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What Both Women & Men Can Learn From The Sordid Andrew Huberman Affair(s)

He was good at playing women, but he offers further lessons on red flag recognition, as well as a helpful lesson for single men who don't want to be.

Neuroscientist and body hacking guru Andrew Huberman would never turn my head if I passed him on the street, with or without the shirt. I’m an early Gen-Xer not into super-muscular men, or much into tattoos.

But I can understand his appeal. Huberman plays female psychology well. Calling him a master would be a stretch, but he’s effective at tapping into and expressing the female-friendly warm jargon and feelings of psychology and therapy. He’s particularly skilled at something many men are not, however well-meaning: He makes women feel heard and understood.

Utilized for the good, many men unblessed with good looks, wealth or celebrity like Huberman could find themselves more popular with women than they realize. And women who analyze how he effectively played so many women at once can better psychologically arm themselves against such games in the future.

On the surface, and even when you drill down below the so-called Andrew Huberman scandal, there doesn’t seem to be much there there, to misquote Gertrude Stein. So this Huberman guy is a player? Who dated six women at once? He was a cad and a bounder? No news here! Furthermore, plenty of women have done and continue to do the same. They’d surely be slut-shamed in a way Huberman is not but so what; frankly, he’s just a boring old manslut, and I’m not afraid to slut-shame men, not that they care. (Ladies: Why do we?)

I examined the Huberman affair to see if there was anything to his story; his body-hacking didn’t interest me much, nor did the allegations that his supplements and behavioral hacks weren’t as rooted in science as claimed; once again, nothing new under the sun. Nothing that hasn’t already been lobbed at other philter-floggers like conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, and probably most of the overpriced elixirs you can buy at your local earthy crunchy hippie store.

Usually, when some guy emerges as the newest X-trend for dirtball behavior, I examine less the man than the women drawn to him. It’s my ‘post-mortem’ to explore how women can better arm themselves against manipulative males. I don’t do it in reverse mostly because I think I just don’t see it. We miss what isn’t happening to us, whether it’s getting followed in a store by a rent-a-cop or marrying Johnny Depp’s Amber Turd.

Maybe we don’t hear about female malfeasance if women are better at covering up affairs. Or don’t try to juggle half a dozen at once. I’m not sure. Folks are welcome to reach out to me about some ladyho they think is mistreating men and I’ll listen.

I do find some lessons both sexes can learn from Les Affaires Huberman.

What can men learn?

Huberman was great, on the surface, at expressing emotional intimacy.

What he wasn’t so great at was genuine emotional intimacy.

I’m reminded of a scene in the 1988 movie Casual Sex in which singles resort dirtball Vinny, ‘The Vin Man’, an annoying on-the-make misogynist Italian-American from New Jersey (played, appropriately, by Andrew Dice Clay) takes a shine to Stacy, one of the main characters, but later falls in love with her. He’s faced with a conundrum: How to get her to fall in love back? “Be sensitive,” one of his friends counsels. “Chicks love sensitivity in a man.”

Later, Vinnie is reading a book: How To Pretend To Be Sensitive.

That was Andrew Huberman’s greatest skill.

When his harem began to unravel, he didn’t lie or deny it. He would text “I hear you, I understand you, I want to work this through with you.” He also self-applied the warm fuzzies: He’d talk about ‘repairing’ himself and ‘healthy merging’.

Apparently his merging was taking longer than expected because he’d been in therapy since high school and it didn’t seem to have taught him much beyond how to pretend to be sensitive. He also confessed to one lover about regularly lying to the therapist, and laughing about it.

For all his obsessive focus on body-hacking ‘down to the cellular level,’ Huberman didn’t appear to put much real effort into managing his emotions. He wasn’t always good at it. His press agent, hired to parrot whatever Huberman put in front of him, claimed he was ‘very much in control of his emotions’. He wasn’t, but more in a bit.

When he was with a woman, he was there. His focus was on her. He treated her like she was the only woman in his universe. He even planned children with one (which his pressbot denies but didn’t explain why, then, Randy Andy was injecting her with IVF treatments).

When he was away—and he was, a lot, as a busy entrepreneur and rising celebrity which provided convenient cover for his pudenda-chasing—Huberman maintained his relationships with warm texts and phone calls. They bought it all.

Men faking emotional intimacy is nothing new; a whole book was written about it by journalist Neil Strauss twenty years ago called The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read on female psychology.

But here’s what how-to-con-women manuals—they’re legion—don’t tell men. How to have a mature relationship when the easy sex wears thin. Not more sex, but better sex; maybe to one committed woman and a family. Not all men (or women) grow tired of promiscuity; but several did in Strauss’s book including himself. He now refutes pickup culture and is happily married with a family. But he was already a well-rounded, well-traveled journalist who’d written for Playboy, Esquire, and Rolling Stone, and he possessed a higher level of maturity.

One of his compatriots was a guy who only wanted to get married but wasn’t good with women; pickup artistry landed him a wife, but he didn’t know how to be in a relationship and his marriage failed. Strauss’s friend Mystery suffered a nervous breakdown when sex was no longer fulfilling, yet he couldn’t connect with a woman through any means other than sex.

I say this not to beat up on men but to observe: They don’t know what they don’t know.

It’s easier, for sure, to con women with faux emotional intimacy than to be emotionally intimate, but in the hands of a man who actually is emotionally intimate, it can be powerful mojo.

I think of Don, a fellow I worked with many years ago in Connecticut. He onboarded me and another new hire for the sales department, also a woman. He was 35 and looked like Wally from the Dilbert comic, which wasn’t yet widely syndicated. Don was a helluva nice guy: Warm, sensitive, and a great onboarder. He had a girlfriend he loved a lot whom I met once at an office party: She wasn’t very pretty, and introverted in the way plain women used to invisibility often are. But Don doted on her.

