If You’re Complaining About “Men!” or “Women!”, You’ve Already Lost…

Stephen Hussey

I read women’s dating advice (including our own), and scroll down the comments:

  • “If only men weren’t so self-centered…”
  • “I’m done with guys. They care about ONE thing and have no desire to commit.”
  • “Men nowadays are impossible. If they’re so complicated, what’s the point in having them anyway?”

I sigh.

And then just to torture myself further, and for the sake of some perverse kind of balance, I click through the men’s forums to see the angry guys there:

  • “Women are selfish and manipulative…”
  • “All modern women are crazy feminazis who use men for their sperm and their wallets…”
  • “Women just want players. It’s best for us decent men to forget relationships and go our own way.”

(Yes, I’ve cleaned these up. The real comments are far worse.)

I sigh again.

It just..gets…so…boring.


Because it’s so damn easy to do. Anyone can do it.

Think right now of that super frustrating guy who kept stringing you along via text and then disappeared. Or that guy who sent dirty messages waayy too quickly. Or a guy who flaked immediately after sex.

Angry? Great. Now write a think piece about why modern men are f**kboys who can’t commit and the future of love is doomed.

Or, if you’re a man, just think about that woman who brutally shot you down when you tried to say hi. Or the one who stopped texting after a week for no reason. Or that one you took out for cocktails who let you pay and then told you she “just wants to be friends”. Now take to the internet and talk about how women are manipulative harpies who just care about a guy’s social status and money.

Look, I get it. I’ve dated enough to know the world of love can be harsh and unforgiving.

But so what??

When did we stop learning how to deal with disappointment in an adult way? When did we allow a few bitter, angry, sexually frustrated keyboard warriors to define the narrative for the rest of us and make us all despair so much about love?

Believe me, I’ve met people at our retreats who have been through awful experiences in love. And what’s fascinating is how people respond to these experiences in COMPLETELY opposite ways.

I believe that what defines maturity isn’t the amount of experiences we’ve gone through, but how we choose to filter and interpret those experiences.

And if you feel nothing but righteous anger against the opposite sex for being “unfair”, maybe it’s time for a new filter…

Don’t Read The Comments…

It’s very fashionable to hate the modern dating “scene”.

We’ve all had failures (or even successes) that made us feel empty and numb. People who date in big cities feel the transience of sex with no emotional connection. Most of us have faced the humiliation of being disposed of by someone who believes they have better options.

But how will we react in these moments? This is where character truly emerges.

When we meet that selfish social climber, or that superficial narcissist, do we throw our toys out the pram and say: “This is what ALL MEN are like! This is what ALL WOMEN are like!”, or do we say: “this is only one person, and there are hundreds of thousands of OTHER people out there who could be right for me”. 

I feel it’s time to call a moratorium on all the righteous anger.

Making generalizations about the other sex is boring. Being bitter and despairing about relationships is boring.

It’s so easy to spend hours trawling through comments, forums, subreddits, and see all the horror stories written by god-knows-who telling you about their terrible relationships, and allow it to warn you off from ever being optimistic about love again.

Despair is a game the internet loves to indulge in:  but it’s one of those games you lose just by playing.

The Formula? Be Cautious, But Be Open To Romance…

Now, I’m no crazy optimist.

In terms of romance, the world can be an unforgiving place, but I do believe in our ability to make things remarkably better for ourselves with the right approach and set of mental tools.

In terms of love, I believe the best approach is a kind of cautious optimism.

Caution = Choose people wisely. Be careful of who you allow to take up your time and emotion. Don’t ignore the red flags. Follow your heart but take your brain with you. Never assume you really know someone until you’ve spent enough time with them. 

Optimism =  Be open, believe there are great people out there, be willing to take a chance at any point with that amazing person you could meet tomorrow that will shake your world and make your heart swoon just from touching their lips to yours, be willing to be blown away.


Because it happens all the time.

From my years giving seminars with Matt, I’ve seen women who were at the edge of despair when they first introduced themselves, only for them to send an email to our inbox three years later telling us the most heart-soaring stories of finding a love they didn’t think was possible for them after all their bad experiences.

If I was ever a cynic before (and as a default, I generally am), these stories have shown me how incredibly wrongheaded we can be in our pessimism and despair.

Unbridled optimism often gets taken to task for having a rosy, false image of the world, but the truth is, unbridled pessimism also suffers from an enormous blindspot – it ignores all the success stories, and focuses on the failures along the way. 

Yes, we make mistakes in love. Yes, we get burnt. It’s happened to you. It’s happened to me. We’ve all picked the wrong people before.

But it’s one thing to lose a relationship, it’s another to lose your ENTIRE sense of optimism and openness to love. That’s a far greater tragedy.

It’s like choosing a career as a mechanic, hating it for 5 years, quitting, and then deciding that careers are for suckers. No, you just picked the wrong one. With the right strategy and work on yourself, there’s an amazing fit for you out there.


