Cognitive Dissonance: Till Death Do Us Part, Unless I’m not Happy

Recently I’ve given online dating a whirl, again. As a 46 year-old man with a decent career and assets to protect, I’m very cautious about the type of woman I allow in my life. I’ve experienced the horror stories first-hand. My ex was violent, emotionally manipulative, and extremely jealous. She was a great example of toxic femininity.

Currently I live in La Grande, Oregon, which has a population of around 15,000 on a good day. The dating pool is extremely shallow to say the least. The risk of earning a “bad reputation” for dating around, my sobriety, and my carnivore lifestyle make it difficult to meet women in the traditional way — so I’ve gone back into the digital meat market. That is where I experienced cognitive dissonance first-hand.

What is cognitive dissonance? Cognitive dissonance is a psychological concept that describes the discomfort or tension experienced by individuals when they hold conflicting beliefs, attitudes, or values, or when their behavior contradicts their beliefs or self-perception. It occurs when there is a discrepancy between what someone believes or values and their actions or external information they encounter.

I became aware of the concept after watching a vlog by Rollo Tomassi (If you aren’t familiar with him, get familiar quickly here. The Rationale Male, enough said) where he gives commentary on popular streamer Destiny’s feminist girlfriend. Her statements are a case study on how cognitive dissonance is the Millennial zeitgeist.

Had I not watched this video, I wouldn’t have understood what happened in my digital interaction and why it is shocking. I matched with a local woman. She had a great smile in her photos. For anyone who has ever swiped right, sometimes that is all it takes. We started chatting, and she told me about her day, her job, and her education. She then revealed her current situation:

“You should know that I am currently separated in the process of divorce, I am Christian and God is very important to me, raised Catholic, but I don’t go to the Catholic Church.”

I then asked her why she was getting a divorce:

“Well…long story short his gambling and porn addiction. As a Christian I tried very hard to keep it together.”

Cognitive Dissonance.

Where to start with this? The Catholic Church does not formally recognize divorce. In the eyes of the church, the Sacrament of Marriage is a lifelong bond. Divorce, therefore, is considered a “grave offense” against the natural order.

Okay – she’s not a real Catholic, she is a self-described Christian though. What about the vow before God – until death do us part? That’s a pretty important vow. Of course, what is a vow anyway? Oh right – a vow is a solemn promise or commitment that carries personal, moral, ethical, or spiritual significance. It reflects an individual’s intention to uphold certain principles, values, or responsibilities and often requires dedication, accountability, and adherence to the promises made.

I think that is pretty important.

But I digress…not really. It gets better.

If we subscribe to the current narrative that addiction is an illness (I’m on the fence on that one) then she abandoned her husband and broke her home because of an illness. If we agree that addiction is a moral failing, then as a Christian, Jesus teaches about forgiveness and encourages his followers to forgive others. In Matthew 18:21-22, Peter asks Jesus how many times he should forgive someone who sins against him, suggesting the idea of forgiving up to seven times. Jesus responds by saying, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times” (or “seventy times seven” in some translations). This indicates that forgiveness should be extended generously and without limit. So she should constantly forgive her husband. But what about her husband’s sin? Well –   be at peace with thee And if he be shameless and persist in his wrong-doingeven so forgive him from the heartand leave to God the avenging. So yeah, this could go on and on, but I’m not a bible scholar.

Did I mention cognitive dissonance yet?

So what is the solution to the problems in her marriage? Separation, divorce and signing up for a dating app. I mean, come on, monkey-branching before God is the 11th commandment in our current social order.

Leave a Reply