The "I Don't Owe You, You Don't Owe Me" Game


Many guys will complain that they are virgins, sexually frustrated, that women are manipulative and won't sleep with them or date them if they don't have a high level of confidence, that they are expected to approach women, buy them stuff, that the girls they end up with will be more experienced than them, etc.

Meanwhile, many women will complain that men just want to use them for sex, that they can't find somebody to commit to them, that guys judge according to looks, that the guys they end up with will complain about their sexual history, that guys never approach them, never buy them stuff, etc.

In both cases, there is a very common logical refutation people use and holds very true,

The world does not owe you

When you analyse the meaning of this phrase, it's a scary thought. If you were penniless, suffering from an illness that was curable, had nothing to eat, under serious threat of murder or bodily harm, you couldn't force somebody to help you. There is no objective ethical code that says you have to help your fellow neighbour in suffering. We do help each other - because we feel compassion to do so. But there is no god or higher authority that says we must do so. And when it comes to some things like loneliness, or sexual ostracisation, being 'owed' something means that you are 'owed' it at the expense of somebody else - after all, that person is obligated to you, then that means that they must give you their companionship or sex as an act of 'charity'. So in actual fact, we do not want to be owed things by the world, as harsh as the alternative may be (nihilism).

But the meaning of the phrase extends beyond the literal fact that you are not owed something. People use this expression to tell you a lot more about your own expectations, desires and inner-conflicts. If somebody is told they are not 'owed' something, what is actually meant is that they have the capacity to get something but what is holding them back is their own standards, their own selfishness, or their own inner-conflicts.

For example, many men want sex but not with just any woman: she has to be an 8/10 or 9/10 stunner. And they want their woman to be promiscuous, but not with everyone: just them.

As for women, they want and expect an ideal partner, but they do not want to approach: the man of their dreams must come to them. And they do not want to be judged by their looks, but they are perfectly content to judge a man by his confidence, or his socioeconomic status and see nothing wrong or superficial about this.

Games people play

As if this phenomenon was not bad enough in itself, there is something even worse about it, people use the expression to shame one another for their standards, rather than just accepting that standards are to be expected and yes, not everything somebody wants or desires is completely logical or non-contradictory. In fact, by very definition, desire is irrational. It is not something that can be defined, it is not something that we can explain or articulate why we want it. It just is.

So where does shaming come into play?

Women wil remind and judge men for their high standards and inner-contradictions. If a man says he is looking for a beautiful model girlfriend, they will tell them that he is being unrealistic, shallow, and that the world does not owe him. Men have to be very careful with the language they use in the first place and avoid communicating the sentiment that they are 'owed' something or that they are bitter and frustrated with the opposite sex when asking for advice about this.

Men become angry and cynical in return. When women complain that they cannot get all of these bad boy studs and alpha males to commit and that they are always being used for sex, then the men will happily remind them that they are not owed anything (because this is precisely the advice everyone has been giving to them - men and women!). To avoid this, women should avoid complaining about how badly they have been treated, especially if there are men - nice and intelligent, but not bad ass, reckless studs - that they have disregarded themselves in the past. Instead, they should focus on asking what they can improve about themselves so that they can be perceived as relationship status material.

A myTake written on here recently is a classic representation of the phenomenon. The woman author of this had the following to say:

Pretty much everything the haters say is true to some extent.

We do like to be wined and dined. It's great to be treated well. Yes, if the situation arises, we love having more than one man chasing us. Who wouldn't? No, we're not going to dump one until we're sure about the other. That would be nuts.

No, we don't let just anybody penetrate us with his dick. We want to get to know you first. We want to find out if you're trustworthy and kind. If you have any higher feelings beyond sexual urges that you care to share with us. Sometimes our expectations are unrealistic, or maybe we aren't mature enough to realize our own selfish motives. Sometimes we just don't know what we want, or we're waiting to see if a weak attraction will grow stronger because we don't want to hurt your feelings.

Does this result in frustration? Yes. Does it make some guys bitter? Definitely. Do some women abuse their power? Yeah. Do some abuse it routinely? Unfortunately, yes.

We know that this brief time in our lives when we're young and attractive is fleeting. You're gonna dump us for a younger model at the first sign of a wrinkle or stretch mark. We're going to enjoy life while we still can, because guys can keep on banging chicks till their 80s but our prime time is limited.

So hate all you want. We can take it. Your whining just proves what slaves to lust you are, because if it was really that bad, you wouldn't keep coming back for more.

My response was equally cynical and mouthy because I wanted to put her down as much as she was putting sexually frustrated men down but I won't repost it, because I do not have hatred for all older women that have a hard time getting a man to commit.

Bottom Line

There are two classes of people at war, and they are not men and women. It's the frustrated and the satiated (their desires - or their main desires - have mostly been fulfilled). The frustrated complain and the satiated keep them down by telling them to stop bitching but at the same time are sometimes guilty of telling them not to try improving - just lower their standards and settle for less.

