Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Rationalisation Hamster: Crazy little sister of 'Frame'?

Any gentlemen here have a little sister? What's the verdict?
Best present Mum and Dad could give me?
Why couldn't the stork keep her?


It was only a matter of time before I was going to write about the 'rat ham'.

It is surely the most overused term in the Manosphere. There are so many references to the rat ham that it is quite the skill to navigate your way through The Manosphere minefield without accidentally stepping on one.

It does exist in a big way in most if not all women, I can vouch for this :-)
But is the 'rat ham' all that bad?
Can I even be objective about this beast being a woman myself?

Can I convince anyone that the rat ham can be a good thing?
At the risk of failing miserably, I shall try.

In the post about The lovable rogue I mentioned that some women have this knack of liking men in abundance. It seems to be a natural thing with them.
Yes I am sure it could indeed be 'natural', as can be all aspects of femininity.
And it sure helps to be around good men.
But in the absence of innate 'femininity', an entourage of good men and everything else which would enable a woman to 'see the good in men', a woman has one last piece of artillery in her armoury.
Her own imagination.

Otherwise known as her friendly Rationalisation Hamster.

Yes, it is this same animal that will enable her to believe that the heavily tattooed unemployed beach bum with the drug and alcohol problem really is husband material.
Totally self-delusional and therefore self-destructive.

As the owner of a rat ham, I can categorically state that sometimes it is a real hindrance, yes. Especially when it is fed by the wrong herd or society in general, if society is 'wrong' about a particular issue.
So sometimes it is a good thing for a woman to kill her own hamster or at least stop feeding it gourmet food. I get that.
I also understand that the Manosphere in talking about the rat ham so much is actually in the business of helping women get a very ugly monkey off their collective backs.
So in recognition of this, I do say 'Thank you'. It's nice to know the 'intent' behind every (even seemingly vicious) action.

But...and there is always a but!

If the hamster is dead, how can she rationalise that you are a lovable rogue?
There is a good and bad side to everything, no?

The question is, are men prepared to take the good with the bad, or are they wishing for the 'selective rat ham'?
Is this feasible?
Is this not 'pie in the sky'?
Does this woman with the selective hamster exist?
Can I meet her?
And if I do, I would like to know what colour Pill she is on...I don't think it would be red - it certainly won't be blue :-)

Leaving aside the 'rat ham' for now, I was thinking about a comment Bellita made under the post about Seal.
In response to my comment that Seal had felt 'privileged' that a beautiful woman like Heidi Klum wanted to be with him (nevermind that she was pregnant with another man's child at the time), Bellita made the point that the rationalisation hamster is indeed alive and well in men too.

I concluded to myself that yes, this could be least in (all-)beta, supplicating type men that Seal was proving himself to be.

But somehow, I felt odd harbouring this belief.
This is where it gets all fuzzy for me.

Any help in decluttering my thoughts would be welcome.

From this point onwards, perhaps my own rat ham will be doing fancy somersaults on the ferris wheel, so bear with me :-)

Is the 'rationalisation hamster' not just a woman's (perhaps desperate) attempt to create a 'frame'?
With one important caveat perhaps.
That she is working rather 'hard' to create this 'frame'.

In other words, is a man's 'frame' something he perceives quite effortlessly, and is in many ways 'outcome independent' (he doesn't need to work so hard to maintain this frame - he either believes it or not) whereas a woman has to work hard to keep the 'frame' going and as such, her 'behaviour' regarding this 'frame' belies said effort?

In the post 'And I am not ashamed to say it', I make mention of the 'Single and happy' (mostly) female crowd and how their repeated and often loud assertions to this 'fact' make it quite suspicious that some serious work is being done to keep up the 'pretty lie'.
At some point, one really has to stop and check to see how much effort it is taking to say something.
Because too much effort implies that what is being stated may be unture, even to the speaker.

Another feminine example I have come across is in the realm of the 'reluctant bride'.
If a woman is having to convince herself/rationalise away that a particular man is the right choice, then perhaps he really is not?
And then it all comes out in the wash a few years later...
Buyer and seller beware...

Do men ever really convince themselves of something? Do they have to?
Did Seal really believe that a pregnant woman, no matter how beautiful, was the absolute best he could have?
Or did he rationalise away that despite the possible 'negative' (sure, a pregnant woman is not every man's 'negative' in the dating world, but I imagine there would not be too many takers for a currently-pregnant woman in the SMP/MMP), this woman was worth sacrificing his freedom for?

If 'frame' and the 'rat ham' are simply the different ways men and women 'perceive' and 'process' their thoughts then surely 'frame' and the rat ham share the same parentage, no?
They are brother and sister.
Except that in the male mind, 'frame' is the gold standard, and 'rat ham' to quote many a Manosphere citizen, is 'b*t sh*t crazy'.


Is this a fair assessment of an important feature of the female psyche?
Or is this the proverbial stick men are using to bash women everywhere simply because they do not like this aspect of their psychological make-up - at least when it is not working for men?

Can I even use the word 'fair' here?
Will a man respond 'deal with it' in the same way he is asked to 'deal with' a woman's hypergamy?

I have another question on this topic:
If the rat ham is sans logic, as is often the accusation lobbed at it, is 'frame' the epitome of logic?

Actually, another huge question:
If 'frame' can be taught, as in PUA technique, then does it not turn into just another form of the 'rat ham'? In which case, it doesn't deserve to be called 'frame' anymore? Because 'frame' should be something that is intrinsic to a man's thinking, and should not come from outside of him, no?
I am going here by the following definiton of 'frame':

A steadfast belief that is unshakeably entrenched in the sensory apparatus of a man. Something he perceives and both his conscious and subconscious minds are in agreement that it is indeed as is.

Is this an accurate definition?

If there were to be a debate on this issue, any suggestions as to the perspectives of the respective genders?

Would this be a good example?

Male perspective: This house believes that the rationalisation hamster is a seriously deranged evil little monster that does not deserve oxygen let alone food and water.
For: Manosphere authority on all things female.
Against: Unsurprisingly, rationalisation hamsters and their flighty owners.

Female perspective: This house believes that the rationalisation hamster is a healthy part of being a normal, well adjusted and feminine woman.
For: Planet Woman Snowflakes.
Against: All you who just don't understand...



Anonymous said...

I came back to leave the promised insightful comment on your previous post, only to be distracted by this one. And I've spent so much time reading it and letting the ideas sink in that all I have left is for another short, "drive by" observation . . .

For a man's frame to be successful, he needs the hamster to work with him. This is because his frame is completely arbitrary, which means that a woman's acceptance of it as the reality she wants to step into requires some level of rationalization.

It's not really a frame; it's a wheel.


just visiting said...

Hahaha. Yes, that fury critter is essential in male female relationships, and I'm convinced that men have their version.

I've mentioned before, the hamster has a "set" switch. But it requires the higher functions to be activated and developed. This is when women rationalize sticking out the rough patches in a relationship or turning down the chance to trade up.

Danny has a male hamster post today. It doesn't pertain to sex or relationships, but gives an insight into what you're discussing.

Grasshopper said...

Women I believe are first attracted to men for their looks – although most are loathe to admitting that. That is where her hamster comes in. She has to explain her attraction in terms acceptable to her social group – be that his earning potential or with some church women I know how good a Christian he is or whatever.

So the hamster serves the woman not the man. The man already has already captured her fancy – he doesn’t need her hamster for that.

The hamster allows her to save face with her social group. She can present herself as a good girl or sensible or whatever face she wants to present to the group. No one has to know the real reason she selected the man she did is (gasp) sexual attraction.

Unfortunately women also use the hamster to justify to their social group reasons for not selecting what is a perfectly good man. That is where I have issue with these creatures (the hamsters I mean).

She can’t admit to her social group that there is no sexual chemistry and that (gasp again) is extremely high on her list of what she wants in a man.

I have personally witnessed women literally assassinate a man’s character and spread hideous gossip about him all in an attempt to make him look bad and therefore justify to her social group her lacking interest in him.

That, my dear ST, is why the manosphere hates the hamster so much. I think a good number of men have been victimized by the hideous little creature in this manner.


Spacetraveller said...

@ Bell,

"I came back to leave the promised insightful comment on your previous post, only to be distracted by this one."
Sorry for the distraction! Not intentional.
Not the first time a woman has been distracted by a hamster, I might add! (Though in this case it's not yours doing the hampering LOL!)

I am still waiting for the insightful comment about Hillbilly and Cityboy by the way!

Bellita, your second paragraph is VERY insightful. I never thought of it like that before.
It really does make sense to me now that you have explained it so well.
There are many guys who have a certain 'frame'.
But no or few women are buying into that 'frame'.
In that sense it must be so much more frustrating than the rat ham because at least the rat ham is not set in stone - it could be 'adjusted' to some degree to a worthy man's 'frame'.
If I may translate your second paragraph into language I can process easier in my own brain, I would say a man needs to have a firm series of convictions (his frame) and find a woman who is willing to be led by him (i.e. who is willing to rationalise that his frame works for her too).
Does this cover it, or have I left out a crucial element?

