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The De-escalation Ladder

This post is also available in: German

How should a man respond when his woman has begun sexually withdrawing from him? This post will examine the issue and offer a method called the “De-escalation Ladder” that reforms women’s bad behavior and robs them of the ability to use sex as a weapon.

For those unfamiliar with pickup literature, the De-escalation Ladder is based off Vin DiCarlo’s “Escalation Ladder” concept of speedily and deliberately moving a courtship to sex. The Escalation Ladder

…is a step-by step formula, followed by a number of laws which govern it’s use for maximum effect. It is designed to provide a smooth escalation, containing no significant jumps that may cause a woman to object. At the same time, the [EL] contains no extraneous steps which are non-essential to the seduction process. This results in a FAST escalation sequence which is compatible with a variety of verbal structures, and has been field tested and perfected by myself, Vincent DiCarlo, in hundreds of trials.

There is an inherent value and attractiveness to a man who can escalate in such an intelligent and socially aware manner, which is why your verbal content does not matter very much when using this method.

The idea is that if you aren’t physically (if not verbally) escalating a girl through all the stages of seduction and through her natural reticence to engage sexually, you risk stagnation and losing her interest or, worse, getting slotted into the dreaded friendzone. A.B.E. Always. Be. Escalating. Why? Because women reward men who take the initiative, particularly early on when their antennae are exquisitely tuned for any arousing signals of alpha male sexual entitlement.

DiCarlo’s historical tome is still relevant, and worth reading in full. The basics of his Escalation Ladder are, in order of application:

1. Strong eye contact.
2. Incidental asexual touch (aka kino).
3. Overt asexual touch.
4. Incidental intimate touch.
5. Overt intimate touch.
6. Incidental erogenous touch.
7. Overt erogenous touch (pre-kiss kino).

Total time for the above: 30 minutes – 4 hours. After you have isolated her in a sex location, proceed to

8. Kissing.
9. Kissing her neck.
10. Touching her bare back below her shirt.
11. Stomach to stomach contact.
12. Touching her bare body (breast inclusion not necessary).
13. Incidental vaginal stimulation.
14. Direct vaginal stimulation from back.
15. Direct vaginal stimulation from front.
16. Remove her clothes for sex.

Steps 8 – 16 can take as short as 15 minutes. Any resistance during any step is handled by backing off a little and continuing with the previous step until the next one is “unlocked”.

That’s the Escalation Ladder. What about the Dark Heartiste’s inverse, the De-escalation Ladder? Just as you “escalate” a girl toward sex, you “de-escalate” from a girl who is withdrawing sexually. ELs are about rewarding girls to encourage good (read: sexual) behavior, DELs are about removing rewards (read: validation) from girls to discourage bad behavior.

Note the distinction between “removing rewards” and “punishment”. Punishment — the kind that’s intentional, obvious, and reactive — can often backfire on a man. If the girl perceives her punishment as immediate retribution for something she did to (or is not doing for) the man, she will accept that as validation of her higher relative SMV. Punishment, therefore, should be wielded with expert care, which means it’s ideally cloaked in a veneer of plausible deniability. The best punishment in matters of fraying romance is not the whip, but the poison.

The CH maxim — Punish promptly, reward intermittently — is not violated by this nuance. A reckless inadvertent punishment can be executed as promptly as a retributive deliberate punishment.

Not all retributive punishment is ineffective, however. At the highest levels of female id manipulation, a mix of purposeful and inadvertent punishment with oddly-timed rewards delivers an intoxicating ambiguous message that can so sufficiently stir fears of abandonment and incoherent jealousy that a woman will find herself defenseless to recapture lost relationship hand. She’ll be incensed to offering generous servings of her sex with no contractual obligations just to keep herself in your game. Any man who’s been fortunate to receive such desperate magnanimity from a woman will tell you it’s heaven on earth. The closest we have, in fact, to unconditional love in this corporeal realm.

The De-escalation Ladder follows a similar, albeit invidious mirror image, progression as the Escalation Ladder. As reader Arred explained,

…progressive punishments and withdrawal techniques tailored to waning interest and misbehavior at various levels of severity.  Kind of like the color coded terror threat level chart, for the gradations of dread required to regain hand.

Assuming your wife or girlfriend or fling or lust target has begun the (emotional or sexual) Withdrawal Protocol, the De-escalation Ladder sequence of responses that follow would be:

1. Break rapport.

Cut her off mid-sentence to talk to someone else, or to switch to your own subject of interest. Negs are also a type of rapport break.

2. Indicate disinterest (IOD).

For example, “It’s a good thing I’m not trying to pick you up.” Make feints toward hooking her up with “one of your niceguy buddies”.

3. Backturn.

Literally turn your back on the girl. Don’t act peeved. Do it with a wan smile or a neutral expression. If she’s says, “That’s rude”, you’ve won the battle. Pretend like you don’t know what you did wrong.

