And Then I Thought I was a Fish

IDENTIFYING INFORMATION: Peter Hunt Welch is a 20-year-old single Caucasian male who was residing in Bar Harbor, Maine this summer. He is a University of Maine at Orono student with no prior psychiatric history, who was admitted to the Acadia Hospital on an involuntary basis due to an acute level of confusion and disorganization, both behaviorally and cognitively. He was evaluated at MDI and was transferred from that facility due to psychosis, impulse thoughts, delusions, and disorientation.

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Observations of a Straight White Male with No Interesting Fetishes

Ever wondered how to justify your own righteousness even while you're constantly embarrassed by it? Or how to make a case for your own existence when you contribute nothing besides nominal labor to a faceless corporation that's probably exploiting children? Are you clinging desperately to an arbitrary social model imposed by your parents and childhood friends? Or screaming in terror, your mind unhinged at the prospect of an uncaring void racing to consume the very possibility of your life having meaning?

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This is the story of a boy, a girl, a phone, a cat, the end of the universe, and the terrible power of ennui.

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Men Going Their Own Way

Composed on the 18th of February in the year 2013, at 9:43 AM. It was Monday.

From youtube comments to Facebook trolls to the abominable testament to the failure of education that is any set of comments on an fml post, the internet never ceases to reveal, or perhaps create, a new dark recess of the global human condition. The latest basement grave I stumbled across is Men Going Their Own Way.

You don’t have to dig very deep to find Men Being Angry Because They Don’t Know How to Talk To Women,1[1] but I was surprised to find a non-fight-club social focal point with its own dedicated forum and, most startlingly, a point-by-point manifesto. We’ll get to that in a moment.

The forum appears to be a kind of social singularity that feeds on the emotion socially awkward and uneducated men get at the exact instant they’re dumped by the woman they assumed would fix all their problems. This has happened to me, and yes, I’ve gone through periods of hating women in my life. They lasted a week or two, filled with some bro-love, “I never liked her anyway” conversations, then I remembered I had a job and sixty more years to get through, so I got over it. The path to emotional maturity is long and depressing, but you get there, usually somewhere in your mid to late twenties, or at least you get to the point where you’re comfortable with your bad decisions and/or chemical imbalances and you cope as best you can.

Unless, of course, you decide that the whole job, love, and sex thing is a social scam designed to enslave beta males, and your best bet is to drop the whole shebang and participate in society only as much as necessary to maintain an internet connection so you can post to a forum about how all women are whores and are going to bring about economic collapse.

It really is that awesome. The sheer volume and consistency of open, misogynistic hatred in these forums just inspires a bemused awe, in lieu of any other possible response. Before the images on the page finish loading, you know you’re in for free entertainment when the main menu bar pops up and contains these, and only these categories: “Fathers, Divorce, Porn, Money, Politics, Women,” which seems to sum up the lifecycle of an average forum member as long as you realize they’re only talking about the last three. And when I say talking, I mean thinking they’ve uncovered some massive, scientifically verifiable truth about the world and it’s all women’s fault, because, you know, taking responsibility for your own shitty life never occurs to a real man. This is how paragraphs like this:

When I first discovered this forum, I felt the some of the same sentiments, but it never deterred me from reading the threads here. The more I read, the more I wanted to read and discover the truth. It was like when I stopped believing in religion. Sometimes the truth is harsh, but I never regret learning it.

end up sharing roughly equal screen time with paragraphs like this:

I’d also like to add that the real enemies are the white knights and manginas. Women on their own can’t do anything.

and this:

Alright you, here’s the deal. Yes, a man who respects himself and doesn’t want his dick anywhere near the revolving-cock-door monster your vagina has become will probably be turned off by your man number. Trust me when I say that anyone who would be interested in you now is probably just trying to fuck you, since I guarentee you have a reputation for being easy. Sorry to say it but unless the guy is the whitest of white knights and/or VERY pussy starved, you might have trouble attracting a guy with class.

I assume this guy, writing his response to a girl foolishly asking the internet for a moral analysis of her sex life, considers himself a guy with class.

This porn forum is oddly sparse, but contains the headline “Internet pornography is creating a generation of young men who are hopeless in the bedroom, according to a woman!” which is met with a slew of “so what? porn is how I avoid women,” and “screw that, I can still fuck I just choose not to” responses. This is right above the headline, “There are new girls coming every day. Hundreds of them,” which, wait for it, is met by “see, all women are whores, this is the best use for them anyway.” This pair of exchanges pretty much sums up American society’s hypocritical relationship with porn, stemming from some men’s refusal to consider women people who aren’t obligated to have sex with them. See… hell, see pretty much everywhere. It’s a bad scene.

