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Bed-Stuy Men Get Brutally Honest in Dating Guide

By Camille Bautista | December 16, 2014 7:43am
 Jean Alerte and Frank Gateau, along with six co-authors, are releasing "Single Man, Married Man," a tell-all on relationships from the male perspective.
Jean Alerte and Frank Gateau, along with six co-authors, are releasing "Single Man, Married Man," a tell-all on relationships from the male perspective.
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DNAinfo/Camille Bautista

BEDFORD-STUYVESANT — A pair of Brooklyn business owners are on a mission to bring couples together with one fact that they believe to be true — every man wants to get married.

Childhood best friends Jean Alerte and Frank Gateau are hoping to end the battle of the sexes with “Single Man, Married Man,” a tell-all guidebook dishing the dirt on what men really think of romance.

“Guys don’t really have an outlet to vent on relationships. We don’t get together and hold these types of conversations like women do, so this is a platform for that,” Gateau, 32, said.

As owner of Bed-Stuy yogurt shop Brooklyn Swirl, Alerte said he and Gateau would talk to several female customers each week, many of whom would question the different perspectives the two friends have to relationships.

While Alerte has been married for five years, Gateau, managing partner alongside Alerte at PR firm Alerte, Carter & Associates, is a self-described “serial dater.”

“We started having these little single-man, married-man conversations and it made us think we should start asking other men what they think,” Alerte, 33, said.

After three years of surveying more than 300 men online and conducting in-person interviews with their six co-authors, the duo is set to release their book on Feb. 10, 2015.

Told from the perspective of married, divorced and single guys, each chapter addresses points of contention between men and women, Alerte said, with titles including “The Reasons Men Cheat” and “Are You Too Strong, or Is He Too Weak?”

Ultimately, the authors said they seek to showcase the idea that though they go about it differently, all men are looking for love.

Alerte cited one co-author, Kel Spencer, who he said had been single for many years and got married during the course of writing the book.

“He proved our theory,” Alerte said.

“At the end of the day, everybody wants the same thing. All men want to get married, they all want someone who will love them — and if they say they don’t, they’re lying. We’re just putting it out there.”

Alerte and Gateau shared excepts from “Single Man, Married Man” with DNAinfo. Below, find perspectives from single, divorced and married men on common relationship issues:

On why women should "stroke his ego":
Single man: "'Cater 2 U' [by Destiny's Child] should be on every woman’s playlist and kept on repeat… They knew that no matter where a woman was in life, she should always be able to cater to her man’s needs — prepare his meals, draw him a bath and massage his feet every now and then."

Divorced: "When he gets his ego stroked, he will be more inclined to love you more."

Married: "The lesson is this: once couples understand each other’s insecurities, the dynamics of their relationship will change for the better and love will flow naturally. Both people can work together to find a wholeness that will meet their individual needs."

On learning to compromise:
Single: "Someone has to wear the pants and someone has to wear the skirt … Women were born strong and have a type of inner strength that men will never have. A man with a dream needs a woman with vision; therefore, you need to recognize that strength within you and use it to build your relationship."

Married: "It’s not in most men’s nature to argue. If your man doesn’t want to argue with you, this does not mean that he’s weak. It possibly alludes to the exact opposite, that he possesses an inner strength to make the intelligent decision to exit the situation."

On why men lie:
Single: "It’s risky for men to be straightforward with women because the truth doesn’t always yield the results we are intending, and when we are being direct with our women, our messages can sometimes go in one ear and out the other. So lies are perpetuated to get our women to listen to us."

Married: "I really don’t think any of us want to know the 100 percent truth about our significant others. Do you really want to know which coworker your man has a meaningless crush on? Do you want to know that he hates how you look in your favorite dress?"

On why men cheat:
Single: "I saw a joke that said, 'A man can cheat on his woman and sleep like a baby in the same bed next to her, but will feel bad about getting a haircut from someone other than his regular barber,' which I found to be hilariously funny and true.

"Sometimes, as men progress in life and in their careers, we are exposed to a new supply of women who weren’t previously available, so we feel the need to explore these potential new mates that are now accessible."

Divorced: "Simply put, cheating is the result of lust; when it comes to a woman, a man is a natural predator. He stalks his prey and pounces every chance he gets until she either gives in or ignores his every advance. That animal instinct in us is what feeds our lust and causes us to lose all sense of what is rational and right or wrong."

"A man who cheats is looking for someone to fulfill a part of him that his lady is not, plain and simple. Whether physical, emotional or social, if there is an imbalance in the relationship, he will seek balance."

“Single Man Married Man” is available for pre-order online and in bookstores Feb. 10. Authors include Jickael Bazin, Rae Holliday, Zangba Thomson, Fadelf Jackson, Kel Spencer, and Pervis Taylor.