"You are so hot."
According to Cosmopolitan Magazine writer Korin Miller those are the four "magic" words that caused John Edwards to toss away his marriage, family, and political career. Could he have simply ignored Rielle Hunter when she uttered those words to him? Such a thing would have been next to impossible...or so Miller claims in her article:
Former senator John Edwards is obviously lacking in good judgment, but he has looks, money, power, and intelligence on his side. Meanwhile, his "other woman," Rielle Hunter, has little to none of the above. So how the hell did she entice him to cheat when he had a devoted wife, loving family, and potential presidency at stake? By using four little words that have a surprisingly powerful impact on men.
According to Elizabeth Edwards' new book, Resilience, "You are so hot" was the one-liner Hunter used to lure John into an affair. Elizabeth's story is heartbreaking and complicated, but this revelation made us think: How can such a clichéd phrase entice a smart guy to risk everything? And is a woman who fails to say these words to her guy more in danger of losing him than one who does?
Poor John Edwards. He had no defense against those hypnotic words. Miller explains the power of those words:
For starters, experts say "You are so hot" taps in to a source of deep-seated insecurity for many men and offers them the reassurance they're yearning for.
"Attractive women get that a lot, but guys tell me they crave the same kind of compliments," says Ava Cadell, PhD, author of 12 Steps to Everlasting Love. "Being perceived as hot in and out of the bedroom empowers a man sexually." And while that's true for any guy, it's likely that John Edwards' poor roots — and narcissistic personality (remember his $500 haircut?) — made him an especially easy target for ego stroking. Some men "are so starved for validation — if you say 'you are so hot,' you've got 'em," says Greg Baer, MD, author of Real Love.
And now Miller gets painfully clinical describing the effect of "You are so hot" on men. Warning: Avoid reading the following paragraph if such clinical detail offends (or embarrasses) you:
And a man's response to this pickup line is more than just mental: Calling out his ability to turn you on actually may increase blood flow to his penis, Cadell says. Of course, a good guy will suppress his desire to stray or channel his lust toward his wife or girlfriend, but he still can't stop his body from registering it.
John Edwards just couldn't help himself as he was hypnotized by those words. Now we understand, Korin.
Ms Miller concludes with some typical Cosmopolitan advice on how wives can use those magic words as a sort of verbal jiu-jitsu to keep their husbands from straying:
Eager to try the Hunter method on your man? Maximize its effect by whispering "You are so hot" at the start of a long meal. You'll re-create the feeling of delayed gratification that you feel at the beginning of an affair, says Love. Your man may wave it off, but don't be fooled. Whether he's Brad Pitt's clone or Jonah Hill's, he'll eat it up and love you more for it. So step off, Hunters of the world. We're on to you.
So if Elizabeth Edwards had simply whispered those magic hypnotic words into John's ear, today they would be enjoying a happy marriage inside the White House? The Cosmopolitan political tip of the day.