After reading the last few “Questions of The Week” I reached out to Christelyn because I wanted to write a post about The Rules and why more Black women and girls should practice them.
The Rules are a collection of time tested guidelines for women on how to approach relationships with men. The underlying philosophy of The Rules is that women should not pursue men, but instead play hard to get and let men pursue them.
I admit that reaction to The Rules is often polarizing. Some swear by them (me) others can’t stand the idea. From my experience though applying The Rules to my dating and relationship life has saved me a lot of heartache, over analysis, and constantly second guessing myself. The most common criticisms I hear about The Rules are that: 1.) its game playing and manipulation; 2.) it’s anti-Feminist and unliberating; 3.) you can’t be yourself 4.) men won’t like you doing The Rules. When I hear women say that I immediately know that they haven’t ever read the book.
The Rules is about playing games
The Rules isn’t about playing games and being manipulative, it’s about having standards and setting boundaries. After reading both posts some things immediately stood out to me as to why the relationships ended the way they did. I’ve found that The Rules can help you to quickly and easily weed-out men with less than desirable intentions because:
1 They won’t meet your standards,
2 They won’t respect your boundaries
3 They won’t allow you to pace the relationship (i.e. they’ll either want to move too fast or waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too slow)
4 They’ll want you to pursue them
All of this will become obvious rather quickly while doing The Rules.
The Rules are anti-Feminist
The argument has been made that The Rules are actually quite Feminist! The Rules are about putting yourself first. It’s about prioritizing your needs and wants and how you deserve to be treated. It prevents you from being treated casually or not being taken seriously in a relationship.
Rule #3: Love only those who love you.
You can’t really be yourself and practice The Rules
Rule #1: Be a creature unlike any other.
Every Rules Girl I’ve met has that je ne sais quoi about her. You know what it is but you can’t put your finger on it. She takes care of her appearance, has an air of confidence, and accentuates her best features (Rule #21, by the way). There isn’t a formula or a model to copy- by all means be yourself but, be the best version of yourself possible because there is no one else quite like you!
Rule #19: Don’t open up to fast.
Rule #20: Be honest but mysterious.
This is where boundaries come into play. I see a lot of women revealing too much about themselves too readily and too soon. Answering questions posed by men that are wholly inappropriate when they’re just meeting someone. It’s not about hiding or being dishonest about who you are but does a guy you just met need to know everything single thing about you (the good, the bad, and the horrifying) on the first phone call or meeting? Do you see how that can make you vulnerable? Getting to know each other should be a process you both respect.
Men won’t like you doing The Rules
In all honesty, most men will have no idea that The Rules are being done on them. That’s speaking from experience. No guy has ever called me out saying “Are you doing The Rules on me?” Moreover, it’s not about what men say it’s about what they actually do and The Rules are great for allowing you to observe a man’s actions ahead of his words. Furthermore, of course some men aren’t going to like you doing The Rules!!! You having boundaries and standards makes their goals that much more difficult, it takes control of the relationship out of their hands. They’ll also know that they cannot treat YOU a certain way.
When I first discovered The Rules I wanted to keep them as my little secret. Now, I wish more women practiced them because then we’d probably all be treated better. So I encourage all of the single ladies (especially you young ladies in or just getting out of college) to pick up a copy of The Rules and check them out. Read the book first and see if you can apply it to your life before making any judgments. I’ll leave you with a few of my favorite Rules and some other Rules-y links and resources.
Rule #17: Let him take the lead.
Rule #12: Stop dating him if he doesn’t buy you a romantic gift for your birthday or Valentine’s Day
Rule # 7: Don’t accept a Saturday night date after Wednesday
(Z says: No, last minute dates. Don’t allow yourself to be treated casually, your time is just as valuable as his.)
Rule #8: Fill up your time before the date
(Z says: In other words, have a life of your own.)
Not Your Mother’s Rules (Revised Edition)
All of The Rules (Original)
Text.Love.Power (How to apply Rules principles to modern day technology)