Over the years a myriad of books about the differences in male/female behavior have been published. Women in particular have driven the sales and the continued interest in how to deal with the male species.
Men have always found women to be somewhat unpredictable, mysterious, and hard to understand, but seem to have very little interest in discovering the reasons. They are happy to share and validate some of what they feel in male bonding situations while watching football games or talking over a backyard fence while spraying weed killer but I’m sure they don’t share or recommend the latest research or books on how to handle their mates.
We women on the other hand think that somehow we can fix who we’re with so they can become the person we thought they were when we first met them. It’s hard for us not to try improve everyone or everything that crosses our paths.
Believe me I have spent a lot of energy doing this myself and I was left exhausted . I am certainly not an expert on how to create the perfect relationship, but I have come to the conclusion that men have a hard time with us because we tend to confuse them. Our conversations are often labyrinthine, whereas they seek to get the facts and get on with what they’re doing.
We often ask questions that if answered incorrectly could mean hours of intense interrogating on our part until we get the answer we’re looking for. Have you ever asked your partner the following: “Do I look fat in this outfit?” This is a no win situation. If he answers “You look great” we will inevitably respond with “You’re just trying to make me feel good, what do I really look like?”
If, God forbid, he stated that we looked like we gained a little weight, hell might be his next stop.
How about when you cook something and you ask “How did you like this”? If I heard “It’s good” or “Not bad”, my inner twisted sister made a solemn oath to never make the particular dish again. My grandmother would storm out of the room and pout for hours.
Perhaps real equanimity between the sexes comes as we get older and we finally realize that acceptance and the ability to laugh at oneself is a far better choice. It certainly leaves more time for fun and frolic.
Loretta LaRoche writes the Get A Life Column for the Patriot Ledger.