by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo
I confess: I fell for this. Like any aging woman who wants a "hip" backup to her own motherly advice, I thought a catchy title and two well-connected authors would cement the solid advice she'd been dispensing for years. Reality check: well-connected authors in the secular world didn't make their connections by attaching themselves to chastity, modesty, or virtue in general. Those are the people still out in the cold, knocking patiently on the sealed doors to the mass media. Those on the inside are there because they have joined in the chorus, belting out tunes that praise the sexual revolution. Silly me.
Somehow, because they are suffering from the inadequacies inherent in adolescence and are yearning to be loved, young girls often miss important cues from the men in their lives. They overlook key defects and ignore telling traits, seeing only good intentions and banking on vague promises. This generation isn't unique in this regard, but the disintegration of the family means fewer women have fathers who are careful to form them and pay attention to their romantic adventures, and there is a greater sense of independence overall from parental oversight in the best of circumstances. Young people navigate the waters of courtship and love with little moral formation and less respect for convention. It is a recipe for disaster.
These two authors, both associated with the hit television series "Sex and the City," teamed up to fight the overwhelming trend they witnessed: women pining over losers who had no intention of trying to make them happy. The chapters are rife with entertaining anecdotes under amazingly obvious titles: He's just not that into you ... If he's not asking you out. ... If he's not calling you, ... If he's not dating you, ... If he's disappeared on you, ... If he's a selfish jerk, ... If he only wants to see you when he's drunk. How obtuse can women possibly be? Is all of this really necessary? Sadly, Yes.
With even the questionable dating habits that parents and grandparents went through in the last fifty years, we now have "serious" relationships based on email, instant messaging, hooking up at assigned locations, and cell phone contact (messages, conversations, and graphic pictures). Real human contact - let's call it eye-to-eye contact - is minimal, and parental involvement may be non-existent despite the best of intentions. Children are loose and on the market from a very young age and the peer advice they get is akin to the "blind leading the blind." From the fact that this book has been a "New York Times #1 Bestseller," we can assume that young women are in a real quandary trying to figure out why they're not getting commitment - or even a modicum of respect.
Chapter Four is the key. This is the answer to why there is little commitment and even less wisdom in picking up the cues about where true affections lie. These two saucy and hip authors toss their readers the "truism" that takes them down the black hole: "He's just not that into you if he's not having sex with you." Yes, dear readers, you read that right. In their logic, they explain:
Ladies, you are going to meet, and have already met, many, many men in the years that constitute your dating lifespan. And I hate to tell you this, but some of these men will simply not be attracted to you. I know you're hot, but that's just the way it is... If he were into you, he would be having a hard time keeping his paws off you. Oh the simplicity of it all! If a man is not trying got undress you, he's not into you.
Then they go on to fielding several protestations about nice guys who don't seem to be this way, which they put down adamantly. Sex is a gift, a right to be enjoyed, they insist, and if your man isn't offering it, it's a very bad sign and you must move on.
Is this said earnestly? Jokingly? Sincerely? While laughing up their sleeves? I don't know, but there it is - which explains the moral vacuum, the blindness, the myopia, the folly. If this is the standard by which women are to connect with men, then it's no wonder that they are more impaired and abused than any generation of their sisters previously. (Even the "flower children" knew what they were flaunting and where the moral bar lay.) Contemporary children are surrounded by decadence, with what used to be fringe now parading everywhere as mainstream culture.
If sexual intimacy is inherent in all male-female relationships in order to prove "I care," then men will be depraved and irresponsible and women will be spiritually and emotionally bankrupt. It's that simple. With the physiological bonding that takes place in women during intercourse, they are serially severing their senses from their being, and fragmenting their very souls. When a woman has to spend $30 on a book for a complete stranger to tell her that the man who abandoned he doesn't care about her, she is beyond confused, she is a blind and irrational soul.
Here's the popular culture, arrayed in snazzy colours, stating the obvious to the oblivious. I took the bait, and found that the "cure" contains poison - not like an antibody to save, but like a nice refreshing glass of water laced with a deadly dose of arsenic. We have to face this message head-on and explain why it is wrong. We cannot afford delicacy on this issue - the darkness lies over this world like a mist and we owe our daughters at least a lamp. Without it, they will be swallowed before our very eyes.