Linda, my fellow new hire, commented to me the following Monday, when we were alone, “I hope Don’s girlfriend appreciates what she’s got. He’s a wonderful guy. Don’t tell him this, but I’m kind of attracted to him.”

“So am I,” I confessed.

It made me think about all the men women overlook until they get to know them, and how surprisingly attractive they become once they do, if they have something else to offer. Like a great personality or sense of humor and a genuine ability to be emotionally intimate.

They’re far more powerful than human beings realize. It works in reverse, too.

My attraction to Don shouldn’t have surprised me. I’d fallen in love with a guy in college who looked like another cartoon character, known at that time only to those who bought Quaker Oats: Waldo, the branding icon who eventually became a ‘90s sensation as the most sought-after man in America.

Jim wasn’t a ho, he was a super-nerd, and I was his first girlfriend. He was genuinely warm, kind and sensitive. The ones who aren’t so good with women, who look like Wally or Waldo, might want to treat—but sincerely—one special woman the way Andrew Huberman treated each woman.

It takes a little longer with no immediate chemistry but she’ll be quite surprised when it kicks in. “He’s so not normally my type!”

What can women learn?

Perhaps the biggest challenge women face in sorting out the players and abusers from the ‘good guys’ is an inability to recognize red flags, and to excuse them when someone points them out.

Huberman appears to have been better than many at juggling as many as six women at once, but what no mortal man can pull off is effective time management, not unless he’s got Hermione’s time-turner device. The biggest red flag was Huberman’s ‘flakiness’, as many described it, his countless silent disappearances and last-minute cancellations. And when he was with friends he was, as one described, ‘buzzing’ and ‘anxious’. No wonder.

He went to a cabin in a park one weekend with a friend and disappeared for a day and a half without explanation, leaving the man alone with his dog. He would go silent for awhile with friends, explaining he was traveling. Rising celebrity was an effective cover for all the traveling he didn’t do for work. And when he finally texted, it was something designed to melt any woman’s squooshy innards.

Another red flag was the way he talked about ‘ex-girlfriends’, some of which were less ex- than others. He’d describe them as ‘stalkers’, ‘alcoholics’, and ‘compulsive liars’. He said one ripped away part of her own scalp yanking on her hair; another supposedly tried to trick him with some dead baby story. I learned a few years ago—and hadn’t ever thought of this myself—that if a guy has a lot of ‘crazy exes’ the problem may not be them but him. (And that goes for women with crazy exes too). Does he have bad taste in women? Does he attract nutbars? Celebrities usually do but they don’t necessarily get involved with them.

There’s an alternative explanation: He’s lying. Which Huberman appears to have done because when his harem began doing Ladies Who Lunch, they found each other to be vibrant, engaging, and not crazy in the slightest.

Huberman’s pressbot denies he’s abusive, but one of his girlfriends exhibited the classic signs of an emotional abuse victim. According to NY Magazine’s The Intelligencer, the pseudonymed Sarah ‘felt herself getting smaller, constantly appeasing.’ This is because the allegedly even-keeled Huberman was prone to flying into rages about her past lovers and choices and even her children from before she met him. He became furious at times with the other men she’d been with and the children she’d had with one of them. He compared his relationship to her as like ‘bobbing for apples in feces’. He’d psychoanalyze her when she hadn’t asked for it, going on about her eleven years of ‘subsconcious drives’ creating ‘nearly impossible hurdles’ for them. The problem, clearly, was his and not hers, but she found herself describing herself as ‘selfish, childish and confused,’ and, pathetically, in an obvious reach for nurturing, ‘needing his protection’.

She’s the one he injected with IVF while he was off screwing other women, sometimes on the same day. She’s the one he gave HPV to because they were having unprotected sex, as were the others. Because he led them to believe they were the only ones in his life.

There are those who practice ‘open’ relationships or ‘polyamory’, and those come with rules. When one multi-shagger leads others to believe they’re the one and only, it’s cheating. Huberman may have been less New Age-fuzzy on modern relationships than advertised; he allegedly expressed to some women that he wished for a woman who was submissive, whom he could slap on the ass in public, who ‘would be crawling on the floor for him,’ when he got home. (With his ding-dong still damp from someone else?) Guess what response the pressbot gave to that story.

I can’t get as outraged about Andrew Huberman as others; apart from being a celebrity, he’s an otherwise run-of-the-mill slimeball. I’m impressed with his admittedly superficial ability to express tenderness and seeming love; it’s depressing, actually, to know that it can be hard to tell the difference between someone who honestly loves you and someone who’s just playing you. But there’s nothing new under the sun there, and women can be just as devious.

We can, however, learn from Huberman’s mistakes, and from his women, not all of whom, I suspect, failed to recognize red flags. There may not have been any. They didn’t know until someone reached out to them on Instagram or they found the texts on his phone.

Huberman wasn’t a master player, but he was better than many. We ladies can learn from his girlfriends’ mistakes, many of which could be explained away as the hazards of fame.

What men who would like to have a real girlfriend can learn from Huberman is the way he treated each woman, apart from the one he clearly emotionally abused. Do that, with genuine warmth, love, and sincerity, and she’ll be eating out of your hand.

Unless she’s legitimately crazy, and some women are. Upon which, I will counsel these men the way I do women who complain about bad men: Find someone who is worthy of you. You deserve better.

Did you like this post? Would you like to see more? I lean left of center, but not so far over my brains fall out. Subscribe to my Substack newsletter Grow Some Labia so you never miss a damn thing!




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