@ JV,
Thanks for the tip-off regarding Danny's post. I went over to have a look :-)

I agree with you that the hamster needs to be 'trained' to do good things.
Otherwise we end up with what Grasshopper describes...

@ Grasshopper,

Most of what you say may be true, yes.
I think the hamster is doing a good job when it serves the woman AND the (worthy) man. It should be given a pat on the back, a tummy tickle and more food and water in its cage :-)

If however it results in a character assassination of a man (falsely) then I agree someone needs to shoot the bugger ( this too violent?) Shall we just starve it for a few days? (Too sadistic?) Alright, alright, how about we just nuke the little so-and-so, as Danny would say :-)

By the way, nothing wrong with sexual attraction for a man by a need for her to feel shame about this. I do believe that for a long term union, it is in fact necessary. (I am NOT suggesting she act on it straightaway though!)
Loveless, sexless marriages could result from a lack of sexual attraction on the woman's part. (I actually do believe that a man SHOULD screen out women who have no sexual attraction for him. I think this lack of sexual attraction may be the clearest sign that she is a reluctant bride...don't men do this screening out thing anyway? I have a feeling you Red Pill ones at least do!)
However, it is often NOT the first attraction trigger for most women, for sure. It may look like it is, because most women would not admit they like a guy until they begin to feel the (aherm) 'chemistry' whereas a man is perhaps more honest with himself (and others) in this context. The truth is, a woman has already done a lot of 'evaluation' by the time the 'chemistry' happens. For a man, the 'chemistry' happens first, then he has to think about other things later...

If a woman is employing her rat ham to justify her feelings about sexual attraction, then this is quite an unnecessary task for the little fella. The poor animal has a lot of other work to get on with, me thinks!

Anonymous said...

Never mind the comment I had for "Hillbilly or Cityboy"! Trust me when I say it wasn't really important. ;-)

I think you've understood what I was trying to say here very well. =)

Since images are worth a thousand words, I spent a few minutes looking for one to help me illustrate my point and found this:

It seems to be a private image that you can't embed, but I think it would be perfect juxtaposed against the traditional hamster-in-a-wheel.


Spacetraveller said...

Bravo Bellita,

It's a brilliant picture!
Does the trick of illustrating your point beautifully :-)

But in your first description of 'frame' as a 'wheel', I guess the traditional view of the hamster running in a wheel would also work, LOL.

How DID hamsters come to be associated with a woman's rationalisation machine? I like hamsters, even though I never had one growing up...What's the deal, Manosphere gentlemen? Did someone observe their childhood pet for a really long time and then decide to accord it this unfortunate association? I mean, here we are talking about 'nuking' hamsters...that's not fair to the poor animal!


Anonymous said...

I believe the term originated with Roissy and everyone else just started using it because it was such a great metaphor. The Manosphere can't live without its jargon.


Anonymous said...


Your understanding differs from mine in some subtle, but important ways. Perhaps you may wish to consider the following:

The Rationalization Hamster spins primarily to insulate the woman's ego/self-esteem/self image from the consequences of bad decisions.

An example:

"Oh, I'm so excited to move in with Billy! I know he still has a bit of a meth problem, but I really love him. And you know what? You just have to act on those feelings - give love a chance to grow. People are too cowardly to do that these days."

See that? The Hamster did two important things just now:

One, it assigned virtue to the woman. She's "brave" enough to act, is better in some way than people who wouldn't make the same choice.

Secondly (and by far the most important thing to understand) is that the Hamster has absolved her of responsibility for her actions. A normal person might balk at cohabiting with a meth head - but she doesn't. The Hamster has convinced her that the virtuous path is to follow your heart. That's what good people do, and she's obviously a good person. She really has no other course of action open to her - she's GOT to move in with the guy.

Far away from the cedar chips and rodent pellets, you can see that she's being an idiot. She can't, though - she honestly believes that moving in with an untreated drug addict is the smart, laudatory, and only choice she can make.

If things go badly for her, she'll never accept full responsibility for the consequences. See, she didn't have a choice, so it's not like she could have avoided the situation. It's just not her fault. Sometimes the Universe just throws you curve balls, and as a smart, good, independent woman you just have to be strong enough to deal!

That's a ham-handed example, of course. But start paying attention...when a woman is presented with evidence that she's been bad/not worthy/undeserving or stupid, take notes. A woman with an out of control Hamster will burn zillions of calories to avoid saying,"Hmm. That was dumb of me. I apologize. How can I fix it?"

To be fair, all people do this to some degree. It has been my experience that women do it far more than men do with regard to relationships.

If you want to hear a male Hamster in action, ask two mechanics that dislike each other to work on a project together. The Hamster is there, but it's different.