  • There are still people with good intentions out there who are just looking to connect with another human being.
  • There are STILL people coming together every day to form lifelong commitments (whatever the doom-and-gloom articles say).
  • There are still people who care about values like family, intelligence, honesty, generosity, and other important traits of a great partner.


There’s the pessimist again.

It’s easy for that voice to come back. Until you get bored of despair, let it go, feel a hundred pounds lighter and decide to give the right people a chance again.

Free Guide

Copy & Paste These
"9 Texts No Man Can Resist"

23 Replies to “If You’re Complaining About “Men!” or “Women!”, You’ve Already Lost…”

  • I like the phrase “cautious optimism”. Love does happen, but, not always on the first try. I think there can be downfalls to going into a relationship biased. You may the one that loses the guy or the one that gained the guy’s affection, but, I think it is important to not let that shape your view of yourself. Who you are depends on you, not on that person. Each new relationship could, and perhaps, should be viewed as a new lesson or journey. So each should be approached with an open mind and a level head, I think that is important. Negativity can be destructive. Positivity can be good, but, too much of a good thing can be not so good. Cautious optimism seems a good place to start!

  • Just broke up with a guy after 3 months. We agreed to be FWBs but he sent lots of confusing signals. Ghosting me for a week for no apparent reason was a bit of a deal breaker so I resolved to have a chat and tell him that he was making it obvious he had no feelings for me and I deserved better. Before I got a chance, he text to tell me he’d met someone. I called time on our arrangement immediately and he had the cheek to be angry about it. Kept asking me why I was acting like this. I guess he thought as we were casual, he could date us both? Anyway, last few weeks have been push/pull – responding to emails or getting in touch, just to disappear again, even after he asked me for help with a very personal problem! I know he’s playing games. Doesn’t stop it hurting though. I am 50 and have been in an abusive relationship for years that I got out of about 5 years ago. This is the 2nd guy I’ve been Fwbs with since but the firsts one I liked and got close to. Very hard not to be cynical when it seems like my life has been a series of bad choices with regard to men. Is it me? Is it them? I try to stay positive but it’s hard :)

    1. It is them. You know what you want, then make a list of what you want – talk to people, flirt, and keep your eyes & ears open.

      Men are basically hunter-gatherers. If they like you, and you have batted your eyelid, they will pursue you if they want you. Let them come to you.

  • Great article! I have recently come out of a 25 year relationship with a man who decided he wanted a ‘younger model’…..hmm, wonder how long that will last!…but that is now irrelevant. I have been in a place of hopelessness and despair, but after a whole year of being apart, I now see things so differently. I am in a new town and am now open to new opportunities…but most of all, I am aware of my mistakes, my mis-interpretations of men and of what I should act on or allow (or not, as the case may be) in the early days of a relationship. It’s not that all men are bad at all….far from it….it’s more a case of what women allow and put up with, even when we know it is not right. The ‘sixth sense’ is there for good reason, if only we used and acted on it earlier in our relationships. We will never stop learning from our mistakes, but that is all to the good and part of what makes us human!

    1. You are so right. Unfortunately when men behave badly it’s because they know (some )women will accept it.
      Well not any more!

  • Throw my toys out of the pram? NEVER!

    I’m a spoiled kid. I could not give up anything. Unless it was thousands of miles away and has its roots thereto fore.

  • Thank you for a great article, Stephen. I guess we all have our fair share of disaster but not giving up is key.
    You can also meet good people but don’t want the same things in life. That doesn’t mean they’re bad people…
    I guess people don’t like the online dating as it kinda dehumanise the whole experience and people feel they can be rude or way to forward because they don’t talk to a person but just a profile with a picture… and because it’s easy, people always look for better option, like the fear of missing out. You meet this great guy but what if there’s someone greater?

    Anyway, thanks again, I really enjoy reading your articles and your appearance in Matthew’s videos (I enjoy Matthew’s videos too, eh!)

  • I totally agree with you (or- deep down -I want to). As I’m in my 40s I met a lot of men, as dates and also have many male friends. A big amount of them are inappropriate for long term relationships.(I’m polite because you are English ) It’s really hard to find someone in the same wavelength. I don’t know if its pessimism or reality. Men are biologically programed to spread their sperm, as their purpose in this world is to reproduce the human kind. That’s why they lie, they cheat etc. I don’t say that there are not many good men out there I just think there are few. That’s not a generalization it’s a reality. For example, in my country Greece, most people have black hair- it’s a fact. I also know if you don’t love the opposite sex you are destined to fail in your relationships (sigh)

  • Yes. THIS. I was one of those women that discovered matts stuff while being in a “hopeless that any good guys exist in the single world Bc all the good ones are taken by the time you hit your 30s” mindset and practiced REALLY hard for the 3 years following hearing from him to stay open and available and learning how that looks while also being cautious. It was a painful up and down for a few years there as I figured out the balance but I’m now engaged and about to marry one of those “good men”. It was worth the risk of keeping my heart open while taking my brain with me. And it really did literally like happen in an instant w my now fiancé. They aren’t kidding when they say life really can flip on a dime. AND also I would say that the only reason I’m where I am today is Bc while single I worked on loving my life and attempting to be the best version of me rather than become who I hoped a guy would want to date. So by the time i met my guy I was in a groove of loving my life and owning my own passions.

