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Dr Sonya Rhodes, author of The Alpha Woman Meets Her Match, due out in Britain next month, says Alpha women are so unlucky in love because they’re looking in the wrong place.
Instead of seeking out a testosterone-driven Alpha man to share their life, she argues, they should try pairing up with his responsible, supportive opposite: Mr Beta.
Rather, she warns of another group of “Omega” men – dreamers, allergic to work, needy – whom empowered women should avoid at all cost.
“None of you should have to be your boyfriend’s caretaker,” insists Dr Rhodes. Indeed, it goes against a recent study of American census data by the National Bureau of Economic Research, which found a marked rise in “like marrying like”, with 48 per cent of graduates wedding graduates in 2005, up from 25 per cent in 1960.
“Maybe British women are a little shyer,” she admits, “but I’ve met lots who are very confident and assertive.
There’s no reason they shouldn’t feel comfortable embracing their Alpha and getting together with a Beta man.” Indeed, she insists the model can inform all aspects of a thriving relationship: from making the first move to paying the bill on a date.
As the singer Alanis Morissette puts it: “Alpha men are very turned on by the Alpha woman – really high chemistry, really fun to work with, probably really fun to have affairs with.
Denis Thatcher was arguably another Beta – though a successful businessman, he was happy to spend much of his life in Margaret’s shadow.
The problem with such labels is that they are often stereotyped.
Alpha females are seen as bitches; Alpha males as Lamborghini-driving James Bonds, while their Beta counterparts are weak, lily-livered wimps. Alpha women don’t have to be career women (“You might be the head of the PTA, a genius at connecting people or the organiser of a group for new mums”); nor are Beta men the type you have to settle for.
Dr Rhodes, a New York-based psychotherapist, was inspired to write the guide based on her experience of clients looking for love.
“I kept seeing strong, confident women who were concerned that they had missed the boat, that marriage had eluded them because they had wasted their thirties developing their careers,” she explains.