreddit name. It is /r/TheRedPill, not /r/RedPill as I had originally shared.
Edit 2: At /u/grizzburger's advice, I offer this TL;DR: It's unfair that men suffer from sexual strategy, but that doesn't make it okay to flip it and make women suffer instead. No one deserves to be emotionally abused.
Edit 3: I feel that I should point out that I do not wish to demonize any group of people. I do not mean to say that all those who participate in /r/TheRedPill or similar forums are dead inside. What I am speaking out against is the use of sexual strategy and emotional manipulation to render your partner compliant. Don't participate in that? Great. I don't have a problem with you. I chose /r/TheRedPill to point out in particular because when I went there, that was what the majority of the posts were about. I know there are other posts in that subreddit, some of which are downright praiseworthy.
310 comments submitted at 15:52:37 on Jun 30, 2014 by TalShar