Regarding Frame:

Frame is an agreed upon reality. That's it.

If I say the glass is half-full, but you say it's half-empty, we're struggling for frame control. If you concede and begin calling it half-full, you've accepted my frame. The version of reality we agree upon is mine.

If I think you're yelling at me, but convince me you're speaking up because of the wind, then I have accepted your frame.

You might want to read up on Frame - it's present in every interaction between people. It's so ingrained in us, though, that we don't notice it without some practice.

Based on my definitions above, here are some things you said that might be worth some further consideration:

"Is the 'rationalization hamster' not just a woman's (perhaps desperate) attempt to create a 'frame'?"

Sort of, but the two concepts are not interchangeable.

Creating a frame is creating a frame. The Hamster might influence the desired frame of a woman in certain circumstances. Mostly, the Hamster assists the woman in hanging on to the most comfortable, self-protective frame.

That's my $0.02, anyway.

Good Day to you,


PS - I wandered over here from Danny's. Also, I hope the above makes sense. I'm a lot more tired than I realized.

Spacetraveller said...


The Sanctuary accords you a very warm and hearty welcome!

Thank you for your insight into the rat ham and frame. Like Danny, you seem to have a great insight into the female mind.

All that you say makes sense to me.

I especially like your definition of frame. It's very succinct - the perfect masculine way of expressing something. As you know, I always need a million words to say anything :-)
The example you gave is of course extreme. BUT, (and at the risk of sounding like a troll on my own blog!) I can still find a way to understand any woman who would stick to a man like that. Perhaps my hamster is so advanced it is capable of moonlighting for other women :-)

I spent some time today reading up about my fav saint, St Gianna Molla. I identify with her for several reasons.
I also just re-read Bellita's latest post which touches on the concept of 'victim souls'. I conclude that there is something about womanhood that is prone to 'self sacrifice' in this way. Factor in religion and a strong sense of justice and you have a hamster with a steroid problem :-)

Yes it can be self-destructive, sure. In the case of St Gianna Molla, it cost her her life.
I may be odd and illogical, but there is something about 'not sweetening the deal for me' that appeals to me.
In my case, moving in with a meth-head is not part of this scenario, but accepting non-perfection in other people is the best way to reconcile my own imperfections.

I am not saying to you, Dogsquat, that 'you just don't understand!' as per the last sentence of the OP, because I get the feeling that you more than most, do.
I am just exposing a particularly complex quirk of femininity.
To make things worse, I think there exists a subset of women who are rather sick of all the Kim K's and the other celebrities who are very quick to drop an 'imperfect' man. So these women will perhaps go to the other extreme by being ultra-altruistic.
I am still trying to decide if I come under this group...somehow I think not, but the boundary line is so blurred, how on Earth will I know if I crossed it already, or am about to?
That's my present dilemma...

Anonymous said...

As far as my definition of frames goes - buyer beware, still waters run deep, etc. I wrote a few words that are very poor shorthand for some huge, nuanced concepts.

You said:

"I can still find a way to understand any woman who would stick to a man like that. Perhaps my hamster is so advanced it is capable of moonlighting for other women :-)"

Herd mentality - a default rally to Team Woman. Be very careful about that.

You asked:

"but the boundary line is so blurred, how on Earth will I know if I crossed it already, or am about to?
That's my present dilemma..."

In "typical male fashion", I will offer you a tool I often use for serious issues.

I recommend you read this book:

On Combat: The Psychology and Physiology of Deadly Conflict in War and in Peace by LTC Dave Grossman.

It seems dumb to recommend a book exploring the experiences of grunts and cops to a woman looking to land a boyfriend...but...

There are many useful tools in that book. I've been out of the military for several years now and I still use the knowledge daily.

One that is immediately applicable is the concept of preplanned decision points. You think about your situation and visualize all possible outcomes. When considering the need to take drastic action (shooting, or in your case breaking up) you think/visualize the criteria that justify the action.

You can get very specific, too - "If he calls me by that pet name in front of my Dad again, I will break up with him. He is being disrespectful to me and my family, and I have asked him repeatedly to stop blah blah blah.."

In your mind, you draw a line in the sand. As soon as the person touches that line, you pull the trigger. You've already done your soul-searching, and you got the hesitation out of the way. All the thinking is done by the time action is warranted.

In addition, by doing the legwork before hand, you are mitigating the effects of stress on your decision making process.

Give the book a shot, if you're so inclined. There is a bunch of extremely useful information in it. Stress, fear, regret, and love are present to some degree in many interpersonal interactions. This book is about understanding and managing those things.