Before I get to the manifesto, I’d like to admit that “Now I ain’t sayin’ she a gold digger/But she ain’t messin’ wit no broke niggaz” is one of my favorite lines from a song I rather like, mostly because it’s catchy, but partly because, if you take it out of the context of an often misogynistic musical culture, it can make the point that dating people who never have any money is annoying. Combine that with a social expectation that men should be providing money, and you get the kind of rage Men Going Their Own Way is all about. I just moved to a city where enough people are over this nonsense to date like an adult, instead of assuming that because some women only date guys with the expectation that they’ll get money out of it, all women are whores.2[2] Fuck You by Cee-Lo Green is a more mature reaction to this situation than MGTOW, because he’s straightforwardly expressing his anger and getting on with his life.

Anyway, this isn’t about gender roles in pop-music. Welcome to the five-step program to become a red pill man. Yeah, they really went there, the whole red pill, blue pill thing from the Matrix. Remember? The movie where the hero is saved by true love’s kiss? The kiss from a chick? The chick who can totally take care of herself?

The manifesto is actually on, a different url, and a url which is evidently for sale, having achieved such some sort of reputation.

As long as you believe that your own happiness and interests are more important than social expectations and you make your decisions based on that, you can consider yourself as one of the MGTOW – Men Going Their Own Way.

Well, that seems like sound advice, right? Welcome to

Level 0: Situational Awareness

This level includes men who are aware of the realities that face them in society, and yet deem the risks acceptable to have a go at playing the game. I will only touch briefly on this group, as there are not many of these around, and for good reason - the odds stacked against men having the white picket fence deal are still too bloody high. For the first time in a long while, men are having to filter women based on their ability to shrug off constant bombardment by society to give in to their hypergamous natures (and the same bombardment repeatedly chastises and criminalises mens’ polygamous natures) and adjustment still has to take place, which may not happen before society at large collapses (yes, I’m that pessimistic).

Every good argument should begin with why disagreeing with it will cause civilization to collapse. Lyndon LaRouche knows it, as does most of the republican party. It’s almost as effective as saying dissent will kill your children, which is a gimme due to biological imperatives, despite the collapse of society being arguably worse.

But really, saying you shouldn’t be beholden to societies expectations is pretty laudable. You just have to respect certain societal expectations so society can continue to function. Except, because of the expectations of women, any man who buys into the system is a sucker. That’s why level 1 isn’t some claptrap about figuring out what you want and trying to get it.

Level 1: Rejection of long-term relationships

The MGTOW rejects all form of long-term personal relationships with women, including but not limited to marriage, cohabitation of any sort which might be classified as common-law marriage, picking up for a single mother’s children, or any action which might be used in court to turn him into her legal indentured servant.

There is absolutely no way the person who started this movement didn’t do it right after a messy divorce.

This is where it becomes obvious that this whole thing isn’t about self-actualization at all: it’s about fear. Look, me, I’m all for getting rid of legal marriage. You should be allowed to sort out your financial, medical, and personal arrangements with people you trust with the blessing of the government, without this weird, all-encompassing grab bag of entitlements and restrictions based on ancient traditions. But MGTOW’s level 1 is about making yourself invulnerable to the possibility of betrayal, which means not trusting anyone, which means you’re so afraid of being hurt you would rather not try at all, which means—you guessed it—you’re a coward.

And, in the case of MGTOW, a weaselly little backstabbing coward, because each level has a list of “Resources withdrawn from society.” In the case of level 1: a) Intimacy and commitment that women desire, temporary or otherwise, and b) State-supported wealth transfers from men to women via the divorce, child support and domestic violence industries.

a) “Phil, from the looks of that play, I’m don’t think he was adding much to the game anyway. Even if he hadn’t thrown a hissy fit and left the field, the coach would have benched him.”

b) Rats. I’ll have to dump all my Domestic Violence stocks.

Level 2: Rejection of short-term relationships

The MGTOW rejects all form of personal relationships with women, including dating, one-night stands, friendships, etc. Any contact with unfamiliar women is kept strictly professional and at a minimum.

This, of course, is where it goes from ignorant-and-reactionary-but-discussable arguments about the state of society, to “I hate women because they didn’t give me enough sex or took my kids or didn’t shut up when I beat them” territory. It lunges straight into the argument “rape laws favor the accuser so all men should be afraid.” Hmm. Let’s see. I’ve slept with several dozen women, made out with maybe a few hundred, and dated numbers I can’t begin to recall. I have never once been accused of rape, or ever even been afraid of the possibility. What could I be doing wrong here? Wait, I’m not sure I have any friends who’ve been accused of rape. Or coworkers. Or people I’ve had conversations with. Or met. Or been told about by friends. That’s weird. Maybe I just don’t hang out with FUCKING RAPISTS.

I’m not saying men aren’t falsely accused. It’s awful. But it happens considerably less often than actual sexual assault, and I applaud a society that errs on the side of protecting victims. Since we already err on the side of accusing them of being lying whores.

