I wonder where the entry point to that community is.
Okay. I've known two. Importantly, I knew them both before they became PUAs, I know them both now that they are no longer PUAs, and I met both of them socially with no involvement from the Internet.
The two have a few commonalities:
- cloudy relationships with their parents, characterized by absent/disciplinarian fathers and love/hate relationships with their mothers
- keen interest in bodybuilding and other masculine pursuits, such as powersports
- gregariousness to counteract inner shyness - both are "all hat no cattle" type people (although I'm fond of them both, they're big blustery pussycats)
- overemphasis on the physicality of women, limited experience with the reality of a relationship with a genuine human of the opposite sex
- credulity towards written advice simply because it's been written
- would be or had been catfished (hard)
I can't characterize all the men who become PUAs the same way. I only know the two. I've interacted with a few online (back in the glory days of Reddit I attempted to negotiate a non-aggression pact between TwoX, RedPill and Mensrights) and while I can easily see them slipping into the same paradigms, I have no way to confirm.
In both cases, they started espousing and practicing archetypal PUA behavior after meeting someone at the gym. In both cases, they found a spotter with a lot more game than they had. In both cases, they had been recently dumped by canonically important girlfriends. And in both cases, they were willing to spend cash money on seminars and reading materials in order to "find more success with women." This was the early '00s, mind you - prior to Neil Strauss. For all I know, they were swimming in that soup back when it was pure and undiluted by the half-hearted flailings of The Internet.
As friends to both of them (neither know each other; at the time they lived a hundred miles apart), both were eager to enroll me in their wisdom. That's part of the whole "red pill" mythos: they had learned earth-shattering Illuminati-grade secrets and while they protected the gnostic mysteries of their craft, they very much wanted their friends to revel in their same exploits. It's like the Masons - to be one, ask one.
One of them went through his PUA phase while I was single. The other went through it while I was with a girl (who turned into my wife some years later). As such, I paid a lot more attention the first time and saw that the song remained the same the second time.
The vector is decidedly word-of-mouth. It is passed from one awkward male with poor understanding and regard of women to another. There needs to be a pattern of misunderstanding, a streak of desperation and an inadequate emotional intelligence and empathy in order for the seed to take root. But if all of those characteristics align, the proselytization and inclusiveness of the culture becomes self-sustaining, at least for a time. That time is governed, I believe, by the ascribant's latent humanity (or lack thereof).
One of my friends foreswore all PUA-related approaches and philosophies upon finding himself profiled on DontDateHimGirl.com. I'm not sure if it was seeing himself objectified and denigrated for base characteristics that did the trick, or if he simply decided that his reputation mattered more. Either way, he entered into a long term relationship that led to marriage a few years later. The other joined the movement after finding himself incapable of dealing with a bad breakup, which eventually led to a relapse in his alcoholism, the loss of his medical practice, his declaration of bankruptcy and a year-long fascination (and practice) of vagabonding.
I would describe both as "joiners." I would not describe myself as such. When the PUA philosophy was explained to me, it went something like this:
"The secret is that women want to be treated like shit."
"Uhm... they don't though."
"Secretly, they do. The ones you can fuck at least."
"That gets all over you though, dude."
"Yeah but I'm getting laid a lot."
"But you're really unhappy."
"But I'm getting laid a lot."
"How much did you pay for this?"
"I got a deal. Jared's really cool. You should talk to him."