As far as the innate self sacrifice thing goes:

You might want to try to go live off the land in some remote area, by yourself, for at least 2 weeks. Don't be reckless, but put yourself in some danger.

That will help you understand how fundamentally simple humans are. You are programmed to survive. When you are starving, you will do what it takes to eat. You will (yes, you who is reading this right now) steal, lie, or even kill if you have to.

I fear you've lost sight of/never grokked that concept. That's understandable. Society piles on many distractions, obfuscating the foundations of humanity.

The self-sacrifice you speak of is rare. It's lionized and magnified in the retelling because it's sometimes extremely valuable to society.

There aren't too many saints, are there? If women really were wired to sacrifice like you're saying, I submit to you that trait would be so common as to render it commonplace, not worthy of canonization at all.

Two Cents, free of charge,


Spacetraveller said...


Wow, as NC says, I get the feeling you speak the Truth (capital T).
Thanks for the book recommendation. I shall go find it.

Can I say, is this something to do with the military? You've only been here at The Sanctuary 5 minutes and I am already getting the sense that you are doing the equivalent of pulling me out of a burning building. You are rescuing me from myself.
You medical/military dudes are never 'off duty', are you?

Well, for all my sins, ingratitude is not one of them (at least not these days). So, thank you for your help. I mean that.

"There aren't too many saints, are there?"

I was thinking about this all day yesterday as it happens.
On the surface of it, perhaps it does seem like there are indeed very few saints amongst us.

But I changed my mind all of a sudden.
With the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic just gone past, there has been a lot of talk lately about the individuals who were on board that ill-fated ship.

One particular set of stories drew my attention. These all come from 'Lifeboat 8' apparently the second lifeboat to take survivors away from the sinking ship.

The first story is this:
"As she was about to take her place in boat 8, Ida Straus, decided not to go into the boat, saying to her husband, Isidor, We have been living together for many years, and where you go, I go. When another passenger suggested Isidor be given a place in the boat, as he was an old gentlemen, he replied “I will not go before the other men”. Both perished in the disaster."

Self-sacrifice. Both Ida and Isidor displayed this.
As far as I know, neither have been canonised, at least not yet. Not by the Catholic Church in any case, the only church known to me that 'creates' saints.

The second story is that of a 33 year old British Countess who despite being aristocratic also happened to be a nurse. She showed so much bravery she was nicknamed 'Plucky Little Countess' by the crew whose job she was doing (as they seemed less skilled than required to get the boat to safety).

Ordinary people can show great courage in times of need.
The question for me is, how to select the appropriate time to show said courage? When does courage become folly?
I see that JV asks herself this very question in the post that follows this one.
Tricky question indeed!

I shall reflect on your words a bit more, and read your recommended book. Then I am sure I will know the answer to this rhetorical question.
Thank you Dogsquat.

Anonymous said...

"There aren't too many saints, are there?"

I know this was Dogsquat's rhetorical question, but since you've taken it in a direction I'm more familiar with, I'm responding to you.

Now I'm filled with sudden nostalgia for my Catholic blogging days as I hasten to remind the audience that the Catholic definition of "saint" is "anyone who is in Heaven." There must be billions and billions of uncanonized saints who will remain unknown until the end of the world.

The canonization process is a bureaucratic legality. A candidate would need a couple of "medical miracles" verified by doctors and a pass from the "devil's advocate" who is part of the investigation into his life. The most saintly people can be disqualified from canonization for the most random things.

I've always been personally frustrated, for instance, that one of my favorite spiritual writers, Thomas a Kempis, shall never be canonized because when his body was exhumed for investigation, the examiners discovered splinters under his fingernails. This led them to believe that he had been accidentally buried alive, which meant that he did not have the presumed "heroic death" (another condition of canonization) that his brother monks said he had. And since nobody could testify whether his actual death after waking up in the coffin was "heroic" or not, his case had to be dropped.

This doesn't mean we can't believe he has gone to Heaven . . . it just means we can't make it "official."


Spacetraveller said...

@ Bellita,

Yes, so true!
Did I hear that JP2's canonisation almost suffered a derailment because there was a doubt as to one of the qualifying miracles? Pope Benedict rushed the process through to avoid this happening and got criticised for it...

Anyway, I digress.

I agree wholeheartedly with you that there are saints everywhere. Not only in heaven but here on Earth too. But sometimes they are not noticed.

just visiting said...

I dunno. Being buried alive sounds like a pretty darn scary thing to endure. Might not have been heroic in the church sense, but you have to admit that he was probably fighting one heck of dark night(nights?) of the soul.

dannyfrom504 said...

I'll address this later....