What have our gents taken from society this time? a) Beta orbiter benefits to women. (Chivalry, etc.), b) Greater loss of intimacy and romantic prospects for women, and c) A general growing indifference by MGTOWs to women (and an observable trend from men in general, too). Hate is not the antithesis of love, because it still implies the one doing the hating still cares to some extent about the hated. The indifferent merely ignores all of this.

a) This is actually a running theme. The people on this site seem convinced of the beta/alpha distinction between men, and anybody joining the site is a proud beta male, branding themselves as born unlucky and incapable of achieving the sex- and money-drenched lifestyles of men with superior genetics. It’s the nice guy fallacy on reverse steroids.

b) “I agree, Fred. Oh, looks like he’s trying to come back on the field and yelling something. Security’s removing him now, sorry for the disruption folks.”

c) This doesn’t really seem like something taken from society. This is what happens when you get carried away with your bullet points and don’t have an editor.

Level 3: Economic disengagement

Now we descend into the wibbly-wobbly crazy.

The MGTOW refuses to produce more than is strictly necessary for his individual survival. He will do as much work off the books as possible to avoid taxation, and will endeavour to remain in the lowest tax bracket possible without jeopardising his way of life and acceptable standard of living.


The first common reason for ascending to this level is sited as “Lack of desire to produce due to being denied a meaningful and socially accepted path to respect within the grasp of the everyday beta man.” Or, “Because respect wasn’t handed to me, I’m taking my toys and going home.”

It’s epic. In order to punish society, the beta man is going to stop contributing to it, because society never did anything for him, aside from that whole public infrastructure thing.

Look, I know that there’s a bum rap when “society” respects me less because I don’t make more money. Actually, no, wait, society doesn’t respect me less because society doesn’t have any feelings at all, and is just a word for an economic and social structure comprised of individuals trying to benefit from distributed specialization. I don’t actually need respect from a thing that doesn’t have feelings, I just need respect from the people I interact with more than twice a week. It is true that trends and traditions can strongly affect those relationships, so when those trends are broken, we should totally make everything worse by saying they’re unfixable and we should crash the whole system and let everybody die. That sounds like a reasonable reaction to personal loss.

We done yet? Nope. One more step.

Level 4: Societal rejection

The MGTOW drops out of society altogether. He minimises contact with the blue-pill world and seeks to further his own ends on his own terms. For all intents and purposes, he does not exist. A urbanite might keep to his own apartment, while someone further out may simply head into the wilderness and go off-grid.

Fortunately, enough of them stay on-grid to keep this website hopping.

Here, we get to the Zen beauty of the whole effort. These men are willingly removing themselves from the whole game. This problem is consciously and actively removing itself. It is to woman-hating what the breatharians were to religion. The dogma eats itself, almost like a whiny asshole running off into the woods where nobody has to listen to him anymore. It almost makes me think that this is a clever joke designed to get men like this out of the way.3[3] All of this makes me hesitant to write the next paragraph, in case it encourages them to come out of the woods to whine more.

A personal philosophy based on failure does exactly what you think it does. A society that creates reactions like this is a screwed up society, and that’s a problem, but MGTOW doesn’t really blame society; it blames women. Hence it gets a huge hard-on for yelling at society and women, basically tying their egos to a hatred of everything that went wrong in their lives that they didn’t feel they could control. So they say they’re dropping out and punishing society because it didn’t provide enough free women slaves to please them, when they’re actually just creating an entire lifestyle based on the thing they claim not to care about. That they claim women are starting to wonder where all the good men have gone and that those men are on this website is a level of self-deception that can probably only be achieved by dropping out of society, so good job there.

Breaking free of problematic social expectations affecting your personal life is not about ducking out of society altogether and ranting about women on the internet. It’s about figuring out how you can build enough self-respect and mature relationships to be happy, while avoiding the traps that convince you that you’re a slave to social expectations and you have to either toil or escape. The MGTOW crowd has so utterly failed in their attempt to live for themselves, they base their lives on that very failure, and recede like whispers into the solitude of shamefully beaten, trying to matter by not mattering.

1 Hint: the same way you would talk to a man. It’s almost like they’re the same species.

2 This is an example of the logical fallacy of statistics of small numbers, or argument from small numbers, and, depending on your mood, a host of other logical fallacies, and everybody should really familiarize themselves with this list before, you know, speaking.

3 And, due to Poe’s Law, I’m fully open to the possibility that this whole site really is a joke, but I’ve read to much OkCupid user mail to think that these people are unrealistic portrayals.

I think this is some famous dude.

Hi there! You should totally go buy my book for the low low price of 6.73! It's like buying me a beer at an out-of-the-way dive bar in Brooklyn! Not in Manhattan. Manhattan prices are ridiculous, though there are a couple of decent Irish dives where you can snag a drink for five bucks. Otherwise, you're looking at a two or three book beer.