Friday, June 3, 2011

Defining Hypergamy

There's a commonly repeated meme in this corner of the interwebz...that female hypergamy means women are constantly looking to "trade up" to the highest status male than can attract, and will jump ship to a seemingly higher value mate whenever the opportunity presents itself.

It is also commonly stated that hypergamy is women only looking to mate with men who have better jobs or higher pay than what they make.

This is not what hypergamy is.

Hypergamy explains why some women do in fact "trade up" when the opportunity presents itself, or why they only seek relationships with people more successful than they are...but these things in and of themselves are not the definition of hypergamy.

Hypergamy simply means women's base sexual nature is attracted to a higher status in relation to herself. In other words, if she does not "look up" to a man in some way, she will not be attracted to that man. The higher status can be on one or more characteristics...which is why the unemployed musician can often date a woman who has job and disposable income. She may make more money...but she "looks up" to his musical talents, and he may be physically good looking to boot, despite not having a job, money or a car and so therefore her hypergamous attraction instincts are satisfied in mating with him, despite her higher socio-economic status.

Hypergamy does not mean women are incapable of controlling their behavior while under the influences of those base instincts.

A happily married woman may meet a man who sends her hypergamy detection meter beeping off the charts, and she may or not act on that instinctual attraction. Every woman is different...the problem with today's world is that society at large encourages women to follow this instinct to be "true to herself" or that "happiness" is the most important thing in her life. It is essentially a message telling women to let their hypergamous nature have complete control of her decision making.

But her actions themselves are not hypergamy. Hypergamy describes the biological basis for her attraction how youth, fertility, symmetrical features and shapely figures are male's attraction triggers. How you control your attraction and how you react to it will vary on a whole host of other factors like your belief system, your moral views, and your abilities to rationalize or justify breaking those views if you chose to do so.

To call a woman dumping her man for a higher status man "hypergamy" is missing the real point.

Hypergamy is not a negative female trait.

Nor is it a positive one.

It just is.

For men, the most important thing here is to understand what hypergamy is, and observe how she acts on it. By observing this, you can determine her character and suitability for investing resources into a committed relationship...if that's what your looking for. And if you do find yourself involved, understanding what it is and how it works is also the key in making sure your relationship can succeed in the long run. Understanding her hypergamous hardwiring means you've got to maintain some form of respect and admiration from her to maintain long term attraction.

I remember a girlfriend I had in my early 20's. I had tickets to an upcoming concert and found out the band was gonna be signing autographs at a nearby record store a few days prior. Her friend's and I joined a throng of fans to wait in line to meet the band. When it came to our turn, the security in the store ushered me in, I got to say a few words with the band members while they signed my CD cover, than the security hustled me outside...while my girlfriend and her 3 friends were still getting their merch signed.

Now, I know my girlfriend had a thing for the bass player. I was pissed that the security guards wouldn't let me stay with her until her stuff was signed and she got her photos with the soon as my CD got signed they almost threw me out of the store.

My girlfriend and her friends were in there a lot longer talking to the band than I had. When they finally came out, turns out a few of the band members were trying to convince them to come to a party with the band after the autograph session. While my girlfriend was flattered and basically on cloud 9...she turned him down and came back to me after getting her pictures and autographs.

Here was a case of extreme attraction and definitely status far above and beyond my own status. If hypergamy were the uncontrollable force of nature many bloggers and commenters describe it as, she should have gone with him and had hot groupie sex and forgotten all about my ejected ass waiting outside that record store.

She later told me that yeah, she sure as hell thought about going with him...but the she also knew damn well he was only interested in casual sex and she did not want to throw away our relationship for a one night stand with a rock star who would forget all about her and be on to the next groupie fling in no time.

Maybe that's one good reason why I ended up marrying her.


Amateur Strategist said...

I think there is a lot of merit in the "it just is what it is" statement on what hypergamy is.

However, I have to find that it is a negative element, at least in the culture we live in.

I believe that the way we are raised to believe that women are these higher-moral beings that can only do good leaves those ill informed awe struck when such behaviors cause an attack when Men are their most vulnerable and most trusting.

One could say that it is the cultural idea that is negative, and not the trait, however, I believe that as long as everyone professes to this falsehood (that women would never backstab you) the ones who do are guilty of sin.

It is also my belief that for hypergamy to be a neutral trait, the culture would need to do more in its power to keep hypergamy restrained; this would probably include strong preferences for empowering Men over women.

Overall, great article. I don't hate women, but they are like poisonous snakes, I know they can harm me in serious ways and I need to do all I can to avoid them for such reasons.

Anonymous said...

I'd say hypergamy is like male reaction to (non-obese) females. It's involuntary.

"I believe that the way we are raised to believe that women are these higher-moral beings that can only do good leaves those ill informed awe struck when such behaviors cause an attack when Men are their most vulnerable and most trusting."

The problem is that once women have said that it's only men that are to be blamed for the lust in their hearts upon seeing a woman, no matter in what condition, why should men continue to think that seeing an angel in a woman has got anything to do with her.

Keoni Galt said...

modernguy, I thought about that angle after writing this...


I suppose it's no different than if I had the chance with a victoria secret's supermodel...I can't say I would've made the same choice as she did when she had the opportunity.

I'd like to think I would have, but than I never faced the same temptation either.

Keoni Galt said...

AS - "However, I have to find that it is a negative element, at least in the culture we live in."