4. Break physical contact.

Stop touching her. When she goes to touch you, gently move away from her. Perhaps with a  sly grin, warn her against “moving too fast” for your comfort. Breaking physical contact can include putting your clothes back on (an especially potent form of hamster torture if done prior to her redressing herself).

If she goes for a goodbye reconciliation kiss, pull back and say “whoa, that’s a little needy” or “hey, I only do that with girlfriends/lovers”.

5. Break emotional contact.

Emotional connection is more important to women than physical connection. Any bedroom cop-out that plowing won’t fix should be answered with a feigned distraction. Your eyes will drift to magazines, the internet (to “read some new emails”), video games, or even text messages from “some quirky friends”. (A girl will always presume a quirky friend is a female “friend”.) You will not act spitefully; it will appear as if your attention merely got captured by something more entertaining.

Mystery calls this the “freeze-out”, and it’s effective, but only if you pull it off with a credible thoughtlessness. At no point should your voice betray a hurt pride or impatience.

Note: Do NOT freeze-out until you have exhausted your mental reserve for pushing her toward sex. Girls love to “be taken”, and you don’t want to misinterpret that peculiarly female desire for sexual frigidity.

Over the longer term, emotional disengagement would include things like terse conversations, diminishing nonsexual time together, provisioning withdrawal, and a careless attitude toward her promised fidelity or threats of infidelity.

6. Depart under mysterious circumstances.

If you’re at her place and a freeze-out isn’t logistically possible, leave. No need to give a reason, just say you “have to go, it’s important”.

It’s incredibly powerful to depart in this manner before you’ve been pushed to it. If you sense even a little bit of withdrawal from a girl, but still far from complete withdrawal when her interest has subsided faster than her curiosity remains engaged, you can say “We’ll catch up another time” and leave her to ponder what the hell just happened.

This is also known as a “takeaway”, or leaving on a high note.

7. Ignore her efforts to get back in contact with you.

Keep her on tenterhooks. Wait a day or two before texting or calling her back. When you do reply and she wonders why you didn’t answer right away, deflate her indignation with a caustic reframe. “I didn’t know we were married!”

8. Initiate the “cheating in my heart” gambit.

Now we’re moving toward strategies to deal with relationship trouble. This is when the infamous “dread game” comes into play. Many powerful tactics are described in that seminal post, so I’ll just wrap them under a single umbrella here called “she wants what she can’t have (or is starting to lose)”. Making late night phone calls with girls’ voices in the background, flirting with other women (either over the phone or in front of her), turning off your phone during seduction hours (after 5pm), making offhand remarks about your sexually voracious exes, polluting your social media space with pics of you in the company of other women, commenting how much you appreciate being “single and free”, scattering “other woman” props around your bachelor pad, and generally acting as if you’re sexually satisfied and not needing her particular brand of physical release are all TNT to a sexually withdrawing woman’s self-conception.

9. Keep two in the kitty.

It’s a Poon Commandment for a reason. The ultimate de-escalation hand over a game-playing woman is another woman. Drained balls won’t betray you. De facto harems are self-perpetuating. The bigger your harem, the more women want in. Sad but true.

10. Actually cheat.

When steps 1-9 fail, you have to deploy the BFG. (childhood Doom ref) Cheat. Get caught. Don’t apologize, but say you’d still like it to work out between the two of you (meaning your withdrawing gf, not your mistress).

11. Break up with her.

Believe it or not, there is something even more emotionally explosive to a woman than catching her man cheating. Preemptively breaking up with her is the Excalibur of shivs. You will hew her ego in half. If you’re married, unceremoniously announce you want time to yourself, and check out. For added impact, slip out the back Jack and lodge your plea for freedom via absentee breakfast table letter.

As women, slave to their hypergamous instinct, are the initiators of 70+% of divorces, so too are they the initiators of the majority of unmarried relationship break-ups. Given this reality, the man who initiates a break-up packs an outsized wallop to a woman’s bloated sense of sexual worth. To a woman, getting dumped must be similar to what a world class chef feels when a starving man turns his nose up at his buffet of scrumptious pastries. Unimaginable.

This is why, when you break up with girls, few will happily or serenely accede to your judgment. Not even those who were having doubts will be able to accept your resignation with tact or calm relief. 9 out of 10 times she will forget all about her prior sexual indecisiveness as she surrenders to a sudden and inexplicable urge to win your favor, like a schoolgirl with a crush on the class badboy. Over the next weeks, you’ll get voicemails and texts and emails pleading for a reconciliation, or an explanation. When she is at the breaking point and starved for your attention, slide a bowl of gruel under the door of her solitary confinement. Wonder, “maybe we could work this out” and recline in libertine splendor as the year closes out with her glued in obedience to your member.

***

The De-escalation Ladder is excerpted from the darkest pages of the tomes of the crimson arts. Few delve here, fewer still delve and attempt to put the devil’s instruction to practice. And the fewest possible can muster the state control to apply the lessons as intended. And yet, when you see the results for yourself, you’ll learn to your great shame that the De-escalation Ladder can be as strangely enjoyable as the traditional Escalation Ladder is exciting. Proceed with caution.

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