Screw that!

To the satiated I have this to say: you wouldn't be so confident if you had not already reached your goals. At some point in your life, you will have felt frustrated about something. Stop telling people to suck it up. Stop telling them 'the world does not owe you' and refusing to offer any constructive advice that might help them. Stop telling them to just be confident, just be themselves. Stop telling people to settle for less.

To the frustrated I have this to say: complaining is unconstructive and no, the world does not owe you. But stick to your guns, keep your standards and remember that 'it ain't over till the fat lady sings'. And remember what it feels like to be frustrated. Don't shame other frustrated people for their desires, even if you think those desires conflict to an extent (e.g. if you are a sexually frustrated man talking to a lonely, single woman, don't be filled with hatred, or shaming tactics). Be very careful with the language they use in the first place and avoid communicating the sentiment that they are 'owed' something or that they are bitter and frustrated with the opposite sex when asking for advice about this. Ask for advice about how to improve. Avoid complainng about how rough you have things. If you do this, people will find it harder to say such derogatory things to you and make you feel bad, or like it's your fault that you have not yet gotten what it is that you want.

the_rake is a GirlsAskGuys Editor
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What Guys Said 5

  • "And they want their woman to be promiscuous, but not with everyone: just them"

    Haha, I understand what you are trying to say but I think "easy" would have been a better word.

    Anyways, I agree that nobody is owed anything. Guys tend to get less sympathy when discussing their problems and dating standards. I think we would be better off not talking about their preferences or complaining about their dating frustrations. It only brings drama and criticism. So if you don't like promiscuous girls, don’t date them but never let them know their sexual history was the reason why you ended things. If you don’t want to date a girl who has sex on the first date with other guys but wants to make you wait, she doesn’t owe you sex and you don’t owe her a relationship. Leave and search for what you perceive to be “better offers” but don’t let them know why. You have nothing to gain from being honest about your preferences and turns offs. You have nothing to gain from telling them why you don’t want to date them; you have nothing to gain from complaining about your struggles and hoping for women to sympathize.

    If I have learned anything from seeing countess guys ask for advice on this site and get shat on, it is “keep it to yourself”. Never ask a woman for sympathy or advice on anything regarding dating.

  • This was a very good read.

  • well said and well thought out. Good take and good message.

  • This is the best My Take I've ever read.

  • What I believe this all boils down to is that with almost every modern relationship there is a certain competition that happens.

    Usually I see it going like this: one person in the relationship desires sex and the other desires commitment. Lets say in this scenario the woman wants commitment while the man wants sex because that's how it normally is. The way the competition would go is if the woman gives the man sex before the man gives the women commitment, the man wins and is the dominant one because he can withdrawal the commitment whenever he wants if he feels that the woman is not pleasing him or is otherwise stepping out of line, thus making the woman crawl right back to him. If the man gives the woman commitment before the woman gives him sex, the woman wins and is dominant one as she now has the authority to control the man by not giving him sex if he isn't committing to her enough or doing enough.

    The problem now is that us men are brainwashed into thinking that the sooner he gives commitment the sooner he gets sex when all committing early is really doing is showing her that he lacks self respect and gives her control of him.

    • Yep, this is a great analysis. Usually it is the more experienced partner who is dominant which is why so many virgin guys end up with sluts who demand commitment from the guy and postpone sex when she have it so freely and easily to other guys (who were more experienced than her at the time). But because the virgin guy has to commit first it takes ages for him to get the experience he needs to turn the tables, whereas dominant men who lost their virginity early in life and women that give away easily are usually leagues ahead. This is why it's so hard for late in life virgins to get laid - even by sluts. Because the sluts give away freely and easily: just not to virgins.

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    • Yes and it is the lack of information in general. Of course advice needs to be blunt and to the point at times but it also needs to communicate the necessary information to push people into improvement. I strongly believe that much of the PUA and self-improvement advice out there for example deliberately feeds out mere breadcrumbs of information as a marketing ploy. Meanwhile, this is interspersed with critical advice like, "the world does not owe you", "just be confident", "stop being a pussy" etc. so that the person receiving advice feels ashamed if they are unsuccessful (they believe it is their own fault rather than the fact there is so little good advice out their and for every nugget of gold, there is a pile of shit being hoarded by these false gurus stringing people along and slowly burning holes in their wallets). It makes me sick. As for ordinary people, they give this advice out of fear: they are afraid that the recipients of such advice will supercede them.

    • I like the way you phrased it as being a competition. It may not be romantic but who ever cares the least wins, who ever is able to get what they want from the other person while giving them less has the upper hand.

      The guys who are able to get sex without giving commitment have more power and are in a sense the "winners". While the guys who date that girl later on and have to give their time, money and commitment before getting sex are the losers.