I’ve been beating the self-improvement drum here on the manosphere for some time now. From promoting the consistent questioning of what you bring to the table to outlining the need to build effortless attraction, the theme I’ve advocated for is clear: young men need to consistently identify their faults and, through doing so, take control over their own romantic futures.
Left out of this discussion, however, are a few crucial realities that relate to things that even those most devoted to the cause of self-improvement will find entirely out of their control. The first of the realities relates to our culture, which is inherently hostile to many of the goals sought by the self-improving male. The second and less well detailed reality relates to the mental state of those that so many of us seek to approach romantically.
As I put quite simply many months ago, many young American women are simply not alright in the head:
The USA has long had the highest rates of mental illness in the world, but the latest reports on the extent of it are still pretty shocking: mental illness struck one in five U.S. adults in 2010.
Among the highlights, people in the 50-plus age bracket had the lowest incidence of any mental illness (14.3%), while those ages 18 to 25 had the highest, at 29.9%. Women had higher rates than men: 23% versus 16.8%.
When broken down by racial and ethnic groups, the highest rates of mental illness were seen among people who reported two or more races (25.4%), followed by whites (20.6%), blacks (19.7%), Native Americans or Alaska natives (18.7%), Hispanics (18.3%) and Asians (15.8%).
This is an important story for American men looking to maintain perspective: at least a quarter of the women you run into at any given time are not going to be alright upstairs. When you take into consideration that the highly sought after 18-25 demographic has even higher illness rates and that many of the mentally ill go undiagnosed, you could be looking at a vastly higher proportion of not-entirely-ok girls, possibly approaching 50%.
Alright, so that’s been said. What does all of this mean for you?
1. Don’t take girls too seriously.
Remember, if you’re 18-25 then it is entirely possible that half of the women in your age group are operating with some sort of mental issue, and that means that for many of them odd, irrational behavior will be run-of-the-mill. Expect this behavior and take it in stride. Do not let it impact you.
2. Don’t get so down on yourself as a young guy.
You may think you’re a loser because you get shot down by these girls more than you’d like, but this isn’t always the case: you’re often dealing with not-entirely-alright girls with illogical criteria.
This isn’t an excuse, mind you. This doesn’t mean that you aren’t doing many things wrong and should stop examining and mercilessly eliminating your faults, but it does mean that you should never be too hard on yourself and must always be ready to chalk some losses up to the way of the world. Even the right moves can be the wrong moves in the eyes of someone who isn’t mentally alright.
3. Don’t try to argue or reason with them.
If you’re 18-25, you will in many cases be dealing with someone who is fundamentally incapable of being reliably rational. You’ll get nowhere playing by their rules, so play by your own. Don’t get sucked into madness.
4. Take girls off the pedestal.
This is tough for young guys, but it has to be done. It should be made easier by the realization that many of the women men seek to place on unrealistic pedestals don’t even have their own minds sorted properly, a fact that should clearly preclude them from receiving worship. This is just another reminder of what so many thirsty males forget time and time again: these women are just humans, imperfect beings like you and I. Nothing more, and nothing less.
5. Crazy works with crazy.
Dysfunctional treatment is often welcomed by dysfunctional people, and many of those with mental issues fit that bill. Since we’ve already established that a very large number of young women fit into that category, you should not be surprised to see so many of them respond positively to dysfunctional behavior.
It is not uncommon for young men to adopt some of these dysfunctional behaviors, find increased sexual/romantic success with their female peers as a result, and then feel guilty about it all. Such guilt is understandable (they don’t like the fact that morally degraded versions of themselves are more appealing to girls in general than the men they actually prefer to be), but ultimately unnecessary—there is nothing a man can do about the female proclivity to welcome such behavior except adapt to it. It is the result of factors much bigger than him.
Self-improvement is important, but knowing your environment is crucial too. You can’t help everyone, but you can help yourself to better deal with those around you.
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