This is an ad found in a men’s magazine for Liquid Trust.
I had another ad for this same product, but I don’t have an image of it to share (it’s pretty boring anyway – a guy in a lab coat with a beaker of red liquid and a lot of text). What that one says that I wanted to include with this image, however, is “new studies show that the human hormone Oxytocin fuels intimacy, reduces your stress in social situations and compels others to trust you.”
Now, I find this ad by itself pretty scary, but combined with that statement it’s even more creepy. I’m sure there’s a fair amount of science behind this and the website states:
“We are strongly opposed to the use of Liquid Trust or any other thing for immoral or manipulative purposes. We truly hope that you will only use our products when you have only the best intentions in mind.”
It doesn’t feel like that statement is very genuine, though. Now, perhaps it’s just the marketing department that’s truly putting such a creepy, controlling, manipulative spin on this product and it’s “virtues”, but since the marketing department controls the flow of information, that’s the impression the company is giving. And while the handcuffs are a big reason for my creeped out by this ad, it’s not because I think handcuffs can’t be enjoyed by a couple that really does trust each other. It’s just that I don’t think you can manufacture trust and I find the idea that they are selling such a snake oil product as a way to get women to submit to you willingly to be incredibly skeezy and morally repugnant.
Obviously, this ad isn’t meant for me. Still, I feel like it’s incredibly manipulative in the same way that books like The Game are. They promise that if you play manipulative mind games, all your most selfish dreams can come true and it’s all ok because you aren’t forcing anyone to do anything they don’t want! It’s giving men a free pass to be manipulative and selfish and, worse, self-righteous if they don’t get what they want. That’s not ok.