I absolutely agree. Our current culture encourages women to embrace their base instinct regardless of who it may hurt.

Anonymous said...

that rock band was very aggressive giving you the boot, and then inviting your girl to a private party. I guess that explains how they pump and dump through hundreds if not thousands of "groupies".

A man can't be sure how his woman will respond to such an invite. If this was husband / wife, it could have been a disaster, unless the rock band has mercy and has a policy not to invite any obvious married women.

This is a case where old fashioned "fault divorce" and father custody would offer husband some security and peace of mind.

I can't get my mind around how chicks sucker for musicians. The tattoos, promiscuity, drugs and alcohol just reeks stuff like chronic hepatitis. Chicks spread their legs for a game of Russian Roulette. Getting a chronic disease doesn't seem good sense reproductive strategy to me.

Anonymous said...

I also agree with the advise to accept female hypergamy as something that just 'is'.

Just as it is an agent that can be used to screw a man over, so it can be used by a man to manipulate his woman.

If you are in a LTR / marriage take the time to discover what it is about yourself that your women perceives as having higher value than herself - is it the money you make, because you have a particular talent, something about your character? This is not easy - do not ask her, instead observe her behaviours. Once you have established the trait, work on it to be the best you can be.

Once you have cemented your DHV in this area it becomes much easier to take control of all other areas of the relationship. And the best bit? Your woman will love you for it.


Default User said...

Funny I had an idea on a post on the same subject, and saying the much the same thing (that she needs to look up to him in some way and that way may differ from woman to woman). Looks like you beat me to it, and saved me the work.

Athol Kay: Married Man Sex Life said...

Great post Keoni.

Susan Walsh said...

I appreciate your breaking this down, Keoni. It's a concept I have not been entirely clear on myself. An excellent tutorial. I especially appreciate your including the very real ability of women, if they will use it, to control their behavior.

Anonymous said...

You hit a home run with this post, Keoni. You are always great but, lately, you are at your best.

Anonymous said...

Wow - excellent post!

Liquid (married 24 years)

Anonymous said...

This reads like a NAWALT defense for hypergamy.

Anonymous said...

And another thing...

Just because a woman 'looks up to a man' as in admires or respects him in some way in no way makes her see him as 'her better', as you and others seem to assume, and imagine this is a place to manipulate from to gain control in all other areas of the relationship (an admission of weakness if I ever heard one).

A woman sees such a man as 'worthy of her'. There is a big difference there. The female is the queen bee, you males are the competing drones, competing to mate with and serve the female. That is nature, and your upside down ideas of patriarchal entitlement are not in harmony with that.

If a woman does not respect or admire a man, she will not invest in him, and certainly will not grant him monogamy; let alone invest in him in all the ways a woman invests in a man. If she feels he is no longer a good investment, she will leave him for a better one for herself and her potential offspring.

It's like a bank figuring out if a company is worth investing in. You can't squeal about manipulating, dominating or controlling the bank. You can't curse and rage like a spoiled entitled child at the bank. 'The bank' only has so much capital in time, equity of beauty and fertility, etc. and has to parse it for the best return.

Society overwhelmingly steers women towards monogamy. A committed woman puts enormous energy into a relationship, home, etc. She must weigh and judge it worth the investment of her time and energy; and yes, her happiness is the best judge of this.

Your deluded entitled whims to own control and dominate women do not dictate to the bank, either literally, or figuratively, as in this case. You twist ideas of hypergamy in an exercise of futilely misplaced over-internationalization that leaves you as confused and misguided as you started. You understand nothing of women.

I hope I have helped to life the veil a bit. You have about as much chance controlling women as you do of dominating and controlling cats. As long as you have a manipulative mindset bent on controlling the woman and the relationship, you will have neither, and you will deserve neither.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said:
"I hope I have helped to life the veil a bit."

You have, and what lurks underneath is truly,truly horrible!

You sound like you are really frustrated and badly need to get laid, but I'm guessing that's probably never going to happen, as I will bet good money that your not very easy on the eye. The reason? A beautiful woman (inside & out) would never be so bitter because they are rarely ever frustrated.
I hope a lot of guys read your post and learn a profound lesson from it. It might even make them aware of the Matriachal Matrix that infuses the western world and begin the awakening process to reality, and for that I am very grateful that you wrote it 'babe'. ;-)

Anonymous said...

"The Queen Bee & the Drones"
Just another self-entitled b*tch trying to deny biological realities..

You have overpriced yourself out the market due to your narcissism and histrionic disorders that you now can't grasp reality

Gerard said...

This is such a great little short story. Awesome.

Anonymous said...

25 years married to a woman I loved.
She had new house, new car, unlimited money.
She said I was best lover she ever had.
She had sex with a 16 year-old at school
I sold everything to keep her from going to prison
A year later she left me while I was at work
The last thing we had talked about was me wanting seperate bank accounts.

Anonymous said...

''Truth is the female is always the dominant one in a relationship, even if she allows a man to imagine he is top. He is not''
How many cats do you own?

Anonymous said...


Willie Holmes said...

I found this because I wanted to know more about it after seeing it mentioned a few times by the Muslim Skeptic in a famous debate of his.

1:46:55​ Polygamy and stable family structures: and probably elsewhere.

I agree that the culture makes this aspect of woman very negative. I'm assuming if that bass player was more mature in the head and willing to actually support a family and be responsible, your girlfriend would have left you in last week. Beware of the next guy, lol.