The price of a bride

Posted on April 28, 2012 by

While America was still a country with low levels of inequality, marriage was considered a romantic adventure. It didn’t really matter who you married, as long as you got along and found each other attractive. Of course that didn’t turn out very well, as Boomer divorce rates attest, but it was a pleasant sentiment.

That is no longer the case — all homo-advocation to the contrary. If there’s one thing my generation isn’t, it’s sentimental. We’re now more socially-stratified than ever, and our marital habits reflect that. It’s difficult and increasingly rare to marry out of your social class, and that is leading to the strange return of the bride price for the upper class. And where the rich go, so goes society.

Although the plurality of unmarried women has created a sex-flooded zone for some men, it has not actually increased the number of women suitable for a long-term relationship. If anything, it has decreased it, as women become more promiscuous and depraved in order to sleep with the few men who dominate the dating scene. So suitable women have a surprisingly high value, hence the increase in men willing to pay outright for their company. It’s like a form of reverse-prostitution, where you pay women a fee for remaining chaste. That, my readers, is a bride price.

It’s gotten to the point that men will pay you in cash just for the opportunity to take you out for dinner (which they also pay for). This is not made-up! Such a payment protects women from wasting their time with high-turnover “players” who are usually quite cheap with their money. In other words, men are looking for wives in a polygamous dating scene, so they have to increase their offering and show seriousness upfront, or they will have few opportunities. So why not formalize it? Why not admit to the facts on the ground and set up a system that follows the New Rules of Dating?

I’ve commented on the return of the Sugar Daddy, and we’ve all been astonished by the open pseudo-prostitution practiced on popular websites like SeekingArrangement and WhatsYourPrice, but I’ve been giving more thought to the overall dynamic. The “monetary matchmakers” claim that they’re only doing openly what everyone else is doing secretly, and I think they are correct.

As marriage has become a high-risk enterprise, both men and women are viewing their prospective partners with an increasingly cool eye. Most of us are aware of our own SMP ranking on a scale of 1-10, and that of our dates, and we’re losing interest in pretending not to know. Everyone wants to get a “good deal” on their partner’s ranking (which results in the marriage of equals), and it is that sense of having married above your station that helps to keep people wedded. If you feel like you  “got a deal” on the first mate, you’ll be less interested in trying your luck for a second time.

A woman’s appearance is essential. Not just how beautiful she is, but also how elegant or pleasant she looks. Can you imagine her bearing your children, or does her face look worn-out by hard-living? How is she dressed? How has she posed for the camera? What is her expression? You can tell a lot from a picture.

Likewise, although a man’s income is essentially irrelevant when seeking someone for one night, it’s probably at the top or near-top of the list when seeking someone for life. Women and children have to eat, and financial security is something no woman takes for granted. We girls try to mask our interest for decency’s sake. We ask mild questions, such as, “So, what do you do?” We note his dressing habits, the color of his credit card, where he lives, and the car he drives. But we find out just the same.

Romance is dead.

Well, not really. Romance blooms nonetheless, but only after the pair has decided that they might be a good match. And that is why I think that the next big development will be arranged marriages. There has already been a move in that direction with the courtship movement, but crossing that studious search for a mate with online dating profiles and an auction would yield an objective, efficient, and unabashed market for spouses. Spouses who, perhaps, will be better-equipped to cross the minefield of modern marriage intact because they are so closely matched.

Long live romance.

Posted in: Relationships