    1. Really happy for you, JN! I think the world needs to hear more stories like these rather than the hate that’s out there. Congrats to you and your fiancé!

  • I grew up in the era where men were existed to pay for a lady’s time. Even my mother reinforced this belief. However, in those days, men were also paid a lot more.

    A few years ago, I met this guy who, on the first meeting, shouted me a milkshake. On the next meeting in the tiny village where I lived, we both paid for ourselves for lunch, and later and I cooked him dinner. On the third meeting, where I also planned to cook dinner, he expected me to buy him lunch as well. Romance and respect died in equal amounts, and I never saw him again. A woman often finds it hard to believe that a man values her if he treats her like a cheap date. A woman yearns to be treated like she is someone special – at least in her boyfriend’s eyes. This doesn’t mean he needs to pay for everything. A woman will also show her respect and generosity by cooking a meal, or helping him in an area where she has more skills than him or by being generous at special occasions and holidays. It has to be give and take. But stinginess in a man often signals problems ahead, and this is why a woman is turned off by this behaviour as well as not feeling valued.

    1. A man refusing to be a John and not looking at his relationship with you as a transaction should be compliment, not an insult.

      1. Thanks, Onder, but I don’t think you understood the point I was trying to make. It’s about a person with a generous and loving nature who shows respect to others. I also try to be that person.

  • So where are the good ones? That’s the real question you guys haven’t truly answered, despite all of your amazing material and advice. I’ve been a loyal follower for 2 years now and I think it’s obvious that I’m still single. Advice about finding more men… Idk… As for using the rest of it, no man on whom to apply most of it.

    As for the alleged comments from men re: women, where the hell are those even coming? Lol. 100% of my single friends and I are all super nice/ kind/ funny, have legit careers, are monogamous and highly sexually selective, and make just as much money or more than a lot of the dudes around us who still live with roommates. Where are the truly quality men? They aren’t on The League, I’ll tell you that. Tried it.

  • So and am smiling! Why have you stopped teaching the men, where they a lost cause? no hope? or are they “face bothered”? The women can learn the skills but how far can we push mules? Am feeling maybe you don’t see the heart of the matter, can’t you see until the men want to come home to share with a women and hold them and we need to hear the call! We can’t do it all!

  • Dear Mathew, I watch your videos all the time sometimes twice. I use most of your advice but sometimes I do what I feel needs done at the time. I was reading some of the things other women put out there, and while I’m not an expert on dating I know this…it’s just as hard for men as it is for women out there.I belong to a couple of dating websites. About a year ago I met a man who I had the weirdest connection with. We met didn’t really click but we had talked about the sexual aspects of dating. The pressure, the interest and the quality. We decided eventually to do a friend s with benefits type thing. I know stupid on one hand but convenient on the other hand. As of March 24 we’ve been seeing each other for a year. I kinda feel bad for this man, he virtually has no outer feelings. He never says one way or another how he feels about me. But he wants us to be together for years. This is how I feel about the situation. Based on what he told me about his life, he’s been very damaged by women, he has no trust in women. He’s never been married, no children and pretty much set in his ways. We see each other once a week sometime twice all depends on our schedule. I love him and he told me once he loves me (lol and don’t expect to hear it again). I know he cares. Because he shows it when I’m with him. If I’m having a bad day he goes out of his way to make me smile or laugh. He doesn’t have to he could be cold hearted but he tries. Everyone I know says why do you stay get the hell away from him. I can’t! That would make me like all the other women who have let him down. I don’t want to be like those other women. I really care. He doesn’t think ours is a relationship, but he doesn’t understand, it is. Different yes, but still a relationship none the less. So I say this to you other women. Don’t be so judgemental about men. You can’t judge all men based on a bad one. Some of the things that other women do to men are as bad if not worse. (His issues started way back with his mother even and were not good). If you find a man who is off balance before you kick him to the curb, let him know that you’re not like the other women before you. Take a minute to let him know you care. If after all of this, he doesn’t respond well, walk away. Because in the year that I have had meeting different men…they’re just as vulnerable as us.
    Yours sincerely Candace

  • Women don’t want men. They don’t want partners or husbands or lovers or fathers for their children. They don’t even want friends. They want employees. And they want to be the angry control freak boss. Once men, and women, understand that it will go smoother for everyone.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *