I don’t profess to be any expert in the fine art of dating and relationships. In fact, I’ve stated several times before that I generally have an aversion to the practice. My history with women has taught me that shying away from relationships may carry with it certain moments of lonliness…but in the end, is far less stressful and nerve-wrecking. Still, I don’t mind tossing out the occassional gem or two to people who are in the dating/relationship scene. Those who can’t (or won’t) do, teach. Right?
My public service this time around around is directed at women. I love you. All of you. My mother is amongst you. My sisters are in this group. My best friend is in this group (what’s up Jos?!). You guys are amazing. And while I love you to death and I think God got it right by making you our helpmates, I also acknowledge the role you play in making our lives a living nightmare. So in the interest of starting the dialogue about women and men (or cats and dogs. Choose your metaphor) and promoting unity within the sexes, I decided to hip you womenfolk to certain things you do that drive us crazy. You can find articles all over the ‘net about things men hate about women. But here’s my list. Be prepared to get schooled:
1. Gossip and backbiting: While I recognize the inherent need for you to annihilate each other with harsh rhetoric, we hate that. Assaulting other women’s clothes, their looks, their personality, and their lifestyles may give you some sense of empowerment, but it drives us up the wall. What’s worse is when you expect us to contribute to the gossip. In the interest of keeping it real with you (we’re all family here), I’ll let you in on a secret: WE DON’T CARE. Don’t confuse our appearance of being interested with actually being interested. Most of time we only take part in the conversation to keep you happy and to keep you from doing the next thing we hate…
2. Nagging: Incessant griping about what men do, what men don’t do, or how we could do things better is enough to make even the most stone-cold person go insane.
3. Passive Aggressive Behavior: In the same family as nagging, passive aggressive behavior is a psychological condition wherein a person exhibits a failure to adequately resolve confrontational situations at the commencement of said confrontation. This unresolved conflict is usually brought up again during the fourth quarter of nail-biting football game and is motivated by something completely irrelevant to the conflict (i.e. picking a fight about the way we fold towels when the REAL issue was that we forgot to buy a Valentine’s Day gift three years ago). Lessening our viewing pleasure of a good game because of some BS is just wrong…plain and simple.
4. Clinginess: While this may be a good way to boost a man’s ego and give him an inflated sense of importance, being clingy is a major turnoff over a long period of time. Calling five times an hour, sending overly affectionate emails/text messages repetitiously, and finding excuses to be around us around the clock is maddening. In your defense, men can be clingy as well. Some bruhs need their lady’s permission to jump, instructions on how high to jump, and advice about where to land. When men are clingy, it’s pathetic. When women are clingy, it’s annoying.
5. Exploitation: Again, men have egos. We LOVE to feel like needed, to feel like the provider. As a result, some men DO occasionally throw their money around foolishly (a fool and his money are easily departed, right…?). But in that same vein, it’s up to women not to exploit our stupidity and our moments of weakness. When you do that, you are essentially telling a man that he is only as useful to you as their wallet will allow. Besides, if a man feels like he has you at the mercy of his dollar, don’t be surprised if and when he starts exploiting you.
6. Insecurity: Men hate overly assertive and arrogant women, true. But just as annoying are insecure women; the types who need affirmation and compliments on every turn.
7. Lack of appreciation: There are instances where men go to great lengths to satisfy their lady. But often times, instead of getting a simple thank you (or, heaven forbid, a little reciprocity), women can be unappreciative and unresponsive to said kindness. In fact, in some instances women will go as far as complain and nag about things they didn’t get out of the gesture (“Yeah. I like this silver bracelet, but I really wanted the gold one”). Egh.
8. Mixed messages: You want somebody who is tough and aggressive, but then you get upset when he beats you. You want freedom to be adventurous, but he’s not allowed to be. You want to have friends of the opposite sex, but you get huffy when he’s around female friends. A man who is stoic and silent is not in touch with his feelings, while a man who expresses his emotions is weak. Please make up your mind.
9. Living in the past: Men hate when women delve needlessly deep into her former relationships. To use, that is usually a telltale sign that you have not completely gotten over your ex or that you are pettily holding a grudge that should have been extinguished years ago. Likewise, we men hate being grilled on our pasts. What’s done is done. Get over it.
10. Vanity: Men HATE it when women pack a bunch of crap in their suitcases they don’t need…and then, in adding insult to injury (or more like adding injury to insult), expect us to haul that crap around. Only the most vain person needs four suitcases, an entire dufflebag of makeup and hair accessories, and a foot locker full of shoes for a three day trip. I was once able to pack enough stuff to last me an entire week in ONE carry on piece. Take notes. Above all that, I’ll be damned if a single woman on this planet does not carry a least one mirror with her at all times. Check yourself out in the mirror before you leave the house. After that, rely on God’s grace.
11. Unspoken communication: Generally speaking, men are pretty simple creatures. Even the most intelligent and analytical among us tend to keep things on the surface. So when women complicate matters by injecting some unspoken language into the communicative mix, there is bound to be trouble. A great example is in “White Men Can’t Jump”; where Gloria (played by Rosie Perez) tells Billy (played by Woody Harrelson) that she’s thirsty. In response, Billy gets her a glass of water. Little did poor Billy know, when Gloria said she was thirsty, she was parenthetically saying she wanted him to exhibit empathy by stating in response “I, too, know how it feels to thirst.” This was only a movie, true. But this scene plays itself out in the life of every single man I know who is in a relationship. As much as we try to learn Venusian, you womenfolk throw a certain dialect into the conversation that we will NEVER be able to understand. Unless you expect us to be mind readers, you need to say EXACTLY what you mean. Leaving your words up to our individual interpretation has never produced a positive outcome.
12. Dramatizations on every turn: One of the reasons why men HATE soap operas is because they are eerily similar to the day-to-day nonsense you put us all through. However, instead of having to rely on drama to boost ratings, women use drama to create interesting stories out of situations that would otherwise be considered boring and petty. I assure you: the brief argument you had with your female co-worker about cleaning out of the coffee maker is NOT about her secretly trying to destroy you and everything you love. Just clean the damn thing and be done with it.
13. Leading people on: One thing I have consistently heard from women is the declaration that they know whether or not they want to pursue a man (or if they’re too lazy or unambitious, have a man pursue them) within the first few minutes of meeting that man. If the interest isn’t there, say so and be done with it. Dragging things along unnecessarily or to satisfy your need to be desired is mean.
14. Pressure: Most men don’t respond well to exigent circumstances. Pressures to meet the parents, get married, move in together, have children, create joint accounts, etc., are all destructive to men in their respective ways. Similar to how certain aerosols have “Contents Under Pressure” warning labels, you should look closely for the labels on men warning you of what could happen when you apply too much pressure. Eventually, we’re bound to explode.
There you have it. I’m sure there are hundreds of other things to add to this list, I think you get the general idea.
You’re welcome. 🙂